Clean Eating Tips From My Sugar Fast

I have been on a modified sugar fast for the past ten days and it has been pretty successful! With our family vacation next week and our wedding a month after that, I am determined to eat well in preparation. When I shared this with one of my dear friends earlier this month, she offered to be my accountability partner in eating clean. We started our modified sugar fast on April 17th, taking last Saturday off to enjoy all the delicious treats at my bridal shower.

My original plan was to cut out all sugar, starches, and dairy, but I have since made a slight modification to my approach. In the past week, I have incorporated sparing amounts of whole grains and cheese. This has helped me to avoid feeling deprived, while still staying on track with progress. I have found some clean eating tips to be particularly helpful throughout this process and am excited to share them with y’all today!

Clean Eating Tips from My Sugar Fast

— Make a big batch of caramelized onions and keep them on hand to add to any and all meals! I have tossed these into salads and omelets almost every day for their savory flavor!

— Stock up on a variety of greens. I have kept a big container of spinach on hand, along with a bag each of spring mix and chopped romaine. The spinach is great for sautéing or tossing into smoothies, and the other two are a great base for salads. I like greens for their source of iron, and the beautiful benefit to my skin!

— Buy a flavorful hummus (or three!). My favorite lunch to make this week has been the Heavenly Hummus Wrap from Pioneer Woman. I’ve been using the smooth garlic hummus from Trader Joes and am such a fan of its flavor!

— Choose a fun seltzer flavor and keep it on hand for an afternoon treat. I picked up a box of the ginger peach seltzer from Target last weekend, served in fun slim cans! Sipping seltzer in the afternoon has helped me to feel like I’m indulging in something sweet, without any of the caloric cost. The bubbles also help my stomach to feel full between meals, a win-win!

— Keep a Think Thin bars on hand throughout the day. I have tossed one of these into my bag every morning, as they especially provide me with a protein-packed afternoon snack. This also makes a great go-to during errands or unexpected car trips. My favorite flavors are brownie crunch and smooth peanut butter.

Through this sugar fast, I have found myself to have more energy, less cravings, and my clothes are fitting better! I plan to continue implementing these clean eating tips after the sugar fast is over to continue these lovely benefits.

What are your favorite clean eating tips? Please share in the comments below!

Vintage Postage Stamps from Little Postage House

As you may have seen in my post earlier this week, our invitations are ready to be mailed to our loved ones!  Details are important to me, so I’d consulted the internet earlier this year to peruse our options. My favorite option for sending wedding stationery is to use vintage postage stamps, but that can be quite costly! Fortunately, we were blessed to be gifted almost all of our pretty postage from my mom.

Of all the USPS options offered in the past few years, my favorite has been the Vintage Seed Packet set. Since they were released in 2013, they have been out of stock at face value for a while, so I began to look elsewhere. I’m also smitten with these Strawberry stamps, but they only come in a 3-cent option in rolls of 10,000. My mom gifted us with the Forever Songbird and the traditional American flag stamps, which perfectly suited our envelopes. The birds looked lovely against our blush invitation envelopes, and the flag popped against our navy response ones. It worked out beautifully!

Through my years of wedding blog readership, I’ve been smitten with the look of vintage postage stamps on wedding invitations. I really like the idea of choosing stamps that reflect a special detail of a couple’s story or interests. Naturally, I took to the internet to research the cost of vintage postage stamps for our wedding stationery. I quickly found that the cost for such pretty postage would be about four times the cost of the current face value of USPS stamps, so we opted against them. Fortunately, I found a small way to incorporate them into our stationery suite anyway.

About two weeks ago, I reached out to Loly of the Little Postage House to inquire about ordering a single set of my favorite stamps. If I can’t have vintage stamps on all of our invitations, I knew I want to at least use them in the suite photographed on our wedding day! I had long been considering the much-acclaimed Verde Studios for such stamps, but was so pleased by Loly’s stock! She kindly responded to my inquiry in the same day, offering to gift us with a set of my favorites. The set came in the mail last night and they are just as beautiful as I’d hoped they would be. I was so blessed by her generosity that I want to share my selections with y’all today!

Vintage Postage Stamps - Magnolia Statehood

Mississippi Statehood

Vintage Postage Stamps - Flowering Tree

Flowering Tree, specifically Dogwood and Magnolia

Vintage Postage Stamps - Annapolis Tercentenary

Annapolis Tercentenary

Vintage Postage Stamps - American Tree

American Tree, specifically the Oak and Pine

I chose the Mississippi Statehood and Flowering tree stamps for their subtle hint of Southern charm. It is no secret that I’m a Southerner at heart! To equally incorporate Dillon’s tastes, I chose the Annapolis Tercentenary because he really likes being near the coast, and the American tree stamps because he likes to be outdoors and currently lives out in the country, surrounded by lots of old beautiful trees. I’m delighted to know that our photographed invitation suite will be sweetly adorned with these beauties in June!

I encourage y’all to check out the Little Postage House shop and comment below with your favorites!

Wedding Planning Update: Less than 2 Months to Go!

We are less than fifty days to our wedding! My friends hosted the perfect bridal shower on Saturday – more on that soon! – and I have felt more like a bride ever since. There have been lots of important to-dos, family gatherings, and projects to be done over the past month. With that, I have not really sat down to blog and share our life happenings recently, but I have missed this! With less than two months until the big day, we are due for another wedding planning update with lots to report!

Wedding Planning Update - Less Than Two Months to Go!

source: Perry Vaile Photography

We have accomplished more in the past month than we have in all the prior months of engagement combined! We are going on a family vacation in early May, so we’ve made it our mission to finish as much of the planning as possible before we leave so we can soak up the much-needed rest. We’ve begun to delegate a lot more of the time-consuming projects to loved ones and continue to be blessed by the generosity of those around us. It takes a village to do lots of things, and making a wedding happen is one of them!

Since my last update we’ve:
— looked at possible bridal accessories (I think I’ve found my earrings and have a good idea of my desired shoe style!)
— decided on and reserved Dillon’s attire
— confirmed the attire for our flower girls and junior bridesmaids
— added another bridesmaid and groomsman to our bridal party
— secured all but two bridesmaids dresses and communicated the shoe choices
— finalized our rental plan
— chosen and ordered our bridesmaid and groomsmen gifts
— spoken with my sweet auntie who is making my veil
— begun to test out wedding day makeup products
— talked with two dear friends who will serve as our emcee and day-of coordinator
— completed a bouquet run-through to estimate the number of blooms to order
— brought my dress for the first round of dress alterations
— put a deposit on a tent in case of inclement weather
— chosen the groomsmen attire and communicated that to them
— discussed ideas for our wedding morning
— chosen a reading for our ceremony
— ordered ribbon samples for bouquets and a couple other projects… there are so many pretty colors to choose from!
— finalized and ordered our stationery suite
— ordered our envelopes
— gathered some vintage postage for our stationery to be photographed (we were blessed to be gifted my favorites from Little Postage House!)
— addressed and assembled our stationery suite (I’m taking them to the post office to be hand-cancelled and sent this week!)
— finalized our timeline and talked through it with our photographer
— ordered and picked up thank you cards

Our next action steps are:
— choose and order my bridal accessories
— make plans for our wedding morning
— plan our ceremony
— write our vows
— place floral order and purchase supplies
— do a cake run through and decide on our cake stand
— order dessert
— sit down with our day-of coordinator friend to talk through specifics
— create playlists for various aspects of the day (ceremony, cocktail hour, reception)
— order any specialty linens aside from the basic ones from the rental company
— go for my second dress fitting
— secure the last two dresses for my faraway bridemaids
— file for our marriage license
— plan our rehearsal dinner
— finalize our list of needs for the big day (down to every extension cord and trash bag… I’m big on details and preparedness!)
— purchase bouquet ribbon

We are getting so close! It’s really exciting to see the pieces come together of everything we’ve been imagining. I’m so very grateful!