CORTNEY & CO

LIFE + STYLE BLOG

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

2018 Goals Update: April

This month's goals update is a week late and if I'm being honest, I didn't really want to post it. I've been inconsistent with some of my goals and feeling lack of motivation with others. 

I know I'm not the only one feeling this way and as we creep closer to mid-year it becomes really easy to let that fire and drive I had in January slowly fade away.The old me would have done just that. And maybe you would have too. Not this year. When we change our thinking from perfection to progress then giving up becomes a lot harder to do. Despite setbacks and missteps there is always progress, even if it's little itty bitty baby progress. 

//Write down ten things that I am grateful for at the end of every single day//
I've actually done pretty well with this goal. I've got a good morning routine down that includes reflecting on the day before as well as looking at what's already happened in the early morning that I can be grateful for. A lot of the times it's the sunshine and birds chirping :)

//Complete at least 3 devotionals or bible studies//
I'm making by way through Awaken by Priscilla Shirer. I wouldn't say I love it, but there are definitely some good nuggets to take away. I'll do a full review when I'm done with it. 

//Workout at least 4 times per week for at least 30 minutes//
I've been pretty inconsistent with this one and I honestly have no excuses. Some weeks I did great and others I only made it once or twice. I've been going on lots of walks now that the weather is nice but that's not definitely not a replacement.

//Lose 20 pounds//
I’ve lost 11.2 pounds since January and while that's great that means I only lost 1 pound in April. See above. I've also been eating horribly on the the weekends and patio happy hours don't help either. I'm determined to reign that in this month and I'd like to loose a few more pounds before our trip to San Diego at the end of the month. 

//Give up soda for at least 30 days//
I completed this one at the end of January and am doing really well with limiting how many I drink to 2-3 per month. 

//Wake up an hour earlier on weekdays in order to have the best start to my day//
Again with the consistency. After losing my shit yesterday morning on the way out the door it reaffirmed that I need my morning time, by myself, before anyone else gets up.

//Drink half my body weight in ounces of water each day//
Doing well with this one. 

//Read 12 books throughout the year//
I've read 10 books so far and plan to do a summer reading list soon.  

//Declare our house a yelling free zone and create a plan on how we'll do this//
Getting in my morning time helps with this and allows me to be ready to go when the kids get up. This time of year is super busy and being prepared (lunches packed, schedule figured out, laundry done, etc) really helps with this. I'm also working on not pushing my rushed adult agenda on the kids so much. Especially on things that don't matter. Say it together now, it will be ok if it takes the kids ten minutes to brush their teeth.

//Have bi-weekly date nights with my husband. Whether we go out or do something at home, a time carved out for just the two of us to strengthen our marriage//
There were many weeknights in April where we were like two ships passing. I'd take one kid to their activity and my husband would take the other. Our anniversary is in May (and already happened by the time you're reading this) which will force us to send the kids away and enjoy a night out.

//Continue to create a budget each month and update the budget at least weekly//
Why must house things cost sooo much money? Can't I have the bathroom of my dreams for free? April's budget wasn't too bad and now we're focused on planning and saving for things like vacations, birthdays, and holidays coming up this summer. 

//Create a house where stuff does not cause chaos. Each room will only have things we love and all of those things will have a place//
It's amazing how normal it's become for the boys and I to get rid of a huge pile of stuff. You would think we'd be out of stuff by now, but surprisingly we keep finding things we can live without which means we're getting closer and closer to only having the things we really use and love.


April Feelings: Stalled, inspired, unmotivated, rushed, grateful 


Monday, May 7, 2018

Weekend Recap

The weekend started on Friday with the day off work. My hair was waaayy overdue for a cut and color and my friend Melissa worked her magic. We've been friends since middle school and I can't tell you how nice it is to completely trust the person doing your hair. 

The weather was absolutely gorgeous the entire weekend which meant a patio and fresh fruity drink were definitely in order. I'm obsessed with this cherry limeade mojito. It's not too sweet or overly minty.

Ben's school had a color run Friday afternoon and he was covered from head to toe. 

Saturday was Cinco de Mayo as well as J and I's anniversary. I celebrated Cinco with a margarita and then J and I went out to dinner that night. We forgot to take a picture and by the time I remembered to take one it was already super late and we were too stuffed from dinner. 

Sunday involved a trip to Sam's Club and family movie day. We saw Avenger's Infinity War and I really liked. It had so many funny parts and I found myself laughing out loud a lot. Jack feel asleep half way through and woke up with 10 minutes left in the movie. I asked him if he was sad he missed some of it because he was sleeping to which he admittedly told me he was not asleep, just resting :) 

Hope you all had a wonderful weekend!

Linking up with Biana for Weekending
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Thursday, May 3, 2018

Creating the Ultimate (Aldi) Cheese Board

It's no surprise I love a good hunk of cheese so a board filled with it is pretty much heaven. Cheese boards are perfect for happy hour, while you're waiting for dinner to finish, or when you don't feel like making dinner at all. 
This beautiful and tasty cheese board won't break the bank. Everything's from Aldi and under $25~Cortneyandco.com

Despite some cheeses hefty price tag, you don't have to break the bank to make a beautiful and tasty cheese board. I threw together this board over Easter weekend and people snacked on it while the kids hunted for eggs. Everything on the board was from Aldi and the entire thing cost less than $25! You can't beat Aldi's prices and selection and their cheese is always super fresh and tastes delicious. This isn't sponsored, I just really love their cheese :)

Cheese I Used
Specially Selected Aged White Cheddar (top left)
Happy Farms Garlic & Herb Goat Cheese (bottom left)
Specially Roasted Garlic with Tomato & Basil (bottom center)

Accompaniments 
Fairway Luxury Cracker Selection
Great Gherkins Whole Sweet Pickles
Specially Bite Size Dry Salami 
Southern Grove Dried Tropical Pineapple 
Spanish Stuffed Green Olives 

For the harder cheeses, I like to cut them into bite sized pieces so people can eat them more easily. The goat cheese is so soft I simply take it out of the package and let people spread it on their crackers. Speaking of crackers, that cracker pack is amazing. I love that you get such a variety and the price can't be beat. They also come packaged in a re-sealable plastic container which is super helpful for saving some for later. 

And there you have it! An inexpensive cheese board that tastes just as delicious as it looks.
Cheese Boards don't have to be expensive to be delicious~cortneyandco.com

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Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Life + Weekend Recap

It's been awhile since I've done an update. Life has been busy and honestly the last thing I've wanted to do at night is sit down and blog. I'm making it a goal to post consistently for the month of May and I've got several other blog goals that I want to accomplish. 

Here's what we've been up to lately.

Although we bought this Ikea table a few weeks ago, I was dreading putting it together. I've heard horror stories about putting their furniture together so I was expecting the worst. It ended up being so easy Ben put most of it together by himself. For real. I'm turning this into a DIY Lego Table so as soon as I order and install the Lego baseplates I'll do a post on it.

I think the nice weather is here to stay which means taking advantage of patios and happy hours. That thing on the left is a savory cheesecake and it is every bit as amazing as it sounds.

Last week I went to a one-day workshop that was on a farm. Literally. Cows and all.

This Saturday Ben and I woke up super early to drive to his first out of town competitive track meet. It was a long day, but I'm so proud of how he did. His team has been practicing 3 times a week for the last several weeks in every weather condition possible. After his first practice in 20 degree weather he wanted to quit so badly and I'm so proud that he stuck it out. He got 2nd place in the 1500m and the 800m and also shaved seconds off his last time. 

Sunday was spent doing yard work and cleaning some neglected areas of our home (i'm looking at you bathrooms). Later that afternoon my parents and sister's family came over for pizza and cake to celebrate my dad's birthday. 

Here's to the start of a great May!


Linking up with Biana for Weekending. 
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Thursday, April 19, 2018

Creamy Potato & Corn Chowder

Well I never thought I'd be making and posting about chowders in mid-April, but here we are. And if there's anything good that can come out of the winter that will never end it's this creamy soup filled with chunks of tender potatoes, sweet corn, and let's not forget the bacon. 

What You Need:
-1/4 cup salted butter
-1/3 cup flour
-6 cups chicken broth 
-1/2 red bell pepper
-1/2 green bell pepper
-1/4 cup diced jalapeños (I used jarred) 
-3 medium to large russet potatoes
-2 cans sweet corn, drained
-1 pound bacon, cooked and crumbled (save the grease)
-1/4 tsp minced garlic
-1 1/2 cups heavy cream

What To Do:
1. Dice red and green peppers and jalapeños. 
2. In a large pot, melt butter then the add peppers and jalapeños. Sauté until tender.
3. Add the minced garlic to the pot and stir for ~ 1 minute. 
4. Slowly add flour to the pot, stirring constantly. 
5. Add in chicken broth and whisk until smooth.
6. Peel and dice potatoes into bite sized chunks. Add to the pot and cook for 10-15 minutes on medium heat until tender.
7. Once potatoes are tender, add in corn and heavy cream. Let simmer for an additional 10 minutes.
8. While pot is simmering, cook bacon and crumble. Add 1/4 cup bacon and the bacon grease to the pot. Stir until well incorporated. 
9. Once the bacon grease is added, cook for 5-10 more minutes for the bacon flavor to penetrate the soup.
10. Serve hot and top with the bacon crumbles. 


Recipe adapted from Cooking Classy