Surprise!

Yes, it’s me…the Internet did not in fact swallow me up. It did almost chew me up and spit me out, though.  It’s been about three weeks since I’ve posted anything on the blog, and even though I pretty much Dave Chappelle-ed everybody, I am officially back! There have been a lot of changes going on in my life, and on the blog. Blog changes will be discussed now, life changes will be discussed later!

About three weeks ago I decided that I needed to upgrade my wordpress blog from a “.com” to a “.org” site, mainly because I wanted more creative control, etc.  Even though I researched and followed everything step by step, while exporting my old blog and importing the information to my new blog, I thought for a moment I had lost everything.

Cue overly dramatic, self-loathing Christine.  As you’ll soon find out I didn’t lose everything {the people at Bluehost ROCK}, and I’ll explain everything else that’s been going on later this week.

I have made the creative decision to improve the blog in a variety of ways, first by improving the name from just “Skinny Fingers”, to “The Skinny Finger Chronicles”.  I tried to take the opportunity to adjust the name while changing the blog from a wordpress.com to wordpress.org site. In terms of what’s on the new blog, every thing is identical, you wouldn’t even know that I had changed anything except for some cosmetic stuff if I wasn’t bringing this up.  My final step before getting things back to normal revolves around me moving my subscribers.  If you’ve subscribed via email I have transffered you to the new blog, but if for any reason you don’t get the new posts, sign up for the new blog at “www.theskinnyfingerchronicles.com”.  Now, if you’re a follower via bloglovin’, the wonderful people at bloglovin’ will be moving you today, and again, you will now be able to find me at “www.theskinnyfingerchronicles.com”.

In the next few days I’ll be redirecting this site to my new one, so there won’t be any confusion. But like I said everything that’s on this blog can also be found on the new one, so no worries there. 🙂

I hope everyone is having a wonderful Monday, I can’t guarantee a new post every day this week, but I do promise that I’m back and won’t disappear like that again. 🙂

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#FiveThingsSF {March 6, 2015}

Heyyooo everyone!  It’s finally the end of the week which means another edition of our Five Things.  Remember to post and share your Five Things for the week with the hashtag #FiveThingsSF so we can all share in each other’s weekly gratitude round-up.  Let’s get started, shall we?

Lavanila D.O.

Living a healthy life doesn’t end in the kitchen and the gym.  For me, living a healthy life applies to all avenues and aspects of what I do…including basic hygiene.  One main focus for this {although it might sound weird} is having “clean” deodorant in the sense that it’s aluminum and paraben free.  I’m going to do a full write up on the who’s, what’s, and why’s very soon, but this week I found a new product favieeee.

I found this Lavanila Deodorant at Sephora on Monday and I’m officially in love.  The deodorant that I was using was also aluminum and paraben free but it wasn’t really working out for me in the sense that at times I wasn’t exactly…smelling…my best.  Not cool.  This tackles both the issue and the reasoning behind choosing a product such as this.  The vanilla grapefruit smells okay, but I’m definitely going to try a few different scents before making my final decision.

Omgliterallydead

I love Instagram, and I love this Instagram account.  I don’t know who is in charge of it {Skellie, duh}, but it’s hilarious.  The account belongs to Skellie, a sassy, urban, 20-something skeleton living in NYC just trying to figure out her place in the world, one insta at a time.  Just to give you an idea…..

Or…

Seriously so funny, so basic, so dead.  Literally,  I crack up every time.  You can follow her @omgliterallydead .

Christmas in March

I woke up the happiest girl on the planet on Tuesday because I had a little gift from one of my besties, Abby.


I don’t care when a Christmas present gets here, if it’s Kendra Scott, say no more.  This girl knows what’s up when it comes to gifting, and anything turquoise is quite alright with me. 🙂

Can You Hear The Wedding Bells?

Ring-a-ding-ding, Santa must have been my mailman this week because on Wednesday I got ANOTHER surprise package from ANOTHER bestie.  This time is was from Liz in Chicago, the friend that we made the Best Bride-To-Be Gift Basket for.  I was super pumped and super honored because this was a surprise package asking me to be one of her bridesmaids!  {It was totally the Gift Basket that persuaded her to choose me…only kidding!!}

Of course I said yes, and I can’t wait to both help her and be by her side for her special day!!  Love ya, Liz!

Jimmy Time

You probably can’t tell from the blog, but Jimmy and I haven’t been able to see much of each other the past three weeks due to work.  This past Monday, he was given the day off last minute AND the weather gods decided to shine down on Charlotte by giving us a beautiful {and random} 60 degree weather, sunny day.  Jimmy and I took full advantage of it and had the best day spending time together and exploring parts of CLT we haven’t seen yet.  We saw places I definitely want to blog about later, but I decided that I want to just keep our random fun day to ourselves.  The blog doesn’t need to know everything. 🙂  I’m just so thankful that we were able to hang out all day and do fun things!  {and in beautiful weather, I might add….c’monnnn spring.  Where ya at you big tease?}

Side note:  picture not taken from this past Monday, but you get the idea

Okay now it’s your turn to share!  What are your five things for the week?  Remember to use the hashtag #FiveThingsSF on any social media platform so we can see what we’re thankful for this week!

What are your Five Things for the week??

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Dairy Free Overnight Oats + February Volunteering Recap

I woke up this morning reeeaaadddyyy for breakfast.  While I attempt to maintain a “paleo-based lifestyle” most of the time, my emphasis is heavy on mostly veggies and no dairy.  I avoid gluten most of the time, but it’s something that I’ll let slip in there every now and then {it’s all about how to best balance your diet for you}.  When I was in college {when I still consumed dairy on the reg}, one of my absolute favorite breakfasts was Overnight Oats.  If you click that link it will take you back to the Rec’s page when I originally posted the blog, oh how time flies.

After posting about my Dairy Free Chai Tea Latte last week, I got to thinkin’…what other of my favie things can I turn “dairy free”.  I instantly thought of this meal.  I originally followed PBF’s measurements, but much like her I’ll get to point where I can just eyeball the appropriate amounts.  The key here is that you MUST assemble this the night before.

Ingredients:

2/3 cup of oats {quick oats work the best, I accidentally bought quick steel cut oats but they still worked!}
1/2 cup of almond milk {or any non-dairy substitute}
6 oz container of yogurt {here I used coconut milk yogurt, but almond milk yogurt should work well also}
2 Tbsp of chia seeds
A little bit of honey or agave nectar for added sweetness

Combine all of the ingredients in a mason jar or sealable container {a bowl that you cover with plastic wrap will also work}.

Then mix all of the ingredients together, seal the container, place in the fridge, and let the mixture sit over night.


By letting this to sit in the fridge overnight, this will allow the oats to absorb the remaining ingredients, giving you a tasty, thick, and filling breakfast!  Top with anything you want, and you’re good to go!  Keep healthy toppings in mind.


And then up close….

Image

Soooo delicious, and I’m so excited that this worked out with dairy-free alternatives!

February Volunteering Recap

If you’re just joining us, my New Years Resolution this year was to become more active in my community through volunteering.  To make sure I accomplish this and stay on top of my goals, I have to volunteer at least once a month.  This month I ended up volunteering a few times, continuing my volunteering responsibilities from January.  It’s been so much fun seeing the kids on a regular basis and playing with them.  Now that the weather is going to start warming up soon, there are a lot of other fun volunteering events that I want to try.  I can’t wait to fill you guys in when I do!

Hope everyone’s having a great Thursday!  One more day to Friday!

Have you ever had overnight oats before?  In what ways do you give back to your community? 

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Organizing Part Two//The Closet & Other Drawers

YOU GUYS!

I have to first apologize.  I’m just now realizing that I promised weeks ago that I would share my “How To Organize The Closet From Hades” experience.  I was flipping through my camera looking for a food pic, and I stumbled across all of my before and after closet cleaning pictures.  So that’s what’s happening today.  It just completely escaped my mind.  To get the back story of my organization habits/check out part one of my reorganization rampage, click the link to read Organizing Part One//The Top Drawer.  Showed ya my top drawer and then left ya high and dry…such a tease.

Sooooooo…this is about to get embarrassing.  The good news is it ends well.

I used to take up every inch of my side of the closet, and not in a good way.  If a stack of clothes got too high or out of reach, articles of clothing would get shoved into any nook and cranny I could find.  I just had so much STUFF and not enough SPACE.

Now, I also want to be clear, let me emphasize the word STUFF.  I don’t mean “I just had so much stuff” as in, “oh good heavens I love all of my fabulous clothes, they’re all so perfect, I just don’t have enough room for them, poor little old me”.  No.  I had a lot of stuff.  Stuff I didn’t wear anymore.  Stuff that didn’t fit me anymore.  Stuff that I’ve somehow hoarded over the years because of that one off chance that I “might” wear it again.

Stuff.  Say no to stuff.

I feel like a lot of us have this same problem.  We have a lot of stuff, but not a closet of quality clothes that we treat well and get good use out of.  As I get older, one thing I know I want is a more mature closet.  Don’t get me wrong, I love a good deal and will bargain shop till I drop, and if no one is stopping me, I’m wearing yoga pants 24/7/365.  However, it’s time to cleanse and work towards a lighter and more organized closet space.  Declutter your closet, declutter your life, declutter your mind.  So let’s go over the damage, and cover the rules.

The top half of the closet/most of what’s hanging up.

And what the bottom half used to look like at any given moment.

I know.. this ish was baaaaaaaad.

I spent a lot of time reviewing other articles and blogs and I made a few simple rules for myself.  Since we’re dealing with clothing that’s not of the undergarment nature, unless what I decided not to keep was in rough shape, I either donated it or added it to my Poshmark account {more on that in a minute}.

Here are the rules:

1.  If it doesn’t fit, get rid of it.
2.  Okay so it fits, but do you REALLY like how you look in it?  {I had a few things like this, I thought I liked the top in store, but then when I got home for whatever reason it didn’t fit the same way.  Then I never wore it and it just took up space}
3.  Even if it fits, have you worn it in the past 6 months {or last season depending on the time of year}?  If the answer is no, get rid of it.
4.  Does it fit the style that you’re going for these days?  {i.e.– are you going for a more muted color look? Preppy?  Boho-chic?}  Whatever it is you’re trying to accomplish with your wardrobe, if it doesn’t fit the “idea” you have, get rid of it.
5.  Take everything out and invest in quality hangers.  {if your closet is anything like mine, you need to block off an entire evening or day where this is the only thing you focus your attention on.}
6.  Also, buy wine.  You’re going to need it.

As seen on Insta.

These velvet lined hangers are my go-to.  I always buy 18 packs for like $10 at Marshall’s//T.J. Maxx.  They keep your tops from slipping off, no matter how wide the neck line on the shirt.  They’re all I use.

After going through everything, I had a huuuuuuge donation pile that I ended up taking to Goodwill the next day, and I also had a Poshmark pile.  Poshmark is a great way to sell your clothes online, especially when they’re a little bit higher quality.  To see my “closet” of what I’m selling online, click here.  It’s a little bit of a process to build your closet, so I’m still adding a few things but you get the idea.

And now for the finished product:

I also nabbed a six dollar shoe rack from Target….

For the top of the closet, investing is some type of storage container is key.  After taking measurements to make sure everything would fit, I headed to IKEA for the Tupperware bins.

I designated one bin strictly to sweaters, and the other to flannels, button ups, and jeans.  When it comes to how to fold shirts and sweaters, you HAVE to start doing it this way…

and now for the t-shirt drawer…

Yes.  I have a lot of Marshall t-shirts.  This is actually not a lot compared to what it used to be.

I used to see this t-shirt folding method online and I ignorantly thought, “no, not for me”.  Well, little did I know that this is the ONLY way you should be organizing tops you don’t hang.  It saves much more space than you would think, and you’re able to actually see what your options are, rather than just what’s at the top of the stack.

When you’re reorganizing your closet or purging your clothes, keep those six rules above in mind.  While at times it was difficult to part ways with some articles of clothing, being able to declutter that space felt so much better than hanging on to a couple shirts because I might wear them again some day.  The time for spring cleaning is coming up fast, and I would definitely include closet cleaning on your list of things to spruce up.

Have you guys ever had a cleaned your closets like this?  What were some of the rules you used?

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Crockpot Tortilla Soup

While I’m sitting here hoping the winter weather is gone for good, I’m also making sure I stay prepared.  Yesterday, I pulled out my good friend, the crockpot.  Still maintaining the dairy-free/paleo mind set, I browsed through a few recipes to figure out one for my own {a.k.a. what’s going to be my easiest and cheapest option based on what I already have at home}.  This recipe is great because it’s flexible.  Notice how I didn’t put any “meat” in the title?  While I used chicken for this recipe, you can also sub ground beef or turkey.  In terms of what makes soup “soupy”, I also noticed that there was essentially a 2:1 ratio between any tomato-based ingredient {salsa, diced tomatoes, tomato paste} and water or chicken broth/stock.  You’ll get more of an idea of what I mean when you see the ingredients.

Aaaaaaand because I already knew that it tasted good, I based most of the ingredients off of my Paleo Stuffed Pepper Recipe !!!

Ingredients:: {4-6 Servings}

1 lb of frozen chicken {***I add the chicken in frozen and it’s easily shreddable once you’re ready to eat.  You can also sub this with 1 lb of ground turkey or ground beef, just make sure you brown the ground meat in a skillet first***}
3 Bell Peppers, diced and sliced {any color you want!}
1 onion {red or yellow will work}
1 jalapeno, chopped
2-3 garlic cloves, minced {I’m a garlic freak, I like to add 3}
2 cups of salsa {I used the original salsa from Trader Joe’s…remember, here you can also used diced tomatoes, etc…have fun with it!}
1 cup of water {**check the 2:1 ratio here as well, remember you can sub any of the options I listed above, just keep the ratio}
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp of onion powder
1/2 tsp of oregano {dried and crushed}
1/4 tsp of cumin
1/4 tsp of paprika
1/4 tsp of cayenne pepper
1/4 tsp of red pepper flakes

Plus diced avocado for topping.  This can get slightly spicy depending on what you decide to use, the avocado does a great job cooling it off {a little}.

Directions:

Add all of the ingredients above in a crockpot {minus the avocado} on high for 3-4 hours or low for 6-8 hours.  Viola!

Now, like I said, you can get pretty creative with this.  Just imagine using a fruity salsa instead!  Some kind of peachy, pineappley, mango-ey {not sure about the spelling here}, instead of a basic tomato based salsa.  As I’m typing this, I’m already coming up with a new crockpot idea…and I’m getting hungry.  That’s what cooking is all about, aside from being healthy, it’s also all about having fun and being creative!

This is also a very freezable recipe, so it’s perfect all around!

What are some of your favorite crockpot recipes?  What are some of your favorite salsas?

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Monday Mantra {March 2, 2015}

Top of the mornin’ to ya!

It’s March, people.  How did that happen??  It’s also Monday, and since I’m not dying like last week, let’s go ahead an kick off the work week with our Monday Mantra!

Religious or not, I really feel as though this applies to all of us in some way.  It doesn’t have to directly relate to something of monetary value or gain.  It can be anything.  Here, I think of profit more as “success”, and poverty as a “lack there of, or the absence of success”.  Maybe you’ve been meaning to organize an aspect of your life, maybe you’ve been meaning to lose those “last five pounds”, or maybe you’re actually wanting to accomplish something that will bring you monetary value.  Having the idea, and starting a conversation about it is great.  It’s the first step to accomplishing your goals.  However, if all you’re doing is talking about your idea, this will inevitability get you nowhere.  You have to get the ball rolling by taking action on your ideas.

Do you want a new job?  Want to lose weight?  Reorganize your finances or even your closet?  Do you have an idea to start your own business? Stop just talking about it!  Do it!  Talking about it is easy.  It’s easy to say, “I want this, so I’ll start it next week”.  Sometimes, next week can turn into the following week, or next month, or next year.  In order to make even a small profit, or “success” of all of your wonderful ideas, you have to take action.  One of the best and easiest ways to tackle this is to start setting up goals and a schedule for yourself.  I can find myself getting caught up in the “talking” about my ideas as well.  I have all these grand ideas floating around in my head, most of them I accomplish, but then there are others that I don’t exactly get around to.  It’s these goals that leave me “impoverished”, or unsatisfied with myself, because all I’ve done is taaaaaaallllkkkkkk about them.  No one owes you anything in this life, so if you want something, you’ve got to make it happen for yourself.

So for this Monday, and for every Monday here on after, let’s make a promise to ourselves of less talking, more doing.  Being able to work hard, grow, and accomplish our goals will enrich our lives more than we could have ever imagined.  Even if actual money isn’t at the end of the journey.

Hope everyone’s had a great Monday so far!  In what ways do you make sure you’re working hard to accomplish your goals?

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