3 Before You Shop Back-To-School Tips with Dick's Sporting Goods + 5 Giftcard Giveaway


 this post is sponsored by Dick's Sporting Goods® and VocalPoint.  all opinions and photos are my own!

welp, we made it through the very first week of school, y'all!  hoping and praying that us newbies, veterans-- everyone has a fantastic school year.  my Kindergartener was crazy excited and prepared for his very first day and beyond, thanks to Dick's Sporting Goods®!DSC_0921-01this Fall 2016, six locations will open up in/around the Houston area:

Baybrook Mall

Deerbrook Mall

First Colony Mall

The Woodlands Mall

Willowbrook Mall

we stopped by one of the largest locations to come above, The Shoppes at ParkWest (across I10 from Katy Mills Mall) for a quick pic, and we can't wait to actually go inside soon!Processed with VSCOuntil then, online back-to-school shopping it was.  less stress for me = no gas used, no getting in and out of the Texas heat, and no lines to stand in with 2 rambunctious boys and a baby bump. Processed with VSCObesides, what kid doesn't love to receive packages in the mail and tear open their 'gifts'!? everything was for Chiso's big Kinder debut, but of course we've gotta involve lil' bro.Processed with VSCO he chose a fresh pair of kicks,DSC_0874-01a super-fly book bag, and a lunch box to match. 

3 money-saving before-you-shop tips:

  • shop your child's closet with them and take inventory of what they already have.  i wanted to make our online experience fun and let Chiso pick things he loved, but i made sure he knew we were only purchasing items we truly needed for the new school year.
  • buy with 'hand-me-down' in mind (especially if you have younger siblings of the same gender of course).  i try not to buy super trendy items (ex. t-shirts with current sayings, sneakers with outlandish colors/patterns, etc.) and stick to classic colors and designs for the most part.  i'm not saying i don't ever buy those types of items because that's no fun, but they are rare and usually reserved for special occasions.  i should definitely credit Hubs for that tip, so i will ;) Dego (2) has plenty to mix and match from for a good while!
  • splurge on the high quality, durable items that will be used daily.  else you'll possibly be buying those same items several times a year.  this might be a no brainer, but i think of the things Chiso will be carrying daily (lunch box, back pack) and how often they get thrown around, banged up, and used in general.  i treat those items just like i would my sports bra purchases.  when i buy them cheap, i can't be mad when the support is basically non-existent after a couple uses and washes!  it's something i truly need and use daily, so spending the money on a few quality bras is the best investment.   the same applies here.

20160822_080018-01ready.20160822_080623-01i was too!  #NoTears20160822_080519-01off he went.  1 week down, 17 years left to go, haha.

shop DSG for back-to-school for book bags, lunch boxes, casual to athletic sneakers & clothes and beyond!  i do believe this will help ;)

we are giving away 5, yes, * F I V E * 50.00 Dick's Sporting Goods® gift cards to * F I V E * readers!!


 a Rafflecopter giveaway

K E E P   U P   W I T H   U S !







  what can i say... except, bravo, Sprouts Farmer's Market!  immediately after i checked out and was hauling my groceries to my car did i see this entire Pumpkin Spice section at the very front of the store. well played, guys.  it was filled with so many other delectable pumpkin spice flavored goodies but i limited my impulse purchases to these 3:

Pumpkin Spice Black Tea - morning delight!

Maple Pumpkin Buttter - toast, ice cream, savory sammiches, etc, etc, etc!!!

Organic Pumpkin Spice Kale Chips - just curious :)20150929_202755-1

i really did get the necessities first though!  some fresh, bargain produce,


a loaf of honey whole wheat bread, egg whites, whole eggs, fresh chicken tenderloins, Applegate natural chicken hotdogs, and some Daiya dairy-free strawberry cream cheese<---(nope, not on my original list).


i was nursing Dego earlier today and in the middle of doing so he unlatched, looked up at me and said, 'AAAAAHHHHH?' like he had just killed the last sip of soda???? or something!!! the boys do this all the time Sonny, but with cups of juice though, haha! #breastjuice

after he finally went down for his nap, i did a quick afternoon abs routine on Periscope! i am excited to say our home connectivity issues will soon be OVA (*knocks on wood, crosses fingers, toes, and eyes*) cause we are finally switching internet providers!  they are coming and we are waiting.


it's not what it looks like, LMBO, but here's a quickly review on the kale chips just for my IG peeps!  i didn't know what to expect with these.... but what a pleasant surprise. i snacked on them in the car as i headed to pick up Chiso from preschool.


 if you like sweet, SUPER CRUNCHY, light snacks (and all things pumpkin spice of course) then you will dig these! i didn't taste the kale at all, actually.  the entire bag is a lil' over 200 cals.  excuse my post-workout, weight glove-less, man hands. let me know what you think of them! the kale chips, not my hands. 


Dego and i went walking/running with my prenatal client tonight and she surprised me and took off like a lightening bolt!  look at that girl GO!  i was trying to keep up with her,  so serious.  she is 8 weeks postpartum and she's got goals.  most importantly...she's willing to work for them!

nothing will change

so get started.

Q: do workout partners help or hinder you?

Q: do you buy into the pumpkin spice hype?


small group host + BE conference time again


 bwhahahahahaha!  i cracked UP at that meme and immediately sent it to my brother. he understands my humor like nobody else.  get it?? happy first day of FALL, yall!


in the studio extra early waiting for my coffee to kick in and ready to teach some HIIT.  i usually wear my Lifetime jacket to feel cool but i needed it this morning. the weather was fantastic at the crack of dawn; the exact opposite of humid and stuffy.


afterwards i did about 10 min of steady state cardio on the arc trainer (cause i got cold again after class) before hitting the weights for some upper body work.  bring on the leggings, yoga pants, and all things pumpkin!  i was sipping on the last of my coffee spiked with International Delight's fat-free Pumpkin Pie Spice creamer on my way home.

later that evening, i had the pleasure of hosting my very first small group.  yep, comfort zone aborted.  joining one, sure, ok. hosting one? me? no way.  i remember signing up for it several weeks back, but only up until a few days ago did i realize the magnitude of what i had done. people really were signing up to come, and they were actually coming.  whoa.  the food responsibilities fall on the host, and well, i was SUPER excited about that part, you already know. i had to sincerely pray about keeping the whole point of the small group and our curriculum as the main focus though, not the food!  don't get me wrong, the food needed to be on point, but ensuring our meeting was well facilitated from beginning to end was just as important.

thank God, it went WELL!  excited to meet again next week.

so, here's what we munched on:


fresh fruit salad with blackberries, strawberries, and nectarines,

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i got all the ingredients needed to make my kopy kate Central Market Cranberry Pepita Kale Salad and did just that.




next, Zucchini Pizza Cruise Ships made with 93% lean ground turkey, smoky chipotle cheese, and turkey pepperoni.




homemade guac and butternut squash tortilla chips,


and finally, i cut up and toasted some naan bread to be dipped into the hummus or the guac.


here's my plate! got a little bit of everything like always.

remember last year's BE conference!? well it's that time AGAIN! the opening ceremony kicks off tomorrow and Ogechi and i are IN THAT THANG!  be sure to keep up with me during BE weekend on Twitter and IG.



TJ's visit + my 1st SETX Cluster Conference

Happy Veterans' Day to you all! today we honor all  US veterans and victims of all wars.

i couldn't help but to stop by TJ's this past friday, you know, since i was in the area and all.


i was greeted with all things FALL! the smell of Fall, the look of Fall, the taste of Fall.  the warm apple cider and pumpkin pie samples were the icing on the cake. there was no cake though; i looked.


i came out with a handful of specialty items:

  • TJ's reduced guilt popcorn
  • Envirokids Peanut Butter Panda Puffs
  • bananas
  • Fig Spread
  • TJ's 0% greek yogurt

and THIS.

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ok this is what i really stopped by TJ's for, i'll be honest. it had been taunting me on IG for way too long. in short, all you need is a spoon. i have yet to spread it on a thing. CYMERA_20131111_101230

saturday, my sorority sisters and i attended our very first South Eastern Regional Conference for Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated!


i even got a chance to meet and take a pic with our gorgeous South Central Regional Director, Chelle Luper Wilson.  She is a very busy mother of four, wow. CYMERA_20131111_093928

attendance was outstanding - we were everywhere!  successful event indeed.

we are on a budget (especially with the holidays coming up) so my debit card was restricted from buying any paraphernalia this time.

20131109_125038_1-1and the food was great :lol:.  of course it was great- the conference was held on my alma mater's campus.  GO COOGS! we had lightly breaded & butterflied chicken breast with a lemon caper sauce, yellow rice, carrots, green beans, and a wheat roll.  a spinach salad preceded our meal, but i couldn't wait yall.  

on sunday we hit up early service at church as usual.  man daylight savings time has been my saving grace this past week!  i've gotten more rest than i have all year.  i've been popping up an hour earlier than usual so i've been able to get more stuff done. i didn't want to exercise at ALL yesterday but since i skipped saturday (i crashed when i got home after the conference) i had to get on out there.


so i did.  1 hour of walking/jogging/running in my neighborhood, 3 sets of walking forward & back lunges down the side-walk and i called it quits.  something IS better than nothing!  thank you to my Instagram #fitfam for the motivation. never fails.

are you off today!? and are you staying in town for Thanksgiving or going to visit family this year?