Tide Dry Cleaners Giveway | Winner Winner!!

Congratulations to Tamara for winning a FREE month of dry cleaning from Tide Dry Cleaners!  

Tamara, send your contact info to {itsamessylife@gmail.com}.  I'll send it to Tide Dry Cleaners so you can get your instructions on collecting your prize!

Thanks so much to everyone who entered the contest.  Don't forget, everyone gets 2 garments dry cleaned for FREE this Saturday, May 16th, at Grand Opening of the newest Tide Dry Cleaners located at 10010 W. Sahara Ave.  in Las Vegas!  


Tuesday Ramblings & Updates

I have a few things to update and share so I figured why not do it all in one hodgepodge sort of blog post!  It's been awhile since I've done that ;) 

First of all, I'm happy to say I'm feeling great and back on track.  After the Spartan Sprint fiasco, I had a hard time finding the motivation to get back on track with my eating and workouts.  I got back to my 5-6 day workouts pretty quickly, but the eating part is a different story.  I kept allowing myself to make bad choices or over-indulge in sweets for a couple of weeks (YIKES!) Well, I finally woke up and said enough!  We've been so busy this past month that we didn't even have time to go food shopping properly.  We would grab a few things we needed at a time or we'd go out to eat, which you all know is just setting yourself up for failure!  Eating out and eating healthy are two very difficult things for me to do simultaneously.  Anyhow, we finally hit the grocery store and stoked up on food, so no more excuses ;) 

I know a big thing that got me back on track is also the fact that my hubby and I signed up for a 12K trail run, Trails of Glory by Desert Dash!  The race is Nov. 22 and will be my 13th race of the year.  This past Sunday was my first trail run since September's Spartan Beast in Temecula.  I'm not gonna lie, it was a rough uphill start, but I managed and really enjoyed the downhill. Plus, I also have Spartan coming up in January.  Not only am I running the Spartan Sprint that was canceled in September, I'm also signed up for the Spartan Beast.  Turns out we didn't run the full 12 mile course, only 11 miles, so I'm automatically signed up for the Beast too.  Yup, this means I'll be getting back to some major workouts soon, as well as another month at Camp Rhino!  I really love that place :)

What else has been going on? Oh!! I am beyond excited for my friend, Evelin, who'll be running World's Toughest Mudder on November 15th.  I have the privilege of being part of her pit crew and cannot wait to be out there supporting her and her team, which just so happens to be making history as the first all female team in World's Toughest Mudder.  No pressure!  I'll definitely be doing  a recap blog of the event and of course sharing pics on Instagram!  

Regarding non-fitness related events, we've been busy photographing some pretty awesome weddings this month.  You can check them out on my photography blog, The Emerics (shameless plug!)

I'm also really looking forward to this weekend.  I've got book club on Friday and it's our 2nd year anniversary and some additional fun stuff is being planned.  We're also going to dinner and a Wine Walk on Saturday with friends!

So, now that we're all caught up on what's been going on in my corner of the world, feel free to share a bit of news from your life! xo 

Viva Las Vegas | 5 Year of Calling Vegas Home

I cannot believe that we've been living in Vegas for 5 years already.  Time sure does fly when you're having fun.  I gotta say, I really like living here.  My husband misses trees, but I don't really.  I mean, it's always nice to see trees when we go on vacation, but I really do love the desert landscape.  Is living in Las Vegas perfect.  Of course not, but what place is?  Well, maybe Southern California is really close to perfection...But, alas, I don't live there. I live in Las Vegas and I'm making it work for me and my family. 

We made the decision to move from Central Florida to Las Vegas 5 years ago because my family had moved here and we were expecting baby #2.  Family is very important to us and I wanted my kiddos to grow up with family around them.  Being in Florida without our family just didn't feel right.  Plus, Jason and I were really ready for a change.  Florida had been good to us for 12 years, but we felt stuck and it was definitely time to move on.  So, we packed up our things and said goodbye to the sunshine state (which is such a bad nickname being that it's so humid & rainy there!)

Making the move cross country wasn't as hard as I thought I'd be.  I'm sure this was because my family was here and it helped make the transition a lot easier.  I didn't feel lonely or lost in a new environment.  I immediately took to the desert lifestyle and I find myself defending Vegas to people how ask how we could like living here or if it's a good place to raise a family.  The truth is, we don't live on the strip and outside of the strip, Vegas is just one big suburb.  We have lots of parks, nice communities, shopping centers, and plenty of kid-friendly activities.  It's like living in most cities, you don't take your kids to the "bad side of town" or with you for a night out, right? Here are a few things I like about living in Vegas and how Vegas has helped me and my family live a fun life:

*I worked really hard to establish my business here.  I grew as a business owner and my photography skills improved, as well.  I'm a wedding photographer, feel free to check out my work HERE (shameless plug, I know!) I don't think I would have such a successful business if we would have stayed in FL.  I didn't have the motivation or the drive to move forward like I felt when we moved here. 

*We get to travel more.  Florida is mostly surrounded by water and it takes about 3 hours traveling north to get out of the state from Central Florida and even then you weren't anywhere super fun.  Yes, Florida has beautiful beaches, amusement parks, and other fun places to visit, but for someone like me who loves to travel and explore new places it just wasn't enough.  Flying is expensive for a family of 4, so road trips are more our style. Living in Las Vegas has really given us the opportunity to visit some awesome cities, national parks, and landmarks in many different states.  

532699_4063305189012_1677268593_n.jpg
25502_1411167767234_2795930_n.jpg
45900_1559865724590_6325049_n.jpg
Its_a_messy_life-zion-national-park-utah.jpg
215772_1965407142872_2390953_n.jpg
303867_2341224778078_80304384_n.jpg
223986_4467353009955_2143566672_n.jpg

*Getting outside!  Yes, summers in Vegas are HOT!! But, they only last 3 months and the rest of the year the weather is pretty close to perfection.  Plus, it's not humid and it rarely rains! We love going on hikes around Red Rock Canyon (which is just 15 mins from our house), going to parks, and just exploring the great desert outdoors right in our own backyards!

3085_1125712031019_337617_n.jpg
34190_1497950776755_7516433_n.jpg
62248_1592135571316_64478_n.jpg
251376_2071135626018_3173104_n.jpg
63151_4799397030848_1150585870_n.jpg

*Getting healthy!  Ok, so this one didn't happen immediately.  It took me a long time to realize that there was a lot more to it than dieting or being fat versus being skinny.  In 2012, I finally realized that I had to make permanent lifestyle changes. I was tired of being overweight and feeling sluggish, so I made the right changes and now I live a much healthier and active life and my family does too! 

1474472_10202456456920737_1884458997_n.jpg
969574_10201166159104098_1177873523_n.jpg
544176_10200901386044937_1819001969_n.jpg

Like I said, l really enjoy living here and we've made some good friends and awesome memories here. I could look at this town and find a million things wrong with it and yeah, sometimes I do.  Sometimes I wish we lived in a city with more of a local vibe, with more cultural centers, museums, and nice farmers markets.  Sure Id o.  But, I choose to embrace where I am and make the best of it.  I choose to look for the good and be positive.  It's easier and makes me happy.  I look forward to lots more family road trips and days hiking along Red Rock Canyon with the kiddos.  Thanks, Vegas!

Vegas peeps, what do you like about living here? If you aren't from Vegas, what do you love about your hometown? I'd love to hear from you! xo