Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween!

Did everyone have a good weekend? Did you go to any Halloween parties? We know a lot of the festivities may have taken place over the weekend, we actually had a little Halloween get together on Saturday and dressed up in what may have been our favourite costumes to date, but we couldn't resist doing a little something to celebrate today too. Though today is a little less craziness and more curl up in your favourite pair of pajama's and nibble on a treat or two while watching movies! :) We hope you enjoy!

Fitness 360!

Today marks my 103rd visit to Fitness 360, since I joined back at the end of March this year, and I'm rather excited about it. I have got to the point now where I thoroughly enjoy going to the gym. My brother has been a huge factor in this, as I look forward to my sessions and what programs he sets out for me, but also because I really love the gym I go to.

Book Review: Celebrations and Confetti by Rebecca Raisin!

Release Date: 24th October 2016.
Publisher: UK Carina.
Twitter: @jaxandwillsmum @ukcarina

If you saw our 'Big News' video over on YouTube, you will already know just how excited we have been for Rebecca Raisin's new three book Christmas series. If you haven't seen the video then let's just say our excitement comes in singing and dancing form. We adore Rebecca Raisin. From the moment we first read 'The Gingerbread Cafe' series we just knew she was going to be an author that would be returning to our bookshelves over and over again...we weren't wrong. Each of her stories have us prancing, smiling and completely content in our little book worlds and 'Celebrations and Confetti' was so different.

Travel Bucket List: Pasticceria Pansa!

You know when you have one place above all other places that you dream about visiting one day? A place that no matter how many other sights you see or travel bucket lists you write, is always, always at the top? For me that place is Pasticceria Pansa in Amalfi, Italy. This isn't a place that I just discovered for this blog, or came across when I researched for my La Dolce Vita post, or a place I spotted on Instagram, or even a place I found on Pinterest. This is a place that goes way, way back in my family and I have dreamt about it since I was old enough to devour their delicious cakes, which was probably from the age of about four! 

Growing up, when we visited our family in Italy, our favourite cakes from Pansa were already at our Auntie's house by the time we arrived, meaning we never actually got to take the trip to see this wonderful Pasticceria, that was delighting us with so many heavenly treats, in person. Moreover, the only other times we were treated with the cakes we so loved was when Grandad went to Italy to see his family. There was always a sense of excitement in the air upon his return, knowing that we would get our hands on the scrumptious cakes when he unpacked his suitcase. It's these little joys that ingrained in us from an early age that it truly is the little things that count. These memories have my heart bursting with happiness and even at twenty eight years old these wonderful cakes still invoke the same reaction. Which you can witness in our British Vlog from last year. 

Pasticceria Pansa has been open since 1830, when it was founded by Andrea Pansa. Since then the little Pasticceria has been passed on through five generations and it looks like it shows no sign of slowing down. Nanna actually remembers meeting Andrea Pansa, when she was a child. She would take the trip to Amalfi from Praiano with her Dad, Luca, for her favourite Sfogliatelle. She also remembers how her Dad would buy trays and trays of their mouth watering cakes for any occasion, be it a birthday, wedding or anniversary. Seeing her smile as she recounted these stories to us made my heart melt and gave me even more reason to have to visit one day. 
Picture from Pasticceria Pansa Instagram.

Set in an idyllic place, near the Cathedral of Amalfi and right next to the Basilica dedicated to St Andrew the apostle, it's literally an instagrammer and bloggers dream location. Just seeing their photos pop up daily on instagram makes my heart flutter. I will continue to daydream about sitting outside near the fountain, listening to the most beautiful language in the world being spoken, while sipping on an espresso, eating La Pasticceria di Mandorle and Cartucce, as well as, trying their Sfogliatelle for the first time, until the day I am actually there, retracing Nanna and Grandads footsteps, with a camera full of photos, a huge smile on my face and a very happy heart. 

Where is the one place in the whole world that you must visit? Do you even have just one?

Have a great day!
Love Kelly xx

Book Review: Christmas Under a Starlit Sky by Holly Martin!

Release Date: 19th October 2016.
Publisher: Bookouture.
Twitter: @hollymartin00 @bookouture

If I thought I wanted to visit Juniper Island after reading 'Christmas Under a Cranberry Sky,' I most certainly know I have to visit there after reading 'Christmas Under a Starlit Sky.' Not least because I now feel like I have friends there but because it seriously sounds like my perfect place to live. It's full of snow, fairy lights and log cabins in the winter months and in summer there is sunshine and pretty flowers. It's quite simply heaven on earth.

The Girl Gang.

When scrolling through my newsfeeds one morning last week a big smile spread across my face as I pressed like on a couple of tweets, commented on some posts, chatted with fellow bloggers, read a bunch of new blogs and looked at some colourful Instagram pictures. The smile grew as I picked up my coffee, took a sip and then felt compelled to write this post. This post is a pretty simple one in all honesty, as today I just wanted to say thank you. I wanted to say thank you to you! Yes, YOU!!

You see, there have been times in my life where I have had moments of doubts and insecurities, where I have felt in competition with those around me or allowed myself to compare myself with others, but on that morning, when looking at all you wonderful bloggers, creative Instagrammer's, hilarious tweeters, incredible authors, fashionista's and gym goers, I felt inspired.

Furthermore, I realized something. Often we can get caught up on the end result, become obsessed with being successful or having what other people have. While yes, it would be incredible to be a hugely popular blogger, making money primarily from your blog and getting certain opportunities that maybe some of the more well known bloggers get, I couldn't help but think that every single one of us who pour countless hours into our blogs, wake up early to post a new post, take time to comment back to people and who love connecting with others through words, videos or pictures, we are all awesome. We are!!! YOU are!!!

YOU all make me happy on a day to day basis. Whether you have one follower, fifty followers or a million followers, curling up and reading your posts after a long shift at work, joining in with Girl Gang chats when I'm in need of a laugh or confidence boost, reading comments from you that say you've enjoyed a post or a video when we've spent hours preparing it and had our fingers crossed that we would make someone smile, and commenting on your posts when you've hit the nail on the head and I just needed confirmation that I'm not the only awkward, anxious, goofy person out there, gives me such joy. And for all of those things I THANK YOU!!!

The Girl Gang truly is a place where we support each other and lift each other up. Where there is no room for competition and rather, tons of room for inspiring others to be their best selves, to progress, learn, and motivate one another. No longer do I hold onto those silly, thoughts of  'but look at her pictures, they are so much better than ours' and allow them to get me down, no. Now I take in the talent, the creativity and beauty of someone else's blog and strive to work hard and improve upon mine in a positive way. It feels incredible to have so many role models and wonderfully unique people to look up to each day. So again, all you awesome people out there, never forget your awesomeness. It doesn't matter about numbers all the time or followers, if you are living your dream each day, know that you inspire me and add an element of positivity, colour and happiness to my day and I truly appreciate it. :) 


Love Lucy and Kelly xx

The Girl Gang was created by Jemma from dorkface.co.uk Visit her blog and sign up! 
Follow The Girl Gang on Twitter @thegirlganghq

Home Alone!

The other week, my husband went out of town for three days. Over the last few years I have often been left to my own devices while he has gone away to wrestling shows and the like, so I am quite used to it, in fact I actually look forward to it. That might sound harsh, but it's true. If you read my post about long distance relationships, you will know that Chris and I are used to spending quite a lot of time apart, so to us it's not really a big deal. Don't get me wrong, I do miss him when he's gone, but sometimes it's fun to have a little bit of me time. I still have Lucy across the hall, which is great, but I really enjoy the Mornings and Evenings when it's just me. I don't know whether it's because my mind has been chock full of so much lately that this time when he went away I was just excited to be able to breathe and do my own thing. 

In the past I always told myself I will stay in bed late or make dinners that only I like, that we don't have all the time, but then I never get round to it because routine kicks in. I'm up at 6:30 and I eat whatever is in. This time I told myself 'No Kelly you will make time to relax and enjoy yourself,' and so I did.

I still had work to go to and I was up early the Friday morning to go to the gym with Luc, but I stayed up till 11:30 on Thursday night reading, made myself one of my favourite Nanna recipes, pasta with chickpeas, curled up in bed early on Friday night and stayed in bed on Saturday morning with a cup of coffee and read for two whole hours. These might seem like little things but to me it's just the fact that I could enjoy all of these things at my own pace. My favourite thing in the world is waking up when it's still dark outside and not worrying about disturbing anyone when I want to sit up for a little bit in bed and watch the sunlight seep in through the blinds. I love making my coffee and just having time to catch up with the world and ponder. This time I was so engrossed in a book I was reading by Rita Bradshaw that to stay in bed and read instead of slipping out into the living room, as to not wake my sleeping husband, was exactly what I needed. I truly felt like I had actually relaxed for once on a weekend morning. 
I also felt like a little bit of a rebel too, as I took my time doing dishes and looked at the laundry basket like 'I won't touch you till Chris gets back with all his clothes that will need washing,' so yes, not many dishes and no laundry for three days...bliss!! :) 

I always find that these days spent apart gives both myself and Chris a chance to regroup and do some of the things we love without having to worry or think about the other person for a little bit. Then when he gets back, I'm all the more excited to see him again and spend lots of time together. 

Do you like spending time apart from your partner, do you have need a break from routine, or do you love spending every second of everyday with each other?

Have a great day!
Love Kelly 

My Life My Power!

A few months back, my husband Chris got involved with a company called My Life My Power. I didn't know anything about them until he started talking to me about what he was learning and I watched him filming videos for them. I can safely say now, after doing my own research too, that they are an amazing organization full of some really wonderful people and I couldn't be more proud of my husband for being a part of it.

So what is it? My Life My Power was founded in 2010 by MMA fighter and WWE tough enough winner Daniel Puder. After not having the best time when he was at school, due to not being good at sports and being a little slower in class to the other kids, Daniel felt like he wanted to be there for the kids today who are in the same position as he was then. So he co founded My Life My Power to do just that. The organizations mission statement is:

To Inspire and Empower youths through transformational mentoring
while adding value within our community.

They do this by offering various programs to schools, in order to help teachers and parents get the most out of their children. The goal is to mentor and to guide children to be the best that they can be and to help them reach their full potential. My Life My Power discusses goals, dreams, bullying, drugs and much more with the kids in a way that grabs their attention and makes them realize they are not alone. It encourages kids to talk to each other, to really listen and understand each other, as well as, to ask adults for help if they need it.
With a unique mixture of people on board like, Professional Wrestler Jamin Olivencia, Harlem Globetrotter Saul White, Retired F.B.I Director Robert W Clark and my husband who is a Professional Wrestling Referee, My Life My Power brings a whole heap of energy, passion and knowledge to the school system. They refer to their team as 'Heroes,' and that's exactly what they are. They are giving hope and helping to inspire the kids who may have given up or who are unsure of how to reach their potential, and doing so in an exciting, fun, positive way. They aren't going into the schools and giving a one off speech about not doing drugs or staying in school,  My Life My Power, is with them every step of the way. They implement these programs and keep tabs on the progress and affects they are having on the students.
It's been amazing to hear Chris talk about the people he has met and the stories he has heard about My Life My Power and how it has affected so many people. He has a whole new sense of purpose himself, in thinking about what he, himself can bring to the program. He has always loved working with students and inspiring people and My Life My Power is the perfect place for him to do that on a bigger level. It's a fantastic organization and I can't wait for what's to come.

To find out more, head over to their website at www.mylifemypower.org
Subscribe to their YouTube Channel.

Have a great day and do something that makes someone smile!
Love Kelly xx

Fitness Journey Update!

Eighteen weeks ago I introduced you all to my fitness journey with my 'What I've learnt so far on my fitness journey' post, and after being inspired by the awesome Steph from Hello Steph and her monthly 'Fitness Update' posts, I thought I would give you a little update as to how things are going for me eighteen weeks on.

Dining with Amy's Kitchen.*

You know Kelly and I absolutely love to be in the kitchen, both cooking and baking. We love food and are grateful to have had the upbringing we had; being taught the value and joy of food through watching our Nanna and Grandad whipping up amazing meals and sharing their passion with us. Therefore, it's not often that we reach for pre-packaged, ready to eat, frozen meals when at the grocery store. However, we would be lying if we said we never ever did. Some nights we positively admit to wanting to throw a pizza in the oven, steam some microwavable veggies or just tuck into something we haven't cooked. After all, it's all about moderation right?! Right!

When the awesome people at Amy's Kitchen got in touch with us about sending us some coupons to try their products, we were intrigued. Having a scroll through their website our taste buds began to tickle and we got excited about the prospect of picking out some of their goodies and here's why:

Amy's kitchen is all about:

Non GMO Food.
Using Organic ingredients, vegetables, grains, beans and such.
Taking extra care to insure that they are getting the best ingredients that fit their products.
Supporting labeling initiatives that mean customers know exactly what they are eating.
Making delicious meals that are healthy and good for you.

Here are the items we tried:
We chose a simple Margherita pizza, as well as, Amy's spinach pizza, as it looked too good to pass up. Before we tell you how they tasted, just know that we have been making pizza from scratch with our Grandad since we were kids, so we like to think we know a thing or two about pizza. Well, let us tell you that this pizza was yummy, like, so so yummy, we were tempted not to even share it with our husbands. (We did, we're not that mean!) Both of these pizzas tasted like we had ordered them at a restaurant, not picked them up from the freezer, they truly taste so fresh. While all of the ingredients/toppings were great, we have to say that the base of the pizzas were what really sold us on just how different Amy's is to any other frozen pizza we have tried. It was soft, yet crunchy and had a very authentic flavour. It didn't taste like we were eating processed dough. It actually taste like something Grandad would make. We could have eaten plates of the base alone!! :)
Next to try was the Brown rice, black eyed peas and veggie bowl. We made a piece of fish to accompany this dish for lunch one day and again, at the risk of being repetitive, it tasted so fresh. You know when you buy frozen or even canned vegetables and they have a strange rubbery texture and just taste like the bag or the can? Well not from Amy's. This tasted like we had just whipped it up ourselves. It was incredibly delicious. This is definitely something we would happily have on hand when doing food prep or for when we need a nutritious meal fast.
Last but most definitely not least is this broccoli and cheddar bake. We adore macaroni and cheese, it's not as popular in England but has definitely become one of our favourite American dishes, so this we knew we had to try. We had finished work late one night and were so hungry, we couldn't wait to taste it. Mmmmmm is all we can say, we actually finished the whole thing between the two of us...yes this one we're afraid our husbands didn't get to try! Oops! This dish was creamy, with the right amount of cheesy, it had a perfect crunch on top and just enough broccoli to add variety for our taste buds. The broccoli and cheddar bake was a huge winner and certainly a nice treat.

So after trying these four products from Amy's, we can honestly say we would get them again in a heartbeat. We can't say anything negative about any of these dishes. They were all devoured within minutes and left nothing but the odd crumb and smiles on our faces.

Make sure you have a read on the Amy's website for more information about their products, as well as their story. It's quite amazing to read about how the company came about and all the roles the family play in running it today. We love family run businesses! :)

Next time you go to the grocery store be sure to look for the Amy's logo!! We are so excited because it's available in England too, we can't wait to try some more pizzas with our family at Christmas, as we know our Mum for sure will love it! :)

Thank you Amy's!

Have a great day!
Love Lucy and Kelly xx

A day to celebrate!

It made me smile when I looked back on the blog and realized that this day each year I had written a special post. One year in and I talked about our magical day and whipped up a replica of our wedding cake. Two years later and I shared some pictures and memories of the best day ever. Three years down and I couldn't help but giggle as the idea came to me for sharing a different kind of post on this wonderful day. Yes, three years gone and today I bring you 'what I've learnt about my husband'. And for those of you wondering what the special occasion is... today marks our third wedding anniversary. Where does the time go? Without further ado:

My husband Chris:
Uh that face!!! Insert huge heart eyed emoji!
Is still the coolest, most awesome guy I know. He just has a very laid back demeanor and always looks like a rockstar.
Is handy to have around when you have a problem. He assesses the situation, doesn't freak out and solves it without breaking a sweat.
Balances out my overthinking and always helps me to see a different perspective and to calm down.
Makes the best burritos and mango salsa.
Likes to season the stove when he's cooking, not just the food in the pan.
Has the cutest laugh when he's trying not to laugh.
More often than not forgets something when he leaves the house.
Will forget something you just told him, but also listens to every one of my monologues and a thousand words per minute rambles...every single day.
Is way more fashionable than I will ever be.
Always knows how to motivate me and make me feel confident.
Is a kick ass guitar player.
Is awesome to talk to on long road trips. We can talk about everything and anything.
Is super creative and writes the best songs and poetry.
And...he is the person who makes my heart happy and still, after three years, when we have spent more than a few hours apart, I get butterflies and smile like a goof when he walks through the door and I get to hug him tight and see his face. :)
I'm a very lucky wife!
Wishing everyone a wonderful and happy day. I'm off to spend the day with Chris to celebrate!
Love Lucy. xx

Fall at Home!

I can't quite believe that October is here already. Where has the year gone? Summer was lots of fun but I am beyond excited that Fall/Autumn is here, as you could probably tell from our Fall Bucket List and Fall Baking Collaboration posts, we were ready for it. These next few months are my favourite of the whole year. Yes I love the sunshine, but there is just something so cozy and warm about the end of the year. The weather, the fashion, the mood, the food and of course the holidays. It makes me all warm and fuzzy inside just thinking about Pumpkin Spice coffee, that soon turns into Peppermint, snuggling up in my softest jumper and fluffiest socks, lighting scented candles that fit the season, thinking about what I'm going to be for Halloween and preparing my Christmas list, the orange crunchy leaves and bitter wind that hits my cheeks, while the rest of me is warm and toasty under layers....
....wait what??? Orange crunchy leaves and bitter wind??!!! I live in Florida!! Oh the tangled web we weave!! Okay, so Fall in Florida might not be exactly how I like my Fall. The weather has changed, it does get a little colder and we still have Pumpkin everything and pretty Fall Fashion, but if I really want to talk to you about what I love most about this time of year, I have to take a trip home.
Home being Heaton Mersey, a little suburb of Stockport,, in Greater Manchester. A place that the longer I am away from, the more I come to appreciate for all it's little quirks.
Here are my favourite things about Autumn (we are now in England after all.) from my hometown.

1. Wrapping up warm to walk to the chippy. The delicious aroma of Salt and Vinegar filling my nostrils and walking back home with a hot bag of freshly made chips in my hands, while the wind whips around me.

2. Walking to Nanna and Grandad's past all the school kids as the orange and brown leaves crunch under foot.

3. Curling up under blankets and watching Harry Potter with my little sister, as the rain lightly taps the windows and the grey sky casts a dark shadow over the living room.

4. Collecting the last of the plump purple figs from Nanna and Grandad's fig tree.

5. Having multiple cups of Tea and Coffee, my favourite being in front of the fire at Nanna and Grandad's house, while munching on my favourite Italian biscuits.

6. Dark nights that make me happy just because they mean it's my favourite time of year.

7. Digging out our Halloween decorations that our Auntie sent us from New York about 10 years ago. We are the only house on our street that decorate for Halloween.

8. The happiness that comes from being around family, tucked up warm in our home. Knowing that we are safe in each others company and that Christmas is just around the corner...but shhh that's another post entirely. 

What do you love most about this time of year? Are you happy Fall/Autumn is here or do you long for more Summer nights?
Have a wonderful day.
Love Kelly xx

The Pro Bar! * Plus GIVEAWAY!

If you remember my Protein bars tried and tested post you will know that I raved about The Pro Bar BASE. I had purchased the Coffee Crunch and Mint flavor ones and honestly enjoyed every bite of them. It was refreshing to dig into a protein bar and love everything about it from the taste to the texture. So you know I was over the moon when the wonderful people at The Pro Bar sent Kelly and I a box of their Pro Bar BASE bars so we could try all of their flavors. I was super excited and eager to tuck in.

Making waves across the pond!

Chris Knott (center) at Frontline Fit.

The other day, I met this amazing women at the gym. I had seen her many times and often looked over and watched her train, as she is always kicking ass, but I was a little nervous about going over to talk to her. Well, the other day she actually came over to me. She wanted to tell me how refreshing it was to watch me train and how fantastic I was doing. She then explained that she had been a bodybuilder for twenty-eight years and that she enjoys watching me train because it's very old school.

Do long distance relationships really work?

This month marks seven years that my husband and I have been together....sheesh...SEVEN YEARS!!! Where does the time go?? This got me thinking about one of the biggest obstacles we as a couple have had to face over these seven long, I mean wonderful, years...Surviving long distance!

Our Story.
When I first moved to Louisville Kentucky, where I met Chris, I was there for three months at a time, then I would go back to England for a month or two, then back again for three months. This went on for a good two years while we were dating. In that time Chris visited England, I believe twice for about a week, each time around Christmas. When Chris proposed in November 2011, we dove straight into organizing the visa that would allow me to get married here in the states. Thus followed our longest time apart yet. One whole year! During that period from December 2011 to December 2012, we managed to see each other on two occasions for a total of, I want to say eighteen days. Chris came to England for three days...yes he traveled 4000 miles to see me for 3 whole days...oh to be young and in love. Then he came to England again for two weeks that Christmas. Since we got married in 2013, the longest we've been apart is two weeks.

How did we cope?
Looking back now, I can't say that it was all easy, especially those first few months when we started dating. I missed Kentucky and I missed hanging out with him like crazy. We Skyped a lot and messaged each other on Facebook as often as we could, but I have to admit to having those girly moments if I woke up in the morning to no message from him. We definitely had a lot of  'I go to bed before you, don't you know how nice it would be if I woke up every morning to a message from you?' conversations. Now those conversations make me laugh. As for the year we spent apart, I was lucky, I had a job at home which I loved and I just enjoyed every minute of being at home. It kind of distracted me a little from missing Chris so much. Instead I was just excited to tell him about the things I was up to.

What made us work?
To this day, myself and Chris have an understanding that we are two separate people who can actually go about our daily lives quite confidently and independently. It's not something we gloat about, like we're these individual people who need space and can live without each other, it's just because for a certain amount of time we had no other option. Any time we had to spend apart never involved us questioning whether our relationship would suffer or if it would last. In fact that never even entered the equation. We knew we wanted to be together so we just saw it as something we had to overcome. We chose to think about the positive experiences we had while we were apart. Furthermore, being in two separate countries also helped us grow and become our own people too, we didn't have to rely on each other and we could enjoy doing our own things for a while. And instead of drifting apart, it seemed to bring us closer together. We are both very different but our differences seem to make us that much better of a team when we are together.

My advice.
Make notes of things that make you smile, that you want to tell your partner/husband/wife later. I especially think this is fun when you know you aren't going to have your phone or WiFi on you, or even if you are both busy and don't have much time for a chat. Writing notes can be fun and then you can recall all those stories at a later date and enjoy them together.
Be you and enjoy what you are doing, grow as a person and then bring what you have learnt to your relationship to make it stronger.
Don't stress or worry if you haven't  heard from them. It's most likely that they are just getting on with what they have to do, be it a new school or work routine or just hanging out with friends to fill a void because they miss you...believe it or not they really do miss you. Take that time to have 'me time' and be happy that you will catch up later.
Most importantly, I think is, Don't Overthink. To me that's all there is to it. There are some things in life you can't control, immigration being one of them. But sometimes we just have to have a little faith that we are on the right track, whilst in the meantime enjoying the journey we are on together. If it means being apart for a little while, that's OK, after all it's better than not being together at all.

So to conclude, my answer is YES, long distance relationships do work, you just have to put the time, patience and effort in. If you want it to work, it will work.

Have a great day.
Love Kelly