Clean Juice – 2 Day Cleanse

Clean Juice – 2 Day Cleanse

All about Clean Juice

I discovered Clean Juice through my Pure Barre studio (shout out to Pure Barre Holly Springs)! PSHS was having an event and Clean Juice was there with samples. I immediately fell in love with the White Juice. You will understand once you taste it… trust me.

Clean Juice is a 100% Certified Organic juice bar. That’s no small accomplishment. As they say, they make it easy to choose organic and get a truly healthy product. Yes please! I love their product, but I also adore their culture. The employees are so friendly and helpful, which I really appreciated because I had no idea what I was doing. Beyond that, what really captured my heart is their faith. They have a jar for prayer requests in store (I took full advantage after I picked up my juice) and they have 3 John 1:2 printed on every bottle. Dear friend, I hope all is well with you and that you are as healthy in body as you are strong in spirit. I was reminded of that verse with every juice and it’s one I’m going to tuck away for later.

Why a cleanse?

I never ever thought I’d do a juice cleanse. I’m a foodie and thought I would be too starving to complete it. Plus there is always an event scheduled or life happens and it’s easy to throw the idea of a juice cleanse out the window…

I was intrigued by the idea and wanted to challenge myself. I enjoy pushing myself in my health to see what I’m capable of and I’m usually surprised. Over the last year or so I’ve gradually put on weight due to some poor habits I’ve developed, so I wanted to use this as a kickstart to put some healthy habits in place and get my mindset right. Nutrition is about fueling your body with foods that make you feel good. Although it’s certainly not a long term fix, dropping some weight and giving my body a chance to detox and have a break seemed like a good place to start.

How a cleanse with Clean Juice works

If you’re anything like me, you’re wondering how this juice cleanse works…

Clean Juice offers 5 types of cleanses with cold pressed juices ranging from “juice til dinner” to 5 days long. I chose to do the 2 day because that seemed like long enough to experience positive effects, but short enough to stick with it as a first time cleanser. The prices range from about $36 to $255. The different lengths and prices offer something for everyone! You can read more about the cleanses directly from Clean Juice here.

Clean Juice makes it so simple! They give you a 6 pack juice carrier for each day and each juice is marked 1 through 6 so you know in what order to drink them. Yes, there is a specific order and specific juices to drink. I drank my first juice for the day about 2 hours after I woke up, drank the next four 2.5-3 hours apart, drank the last (best) one at least an hour before bed. I also drank lots of water! This helped maintain a full stomach.

I was told it’s best to do the cleanse when you’re busy and I would agree. Although I did this on my days off, I was busy both days and that helped keep my mind off of mindless snacking. Old habits die hard.

Juices

Sweet Green
Ingredients: organic cucumber, organic apple, organic kale, organic spinach, organic mint
Potential Benefits: huge vitamin boost / sharp brain / glowing skin / regulates pH

Orange
Ingredients: organic carrot, organic pineapple, organic orange, organic tumeric
Potential Benefits: cold + flu protection / happy digestive track / joint & bone pain relief / reduced inflammation

Green
Ingredients: organic cucumber, organic celery, organic spinach, organic kale, organic ginger, organic lemon
Potential Benefits: low sugar, high vitamin boost / hydration / illness protection / antioxidant boost

Yellow
Ingredients: filtered water, organic lemon, organic maple syrup, organic cayenne
Potential Benefits: intense detox / increased metabolism / lower blood pressure / healthy cell function

Red
Ingredients: organic apple, organic carrot, organic beet, organic lemon
Potential Benefits: boost stamina / improve blood flow / protects skin & eyes / huge vitamin boost

White
Ingredients: organic cashews, filtered water, organic vanilla, organic cinnamon, organic maple syrup, Himalayan pink sea salt
Potential Benefits: good source of protein / healthy muscles / promotes heart health / calm nerves

My experience — Juice by Juice & Overall

August 6
7:30am — Pick up at Clean Juice Morrisville
7:40am 1st juice (Sweet Green) — Yum! Really good taste
9am — Dentist appointment for fillings and super numb!
11:15am 2nd drink (Orange) — Delicious! Tastes like fancy orange juice
2pm 3rd drink (Green) — Tastes very green with strong veggie flavor. Not my fave, but not bad at all. Feels like my insides are getting a bath
5pm 4th drink (Yellow) — Smells like lemonade 😍 Tastes like lemonade with a kick
8pm 5th drink (Red) — Good flavor, a bit sweet. I’ve never had beets before, so I wasn’t sure about this one, but I like it!
10pm 6th drink (White) — MY FAVE!!! So delicious. Tastes like the milk at the end of Cinnamon Toast Crunch. Such a wonderful treat before bed. Goodnight!

August 7
9am Sweet Green — Yum! Good start to the day
12:45 Orange — Little late since I got caught up in the work event. Yummy! Wasn’t even hungry or craving the catered food or treats at the booths
3:20 Green — Still not my favorite. Strong celery taste, but definitely drinkable. I just prefer to drink it fast 😉
5:10 Yellow — Sassy lemonade. Drinking before I double up on Pure Barre/Empower classes. Giving me energy and fuel I need (I usually do my 6am classes fasted, so used to it and didn’t feel bad during class)
8:15 Red — Refueling after 2 Pure Barre classes. Need it! Didn’t feel super hungry, but stomach did growl a few times during my 2nd class (thank goodness the music is loud) Drank it pretty fast and easy
10:15 White — been looking forward to this all day! So tasty!

I honestly enjoyed my juice cleanse. It was a lot easier than I had imagined, mostly thanks to Clean Juice’s organization and tasty juices. I felt lighter, both physically and mentally. I felt focused and positive. I was able to do better work in my Pure Barre classes because I didn’t feel full or icky from the day’s food combined with exercise. As expected, I did lose some weight (1.8 pounds), but I’m more excited about my lack of sweet cravings and continued good mood! When I feel good, I do good.

It’s taking my body and stomach some adjustment time back to normal food which makes sense after two days of liquids only. I intend to continue with healthy, clean eating, so the cleanse was just the jumping off point. I definitely want the positive effects to stick around! Would I do a cleanse with Clean Juice again? Absolutely. Maybe it will be a good seasonal or as needed reboot for my system.

Exciting opportunity for local friends!

I know I’ve given you a ton of information, but if you’re itching for a juice cleanse now too I’ve got exciting news for you! Where are my local friends!? Raleigh, Cary, Holly Springs, Apex, etc — whoever is willing to venture to the Park West (Morrisville, NC) location (it’s totally worth it). YOU have a chance to get a discount and a tasting in store!

If we can get TEN or more people to commit to doing a cleanse, Clean Juice will generously give a 10% discount. Woohoo! AND they’ll even do a sample night so you can try each juice before you purchase. I’ll be there too, of course, because I’m not missing a juice from CJ ❤ If you’re in, please comment below or email me at flourishwithrach@gmail.com and I’ll coordinate the group. This is gonna be fun!

You will never regret being intentional in taking care of yourself. You are worthy, deserving, and lovely. I’m certainly not saying you need a cleanse. You’re wonderful and beautiful right now. But if you think it would be beneficial for you, your mindset, your body, then I encourage you to go for it! I’m here as a resource, so if you have any questions I’m happy to help!

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July Progress | August Goals 2018

July Progress | August Goals 2018

This post contains affiliate links. See affiliate disclaimer here.

July is a sweet and busy month! We have had a lot to celebrate (Fourth of July, wedding anniversary, Grand Opening for Vida Dulce), events, appointments, and all the regular life stuff. I’m sure you can relate. With such a busy season, I can’t imagine what my days would look like without my Powersheets.

This planner encourages me to be intentional, to be gentle on myself when I have a ton on my plate, and to work towards what matters most. They are sold out, but will be on sale October 24th for 2019 — trust me, you don’t want to miss out! Lets get into some progress and goals!

July Progress

Monthly Goals

  • Celebrate 2nd wedding anniversary: This was a joy! As you may have already read, we spent a week in Cancun and it was absolutely incredible! If you’re interested in reading about our trip, you can check that out here. As you can imagine, I learned a lot in our 2nd year of marriage — you can read about my marriage lessons here.
  • Budget communcation: We are still going strong with this! We’ve gotten into a good rhythm, so a monthly budget meeting isn’t as important to us as just regularly staying in communication about our budget. We may not always have time for a sit down, but we make time for big decisions.
  • Set up wills with LegalZoom: Yet again, this is getting moved to the next month. Oh well, we’ve been busier than anticipated! It will happen 🙂
  • Friend date: I love that this is a goal! With such a busy month it can be easy to go weeks or even months without seeing friends. It’s not always easy to coordinate schedules, so we’ve been doing our best. It doesn’t have to be some grand plans. Even getting together in pockets of free time is well worth it and makes me feel so fulfilled. Friends are good for the soul.
  • Read book #7: Check! I read The Miracle Morning by Hal Elrod and started reading The Best Yes by Lysa TerKeurst as my vacation read. Both are books I’ve read before, but still good to read again! The Miracle Morning is practical and really encourages me to wake up earlier and make the most of my mornings to make the most of my life! It talks about the power of setting time aside in the morning to do the simple things that will make a huge impact on your days. For me, that’s time with the Lord, exercise, a good breakfast, meditation, learning, and a little time to decompress before I get my day started. It’s an awesome kick in the booty if you need it. Honestly, we probably all need it.
  • Positive report at dentist: My dentist appointment was originally scheduled for June, but we ended up having a mandatory breakfast meeting at work, so I had to move it. It’s all done now though! I do have to go in for 3 fillings (ugh, I swear I take care of my teeth). These were fillings that were supposed to be done since my last appointment, but I totally forgot. But no new concerns, so that’s a win. You’ll see I have a new goal for August related to this.
  • Refresh blog branding: This isn’t complete, but it is underway! I’m working with one of my best friends on this who is a talented designer and actually did my current logo. I’m craving a refresh of logo and branding since I’ve grown and this blog has pivoted a bit, so stay tuned! I’m excited about it!

Weekly Goals

  • Use time intentionally: I have gotten so much better in this area. I still have times where I just zone out and scroll through my newsfeeds, but I don’t feel like that’s the worst thing if I’m using the rest of my time well. Sometimes I just need a brain break, you know?
  • Blog post: This is going well! I’m considering increasing posts to two times a week instead of just one. There’s so much I want to say and I feel like maybe one post a week isn’t enough space to do it! We shall see. Bottom line, I’m enjoying writing and connecting with you! ❤
  • Encourage a friend: I love this goal. It encourages me to think about others and how I use my words to brighten their day and lift them up. I’m a Words of Affirmation person, so there’s nothing better! Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing. 1 Thessalonians 5:11
  • Cultivate routines: For so long I wanted to cultivate a good routine, but I didn’t know how to do it. I knew it would mean I’d have to wake up earlier and that would be impossible. Well actually it’s not and I’m doing it. It’s taken a while to get into the flow and to figure out how exactly I wanted to use my time. After some practice, I’ve found the routine that works well in this season.
  • Declutter a space: This was a bit too vague for me. I think I would have had more success if I made it a bigger goal and just focused on one area so I could really dig into it. So that’s what I’m doing for August. The decluttering never stops. I did make progress in my closet and pulled out pieces that just don’t fit anymore or I won’t wear. Phew, that feels good!
  • Mindful spending: You may or may not know this about me, but I’m a recovering spend-aholic. I used to shop like crazy (hence all the things I’m now decluttering). I’ve come a long way, but I still give into the impulses and the apparent “need to have this” feeling. Eric and I each have “fun money” in our budget. This is a set amount of money we can each spend without having to discuss it. I pretty much always go over or spend into next month’s, so I’m working on improving that. I am making progress here because it’s on my mind. Progress > perfection yall.

Daily Goals

  • Bible plan — Achieved 31/31 days
  • Write the Word — Achieved 31/31 days
  • Move body — Achieved 31/31 days
  • Love Eric well — Achieved 31/31 days

I’m so excited about the progress made on my daily goals in July. This didn’t just happen though. I’ve been working at cultivating these goals into habits and it’s clicking. I believe a big reason for this is my newly adopted morning routine. It doesn’t get done every single morning, but most mornings it does. And if it doesn’t, I fit in the important things as I can throughout the day. It’s working for me! I’m striving for health in important life areas: physical, spiritual, and marriage. It won’t always look perfect, but I’m celebrating when I do well and storing up the grace in my heart for when things slip.

August Goals

Monthly Goals

  • Budget communication
  • Set up our wills with LegalZoom
  • Friend date (x3)
  • Read book #8
  • Simplify a space
  • Whole30 — complete with Eric
  • Transition well into promoted position
  • Plan blog content — August & September
  • Nurture plants — keep alive & well

Weekly Goals

  • Serve Eric well
  • Encourage someone
  • Blog post published
  • Cultivate life-giving routines
  • Mindful spending

Daily Goals

We have a big month ahead with some new goals to reach for! You’ll notice a lot of my goals move from one month to the next. Sometimes this is because I need more time to complete it. For many of my goals, they are ongoing. Habits and rhythms I want to cultivate deeply, so they show up month after month.

There is not right or wrong way to set goals. If you keep many of the same goals, that’s okay. If you feel ready to mix it up, that’s okay. If you feel a need for a complete shift, that’s okay. You don’t have to hold up your goals to someone else’s to see if you’re doing it right enough. You do you, honey! If you keep your eyes fixed and focus on what matters most to you, you will be blown away by how your life looks a year from now. You got this! What goals are YOU working towards in August? Lets cheer each other on! ❤

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July 2018 Round Up

July 2018 Round Up

This post contains affiliate links. See affiliate disclaimer here.

Does anyone else feel like summer is flying by!? I feel this way pretty much every month, but time just keeps moving faster. We’ve been staying busy with many new and exciting things so that makes sense and we certainly can’t complain. Lets round up July!

3 things I’m excited about

  1. My promotion at work: More to come about this in the future I’m sure, but I got news July 16 that I earned my promotion. Eeeekkkk!! It became official on July 20th and I’ll be starting in my new role on August 1st. That’s wonderful news to receive the Monday after vacation. This year has honestly been blessing after blessing and I’m so grateful. I work with an incredibly supportive team — it’s amazing to be a part of it. I started working for M/I Homes June 2017 as a Sales Assistant with the goal of being promoted to New Home Consultant in about a year give or take. Goal accomplished! I’m excited to fully step into this role and give everything I have.
  2. Whole30 round 2: Eric and I have mentioned in passing doing Whole30, but it’s actually happening in August. I completed my first round earlier this year in February (you can read about my experience here) and then attempted a reset (that flopped, read about it here), but Eric has never done it. It’s going to be challenging, but I think having his support and partnership in it will make it easier as well. He works in an ice cream shop 6 days out of the week, so he’s going to need some extra will power. I’m excited to see how it goes!
  3. Dip powder manicures: It sounds vain, but I appreciate feeling put together. It’s amazing how much of a difference nails can make! I’m never going back. My manicure lasted for a month! A whole month yall! It stayed perfect aside from my nails growing out, which drove me crazy at the end, but that’s okay. My nails feel so strong and even when they removed the color to change it, my nails were not damaged. Instead of usual nail polish, they use powder. They put a clear coat of polish on your nail and then dip it in the powder and repeat. My experience is they repeat 3-4 times, so it doesn’t take very long. If you’re someone that enjoys a good manicure, I highly recommend giving this a try!

Quote I’ve been meditating on

“For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love, and self discipline.” 2 Timothy 1:7

Yes, yes, yes! This verse speaks into every area of my life. There are times I feel timid and unsure of myself, but this reminds me that the Spirit God has given me is not in alignment with those feelings. It’s okay and normal to feel them, but I shouldn’t dwell there because I’m made for more.

Power.
Love.
Self discipline.

This spirit allows me to accomplish anything. Isn’t that amazing!? God thinks of everything and He has it all under control. That takes the pressure off me and gives me the space live like I believe it’s truth ❤

Who or what I’m adoring

Primally Pure — I have finally found natural products that work AND use great, clean ingredients (that are also organic and fair trade). It can be so hard to find a product that meets both criteria. I’ve tried products before that have awesome ingredients, but they don’t work so well, specifically natural deodorant.

I was hesitant to give another brand a try, but I’m so glad I did! I started with their Starter Kit because I’m a sucker for a good bundle deal. Plus it gave me the opportunity to try many different products. I fell in love with all of it, but mostly the lip balms and deodorant. It’s the first natural deodorant I’ve used that actually works all day. It’s hot here in North Carolina so I was nervous to make the switch, but it’s been no problem. It neutralizes odors, so I don’t still smell like deodorant at the end of the day, but I just don’t smell like anything. No body odor, no funk. It’s amazing!

Favorite memory from July

July is such a sweet month. There’s something fun and exciting about the middle of summer. It’s challenging to choose just one memory! Independence Day, our anniversary vacation in Cancun, moments with friends, and lots of sweet memories in between. Can I just say the whole month was my favorite!? I suppose I can cause I’m the boss here 😉

But really… one day sticks out to me: July 19th. It was a busy day, but it was oh so good! Eric and I both had the day off, but we didn’t really spend time together until it was time to tend to our commitments. Our church, Hope Community, features different stories and testimonials through interviews and we were asked to share ours. So at 2:00pm we met with the team and shared our hearts. We were nervous, but we’re excited for how our story will impact someone else!

After our interview we had some time to use before the event and it happened to be Starbucks Happy Hour, so the waiting place was obvious. I wrote a blog post (this one) and Eric worked on content for Vida Dulce’s website. Productivity at its finest!

We spent the rest of our day at a grand opening party for a sweet local business, Gather Goods Co. We sold popsicles and got to meet many incredible people. It was so special to me that I was able to work alongside my husband and witness him in action. He’s so good with people, dearly loves his company, and serves his customers well. Opening a business is not for the faint of heart, but it’s worth it.

A good lesson I learned

Just go to bed earlier. 

I’m slowly, but surely becoming a morning person, but that means I have to break up with my late nights. Usually I’m not up late doing anything important. Probably just scrolling Instagram, doing some last minute chores, or watching Netflix. All things that can totally wait until tomorrow. Eric works late, so I would try to stay up for him. That isn’t always what’s best for me. Of course, I want to spend time with my husband, but many nights I found that time unproductive in connecting. We were both tired with short patience, so you can imagine our conversations weren’t always the best.

I’m a better wife and person when I get enough sleep. I’ve started doing 6am Pure Barre many mornings due to my schedule so that means I need an early bedtime. I’m still working on it, but I’m getting so much better! Old habits die hard. I need to remind myself that pretty much anything can wait until the next day — a good night’s sleep is worth it.

In August…

I’m saying no to: excessive mindless scrolling.

I’m saying yes to: time blocking so I can be fully present.

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Anniversary Celebrations in Cancun

Anniversary Celebrations in Cancun

“How was your trip?!”

I have gotten that question so many times this week and I love that people care to hear about our trip. It’s hard to sum it all up in one simple response, so I just say “so SO good!”

 

But this is really how our trip was… all the fun details, what we would have done differently, and what we did right. Let the reminiscing begin.

Where we stayed

 

This was our second time in Cancun. This city holds a special place in our heart.

The first time was 2016 for our Honeymoon and we stayed at Le Blanc. We absolutely adored that resort, but they are currently closed for renovations. We thought it would be a good idea to at least stay within the same resort group, Palace Resorts. It was a good idea indeed.

We stayed at Sun Palace. An all-inclusive, adults only resort. Yes please! We love kids, but don’t exactly love kids on vacation. You know what I mean. Sun Palace is only about 15 minutes from the airport which was perfect! It’s not close to the downtown “going out” area, but we were fine with staying around the resort. Gotta take advantage of the all-inclusive food and drinks 🙂

Sun Palace is also a smaller resort, so it was a quick walk to anywhere. The gym was actually right around the corner from our room (insert slight guilt when we just walked past it instead of going in after day 2…). The spa, lobby bar, restaurants, pools, and beach were all just a few minutes from our room. Easy breezy.

 

Even though we were only on the second floor, the view from our room was gorgeous blue water and we could step out on our balcony to scope out the best spots on the beach or by the pool. I gotta admit, I miss looking over to my left and seeing water. Now when I look to the left from bed I just see a closet and dresser. Not quite the same. But I have these pictures to take me back! Take me back to infinity pools and ocean views.

What we drank + ate

 

It was vacation, so of course we did a lot of drinking and eating! I was pleasantly surprised by everything we had, but I definitely had some favorites. Eric got suckered into some shots, but made sure they were fruity and delicious. Frozen drinks were the go-to since it was so hot out, but we had to be careful to avoid brain freeze. Tropical vacation problems.

It was expected being in Mexico, but my favorite drink was the strawberry margarita. But we definitely learned who made it the best and when I ask for an extra shot to add. It had the perfect hint of lime and was so refreshing.

Sun Palace has four restaurants and a snack bar at the pool. The Alamo offers buffet style breakfast and lunch and turns into a sit down Mexican restaurant for dinner. Other dinner options are the Steak House, Oriental Lounge (Thai), and Trotto (Italian). 24 hour room service is also an option — the room service menu was actually really good! The snack bar was a favorite since we didn’t have to leave the pool area. Quesadillas with fresh guacamole and pico, yum! I’m pretty easy to please.

 

We ate at the Mexican restaurant, Alamo, for our last night since it was the only one we hadn’t tried. We were greeted with a beautiful anniversary surprise! A sweet couple we met at the pool that day helped arrange this to celebrate our anniversary. It was so kind and we enjoy the well wishes from the staff. I couldn’t stop smiling!

What we did

 

Since we stayed a certain number nights, we earned resort credits. This is pretty awesome although you do have to pay the 16% tax, so we didn’t use up all our credits. We picked out a few things that we both really wanted to do — we were both happy with our choices: couple’s massage, wine tasting, and Tulum.

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I loved these pretty tile floors at a shop in Tulum

The couple’s massage was an absolute must! I went into our trip knowing we would at least do that. We both were in need of a massage. It wasn’t the full on fancy experience we were used to at Le Blanc, but it was still nice and we enjoyed it. A great way to spend a morning before a fun day in the sun.

The wine tasting was much better than I anticipated! I’m always down for some wine, but this tasting was very educational, fun, and delicious! We tried 5 different Mexican wines and each had a hand selected food pairing ranging from salad to meat to dessert. We both learned a lot and thoroughly enjoyed it! Although we did make the mistake of eating RIGHT before we went. We weren’t informed of the food pairings and we didn’t want to attend a wine tasting on an empty stomach. Whoops. Next time it would be wise to ask if there will be food involved as well or if we should eat ahead of time.

 

Tulum was incredible! I have so much to say about it and grabbed many pictures that it may warrant its own post (if you are interested in that!) It was crazy to experience a place that used to be so vibrant and is now deserted. It took a few hours to get to Tulum – longer than normal since we had to pick up people from two other resorts. It was rainy the morning we went, but luckily the rain stopped right after we got off the bus. It ended up being pretty overcast which helped with the heat and possible sunburn.

We had a wonderful time learning about the culture and exploring the ruins. After a 6am wakeup call, bus ride, and adventure we sure were exhausted when we got back. We got back to our resort around 3pm which was great to still have a good part of our day to hang out. Food was not included on our tour, so the first stop when we got back to Sun Palace was the buffet and then we got along with our usual pool/beach routine.

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The ice cream man obviously couldn’t pass up a photo opp with an ice cream cone 😉 Good thing he was repping all his Vida Dulce gear!

What we thought

 

We loved our time in Cancun at Sun Palace! We have traveled internationally quite a few times together by now, so we learn how to do it better each time.

For our next time we definitely need to bring more cash. It’s so handy to have cash for tipping and paying for item, especially somewhere like Mexico or somewhere touristy that will accept American dollars. We did better with the cash this time, but were cutting it close. One of the benefits of being out of debt is the ability to give freely, so we want to bless the people that serve us on our travels!

A few things made this trip easier. The first being our Global Entry access. This is similar to TSA Precheck, but it’s for international travel. We have been background checked, so it makes customs easier. It also gives us TSA Precheck, which is such a treat! If you travel relatively often, I would highly recommend looking into Global Entry or TSA Precheck.

Eric booked our airport to resort transportation ahead of time. This kept us from having to be haggled in the airport to find a ride and we knew already how much it would cost. There aren’t taxi meters, so there’s no way of knowing how much you will owe at the end. Many resorts may include a transport in their price or have some sort of deal. Be mindful of when you need to be picked up for your departure though because it could be 3-4 hours early, which may or may not be necessary.

Lastly, we maintained a relaxed routine. We didn’t go crazy and go way against our normal routine which did make it easier to be back home. We created a general routine and stuck to it every day we could. I’m someone that thrives with routine, so I enjoy that. Know what you enjoy and do what works best for you!

If you’re still with me, thank you — I hope you enjoyed reading about our trip! Do you have any adventures scheduled!? Although I’m not sure where it’ll be, I’m already looking forward to our next one. The travel bug always gets me.

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Second Anniversary — 7 Lessons

July 9, 2016.

Thinking about this day still brings happy tears to my eyes. I don’t think that will ever stop. At least I pray it never does. It was a stressful, nerve-wracking, beautiful day spent with our family and friends. It was everything I’ve dreamed of and more.

You prepare a great deal for the wedding. You spend hours upon hours researching, planning, preparing, and celebrating. All that time and attention for one big day. A special day, of course, but no matter how you shake it, it’s still only one day of your life. Marriage- that’s the real journey. That’s where we spend our time and attention now. It’s crazy to think another year has come and gone. A year ago I reflected on the lessons learned during our first year of marriage with this post.

I thought it would be fun to reflect again and share more lessons learned. When I was thinking about this post I thought I might have a lot of similar lessons, but that actually wasn’t the case. We are learning and growing each day as husband and wife. Another year brought new lessons ❤

#1: Prayer is powerful

This is a forever truth.

Pray for each other. Pray together. Pray for my ability to grow in my role as a wife. Ask trusted friends to pray when we’re struggling with a situation or decision. Walk individually with the Lord. I’ve noticed that as we both grow closer to the Lord, we grow closer together. We are more patient, more loving, and more generous.

I’ve witnessed and experienced the power of prayer in the most specific, beautiful ways. God is powerful. He’s bigger than any challenge or fear. He knows what we need before we ask. Let Him always remain at the center of our relationship. Ecclesiastes 4:12 was a part of our wedding ceremony. I just love the image of the 3 strands. “Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.”

#2: We can accomplish anything if we’re in agreement

We work best as a team. When we come together in agreement, we can accomplish big things. Last year we agreed to eliminate our debt and we did it faster than I even thought possible! We are living with a lot less stress and better communication skills because of this accomplished goal. It seemed overwhelming when we got started, but once we agreed this was something we were fighting for, there was hope.

It didn’t suddenly become easier, but it did give us strength and perseverance because it was something we both wanted and were working towards together. I now know that we can do anything we set our minds to. Cheesy, but it’s the truth!

#3: It’s not worth it to “win” the argument

Usually if I’m focused on “winning” an argument, then that means I’ve lost sight of our relationship. I’m too consumed with being right that I forget for a moment what’s really important: our marriage.

I think he will admit that I am right a lot of the time (okay probably not ha!), but it really doesn’t matter at the end of the day. Keep in mind, I’m still working on this. I do feel a lot better when I let go of trying to be right and shift my focus to how to work together. How can we come to an agreement? How can we resolve this and move forward? How can we do this better next time?

This has helped me actually be grateful when we disagree and argue because it was productive. It brought an issue to the surface and allowed us to work through it. We don’t usually fight about the same things over and over (how exhausting is that!?) and I think it’s largely because of this mindset. 

#4: Laugh together… Often

Have fun! I know a lot of adult things come up in marriage like paying bills, errands, responsibilities, etc but it doesn’t always have to be serious. I married him because he’s the person I wanted to enjoy life with for as long as I’m able.

“I think one reason for a successful marriage is laughter. I think laughter gets you through the rough moments in marriage.” -Bob Newhart

Life really is better with laughter. Laugh off the little things. Plan a fun date. Be silly! Small things that used to offend or annoy me, now I try to laugh. I’m not always good at this. I still get serious and upset at times, but if I take the moment to laugh and not immediately react, it’s a better outcome.

#5: Sacrifice is required from both of us

When I was preparing this post I asked Eric what lessons he learned this year. The first one that came to mind: sacrifice. So it’s obviously a big lesson learned by both of us! We knew going into marriage sacrifice would be a big part. Merging two lives, two dreams, two backgrounds, two ways of seeing the world. This can only mean sacrifice and compromise.

But I’m not sure we truly understood what sacrifice would look like. In our second year its meant many different things. Supporting each other as we both have gone after different career paths. Getting home to take care of our pup, Stella, while the other does something after work. Handling most of the chores and errands while the other works hard. Saving money instead of going out to eat or going out with friends. Sacrificing time together to make dreams and success happen!

It’s been a challenging season as Eric has opened up Vida Dulce and I’ve been busy with work. Sacrifice has been a theme that we continue to improve on. I’m learning each day how to put his needs above my own.

#6: I can serve and love him well even when we’re apart

As I touched on in #5, we spend a lot of time apart because of our schedules. I was struggling with how I could still serve him and make him feel loved. I was used to doing this face to face, but then those opportunities became limited.

I had to get creative sometimes, but I learned less time together is no excuse to not feel loved or connected. Serving him while apart can look like a “thinking of you” text, buying the extra things from the grocery store I know he loves, or taking care of the chores so he can do other things on his one day off.

At first when we were trying to navigate this new normal, I felt disconnected. But with some time and practice, I actually feel more connected now than I did when we had more time together. Intentionality makes a difference. This schedule forces us to be intentional if we want to make progress in our marriage — the silver lining.

#7: He doesn’t complete me

I know this sounds very unromantic, but stick with me. I am already whole. I am a whole person on my own with Jesus’ help. My husband complements me. He adds to my life. He helps fill in the gaps. He’s patient while I’m impulsive. He researches everything while I’d rather choose the first best thing I find. He’s able to fix anything while I’m a bit lost when it comes to most repairs.

We share many similar traits and values which shine all the brighter together. We believe in serving the Lord, the need for hard work, and the importance of family. We absolutely love traveling, adore yummy food (and dessert of course!), and taking family walks at the lake.

He is a large, wonderful part of my world, but my world does not revolve around him. And thank goodness because that’s a lot of pressure to put on someone. When we rely on someone else to complete us or make us happy, we will always be disappointed. We are both happy and healthy within ourselves. I certainly seek out ways to serve him and bring him joy and he does the same for me, but it’s not the end all be all. I pray that we continue to grow separately so we can grow together.


Thank you for walking this journey with us! My hope is that our marriage can be a light to others. May this will be an encouragement to you and your current/future love. It’s not promised to be easy, but it is worth it!

What have you learned along the way in your marriage journey!? I’d love to read your wisdom!

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June Progress | July Goals 2018

June Progress | July Goals 2018

This post contains affiliate links. See affiliate disclaimer here.

We’re halfway through the year! Can you believe it!? Whether you’ve been working through goals since January or you’re still waiting to get started, July 1st can be your January 1st. Reflect, write down your goals, and get after em! My Powersheets have made the biggest difference in making what matters happen.

June Progress

Monthly Goals

  • Budget Meeting: These are still going strong! We did overspend in June, but most of that was due to paying for our anniversary trip (worth it!) and lawn care. Homeownership isn’t all fun and games… Although we overspent, we kept open communication and were on the same page, so that’s a win.
  • Set up our wills Research will: This goal kept getting moved month to month and I realized it needed to be broken down a step further to make it happen. My husband and I only have maybe 1 day together, so setting up our will was unrealistic. Instead we did some research and figured out where we want to get the will done and what type of plan is best for us. Now that’s settled and it’ll be quicker to move forward and (hopefully) accomplish in July!
  • Complete + submit financial plan: Done! We’ve been working with a financial advisor to make sure our savings and retirement are on track! We have a ways to go, but while we’re young, we wanted to make sure we’re doing it all right from the start. We still need to review the plan provided based on our information, but the hard part of gathering everything is complete.
  • Friend date: This was fun! I had a pool date with a friend and was able to get together with some of my real estate pre-licensing classmates. With a busy schedule it’s easy to go weeks or even months without seeing friends, but being intentional and scheduling dates is so worth it and good for the soul!
  • Read book #6: I read a lot of personal development type books, but this month I mixed it up and read a “fun” book — Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert. I know it’s an oldie, but it’s still a goodie and such a fun summer read! I love Elizabeth’s writing style and the book inspired me to have more adventure and self care in my life.
  • Anniversary plans: Plans are made! Our trip is all booked — leaving on our anniversary, July 9th! And his gifts have arrived. Year 2 is cotton which was tricky at first, but Etsy is wonderful and had tons of cute ideas. I’m excited to celebrate this milestone!
  • Positive report at dentist: I had a work meeting scheduled for about the same time, so my dentist appointment got moved to July as you’ll see in my goals below.
  • Support Eric with Vida Dulce: This has been so much fun and easy to do because I enjoy it! It takes a lot to run a business, especially at the beginning, so I’ve been trying to be as supportive as possible. I try to ask him every so often how I can support him better to make sure I’m not missing anything that would be helpful. It’s been an exciting journey so far and can’t wait to see how the shop continues to grow!

Weekly Goals

  • Rest + care: The rest wasn’t 100% because I took a few 6am Pure Barre classes and I’m still trying to get into a good sleeping routine for waking up early. BUT I’m making progress. I was more intentional overall about sticking to an earlier bedtime so the rest will happen.
  • Spend time well: I feel like good progress was made here. I’m working on using downtime first for most important activities like meditation or my devotional and then doing mindless activities like scrolling or watching YouTube videos once those are done. I can do both, I just have to make sure I’m prioritizing the most important so they don’t get shoved off my plate by the other things.
  • Blog post: I did these weekly! I’m thinking about maybe adding a 2nd post for each week since I’m in a good flow — what do you think? Is there anything special you’d love to see on Flourish with Rach? I’d love to hear your feedback!
  • Celebrate others: This month I realized how special it is to be intentional about celebrating others! That could be big things like a wedding or new job or little things like getting through a tough day! As I talked about in my June Round Up, celebrating others is such a fun way to cultivate relationships.

Daily Goals

  • Bible Plan — Achieved 30/30 days
  • Write the Word — Achieved 28/30 days
  • Pure Barre — Achieved 23/30 days
  • Serve Eric — Achieved 30/30 days

Wow, I’m proud of this progress! I’ve had these 4 goals as my daily goals for a few months now and I think that’s been really beneficial. Each day I know my intentions — faith, wellness, and marriage. If I get those things done, then it’s a good day and I’m not so worried if nothing else happens. Don’t be afraid to keep the same goals month after month. It can take time to cultivate good habits and it’s definitely worth the focus. Little by little, a little becomes a lot.

July Goals

Monthly Goals

  • Celebrate 2nd wedding anniversary
  • Budget communcation
  • Set up wills with LegalZoom
  • Friend date
  • Read book #7
  • Positive report at dentist
  • Refresh blog branding

Weekly Goals

  • Use time intentionally
  • Blog post
  • Encourage a friend
  • Cultivate routines
  • Declutter a space
  • Mindful spending

Daily Goals

  • Bible plan
  • Write the Word
  • Move body
  • Love Eric well

I’m thrilled about working towards these goals! We will be in Cancun, Mexico from July 9-16 to celebrate our anniversary, so I’m going to do my best! I’ve giving myself grace for however that turns out and I’m going to make sure I savor those moments and memories! ❤ What are you working towards in July!? Don’t forget to let me know what types of posts you want to see here — I do this for YOU! You will flourish today, darling! ❤

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June 2018 Round Up

June 2018 Round Up

Wow, 6 months of 2018 complete. How have you been using your year so far!? These round up posts are so fun for me to put together to reflect and summarize my month. Here we go!

3 things I’m excited about

  1. Our second wedding anniversary and our trip! I can’t believe it’s almost been 2 years since we got married! July 9th, 2016 was such a special day because my best friend and I committed forever to each other in the presence of so many family and friends. Marriage is hard, but it’s also such a gift. In honor of our anniversary, I’ll be dedicating an entire post to marriage, so keep an eye out if that interests you!
  2. 100th Pure Barre class! I attended Pure Barre years ago right after I graduated from college, but had a hard time coordinating the class times with my schedule then. I started up again in February and it’s been amazing! I’m getting stronger, mentally and physically, with every class. It’s been the greatest accountability and community. Not to mention my favorite Mexican restaurant is within walking distance and there’s a great nail place two doors down 😉 It’s so challenging, but also one of my favorite things! I can’t say enough good things about the instructors and the studio in general. If you’ve never tried Pure Barre, I suggest checking it out!
  3. Completing the Certified Sales Professional course! I spent two days learning and growing as a real estate professional in the new construction world and it was fabulous! It’s been almost a year since I got my real estate license and I’m all done with my post licensing as of last December, but that doesn’t mean the learning stops. I love that I’m in a field where I can continue to grow and use my strengths to flourish. Plus I actually enjoy class… most of the time. You could call me a nerd 🙂

Quote I’ve been meditating on

“Learn to be happy with what you have while you pursue all that you want.” -E. James Rohn

We’re in a season of excitement and pursuing bigger things! That’s wonderful, but that can also make it easy to lose sight of what we currently have. We are beyond blessed, but those blessings can be missed if we’re only focusing on what’s next or around the corner. I’m learning more and more about contentment. Being happy with what I have now.

That doesn’t mean I don’t want more or better, but it means I don’t need more or better to be happy. That difference is huge. When happiness is always to be found in the next or the more or the better, it will never be achieved. There is always something else that will be next, more, or better. And then happiness will never be where you are. Hold onto happiness with one hand and reach for the next good thing with the other.

Who or what I’m adoring

The Linden Manor — I got to experience the first wedding at this gorgeous venue and see a dream come to life! My good friend, Kelly, and her aunt started up this amazing venue space in Hillsborough, North Carolina. It’s actually her aunt’s home. Can you imagine actually living there!? Stunning home, luxurious pool, and lots of great space on the property for the wedding of your dreams!

I remember when this venue was just a hope and a thought. I helped with one of the first consultation appointments. I’ve prayed for this friend and venue. It was a true honor to be a part of the first BIG day! If it was any indication of the future, I am sure there are many, many more to come! If you’re a bride or know a bride seeking an affordable outdoor wedding space that doesn’t sacrifice beauty, I highly recommend The Linden Manor. The owners are kind, friendly, and professional, plus you may even see me helping behind the scenes! Here’s just a few of my favorite pics from the (hot!) day

Favorite memory from June

Harrison and Jasmine’s wedding and a weekend away in Wilmington was definitely a favorite memory. We had an absolute blast in Wilmington! I had forgotten how close the beach was to where we live and then was kicking myself for not going more often. It was a scorcher weekend, but the heat was worth it. The sweet newlyweds and the wedding were gorgeous! It’s a joy to witness love and welcome friends into the “married club.”

We decided to stay for two nights which was the best decision! The day after the wedding we had a whole day out on the beach. Plus what would a trip to Wilmington be without Britts Donuts!? Eric was in heaven and I certainly ate my fair share. With as busy as we are and as limited as our time together is right now, a weekend away was much needed. Happy marriage to the newest Mr and Mrs!

A good lesson I learned

It’s important to take the time to celebrate others.

We all want to be celebrated, right? We want to be acknowledged for the good work we’re doing and we want our milestones to be noticed. I’m learning this is such a wonderful way to be there for the people in my life and cultivate deeper connections. I love being a part of those moments and I know my people appreciate the support. Time is a gift. If I can’t be there in person, I try to do the next best thing with a text, phone call, or card to let them know I’m thinking about them and celebrating from afar.

Make it a goal to celebrate at least one person in your life each month. My guess is once you get started and seek out those opportunities, you’ll be celebrating loved ones left and right. Moments both big and small deserve to be celebrated, so don’t feel the need to put any limits on it!

In July…

I’m saying no to: time wasters.

I’m saying yes to: waking up early.

Cheers to a safe, happy summer with lots of celebrations! I’ll see you here next week ❤

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