Learning the Ropes of Windows Phone 8X


As I mentioned in a post recently, I was asked again to be an ambassador for Verizon Wireless, this time getting the Windows 8X phone by HTC, and an Otterbox.

photo 95

This phone was a bit overwhelming at first because it is different than anything I have had before in a phone. However, as a windows user, I quickly figured it out and wanted to share some of the great features with you!

-I love how lightweight and thin it is. It has a bigger screen than my iPhone (but not as big as my galaxy S3) and the buttons are flush against the phone and while it makes it very sleek, they can sometimes be slightly difficult to press, which isn’t a huge deal.

-The personalization is great, you can “pin” things to your screen, and make them bigger or smaller. You can also customize your home screen colors (love the pink obviously!) and what you want tos ee on your home screen.

-The colors are very vivid, and the camera is easy to access even from a locked phone, and it takes a very wide angled shot, so no more crowding people to fit them into your photo (one of my favorite features!)

-A couple of areas it is lacking, the social sharing is a bit more difficult straight from photos, and the marketplace is lacking in some of my favorite apps (but I hear they are working on this) so it’s definitely not a deal breaker, I have just had to get a bit more creative!

In future posts I will be talking more specifically about some of the features like the beats audio and the camera, kids corner, etc. But I just wanted to give a quick overview after using it for a couple of weeks!


I realized I never shared photos of the outside of my house decorated for Christmas, so here ya go, my last Christmas-y post, I promise!





QOTD: What is something you wish your phone had that it doesn’t?

*Disclosure: I was provided with a device and phone service from Verizon Wireless

RWS Features #45


Good morning! It’s officially Christmas weekend! That means lots of baking, family, and very little work. What does everyone have planned this weekend? Going out of town? Family coming in? I would love to hear!

Today I want to introduce you to Caroline from http://fightingforwellness.wordpress.com. She is a counselor who also runs. Be sure to stop by her blog and say hello!


1.) Why did you start blogging?

I found fitblog back in October 2010 (I think!) while on twitter one day, and started discovering all sorts of healthy living bloggers. I read blogs for about 11 months before deciding to start documenting my own journey. While I’m into exercising and eating healthy, I’m also a counselor, so I have a passion for reaching out to people in that area as well.

2.) Sum up your blog in a couple sentences:

My blog is an exciting mix of my personal fitness journey, dealing with postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (I was diagnosed back in the fall of 2004), recipes I’ve enjoyed making, and mental health as well. I view health and wellness holistically, and try to address multiple aspects of wellness in my blog (not just physical health)!

3.) What do you wish to accomplish/achieve by blogging?

Blogging has been a great way to document my life, and I often go back to read old posts! When I put something out on the internet, I’m more likely to follow along with my goals, so blogging is a way to motive and push me towards the things I want to accomplish. Blogging has also gotten me involved in a great online community that provides support and encouragement, and I learn a lot each week from them as well!

4.)What is your biggest healthy living accomplishment?

This is tough! I’ve run 2 half marathons, which I thought I could never do because of having POTS. This is a huge accomplishment because I had a lot to fight through. I think that was my most impressive accomplishment because I didn’t think it could happen. Maybe my “biggest accomplishment” would be just learning about all the factors involved in wellness and learning how to manage each of these areas in a balanced fashion.

5.) What is your blog URL and twitter handle

Blog: http://fightingforwellness.wordpress.com     Twitter: @kalolainastar


Time to announce the WINNER of the Fitmixer boot camp giveaway!

Julie M, comment 54, you are the winner! Please e mail me at [email protected] and I can get you your entry!

QOTD: What are you doing this weekend?

Stay Connected


I am a bit obsessed with being connected to social media, texts, phone calls, etc. This is a blessing and a curse I know, but it is also part of my two jobs. I was chosen to return as a Verizon Wireless ambassador, and I am so excited to share some new info, tips, and tricks about my brand new phone….the Windows phone 8X by HTC! I am a PC girl, so this phone is right up my alley and I found myself able to learn it very quickly.

photo (27)

Why hello new phone. I love you and I don’t even know you.

Not only was I given a phone, but we also given this awesome OtterBox! I actually *cough* BOBBY *cough* a mishap with my Galaxy S3 from last time, and it got dropped and scrapped up because I had no case for it….so I was STOKED to get a case this time. So far I am loving it (it’s from the defender series) and don’t feel like I have to constantly worry about dropping my phone.

photo (28)

I can’t wait to share more about the device itself with you, I will be using #VZWA on Twitter when tweeting about it, so be on the lookout. So far my favorite thing is the live tiles! Staying connected is so easy with everything right on my home screen.


In other news, I started seeing a chiropractor again, and on top of already knowing I have neck and back problems, we talked about one hip being higher than the other which is probably throwing my bio mechanics off when I run, he is going to do some ART on me and also some stretches and exercises I can do to work on any muscular imbalances, etc. I am really hopeful about getting help for my body to improve my overall health and my running!

QOTD: Have you ever dropped your phone? Do you keep it in a case?

*Don’t forget to enter my Fitmixer boot camp/product giveaway!

*Disclosure: I am participating in the Verizon Wireless Ambassador program and have been provided
with a wireless device and three months of service in exchange for my honest opinions about the

Healthy Living Blogs


If you don’t know about Healthy Living Blogs, you are missing out! it is a great website/blog created by healthy living bloggers for healthy living bloggers. They are trying to get 2013 members by 2013, and I need your help!


Are you a member of HLB? If not you should be! Here are a few good reasons:

-Search for other healthy living bloggers by location, or A-Z

-Advertise your blog on their site

-See blog posts from other bloggers

-Get news and info from what’s happening “around the world” with other blogs


You can get more membership info here. It only costs $10!  They do a great job of explaining why you should become a member, so I am just copying and pasting them info below:

There are several different benefits to being a member of HLB!

“We have a lot of awesome posts going up, every day of the week offering another theme or subject.  HLB Members are often given a sort of free advertising for their own blog by our posting links to their own sites and doing a sort of “guest posts” for the different series we publish each week.  You can see an explanation of the posts here: http://healthylivingblogs.com/2010/12/major-changes-at-hlb/

Also, there are some opportunities that are only available for HLB members. One example of this would be this awesome giveaway: http://healthylivingblogs.com/2010/12/the-very-best-giveaways-camp-blogaway-registration/

And of course, being listed on the blog as a member is beneficial, too!  Other bloggers in your area can connect with you for blogger meet ups, readers searching for advice from people who write about specific subjects, or companies seeking out bloggers for new opportunities can all use the HLB a to z page, location pages, twitter group and master member list to find you!”


QOTD: Are you a member of HLB? have you ever submitted posts for them? Link ‘em up!

*Don’t forget to enter my Fitmixer boot camp entry/product giveaway!

RWS Features #44


Good morning friends. My heart is heavy this morning and I feel almost….bad posting a blog post about things that just don’t seem to matter much after the school shooting events that happened yesterday. I have an 18 mile run on ta for this morning, and am not really feeling like running.

However, I want to introduce you today to Ali from http://msprun.com/. Be sure to stop by her blog and say hello to her. She ran the Disneyland half and is doing Goofy at WDW in January!


1.) How/Why did you start blogging?

I started blogging for a few reasons. I’ve always been a person that learns more from “doing”, so when I began my social media MBA I wanted to have actual experience for my classes than just speaking theory. I also began my blog to hold me accountable. I had signed up for my first half marathon ever (Disneyland Half), and wanted something to keep me on track through my training

2) Sum up your blog in a couple of sentences:

My blog is a blog about running and traveling. I participate in races all around the US, and focus on both the travel and race.

3) What do you wish to accomplish/achieve by blogging

I’d like to motivate someone to try something new with my blog.

4) What is your biggest healthy living accomplishment?

My largest accomplishment to date has been losing 30lbs through diet and exercise, and keeping it off! It was hard at first, but now I find myself choosing healthier alternatives instantly.

5) What is your blog URL and twitter handle?

My blog is msprun.com and my twitter is @am588

Thanks so much Ali! Hope to see you in January!


The winner of the Oakley Sunglasses Giveaway is Danielle, comment 40! Please e mail me at [email protected] and I will get you in touch with Jess to get your prize!

QOTD: What workouts do you have planned for the weekend?

Disney Cruise out of Galveston


Back in October I was lucky enough to get a great rate on a Disney cruise sailing out of a new port, Galveston Texas. This was great for us because it was a three hour shorter drive than driving to Port Canaveral, and I had a lot of people asking about the new cruise and port. Instead of doing a day by day report, I just decided to do some photos of the trip for you in 2-3 installments, with a few quick captions/explanations. If you have questions about Disney Cruise line cruises please contact me (or any other cruise line!)

We sailed on the Disney Magic, which is one of the classic (smaller and older) ships. I have sailed on her twice before, and while she doesn’t have the newness or technology of the new ships the Dream and the Fantasy, it is much less crowded and has a more intimate feeling.


Disney did a great job of sprucing up the port in Galveston by adding signs, etc. All in the waiting areas before you board the ship.


Mom, dad, and Bobby waiting to board


Lunch at Topsiders


Our oceanview stateroom with verandah


Going to dinner the first night


The first sea day we went to Palo (adults only) brunch




Formal night




On the tender boat going to Grand Cayman



We took a cab to Royal Palms




In the next installment I will have pictures from Coast Maya, Cozumel, and more of the ship!

*GIVEAWAY on the blog tomorrow. You won’t want to miss it *cough* Under Armour *cough*

QOTD: Have you ever cruised? What was your favorite port?

I would love to book your dream vacation for you, and it costs you nothing extra to book through me. I can book most cruise lines, Disney World, Disneyland, Aulani, Adventures by Disney, Universal, as well as many all inclusive resorts. E-mail me at [email protected] for info!

Weekly Recap: November Week 5


Good morning! I hope everyone is having an awesome weekend. I know a lot of people raced yesterday or this morning and I hope you all did great! I will hopefully be racing next weekend, depending on what is found during my procedure Tuesday.

Other than that, I had a decent week of workouts and a really great eight mile run yesterday.


Yes I was wearing that running. In December. It was a humid 75 degrees, welcome to the south.

However, despite the heat, I was able to run really well, and finished up eight miles in 1:19. Considering all my health problems lately, I was very proud of that number.

Here is the rest of the week’s workouts:

Sunday: rest

Monday: rest/GI Doctor appointment

Tuesday: ran 3 miles, lifted upper body weights

Wednesday: lifted upper body weights

Thursday: ran 6 miles in one hour

Friday: lifted upper body weights, 30 minutes stationary bike

Saturday: 8 miles 1:19


Lifted weights X’s 3

ran 17 miles

cross trained one time

I have also been trying to do lots of stretching as I up my miles in my marathon training. The last thing I want is a cramp in the middle of running goofy in January!

Don’t forget to check out my Facebook page starting tomorrow for a week with ten giveaway’s on some friends’ blogs (and mine!)

QOTD: What is your favorite stretch?

December Goals 2012


One month left of 2012! Aaaannnddd then it will take me until the middle of next year to remember to write 2013 instead of 2012! I was literally gone for 16 days out of this month, then 3 for Thanksgiving, so I was barely home in November so i can’t believe it’s time for another month of goals! First let’s look back at my November goals and see how I did.


1.) Vlog More: Let’s shoot low this time, I want to vlog at least ONE TIME in November. There.

Grade: (A-) I vlogged ONE time this month! I know it was my goal to only do one but I really should do more.

2.) Be happy: There are some crazy things going on in my life right now that have caused me some discouragement, and I am working on being happy despite my circumstances.

Grade: (B-) In all honestly I have good days and bad days. I have been feeling very overwhelmed with some things i have going on, and some days I handle it really well and have joy despite my circumstances…but some days I crack under the pressure and have a mini freak out.

3.) Secret goal. Yup. Pulling this one again. Trust me when I say I want to tell you guys SO BADLY. So let’s pray this one happens in November.

Grade: (F-) Is an F minus even a real grade? Sigh. I really hoped November was it (and for those wondering, no we are not trying to get pregnant.)

4.) Get at least half my Christmas shopping done. No waiting until the last minute. Let’s get it done before the crazies come out with their less than stellar Christmas spirit!

Grade: (A+) I only have a couple more gifts to buy, I am almost DONE with my shopping! Woo hoo! I knocked out a lot on Black Friday and then some more on cyber Monday.


December goals:

1.) Enjoy the Christmas season. It seems some years I get so wrapped up in the business of the holidays that I don’t actually take the time to enjoy it and remember the real reason we celebrate.

2.) Figure out what’s wrong with my health. I am hoping December will be the month I get some answers to my health issues. I would like to start off 2013 healthy!

3.) Be more thankful. I have really been working on being thankful for the things I have instead of focusing on the things I want to change in my life. It’s tough sometimes but I am trying!

4.) Successfully finish my Goofy training. I am quite the injury prone runner, so I am focusing on finishing up my training for the runDisney Goofy’s race and a half challenge injury free so I can finish with a smile on my face!

Here’s to a successful December and finishing out 2012 with a bang!


*Today is the LAST DAY to use code RPAHeather and save $30 on the Woman’s Half Marathon or 10k that is in Baton Rouge next weekend! Or, save $5 on the 5k. Take advantage of these savings! The medal is awesome with a removable charm, you will get a nice gym bag for your “goodie bag” at the expo, and all photos taken on the course will be able to be downloaded FOR FREE after the race!


QOTD: Do you have any goals for December? Name one!

Healthy Christmas Gifts Giveaway Series


Good morning! I love Christmas. Gifts are fun right? I really do enjoy GIVING gifts and picking things out for people. So, guess what? I have partnered with nine other bloggers who are Sweat Pink or Fitfluential Ambassadors like me, and we are ALL doing give away’s next week!

We will be giving away things like Under Armour shoes and sports bra (I am doing the sports bra!), workout shirts, arm warmers, etc. The way it works is every day, morning and afternoon, I will be posting a link to one of the other ladies’ giveaways on my Facebook fan page. So, if you want to see what blogs have the giveaways, you need to be sure to like my Facebook page.


(Not the stuff I’m giving away, just some of my favorite Under Armour gear!)

Also it would be awesome if when you clicked through to each giveaway if you liked their Facebook page as well (not a requirement, just would rock!)

A huge thanks to Amanda from Fit Pregnancy and Parenting for setting this up! We all happened to be about to post giveaways, so we thought what better way to do it than for you to have the opportunity to enter TEN different giveaways over the course of a week?

So, be sure to like my Facebook fan page and then check back on it starting next Monday morning and afternoon every day to see a new giveaway on a different blog! Be sure to spread the Christmas cheer so others can enter as well!

*Last chance to enter the Woman’s Half Marathon, 10k, or 5k and SAVE! $30 off the half/10K and $5 off the 5k with code RPAHeather at checkout when you register! Ends TOMORROW! Going to be a fun race in Baton Rouge on December 9th!

photo (2144

Run Pink and sign up for the race!

QOTD: What workout gear is on your Christmas list?

Rock the Race with Meb


Raise your hand if you love Meb  Keflezighi? Ok, now that EVERYONE’s hand is raised, how would you like to win one of three amazing prizes, one being training for a day with Meb and staying in California for three nights? What if one of the prizes was to have an epic music festival experience like no other. Get ready for 5 nights in Austin and 2 passes to one of the largest music festivals in the world. OR, you and a friend can enjoy the full rock royalty treatment at a Rock ‘N’ Roll marathon® event in 2013.


Sounds pretty awesome right? The great news is that it’s so easy to enter to wing this virtual running game!  Simply go to the Rock the Race with Meb website and connect with your Facebook account.

-Accept the Rock the Race with Meb application,
and then you’re automatically entered to win one
of the three grand prize packages.

-Pick 20 of your fleetest Facebook friends and
pass them a virtual microphone.

-Your friends accept the mic and pass it to 20 of
their quickest friends, and so on.

-Get 55 friends of friends to accept and pass the
mic, and you’ll be cruising across the finish line!

There are also ways to earn bonus entries, so be sure to check out the website. You can also win some really sweet Sony W-series Meb edition MP3 player. This thing is cool.

-One-piece wearable music player for wire-free workouts
-Water-resistant design holds up during intense workouts
-Drag & drop from iTunes® (PC) or Windows® Media Player
-Includes runners audio tips & booklet by Meb Keflezighi
-Compact design with 2 GB internal memory
-3-min quick charge = up to 60-min of battery life
-Easy navigation of songs & folders
-Enjoy playlist compatibility (PC) and shuffle mode
-Crystal clear sound and deep bass

ZAPPIN™ search plays about 4 or 15-second music clips
USB cable, holder and S/M/L ear-buds included


It’s super easy to enter and really fun, too. The prizes are amazing, so what have you got to lose? Check it out today, contest ends December 31! Here are some important links for you to check out, as well as Twitter handle and hashtag!

QOTD: If you got to run with Meb for a day, what is a question you would ask him?