Thursday, March 30, 2017

Life Lately

Hey friends! It's only been 30 days since my last post, but who is counting?! We have been busy busy and been doing SO much fun stuff. I end up posting to my Insta story and not saving any pictures, which is a major fail on my part.

Every weekend we have had plans. I'm definitely in need of a relaxing weekend soon! 

We spent the first nice weather weekend at the Tiki Bar where my MIL keeps her boat. Drinks and a gorgeous sunset were the highlights of that evening!

We've watched a couple movies on Sunday evenings with popcorn + candy (duh). We've seen Deepwater Horizon, Hacksaw Ridge, and The Butler. We haven't finished The Butler, but I read the entire Wikipedia which the story was based off of and it's so good.

Can you tell I love movies based on true stories?! Both Deepwater Horizon and Hacksaw Ridge did not disappoint! I definitely recommend watching them!

A couple of weekends back Justin asked that we spend quality time together on Saturday instead of time on chores and errands. We got breakfast together at one of our favorite spots and went shopping for fun stuff the rest of the afternoon.

I've been treating myself to flowers every two weeks and let me just say, it's the best $6 I spend every time. Coming home to fresh blooms on my kitchen table is just the best.

Saturday night we got fancy at went to Justin's annual work event at the new Sagamore Pendy Hotel. We were the first event to be held there and it was gorgeous! There was plenty of drinks and some table games..I ended up playing about two hours of blackjack with monopoly money for raffle tickets. 

The highlight of these past few weeks though was booking our trip to California. We will be crossing off some bucket list items on the trip and I have a countdown going until we leave! Our itinerary includes going to Pebble Beach, a night in San Fran, and three days in Napa. 

We have never planned a vacation to somewhere we have already been, and doing so is even more exciting. We know what to expect, where we want to revisit, and places we didn't get to go last time that are now priorities. 

Happy Friday Jr. friends. Feels good to pop back into the little space. 

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

March Goals

So happy to see Spring coming our way. A new season is like a new beginning in my book and the warm weather always helps!

February was a really good month. The car show was a great time and Justin narrowed down his list to two cars. We got our carport cleaned up and enjoyed our Valentine's Day together and most of all, I stressed less.

I could still work on stressing less, and I am going to make it a goal for this month as well, but what a life changer! Justin's work has slowed down and that means more time on the weekends to do fun things :)

March Goals:
  • Stress Less - It's a constant work in progress but not letting the little things in life get to me has been a breath of fresh air. I was at Panera a couple weeks back and they ran out of broccoli cheddar soup (I hadn't ordered it) and were apologizing to all the people that had already ordered it and were waiting. One woman turned irate and started yelling. Over soup. Not going to let myself ever be that person!
  • Spring Clean - Justin has a ton of clothes that he doesn't wear anymore and needs to go through. I have the "one year rule" aka if I haven't worn it in a year, it gets donated. So I need to go through some things!
  • Make a List of Clothes We Need - We really don't buy clothes very often. It's just not that big of a priority, but we have both reached the point that we legitimately need things. Work pants, sports bras, pajamas, etc.
  • Find a Dress for the Gala - Every year Justin's work hosts a gala at the end of busy season for everyone to unwind. I am going to try Rent the Runway this time. Hoping it works out!
  • Figure Out Travel Plans - California is at the top of our list and we are just trying to finalize the timeline and make a budget before booking everything. But if we are going to go, it needs to be booked asap. 

February Goals:
  • File Taxes
  • Stress Less
  • Go to the Baltimore Car Show
  • Finish Side Door Project 
  • Celebrate Our Dateversary/Valentine's Day
  • Bag Leaves in Carport 
Happy March everyone! Time. Is. Flying. 

Friday, February 10, 2017

Friday No. 6

Last Friday Justin and I restocked our wine bin as we have been running super low on wine for some time now. We belonged to three wine clubs at one point and had a big stock pile that we couldn't keep up with (horrible problem, right?!). We ended up canceling all but one wine club but have held off on shipments the past 2 quarters. The trip was much needed.

For Christmas in 2015 I received Orioles Cabernet. I held off on drinking it because I liked the label too much but when I did finally open it, I was delightfully surprised! It was so much better than I expected and now our local wine store carries it!

The gallery wall I have been planning is finally starting to come together. I decided that I want to use black and white photos and white matte/white wood frames. I am going to do three rows of three and have all nine photos picked! I know this is going to make me want to paint my family room again too...

Just a few of my favorites below :)

It has been light when I am leaving work now which is such a tease of spring! The sunsets have been so gorgeous.  Especially last nights sunset!


I saw this on Instagram a while ago and then saw that Emily Meyers of  The Freckled Fox posted it last night and I just love everything about these words. I have been trying to be positive and it has completely changed my attitude and general well being. My positive attitude and smile also have rubbed off on others. 

Being negative takes so much energy. It's a completely different mindset and now looking at the good in every situation is so freeing!

This weekend is filled with fun. We are going to the car show, getting sushi, and hopefully enjoying a gorgeous warm day on Sunday! Happy Friday :)

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

February 14th

F O R   M E N
Untitled #10

The most controversial "holiday" is just around the corner! & for those of you who aren't on the "everyday should be a day to say I love you" train, I've created a little gift guide for you!

Valentine's Day happens to be the day that Justin and I went on our first date, so it is a day to look back and think about how far we have come since that day. If you do celebrate with gifts then I think you'll love some of these ideas!

1. J.Crew Socks - because Justin loves his sock game
2. Titleist ProV1 or ProV1x Golf Balls - because according to the golf channel they are like magic
3. Grill Tools - because who doesn't love massive spatulas?!
4. Sunglasses - because summer is just around the corner! #praisehands
5. Beef Jerky - because yum
6. Scratch Offs - because men love to gamble
7. Boxers - because ooh la la
8. MVMT Watch - because they are relatively inexpensive and look really nice

Happy shopping!

Friday, February 3, 2017

Friday No.5

Switching things up a bit because sometimes five on Friday turns into four on Friday! 

Yesterday I woke up reminiscing on the anniversary of the day Justin got down on one knee and tiredly asked me to be his wife. It's hard to forget when it also falls on Groundhog Day. 

Poor Justin. I am the worst at surprises. So bad that I used to unwrap Christmas gifts and re-wrap them as a child. I begged him to give me hints and details and then got frustrated when he wouldn't budge. I have apologized to him a lot. 

I thought I knew what was going on. I thought it would be a Saturday and it would be obvious when it was going to happen. Saturday came and went so I had written off that weekend as being "the weekend." We walked into a Superbowl Party, started saying hi to everyone, and before I knew it he was down on one knee and our friends surrounding us in a circle. 

It was the best surprise ever and he totally caught me off guard. I'm getting better with the surprise thing now :) 

Totally random but a few weeks ago, I was asked what my favorite color was. I responded "black." I wear black all the time. I don't wear pink or violet or buy things because they are "my favorite color" consciously. I like to wear black because it's sleek and doesn't stain.

I started thinking about it and realized that my favorite color is probably definitely black AND white. Although I never wear white, I buy a lot of white. So then I looked it up:

"Personality color white is associated with high standards in cleanliness in appearance. Your consistent choice of white over other colors shows your confidence in yourself, your openness, fearlessness and your striving for perfection."

"The color black is the color of sophistication. Not everyone understands its refined beauty but those who have personality color black do. Personality color black was described by color psychologists as decisive, powerful and confident, people with this personality type will make excellent leaders or entrepreneurs."

So random I know, but so true!

Last night I went through old photos on my old laptop. I have been meaning to put them onto a hard drive and just haven't gotten to it but definitely need to do that asap! I found pictures that I had on my blackberry and first iPhone!
such babies!
One of my favorite things to make for weeknight dinners is a quinoa stir fry because it's so filling and you can add so many different veggies. Wednesday night I made one of the best ones yet. 

  • 1/2 Cup Quinoa
  • 1 Pound of Ground Turkey
  • 1/4 of Onion, chopped
  • 1 Sweet Potato, cubed
  • 8 oz of Mushrooms
  • 1 Teaspoon Red Pepper Flakes
  • Garlic Salt to Taste
  • 1/2 Jar of Three Cheese Pasta Sauce
1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees and bake sweet potatoes.
2. Boil water and add quinoa, let simmer until cooked through.
3. In a separate pan, brown ground turkey then add the onions, mushrooms, and seasoning. Once the quinoa and sweet potatoes are cooked, add them in and add the sauce!

It may look like a bunch of mush but it's SO GOOD.

That's all folks. HAPPY FRIDAY!

Thursday, February 2, 2017

February Goals

Time is flying and now when I am leaving work, the sun is still out. It's a beautiful thing. Although I still feel like NYC was forever ago and Christmas was ages ago, I can't believe it's February. This month is filled with birthdays and fun plans. We have something almost every weekend except this one. 

January Goals:

  • Eat Vegan 1 Day a Week - I went fully vegan for breakfast everyday and vegetarian for lunch (I have a slice of cheese on my sandwich). Dinners are the hard part. So I will half check this one off. 
  • Finish Painting Kitchen/Dining Room Lighter Color 
  • Develop and Complete Annual Budget
  • Successfully Go Snowboarding - Booo to the weather! It's been too warm.
  • Blog 3 Times per Week - Working on it ya'll!

February Goals:

  • File Taxes - Welp, already did this one last night!
  • Stress Less - I stress so hard and it's not good for me, my health, or anyone else. How will I do it? Idk. I am working on that part. Breathe! 
  • Go to the Baltimore Car Show - Justin is in the market for a new car soon and he regularly reminds me that I got to pick my car without much of his input. Going to have to work on that stress less goal..
  • Finish Side Door Project - We have so many projects on the docket but this seems like the most realistic one this month.
  • Celebrate Our Dateversary/Valentine's Day - Justin took me out on our first date on Valentine's Day, so we use that as our anniversary of dating. Our annual tradition is pizza and beer and that tradition isn't changing anytime soon! 
  • Bag Leaves in Carport - Hoping for a warm February day! That means I may wash my car too :)

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Wood Wall: My Favorite DIY Project

Ah the wood wall. It's such a focal point to our entryway that leaves everyone oohing and aahing. Even me. Sometimes I just look up at how pretty and warm it is. 

On my last blog, I touched on this wall but never really gave the full deats. It was one of those intimidating projects that once we started, we realized how easy it was. The only challenge was the slant at the bottom of the wall that we wanted to level off with one piece of wood. 

Once we got going, it went up fast. We took our time with the bottom piece to make sure the wood was secured and looked right from underneath. 

  • Standard Pine Wood (in desired size, we used 2x4s)
  • Nail Gun
  • Liquid Nails 
  • Miter Saw
  • Stain with Poly (we used Varathane walnut)
  • Measuring Tape, Pencil, and Patience
What We Did:
  1. We borrowed a compressor, miter saw, and nail gun from a friend and thoroughly measured the wall. Our wall is not plum, so each board was going to vary in size a bit.
  2. We did some math and bought just enough boards to cover the space. I think we bought 4 or 5 eight foot long boards to then cut down to size.
  3. We started at the bottom, excluding the slanted part of the wall and carefully cut each board based on the size of the wall. 
  4. We applied liquid nails and wedged the board into the space, then used 2 nails to secure the board even more (this thing is never coming down).
  5. After reaching the top of the wall, we cut a board down to size and finished the slanted area. 
  6. Next, I got on a ladder and stained the wood carefully. I only did one coat of stain and it is absolutely perfect!
I change the wreath out seasonally and this large focal point wall is now all dressed up! I am hesitant to do another wood wall somewhere else in the house because it does seem like a permanent thing. This wall isn't in a bedroom or bathroom that would be changed out with new owners and such. 

If you have thought about doing a wall like this, one piece of advice: just do it.  

Friday, January 27, 2017

Five on Friday

I have three things in life that I typically cannot stand. They are: reading books, museums, and salads. In college, I never read a single book for any class that I took (sorry dad). I went to every single class and diligently took notes and that seemed to be more than enough. And it's not like I don't like vegetables either. I love veggies and fruit. 

I enjoy reading blogs, I liked the Broad Museum in LA, and I love the strawberry poppyseed and chicken salad at Panera, but I think those may be one offs. 

So when I found a book on Amazon, read the first 10 pages on the "preview" feature, and was 100% hooked, I bought it immediately. 

To top it all off, I went to Panera and bought myself a cobb salad which is almost impossible not to like. Bacon, hard boiled eggs, and avocado? Sign me up!

I started reading Bringing Up Bébé (I am not pregnant) and absolutely adore it. I actually feel calm and relaxed reading and the book has given me so much insight on how I want to eventually parent!

Last Friday Justin and I cut the gym short and went to happy hour which quickly turned into Irish car bombs at home and eating an entire bag of carrot chips and hummus for dinner. Better than pizza, right? Ditching our normal Friday routine was much needed.

During one of my daily trips to Wegmans this week I noticed these adorable cookies that I feel like have to be Valentine's Day cookies. I am jumping for joy to see Valentine's stuff out because that means filing day for my hubs is closer and that also means our six year dativersary is around the corner (!!!!!).
While designing our kitchen, I had plenty of pinterest inspiration pictures, but there was one that really hit home. 
I loved the backsplash to the ceiling and decided to replicate it and I am now trying to decide on the wreath. 

Part of me really likes the simplicity of the backsplash, but this kitchen needs some pops of colors! Votes? 
This weekend I have one plan and that's relaxation. That includes a pedicure + Sunday lunch with my sister. I haven't gotten a pedi since her birthday last February which I find shocking myself. I also have some champagne that I really think needs to be opened...

Happy Friday friends!

Friday, January 20, 2017

Five on Friday

Since our kitchen has been done, I have been trying to figure out how I want to "style" the room. I want to keep decor to a minimum and so far I have just enjoyed having a place for my mixer finally!

The fresh flowers also help!

During Justin's "busy season" I end up skipping the gym a lot more and hanging with coworkers after work. My rigid schedule goes out the window sometimes after a long day at work and these nights are so much fun! The mornings aren't the most fun though ;)

This was taken last year. A lot of changes at work have happened, but I hope to have many more evenings like this one!

We did brunch on Saturday morning and Brunch is seriously my favorite meal ever created. Sausage gravy biscuits and french toast was on the menu. The sausage gravy is to die for and it's seriously the easiest recipe. 

It consists of:
  • Hot Jimmy Dean Sausage
  • Flour
  • Red Pepper Flakes
  • Whole Milk
All you do is brown the sausage and add in some red pepper flakes. Add flour to completely coat the sausage. Add milk and let thicken. BAM. Sausage gravy and of course pillsbury biscuits. 

I want to put together a gallery wall in our family room and this picture is exactly what I am looking to do! The only problem I am having is finding enough high quality photos to put into frames. I don't want a bunch of wedding photos on the wall, so I am still trying to figure this one out.

We don't have anything on the agenda this weekend like we normally do and those type of weekends can be so good for the soul. Relaxing is in order! Weekends with no plans usually result in new recipes and spontaneous shopping trips.  
Have a wonderful weekend friends!

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