Thoughts on Thursday: Favorite Finds!

Have you ever had those weeks where every morning you wake up, you have a feeling that "Oh, it's Friday!" but then no... nope it's only Tuesday, and then Wednesday, and then you finally wake up on Thursday and think "Okay, it's not Friday yet but it's Friday EVE so I can manage this"?  No? Just me?  Ah, well that's been my week in a nutshell.  So much so that Starbucks was calling my name loud this morning, so I'm hoping that after my caffeine and little spinach feta breakfast wrap (so dang good) that I'll be ready to take on the day!

And let us not forget that Molly, the 75 pound dog who still sleeps in our bed, was up and 2am and 4am this morning.  At one point she did need to go out, but when she woke up at 2, she woke us both up and then kind of stared at us like "Let's play!"  Uh, nope.  So my 5:30 alarm came quite early today, also contributing to the need for The White Cup.

Now, I have to share two purchases that I made yesterday and am probably way too excited about but whatever-- better to buy a shirt and go home happy than wish you had and go home bitchy, amiright? 

I'm a curvy girl, and bootcut/flare jeans tend to flatter my shape more than skinny jeans, so I'm all about the style coming back.  Slightly flared, not... bell bottom-esque, thanks.  I placed a big Old Navy order a couple of weeks ago to stock up on basics during one of their big sales and threw in a new pair of dark flares just for kicks-- I'm obsessed and wish I could wear them all day, every day.  The dilemma was that I've been buying tunics and more flow-y types of tops for so long now to go with skinnies that I was left with very few tops to match the sider bottoms-- flowy tops + wide pants for me = a look similar to a potato sack. 

So I started browsing my Pinterest boards for inspiration and came across this look from The Northeast Girl.  SOLD! If I have anything already in my drawers, it's slim fit, striped tees-- CHECK!  The jeans are washed and folded, just waiting for their next wear-- CHECK! But that sweater-- I fell hard for that sweater.  But I couldn't justify impulse buying a $70 sweater after seeing it for 2 seconds on a website.  I filed it away as "The Perfect Sweater That Will Probably Be Gone By the Time I Decide to Buy It" and moved on.  Well, I was pleased as punch when I checked my email yesterday evening and saw that Loft was having a flash sale, 50% off all new fall arrivals. Guess which sweater was in that batch?  Oh yes, I couldn't sign-in to my Loft account fast enough.  This baby is comin' home to mama!  

Patience is not one of my strong suits, but I guess sometimes it pays off!

Usually when I get to my desk in the morning, I log in, enjoy my coffee, check through/respond to any pressing work emails, then take a few minutes to look through my Gmail inbox and blogs-- it's a nice, calming little start to my day.  I have definitely started to feel inspired by the Christmas spirit, mainly because I'm being proactive (for once) about actually getting things done ahead of time-- I'll say it again, I can't be cray-cray at Christmas again this year.

One of my favorite small shops, jessicaNdesigns, had sent out a Christmas promotion email, which I of course had to click into. I love everything that they do and would stock my entire kitchen with their products if I could.  We even ordered our custom cake forks through them for the wedding last year (can't wait to pull them out one month from today to celebrate our anniversary!  How has it already almost been a year?!?). So I love their homegoods... but I was pretty darn delighted to see that they also not only have their entire Christmas Collection out, but that that collection includes holiday t-shirts!  Y'all... I cannot even with this shirt-- it's the perfect gray tee AND a Christmas movie quote!  

I am the queen of Christmas movies. Truly.  If I haven't watched all of my favorites by a certain date in December, I feel panicky, like I can't fit them all in by Christmas (I know, it's a sickness).  So when I saw one of the best Home Alone quotes ever on that shirt, I didn't think twice as I gleefully submitted my order.  I mean, I love to dress up for Christmas shopping, but when it's nose-to-the-grindstone tone and you need to get shit done, there's nothing better than jeans, cute sneaks, a tee and a sweater or scarf to top it off-- easy layers, yet still spirited!  Or, you know, you can totally wear it with your candy cane pajama pants while watching "Love Actually" for the twelfth time since Thanksgiving-- no judgement here. 

And no one has an clue that I'm raving about their stuff-- I'm just that excited about my new finds and wanted to share the love!  

With that, I'm off. Have a fabulous day, lovelies!

Five on Friday!

Happy Friday, y'all!  This has been the longest week in what feels like forever, so I am oh-so-happy to welcome the weekend with open arms.  Let's get right to a little Five on Friday, shall we?

{one} family/new house photos
Since we moved into our house the week of Thanksgiving last November, the holidays were a little cray-cray for us.  We were still in boxes, I hardly decorated, none of the rooms had furniture or decor... it drove me crazy.  And I hated that our first Thanksgiving/Christmas didn't really feel like the holidays because of all of the chaos.  Well, with a year (and MANY trips to HomeGoods) under my belt, the house is finally in a place that makes me feel happy and warm when we walk in the door.  Add to that the new addition to our family last January (Miss Molly, obvi!) and you have what I see as pretty perfect for us right now.  With the traditional first wedding anniversary gift being paper, I surprised Brian and hired our wedding photographer to come and take photos of us with Molly at the house.  Who knows how our lives could change in the next year, and I really want to document what and where our family is right now... and I'm so excited!  She comes Halloween afternoon and I'm already thinking about outfits and such-- loving the look of something like these!

{two} flats 
I'm on my feet a lot during the day, running around for photo shoots, meetings, etc. so I tend to stick with flats at work.  I purchased a pair of black TB Revas two years ago and while I loved the look, I've a) worn them into the ground, and b) hate how much they hurt me feet for the price that I paid.

Is it common for the Reva to rub your feet the wrong way?  Moreso my heel-- it's awful and painful!  And I definitely sized correctly-- I tried on sizes bigger and smaller, did the walk test, etc.  Since I'm in the market for a new pair, I'm considering the Caroline flat.  Any insight on one or the other?  I won't be buying another pair of Revas but could consider the Caroline if y'all can persuade me!

{three} workin' on my fitness
After a long hiatus from the gym, I've made myself a little commitment calendar to get back it for the month of October.  We have two weddings coming up and I would love to feel even better in the two dresses that I've already bought to wear.  I'm thinking I might do a check-in one day each week to keep me accountable.  My little reward for myself is happening if I complete every workout-- I'm buying myself a FitBit (finally).  Working out is such a trigger for me-- once I get in a routine, I'm overall happier, I sleep better, I make better food choices... basically, it's a necessity!  AND it keeps me sane.  What more could I ask for in something FREE that literally just requires me to move my body and put myself first?

Last resort motivation?  Our (destination yet-to-be-determined) beach anniversary trip in January.

{four} christmas crazy
Call me crazy, but in line with my whole "I want to enjoy the holidays and not be stressed!" approach to the end of the year, I've already started my Christmas shopping.  I've made two gift purchases, ordered our Christmas cards (thank God for Minted and their "Buy now, personalize later" deal), bought a new return address stamp from Etsy (with our married name and new address-- woohoo!), and have my list made for the rest of the family/friends that we buy for. I'm convinced that in the long run, shopping early will save me money too-- am I the only one more apt to impulse buy something for someone when I'm stressed and under the gun on December 22?

I want time to watch my favorite Christmas movies with my guy, bake cookies for our neighbors, decorate early enough in the month to enjoy and soak it all in... not be running around like a lunatic on my lunch break and after work to wait in line and lose the sentiment of the reason for the season!  I'm also loving that this is our first Christmas with Molly.  I MIGHT (ok, I totally did) have ordered her a mini stocking that matches ours (monogrammed, of course), a jacket to wear in the rain/snow (again... monogrammed) and a Bark Box subscription. I can't wait to have her as a part of all of the fun, but I'm totally preparing myself to come home to a disaster once we put the tree up-- Molly loves few things (aside from tennis balls and mint bones) more than branches and logs in the yard.  Could be interesting...

{five} weekend fun
The first thing that Brian and I said to each other this morning was how ready for the weekend we are. If I can just make it through until 5pm, I'll be good to go.  I'm painting our living room and we're mounting our TV (seriously so excited-- the battle that ensued over to mount vs. not to mount is one for the books AND I WON).  Tomorrow we're planning to watch football and break in the firepit with lots of wine and pumpkin beer, and Sunday will be lots of relaxing while Brian plays in a golf tournament.

Cheers to the weekend, friends!

Thoughts for Thursday: October Bucket List

October is, without a doubt, my favorite month of the year.  The weather and leaves are changing, sweaters and boots get dusted off and ready for weather, soups and chili just seem like the answer to "What should we do for dinner?" more often than not, and it's finally cool enough to leave the windows open at night and add that extra blanket to keep you snug and warm.  

And we can't forget the fun stuff-- football Saturdays and Sundays, pumpkins and mums everywhere, HALLOWEEN, all of my favorite spooky movies (I cannot wait to say hello to the Sanderson Sisters for the 22nd year in a row-- can you even believe that Hocus Pocus is 22 years old?!?)... ah, yes.  October, it's been a long year waiting for you but I welcome you with open arms.

I'm sure you've seen various forms of fall bucket lists floating around different blogs, but since a lot of the items on those lists don't really apply to me (we don't have Littles of our own yet, so count us out for anything related to hayride/pumpkin patch/arts & crafts), and while I want to soak in as much of the fall as possible, I know that this month and next are going to be BUSY for us.  So, I made my own little custom bucket list that I know works for us and won't be a pain in the bum to feel obligated to complete!  Some are related to the season, others are just things I'd like to focus on this month-- can't wait to start checking away!

Books to Read

A Tree Grows in Brooklyn.  This would be a reread for me, as I've read this countless times before, but not in several years.  I came across this fantastic list of children's books from Good Housekeeping that lists 50 books that adults should read (or reread) and A Tree Grows in Brooklyn was one of them.  It's perfection-- I can't wait to tuck under a blanket and read a Saturday away!

Halloween Movies to Watch
No explanation needed!

Sandy, Nicole, two crazy aunts living in a Victorian house in New England, a love story with Aidan Quinn, and Stevie Nicks on the soundtrack-- perfection.

Call me crazy, but it's not Halloween unless I watch it!  It puts the fear of God in me (literally) every year, but it's just too well done, classic and downright terrifying to not pay homage to.

Halloween/Fall Activities 
Have friends over for supper, games and drinks around a fire! 

Go apple picking.

Make our yearly trek to Salem for a beer and wine festival (one of my favorite traditions, obviously).

Halloween Fun for the House!

New Fall Recipes and Cocktails!

I think it's safe to say that I've got a busy little month of October planned out for us... LOVE IT!  I'll document as I check things off, and to keep me accountable :)

And as if you won't see this all across your Instagram today...

Home Happies: DIY Firepit

Thanks so much for the comments on our firepit!  I passed the praise along to Brian and he was oh-so-proud of himself.  Honestly, he put up the biggest protest for the longest time about the project, thinking it would be way bigger of a task than he was up for taking on.

WELL, after showing him the tutorials that I had found and putting together a shopping list, he agreed that we could do it.  If you browse Pinterest, as with anything else that you look for there, you'll find a million results, varying in degree of difficulty.  

Some people built their firepits on top of their already-paved patios, or areas in their yard where pavers had been laid (this was my favorite look and something I wanted to begin with but we just weren't able to take on such a big project right now-- ain't nobody got time to build their own patio on a random Saturday!):

Others built right on to the grass and without a firebowl insert so they could place their logs/whatever they're burning straight in the bottom and use whatever cover suited their fancy: 

And then we have the tutorial that we followed, doing a little manual labor with digging the circle and laying the blocks, but we added our own step by a little help by purchasing a firepit kit from Lowe's:

Our shopping list was easy: 
*Pea Gravel (4 bags at around $4 each-- we actually ended up buying 2 additional bags on Sunday to fill in a bit higher around the perimeter) 
*A stamper (to make sure the ground was nicely compacted after digging the circle but before spreading the rock/building the pit (update: this is called a tamper, but that makes no sense, so I shall continue calling it a STAMPER.  This was around $26.)

We drove our little Subaru over to Lowe's and once we wheeled all 48 of our (heavy, cement) stones out to the car, plus the four bags of gravel and the huge box holding the firepit, we realized this was going to be a multi-trip project.  So we loaded up 24 of the stones, two bags of the gravel, the stamper and the firepit, and drove home.  Once we unloaded, Brian started the manly task of digging the big circle while I drove back for the second batch of supplies.  

If I would have been home, I would have taken pictures, but instead will hopefully explain (not the same, I know).

1. We picked our spot in the yard (10 feet away from our house, trees, anything that could catch fire if a quick wind picked up a rogue flame) and placed the screen top that came with the firepit on the ground. 

2. We knew that we wanted to account for plenty of gravel space around the edge of the firepit once it was completed, so Brian laid out two rows of the stones around the screen (two rows side by side, not stacked, if that makes sense), and used the shovel to mark a full circle around the outer rim. Then he moved everything out of the way and started digging.

3. This is when I made my reappearance with the rest of the supplies (and lunch).  Luckily, Brian had the entire circle cleared and had started using the (s)tamper to level and flatten the ground.  The yard sloped just a tiny bit, so one edge was a little higher than the other, so that took a bit of leveling out.

4. Using our trusty fire screen again, we set it in the center of our circle, making a row of the pavers along the outside of the rim.  Once we had our bottom row, we moved the screen out of the way.  Based on the size of the screen, we ended up only using 11 blocks on our first row. 

5. For the next layer, we staggered the blocks so that a paver sat like a tripod/connector on the two pavers below it (you can see the stagger in this photo). Once we had the first two layers, we laid the fire bowl inside to make sure that everything laid flat and that the blocks were spaced appropriately-- it was perfect!

The second layer and the remaining two layers also each had 11 pavers, which left us with 4 leftover.

Once the four layers were stacked, we poured one full bag of the pebbles into the center, and the remaining three bags around the edge.  We did this instead of pouring all of the pebbels and then stacking the pavers on top of the pebble layer so that the bottom pavers were on the compacted dirt, making it all a bit more steady.  

As I mentioned, we did end up buying 2 additional bags of pebbles, but only because of the higher edge on one side that Brian leveled-- it needs a little more coverage.  We also love that the pebble edge extends further away from the firepit itself-- the tutorial that we followed noted in their instructions that they wished they'd done so, to make it easier to navigate when mowing.  I also like that it makes for a little more space between the fire and your chairs :)

6. The last step for us was to inset the firepit bowl from the firepit kit.  We unscrewed the brackets on the bottom of the bowl (meant to screw into the legs, if you're using the firepit kit as a stand-alone set) and discarded them.  You can see in the picture that the lip of the bowl overlaps the inner rim of the pit-- this was why we used the screen as our reference tool when deciding how to place the first row of pavers, knowing that we wanted the rim to be more snug so that the firebowl would nestle in and be sturdy/balanced, not... wiggly. 

All in all, this was easy-peasy.  Once you have the ground leveled, it took us all of 15 minutes to stack and fill everything, and it actually came out being fairly cheap compared to other tutorials that I've seen.  And I definitely recommend buying the firepit kit-- it comes with a grate inside, the screen, a tool to use to adjust the screen/grate, the legs and a cover.  We tested the cover and while it doesn't fit over the entire firepit, our plan is to remove the firebowl/screen during the winter, cover it with the cover, and store it in our shed so that the snow doesn't rust it.

That was legit probably the worst tutorial ever, and it was PICTURELESS, which is basically criminal in blog-world.  But oh well-- y'all had some questions and I answered! Happy building!


It's crazy how rejuvenating a random long weekend can be-- I advise every single one of you to take advantage of one before the holiday crazies commence!

Call me crazy, but one of my favorite ways to spend a weekday not working is to get things done at home.  I was up with the sun to hit the gym for a good workout, which I was in desperate need of.  It's so hard finding the time to get to the gym these days-- I am definitely more of a morning workout person than an evening person, but we have to leave our house by 7am during the week.  My gym opens at 5, which means I would have to be there when they open and cram in 40 fast minutes then book it home to shower by 6 or so-- that's EARLY, y'all.  The other option is in the evening, but at the end of the day I want to just lounge with Molly, cook dinner, and hang out with Brian while he studies.  Ugh, the struggle is real-- I basically need to just bite the bullet and make one of them work, but still-- yay for a casual Friday morning workout!

Post-workout, I had to swing by Target to stock up on spooky surprises for my Halloween care package to send to the nieces and nephew in Baltimore.  They're still at the ages where the tiniest thing, like a light-up bracelet to wear while trick-or-treating can MAKE THEIR DAY, so I hit the jackpot at the Dollar Aisle-- holla!

As a sidenote, I feel that I should also share with y'all the news that the back aisle of my Target was already decked out for Christmas. I mean, the light-up reindeer were practically mixed right in with the screaming ghosts and monster bags of candy.  Christmas is my jam, but I enjoy taking my time to soak up Halloween and Thanksgiving first, thankyouverymuch.

Anywho, after Target I went home to my Molly girl and deep cleaned our house, then decorated for fall/Halloween which made me feel all festive.  I decided that with the weather cooling off and it being such a gorgeous fall day, that my nails were in desperate need of their first official fall mani!  I've been trying to scale back on gel and opting for polish (the gel wreaks havoc on my nails if I get it too many times in a row without a break) but it had been a while and I'm so hard on my hands that  sometimes splurging on the gel is just WORTH IT.  After a coat of OPI "Magala Wine" at my favorite little salon, I picked up Brian, pizza, and a bottle of wine, and we called it a night.

Saturday had us up and moving early-- the gym and a trip to Trader Joe's and Starbucks for me while Brian studied, and then we reconvened for breakfast and enjoyed a bit of College Gameday before we played the #basichomeowners card and geared up for a trip to Lowe's.  

I've been realllly wanting a firepit in our backyard since... well, since before we made an offer on the house.  I combined three or four Pinterest tutorials and after a solid two hours of work, including the two trips to Lowe's to transport all of the stones and pavers, we had a firepit!

Call me crazy but I kind of love it.  We've yet to have a fire in it, but I can't help but smile every time I see it out in the yard!  We took it easy that night and picked up burgers from a local spot and watched Southpaw (didn't love it).

Molly woke me up at 7am on Sunday and of course I couldn't fall back asleep, so we snuggled on the couch with coffee while I browsed Pinterest until Brian woke up.  We had to hit Lowe's for more stones to add around the firepit and pick up mums for our porch, then continued our weekend tradition of bagels and coffee at Gunther Tooties (alleluia, amen).

I worked in the yard for a couple of hours while Brian studied (are you sensing a trend with the studying?  Yes, it is ALL OF THE TIME and it's only been a month or so) and watched the Pats game.  After a quick shower, I decided that with my early wakeup call behind me, I was in desperate need of a nap, so while Brian made football snacks (love that husband and his knowledge that I will almost always choose apps/snacks over a meal), Molly and I did a lot of this:

I had an urge to make soup for supper, so I copied Chrissy Teigen and went for Ina Garten's Roasted Tomato Basil Soup-- holy goodness, y'all.  We made grilled cheese to go along with it, and it was just the best way to end our weekend. 

I would make a few modifications next time-- it didn't have a TON of flavor, and I would use different tomatoes, but all in all, it was so good.  I was prepared for it to be heavy and high in calories, but the only dairy in the soup is 2 tablespoons of butter that you use to saute the onions and garlic before blending, so it's not terribly unhealthy at all!  

We did stay up to watch the Supermoon/Eclipse, but I am feeling that late night this morning for sure.  Hopefully today flies by and I don't need to funnel coffee to survive!

Thoughts for Thursday: Today is my Friday + Vacay Suggestions!

Today is my Friday and I am SO grateful for that!  Work has been absolutely crazy these last couple of weeks, so I opted to take a day off tomorrow and make a long weekend out of it, and I just might be counting down the hours already until 5pm.

I am so not someone who can just take a day off and get absolutely nothing done, so on my to do list for tomorrow: stop by the DMV to change my name and address on my license (it's only been almost a year since they both changed-- whoops!), clean out our closet and drawers to round up things to donate, get the basement organized (it's empty except for a few random boxes and holiday stuff... also from last November), deep clean the house, and decorate for fall!  It finally cooled off here in Boston this week, so I'm taking full advantage to bring out the pumpkins and put away all of my summery stuff.  I already cannot wait to sit back on the couch tomorrow night with my favorite candle burning (aren't the best smelling candles always FALL candles?!) and a glass of wine in the middle of our clean house!

Also, and this is random, but I love some input from my blog-people and I need some insight on TWO things:

ONE. Love that new car smell
This is the first time that Brian and I have both had jobs where the schedules didn't perfectly line up for commuting, so we're kind of sort of starting to look at buying a second car and I cannot lie-- I'm pretty excited, probably (okay, definitely) because we had the reality check that whichever car we buy next will need to accommodate a baby and the endless supply of baby gear that goes along with them (which is equally exciting and terrifying), so we're looking at SUVs.  I am AMPED. UP. and can't wait to start test driving.  We've looked at a few of the "crossover SUVs," since we don't THINK that we really need the space of something on the bigger side, butimean... what do we know, other than that we don't want to buy something and outgrow it within a few years?  If you're in the same spot now or have been before, what did you end up buying?  Do you love it/hate it?  Suggestions, please! I'm kind of loving the Volvo XC60, and a pretty Explorer makes my heart flutter-- how old is that of me?  

TWO. Vacation all I ever wanted
After the crazy year that I've had professionally, Brian starting a new job and taking on studying for this exam, the knowledge that we probably have one big vacation left before we start moving towards the baby stage of our marriage, celebrating our 1 year anniversary on November 8th AND my 30th birthday on December 11th... we want to go on a trip this winter.  We've been bouncing around between several locations but have narrowed things down based on a few restrictions:

*Definitely adults only, ideally all-inclusive (if we do somewhere beachy), and a resort that has a nice mix of relaxation during the day, and entertainment options at night.

*We're planning on five nights, so nowhere too terribly far which would require almost two full days of travel just to get there and back. We want to be able to get on an early flight and be somewhere with a cocktail by lunchtime.

*Our honeymoon was in Mexico, and I would go back in a heartbeat, but Brian thinks we should try somewhere else.  We stayed at El Dorado Casitas Royale and holy perfection-- I would just move there if I could, and I would stay there again without hesitation (note to self: you never shared honeymoon pics on the blog-- whoops).  I've also heard good things about Excellence Playa Mujeres.

*We've considered Punta Cana, and haven't nixed it but I'm overwhelmed with how many resort options there are, the quality of the resorts, distance from airport (it sounds like several are an hour or more from the airport on bumpy roads and that could be bad). Any insight on PC? 

*I'm also not opposed to staying in the U.S. and doing a big Napa blowout, a trip to Oregon/Seattle (because why not?), or a Deep South Charleston/Savannah tour.

*Completely out of left field, there is also a part of me that's wondering if we could cram a trip to the UK in with that amount of travel time.  Worth it?  Or wait for a time when we have at least a week to play tourist?

Any feedback on any/all of the above would be so beyond helpful.  Word of mouth is my favorite way to check places out, so resort suggestions, locations to explore that I may not have thought of... share away!

20 Questions About Me

In order to ease myself back in to blogging, I'm taking the easiest cop-out ever and playing along with the 20 Question Game that I've seen floating around the blogosphere.  I mean, anyone who blogs loves to talk about themselves, and anyone who reads blogs loves to read about other people talking about themselves, so what better way to cover both bases than to share this little gem?

What is your road trip essential snack?
I am most definitely a salty snacker-- Cheez-its, Pringles, Chex Mix (cheddar, please!)... the list could go on and on.

You've been handed two free round-trip tickets...who are you taking and where are you going?
Hm... I would typically say somewhere beachy, like Bali or Bora Bora, but since I'm over this heat, I'm going to go with France.  I want to see it all, from Paris to Provence and everything in between.  And I'd of course be taking the husband on that romantic little jaunt across the world.

What was your high school jam?
NSYNC for sure, and my girls and I spent A LOT of time driving around, belting out "Pieces of Me" and "She Will Be Loved" while snacking on Blizzards from Dairy Queen.  Oh, the days of not having to worry about calories!

Would you rather have a perfect bum, or a flawless face?
 I'm going to go with perfect bum.  I'm lucky in that I've always had really good skin, and I kind of feel like any fine lines and such that may will pop up are just a fact of life.  But I'd kill to have a great yoga booty!

What shows are you ashamed to admit are on your DVR?
My brother came to visit a couple of weeks ago and informed me that I have a questionable taste in TV shows so that should speak volumes about this list.  Right now, I'm loving Don't Be Tardy, DCC: Making the Team, Fixer Upper, Who Do You Think You Are?, Ballers, Flipping Out... love it all.  And I seriously cannot wait for the fall premiere of How to Get Away With Murder and Scandal!!

What's your ringtone? 
Just a standard iPhone tone.

What's on your nightstand?
Chapstick, hand lotion, the AC remote, the television remote, and a couple of books.

Do you have any siblings, and if so, where are you in the birth order?
Yep-- a brother, who's 3 years younger than me.  I'm the oldest in every sense of the word!

What physical quirk were you born with?
I'm not sure if I was born with it, but I have a freckle on the bottom inner rim of my left eye.  I'm also SUPER double jointed in my fingers and toes-- if I give you a thumbs up, the tip of my finger bends back to a 90 degree angle.

Morning person or night owl?
I am most definitely a morning person.  I'm up and going by 5:30am every day, and while I usually crash by 9pm, I feel like I fit so much more into my day.  I get REAL mean if I stay up past my bedtime and am over-tired.

 What would you request for your last supper?
The biggest platter of Mexican food ever.  The works!  Tacos, burritos, enchiladas, rice and beans, unlimited salsa, queso and chips...

Have you ever been hospitalized, and if so, what for?
Never, thank goodness!

How tall are you? Do you wish you were taller, shorter...or are you just right?
5'7".  I've always been fine with my height, so I'd say I'm just right!

Do you prefer to DIY or hire it out?
I love to DIY smaller projects, like painting and such.  But when it comes to electric work or anything having to do with demo, we hire it out for sure.

What do you eat for breakfast?
 I get really tired of the same foods really quickly, so I'm constantly rotating.  Right now it's an egg sandwich, sometimes a breakfast taco.  When I want something light, I love avocado toast, or almond butter toast with a banana.  I never used to eat breakfast and now I look forward to it every day and am FAMISHED if I skip!

What would you do for a living if you didn't need money?
It sounds silly, but my dream is to be a stay-at-home mom and be able to do something I love on the side, both for that extra income and for an outlet from the kid-crazy.  I've always loved the idea of being a party planner, or running my own lifestyle/fashion/food website catering to ALL women.

Finish this sentence: Every room needs....
A comfy place to relax!  A good chair, the bed, the best corner of the couch-- a pretty place to put your feet up makes everyone feel at home.

How frequently do you wash your hair? Do you have any hair secrets or tricks?
Every day!  I know it's not great for it, but my hair can get greasy really quickly, especially in the summer when it's so humid/hot every day.  I wash it every morning, and if I work out in the evenings, I wash it again.  I do switch things up with shampoo/conditioners and try to keep it balanced.  Once a week I use a deep cleansing shampoo and follow that up with a deep conditioner and make sure to let it air dry for a little refresher.  Something else that has definitely made my hair more healthy has been letting it air dry about 70% before I blow dry it in the mornings.  I have some wild cowlicks, so I do have to blow dry at the end to make sure everything falls nicely, but blasting it for 3-4 minutes versus 10 or so has made a world of difference.  And I swear by using a heat protectant spray!

Will you leave the house without makeup?
If I'm having a good skin day, sure, but only to the gym and if I'm running errands super early on a weekend.  Otherwise, I always wear a full face of makeup-- call it the southern girl in me, but I can't help it!  Primer, foundation (although I use a tinted moisturizer most days in the summer), powder, bronzer, blush, full eyes, and a dab of color for lips.  If I wear makeup when I workout, I breakout, so that's my only exception.

You just unloaded your Halloween haul...what candy do you go for first?
Probably the Reese's Cups, and then Kit Kats, 100 Grand, and Skittles.  Dangerous stuff, I tell you!

See ya, summer

Did the end of August sneak up on anyone else?  Perhaps it's due in part to the fact that this was quite the cray-cray summer for me, but I  have no sympathies towards the fact that this season is on its way out the door.  

If you know me, you won't be shocked to hear that I am so NOT a summer person.  The heat, the humidity, the clothes, all of the outside obligations... it just doesn't float my boat.  Never has, very probably never will.  Fall IS MY JAM.  The cooler temps, the leaves changing, football (alleluia, amen!), being able to open the windows in the house and air it all out, riding boots and sweaters, cozy candles, sitting outside with a pumpkin beer and not having to battle mosquitoes, hot coffee in the mornings, and of course, Halloween and Thanksgiving!

After the winter that Boston had this past year, I was certainly looking forward to the warmer weather, but I think that we tend to block out the reality of summer from September - April.  By the time May rolls around, we've designed the perfect four months ahead of us-- casual days at the beach with nothing more than a book and your chair, happy hour at home around the fire pit, your sassy summer haircut blowing in the breeze as you stroll down the street in the maxi dress that you knew would be just perfect for a hot day.  Reality?  

The beach is inevitably packed, HOT, way more sandy than you remember and the bag that you now carry is packed full of necessities-- sunglasses, snacks, sunscreen, a hat, an enormous towel, and the tote bag itself emblazoned with your monogram #priorities.

The heat and humidity are so suffocating, you can hardly stand to be outside to let the dog out, so you can just forget voluntarily sitting around a BLAZING HOT firepit.  I'll take a beer in front of the AC, please.

That sassy summer cut fell real flat as soon as you stepped outside, and you've hiked the maxi halfway up to your knees because DEAR GOD it's like a sauna in there.

So yes.  I'm over summer.  Bring on fall in all of its glory, y'all!  And to remind you that that sweet season is OH so close, a few of my favorite pretties.