Bon Voyage

We're off!
Paris Photography - Paris Je t'aime - Paris in the Springtime - Pink Cherry Blossoms Eiffel Tower - Paris Home Decor - Blush Pink on Etsy, $30.00
Our flight leaves this afternoon at 3:50pm and lands tomorrow around lunchtime in Paris! 

I've got my comfy travel outfit, sleep mask, a few French-insprired movies downloaded on the iPad (Midnight in Paris, Monte Carlo, & French Kiss) and will be anxiously waiting to hit cruising altitude to cheers over a glass of red wine to our Parisian adventure.
There are only two places in the world we can live happy: at home and in Paris ~ Ernest Hemingway
We've both enjoyed all of the anticipation and preparation for this trip, but now, it's time to live it.

I just can't wait to take in the beauty of France, live a little more the way Europeans do and enjoy ten days with Joel exploring.

overlooking paris street...one day soon

Until June 2nd 

Au Revoir


Work Wear ::: updated

Work It Girl

Ha, you can totally tell in these pictures that Los Angeles was under a major heat wave last week.

I try to sneak in my workouts before work, but when it's so hot out, I just cannot stop sweating - which results in ponytails and very little makeup. 

J.crew sweater & dress. Ralph Lauren sandals

J.crew jacket, J.crew peplum tank, Max Studio pants, Toms Wedges

Gap top, Loft jeans, TB sandals

Loft blouse, J.Crew minnies, Michael Kors sandals, F.21 necklace

 J.Crew dress, Ralph Lauren sandals, F.21 necklace


Weekend Report

This weekend was all about getting things done, and Joel and I actually crossed off every single task we set out to do.
On Friday we started the weekend out by emptying the fridge and grilling anything and everything we could have. 

I seriously love the feeling of coming home from work on Friday, knowing that the work week is done and just being able to kick back and relax. 

Since we leave on Thursday, we are trying to eat at home as often as we can to save money and calories.

 We ate our turkey dogs outside - over tequila and beer - and played country music as we decompressed the day. That pretty much sums up my perfect Friday night. 

The weather was hot this weekend, so even though we ate outside, we were so thankful to come back inside to air conditioning. I think on Friday it got up to 106. 

And side note - we got our shipment of wine club which included two bottles of this amazing red wine, Open Range. It's sold at a William Sonoma - and big box wine stores for $18.00. If you ever see it grab a few. It's the perfect red wine and we finished both of our bottles this weekend. 

On Saturday, after a tough spin class, I packed every single thing for Paris. Plus, I tried on every, friggen, outfit. It was exhausting and hot - but I packed it all into a carry-on, and while there will be a lot of repeat pieces, I'm hopeful that I packed all the right pieces. 

After packing, we sat down for four hours and planned out our detailed itinerary for Paris. That was hard, and pretty stressful, but we've got great plan and it made me even more excited for the trip. We were hoping to cook at home but by the time dinner rolled around we were tired and worn out, so we ordered pizza and watched "That Awkward Moment" and got to bed before 10pm. 

We had to get up early on Sunday because we had the Girls on the Run 5k race! 

 The girls did awesome and I can't say enough good things about the GOTR program. All of our girls finished the 5k, and finished it well - and it was such a fun and inspiring season.

 On Sunday we went to the grocery store, did laundry, cleaned the house, packed up Joel, and prepared dinners and lunches for the entire week. For dinner had a great salad and Shimp and Risotto, watched a few TV movies, and called it a weekend.

I mean, you guys, we were like little machines all weekend long. It was "boring", but it was productive, and I feel so much more calm about the week ahead.

We're all set for Paris and all we have to do is get to Thursday!!


And so I shall.



Friday Five


This week for Girls on the Run we took money that we made at a bake sale and donated to the No Kill Animal Shelter here in LA. The girls and I got to take a tour of the awesome facility and got to play with some the puppies and new born kittens. Besides my allergies going wild - it was such a treat. And I really wanted to take home this sweet baby named Pearl.



When Joel was in Seattle he visited with our friends Max and Anne (Hi Anne!!) and loved a canvas they had that reflected Chicago and Seattle's skylines. He ordered on for me as a surprise birthday gift and it just came in last night. I love our two cities (LA and Chicago) and can't wait to put it up this weekend.


I decided to get a cut and color before we leave for Paris. Every week on RHONY I fawn over Kristin's hair (and body...and style), so I took her picture in for my hair stylist to gain inspiration
 from.  Minus my awful selfie taking skills, it's actually pretty close and I think it will be a great summer hair cut to work with.

I desperately needed my wedding rings cleaned, and I had no idea you could take them to any jewelry store to get them cleaned for free!? Is that like a secret that everyone knows? It took 3 seconds, they ran both through an "Ultrasound cleaning machine" and my rings have sparkle I haven't seen since I got them!


I have to say I am struggling HARD to think about anything besides the fact that we will be in Paris in 6 days. It's hard to work, cook dinner, run errands - even sleep - because I am just SO dang excited! This weekend we are wrapping up all of our loose ends, exchanging our money for the Euro, and packing our bags (well, I am). I do love vacation anticipation!!

The world is waiting.


Must Have's

I might actually change your life with product. For years, I've had the worst damn luck with can openers. Like, I would bitch and moan every time I had to use it, which was often. I finally get fed up enough that I tossed our 4th stupid thing in a year into the trash can and finally went online to research good can openers. Because I've got nothing better going on.

Well, I can say with authority, this $16 gem is a life changer. I'm not sure if hatred towards can openers is a common situation, but if for some reason you need a new one, please buy this one.  

:::Apple Cider Vinegar:::
All the research I've done says you have to drink the type that still contain "The Mother"
It curbs my immediate appetite significantly. I normally walk in the door after work starving and instead of diving deep into a bag of tortilla chips, I take 1 tablespoon of the vinegar and mix it with half a glass of water. I plug my nose when I drink it, because the smell is the worst part, but it actually works. I can make it to dinner without snacking and I also think it really curbs my sugar cravings as well.

7StepforOrganizingYourHomeWithoutGettingOverhwhelmed thumb 7 Steps For Organizing Your Home – Without Getting Overwhelmed
When I get back from Paris, I need to spend some time reorganizing the house. I've let a lot of my cabinets get crazy, my jewelry is a message, bookshelves haven't been updated, and our spice cabinet makes me want to jump off a cliff.  It's my summer goal - besides getting my damn wedding album complete, so I'm trying to really get myself geared up for a total overhaul. A feel like a few good trips to GoodWill and The Container Store will be in our future. 


Work Wear

Work It Girl

Shopping my closet every week has made it very clear about what I wear, what I gravitate towards, and what seriously needs to be thrown away. 

The old I get, the simple and more neutral I dress. I like clothes that fit well, look good, and are pretty simple over all. I really like this week's line up, but I know next week's will suck. I don't have great "It's 95 degrees and I'm still sweating from my morning workout" outfits, so prepare for a major downgrade.

re-worn from birthday night
Cynthia Rowley blouse, Loft jeans, Michael Kors sandals

Banana Republic silk blouse, J.crew minnies, J.crew wedges

Loft tee, Burberry scarf, Gap pants, Ivanka Trump heels

My birthday!
DKNY dress, Loft necklace, Ivanka Trump heels

birthday hangover. 
Loft sweater, target tank, J.Brand Jeans, Forever 21 necklace TB sandals


Birthday Weekend Recap

Turning twenty six was one for the books - and I have to give credit where credit is due - Joel really went above and beyond to make sure that my birthday was celebrated in style.

After work on my birthday we met at Mastro's and had a few martini's at the bar. Mastro's is a sexy steakhouse and they made some seriously killer French martinis. 


Joel had champagne sitting at our table which is always a nice touch, and I grabbed the waiter to take a picture of us as we were double fisting and still somewhat sober.  

As a starter, we went with crab stuffed mushrooms, which we both agreed were amazing. For dinner we each had a small filet and shared frites....because...obviously.

The restaurant sent a really cute dessert, but when you go to Mastro's there is only one thing you can get for dessert - and that's their buttercake.


So, because it was my birthday, I ordered it too, and we didn't touch the chocolate cake or have guilt about it going to waste either. And the butter cake was so.damn.good.

When we got home, I opened my birthday gift from my boys which included my favorite wine and tickets to see James Taylor at the Hollywood Bowl when we get back from Paris!!

The other few things I wanted to do for my birthday weekend all happened too; a long run, Paris planning, and a trip to the movies.

On Saturday, Joel took me on my longest run ever. We set out to do 7 miles, but I was feeling ok, so we stretched it for one more mile and I was seriously so proud of myself.

And I actually think I could have maybe done more..

Saturday night, Joel and I did some research (blog reading) and took down a few must-see places in Paris.Plus, Joel made a french themed dinner to go with our planning sesh and so we dined like Parisans too. Drinking white wine, browsing Pintrest,  having my dinner cooked for me by a cute chef was pretty much paradise. 

Fondue and mussels, and some of my birthday wine, and life was really, really good.

After laundry and grocery shopping on Sunday, we made it to an afternoon showing of The Other Woman (entertaining and silly) and ended the night with homemade pizza.

It was such a great weekend - the only thing that would have made it better was spending yesterday with my Momma and cheersing my Dad on his birthday. 
Yes I am! For the wonderful little girl the Lord blessed us with!  My Fabuless Life: Today I Am Grateful {Printable}



Somehow another year has rapidly passed by and here we are again. I've had good years, and bad years, and overall, this was a really, really good year. I have a charmed life, and I feel really really lucky to live it. I have a strict no-complaining about age policy because, the alternative is a LOT worse. I'm thankful to be healthy, happy, and walking into my 26th year with a lot of love.

And for good ol' birthday measure, here are 26 things random things about me


1 - I talk on the phone a lot. I talk to my mom at least twice a day, and I usually talk to at least three or four friends, sisters, or my dad, in a day too. I have different times that I like to talk to people - driving to work, walking the dog, getting ready for dinner, but I check in on people a lot and like to hear about the random nothings of their day.

2 - Once I finish a book, I cant start one immediately after. I feel like I need to let the characters and story really sink in before I throw them to the wayside.

3 - I think about what pregnancy is going to be like a lot. Ten months seem like an awfully long time to feel nauseous, uncomfortable and tired. I'm also border-line obsessed with reading mom's-to-be pregnancy blog updates.

4 - Getting your nails done in LA is really cheap - like $5 bucks, so I've gotten in the habit of getting my nails done every week and I cannot stand when they are chipped. 

5 - I screw up expressions and words...a LOT.  My sisters are very guilty of it too, and Joel thinks it's equal parts funny and scary. For example; for years we thought a valedictorian was a Valid Victorian. Which actually does make more sense.

6 - I love wine, but I suck at ordering from an unrecognizable wine list at restaurants. I never know what region I like my wine from, or what year the best grape came from, so Joel has taken on that role. It's great, except for when I'm out without him - in which case I go with the 2nd least expensive bottle. Obviously.

7 - I very rarely buy things full price. And it's not a good thing, it's actually a damn curse. And yes, I blame you mom. 

8 - I coach a Girls on the Run team. I used to coach back in Chicago and this is my first season coaching here in California. The program is amazing; our group is 8 elementary girls from 3rd-6th grade. Every week we focus on a different topic that is bound to come up in their life - bullying, mindful eating, friendships, tolerance, etc. After we talk about it and play games, we run. We train to run a 5k together and talk about the importance of using running and positivity as a way to deal with problems and maintain a healthy lifestyle. 

9 - I hate using credit cards. I've heard too many horror stories about how quickly debt can accumulate so Joel and I only buy and do things that we have the cash to do. For big ticket items, we put them on a credit card so that we can get the points, but we never carry a balance and hopefully never will.

10 - One of my goals in life is to buy a house before I'm thirty. Buying a home is such an accomplishment, and normally a smart investment. The idea to have "my own home" gives me jitters! We aren't sure where we will plant our roots, but hopefully when we do, we will be in the position to buy instead of rent.

11 -I'm an old soul and always have been. Growing up (and currently) I would beg my mom to invite her friends over to hang out with us.

12 - I love alcohol but refuse to take shots. I don't like being drunk as much as I like to actually enjoy what I'm drinking, so shots really don't do it for me.

13 - I know what my future children's names are but my lips are sealed.

14 - I STILL have not made a wedding album. It is driving me crazy but every time I think about just sitting down and doing it, I find an excuse not to. My deadline is June 22, 2014 - exactly one year later. Does someone want to do it for me?

15 - I can't miss meals. Well, maybe I can, but I don't. I'm not a pleasant person when I'm hungry so I have an apple or a bag of almonds around me to starve off the crazy.

16 - I love to read. I really only read chicky-flicky books, but they're my favorite. I probably read about twenty books a year on average, and when I find a good book I will sit and read for hours on end. See point 2.

17 - Most people don't like dining out alone, but I love it. Having a salad and a glass of wine in a busy bar, sounds like Heaven. I also love going to the movies by myself. It's so quiet and relaxing-such a fun way to spend an afternoon.

18 - Having a dog has given me a greater appreciation for not injecting advice where it is not asked for. I swear it's like weekly that someone corrects me, or tells me that I'm not seeing the best vet, or the better way to do one thing....It's such an overstep of boundaries it blows my mind!

19 - As much as I crave routine, sometimes I get really sick of coming home from work, eating a boring dinner, turning on the tv, going to bed and doing the same thing the next day. We need a few days like that every week - sure, but I hate when it becomes too ground-hoggy. We're too young to live like grandparents.

20 - I don't have a lot of patience in any area of my life, but restaurant service is a sore spot for me. I just can't stand bad waiters. I'd like to think it's because Joel and I were "secret restaurant diners" and had to be hyper critical of every move during our dining experience - but it could just be LA. The servers here, broadly speaking, suck. 

21 - There's a chance that I am the worst jumper in the entire world. You know those pictures where all of the girls are like jumping freely in the air in joy and triumph? Never happening.

22 - If I had to pick one dessert to have for my birthday it would probably be pecan pie with vanilla ice cream on top.

23 - I workout a lot - I try for five days a week. I've always been good about fitting it into my schedule and now it's just part of my lifestyle. Although, I wish it made me look like Giselle.

24 -Traveling is really, really important to me. I want to constantly travel, see new places, and expose my kids to different cultures. I feel really proud to rattle off the places that I've seen and my to-do list is still verrrrry long.

25 - I get homesick for Chicago a lot. For the people, the smells, the food, the flavors, the lights, the radio stations, my house, the seasons....everything.

26 - My celebratory birthday drink tonight will be a French martini! Bring on the day!!
"Do not regret growing older.  It is a privilege denied to many." 

Here's to 26 friends!! Thank you all for letting me share this little piece of my life with you. I love having my blog to store all of memories, and you really make the process so fun!