Friday, April 22, 2016

Friday Favorites | Life Lately

I was in a pretty decent blogging habit until I let it go to shit this week. All of sudden it's Friday and I realized I didn't blog at all. Ugh. But! That didn't stop me from photographing every mundane thing that has happened to me lately. I'm sure you're all thrilled.

Life looks a little bit like this lately...

Some tea and relationship advice at work
{and my last week in our old space!}

Sammy and I spent last Friday night out downtown with friends. 
Sammy was kind enough to drive us and some of our friends so I could drink one Long Island iced tea and embarrass him with my dance moves as soon as Fetty Wap came on. #lightweight 
Note: the phenomenal picture quality.  

Saturday we went and saw his cousin's varsity soccer game. 
This is also clearly a quality photo. 

A little 1st birthday party action.
Looking psyched as hell to be here. 

Sunday we chilled hard AF on the hammock until we realized the fabric was ripping. 
Nothing has made me want to start my diet more. 

But not until I ate all this potato salad!!! 
Again, noting this photo...  I clearly did not care this week how pictures turned out. It's laughable. 
But Sammy made us dinner and we ate outside which was so nice before he went back to the academy. 


We finally moved!! Hence the leftover confetti heading into our new space. 
And there's my new desk! I have since decorated but I want to be a nerd and do a desk reveal since I've been waiting so long for one. 
Today, my boss sent an email around telling us to let her know if anything was wrong with our individual spaces and I responded with: "No. It's perfect. I want to live here." 
Always the professional. 

Speaking of professional... 
Here I am drinking prosecco in my cubical... alone... sans makeup {it was "moving day". That was my rationale} like the biggest dork on earth. I'm pathetically in love with a cubical. 

The invitations I had made for Chelsie and Dan's engagement party were delivered this week!  
These are the recipe cards I also had made to be included in the invitation. I had a little "instruction card" made as well in the same floral design. Dan really likes to cook so I thought having everyone bring a favorite recipe with them to the party would be something nice for him and Chelsie to go home with since most of the guests have already given engagement gifts. I also grabbed a recipe card box from Crate & Barrel to put out to collect them all in. 
 I've been making headway in the planning department and I think I have most things figured out already. There isn't much more I can do until we get a little closer except solidifying a color scheme and keeping an eye out for decoration ideas. Everything else is pretty set! I want to do a post about this as well to keep me in line with planning so hopefully that's coming soon!


This weekend we have another family birthday party for some cute 12-year-olds Sammy and I know, some binge watching, and major relaxing. 

Saturday, April 16, 2016

Friday Favorites | Life Lately

I've missed a couple of weekend recaps {surprise, surprise} so I thought doing a "Life Lately" post for my Friday Favorites would be fun since "Life Lately" posts are some of my favorites to read. 

So let's get to what is essentially a large photo dump ;)

// a few weekends ago, Sammy and I had a day date downtown. 
I had to attend an event for one of my classes so I dragged Sammy to that ;) I loved having him experience a little bit of the world I've been so immersed in for the last several years. It was cool to walk around campus with him and show him where my buildings are and stuff. 

Afterward, we went to DMK Burger for burgers and beer. 


Sammy got a burger with gauc, chipotle mayo, and all that on it. I got a salmon burger with Asian relish and a red curry sauce. It was really great. The fries were prettay awesome too. 
I wasn't crazy about my beer only because I'm a snob and don't like hops and only like German and Mexican beer, so don't go by opinion ;) 

After we ate, we headed over to the United Center to see our last Bulls game of the season. 

I had gotten Sammy tickets for his birthday and as you can see I can clearly afford the best of the best since we're so incredibly close. 

We also wore the matching Michael Jordan jerseys I got us which Sammy was mildly embarrassed by. #23IsKing

// on Sunday of that weekend, my best friend Chelsie had all us girls over for brunch which was so lovely. 


She, and her fiance Dan, served pancakes with a homemade strawberry sauce, fruit kebabs, roasted potatoes, egg cups with onions and red & green peppers, and I brought an angel food cake like a schmuck. I did, however, bring Bellini mix {$5.99 at Trader Joe's, people!} and champagne for mimosas which is very anti-schmuck behavior so I think I may have redeemed myself there. 

Before we sat down to eat, we found these cute little boxes at each of our seats that Chelsie had put together.
There was a tiny little message in a bottle inside the box and when we opened it we all had little messages to read! 
Here was mine:

Ask me if I ugly cried. Now ask me if there are photographs to prove it. 'Cause there is. There are several. Several. And they are as ugly as it gets. But it's fine because I am honored beyond words and measure to stand next to my sister on such an important day. I seriously can't believe it. 

Obviously, I have become even more obsessed with their wedding {if that was even possible} and am in full swing planning mode for the engagement party I'm hosting for them in June! I can't wait! 
This means I've been on Etsy like every night this week picking out invitations and 47 other printables. 
She's worth it. 
{I'm sure I'll be doing a post on my inspiration soon. Anyone have engagement party throwing experience/advice?!}

// last week it was my Dad's birthday and we celebrated twice because he's worth a million celebrations and because we love food. 

He's the cutest, no?


During the middle of the week, we tried Demera in Uptown which is an Ethiopian restaurant. 
I ended up really enjoying it. It was fun to try a different cuisine from what I'm typically used to. 
My favorites were the spicy lentils, yellow peas, and a white fish mixture. 
Also, the beer was excellent. Guess I like Ethiopian beer now too. ;)


On his actual birthday, we tried Osteria Trulli a new Italian place that opened up near our houses and it didn't disappoint. I got the margherita pizza and I loved how fresh it was. 

// I got surprise anniversary flowers delivered to the office last week

They were white lilies {my fav} and pink cabbage roses which I'm loving so much more than regular roses now. 
It was such a lovely surprise and everyone who passed by my office said how amazing they smelled. WHICH they still do since they have lasted over a week now without wilting, losing one leaf or petal, or fading in color. I can't believe how amazing they look. 
Also, the card Sammy wrote made me cry at work 'cause I know how to be professional. 

 // Sammy and I spent our anniversary last weekend doing "us" things. Eating, randomly shopping, and lounging. 


We stopped over at Scudiero's in Melrose Park which is one of my favorite Italian places ever. It's an old-school deli and I couldn't love it more. 
I always get the eggplant parm sandwich because it's to die for and I don't have time to mess around with anything else {although I'm sure everything is amazing}. 
The deli is family owned for over sixty years which makes my heart disgustingly happy and they're all policemen and firemen so ya gotta love that too. 

The owner was awesome and talked to Sammy about his experience in the academy and told us if we need anything to give him a call. After meeting him once. Ah, I can't get enough of it. 

Also, this sign is everything to me. 

After lunch, we did some random shopping because Sammy is a 72 year old man who has to use his Kohl's cash before it expires. But I'm no better because while we were there, I bought two nightgowns by the same brand my 83-year-old grandmother wears............
We had the best of intentions to stay out like human beings and actually do things, so we were going to go to Pinstripes until we found out we needed reservations, and there were no openings for bowling that day and no openings for bocce until 10pm. 
Like really, I gotta make a reservation for bowling...

I don't think so. 

So we went back to his house to lay on the couch for 8 hours. Very reflective of who we are ;)

//  I got my certificate from the English Honors Society this week 

And also my pin which I will wear every day since I've never gotten honors in my entire life and I'm milking this shit for all it's worth.

I also had a really good week at school this week which I definitely needed. I've been struggling this quarter since I picked heavy loaded classes to finish out my graduate career {only I would do this...} and I've been feeling inadequate during these first few weeks because there are so many intelligent people in my classes that I'm easily intimidated. 
I struggle with social anxiety to a degree so speaking in class is difficult for me {even though no one would know since one-on-one I won't shut the hell up}. I had to read a piece I wrote for class and I was shaking I was so nervous. You'd think that stuff would start to get easier but it doesn't for me for some reason. 
I didn't feel nervous as I read but my body still acted as if I was nervous which was annoying. 
But afterward, I got the best feedback I've ever gotten in a workshop before. Classmates came up to me after class to tell me how well I read and how solid the piece was. My professor even told me he sees it being an essay if I keep working on it which was the highest compliment to hear from him especially.

I was in need of a positive experience like this before I got really discouraged. I have the above photo as my wallpaper on my phone right now as I've been trying to remind myself of the message every day. My comments are intelligent enough to be heard, and my story is worthy of being told so I need to stop comparing myself to other people and just be. 
I gotta do a little more blooming. 

// and to close, some Benny pictures because I hoard them on my phone like a nut case


because we just 

can't deal

can we?


Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Lookbook | Spring

As the weather has started to warm up more, I've begun to get more excited about putting together lighter, more Spring-y looks!
Aka less leggings and more skirts. Always sticking with the elastic waists though. ;)


I thought I would put my pinning expertise to productive use and compile a list of some of my favorite Spring looks I've recently saved from there.

By the time Spring rolls around, I'm looking to put together outfits that feel light and fresh. I think mixing materials and different textures is a great way to add freshness to an outfit especially if two materials are seemingly contradictory like chambray and chiffon.
I'm looking edit the cotton maxi skirts out of my closet and replace them with a floral chiffon one. I think it will have so many outfit possibilities.


Whenever I shop for new pieces I'm almost always trying to see if I can wear it casually, but also the office. Luckily, I work in a creative office where attire is on the casual side anyway but it's nice to look a little more put together when I'm in the office.
I recently picked up these black trousers, linen shorts {in black} and d'orsay flats from Old Navy. Where else? That store is my entire life. I'm going to get so much use out of the pants and the flats at work and outside of work and while I most likely won't wear shorts to work I think they're of solid construction that they could be dressed up if need be. 


Even though I say every morning I'm going to look through my pinterest boards for outfit inspirations when it seems like nothing in my closet will work, but my laziness always wins out and I end up half-assing an outfit and wind up late to wherever I'm going.

I've heard of people taking ootd shots when they've put together an outfit they like and want to recreate again later and even hanging them on a hanger next to the item of clothing or next to their closet. I was introduced to Social Print Studio and thought their mini digital photo books would be a great place to display outfit ideas visually in a way that doesn't take up a lot of space. They're also a great way to organize photographs since the albums are so small, you could create an individual one for different categories {outfits, travel, family photos per holiday, occasion, etc.,}.

Some of my favorite Spring trends are pretty obvious in the photos above: sweaters with chiffon skirts, chambray, light trench coats, and d'orsay flats.
What are some elements you're excited to add into your wardrobe or utilize this Spring?!

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Ten on Tuesday | Facts of Us

With our anniversary this Saturday, I've got "us" on my mind. I can't resist doing another relationship centered Ten on Tuesday post. This week I wanted to do ten facts about us! I asked Sammy to answer some questions with me over the weekend while we were on a date and it made for such a nice conversation.
So sorry ladies. It's about to get mushy and silly, and honestly, kind of great. At least to us. 

1 // How We Met 
Sammy and I met in elementary school. In second grade to be exact. I've told this story about 100 times but it never gets old. I remember seeing him come in during our "meet your teacher" day before school actually started. He was this little boy carrying a grocery bag full of school supplies. He had on a sweater vest and little wire framed glasses. Let's take a moment to repeat. He wore a SWEATER VEST to a not even real day of school. I was done right there. 

{Sammy's birthday party probably in 4th grade-sorry for the terrible quality but it's an old scanned photo} 

Our desks were next to each other on that first day of school and on every first day of school after that. Thanks, teachers ;) 

2 // How Long?
We've known each other for seventeen years and have been dating for ten. 

{one of our homecoming pictures}

3 // How Did He Ask?
Here's a classic tale for any of you 90's kids out there. Sammy asked me to be his girlfriend over AIM. AIM PEOPLE. I remember I was over at my girlfriend's house working on a Spanish project and I kept sneaking over to their family computer so I could answer his IMs. He asked me if I'd be his girlfriend using red bold comic-sans. Can't believe I've been with a guy this long who, at some point, preferred comic-sans. 

4 // Our Favorite Things About the Other
His: "I come home every weekend from a stressful place and with a stressed mind and just being around you makes me calm down. Sometimes we talk about work and sometimes we don't and that's okay {I think he's referring to good balance here}." He also insisted on mentioning one of his favorite things is "your attempt to be funny. The joke isn't usually that funny but you're attempt at being funny is what's funny." THANKS.

Mine: One of my very favorite things about Sammy is how passionate and dedicated he is to the things he loves. Loyalty is extremely important to me and Sammy proves his loyalty through his passion and dedication for what he values. He grows more dedicated to our relationship every day and throughout all adversity his passion for his career, family, and friends, etc., only strengthens. His dedication inspires me to be better every day and to prove my passions through action. 

5 // Our Favorite Dates
His: "The Signature Room was pretty nice." 

Mine: There's a little restaurant in Cicero called Freddy's Pizza. It's old school Italian and I like to think of it as our place. 

6 // Our Favorite Trips
His: "One of the Florida trips." I then made him pick a specific one and to my delight he chose our most recent trip which was to Disney. God bless him.

Mine: Excluding Disney, I'd probably have to choose one of our downtown trips. We did one of our Christmas trips down there and a trip after we graduated. We always pack so much into our Chicago trips, they end up being so fun. We love playing tourists in our own city. 

{rivals forever...Go CUBS!}

7 // Our Favorite Year of Dating
His: "I think the first year because we had reconnected after not talking {he's referring to middle school here...} and also this year because I feel like we've gotten back to acting just like we did when we were younger just..with things." 

Mine: I have to agree with him entirely. While I've loved every year for specific reasons, there were some in the middle there that were tough as we were dealing with all the shit that comes with growin up, but the first year was so much fun and light hearted and this year I think we really found our groove more than any year before {although we needed those previous years to teach us and get us here}.

8 // His Favorite Thing on Our Bucket List
His: "Moving in together. Picking the place together and organizing it." He literally said organizing it. Have I mentioned how much I dig him? Also, I was not expecting this answer AT ALL and kind of died in the restaurant. I told him I was thinking more of an activity or place we want to visit that's on our bucket list and he said, "well, this is on my bucket list". Okay, man. ;)

{can we find a place like this? ;) any chance I can to bring it up, I will}

Mine: Something I'm really looking forward to doing on our bucket list is doing a cross-country road trip, going back to Paris with him, camping in Yosemite. I can't pick just one! 

9 //  Our Anniversary Plans
We recently decided we're going to skip celebrating over this weekend {since Sammy has limited weekend time while he's in the academy. He's also going to be in Vegas from Sat-Sun with his buddies anyway} and save our money to take a trip celebrating our 10 year and both of our graduations {my master's degree and his academy} once Sammy gets his solidified vacation time. I can't wait to start planning that. 

10 // Why Do We Do It?
This seems like an odd question but people ask us this all.the.time. It's kind of weird because to us it's kind of self explanatory. 

Him: "Because it was bound to happen." When I asked him this question he brought up being seated next to each other in elementary school and because of that "we were bound to be together". 

Me: For me, there is no other way to be. He's my guy. There's no one like him and our relationship is one of my greatest joys in life. We work hard on it every single day and I'm very proud of where we've come and all the places we can go together. Loving him is such a privilege. He's the greatest life partner I could have asked for.


Anyway, thanks for reading all that if you made it to the end! It was really fun and nostalgic for me to put this post together so thanks for putting up with me. And for the obnoxious amount of photos of us. It was excessive. Sorry. They're just some of my favorites. But also, sorry. ;)