Creed Bratton at Jammin Java

Today is a rather rainy, overcast day in Northern, Va. But i’d rather have rain during the week than the weekend. We actually have some fun plans in the works and the rain could wash them out completely. Fingers crossed the weather cooperates!

Jammin Java Date Night

Yesterday evening Jason and I headed to Jammin Java for a Creed Bratton music and comedy show. We are huge “The Office” fans, and Jason loves the characters Dwight and Creed, so he jumped at the chance a few months ago to buy tickets to the show. He actually got to meet Rainn Wilson (Dwight) a few months ago at his book signing in NYC!


Jammin Java is a bar/cafe in Vienna, Va. and they have performances every night of the week. The atmosphere was super relaxed, and they had a great selection of food and drink. I sipped on a white russian and we shared a bavarian pretzel, fully equipped with beer cheese and something delicious called tiger sauce.

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The show kicked off with a performance by Andrew Tufano, an up and coming singer/songwriter from Nashville. He was fantastic, and definitely got everyone into the right mood for the evening. He pressed us so much that we bought his CD at the end of the show, and are making plans to see him again in the next few months.


The next performance was a comedy act by a local comedian. He had us laughing through his entire segment, and seemed like such a natural. I forgot to snap any pictures during his time on stage, but that just shows how focused I was on all the laughing, right?

During intermission Jason and I were chatting about the show, and before we knew it Creed himself had walked on stage and was waving to the crowd. He looked way younger than I expected and it took me a few seconds to realize it was him. He got the show started right away by breaking into song. But in Creed fashion, he abruptly stopped, introduced himself and then picked back up right where he left off.


Creed performed a number of songs from his Grassroots days, did a lot of throw back dialogue to The Office, and graced us with a nostalgic tune incorporating all of the office casts names. He put on a great performance and overall seemed humble. Such a fun night!

It was super late by the time we got home (like after midnight), so I went straight to bed while Jason took Robelee for a quick walk. Now off to start an office watching marathon!





Growing Our Family

I thought a lot about starting to write again, especially about everything that is our first year of marriage.  The first year is tough in some ways, we re-learned things, and developed a new balance, we also combined finances for the first time ever.

I also thought a lot about weather or not to start writing about our journey to growing our family. I even asked Jason first, if he would mind if I wrote about our experiences. I thought about weather this should be private, or if other family members would judge me for talking about it (silly stuff!). But in the end, it’s my decision, and I definitely didn’t want my insecurities to prevent me from sharing our experiences through an outlet (writing) that I enjoy having. I also know how much it helps me to read other bloggers stories, and feel not so alone.

So, Jason and I have been struggling to have a baby. It’s been hard, emotionally draining, stressful, and time consuming. We began trying shortly after our wedding in May, but nothing was happening. We really thought since we’re young that it would happen within just a few months. After six months of nothing, we decided to help put our worries to rest and seek the help of a fertility specialist. We really thought it would give us the assurance we need to “relax and let it happen”, as so many people innocently tell you to do when your trying.

Then our results started to come back in, and there ended up being a slight male factor. I remember the nurse telling me the results of Jason’s test over the phone, and saying that it really isn’t a big deal, that she’s seen so many people with this problem get a baby. Well, she didn’t say exactly how those couples got a baby (IUI, IVF, naturally?). I had a lot of questions, so she said she would have our doctor call in a few days.

When our doctor did call, he refused to discuss what Jason’s results meant for us because I had not yet completed all of my testing. Since a few days had passed between getting the results and speaking with the doctor, we had already researched what the results meant, and that IVF is likely our best option. Him refusing to answer anything was really a blow, because now we would have to wait weeks before my tests would be done, and for him to tell us if what we had researched is accurate or not.

Then I had my final test, the HSG. I was told it would be uncomfortable, but when the technician came in she told me it would either be mild pain, or the most excruciating pain i’ve ever felt in my life. Real nice way to start, right? I must have fallen on the far end of the spectrum, because it was so awful that I had to have them stop midway through. I cried a lot. I cried because it hurt, and I cried because I felt I had failed. I also cried because I knew if i didn’t complete this test, the doctor would never discuss our results with us and it would be my fault that we were delayed in getting answers. And the HSG has to be done at a certain time in your cycle, so any do-overs would need to wait a month.

I called the fertility clinic to let them know that I couldn’t finish the HSG and would be coming by to pick up our records. Jason and I decided we would be switching clinics so we cold hopefully get answers, and overall just didn’t feel comfortable with the place we were at. That’s when our doctor called and finally told us that “Yes, based on your husbands results, your going to probably need IVF”, but not to worry because he’s good at what he does and will “get us a baby”.  We felt awful that we waited so long to hear what we already knew. We also decided to try to focus on the solution and not the problem, so we made an appointment at a large clinic in the Northern, VA area.  We had heard good things about the new facility from others that went through similar struggles.  Its funny, it feels as though you never hear anything about infertility until you’re going through it.

Our new doctor answered all of our questions, and took time to sit down and go over the results we collected from the previous clinic. He ordered a much more thorough work up, and suggested I do the HSG under sedation. He also told us our chances of conceiving naturally based on Jason’s results alone, 4-5%. But also said that anything is possible, and not to give up because he’s seen it happen unexpectedly in the past, even when the chances are slim.

Now we need to see what the end game is going to be, because my HSG (which I think i’ll do a separate post about) showed a closed tube. Overall, we finally feel like we’re moving forward, and aren’t crazy for thinking something was wrong when we were trying without success. This has without a doubt been difficult to deal with, and the word “patience” has never meant more to us than it does now. I also certainly know other people out there are going through worse, or have been trying for a baby for a lot longer that we have. This is just our story, and I hope this blog can continue to be a positive outlet for me.


Hawaii Wedding Part III – Our Vows

**If you missed the first two posts about our wedding, you can find the first one here and the second one here. Part III is a long one, so thank you if you actually make it through the entire post. All photo credit up until the dinner portion of this post goes to our wonderful wedding photographer, Mariah Milan.


Jason and I are a very non traditional couple. We wanted to have a small wedding that focused on us and did not revolve around trying to make a ton of guests happy. The decision to have our wedding in Hawaii came after we visited Charleston, SC to scope out venues. We loved Charleston and could imagine having our dream wedding in this beautiful city. However, before we even booked anything, the costs were adding up rather quickly (via quotes from vendors, and the venue fee). Since we were paying for everything ourselves, we decided it was just too much to put towards a 4-5 hour event.

So the search began for more intimate “elopement” wedding packages. We didn’t want our wedding to feel cheap or thrown together, and got these vibes from many of the places/packages we researched. Yes we were trying to save money, but no, we were not going to completely skimp on something that was so important to us.


The search was frustrating, so I resorted to google for “elopement wedding” inspiration. Thats when I came across Megan Fox’s wedding pictures from Hawaii and decided to look into the cost of such a wedding. I actually looked into the exact resort, The Four Seasons, and was surprised at how affordable it was (but still out of our budget). It was kind of a silly idea I tossed at Jason, fully knowing how unrealistic it would it would be, and how fast it would be turned down.

To my surprise he was on board. His immediate excitement threw me for a loop. I hand’t bothered letting myself imagine it ever being a realistic option! When I told him, it was done in frustration at the end of the night when I was exhausted from trying to figure out what we should do. I flopped on the bed while he was getting changed from work and said “I just want to get married on a cliff in Hawaii”. Never could I imagine his next words would be “Okay, lets do it. Let’s look into it and see we can do this”. And so that’s what we did. We planned our wedding completely by phone and email!

Mauis Angels Weddings took care of everything! I cannot say enough good things about this company, and the friendly people that work there. Jason and I felt so relaxed during the planning process, and found it so easy from start to finish. They were the coordinator for the wedding, and all vendors for our day. The only thing Jason and I planned outside of them was our dinner because we wanted to do a private event through a hotel, but more on that below.

Our Wedding Day

Jason and I woke up bright and early on the day of our wedding and went out for breakfast almost before the sun rose. We planned to spend the day together until around 2:30 p.m. when my mom and sister would arrive to help me get ready.  We relaxed, talked, and then grabbed a quick bite to eat at Dukes before it was time for Jason to get ready. He headed to his moms hotel so we could get ready in private, and spend time with family before the ceremony. My mom and sister arrived right before my hair and makeup artist knocked on the door, and from this point the day progressed so fast!


I gave both mine and Jason’s mom a handkerchief embroidered with a special sentiment, plus included a hand written letter for my mom that I gave her when she got to our room. We chatted throughout the entire time my hair and makeup was being done, and before I knew it the photographer had arrived.

I felt that the arrival of our photographer is when everything started to feel a bit more real. I knew it was my wedding day, but up until this point I didn’t have that “this is it” moment. It was around this time that I started to think about how crazy it was that the day had finally arrived. After 14 months of being engaged and planning, the day we were waiting for had arrived. I was getting married!


After the photographer finished the before photos we headed to the car so we could drive to our ceremony site, Ironwoods Beach. While waiting in the lobby for the car to be pulled up I received so many kind words from passerby’s, which amplified my excitement even more. It suddenly felt so unbelievable that this was my wedding day. I was having those “holly crap this is happening” excited feelings that had sorta been missing the rest of the day. Of course I was excited to marry Jason, but being in my gown, at our ceremony site, really sparked a new anticipation that felt great.

We arrived at the beach just before 6:00 p.m. and while everyone else took their places I stayed back so Jason and I could have our first look.



We were able to walk together down the path that led to the stairs that would take us to the beach where we were to be married. Once we were there, Jason headed down the stairs to take his place while I waited for the signal (the blowing of the conch) to start my walk towards my husband-to-be. During my walk, our musician played the ukulele while singing our wedding song “Over the Rainbow”.


Our vows lasted about 15 minutes, after which we signed our marriage license. This was also the time when we hugged everyone before they headed off to wait for us at our dinner location. We only had four guests, so we opted for a private dinner at the Westin. But first we had to finish up our photography session!


We could not have been more happy with Mariah Milan. She was so kind and had tons of ideas for photo poses, which we loved because we’ve never been photographed before.

After our session ended we headed to our car so we could make our way to dinner at the Westin Maui Resort & Spa. 


When we were planning our wedding, the one thing we knew we didn’t want to sacrifice was a special dinner afterwards that would be private and memorable. We found a few places on the west side of the island that offered private options, and ultimately decided the Westin met all of our needs. We sent them our menu selections ahead of time, and were able to order drinks from the menu when we arrived.

Our table was set up outdoors and surrounded by tiki torches. They added a bit of decor to the table, and had a separate table set up for our cake. The dinner was managed by a private waiter that took care of everything we needed from start to finish.

Each course was brought out one at a time, with plenty of time in between for us to feel relaxed and not rushed. We enjoyed every second together, and chatted away throughout the entire dinner.

Towards the end we cut the cake, which was one of the traditional wedding events that I really wanted to incorporate in the day.

We loved our “reception”. I’m so glad we stuck with our decision to have a small wedding in Hawaii with just a few guests. We were told by so many people who had traditional large weddings that they: didn’t even get to spend much time with their spouse, didn’t get to eat, felt rushed the entire time, etc. We both loved being able to focus on each other and enjoy all the little moments throughout the day.

A Trip Down Memory Lane

Last weekend we decided to take a short trip to Maryland, to a place that holds a lot of memories for me. Jason has on numerous occasions shown me around places all over Pennsylvania that are meaningful to his childhood, and it was about time that I did the same.

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With Robelee in tow, we headed to Fort Washington National park. We wanted to get Robelee out of the house and do something active together, so this seemed to fit the bill (not too far away, and the historic nature was right up Jason’s alley). I spent countless days visiting this place with my grandparents and parents when I was little, and the memories just flooded back the second we pulled into the parking lot.

I vividly remember parking and making the walk to the entrance of the fort, and visitors building. It almost felt like stepping back in time to when I was little, especially since not much has changed at the fort since then.


Robelee was all too excited to be out and about.  I don’t think he’s ever been so into any other trip he’s gone on. You’d think by his eagerness to get into the fort that we were making late for some sort of important party.


We spent about an hour exploring all the “ins and outs” of the fort, which was so fun. I forgot how many places you could go that aren’t off limits (stairwells, different rooms, etc.), which made it that much more interactive and exciting.


After we finished up, we decided to go a bit further down memory lane to BJ’s Carryout for ice cream. My chocolate malt satisfied my sweet tooth, and added even more to the nostalgia I was already feeling from the day.

We also decided to add onto our trip and take a drive to the first house I lived in before my parents divorced, and then past my grandparents house. So many memories!

Seeing everything in person after so many years was quite the emotion overload and brought back so many happy memories from my childhood. It was nice to be able to share them all with Jason.

Hawaii Wedding Part II – Maui

You can find Part I here.

Maui was the second leg of our wedding vacation, and also the island where we said our I Do’s!

Of the three islands we visited, Maui seemed to be the best of both worlds; calm and relaxing, but also lots to do, see, and eat.

We hopped in the rental car and made the journey to Kaanapali where we checked into our first hotel (we switched hotels three times while in Maui). The majority of our hotels were booked through either Hotwire or Priceline using their secret rate feature. This allowed us to save tons of cash but still get a super nice room.

Our first hotel was the Westin. We loved the hotel, and felt so relaxed here. The bathroom was amazing, and the bed was super comfy.



Our only complain was that the pool was 3.5 feet at its deepest. Jason and I both love swimming, but definitely prefer something a little deeper to float around in.

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After checking out the room and grounds, we headed out to the beach so we could meet up with my mom and sister! I hadn’t seen my mom in nearly three years before this, which is entirely too long. We live on opposite sides of the country, so having them join us for our big day was quite special.

Oops, I was so focused on spending time with everyone, that I forgot to take any pictures. So, here's a throwback of my sister and I, circa 1995ish.

I was so focused on spending time with everyone, that I forgot to take any pictures. Here’s a throwback of my sister and I, circa 1995ish.

My mom, sister, and I decided to hang out while Jason met up with his mom and her boyfriend for dinner. It was nice being able to just sit and talk after being away from each other for so long. Before the night ended we made plans to meet up together the next day for a little sight seeing. We had to check out of our hotel in the morning anyway,  and would have a lot of free time until the 3:00 p.m. check in at the next hotel.

The next morning my mom and sister asked us to meet them at Whalers Village and guaranteed we’d love all the shops. they had made the rounds earlier in the morning and had put quite the dent in their wallets from all the shopping they did. The outdoor style mall was the perfect setting for shopping while still maintaining a vacation feel.

Sorry:( I forgot to take pictures of Whaler’s Village. But seriously, it was a great shopping area to walk around and shop. 

We decided to stop for lunch at Hula Grill, which is part of the Dukes chain. Can you see a theme? Jason and I just couldn’t turn down the chance to eat at Dukes, or enjoy another Mai Tai.


Our next stop was Lahaina Village, another great place to do some shopping and sight seeing. Lahaina is right on the water and was basically a downtown area full of touristy shops, restaurants, and the largest Banyan Tree in Hawaii.

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Oops, I forgot to take daytime pics.

Oops, I forgot to take daytime pics.

Bring sunscreen (duh) and a hat, because it was H-O-T! The sun drained me nearly every day that we were in Hawaii. I’m naturally super sensitive to the sun and heat, so we had to take a few breaks to refuel and cool off. I  bought a large sun hat to help keep the sun off my face, and wish I had done so sooner. It was a total game changer.


Okay, so this isn’t the hat I bought. But how often do you see Indiana Jones’s hat?

After a busy day of shopping and spending time with family, we checked into the Honua Kai Resort and Spa in Kaanapali. This was the only hotel we didn’t book through Priceline or Hotwire. We wanted to be sure we had a nice room for the night before and night of our wedding, so this was the only hotel we splurged on.

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Quick note – This was the only hotel where we could spell the nearby poop plant wafting through the room at certain times of day. Yuck! Jason’s mom had the same problem at their hotel too, so maybe it depends on which side of the building your staying on. Something to keep in mind if your sensitive to smells, but it wasn’t much of an inconvenience for us. 

The room and view was nice, but we weren’t overly impressed by anything the hotel had to offer compared to others on our trip, except that they had a Duke’s onsite which we took advantage of… again.  The main pool, which was part of the appeal in the pictures we looked at prior to booking was closed down and surrounded by a temporary wall, which really took away from the beauty of the place. We both agreed that we felt like we wasted quite a bit of money by booking with the Honua Kai. The staff were friendly, but the website impressed us more than the actual resort.

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We got to bed because our wedding was the next day! Getting ready for our 6:00 p.m. ceremony consumed the entire day, so Hawaiian Wedding Part III will be entirely dedicated to our day. In the mean time, here’s a quick glimpse.

Photo credit goes to Mariah Milan Photography

Photo credit goes to Mariah Milan Photography

Our first day of married life was pretty much the same as engaged life. Except, we were finally done with the stress of planning a wedding and could start our lives together as husband and wife! Oh, and I was sick for half the day:(


But lets back up a bit to before I got sick… we started out our first day as newlyweds with a trip back to the airport to return our rental car. The check engine light had come on after the wedding when we were pulling up to our hotel for the night. The rental company told us to stop by to exchange it, so we headed straight there when we woke up in the morning. The nice perk to that was the company upgraded us to a Camaro for half the price! Given our addiction to Hawaii Five-O, we were just a little excited (they drive a silver Camaro on the show).

We topped the trip off with a visit to Coconut’s Fish Cafe in Kihei for lunch, and finished with a coffee from Java Cafe just a few stores over. The fish tacos are apparently the draw to this place, and they were great. The combination of the slaw, fish, cheese, and mango was just fantastic. And the coffee? It was probably the best coffee i’d had in a long time. I ordered a kailua and cream latte, or something of the sort, and it was just perfect.



I think the combination of travel, eating tons of food/sweets, and the heat had gotten to me and my belly just couldn’t handle anymore. We were able to make it to another out door shopping village on our way back to the hotel, but I was down for the count for a few hours afterwards. Everyone understood and even chimed in that they also had their bouts of sickness during the trip… so I wasn’t the only one feeling the combo of circumstances. I’ll tell ya, a six hour time change and great (but heavy) food really does a job on the system.

The rest of our time in Maui was spent relaxing, visiting with family, and enjoying the scenery. One of the especially scenic outings we took was to Iao Valley in Wailuki. The ride to the monument traversed a winding road surrounded by homes and lush greenery. The weather became more and more cool as we neared the top and eventually started to lightly rain.

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After finding a place to park we headed up the stairs to the top of the monument for a few pictures. This place was absolutely beautiful and just felt like we were in a far away land, completely removed from civilization.

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Maui IIII-0240Our time in Maui was wonderful. We were so happy to have family join us, and start our lives together as a married couple in such a beautiful place. We will always remember how much fun we had, and how special this particular leg of our trip was.

Stay tuned! “Part three, The Wedding” will be up soon.

Hawaii Wedding Part I – Oahu

Jason and I tied the knot, Hawaiian style!

We soaked up every ounce of Hawaii during our nearly two week stay and loved everything the beautiful state had to offer. I originally wanted to journal at the end of each night to document our trip, but I forgot about the idea until a few days before coming home, so it never happened. We did however take tons of pictures!

Honolulu: Jason and I arrived mid-day and were tired, and hungry after a nearly 11 hour flight. We picked up our car and got on the road so we could check into The Hawaii Prince Hotel. This place had the most comfortable bed i’ve ever slept in at a hotel, and probably one of the best views of the trip. After we were done being mesmerized by the view, we immediately threw on clothes to hit the town… in search of food.

Hawaii III-0033We read good reviews about Duke’s on Waikiki Beach, and were not disappointed! The Mahi Mahi fish and chips, paired with one of their famous Mai Tai’s was the perfect introduction to all the great food to come during our trip. 

 After dinner we took a quick stroll down Waikiki Beach. There are so many famous places in Hawaii i’ve heard about, and this was just one of them, so it was really cool to actually be there in person.

Of course dinner, especially while on vacation, is not complete without desert. Thanks to Hawaii Five-O, I couldn’t wait to try the Cocoa Puffs from Liliha Bakery. I can’t begin to describe how delicious they were, but the chantilly frosting on top made this into a hands down winner.

With full bellies we headed back to the hotel for the night. We had a bright and early day ahead of us, with something on the agenda that i’ve been wanting to see for over a decade. Jason and I actually made a stop in Oahu for this alone.

Pearl Harbor

After stopping for a quick Starbucks breakfast we headed to the Pearl Harbor visitors parking lot to wait for our tour time. We were so excited for this part of our day that we arrived almost two hours early.  Luckily we were able to exchange our tickets for an earlier visit to the memorial. I would definitely suggest going early to avoid the crowds and heat. We enjoyed cool weather during our visit since we arrived so early in the morning (I think before 8:00 a.m.). I would also suggest booking tickets online, which I think you can do almost two months in advance. Knowing we had tickets and wouldn’t have to wait in line hoping they didn’t run out alleviated a lot of stress. SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

The tour started with a short movie recounting the events leading up to, during, and after December 7th, 1941. After it was over we exited the theater and headed to a boat that was waiting to take us to the USS Arizona memorial. SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

The boat ride to the memorial took only a few minutes. We were able to walk around for about 10-15 minutes, which felt like just the right amount of time to really take everything in without feeling rushed. It was a very peaceful experience, and felt a little unbelievable knowing exactly what had once occurred in that very spot. You could even still see oil spilling into the water from the USS Arizona.


Jason loves submarines, so after the boat dropped us back at the dock we headed over to the USS Bowfin to take a self guided tour. We were able to walk along the top and inside the submarine which was very cool! It was even better that there were only a few others walking through at the same time as us.

Oh, and talk about claustrophobia! With such tight spaces, I don’t think it would have been as enjoyable if there had been tons of visitors there all at once. SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

We were only in Honolulu for a short time, so we wanted to soak up as much as we could during our stay. After we left Pearl Harbor, we went on a driving tour of the island.

During our drive we came across this beach and were floored by how blue the water was. This picture hasn’t been retouched at all! It was extremely windy, but gosh, we were just in awe of this place.

And this is the view from behind. Seriously, the beach and those mountains combined made for such a beautiful setting. 

We finally made our way back to town and knew we couldn’t leave Oahu without stopping to see the King Kamehameha statue. Jason and I both binge watched Hawaii Five-O, and after seeing this in numerous scenes we put it on our list of things to see during our trip.

Our flight left the next morning, so we wrapped up our day with another trip to Dukes and Liliha Bakery before crawling into bed and watching the sunset.  We checked out the next morning and packed up the car. But, the trip wouldn’t be complete without a morning stroll to the Hilton Hawaiian Village. The lagoon there is another common scene from Hawaii Five-O and was super close to our hotel. We had just enough time to walk there and back before making our way back to the airport.

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We wish we could have had a little longer on this beautiful, yet busy island. There was so much to do and see in such a short amount of time.

Stay tuned, part II of our trip will be posted soon.

A Little Catch Up

It’s been awhile. I’ve wanted to get back to blogging so many times, but just haven’t had anything to write about. There were multiple posts that I started, but just kinda felt blah about them once I started writing. Maybe it was the winter zapping my energy, changing jobs, planning a wedding, or just plain ole writers block. But today I felt a renewed desire to blog again, so I figured I’d keep it quick with a recap post.

1. Robelee is 10 months old and is officially a “teenager” in doggie years. He’s a sweet, clumsy, dopey boy, and we love him. But the phase of his selective deafness, and jumping on the furniture when he knows he’s not supposed to will surely not be missed. SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

2. Our wedding is right around the corner. After getting engaged last March, I was worried that the time would drag by, but it has been the complete opposite. I really want to make sure to cherish these last few weeks being Jason’s “finance”. I know a title change isn’t that big of a deal to a lot of people, but i’ve always felt it important to enjoy each chapter of our relationship from just dating, to becoming boyfriend and girlfriend, finance’s, and soon to be husband and wife! The last nearly five years have been special. Full of ups and downs, milestones, and changes. Having each other has been a consistency that I have become dependent on. I’m so excited to become his wife and call him my husband. Dress

3. Meal planning has fallen to the wayside around here. I’m hoping to change that now that more items are coming back into season. I love when the prices of our favorite produces drops during the spring/summer months. Strawberries and blueberries are staples in our house.

4. Baked goods seem to always be in full force. Everything in moderation.



4. Speaking of baked goods. Jason and I decided we would have Easter cupcakes this year and skip the candy.  Sweet Reasons has been our new favorite for awhile and I had a “buy three get three” coupon, so we couldn’t resist. I think we may have just started a new tradition. IMG_2302

4. I’ve been taking advantage of the free gym at work and have stuck to a routine for the past few months now. I was doing Purre Barre for a while and loved the way it toned my muscles, but unfortunately the location wasn’t convenient so I needed to switch things up.

5.  Hello Smart Water. Jason and I both love this stuff and even though it’s just water, it tastes different and more refreshing than any other brand we’ve tried. Man, I wish they sold it by the gallon.

6. Netflix. Vampire Diaries and Hawaii Five-O have turned me into a binge watcher. 


I think that’s where I’ll leave it this time!

Robelee – Our Shiloh Shepherd

I thought it may be time to introduce Robelee, our Shiloh Shepherd, since I briefly mentioned him in my last post. Trying to sum him up is a task! He’s got energy out the wazoo, and no two days are the same.  Oh, and if there’s a sock in the room, he will surely find it.

Lets start with the basics though, okay?

Size: Robelee will be a BIG dog when he is full grown. He’s already around 60 pounds, and he hasn’t even reached 5 months yet. We expect him to top out at about 100 pounds.

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Obedience: Since he’s going to be already a big boy, we started training immediately. It’s been a long process, and he’s still learning… remember, he looks big, but he’s really just a little pup still. He quickly learned, sit, stay, come, and lay down. But, were still working on “leave it” and “drop it”… especially when it comes to socks.We’re looking forward to enrolling him in the second level training course at Petsmart.

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HouseBreaking: He’s already housebroken, woohoo! The bigger the dog, the bigger the puddle, so this was a major task to accomplish early on. We took him out every 30 minutes for the first few weeks. Luckily, he never had to go in the middle of the night, but Jason would take him out super early in the morning just in case. The most important potty times were right after eating, sleeping, playing, or coming out of his crate. After he got the hang of what we expected, we relaxed on the frequency of his outings. We also make him sit by the door every time we go outside, so he eventually learned to do this as a way of “asking” to go potty. I’m happy to say our paper towel budget has gone back to normal:)

Food: We kept Robelee on Royal Canin, because that’s what he was started on with the breeders.  We don’t see the need in switching up something he does we’ll with and seems to enjoy. However, we will most likely transition to Blue Buffalo when it comes time to start him on adult food. Jason and I love everything Blue Buffalo has to offer, and feel we can trust the quality of their products. Robelee can’t get enough of his Blue Buffalo treats, which we buy in a multitude of varieties (I think he favors the duck flavors though). He eats about 6 cups of kibble spaced throughout three meals each day. I also make homemade wet food using my Vitamix.

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Personality: Like any dog, Shiloh Shepherds need to be socialized from a very early age, especially since the fall into the herding group, and have a natural instinct to protect their family. Robelee was a social butterfly from day one, and he continues to soak up every bit of attention that comes his way. We try to expose him to as many different environments, people, and sounds as possible, and take him with us as often as possible when we leave the house. We even took him out on Halloween, but he didn’t even notice anything was different. He is a goof more times than not, but is also a very quick learner… I think it’s a good balance.

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He’s just so curious.

Grooming: Shiloh Shepherds= SHEDDING. That’s just a fact of life if you own one of these dogs. Rebel has a plush coat, so his fur will be long and require a lot of brushing to prevent matts. It’s a habit I started early on to cut down on all the fur left on our floor. I also invested in the Fulminator, but so far he doesn’t love it:(

Activity: This has fluctuated from the day we brought him home. Sometimes he just wants to lay down and sleep for hours, but then other times you’d think he’s running from a fire. The little guy just has a lot of energy spurts, and it drives us nuts! When we try to play with him, he usually wants nothing to do with us. It’s when we’re in the middle of making breakfast, or right after we sit down to relax for the night that he decides he’s going to unleash the Energizer Bunny from within. Point is – he’s got lots of energy right now. But he should mellow out a bit as he gets older, then a daily walk and play session should keep him balanced.

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I think that about covers it. Robelee has definitely added a new element of responsibility to our lives that we were ready to take on (not those first few weeks though, those were terrible), and he sure has keep us on our feet!

Three Month Hiatus

Oops:( I never meant to stop blogging for three whole months, but it just happened. Days turned into weeks, which then turned into months. The desire was there, but the motivation and energy was lost. Things have been busy around here and lots has changed, so when I had time to myself I just didn’t want to sit in front of the computer and write. Nor could I think of anything fun or interesting to write about. But alas, I pulled myself out of the funk and am ready to hit the ground running typing again.

Lets catch up shall we?

1. My job was causing a lot of chaos in our lives and it was draining my energy mentally. But now I found a new job, and I start tomorrow. I’m actually really nervous about this new position, not only because it’s a new company and I’ll be starting over again, but because I don’t quite know what to expect yet… Will this be worse than my old job? What if i’m awful at it? Did I just make a huge career mistake? Only time will tell, so all I can do is take it one step at a time.

2. We got a puppy!!! His name is Robelee and he is a Shiloh Shepherd. Jason and I (after lots of talking and thinking) decided we had healed enough from losing Franklin earlier this year to welcome another dog into our home. Robelee can be a little gremlin sometimes, and a goofball other times, but we love him and enjoy spending as much time with him as possible.

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3. Remember back in April when I wrote about my engagement and then never mentioned it again? Well, thats because we were completely lost trying to figure out what to do for our wedding. Weddings are expensive, and were paying for everything out of our own pocket… no help from family. Which is totally fine.  But, since were paying for everything ourselves, it was really wearing on us when family members were angry over every wedding decision we were making. Now i’m very happy with our decision to elope to Hawaii this May:) Like, super crazy excited!


That’s about it, all wrapped up in less than 400 words. I’m going to definitely try to make my blog more of a priority. I love it and blogging is something I enjoy.

Summer TV Addict

Jason has a huge obsession with Panera Bread’s Corn and Potato Chowder. He was really excited this weekend to see it has made it’s return for the summer, and I was excited when I found out it was vegetarian! We both ordered a bowl and ate every bite. The flavor was different than expected, but still super good:) I paired it with the Tomato and Mozzarella panini, which is an odd match, but it’s my favorite sandwich from Panera.

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As usual, I forgot to snap a picture of our Panera outing… so this filler pic will just have to do.

I’m a big fan of chowder, so it’s usually what I default to making when I whip out the crock pot. After our trip to Panera, Jason was left craving it again, so he requested I make a batch of my own Corn and Potato Chowder to eat throughout the week. You may remember my disastrous experience making this last year… we’ll I loosely followed the same recipe, minus the snafus, and added a bag of peas for a little extra color. I also limited the whipping cream to make it a bit more light and soupy.


Summer TV Addict

Now that all the shows I regularly watch have gone into hiatus, I’ve started unintentionally watching a ton of reality TV shows. I’m usually not a reality tv fan AT ALL, but i’ve been getting sucked in big time! We also got rid of our cable a while back, so the pickings are even more slim.

The other night, I discovered “Married at First Sight” and let me tell you, I’ve never been so captivated by the first episode of a show…ever. The premise is to match couples based on expert calculations of each individuals wants/needs/personalities, etc. Interesting right??? The idea of marrying someone you never met sounds bizarre, and getting to watch it play out on TV will be so interesting. I’m really curious if the “experiment” will work, and I’m really pulling for the couples. I just can’t imagine the nerves they must have had while walking towards a complete stranger, knowing they would be marrying them just a few minutes later.

The other shows i’ve been addicted to lately are: The Bachelorette, and the complete failure “I Wanna Marry Harry” which was painful to watch, but so ridiculous I just couldn’t turn the channel. This show was cancelled after just a few episodes, but the remained were tossed onto Hulu, so i’ve luckily already finished watching. The Bachelorette however, has one more episode to go and since Nick seems like such a creeper, I’m rooting for Josh.


Q&A: Do you have a favorite reality TV show?