3 Years of I Do

_DHP7250

Dear Ryan,

Three years ago we promised our lives to each other. We had only been dating a year and a half, yet we know that we wanted to share our future. They say marriage is one of the biggest risks you can take, but I had never been more sure of anything in my life. 

This past year has been one of major growth for our marriage. Having a baby together will do that.

Those same people that say marriage is a huge risk also say that you need to work on your marriage after a baby enters the picture. Once again, I disagree. 

Raising a baby together has only strengthened that promise we made to each other three years ago.

This past year you witnessed me at my very lowest points and decided to only love me more. The immense support you showed me during my pregnancy and as I transitioned into a mother made my love for you grow daily. I would have been so lost without you by my side, encouraging me, laughing with me, and learning with me.  You are the best father to Wyatt. There is no one else I’d want to (or could do) parenthood or life with. 

Although this has been a year of many ups and downs, our marriage has benefited by growing stronger and I’m so excited for what comes next. 

Thank you for all that you do every single day to make this marriage work. Thank you for waking up with me each morning and deciding to say “I do”, no matter what the future holds. 

Love you always,

Katie

33 Things for 33 Years

katiebirthday1

I turn 33 years old today! This year I kept forgetting how old I was turning. Is that a sign of getting old or just a sign that the number no longer really matters?

This feels like a pretty big year.

This year I decided to choose comfort over in pain in footwear. I finally found some make up that I love and figured out how to use it. We bought our first “real” furniture for the house. (ie not something from ikea and not a hand me down). I gained new respect over my body and stopped obsessing over the number on the scale. And oh yeah, I gave birth to a baby and kept him alive and happy for 6 months so far! 

I love birthdays because I love celebrations. It’s also a great time to reflect on life. So in honor of my 33rd year I decided to make a list of 33 little things that currently make me happy:

Baby giggles

Taking walks

Sweet Kale Salad 

Getting Wyatt outside

Baby shoes

Clean Sheets

That first sip of morning coffee

 Especially  if it is Deathwish Coffee

Fuller House

Thursday night wine

Spring clothes shopping , not maternity

Singing to Wyatt with Ryan

Chicken Salad

Weekend mornings that Ryan lets me sleep in, alone

Cosmos from The Belvedere

Sunday night family dinners

Lazy Sundays

Summer baby clothes

Taking endless photos of Wyatt

Maggie cuddles

Afternoon chats with my Mom

Reading with Wyatt

Finding some time to read myself

Bubble baths with US weekly

Baking cookies

Amazon Prime

Instagram

Outside drinks

Counting down to the beach

The rare girls’ night

Waking up to Wyatt’s big, full face, smile

Jane the Virgin

Naps

Time to celebrate! Cheers to another year of life! 

 

 

 

 

When It Snows…Blizzard 2016

blizzard1

Well, we survived the blizzard of 2016. We are finally dug out and our lives have gone back to routine. The snowstorm began like any other storm, with tons of anticipation and last-minute trips to the grocery store to stock up on essentials like wine and cheese and pastries and making mental lists of all the things I will accomplish while being snowed in.

The snow began late Friday night and it fell fast and heavy, blanketing our world silently. By late Saturday we were living in a winter wonderland, buried in 29 inches of snow. We spent the next 4 days in our pajamas, bundled up inside together.

blizzard3

wyattblizzardcozy

Things I accomplished during the blizzard:

  • Made a long list of things I wished to accomplish during the storm.
  • Accomplished none of them
  • Ate an entire tub of artichoke and spinach dip from Costco
  • Started each morning with copious amounts of coffee and a danish the size of my head. (bless you Costco)
  • Took many naps
  • Watched the entire first season of Man in the High Castle (highly recommend)
  • Read The Martian (and became the only person in the country who disliked it)
  • Finally took down our Christmas tree

We ventured out in the snow a few times and introduced baby Wyatt to the wonder of it all. He was not that impressed. Like is mama he would prefer that freezing rain did not hit him in the face and would rather not leave the house wearing one hundred layers. The boy seriously hates wearing hats. But we managed to get a few cute photos of the experience. 

blizzard2

blizzard9

Then the novelty wore off. The snow storm ended like every other storm – with us all going a little stir crazy, our cozy home feeling almost prison like, and ready to enter the real world again.

I often lament on the fact that I wish I didn’t have to go to work so I could stay home with Wyatt all day. Well after a whole week of being inside and nowhere to go I was busting at the seams to get outside and talk to some adults.

It was nice while it lasted, but Spring, you can come anytime now. 

 

 

 

What’s New? Coffee Talk Vol. 4

IMG_5169.JPG

Hey there, I thought I’d use this Friday to do a little check in with you. Grab a coffee, let’s chat. If we were sitting down together, sharing a chat over coffee, this is what I’d tell you:

  • Although I still don’t like winter, this winter doesn’t seem so bad. Probably because the winter of 2014 was so awful and terrible, what with the never-ending snow and ice storms and negative temperatures. So far, this winter has seemed pretty mild in comparison. So that’s a plus. 
  • Last Friday, before we skipped town, we bought a new car. (This marks two new cars in one year, gasp!) I usually hate car shopping (all the small chat, all the hidden deals and messages) but this was pretty painless. We knew exactly what we wanted and we knew what we wanted to pay and we got it. We traded in my 2008 two-door Hyundai Tiburon and Ryan is now the proud driver of a 2015 Hyundai Elantra. I’m usually a sentimental sap, but I have to say I was not sad to say goodbye to Tabitha the Tiburon. Other than driving me home from Chicago after a terrible break up she’s been nothing but bad news for me. See ya! 
  • We’ve officially given up Comcast cable. It felt good to cut the cord (and cut down our ridiculous high bill). We got an Apple TV and it works great. We’re able to watch all the shows that we want and it works perfectly with Airplay on the Ipad. 
  • I’ve been reading a lot lately and will be sharing my latest book reviews next week, however I have a little secret. In addition to the “normal” books that I read, I’m also in a book club…that specifically reads books written by the girls from MTV’s Teen Mom and other fallen starlets (right now we’re consuming Jodi Sweetin’s book). They are ridiculous, sad, and highly entertaining. So far we’ve read Kailyn, Farrah, and Amber’s autobiographies.  Such guilty pleasures and so fun to discuss and gossip over. 
  • We watched a movie we had rented through Netflix mail order this past weekend (Monuments Men). While packing up the DVD to mail back I noticed that the traditional red and white Netflix envelope was decorated with spider webs and bats and said “Happy Halloween”. Yep, we’ve had a movie since early October. We just never got around to watching it. How long have you had a movie from Netflix? 
  • Another confession: my Christmas decorations are all still up. Yes, my Christmas tree hit the curb (isn’t that the saddest sight?) a few weeks ago, but all the other decorations are proudly on display. I’ve been too busy, lazy, sad to take them down. Maybe this weekend….

What is new with you? How is January treating you?

 

 

Weekend Getaway in Luray, VA

luraysm6

For Christmas this year, I gifted Ryan a weekend away in the Shenandoah Valley. A pleasant 3.5 hour drive to Luray provided us with a getaway from everyday life and a chance to rest, relax, and reflect before he starts his last semester of school and before we must battle another winter.

I booked this awesome cabin through AirBnB. I mean check at this view from the house! We could never get enough of this view of the Shenandoah Valley and River.

luraysm1
luraysm13
However, when I think of cabin, I think of rustic, small and cold. This was more of a house, complete with a huge fireplace, lots of cozy places to take in the view, Netflix, wifi, and Apple Tv. It was the perfect house to cozy up for the weekend, with little plans other than to relax, read, cook, and watch some movies. 

luraysm14
We grabbed a delicious lunch at Gathering Grounds in the sleepy little valley town of Luray before driving up 2,200 ft to our home for the weekend. Ryan got to work making a fire and we changed into PJ’s and hibernated for the rest of the evening. The house had three huge bay windows overlooking the view that allowed us to enjoy the scenery despite the chilly temps. I made my favorite Martha’s Stewart Mac and Cheese. Comfort food at it’s best. 

luraysm4
luraysm3
luraysm8
luraysm9
luraysm10
luraysm12
I loved walking out on the deck at night and gazing up at the stars. It felt like we were in them, so close and so bright.

Our host said that watching the sunrise was the best element of the house. So each morning I set my alarm and wearily crawled out of bed expecting to see a breathtaking view. Yet each morning it was the same. We were greeted with a sky full of dark clouds and nothing else. So back to bed we went.

On Sunday morning we decided to venture out and tour one of the local Caverns. I’ll be recapping that experience next week!

luraysm11
After our caverns tour we hit up a small pub with a great happy hour before retreating back to the house for another night in front of the fire.

On Monday we slept in and leisurely spent the morning sipping coffee and reading before our noon check out time.

luraysm2
After another great lunch at Gathering Grounds, We took Sky Line drive home in the Shenandoah National Park where we drove along the tips of the Blue Ridge mountains and were able to take in amazing views from all directions.

luraysm20
luraysm21
luraysm16
luraysm15

Hello 2015! Time to Relax!

nye14blog
Happy New Year, friends! We’re already a week into 2015 and it’s already zooming by. 

Our New Year’s celebration was pretty low key but very nice. As my Christmas gift, my boss treated us to a very nice and fancy dinner out on New Year’s Eve. We enjoyed delicious wine and seafood and had fun dressing up. At midnight we said cheers to the Near Year and made some resolutions. 

As I shared on Monday one of my New Years resolutions is to relax more. That may sound funny to you. How hard is it to relax? Do you really need to make a resolution to lounge around and sleep more? If you know anything about me, you know I’m a big worrier and suffer from anxiety. My constant state of worry often makes me lose out on moments of joy. Instead of basking in the moment and taking it all in, my mind is thinking about everything that could go wrong or trying to create a perfect plan so that everything falls into place how we want it.

No matter how many times I learn that I’m not in control of how the world turns, I can’t stop trying to take control or worry about the outcome.

That’s why I decided that my word of 2015 is going to be RELAX. 

2015 is a year of growth and change for Ryan and I. Ryan will be finishing up law school and will be graduating in May. He will be leaving his current job while studying for the bar. We will be moving to a new house in a new area. And then he will be starting his career at his new job in September. This is the time we’ve been waiting for and I want to experience it with joy, not anxiety. 

So in addition to lessening stress and finding the calm in those big moments of change I am also going to start incorporating peaceful and positive changes in my daily life. Like, practicing meditation, yoga, and sleeping more. As well as making priorities and sticking to them while also making sure I have time for myself and my needs. I want to feel centered and relaxed yet intent.  If that means blogging only once or twice a week, so be it! 

Through these changes I am committed to staying relaxing and adopting a “come what will” or “whatever will be” attitude. We are going to be fine, no matter what. Let’s make the ride an adventure, and an enjoyable one, while we are still on it!

What are you hoping to achieve in the New Year?

nye2blog

2014 A Year in Review

Another year come and gone. I feel it’s important to reflect back on what the past year has given us, before we start anticipating what we may receive in the new year. I had fun looking back at 2014 via my blog.

 I wanted to thank each and every one of my readers. You don’t know how much I appreciate your comments, thoughts, and support. Thank you for following along on this adventure with me!

2014 was busy. Sometimes it felt like we were never home. We took multiple weekends away to Philly, DC, Annapolis. And a few more trips to Avalon, Scranton, Gettysburg, the Finger Lakes, and a big trip to Jamaica. I celebrated the shower, bachelorette party, and beautiful wedding of my best friend. 

I watched less movies but read 29 books. I tried countless new recipes and finally mastered my half broken oven and didn’t burn every cookie I baked. We powered through another school year for Ryan and I grew to appreciate my job more. We experienced disappointment and loss and debated what our future would hold. Ryan accepted a new job for after graduation. 

We made family time (both our little family and our extended family) a priority. We learned to love with bigger hearts through our mistakes. And through it all, we kept our hearts full of hope. Although this year did not hold any huge milestones, I feel the little ones, the ones full of simple moments of joy and hope, are the paving stones to our future. 

So here’s a look back at our 2014:

January

nye5
In January we celebrated a simple New Years Eve where I decided to make my word of the year be “Respect”. I vowed to value my personal choices and opinions and to schedule me time throughout the year. 

While we were surviving one of the snowiest and coldest winters in PA record, I learned that I really need to Stop Apologizing so much and was also very brave and did my very first vlog

February

  IMG_3375.JPG

In February we survived more snow and cold and battled some cabin fever. I survived by doing lots of baking and cooking and reflecting on everything love related. (In honor of Valentine’s Day). I shared some love lessons I’ve learned since becoming a newlywed as well as what my favorite romance movies have taught me about love. One of my most favorite posts share “Why We Work” as a couple.

I also reflected a little bit on the weirdness of blogging

March

10150791_711625824459_1004106528_n

In March I attacked my closet and addiction to clothes and did a massive clean out. We celebrated with friends for St. Patrick’s day and I longed for warmer months.

The celebration continued as I wished Ryan a Happy Birthday in this letter (my most read post of all time) and followed that celebration with me turning 31. Ryan and I had a getaway in Annapolis, MD and I shared 31 things I’ve learned in 31 years

April 

inspiration

My mom underwent some surgery and it pushed me to take some pressure off of myself when it came to this blog. And I haven’t look back since. I discovered where my inspiration comes from and decided to only post when I felt like it, not 4-5 days a week like I used to.

This month I did a lot of bridal shower planning for my best friend and spent time with family. But I did manage to write an article in Defense of English Majors like myself, interview Ryan, and share a blast from the past, talking about growing up in the 80’s and the 90’s

May

showerktk-e1399387030359

In May I threw my best friends “Love Birds” themed bridal shower. One of my decorations was this Tissue Paper Garland that I shared a DIY video tutorial for. I also celebrated my Mom’s on Mother’s Day and shared some of the best advice she has ever given me. 

I discussed my Fear of the Unknown as Ryan wraps up his third year of Law School and we begin to think where we will be living next year. And along the same lines, I shared how I think Marriage is always Like a Seesaw. 

June

fl87

This summer I took a big break from blogging to enjoy the season. After such a long winter I wanted to do nothing else but sit outside and read and bask in the sun. 

We celebrated our first wedding Anniversary in the Finger Lakes region of New York and I made this video highlighting our first year of love

Next I honored my Dad on Father’s Day and praised the merits of summer. before heading off to celebrate my besties bachelorette weekend!!!

July

ww14

On July 5 I was was Matron of Honor in my best friend’s wedding! So much fun!

Then I finally got around to sharing our anniversary trip recap and photos and also got deeper with a talk about the role Social Media plays in our lives.

As I prepped to go on vacation to Jamaica I dived into some body issue talk

August

jammom1

JAMAICA BABY! It’s safe to say that this family vacation, recapped here and here, was the highlight of my 2014. We spent a week at a resort in the beginning of August. 

After returning to real life, I celebrated my one year blogging anniversary. The rest of the summer was filled with fun day trips and time with friends before Ryan headed off to his last first day of school

September

avalon13

September was good to us. Maggie turned 8 and I celebrated by sharing 5 ways she makes me a better person. We had a great weekend at my best friend’s lake house in Scranton. And then we then had a beautiful weekend at the Jersey Shore I love the beach in September, followed by a weekend in Annapolis and DC with my best friend from college.

I also discussed how being a newlywed isn’t always unicorns and roses. And, I made a point of celebrating the small things and trying to take life one day a a time. 

October

nyc16

October was a big month!

In October I was excited to start a new series: Recently Read and Think Positive Mondays.

We also celebrated Pop-Pop’s 89th Birthday as well as surprised Ryan’s mom for her birthday.  I discussed books a lot with another blast from the past  and talking about my love of real books over e-books (that’s backed by  science!)

I also took a girls’ trip to NYC for a weekend and to see Beautiful.

But most importantly we celebrated Ryan accepting a job offer in Wilmington after graduation! 

November 

IMG_4826.JPG

 November seemed like a slow month, as we crawled into the busyness of the holiday season. We threw Ryan’s parents a surprise Anniversary party. I talked about making time to do what you love every single day. For me it’s reading and finding quiet time. I questioned my identity in relation to my hometown and where I live. I wrote Ryan a Love Letter of Gratitude and also expressed gratitude on Thanksgiving

December

10891830_781296488889_3552629746052412764_n

IMG_4992.JPG

This December was one of the fastest on record for me! We selected our Christmas tree, got it all decorated, and had it crash into our piano a few days later. Which made me write this post comparing Christmas Trees to Marriage. We saw Tedeschi Trucks Band in concert and did Karaoke and dancing in Philly for a good friend’s Birthday and I discussed more books

An increase of violence in our nation and in our small town had me reflecting on community, neighbors, and trust. 

We baked and decorated hundreds of cookies, sang our hearts out, and celebrated Christmas to the fullest. Family came in town for a week and we had a lovely family Christmas. 

Once again, thanks for being a good friend and following along! I hope you’ll join us for 2015!

Happy New Year!