Little Loves of Life

mdw
There is nothing like a long weekend spent with family and time outdoors to make you slow down and appreciate the small things.

Life is constantly a busy mess. It can often feel like nothing is going your way and you are always stumbling and trying to catch your breath. It’s clumsy, messy, and tiring. My trick is to remember that we are all in this crazy game together and that the good often out weighs the bad. 

 Isn’t is crazy how the tiny things, when all added up, are the things that make our lives worth living? Our tiny loves are the things that transform our life from a stumbling mess into a beautiful dance. They set the beat and encourage us to to the extra twirls and dramatic dips. 

Here are a few of my little loves from the weekend that make my life worth living, the little things that make my heart do a little dance. 

The smell of coconut pineapple Chapstick (the only kind I buy) 

Straws

Violets growing in the yard

The feel of opening a brand new never been read before book

The smell of sun screen

The proud look Maggie gives when she retrieves her play rope outside

Ice cream sandwiches made with chocolate chip cookies

Ice clinking in summer cocktails

Fresh clean sheets

Holding hands with Ryan in silence while sitting outside

 

Follow along on instagram for more little loves. 

What little things made you happy this long weekend?

xoxo Katie
 

 

 

Currently

life lately katie

It’s been awhile since I used this space to do a little life update. To fill the space in between the lines, to ramble randomly, to give a peek into my every day life. So this is what current life is looking like:

Reading: I just finished the delightful book, Where’d You Go Bernadette? by Maria Semple in two days. It was charming, witty, laugh out loud funny and touching at the same time. Highly recommend it. 

where'd you go bernadette

Watching: We watched “About Time” this weekend and loved it. A cute rom com about a time traveler who want to perfect his relationships, both romantic and family. It reminds us all to slow things down a bit and appreciate the beauty of every day. You don’t get any repeats in real life.

Wanting: It to be Spring with warmer temps. To throw my boots in the very back of my closet to not be seen again until next October. For Ryan’s semester to be over. The past two weeks have been really hard on him and subsequently us. He has one more month of this semester left then he’s off school all summer! Freedom! I get my husband back full-time!

ryan tuac

Thinking: When will I ever learn to live in the present? (see above) I’m always pushing for the next season, the next event, to fast forward to the future, but to quote About Time, “We’re all traveling through time together, every day of our lives. All we can do is do our best to relish this remarkable ride.” Plus, I’m 31 now. 31! I was okay with 30 – it was still a transition age. Now 31 sounds like I need to be more settled, more comfortable with the here and now. Will that day ever come?

Needing: To go grocery shopping. It rained ALL weekend. Sunday was non stop pouring complete with flooding. I had zero desire to leave the house and run errands.

Smelling: Spring. It makes an appearance some days but then hides away and the 30 degree temps creep back in. But when it’s here, I can smell things growing and warming up.

Loving: All the celebrations we were able to fit in for Ryan and I’s birthdays this past week. Between dinners out with friends, family, and also just the two of us we really lived it up this past week. We had our final celebration on Saturday night with a dinner out with both of our parents. It’s rare that both of our families get all together.

katie and ryan birthday

Cooking: Spaghetti Squash everything. Pad Thai, Vegetarian Pesto, Mac and Cheese, I never considered all the uses for Spaghetti Squash! It’s so filling too.

Listening: A whole lotta pop. Don’t judge. I need something to cheer me up from this glummy winter we are STILL experiencing. Hopefully Katy, and Demi, and Taylor will carry me into Spring.

Planning For: My best friends bridal shower which is a month away! Other than the date and venue, it’s all a surprise for her. I can’t wait!

I’d love to hear what you’ve been up to lately! Let me know below!

xoxo Katie
 

What Are Friends For?

friendship quote shakespeare

Good friends are hard to come by.
Old friends are the best friends.
Make new friends but keep the old, one is silver and the others old.

There are a reason why clichés become clichés, because they are universally true. I’ve always chosen to have a small tight group of girlfriends that know me in and out over a large array of friends. I feel fortunate to have 4 life long best friends, 2 from high school, Kay and Ashley, and two from college, Laura and Jeanette.

This weekend I hosted a sleepover for three of them. Weekends with girlfriends always make me feel rejuvenated, happy, and young at heart. I absolutely believe those studies that show that people live healthier lives and overcome illnesses quicker when they have strong friendships throughout life.

winery

Only one lives in the same city as me. The others are in Philly and DC and we all take turns visiting each others cities. Although we’ve all changed and in some ways grown apart, we all have the common base of our friendship to hold us together. If we met in present day, we probably wouldn’t choose each other to be friends. But really, how many people meet friends in their adulthood that compare to the friends they meet or harvest in their college years?

Like any relationship, friendships take effort – especially when we all live so far apart. (Do you know how hard it is to pick a weekend that suits four busy young women?) But, old friends are the ones to invest in because no one can replace the lifetime of shared experiences.

old friends quote ralph waldo emerson

 We met in high school and college, an intense time where we have the freedom to experiment with our identity. A carefree time that leaves room for spontaneity, creativity, and simple fun. There wasn’t the harsh competition or comparison that we may do with friends that we meet in our adulthood. Studies shows that you are happiest when reminiscing over old memories – and that’s one of the things old friends do best – retelling the same funny stories, bringing up inside jokes, and remembering the “good old days”.

When I’m with my friends it’s always a judgement free zone. We love one another like family, accepting us, flaws and all, and validating us as a person that matters. Friendships play a vital role in our lives. They fulfill our need to connect, to bond, to belong.

Although we’ve all grown up and changed, we still compliment each other so well. We can go weeks with out communicating but when we’re together it’s like no time has passed and we quickly revert back to our college years with big belly laughs, silly stories, and boy talk. But the best part is that we also accept one another as the women that we have grown into and eagerly celebrate our lives with each other.

xoxo Katie

 

Weekend Wrap Up – 11.18.13

This past weekend was the last relaxing weekend before the hustle and bustle of the holiday season sets in. I love my relaxation time but I’m so excited for the holidays! My enthusiasm caused me to get some of the holiday decor out. I ordered new monogrammed stockings and can’t wait for them to arrive tomorrow. There is nothing like a home decorated for Christmas…

On Saturday we were babysitting my parents dog, Bonnie. She and Maggie are best friends for life and are so cute and happy together.   bestfriends maggieandkt   ryanandbonnie

Saturday afternoon we worked on cleaning out the closets and managed to fill up more bags of clothes for donation. This has been an ongoing project since September – and by the sheer mass of clothes that both Ryan and I have donated it is obvious that it was long over due.

Back in September I donated a huge stack of gently worn clothes to an amazing online consignment company, thredUP, and made $28!

ThredUp-Logo

Here is how it works:

1. Create an online account with thredUP.

2. Send away for a “Clean Out Bag” (which ships to you for FREE)

3. Fill the bag with you gently worn clothes and ship it back to thredUP for FREE

4. thredUP combs through your items and pays you up to 40% of the resale value in cash!

What is there to lose? I was so happy with my $28 and can’t wait to see what my new donation brings in! Try it out today! 

After doing some major clean out we headed out for dinner.

katie and ryan

Later on Saturday evening I forced Ryan to watch one of my favorite movies of all time, Gone With the Wind. He’d never seen it, and because he’s such a good sport, he said yes. This was my go to movie when I was at home sick from school as a tween. I remember going to the video rental store and seeing the huge record size display case holding all FOUR VHS tapes. It was so beautiful and I looked forward to renting it during every  bout of middle school strep throat. I’d cry my eyes out and memorize all of Scarlet’s monologues. I know way too many facts about this movie and felt like Ryan needed to watch it with me as it is such a part of who I am.

I also proceeded to drink cheap red wine throughout the movie and of course ended the night in a puddle of my own tears. On the other hand, Ryan fell asleep a few times and couldn’t believe how bitchy Scarlet was and that it was about 2.5 hours too long. Oh well.

Sunday was spent doing some work at home and preparing for the last full work week of November! My social calendar is full this week too, and then we are off to Asheville, NC for Thanksgiving, and come back home on December 1 ready to celebrate Christmas!

I hope you had a great November weekend!

xoxo katie

 

Weekend Wrap Up 11.11.13 Follow Your Bliss

follow your bliss

Today I feel a little bit like a kid who forgot to bring their homework to class. On Mondays I have been following the rule of posting a weekend wrap up, including pictures documenting the events of the past weekend. I took zero pictures this weekend! You can lower you eyebrows now – I simply took a little break from technology this weekend.

The weekend started off with a heavy dose of law school stress. I write often how I wish this hard time would go by faster. I hate seeing Ryan so stressed and unhappy. The heavy load of work, school, and finances hit us hard on Friday evening. I’ve been trying hard to follow my own advice and to not wish these rough times to pass. I’m making an effort to savor the waiting.

We allowed ourselves some tears and some time to wallow in the stress on Friday. Sometimes after you release that rage and wipe away the anger and tears the bigger picture looks so much clearer. I was able to come away with a new perspective and a goal to keep things simple.

An old boss had a signature phrase that I used to roll my eyes at; “Follow Your Bliss”. As a twenty-something I scoffed at this saying. I would think, well sure, I would just LOVE to follow my bliss, but how am I going to afford to go live at the beach and write poetry and novels with the man of my dreams and two little children running along the water’s edge? Sure boss, you followed your bliss because you had the money.

But now I see that your bliss doesn’t have to be a huge all encompassing dream. Your bliss can be something simple – anything that makes you smile, that makes your days a little more you. Following your bliss means creating your life to be a mirror image of YOU, of your thoughts, dreams, and hopes. It means filling up your days with actions and words that represent the heart of who you are as a person. Do what makes you happy. Create the changes you wish to see and be the type of person you dream of being with each little element of your day to day life. This is a rule that we all could strive to follow a little better, don’t you think?

So, this weekend I made sure to follow my bliss.

The rest of the weekend was filled with things that are signature happy Katie.

1. I jumped in on the Christmas spirit early. I love Christmas more than the average person – probably even more than a 5 year old. I love the warmth, the reminder to love each other, the festive decor, the excuse to celebrate and the magic of it all.

So, this weekend I decided it was time to start bringing Christmas to our home. I’m about 75% done with my shopping, bought some new decorations, played Christmas music all weekend and lit the Christmas tree scented candles.

2. I spent hours catching up with my bff Kay Marie and wedding planning! She was the maid of honor in my wedding (and did a fabulous job) and I am now able to return the favor as I am now the maid of honor in her wedding. Weddings and parties are a good second favorite after Christmas. I am so excited to be part of her wedding plans.

3. I danced around the kitchen to James Taylor as I made Pad Thai and baked some cookies – a home is complete when the kitchen is full of good scents and music. We ended the weekend together. There is no other bliss I love more than simple time with Ryan, bundled up with blankets, wine, a Christmas tree scented candle and freshly baked cookies.

This is what life is all about. As this is the month of Thanksgiving, I should be grateful for the hard times, as they remind me to enjoy the small things and to remember what makes me happiest and full of bliss.

xoxo katie

 

Weekend Wrap Up – 90’s party in DC

Hello hello hello!

I’m having an exhausted Monday morning after a fun-filled weekend. Friday night started off with a celebration for my Pop Pop’s 88th Birthday. I joined him for dinner and a nice one on one visit. Then the rest of the family and some friends came over for cake and ice cream. At 88, Pop Pop is still as vibrant and full of love as ever. I spent some time interviewing him. Stay tuned later this week for a fun video of wisdom from Pop Pop!

pop pop birthday

While visiting him at his lovely retirement communty, I learned that Emma Stone’s (girl crush alert!) grandmother is also a resident. In fact, Emma Stone visits frequently and showed my love for Lancaster in this nice article in the community’s magazine:

emma stone emma2

Fun, right?!

On Saturday, Ryan and I went to Washington DC to visit my best friend and college roommate Laura! Of course we couldn’t visit any museums to due to government shut down, but we had fun enjoying the beautiful 85 degree weather! I love Laura’s cute neighborhood and all the colorful row homes.  We had a front stoop BBQ with some Old Fashioneds.

Katie and Laura

Emily, Laura, and Ryan

We then go ready for a 90’s Party!!! Kel (from Kennan and Kel, All That, Good Burger fame) was hosting a awesome and tacky 90’s party at the most frat boyish bar ever. And we just HAD to be there. There is nothing more that Laura and I enjoy more than a good costume party!

So we got all jazzed up in our best 90’s gear and did our hair in the best Spice Girls’ style. FYI – my hair crimper from 1989 still works!

90's party

90's party

ryan and katie 90's party

You can bet we got some good stares on our 30 minute walk to the bar.

Once we arrived, we imbibed in some Pop Rocks cocktails and rocked out to some good 90’s jams. Too bad most of the people there were like 5 in the 90’s and most of their outfits were not even close to being 90’s themed. Nice try, kids. Like for instance — Heath Ledger’s 2008 joker showed up — um what about Jack Nicholson joker instead?

joker

No! Not from the nineties!

Kel finally showed up. He was so sweaty and gross.  I should have asked him if he’s heard from Amanda Bynes lately…

kel

Ah what a night!!

Sunday we had a nice little brunch and walked around the city before driving home.

brunch in dc

After a full month of weekend travels Ryan and I are both ready for a quiet weekend at home. I love getting around and visiting friends but boy am I ready to do things around the house and explore our own lovely city.

xoxo katie

Weekend Wrap-Up or How Michael Buble Saved Me

Saturday night was full of magic. It was one of those nights that reminded me just why I married Ryan. We went to see Michael Bublé in concert and spent the night singing to one another, chair dancing, and waving our hands. I love being cheesy! This was a long week for me, where I was desperately wondering how we were going to make it through the next two years. But Michael and his sweet charm and romantic tunes made it all better.

You see, Michael Bublé and I have some history. For one, I’ve always been in competition with him since he is Ryan’s biggest man crush. Secondly, when I found out Ryan loved Michael I knew he was my type. I love old jazz standards, ballads, and being swept off my feet by crooners. Most men that I knew wouldn’t admit to loving that feeling too, but not Ryan! Thirdly, our first dance at our wedding was Michael’s “Everything”. It was about time we met.

I could listen to Frank Sinatra, Ella Fitzgerald, or Sammy Davis Jr. any day of the week. My living room is quickly transformed to a candlelit salon where my lover and I are dressed to the nines, martinis in hand, and celebrating life and love. I feel swept back to a time where it wasn’t unusual to make time for romance. When women were courted and wooed and love was still a little mysterious. And this all happens in the confines of my small living room.

Seeing Michael live brought that experience to a whole new level. Even though we were sitting up in the cheap seats, surrounded by people, we quickly felt like we were the only people in the room (er arena). In a live setting like that, Ryan and I were both totally present – both feeling the music and listening to the lyrics. Which is rare in our busy, barely have time to talk, schedules.  I felt in love with Ryan a little more that night. Oblivious to those all around us we chair danced our little hearts out, (forced to chair dance since those around us decided not to stand up, how lame were they?!). It felt like Michael was singing only for us.

Two weeks before our wedding,  we were totally crazy and decided to change our first dance to a choreographed routine to “Everything”. (it’s not like we already didn’t have enough on our wedding and law school plates). So, when Michael started singing “Everything” on Saturday night, I was transported back to those long nights that we practiced our choreographed routine.  Every night for two weeks we practiced and practiced either in our pj’s in our cramped living room, our hot and muggy garage, or, if we were feeling brave, at a studio at our YMCA.

In the end, our dance was choppy and clunky and not even close to professional. But to us, it was an awesome achievement and we had so much fun practicing and tripping over each others feet. I can’t tell you how many times Ryan almost dropped me during those lifts or how many times one of us almost gave the other a black eye from our arms wailing every which way.

I was an emotional mess the two weeks before our wedding. However, those couples hours a night that we shared with Michael Buble on repeat (and repeat and repeat and repeat) provided moments where I could giggle and have fun. I was reminded that this wedding, this day, and this dance were about us.

You can watch our First Dance here.

So, on Saturday night, Ryan and I were totally re enacting our dance moves – in our chairs. We must have looked ridiculous and I just LOVE being ridiculous.

After a Sunday routine of errands and the gym I whipped up some Mexican Corn Dip and these delicious cake batter party blondies (recipe from Gracie over at Girl Meets Life ) for my RDS meeting. BTW, I have since renamed these miraculous bites of heaven, Rainbow Brite Blondies.

Rainbrow Brite Blondies

My Rainbrow Brite Blondies (cake batter, sprinkles, and white chocolate)

You haven’t officially met the lovely ladies of RDS – but we’re all former colleagues who get together for a monthly meeting of the Red Drink Society. We call them meetings because we have some serious discussions over heavy eating and drinking.

I love it because we’re all different ages with all unique personalities. We’ve been meeting for over 3 years now and they’re like a family.

RDS wedding

The lovely RDS ladies at my wedding

This weekend full of love got me ready to conquer another week. Let’s do this!