Thursday, December 29, 2011


The big holiday weekend has come and gone. For the first time since starting my new job, I had four consecutive days off. No on-calls, no nothing. It was lovely. I slept in, stayed up late, and spent quality time with my family.

Friday night my sister and brother in law drove in from Michigan.

Saturday morning my dad and I went for a glorious 4.5 mile run, then returned to assist with brunch hosted by my parents for my extended family: aunt, uncle, cousins, and my cousin's family. It was delicious. Saturday night Hubby and I went to a Hanukkah hosted by B and her husband.

Sunday morning was spent sleeping in, eating a laid-back breakfast, sipping coffee. Hubby strummed the guitar while we sang Christmas carols and spent time listening to my parents read the scriptures. Instead of cooking traditional dinner, we all went out to a late lunch at a local Chinese restaurant.

Overall, it was such a great weekend spent with family, creating new memories and sharing old ones. Gosh, I wish we all lived in the same place.

Here's a little photo recap of our Christmas weekend:

{Hanukkah Party with B on Saturday night}

{Christmas morning all of the kids on the couch ... plus Lennon}


{New sleep masks courtesy of Carolyn}

{New snuggies courtesy of Hubby}

{My most favorite little gift - Marcel the Shell with Shoes On book}

{My most favorite pretty gift - a necklace from Hubby that he picked out all by himself}

{The family all together}

{The Christmas Doggy}

Since all of our holiday card-making items were buried in our storage unit, this year we ordered {gasp!} our holiday cards to coincide with the new year. I will post a photo of our card for my 2011 recap/ new year goal post coming up.



Sunday, December 25, 2011

Happy Christmas

When my family is all together for the Christmas holiday, we spend as much time as we can together carrying on our traditions. On the Eve of Christmas, the three girls open one small gift, and snuggle up to watch our favorite holiday classic: Muppet Christmas Carol. This year, our DVD copy remained buried in our storage unit, so instead we opted for Super 8 via Dad's new blu ray player. Snuggles, laughter, and silly talk ensued. It's definitely one of my favorite things about Christmas.

Hope you all had a lovely holiday surrounded by family and friends.



Wednesday, December 21, 2011


{a few of my lists from my daily planner: 2011 goals, 2010 goals/wishlist, various songs/musicians to check out}

I'm a list-maker by nature. I love making lists of all sorts of things: for the grocery store, my daily tasks, weekly goals, etc. In the back of my daily planner, I have a section with a list of baby names {yes, I admit this}, blogging ideas, and various songs I've heard on Pandora that I want to download. Often, this drives Hubby crazy because I insist on "making a list". I will say that over the years, my process of list-making has begun to rub off on him as he has taken to writing down lists and enjoys checking them off almost as much as I do.

Every year, I make a list of things that I hope to accomplish for the year.  I vary between significant goals {fitness, learning a new skill or hobby}, and small goals {baking 1x/month, reading a leisure book 1x/month}. I find that writing down my goals, carrying them with me each day, I'm much more motivated to make efforts to achieve my goals. I love this method of goal setting often referred to as "SMART goal setting":

  • Specific: What, Why, Who, Where, Which

  • Measurable: How much, How many, How will I know when I have accomplished it?

  • Attainable: Realistic, How can the goal be accomplished?

  • Relevant: Is this goal worthwhile? Is this something that I really want to do?

  • Time-Bound: When will this be accomplished? What is a realistic timeframe for me to accomplish this goal?

This system really facilitates the process of goal-setting. This creates a much easier system for setting specific and measurable goals. As I head into the new year, I'm carving out time to reflect on the things that I accomplished, and also re-evaluating previous unmet goals.

Are you a list-maker? Do you set weekly/yearly/monthly goals? How do you track them?



Tuesday, December 20, 2011

An Early Christmas Present


{Source: Fresh Air on Tumblr}

Just popping in to share a little humor with all of my fellow NPR Fresh Air lovers.



Friday, December 09, 2011

Weekly Gratitude

{mah boots}

In all honesty, this has been a horribly awful work week. I'm emotionally exhausted, and feel as if I could sleep the entire weekend Fri-Sun with waking only for the necessities. Though tempting, I plan on sticking to my weekend routine that includes a Saturday {or Sunday} morning run, brunch, and some relaxation reading: The Night Circus. I might be able to sneak in some holiday shopping as well.

Even if the negative seemed to outweigh the positive this week, I am grateful:

  • Girl's Night Out with B at the CBN Rent the Runway Party. Girl. Time. Rocks. Even on the worst of days.

  • My new winter boots finally arrived in the mail {pictured above}. In the correct size.

  • New running tights arrived in the mail; thanks to a LivingSocial deal, I snagged them for 50% off!

  • Christmas cookies - they are in abundance around these parts and I love them!

  • My new winter coat that has been keeping me warm.

  • Hubby completed his final semester of prereq's, rocked a 4.0 the entire time, and finished with a A+ in Organic Chemistry. I'm so proud!

  • ABC Family's 25 days of Christmas movies: Polar Express, Elf, and Home Alone? Yes, please.



Wednesday, December 07, 2011

CBN Rent the Runway Event

Last night, after a horrendous day of work, I did not feel like taking photos {or having my photo taken, either}. But I forced myself to stick to my plan and meet up with B to attend the CBN Rent the Runway Event at Maxine's. I threw on my favorite jeans, top, blazer, and was out the door in 20 minutes.

We had a great time chatting with other bloggers, catching up and meeting new people. Maxine {the owner of the salon} opened up her ah-mazing home to host the party. It was absolutely gorgeous. Quite possibly the most beautiful loft I have ever seen. Unfortunately, I didn't snap many photos due to aforementioned circumstances. I will, however, post links to additional photos as they are available. You, too, need to see the beauty of the loft.

{Lori of and friend}

{A terribly shadowy photo of B and I - it was either no flash or red eyes}

Thank you again, Chicago Blogger Network, Rent the Runway, and Maxine for being such generous hosts. Thank you to  Vosges, Rent the RunwayFreshiiPink PapayaKindPop Chips for stuffing our bags full of goodies!!

After the party, we headed to a favorite neighborhood spot to grab some grub. Hooray for a weeknight Girl's Night Out!



Holiday Wishlist: Hubby Edition

Hubby enjoys making his holiday wishlist just as much as I do. In all honesty, he probably loves it a little more than I do. Here's his list of things that he would love to receive this holiday season. Do you hear that, Santa?!

Hubby's Holiday Wishlist

Nixon Voyager Messenger, Burton 2.5L Fix Jacket, Brooks England Flyer Saddle, Men's Health Magazine Subscription, Keen Men's Springwater Cycling Shoe, Xbox Kinect, Handlebar

Sunday, December 04, 2011

Holiday Wishlist

These are a few things that I'm currently loving this season. Hubby and I will be exchanging gifts {with a set budget, of course}. Because most of these things are beyond our budget, I realize I won't be getting many of them this holiday season. But a girl can still hope, can't she?!

Holiday Wishlist 2011




Women's Health Magazine SubscriptionNike Running JacketDiptyque Vetyver CandleMarc Jacobs TotePetal to the Metal PouchWigwam SocksThe North Face HeadbandThis or thisClarisonic MiaMonogrammed Mug