a lazy but productive weekend

Bri-guy was in NYC this weekend for a bachelor party, and I have to say I relished the downtime at home by myself! I always miss him when he’s gone but there is something to be said about finally being able to binge-watch the last 4 episodes of this season’s Scandal 😉 (my newest guilty pleasure!)

My weekend was spent cuddling with the pup and hanging out with my girlfriends for the most part, but yesterday my mom and I went on a mission to find bud and milk vases for the wedding centerpiece idea I had. It is finally coming to fruition! The picture below is just half of what we scored at the local Goodwill, we ended up with about 40 vases and only spent $47!! We stopped at an antique shop afterwards and found this vintage copy of Gone with the Wind…one of my all-time favorite books. I could be selfish and keep it for me but am giving it away as a birthday present instead to  a fellow book lover 🙂

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Hope you all had a nice, relaxing weekend!

5 on Friday – wedding edition!

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Greetings all! I’ve been pinning like a mad woman to my wedding board lately so thought I’d share some of my latest inspiration on this Friday. Let me know what you think!

1. This sign
Saw this on Style Me Pretty and have just fallen in love with it. It goes along with the style I’m looking for, so I am going to start perusing Etsy and see what I can find.

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2. These invitations
Just started working with my designer friend on our invitations and this is totally the style I am digging! It somewhat mirrors what we did on our save the dates. I love the whimsical writing.

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3. Baby’s breath and lanterns
After meeting with the florist we decided that floral centerpieces are way out of our price range unfortunately…so, we’re going to make sure mine and the girls’ flowers are gorgeous and look for inspiration for the tables elsewhere. I am in love with the idea of lanterns and candlelight, it’s so romantic. And now more recently – baby’s breath. My mom and I are going to scour thrift stores for vintage bud vases this weekend while Bri is away at (yet another) bachelor party! Here are some pics I really love.

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4. This other sign
This one I actually bought and just received in the mail yesterday! It’s in a natural color which kinda goes with the theme, and I just think it’s adorable. Thought we’d hang it from the dessert or gift table.

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5. Door hanger
I’ve seen these everywhere and think they are so cute, I am going to get them for our welcome bags.

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So there you have it! A little look in to our wedding inspiration lately. Thanks to our 5 on Friday hostesses and TGIF everyone!

Living to work or working to live?

Life-and-work

I’ve spent the better part of my 20s “living to work” – ever since I found a passion for marketing and specifically in healthcare, I’ve loved my job. When I moved back home to be with Bri and my family, I gave a little bit of that up. I still love my profession, but I often find myself getting increasingly frustrated and wanting to be home more and more. I imagine that will only increase when we have a family one day.

What I struggle with is accepting that. I feel like my job and what I do for a living has always defined me…I’ve been successful, I’m good at what I do (if I do say so myself), I’ve advanced at the pace I wanted to, and now I’m pursuing my MBA (in hopes of graduating in Spring 2015.) I’ve always been content from a professional stand point, and that is slowly changing. It makes me uncomfortable because it’s new territory for me. And it’s disheartening because I spend more time at work than I do at home, like most people.

Most of my friends “work to live” and are perfectly content just leaving their work at work and not becoming emotionally invested. It’s never been like that for me, and I guess I am just struggling with this inner pull I feel. I’ve gotten pretty much everything I’ve wanted, and here I am…and it’s just not as cool as I thought it would be. Being in an upper-level management position has opened my eyes to the unfortunate politics and behaviors of people at the top, people I thought I respected and then learn that most of them are just out for themselves. It’s jaded me a bit.

I am hoping this may just be a phase and I can find my passion again…and if not, it may be time to figure out a new direction. But until then I will just try and enjoy the journey.

5 on Friday

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Happy Friday everyone! Spring has sprung here after a last blast from Winter on Tuesday. Thanks to our hostesses as always! Here’s what’s going on this Friday:

1. Good Friday
It is indeed Good Friday and being raised Catholic in an Italian family it’s a big tradition to do a fish dinner. So we’ll be feasting on fried clams, haddock, garlic pizza and spaghetti with red sauce and tuna (which sounds gross but my mom makes it and it is delish!!) I love having these traditions and it always brings me back to childhood. After dinner tonight Bri and I will be heading to our friends’ house for a poker-themed 30th birthday party. One of my oldest friends (I’ve known him since kindergarten!) is turning 30. I still can’t believe we’re turning 30 this year.

2. This dinner
We made this last night and it was the perfect Spring-night dinner! So easy to make and the salad was so fresh-tasting. Plus we got to break in the grill for the season. It reminds me that summer is on the way.

Chipotle pork loin and black bean salad

Chipotle pork loin and black bean salad

3. Easter Brunch
We’re going to brunch on Sunday with my parents and grandparents which I am looking forward to – but I am even MORE excited because it will be where my bridal shower is being held in September! I just found out a couple weeks ago where my girls were planning to have it – the rest stays a surprise. But the food at Gentile’s is unbelievable so I know they will do a great job.

4. Tucker
I just love our pup. Bri and I were saying last night that it feels as if he is our child. We’ve only had him for 6 months but he’s such a good dog and I am so happy we could rescue him from the horrible situation he was in. Here he is sunbathing on our deck Wednesday even though there was still snow on it and it was 30 degrees out!

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5. Thankful
As I was writing this I received a very sweet email from my future mother in law – she told us she finally had time to look and read through our wedding website and she just said some of the sweetest things. I am so lucky, blessed and grateful that I get to marry in to that family and she has been such a blessing in my life and someone I look up to greatly.

TGIF

bridal showers and Easter eggs

We had a super busy and fun-filled weekend of family and friends! Spent Friday night putting together last minute details for Kaitlin’s bridal shower, then pulled it off without a hitch on Saturday! Tons of photos below to re-cap. (and you can see my Rent the Runway number!) Sunday was absolutely gorgeous (and unseasonably warm here) with 80+ degrees! We had our Easter with our nieces and capped off the day with putt-putt and ice cream. So fun! Hope you all had a great weekend!

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Beautiful (and tasty) cupcakes with G for Gallagher on them!
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Centerpieces we worked tirelessly on the night before 😉

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The spread!

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Our blushing bride with her signature white sangria cocktail

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Me and the bride, bride and her MOH, and cutest flower girls ever!

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And finally, our “Easter Sunday” (Palm Sunday) with nieces, in-laws and family!

xo!

5 on Friday

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Good morning loves! Hooking up with our fabulous hostesses this week and sharing some Friday things.

1. Etsy

I wanted to send a quick thank you to Lisa, Nina and Jennifer for their suggestions about getting my own blog template off Etsy. Who knew?! I seriously never thought of looking there. So over the next few weeks I am going to peruse the selection and will unveil a new design!

2. Rent the Runway

Most of you have probably heard of RTR (referral link), and if you haven’t, you MUST try it! I’ve been using them for about a year and a half now and I’ve become slightly addicted. You see, I have this problem where I feel that I need a new dress for every. single. occasion. (Can you relate?) The issue is that I spend all this money on dresses I only wear once that end up sitting in my closet. So for most weddings and sometimes showers I’ve attended, I call on my trusty old friends at RTR! You literally rent a designer dress for four days (and there are some STEALS on there) then plop it in the mail when you’re done. So, I get to be donned in designer threads for about 50 bucks a pop. I’ll be wearing this fun number to my friend Kaitlin’s bridal shower tomorrow (pics to come!)

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3. Kait

Speaking of Kaitlin, we are throwing her a fabulous bridal shower tomorrow! I am so excited. It feels like we’ve been planning forever and it’s finally here. We’ll be having it at this amazing restaurant called Laci’s Tapas Bar. I threw a shower there last year and they did such a great job. Plus, the food is amazing. Can’t wait to share some pictures from the weekend! Here is a preview of one of the tapas on the menu, Mexican Sliders…yum!

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4. Easter

We’ll be celebrating Easter a week early with Bri’s family this Sunday since our nieces will be around. I made their Easter baskets the other night and I can’t tell you how giddy I get doing stuff like that! I love buying them Christmas and birthday presents. I am an only child so it is such a blessing to have them in our lives. The second we got engaged they started calling me Aunt Rachel, haha 🙂 It’s so fun to watch them grow up and turn in to little ladies.

5. Quote

I keep seeing this quote pop up, either on Pinterest or Facebook or some other social media site, and I am reminded and also humbled every time about how much I love it and how true it rings. It’s something I often have to remind myself of when I feel angry with someone or perhaps upset with a co-worker. You just never know what else may be going on in someone’s life.

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Have a great weekend, everyone! xo

week’s end and blogging help

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Hey all! Sorry I missed my usual 5 on Friday post this past week. I was traveling for work and am not organized enough to schedule a posting 🙂

We had a great weekend, it was finally SPRING here in Syracuse! Friday night Bri and I had a nice and relaxing date night in. We did a wine tasting at this awesome little shop called the Savvy Wine Cellar. They have been open for 5 years now and it is so great to see a local business thrive. They sell JUST wine, no liquor. And they do free tastings every weekend (my kind of place!) Then we got takeout from our favorite seasonal Mexican joint, Boom Boom Mex Mex.  When Boom Boom opens it’s officially the sign of spring. It was just as delicious as I remember it being.

Saturday we went to our niece Katie’s art show up at Syracuse University. She was just the cutest and so excited/proud of all the hard work she had done. She looked like a little adult. (Pardon my wet hair in the picture ;)) Saturday night we had a great night out with friends. Grabbed burgers at our favorite local pub The Blarney Stone and then had a good old fashioned night of bowling. It felt like high school, hah! But those are the best nights in my opinion.

Sunday was gorgeous and we spent all day outside working on our front yard. (Pictured above – the entire garden department of Home Depot that we bought out). I can see how people think gardening is therapeutic, there really is something about digging through the dirt and planting! Right now we just have mulch and  lot of soil. We didn’t move in to our house until late June last year, so we are not sure what’s planted there, but it looks like a lot. We are excited to see what blooms!

Lastly – since I am new blogger, I have been using one of the canned WordPress templates. I am already getting bored of it! Do any other bloggers out there have templates they’ve successfully downloaded from other sources? Or is the trend to have something custom-designed for you? I’d love any and all advice!

That’s it for now – hope your week is off to a fabulous start!