Thursday, March 29, 2012

OOTD and Nude Heels

Quick OOTD - all J. Crew - Minnie Pants (this year), Silk Ruffle shirt (couple years ago), coral cardigan (hello spring!) and my bargain VANELi heels

I have had a hefty Nordstrom gift card from Bossman since Christmas burning a hole in my pocket and let's be honest, 5 years ago I needed nude heels.  They are a staple in any closet.  I've also bought these before and returned them (after buyers remorse) but I've searched high and low and these are still my favorite. 

So yesterday on a quest for wedding shoes, I also wanted to try these on again.
And I got them with the gift card which made it a little more justifiable since I'm on crazy wedding budget. 

But if I wear them as much as I see others wearing theirs, because they literally go with EVERYTHING, then I'm okay with it. 

Tell me where you got yours.  I think there is a fine line between old lady nude heels and nude heels for us ladies! ;)

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Wedding Wednesday - Easter Style

This sweet, lil baby Sarah and....
Love this picture of her with my parents

crazy gal Anna Kate made us....

Wedding Easter Eggs!

How cute are they?
They are certainly creative little girls! :)

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

New Brush

Dear friends:

Meet my way too expensive brush that I bought last Saturday.  I've been eyeing this thing for months.  It was time.

To my credit, I did use a gift card that I had bought 20% off, so that makes this brush 20% off right?!

It was $45.  Way too much.


It has changed my life. 

My last one died after only 6 months.  It tore my hair up and just in general did not make it look right.  And that one was $20. 

My hair gal swears this one will last foreverrrrr so it's a good deal right?!  I'm trying to justify it. 

Here is the result of an extremely quick hair do this morning.  It was my first time using it and I did it super fast.  I look forward to actually spending time on it next time to really see how this thang works.

But so far so good, I like it.  It's easier to use and much healthier for my mop of hair.

And after googling it and finding it on Amazon, it looks like I got a terrible deal.  See here.  Grrrr.

I guess it's not as bad as my new $2,000 air compressor that I had to pay for last week.  Is March over yet?! :)

Hey at least with my new compressor, it's cool in my condo again and I can do my hair more comfortably.  Positive!

I'm going crazy.

The end.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Weekend - Out and About

Friday night we went to dinner with Kevin's fam to Red Bowl.  Always a treat but this time we got to hold Kendall for awhile which we loved!

Saturday I did a long run that morning with Tara and Kristen then I got my hair cut a bit.  Still trying to keep it long for the wedding but I do still have another year.  Val and I talked hair styles and I showed her my dress.  I'm so excited that she is doing it for the wedding...I've gone to her for years and I trust her.  Plus she is super fun so she'll be fabulous to have around on wedding day!

Saturday night, Kevin's buddy Brad came and got us and took us to Jack's where we met a bunch of others.  Was a good time as always.
Me, Erin, Tara

And Katie was there which was super fun.  I'm sure her husband thinks I'm totally spastic but it's okay haha!  Kevin got to meet them both so that was cool!  They were out for a 30th birthday party. 

We ended up going to Jack's, Philosopher's Stone, back uptown to Phil's then to Corner Pub which is never a good idea.  About 3am we walked back in the door at Avenue.  Bad news my friends.  Felt like we were back in college. 

Sunday I slept a lot (ha!) and we went to a new bbq restaurant uptown which we loved.  Kevin says he thinks he may like it better than Mac's...crazy!  Needless to say, I emailed their event woman about rehearsal dinner options.  Kevin's excited!

Hope you all had a wonderful weekend! 

Friday, March 23, 2012

Old Navy Finds

This week while I was in VA, I had an hour to burn so I stopped into Old Navy.  And found.....this wrap dress for $9.99.  I probably won't do the tie like this but I thought it was pretty cute.  I did have to take it to my alterations people to get a snap put on the top because it was pretty low otherwise.  But $13 in, can't beat it. 

And I thought this top was pretty cute too.  It can be tucked into a suit skirt for work for something different or worn out with jeans, heels and drop earrings.  I think I paid $15 in the store.  It is super baggy so I ended up getting a size Small which yall know I don't wear a Small.
And I couldn't pass this nautical bathing suit by. It was a complete bargain to my usual J. Crew (on sale of course!) or South Moon Under suits.  I need to start collecting some new things for la honeymoon! ;)  The bottoms were string and this girl doesn't wear string so I'm just going to pair it with black bottoms I already have (the color in it is black, not navy after a big survey held in the store haha!). 
I know you guys are laughing because I'm never daring enough to go into Old Navy because I just don't ever think I can pull these things off.  I'm so used to J. Crew and more comfortable with their pieces.  But it's good for me to branch out and try new things, especially when they are very reasonable!

Tell me your bargain pieces recently.  We can all use a little help!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Arooji's Blogger Get Together

Last night we had a Charlotte blogger get together at Arooji's wine bar in the Southpark area.  Some of us had met many times before, others were very new to Charlotte.  It was the perfect mix!

Okay I'm going to attempt to list everyone's name and their blog will be linked to that. 

Front row sorority squaters L to R - Michelle, Christina, Sarah, Dee

Back row L to R - Katie, April, Me, Kate, Sara, Jordan, Maran, Lulu

Now I just need to add the rest of y'all to my blog roll which I will do today!

Anyway, we had a grand time sipping on wine and having the risotto that came with the 3 wine tastings for $14.95.  Bargain. 

We went around the table and introduced ourselves, where we grew up, what our blog was, what we do for a living and a favorite blog that wasn't represented last night.  It was fun getting to know everyone better! 

It continues to amaze me how blogging has become such a great thing.  I've been so fortunate to always have great girlfriends in my life and I've only gained lots more from blogging.  These girls are classy, genuine and we are all normal (at least I think I mostly am!). we would have been friends in college type girls.  Yall know what I'm talking about!
We were all soooo loud in this small restaurant, it was fantastic haha!  We might have overwhelmed the two waiters!

Anyway, thank you again to April for organizing!  And as we talked about, let's do it again soon!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Wedding Wednesday - Honeymoon

We are going to Hawaii! Tell me your favorite island and why! Any excursions or things that we must do and see?! Feel free to post links to any blog recaps.

Advice on stopping on our way out or back in San Fran? Should we do that or take the hike and go straight there?

Thank you all!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Things that make me happy!

Today, since it's the first day of Spring I'm focusing on happy  and fun things!  :)

Like...ordering our guest book.  It won't say Wedding Journal, instead it'll say Guests and be personalized in the bottom right with our names and wedding date.  It's by the company Post.  PS - any Charlotte ladies - I have always gone to Paper Twist, but they were SO helpful with this and with ribbon for programs.  I recommend!

Like....tulips around all the trees uptown.  I love that Charlotte does this. really cool cousins sending Kevin the cutest get well package full of tasty goodies!  So incredibly thoughtful.  :)

And like.....girl's night out at Nikko's last Thursday - Emily F., Emily M., Tara, Kim, Lauren, Koren and I.  Always much needed.

Happy Spring my friends!

Monday, March 19, 2012

Weekend - St. Patrick's Day

This weekend was super low key which was very welcomed so we could get Kevin back to feel better.  Thank you all for your sweet comments about him.  He is still sore but today he is better than he was Friday, by far.  I think he can only get better from here which is good news.  Follow up appointment is Thursday so until then, he still can't lift more than a milk jug.  ...which has been hilarious at the grocery store or opening heavy doors - he is sooo embarrased to not be carrying the bag for me or opening doors!  I keep telling him to get over it but he's a good ole southern gentleman and his mama and daddy taught him right!

Friday night I went out to dinner with some neighbors to Brixx and brought Kevin back dinner.  He loved that.  I hit the sack early because of a long run the next morning.  Came back from the run and had no water, it was glorious since I was soooo disgusting.  Kevin felt like walking the half block to the parade so we watched that with some neighbors.  Beautiful day in Charlotte...

See, I told yall I was nasty.  I did change into this clean outfit but I was still gross.  I headed back mid way through the parade to retrieve some beverages and thankfully the water was back on.

We grabbed a quick bite with our friend David then headed home for Kevin (and I haha!) to take a nap. 
That night we actually drove out to Mama Ricotta's for dinner for something different.  Everyone else was bar crawling and we just needed to be low key.  So we had dinner then drove around some neighborhoods and headed home.  It was the perfect St. Patricks Day. 

And we felt amazing on Sunday morning haha!

Kevin didn't want to sit around Sunday so we got his car inspected, drove some more neighborhoods, did registry stuff at Williams-Sonoma (PS - best customer service help with our registry out of all the places we've gone), and went to the Taj Teeter. 

That was enough for him so we chilled at home, I made some dinner and we called it a day. 

Cheers to NC State for making it to the Sweet Sixteen!!!!

Friday, March 16, 2012

Butter Shoes

Maybe I've been living under a rock but have you all heard of Butter shoes?  All of them look adorable!  Check them out on the website here.
They are sold at boutiques across the country.

Certainly not the cheapest shoe in the world but as long as they are practical and comfortable, I'm willing to splurge every now and then.
They even have a bridal line - see here.

Aren't these flats fun?  Wonder if they are more comfortable than the TB's?!

Images via.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Poor Kevin

I told yall Kevin was a sick guy on Sunday was unlike anything I've ever seen before with him.  And you know how you just KNOW if something is wrong?  Yup, I did.

Monday he woke up and was pretty sore but we thought it was from him getting so sick. (sorry TMI)

Tuesday he was still sore on his lower right side.  I went home at lunch and picked him up and we went to the ER.  6 hours later (LOTS of waiting) it was a clear case of appendicitis.  He had emergency surgery an hour later.  He did well and bounced back quickly.

He was discharged yesterday and as we were leaving, we got an email that said our water may be out in our building thanks to the City of Charlotte doing some work.  So I went home and Kevin stayed in the car while I stuffed a bag full of his stuff for 2 days and I filled my bag for 2 days and we headed to his parents house about 40 minutes south of Charlotte.  We are SO thankful for them. 

We stayed there last night and today he is still pretty sore.  I came into work midday while his Dad plays nurse!  I'll go get him later tonight or tomorrow depending on what happens with the water.  We still don't know when they are doing the work.  Talk about ucky timing!  I know Kevin is comfortable at his parent's home and I'm sure they are loving spoiling him! :)

Thank you to all of our family, friends, sweet Twitter gals and y'all for your thoughts and prayers! 

As my SIL Emily's Dad says, "this too shall pass."

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Wedding Dreams

Ohhhh my.  Last night I had some serious freak out wedding dreams.  And our wedding is more than a year away.  Why am I worrying already?!!!  Please tell me this happened to you all!

These were my dreams:

 - I had booked buses but then forgot to cancel them so I was stuck with a $5,000 bill I wasn't expecting.

 - I was running really late to my hair appointment and I didn't have time to take a shower.

 - My normal hair girl wasn't doing my hair and that made me very nervous. 

Seriously what is wrong with me?!!!  I have a feeling they will get worse as it gets closer haha!

Monday, March 12, 2012

Weekend - Out, Registry, Cake Tasting

I really wanted this weekend to be relaxing and I guess it mostly was but we were busy the whole time. 

Friday night we went out to celebrate Josh's birthday.  Alexander Michael's for dinner then to Dandelion.

Saturday morning I did a long run with Tara in the morning then we went to the Adidas Warehouse Sale.  Dry fit shirts for $5 each.  Hello bargains.  That afternoon I went to the grocery store and watched the NC State Carolina game.  Even though my neices looked super cute, unfortunately that blue color won. 

Saturday night I made an early dinner of Kevin's favorite - Chicken Parm - then we went to the mall to finish registries at Pottery Barn and Belk.  Kevin really didn't care about much of it but he was a good sport.  He did offer an opinion on a few things which I was glad about!  We agree on pretty much all of it so it was easy. 

Sunday morning we went to church with his parents then to their club for brunch.  Afterwards we had a cake tasting and it was soooo good.  I don't want to spoil all of the flavors but my Chi O gals will be glad to see the red velvet!  We will be having that as a layer....tradition!  

On the way home, Kevin had set up 3 house appointments for us.  None of them got my reaction of, "I must live here" but they weren't terrible either.  At least we have the neighborhoods narrowed down to three now.  That's huge progress from where we started last summer.

Last night about 9pm, Kevin and I were watching TV and he started feeling terrible.  Needless to say, I believe we saw the 3am hour after about 20 threatens of me taking him to the ER.  I was so helpless yall...there was nothing I could do to make him better.  We ended up not going and he finally calmed down and fell asleep.  I brought up lots of things from my condo this morning for him to have while I went to work - the usual - ginger ale, crackers, plain pasta, toast, ice chips, popscicles.  I know he is very weark right now so I hope he is getting something in him and most importantly keeping hydrated.  Ucky bug we think!

Hope you all are having a better start to your week than we are! 

PS - did you all see this Wear to Work guide that J. Crew did?  It's a great resource for some new ideas!

Friday, March 9, 2012

Guest Blogging, Wine Date & Congrats!

Today I'm blogging over at Emily's blog All You Need Is Love while she and her hubby are exploring their new town of Princeton, NJ.  She gave me some fun questions and I answered!  Click here to check it out!  Have you all read her blog?  They live in the Raleigh area while her hubby finishes grad school this year.  I hope to meet her before she leaves North Carolina!

Last night I had a much needed wine date with a couple gals (Katie and April) who I've known in real life but they also happen to be bloggers.  We were destined to be friends.  Haha! 
L to R - Me, Katie, April
It was good to get together with just the two of them and chat about our guys, marriages, weddings, jobs and life.  We are all very similar and it's refreshing to have girl's that you can chat about that stuff with.  Ya know?!

Happy Weekend!  Kevin and I are going out for a friend's birthday tonight and tomorrow I have a long-ish run with Tara.  Looking forward to it all!

PS - Congrats to my friend Fran and her new FIANCE Matt.  They are the most precious couple....look how he asked her...

Thursday, March 8, 2012

What I Do!

Today I thought it'd be fun to do a post on what I do day to day for work!  It really varies but that's the fun of it!

I graduated with a civil engineering degree and a business minor in 2005 from NC State (yup, 5 year plan with summer school - love engineering!).  The natural job after school is a civil engineering design job where I sit in the office for 10-12 hours a day and grinding out grading plans and stormwater ponds.  Yes, I did this for not even two years and was miserable.  Although I was working at a very reputable firm with fantastic benefits and great people, it just wasn't me.  I had to get out.  Sooooo before I quit, I started looking for jobs just for fun.  And through a staffing firm, my current company found me and I found them! 

Match made in heaven - in my opinion at least!

I now work (and have since April 2007) for a commercial developer.  Basically I do all of the up front site investigation work on retail deals (and some industrial and office too).  One of our brokers gives me a site to go look at and I determine if it's buildable (wetlands, traffic, grades, utilities etc).  If it is, I put together a budget and we decide if it's still a real deal financially.  If so, I go meet with the municipality to determine the permitting process.  We get the deal approved by our tenant and then we go to work. 

We hire all of the vendors - dirt and environmental guys,  surveyors, engineers etc to make it happen.  They start working on plans and then I go with them or sometimes by myself to the municipality meetings like City Council.  Sometimes I stand before the Board in my suit and have to raise my right hand and swear to tell the whole truth and nothing but the truth; other times I get on their level in my cowboy boots and cords, just depends where I am. 

Then once we get all of our permits, we hire our general contractor and the building gets built!  We manage the construction process too.  Once the tenant opens for business, they pay us rent and we're their landlord.  Pretty cool deal right?!  Wow, that makes it sound really easy.  HA!

Where do I work?  Well we are based out of Charlotte but our folks are on the road a lot.  All of us travel from Massachusetts down to South Carolina, some across the country and we've done a project in Scotland (I didn't get to go).  We are out of the office mostly every week but it's just the right amount....only about 1-2 nights.  Honestly it's all I can take haha.  If my trips were flying to one place and driving an hour to a meeting then coming back to the hotel at 6pm and going to the airport the next morning, I'd be in heaven.  Most of the time, I roll 14-16 hour days on the road and that includes flying and then driving lots of hours.  And night meetings.  I have hardly any relaxing meals on the road - most of the time it's fast food while driving. 

I'm not complaining.  Honestly I love what I do and feel so fortunate.  I really have the best job in my opinion.  I work with awesome people that I just love and we have a nice office in a great part of Charlotte.  Just really lucky. 

I count my blessings daily.  :)

(and no they don't know about my blog!)

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Recipe - Roasted Vegetable Gnocchi with Spinach Herb Pesto

(I can't get this Bold font to go away, sorry!)
I found this recipe in my most recent issue of Southern Living and decided to give it a shot.  It was reasonably healthy and quick to make so those were the main reasons I tried it.

Roasted Vegetable Gnocchi with Spinach Herb Pesto

 - 6 yellow squash (about 1 1/4 lb.) - I only used two in a package from Trader Joe's
 - 8 sweet mini bell peppers - I picked these up at TJ's too
 - 2 tablespoons olive oil
 - 1 teaspoon salt (I used less than this, it seemed excessive)
 - 1/2 teaspoon coarsely ground pepper
 - 1 (16-oz.) package gnocchi (I used plain whole wheat and then just put some pesto on it)
 - Spinach Herb Pesto
 - 1/2 (5-oz.) package baby spinach
 - 1/4 to 1/3 cup (1 to 1 1/2 oz.) freshly shredded Parmesan cheese


1. Preheat oven to 425°. Cut squash into 1-inch pieces. Cut bell peppers in half lengthwise; remove seeds. Stir together squash, bell peppers, oil, salt, and ground pepper. Arrange vegetables in a single layer on a jelly-roll pan, and bake 15 minutes. Stir and bake 5 minutes or until tender and golden.

2. Cook gnocchi according to package directions in a Dutch oven (I just used a regular pot); drain. Return to Dutch oven. Add Spinach-Herb Pesto to gnocchi, and toss to coat. Add squash mixture and spinach, and gently toss to combine. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Serve immediately.

*Medium-size pasta shells may be substituted.

(Kevin's only complaint was that it didn't have meat in it.  He survived!  I thought it was really good and I'm looking forward to the leftovers for lunch.  I think it had about 350-400 calories per serving)


Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Well friends, it happened.

It started off like any other early morning except this one was especially hard to get out of bed.  Oh well, did it anyway.  Met Tara and Kristen at our corner uptown and we set off on our supposively 4 mile trot. 

We took a different loop today to change things up and we were coming up Providence towards uptown, you know, with rush hour traffic so lots of people were around. 

I tripped.  And fell.  In my neon pink fleece.  In rush hour traffic.  And crashed.  Hard.

Mostly concerned about my phone, I asked if my phone was okay.  Tara and Kristen said it was fine and kept asking how I was.  They took good care of me!  They did have time to mention that it was, "my turn" as they have both fallen recently.  Sidewalks jump up and getcha sometimes!

I have fallen years ago in Southpark by myself and lost my house key...that was real exciting too.  Didn't hurt nearly like this. 

Today, I skinned my elbow through THREE layers of clothing.  Nice!  And it bruised instantly, can't touch it.  My pants protected my knee really well so I will just have a humongo bruise and it's scuffed a bit. 

A woman driving by saw it happen and stopped to ask if I was sweet.  I arrived back at my condo and Isaac our friendly concierge asked if he could help me clean it up.  Bless his heart, that was so nice of him.  I kindly said I'd go up and shower and be okay.  :)

I'm so thankful to my girlfriends I was with....they stopped and made sure I'd make it home.  I'm SO glad I didn't fall into either of them.  They were in front and I was behind, kinda between them.  It actually worked out as well as it could have.  And then we just ran on home.  Hey at least we got 6 miles in when we were only planning on 4.  Ha!

Another adventure and probably not our last! 

Monday, March 5, 2012

CIAA Weekend

Since we were forced out of our town this weekend due to the CIAA tournament, we did many things outside of our usual 2 block area.  Friday night we went to the Fish Camp with Kevin's parents, brother and little Kendall.  His SIL had to work.  I just loveeddddd holding Kendall, she's presch.  We actually spent the night down there at Kevin's parents home so that was fun!  It was nice to sleep in silence without hearing fire trucks and loud bass every two minutes. 

Saturday I got up and ran in the rain and Kevin's Mom made a gourmet breakfast!  Literally she made everything known to man for breakfast.  So good.  Kevin and I left after that to look at some more homes on the way home. 

We showered up and then went to a Couple's Shower up in Mooresville for one of his friends then came back down south to Matthews for a housewarming party for one of my girl's.  Busy day!  Andddd I didn't take any pictures, I'm awful.

Sunday afternoon we got frisky since we drove around all weekend and we wanted to celebrate Jenn's birthday since we couldn't on Friday night.  We bopped around uptown - Blackfinn, Vida then the new place called Fitzgeralds (where Buckhead used to be).  We had fun at each place.  It's funny, with our neighbors, we always end up hopping around different places and checking new things's always so fun!

Here's to the start of a new week! :)

Friday, March 2, 2012

Wednesday Night Out

Thanks for your sweet comments on the post yesterday.  I hope it serves us all a reminder that life is too short and to live each day to the fullest!

I can't believe I'm posting this nasty picture of me but anyway, we had a fun girl's night at E2 on Wednesday.  It's the new Emeril's that just opened here in Charlotte!  Afterwards we hopped around uptown and ended up at Carolina Ale House.  Always fun. 

Emily and Koren left so I went and met Kevin who was out with some of his old bank buddies at Connolly's. 

Then home too late.  Amazingly I somehow got up 4 hours later and ran 7 miles with Tara at 6am.  No clue where that energy came from especially with being gone most of this week. 

Tonight we are going to Kevin's parent's club with them for seafood night then staying over at their house to avoid the CIAA madness.  It's a basketball tournament that's in town that attracts some interesting folks.  Enough said.  (It kept me up all night last night grrr!)

Happy Friday friends!

Thursday, March 1, 2012

You Just Never Know

On Tuesday morning, I was outside of DC on a site visit doing a punchlist for a building that is almost finished.  There were some things that have to get done in the next 1.5 weeks or big time money is at 6 figures kinda money.  AKA I have just a tiiiiiny bit of pressure between now and next Friday.  Totally fine, we came up with a game plan and all will be well.  I still stress it but it's ok. 

Then I get in the car all worked up about getting a sink put in this building and receive a text from my Mom.  One of her friends had a massive heart attack and her husband found her at the bottom of the stairs Tuesday morning. 

Everything stopped.  Shock set in.  No one can believe it.  It can't be true.  She was too her 60's.  Not fair.  It's just not fair. 

And I was so worried about this silly building.  It just isn't about all that.  It's about relationships, it's about friendships, it's about the fact that she has two grown children who don't have their Mom any more.  It's about she didn't get to have grandchildren.  It's about she leaves a husband she has been married to for 40 years.  It's that all of her friends (they call themselves the Champagne Ladies) are now planning food for a get together to celebrate her life.  They shouldn't be doing that.  They're too young!      

So I guess my point is that you just never know.  It's a reminder to love on your friends and family, go visit or call folks you haven't spoken with in awhile, do nice things for people, exercise often to keep your body in good shape (even if it's a mile a day!), don't hold grudges, celebrate every day as a special occasion and live life to the fullest. 

Please keep this family and all of their friends in your thoughts and prayers.  Thank you all.