That’s a Wrap on Summer…

I’ve failed miserably on writing new posts the last couple of weeks. I did not do book reviews for June (or July) and never finished sharing about our D.C. trip. I’ve been back to work for a week now and tomorrow the kids are back which means… summer is officially over. I knew it was going to go by quickly but what?! And for all those that say teachers get 3 months off, try 4 weeks (and yes, I realize most other occupations don’t even get this, but work with middle schoolers– and all other children– for eight hours everyday and you’ll understand why we earn it).

So instead of writing a post, I’m just going to share pictures from the rest of my time off. Hopefully a summer book review (may wait until the end of August) will be on the way soon, too. And here we go…

Here are some from the second half of our D.C. trip:

Kelley is getting married in less than ONE week and we celebrated by decorating cakes at Duff’s Cakemix in LA:

I visited Whitney in Boise where we hiked, vegged (finished The Handsmaid’s Tale.. highly recommend), did Pilates, did okay at trivia, and met my favorite, Joshua Radin (who signed my poster– along with Brandon Jenner– which will be going up in the apartment soon).

Michael and I moved! FINALLY! We are still getting settled in but so far, so good! I did a gallery wall above the couch and we also have a super awesome view!

And there was lots of exploring…

 

I’m already counting down til next summer!

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What’s Up Wednesday

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Long time, no write! I feel like, even though I have more time with school being out, I am finding less time to write (or desire to write). Good thing this post just about covers it all! And I totally forgot to press “post” yesterday, so this is a day late…

What I’m eating this week:

I am currently obsessed with avocado toast! Like, I can’t get enough. I’ve been using avocado packs from Trader Joe’s (each pack has only 100 calories!). It’s the perfect amount for two pieces of whole wheat toast. I’ve also been putting Trader Joe’s Everything But the Bagel seasoning on top. YUMMM. I’m not lying when I say I can’t get enough.

What I’m reminiscing about:

The roomies just booked tickets to Spokane. I haven’t been since I finished my Masters (7 years ago?!) so I know campus will have changed a ton. We are going in September so here’s hoping the leaves have started to change colors a little bit. I’ve said it before that I didn’t really appreciate Spokane while I was there and while I still wouldn’t want to live there, it’ll be nice to visit!

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What I’m loving:

I am loving my summer schedule! I do summer school until 12:30 and have the rest of my day to relax and veg and do all things that someone on summer break should do. I’ve been waking up at 5:15 a couple mornings a week to run before work so it definitely feels good to get exercise out of the way before my day even starts. Hopefully getting into this routine now can help me keep it up once the school year starts again. It’s nice not having to wait for it to cool down or skipping altogether because other plans come up.

What I’ve been up to:

I am back at work this week for my last week of summer school but over the weekend enjoyed The Book of Mormon (it was funny!) and a baby shower for my bestie! Elliott is due on August 29th. My birthday is August 30th and while I am very particular about my birthday (because it is my favorite holiday obviously), I would be honored to share it with Ellie! How perfect would that be? Besties since Kindergarten with her first child born on my birthday. I’m counting on it, Whitney!

What I’m dreading:

Moving. Well, maybe packing and unpacking I should say to clarify. I am so excited to move but I absolutely hate packing. I feel like I just did it (which is kind of true). I am glad though that it will be done before the school year starts so I can feel settled.

What I’m working on:

I will be working on packing once we’re back from D.C. I’ll have about two and a half weeks which should be plenty of time. Storage isn’t too too great at the new place (neither are the closets) so I’ll make myself do some spring cleaning and get rid of some things that I haven’t worn or have been holding on for too long.

What I’m excited about:

July is jam-packed (see below) and I’m super excited for all of it!

What I’m watching/reading:

This season of The Bachelorette is boring me. I’m still watching of course but I’m just not as invested in this season than I have been in past season. I am really glad all the drama with Bachelor in Paradise got sorted out because I always look forward to that one. As for what else I’m watching… I’m still trying to catch up on Scandal and have been enjoying the new season of Master Chef90 Day Fiance: Happily Ever After? also just started up and it’s the best. Anfisa is enough reason alone to watch it. My favorite quotes from her during the first episode: “I hate our apartment. It looks poor” and “I hate being married to Jorge”. SO GOOD!! The series finale of Pretty Little Liars was last night and I was underwhelmed to say the least.

I am currently on book number six for June with an easy breezy read from one of my favorite authors, Elin Hilderbrand.

What I’m listening to:

Same old stuff. I really need some new music. I am really happy though that Taylor Swift is back on Spotify! Which reminds me that I need to download a bunch of music before our flight!

What I’m wearing:

I think I’ve gotten to the point in my life where I will choose comfort over fashion. It’s been so hot that I’m usually just in a t-shirt and shorts/jeans. Nothing too special. One thing I do love always though is… shoes! I bought some Nike’s for D.C. I usually wear my Converse (the Shoreline ones are great) when walking all day but even those make my feet tired so I am hoping the Nike’s help. I wore them yesterday to test them out and they were like walking on a cloud. There will probably be more in my future. And there I go choosing comfort again!

What I’m doing this weekend:

Michael and I leave for Washington D.C. on Friday. His sister is getting married on Sunday and we are making a trip out of it. We’ll be there for a week and have our to-do list set. I love Washington; I’ve been twice but unfortunately haven’t been since freshman year of high school. I am gearing up for the humidity though…

What I’m looking forward to next month:

July is a super busy month: the Washington trip, visiting Whitney in Boise, doing a program at school for the incoming students, moving to our new apartment, etc, etc. I know the month will fly by because of how busy it is.

What else is new:

That’s about it!

Pinterest Dreams

The move-in date to our new apartment is still several weeks away but that definitely hasn’t stopped me from beginning the decorating process. We aren’t starting from scratch whatsoever as I have most of my decor from my Phoenix apartment hiding in my parent’s house or in storage, yet I find myself still pinterest-ing (yes, a verb). In my next life I plan to be an interior decorator. These home decor images are all of the heart eye emojis.

Kitchen // I LOVE the maps as wallpaper (so much so that each of these are pinned more than once…). I also love a kitchen with white cabinets, subway tile, and open shelving. And something you’ll probably see in all of these pictures– I love a good pop of color.

 

 

 

Living Room // I am a huge fan of gallery walls and (again) pops of color. I love how everything in these rooms isn’t too matchy-matchy and blends just enough.

 

 

 

Books // In moving back to California, I got rid of so many of my books because I didn’t want to have to transport them. I kept my favorites of course and due to my Kindle being so much more convenient (and cheaper!), I’m not really buying any new books but hopefully some day the collection will grow enough to be able to fill up a space like the ones below.

 

 

Perhaps I’ll share the pins for other rooms (bathroom, outdoor space, etc) in another post but they would pretty much be along this same theme! Color and pattern mixing galore!

Summer So Far…

Well, school has been out for a week and I am finally getting around to vegging and doing absolutely NOTHING (just in time for summer school to start on Monday)! I (very easily) convinced Whitney to change her flight to Friday so that meant an extra day of roomie time and that summer break literally started the second that bell rang at the end of the day. We definitely kept busy the entire time; I’m seriously impressed with all the stuff we did. Here are the highlights!

Disneyland // Note to self, Disneyland is especially crazy in the summer and should probably be avoided. We ended up going on Monday because Michael wasn’t able to go on Sunday and figured that perhaps it would be less crowded? Nope. We didn’t get there until late morning but still only went on about four rides. The lines were just ridiculous– 60 minutes for Pirates of the Caribbean and 150 for Space Mountain. Who waits in lines that long?! The real mission of the day though was introducing Whitney to the amazingness of Dole Whips and I’m pretty sure that part was a success.

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PUMP and SUR // Vanderpump Rules is currently filming and we thought for sure this would FINALLY be the time (third times a charm) that we see our favorite train wrecks. Unfortunately, we struck out again. It was still super fun hanging out and people watching. Two of my friends from work, Marcia and Emily, came too. Tip to those that love the show and are in town and want to visit the two restaurants: the drinks and appetizers are good but the regular menu food is definitely not with the money.

Mount Hollywood // This is definitely my go-to hiking/outdoor activity spot. Recently, mornings have been super ugly (hello, June gloom) but the day we got ourselves out of bed early turned out to be a perfect day! Nice and clear, minus the smog. Going on a weekday was also a good choice, too. We got in about 12,000 steps and felt no guilt in enjoying our breakfast quesadilla/burrito when we were done.

Ellen’s Game of Games // I got to high-five Ellen! Emily got tickets to the new game show hosted by Ellen (think all the games played during the regular Ellen show, just bigger) and the timing worked out perfectly because Whitney was here and because it was my only week off before summer school/traveling. There was a ton of waiting (both outside and inside the studio) but it was totally worth it. We had super good seats one row up and at the end– the end where, between segments, Ellen walked to get backstage (hence the high-five). It was really fun to see how they film the show and Ellen was super funny (and sincere) when interacting with the contestants and the audience. The best part is that we will be getting tickets to a taping of next season’s regular Ellen show!

So far so good for the start of summer. I have two weeks of summer school and then Michael and I are off to Washington, D.C.!

On My Radar

HAPPY LAST WEEK OF SCHOOL! Yes, that deserves ALL CAPS! Besides it being almost summer break, here are some other things I’m currently loving:

Scandal // I am finally getting back into Scandal. I watched religiously but got really tired of the Olivia/Fitz back and forth drama so I stopped watching. One of my co-workers encouraged me to jump back on board and it only took a few minutes to suck me back in. If you haven’t watched, you can start from the very beginning on Netflix. It has several seasons so it is intimidating but I can pretty much guarantee that you’ll fly through.

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Our new home // Michael was back in town for a short 36 hours or so and in that time, we signed a lease! We are both currently month to month and had the end of July as our goal for moving into a new place. We toured a couple options and got scared by the prices in others (parking for an extra $350 a month?!), but we found a place that we loved and signed the lease! Neither of us thought we would be signing anything but the dates lined up perfectly. I am already decorating our new place in my head (and trying to find a place for Michael’s Steph Curry poster 😉 ).

This Target ad // Target is already my favorite store… you can literally be trapped in there for a month (or longer) and you’d survive. It has everything. I was super happy to see this sweet girl featured as a model in this week’s ad! I know Target is known for featuring models with disabilities but I had yet to see any of those ads. I hope that it eventually becomes the norm. It’s discouraging to me that part of my post is about how cool it is to see when really, it should just be expected and something I don’t have to point out. But anyways, go Target!

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The Forever Summer // Well, the time has come. I have four books that I’ve had on hold forever and they’ve all become available to me AT THE SAME TIME! Thankfully, due to how good my current book is, I should be getting started on the next one fairly soon. I’ll review it more fully in my book review at the end of the month but if you’re in search of a good summer beach read, The Forever Summer is it. Each of the characters is likable, the setting is perfect (Cape Cod), and there is just enough drama/twists that make me keep reading.
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Roomie Visit! // So you’ll be hearing about this in a whole other post but Whitney is here on Saturday! We have a very long to-do list (with some relax time to veg with some good television). On our list: the beach, Disneyland, taping of The Ellen Show, happy hour at Sur and Pump (they are filming. Maybe this will be the visit we finally see our fave train wrecks!), hiking, and potentially seeing Jimmy Kimmel. We also have some food (fro yo) that is high up on our priority list. This is definitely the perfect way to dive right into summer! The picture below is during the last LA visit (sorry that my arm wasn’t long enough to get us all in, Steph).

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What’s Up Wednesday

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I’m linking up again this month with Mix and Match Mama for What’s Up Wednesday. This month hasn’t been too exciting but let me tell you, I am SO looking forward to summer break.

What I’m eating this week:

I’m definitely not eating anything too excited (as always) but I will say again that I can’t wait to get into a new apartment so I can cook (and bake!) at my heart’s desire. I think I will also be investing in a crockpot that should come in handy when I’m really lazy and want an easy meal to prep. That sounds like a Pinterest board waiting to happen!

What I’m reminiscing about:

Every Memorial Day weekend reminds me of watching the Indy 500 with my grandpa when I was younger. When Erin was in the hospital, my younger sister and I spent lots of weekends at my grandparent’s house and one weekend was over Memorial Day. This was maybe at the end of 5th grade. I wanted to be an IndyCar driver (only in the Indy 500 though) and even did a History Day project in 6th grade on the impact of the fuel changes. Whaaaat? Up until perhaps the end of high school, I continued to spend Memorial Day Eve at my grandparents and watched the race with my grandpa (complete with a wonderful breakfast of french toast!) the next morning. I may not watch anymore, but the race and Memorial Day weekend will always be special 🙂

What I’m loving:

I’m still loving the weather… it’s been in the 70/80s lately (with cooler mornings). Mom and I went on a hike to Mt Hollywood over the weekend and the weather was perfect. It’s nice to be able to plan things and count on the weather to be nice.

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What I’ve been up to:

The typical daily grind. The end of the school year is exhausting; I’ve been staying after school at least once or twice per week to tutor kids and allow them to get caught up on assignments. That makes for really long days and with all of the events of the end of the school year, I am thankful summer is right around the corner.

What I’m dreading:

Packing. I absolutely hate packing. I have a couple trips coming up in the next several weeks so I am definitely dreading the packing (and unpacking). Michael and I are also looking at apartments with a flexible moving date sometime in July. Bring on the boxes and packing tape!

What I’m working on:

Finding the perfect apartment. I do not like my currently living situation AT ALL. In fact, Michael is out of town for a big length of time in the coming weeks for work, so I stole his keys so that I could stay there some days. We are looking to move by the end of July and I compromised with moving downtown. I really like downtown and although I don’t want to be there longterm, it’s an easy place to be for now. My commute won’t be any worse than it is now and I’ll be happy to be able to walk to more things than I am able to now.

What I’m excited about:

SUMMER! My summer filled up quickly. Along with teaching summer school and attending professional development, I’ll be traveling to Washington D.C. and Boise and then hosting my bestie when she visits (and let’s be honest, that’s like a vacay for me, too). I currently have a to-do list going on my phone for all the Washington sites I want to visit. I’ve been twice but not since high school and I absolutely LOVE all things history so I can’t wait. Whitney and I plan to do Disneyland while she’s here and probably some other typical California activities like the beach. Oh! And we are going to go see a taping of The Ellen Show! One of our favorite artists (Joshua Radin) is playing in Boise which led to me booking a flight because that weekend also worked out perfectly for a visit!

What I’m watching/reading:

The Bachelorette is back! Michael and I also finished watching the new Master of None season on Netflix. There was a lot of time between seasons but we waited patiently for Season 2, and it didn’t disappoint. At first I didn’t like it as much as Season 1, but when we got to the last episode, I didn’t want it to end! Here’s hoping we don’t have to wait another two years for the next season. I also started The Keepers on Netflix and oh boy, it is super intense and super disturbing.

As for reading… I read A TON this month. My May book review will be posted soon and thanks to state testing, I was able to get in some solid reading hours.

What I’m listening to:

I am really enjoying A R I Z O N A’s album. I don’t even know what the music would be classified as. EDM? Hopefully not because I am not into that AT ALL. Techno? That either. I really have no idea. But I’m loving it and it’s perfect summer music.

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What I’m wearing:

I love espadrilles and am so happy they are still in style! I bought this Sam Eldeman pair for my mama for Mother’s Day and they are currently on sale at Nordstrom! Debating buying myself a pair (hey, I made it through another school year! I deserve a reward!)

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What I’m doing this weekend:

Michael and I are going to look at some apartments on Saturday. We had Book of Mormon tickets but Michael is going to be out of town for work (darn NBA Finals) so we had to swap them for a different day.

What I’m looking forward to next month:

ALL THINGS SUMMER BREAK!!

What else is new:

I think I’ve covered it all!

It’s Been a Good Year…

As my Facebook kindly reminded me this morning, I officially said goodbye to Arizona and moved back to California one year ago today. I know I seem to say it a lot in my posts, but this last year has probably been one of the best.

I was not happy in Arizona. I had a couple good friends (hi Tricia and Jolene!) but aside from that, I had no roots there.  I was there for six years and never really let myself establish anything because I knew I didn’t want to be there forever. My life there was really lonely– my family was in California, my boyfriend was across the country in Connecticut, and my best friends were either back home or in other states (this I am used to though!) I told my mom, time and time again, that I felt like life was just passing me by. I saw everyone moving forward in jobs, relationships, and just life in general, and I was still not even living where I wanted to. Everyone’s life seemed to be in this straight, easy path and mine had zigzagged all over, leaving me still somewhere I wasn’t happy to be.

 

I’ve spent the last year exactly where I want to be and with the people I longed to be with the most (minus some people are still in other states 😉 ). That zigzagging road finally took me right to where I wanted it to! Enjoy the picture overload of some of my favorite things from the past year.

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