Tuesday, September 30, 2014

September at a glance

September was a crazy busy month for me.  There was so much going on that I still feel like I'm catching up.  Do you ever feel like that??

First I showed you how to make a DIY Wedding Card Album

I introduced you to a few more of my Style Icons:  Olivia Wilde, Kate Beckinsale, and Miranda Kerr

I told you a little bit about were I was from, Pittsburgh

And I shared my Fall Bucket List

It was definitely a busy month!  But it doesn't look like it's going to be slowing down anytime soon because I've already got a lot of things planned for October.  So excited!

Monday, September 29, 2014

OUTFIT: Date day with my hubby

It's getting chilly here in PA, so I have officially broken out my favorite leather jacket.  I probably wear it 3 or 4 times a week.  I love it!  If you've been around my blog for a while then you already know that I have a little bit of an obsession with tribal print.  I swear almost half of my closet is tribal, if not more!

These photos are actually from a couple weekends ago, my hubby and I actually had the chance to have a date day.  We had my mom watch her for a couple hours just to have some "us" time.  We definitely needed it!  Our plans were to go out to eat and see a movie, but we ended up missing the show time that we wanted so I got to do some shopping instead (thus the Express bag in my hand in the first picture).

We also decided to stop and have a drink at Rock Bottom, a microbrewery located right in the shopping plaza. (How convenient is that?!)  I love playing with my daughter and she is the cutest baby ever, BUT it was sooo nice to be able to have an actual conversation with my husband.  We had a lot of fun just sitting there being goofballs and flirting with each other like it was our first date.

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Life lately

Today is day #28 of the Blogtember Challenge and today's prompt is: What were your highs and lows for the month?

HIGH - I got to go to a comedy show with my mom last weekend.  My mom is my best friend so I love having our girl's nights.  I also got to have a much needed baby-free date day with my husband a couple weeks ago. (Post about that tomorrow)

HIGH - Paige had her 18 month check up and the doctor said she is very advanced for her age.  Her height and weight were perfect too.  Yayy parenting win!!

LOW - Unfortunately, I've had a few health problems lately.  If you read THIS POST then you probably remember me saying that I've been having sudden vision loss where I lose almost all of my vision for up to 40 minutes at a time.  I've been to 2 specialists and they are both saying that it is "migraine with aura" or "ocular migraines".  The headache specialist basically told me that I will suffer with them my whole life and there is nothing they can do or give me to prevent them.....  so that sucks.  My husband is making me see another specialist to get some bloodwork to make sure that it's not some nutrient that I'm missing causing me to get these headaches... so we will see.

HIGH - This one sort of goes along with the last one...  but it's more positive.  When I went to the Retina Specialist for my vision loss problems, she did a bunch of different test and confirmed that there is nothing wrong with my eyes.  So my biggest fear, that I was going to lose my vision completely one of these times, was alleviated.  Thank goodness!!

LOW - Along with these crazy headache and vision problems, I've been having a lot of trouble sleeping lately.  I suffered from insomnia for a very long time, but I am worried that it is coming back.  Also, lack of sleep can bring on my crazy headaches....double boo!

HIGH - Two job openings that would be absolutely PERFECT for me opened up recently, so fingers crossed that I will be hearing back from one of them soon!!

HIGH - It's FALL!!!  I love Fall.  This is my favorite time of year.  I love it because it feels like it kicks off the long holiday season.  First my birthday Oct 29th (even tho I'm turning 30 this year, yuck!), Halloween, my hubby's birthday, Thanksgiving, ahem Black Friday shopping!, and CHRISTMAS, then New Year's!!  It's like a never-ending party!!

HIGH - I won my first giveaway ever!!  I never win anything, so I was so happy!  I won this amazingly cute quote from The Artsy Apple.  Thank you so much again!!  It is now hanging in my art studio for inspiration!

So it looks like I have more "Highs" than "Lows".  How has your month been going??

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Style Icon: Miranda Kerr

Another person's style that I absolutely love is Miranda Kerr's.  She always looks so put together and stylish, even while carrying around a little one.  What is she, superwoman?!  Seriously??  When I'm out and about with my little one I feel like I probably look like a crazy person.  I'm normally covered in cookie crumbs and have "mystery" handprints.  Sometimes it's better not to try to identify what it is that they have just wiped all over you or in your hair.

I love how she styles her casual outfits.  She wears neutral pieces and then adds one item to make the look pop.  Take a look at her stylings below and you will see what I mean.

Her red carpet style is to die for too.  I'm absolutely in love with her choices below.  I can't pick a favorite.  She has a great way of pulling off the sexy but classy look.

If you missed the other Style Icon series posts, then check them out here:
Style Icon: Jessica Alba
Style Icon: Olivia Wilde
Style Icon: Kate Beckinsale

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

35 Things to do in Pittsburgh

  • See the sunset at Mt. Washington overlooks
  • Dueling piano bar - Sing Sing
  • Comedy shows - Improv or The Funnybone
  • Ohiopyle State Park
  • Try your luck at River's Casino - www.riverscasino.com/pittsburgh
  • Gateway Clipper dinner or sightseeing cruisewww.gatewayclipper.com
  • Play games at Dave & Buster's . It's like a Chuck E Cheese for grown ups!  So much fun!
  • 'Burg Bits and Bites food tour - burghfoodtour.com
  • Color Me Mine - paint it yourself ceramics studio - www.pittsburgh.colormemine.com
  • Moonlit horseback rides - Bridgeville - Check it out HERE
  • Couples cooking class @ Crate
  • Rock wall climbing @ The Climbing Wall
  • Visit one of the many art museums - Andy Warhol Museum or Carnegie Museum of Art
  • Carnegie Science Center Sky Watch on Friday and Saturday nights - Click HERE for link
  • Just Ducky Tour - takes rider on land and water through city - www.justduckytours.com
  • Go see a theater production @ Byham, Benedum Center, or Heinz Hall. You can find tickets for shows at any of those 3 theaters at the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust site
  • Take a salsa class - www.salsapittsburgh.com
  • Attend an improv show - Clo Caberet or Steel City Improv
  • Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens - phipps.conservatory.org
  • Duquesne Incline - scale Mt. Washington in a cable car for an incredible view of the Pittsburgh skyline - 400ft incline
  • National Aviary - www.aviary.org
  • Children's Museum - pittsburghkids.org
  • Pittsburgh Zoo - www.pittsburghzoo.org
  • South Side bar crawl - Carson St. in South Side is full of bars lining each and every block.  If you don't like the atmosphere at one place you could try next door at the next one.  It's almost impossible to make it to every single bar in one night.
  • Station Square - This is where you will find the night clubs for dancing, and during the day a few restaurants.  They also host a lot of walking tours that will give you information about the history of Pittsburgh  www.stationsquare.com
  • Photo Antiquities Museum of Photographic History - www.photoantiquities.org
  • Sandcastle water park - Featuring a bunch of different kinds of water slides (tubes, speed slides, and body slides), a wave pool, a regular pool, a lazy river, and even a kiddie pool and playground.  It's fun for all ages. www.sandcastlewaterpark.com
  • Kennywood amusement park - Kennywood is one of the oldest amusement parks in America.  It was founded in 1898 and has been considered a National Historic Landmark since 1987.  Obviously it has grown with the times and features steel and wooden coasters, water rides, and even has a kiddie land for the little ones   www.kennywood.com/
  • Frick Art and Historical Center
  • Pittsburgh Ghost Tour - hauntedpittsburghtours.com
  • Toonseum - toonseum.org
  • Laurel Caverns - laurelcaverns.com
  • Skydive - skydivepennsylvania.com
  • Hofbrauhaus - Modeled after the legendary hall in Munich.  Beer is brewed on site in HUGE mugs.  Everyone is dressed in traditional Bavarian attire - hofbrauhauspittsburgh.com
  • Visit "The Point" at Point State Park - This is where the Allegheny and Monongahela rivers meet to form the Ohio River - thus "The 3 Rivers" .  This is where you will also find the Fort Pitt Museum, where you can learn about the history in the area.

top 2 pictures: "The Point" Point Park,  Station Square at night
Duquesne Incline, Heinz Feild (home of the Steelers), Gateway Clipper
Sandcastle waterpark, Laurel Caverns, Kennywood Park

If you know of any other places in Pittsburgh that I should add to my list, send me an email or leave it in the comment section below!

Monday, September 22, 2014

Blog-tember Challenge - DAY 22

Today is day #22 of the Blog-tember Challenge over at Brave Love blog.  Today's prompt is: Introduce us to 5 Blogs you read and tell us why .  There are always a few blogs that I check every single day to see if they have anything new.  Here are my top 5 (in no particular order)

Grateful Heart linkup w/ Ember Grey
Emily is probably one of the sweetest bloggers you will ever meet!  She has the greatest heart and positive attitude.  She hosts a weekly link-up called Grateful Heart.  Basically every Monday you can link up and share what you are grateful about this week.  It's definitely a great new way to think about Monday for me, since I always hated Mondays.  Instead of going into a week being grumpy, you get to start it out thinking about the things you are grateful for.  Isn't that a great concept?!  She also shares really hilarious conversations between her and her husband.  Seriously, so funny!

Jade & Oak
Jackie is a Pittsburgher like me, who blogs a lot about her amazingly cute pugs, her life and home design.  She is a new home owner and shares so many great decor ideas.  She also shares a lot of blogging tips, which I really appreciate because I am still fairly new at this whole blogging life.

The Grits Blog
Ashley's blog is the first blog that I ever sponsored and she was so helpful and great with me.  She is also a huge sweetheart that blogs about what's going on in her life, her cute puppies, really helpful blog tips, and even hair tutorials.  Seriously, what's not to love!

Rachael is a free-spirited artist that blogs about her life, her adorable animals, her art, and shares her fashion.  She was one of the very first bloggers that I started following, and probably what made me decide to start blogging myself.  She has such a different style of art and focuses a lot on nature around her.  She is also designing her very own tarot deck right now and has even done the art for a book!  How cool is that?!

Exploring My Style
Exploring my Style
Lauren is a super down to earth fashion blogger that I LOVE getting outfit ideas from.  She will show you a dozen different ways to style one skirt,  how/what to pack for a trip (I always feel so lost when I try), and shares her thrifting adventures.

Do you follow any of the same blogs?  What ones are your favorites?  I would love to check them out!

Brave Love Blog

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Blog-tember Challenge - DAY 21

Hello again to everyone from the link up, and of course even to the ones not participating!  I've been having so much fun with this challenge and meeting new bloggers!  I love reading how everyone else "answers" the blogging prompts from Brave Love.  Today's writing prompt is to share what we love about Fall.

  • Pumpkin flavored everything! Yummm
  • Cozy sweaters
  • Fall fashion - I love the layered look and this is definitely the season for it!
  • Bonfires
  • Carving pumpkins
  • Walking on crunchy leaves
  • The changing colors of the leaves
  • Apple cider
  • Apple picking
  • Hayrides
  • Corn mazes
  • Caramel Apples
  • It's snuggling weather
  • Football season!
  • Haunted houses
  • Halloween
  • Cute boots
  • I don't have to shave my legs as often (hey, I'm honest!!)
  • Trips to the pumpkin patch
  • Apple dumplings
  • Hot chocolate with marshmallow fluff on top!
  • They play Hocus Pocus ALL THE TIME
  • Homemade chili
  • Thanksgiving dinner 
What are you looking forward to this Fall??

Brave Love Blog

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Blog-tember Challenge - DAY 18

Today's blog prompt from Brave Love is: Favorite vacation or place you've been.

This was an easy one for me because my husband and I STILL talk about this vacation.

During our first year of dating my husband and I went on vacation to Daytona Beach and Orlando, Florida.  We had so much fun!  I'm a huge beach bum, so anywhere with a beach, count me in!!

We spent the first two days at Daytona Beach.  We had so much fun just relaxing on the beach.  Just about everything was in walking distance so we walked to try out a few different restaurants, including Bubba Gump Shrimp. Soooo so good!

After you put your food order in they quiz you on Forrest Gump trivia while you wait for it to get done.  We apparently are Forrest Gump experts because we got every question right!  Woohoo!  After that we stopped at Coldstone Creamery for the very first time, and it was A-mazing!  Mmmmm cake batter ice cream...... ANYWAY, on the third day of our trip we swtiched to a hotel in Orlando, and went to Universal Studios!

We are big roller coaster fans so you know we had to go to Island of Adventure too.  I mean, the Jurassic Park section alone sells it for me. lol!

The fourth day was supposed to be a relax day before we left the next day.... but my husband had other ideas.  He decided to surprise me with Disney tickets!  I'm a HUGE Disney fan so I was just a wee bit excited...embarrassing picture below.

We only ended up staying in Disney for a few hours because I'm kind of a dummy and wore flip flops so I got bad blisters.  Seriously, what was I thinking?!  But we had the most amazing time ever!

I can't wait to bring Paige to Disney when she is just a little bit older... and maybe a little bit because I'm still a Disney dork.

Have you ever been to Universal Studios and Disney??  What one did you like better?

Brave Love Blog

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

How you know someone is from Pittsburgh

Around here we have our own way to talk.  Most of it doesn't even make sense, even to me, and I've lived here for a long time.  I think most of it is just being being too lazy to say the whole word, but I have no idea where the other stuff comes from.

Here are some things you will only hear in Pittsburgh:

We also have our food.....

Up until a couple years ago I didn't even realize that most people didn't know what a pierogie was!  I've been eating them my whole life, so they were no big deal to me.  It is sort of like a ravioli but it is stuffed with cheese and mashed potato (sometimes sauerkraut) then fried with butter and onions.  Sooo good!

Another food we are famous for is the Primanti's sandwich.  It is a HUGE sandwich topped with french fries, cole slaw, and all the fixinz.   It's basically a heart attack waiting to happen.

Thinking of taking a trip to see Pittsburgh?  Stay tuned, because I will be posting a giant list of things to do around the Pittsburgh area next week.

Have you ever been to Pittsburgh?  Do you have any certain language goofiness or crazy food that your town is famous for?

Monday, September 15, 2014

Style Icon: Kate Beckinsale

Not only is Kate Beckinsale's hair always ridiculously gorgeous, but I love her fashion style.  She has mastered the layering technique without looking like a hobo (like me). HA!  

Whether she is dressed up or down, she always ends up looking classy, and I love it!  She rocks those scarves and oversized sunglasses too.  Would you guess that she is 41 years old?!?!  Yeah, me niether!  I'm pretty sure she found the fountain of youth and isn't sharing.

And when it comes to her award show dresses....  AMAZING!  I seriously LOVE all four of these.  

What do you think of Kate Beckinsale's style?  What dress is your favorite?

For more of my Style Icon series click the links below:
Style Icon: Jessica Alba
Style Icon: Olivia Wilde

linked up at: Manic Monday with More Pieces of Me and On the Daily Express

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Blog-tember Challenge - DAY 14

Hello again everyone!  This is only my second time linking up with Brave Love Blog for the Blog-tember Challenge but I am having a lot of fun scheduling posts so I can join in even more this month.  Today's prompt is: When did you start blogging and why

I've actually only been blogging since the beginning of this year.  I started in January.  At first I started it just as a way to document and show my artwork, but now I've met so many amazing people and found a new love for blogging.  I've also included a few of my other interests to share with people.  I've always been a huge lover of fashion and all things crafty so I started to incorporate a lot of that into my blog as well.

Another huge thing that I love to blog about is my life.  I love the idea that years from now I will be able to look back and see what I was doing around that time.  It's a fun way to see my daughter grow too.  I love looking back through some of my older posts and thinking, Man, she was SO LITTLE then. lol!

Since I am also a stay at home mom (for now), blogging has also been an amazing way for me to "stay social".  I enjoy catching up with a few blogger friends and seeing what's going on in their life without actually having to drag me and the baby out of the house, and skipping her nap time.  Because then I have to deal with her wrath....  it's not pretty folks.

Brave Love Blog

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Blog-tember Challenge - DAY 13

Okay, so I am way late to this party, but Bailey Jean over at Brave Love is hosting a daily link up for the month of September.  She gives you a different topic to write about every day for the whole month.  Today is already day 13 and the prompt is: Your current relationship status. If dating/married, give us a glimpse of your story! If single, share about this special season.

I am married to my best friend in the whole world.  I've known him since I was 13 years old!  He was always my best guy friend.  If either of us needed advice on the opposite sex we would ask each other.  We always had each other's backs.  I secretly had a crush on him since the first day that I met him....and he never knew!  Apparently, he always like me back.  But neither one of us ever said anything because when I was dating someone, he was single...and vice versa.  

Fast forward about NINE years....Until one day when we messaged each other on Facebook trying to catch up on each other's lives.... I was single and when he told me he was single too it was like all of those goofy high school crush feelings came rushing back, but I still didn't say anything.  Since he had just gotten out of a long term relationship (2 months before)  I told him he should come out with my friends to the karaoke bar.  After a few minutes of begging he decided to come.  I thought he might, because he was in a band and is a great singer.

When he showed up I was really giddy and we had so much fun.  He got along with all of my friends so well.  They loved him, and kept asking me (right in front of him) why we had never dated. hahaha!!  My friends are good for putting me on the spot.

photo from that night

He was only able to stay for an hour or two but when he left, he asked if I wanted to come over and watch a movie at his house the next day.  Of course I said yes!  And then stayed up all night wondering if we were watching movies as friends or if he liked me to. LOL

When I got to his house we were flirting THE WHOLE TIME but I was still worried he just thought of me as a friend.  Once the movie was over and it was really late he asked if I wanted to spend the night, and I actually gave him kind of a "EXCUSE ME?!?!" kind of look but he laughed and said no, not like that.  I said I don't know and we decided to flip a coin....if it was heads I would stay, tails I would go home.   We cuddled all night <3  

He proposed after a year of us dating and we were married almost a year after that...And the rest is history!  We've been together for 6 years, married for four.  And still completely crazy about each other.

I have actually shared the proposal story and also shared some photos of our wedding day if you wanted to know more about us crazy kids.

Brave Love Blog

Thursday, September 11, 2014

My reading list

Well, it's getting to be that time of year again...  The time of year that I stock up on a few new books. When the weather outside is chilly, I don't think there is anything better than curling up in a fuzzy blanket and reading a good book.  I think that is how I spend most of my winter so I have to make sure to buy enough to last me until May-ish. lol!  My first stop is always our little public library.  They have a big donation area where I drop off the ones that I decided not to keep from the previous year, and then they have a section of books anywhere from FREE-$2!  Some of them are brand new books too!  Here's what I found on my first trip:

Hope Ignites - Jaci Burton
Larkspur Road - Jill Gregory
Butterfly Cove - Christina Skye
Shoe Addicts Anonymous - Beth Harbison
The Name of the Wind - Patrick Rothfuss
The Cupcake Queen - Helper
Someday, Someday, Maybe - Lauren Graham
The Lovely Bones - Alice Sebold
Collection of Jane Austen's 4 Classic Novels - Sense and Sensibility, Pride and Prejudice, Emma,  and Persuasion (I mostly just bought this to add to my collection, because I have read them all but Persuasion)

I always buy a couple really cheesy romance novels...because, why not?

Have you read any of these titles?  What ones would you suggest that I add to my reading list this Fall/Winter?

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Pittsburgh Renaissance Festival

The last weekend in August we took our little one to the Renaissance Festival to be a princess for a day and see all of the horses.  She loved watching all of the horses running around.  It was SO HOT that day, if you couldn't tell from her rosy face.

She couldn't decide if she wanted to be a knight or a princess, so she decided to be both!  Daddy had to help her get her head in the right place tho!

How cool is this medieval swing?!  It was the first real ride (other than a merry-go-round) that Paige ever got to go on.  She loved it!  I sort of felt bad for the guys that had to push that big thing in such hot weather...with their costumes on.  Poor guys!

This is a comedy show called The German Brothers.  They were hilarious!  They were "german rap stars", one's name was "White Chocolate" and they had a rendition of Baby Got Back where they rhymed words with schnitzel and schizer.  They did a lot of crowd participation stuff.  At one point they had a man from the crowd on stage strutting his stuff and participating in a dance off.
 This was probably my favorite show of the day.  It's called "Cast In Bronze".  This masked man created an musical instrument using bells and levers to ring then, sort of like a piano.  The music was absolutely beautiful and reminded me so much of Phantom of the Opera with the mask and the theatricality of the way he played it.  Really cool!

Have you ever been to a Renaissance Festival??