Monday, August 31, 2015


Last night we got back from another great weekend at the lake - our last one of the season.  We arrived just in time for cocktail hour on Friday night and enjoyed our relaxing weekend.  Last week was a hectic one amongst the family and everyone was exhausted as well as ready for a cocktail and relaxing. Last week's occurrences brought in some out of town family and we had a larger than normal group which was fun and very like old times when we were kids - there were about 15 of us total and everyone enjoyed the extended family time.

All day on the dock, some time relaxing on the couches in front of the TV's, long cocktail hours and time spent on the porch, a big champagne brunch, walks with the pups, s'more making over the burner and most of all great family time with lots of laughs.

Because sometimes when Friday night hits all you want is a delicious pizza.  And time on the bouncy chairs.

The weather was gorgeous all weekend long - low humidity, a nice breeze and very bright skies.

The two biggest fans of the lake house spent the majority of the day IN the water.

There's a big rock not too far from our dock that everyone always swims out to (Nash made the trip this time too) so Derek's not walking on water… just standing on the rock.  We have two water toys that the dogs could chase for hours (well, mainly Nash - Stella is more into wading and swimming in little circles).

She finally dried off by the time the sun went down…

Some of the family went on a booze cruise while some of us got cocktail hour set up on the porch.  There was about  15 of us up there and the porch was at capacity.

We've been trying to make s'mores all summer long but get too full or too tired or something like that but we finally got around to it and all gathered around the burner and enjoyed the gooey treats.

Sunday morning brunch was more food than we could have even imagined (I was too ready to eat it to remember to take any pictures) and it's not a bad way to kick off the day with a mimosa and lake view.  We had all the fixings like the brunch used to be "back in the day." 

It's a very peaceful setting to take a walk in - we enjoyed a long one to burn off some of those extra brunch calories.

My sidekick found a shady place to relax from all of her swimming.

The boys had a successful fishing outing which resulted in the catch of a catfish.

If these aren't the looks of too extremely happy pups then I don't know what is.

The boat got a lot of action with plenty of ski runs.

One of my favorite places - we stayed much later than expected and got the full use out of a great summer day.

I think last night everyone was feeling like the pups were here (how cute are they cuddling together?!)

Past lake weekends this summer… 
On the lake
Fourth-ing at the lake

Friday, August 28, 2015

Friday's {Fall} Feature

Recently even the end of summer sales haven't been able to get me, I've only got fall on my mind.  Some new trends {new to me} I'm loving this year are fall hats, long sleeve dresses and the color maroon. I'm also looking forward to getting my flannels and scarves out of the basement closet and into mine, lighting up all my crisp smelling candles, getting back to neutral nail polish, wearing my many, many scarves and wearing my espadrilles. {The pair below I got this week and they are so comfortable, will match anything AND on sale - highly recommend}

fall favorites

One. Flannel Shirts // Two. Neutral Polish // Three. Plaid Scarves // Four. Everything Maroon {Purse} // Five. Seasonal Candles // Six. Espadrilles // Seven. Fall Hats // Eight. Long Sleeve Dresses

Other Happenings:

+ Speaking of fall, If you head on over to my friend, Jenn's blog, Going the Distance, you can find me guest posting today with sharing some of the things I'm most excited about for the upcoming season.

+ These "Friends" greeting cards {found here} would be the best thing ever if they were available in real life.  I would use them for as many occasions as possible.

+ I'm hoping "After Paradise" continues on to "After Bachelor" {Can't wait for Ben} because it's just so weird and all over the place but so great with all the interesting things that pop up and happen.

+ I love that Heather Dubrow has made a luggage room in her new house.  Luggage is the hardest thing to store - we designated an entire closet to it in our basement {it's actually one of the things we also thought about when moving in} but Heather's got the right mindset - it's too far - we're too often lugging suitcases up and down the staircases.  I also love how she did her cheers at her ladies lunch this week - definitely going to try that sometimes with each person clinking glasses with the next.

+ Last but not least, we are into the final countdown for College Gameday… just ONE week and it's back.  I can't wait - Go Nittany Lions!

Cheers to the Weekend!

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Own It {August Linkup}

Welcome back for another Own It linkup. Own anything. Have a confession session. Share the little crazy things about you 

Last month I had a theme and owned that I usually like/need a theme but today is just a random mess of everything 

In the Moment
I've grown to be a very "in the moment" person with a few scenarios.  If I'm traveling and on vacation - then I start planning the next one and need it soon.  If I'm home for the weekend then I want to try to be home as many weekends as I can.  If I'm at the lake then I need to go back next weekend.

Repeat Buyer
I'm a repeat buyer - 100%.  If I like something like a pair of jeans - I HAVE to have two.  If I like a shirt - I NEED it in a few colors.  I've been breaking this habit {a lot lately} because if I get the item in multiples then a bit later I think, "Did I really need all those" BUT if I don't get repeats then I always end up wishing I had another color, version, etc. down the road - happens every time.

I haven't used my gym membership all summer long
I can't remember the last time I went to the gym - I think it was in late spring.  I just can't stand being cooped up in the gym on the treadmill when it's so nice out - or too hot to be out.  I've still kept up working out almost everyday just in different ways outside and in our home.  When fall starts back up, I'll get back into it - this cycle repeats every year.

I wish I could have ten weddings… sometimes.  
All with the same groom, obviously! I always used to say I need about ten weddings to get in all the color schemes, all the dresses, all the etc.. There are too many options.  {That said I LOVED all my choices for mine and can't believe we're just about a week away from that day a year ago!}

Grocery Bagging
I really dislike having my groceries bagged for me.  There I said it - I don't like the extra help.  I have my reusable bags and like to fill them so they are easy to unload at home - I don't like the nail polish remover in with the fruit {yes, that happened last time they were bagged for me}.  On occasion I've gotten in a slightly longer line just so I can bag myself

I hate forgetting my reusable bags
I went through a phase a few months ago when every week I'd get to the store and realize the bags were still in my car as I was shopping and get quite frustrated.  Those bags fit so much more than the paper/plastic ones at the store and the food is less likely to fall all over the car as well as much easier to carry into the house with fewer trips.

Damp Hands
I need my hands fully dry after washing - I'll use as many paper towels or minutes under the hand dryer as it takes - I hate when they aren't completely dry.

College Laundry
I would fly home from Providence every 6 weeks-ish to visit for the long weekend {we didn't have classes on Friday so I could leave in the afternoon on Thursdays after classes} and on a few occasions I would fill my suitcase with all my dirty clothes to get them washed at home.
*I now enjoy doing laundry 4 years later!

Ok, your turn! Linkup below.  If you missed out today, the linkup runs through Saturday so join in. 

Thanks to everyone who has participated all spring and summer long!  Now that we are about to enter into fall I think I'm going to take a little break for the next few months - it's been fun!

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

California Part Two: Beach to City

If you missed the start of our anniversary trip in California and with our time in Santa Monica and Malibu, you can catch up with that here.

Day Three - Free Day
Monday we had zero plans other than the intentions of wandering about Santa Monica a little bit and getting in some beach and/or pool time.  {The one slight negative of the hotel was that it looked like it was very close to the beach - which it was but there was construction going on so we needed to take an open top jeep beach cruiser ride to get down and get back to the hotel - about ten minutes each way because of the detours.  It was a far walk out to the beach club area and then back to the bathrooms/beach bar/etc. so we opted for easy… the pool!}

We strolled down the bike path near the beach (about a mile each way so at least we got in a slight workout) and headed for the pier for some morning exploring and lunch - there are a ton of casual places to eat so we had no problem picking one out.

Staring at the ocean never gets old - neither does the sea breeze - it was probably a good 15 or so degrees cooler here than once we got into Beverly Hills.

We could take or leave the pier activities so we just walked around and then after a lunch - outdoors, of course - headed back to the hotel.

Then it was right off to the pool for the entire afternoon and as much relaxing we could get.  There was a good mix of sun and then napping/reading in the shade.

beach dress: Lilly Pulitzer {similar style} // tote: gap // headband: etsy

We called it a day at the pool in the very late afternoon before heading into the spa to unwind with some massages before heading up to get ready for dinner.

Dinner this night was at our very favorite place {one hasn't opened in Philadelphia… yet - we've heard they are slowly taking over some of the Chart House locations} Mastro's Steakhouse in Malibu.  We at at the BH location last year {which we revisit later in the week} and couldn't stop raving about it.

dress:  nordstrom {same dress, different pattern} % 40% off // purse:  gigi new york // shoes: ralph lauren {& on sale + four more colors}

Our favorite meal, sitting right above the crashing waves AND watching the sunset - definitely one of my favorite nights and we completely stuffed ourselves full.  They have my absolute favorite scallops.  A fisherman caught a stingray right in front of us which we got to see before he set him free again.

Day Four - Switching to Beverly Hills
On Tuesday morning we had one final breakfast at the beach before moving inland to Beverly Hills.  For those who are new here, we spent a couple days in Beverly Hills last year to break up the trip to our honeymoon  {You can see about last years trip here} so it holds a special place in our heart - in fact, when we arrived back at the hotel, all the memories and excitement of the year returned {we've been debating whether to try to fit it in as a quick annual trip every year since it's such a special spot for us}.

dress: old navy {similar style} // purse: gigi new york // necklace: jennifer zeuner // watch: michael kors

Breakfast on the rooftop overlooking the ocean with a bellini in hand.  My new favorite breakfast meal of eggs benedict did not disappoint. 

I clearly did the heavy lifting when switching hotels with the most important item while Derek just relaxed…

We found a great company to do a private stars' homes tour with - we saw Robert from Shark Tank walking his dog and Matthew Perry (Chandler Bing).  We saw everything from Reba, Lucille Ball, Tom Cruise, Courtney Cox and Denzel Washington to people like Justin Bieber and more.  One of my favorites was that Jennifer Anniston (still owns the house, but isn't living there), Michael Buble' and Rihanna all share basically a cul de sac.  I didn't take many pictures, more just enjoyed looking at the gorgeous houses but a few are below…

Top: Leonardo DiCaprio, Matthew Perry entering his home and the gate of one of Jennifer Anniston's houses.
Bottom: Enterance to Lisa Vanderpumps, Scott Disick's (Post Kardashian Split) and a view of the Hollywood Hills

I loved the ambiance at lunch - we dined on the patio and there was fresh flower displays everywhere.  Every table top, on other display tables, inside the restaurant, in the bathroom - everywhere.

Enjoying our new view.  I enjoyed lounging on the loungers on the balcony almost as much as laying by the pool because of the gorgeous view and nice breeze - so peaceful.

We spent the afternoon post lunch by the pool reading, swimming and relaxing - it's a small pool area but secluded and private with nice scenery.

Looking down on the pool vs. laying next to it… 

 We were "winging" dinner tonight and had some extra time to get ready before we headed out - which included watching some of the sunset.

 dress: similar style // necklace: similar styles here and here

A couple drinks out to finish off the day - but still not too bed too late - same routine again in the morning - up early :)

Helpful Links… 
Mastro's Ocean Club
The Penthouse
Glitterati Tours
The Ivy
The Beverly Wilshire
Pump / Sur
Don't forget to join me in the own it linkup tomorrow!
*Probably the last one for a while - so don't miss out