Sunday, January 26, 2014

Out with the old...

After 8 years of service, my old Mac has finally kicked the dust. It saw me through undergrad, nearly all of grad school, international travel, first jobs, and more. More sentimentally, this little guy's faulty internet connection in the freshman dorm forced me to introduce myself to my neighbor - and current boyfriend - in hopes of tech help.

After a relatively painless experience at the Apple store, well for me - my wallet took a beating, this new beaut made its way home with me. Now that I have a fully-functioning computer, I can't get off the thing. Hopefully this translates into more productivity and not just more pinning.

Friday, January 10, 2014

Holiday Party 2013

We had so much fun hosting our holiday party last year, that we started planning early for this year's. We kept what we liked, added what we thought was missing, and made time to splurge on ourselves...

We started with blowouts and bubbly at blowout bar dc.

The result:

When we got home, we just added a dress (and of course a statement necklace)

For decor, we added an extra bar, some more seating, great light fixtures, and amazing holiday arrangements made by my talented roomie (with grocery store flowers and julep cups!)

 We drank, danced, and chatted through the night. We spent Sunday cleaning while others recovered...

Did you host a holiday party this year?? I'd love to see the details!

Thank you for stopping by!

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Christmas in Chicago 2013

Every Christmas I travel to Chicago to spend time with my favorite people in my favorite city.

Chicago is everything. All the great parts of New York paired with the great parts of the midwest.

In addition to an annual family dinner at the Signature Room at the John Hancock Building, shopping on Michigan and State, we also make time for lake front runs, and home cooked meals at my aunts homes.

Oh and Garrett's popcorn... lots of Garrett's.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

New Year: Resolutions and Looking Back

Hello friends!

I know not everyone is on the "new year resolution" train, but I like setting goals for myself and working towards them. In addition to the resolution to blog more regularly again, I have a few things I am hoping to accomplish:

- Run a race every month
- Get a PR in my April Half Marathon
- Graduate my Master's Program
- Finally move to NC
- Eat more veggies

What are your goals for the new year? Resolutions - yay or nay???

After being occupied with some personal matters since I last wrote, I wanted to reflect on some of the positive things that have happened since then:

I celebrated another birthday with the love of my life

I cheered on my favorite team...

I got spoiled with mint goodies from everyone for my birthday and Christmas!

I spent quality time at home in Minneapolis playing aunt....

 I met and loved my parents' new puppy

We also threw our annual holiday party and I traveled to Chicago per tradition for Christmas... more on those fronts in other posts.

Happy New Year! Thank you for stopping by!

Thursday, November 7, 2013

(Long) Weekend Things: Halloween and Making Moves

I think I win the award for least consistent blogger as of late.

Work, school, applications, pending moves, long distance relationship, the list goes on with excuses. I created this blog as a reminder to stop and appreciate what is going on in my life, and I need to get back to that!

I made my way down to Chapel Hill this past weekend. Last time I was there earlier in the fall, it was all fun and games with a girls trip conveniently to my boy's town.

This time, it was business (but it was also Halloween so we played a little).

Maybe other long distance couples can relate, but were reaching an interesting inflection point where a lot is on the verge of happening. It's exciting, stressful, wonderful, and terrifying.

I graduate in May, he has three more years of grad school (thanks a lot PhD). So if I do not move there, were locking into a few more years of distance. Not ideal. I love NC. I love this man. My graduate degree and experience is better suited to DC, but I feel like the rest of my life is waiting for me in NC. My heart is being pulled to NC, but my stubborn, independent, and rational side says to be careful about moving for a boy (even if we have been together for 5 years!).

Are you tired yet? Yea that dialogue is getting old in my head too. So this past weekend I had a million (or like ten) informational interviews. I started the fun process of networking, discovered some avenues that could be a good fit, and started to see this move as something that could work. Baby steps people.

When I wasn't trying to play chess with my future, we made the rounds at Holiday parties. We love a good couples costume. Last year, my man and I went with this. This year, separate parties called for couples with both of my other halves.

Round 1: Average Joe's Dodgeballers

Round 2: Beauty and the Beast

(FYI: This dress was a good will find the weekend before. Best $7 I've spent in awhile)

What were you for Halloween?

Have you ever moved for someone you love?

Thanks for visiting :)

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Surviving Grad School on a Slow Cooker: Mexican Chili

When the temp drops, I crave cozy food. Chili was a family favorite growing up, so I always equate it with comfort.

Now that school has hit the point in the semester where all structure to my life has gone awry, I wanted something that would require minimal effort, produce maximum flavor, and be a healthy alternative. Enter the slow cooker and skinnytaste.

Skinnytaste has an entire section dedicated to the slow cooker, and I plan to try them all.

The Chicken Taco Chili Ingredients were calling my name.

I should make a confession. I am really not a good cook. Like really. But this was so so so easy. I bought what she told me, threw it into the pot, let it cook 6 hours, and had lunch and dinner for the entire week.

I went through variations. Sometimes I ate it just as chili, sometimes as a Mexican dip for some tortilla chips.

Other times, I served it over rice, or I rolled up all the above ingredients in a burrito - with avocado of course!

How would you serve it up???

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Weekend Things: Fall in New York

This past weekend was a goodie. The stars aligned and my uncle from Germany and my parents all ended up in NYC. When I heard this, I quickly booked a flight up to join the party.

My parents got me an extra bed in their Waldorf Astoria suite.... don't mind if I do.....

The mornings were spent on runs with my Dad through Central Park...

And the days were spent out and about. Saturday, we checked out the much-hyped High Line, an old elevated train track through the city converted into a walking path full of greenery. It was a great way to check out some new sites while catching up with family I hadn't seen in years...

Sunday afternoon was spent brunching at the Loeb Central Park Boat House. Every time I am here, I remember this scene from SATC....

The weather was perfect for a cocktail outside while we waited for our table, and the food was perfect for a cozy afternoon spent with loved ones.

The evenings were spent with my dad's family that happen to live in Westchester. Friday evening called for fondue at Artisinol. Saturday afternoon we caught the train out to their place to enjoy some home cooking and college football. A sweet surprise was a visit from one of my fellow State Department Italian interns......

The weekend came and went far too quickly. I woke up a little gloomy on Monday, wishing I was heading out for another run with my dad instead of walking to work. I hit this street and caught myself grinning a little. Fall in DC sure makes me happy to be here.

I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend!