Friday, December 30, 2016

2016 Recap: Part 2

Eek the last Friday before 2017! I hope you enjoyed strolling down memory lane for the first half of the year with part 1 of my 2016 recap. Today I have for you part 2, let's jump right in...


-Ran/walked a 5k with my old co-workers

-Had a last Girls day out in Chicago with my 2 besties. We basically did all the fun things, but mostly ate a bunch of yummy things.


-Moved to Houston with my brand new husband in tow!!!

-Got my very first Louis Vuitton bag (thanks sissy, you da best)!

-My sis got the cutest puppy ever, Nico is my fave dog ever!


-My parents came to Houston for a week and it was so great spending that much time with them since moving.

-Had a luncheon for our Houston peeps that couldn't make it to the wedding in Chicago

-Jet off to Mexico for a week to enjoy our honeymoon, take me back to the sunshine and beach!

-Celebrated my 28th birthday as a married woman!


-Flew home for Labor Day Weekend and celebrated a friends' wedding

-Got to meet my fur nephew Nico

-Drove home to Houston with a pit stop in Memphis

-Went to our first Texans game

-Became an official Texan by giving up my IL drivers license

-Met up with Myra when she was in town, but managed to get zero pictures #bloggerfail

-Accepted and started my first full time gig at Baylor Dermatology


-Cheered on my Cubbies while they were in the World Series

-Celebrated Halloween at work by dressing up as a nerd

-Celebrated Diwali and Indian New Year with family and friends


-CUBS won the World Series!!!!

-Voted in a historic 2016 election, even though I'm bummed with the result of it

-First country concert we saw Jake Owen and it was awesome

-Went to a friends bridal shower

-Celebrated Thanksgiving with my new family and make a super yummy cinnamon crunch cake that was a big hit


-Decorated the house for Christmas

-Went to our towns tree lighting ceremony at Town Square

-Went to Fredricksburg, TX for a friends bachelorette party

-Made an ugly sweater for work and won the contest

-Sent out my favorite holiday cards so far

-Celebrated our work holiday party at the Houston Rockets game

-Celebrated Christmas away from my family for the 1st time ever, but still got spoiled with gifts

-Went to the River Oaks neighborhood to look at the lights


Overall I'd call 2016 a successful year, a lot of huge changes came my way, but I welcomed them. I got married, moved to a completely different state, lived with a boy (ew), started a new job, made new friends and memories....I wouldn't change a thing about my year!

Cheers to hoping 2017 is even better than 2016. Most importantly I have my family/friends, health, job, shelter, etc so I can't really complain. I pray that we as a country can learn to be better in 2017 despite the obstacles standing in our way.

If you're going out to celebrate, be safe and have a blast! See y'all next year!

✌️ out Girl Scouts!

Thursday, December 29, 2016

2016 Recap: Part 1

Phew it's taken me some time to get my act together with this post, but it's up! Let's just say 2016 was such a crazy busy year for me, but I wouldn't have changed a thing! I definitely had to break it up in separate posts because there was just so much stuff happening especially from months June-August ;)! 


-Started the new year off with a family road trip to NY/NJ to go wedding shopping. I managed to find my bridesmaids dresses and wedding dress!

-Peppermint sugar scrubs were DIY'd

-Sissy and I hit up the gym quite a few times, have to start that up again...


-Started the month off cheering on the Denver Broncos and Peyton Manning winning SuperBowl 50!

-Got our wedding invites in and fell in love with them!

-Celebrated Galentine's Day for the last time as a single lady with my girls watching Deadpool

-Celebrated 2 years of dating and Valentine's Day with a beautiful bouquet, chocolates and bear from A.


-This was the month of DISNEY!!! My sister and I flew to Orlando to hit up Magic Kingdom, Universal Studios/Islands of Adventure...we ate to our hearts content, wore our ears around, played at Hogwarts & met a bunch of princesses.

-Met up with some awesome blogger friends (hi Kate, Kerri & Pamela)

-Got my bridal shower invitations in and fell in love all over again!


-Roadtrip #2 with my parents to NY/NJ to finish up wedding shopping.

-Attended the Nordstrom Spring Beauty Trend Cocktail Party and got dolled up by t3 & NARS

-Celebrated A's birthday weekend in Chicago: brunching with my fave couple, went to Lincoln Park Zoo, had some laughs at Laugh Factory Chicago & I got to meet LaRoyce Hawkins from Chicago P.D.

-We celebrated my momma's birthday at our favorite Mexican place


-Cinco de Mayo celebrations with yummy Mexican food with my longtime friend

-Saw Loni Love at the Improv Comedy Club with friends

-Celebrated my last Mother's Day with my momma

-Made sushi with my bestie and celebrated another friends birthday

-Painted pottery at Color Me Mine

-Went to a Chocolate Festival

-Spent Memorial Day Weekend in Houston for the last time before officially moving here


-Lost my favorite patient ever, she was like a grandma to all of us at the clinic and her death hit us really hard. I still think about her constantly!

-Went paddle boating & kayaking with my sis

-Celebrated my nephew with family and friends

-Quit my favorite job ever at the CHF clinic, leaving behind some amazing co-workers

-Enjoyed my bridal shower!!!

-Celebrated my bestie getting her Masters degree with a fun bbq

-Went to South Beach, Miami for my bachelorette party, best time ever!!

-Saw Gavin DeGraw & The Fray in concert at the Ravinia

-Had a friends summer bbq


There you have the first half of 2016, if you made it through that then hopefully you'll have the energy to make it through part 2 coming tomorrow. It was so fun to look back on all the fun memories from the past year! Can't believe we are so dang close to the end of the year!! 

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Christmas 2016 Recap

Happy Tuesday (although I wish I was still in bed to tell ya the truth). It's definitely tough going back to work after having 3 glorious days off from it. Thankfully it's a 4 day work week and the weekend ahead means another 3 day weekend, so I'm cool with that. Side note, can Christmas & New Year's always fall on a weekend?!

This is mostly going to be a photo dump post, even though I could have taken some more pictures of our Christmas Eve party we went to.

On Friday evening, I was really craving sushi, so we had a little date night at our favorite sushi place.

Saturday was spent mostly getting chores done and cleaning around the house. We then had a Christmas party to go to. It was so much fun and I wish I had more pictures, but the only time I took my phone out was to get some snapchats. We did a white elephant exchange and I got shafted with a plunger...yeh wasn't too thrilled about that, but we made out with a cool bar set & salad bowl set so I wasn't too disappointed. After the party we headed to one of the cousins house to watch a movie and play games.

Sunday morning we slept in, it felt so good! I FaceTimed with my sister and parents as they opened their gifts. My fur-nephew was loving his penguin onesie I got for him.

That afternoon I spent watching Hallmark movies in my Christmas PJ's.

We then decided to open gifts, let's just say I think I got plenty spoiled this Christmas. I was expecting nothing this year since we have some huge trips coming up later this year, but hubby surprised me with a beautiful necklace from the same collection as my engagement ring.

After eating dinner at home, hubs and I headed out to the River Oaks neighborhood to check out the lights. Y'all if you are in Houston during the holidays, you have to check out this neighborhood. I totally over-snapped, but I couldn't get enough! The houses were so beautifully decked out with Christmas lights and displays. We decided to park and walk the streets since it was a beautiful and humid evening, plus the car traffic was just too much for me.


I hope y'all had an amazing time celebrating and spending time with loved ones. Even though I was missing my family this Christmas, I was thankful to have gotten new traditions started for years to come.

Linking up with Biana for Weekending.

Friday, December 23, 2016

12 Questions of Christmas

When I saw this on Ashley's blog, I knew I had to play along! I've been spotty with my blogging, but this is a fun post to get up before Christmas, which I can't believe is only 2 days away!

1. What is your favorite Christmas film?
Oh I can't just pick one...a few of my all-time favorites are: Elf, Love Actually, Home Alone (1 & 2), National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation, Polar Express and Four Christmases.

2. Have you ever had a white Christmas?
Crazy that I've always had a white Christmas, this will be my first Christmas with almost 80 degree weather! I do enjoy some snow on Christmas, but anything more than thank!

3. Where do you usually spend the holiday?
Considering this year is going to be completely different for us, we are just spending Christmas at home. Eventually after we have our own house, I plan on hosting Christmas and hope my family and cousins could join us!

4. What is your favorite Christmas song?
Literally anything BSB or *NSYNC holiday version, even the classic Mariah Carey All I Want For Christmas Is You. This year I've been listening to a lot of Pentatonix because they are just phenomenal. 

5. Do you open any presents on Christmas Eve?
Usually I'll do a stocking stuffer or two. Since we are spending Christmas Eve at a family friends house this year we may not do that. 

6. Can you name all of Santa's reindeer?
Not if asked on the spot, I can probably list a few of them though, Rudolf, Prancer, Vixen, Dasher, Dancer, Donner, Blitzen...that's about all I've got.

7. What holiday traditions are you looking forward to most this year?
Just being with my new family and husband, it sucks that I'm not able to spend it with my parents and sister, but the thought of traveling to Chicago during Christmas doesn't appeal to me or them. Just have to wait a month until I go there!

8. Is your Christmas tree real or fake?
I always have bought fake, I feel like I'd want to do real for the smell, but the maintenance of it sounds like too much work. 

9. What is your all time favorite holiday food/sweet treat?
I will never turn down a dessert. I love some milk and cookies...really anything is good with me!

10. Be honest, do you like giving gifts or receiving gifts better?
I actually LOVE to go out and shop for people, I try to get creative and personalized gifts depending on who I'm shopping for. I also enjoy when they open it up and really enjoy what I gave. I can't lie and say I don't enjoy getting gifts, but I don't expect one from anyone that I give one to!

11. What would be your dream place to visit for the holiday season?
My husband being from London always tells me how London is usually always decked out for the holidays. I have always wanted to go (and we might be later next year), but I would totally go and spend the holidays there! Either that or a relaxing beach/cruise vacation!

12. Are you a pro present wrapper, or do you fail miserably?
I like to consider myself a pro present wrapper. My in-laws have had me wrap all their gifts, if my husband could have me wrap my own gift he would, he just took the easy way out and threw it in a bag. It's not as polished as others, but I consider it to be decent looking enough to give to someone! I actually enjoy it too, it's fairly therapeutic! 


Merry Christmas my loves! I hope you all have a wonderful weekend celebrating (or not, whatever you want) with family and friends! I'll see y'all on the flip side...hopefully I get my act together enough to get a 2016 recap post up! 

Merry Christmas ya Filthy Animals!

Monday, December 19, 2016

Weekending | T'was the Week Before Christmas

Ah, the Monday before almost feels like we shouldn't have to work this week right?! Hopefully this is a quick week for all that are working!

This weekend was fairly low key. On Friday I had my work holiday party at the Houston Rockets game. I was super excited for this because it meant spending time with my coworkers outside of work and free food and booze can't ever be a bad thing right?! Luckily, the Rockets pulled off a pretty impressive win over the Pelicans, even setting some NBA records that night! 

Saturday was a pretty chill day besides a quick Target run, which ended in a yummy Potbelly shake (thanks Jenn for the craving)!

Saturday night we ventured out into the cold to watch Rogue One: A Star Wars Story and guys it was SO good! I can honestly say I've never seen a single Star Wars movie, I know I know...I need to change that. This movie was really good even without seeing any of the other movies. The cast was totally perfect too, the main character gave me some serious Katniss Everdeen vibes!

I can officially say we are finished with ALL of our Christmas shopping for the season! Everything is wrapped and under the tree waiting to be torn apart! Nothing better than some hot cocoa and Christmas tree lovin' to cap off the weekend right?


How did y'all spend your last weekend before Christmas? Any last minute shoppers? Let's not talk about the Christmas cards that still need to be put in the mailbox...whoops!

Linking up with Biana for weekending!

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Wedding Wednesday | Christmas Cards

With less than 12 days until Christmas Day, there's no time like the present to get those holiday cards sent out right? I've totally slacked and ordered mine after December, which of course meant I wouldn't get mine until mid Dec. Luckily I had my list of recipients ready to rock and roll.

When I was designing my Christmas card I didn't know which direction I wanted to go. I originally was going to convince A we needed to do a Christmas photo shoot...that did not happen. I was sad, but then I decided you know what, we could just use wedding pictures! After perfecting and picking out the perfect template, I was ready to order. I had searched Zazzle since I have used them for wedding things earlier this year. The templates they offered were definitely plenty, literally something for everyone. 

After placing my order, I patiently waited for them to show up in my mailbox. Once I got them I got them addressed and ready to send out asap. Here's how the card turned out!

Do you send out cards for the holiday? Let me know if you want me to send you one of our cards :)! 


Now it’s your turn to link-up and share your wedding tales. 

I love reading all about your big day, someone else’s wedding adventures, or anything else wedding related. Alex & I just can’t wait to read all about it!


Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Studio Gear | Skin Perfecting Face Primer

If you don't use a face primer in your makeup routine, I hope after this post it at least gets you thinking about using one. It has completely changed the game when I put my makeup on daily. Think of it like greasing a pan before you bake or cook something, the same concept applies. 

With the influx of face primers out there in the makeup world, it's really hard for someone who is fresh on the makeup scene to figure out which direction to go in. I've tried many different kinds of face primers and have loved some and hated others. I have found that I enjoy the silkier and thin application because it feels light on my face and actually feels like it's making a difference. I have used other primers that are just too thick like an ointment and I hate that feeling.

With the Studio Gear Prime Objective Perfecting Face Primer the silicone based primer feels super light on the skin while minimizing lines and pores with ease. I have totally noticed that my makeup goes on amazing with this primer and I'm adding this to my holy grail primers because it's that good! 

I love the bottle it comes in because the pump is unlike any primer I had used in the past. I notice just the right amount of primer comes out, which is great with a splurge product like this one. If price is something that you are considering when getting products, this one is definitely not on the cheaper end, but it's not the high end either. I've used more expensive products that don't deliver like this one does. They claim to act like a "re-touching" and I truly believe it does what it says it's doing. 

The other amazing thing about this products is what it has and doesn't have. Paraban & fragrance free, but it has retinol in it as well. Working in dermatology, I've started focusing on my skincare and retinol is one of the best things out there for wrinkles and fine lines. The fact that this product has it in there is incredible guys. If you don't know, prescription retinol creams/gels can cost upwards of $500 since insurance won't cover these (I fight with insurance companies daily trying to get them to cover this, it isn't going to happen).

If you're on the fence of what face primer is right for you, definitely try this brand out and see how you like it. You won't know how you like it unless you physically try it out on your own skin.

Studio Gear is kind enough to offer my readers a discount to try out this product! For 10% off your order use code: BB.

(This is a sponsored post powered by BrandBacker. A sample was sent to me by Studio Gear but, all opinions are honest and my own.)

Friday, December 9, 2016

101 in 1001 | Update

I'm very late on this train, but I figured better late than never right?

to travel and beyond

6.Successfully open a bottle of champagne {August 2016}
I was able to accomplish this while we were in Mexico for our Honeymoon. I've of course drank champagne, but never opened a bottle myself.

15.Invest in a classic handbag {July 2016}
I finally got my dream handbag this past summer from my amazing little sister. I can add Louis Vuitton to my collection of handbags, of course nobody as glamorous as him though!

27.Get a family portrait done {Wedding Photos, July 16th, 2016}
This was completed during the wedding of course! Got some with my family and my new family so that was a win-win!

33.Get married!! {July 16th, 2016}
Just a small thing that I did this past summer, lol! I can officially cross this sucker off my list!

35.Move to a new city {Houston!! July 2016}
As of July 18th, 2016 I was officially a Texan, but it became even more real when I gave up my IL drivers license and got a Texas license.

38.Find a full-time job {Baylor Dermatology, September 2016}
This took a little bit more time than I anticipated, but this opportunity was so perfect and came at the perfect time. I absolutely am thrilled to be a part of such a great workplace!

59.Go to a Houston Texans game {September 11th, 2016}
The home opener game this year was against my Chicago Bears and so we definitely knew we had to go to this game. Being my first (and hopefully no last) Texans game, it was such a fun time and I couldn't have asked for a better game to attend.

83.Travel to a new country {Mexico-August 2016}
I was finally able to do this with our honeymoon to Mexico in August. It was such a blast and I couldn't have dreamt up a better honeymoon!

In Progress:

14.Read 20 books (12/20)
-I Said Yes by Emily Maynard (May 2016)
-It's Not Okay by Andi Dorfman (Aug 2016)
-Year of Yes by Shonda Rhimes (Oct 2016)
-In the Country We Love by Diane Guerrero (Nov 2016)
-The Weekenders by Mary Kay Andrews (Nov 2016)
-The Association of Small Bombs by Karan Mahajan (Nov 2016)

46.Go to 5 concerts (4/5)
-Gavin DeGraw & The Fray (June 2016)

-Jake Owen & Frankie Ballard (Nov 2016)

Thursday, December 8, 2016

Cinnamon Crunch Cake | Recipe Files

It's seriously been way too long since I posted a recipe and since I baked something new during Thanksgiving (and have gotten some requests for the recipe), I figured why not! Let me preface this by saying this, the recipe calls for quite a few ingredients, but it's super easy to make. If you follow the recipe to a T then you'll be good to go! 


1 (18.25 ounce) package yellow cake mix 1 (3.4 ounce) package instant vanilla pudding mix 1 (3.4 ounce) package instant butterscotch pudding mix 4 eggs 1 cup water 1 cup vegetable oil 1 cup packed brown sugar 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon 1 cup chopped walnuts

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 10 inch Bundt cake pan with Pam or cooking spray.
2. In a medium bowl, stir together the cake mix, vanilla pudding mix, and butterscotch pudding mix. Add the eggs, oil and water, mix until well blended. In another bowl, stir together the brown sugar, cinnamon and nuts.
3. Pour half of the cake mix batter into the pan, spread evenly. Sprinkle with half of the nut mixture. Cover with the rest of the cake mix batter, and sprinkle with the rest of the nut mixture.
4. Bake for 20 minutes in the preheated oven, then turn the oven down to 325 degrees F and bake for an additional 35 to 40 minutes.

You can add a glaze drizzle over the top or put a scoop of vanilla ice cream over a slice, whatever you prefer..make it however you like :)!

Monday, December 5, 2016

Weekending | First of December

After such a dreary and rainy weekend, I just want to stay curled up in bed watching Netflix and Hallmark movies. Luckily for me, this is a 4 day work week for me since I head to a bachelorette party on Friday! 

Since it was rainy and cold pretty much all weekend long we didn't get to go do any of the fun lights we had planned. Instead we basically became hermits and stayed in all weekend. We ordered pizza and hunkered down for some serious Netflixing. I was able to also catch up on all my shows (except Gilmore Girls because I secretly don't want it to end so I don't want to finish it).

I also made a yummy pasta bake and it turned out so good. It's what's for lunch today and I can't get enough.

I also managed to finish all my Christmas shopping (thank god for online shopping and quick package delivery). This weekend being at home meant I could get everything wrapped and under the tree! I loved the pretty wrapping paper I picked up from Target last week!

We did run out on Sunday and finish getting a few gifts for some extended family members and gift tags, snow blanket for under the tree and other miscellaneous things.


What were in your weekend plans? Hoping for a quick & fabulous week ahead for everyone! Linking up with Biana for Weekending!

Friday, December 2, 2016

It's Friday | Spread the Holiday Cheer

Happy Friday loves. Boy am I glad to finally see the weekend, feels like the longest and slowest week so far. Let's just say I wish the traffic from last week stuck this week because it was awful out there. We finally got our dose of cooler temps, thank GOD! It went from 82 degrees to 41 degrees in less than 12 hours, craziness! 

Now that it's (finally) December, all the holiday cheer is all around and I love it! I literally wish December could last longer than 31 days because it's crazy to think that in less than that, it'll be 2017! With 2016 being an amazing year of ups and downs in my life, I can't believe it's coming to a close! 

In other news, we got our precious tree in (thanks Mom & Dad for sending us a pretty tree for us to have this year). Hubby let me decorate the house and tree before December 1st because he was feeling nice. Even though our tree is small, it makes me happy and feel cozy! Plus our other decor (I'll share pictures when I take some) adds to the festiveness. 

Yesterday, hubby and I went to our town center for the annual tree lighting ceremony. It was the perfect evening in the low 60's and it wasn't too packed. They had food trucks, booths selling some goodies, fun games and activities for the kiddos. Overall it was fun to get into the magic of the holiday with Santa & Mrs. Claus joining in on the fun. 

The tree lighting was fun and pretty, but we were pretty hungry so as soon as it was lit we were high tailing it to the Baker Street Pub in town square for some much needed dinner.

After dinner, when the crowds around the tree died down, we headed back for an obligatory selfie in front of the tree.

We are supposed to go to the Magical Winter Lights and Zoo Lights today and tomorrow, but this crazy rain that we are projected to have is threatening those plans. I hope we can make it this weekend, if not then it'll have to wait until mid December! If rain ruins our plans then a lot of Netflixing will be on the agenda. What fun things are you guys up to this weekend?


Linking up with Amanda for Friday faves & Liz for Five on Friday!