Monday, July 30, 2018

What I'm Loving this Month // July

July has been so hot! The humidity in Illinois decided to show itself this month, making it both hot and muggy. It's definitely not something I'm loving this month.

I am, however, loving some other things this July.

My most favorite thing. I love July because there's always a chance I'll get to see fireworks. This year, I was able to see the Arthur Fireworks and let me tell you, they were incredible!

My Job
I am loving my job right now. I've officially closed six roles and am slowly taking on more responsibility. I'm really finding my groove at work and loving it.

My Parents & Pups
I'm really trying to savor this last month of living at home. I've been spending more time with my parents and snuggling my pups a little extra.

Soft Workout Tanks
I have some extremely comfy tanks from Target that I've been living in. I workout in them, but also love relaxing in the softness.

This month, I remembered just how much I love this game. It's relaxing and requires just as much strategy as it does luck.

Tell me: what are you loving this month?

Thursday, July 26, 2018

Moving Series // Why I Chose Chicago

In three weeks, I'm making the move from the suburbs to the city! When I accepted my job offer back in March, I also made the decision to move. I knew that as soon as I had a full time offer, I would move back out of my parents' house, I just wasn't sure where. After much consideration, I decided on Chicago.

I'm not exactly what you'd call a city girl, so when I told my family I'd landed on Chicago, they were surprised. To be honest, I'm still kind of shocked that I'm moving there. But, I'm also really excited.

There are so many things about Chicago that I'm looking forward to. The biggest thing is the constant parade of things to do. From Farmer's Markets to festivals; boat tours to unique shops - I know I won't be bored. Exploring new things and discovering hidden gems are two things I love most.

The other benefit is the proximity to friends, as well as new people. At the age I'm at, so many people live downtown. Not only do I have current friends that live a few blocks from my new place, but people from work. There's also so many new people to meet as I explore new parts of the city. I've always been someone who loves having large groups of friends and I just know that I'll have that in the city.

August 1 we get the keys to our new place. August 10 we start moving in. August 18 we're home. I can't wait.

Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Recipe // Raspberry Lemonade Margarita

Happy National Tequila Day! In honor of the day, I decided to create the most traditional tequila drink - the margarita. I wanted to put a sweet twist on it, so included two of my favorite things: raspberries and lemonade.

2 cups raspberries
6 tablespoons sugar
1 lemon
1 cup lemonade
2 ounces silver tequila

1. Puree raspberries in blender until smooth.
2. Place wire mesh colander over bowl.
3. Pour in puree. Use a spoon to push through colander.
4. Add 2 tablespoons of sugar to mix (add more or less depending on sweetness).
5. Place remaining sugar on plate.
6. Run a lemon slice over rim of glasses.
7. Dip rim into sugar. Set aside.
8. Fill cocktail shaker halfway with ice.
9. Add in 4 tablespoons of raspberry puree.
10. Add in 1 cup lemonade.
11. Add in 2 ounces tequila.
12. Squeeze half a lemon into mixture.
13. Shake it up and pour over ice.

(You'll have plenty of leftover raspberry puree to make more for your friends!)

Enjoy National Tequila Day (responsibly)!

Friday, July 20, 2018

Get to Know the Blogger

Happy Introduction Friday! There have been a lot of new readers these past couple months, so I thought it'd be fun to re-introduce myself. I've always loved the Cosmo quizzes that the magazine does for its cover stars, so that's exactly what I'm doing today!


 Have a happy weekend!

Monday, July 16, 2018

Weekend Recap // Kristina's Bachelorette Party

Last weekend, I traveled to Portland to celebrate one of my best friend's bachelorette parties. I met Kristina in our global studies class our freshmen year of high school. I remember my birthday sophomore year - Kristina wrote me a card and called me her best friend. I was so relieved she said it first. ;) Since high school, we continued to stay close and build our friendship. She went to university in Oregon, where she met her now fiancé. I remember her telling me about him over Christmas break and the incredible date they had. Right then, I knew he was a keeper.

I flew into Portland a day early, which meant I got an extra day with my best friend. I camped out at a Starbucks for the day to answer emails and do some work. Once both of us were finished for the day, we met back up at her apartment. Kristina's sister also flew in a day early, so the three of us spent the evening together. We went to Hillsdale Food Park for dinner, DIY shopping at Michaels, and then went dancing. We started at Scooter's, a fun bar downtown, then to the Crystal Ballroom where they were having a 70s vs. 80s music theme night, ending our night at White Owl, an outdoor dance club. We stayed out past 2AM - I was wiped, but had a blast!


Kristina wanted to spend her bachelorette on the coast of Portland, so off to Manzanita we went! Before heading to the house, we stopped at Nehalem Bay Winery for some wine tasting. Once we got to the house, we had a picnic on the balcony - it was perfect weather! We also decorated for Kristina with fun signs, penis straws, and gold and white balloons. The weather was too amazing not to then head to the beach. Manzanita's beach was so different than anything I'd seen. It was stark and flat, but beautiful. For a quick pick-me-up afterwards, we went downtown for some coffee and exploration. Before dinner, we played some fun games, like Bridal Pictionary and a new one, Mixed Salad. After our pizza dinner, we went back down to the beach for a bonfire. We were welcomed by a gorgeous sunset! I always feel so close to God when I see sunsets like that. It was truly breathtaking. Once the sun fully set, we enjoyed our bonfire with s'mores and star gazing.

We had another beautiful day on Sunday. We ate pancakes and fruit on the deck for breakfast, with views of the ocean in the distance. On our way back to Portland, we stopped at Tillamook Creamery, where we went on a self-guided tour of the cheese factory and had some tasty ice cream.

The rest of my Sunday was spent relaxing, watching Queer Eye, and having a tasty Mexican dinner with Kristina, her sister, and her fiancé.

I had such a wonderful weekend exploring the Oregon coast and celebrating my beautiful best friend and her upcoming wedding.

Three weeks and counting until the big day!