Monday, July 26, 2021


person riding on canoe boat in between hill on body of water

A photo I snapped on our 2016 trip to Banff.

Chalk it up to a "stay at home" 2020 to conjure up feelings of wanderlust in this homebody. I wouldn't necessarily consider myself to be well-traveled. But I am someone who enjoys traveling to specific places I want to go. I'm not one of those people who tags along on trips or goes to a place just to say I've been there. I'm very intentional with my travel...which is why my list of previous travel destinations is pretty short. 

However, because I'm a selective traveler, my list of places I want to visit is also fairly short. To me, this is attainable in my lifetime pretty easily. 

Gulf Coast Beaches (Florida, USA)

Grand Tetons/Sawtooth Mountains (Idaho, Wyoming, Montana, USA)

Scotland/Ireland (the motherland :) )

Switzerland (the fatherland :) )

Seoul (South Korea)


Banff (Alberta, Canada)

Big Bend National Park (Texas, USA)

The Caribbean (Ocho Rios, Jamaica)



Since 5 of my remaining 8 are international, it sounds like I better start saving more! Where are some of your must-have travel locations? 

Tuesday, June 15, 2021

Summer Goals 2021

Ah yes, the temperatures have started climbing into the 90s and the humidity is in the 80s. It must be summer in the Carolinas. Every summer I typically have a few goals I try to achieve. Sometimes, I do achieve them. Most times I fail miserably. But hey, I wouldn't be a true Enneagram 1 if I didn't set high standards for myself and then later berate myself for not living up to them...right? 


One. Take one "unplugged" vacation. I'm very busy at all the time. Over the last 4 years in this role, I've taken on more responsibility and so, it's very difficult for me to truly get away from work for a vacation. My goal for this summer is to take a trip with M that will allow me to be off-grid and unreachable by work. I don't want to have the option to check email or answer messages so that my mind can relax and refresh. We've booked a trip in a farmhouse in late August that may just fit the bill. More on that later. 

Two. Save enough money to have our kitchen cabinets painted. This has been a goal of mine for a couple of years now. I want to use the summer as my time to save extra income so this can happen.

Three. Get better at piano. I've long said that I'm a jack of all trades but master of none. Meaning, I'm a little good at a lot of things but I've never really taken time to get really good at many of them. I've known how to "play" the piano since I was a child but I stopped taking lessons and just never taught myself how to play accompaniment. This is an area that I think I could easily get much better at with more dedication and practice. So, I vow to beef up my piano accompaniment skills this summer.

Four. Perfect my sangria recipe. For a few years I've had a basic recipe that I just kind of add to each year. This summer, I want to focus on perfecting it. My goal is July 4th. 

Five. Finish our backyard landscaping. This is a pretty lofty goal, to be honest. We are about halfway there but still have lots of mulch to spread, weeds to kill, plants to plant. Maybe this should be my fall goal too? :D 

Monday, May 31, 2021

Flooring Update - Luxury Vinyl Plank

If 2020 taught us anything, it was that it's worth the time and money to invest in your home. We spent so much of our time last year inside these walls, so splurging on updating some of the things we didn't love about our home made a lot of sense. 

From when we purchased the house, we knew we eventually wanted to update the flooring. The upstairs is carpet (yet to be updated) and the downstairs had hardwoods. While they weren't in terrible, they were a reddish wood stain and very, very shiny. They were also super soft and every scratch, ding, dropped fork and dog scratch showed on them. We wanted to invest in flooring that could withstand dropped utensils and dog claws and high heels AND match our style a little better. 

Here are some before photos that show the flooring: 

And now some of the after photos: 

We are so pleased with the flooring we chose for the downstairs. After many weeks of research and comparison, we decided on Lifeproof Luxury Vinyl Plank in Choice Oak. I'm pretty sure it's a Home Depot exclusive. And no, this isn't a sponsored post in any way. We just heard such great things about Lifeproof flooring that we ended up choosing it. 

We've had these floors now for a few months and we are so happy we did it. It makes a huge difference in the look of the downstairs and I can drop a knife or plate and not worry about creating a huge gouge in the flooring. When Bear (who has a beard) drinks water and drips from his water bowl into the living room, I'm not worried about water stains. Lifeproof flooring is waterproof and scratch resistant. It's also Floorscore Certified, has low VOCs and is formaldehyde-free for air quality purposes. 

Have you done any home updates during the last year?

Monday, May 24, 2021

On Grief and Love


I don't know if you have seen Wandavision yet on Disney Plus? It's a tv show and one of the more recent installments in the Marvel Comic Universe. If you haven't, I think you should. 

Here's the deal, I am not a Marvel person. I've only seen a few of the movies but M convinced me to watch it and I'm glad I did. The entire plot centers around grief and it is SO GOOD. Seriously. It's so good. 

I don't want to spoil anything if you haven't watched it, but there's a point when the main character (Wanda) is dealing with the fact that her husband/soul mate is dying and he said this quote. 

At first when I heard it, it didn't register. But then I thought about it more and more and it completely rocked me. I'm no stranger to grief...especially grief over someone I so dearly loved. So, I decided to make a simple quote graphic while doodling on my iPad. It reminds me that grief and love are entwined. They never truly go away...even when a person has. Sometimes grief is like a sucker-punch and other times it's a sweet memory. But in every way that grief resurfaces, it's continued proof that love endures and perseveres. 

Monday, May 10, 2021

Brands You Probably Forgot About, But Shouldn't Anymore


I'm partially brand loyal.

I'd say maybe 70/30 non-loyal and loyal. 

For most things, the brand isn't relevant or priority. I'll buy what I like or what is on sale. For other things, I'm a total brand snob. Some of my favorite brands are very mainstream (Diet Coke, Kate Spade, Apple, Chaco, Duke's Mayo, Cheerios, etc.) Some of my favorite might not have heard of...or you've at least not heard of them in awhile. 

Time & Tru

This is a house brand from Walmart and it's only been around for a couple of years. Y'all, I am obsessed with so many things from this line including these shift dresses, these sandals and these leggings.


This is a brand I've only been able to find on Zulily, but it's affordable and a great place for basics like cardigans, leggings, tops, tunics and more. See Zenana on Zulily.


I have been singing Cupshe's praises for a few years now and have almost exclusively made my entire swimsuit wardrobe from this brand. The quality is excellent. (I've had many suits for multiple seasons.) The sizing is inclusive (HOORAY!) and the styles offer something for the more modest (like myself) or the more daring. I just bought my 5th Cupshe suit for this season. See Cupshe.

American Eagle

The caveat with this one is you've probably forgotten about American Eagle if you're a man or woman of a certain age. I used to shop at AE when I was a teenager and now as an established woman in her mid-30s it's not typically somewhere I'd look but they are killing it with a few things in general: denim, inclusive sizing and fits, basics and Aerie boyfriend tees. I'm obsessed with the boyfriend tees and actually have 9 of them. :)

Are there any other brands you're loyal to but I might not know about?

Monday, April 26, 2021

Things That Make Me Sneeze

In my wildly popular (read: a handful of readers) "Things That Make Me..." series, I realized I never did one for sneezing. Why sneezing? Well, since pollen-mageddon is upon us, it feels...appropriate. 

Also, can we talk about sneezing during the time of COVID? No one wants to sneeze in their mask...but also it feels wrong to pull down the mask to sneeze. So...I end up pulling my mask slightly down and doing the vampire sneeze...aka the dab as Mrs. Betty exhibits below. 

Pollen. Obvs. 

We'll start this one out with the obvious. Pollen makes me sneeze. And if you live in the southeast, you know that it's not just "pollen season". It's hide ya kids and hide ya wife, wear a mask to walk the dog or your poop will be green, pollen season. This is why I want to retire in Canada. 

I also have a theory on why pollen is so bad this year and it's tied to COVID. Hear me out...last year COVID pretty much made the world come to a standstill. And nature benefitted from it. Water, air, soil and other environment pollutions were at an all time low. So, the plants became healthier. And now they are producing more growth...which creates more pollen. Yeah? No?

honey boo boo sneezing GIF


Still. Even after multiple years of allergy shots. But at least I can be in the same room with someone who owns them. 

Will & Grace nbc makeup coke will and grace GIF

HVAC Switching

When the time of the year comes and we switch our heat to AC or vice-versa, it's about a week of sneezing. No matter how clean our filters are, it's just a mess. 

snow white and the seven dwarfs sneezing GIF by Disney

Yard Work

Any kind of outside yard work from spreading mulch to trimming hedges, rattles up my sinuses. I have to wear a mask or keep my tissues handy.

What about you? Read the other "Things that make me..." posts here:

Things That Give Me Headaches

Things That Make Me Roll My Eyes

Things That Make Me Rage (Office Edition)

Things That Make Me Rage (Travel Edition)

Things That Make Me Panic

Tuesday, April 20, 2021

Anniversary Hiking Trip


Last week, Mark and I celebrated our 7th wedding anniversary. CAN YOU BELIEVE IT? It seems like it was just a year ago that we got married

With COVID and travel restrictions/concerns, we opted to stay local and explore some of the gorgeous scenery in our home state of South Carolina. Yes, you read that right...SC has mountains too! (It's not just full of barbecue and beaches. HA!) I planned some hikes for us and used the All Trails app to keep us on track. The pics above are some of the highlights, but the trails we used are listed below. 

We also did some sightseeing at Lake Keowee, Lake Jocassee and a couple of other local sights. Due to timing and...well...being old, there were a number of hikes we didn't get to do. The great thing about vacationing in your own state is that we are only 2.5 hours away and can go back on a weekend day trip to do some. I'm looking at a few more waterfall trails for our next adventure! 

Thursday, April 8, 2021

Don't Sleep on Amazon Fashion

 It is a truth universally acknowledged that a woman in search for a great fashion deal, will try Amazon. 

And it is a truth that Amazon fashion can be a hit or a miss, but the thrill of not knowing is worth it. Ergo, I've lucked out with about 80% of my Amazon fashion adventures and want to share those with y'all! 

Long Mustard Cardigan // Gray, Black and White Cardigan // No Show, No Slip Socks // Amazon Daily Ritual (the whole brand!) // Racerback Maxi Dress (I have 3 of these!)

Tuesday, April 6, 2021

Things That Are My Current Jam


Korean Dramas

I have a coworker to thank for getting me hooked on these. Yes, they are in Korean (English subtitles) and, YES, they are so good. If anyone needs any suggestions, let me know! 

SC Waterfalls

Another friend added me to a Facebook group for South Carolina waterfalls. (I live in SC.) Every day, people post photos of waterfalls they find while hiking around in the state. Most of the waterfalls are located in the SC mountains. (Yes, non local people, South Carolina does have mountains.) M and I are taking a trip to the SC mountains next week for our anniversary and we will be doing lots of hiking. This group has been invaluable in helping me plan out our trail hikes. 

Easter M&Ms

I understand that pastel colors do not make the M&Ms taste better, however, they do make me happier while I eat them. 

Snowflakes & Cashmere

I've been chasing this elusive Bath and Body Works scent for years. They initially unveiled it at Christmas about 4 years ago and I got 2 bottles. It lasted me for a while but ultimately ran out. Then this PAST Christmas, they brought it back and I got 4 bottles. Now, the panic has started to set in because I'm down to 2.5 bottles now. Meh...

What sorts of things are tickling your fancy at the moment?

Wednesday, March 31, 2021

The Great Three Year Catch-Up Post

Three years ago (almost 4!) I wrote a blog post never realizing it might be my last one for a long time. To be honest, I just got tired of it. I got busy. I had different priorities. 

And then I kind of forgot about it. 

But then today, I logged onto my blog looking for an old recipe and it just felt enticing again. It didn't feel like a chore to keep up and I felt excitement towards writing again! 

So, here I am. And below is my pretty terrible attempt at quickly filling in the gaps over the last couple of years. Obvs, I'm just hitting the major high and low points. 


  • Said goodbye to my fur baby Hewitt.
  • Took up a hobby
  • Traveled to Puerto Rico.
  • Saw Hamilton!
  • Got my tattoo redrawn and refreshed.
  • Celebrated our 5 year wedding anniversary in Longboat Key, Florida.
  • Adopted the sweetest angel baby named Bear from a local breed rescue.
  • Did a drastic side-shave on my hair.
  • Bought a car!
  • LOL does 2020 even deserve a shout out? Just kidding...
  • Drowned my COVID sorrows with Animal Crossing.
  • Started venturing out later in the year, masked up...of course!
  • M started a YouTube channel.
  • Took a lot of puppy pics. (Can you blame me?)
  • Cut my hair. Again.
  • Welcomed my niece to the world!

Phew, that's quite a bit of happenings over the last little bit. I hope you've stayed safe and well during the pandemic!