LIFE AS YOU LIVE IT

VIEW THROUGH MY LENS: JULY

31 July 2016

I started posting these "view through my lens post" to help recap each month through my iPhone shots to keep random snapshots saved and easy to find. They are, by far, my favorite posts to write and look back on, as I am able to relive each and every memory from the month.

I started my new job on July 1st! After years of having a very flexible schedule and flexible income, I am now on a set schedule with a set income and I like it a lot! I feel as though I am being paid to learn which is the most rewarding part. 


We found this cat sized pool table in our house and Macy couldn't be any happier! Look at that face of excitement!


Moving out of Boston has been a little bit of a process, especially since we opted out of hiring a moving company. We figured that since we had a month of overlap we could make weekend trips up to slowly move everything over. My favorite part was camping in our bedroom! (:


I am truly so very sad to be leaving this place, it was such an amazing place to live!


I found this moose sleeper and put it on the cat. She hated it, I loved it.


Lake Winnipesaukee in all its glory from Mount Major.


We scored BIG TIME in the wild blueberry department! Bring on the pound cake!


...and then we found this on the hike down... #blairwitchproject?


I've been getting so lucky in the fresh produce department at the office, delicious! I love that people bring their veggies in for everyone! I can barely grow a flower.


L's been working hard at clearing some trees in the backyard. Rumor has it that in the wintertime, we might be able to see a mountain skyline from our loft!


I haven't been horseback riding in centuries! Mamacita and I took them out to a little pond where the Pony went crazy and my ride tried to roll me in the water. #greatsuccess


...but we rode through this adorable Christmas tree farm. I need to live on a Christmas tree farm!


L has set a test date for his series 65 do it has been nothing but studying around here. Even the cat is over it.


I see a fried chicken.


Fiddle leaf fig fail. Remember when I got it?



 Looking forward to what August has in store for us!

VIEW THROUGH MY LENS: JUNE

30 June 2016



I started posting these "view through my lens posts" to help recap each month through my iPhone shots to keep random snapshots saved and easy to find. They are, by far, my favorite posts to write and look back on, as I am able to relive each and every memory from the month. 


Sorry for the radio silence for the past couple weeks after we announced our move to New Hampshire! Even though we gave ourselves a month of overlap between our lease in Boston and our lease in New Hampshire, we are still finding ourselves a bit frazzled. Moving to a different state is fun, yet extremely chaotic at the same time. We have a never ending to do list that continues to get longer by the day and we are finding it more and more difficult to tackle as our schedules are still very full. To put it into perspective, I left the DMV crying this morning. But hey, June was still a ton of fun nonetheless, so let's get crackin'!

I dropped the ball in May by publishing my "view through the lens post" four days late, but kept my word by getting posts up regarding my very fun and impromptu 14 hour trip to vegas (video), graduation (video), and family road trip to Ohio and back. Score!

Thanks to the convenience of the city, where we worked, and where we lived, L and I haven't needed a vehicle to cruise around in for the past three years. Now that we no longer live within walking distance to anything (except for a swanky pool), L and I found it necessary to invest in a good, reliable, four-wheel drive car. While we still have good old faithful from high school, it will be nice having some newer, bigger, and a little more reliable.


Right after we moved into our new house, we ran off to play in the North Conway and Bar Harbor areas. L and I hiked up to Cathedral Ledge where we got engaged three months prior and found the tree that we carved in. You can barely read it!


While in Bar Harbor, we met up with my sister and found our way to the Beehive trail, a crowd favorite! We had to introduce L and his brother to the hiking "rungs and ladder" experience... they enjoyed!! I think the pictures below literally speak miles for the beauty that is Acadia National Park, so I won't go into too much detail. It is by far one of the most beautiful places I have ever been to, read my review of my trip to Bar Harbor and Acadia a couple summers ago, here!




The following weekend, we scooted over to Freeport Maine to play in L.L. Bean's many stores! We started out at Wolfe's Neck Woods State park and then worked our way over to the shopping.


House Goals. Naturally, it's the L.L. Bean Outdoor Center.


What a view!


We ALWAYS have to take an obligatory photo in front of the infamous boot. I believe this one was snapped right after the kind lady at L.L. Bean scolded the big kid sitting in the front (my father) for climbing it. ...and he was the first one to climb the boot all day, at 7pm... 



We didn't go too crazy in the shopping department, however we did tire the guys out when we hit the home store. When L.L. Bean designed this store, they clearly had the #boysclub in mind.


L started his first day of work the following Monday. This is such a different lifestyle for us. Our jobs in Boston, prior to the move, were very close to home making it easy to scoot home for a long lunch or to eat out. We are now grocery shopping and packing lunches! Exciting! But really, we love it! (:


I went back into Boston for a couple days where I was graciously blessed with a feast of a goodbye party by the kind ladies that I worked with. The picture below is JUST the dessert spread! JUST the desserts, people! I left very happy and very full. Can we take a second to talk about that delicious carrot cake. It is by far the best carrot cake I HAVE EVER HAD. I encourage everyone who is in the Boston area to buy a little slice of heaven from Modern Pastry located on Hanover Street in the North End. I will severely miss eating this cake 2 to 3 times a week! :(



While in Boston, I also worked my last couple shifts at the bar that I have worked at for the past three years. It was my first and last job in the city. As much as I may have huffed and puffed about it in the past (as all people in the industry do), I truly will miss it. When in season (Bruins and Celtics), it's a crazy, fast paced microbrew with an exciting vibe! It has always kept me grounded, and has always helped me make ends meet financially. The people that I worked with were very friendly, and the schedule was flexible. I know that I will secretly miss it. Thank you BBW! (:


We moved two vehicles full of our stuff out of the North End on Sunday, what fun that was. I cried a little. I will miss our beautiful home here so very much. We were so fortunate to have such a great apartment, a great location, and a phenomenal landlord. I feel as though I will always compare future homes to our wonderful, tiny house here.


Our new house is wonderful as well! It is an old ski chalet that comes with all of the charm. I feel as though I'm on vacation every time I'm there. I'm sure that will wear off after I start my new job tomorrow, start doing my household chores, and get into a daily grind. As mentioned above, we are desperately trying to get our lives back to ABC after our move, but we are hitting roadblocks every step of the way. The only "thing" we have really been able to get done thus far (in two weeks) is set up our electric. That's it. We have electric and that is all. Because of our new, and very remove location, we had to switch internet providers which has been a trip. Hopefully, that will be set up next week and I will no longer need to camp out in the library. We aren't completely sure which route we're going to take regarding the trash and recycling pickup which is another little "thing" we need to address... it's starting to build up. Because we just purchased a vehicle, we are looking to register it in NH, however, we need NH licenses to do so. We drove over a half hour to the DMV today with all of the required paperwork only to be turned away because they didn't like the format of the lease we signed and didn't want to use it for residency verification. I cried. I'm becoming frustrated over little things like that not getting done. We bought ourselves a little gift on the way back to make it worth the trip. After all, we will need it to help clean up the yard and were actively shopping for one. The list of things to get done continues to grown and not having internet makes it very difficult. Dang internet. I'm so excited to get settled though and enjoy our new space. It is truly a very unique place and will be a wonderful area to live.


Our view out the back is all trees. It's beautiful, peaceful, quiet, and nothing like Boston. I will miss the city noises at night, but also appreciate the silence that our new home has to offer. The shingle siding is my favorite part, along with the massive deck that wraps around two sides of the house. When we get more settled, I will be sure to share pictures. It is truly one of a kind!


 I'm happy to see that this little lady is enjoying the new house! We have slowly been letting Macy Cat out to explore and I don't think I like it. She likes to stay out anywhere from 5 minutes to an hour and a half, so imagine the worry wort that I become! She has been an indoor city cat for the past three years and has absolutely no street cred! 


I'm off to head home, my mom is visiting for the day and is only 15 minutes away! SO MUCH FUN! Maybe we'll bake cookies and hike? Enjoy your last day in June!

Looking forward to what July has in store for us!


We're Moving! Today!

15 June 2016

Surprise!


Remember the picture below? I dropped a hint back in March about a potential adventure coming our way. 


As you may or may not know, L and I are originally from the midwest and made the move to New England in the summer of 2013 (I just realized none of the pictures from that post show up, that makes me sad). We have been in Boston for the past three years to finish up our degrees, start our careers, and experience a new and different area. I am so glad that we made the move to Boston, as it has been nothing short of an amazing place to live. I could go on and on about how great it is, however I may start crying... so let's save that post for another day! We knew that Boston would be temporary, as L missed having a backyard and the country life.

In March, L accepted a position to a job located in NH that offered him everything he was looking for, for his particular position. He and I were both very excited and interested in the area, as it would only be a short two hour +/- move for us. A couple months later, I was offered a position in the same area, which I am very thankful for as well. Through a mutual friend, we were able to secure a little home a 10 minute drive to work. 

L and I also just purchased a vehicle, as we haven't needed one in three years. Now that we're in the sticks and are unable to walk everywhere, it was a necessity. As I type this, L and his brother are hitting their twelfth hour in the car as they make the trek to Boston. Once they arrive, we will pack up a few things and continue the trip right into NH!

Fortunately, we still have our apartment in Boston through July which makes moving 10x easier. Because we still have the space, we will be able to move everything over in phases. Phase one (today) is the cat, her stuff, the TV/cabinet/movies/games, and some bedding. 

Being the geek that I am (no shame), I designed a moving planner to help us have a hopefully seamless move! It's 12 pages of important contacts, packing lists, room layouts, moving tips, you name it! I just put it up in my Etsy shop today.


My favorite part of the planner is on the last page under the "moving tips" section. I put together a box of "first day essentials". While we are moving to a furnished home, I still feel as though these are a few items that we may need when we first arrive. Paper towels, toilet paper, disinfecting wipes, a measuring tape, snacks, hand sanitizer, dish and laundry detergent, barrel liners, scissors, tape and pens... just to name a few. It will be nice having these very important items all together in one place for when we need them!


 I will continue to keep you posted as to how the move goes! I'm thinking I will try to make a little vlog since I've been enjoying the world of youtube (my channel) lately! I'm off to continue packing! (: Wish us luck!


14 Hours in VEGAS!

10 June 2016


I mentioned in my May recap post that my friend had surprised me with a trip to Las Vegas as a graduation gift to celebrate the end of my undergrad career! I hadn't been there since I was a tyke and we both had intentions of going sometime during our adult life. The timing of the trip could not have been more perfect, and we lucked out with beautiful weather! We flew out of Boston at 6am stayed for 14 hours, and then took a red-eye back. I have never taken a quick trip like that before, but am now inclined to take more exactly like it!

I've enjoyed making fun, recap videos and posting them on my youtube channel, and am glad that I snapped some videos of our 14 hour experience to help document the trip! I've been finding that little videos of any adventures are more fun to look back on then pictures, so sit back and enjoy! 


Let me preface this post by letting you know that we barely made it on the plane in Boston. When you watch movies of people running through the airport trying to make their flight, that was us... in dresses. We were running a little behind and when we got in the long line for security, we wanted to cry. Thankfully, the angels that work at Boston Logan were MORE than accommodating, by calling the gate, bringing us to the front of the line, and ushering us through the security protocol. We then started sprinting like mad women to our gate, where we were the last to board and actually ended up scoring an entire row for ourselves in the back of the plane. I have so much love for Jet Blue! Our 6 hour flight over was filled with lots of candy eating, tv watching, and a little bit of sleeping.


We had a handful of things that we absolutely wanted to make sure we saw/did while there and then played the rest by ear. One of those being noshing at the infamous Giada Restaurant. Our food (Strawberry Polenta Waffle and Lemon Pesto Grilled Cheese) was amazing, and the view of the strip was even better. This was a great place to relax, refresh, and recharge after the plane ride. From there, we walked around a little, shopped, and had some tea at Sambalatte to wake us up!


Another attraction on our list that we wanted to visit was The Mob Museum. This fascinating museum gave us some insight into how the organized crime effected Las Vegas by displaying multiple stories, artifacts, and movies to help us better understand. The museum is pretty large and is very engaging for all age groups. It was interesting to learn more about this, especially after the release of Black Mass. 


We did pass through the "Fremont Street Experience" in search for a little cocktail bar, but that was it. This is where you will find grown men dressed as babies and nearly naked women. Fascinating! My favorite part of the day was seeing Cirque Du Soleil's Ka show. We ate at Wolfgang Puck's prior to the show, which is also located in MGM Grand. Ka was indescribably amazing. I literally cannot put into words how talented the acrobats were and the quality of music, lights, direction and stages that were used. Imagine the acrobats climbing vertical walls, swinging across the audience, and running on top of a huge hamster wheel and jump roping while it is also spinning... because that's what they did. I would go and see this over and over again if I could. It was worth every penny and then some.


By the time Ka finished, it was dark out, so we ubered our way over to the Bellagio to catch a fountain show. As expected, this was perfect as well. I think they do their fountain show ever 15 minutes at night which made it convenient to watch. We decided to try our hands at a few of the slots afterwards where we had no luck. Actually, I had no luck. I believe Kristina ended up breaking even and then some. By then it was time to make our way back to the airport where we sat at the gate with sleepy eyes waiting for our plane. The plane ride back didn't seem very long, as sleeping and eating helped to pass the time. I am so happy and glad that we were able to zip up for a couple hours to experience the infamous sin city. It was everything I imagined it to be and so much fun! 


...and guess what!? That's another thing that I can cross off my 30 by 30 list!
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Getting Crafty: my graduation cap

07 June 2016


I didn't have any intentions of decorating my cap for graduation up until a week before when I drew inspiration from my dear friend, Sallie May. That sweet email sitting in my inbox reminding me that I had just entered by short six month grace period and had years of payments ahead of me. Thank you, education. I don't know where the fun tradition of decorating graduation caps came from, however I do love the entertaining spin that they provide on an otherwise long and boring ceremony. There were a handful of creative ones at my ceremony, some of which were completely covered in keys (heavy!), and others that looked like a piece of art created by Van Gogh himself!


 I used my beloved silhouette portrait to cut out the words "MY $75,000 DOLLAR HAT" onto a metallic card stock that shimmered. Unfortunately, it doesn't look very shimmery here. Obviously, this hat is very customizable and you can put whatever outrageous number that you spent on your education on it. Let me explain myself by saying that $75,000 was an estimate of my expenses over the past 5 years. It includes what I paid in cash for my tuition, any loans, books, etc. Thankfully, the loans I have yet to pay off are a little less that 1/4 of this number. PUT MONEY TOWARDS YOUR LOANS WHILE YOU'RE STILL IN SCHOOL, KIDS. If I were to include my cost of living expenses, the number would be a little lot higher. I didn't want to get too crazy.


I used a sticky note from a mortgage company that I found in my desk and rolled it up to resemble a diploma. Tied it with a ribbon and wrote my major on there... ya know, in case I forgot?


I wanted to glitz it out a little bit since it WAS my $75,000 hat, so I glued a few multicolored swarovski crystal rhinestones on to make it look a little more "expensive". There's only so much you can do to a cardboard hat.


VOILA! My $75,000 hat!

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