September 7, 2012

Decisions Decisions... and an update

You might have noticed (although, I very much doubt that anyone other than Sara-Kate did... hi SK!) that I haven't blogged in 3 months. I attribute this [unplanned] hiatus to several things:

1) I was studying for the Bar and had very few blog-worthy things going on to write about, 
2) I was feeling really over it, this whole keeping up with a blog thing, and 
3) As I inch closer to being a lawyer, I'm sort of conflicted about what/how much of my life I should be publicly posting on these crazy - and sometimes creepy - interwebs. 

I'm still going back-and-forth about whether I want to continue blogging at all ~ but since this is my little corner of the internet to keep record of memories that I can reflect on later without digging thru iPhoto and the like, while I mull this issue over (don't worry, I'm not really mulling... little to no actual brain space is being tied up with thoughts of do-I-or-don't-I-keep-blogging nonsense) I think I'll dump a few photo memories of the last 3 months into a post. 

**related: my sudden urge to have pictures memorialized on my blog to grab and save at a later date has been heightened due to the fact that I recently had my iPhone and camera stolen on a trip to the beach! If I'd been a better blogger, I would have had most of my pictures available online even though I don't have my phone or memory card. I'll add that to the "Pro" column of my blog/don't blog list...

We've spent lots of time having low-key fun w/ friends this summer. Concerts on the green, farmers markets, and cookouts on the deck have been our go-to weekend activities. 
Concert on the green


Gia + Darla = BFFs forever

Someone perfected the head-out-the-window dog move on our weekly drive to the Janssen's!
 We spent a week in Ohio with family and we got to MEET OUR BABY NIECE! She is getting so big and she's so presh. We are obsessed with her!
Uncle Andrew meets little Brookie

20 mile bike ride w/ my maniac mom... what was I thinking?
After a week in Ohio, we headed even farther north to spend a week with our extended family on our annual Canada fishing/boating/lake trip. I spent the majority of my week inside studying, but it was still such a fun week and Darla got to tag along!
THE BEST car riding puppy. She was so good!

View from my study dungeon on our trip to Canada.
 We headed back to Atlanta, where life as normal resumed. Aka we went back to being crazy pet parents. Darla and Bella are now besties, and spend the better part of their day chasing each other or napping (but not cuddling) near each other.
My girls :)

Darla graduated from PUPPY SCHOOL!

Embarrassingly proud parents.
 I flew up to Ohio to take the Bar exam at the end of July and got to spend a few days in Hudson after that miserable thing was over. Which meant more baby Brooke time and a little Lake Erie fun.
Auntie Em

Pier W for dinner
 And because I'm too lazy to re-order these pics, here are a few other Canada gems. Darla wasn't so sure about the water at first, but homegirl looooved the sand. And by the end of the week, she had made friends with all the other dogs and realized that she can, in fact, swim. We were as shocked as she was! We were pretty sure this big moose of a dog would sink.
Lake pup

Someone get me a power washer...

Sisters on the boat
Sadly, some of the best memories of this summer were stolen along with my phone and camera. My sister had 2 beautiful wedding showers, and then these two cuties GOT MARRIED!!!!!!! I'll snag a few pics as they get posted of their gorgeous wedding and post them sometime between now and their 10th anniversary I'm sure.
I spent Labor Day weekend in South Beach for SK's bachelorette party, which unfortunately ended with a beach theft and left me phone-less for 4 days. Moral of that story: don't leave your bags out of reach when you're doing cartwheels on the beach. Or, if you know you're prone to doing such "irresponsible" things, (thank you, husband, for using - and overusing - that adjective... I have heard it quite enough this week, thank you very much!) back up your phone and camera pics every week during your favorite show! That's my new plan, anyway ;) 

That's all I've got energy for today. I'll be back... sometime! Maybe!

June 7, 2012

Work Tote

My parents wanted to get me a nice "lawyer bag" for graduation. Little did I know, finding a quality office/court-appropriate bag to tote around would prove to be ridiculously difficult.

The totes I found were either:

a) too small 
       I don't need a weekender, just something to fit some files and at least a laptop.
b) too flimsy 
       Ideally, I was looking for something sturdy enough to stand on its own.
c) too fashionable* or 
      Black or brown leather. Boring. But necessary.
d) actually a diaper bag
     True story. Every single bag I was drawn too came with a changing pad haha.

*I'm all for fashionable work bags, believe me. But certain bags are just not made for most office settings (or, especially, not made for court): patent leather, bright colors, flashy prints, designers' monogram plastered all over it, polka dots, etc.

I wasn't interested in spending their life savings on this gift, but I wanted (and they wanted for me, of course) a nice, quality, durable bag that was designed to really last. As it turned out, a great, functional, appropriate bag was really hard to find! I narrowed it down to my go-to, favorite designers and checked them all out in person before making a decision. So, for anyone else who is in the market for a similar bag, I put together a little list of my top picks. {Based on: simplicity of design, durability, quality of materials/leather, space, and personal preference!}

I settled on the Kate Spade. It is really well-made ~ sturdy, great interior pockets/storage, and easily can accommodate files and a computer without anything poking out the top or sides. It definitely looks like a "work bag" and not a purse - which is exactly what I was going for. duh. I gave my new lawyer bag a trial run at my first big girl job interview last week and further confirmed my choice -- I love it! 

Would I rather have spent that kind of $$$ on 15 other dumb little things? Probably. But all this to say, I'm happy to have found a work tote that I will (hopefully) use for a verrrry long time. And since it wasn't as easy of a search process as I initially expected... it was worth taking the time to really look and hopefully my research and testing of these silly bags will prove to be helpful to someone else who embarks on the same search down the road ;)

Anyone else have work tote favorites to share?? I'd love to have more options/ideas to pull from for future reference!

May 31, 2012

Summer Dreaming

While I'm cooped up inside studying for the dreaded Bar exam all summer... my mind is drifting from boring contracts and property lectures to fantasies of summery sangria, bright beautiful centerpieces, fruity foods and fun warm-weather fashion.

Sadly, most days as of late I don't get out of pajamas or put on a bra until after noon. I'm doing my best to at least run a brush through my hair before my poor husband gets home... but even that is not something I'm managing to do on the reg. {On the up side, I won't have to buy new make-up at this rate until about 2015.}

8 more weeks.

Until then... here is where my little (and overcrowded. and exhausted.) brain is wandering.

Dream on.
Raspberry and Serrano Sangria... need to make this asap!

These Jamba Juice recipes look sooo refreshing! Smoothies = brain food :)

I'm loving citrus + floral centerpieces for summer entertaining.

Super healthy strawberry shortcake muffins - these look like a perfect summer breakfast/brunch addition!

I'm daydreaming about this entire outfit... and also dreaming of a long toned arms/legs to go inside the clothes...

Thanks to my black thumb and no time, this will continue to be a pipe dream for basically... well, forever.
And with that, my 10-minute study break is up. Back to Professor Poke-Your-Eyes-Out-Boring for the remainder of the morning.

Go enjoy some summer fun for me, will ya?? :)

May 18, 2012

Brooke Michelle

The long-awaited birth of our precious niece finally arrived last week!

Brooke Michelle was born on May 14th.

Her perfect little cheeks weighed in at 7 lbs 5 oz.
She has stolen our hearts and we can't wait to get our hands on her next month!!!

Her first picture!

Cutest little burrito
One of my faves!
"No more pictures please..."
"Excuse me... someone get me outta here!"
So precious!!!!!
Despite being hundreds of miles away, we feel like we know this little bean already thanks to (almost hourly) pictures from my in-laws! We're an aunt/uncle... what a cool, special, amazing thing! We can't wait to watch this little girl grow. Her birth has made us really anxious to move back closer to family so that we can be part of her life on a more regular basis :)

Brooke ~ you have only been on this planet for a few short days and already you are so loved!!! Your auntie and uncle can't wait to spoil you rotten....... in fact, I'm headed out right now to mail you a (another...) present! xoxo