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Monthly Archives: May 2012

Mother’s Day #recap

Nothing like a belated recap to kick off a freezing Thursday (wtf Mother Nature?!)

Mother’s Day, just a few short weeks ago. As you know from this post, we were still making plans extremely last-minute to honor some of the most important women in our lives.

Final decision? Starved Rock State Park

It was awesome. Some hiking followed by a little cookout, the whole time being one with nature. Love! Added bonus was the park is located at the mid-point between my parents in Iowa and the rest of us in Chi.

A more in-depth ode was done to my mom here, or check out this extremely short video from our Starved Rock adventure:

Please note the song is a complete cliché, living out my childhood dreams of someday putting Mama by the Spice Girls to good use.


Tuesday #top5 Summer Style

I suppose this could be considered my second dive into the world of fashion via blog. Check out my first attempt here with mint green, seriously love. Taking that out of the equation, here are my #top5 summer fashion trends:

(1) Neon

I’m not a “go big or go home” girl when it comes to neon. A small dose makes a big impact. I love neon three ways: accessories (jewelry, belts, nail polish, etc), swimwear and workout clothing/gear:

(2) Colored Jeans

I’ve loved colored jeans ever since Milan Akerman wore them last fall. Since then it seems everyone is testing out the rainbow, and I am too:

[Image from Mirror]

(3) Maxi

Skirt, dress, solid, print … you cannot go wrong with this simple, comfortable style. Perfect for a day at the office, running errands or bumming around the city:

(4) Lace

I love how lace bumps up any look a notch. It’s lady-like and sophisticated but can also be stylish and fun:

(5) White jeans

My Gram loves wearing white. Always has, always will. I’ll never forget the day Gram wore all white to go hiking. A true class act. I absolutely love white … specifically white jeans:

I’m obsessed with … my life!

Well I just got back to Chi after an amazing weekend home in Iowa and I literally can’t help but think that life is pretty great right now. In fact, it’s f’ing awesome.


I recently read a quote on Twitter about being the best you. A weekend in Iowa always allows time for self-reflection and what I’ve realized that I’m the best me when I’m doing things I love and surrounding myself with the people I love. I don’t have everything workout out yet, but I’m young — I’m not supposed to. I’m supposed to learn, grow, experience and enjoy.

So yeah — life is pretty FAB!!

Ok I’ll step off my blog soapbox now…

LASIK: 3-months

3-month LASIK check-up? Success!

I figure the 3-month mark was time for me to move on from all old vision-oriented things: bottles of contact solution, extra contact cases, partially used drops, etc. I’m going to donate my glasses and looking for something to do with leftover contacts. What a great feeling!

My friend Justin went to Dr. Probst at TLC from my recommendation and is in the same boat as me: happy as a clam with vision. Love!

LASIK = top 5 decisions of 2012. Period.

Tuesday #top5 Ice Cream

The warm weather means that one of my favorite treats is more socially acceptable: ice cream!

Check out my #top5:

(1) Breyer’s Oreo Birthday Blast!

Heaven in my mouth. Cake flavored ice cream with Oreos and sprinkles in honor of Oreo’s 100th birthday. Um I’ll take seconds…

(2) Whitey’s Mint Chocolate Chip

I grew up with Whitey’s, a Quad Cities tradition since 1933. In addition to supporting local business, it is hands down amazing ice cream. My go-to? Mint Chocolate Chip! Close seconds are Graham Central Station or Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough.

(3) Breyer’s Waffle Cone with Chocolatey Chips Blast!

Lin brought this specific ice cream into my life. I will forever be in her debt because it is awesome. Hits the spot with chocolate-covered waffle cone pieces, chocolate chips and caramel swirls. YUM!

(4) Whitey’s Viking Pride

Created in honor of Augustana’s 150th Anniversary, Whitey’s Viking Pride is peanut butter ice cream with fudge swirls and Oreo chunks. In addition, Augustana and Whitey’s tackled the Guinness World Record of the longest chain of people licking ice cream. Delicious and awesome.

(5) Ben & Jerry’s Chunky Monkey

I’d wanted to try this flavor forever. I finally gave in and bought it for our Bachelor finale party this past winter. Best decision ever. I love banana-flavored anything. I love chocolate. And the walnuts remind me that I’m still being healthy? Ha! Regardless it is delicious.


I’m obsessed with … Jillian

Have you ever heard this quote?

“Some people come into our lives and quickly go. Some stay for a while and leave footprints on our hearts, and we are never the same.” –Unknown

So true.

She came into my life toward the end of 6th grade. I gave her a tour of the school as she was going to be starting at Bettendorf Middle School for 7th grade. She was more like a sister than friend throughout high school being on the dance team together. Stayed friends through college despite the distance as she ventured to Texas. And to this day, Jillian remains one of my closest friends.

You may remember her from this trip I took to Dallas. Aside from our annual weekend get together in Dallas or Chicago, we keep in touch via phone calls, emails, Twitter, Facebook and most recently … you can follow her blog: KeepnUpWithJ

My favorite? Our annual weekend get together, obvi. Time spent with Jillian is spontaneous, its quality and it’s a guaranteed awesome time.

So why is this post so timely given my trip to Dallas was last October? Well Miss Jillian just booked herself a Chi weekend extravaganza for July!! I could not be more excited and literally feel like I’m already counting the days.

Shall we countdown together? T-67 days!!

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Recipes: Cooking Out!

With Memorial Day weekend just around the corner and Mother Nature on board with the weather, it’s time to fire up the grill for one of my fave seasonal traditions: COOKING OUT!


Here are some of my favorite cookout recipe ideas:


Main Course


  • Corn on the Cob
  • Baked Beans
  • Watermelon Wedges



Recipes courtesy of: thetwentysixthyear, The Thread Affect, Food Network, Taste of Home, Our Best Bites