Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Bridal Talk Tuesday - Sorority Love

Life with Elizabeth

Happy Tuesday ladies!

During my freshman year of college, probably much like many of you, I went through sorority recruitment. It was one of the best decisions I have ever made and has definitely shaped the person I am now and the friendships that are most valuable of me. I am a proud alumna member of Kappa Kappa Gamma and three of my bridesmaids are sorority sisters. I can say without a doubt that had I joined a different sorority or had I not gone through recruitment at all, I would be a completely different person and I would probably be in a completely different place in my life.

Kappa shaped the friendships I made, what social events I attended at college, who I confided in when I had a secret to tell or was having a bad day. My maid of honor is one of my closest sorority sisters and she is the person who introduced me to Corey. It is hard for me to imagine where my life would be right now had I done down a different path years ago, as an eighteen year old freshman. When you are choosing a sorority, I think it is almost impossible to realize the impact it may have on you one day down the road.

With that being said, Kappa Kappa Gamma will somehow have to be incorporated into the wedding. Many of my close friends and three of my bridesmaids will be there - and it is a ritual to sing "Oh Pat," a Kappa chant when a sister gets married. Aside from that, some ideas I've found via Pinterest for incorporating your sorority into your wedding are:

Kappa pin attached to the inside of my wedding dress as my "something blue." This makes me teary eyed!

Or perhaps, I'd pin it on my bouquet for my "something blue" so everyone can see it.

I also absolutely loved this idea, again from Pinterest. Bridesmaids' and friends' pins attached to the bouquet as "something borrowed." I think this is such a cute idea but I also have another broach I want to pin to my bouquet.

I'm not a legacy, but I also saw a pin where the bride pinned her mom's sorority pin and her sorority pin to the inside of her dress and it represented "something old." I know that would be so special for a legacy mom.

Are you a member of a sorority? Have you thought about incorporating it in a small way into your wedding? What are your thoughts?

Want to join in on the Bridal Talk? Grab the button, link back, and link up.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Monday Randoms

with the lovely Carissa at lowercase letters

Happy Monday ladies! I am not excited for the 5 am alarm this morning or to be at work after four days off, but I am super excited that December begins this week and so will our month-long Holiday unit at work. I really love this time of year - at home and in the classroom.

We had a delicious Thanksgiving and it was a wonderful day with Corey's family. My parents back home had a really great Thanksgiving, too, and I'm excited that I'll be there with them for Christmas in less than a month. My mom will be here to visit me in less than two weeks for a girls' weekend and a return trip to Kleinfeld! So exciting.

On Thanksgiving night, I felt a little bit like this, when I refused to let Corey into the car to go home until he'd helped me drag all the Christmas decorations out of his parents' garage and load them into the car - including our six and a half foot tree.

I'll have to do a photo tour of our apartment - its fully decorated but for now, here's a photo of our tree. I fought a lady for this in Target's day after Christmas 75% off sale a couple years ago. I got there first and was waiting patiently for my mom to get a shopping cart, and this woman tried to steal my tree. When she tried to take it from me, I said, "Excuse me, I was here first. I'm waiting on my mom to get a cart." And she said, "Well, I have a cart now." Well, girls, I jumped on top of the tree and straddled the box, holding on to both handles. And, I have thoroughly enjoyed the tree. Here it is, making a return appearance this year.

Corey, Riley, and I walked eight miles yesterday. It wore me out. Riley and I took a good three hour nap yesterday afternoon after we got home. But I needed the exercise and it was such a beautiful day here, we thought we should take advantage of it. Pretty soon its going to be so cold that I won't want to go outside at all. 

I don't do black Friday shopping, however I had to venture out to make a return on Friday and stopped in Bath and Body Works really quickly. I bought the Spiced Apple Toddy candle and oh my word - it smells ah-mazing. Our entire apartment has a light smell like spiced apple cider. Perfect for the Holidays!

Happy Monday girls!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Wednesday Loves and Birthday Recap

with Jamie at This Kind of Love

Happy Wednesday ladies! I can't believe my workweek is already over today and that Thanksgiving is tomorrow! As per the usual, I'm linking up with the lovely Jamie at This Kind of Love to share all my current loves.

Today I'm loving...
That we only had two and a half days at work this week. Usually teachers stay until regular time when students have half days but today we get to leave at 1:00! Yay! 

That my car, which has been in the shop for two weeks (thats a lengthy story and a whole other blog post) should be ready to be picked up today. Thank goodness because I've maxed out my rental coverage!

That I had a great birthday week last week. Thursday night one of my friends from college was in New York with her husband and parents. Corey and I met them and another sorority sister at Elio's, a famous Italian restaurant on the upper east side for a delicious dinner. It was so refreshing to see a friend from home! 

Friday was Corey's childhood best friend's birthday so we headed down to the infamous Jersey shore for a double birthday celebration with her. It was lots of fun but waking up at the beach made me wish we lived somewhere where the weather was warm!

Saturday I spent the morning with Corey and then went on an all day shopping excursion with one of my girlfriends. I even bought a birthday present or two for myself. When I got home, Corey had snuck out to Sweet, my favorite bakery, and brought home an assortment of mini cupcakes. Corey and I double dated with another couple to a delicious steakhouse here in Hoboken. It had a very classic atmosphere and the dinner was amazing. We stopped in at a local wine bar afterwards. 

On Sunday, Corey and I took Riley for a three mile walk then headed into the city with his parents for a birthday brunch at Landmarc, located at the top of the TimeWarner building overlooking Columbus Circle. Brunch was phenomenal and complete with several mimosas (my favorite!). The weather was perfect so we rented bicycles and rode a lap of Central Park. What a workout! My bottom was so sore the next morning - obviously I don't focus enough on glutes at the gym and need to spend more time on the stationary bike machine.

I'm loving all the fun new additions to my closet that resulted from my birthday. I asked for these Michael Kors riding boots from my parents and they gave them to me several weeks ago. My dad was worried my feet might get cold in New Jersey if he waited until my birthday.
Corey surprised me by hunting down this matching Michael Kors satchel that I spotted when out shopping with his mom. I love that it matches my boots and that its in between the sizes of the two bags I carry most often - exactly what I needed!
Corey's parents bought me a super cute off white puffer jacket with a cinched waist. I can't find a photo online but I really love the cut of it. I have refused to admit it will be cold enough to need a puffer coat and have adamantly refused to purchase one. I know I need a good down puffer for the New Jersey winters and I love the one Corey's parents gave me. The color is exactly what I wanted and the cinched waist still gives me definition. 

I also added a new short pea coat to my jacket collection (which is rather extensive). It is absolutely precious and I love everything about it. Its hard to tell how cute it is from the promo picture but the sleeves are the best part - so adorable. And it looks absolutely precious when its buttoned. At some point, I'll have to take a real picture. 

I bought a new blouse as a birthday gift to myself. I couldn't help myself. The black lace is so flirty and fun and I love tiered ruffles!

I'm loving that Thanksgiving is tomorrow. Holidays are absolutely the best and Thanksgiving is one of my favorites - right behind Christmas. I'm so excited for the Thanksgiving celebrations on Thursday and feel like I have a lot to be Thankful for - I feel like I'm a pretty lucky girl and am really grateful. This time last year Corey was on a plane moving to New Jersey while I stayed at home in South Carolina teaching and finishing my masters. I'm also really excited for Friday and unpacking all my Christmas decorations. 

As always, I'm loving my boys! 

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Bridal Talk Tuesday - Blending Holiday Traditions

Life with Elizabeth

Happy Tuesday ladies! I hope you all don't think I've forgotten about you - I had a super busy week last week and weekend celebrating my birthday. It was a great weekend and I have some pretty new goodies - more to come on that later this week, though!

I have been cooking up a storm this week preparing for Thanksgiving - we're having a potluck at work today, my classroom is having a Thanksgiving party on Wednesday, and then I'm preparing for real Thanksgiving with Corey's family on Thursday. This is the first Thanksgiving in my entire life that I haven't spent with my parents and my own family and as I was preparing a Bridal Talk Tuesday discussing my take on bridesmaids dresses, I changed my mind completely and decided to talk about a more serious topic.You'll have to stay tuned another week in the near future to check out my top picks for my what my bridesmaids will be wearing.

Today I wanted to talk about blending holiday traditions. I am an only child and I have never spent a Thanksgiving away from my parents. There were a couple Thanksgivings where it was just me and my mom (when I was representing South Carolina at the National American Miss pageant in California which took place during Thanksgiving week, for example) but most of the time I've had both my parents with me and other members of my own extended family.

On my 21st birthday my father was admitted into the hospital for congestive heart failure. He stayed in the hospital for a week and it was unbelievably scary for me. He came home on Wednesday afternoon before Thanksgiving and even though we ate steamed vegetables and low sodium stuffing, it was probably the Thanksgiving where I felt most thankful.

I can't wait for the day when Corey and I own a house and can host Thanksgiving there for both sets of parents. This year, we're spending Thanksgiving with his family here in New Jersey and then we're flying home to spend Christmas with my family. Everyone seems to be pretty happy with this arrangement for this year and I'm excited that Corey and I will be spending the holidays together.

I love the holiday traditions I have with my family but I love Corey's family as well. I really wish we could just have two Thanksgivings and two Christmases so I could celebrate both holidays with all the people I love. Compromises are being made - I'm making macaroni and cheese to bring a bit of Southerness to Thanksgiving this year and I know my parents will adjust our Christmas traditions to make Corey feel at home.

My question for all of my married and engaged readers, what are one or two ways you've blended your holiday traditions with your significant other?

I'm excited that I'll be spending Thanksgiving with this man, this year and always.

A little bit of a ramble today but I think this is a more serious aspect of wedding planning than the usual fluff we've been discussing - you know, the hair, shoes, wine choices, etc. And its something I've been thinking about today!

Want to link up a wedding related post today? Grab the button, link back to Life with Elizabeth

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Wednesday Loves

with Jamie at This Kind of Love

Happy Wednesday ladies! Today, I'm loving...

That it is my birthday week and that I'm celebrating all week. Last night I was completely exhausted so Corey ordered pizza from our favorite local pizzeria. They seriously have the best pizza I've ever tasted and it really hit the spot. Yum!

That there are surprise birthday celebrations in order for the weekend! I'm super excited. I love birthdays. Since they're part of the Kindergarten social studies curriculum, my co-teacher and I decided that we'll throw a birthday party on Friday with some birthday games and treats for our kids to enjoy at the very end of the day. If you follow my teaching blog, you know there is one child in particular who really deserves a cupcake!

That I've gotten a few of my presents early and have already been enjoying them! Remember these cute birthday boots my parents bought me?

That tomorrow is a half day for my students so I have time to grade and enter everything into the computer in time for progress reports, which are coming up next week! And that we have a Thanksgiving faculty potluck dinner next week at work. And I'm testing out a new macaroni and cheese recipe, so I can bring a taste of the South to Corey's family on Thanksgiving.
That I have an appointment to head back here in December when my mom comes to visit and we'll be picking out my veil. I decided on shoes, so that means the wedding ensemble is complete!

I'm loving sequined dresses for New Year's Eve! Thinking ahead!

both {via}

And as always, I'm loving my boys!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Bridal Talk Tuesday - Recent Pinterest Loves

Life with Elizabeth
I know all of you engaged ladies are just as addicted to Pinterest as I am. Actually, probably all of you ladies. Oh my goodness, I find inspiration everyday. And I downloaded the App for my iPhone just in case I have spare time with nothing to do (usually doesn't happen, but just in case!).

Lately, Pinterest has given me some fun wedding ideas. Such as:

Meet the Maids and Meet the Men display at the reception. So cute and what a wonderful way to honor your wedding party. I would use gold frames.

Childhood pictures of the bride and groom on the reception restroom doors. What a fun little touch!

The perfect groomsman thank-you kit. Love this!

Wedding Day timeline for out of town guests. I must have this because there's so much for our out of town guests to remember (when to meet the shuttle bus, etc.) and I think if its displayed in a cute format, people are more likely to actually read it and hang on to it!

Fingerprint guest book. I won't be doing this because its too casual for our formal wedding but I thought this was way to cute not to repin!

Married/engaged ladies - want to join in on the Bridal Talk? Grab the button, link back, and link up!

By the way, today is the last day to sign up for my blogger Christmas ornament exchange. Get your name in! You can do it here!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Misc. Monday

Happy Monday ladies! I can't believe I'm back to work today after a wonderful four day weekend. I almost forgot I had a job and was really disappointed last night when I realized that I had to set my alarm for 5 am this morning. Back in the swing of things today!

How was that fabulous four day weekend, you might ask. Well, it was fabulous! I made it to the gym every day of the four day weekend and got my first airbrush spray tan on Thursday. Girls! This has changed my life. I think I'll be getting one of these every ten days all winter long. Maybe every ten days for the rest of my life. I wish I'd taken a before and after picture in shorts and a tank so you could see the difference but I did not think of that at the time. Some of you asked in comments and emails that I report back and my recommendation is that you all make an appointment at a salon near you right now. Once upon a time I used to tan in the tanning bed almost every day. I even went twice a week in the winter time. But then I had to get an emergency biopsy on a spot on my leg my sophomore year in college, so now I limit it only to super important occasions and lather up with SPF 45 when I'm outside. My airbrush tan looks a natural golden shade and is very even. My advice: Be careful around your hands and feet and use the barrier lotion as directed. Most importantly, shower and exfoliate before you go and be careful around water for eight full hours. I washed my hands shortly after and I have one water droplet mark on my wrist. 

A new cafe and bakery opened up close to our building. I stopped in for a vanilla chai and couldn't resist walking out with one of these. Of course, I couldn't eat it all by myself but I ate half and it was delicious! 

On Friday I got a mani/pedi (see picture below for the pretty neutral shade I chose) and was so excited on my way home when I stopped in Starbucks and found that they've switched over to the Holiday cups. That means Christmas is almost here! 

I did a little boutique shopping, gingerbread latte in hand, and found a couple cute accessory finds. I got a free gorgeous pashmina from my favorite boutique as part of their anniversary celebration. One thing I love about this boutique is that you get some type of free gift almost every time you shop. Earrings, sunglasses, pashminas. Love. 

Friday night, Corey and I planned to have a pretty casual night with just the two of us. Of course, we met up with a few friends for happy hour first. This is the cozy outfit I wore to keep me warm - it was freezing in Hoboken and NYC this weekend! Brrr! This is the softest sweater ever and I love the argyle - so preppy and pretty with the sequins. 

Corey and I went into the West Village and had dinner at Mapamondo, a delicious Italian restaurant. We started with the Caprese, which had eggplant with the tomato, mozzarella, and basil. I loved the addition of the eggplant. 

Corey and I each chose a pasta dish, which was perfect for a cold night. I chose the Raviolini di Vedure, which was ravioli with zucchini, asparagus, and mushrooms with a tomato sauce. 
Corey had Tortellini alla Panna or cheese tortellini with mushrooms and peas in a cream sauce. Yum!

Corey and I had brunch and mimosas with another couple on Saturday and then I made an Ulta run. I haven't been to Ulta since I moved here because there is a Sephora right on the LightRail and is much closer to our apartment. I prefer Ulta, though, and was so excited. I was like a kid in a candy store. The purchase I love the most:
Oh my goodness! This is the Spornite Little Wonder #111 and I first saw it mentioned on Pink Lou Lou's Confessions of a 20 Something and kind of forgot about it until I saw it at Ulta. At under four dollars, I decided to give it a try and it really is a little wonder. I'll have to post before and after photos later this week.

We met up with Corey's parents for a delicious chinese dinner (some of the best chinese I've ever had!) and then headed home. We woke up early on Sunday and went to the gym then lounged around and had a lazy day, which was perfect. I felt so recharged and ready to get back into the swing of things today! And our apartment is spotless!

By the way, its officially my birthday week! The official day is Saturday but the celebrations start now.   

Thursday, November 10, 2011


I confess...

That I'm off work today and I only got out of bed when my credit card company called to verify the ridiculous amount of money that I spent on shoes last night.

That I spend too much money on shoes. On a regular basis. And even though I'm aware of this, the trend will probably not stop.

That my apartment is a mess and that I took a break in cleaning because I wanted to catch up on blogging.

That I had a vanilla milkshake yesterday even though I'm trying to diet. It was a rough day of work and I thought I deserved one.

That I'm thoroughly enjoying having some time off work this week. I feel like I needed a chance to recharge and get some rest slash do some girly, pamper myself stuff (haircut, airbrush tan, mani/pedi, Swedish massage, hit up Ulta and my favorite local boutique.)
Source: google.co.uk via Leo on Pinterest

Don't forget to join in on my Holiday Ornament Exchange!

Wednesday Loves!

Happy Wednesday ladies! I'm loving so many things today! Linking up with Jamie at This Kind of Love as per the usual.

I'm loving that I had yesterday off work but my work week still ends today! Its a crazy week at our school with only two school days. Yesterday, I got a haircut, went to the gym, got my car appraised, and spent much of my afternoon doing absolutely nothing. Tomorrow and Friday are jam packed too. I'm getting my first airbrush tan, a mani/pedi, and a massage. My plans also include cleaning our apartment, some hardcore workouts at the gym, and girls' night. Tough life this week, I must say.

I'm loving that the weather was pretty warm yesterday. I wore this cute outfit yesterday without a jacket all day long and then my lightweight Northface when Corey and I went to dinner so we could sit outside one last time this year.

I'm loving that it is almost my birthday. The countdown has begun and my wish list has gotten pretty long!

I'm loving that my dad won his election yesterday and will be serving a third term as mayor for my hometown. It was a pretty nasty election these past couple months with the other candidate stealing his signs out of people's yards in the middle of the night and slandering him but my dad stayed professional and classy throughout and it obviously paid off.

As always I'm loving this sweet dog
And this amazing man

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Bridal Talk Tuesday - Choosing the Shoes!

Life with Elizabeth
Happy Tuesday lovelies!

I'm currently focusing on finding the perfect wedding day shoes. I'm off to Kleinfeld's again in a couple weeks when my mommy comes to visit and we're choosing my veil - and getting to try on the sample dress again. So I'm determined to at least have one possible pair of shoes to try on with the dress while we're there!

My dream pair of wedding shoes would be these:
The pink version of the heels that Carrie wore to her and Mr. Big's wedding in the Sex and the City movie. Ahhh...to wear Blahniks on my wedding day.
Unfortunately, these beauties ring in at $945 plus applicable sales tax. Ouch. Gorgeous or not, perfect or not, that is slightly over my wedding shoe budget. While I do have a birthday coming up, I doubt I'll wake up to a package containing shoes that are valued at half of our monthly rent. If you would like to send them to me as an engagement gift, I'll send you my address! ;)

While I do love the hot pink Manolo Blahniks, our wedding colors are more of a blush pink, ivory, and gold. My wonderful wedding planner sent me links to these pretties:
Badgley Mischka Lissa 
Badgley Mischka Lacie

Oh my word I love them both! So classy and elegant with the crystal broach. I'd say the Lissa is probably my favorite because I love a delicate, feminine pump but I also love the d'orsay look of the Lacie. Both of these shoes are on their way to me so I can try them and compare. For prettiness but also for comfort.
by Ivanka Trump

I usually consider myself to be a sandal gal. You would too if you saw my closet. I'm tempted to choose a heeled sandal for my wedding day and these are gorgeous. But could I possibly not wear pink on my wedding day?

Choosing the shoes is almost as difficult as choosing the dress. I'm such a shoe girl after all!

Grab the button, link back, and link up to join in on the Bridal Talk.

I'm off work today with it being election day so I'm off to have my car appraised from when it was hit in a parking lot, have a nice long workout, a haircut, and sit impatiently on the edge of my seat and bite my nails while I wait on my dad's election results from back home. He's up for re-election today!