Search Results : richard

Jan 052018
 

Hi friends! Today I’m back with the very last recap of our beautiful wedding. Man, it sure took me a while to get through all of these, didn’t it? Today’s post will recap the most fun part of the wedding: the dancing! As usual, here are my vendor notes:

  • DJ: Crow Entertainment (we worked with CJ, and he was SO great! He got everyone’s names right, and we had some tough ones! Plus his playlist was fantastic!)
  • Photography: Lauren Nievod (I’ve already raved about her a ton of times – 100% recommend)
  • Venue: Wye River Conference Center (amazing Eastern Shore/riverfront hotel with beautiful grounds. Can only be booked by groups, meaning our guests took up the whole thing)

If you missed any past recaps you can find them here.

And now, let’s jump right in!

For our first song, I wanted to start off with something to honor my grandparents, who have been married for 63 years! I had talked to my DJ about this ahead of time, and he asked all the married couples to head out onto the dance floor for a special dance.

It was crazy to see a bunch of our friends on the dance floor – we’ve been to so many weddings in the last few years that we actually have a lot of married friends now!

Jess & Erick

 

Megan & JR

Grae & Dan and Rebecca & Richard

Plus some family members too!

After everyone danced for a little while, the DJ would ask the couples to sit down based on how long they’ve been married. He started with “sit down if you’ve only been married for an hour.” Ha! Guess that’s us.

Then he continued counting down different amounts of time until only my grandparents were left on the dance floor!

I thought this was a really fun way to celebrate their marriage, and it got everyone’s attention on the dance floor. 🙂

Yay, Grandma and Grandpa!

After that, the boys headed out to make a toast at the bar…

…and the ladies hit the dance floor!

I was so happy with how the reception went as a whole; we had given our DJ a list of songs that we definitely wanted him to play and a few to steer clear of. He totally listened to our suggestions and added a few selections of his own. Everything was a hit!

As for the dance floor itself, it was totally packed during the whole wedding! Many of the venue’s employees told us the next day that they’d never seen a wedding there where every single guest was up and dancing. What can I say, our friends and family like to dance!

One good thing about being under the tent was that when the dance floor got too crowded, people just danced on the grass either by the tables or outside the tent. Of course my mom and stepdad did some of this since they need a lot of room when they dance. 🙂

A couple other guests danced out there too!

There were also different pockets of people on the dancefloor – I guess because of where their tables were set up and what part of the dance floor was closest to them – so I made sure to move around the floor so I danced with every group a few times. Fabio and I didn’t really do the whole go from table to table greeting people thing (we didn’t spend much time on dinner and didn’t think we would have time to visit everyone), so instead we mingled on the dance floor instead. I think that’s more our style anyway. 🙂

Here are the bridesmaids/my friends!

And this amazing selfie that Fabio’s friends got!

(Also with our Snapchat filter!)

We also danced with my family/family friends! (How cute is my grandma – my mom’s mom – dancing with Fabio’s dad?)

Plus Aunt CC and me, of course.

And my sister danced with Fabio’s dad!

And you probably recognize these guys, though they’re usually in sweaty gym clothes when I post their pictures: Anne and Kathleen!

Fabio’s family was really fun to dance with too, and they got up to some crazy dance moves.

For example, check out this photo sequence with Fabio’s Tia Clara. She’s always a hoot, and these pictures continue to crack me up.

Yes, that’s Fabio crawling between her legs. Ha!

Fabio’s family are all really good dancers, and I made sure to do some salsa dancing with them too. I specifically remember singing to Despacito with Fabio’s Colombian cousin in this picture. 🙂

I’ve gotten really close with Fabio’s cousins over the last couple of years, and now I feel like they’re truly my cousins too! I love this one with his (my!) cousin Maria Clara. <3

And then, of course, I did plenty of dancing with my husband too!

 

These two pictures sum us up perfectly. I love them!

 

Yayyy!

Before we knew it, our time was up and it was time to leave the tent for the after party.

When planning out our timeline for the day, I knew I wanted to do a bouquet toss but didn’t want to use up valuable reception time on it. Instead, I did a more casual bouquet toss in the grass outside the tent as everyone was leaving. My cousin Yasi caught it!

(I also wound up throwing a smaller bouquet that was used on the dessert table so I could save mine. It worked out great!)

After that, we all hopped on the venue’s shuttle for the after party! We held it in one of the houses on the property, and it had a really cool atrium ceiling and balcony by the upstairs rooms. My dad brought a sound system/light machine from home, which made the space really fun! Fabio and I climbed up on the balcony to thank everyone for coming, and then the party kicked off!

(We had another Snapchat filter for the after party!)

It was so fun spending more time with our guests, and I was happy to see that our family joined us for the party as well. 🙂

I had debated changing into another outfit, but I decided that I spent so much money on my dress that I wanted to keep it on for as long as possible!

We ordered something like 30 pizzas for the after party (this is just one stack), and somehow they ALL got eaten by the end of the night. Crazy!

We had purchased alcohol from Costco ahead of time, which made everything really easy. It seemed like everyone had an absolute blast – I know I did!

Jack came to the after party too, and goodness only knows how much pizza he ate. Everyone kept telling me that they fed him some – LOL!

He was definitely the hit of the party. 🙂

Overall it was the perfect way to end our night and was just SO much fun.

We finally stumbled back to our room at around 3:30 a.m. Oof! What a long day.

I think everyone was hurting a bit in the morning, and our friend sent us this picture on her way to meeting for breakfast. Ha!

Yep, it was a fun wedding and after party, that’s for sure.

We had a really nice breakfast the next morning under the tent, and then around noon we all said our goodbyes and Fabio and I headed off to Thailand! But you already know that part of the story. 🙂

Aaaand that concludes the blog recap of our amazing wedding! Everything just went so perfectly – you always hear that things won’t go according to plan but we just got so, so, so lucky with the weather and the venue and our vendors and everything. I remember we both had humungous grins the whole drive home, and we couldn’t stop saying how lucky we were. <3

Question of the day: Do you like when weddings have traditional elements like the bouquet toss and garter toss, or would you rather spend more time dancing?

 Posted by on January 5, 2018
May 122017
 

Oh man, this has been a week. Work is crazy, life is crazy, and I feel like I just need a minute to catch my breath. Phew! Hopefully things will be a little calmer this weekend.

Luckily I had some really good workouts this week, and I felt like they helped to keep me grounded and sane. I used to dread working out (back in the days when I used to work out in my living room after work – oof) but now I look forward to it as the one time of my day that I don’t have to think about anything else on my to-do list. I also know that a workout will improve my mood immensely. What a change!

Here’s a look at what I was up to!

Sat., May 6 & Sun. May 7 – Rest days! This weekend was spent traipsing around New York City with Fabio and our family and friends.

Mon., May 8 – On Monday, I took my workout over to the track at Washington Lee High School, which is right by my house. It was a beautiful, sunny day, and I decided to complete one of my old Kayla Itsines workouts on the track.

I positioned myself next to a bench so I could do some step-ups, and then got to work! My workout included weighted walking lunges, burpees, squat jumps, sumo squats, step-ups, and more. It was a good one! And it was so nice to be outside in the sun. 🙂

Tues., May 9 – On Tuesday, Fabio and I headed to a FlyWheel class via ClassPass (<– affiliate link for $30 off). We had Richard as our instructor, and his classes are always so hard. My total power at the end of class was 293, which was much higher than my usual 255ish. Clearly he pushed us on Tuesday! I was dripping in sweat by the end of class, and was feeling so happy to have such a good workout behind me. Plus, it’s always fun when Fabio joins me! 🙂

Wed., May 10 – Wednesday was bootcamp day with the girls! I met up with Anne and Kathleen at our favorite spot, Urban Athletic Club, for a 7 a.m. class. Unfortunately all the usual instructors were randomly out of town/unavailable that day, so we had a last minute fill-in instructor teach us. He was a nice guy, but I didn’t love the workout he took us through which included toe-taps on the medicine ball, cleans, skaters, push-ups, and just a couple of other moves. The one part of the workout that I did really enjoy was a quick jaunt around the neighborhood, and since it was such a pretty day out, it was nice to get a quick run in outside!

Thurs., May 11 – Thursday was a rest day for me since we wound up going to the National’s game with our friends Megan and JR the night before and didn’t get home until around 11:00 p.m. By that time the stress of the week had caught up to me (plus it was rainy and gross out on Thursday morning), and I was glad to have a planned rest day.

I love these guys so much!

Fri., May 12 – Tomorrow morning (it’s Thursday night as I write this), I’m planning to take the sculpt class at CorePower Yoga. It’s one of my favorite classes, and I’m really looking forward to it!

And that’s a wrap! I hope whatever you do this weekend is exactly what you want to be doing – whether that means it’s filled with lots of plans or none at all. 🙂

Question of the day: Have you been to any baseball games yet this year? This was our first one of the season!

 Posted by on May 12, 2017
Apr 142017
 

Hi there! How was your week? It sure was a beautiful one over here, with plenty of days filled with sunshine and warm temperatures! More on that in a minute. 🙂 For now, let’s chat about my workouts this week!

Sat., April 8 – Rest day! This was a fun day spent having my second wedding dress fitting, celebrating my dad’s birthday with my grandparents, and meeting my friend Hana out in D.C. It was a busy one, so working out wasn’t a priority. Then again, Hana and I did tear up the dance floor on Saturday night, so that might count as a workout! 🙂

Sun., April 9 – Rest day! We spent this day doing yard work and prepping for the week ahead. There was also a nap involved after all the late-night dancing the night before. 😉

Mon., April 10 – On Monday morning, I ran three miles with Jack. Three miles is my favorite distance for just a normal, not-training-for-anything-but-want-to-hit-the-pavement run. It doesn’t feel too challenging, doesn’t take too long, but still feels like an accomplishment. Jack loves this distance too! 🙂

Tues., April 11 – FlyWheel class with Fabio! This week we went to the Dupont location instead of City Center (where we usually go), and we took a class with one of my favorite instructors, Richard! We hadn’t had him in a while and I forgot how tough his classes are. Tuesday’s class had tons of hills! Oof!

Wed., April 12 – I ran out of ClassPass (<– affiliate link for $30 off!) classes early this month for some reason, which was a huge bummer! (I have the 10 class plan.) Last week I wanted to take one more class on Thursday or Friday, until I realized I would have been left without any classes for this week. Aw man!

I used my last class on Tuesday for FlyWheel, so on Wednesday morning I planned to complete an at-home workout in my living room. I had picked out the workout and everything the night before, but when I woke up on Wednesday morning I just had no motivation to crawl out of bed. Apparently, I now need the accountability of a workout buddy or a ClassPass fine to get myself out of bed for an at-home bootcamp! How times have changed! This day wound up turning into a rest day. Womp womp.

Thurs., April 13 – Even though I was out of ClassPass classes, I wound up buying a discounted class through their app to take a bootcamp class at Urban Athletic Club with my buddies Anne and Kathleen. We had a new-to-us instructor named Howard, and he was great! Classes on Thursdays are strength-based with a lot less cardio, and we all enjoyed the workout! And the foam rolling at the end, which is when we like to chat and catch up. 🙂 (This picture is actually from last week’s class!)

Fri., April 14 – I’m not quite sure yet about my plans for tomorrow (it’s Thursday night as I type this) but it will either include using up my last class at CorePower Yoga on a sculpt class, or sleeping in a little more and going for another run with Jack. We will see! Thank goodness my ClassPass resets on Saturday!

All in all, this was definitely not my best week of workouts. I could blame it on ClassPass, but I know part of it was also just me being lazy. I can tell that by my food too – I did ok at sticking to healthy choices, but I also snuck a few treats here and there that I definitely could have done without.

Knowing myself, I know that this is also a bit of a mental game for me. With the wedding coming up on June 10 (eek!!) I know I’m probably going to go super crazy with healthy eating and exercise during the month of May, and I guess I’m giving myself permission to enjoy this last bit of time where I don’t have to feel guilty if I eat a cookie that my coworker offers me or sleep in on a random Wednesday that I should have worked out. Of course I know I shouldn’t feel that guilt at all – I should just do my best to balance healthy choices with a few indulgences here and there – but I know as soon as it’s crunch time before the wedding that guilt is going to come on strong.

Anyway, enough about that. Let’s talk about a couple of other highlights from the week – namely, the weather! Spring is definitely here, and everything is blooming. Look at these tress in my neighborhood!

We have a beautiful azalea bush in front of our house, and it is so, so close to being in full bloom. There are a few flowers out already, but I can’t wait until they all open up in a couple of days!

Pretty much every day this week has been beautiful, and I did my best to get out for a walk during my lunch breaks. On Tuesday I had some more work to do once I got home around 6:00, but I was able to take it outside and finish working on the front stoop with my favorite furry buddy! And it was HOT!

And now that we removed that annoying stump, we can use our grill!

We wound up using it on Wednesday night and are planning to use it again tonight (Thursday). On Wednesday we had burgers and sweet potato fries, and while Fabio grilled I kept him company with Jack outside!

Yummmm.

I can’t wait for more grilling now that warm weather is here!

Well friends, that’s all I have for you today. I hope you have a wonderful weekend, and for those who celebrate it, happy Easter and passover! We have a very full weekend ahead of us, and I’m excited to get it started!

Question of the day: Do you grill? If so, how often? Do you ever play weird mental games with yourself when it comes to being healthy?

 Posted by on April 14, 2017
Mar 132016
 

Hey there and happy Monday! How was your weekend? Do anything fun? Mine was really nice and not too crazy, which was just what I wanted. Here’s my recap. 🙂

Friday

Neither one of us felt like cooking on Friday night, but we also wanted something a little healthier than our usual take-out favorites of pizza or Chinese food. Instead we decided to go pick up sandwiches from Taylor Gourmet! Fabio and I are both huge fans of Taylor Gourmet and their fresh ingredients and unique flavors always hit the spot. Fabio got a chicken cutlet sandwich with pesto, prosciutto and parmesan on white bread (totally a man’s sandwich) and I got spicy chicken salad with grilled pineapple (!!) and kale on whole wheat (yep, a more lady-like sandwich). It was delicious and exactly what I was craving. Sweet + savory gets me every time!

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While we ate, we powered through no less than three episodes of House of Cards before I called it quits and made us watch something else. Even after pulling the plug on our binge, I wound up having dreams about politics all night long. Sigh. This show is messing up my sleep schedule. We can’t stop watching!

Saturday

Fabio and I were up relatively early on Saturday morning to spectate the Rock ‘n’ Roll race!

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The runners ran right down North Capitol Street which is only three blocks away from our apartment, and we had a bunch of friends running the race this year, so we decided to walk over with Jack to cheer them on.

It was a perfect day for the race – much better than the freezing rain from last year. We were situated on North Capitol and Quincy, which was right near one of the live bands and a rowdy group of November Project spectators. It was such a fun and lively spot to cheer from! Plus it was nice that it was less than a five minute walk from our apartment. 😉

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It actually wound up being much harder to spot our friends than we anticipated; I almost missed Anne run right past us. Luckily Fabio is taller so he saw her and was able to point her out! We were able to call her name and wave hi, but this was the best picture I could get of her (she’s circled in red below). Fail! Haha!

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Up next we saw my friend Sokphal (we waved hi but didn’t get a picture) and then Fabio’s coworker/our friend Annie! Annie didn’t know we would be spectating and was so surprised when she saw us. It was really cute! 🙂 Sadly this is the best picture I got of her too, haha. She’s circled in red again!

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Then a little bit later on we saw our friend Ciro and waved/cheered for him. Fabio actually almost didn’t see him at all, so it’s a good thing I did. It probably doesn’t look like it in these pictures, but it was really hard to spot specific people since groups of runners were often dense and they were going pretty fast down the hill.

Right before we left we spotted a guy in a chewbacca costume; please explain to me how you run 13.1 miles in that!!

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All in all we had a great time spectating, and I’m so glad we were able to go out and support the runners!

After about an hour we headed back home to breakfast: half an arepa with salsa, an egg, and some cheese. Plus a latte on the side. Yum!

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After breakfast we drove over to Mt. Vernon square area to look at a potential condo! It’s new construction and the building won’t be finished until around July, so we had to wear hard-soled shoes and hard hats. It definitely made the tour kind of fun!

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So far we really, really like this condo and are trying to decide what to do – it’s a lot of money and pretty small but in a great location and with all the gorgeous finishes of a brand new building. Sigh. Decisions are hard.

Later in the afternoon we headed over to Toro Toro for brunch! We met up with a bunch of friends there – including Ciro and his friend Kelly who had run the race earlier in the day – and we had a great time celebrating with them. I had a little bit of everything from the buffet: macaroni and cheese, eggs, potatoes, brussels sprouts, chicken, bacon, plus salad with beets and quinoa for balance. 😉

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Toro Toro had a really good brunch deal and along with the buffet we wound up enjoying a fair share of mango and passion fruit mimosas. Yum!

The rest of the evening was spent – you guessed it – watching House of Cards! All in all a perfect Saturday.

Sunday

Sunday morning began with a run!

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I took Jack out for about three miles over to Union Station, which is quickly becoming our (my?) favorite short run route. Can you see the Capitol dome in the distance above?

There’s a small grassy area in front of Union Station where I usually let Jack sniff around, and while we were there I spotted one of the lion monuments from the House of Cards opening theme song. Of course I had to document it via Snapchat! #obsessed

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The rest of the day was spent cleaning the apartment, doing laundry, meal planning, hitting up two grocery stores, and meal prepping. Phew! It was a busy afternoon. I feel great though knowing we will be all set for the week ahead.

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By the way, I don’t know if I’ve mentioned this before on CET but one of my favorite parts about juicing is looking at all the pretty colors in the “pulp bag” after. Eat Drink the rainbow!

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Oh yeah, and the handsome guy in the background making us old fashioned cocktails isn’t bad either. 😉

Alright friends, I’m signing off so I can continue our HOC binge! (It’s Sunday night as I write this, so I should be able to squeeze in another episode or two 😉 Haha!) Have a good one!

Question of the day: Are you watching this season of House of Cards? Have you spectated a race before?

 Posted by on March 13, 2016
Feb 162016
 

Hi there! Did everyone have a nice Valentine’s Day/President’s Day weekend? We had a wonderful three days off from work, and I took a ton of pictures, so let’s jump into today’s recap with a sentence (or two) per picture!

Friday

On Friday evening we met up with my family at the Narrows in Kent Island to celebrate my grandma’s birthday. (When did my little sister get so big?!)

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I ordered the crab cakes with a side of mashed potatoes and veggies. Delicious!

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My grandma turned 81 years old, and is still looking fabulous.

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Happy birthday, Grandma!!

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Saturday

Saturday morning began with cappuccinos, made by barista Fabio.

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Then Fabio and I tag-teamed breakfast/lunch; I made a potato and bacon hash and he poached a couple of eggs. So good!

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Later in the day, we joined some of Fabio’s coworkers for a birthday party in Herndon, VA. One of Fabio’s coworkers, Wally, turned 50!

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(Hi Ash!)

At one point Fabio and his manager, Kyle, took over bartender duties.

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Then there was a literal dance party in the living room.

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Who knew 50th birthday parties could be so fun? 😉

Sunday

Sunday – Valentine’s Day – began with another cappuccino, only this time it was extra festive for the holiday!

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While Fabio made the drinks, I got working on some festive pink pancakes.

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That I then had to snapchat them to all my friends, because these days if you don’t send a snapchat, it didn’t happen. 😉

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Yum!

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In the evening, we met up with Rebecca & Richard and Grae & Dan, for a Valentine’s Day triple date at the Liberty Tavern in Arlington. We had been trying to schedule a dinner date with them for months, and after making a Doodle poll we realized that Valentine’s Day was literally the only day we were all available. Oh well!

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I wore my heart sweater from J. Crew because you can’t own a sweater like this and not wear it on Valentine’s Day.

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For my meal I ordered the prosciutto carbonara, which was delicious. Plus I had plenty for leftovers. 🙂

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It was so great catching up with this group!

Monday

Monday began with an extra long walk for Jack, who was loving the surprise snow we got!

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Somehow he found a gigantic stick tree branch and insisted on running around with it, even though he could barely lift it.

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What a goof.

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The rest of the day included a trip to the grocery store and some meal prep.

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I made a big batch of fresh juice and some hard boiled eggs to snack on during the week. Yum!

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Fabio was in charge of dinner (his Valentine’s Day gift to me) so I sat back with a glass of wine while he cooked. How cool is this reflection?

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He made us a delicious meal of chicken Parmesan and his famous homemade mozzarella sticks.

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Enjoyed while watching the Bachelor. 🙂 Perfection!

Question of the day: How do you celebrate Valentine’s Day?

Fabio and I both are ok with laying low on Valentine’s Day, and usually a quiet dinner at home is just fine for us. This year though it was nice to go out with other couples!

 Posted by on February 16, 2016
Feb 042016
 

Hi friends! How’s your week going? Mine is going well; it’s busy enough to be passing by quickly but not so hectic that I’m going crazy or feeling stressed. It’s the perfect balance!

First, I have to thank you all so much for your suggestions on helping me choose a wedding venue. All of your comments have been incredibly helpful, and I think Fabio and I are making progress on our decision. You know I’ll keep you posted! A bunch of you also mentioned that you are really enjoying the wedding planning updates, so I’ll keep them coming (in a reasonable amount, obviously). Thanks for your support! 🙂

Today though, let’s take a moment to look back at my Tuesday. It was a particularly nice day for me and I took enough pictures to document it, so here are some of the highlights.

1. I took a really, really hard spin class at FlyWheel. The last time I took Richard’s class at FlyWheel I thought it was just a really difficult day for me (it was a Monday after a very indulgent weekend), but now after taking his class again I’m sure it’s him. His classes are so difficult! It was also completely packed at 6:00 am, so I know others must appreciate his tough workouts too. It was a good one!

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Just look how red my face was after! That sweaty hair is a good look for me, huh? 😉

2. I found a new way to make scrambled eggs, and it’s life-changing! My mom recently called to tell me about how she’d been making scrambled eggs wrong her whole life, and she couldn’t believe how good the eggs are when you cook them the “right” way. To make them, you whisk your eggs with a splash of water (not milk!), sprinkle in some salt and pepper, and then cook them over really, really low heat. I usually cook my scrambled eggs over medium or medium/high heat, but she was right – these low and slow ones turned out so much better. I made some for us on Tuesday and we ate them with a toasted homemade roll (another one of my mom’s recipes) with some of my stepdad’s blackberry  jam. Yum!

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Awesome weekday breakfast.

4. Work has been going really well lately, and I’ve gotten to write about some really cool weight-related science. This week I worked on a press release about how gender expression can affect someone’s weight. It’s actually pretty interesting; the study found that people who tend to be more masculine weigh more. It makes sense when you think about it too – when a bunch of girls go out to eat together they usually tend to order salads or something relatively nutritious. When guys go out to eat though, they tend to order lots of big “macho” meals, and feel more pressure from society to be bigger/bulkier than their peers. Anyway, it’s been a fun project to work on and it’s just a nice reminder of why I love my job. 🙂

5. For lunch on Tuesday, I enjoyed leftovers of a delicious butternut squash curry soup!

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When we were in Cambridge over the weekend, I met the owner of a coffee and spice shop called Night Kitchen. He told us about a butternut squash soup that he makes with his Vindaloo Curry mix, and since I had a butternut squash at home that was just waiting to be used up and I love all things curry, I decided to buy his spice mix. I wound up following this easy recipe, and swapped the regular curry for my new vindaloo mix. It came out pretty spicy, but very delicious! The leftovers have been so nice to have this week too! I can’t wait to use this spice blend for other recipes. Any suggestions?

6. I had dinner plans with my friend Lauren on Tuesday, and on my way there I saw this beautiful view of the Capitol from Union Station.

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Obviously I had to stop to take a picture! They’re doing a lot of work on the Capitol building right now, which looks pretty awful during the day but is actually very pretty at night! I love my city. 🙂

7. For dinner we headed over to Driftwood, a fun restaurant on H Street. Lauren hadn’t seen me since Fabio and I got engaged, so we ordered some prosecco to celebrate. We also got a bunch of appetizers to share, including crispy brussels sprouts, truffle mac and cheese, and crab dip. Yum!

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Everything was delicious, and we had such a fun girls’ night out! It was so nice to be able to catch up about relationships, work, and mutual friends, and I loved our time together. Thanks for meeting me, Lauren!

8. While I walked home from dinner, I talked to my dad about wedding planning. We wound up talking for almost an hour (even after I got home), and it felt really nice to get his perspective on eberything. These are some tough decisions I’m making, and it’s nice to know I have so much support! My parents and Fabio’s have been the best!

So there you have it, a little peek into my Tuesday. I definitely would say it was a good one!

Question of the day: Tell me one thing you love about where you live.

 Posted by on February 4, 2016
Dec 182015
 

Hello, hello! Is everyone excited for the weekend? I have a few fun holiday activities on the agenda, so I’m obviously pumped! Is today over yet?

Before we can get to the weekend fun, let’s take a look back at my workouts this week. I had some really good ones, and I am feeling the effects of them today. I’m actually pretty sore!

Monday

I worked from home on Monday since Jack had an appointment with the vet, so I slept in later than usual and then took Jack on a short (2ish mile) run. It was nothing crazy, but it got me moving which was nice! I haven’t been running much at all lately – I’ve been trying to make the most out of ClassPass since it’s so expensive – so whenever I can hit the pavement with my furry little guy it makes me happy.

Tuesday

Tuesday morning kicked off with a 6:00 am spin class at FlyWheel!

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I’m so happy that FlyWheel classes are on ClassPass because I absolutely love them! There is nothing better than sweating my butt off while zoning out to awesome music. I get so much energy and a surge of happy endorphins when a song with a great beat comes on, and we’re told to sprint our fastest. It’s the best!

I also love that the room is really dark so I don’t have to worry about how my sleepy eyes and messy hair looks at 6:00 am. It’s definitely a perk.

Tuesday’s class was with Richard, and although I’ve taken his class before, I found this one to be really challenging for some reason. Phew! It was a tough one.

Wednesday

On Wednesday morning I actually went back to FlyWheel, but this time for their FlyBarre class with my favorite instructor, Stephen!

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Stephen is just the best and I love his fun playlist and awesome energy. Of course, he kills me with his tough barre movements, but that’s what he’s supposed to do, right? He wound up pushing us through some really intensive inner and outer thigh work – ugh – but he had a great “Let it Go” remix from Frozen playing with a fast beat, so I was happy.

His arm sequence was also really tough, and I was proud of myself for sticking with my heavier set of weights for the whole thing and not dropping down. BTW, it’s crazy that the “heavier” weights were only three pounds, and my lighter set was only two! Barre weight training is just so different from any other type, and all those micro-movements really get you in the end!

Thursday

On Thursday, I joined my friends Anne, Kathleen, and Karen for a fun workout at our favorite spot, Urban Athletic Club!

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This week Graham taught our class, which was nice since I hadn’t taken one of his classes in months. I feel like his classes are a little more strength-focused, whereas our other favorite instructor, Teisha, tends to incorporate a little more cardio. Both instructors are awesome, and it’s good to switch things up. 🙂

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For Thursday’s workout, Graham had us moving from station to station and completing exercises like shuttle runs, push-ups, pull-ups, pistol squats, frog jumps, bear crawls, tricep work, goblet squats and more. Phew! It was a tough one!

For our “half time” exercise, Graham taught us how to do “Turkish get-ups,” which I had never tried before. They were pretty tough and I’m not sure I got the hang of them 100%, but it was good to practice! We wound up recreating part of the move in our group picture above. 🙂

As for today, I was originally planning to take another 6:00 am spin class – this time at Zengo – but last night I was feeling pretty sore and tired so I decided to make today an impromptu rest day. Waking up super early every day takes a lot out of you, and sleep is important too!

I’m thinking I’ll try to squeeze in another workout of some sort – either a run or a class – sometime this weekend, but we will see what happens. 🙂

Question of the day: Do you like taking structured classes or are you more of a do-your-own thing person?

 Posted by on December 18, 2015
May 042015
 

Hi friends! I wound up having a seriously amazing (if less than healthy) weekend. I have a lot of pictures to share with you today, so I’m going to try to keep my words brief!

The highlight of the weekend was a surprise bridal BBQ (similar to a bridal shower, but without the female-only traditional vibe) for one of my best friends, Megan. It was so much fun!

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Friday

After work on Friday, I met up with my friends Lauren and Kristen for happy hour at El Centro in Georgetown. The three of us were all in the same pledge class (Fall ’08 baby!) when we joined our sorority, Kappa Delta, in college, and it was so nice to be together again after all this time. IMG_1345

Kristen came into town on Friday evening for Megan’s bridal BBQ, so it was great to catch up with her a bit before the big party.

A little later in the evening my friend Britt flew in as well, and after picking her up from the airport we had a fun evening chatting over delicious cannolis that she brought with her from Boston. Yum!!

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We wound up chatting until a little after midnight before finally hitting the hay. We knew we had a long day ahead of us!

Saturday

On Saturday morning we slept in a bit (glorious), and then Fabio made breakfast for us ladies. After eating, we took Jack on a leisurely stroll (it was beautiful out!) and finally around lunchtime we met up with some of Fabio’s friends at Cantina Marina for some sunshine and cocktails on the water.

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Cantina Marina is one of our favorite bars because it feels like you’re on vacation! I love having the water all around, and the fake palm trees are a fun addition. 😉

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Cheers to the first visit of the season!

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Cantina is a very dog-friendly bar, so of course we brought Jack with us. He was loving all the attention from Fabio’s friends.

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We wound up ordering a plate of nachos to share, and after soaking up the sun for an hour or two it was time to head back to get ready. We scooped up Kristen on our way over, and before we knew it, it was time for the surprise bridal BBQ!

The party was held at Megan’s parents’ house, and everything was decorated beautifully.

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My friend Megan (not the bride – another Megan) and I actually realized we matched the desserts perfectly, which was pretty funny. Twins!

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Once we arrived, we found a seat out back with a bunch of our friends and waited for the bride- and groom-to-be to arrive!

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It was a perfect day for a party – very sunny and not too hot. Soon enough, Megan’s mom told us that Megan and JR were on their way, so we all lined up in the hallway so we could yell surprise when they walked in.

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At this point we were all so nervous and excited! Gahh!!

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Here they come….surprise!!!

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Megan and JR had the best reaction, and they definitely seemed surprised. I love her face in this picture!!

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Hugs all around. 🙂

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Megan was especially excited to see Britt and Catrina, since they flew in from Boston and San Diego (respectively) for the occasion.

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Yay!!

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After the big surprise, we all dried our eyes a bit (we always get so emotional…) and then it was time to enjoy the party! We spent the rest of the afternoon sipping wine, enjoying delicious BBQ food, and chatting and laughing with one another.

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I can’t think of a better way to spend a Saturday!

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After dinner and desserts, it was time for Megan and JR to play a fun relationship game. Megan’s sister-in-law read questions out loud, and Megan and JR both had to write their answers on a dry erase board. The questions varied from “What is Megan most looking forward to on the honeymoon” (answer: pasta and wine) to “What is JR’s favorite TV show” (answer: Game of Thrones).

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The game was really cute, and Megan and JR did a really good job! The only question they got wrong was who their dog loves more, which I thought was so funny. Fabio and I would have had different opinions for that one too! 😉

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A little later in the evening we all headed downstairs to play some fun games of flip cup and beer pong. We also had a 90s playlist going, and had a great time just enjoying each others’ company.

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Overall the party was absolutely perfect, and I was on cloud nine to be with so many of my best friends. Such a fun day!

Sunday

We all woke up feeling pretty groggy on Sunday (everyone had spent the night on various couches and air mattresses) but luckily we had Fabio to cook us an amazing breakfast of eggs (over easy and scrambled), bacon, turkey sausage, and bagels.

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We had quite the spread! I definitely have to give Fabio a lot of credit here for making so much food for everyone. It turned out great!

After breakfast we spent a few last hours with our friends in the sunshine (it was another gorgeous day) before eventually driving back home. We dropped Britt off at the airport around 2:00, and then spent the rest of the day meal planning, grocery shopping, and relaxing. Sigh. It’s always sad when a weekend like this comes to an end.

This party wound up being so much fun, and even though I’m sad it’s over, we still have the bachelorette party and wedding to look forward to!! I can’t wait!

Question of the day: Do most of your best friends live local, or are they all spread out?

We used to be split pretty evenly between New York City and DC, but over the last few years we’ve all spread out a bit more. Luckily I still get to see all my college best friends pretty often, and we chat through g-chat, texts, and our email listserv throughout the week!

 Posted by on May 4, 2015
Apr 292015
 

Hi friends! Today I’m coming at you with a fun What I Ate Wednesday post featuring a menu tasting at La Sandia!

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Before we get to that though, let’s back up to my morning workout and breakfast. Here’s a look at my Monday!

Linking up with Jenn for the WIAW party!

Workout

My Monday morning kicked off with a 6:00 am barre class at Barre3 in Georgetown. Since I was recovering from a fun wedding weekend I seriously considered skipping the class in favor of getting some more sleep, but I knew once I got moving I would feel better.

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I was right! I’m so glad I went. This was another great class with Alex, and she had us doing all sorts of challenging moves that had my legs shaking and quaking. Phew! It was tough!

Breakfast #1

Once I got home, I drank a glass of fresh juice made with pineapple, cucumber, celery, ginger, lemon, and mixed greens.

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It hit the spot!

Breakfast #2

After my shower, I dug into a bowl of Kellogg’s Crispix cereal with some raisins tossed in. After my post last week about skim milk, a few of you agreed that it’s better to switch to milk that has more fat, so as soon as this gallon is finished I’m planning to make the switch to 1% (then 2%, and maybe whole milk, but I feel like it will take a while for me to get used to that!).

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Snack

Unfortunately the Crispix cereal is really not doing it for me these days; there’s just enough protein or fiber in it to keep me full! I probably won’t be buying it again. 🙁

At about 10:30 my stomach started grumbling and I knew I was a long way off from lunch, so I munched on a small bag of pretzels leftover from my flight on Southwest over the weekend.

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This was just enough to take the edge off my hunger.

Lunch

Soon enough it was time for lunch, and I dug into a gigantic salad full of mixed greens, broccoli slaw, curried quinoa, chicken, feta, and craisins. I topped it off with a homemade dressing made from olive oil, balsamic vinegar, spicy mustard, salt and pepper. Yum!

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I just love how good I feel after eating a salad like this – full but not uncomfortable! Plus knowing I got a lot of good nutrients in makes me happy. 🙂

Dinner

After work, Fabio and I headed over to Tyson’s Corner for a fun menu tasting at La Sandia!

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La Sandia is a Mexican restaurant located right inside the mall at Tyson’s Corner. La Sandia is owned by the same people who run Zengo, El Centro, and Masa 14 (among others in the US) so we knew it was going to be delicious. La Sandia is launching a few new menu items for spring, and they invited me to bring a guest and come try out the dishes. So fun!

The event was described as being a “patio party,” and although I was expecting the patio at La Sandia to be outside, I wasn’t too disappointed to see that it was actually a patio inside the mall since it was drizzly and cold on Monday.

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The space was very bright and open, and it had a pretty fun vibe considering we were still in the mall.

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Each party guest was given one free drink coupon, one voting card, and one coupon to come back and try the winning dish for free.

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We redeemed our drink coupons right away, and were treated to two delicious cucumber margaritas with a spicy salt rim. These were amazing! I’m going to ask bartender Fabio to try to recreate these (especially the spicy salt rim) at home!

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So good!

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Then we munched on some tasty chips and salsa while we waited for the dishes to come out.

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Each dish was passed around to the guests to try in small portions, which seemed to work well.

First up was a shrimp quesadilla topped with chipotle aioli. This was really tasty, and I especially liked the little bites of sweet corn and onion throughout the quesadilla.

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Next we tried a sweet plantain empanada topped with a black bean puree, queso fesco, and slivered almonds. If you’ve been reading this blog for a while you’ll know I’m a huge fan of plantains, so I loved this dish! It was sweet from the plantain but still ultimately a savory dish. Apparently the empanada dough was also made with plantains, which I thought was really cool.

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After that we tried the braised beef flautas which were served in a crispy tortilla with some delicious sauce on top. These were amazing, and the beef was cooked perfectly. I couldn’t get enough of these!

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Then we had the three bean salad, which was made with cannellini, garbanzo and red beans, plus roasted tomatoes and a Mexican ricotta-style cheese. I liked this dish, but I thought the others had a lot more flavor.

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By this point we had finished our drinks (who am I kidding, I downed that thing in five minutes!) and the manager brought us over one of their signature blood orange cocktails to try. This was another delicious one!

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Finally the last dish of the evening came out, which was the churros with a caramel chocolate sauce.

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I took one bite of these and practically swooned on the patio. They were hot and crispy on the outside, and soft and doughy on the inside. The dipping sauce was fantastic too! I wound up eating two of these, but easily could have polished off a third.

After the churros were demolished, it was time to vote!

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I wound up ranking the beef flautas first and the churros second, but I added a note saying it was a tie because it was really hard to compare and entree and a dessert. Then I ranked the empanadas third, the quesadilla fourth, and the bean salad fifth. Really I loved everything that we ate, and had a very hard time choosing!

Overall it was such a fun evening, and I am so thankful to the folks at La Sandia for inviting me to take part in this fun event. I can’t wait to go back and redeem my coupon for the winning dish!

Question of the day: What’s your favorite Mexican dish?

 Posted by on April 29, 2015
Mar 302015
 

Hi friends! My weekend involved driving to Baltimore and back three times, but each time was a lot of fun. Here are the highlights!

Friday

On Friday evening, I joined Fabio, my dad, my stepmom, and my little sister for an evening in Baltimore with Bill Cosby. Fabio and I were recently given the tickets, and we decided to invite my family along since my dad is a big fan of Bill Cosby.

I know there’s a lot of controversy surrounding Mr. Cosby right now, but my family has always been a fan of his work and we didn’t want to waste the opportunity to see him.

Along with the tickets, we also had the opportunity to go back stage and meet Mr. Cosby! It was such a cool experience, and we had fun joking around with him for about 10 minutes before the show began.

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Being around Mr. Cosby was incredibly cool – he is so clever and everything he said had us laughing out loud. It’s amazing to see someone’s brain work like that; the jokes just came so naturally!

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He wound up telling some pretty funny jokes about Iran, since that’s where my stepmom is from. He even joked around about her accent a bit, all in good-natured fun of course. I think all of us were bent over laughing at this point.

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It was so cool!

Once we were done meeting Mr. Cosby, we headed back out to the main hall of the theater for a quick glass of wine. I think we were all in shock at this point that we had gotten to spend time with Bill Cosby. What an awesome experience!

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Then it was time for the show, which was just hilarious. We were all laughing the entire time, even my little sister. I love that Mr. Cosby’s jokes are all family-friendly, and she giggled as he reminisced about the time he dropped his huge ice cream cone on the ground, inevitably creating a real life “rocky road” flavor, or how he had trouble convincing his 10-year-old daughter to do her homework.

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Overall it was such a nice evening, and I was so thankful for this opportunity.

Saturday

Saturday morning was super busy, and before noon Fabio and I had already washed and put away three loads of laundry, vacuumed, cleaned the bathroom, dusted, and windexed. Phew!

Later in the afternoon we drove back to Baltimore to join Fabio’s cousins for an early dinner at Lebanese Taverna.

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All of Fabio’s cousins were in town to celebrate his sister Diane’s bridal shower on Sunday, so we took the opportunity to have a nice meal together on Saturday. I wound up ordering the chicken curry, which was delicious.

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Yum!

After dinner we headed back home with two of Fabio’s cousins. We had a nice little pregame at our apartment where my friends Jadd, Jojo, and Kyle came over, and Fabio made us delicious drinks. He’s becoming quite the bartender!

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Then we met up with our friends James and Shelley at Masa 14 and spent the rest of the evening dancing to great music.

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So fun!

Sunday

On Sunday we made our last trip to Baltimore, this time for Diane’s bridal shower. The shower was hosted by all of us bridesmaids, and it was so nice to see how it all came together.

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The bridesmaids!

The shower was held at 7 West Bistro in Towson, which was the perfect venue.

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The whole space in the back was reserved for us, and we had plenty of room for all her gifts, plus the 40+ people who were there.

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The decorations were wonderful too, and I loved the feminine touch of the flowers, pink table runner & napkins, and heart decorations.

During the shower we had an unlimited supply of mimosas and sangria (woohoo!) and while the waiters brought out plates of spanakopita, salad, meats, cheese, and bread, I helped organize a few games. We wound up having a purse scavenger hunt that was a lot of fun, and then moved on to bingo when Diane opened her gifts.

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Toward the end of the shower, the groom-to-be arrived, surprising everyone. (Everyone but me that is – I knew he and Fabio had been having some beers down the street while watching basketball games.) 😉

Once people started to leave, Fabio came inside so he could congratulate his sister and spend a little time with his family.

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Overall I would say it was the perfect shower, and I could not be happier for Diane and Alex.

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Now I just can’t wait until the wedding!

Question of the day: What’s your favorite part of a bridal shower?

I’m going to have to say the cupcake 😉

 Posted by on March 30, 2015