Weekending & T-Giving 2015

Hello mini-seahorses!

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What wonderful weekends I’ve been having! A couple weeks ago, Nan, Megan and Mr.Tate decided to come for a visit and I was beyond excited to have this tiny human back in my life.

Girls weekends with Megan and Nan usually involve shopping from about 11 am to 9 pm, with lunch, wine and maybe some fro-yo sprinkled in. Us gals can go go go. We usually start out at a mall, throw in  Nordstrom Rack, some consignment stores and then to appease Nan, we’ll hit up a Goodwill right before closing time so she can contemplate a book on CD entitled “The Jewels of Tessa Kent”. But now. Things are a bit different having a tiny gentlemen in tow. We decided the safest option was a straight-up shopping mall and what better place than stroller-ridden Washington Square?

First, we woke up and had play time:

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Then we walked down to Jim and Pattie’s for brek:

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Then we hit WA Square and Meg gave the Ergo Baby a whirl.

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Tate was a champ for the first couple of hours, happily snoozing in the pram and periodically opening those eyes (lined with LONG eyelashes now!) to stare up at these crazies subjecting him to horrible techno at H&M. We went to all our faves, like Pottery Barn Kids and Nordstrom (places I can definitely afford).

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Of course I did this.

I found one of those cheesy-ass signs that actually makes perfect sense:

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Then, we stumbled upon what could very well be the CUTEST and most magical place in Portland, Lolli & Pop’s!

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Look what the employees wear. OMG.

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Aside from the fact that everything at Lolli & Pop’s costs $14,000, I am totally a fan.

We had lunch at the Nordstrom Cafe and then I grabbed a Candy Mountain Bubble Bar from Lush! We knew Tate wasn’t going to last much longer, so we all got in the car and made an attempt at Nordstrom Rack before quickly realizing Tater Tot was done. The weekend wrapped up with the three of us watching movies and trying to get Tate to smile (which I am SO good at).

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And then of course, it was T-Giving! I drove home after work on Wednesday and spent 3 glorious days at my parents new digs.

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The first night, I partook in the following activities:

  1. Playing with Gare’s new label-maker:

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teehee

2. Eating gingersnaps

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3. Looking at the butter sculpture Nan bought:

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4. Taking photo-booth pics of Nan while she was asleep on the couch eating butterscotch disks:

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baahahahaaaaaaaaaa

The next day I watched the parade in my jammies and got mad that I missed the Hello Kitty balloon. Tate and Megan came over and I played with him and fell even more in love.

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Then, we put hims in his OOTD:

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Then I combed my hair and put some makeup on and a headband to go to my grandparent’s for T-Give:

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Thanksgiving dinner was spent at my grandparents, which meant we were all sweating from the permanent 80 degree setting on their thermostat.

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If that wasn’t enough, my grandma also got out her scarf collection and had me pick out a few for myself (I currently own about 40 of these already), but I was a sport and acted completed delighted to sport a thinly knitted  bit of periwinkle! We stupidly only brought one bottle of wine over, so I was reduced to sipping from an old bottle of Disaronno I found behind my grandparents’ 2008 Mall Walkers participation plaque. At this point, I was lookin’ purty good:

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Then Ben and Megan brought Tate over and ta-dah!!! Instant distractions and something to stare at for 2 hours! I did snap a few adorable pics though:

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Four generations!

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Reasons why this is the cutest ever: 1.) They are matching 2.) Tate’s smile 3.) My grandpa’s giant hand 4.) They are matching

And thennnnn we did the unthinkable. Nan, Megan, Tate and I went to Macy’s. This year, they opened their doors at 6 pm and I was really jonesing for the $25 Ariana Grande bubble bath. After grabbing a few deals, we mozied by BBW on our way out and I was terribly disspointed at their half-assed sale. Buy 3, Get 3 Free!?!? WTF. That is, like, NOT a good deal. Give me $8 dollar candles or 75% off of something! GHODddd.

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Anyweeeez – the next day was spent hanging with Amy and Shannon, playing cards, drinking Svedka and 7’s and me having perpetual bed-head, which was making Megan actually mad at me. Excuse me if I don’t want to comb my hair for 24 hours.

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I made it back to Portland safe and sound and immediately jumped (ok stepped) into my bathtub for a candy mountain soak. NOT A BAD END, my friends.

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Happenings

I recently started volunteering at a local elementary school as part of a program that my work puts on. I tutor a 2nd grader in reading every Tuesday and oh my, how I look forward to it. First of all, the school is one of those charming old brick buildings, with these giant palatial windows and little pop-outs for window seats, where I imagine young minds curled up and feasting on books by Roald Dahl. Every time I walk, in I am greeted by the smells and sounds of my childhood. Eager crossing guards, racing outside in their orange vests, moms and dads holding the hands of sleepy little ones with traces of pillow lines on their faces. It’s all so cute and happy and it makes my heart full. The icing on the cake is every time I leave the school around 8:45, there is the absolute cutest little French bulldog with a pink collar. She sits obediently on the pavement and does not bark at any passersby. I always say hello to her (or him) and add, “I love you!” while I give her a little pet. It really is the best day of the week.

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A few weeks ago, on a rainy Sunday, I convinced Bryan to take a study break and escort me to NW 23rd Street, where my local Lush resides. I was all giddy in the car at the thought of buying Lush’s Unicorn Horn, that I couldn’t stand it. We parked in the rain, got out the umbrellas and trucked up the street to the store. I walked in and ALL OF THE VALENTINES STUFF WAS SOLD OUT. The girl who worked there told me it barely lasted a week. I cried silent tears and we walked across the street to Jo Bar for some Happy Hour food. We shared fondue! It was soooo good and the world started to feel right again.

R.I.P

R.I.P

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Speaking of Lush, check out my bath the other day, using the Dragon’s Egg bath bomb:

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You can’t tell from this pic, but it was GLITTERY!

My eyelashes are falling out and it really is the most terrible thing that could ever happen to a girl. When I have no makeup on and I look at myself in the mirror, straight-on – it is literally the saddest thing ever. I feel like one of those hairless cats or a mutant alien. ANYWAYS ugh. I am not doing Latisse for a multitude of reasons (eye color changing side-effects and the price being the top two) and so I have been forced to look elsewhere. I have decided to try Rapid Lash, which is available everywhere and recently I have also discovered Castor Oil as a treatment.

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I have been using Rapid Lash now for about a week and I just bought Castor Oil the other day. Keep in mind if you try this that you should buy cold-pressed, organic 100% pure Castor Oil.

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My plan is to use the Rapid Lash as directed and then apply the Castor Oil directly to my eyelashes. We’ll see. Isn’t it just SO WONDERFUL that this has happened to me!? I feel like as I get older, the list of “conditions” I have to deal with just gets longer and longer. Sheesh!

And lastly, I heard someone say the funniest thing the other day when talking about how tired they were…

Person: “OMG I am exhausted today!”

Me: “I know, me too!”

Person: “Good thing the bags under my eyes are Prada.”

Me: “Haaahahahahaha OMG I am going to make a shirt that says that!!” (I srsly thought I was going to be soooo clever).

Turns out, its already a thing. SO a thing.

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November Favorites

Sooo…let’s pretend to ignore the fact that it’s been awhile since my last Favorites post ok? OK.

Bath & Body

Ro’s Argan Body Conditioner

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It’s a very scary thing to realize how reliant I am on certain products. Take for example my beloved Ro’s Argan Body Conditioner from Lush. In the winter, my skin may as well be made of cardboard and every lotion I try just doesn’t cut it. The body conditioners from Lush are miracle workers. I smooth it all over in the shower, let it sit for a few seconds, rinse it off and then pat (not rub) myself dry. I feel like it’s locking the moisture in from the shower and the scent? I’ll put it this way – I have emailed and tweeted the company multiple times to re-release the Ro’s Argan perfume. A petition might be in order.

Cake Batter Chapstick

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It smells like cake and it feels great on the lips. What more could you possibly ask for in a lip balm?

Makeup

Dior Star Foundation

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I must preface this by backing up a few weeks ago. You see, I have been out of foundation for quite some time now. And rather than barrel into Sephora and select a random bottle from the gaggle of choices, I decided to be a bit more methodical. So, I have been slowly accumulating samples of high-end foundations to put through the ringer and of course blog my thoughts on each. But you guys -I may have struck gold not even a quarter of the way through my stash. I’m talking about Dior Star Foundation, and yes, I’m in love. You MUST apply with a Beauty Blender and the result is nearly perfect. It is slightly dewy, blurring and brightening and it applies smoothly and evenly leaving my skin looking like a literal movie star (the concept behind the name).

L’Oreal Carbon Black Liquid Eyeliner

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This eyeliner has to have earned holy grail status by now. It is truly a workhorse, providing a very pigmented black and super simple application. It’s also like  8 bucks so yeah, git it.

Mac Pressed Pigment in Warming Heart

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I have recently re-discovered this little gem from a Mac collection that was sitting all alone on my vanity and I have fallen back in love. The timing couldn’t be more perfect being the holidays. The holiday season means that I can finally bust out all my overly shimmery and glittery shades not suitable to other times of the year. This Mac pressed pigment is perfection because the glitter is so fine and when used in conjuction with a primer and a little Fixed +, ohh law. It is sooooo beautiful.

Hair

Nature’s Gate Aloe Vera Shampoo

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Guys, I have gone sulfate free and I may never look back. This shampoo not only smells great and leaves my hair feeling clean and healthy, but it is $9. Additionally, I feel like my hair has been growing much faster and I’ve been losing way less.

*A DUD*

Rusk Freezing Spray

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This Freezing Spray by Rusk is just the pits. I got last summer in the Allure Beauty Box and I had high hopes for it. It claimes to be completely weather-resistant and let me tell you, nothing could be further from the truth. I have tried it on multiple occasions where I curled my hair, finishing with the hairspray, and left to run an errand. I would look into the mirror not 30 minutes later and it would be frizzy, dull and devoid of ANY curl. I am better off using no hairspray at all.

Misc.

My Merin Bag

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Surprisingly I have never mentioned this bag in any of my favorites but I honestly use this almost every day. The company is out of Seattle and was started by a woman who wanted a tote bag that could do it all. The interior of the bag is lined with waterproof pockets of various sizes, making it a cinch to organize all your stuff. The thick, yet pliable canvas fabric is beautiful, making it a chic alternative to those plastic-y and obnoxious cheaper tote bags. The bottom of the bag is also made of waterproof fabric, which means it is perfect for the beach, the pool or ANYONE living in the Pacific Northwest. I have an older design and I could not live a day without it.

Sparkly Nina Flats

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I MEAN. Of course these pups made my favorites. They are MAJESTY.

And lastly…Our Christmas Tree/Décor!!

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You may remember our scant, poorly Christmas tree last year, appropriately named Nadine. Well this year, we made the tough decision to go artificial. Maybe it’s our small(er) front room, maybe we missed seeing actual branches, but whatever it was, running into Target and picking this little lady up for a mere $30 seemed all too perfect. Her name is Fanny, btw.

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I’ve also thrown around some miscellaneous décor this year, in the form of a new blanket(Martha Stewart Collection from Macy’s), new pillow (Marshalls) and little Christmas wall décor (Target). I couldn’t be happier! Merrrrry Christmas!

 

 

February Favorites

I KNOW, I’m super late. But don’t be mad.

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And really quick – can we talk about the season finale of Downton? I have so many questions. Where is God’s name is Michael Gregson? And why won’t Mary just choose the cuter guy (Gillingham) like we all want her to?

Also – I FINALLY got through Breaking Bad and all I want to do is talk about the finale. But. Anyways.

Onto the favorites.

Beauty

Treehut Shea Sugar Body Scrub in Brazilian Nut

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It’s official – I have hopped on the sugar scrub band wagon! And now that I have safely arrived at the exfoliation station (see what I did there?) I am never looking back. The smell of this product is insane. Like something you want to lick and ingest into your entire being. I can’t help but grab myself a good palmful and squish it playfully between my fingers before I slather it everywhere and inhale, deeply. The result is baby-soft, wonderfully perfumed skin that is also perfect before self tanner.

The Comforter Bubble Bar from LUSH

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This product just makes me happy. The shape, the color, it’s immense size. I used a chunk in Whistler after my epic ski day and was immediately enveloped in a blanket of sweet majesty. The name totally suits the product, this baby is so COMFORTING. To me, it smells sweet with a hint of a fruity note – oh. And it turns your bathwater purple. So yeah.

Makeup

Origins Ginzeng Brightening Mascara

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Not sure why they call this mascara “brightening”, however it is a great mascara. It’s nice and black and gives my lashes volume and length. I have been using the sample size but would consider upgrading to the full in the future.

BH Cosmetics Glamorous Blush Palette

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Sister Megan gifted me this 10-pan palette of glory for Christmas. The shade range is drastic and most of the colors are pretty wearable, for me. I have particularly enjoying the shades: top row, 4th from the left AND bottom row, first on the left.

Essence Eye Sorbet in Illuminating Hazelnut

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I randomly came across this eye product at Fred Meyer while I was picking out a Valentines Gift for Meg. I LOVE that Essence stuff has testers – drugstores should really start doing this! The swatch was like BAM and my heart started beating #beautygirlproblems. It is pretty pigmented for a whipped, gel-like creme shadow and it delivers some SERIOUS shimma.

Lancome Juicy Tubes in Moulin Rose

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My wonderful soon-to-be Mother in Law gave this for Valentines and I have been wearing it non-stop since. It actually smells like roses but has a subtle, sweet flavor. Since I am OBSESSED with anything rose – this is a major hit with me. The color is pretty sheer but I just love the staying power of this formula on me.

Randoms

 Vikings

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SO NOT ME. But the shows that Bryan will actually sit through are few and far between, so I will take what I can get. Basically, if he wanted to watch a show about dung beetles I would be like, “I’ll get the popcorn!” but Vikings is actually quite good. It’s on History so there’s no boobies and although it’s gory, it’s not like Saving Private Ryan or anything.

The SUN

It is fiiiinally still light out as I get off work at 5 which makes me SO happy. This can only mean that spring is right around the corner! Which in Seattle means more rain :(. But then, it is summer and I will have a freak-out.

MISSES

Pixi Lash Booster Mascara

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DOG POOP Source

Note to Ipsy: STOP including these bogus, wimpy little mascaras in our monthly bags. NOBODY likes them and this is the second god-awful mascara they have sent me. This mascara gave me barely defined, thin, HORSE eyelashes.

Kate Somerville Oil-Free Moisturizer

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In the words of Randy Jackson, circa 2007 “this was just aight for me”. Maybe I have camel skin, because this cream does absolutely nothing in the way of hydration. Perhaps this would be a better choice for someone with really oily skin?

Jordana Best Lash Supreme Mascara

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I was SO pumped to try this little sucker out. I even made a special trip to Walgreens . SO many YouTubers and beauty bloggers rave about this formula, but it gave me those little spidery bits at the end of my lashes that go all jagged. I will use it up and try to concentrate it towards the base of my lashes, but overall I am disappointed. #poop

What have you been loving lately?

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Ski Trip to Whistler

OH CANADA!

Is it bad that I know only two words of the Canadian national anthem? Perhaps. Because a couple weeks ago, Bry and I paid a visit to our neighbors of the north in the form of an epic 3-day skiing spectacular!

We left early Friday morning, the Jeep brimming with all our crap. I settled right in to the passenger seat and navigated us fell asleep all the way there! We arrived at the Cascade Lodge around 2 pm and were able to check in early. Our room was somewhat modest, but did have a kitchenette as well as a fireplace and decent-sized soaking tub so all was well. We tucked away our brews, vodka and nerd ropes safely and decided to head out into the “village” to grab our ski passes for the next day.

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You guys. Whistler Village is just so unbelievably charming. Restaurants, bars, shops, all staffed by friendly (and mostly European) folks with lovely accents. Why does EVERYTHING sound more appealing when described by a dreamy, wavy-haired Aussie? WHY?

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After we picked up our ski passes, we went back to our hotel to get gussied.

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Such a snow bunny right now

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Obligatory fireplace shot

Then we naturally headed to the Irish Pub, The Dubh Linn Gate.

The Whiskey Richards performed (get it?) while Bry and I chugged our pints atop teetery bar stools. I did a jig. Because, I mean. Why would I not?

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I was dying to go in every. single. store but I had to practice restraint as Bryan does not fare well in crowded shopping situations. Especially at L’Occitane. Or Lululemon. Or anywhere besides REI. He did approve a quick stop-off at my absolute biggest shopping weakness – LUSH. The store was giant, empty and looked after by two of the most charming girls in the world. One had a British accent which of course didn’t hurt their cause.

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I picked up one solitary Rose Queen bath bomb and we were on our merry way back to the hotel.

Then we headed down to the hot tub. And can I just say, I haaaate getting in hot tubs at hotels. You start climbing in and everyone is just sitting there, safely under the bubbling water as you uncomfortably stammer down the steps and hope you don’t trip and accidentally show a little nip. Then you settle in and aren’t sure whether you should acknowledge that you have joined the tub, look off to the side or (like me) realize that someone has probably peed (or worse) in there.

That night, we walked around for a bit and then had dinner at Carramba’s.

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Bryan can’t believe it!

Really, we just wanted pizza and this place had it. We had a margarita and pesto + goat cheese. Delish.

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The next morning we woke up relatively early to attack our one and only day on the slopes. I was a nervous wreck, as the last time I had been on skis was 2 years ago. I reminded myself to keep a positive disposition for as long as possible. It was going to hurt. I would want to quit. I would be cold. So I sucked it up, got myself ready and we headed for the gondy.

The line was soooooo long. As a person who has only skiied at Jackson Hole and Sun Valley, I now realize how spoiled I was with lift lines. Since Whistler is so close to 2 major metropolitan areas, you end up waiting forever.

But the runs are worth it.

Right off the bat, I LOVED the fact that there were so many green runs. For any newbie skier or boarder, this is huge. Jackson Hole literally offers ONE lowly green run and it is super short. Whistler is massive and therefore, offers people a huge variety of terrain to ski. Like a good fiance, Bryan dutifully stuck by my side, reminding me to keep my feet on the ground (I have a tenancy to stand on my tippy toes), not pick up my skis as I turn and USE my poles!

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Look at those lovely greens!

I completed the first run and as expected, my muscles were screaming. I cursed the day I decided not to sign up for the free ski fitness classes offered at my gym as I shamelessly bent over my ski poles to try and relieve ANY pain I could from my legs. Despite the fact that I was wearing a modest base-layer, fleece gaiter and ski jacket I was POURING in sweat. And this was only the first run. MAN I wish I had taken a selfie with my hair plastered to my forehead for you guys. But there was no energy. NONE.

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hahaa

After the first run, we headed back up and went in for a hot chocolate. Loosening my boots felt like heaven and I just wanted to stay there. Inside. With slippers and an iPad :).

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But I went back out and the next two runs went wonderfully. I was turning like it was my job (if my job entailed making beginner turns on corduroy green runs) and actually having fun! I even did some ski-humps <- air humping while skiing. It’s a skill.

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I was also starting to cool down. Mostly because my nerves stopped going ape-sh*t on me, and I started to relax into my boots a little. We had lunch in the most packed lodge of all time, seriously, it was CRAZY.My noodley legs were shot and so it was decided that I would download from the gondy. But we were pretty far from it. So Bryan grabbed a map and routed the easiest way down. What he failed to tell me was that it was about 218921371203 feet away.

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I started out okay, making decent turns and keeping my composure somewhat. But after about 5 minutes, my legs were just PISSED at me and I began to lose it. Any “form” I had went completely out the door. My ski tips were crossing and my pace was all over the place. Buckets of sweat were pouring down my chest and back like hot flashes on acid. My nose was a faucet, soaking my gaiter and then immediately freezing to my face.

 I skidded to a halt in front of the gondola and realized I was sufficiently upset. I was upset at my legs, my godforsaken boots and most of all – my sweat glands. I hastily muttered a “see ya” to Bryan, snapped my skis off and stumbled onto the gondola. While Bryan skiied for another 40 minutes or so, I rode down to the base, desperately trying to mop the sweat from my brow and pound out the muscle knots in my legs.

Somehow I managed to  schlep my skis back to our hotel, all the while muttering and cursing to myself à la Joe Pesci. I peeled the layers of clothing from my body and literally wanted to cast them into the fire. After a quick, warm shower, I slipped into fresh clothes and met Bryan at the Longhorn for my favorite part about skiing – après!

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A pitcher later and we we headed over to Citta for another round of drinks. When in Rome, my friends.

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Also found THESE BEAUTIES whilst shopping in the vill:

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Afterwards, we headed back to our hotel so we could get in a good amount of hot tub time. Well, the tubs were PACKED. It was like cesspool of sweaty snowboarders who smelled like ham and cheese. NO THANKS. Instead, I opted to utilize my new bath bomb in our room and take my relaxi-taxi there.

And the Rose Queen bath bomb is just that. The BOMB.

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That night, Bryan and I prepped ourselves to “go out”. 22 year old style. We were determined to prove to our 30-year-old selves that we still had it, goddammit. So, we began by taking naps at 6:30 PM. We each slept for about an hour and then took showers and got ready.

After TEE SHIRT TIME (teehee) we ventured to Village Sushi for dinner. The wait was long – nearly 45 minutes, but the food was great and also a good price. We were seated around 9:30 PM and finished eating around 10:30. Whistler is like, très European. Restaurants still take reservations at 10:30 PM and aren’t pushy about getting their tabes turned. We felt SO cool finishing our dinners at 10:30.

After dinner, we headed to the Irish Pub …again, and had a few burrs. Once we felt sufficiently tipsy, we decided we were juuuust inebriated enough to attack da “club”. So, we went to Garfinkles and immediately ordered a vodka + redbull. As you can probably guess, things just got hilarious. We danced a little, we people watched. Twas magical.

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Around 2 AM, we left the club and it was just about that time for SECOND DINNER. I shuffled back to the hotel, drank 7 glasses of water and peeled off my false eyelashes while dear Bryan braved the cold (at my insistence, haha) to pick up a Dominos. I scarcely remember stuffing 4 pieces in my mouth and then promptly PTFO.

I was then rudely reminded of my 30 years of age around 4 AM. Standing up, my head pounded, my feet ached and my hands were trembling. After a 5 minute teeth scrubbing and thorough floss, I popped in my mouth guard like the teeth-grinding, adult that I am. 123894 more glasses of water. 4 IB’s. And sleep. Lots of it.

The next morning we begrudgingly got out of bed and dragged our sorry asses out for coffee. Although I was surly and sick, I felt a pang of pride. I did it!

We went to Purebread for coffee + pastries and my hangover raged as the boy behind the counter told me they didn’t offer brewed coffee. Espresso only. ‘Scuze me, Broseph, an americano IS NOT the same as a slow roasted cuppa drip. You don’t know who are dealing with, sir.

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We shared an apricot + vanilla bean scone which was heavenly and then went back to the hotel to get ready for our day. A stop at Starbucks was necessary after our subpar americanos and I gulped down a venti water. We strolled along for some time, popping in various shops and relishing the beautiful day.

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Respect the Chemistry Point

We stopped for lunch at the Brew Pub and were lucky enough to get a table right next to the fire! We had a burger with fries and a salad and all I could think about was that it was NAP TIME. I convinced Bry to go back to the hotel where we had a hot tub and snoozed for a couple of glorious hours.

After I woke up, I determined the only cure for the hangover I STILL had was of course, more LUSH products. So, we walked down to the shops and I scored this amazing set which I had a gift card to nearly cover the cost of (thanks KC and Bry!):

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I took a bath and we headed out for dinner around 8 to Araxi. We ended up getting a seat in the lounge and having a witty french server who blinked alot. I loved him. We had this delicious appetizer:

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Dungeness Crab Roll in Egg Crepe
wrapped with cold smoked wild salmon, watercress and yuzu mayonaise in an egg crepe with avocado and tomatillo salsa verde

And Bryan ordered the sablefish as his entree. I stuck to the butternut squash soup, 7,000 rolls with butter and plenty of water. Dinner was really lovely with the snow slowly falling outside the windows. After dinner we REALLY wanted the ice cream at Cow’s but they were just closing :(.

The next day we left town after a quick breakfast at BG Urban Grille. Whistler got a ton of snow on Sunday and Bryan definitely DID NOT want to leave. But contrary to how we acted the night prior, we are adults. Who have jobs. And mortgages. And horrible hangovers.

Til next time, Canada!

Wedding Planning Weekend

Hello! And greetings to you all.

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McDougal

Last weekend, Bry and I decided it was high time to do the things we  haven’t had time to do because of the Seahawks we are so busy. As a result, his and hers trips were planned respectively. Bry scampered off into the Cascades with Jeremy to climb Rainier. And then they decided to ski down that sh*t because, yeah. They crazy.

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And since our wedding is 158 days away (according to my handy-dandy wedding countdown clock) and all I’ve done is book the GD venue, I thought it wise to head east and procure the remaining 3823,234,32 items I need before The Big Day.

I arrived home in Kennewick late on Friday evening after a dry, but foggy drive over and hit the hay almost immediately. The next morning we got to work Googling polyester tablecloths to our hearts delight and calling rental companies 7 times because we kept thinking of more questions.

Unfortunately, my wedding venue is totally bare bones. Basically, I fork over a big ol’ fee and they unlock the doors and PTFO. So everything from napkins and tablecloths to wine glasses, tables and chairs is on me. I have to find someone to run the show on my end and get this: right now they don’t even have a wedding coordinator. Which means, every time I have a question I have to talk to some dude in the tasting room who doesn’t know what a peony is.


Before this weekend, I was SERIOUSLY considering eloping at the Bellagio and sending out “Oopsie we did it (and no we’re not pregnant)” cards. Everything was just a mess.

Thank God for Nan, sister Megan and sister Ray-Ray.

Immediately we talked to our caterer,who helped determine what we needed in terms of tableware. And thanks to my sister getting married last summer, she and my Mom knew what to do for tablecloths and napkins; not to mention we already own a treasure trove of lanterns, chargers, vases, birdcages and tealights.

We found some nice-looking fake flowering trees at T.J Maxx for $39.99 a piece that can sit at the ceremony site (such a maxxinsta right now). I also made the judgement call that it is PERFECTLY fine with me if we mix real and fake flowers for arrangements to save some cashola.

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Inspiration

And only in the good ol’ TC will you find exotic wedding paraphernalia such as these bedazzled cowboy champagne flutes:

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Then we went to Michael’s, Hobby Lobby and JoAnn Fabrics and bought a few fake sprigs and bud vases.

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The Kennewick JoAnn Fabrics. Just, yes.

When we got home, we threw a bunch of randomness on top of a cute white charger and added some tall mercury-glass candle holders from Megan’s decoration stash – and what do you know?! We found ourselves a right-fine tablescape! Hopefully it is Sandra Lee-worthy.

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Oh m’lord

So now, it’s just a matter of procuring the necessary components and the decorating portion of this shin-dig will be DONE. Praise Jesus.

On Sunday, I got up and drove back west. When I got home, I treated myself to a Lush-errific bath, vodka sodas and several million YouTube makeup videos.

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All in all – a successful weekend.

Christmastravanganza 2013

Happy 2014 to you all!

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Last night I sang the wrong lyrics to Auld Lang Syne as I do every New Years and thought I’d write an epic Christmas re-cap. Because, really. Don’t pretend you’re not dying to know :).

Our story shall begin the eve of my big 30th birthday bash, which incidentally did not take place on December 24th. Because of everyone’s crazy schedules, we decided to celebrate my birthday the weekend before Christmas, on Saturday and then do our early “Christmas” on Sunday.

Nadine, our appropriately named scant Christmas tree had been without a skirt for weeks. Bottomless, Nadine cowered in the corner of our living room, bashfully attempting to hide her bulky tree stand with garish ornaments and extra branches I had haphazardly attempted to attach to her lower branches. Truth.

With family coming the next day, I went to not one, not two, but FIVE stores in hot pursuit of a tree skirt for poor Nadine. Target, Fred Meyer, Pier 1, World Market and Bed Bath & Beyond let me down. Sales clerks shaking their heads and giving me the “They were gone two weeks ago” lecture, I retreated to my car with my tail between my legs. Not a single GD tree skirt on the ENTIRE Eastside? I was beside myself.

Meg, Ben and Nan arrived the next day with armloads of presents and plenty of Christmas cheer. Nan came to the rescue with a creme-colored toile tablecloth she pilfered from her own collection, which we arranged beautifully under Nadine before covering with dozens of presents. And then I realized that Christmas tree skirts are basically useless once you stick a bunch of presents underneath. Oh well.

That night we got cray at my huge, raging 30th birthday party. We wore ugly Christmas sweaters. We took shots of tequila at the insistence of my auntie. We ate bison sliders, goat cheese and Zachary chocolates. ‘Twas perfection.

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It is just NOT Christmas without Yankee Candles!

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…HE KNOWS…

The next day was “Christmas” with my family, minus Amy and my Dad (which SUCKED). Christmas just isn’t the same without my Dad softly squishing each of presents to ensure it isn’t a “soft” present, i.e socks, underwear and the like.

I got wonderful gifts from my family, Bryan and the Nash’s for both my birthday and Christmas. Here are some highlights!

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Bryan also scored pretty huge.

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That night, Bryan and Ben decided it was the perfect time to turn our house into a brewery. While Nan, Megan and I watched The Holiday and played Candy Crush, Bryan and Ben were snickering over in the corner like little boys playing with a chemistry set. It was adorable, but our house stunk like hops even with all the windows open. Of course, Nan liked the smell. Oh Nan…!

The next day I bid adieu to my family and reluctantly returned to work, craving more family time. Luckily I work with some pretty awesome people and was greeted by this.

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After working a half day on Christmas Eve, the Nashs picked me up promptly at noon and whisked Bryan and I into the city for an afternoon of Christmas fun.

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Chocolate croissants and peppermint mochas

We saw a matinee of Oliver! at the 5th Avenue and basically sat in the front row. It was AMAZING. Oh law – these kiddos were talented. The sets were beautiful, the cast was perfect and we all left with huge, goofy smiles on our faces.

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Naturally, after Oliver! we went to Oliver’s Bar at the Mayflower Park Hotel. The scene could not have been more perfect – huge windows looking out onto the bustling city streets.

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After our delicious cocktails we headed back to Redmond for some dinner, libations and more gifts. We had lasagna, prosecco and I opened even more amazingly thoughtful and wonderful gifts. I truly do not deserve to have these wonderful people in my life but GUESS WHAT? I’ll take em!

The next morning we woke up to our first Christmas morning in our new house. Aw, mems. Then, we went to the GYM. Yes – Bryan and I worked out on Christmas morning. It was indeed, a Christmas miracle.

Upon arriving at the Nash homestead, we were treated to Mary’s famous breakfast casserole and then we happily dove into our stockings. And really, aren’t stockings the BEST?

After the gift giving had ceased, we sat in the Christmas carnage and purveyed our new goods and wares. The day was spent watching The Holiday (again!), The Family Man, playing Monopoly, cooking dinner, making cosmos and a rousing game of Catch Phrase which, btw, is awesome.

It was a wonderful holiday filled with family, friends and tequila. And a tiny unicorn, thanks to Megan.

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Having a couple days off from work meant lots of productivity at home.

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OH YES

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Candy Mountain Bubble Bar asdoijasdionj!

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Snowman bath bomb + Ro’s Argan = MAJESTY

OMG Breaking Bad. Just, yes.

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Already on Season 3

We even went for a hike up little Si!

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My face is completely round

For NYE we decided to head down the street to Salish Lodge and have drinks at the bar.

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This picture says everything and nothing

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Pretty lobby

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Snoqualmie Honey Ale and Brut Rose

In a word, our holidays were…perfect.

How were yours?