Life Lately: November 2014

Time for a life post! I have to bring you guys up to speed on the last two months, but since December was chock full of holiday fun, I’m only giving you November for now. This way you don’t have to scroll and scroll and scroll.

Life Lately

Tim and I kicked off November with dinner out at Brio Tuscan Grille in Chestnut Hill. The occasion? Our parents had never met before! Can you guys even believe that? All went well, and our food was great. We wanted to have them meet before the holidays and before our wedding planning picks up next month.

Brio Tuscan Grille

Then we both traveled for work during the first week of November. I went to Minnesota to do a couple of Stress Less seminars for our staff out there and to be there for the MN health fair. Everything went really smoothly, I got to lead a plank contest and a stretch session during the event, and the wellness champions out there organized an after work 5k race. I just love our Minnesota staff members. Everyone is so active and engaged with the wellness program, which makes for a nice change of pace.

Minnesota Health Fair 2014

Minnesota Health Fair 2014

Tim and I both had a long day of travel home on Friday at the end of the week. I landed around noon, caught a cab home from the airport, went through emails while eating lunch, and then I had to shower and get ready to go back to the airport to get Tim and head to Worcester for wedding #7 of 2014. It took us three hours to get from Boston to Worcester, and we were both exhausted, but we rallied and somehow managed to find the energy to celebrate Pete and Andrea’s special night!

Pete and Andrea's Wedding Pete and Andrea's Wedding

The rest of that weekend we pretty much did nothing! We finally got to spend some fall time outside with each other on a long walk, and it was nice to just relax and rejuvenate.

Tim and Me on a Fall HikeThe Best Yes

The following week, I hosted a girls night for my friends Allison, Shannon, and Tracy from home on Thursday. We spent it drinking wine and catching up over a good meal. I made a gnocchi and squash casserole with greens (hard to please a vegetarian AND two picky eaters!), Allison brought a salad, Shannon the wine and cheese and crackers, and Tracy brownies. It was perfect!

Butternut Squash with Gnocchi and KaleThe following night I headed over to Slesh’s apartment to hang out while we waited for our friend Erica to arrive. Erica was in town for one of the three parties that Tim and I were triple booked for on Saturday, and since I knew I probably wasn’t going to be able to make it to the one Erica was here for, I wanted to make sure I got some quality time in with her! Slesh and I hung out and drank wine (seems to be a theme, huh?), got dinner ready, and talked about some wedding related things before Erica got there. The rest of the night was spent catching up with both friends, and I felt lucky having two really great girls nights in a row. Slesh also made the most delicious chocolate chip cookies!

Chocolate Chip Cookies

On Saturday, our friends Ashley and Bret had a housewarming party, so we went over there for party #1. We brought the cranberry avocado salsa that I posted the other day, and we spent a lot of time chatting with my gym friend Jess and her fiancé Chris. Both Chris and Tim are foodies, so we knew they would hit it off!

Cranberry Avocado Salsa

Ashley and Bret's Housewarming

After a couple of hours spent at Ashley and Bret’s house, we headed out to party #2. Our friends Cate and Joe were hosting people at their house for Cate’s 30th birthday before heading out to celebrate with drinks at Howl at the Moon in Patriots Place. We had a ton of fun, but unfortunately we didn’t make it to party #3 which was a goodbye party for other friends of ours who are moving to LA. It was just too much to do in one night.

Cate's 30th Bday

Finally, I wrapped up that weekend with brunch at Johnny D’s in Somerville with Slesh, Erica, and Bridget! I was happy to see Erica one last time before she headed back to New York. This is awkwardly the only picture I have from that morning, via Bridget’s snap chat. We are weird. Sorry, Slesh.

Snapchat

The next week was the Massachusetts health fair week, so work was very stressful, but like Minnesota, the event went really well. We opened the day with a big presentation in our auditorium, we had multiple ed sessions throughout the day, my friend Dawn won the plank contest, and we did yoga. I was so relieved when the day was over (in a good way). Planning a big event like that for hundreds of people is not easy!

MA Health Fair 2014

Note Tim awkwardly getting fitted for orthodics. Haha! After the health fair, Tim and I went out for a celebratory dinner and much-needed margaritas at El Centro, a new Mexican place that opened in Belmont center. Loved!

El Centro in Belmont

The rest of the weekend was exactly what I needed after the health fair craziness. On Friday, I worked from home and met up with Dawn for a Whole Foods lunch date, and then Tim and I stayed put on our couch that night.

Whole Foods Salad Bar

I was supposed to teach another Athleta class on Saturday morning, but unfortunately it got canceled. Instead, I went on a morning hike and out to breakfast with some of my gym friends.

Gym Friends Hike

Since we met before 8am, we were done with our workout and breakfast by 11ish. I loved having the rest of the day to run some errands, prepare for Friendsgiving on Sunday, and relax!

Thanksgiving 2014

Sunday was Friendsgiving at Slesh’s, which you guys already read about in my Thanksgiving post a couple of weeks ago.

Thanksgiving 2014

That week at work was a short week. On Thanksgiving Day itself, Tim and I did a quick workout before splitting the holiday between both of our families.

Thanksgiving 2014

The rest of the weekend was spent teaching a post Thanksgiving class, grabbing another breakfast out with the gym girls, and hanging in on Friday night. On Saturday, I got all the details for my Holiday Hustle Challenge ready, we went out to lunch with our friends who were in town, and we saw Tim’s sister and her boyfriend for margaritas back at El Centro at night. Finally, I wrapped up the weekend and month at my friend Nicole’s baby shower.

Nicole's Baby Shower

And that was my November! December and holiday update coming soon.

–Let’s chat–
I would normally ask how your Novembers were, but that seems like ages ago now. Instead, tell me what you guys have going on for New Year’s Eve tonight. Going out? Staying in?

Tim and I are going out to dinner at Solea on Moody Street, and then we are stopping by Hopsters to see what their Happy Brew Year shindig is all about. We wanted to keep it low-key without staying in. Whatever you guys are doing, have fun tonight! Be safe!

Life Lately {September and October 2014}

It’s been a while since I’ve done a life update post, huh? It’s been since August, to be exact.

Life Lately

I don’t know about you, but I welcomed fall with wide open arms this year. Like I mentioned in my new newsletter that went out last week, I was happy to embrace the new season because it meant things were slowing down a bit from all the craziness that the summer brought. The first week of September was spent off from work. We spent the first half of the week celebrating my birthday, checking out potential wedding venues, and enjoying some time at home. We spent the second half of the week up north in one of our favorite places, Maine!

Maine Vacation: Cape Porpoise

When we got home from our vacation, we immediately were back into wedding mode, as we needed to make a decision within a week about our wedding venue. We were really torn between Atlantica in Cohasset for an ocean front wedding and Zorvino’s in NH for a rustic winery wedding. The second weekend in September we actually did a second visit back up to Zorvino’s just to make sure we had all our questions answered, and the return visit really clinched it for us. So that’s that! Our wedding date is set for Sunday, September 20th of next year at Zorvino’s!

Zorvino's

We are really excited about our venue, but I am just so relieved that the venue researching part of the process is over. Don’t get me wrong, I am really enjoying other parts of the planning, but the venue hunt simply wasn’t one of them. I feel guilty saying that because everyone and their mom and second cousin once removed felt the need to remind me about how AMAZING all of that should have been, but you know what? Trying to coordinate viewing a bunch of places all over the state between the hours of 8 and 4 during the week and keep it all straight actually wasn’t that amazing to me. I’m way more excited now that we have our venue and church selected and can think about more exciting things like who is going to lead the Greek dancing circles, what color I want my bridesmaids to wear, and what our signature drinks should be. Right?!

Zorvino's

Other mentionable September happenings include apple picking,

Apple Picking 2014

attending the annual WWCMA conference for work,

WWCMA 2014 Conference

going to a sweetgreen passport class called Barre & Bites with Liz,

sweetgreen barre & bites

and much more of THIS than I’ve been able to do in a really long time:

Tea on the Couch

There were also a couple of nights out to dinner with friends. I saw Allison for dinner at Seasons 52 in Burlington one night, and I met up with Bridget, Slesh, and Trina at a restaurant called Forum downtown. However, I’d say one of the main highlights of September was one of my bestie’s weddings! Holy moly, talk about an amazing fun weekend in NYC celebrating Erica and Chris. One of the best weddings I’ve ever been to, and just for the record, Tim and I figured out we’ve been to 23 in 3 years. So I think we are pretty good wedding judgers!

Erica & Chris: NYC Wedding

October was here before we even knew it, and I kicked off the month by hosting my really fun event at Athleta. Another one is in the works, so make sure to sign up for my newsletter to get early bird signup privileges and sneak peek details!

Athleta Legacy Place: Birthday Bootcamp

Tim was away for a bachelor party the first weekend of the month, so I used the time to catch up with friends I hadn’t seen a long time. I did dinner with my friend Erin at Isabella Restaurant and was able to get together spontaneously with some of the gym girls at Solea for sangria and tapas too. After we did dinner that night, I hung with Ashley at her house for awhile just catching up and drinking cider.

The week Tim got back, I was supposed to go to the October New Balance Girls Night Out event, but since we were still sharing a car at this point, it was impossible to get downtown. I was bummed to miss it, but Tim did get a new Altima, and we didn’t go broke (or start hating each other) in the process.

Other beginning of October things included a date night to see The Lion King (my birthday present, with dinner at Harvard Gardens first),

The Lion King

Tim’s godson’s christening,

Wes's Baptism

a random Tuesday night sleepover/gym friend get together at Ashley’s house when Jen was back in the states,

Jen's Visit: Tuesday Night Sleepover

and wedding dress shopping! I went first to David’s Bridal in Danvers to get a better idea of what type of style I was going for. I had no clue going into it whether I wanted satin versus lace, strapless versus not, etc. so that really helped. I brought my mom, MOH (Slesh), and bridesmaid (and seamstress!) Shannon with me, and they were all awesome throughout the whole process.

Wedding Dress Shopping

I went dress shopping again the following week, this time with my mom and Shannon again, but my Uncle Chris came along too. This trip I found the gown! I can’t wait for you guys to see it, but I suppose you’ll have to wait a year, huh?

Wedding: Gown

October’s last few weeks were spent celebrating our five year anniversary (dinner at Harvest in Harvard Square + drinks at Beat Hotel — HIGHLY recommend both),

Five Year Anniversary

spontaneously going to Harvest Fest 2014 in Somerville (SO many fun beers and food samples!),

Somerville Harvest Fest 2014

running the Oak Square OAKtoberfest 5k and post race brunching,

OAKtoberfest 5k Race & Taste: Family

Cook Restaurant

getting my monthly deep tissue massage (I signed up for a wellness package),

Massage Envy

celebrating my friend Jen’s birthday with the gym girls,

Gym Friends at Jen's

Gym Friends Food

going to Tim’s cousin’s birthday party, my friend Johnny’s housewarming party, and Patrice and Brian’s beautiful wedding!

Patrice & Brian's Wedding

We rounded up the month by heading back up to Zorvino’s for our meet the vendors night, and finally, hosting Halloween! We were lame this year and didn’t require anyone to wear a costume. What we did require was everyone bring a seasonal craft beer so we could have a little tasting. It was fun!

Halloween 2014

Lots of good stuff going on outside of work lately!

–Let’s chat–
Tell me about the highlights of September and October? What stood out to you the most? I want to know what you’ve been up to! What are you looking forward to in November?

I am looking forward to a free Saturday and Sunday next weekend after we attend wedding #7 of 8 this year on Friday night! I am also excited for Thanksgiving. Slesh is hosting Friendsgiving again this year, AND Tim and I figured out how to spend the holiday with both of our families.

Have a great day, you guys!

Erica’s Last Sail Before the Veil

This summer, I helped throw my friend Erica a bachelorette party in Newport, Rhode Island. Since we were going to be on the water all weekend, I suggested we have a nautical theme. After some brainstorming, we decided to call the weekend Erica’s last sail before the veil. Bridget and I spent the three days after Slesh’s wedding and before Erica’s bachelorette weekend in full blown errand mode. There’s no such thing as too many party props, right? Erica's Last Sail Before the Veil: PropsI took Friday off from work and drove down to Newport with Bridget and Ashley. When we arrived, we checked in (party props in tow) to our hotel, The Newport. Erica's Last Sail Before the Veil: The NewportWe decided to head down to Bowen’s Wharf and eat an early lunch before settling in to the hotel. We went to The Lobster Bar, and I enjoyed a lobster salad and a cocktail with a view. It was a perfect day, and the ocean was gorgeous. Erica's Last Sail Before the Veil: Lobster BarErica's Last Sail Before the Veil: The LandingErica's Last Sail Before the Veil: The Landing After lunch, we went back to the hotel to decorate and set up before everyone else arrived. First we put the party bags filled with champagne, leis, snacks, koozies, straws, and more out on display. Erica's Last Sail Before the Veil: Party BagsNext we strung thongs, condoms, and a pair of bride underwear across the room. Erica's Last Sail Before the Veil We also got busy with balloons, streamers, and other decorations that I probably shouldn’t post on this blog. Erica's Last Sail Before the Veil: DecoratingWhen Erica arrived there was a lot of screaming and giggling. And a one piece pajama set to go nicely with the underwear. Erica's Last Sail Before the Veil: PajamasOur first destination once everyone arrived was the Castle Hill Inn. Holy gorgeous waterfront. We spent a couple of hours just lounging on the lawn with fun cocktails, catching up, and enjoying another beautiful view. Erica's Last Sail Before the Veil: Castle Hill Inn Erica's Last Sail Before the Veil: Castle Hill Inn Erica's Last Sail Before the Veil: Castle Hill Inn After our lovely afternoon, we went back to the hotel to get ready for dinner at the Gas Lamp Grille. The dress code for the night was Erica in red, everyone else in black! We also sported light up rings from the party bag. Erica's Last Sail Before the Veil: Friday Night During dinner, Erica’s sister gave a little toast, we drank out of inappropriate straws, and we clinked cheers many times! Erica's Last Sail Before the Veil: Gas LampAfter dinner it was time to dance! We walked over to Studio 3, which is a nightclub that has a CATWALK. Let’s just say a lot of time was spent up there. Here are some gems from the night: Erica's Last Sail Before the Veil: Studio 3Erica's Last Sail Before the Veil: Studio 3 Erica's Last Sail Before the Veil: Studio 3Erica's Last Sail Before the Veil: Studio 3Erica's Last Sail Before the Veil: Studio 3It was such a fun night! When we got back to the hotel, there was a lot of snacking and snuggling before we all went to bed. Erica's Last Sail Before the Veil: BedtimeWhen we woke up on Saturday, it was a little overcast, so we took our time getting up and at em. Bridget and I did a bagel run for everyone, and eventually we all made our way to the beach. We spent the afternoon just lounging, snacking, drinking mimosas, and playing a fun bachlorette game that Erica’s sister put together where she asked Chris to answer questions ahead of time, and we had to see how many Erica would get right. Erica's Last Sail Before the Veil: MimosaErica's Last Sail Before the Veil: Beach DayAfter our beach day, it was time to get ready for the second night of festivities. Our Saturday night dress code was even more intense than Friday’s. Enter matching tank tops and sailor hats. Erica's Last Sail Before the Veil: Tank TopsWe had a few drinks at the hotel while playing a few more games and taking a look at the scavenger hunt that our friend Eileen put together for the night. Erica's Last Sail Before the Veil: Scavenger HuntThen we were off! Next up on our agenda was a sunset cruise. While we were waiting for our boat to arrive, Erica did some scavenging. Yes, that’s one of our party props you see: Erica's Last Sail Before the Veil: Scavenger HuntOur outfits were seriously a huge hit among passerby! Erica's Last Sail Before the Veil: Matching Sailor OutfitsErica's Last Sail Before the Veil: Me and TrinaWe boarded our boat, The Rum Runner, around 7pm for an hour long cruise around the harbor. The boat had snacks and rum punch, and it was a really fun activity to add to our night. Erica's Last Sail Before the Veil: Rum RunnerErica's Last Sail Before the Veil: Rum RunnerErica's Last Sail Before the Veil: Rum RunnerErica's Last Sail Before the Veil: Rum RunnerErica's Last Sail Before the Veil: Bridal partyErica's Last Sail Before the Veil: Rum Runner Newport After our boat docked, it was time for dinner at Jo’s American Bistro. We didn’t just take any transportation to dinner though! Erica's Last Sail Before the Veil: Carraige I could not stop laughing the entire ride sitting on Katrina and Kelly’s laps! Dinner that night was perfect, and I’m bummed I didn’t take any pictures during it! The food was great and right up my alley. I ordered the salmon, and it was served with couscous, red quinoa, lemon and feta cheese, kale, and a citrus salad. Another bachelorette thing we did during dinner was take turns going around the table to each say something we love about Erica. Mine was how she is always up for a fun activity – no matter what!

After dinner, we concluded our night at a couple of different bars. First up was the Boom Boom Room, which made me feel super old. They had a TV at the bar that showed footage of the dance floor, and it was hilarious to watch! We only went there for one drink before heading to One Pelham East to dance to a live band for the rest of the night. Erica’s sister even got to go on stage and sing with the band for Billy Jean! So cool. Erica's Last Sail Before the Veil: One Pelham EastOn Sunday, those of us who didn’t have to leave early did one last brunch at the Atlantic Beach Club before heading home.

Erica’s bachelorette was such a fun weekend, and everything went so smoothly! I know I’m a few months late in recapping the weekend since it took place in July, but it was fun going back through my pictures while writing this post. I still have shower and all my besties’ weddings to write about, but I’ll save those for another time.

–Let’s chat– Have you ever been to Newport? What’s your favorite thing to do there? Tell me about the bachelorette or bachelor parties you’ve been to this year, if any!

For other bachelorette fun, check out: