happy tuesday

We stayed around the house for most of the long weekend - I don’t think I changed out of my running shorts (I never even went running) and old t-shirt for three days. Bear had writing/work to get finished and I got into a weird mood that consisted of me wanting to deep clean and organize everything.

Since the weather has gotten warmer we spend most of our waking hours outside. We got a BBQ this past week and I planted flowers in pots on our deck. We spent Sunday evening sitting outside under the white twinkle lights that hang around our deck. It was a romantic evening. Sometimes romance can come when you least expect it, we weren't making out under the dark sky- even though that would have been fun too- we were just enjoying each other’s presence and having conversations about gun control (how romantic huh), raising kids, if we are a good judge of character, and why we love hanging out with each other. 

Together we have been reading Love Does by Bob Goff. It’s funny and creatively written and although Bear doesn’t love every story that he writes about, it has given Bear and I topics to discuss and think about with our own life. One of my favorite quotes so far from the book is “We get to decide each time whether we will lean in toward what is unfolding and say yes or back away.”  There are so many times in my life that I want to back away – run away for that matter, and sometimes I do. More recently, I have been trying to embrace what is in front of me, good or bad, and feel blessed that I have the decision to say YES.

Let’s enjoy this week. Take some time to plant some flowers, have some romance, and say YES to something unfolding in your life!

have a happy tuesday, and a happy week for that matter. 

(photo source



Easter is a refreshing holiday. The flowers are starting to showcase their colors and new life starts appearing. The birds are chirping outside and the sun and blue skies shining brightly are an instant pick me up. Oh how I LOVE this time of year.  

For Easter we spent most of the day at the New Jersey Botanical Gardens. Things were just starting to bloom and have some color. I can’t wait to go back when all the flowers and trees are in full bloom. 

After we got home from our day spent at the gardens, we did our annual Easter egg hunt for Shento. He has perfected his craft of finding eggs. Bear hid them all over the yard, on top of a tree branch and in a flower pot, and Shento found every single one of the eggs.

He did eventually find the blue egg in the flower pot :) 

January - February - March - April

We rang in the New Year pretty uneventful. Some loud cheers, dancing in the living room and a kiss at midnight was what we mustered up.

We  visited one of our best friends in Charlottesville, VA. We had a great time, like we always do with him. We explored the town, went out to breakfast, and took a day trip to Roseland. The Roseland day trip was quite eventful, we got turned around and went the wrong direction for some time before realizing that we might be going in the wrong direction. A couple hours later, an ice cream pit stop, and a lot of quality time together, we arrived, just before the sun set over the hills.  We spent the evening by a huge fireplace eating food and enjoying some yummy drinks at Devils Backbone Brewery.

February was by far our worst winter month. It was filled with snow, rain, ice, freezing temperatures, and more rain. The entire state seemed like it was one big ice skating rink.  We watched a lot of Parks and Rec. and British Murder mystery shows.

In March we went to an all Beethoven recital by the wonderful Norwegian pianist Leif Ove Andsnes at McCarter Theater in Princeton. Bear loved it and I appreciated the talent that he had. Incredible.

We also cheered for the Gators during March madness.  We don’t have cable so we watched most of the games at our local pizza parlor.

On the first semi warm day the local ice cream shop opened, and you bet we went and tested out a few flavors.

For Easter Bear brought home the most gorgeous bouquet of flowers I've ever seen.   

It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year

I’m so happy to be finally posting about the most wonderful time of the year.  December. This December felt more magical than most, and although we weren't around any of our family, sad face, we loved every minute of being together and really tried hard to do lots of holiday stuff. 

Our first holiday outing was to a small town just West of us, Clinton, NJ. They put on an annual Dickens festival complete with horse drawn carriage rides, old Saint Nick walking the streets, and holiday decorations that made the small town sparkle. We walked through the streets and ventured into a couple local shops. If you happen to be in the Clinton area stop off at Citispot Tea & Coffee. We ordered the pumpkin spice latte and it was wonderful. 

Next up, we got a Christmas tree. No, not the gigantic one on the left, even though I think that one would have been perfect, we opted for the cute five foot tree that was little crooked and missing a couple branches on the lower half. We always feel bad for the little Charlie brown trees  

One afternoon we drove to the shore and spent the evening enjoying the sights and sounds of Asbury Park. A lot of the area is still in the re-development stages after hurricane Sandy but Shento, Bear, and I were able to enjoy parts of the beach and boardwalk. After tiring Shento out we headed into the old conventional hall for some delicious dinner. If you look closely in the picture above you can see the convention hall and inside it was all decorated for the holiday. 

One of our newly acquainted holiday traditions is trying a new restaurant that normally is out of our everyday price range. This year we got all fancied up and went to Delta’s. A southern style, jazz music playing, fried chicken kind of a place. The chicken and waffles (with a hint of powdered sugar on top) were out of this world good. 

By the middle of December the weather was starting to get pretty terrible, and venturing outside in the ice and snow didn't seem like a good idea. But visiting numerous coffee shops throughout the area was the perfect date. There is something I love about sitting at a cozy coffee shop enjoying the company of a loved one. 

Bear baked some delicious pecan tassies.  Thanks to an old family recipe that his Mom gave him and his amazing baking skills these quickly became one of our favorite treats. 

Christmas morning was magical. We sat on the floor together and opened our presents. We felt so blessed to have family who graciously sent us wonderful gifts and my Mom who (always) put together the best stockings. We acted like kids, laughing and loving each other. I don’t think we go out of a PJ’s until after 1pm.  

Happy Holidays to everyone 5 months late. 


September, October, and November Adventures

I still have updating to do from the past several months. I have made this a goal to get all the updating done so that we have some sort of documentation on the last several adventures Bear and I have been on. This process has seemingly taken forever. I sit down to go through pictures only to realize that I have thousands of pictures all un-organized and in separate folders because that's the way they have downloaded to my computer… ridiculous.  But hooray for me, I'm slowly making progress on the photo organizing front and updating our life over the post 6 months. 

To those who still read this crazy blog of mine, the months and months of updating will soon be over and I will get back to posting regular posts.

We were still on the hunt for furniture to fill our empty home. I stopped by every yard sale I found and frequently visited the thrift store.  I was able to find some great things, see below the 1980’s record player hutch. With some sanding and a new coat of paint it looked great.

We enjoyed our favorite Chinese noodle restaurants in New Brunswick. 

The weather was so beautiful in September that every moment we had we got outside and went for runs/walks to our local park.

We celebrated Shento, it was a happy 7th birthday filled with dog cupcakes and a new stuffed animal.  

I traveled to WA to visit Miss. Milly, Whitney & Joey.  I had such a wonderful time. We packed the 5 days with eating Cronuts, wondering around the unbelievably beautiful Chihuly garden and glass museum, went on a girls date and devoured Mexican food, took lots of walks, and explored a little bit of Seattle.

Bear and I wanted an adventure, and we had always heard that upstate New York was beautiful during  the fall months, so the weekend after I got back from Washington we hoped in the car and drove to the Catskills.  We camped out in our car for a night and explored the little town of Windham.  

Janice came for a weekend visit. We walked downtown Highland Park stopping at the farmers market and our favorite bagel shop. 

Vicci and Charlie, Bear’s Aunt and Uncle, were visiting Maryland and it’s only a short drive from our house so we went to enjoy the day with them. We ate the absolute best crab cakes ever.

Bear rang in another wonderful year of life. He was busy the entire day so we celebrated that evening with a stombolli, cake, and the opening of gifts.  

Ryan took a spontaneous trip from D.C to come visit us. Always fun having him around. 

Bear went to Chicago to present a chapter of his dissertation. This was a big deal and I was a very proud grad student wife. 

We celebrated Thanksgiving by each picking two new recipes and making them together. The top favorites were the spinach sausage tart and the mushroom pilaf.