Wednesday, November 12, 2014

almost MERRY CHRISTMAS!



 


my favorite time of year has started and my favorite holiday IS ALMOST HERE!
over the last few weeks {well, month *cough* KOHLS *cough*} I have seen trees go up, ornaments go up and fake snow placed around the displays at select stores. starbucks introduced their Christmas drinks the first day of November {yep, ittttt happened and I totally drank my favorite peppermint mocha}. we have a tradition here in this house that we go tree picking the first weekend of december. we chop it down, decorate it and enjoy it all weekend. I would love to decorate earlier this year, but I am all for enjoying the holiday and time in between Halloween and New Years Day.

one of my favorite memories revolving around Christmas involves my grandma frahlich. which, almost every one of my favorite memories involves her. I would spend the night the weekend after thanksgiving, or even thanksgiving night. we would stay up late watching movies, making our signature nightly snack and I would spend it trying to convince her decorating that year was a good idea. I was always convincing her, and she was always thanking me I had after.

we would get up, have our breakfast and slowly make our way to her storage closet. box by box, I would bring the Christmas decorations back to her apartment. it was always a gamble to see how many boxes at one time I could bring back to save the most time. I would get inside and she would start unpacking. "I can't believe I have so many Christmas decorations. Alex, is there anything you want? I need to get rid of so much." I would always find a place and if not, there was no shame packing it back up and sticking it in the closet.

my absolute favorite thing to decorate with my grandma was the Christmas tree. I would set it up and she would unwrap the ornaments. slowly, and with careful eyes, we hung each one. we topped it with a sparkly star and then held our breaths as we turned the lights on and stepped back to admire it. and then she would hug me and thank me for decorating. and every time it made me so happy. because those moments, alone with my grandma, were my favorite and I miss them every Christmas.

one of the first things I requested when she passed was that Christmas tree. and I still have it. I put it up last year {the first Christmas without her} and it wasn't the same. I eventually took it down before Christmas. but I know when I have my own place, I will put it up proudly the weekend after thanksgiving and remember every memory of every decoration and ornament I have of hers and know she is with me the entire time.

xo

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

monty the penguin


I smiled throughout the entire video and then I cried at the end. but it's a good cry. this is true happiness, guys.
john lewis is amazing.
I want one of those penguins!!

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

frustration.

I'm going to be pretty honest.
one of the absolute must frustrating things I deal with on almost a daily basis is worry. worry that is attributed from melanoma. every new freckle, bump, or different colorization puts me on the alert.
and then I do one of the worst things ever and that's going on Google.
but quickly, I calmly talk myself out of it and look at my symptoms logically. is that bruise from when I bumped into my desk at work the other day? oh, yeah, probably.
was the freckle by my scar always there? no, but it looks normal and I just had my scan a couple months ago.
and ladies, let's be honest. we all aren't the best at updating our bras when we probably should and those underwires hurt under our arms. so is that bump that hurts an irritation, or is it a sign of cancer.

my mind goes straight to cancer and I hate that it does.
so I wait it out. I keep my mind off of it. I monitor it. but when it doesn't go away, I panic and you can bet nothing much else is on my mind. because last year we all thought the mole was nothing. and then it was everything wrong.

so it's hard when something isn't going away to not worry. and then i'll ask a million questions to my doctor this Friday when I see her and hopefully it will all be okay.

because if there is anything I learned from my whole melanoma experience last year, it was to just take one day at a time. there is nothing you can do today about it. don't think so negatively and drastically. just think rationally and logically and know that the results will come when they do. the doctor is going to give you good or bad news regardless. so enjoy the moment. enjoy the little things. don't let it consume you. because you will drive yourself insane and find your nights falling asleep are spent crying in fear. and really, who wans puffy eyes the next morning? I've had them too frequently lately.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

the new york city ballet.

holy moly guacamole. I was introduced to this city.ballet series by a cup of jo and fell in love. I have never been able to dance. ever. slow dance, sure, and teach me something and I will eventually get it. I think I did ballet when I was four for a year or two but I have always had such an appreciation for the dance and the dancers. one of my favorite movies is center stage.
so when Joanna blogged about this, I checked it out and finished the entire first season in one sitting {because, you know, I don't have a dozen other things I should be doing...}
and there is a second season, so you can only guess what I will be doing at some point this week.
anyway, check it out. it's mesmerizing.

image from a cup of jo from city.ballet

Friday, October 31, 2014

happy halloween weekend!!!!!!


I pulled out some of our old photo albums and stumbled upon this little photo. my mom was pretty cool to dress up with me. actually, she probably still would if I asked her to!

Halloween is so much fun! all of the pumpkins everywhere and the excuse to make everything pumpkin flavored is valid.
anyways, I will be dressing up this year...I think...for a Halloween party. thinking of going as Mary Poppins because I fell in love with Saving Mr. Banks this year and seriously, how cute would that outfit be?
but what makes me most excited about this time of year is that tomorrow, I can officially start listening to Christmas music without feeling guilty. I was made fun of at work {all in good fun} for listening to Christmas music and I get it. it was a little early. but I can't help it! Christmas is just so magical.
but first comes thanksgiving and in our family, we have something super exciting happening this year! celebrating thanksgiving on my mom's side a little early! I cannot wait, guys!
what do you love about this time of year?
xo

Friday, October 24, 2014

it's autumn. and it's friday.

two of  my favorite things. the air has been crisp outside. the leaves have all officially turned and hot chocolate and plenty of coffee during the day have all been necessary. my sweaters have been moved out from the back of the closet, my scarves are hanging up and I found the best hat for when it gets a little chillier out. this girl is happy. fall is here.



{this is the latest we have ever gone to get pumpkins! our porch looks so much better with a little orange}
 

 

 
 

{these had me itching to make a pumpkin pie. or anything with pumpkin, really}
 

 
{sadly, it was pretty gloomy out. but I think it added to the whole Halloween vibe}
 

 
{my brother got stuck with the heavy lifting}
 
 
{and this is the house on the property. can you imagine living here? I think it looks so creepy!!!}

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend ahead! mine will be spent with family and friends and babysitting the cutest kids.
xo

Monday, October 13, 2014

we came back smelling like campfire.

it was the perfect weekend for camping! sure, it was a bit chilly (I think the high was 55) but that's what campfires are for which we had going all day long. it was fantastic! we spent time with family and enjoyed being outside all day. there were even some fall activities going on.

have I mentioned how much I love fall?


{my new Diana came in the mail and I have been reading and reading about how to take the perfect picture. but what I have found out is it's the not so perfect ones that are phenomenal. so I brought this lady out and snapped some shots}





{one of my most favorite things about camping is getting up early in the morning and enjoying everything around me before everyone is awake}



{our view from one of our camp sites}





{the moment in the day I regretted only bringing one sweatshirt. it was a bit chilly. but then I looked around me and all was good again}



{even camping, zip has to be "proper" and cross his arms}

Friday, October 10, 2014

let's go on a bear hunt...well, maybe not...


my family and I are going camping together this weekend!
well, minus my brother .... he has to work.

but I am super excited!!!! camping in the fall is one of the best things ever and I can't wait to bring my Diana to take some amazing photos!

I hope you have a wonderful weekend and do something fun!

see you on Monday!

xo

Monday, October 6, 2014

so good.

this weekend was really good. it started off with the coolest of restaurants with the yummiest of endless {ENDLESS} fries and the best of people.
Saturday was spent running around vintage shopping and I was so disappointed, guys. I went all the way out to the Canton area {well past that, to be honest} to a place I had been told about and it was awful. luckily, my vintage hopes were restored at two local shops I didn't know about. wish I would have started there.

I then spent way too much time in target and also in the craft store picking out yarn for various knitting projects. if you want one of these:


...let me know and I would be happy to !

I also received my DIANA CAMERA in the mail and I cannot wait to take some mind boggling photos with it.

the weather this weekend was pretty chilly, but I LOVED it. welcome, fall!
on sunday, I spent the day knitting and cleaning up around here. also, while I am catholic, I was intrigued about the general conference. many bloggers I follow talk about it, and I wanted to see what it was about. I am glad I listened in on it and it is certainly not for just one type of religion. you can gain so many beautiful insights to life by listening and I wrote a few down I will take with me. there were so many wonder, inspiring and enlightening talks that I just feel so good going into these winter months with an open mind and heart. my church is amazing and our priest gives beautiful and relatable sermons every week. life is good, guys.

have a WONDERFUL Monday and an even better week. it's going to be a good one.

xo

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

this past weekend.


I had goals this weekend. serious. goals.
one of them included finally buying a MacBook air.
since I used a mac when I interned a few years ago
in a marketing & communications department,
I had been wanting one for myself.


the problem?
they're expensive.


for the last three years, I had known it was going to happen.
as a writer, the mac felt right and as someone who wanted
to learn about photoshop, the MacBook seemed perfect
for just that.


so Saturday, I got up, ran some errands which included the apple store.
I had it all picked out and after an hour or so of issues,
{apple store had problems that day...should have taken it as a sign},
my MacBook was in my hands and I was on my way home to obsess.


when it came time to open the box up {which is fancier than any packaging I've seen}
I opened it up and was sad to realize how little excitement I had.
I brushed the doubtful feelings aside and turned that baby on.
playing around with it, it felt familiar and I thought, "I could do this."
then I opened iTunes. and that is when it hit me......


how can I copy a playlist to a CD when there is no place to insert one...?
oh, how I was disappointed, but happy in a way, too.
I had doubt for a reason and I should have listened to it.


so the next day, I took the walk of shame back into the apple store.
sucked up my frustration as the guy who processed my return gave me a look
and I walked out of there happy with my decision.


so now...now, I am on the hunt for a computer. but not a mac.
anyone else have to recently make some hard decisions?


 

Monday, September 29, 2014

enjoying the sights of autumn everywhere i go.





 it's been a bit warm around here ever since fall made its official debut. the sights scream fall, but the upper 70 degree weather shouts summer. not sure how I feel about that seeing I was pretty pumped for fall to finally be here. I guess I should take it as a good thing...we are getting a little bought of warm weather before winter starts. which, hello, is sooner than we think. The Hallmark Channel is already advertising for their Christmas season. not that I am not excited. I just want to be in the moment. it's fall. not summer and not winter.

and while it's sometimes frustrating, gosh I love living where I do. we get every season and I am going to live each of them to the fullest.

happy fall, everyone!

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

little notes.

dear grapefruit,
I've become a new fan of yours. I'd Never tried you for breakfast or lunch but am pretty excited about this.


dear dell computer,

I will miss you after all of our manuscripts and college essays together. but I'm getting a mac soon and I.CANNOT.WAIT.


dear snoring,

you embarrass  me so much. you can go away now.


dear fall weather,

hello! thank you so much for coming. i love you


dear week,

please be gentle on me. the last couple of have been a little rough. I'm ready for a break already. weekend, please come.


dear scary movies,

I really do enjoy you, but the movie Annabelle is going to kill me. oh and  buy and the fault in our stars which came out on DVD last week and i now own you.


dear fall, thanksgiving and Christmas,

i won’t say who, but somebody is getting really excited to enjoy you this year because I feel like I was robbed of you last year.



love,

alexandria

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

monday was the most perfect autumn day.



i went into work on monday with a huge smile on my face.
the weather was perfect and it's officially autumn TODAY.

the colors on the trees are changing.

and if you close your eyes, you can kind of smell october.

which, by the way, smells phenomenal.


I'm ready for pumpkins. I'm ready for leaves. I'm ready for more days like Monday
where I can wear my new favorite boots and sweaters and scarves
and order a hot drink from my local coffee shop.


I'm ready for you, autumn. come on full force.

Monday, September 22, 2014

24 years old. or 4

two nights ago I had chicken tenders for dinner...buffalo style.

the other day, a classic pb&j; with a big glass of milk was my lunch.



sometimes you need to feel like a kid again.

I might be having pb&j again tomorrow for lunch.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

writing a manuscript.

it's one of the most infuriating, frustrating, hair tearing out process I've ever gone through.
but it's the most rewarding and fulfilling thing I have done {besides fundraising} in my life.

there are nights where I am up two-thirty in the morning because I couldn't, physically and mentally, stop writing.
and then there are the moments of pure doubt. I can't tell you how often I've written a scene over to hopefully make it have more impact on the reader.

last week I gave my lovely friend, Marilyn, a copy of my manuscript. I reached the point where I had an editorial reviewer give her take on it and I had made the changes {and then some} on it, but couldn't move forward unless I had someone to talk back and forth with on it.

the moment I hit send, I was nervous. for many reasons. but mostly because someone was going to be reading my work...and then giving me all of her thoughts. the good and the bad.

this manuscript means so much to me. it's going to mean so much to someone else, I just know it. this book is like my child {and I say that now before I have any kids and I will probably kick myself for comparing words to children someday...but it's a metaphor. 'kay?} and further down the road, I hope someone in the publishing industry sees and feels the potential I see and feel. I just need to make sure it's ready before I expose it to the world.

my friend max provides an array of services for writers and, if anything, I recommend the editorial review. check her out.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

today...


i am thankful for pumpkin spice lattes,

those funny new {or not so new} Dorito commercials,


friendly passerybys who offer a smile back,

September finally being here.


i am looking forward to taking time in the morning to walk and just be present before my day starts,

making lists that count and actually accomplishing them,

camping in the cooler weather,

making pumpkin pies, chili and zucchini bread with my mama.




i know it’s only the middle of the month and fall isn't here yet,
but i wish you all a beautiful season.

 thanks for reading.


 


Tuesday, September 16, 2014

tuesday.

today is going to be a good day today.
I can feel it.

it has to be and I'm determined to find the good
and the happiness
in everything I can.

an sometimes, the joy in a day
is making your own happiness.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

here's to a {mostly} bad week turned around.

after Wednesday, my week turned around. here are some of my loves that turned my mood back up.
i love the new crisp feel outside as summer ever so slowly comes to an end. the smells of autumn around the corner is SO good.
i love that this means it’s time to bring out all of my favorite sweaters in my closet, and put my tank tops and summer shirts in the back. it's a good day when that happens, guys. i also love seeing my scarves and hats and knowing that wearing them is just around the corner. oh, and knitting. i do a lot of knitting in the fall.pull out the sweaters, scarves and hats.   and am wearing them faithfully around the apartment while

i love drinking apple cider and darker red nail polish to go with the colors of fall.
i love knowing I can wear boots soon and put my flip flops to rest. boots are SO much better.

i love my study guides and learning more about my faith. and also wearing my favorite cozy sweater while completing this week's guide. those guides bring such strength and joy into my life.


i love baking. and I love how baking in the fall {and dare I say winter} is a million and one times better than baking in the summer.


i love improving in my room...little by little.

i love movement. i love my space. i love music. and i especially love this. {and yes, it makes me cry and gives me crazy harsh goosebumps}.


i love my life. i do. even when it's hard and confusing {this week had it's moments. but Thursday started to really look up}. and i am thankful for all of it.

I love family. and I love all of them that I got to see since Thursday.


 

Friday, September 12, 2014

a quote for the weekend ahead...


i think this is may be my new life motto.

i couldn’t agree with it more.

xo

a special weekend.


i hope you have a special September weekend.

it's supposed to be a little cold outside and gloomy
which I am okay with but this up and down weather
is not my favorite.

I will be spending time with family all weekend!

we have a special family member coming from Hawaii

to stay with us for a few days. she love nyc

just like me.

we will get to see lots of family in the next couple of days

which makes me happy.


sunday is my cousin's first birthday.

this baby is the happiest baby I have ever met

and can't believe he is one already.

can't wait to give you lots of hugs, mister grady.


i wish you all a lovely weekend.

i’ll see you on monday!




Thursday, September 11, 2014

september 11th

i'll never forget where I was 13 years ago.
the world seemed so scary even at 11 years old.
my mom picked my brother and I up from school
and i'll never forget how the sky looked different that night.


thank you to all men and women who fight for our freedom.

hug your families a little tighter today and never forget.


god bless.

 


Wednesday, September 10, 2014

wednesday.

hi hi hi!


it's the middle of the week and I couldn't be happier.


i've been watching the show, Grey's anatomy lately and it's making me all nostalgic.
i used to watch it in high school with some friends and we would stay up super late and watch half a season. since then, I've lost interest in the show but now it's all I want to watch. There's only four more seasons until I'm caught up...I can do it right?


anyone else do that?


anyways, it's Wednesday, guys! half of the week is over. thank goodness.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

little notes.


dear Hershey's dark chocolate,

I had a crappy day yesterday and you seemed like the best solution to that. I tried to talk myself out of buying you, but my not so great monday deserved a little chocolate.

xxx

 dear Monday,

you weren't very nice this week. all day long i couldn't decide if you were a good day, a sad day, an ugly day or whatever. i was so happy to climb into bed and wake up to Tuesday. so thank you, Monday, for Tuesday. i have high hopes for today.

xxx

 dear television channel,

why are there such trashy tv shows on right now? and why do I feel the need to watch you so often?

xxx

dear mom,

I think you should make more of your zucchini bread. I have been missing it like crazy and going through withdrawal since you made your last {small} batch a month ago. oh, and your pumpkin pie. cause, you know, autumn is coming up.

xxx

dear cold I can feel coming,

please don't. I really hate being sick and working. and working out. although, it would be a nice excuse...

 xxx

dear pumpkin spice lattes {with soy} ,
why, oh why, do you have to be so good and so easy to order? my wallet doesn't like you, but I sure do. you're my favorite until peppermint mochas come into town.

 xxx

dear closet,

I am sorry I let you get so crazy inside. I didn't mean to and I promise I will {eventually} put you back together again.

 xxx

dear alarm clock,

I'm sorry for wanting to throw you across the room. I know you're just doing your job, but that 6:45AM wake up call is not my favorite five days a week.

 xxx

dear running,

please get easier. I want to be able to get stronger and healthier. you're the way to do it, but I really don't like you when I am actually running.


 xxx

dear weekend,

please get here soon. I need to enjoy the cooler and gloomy weather in all its glory and this week just needs to be over with. I miss sleeping in and not rushing anywhere.



Monday, September 8, 2014

what do you wish?

i wish it would cool down enough so I could wear my new favorite sweater and go for a walk outside and not be too warm. autumn, I'm ready for you {have been since sept 1}, I can't help it.


i wish nutella {any other form of chocolate} were a healthy enough snack that I didn't feel so guilty eating it. gosh...the guilt.


i wish people weren't so rude in parking lots. seriously. I had a not so wonderful experience with a woman {older than me} who thought she saw a parking spot first {I had been circling, I saw it, I parked...first come, first serve, right?} and began to scream at me. I was scared and embarrassed.


i wish candy crush wasn’t so much fun and absolutely addicting to play. I'm losing valuable sleep at my house thanks to those stupid pieces of candy.


i wish I liked to run outside. with the weather becoming crisper and cooler out, it would be perfect. I just can't do it. well, today I can't.


i wish flying to new york wasn't so expensive. I would love to visit there again soon...just to see the leaves in central park. it's so gorgeous there this time of year.


and… i wish it was friday. because that would be the start of my weekend, and today wouldn't be Monday. because, really, Mondays I struggle. but I am going to concentrate on my little moments of happy that get me through the day.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

dream


her voice, guys...gosh, it gives me goosebumps. I came across this song initially when I heard it on grey's anatomy and I fell in love with it.

"I'm ready now to fly from the highest trees...
I had a dream."

Saturday, September 6, 2014

28 years.



that's a lot of years and it is something to celebrate!
happy 28th wedding anniversary mom and dad!
---
xo

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

untitled.

how was your labor day?
i’m in love with three day weekends and they make me happy long before they begin.

i spent my days off reading, writing, spending time with loved ones and exploring. it was fantastic.

also, it's September and i cannot wait for fall like weather to begin.
i know, i know. enjoy the moment. but i am so ready for cold nights wrapped in scarves and blankets walking around with the beautifully colored leaves all over the ground.
hopefully it will come soon!

xo

Monday, September 1, 2014

a little more personal


i don't have a lot of time to read these days and whenever i have a moment at night before sleep takes over, you better believe my nose is in a book.

lately, I've been so intrigued and inspired by study books. my faith is important to me and i am all for furthering my knowledge. my favorite study books have been anything Jennie Allen and right now, i am almost finished with the Stuck Study. it makes you think about what is keeping you from things in life and how to get through them. it's a beautiful book and i highly recommend it.

anyway, because i loved the idea so much, i began searching for other ways to explore. a blogger (whom i can't remember...I'm sorry!) recommended this prayer journal by ValMariePaper and i was instantly drawn to it.

the design is gorgeous and so easy, but the idea is what caught my attention. the book itself isn't available until September but i cannot wait to order and receive mine! it just takes a few moments how ever often you want to sit down and write...explore and take time to think about what's going on in your life and around you. also, she has an adorable blog that everyone should check out!

cannot wait!
xoxo

unplugged


there's a few articles running around the internet about unplugging from social media. there's no way i could do that completely...but i am determined to cut back.

I've found myself, more times than i would like to admit, getting lost in my facebook's news feed. facebook makes it easy for you to click on and get lost in other people's lives. while i like to keep up with friends and family...how much time has been stolen from facebook? what happened to the old fashioned phone call or  write a letter to learn how people are doing?

there are so many things i want to do with my day and spending it checking facebook is not one of them. so I'm unplugging. i'll still use facebook for personal use, but i want to try and focus on other things.

you'll probably catch me more on here, or on twitter. and if you have a blog you would like to share with me, please let me know. i would love to connect!

Sunday, August 31, 2014

the whole month of august...according to my iphone

it's been a whirlwind, you guys. august came and went, but i am ready for these hot and steamy days to be done and over with. with it being so crazy, i haven't done a very good job keeping up on here so i apologize for the amount of pictures in this post but i had too many great days to not share them.
first...Madsen Donuts from Geneva on the Lake.



















sister's shoulders are for sleeping on I guess on long car rides.