flashback friday

today takes us back to 2011.

this was the year that we got married but it was also a year where we had 9 weddings to go to, including our own! it was quite the year of wedding! this picture was taken at our friend jaime’s wedding in june. carol was a bridesmaid and, obvs, i was a guest! ooooohh, and we were so tan from the summer already!

it was a little bit of a cray summer for carol. not only were j and i getting married {she was a bridesmaid for the both of us, my matron of honor} and she had to to pick and choose what she could attend because she lives in seattle!

i love this picture of us because we are and look so happy. who doesn’t love attending weddings?! it’s always fun and filled with love. plus, it’s a big parteeee! socializing, drinking, eating, dancing, and vivacious behavior is widely excepted. i clearly remembered it being a very warm, humid day. it was, overall, a perfect day to get hitched.

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ahhhh, warm weather…hurry up! chiberia temps is just too much! well, i hope somebody out there is going somewhere warm this weekend, i’ll just live vicariously through my old summer/vacay photos! dreaming away…

xoxo

january snapshots

oh yessss, i am soooo behind with this one! aren’t i? well, as i always say, better late than never!

january was quite the busy month {i know, i know. i do say that a lot}. but, isn’t january a month where things slow down? i guess, not in my world {or at least in my head}.

the highlight of this past month was our trip to L.A. to celebrate my sister’s birthday. it was wonderful to get away and soak in some warm weather. the temps were ah-mazing! i had no kid, no hubs, {although i greatly missed them!} just me and my sisters. it was awesome to relax and explore the city. the bonus part is that my brother, huy, lives there with his girl,ย tashina, and it was purty awesome to hang out with them the whole weekend!

of course there was a lot of oliveness going on in january. my cutie is becoming wiser, funnier, and is as quirky as evah! oh, she blows my mind every day. not only with her cute, cutie, cute face but her growing personality. being a mom for the first time is so novel and i can’t even imagine i could possibly bring more cuteness into this world!

anyhoo, here are some fun shots of our past lovely month of january:

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[shopping…what we do best]

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[olive with her goofy cousin b]

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[what a goof]

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[mmmm, portillo’s // my girl olivia]

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[our typical morning…relaxing together after she nurses]

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[cookie monster]

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[gifting marina with a little sprinkle]

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[bottega louie // L.A.]

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[first big snowfall]

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[apple head]

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[her favorite eating nook]

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[the tired mom look ๐Ÿ˜‰ ]

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[cat baby // discovering her reflection]

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[my love]

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[my two favorites – coffee and breakfast]

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[morning routine]

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[her favorite toy]

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[kicking back in her toy basket]

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[caged animal]

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[watching t.v. together]

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[my sweet babes]

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[breakfast on our last day in L.A.]

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[funny gal]

that was our january in a nutshell! i hope y’all had a great past month as well. february is looking pretty awesome so far! i can’t wait to share…hopefully not so late in the game next time! woot!

xoxo

hb dick!

yes, it was mr. heintz sr.’s birthday! when i tell people that my husband’s parent’s names are dick and jane, it’s a 99% chance that they totally get a kick out of it. yes, quite the classic duo.

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anyhoo, it was definitely a lazy day for us. we didn’t have to be at dinner until later in the afternoon, so we just hung out all morning and afternoon, just chillin’. it was grrrreat. we did stuff around the house {cleaning, relaxing, eating, etc.} and loved every minute of our no frills or fuss day.

we got ourselves ready and headed out to crystal lake. there was no traffic, so it took us just a little over an hour. it was freeeezing out! oh, so cold. it’s so funny to me that when it’s so cold outside {like 5 degrees out with a negative windchill} for awhile and then we get hit with a day that is 30 degrees, it’s like a freakin’ heatwave here in chiberia!

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[dinner party]

once we got there, pretty much everyone showed up at the restaurant at the same time. score…we were all on time! olive was most excited to see grace. it was too sweet. she just lights up when she sees her big sister and i love every moment of it.

we all sat down and perused the menu to decide on what we wanted to eat/order so we could get the ball rolling on this dining excursion. i ordered the tortellini…i’m a sucker for any cream sauce {so healthy ๐Ÿ˜‰ }, pancetta, peas, etc. after we ordered, i pretty much entertained olive or she was entertaining herself. she’s so funny now. she definitely wants to be close to me but yet she also wants her independence. she’s a mixed bag of emotions, actions, and ‘words’. of course, it might have been dick’s birthday but it’s always the olive show, natch. {she’s the cutie baby, duh!}

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[gramma and olive]

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[olive peeking over at her cousin daniel]

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[she’s always happy in her sister’s arms]

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[could this entree be any bigger?!]

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[olive finally into opening up gifts]

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[she loved helping papa open up his gifts!]

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[she loved, loved the mobile!]

after dinner, dick opened up all his gifts. jane’s present for dick was the one that olive loved the most! it was too precious. jane pulled out the mobile and olive ohhhh’d and ahhh’d over the gift! she was so amused by each photo and screamed out loud at each one she saw. sooooooo adorbs.

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after dick opened up his gifts, desserts were served. the tiramisu was yummy but i could have done without the chocolate chips inside each bite. that kind of threw me off but overall, it was tasty. it was too much chocolate. yes, i did say that. i’m not a huge chocolate fan. i like it as an accent but not as a whole. annnddd, it has to be mixed with something and not alone. yes, yes. those are my chocolate rules. ๐Ÿ˜‰

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well, happy birthday to my wonderful, loving, sweet, caring, and awesome father in law. you are the best. we love you so much and we were so happy to have celebrated it with you!! muwah!

xoxo

deeelish cookies

i’ve been making sugar cookies almost my whole life. it was what i did and do. every holiday season went hand in hand with making sugar cookies. yup. i actually have never kept a recipe. i would go from one version to the next because you can always find a sugar cookie recipe.

but i have searched no more. i have found the most perfect sugar cookie recipe. i’m in love.

so let me back this up a bit. i’ve been a bit obsessed with copper cookie cutters. yes. i want to buy 50 styles of cookie cutters but that would cost an arm and a leg. they are expensiiiiiive. well, i’m collecting a bit here and there so i can build my collection. anyhoozle, when i purchased a batch of cookie cutters from copper gifts, they came with a cute little booklet with a few recipes inside. i decided to try them! boy oh boy. it turned out the most delicious, buttery, perfect sugar cookies.

they had great tips {unlike the traditional way i use to make them} and it was sooo much easier and practical. the cookies came out substantial in size, thickness, and were perfectly baked to buttery goodness. mmmmm.

they also had a recipe in the fold over for royal icing. unfortunately, this was a last minute baking bonanza and we didn’t have any meringue powder in the house, nor could hc find it on his excursion out. so, i made icing without it and it was just fiiiine. it took longer to harden but it was, nonetheless, tasty good. my other problem or lack of effort?? i didn’t have the time or the energy to pipe my frosting. it was already soooo late {and i was damn tired} and i wasn’t in ย the mood. shame on me, non? i just hand decorated each one, so my lines are a bit wonky…c’est la vie!

2 cups unsalted butter (4 sticks room temp)
2 cups sugar
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
6 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt

gently mix butter and sugar, then beat until light and creamy. beat in eggs and vanilla. gently stir flour before measuring. combine dry ingredients and add a cup at a time to butter mixture. beat until completely blended. roll cookie dough between two sheets of parchment paper. continue rolling all dough between parchment paper and placing in stacks on a cookie sheet (that fits in your refrigerator or freezer). cover cookie sheet with foil. chill dough overnight or 1 to 2 hours. remove one sheet of dough at a time and cut into shapes. bake on baking sheet at 350 degrees for 10 to 12 minutes or just until the edges begin to slightly brown. this recipe will make at least 2 dozen, 4 to 6-inch cookies.

for the icing, i used powdered sugar, warm water, clear vanilla extract, and food coloring. i made small batches of different colors to ice the cookies.

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[โ™ฅ xoxo i lov~e]

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overall, i was a happy gal on how they turned out {despite it being a last minute baking session}! annnddd, they were oh so delicious. i.can’t.stop.eating.them.

well, i hope y’all try this recipe! it’s so yummy. happy baking my lovies!

xoxo

flashback friday

today takes us back to 2010.

here we are celebrating my brother in law’s birthday at revolution brewery. i’ve been there a few times and have always had a wonderful time each visit.

one night, hc and i were scrolling through movies to watch and he happened to fall upon this movie called drinking buddies. it was based around revolution brewery! pretty awesome. it was a low key, low budget movie that we really enjoyed! plus, we were loving that a few chicago favorites, like the empty bottle, were mentioned in the movie and we happen to be living right down the street from it! very cool.

well, here we were at the restaurant eating organic egg topped farm burgers & bacon fat popcorn. life is great. soooo good. what is better than celebrating your loved one’s birthday and eating amaze food?! not much. oh, it makes me want to go back there soon! yum.

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well, my lovies…i hope you enjoy a wonderful, cool, fun restaurant this weekend..possibly celebrating someone special or something special {whatever it may be!}.

happy friday y’all!

xoxo

ash wednesday

here weeee goooo! it’s the start of the lenten season!

wow…i felt like it just popped up on me. i was so unprepared. it was like boom! it’s time to fast {i’m hungry!}, reflect on our relationship with God, repentance, penitence, basically go back to square one and it came out of nowhere. literally. wednesday came and i was like whaaaaa? it’s ash wednesday?!

anyhoozle, this journey that we embark on every year is about cleansing our minds. it’s a time to think and pray. to challenge yourself to be better, give back, forgive, and think about, truly, how fulfilling your life is. it’s not the material items that complete you but your kind actions, kind words, and kind thoughts that should make your life fulfilling and complete.

annndd, then there’s the part of giving something up. the question is what? what will i give up that will really be impactful? it’s a decision that has so much weight to me. i think about the suffering that Jesus endured for 40 days and nights and it makes me feel like giving up anything is so minuscule! nevertheless, it’sย a reminder for us, that even though what we give up is nothing compared to Jesus’ suffering, it our way to bring ourselves close to God.

every year, i love this time because it really challenges me to be a better person. to slow down and appreciate the life all around me. to love the people around me even more. to try, try, try again because i am not perfect. i will stumble and fall. i will get back up to try again to be at my best.

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you are dust, and to dust you shall return genesis 3:19

doesn’t my ashy cross look more like a thumbprint?! ha.

i’m excited to embark on this season of lent. a time to renew myself, work on my commitments, and give back. cheers to a fulfilling and grateful lenten season.

xoxo

love day part 2

on valentine’s day evening, we swung on by my parent’s house for some love day fun. the boys were over and wanted grace and olive to come by to play. plus, we also had their vday gifts to give as well!

we started with a valentine’s day themed meal. we were crazy about anything heart shaped! we ate a heart shaped pizza, finished off our meal with a heart shaped cake on heart shaped plates! natch. the pizza was ordered by kim and the cake was made by terry’s mom, barbara! how sweet!

we munched away at our dinner and then our cake {delish!}, while the kids played and ate…well, mostly played! they were itching to open up their gifts. oh, kiddies…they have no patiences do they?!

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[how adorbs is this heart shaped pizza??]

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[twinning]

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[heart shaped chocolate cake by barbara]

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[b really wanted to be in the picture]

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we finally gave them the green light to open up their gifts. they were super excited! we lined them up and they were ready to go.

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[ready for presents!]

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thuy and the boys gave olive the cutest gifts! pretty outfits, toys, and make up! yes, you heard that right…make up. she loves to watch all the ladies of the house get ready in the morning. that’s her thing…sit on top of the toilet and watch me{us} put on make up and get ready. she loves to brush her teeth {baby toothbrush}, comb her hair, and put on bronzer. so, auntie thuy gifted her with bronzer, make up brush, and a hair brush for her purty hair. so fitting.

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[she loves make up and getting gussied up already…]

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[my cute tiffany blue colored pouch from thuy]

after the kids opened up all their gifts and reveled in the goodies, thuy surprised us with a little gift! how sweet and thoughtful! she gave me a beautiful tiffany blue zipper pouch…how cool. i love the color and the bag.

well, that was our valentine in a nutshell {or really in a two part blog ๐Ÿ˜‰ }. we had a wonderful, blessed day celebrating with our loved ones.ย โ™ฅ

โ€œLove is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.โ€ first corinthians 12:4-8

xoxo

love day part 1

yeah, valentine’s day was probably a three part event. well, kinda. it was quite the beeesy weekend for us. we had people over or did something three days in a row, so yes…it was beeesy. it’s so normal for me to not sit still and boy, i wasn’t sitting still at all this entire weekend.

friday, i spent the morning with my dear olive, then i dropped her off at my parent’s and skedaddled on my way to pick up miss grace {which is such a trip!}. that evening, we had terry and the boys over for wings and drinks {root beer for the kiddos and beer beer for the big boys}. the kids had a crazy time playing together…it was non-stop until they left! phew!

on saturday morning {happy valentine’s day!}, we woke up bright and early, thanks to miss olive, and got ourselves ready for our vday brunch in the city! hc had made all the plans…he made reservations for an early morning brunch at the carriage house, in our old stomping ground. oh, don’t get me started on the city! *sniff* how i miss thee on a daily basis.

anyhoo, we arrived at the restaurant and there was just a wee bit of a wait for our table. it was bustling. i do recall this place being built…hmmm, was it a year or year and half ago? we never ate there even though we lived down the street from it! but now it was our time.

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[grace and her dad]

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[carriage house]

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[i love, love her face in the pic]

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[aannndd this photo…olive’s face is priceless]

i loved the interior…very earthy and rustic. i was excited to try the menu and hc was excited to try the drinks ๐Ÿ˜‰ ย we were seated in a comfy spot and ready to peruse the menu. we started out with drinks…an old fashioned for the hubs and juice {always orange and grapefruit mix for moi} for the gals. olive nibbled on some crackers and we had ordered her some cheesy grits. she was all about the grits {which were sooo delish} at first but then she turned her nose up at it. whaaaaa? it was so good but oh well, more for us!

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hc ordered the chicken and biscuits, i ordered the mushroom, truffle, and egg {with a side of bacon} and grace ordered the beignets. mmmmmm. it.was.so.tasty. i was a happy camper. the sun was shining. i was brunching with my loves. we were in the city. the restaurant was cool. the food was delicious. it was valentine’s day. life was good.

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[cheers to love]

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[mushroom, truffle, and egg with a side of bacon]

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we even dressed the part! hc had on a red sweater, as well as grace. i wore my red hunters as my nod to the day and olive wore hearts all over herself! happy valentine’s day it was! we had the most wonderful time having brunch together. hc did a great job coordinating it all!

i hope everyone had a fantastic love day with their loved one. we sure did! as i stated it the beginning of this post…i still have more love day goodness to come. stay tuned my lovies!

xoxo

flashback friday

today takes us back to…2014! i wanted to post a pic of me and rich from a few valentine’s day ago but i couldn’t resist this photo!!!! oh em gee. look.at.her. i die. soooooo sweet, small, cute, & perfect! such a little peanut! *sigh*

i’m dying over her short, shiny hair. her round buddha belly. her fat chunky, chubby, cheeks. she is barely 2 1/2 months young here. what a doll! plus, i loved her sweet little outfit: a pink cardi & heart printed pants. she was definitely my valentine!

oh, how time is flying. i can’t believe how tiny my babes was. *sniff, sniff* i seriously wish she could stay little forever. don’t get me wrong, i am loving every moment with olive as she grows but looking at photos like these makes me miss her at this size! soooo stinkin’ cute.

last year, we celebrated one day with our family {my sisters and my nephews} and exchanged gifts. then we celebrated at home {sweet home chicago} with just me, the hubs, and olive. it was pretty awesome…having the new babes and all. it was a very special valentine indeed.

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well, i hope everyone has an amazing valentine’s day! i hope you are spending it with someone special, your family, or friends! enjoy this day of love! happy valentine’s day lovies!

xoxo

makey valentines

we loooooove making cards…especially valentine’s day cards! it’s always a fun project & i love racking my brain for creative ideas. i didn’t get as detailed with this diy as i typically can get. i was a bit rushed, but nevertheless…we got ’em done and they turned out cute.

we set up the workstation and we were ready to go! olive was excited to finger print her cards {but then her controlling mama got her in a tizzy near the end}. she was a good girl, she finger printed all her cards and was a happy camper to be sticking her finger{s} all over that ink pad.

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[i love the valentine’s day mailer envelope!]

i love, love this table and chair set from auntie kim, terry, and the boys. it’s so purrfect. i have future plans to jazz it up a bit. i definitely want to add a little pizzaz to the set but i haven’t had the time as of late. so i am hoping to be able to accent it soon…just a little color and design to the stems and attach a paper roll for fun, drawing, coloring activities! soon. soon.

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i put out a bunch of fun valentine’s day trinkets to entertain miss olive. she loved the little pom pom creatures. she did such a good job {with the help of momma} stamping all the cards with her ittty bitty finger!

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[my sweet babes…always so serious]

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[ready to makey some cards!]

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[finger printing!]

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[i love this face & those cheeks]

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[swak!]

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once all the cards were finger printed by olive, me, and hc, i went to work on detailing them. normally, i would add more depth, layers, pizzaz, glitter, and details but i was stressed for time. oh, it’s so me…i always take on toooooo much! so, a few paper cutouts, stamping, stickers, and drawing was all i could do. ๐Ÿ™‚

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[aaaanndd they are ready to be sent!]

well, there they are! our diy valentine’s day cards by us! signed, sealed, and ready to be delivered!

xoxo