Tuesday, December 12, 2017

It's beginning! Christmas!

Tis the season, am I right?! 

I know it comes with this time of year, but dang have I been busy lately. If it's not going out to dinner with family and/or friends then it's running errands or a work function... The list goes on. I should really take advantage of this chaos, though, because we all know that by the middle of February I'm going to be questioning if I ever even had a social life to begin with.

OK, with all that being said, this past week has been incredible! Celebrating Cade and his birthday with family AND friends with love and gifts. What a beautiful thing to see someone you deeply love just gleam with happiness!  

 Here are some random Christmas photos that I had in my phone of our tree, some favorite ornaments and a few decorations around the house. 85% of me LOVES the Christmas decor this time of year, but the other 15% of me is like "is it time to go back to normal now?!".

Merry Christmas friends! I hope you have a wonderful holiday season <3 font="">

Thursday, December 7, 2017

to cade.

The man of my dreams.

Sometimes I feel guilty that only I get him for the rest of my life because then that means that no one will ever know him on the level that I do.

I prayed and begged and fought for not only this love that we have, but specifically for this man. For Cade Jordan Buckus.

He is that fleeting feeling of falling in love. When there's nothing to grab onto to keep you still but you're not really reaching for anything anyway.

He's the quivering lips when you can't stop a smile from growing.

He's the memories I visit when I want to feel loved and he's my happily ever after.

Happy birthday sweet boy. I love you more than these words and I hope you know that forever.

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

thankful on thanksgiving eve.

Is it just me or is 2017 flying by? I feel like just a few weeks ago I was putting up all my Christmas (2016) decorations and growing more and more excited with every new Christmas song that came up on my playlist. Now I'm getting ready to do the same thing for this season! 

This past Sunday we had Thanksgiving at my parents house since they'll be travelling for the holiday. As I was sitting at the table looking at everyone, all I could think about is these wonderful, happy souls are my people... I always complain about how I never win in those random drawings, or the lottery but, really, when you think about it... I didn't get to choose my family and I won that. I won this life, with these people and that's better than anything else. They fill my heart and I am incredibly thankful for them!

I also wanted say "thank you" to you. Thank you for the beautiful and kind messages on my last post. I wrote that a couple months ago and was too nervous to share it for a few reasons. The most important one is that I thought "this is too much about me and what if no one relates a.k.a cares?" But you all proved me wrong. So thank you! It means more to me than you think. Truly.

It might be hard to believe, but blogging is intimidating. First of all, I overthink ev-er-y-thing. I read my posts over and over again until I can recite them. You wouldn't believe how many times I ask myself "am I using this word too much? should there be a comma there? is this a run-on sentence?, etc." I'm sure it's not healthy, but I want to make sure I'm giving you the best material to read. Which leads me to my next point: MATERIAL! Do you really want to read about how I watched the Cavs game last night? No. I mean, you can ask me about it and I'm happy to chat about it, but I'm not going to ask you to read about it.  It's basically a platform that I own and really want to please everyone with. But I want it to be personal and I want you to feel like we are the very best of friends when you read it. There are so many personalities out there and I have this strange urge to want to get along with all of you. I mean that too. 

So basically, what I'm saying is this... I hope you all are getting what I'm trying to convey with this blog. To be completely honest (and vulnerable) with you - I lose motivation too easily. That's one thing I really hate about myself. I need someone, or something to keep me honest. If I have that then it's smooth sailing and I'll stay there forever. I've been blogging weekly since July and your responses keep me coming back. I love the support I feel from it and I know we really are the very best of friends. It's hard to explain because this can seem kind of one sided considering I am the writer here, but I feel you when I'm writing my posts and I'm keeping you in mind. 

I'm thankful in a lot of ways, and you checking in every week to read is one of them. I very much enjoy writing  and I hope to keep writing for many, many years! So tomorrow, when I reflect on what I'm thankful for this year, I just want to let you know that one of those boxes on my list is going to be you, my friend! 

Happy Thanksgiving & I have it on good authority that calories don't count when the thanksgiving meal is enjoyed! 

Monday, November 20, 2017

Dear 2007 Renee

Hey girl! First, let me say, you look beautiful! No one is going to measure the size of your thighs when you're sitting down, so get over that. Second of all, TELL CADE YOU HAVE THAT CRUSH ON HIM! Trust me, the response will be exactly what you dreamt it would be, not what you feared it would be. 

This past summer was tough, between the letting go and thinking you've found something new. Now you're a couple months into your senior year of high school and for some odd reason, it doesn't feel as overwhelming or intimidating as you thought it would. You're going to do great this year, even with the "lows" that'll come, you'll learn that it's all apart of the growth process. 

Yes, let me reassure you did get married when you were 25 (why did we always think that was an ideal age?) and you eat more than just mac and cheese and dill pickle chips. You won't believe this, but you even grew a fondness for jalapenos, and peppers in general! I know, I know... It's crazy. Not too crazy though, you still hate mustard and get nauseous just thinking about onions and mushrooms. 

The good news: 

  • First and foremost; you are crazy blessed. Your great grandma beat her breast cancer at 86 and is still alive and sassy as can be. Actually, all of your loved ones are still with you. Enjoy. Every. Moment. Make sure you always tell them how much you love them.
  • YOU HAVE A NIECE!! And she has your whole heart. 
  • You still have some of the same friends you did in high school. Some of them made their lives in a different way than you and you might not talk much anymore, but you're happy for them nonetheless.
  • You're going to be living in your very own apartment within the next year and you're going to meet SO many new friends who will become your very best friends (think: Chipotle)
  • That then leads me to this: You're actually going to like Chipotle's food
  • You're going to continue being incredibly kind to strangers who become friends. This will lead you to some really great opportunities, both in your career and personal life.
  • You have a legitimate green thumb. It's impressive and you're going to have some stellar house plants in the next 10 years. 
  • Craziest one of them all... After you graduate, reading is going to be fun again! HA! I know!?! (In my best Monica voice)
  • Lastly, in the next ten years, you will travel all over. San Francisco, Boston, Seattle, Arizona... Take every opportunity that you can, and travel everywhere.

The ugly:
  • Don't date that jerk. Trust me. You will break up shortly into the relationship and you should just let it be... No need to continue down that path.
  • You're going to let your anxiety get the best of you in certain situations. Don't be afraid to go talk to someone. Especially your mom. She will impress you with her understanding.
  • There are going to be times where you feel like you have zero control over your life (planning, finances, health, etc.) and you'll want to ask for help, but you won't, but you want to, but you can't... Just ask. 
  • You can't heal the pain that some of the people closest to you are going through... Just be there, and listen to them.
  • The world is scary, and getting scarier every day... Don't lose that hope that there is more good than ugly. There is. It's in the chaos.

Overall, it's been a great 10 years. I can't see what's coming up next, but I have a feeling that it's going to be just as good :) 

Monday, November 13, 2017

a day at the museum

Over the weekend Cade, his mom, her husband and I found ourselves at the Cleveland Museum of Art. I love this art museum so much. It's so beautiful, well kept and peaceful. In fact, I think it even ranks as one of the best in the country!

Anyway, here's a quick backstory to add to what I loved so much about it this particular day... I have been dealing with the worlds most annoying cold and all I've wanted to do is nothing. I wake up super tired and exhausted and to top it off I can't even taste my food or drinks. So yeah, what is life right now anyway?! (kidding, of course). SO, Saturday morning I woke up and put on the most acceptable, comfy clothes that I owned (lots of layers) and we headed out. I was bundled up, and also had my hat, scarf, gloves, etc... We got to the museum when it opened and it was so warm and inviting on the inside compared to the 20'ish degrees that was the outside. I left my layers on and we meandered around the museum. I took it all in, every painting, sculpture, photograph... I read each script next to the piece of work and I imagined myself as the artist at the time. It felt so comforting and romantic. Just me these incredible parts of history. I was standing in front of a beautiful painting when a guard came up and said good morning and asked how I was... My response was something like "I'm great, I'm here!" and she grew this giant smile on her face and said that even though it was work, there was no where else she'd want to be that Saturday morning. 

So, with the comfort and layers keeping me warm, the beautiful, timeless work keeping  me occupied, and great company (family and museum workers included), I was having a Saturday for the books. 

See what I mean? The whole thing to ourselves!

Fun fact: You are allowed to take pictures and whatnot, but there is a limit to just how close you can stand to the work. I found that out right after I took this picture. The lady nicely told me that I was standing too close... But what is that going to do?! I wasn't breathing on it. Oh well, now I know. I guess.

I love Monet. I loved standing in this room with something that he's touched and created with his own hands. Something about that just makes me feel a little more significant in life.

Ok, but in all honesty. I heeded the lady's advice and I really wanted to do my best to follow the rules, BUT then I had to go and stand next to Van Gogh's work and somehow I find myself standing (probably) too close. I tried... I really did. 

I don't even think we made it out of the building when I was telling Cade that I already wanted to go back. We will be soon enough. Especially with winter on it's way in! 

Monday, November 6, 2017

fall cleaning!

A couple weeks ago I shared a link on my Facebook about this organization called Grove Collaborative. They sell non-toxic, natural cleaning products at a great price. It's not so much of a subscription service as it is just a seller... There is the option to have product arrive every month, but you can also set it up so you only receive it one time (a.k.a one and done), or any month of your choice. I know several people who use it and they all had nothing but great things to say so I gave it a try! 

Side note: I've been using Mrs Meyers products for YEARS now... maybe around 8'ish years. I have always loved their products but the real winner is the scent! There is nothing better than doing dishes and smelling any of their varieties of scents - basil, radish, lemon, lavender, honeysuckle, geranium, etc... It goes on, and on!

I got the box middle of last week and it's been a cleaning frenzy ever since. Our house has never been better! 

P.S - our dining room walls are bright orange which tinted the photos. I was, and am too lazy to set up this little photo shoot anywhere else so please pardon the quality of some of the photos. Thanks! 

Everything that came in my box! 

This works better than any dusting product I've ever used. And it smells so incredible! 

They also have their own line of product. I'm a sucker for the branding, but the quality is really more than I expected. 

I love this sea-foam green glass spray bottle that was included in my order.

If you're interested in trying them out then feel free to use this referral code that'll get your $10 off: https://www.grove.co/referrer/1640046/ 

I want to share a tour of our whole house, but here's some snippets of what I already have in my camera roll. Enjoy! 

I got a couple bouquets of Eucalyptus from Trader Joe's recently and decided that I'll never not have it in the house. It's SO pretty and smells equally as good. 

See what I mean about those bright walls?!

Sorry for the silence lately! I'm back now though. Just in time for the holidays! 

Monday, October 23, 2017

remembering it all.

^^From the day that Cade got the job.

Yesterday morning, Cade and I were out to breakfast and I quickly took out my phone to snap a picture of our full table .. I had no intention of doing anything with that picture, other than to keep it for a memory. So that one day, when I'm scrolling through my photo's I'll remember that time that we went out to breakfast on a Sunday morning and had some pretty comical conversations while also talking about some things that we're proud of.

Am I alone in this? There was one point in time a few years ago when social media was becoming more popular (thanks to Instagram, for me) that I would only take photos that I could use for posting. Now, I take them to remember details in my days. I have so many random pictures that hold memories... It's so nice to have my own personal nostalgia lane to go down sometimes. 

So here's a brief glimpse of my very best memories. I want to remember...  

Frank in a hat. Cade and I took Sir Franks to the park and he wore this hat without any issue! I thought for sure it would've been thrown off in a millisecond. This was also the day of the Cav's championship parade and Cade and I were both off work for it.

my visit to Edgewater Park for the first time, shortly after moving to Cleveland. This was such a great day I had exploring Cleveland with Cade and I am so glad that I have photos to remember it.

the first time I met Lilah. All 5 lbs, 13 ounces of her. 

that I was having a bad day at work so I went to Rocky River to clear my mind. There's something about nature that makes me more of a forgiving person. I don't remember what I was upset about but I remember standing there watching these leaves gently move with the wind... The water, softly rushing in the back ground over rocks of every size. 

when my aunt came to town and we walked into this church (her request) off the street and the beauty and magnificence of it reminded me of somewhere I've never been before.

this first hat that I crocheted that came nowhere near fitting Lilah's head. In her defense, it was a very tiny hat.

Mexico... Sitting on a white-sand beach just breathing in the salty air. The warmth I felt on my face from the sun was a blanket protecting me of anything that I could possibly have to worry about in that moment.

how my mom never fails to get me the most beautiful flowers every birthday. More than anyone else, she has always made me feel the most special in this lifetime.

that time I went to Tucson and was blown away by how beautiful something so dry and lifeless could be.

the book that changed my life.

seeing my fearless, strong, emotionally rock solid brother become a ball of mush around her.

when I finally got out of my slump of not using my camera and took this photo with no tripod. It was like this waterfall, the lighting, and my camera all knew that I needed something to get me back into the swing of things.

when we decided to be active and silly on a cold and rainy Saturday morning instead of staying home in our PJ's like we thought we were going to do.

Finally, this. When Cade snapped a photo and edited it just because. It's thing like this that remind me of his love in ways that aren't words or random kisses. I imagined that he looked over, saw this scene and decided that he also wanted to always remember this.

Here's to the future and creating more memories for me to look back on.

Have a great week!