Friday, January 25, 2013

friday letters.

{we are homeowners!!}
 dear weekend, you are kind of a big deal and i am SO happy to see your face. dear house, as of 4:00 this afternoon, you are officially ours!! i cannot wait to move all of our stuff in and make you home. dear hubs, thanks for making all my dreams come true. i love you, i love you, i love you. dear blog, i am so sorry i have neglected you the past couple of weeks... hopefully after we get this move taken care of i can devote a little more time to showing you some love.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

how to make the most of your vacation.

if you've been hanging around these parts for long, you probably know how much the hubs and i love to travel. it's one of the things that originally brought us together. 

in our dating days we bonded during early trips to chattanooga for a friends wedding, savannah {where the hubs learned the lesson that you don't invite your boys to stay the night on your weekend getaway with your girl and i truly discovered that i loved greg} and myrtle beach.

since traveling is one of my favorite things, i decided it would be fun to do a post outlining my tips and suggestions to make the most of your vacations...
{our first anniversary in st. thomas}
 first, always do research on your destination. i highly recommend asking blog friends who live where you are going or have visited for their suggestions! this helped me SO much while planning our new york trip.
{at the empire state building in new york last month}
find out where the locals eat- often the touristy places are simply popular because they're large restaurants with a big marketing budget, and not actually because they serve the best food.

make reservations at any restaurants you definitely want to try, especially if you have a large group.
this was one challenge in new york {because doing anything with 15 people is difficult}- we missed out on some of the restaurants that i would have liked to try.
{eating with the old roomies at magnolias in charleston}
 carry cash... but mostly small bills. i also like to separate my money into different locations, and not carry all of it at a time {heaven forbid something happen and you lose it!}

plan your outfits- stick to one color scheme.... i like to go with neutrals and accessorize with a colorful scarf or bag. i also like to pack crossbody bags because they are so convenient for walking around sightseeing or shopping- so you can just carry the essentials and not have to carry a heavy bag on your shoulder.
{at the biltmore while visiting asheville, november 2012}
a vacation should be the perfect balance of relaxation, local flare and tourist attractions- since you ARE a visitor after all. look into the tours to see the famous highlights- but read reviews and check with the concierge desk at your hotel for their opinions and coupons!
{snorkeling on our honeymoon in st. lucia}
hope my tips help you with planning your next vacation... and i think it's about time i plan our next trip ;)

Monday, January 21, 2013

life lately.

hey lovies!

i haven't meant to be so absent in the blog world lately... we have just been soooo busy {and slightly overwhelmed} with getting everything ready for the big move.
our house is a wreck. there are boxes, bubble wrap, tape and sharpies everywhere... and i haven't even organized/put up my christmas stuff yet. i cannot believe we are closing on our house THIS friday!

because i hadn't mentioned it- my birthday went really well last week. my sweet hubs surprised me by making me an appointment to get a massage and a pedicure after work and then took me a dinner and a movie date... we ate at east west bistro {their salmon is my FAVORITE!} and then we saw this is 40. {we both really liked it}.

since then my parents, my in-laws, my best friend and greg's best friend have all come to town to see the house... i am loving showing it off to the special people in our lives and i cannot wait to move all of our stuff in.

my favorite part has to be the kitchen... 
take note that this is very much a "work in progress picture"... they installed the wrong color outlets (they should be white to match the subway tile}, and wrong color hardware {we went with brushed nickel instead of bronze} and everything is VERY dirty- but i am super excited about cooking in my new kitchen.

the appraisal should be happening today... tomorrow we meet with the superintendent, warranty guy and our realtor to do a walk through of the house and put any touch ups or anything they need to fix on a "punch list" and then friday we will do a final walk through before closing!

i plan on showing more pictures of the house this week and hopefully making a blog comeback this week- i sure have missed you guys!

Thursday, January 17, 2013

hana hairdryer: a review.

i was SO excited when the people at misikko contacted me to do a review on the hanaair blow dryer.. which they claim to be the best professional hairdryer.
i've always bought my hairdryers from target and never spent much money on one, so i was curious to see if it made a huge difference.

my first impressions were i liked that the cord is EXTRA long and the "cold" button stays in- so you don't have to hold it like most hairdryers.
it is SO much faster drying my hair- which is a huge plus for me since my hair is super thick... and this girl likes to take advantage of every extra minute of sleep in the mornings. 
and the best thing? my hair seriously looks and feels so much healthier. it is smooth and i don't have to spend nearly as much time straightening it.

 it kind of made me feel like one of those cheesy hair models on the shampoo commercials...
but after seeing that picture, i think i'll stick with my day job.

i realize the hana hairdryer is a little more expensive, but sometimes you get what you pay for, friends. 

now i'm just crossing my fingers that misikko asks me to review their straightener, too ;)

Thursday, January 10, 2013

awkward and awesome

ya'll, i don't know where this week has gone! and even though there is only an hour and a half left of thursday, i am going to continue with my planned post for today, since i've obviously been slacking on the blog this week.

awkward & awesome thursday was started by sydney over at the daybook... she doesn't really host it anymore, but it's always a fun one... especially since i feel like my life consists of entirely too many awkward moments.

AWKWARD:
  • the bank teller calling me 'tori'. every. single. day. i go through the drive through... and me responding with a big ol' smile, like my name isn't actually 'lori'. i just don't have the heart to correct her. 
  • phil collins 'in the air tonight' coming on as i'm pulling into work- so naturally, i sit in the car and wait for the drum solo... and i'm pretty sure the woman in the car next to me sat there watching the entire time i went to down banging on the steering wheel.
  • the shuffle people do when a car stops to let them cross the street... arms at a running pace, but their legs are just walking like normal.
  • shaving one leg and forgetting to shave the other... does anyone else do this ALL the time?!

AWESOME:
  • we are set to close on the house on the 25th! {only 15 days from now... eeek!} they poured the driveway and installed the hardwoods, carpet and kitchen backsplash this week and we even have a mailbox!! i don't know what it is about the mailbox, but i got SUPER excited when i saw it... something about it just made the whole thing more real. {look out for more house pictures on the blog next week}
  • the hubs is now on evening shift and i am not only loving spending my mornings with him... but it's even better when i can get him to do a chore or two while i am at work ;) 
  • i have been doing really well with all of my resolutions so far... i realize we're not even two weeks in... but i've worked out 8 of the 10 mornings, and lost about 2 lbs AND i've already finished one book out of my 25.
  • tomorrow is my birthday... i'm not overly excited about turning 26- but i am excited for a date night with the hubs, my parents coming to athens, and the surprise the hubs claims to have coming while he is working on saturday. 

Monday, January 7, 2013

my resolutions...

i know, i know... i'm a little like a week late posting about my resolutions for 2013. i went back and forth on posting this because i feel like the blog world has been a little oversaturated with "new year, new me" posts. and quite honestly, i didn't do SO hot with my goals throughout the year... and who wants to set themselves up for failure?

but after thinking about it, i decided to go for it. it's okay if no one reads and/or comments... at the end of the day, this is for me. and these are things that i REALLY want to do... and maybe you guys can help encourage and hold me accountable. the blog community is kind of awesome that way.

1. get in the best shape of my life... i lost 25 lbs in 2011, but then in 2012 i just kind of slacked stayed the same {give or take 5 lbs}... i want to be happy with my body before i get pregnant, and if the hubs has anything to say about it that may not be TOO long from now. so i feel like 2013 is my year to get it done... i've worked out 5 out of the 7 days we've had of 2013 so far... and i feel like i've done really well with my eating. i'm already FEELING a lot better... and now i'm ready to start SEEING some results.
{via}
2. grow my blog... this doesn't just mean "gain followers"{while that would be great}... blogging is something that i am passionate about and i don't want it to become stagnant... i want my blog content to develop as i do as a person. i want to continue making connections with people... and hopefully make some of you blogger friends IRL friends, too {if you're in georgia, holla at me} and now that the hubs is on evening shift, i will have a lot more time to devote on posting and commenting after work and i won't have to stay up until ridiculous hours to do it.
3. focus on my relationship with the hubs. obviously, greg's schedule isn't the easiest or most accommodating at times- so i feel like we need to make sure we have plenty of date nights and i want to put more effort into just doing the little things to be the good wifey that he deserves. more posts to come on that topic later...
{cabo san lucas, mexico}
4. travel as much as possible... i am sure that after the kids come, we won't be able to travel as much... so i want to take full advantage of this time in our lives so that when the babies come along, we are 100% ready and have no regrets.

5. read... this is a goal that i completely failed at last year... i set out to read 25 books in 2012, and i only read 9. i go through phases where i read a lot for a couple of months, and then i don't read anything for a long time... but i really do enjoy it. i started {my favorite author} emily giffin's latest, where we belong, this weekend and have a huge stack of books just waiting on me to tackle when i am done with it. 
{via}

Friday, January 4, 2013

friday letters.


dear nyc, thanks for showing us a good time! i loved visiting but i sure was ready to come home on monday! this georgia girl could only take the crowds and cold for so long. dear georgia football, i am sad the season is officially over, but you have made me proud. {ps. aaron murray, stay for another year... pleaseeeee?} dear panera, since the hubs is officially on evening shift, which means i will be having dinner solo a lot... my macbook and i will be seeing you for dinner tonight. dear nana, happy birthday {a day late!}... i am so glad we were able to come have dinner with you last night... and  you sure looked good in that sombrero :) we love you!

Thursday, January 3, 2013

bigger is better... right?

a couple of weeks ago firmoo contacted me to do a review of one of their pairs of glasses.
i am not blind by any means, but you probably don't want me behind the wheel without my glasses or contacts... so i'll always take a free pair of glasses.
 after looking through all of the options, i decided on these frames... mainly because they were black, and the frame was not too thick. i also tend to like the larger frames, because i have a larger face ;)

they arrived quickly, with a case and cleaning cloth.

they were a little bigger than i expected, but i'm okay with that. i mostly wear my glasses at home, first thing in the morning or when i'm blogging at night anyways... or there's the times like the other day when i put that contact solution that you soak overnight directly in my eye and thought i just might lose an eyeball... that was definitely a glasses day.
other positives are they're very light weight and comfortable to wear for long periods of time. and they're affordable... especially because you can get a free pair now, too! go here to pick out your frames- and ONLY pay shipping!! {true story. no catch.}

i think i'm going to need to order a couple more frames... they're so affordable, you can change them with your outfit ;)

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

the williams {beebes and irbys} take new york.

this year {all} 15 of my hubs extended family decided to take a trip to the big apple for our christmas together. although most of the family had been before, this was the mine and the hubs first time visiting and we had been looking forward to the trip for MONTHS!

we left on thursday, two days after christmas. the day started with waking up at 4 am when our early morning flight no longer sounded like a good idea... but i'm glad we were able to get there in time to enjoy the day in the city. we stayed at the sheraton at 53rd and 7th, which was a great location.
 after we dropped off our luggage, we went to juniors for a yummy burger and some delicious red velvet cheesecake, then we spent the rest of the afternoon walking around taking it all in.
{grand central station}
ronald and lauren were so sweet to stand in the tkts booth line and get everyone tickets to see newsical, an off broadway show staring cheri o'teri {from SNL}. it was really funny and everyone seemed to enjoy it. then we went to john's pizzeria {which is an old converted church with really cool atmosphere} for a late dinner.
{the cousins at rockefeller center}
friday we had burgers for lunch at the shake shack {from the movie something borrowed}
 and then walked around 5th avenue a bit and saw macys...
 which was even bigger than it looks on tv!

then the whole family went to the afternoon radio city music christmas spectacular show {featuring the rockettes}, which i absolutely loved!
and then we walked around a bit, seeing famous sites like the plaza hotel... from bride wars, home alone 2 and many other films...
and the big piano at FAO schwarz... {which was sadly broken... but still cool to see}
ronald had made reservations for us to go to virgils barbq for dinner- and we had such a good time... they were even able to fit us all at one table!
after dinner we went by a couple more stores and rode the ferris wheel at toys r us...
saturday morning a group of us went to the 9/11 memorial, which was beautiful.
{ronald, alex, lauren and alicia on the subway heading to the memorial}
{greg and his cousin, matthew}
it was snowing and absolutely freezing! it was really surreal to see the site of the twin towers and ground zero...

and it was really weird to think that matthew {the youngest cousin, at 18} was only 7 when the attack happened.
 {i also learned about st. pauls church, which was one of the only buildings that did not have any damage- not even a broken window... even though it is RIGHT beside the site and the survivor tree, which are really inspiring stories if you are not familiar with them as well}.
sunday we went to the empire state building first thing with jon so we would be back before he and the beebe's had to go to the airport for their flight that afternoon.
we got there about 8:30, and were able to skip the line {thanks to the VIP passes the concierge at our hotel hooked us up with}

{the tall tower is the freedom tower, where the twin towers used to stand and if you look real hard you can see the statue of liberty to the right}
 it was really windy and cold at the top...
 but it was a clear day and the views were gorgeous!
 by the time we left, the line was around the block and hours long- so we really lucked out by going early.
we had lunch with the irbys before everyone left that afternoon, except my family of four {who accidently booked our trip an extra day longer... but it worked out in our favor!} sunday was one of my favorite days because we were able to see the lion king on broadway!
although i saw the lion king in atlanta with my mom a couple of years ago, it has been on my life list to see a show on broadway, and i knew the hubs would like it. i was practically giddy with excitement!
it definitely did not disappoint... the show {and costumes!} were AMAZING!
for dinner we went to lombardi's pizza, which claims to be america's first pizzeria- we saw it on the amazing race a couple of weeks ago, i am so glad we decided to give it a go- it was delicious!
i may or may not have followed the pizza with a cannoli in bed... ;)

we had an amazing trip and some good quality time with family, but i gotta say after a couple of days in the big city, i was ready to come home! i felt like we timed it perfectly... we were able to see new york decorated for christmas, and left just in time to miss the NYE craziness.

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