Dog life

Welcome,

Many of you already know my dog obsession from reading my past posts.  If you aren’t aware, prepare yourself.

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I started to use my camera to take some good photos of my dogs.  Believe it or not they have learned to stay still and I secretly think they enjoy modeling.

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Buttercup and Bella trying to squeeze on a seat for their photo op.

 

I can’t help it but they are the cutest!  So obsessed with how these came out.

 

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I can’t forget the boys who haven’t learned to sit long enough to get model like photos.

Maddox (top photo)

Bandit (bottom)

 

Hope you enjoyed the photos.  Thought I would share the cuteness.

 

-A

In Loving Memory

Welcome back all,

So you will notice it’s been far too long since I posted.  Nothing crazy has happened but spending quality time with my family and enjoying the weather has been rather enjoyable.

On June 10th, Brian, his family, and I celebrated his Mother’s birthday and life.  I have plenty of pictures of the church but have yet to download them to my laptop, so more to come.

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Brian talked about his Mother often when we first met and I could tell how much he loved her.  His love for his Mother actually made me fall in love with the person she raised him to be.  Brian’s mom had kidney issues and was being treated with daily dialysis which Brian had learned to do at home.  He shared this information with me early on in our friendship and well, it made him look good in my eyes.  He spent his nights after work setting up her dialysis machine and nearly turned down our first “date” in order to do so.

Brian lost his mom three years ago.  At the time, Brian and I had only been dating a little over 4 months and I had only met his mother once and visited with her in the hospital once.  Our first meeting was not how any of us would have pictured it.  We met in the emergency room after she had fallen because her blood sugar dropped too low.

Growing up I developed this fear of hating my future in-laws.  I think it came from the famous “you marry the family” line.

Although Olga and I did not have much time together it was enough for me to understand why Brian loved her so much.  It’s common knowledge that kids love their parents.  However, the bond you have with your children depends on many factors.  Brian and his mom were like best friends.  She would joke around with him and in the same breath tell him to cut the shit.  I wish I would have gotten to spend more time with her but I know she is watching over us, probably wondering how we put up with each other, stubborn and emotional.

Olga,

Thank you for raising the man of my dreams.

Love,

Ashley

 

In Loving Memory of 

Olga Mendez

June 10, 1948 – June 11, 2015 

 

Vacation Recap

Hello all,

Better late than never.

As I settle in from my absurdly long vacation I am so grateful for all I did while enjoying time with my wonderful family and boyfriend.  The picture below represents my feelings on being 26.

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As many of you saw via my Instagram, my dog Bella cut the webbing of her paw prior to my vacation.  Although we do not know what she was injured on in our yard we do know she’s a wild child and loves to get into things.  This didn’t ease my animal loving heart when I first found out.  I shed a tear for sure.  This also allowed for lots of cuddles with “Coney,” our official nickname for this little one.

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Bella is officially cone free and loving life again.  She enjoys running around in the yard looking for bunnies and jumping up on hind legs too look over our deck at the neighbors dog while barking.  I swear the neighbor dog thinks we are insane (she doesn’t know the half of it).

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A few days after my birthday Brian and I went to Replay to see the Pokemon set up for their event (As mentioned in prior post).  Since, they’ve now expanded the event to incorporate the entire bar and a Pokedex to “catch em all.”

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The time this must have taken earned my respect and also made me want to hire them! What do you think about the decor?  Have you gone to Replay or are you interested in going?

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Brian and I received all of our badges and it was such a fun time!

Later in the week my friend Kayte was in visiting from Seattle.  Oh man did I miss her!  It is nice to have friends who’ve nearly lived your entire life with you.  It is like choosing your family.  16 years of friendship and still holding on for dear life trying to adult. : )

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Brian and I also finished 13 Reasons Why 2, I haven’t found the words to express how I feel about it yet.  I suppose it’s similar to how I felt after season one, check out my 13 Lessons post for my recap of what I got from season one.  Did you watch season 2?  What are your thoughts/feelings about the seasons huge end?

To wrap up vacation Brian gave me my gift.  Literally one of my favorite gifts of all time!  The gift of a hobby and art, in the form of a Cannon Rebel T6.  I’ve always loved capturing a moment and being able to see the beauty in it forever!  I am so excited to have the highest of quality memories for both myself and my family.  Thank you again babe!

Special thank you to everyone who called, text, facebook messaged, and spent my birthday with me.  Here is to 26!  I am ready for what this next year has in store for me!

– A

Birthday vibes

Hello 26!

Yesterday I celebrated my birthday.  The day got off to a slow start because I have been feeling sick for the last three days.  Body aches, sore throat, and stuffy nose — I didn’t let that stop me.

My parents surprised me with an early dinner at Cochon Volant, 100 W Monroe St. Chicago, IL.

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Again my love for France from my trip continues.  The decor of this place reminds me of the French bars we would sit at and drink beer and coffee while staring at the Eiffel Tower!

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Cochon Volant – Flying Pig in English has the cutest logo.  Helps if you do not know the translation at first.

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We came during their lunch hours, so appetizers filled the menu.  We decided on the Warm Brie Plate and Croque Madame Eggrolls.  Looking back I realized I didn’t take photos to share… but it was because it was so good!  Once we got the dishes we dug in and although it was appealing to the eye my stomach was very pleased as well!

If you have been is there anything you would recommend from the dinner menu?  I am interested in going back soon!

Check please,

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The check comes with a Cochon Volant postcard!  What a cute way to market yourself!

After we arrived home we played games on the deck as we enjoyed some refreshing beverages.  The weather today although hot on the day side was perfect for deck drinking.  It was a great way to kick off my vacation as well as celebrate my official adulthood.  I’m off my parents insurance (insert crying).

I will keep you updated on all the vacation fun to come!

Thanks to everyone reading and to everyone who made my birthday memorable!

-A

Treat yourself

Hello all,

Today was my day to get my nails redone.

Although the length is a little long for my liking I am really in love with the design.

The guy who did them has been a nail tech for 18 years!  He’s super talented obviously.

If you are interested I went to Magic Nails in Countryside… they opened a new location near the Best Buy – 11 Countryside Plz.  I visited this one with a friend today after work and it is so nice!  Everything is new and spacious, less busy than the other location but I doubt it will stay like that for long.  Has anyone else in the area been here?  How was your experience?

 

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My ring finger is done to look like marbling.  The rest of my nails are done in white/ grey ombre.

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Many times when I tell people this is where I get my nails done they talk about price.  Yes, it is a bit expensive, however you get what you pay for.  The entire expeirence and products are high quality and if I am going to treat myself why not I am not going to pick the McDonalds of nail salons.  I want the Gibson’s of nail salons if I am paying for something to last me 3 weeks.

Also I do the DIP which can last 3-4 weeks… meaning I am paying $2 a day for nice nails… not bad in my book.

P.S. Right now until the end of May they have 15% off at the new location!

Hope everyone is wrapping up their week in a fantastic way!

If you haven’t done anything to treat yourself this week go a head… you deserve it!

Below is a throwback to walking the Paris streets… oh how I miss this!

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-A

Fun and Games

Welcome back!

It has been a few days.  Hope everyone had a wonderful Mother’s Day!

I had the pleasure of watching my Aunt graduate with her Masters of Law.  Literally the most inspirational ceremony, I cried pretty much the entire time.  Both because my aunt is a bad ass and can accomplish anything she puts her mind to and because the inspirational words shared hit home.  One speaker spoke about the importance of what you get from your career, with the exception of money.  How money (although a necessity in life) should not keep you doing something that doesn’t bring you happiness and provide value to your life and the lives of those around you.

I know he was talking to the new graduates, but the speech was for the moment of life I am currently in.  It was nice to be reminded by someone who doesn’t even know me.

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Also tickets for Pokemon Go Fest in Chicago went on sale… and sold out this past Friday.

Brian and I were lucky enough to have gotten a pair.  I am hoping for the sake of players who were unable to get tickets Niantic will rethink the platform they use to sell tickets to events so they are not purchased by people who are going to mark up the price.

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Needless to say I am so excited! Brian and I went last year and it was fun, despite my cellphone reception being horrible, which I blame AT&T for not Niantic.

Is anyone traveling to Chicago for the event?  Where are you traveling from?  Did you have troubles getting tickets?  What are you most excited for?

Here is a picture of us last year…

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I am also looking forward to the nice tan I will be getting walking around catching Pokemon!

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Brian also sent me this bar that Replay in Lincoln Park is doing a Pokemon themed event that starts on my birthday!  Can we all guess where I will be?  You’re smart.

Is anyone else interested in this event?  The event runs from May 25th- June 4th.  Below is the event description:

Starting on Memorial Day weekend, we’re transforming our bar into a Pokemon trainer’s paradise, complete with themed drinks, a Pokemon Center and Pokemart, and lured pokestops for all you Pokemon Go players.

But if that weren’t enough, we’re also allowing budding trainers to take on the Replay Pokemon League Challenge. When you visit, you’ll be able to ask your bartender for a Trainer Card, with spaces for eight badges earned through ordering specific themed badge shots at the bar. If you collect all eight, you’ll be able to challenge one of our Elite Four at Pokemon Stadium. If you prevail, you will receive a prize pack fit for a champion.

Not feeling competitive? We’ll also have wild Pokemon hidden all around the bar. Catching them by entering a code on a specific website will unlock discounts and goodies. We’ve even heard rumors that there are some legendary Pokemon out there that will unlock secret menu drinks!

Let Brian and I know if you are going?  What part of this do you find the most exciting?

We will be there and be geeky.

This week keeps getting better…

Drake announced he will be in Chicago August 17th and 18th.  Who is going?  It has been a few years since I went to see him so I am so happy he’s back in Chicago!

More to come on Drake because I have not purchased my tickets yet but I can hardly wait to do so!

-A

Attitude of Gratitude

Tonight was so much fun!

My aunts, grandmother, mom, and I all spent a pre Mother’s Day night out.  We went to the pre-screening of Book Club.  A must see!  It was so hilarious!

Have you watched the trailer?  What are your thoughts?  Are you going to see it May 18th when it’s in theaters?

After the movie we enjoyed a nice dinner at the pizza place near the theater.

I honestly couldn’t navigate life without her.  She is my biggest supporter and my voice of reason when I am in need.  She has taught me so much over the years and my need for her wise words and strategic thinking has only increased as I age.  I am so grateful to have her as a mother and best friend.  (P.S. Jerzday has been moved to Friday!)

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All my mothers in one picture… Mom, Grandma, and Godmother.

I wouldn’t be the person I am without these wonderful women!  I literally am my grandma in so many ways it’s crazy!  As an adult it’s so wonderful to see the impact of those around you in your actions, mannerisms, and of corse looks.

Looking forward to doing this again with these ladies and I am so excited to celebrate them again this Sunday!  Any interesting Mother’s Day plans?

I would also like to add as a reminder that some people no longer have their mothers to celebrate Mother’s Day with.  We should use this as an opportunity to celebrate all women who have shaped our life with their love.  Celebrate and love your moms everyday, because they deserve it!

Happy Mother’s Day!

-A