Tag Archive | friends

Friday Confessions: moments

Hey friends! Long time, no talk. Time sure has slipped away from me this summer. It is SO hard to believe we’re almost to Labor Day.  I don’t know how you’re feeling about it, but I’m quite honestly having mixed emotions.  Since the end of summer is upon us (I hate saying that but it’s true… I start classes in less than 2 weeks!), I wanted to be sure I wrote about some of my favorite moments through the last few months. After all, even though I originally started this blog to share recipes,  it has truly become a space to also express my feelings and write about memories I never want to forget.

We all have moments that stick out in our minds…happy and sad moments, freaking-out moments,  life is oh-so-good moments, etc. I’ve certainly had my fair share of cries and hysterical moments this summer, but all-in-all, there’s been a lot more happy moments that stand-out in my mind more than anything at all. For one, Brandon came home,  for another, my sister got married, and just yesterday we signed a lease and move in one week! While the summer has also had its challenging moments, mostly it’s been incredibly special. I will always look back on these few months and cherish these times.   My favorite moments were:

Moments with my parents: It’s been incredibly rewarding to live with my parents this past year. Having this one-on-one time with them day-in and day-out as an adult has been so special. I’ll always hold dear to my heart the early morning work-outs and walks with my Mom, movie and dinner dates with my Dad, bike rides, mother/daughter day-off trips, and grocery shopping together…man-oh-man I’m going to miss my parents. I will never be able to thank them enough for their generosity this year and I will always treasure these moments.

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An evening stroll in Kennebunkport

Fried food date with Dad (YOLO)
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Bike ride cuties

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Moments with friends: I haven’t seen nearly enough of my girlfriends these past few months, but no matter how far apart we live, the second we’re together, it’s just like old times. Much love to my girls.
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Moments with my other half:Although I’ve only seen my sister ONCE this summer (I can’t even believe that’s the truth), every second of  being together was wonderful. Best friends forever and always.

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Moments with grandparents (and the grand-dogs):
It has been a summer of adjustment without our Boppa around for all of us, especially for Nana. For that reason, we’ve tried to keep her busy and keep her surrounded by loved ones at all times.  Moments with Nana and my Mem are always full of laughter and love, but they’re never quite long enough. My parents would agree that moments with their “grand-dogs” are never quite long enough, either.
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Moments of celebrating love:
It is the summer of weddings and I have loved it! Witnessing some of our closest friends and family members exchange heartfelt vows has been so special and has warmed my heart. Plus, attending them with Brandon has made them even more special.

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Moments of togetherness:

I have not spent nearly enough time with Brandon this summer as I’d hoped, but we are so excited about our upcoming move and future endeavors. I’m thankful for the special moments we have had this summer, and can’t wait for future together.
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Moments at work: The biggest challenge I faced this summer was creating a work/life balance for myself. While I didn’t exactly excel in this balance, I am really proud of the improvements I made in my managing skills and food-service skills, along with the commitment and dedication I showed throughout the season. I truly couldn’t love a small business more.  

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Do you have any stand-out moments of the summer?

What’s up for Labor Day?
I will either be moving or working, so please share some fun plans so I can live vicariously through you!

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Friday Confessions

Hi friends! Happy Friday. Another week almost over…sheesh! I am not sure where June is going but I want summer to slowww down.  Why does the best time of the year always have to go by the fastest? Why why why? Well, I truly haven’t had a chance to write since my last post, so I wanted to try and squeeze a quick post in before the weekend, I have lots to share!

1)Post-wedding depression is a real thing.
I’ve heard about the post-wedding blues before but I never thought much of them. Now I totally get it. I wasn’t even the bride and my sister’s wedding being over and done with has seriously depressed me. I think it’s the long-awaited anticipation and build-up of such a fun, life-changing event suddenly being over that’s the culprit of it all. The day after the wedding, we all had the post-wedding wedding blues, that’s for sure. In the last couple weeks though, one thing that’s helped cheer us all up is catching some glimpses of  the professional wedding photos. (This is just a Facebook peek, but it’s so cute) LOVE!
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2)I’m beginning to think I have a serious ice-cream problem.
Last week, I ate ice cream for dinner twice, and this week I’ve had a cone every day for the last four days; whoops. I wish I could say I was sorry but…I’m not.
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3)I am 100% positive my hair has never been this long.
Originally I was growing my hair out for the wedding, but now that it’s over, I’m not sure what to do. Keep it long? Chop it off? I’m liking it long but goodness gracious it’s a pain in the heat. Suggestions welcome!
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4) Everyday is a gift
I’m trying to remember this each and every day, especially when I’m feeling down about something or defeated. One of my closest friends was recently in a horrible car accident and although she was injured and suffered a terrible wrist-break among other things, she is thankfully on the road to recovery and is SO optimistic and up-beat. Having dinner with her this week put it all in perspective.  Everyday is truly a gift. I love you, Tiff!
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5)These are the best cookies ever.
No joke, I made a gluten-free Almond Butter Chocolate-Chip Cookie recipe last week and the entire batch was gone in 2.5 days (thanks mostly in part to me). I’ll share the recipe next week!
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6) Whenever I am feeling unmotivated to work out, new clothes always help.
I’ve been loving outdoor running over the last month, but lately it has been feeling harder and harder  to get motivated in the morning. A new top and new sneakers did the trick. (Thanks to my love for the shoes, and to Nike outlet for an amazing deal!)
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7) I just love my Dad( s )
Happy Father’s Day to all of the Dad’s out there this weekend, especially mine.  I am so grateful for you each and everyday. And to my second Dad, too! I am so blessed to have you in my life!
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Have a great weekend, friends : –)

Ever suffered from the post-wedding blues? How did you cure them?

What should I do with my hair?!

my sister is beautiful

Hello, hello! Oh my goodness it feels like I haven’t written in forever (because I haven’t) so I have about one zillion things to catch you up on. First things first. Sadly, my Grandfather passed away on May 17th at the age of 85. We are so thankful that he lived a long life, but that does not make the fact that he is no longer with us any easier. The sorrow my Nana and family is feeling is heart-wrenching. Boppa meant the world to us. His passing happened 8 days before my sisters wedding, too, which was (and still is) extremely difficult to comprehend.  As a family, we’ve helped each other cope and grieve together. We knew Boppa would want my sister to have the best day of her life on her wedding day, so it was essential we made sure to stick together as a family for both Kimmie  and Nana’s sake. We love you, Bop.
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Secondly, in exciting news…my twin sister is married! With Boppa watching down on us, Kimmie and her longtime-love Jimmy tied the knot this past Sunday evening, May 25th, at Castle Hill Inn in beautiful Newport, Rhode Island. Everything turned out perfectly: the weather, the setting, the dresses, the food, the entertainment, it was magical. Plus, having our entire family together in one place was so special. My aunts, uncles, cousins and friends traveling from near and far made it even more special! My sister stated that it was ‘the best day of her life’, which is just what we all wanted to hear. I’m SO happy for these two…and I’m psyched to have a brother.
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For now, here are some pictures of our weekend in Newport and of Kimmie  & Jimmy’s big day. Everyone loves wedding pictures, right? (Well, I know I do, and I’m guessing some of my fellow ladies out there do too!)

Leading up to the wedding : Day 1, Newport:
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Day 2: Rehearsal
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Day 3: Kimmie’s Wedding Day!

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The stunning Bride

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Steaming away to calm my nerves!
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Off to Castle Hill Inn!
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The most beautiful bouquets
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Beautiful Mom
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Sisters :- )
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Father-daughter moment <3
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Family!
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Mom and daughters
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Wedding party!
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With our Mom’s <3
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With my handsome date

Congratulations, Kimmie and Jimmy. I love you!

p.s. I promise I’ll be back soon with a recipe or two…PROMISE! : –)

Have you ever been to Newport?
I love Newport more and more each time I visit!

What’s your favorite part about weddings?
I have too many favorites…the vows, watching the first dance, the flowers, and dancing are all a tie for me!

Kimmie’s Bachelorette: atlantic city fix

Hi my name is Meredith and I used to write a blog. Sheesh! I can’t believe I haven’t written in so long. I feel like I have so much to share. But life is full of phases right? Happy phases, sad phases, stressful phases, we’ve all experienced them at one time or another. I feel as though I just went through a five-month crazy-busy, can’t-slow-down phase that caused my life-work-school-blog balance to become obsolete, so now I’m trying to fix it. Quite possibly the best motivator ever to fix it is having my boyfriend home. That being said, I will be back to writing more frequently soon, soon, soon!

Speaking of phases, my family is obviously going through a wedding phase right now. My sister’s wedding is 10 days away…eeeeek!  As stressful as wedding plans and preparations can be, it has been so fun to celebrate Kimmie. Two weeks ago, nine of us jet-set to Atlantic City for her bachelorette-party weekend and it was memorable. I was so excited because the bridal party includes many of my closest friends and family members, but I was also a bit nervous because I just wanted her to love everything about the weekend. Well, after dancing, laughing, drinking, celebrating & gambling  I think it is safe to say she loved it, and safe to say I have had my Atlantic City fix for awhile!
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Since my sister’s bridal party members come from all over New England, it made the most sense for those of us in Northern New England to fly to Atlantic City. Obviously mimosas in Logan Airport were necessary at 7 a.m.

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After our zillion modes of transportation (car, flight, shuttle, car), we finally arrived at our hotel for the weekend, Revel Resort, and scrambled to decorate Kimmie’s hotel room. A lingerie clothesline, gift bags, and lots of pink bubbly helped to spruce up the room. She loved it!
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Our first night there we all wore matching “team bride” tank-tops which was a blast, and we bar-hopped in the Borgata Hotel.
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We fought our hangovers the next day by way of outlet shopping, coffee consuming, gambling, board-walking, and more drinking (obviously).
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Saturday night was also memorable, beginning at American Cut Steakhouse and ending at HQ nightclub. We all wore black while Kimmie wore white (and her bride-to-be-sash), along with our matching cute/obnoxious flashing rings I insisted we wear! We celebrated a birthday too (love you, Sar!) What a blast we had. The pictures say it all.
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What a fun girls weekend…love these ladies! I think it’s safe to say we have all had our Atlantic City fixes for awhile Winking smileWe love you, Kimmie! As fun as the weekend was, I certainly wasn’t loving life upon our return since I had 4 finals that next week, starting on Monday. Thankfully, I got through them, with lots of help from iced coffee!
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Now I am thrilled to say I am done with classes until my semester begins in September. Best.feeling.ever. Since studying is over-with, I can focus on my maid-of-honor speech, which I am starting to get a bit nervous about…help!!

Have a great rest of the week, friends : –)

Have you ever been the maid of honor or spoken at the wedding? Any tips you can share with me?

Ever been to Atlantic City? If so, where’s your favorite spot?
I loved our hotel, I’d stay there again in a heartbeat!

28, feeling great: Confessions

Happy Friday, friends! It is safe to say April is the month of birthdays around here. First was Brandon’s (he is only 6 days older than me) and on Wednesday my sister and I turned 28. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again..where does the time go? I really do not know. What I do know is that I wish my twin sister her very best year yet. 28 is proving to be a huge year for her already! To start, she’s getting married and she just started a new job. Who knows what else the year will bring? I couldn’t be prouder of her. Anyway, since it’s Friday and all, I’d say it’s time for some confessions:

1) It always seems that every year at least one person asks me what it’s like to share a birthday as a twin.
I love getting twin questions, and I always answer this one in one simple word: AMAZING.
It’s amazing to share a birthday each year with your very best friend.
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It’s amazing to grow up and have joint birthday celebrations (twice the cake, twice the friends, twice the fun!)
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It’s amazing and a true blessing to be a twin.
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2)I should have been a wedding planner
As much as wedding-related activities can be stressful, it has truly been such a fun process with my sister and it was SO fun to make her wedding invitations this past weekend.  Although we were very tired of gluing and assembling after 150+ invitations, they came out better than we ever imagined. Looks like I should have been a wedding planner…or maybe just an invitation maker!
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3)I couldn’t have felt more loved on my birthday
Seriously,  I am so blessed. I have the best boyfriend, family, and friends around. The flowers, cards, packages, multiple phone calls and all of the messages I received throughout the day were so touching. Even though I had to be  in class all day, I couldn’t stop smiling from the amount of love I felt. Thank you all for your kindness. 28 feels great so far!
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Also, this was by-far the highlight of my food-related birthday treats:
A Dairy Queen Confetti Cake Blizzard. OMG. All I can say is, if you have a DQ in your area, go order this NOW.
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4) I am positive I have a cauliflower problem
Ever since my Mom introduced me to a gluten-free, dairy-free “cauliflower poppers” recipe that involves nutritional yeast as a main ingredient, I have been HOOKED on cauliflower. I’ll share the simple recipe soon, it is a definite keeper!
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5) 11 days remain…
The countdown is dwindling…Brandon is home in 11 days and counting! I have to pinch myself on a daily basis; I can not believe we are almost down to single digits. Ahhhh!  Wishing my love a wonderful last week with his mates down-under.
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I hope you have a wonderful weekend, friends!

Anyone else ever want to be a wedding planner?
Have you cooked with nutritional yeast?
Do you like Dairy Queen?
I am literally obsessed.

Reflections

Happy (belated) New Year! What a whirlwind the holidays are. Each year, it feels like they go by faster and faster. Anybody else feel that way? The last time I blogged, I had just finished finals, Brandon was about to come home, and Christmas was about to occur.
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Fast forward to today and suddenly I’m back in classes, Brandon has returned to Australia and Christmas is over. Where does the time go? Anyway, I was looking through my phone (and my nearly 3,000 photos…yikes) and I started to reflect on this past year. I love  how that’s so easy to do with pictures! I’ve never been one to state so-called ‘resolutions’ for the new year, but I do believe in goals, so I thought I’d state my reflections on the year instead, along with a goal to go along with each of them too.

Reflections 2013
-Personal growth happens when we least expect it
Looking back, I think I grew more as a person this past year than ever before in my life, but I never really thought so at the time. For all of last year, I was mostly just a basket of nerves. I was nervous to move beyond my comfort zone, nervous to change career paths, nervous to head back to school, move internationally, live with my boyfriend, make new friends and nervous to think about what direction my life would go in next. All of these things pushed me out of my comfort zone and helped me grow. Yes it was scary, but I undoubtedly grew from it, without even expecting it.
Goal: Do one thing every month that pushes me out of my comfort zone.
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-Australia was a blessing
Moving across the world was the hardest thing I’ve ever done, but it’s also the greatest thing I’ve ever done too. It forced me to grow, ignited my love of traveling, introduced  me to things and new friends, and gave me a lifetime of lasting memories, too . As hard as it was to be away from home, for me it’s harder to be away from the one I love, so everyday has its challenges. That being said, I know (now) that I made the right decision for our future, but it sure wasn’t easy at the time.
Goal: Travel to Australia with Brandon again one day.
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Distance makes the heart grow fonder
Truth is, I didn’t always believe this, but I am a whole-hearted believer now. Long distance relationships, like any relationship are based on commitment and trust, but with long-distance, I feel the belief you have in your relationship and in one another is a key component, too.   With this commitment and belief forms an unbreakable bond, and if this year has proved anything to me, it’s this. I’m thrilled to say that as soon as April hits, the long distance will be over and Brandon will be home!
Goal: Date nights once a week, minimum!
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-A week off from exercise is actually GOOD for my body
If you told me this a few years ago I would have cringed at the thought. I took a 5-7 days off from exercise at a time a couple of times this year, and it truly helped me both mentally and physically. I am so happy to be past my exercise addiction habits and ways of thinking. Rest does the body good.
Goal: Take breaks from exercise, whether needed or not needed

-I need to sleep more
I have been guilty of being sleep deprived for as long as I can remember, and this year was no exception. I need to remember how good I feel after an 8-hour sleep compared to a 5-hour sleep. My energy levels are better, my concentration is better, my mood is better…everything is just better.
Goal: 7-8 hours of sleep a night
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-I ran a lot but I’d like to run more
Since I stopped playing basketball at age 18, I haven’t felt like I’ve had a ‘sport’. This year, I really connected with running and now it kind-of feels like ‘my sport’. I’m not running a marathon anytime soon, but a second half marathon may be in my future, and it’s just so nice to look forward to running.
Goal: ‘3’ has always been my average number, so I’d like to increase my average running route from 3-4 miles to 4-5 miles by the spring-time.
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-Group exercise is addicting
I can thank Australia for this reflection. It’s there that I fell in love with bootcamps and Les Mills workout classes, and I looked forward to them almost daily. They were addicting, but in a good way. I miss them everyday.
Goal: First purchase when I move back to city/Boston area living is a gym membership…can’t wait!
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-Age is just a number
The thought of turning 28 this year sort-of makes me want to cry. ‘Late-20’s’ oh my. I kick myself just writing those words, but I can’t help thinking it!  When I look at my Mom and Dad I just hope I am just like them in my 60’s, not looking or acting a bit like ‘60’ at all, since age really is just a number.
Goal: STOP thinking of aging as a sad thing and start thinking of it as exciting part of life.
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-As you age, you learn who your friends are
Moving away was truly telling about my friendships. Oddly enough, I felt moving away brought me even closer together to a few of my best friends. Even though I’m not in the same city or state as them right now, I couldn’t love them more.
Goal: Have a girls weekend once a month.
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-Family is a precious gift
My family means everything to me, and this year, more than ever, their support was crucial to my well-being. I can’t say thank you to them enough.
Goal: Make togetherness a priority this year and every year.
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And on a less serious note:
-I have a cookie butter problem
I’m not seeking help for it since it’s too delicious, but I just wanted to acknowledge that I eat far too much of it.
Goal:  Try new nut butters….there has to be others that I like just as much, right?

-Puppies are a key to my happiness.
This might sound sappy, stupid, whatever…I am a true believer in this. Puppies always make me smile, no matter what. My sister’s puppies actually lick my tears. Sometimes I fake cry just so they’ll do it (truth).
Goal: Puppy by year end (NO MATTER WHAT!)
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I’m thankful for a wonderful 2013 and looking forward to a bright 2014.

Do you have any reflections this year?
Anyone else  have  a goal of getting a new puppy, or a pet in general?

I love Cori’s new puppy!

Truth is…

Truth is… 
Time management has been a challenge for me lately. I love blogging, but I’ve had a hard time balancing school , work, and life over the last few months. One New Years resolution of mine will be to blog a couple of times a week, mostly because it truly makes me happy to write, reminisce, and share thoughts and recipes.
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Truth is…
Thanksgiving this year was one of the best that I can remember. Great food, great family and lots of laughs, I just loved it.
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Truth is…
I am mentally (and physically) exhausted from studying for finals. I have had 3 finals over the course of the last two days, and in the last two weeks, I do believe I’ve studied more  for chemistry than I have for any other subject EVER. Lets hope it pays off.

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Truth is…
I recently found out my anatomy & physiology credits from Australia aren’t being accepted for course credit at the college I’m attending, and therefore I must repeat A & P in America. Truthfully I cried for about six hours thinking about the effort and money I spent to take that class…but truthfully I know everything happens for a reason and it will all work out in the end.

Truth is…
I love my grandparents more than anything and selfishly I want them around forever. Watching them struggle with old age has been nothing short of challenging, so I’m always so happy when we’re together and we can dote on them.
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Truth is…
Friendship is a blessing. I spent last Saturday in Boston with some of my dearest friends and I truly loved each and every second.
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Truth is…
I really miss outdoor running. While in Australia, most of my workouts were outdoors and I sort -of became accustomed to it. I certainly enjoyed fall running to its fullest in New England, but Maine winters +snow+black ice+frigid temps=no more running for me. However last week and this week, I managed to sneak in one run each week on the “warmer” days, and walk/runs with my Mom. It was blissful!
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Truth is…
I’ve been making a protein shake each morning for breakfast to go along with my fruit and yogurt, and I am absolutely amazed at how long it keeps me satisfied. Arbonne protein powder for the win!
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Truth is…
The holidays are my favorite time of year. When else can you bake and shop every single day and not need an excuse to do it?
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Truth is…
My Mom and I may have a T.J. Maxx problem…just sayin’.
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Truth is…
I made these iced oatmeal cookies last week and they were EPIC. Mother Thyme is a genius. I’ll most definitely be making these  over and over again.
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Truth is…
Brandon arrives home for Christmas in 12 days. To say I’m a little excited would be an absolute UNDERSTATEMENT!
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Got any truths to share?
What’s your favorite thing about Christmas time?
Anyone else have a TJ Maxx “problem”? : –)