It is the chocolate and kisses of life that make us rich. Enjoy what brings a smile to my face and love to my life.....

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

"The Dress"

It seems that some girls start planning their big day from the moment they start talking and walking. It just goes in that order. First you say mama, then you take your first few steps, pretty soon you have a data spreadsheet all made out with wedding plans buzzing, even before you've met that special someone. Ok, maybe not quite like that. But, I do know of a few individuals that started wedding dress shopping (not just browsing for fun shopping), like REALLY on the search for the perfect dress, years before they even met their guy. Now that's predetermined commitment.
I also know of someone who went out and bought a cubic zirconia ring in the exact style she demanded her ring to be. Not for nothing, if I happened to be male and thinking I wanted to pop the question, that alone would make me run. I would jump on the next flight out of the country. We all have our own limitations when it comes to control issues.

The Dress

Some of you try on dress after dress to find that dress that makes you cry. Not tears of sadness, but tears of overwhelming joy as you approach one of your most special life changing moments. For me, that dress was found on lucky #3.

I had called many bridal shops in the search of a particular dress that I wanted to try on. Well let me tell you that if you want to be treated nicely, you shouldn't do that. I guess in the wedding dress world that is considered a No No. Well, if they had let me finish and say I wanted to try on other dresses, maybe they would of been nicer, but they weren't. Maybe they would have gotten my business, but they didn't.
I finally found a place that had the dress I wanted to try on. Again, they weren't the most pleasant of people when it came to me looking for a particular dress, but I made the appointment anyways. I know that a lot of people don't know what they want when they are looking for a dress. Though, there are some of us that know ourselves so well, that maybe these wedding dress people should just listen to us once in a while? Okay, I'm done with that.

The morning of my appointment I was browsing through more dresses when I found a different one that  immediately had me in a jaw dropping moment. This was the one. Obviously you need to try dresses on to see if they do your body any justice, so I went to my appointment.

When I showed up, it wasn't at all what I expected. This wasn't the bridal boutique you see on Say Yes to The Dress, it looked like my garage stuffed with dresses, but smaller. What I thought was a man on the telephone, actually turned out to be a woman, oops!

She made me try on a dress she chose for me based on my body. It was alright, but I wasn't feeling it. Then she allowed me to try on the original dress I went in for. It was pretty but it made me feel plain. It fit my body well, hugged all the right places while supporting and giving some other places a few hikes up (if you know what I'm saying!). Being that it was such a small store I didn't think they would have the other dress I found earlier in the day, but I asked anyways. They did!! What are the odds?

With that, my dress shopping was complete. They always say you know when you know, and I am a firm believer in it. In my mind, if I have doubts, it isn't for me. The things I have done so far with my life and the choices I have made, I just knew. It wasn't hard to choose, it is all the lovely issues after the choice that make things difficult!

                                 This was my original choice
                                 This was similar to the one she chose for me

I can't show you what my choice actually was, but if you keep reading for the next two months, there will be some beautiful pictures after June 10th!

Monday, March 28, 2011

Grocery Shopping on a Budget

For the first time EVER in our relationship, the man and I have went to the grocery store with a smaller budget in mind, and left buying all we needed for EVEN less!!!
Rewind: Last week we were hit with a punch that we might not have the money for our wedding which is on June 10th. Instead of having a three year old tantrum, I decided to take a different approach and I am quite proud of myself. It was time to put ourselves on a very strict budget. We probably should have done it a little sooner, but we live, we learn.

Fast forward: The budget I allowed for us was $50.00. I told the man we were allowed to buy what staples we were out of, a few protein choices for the week, and if we saw any good sale purchases that stayed within our weekly allotment, it was game.

Rewind: The man and I have a serious shopping problem when we are together. It's like our happiness with each other causes us to buy really absurd purchases. Not that we buy things that are inappropriate for our lives, but when we have a day off together, we validate purchases that we probably should have held off on until later. It's the "if you want it, get it" approach. Note to self: It doesn't always work.

Fast forward: During our visit to the store we purchased the following:

  • Lettuce
  • 2 red onions
  • 2 granny smith apples
  • mushrooms
  • 2 red bell peppers
  • 1 1/2 lbs of chicken 
  • 1 lb of lean ground beef
  • 1 lb of turkey sausage
  • cholula
  • 1 frozen pizza (try to have on hand when the man doesn't want to cook for himself)
  • 3 cans of soup
  • 2 bottles of soda (trying to get him to stop, it's like taking a binky away from a baby!)

Drum roll please.... $39.00!!!!

Rewind: From the moment the man and I started to live together, our grocery bills have always been over $70.00. We definitely have a problem with impulse buys, so while most of the items on our list were necessary, some really weren't needed. For example, our pantry is like a mini mart. So when my family comes over, I enjoy giving them things that I'm not going to use. That being the case, I probably shouldn't have bought it, if I'm not going to use it!

I'm pretty sure the reason our current shopping adventure didn't cost us that much was because we still have a lot of other things on hand in our house. We were able to eliminate buying things we didn't need and kept in mind that our budget is something we have to stick to. I'm actually looking forward to next week's shopping trip because this almost feels like a game, and guess who's going to win?
This girl!!!

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Wedding Colors

It wasn't a difficult decision to know what colors would appear all over my wedding. It was actually quite obvious. I'm pretty sure if I hadn't revealed my decision from day one, everyone that truly knows me would already have known the answer.

Purple and green.
Not just any purple and green though. A deep purple, the color of plums. A green with a subtle hint of gray, sage green.

While I have had no problem incorporating purple into the day, the green kept getting pushed to the background. If a decision had to be made, my eyes would automatically fall on anything in my favorite color. My mind envisioning a room draped with purple linens, purple flowers, purple people...well, not really.
It seems that my favorite color happens to be the color theme for many weddings this year, and that's alright. I was watching one of my favorite people, David Tutera and a bride came out with a purple wedding dress. She stole my idea, damn!
Not really. Although I secretly wouldn't mind one. Maybe.

There are a lot of details I'm still trying to piece together in my head but we have managed to decide on our flowers. I know a lot of people while planning their wedding want loads of flowers everywhere. That would be great if we had a never ending budget. I guess when I was younger I should have planted myself a wedding money tree. If only money trees were real. 

So for our wedding flowers, my florist describes them as an elegant base of baby green hydrangeas punctuated with deep saturated hues of aubergine, lavenders, apricot and tangerine. Whatever that means, just kidding.

Without even mentioning everything else that we've planned, it's going to be a vibrant day!

Friday, March 25, 2011

All I want......

........ is a piece of Costco's heavenly chocolate cake. Say it with me, triple layered chocolate cake filled with sweet chocolate goodness with chocolate shavings surrounding it's edges of wonderful chocolate icing.
It may just be me, but I feel like I can taste the chocolate through the screen. Or it's just a dream of mine. To be able to make my air taste this good with ZERO calories. We all can dream.

If I can't have that, then I want this.
My other half is trying to find a new job. I told him for all the cover letters and tests I so graciously do for him, he owes me a cheesecake. When the easter bunny comes with my basket, this better be in it.

Along with coupons, lots of them, so that in the summer I can enjoy as many of these as my heart desires.
Carvel soft serve covered in thousands of rainbow sprinkles. I think I may have just passed out at the thought.

I am torturing myself because I have spent 17 long days dreaming of chocolate, ice cream, cookies or anything that deserves a drooling mess. While I have been wonderful at keeping to the NO SWEETS ZONE I have just figured out that it is not 40 days that I will need to tough out, it is actually 46! No, it's not going to break me, but it is making me dream. I mean, there is only so much fruit you can eat to satisfy the sweet tooth.

I will survive. Mostly because I have the man telling me that we will not fail.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Wakin' Up

One of the questions on the ABC's of Me Post was asking about your morning routine. Besides anxiously awaiting my coffee every morning, one thing that I absolutely look forward to is waking up to the blog community.
I know when I wake up and sign on, that tons of wonderful bloggers will have posts already up and ready for my eyes to read. I know that I will learn something new every morning when I wake up. Whether it be a new recipe, a new workout or a little tidbit about some of my favorite bloggers' lives.

At first, when I decided to start a blog (which really wasn't that long ago) I didn't know what I was getting myself into. But over the past few months, I've encountered so many wonderful things that the blog community has to offer.

I have always loved to write, and it is something that I have missed over the past fives years. To be able to place my thoughts out there whenever I want, on whatever I want makes me feel very grateful. I am still learning my voice, still learning what I want to morph this blog into but it is a learning experience and I'm willing to take that opportunity to make myself happy with what I present to the blogging world.

There are so many blogs out there for people to read. The topics range from literature, food, fitness, life, grief, weight loss stories, to book reviews, poetry, art... the list could go on and on forever. It's definitely a community where anyone can find something they are interested in reading, watching, and most importantly something they enjoy.

One thing that I find amazing, is how fortunate we are to have a community where others are so supportive of each other. Not every day is going to be a perfect day, things in life do go wrong.  The kind words, the advice, the virtual hugs, all that does play a part in someone's healing process. It's a beautiful thing to witness. Yet, another reason why blogging is a wonderful thing.
So as I wake up today to my daily blog reading routine, and to whoever reads this, thank you for taking your time to support me in my journey. It's not always easy, but I'm sure going to make it fun!

Monday, March 21, 2011

It's SpRiNg!

And there is snow on the ground....again.
At least there is an end near with the winter blues. When I took a walk the other day with my dogs, I did find some green sprouting through and the first flowers in our yard! This is what makes me happy.

What also makes me happy today is being able to spend time with this guy. He leaves for a work thing tomorrow in Ohio for a few days. I have to say for someone that is in the restaurant business, he sure has traveled A LOT in the past 3 years. If only it were for pleasure and not work, huh?
Today was a good day to have a nice warm meal. The kind of meal that sticks to your stomach and makes you happy. Yes, the kind of food that is referred to as comfort. The comfort of knowing you are having a hot and scrumptious meal when outside is so dreary and cold. I was planning on a salad but crispy lettuce and cold veggies didn't make my heart skip a beat, it actually made me shiver. So today is all about mashed potatoes with succulent pork and sweet caramelized onions. I have an addiction to caramelized onions, they are just that good. Oh yeah, and potatoes.
There are so many ways to make mashed potatoes. Everyone thinks that they have found the best way and they might have, for them. It's all about preference and for me the perfect mashed potatoes are made with potatoes, salt & pepper, garlic, butter, sour cream and milk. The sour cream addition stems back from my childhood and a tip from my mama. It makes them extra creamy and that is exactly how I like them! I've definitely changed this up a bit, adding different cheeses and seasonings, because potatoes are very versatile. Sometimes though, the basic recipe is your best bet.

Soon you will notice a theme in tonight's meal...butter.
Sometimes when you are hit with a big blow it just takes the little things to bring it up a notch!

Dinner was an absolute hit. I have been craving perogies for the past week but instead of going out to buy more things I didn't need at the grocery store, I opted for option number two. I do have a wedding to pay for here, and at the moment things aren't looking so wonderful. But my motto for now, just gonna keep it positive.

ABC's of Me

A: Age- 27, but turning 28 on April 26th. Love even numbered birthdays! (Don't ask why!)
B: Bedsize- Queen. If it were any bigger for the way I curl up in a mummified ball, he might as well sleep in the spare bedroom!
C: Chore you hate: Cleaning up dog hair. I love them but to clean up dog hair thank you. Hence why I don't and why it ticks me off even more!
D: Dogs: Tucker & Molly. They are both puggles and fabulous dogs. Although they weren't socialized enough when little and have a little "anxiety" at first when people come over. Otherwise, they are dolls!

E: Essential Start to your Day: Wake up, make some stretchy noises, and roll around a few times to really wake up. Get up, let the dogs out. Turn on the computer and wait for my iced coffee to be delivered by the man because he is just that wonderful to me!

To answer Allie from All I Eat Food, I'm a French Vanilla Girl 100%.
F: Favorite Color: For all those that know me. I gravitate towards anything and all things purple.
G: Gold or Silver: Silver unless we aren't talkin' jewelry. Then you can give me all the gold in the world!

H: Height: 5'1 1/4". The 1/4 inch counts, because in 20 years it'll probably have disappeared and then some
I: Instruments you play: I played the recorder, Hot Cross Buns is my specialty. I also played the flute until high school. We just found it late last year, tucked away in my mom's house. Should I bust it out for the wedding?!?
J: Job title: Registered Nurse in Emergency Department
K: Kids: For now, I consider my dogs my children. They sure act like it! Hopefully within the next year we'll have a little one. :-)
L: Live: Watertown, Connecticut
M: Mom's name: Vivian- otherwise known as the best mother ever
N: Nicknames: Mel, Meliss, Sexy, use to be a little pea, not so little anymore. Did you know that Meliss actually means to molest? Yeah, I don't like that nickname.
O: Overnight hospital stays: Does working the overnight count? Because that was for a whole year and it blew! If not, when I was born in 1983.
P: Pet peeves: do not like it when glasses are left on tables without coasters, hate when food is left all over the plate and put in the sink, don't touch my feet, dislike rude inconsiderate people, don't put boxes/bags back when empty, don't leave doors/drawers open and walk away. These things being considered, I hold back in my impulsive opinions because otherwise I would drive myself AND others crazy!
Q: Quote from a movie: "Sometimes being a b*tch is all a woman has to hold on to." Kathy Bates in Dolores Claiborne
R: Right or left handed: righty
S: Siblings: My older sister Nicole, she's fabulous and I love her deeply.
This is probably the 10th picture in a series of many attempts to get rid of our double chins...haha!
T: Time you wake up: When I feel like it. Although I feel better and more accomplished when earlier. Early to me is 9. (I got to bed anywhere between 1 and 3 am)
U: Underwear: Hate touching others. Makes laundry somewhat difficult at times.
V: Vegetables you dislike: I can't think of a vegetable that I dislike. I can say I've never had a brussel sprout, because I hate the way they look. I guess it's the little things.
W: What makes you run late: My significant other. Otherwise the dogs.
X: Xrays you might have had: Teeth
Y: Yummy food you make: Turkey Joes, Lasagna, Apple Crisp, Oreo balls(but who doesn't make these?) I'm just going to say everything I make is yummy! Haha
Z:  Zoo- favorite animal: It's a toss up between the gorillas and the whales. Although I don't know if any zoos have whales? But I'm sticking to my answer because despite the fact that some have a bad rap for say eating people (so what?) I think they are beautiful creatures and I would go to SeaWorld any day over a zoo.

So that's me. There is no more to learn. Right.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Wedding Jitters

The time is approaching very quickly. I feel myself getting upset over everything. All the decisions that need to be made are making my brain feel scrambled. I'm trying to get everything done but I am feeling slightly overwhelmed. They said this would happen. They also said that in the end, everything is going to come together beautifully.

If you have never planned a wedding before, you don't realize the drama that it might entail. You always think everything is going to be perfect, because its YOUR time. You think that all those around you will show amazing amounts of support because its that special time in your life. Well, it has been a little different for me. Maybe it's just a fairy tale that I've envisioned in my mind, or maybe I thought too highly of the ones that I've chosen? Whatever it may be, it's taken the wind out of my sails.
While I've tried to be there for everyone in their problems, I have taken away from my own happiness and glory. I'm not doing it anymore.

Do not think that I am not happy about marrying my Mr. As I told him last night, I would get married today, tomorrow and forget about all this drama. But he doesn't think thats what I really want. Is it?

As the days go by, I find myself thinking about the past. About my childhood, my family, the good and the bad. All of it. You never forget your loved ones, and it's moments like these that you miss the ones you've lost even more, if thats possible. You also find yourself getting angry at the one that decided to walk away.  The one person that little girls are suppose to idolize their whole lives, who in reality has let you down over and over again.

As you can see, I am just putting my thoughts out there. Maybe by doing so I will be able to just move forward and LOVE this moment that I am in. I'm happily engaged to the man I'm going to marry in less than three months. I'm hoping our future is long and healthy. I'm picturing the kids we will have together, soon. It doesn't get better than that.
When we met almost 7 years ago. 
Me: "But I'm wonderful"
Him: "Crazy girl"

Saturday, March 19, 2011


I stumbled upon some blogs today that left me sad, crying, but grateful. Grateful for every day I wake up. Grateful for every person that I love. Grateful to be here in this world, no matter what happens.

We all get distracted by the little things on a daily basis. Things that don't always compare to bigger issues. The important thing is that we embrace what we have and realize that nothing lasts forever. So cherish yourself, your loved ones, and your life.

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