First Trimester Symptoms

pickled cucumberThank you all for the sweet words on the blog and all over social media yesterday after I shared our big news!

Pregnancy is a crazy thing. I never expected my body to experience so many changes in just three months. While it’s fresh in my mind, I wanted to document a little on my personal symptoms during the first trimester.

Exhausted. Turns out, growing a tiny person is very hard work. The last three months have been extremely exhausting! I have never experienced so much fatigue in my life. There would  be days when I’d come home from work, take a nap and then literally go to bed at 8:00.

Emotional. I think my first clue I could be pregnant was when I cried watching Click starring Adam Sandler. One minute I’m laughing hysterically and the next I’m crying over something so silly. Thank you, hormones!

Nauseous. I’ve felt pretty sick throughout my entire first trimester, but thankfully didn’t experience full blown morning sickness (aka vomitting) like many women do. Some days I’d actually hope I’d vomit just to relieve some queasiness. Nope. Just a constant yucky feeling, similar to motion sickness.

Hungry. I’m not gonna lie, there were days when I threw my normal healthy eating habits completely out the window and probably consumed way more calories than I’d like to admit. Pregnancy hunger is REAL, my friends. I’ve had a few interesting cravings: pickles, fruit, cottage cheese, yogurt, and Chipotle (!!). Oh, and veggies / salads make me gag.

Oily. I have always been lucky when it comes to my skin and never really experienced breakouts or zits, even as a teenager. My skin is normally on the drier side, but lately I’ve felt like a total grease ball and am experiencing more acne than ever. Ugh!

Phew, I’m glad the first tri is over with!

As I’m writing this, I realize how horrible the first three months sound. Even though most of the symptoms aren’t very appealing, it has, hands down, been one of the most exciting seasons of my life. I wouldn’t trade it for anything. Thankfully I’m starting to feel a lot more like myself these days!

Special Announcement!!


IT’S TRUE, It’s true!! Today is the day I can finally share my very exciting news…I’m pregnant!! Mark and are expecting our own little bundle of love next Valentine’s Day!

It’s been killing me to keep this little secret for the past 13 weeks, but now that I’m officially in the second trimester I could not be happier to share our special announcement.

Stay tuned for some upcoming posts on how I’ve been trying to stay healthy during this crazy season of life!


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Friday Five: Summer Date Ideas

tumblr_lmby2mnQaJ1qck08go1_500_largeI’m a huge believer in weekly date nights. No matter how busy we get, Mark and I always set aside one night a week for a date. It’s important for us to dedicate a specific time to be together as a couple to connect, be romantic and just enjoy each other’s company.

As we settle more and more into marriage, we’ve agreed that date nights don’t have to be as fancy as they once were. While an evening of wining and dining is always OK in my book, it’s not always practical or affordable. After all it’s the time we spend together that’s the most important.

During the summer months when the weather is warm and the nights are long, the possibilities for date night are endless. So to give you a little inspiration, I’m sharing my top five favorite date ideas to try out this sunny season.

// One //  Beach Cruising // Preferably near the beach or bay, but just about anywhere around town will do. If you don’t own a bike, they are pretty reasonable to rent for a few hours. Just remember to bring bike lock so you can stop for a drink along with way!

// Two // Picnic in the Park // The ultimate romantic date. Pack your picnic basket, grab a blanket and some tunes and head to the park. Not sure what to pack? Think finger foods, a mix of snacks like pretzels, grapes and carrots, plus your favorite wine or beer.

// Three //  Sunset walks //  It doesn’t get any more romantic than this! We love taking our doggies on a long walk during sunset. The best part about this date: it doesn’t cost a dime!

// Four // An afternoon at the Dog Park // There’s nothing that will put a smile on your face  more than watching all the pups run free. Bring a bottle of wine and make it “yappy” hour!

// Five // Fro-yo Date //  Nothing says summer like an ice cream date. When its warm out, I love grabbing a nice cold sweet treat and enjoying it in the summer sun with my man.

What is your favorite summer time date? Any ideas for me?


A Note on Mental Illness Following Robin William’s Death


“Robin Williams was an airman, a doctor, a genie, a nanny, a president, a professor, a bangarang Peter Pan, and everything in between. But he was one of a kind. He arrived in our lives as an alien — but he ended up touching every element of the human spirit. He made us laugh. He made us cry. He gave immeasurable talent freely and generously to those who needed it most — from our troops stationed abroad to the marginalized on our own streets.”

–President Barack Obama

The news of Robin Williams’ death yesterday morning due to apparent suicide is such a tragedy. While I am by no means an expert in this area, I can’t help but want to write about it.

Coincidentally, my husband and I were talking on Sunday about our favorite childhood movies and I immediately brought up two of my favorites: Hook and Mrs. Doubtfire. Robin Williams brought so much laughter and joy to my childhood. The news is surely a shock to us all.

I can’t help but wonder though. How could someone with so much going for them possibly feel depressed to the point of suicide? He had it all, right? The fame, a dream worthy career, and a beautiful family.

But it’s important to remember that depression and most mental illnesses don’t take personal factors into account. Mental illness can affect anyone. It’s time that we, as a culture, as a community, stop shaming people for what is out of their control.

Now maybe we can’t prevent the inevitable. But what if we can.

In memory of Robin Williams, my hope is that we can all be a little kinder to each other and strive to make each other smile, laugh and feel happy. There is no doubt that he did that for us.

Twenty – Eight

Pink Cupcake with CandleYesterday I celebrated my twenty eighth birthday.

Womp Womp. There’s nothing too exciting about twenty-eight.

The day was perfect, nonetheless. It was pretty mellow, and just want I wanted. Brunch at one of my favorite restaurants with some great friends followed by a day in the sun at the bay with Mark. And yes, the SUPs were definitely involved. Told you — can’t get enough!

Mark cooked me a yummy dinner and we ended the evening with the Kardashians. Typical Sunday night, don’t judge.

It was simple, perfect and everything I’d hoped for.

I must mention though, last weekend Mark surprised me with tickets to the Beyoncé and Jay Z On the Run Tour for my birthday and we totally partied it up. I definitely got in my share of celebrating! But let me tell ya, that concert was insane. I’m still having withdrawals. Best show ever.

And you all know how I love that power couple.

Cheers to the an amazing 27 years. Twenty-eight is full of big things and I can’t wait!!

My New Favorite Exercise / Hobby: Stand Up Paddle Boarding

casey_michigan_sup1My husband and I have been borrowing my in-laws stand up paddle boards for the summer and let me tell you: I’m hooked.

If you aren’t familiar with stand up paddling (SUP), let me fill you in. Stand up paddle boarding originated in Hawaii as an off shoot of surfing. It can be done on anything from flat water protected lakes, to easy beach paddling, to open water paddling, and all the way to surfing waves.

Anyway, these SUPs we’ve been using, they are INFLATABLE! Have you ever heard of such thing? I mean, how practical is that?

Because let’s be real — owning a traditional 10 to 12 foot SUP is only practical if you a) live at the beach or b) own a truck and c) have lots of storage space.


Suddenly stand up paddle boarding became mobile. Now, this isn’t your typical water toy. They are military grade, highly pressurized and super rigid.

Thankfully I have my hubby to help blow pump them up for us, which takes him all of 5 minutes. But let’s be honest, if I were doing it…. it might take all day. These babies hold 14 pounds of pressure. And they best part? They roll up into a backpack when you aren’t using them. So they easily fit into your car/garage/closet.

Is SUP good exercise? Yes! It is an excellent low impact workout. You’ll engage your core while activating the burn in your arms, legs and back. It’s a full body workout and is great for balance. Caloric burn will vary depending on stroke intensity, wind, and water conditions but here is a good rule of thumb:

 ++ Leisure Paddle: 225 calories per hour ++

++ Moderate Paddle: 500 calories per hour ++

++ Intense Paddle: 850 calories per hour ++

**Estimates are based on a 165 lb person and one hour of paddling.

Looking for an inflatable SUP? Check out these babies.

Have you tried SUP? What is your favorite summer time exercise? 

Wanderlust: Bend, Oregon

2014-07-27 16.10.46I’m Ba-ack! What a week!

If you ever get a chance to visit Bend, Oregon: GO! It is one of the most beautiful places in the world. You are literally surrounded by nature wherever you are and it’s impossible not to find peace in this place.

I thought I’d do a little travel guide in case you are ever in the area.

Where to stay:

++ We stayed at the Sunriver Resort, which I recommend overall due to its close proximity to everything. If I were to go back, I’d consider renting a house or condo on the river. Having the option to cook or BBQ would be awesome because I honestly didn’t find the food and restaurants to be spectacular (or at all healthy, surprisingly) in Bend.

What to do:

 ++ Bike through the Sunriver Village – 38 miles of bike trails, surrounded by tall trees and wildlife.

++ Float down the Deschutes River. Or white water raft, canoe, kayak, or stand up paddle board down it.

++ Golf. I finally learned how to hit a golf ball!

++Tour the breweries and wineries.

++ Visit the Sage Springs Spa at Sunriver. One of the best I’ve been to.

++ Visit downtown Bend. The most charming little town in the Pacific Northwest, with tree-lined streets and cobblestone sidewalks.

++ Take a day trip to Crater Lake and hike to the bottom. It is well worth it.

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Officially in Vacation Mode

bend-area-mastheadWell, I am officially in vacay mode! My bags are packed and we’re off for week long trip to Bend, Oregon with the fam. Excited to leave the stresses of work and (let’s be honest) LIFE behind for a relaxing getaway in a place I haven’t been since I was a little girl.

What’s on the agenda for this week? Good question.

While we don’t have any set plans yet, our week will likely consist of lots of lakeside lounging, hiking, mountain biking, kayaking, paddle boarding, reading and of course lots of good food and drinks. Basically some much needed R&R. Oh, and definitely a day trip to the infamous Crater Lake.

A few pictures to share today as I dream of arriving at this beautiful destination. This is where I’ll be spending the next 6 days….

++ Side note: I don’t plan on blogging (or even turning on my computer) while I’m away. Sometimes it’s nice to just unplug and disconnect. Have a wonderful week and I’ll be sure to update when I return! 





Have you ever been to Bend, OR or Crater Lake? Any travel tips??


Travel Essentials: What to Pack

_9321890Welp, I’ve got this trip coming up that I’m really stoked about… but, I’m seriously DREADING packing for it. And don’t even get me started on the UNPACKING. Ugh!

P.S. How cute is that Longchamp travel tote?

Anyways, thought I’d jot down a list (I love lists!) of my top travel essentials to share with you. And so I can get my head on straight and figure out what I need to bring.

Here we go.


+ A beachy tote. Plus all it’s belongings. See what’s in my beach bag here.

+ A killer camera. What’s a vacation without the pics to prove it? Oh and sorry guys, your iPhone will not do.

+ iPad, plus charger and headphones.

+ Snacks. You never know when you’ll need a little something to hold you over. I love stashing a few Think Thin bars and some almonds in my travel bag.

+ the perfect bikini. 

+ sunglasses.

+ a big, floppy hat. my faves: here, here and here.

+ dry tanning oil with SPF. yes, this is a real thing.

+ a good book plus magazines.

+ workout gear + your oldest running shoes for hiking.

Now this list doesn’t include all the clothes and shoes you need, (obvi) but it’s all the little extras I tend to forget.

Tell me: Did I forget anything? What are some of your travel essentials? 

When to Replace Your Running Shoes

2013-Nike-Free-Run-2-0-women-running-shoes-gray-orange---0-3407-21275How often do you replace your running shoes? Every few years seems plenty enough, right? Think again.

Replacing your running shoes often is vital to preventing injuries while exercising. But just when should you toss those tennies?

Experts suggest replacing your sneakers every 300-500 miles. But other factors like your weight and a heavier foot strike can mean replacing shoes even more often.

Every 300-500 miles. What exactly does that mean? If you don’t keep a running count of your mileage (who does that??), every 6-12 months is a good rule of thumb if you exercise 3-5 times per week.

Seems like a lot to me. I’m notorious for keeping my shoes AT LEAST a year. But if it means preventing an injury, trust me, it’s worth the extra money.

Six months seem to soon? Start paying attention to how your feet feel in your shoes. If they start to feel too loose or you feel joint or muscle pain or shin splints while running, its time to replace them. Take a look at the heels and soles of the shoes, do they look worn out or squished? Take that as a hint.

How often do you replace your running shoes? 

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