Latest Fashion Obsessions 07.17

This month’s latest obsessions is a fashion edition. Covering off on all my favorite summer pieces from the beach, to the patio, to a wedding!  Let’s face it, that is pretty much what the whole summer is about, and your wardrobe can never have enough options for any of those occasions!
Latest Fashion Obsessions_07.17 - the bee life
For the Beach:  My must have is high-waisted bikini bottoms! A little over a year ago, these were hard to find, now you can find them almost everywhere! From Target, to Old Navy to Athleta, the prints and options are endless and adorable!  Since my beach bod has been a work in progress, this is a cute way for me to feel more confident and comfortable!  Not to mention everything is on SALE right now! Stock-up!

For the Patio: For the cool summer nights I’ve been loving a pair of mid-rise jean shorts paired with a flowy long sleeve shirt or sweater.  It’s perfect for a low-key night with friends sitting around the fire, sipping on a tasty beverage and listening to some good tunes.

For the Wedding:  I first fell in love with Jessakae on Pinterest when I saw these gorgeous floral printed dressed.  Although, like most clothing pins on Pinterest, the links never work but I decided to click, and to my surprise the link worked! I’ve bought three dresses off Jessakae, they arrive quickly, the fabric is incredible soft and light and they’re great for casual events or to dress up with heels and a nice hair style. They also offer tops, bottoms, and cute shoes!

There is still plenty of summer left to stock your wardrobe with all these essentials, I know I have been!

Image Sources: Top Left || Top Right || Bottom Left || Bottom Right

Planning Your Honeymoon

When planning a wedding, the honeymoon is often the second most talked about event beyond the big day.  And it is often the thing the couple ends up looking forward to, maybe even more than the wedding day? So with so much pressure on the big day, there is equal pressure for the week after.  Here are a few tips for planning your honeymoon!
Planning Your Honeymoon - the bee life

  1. Consider a Mini-Moon. Since we’re getting married in November, our dream spots aren’t in season in November or December, so we were a little bummed out.  Until family/friends were telling us we had to get away still, even if it was local in the U.S. Problem solved, tickets/resort booked! There are so many cities popping up all over the U.S. that can allow for the perfect romantic getaway you’re looking for. Oh, and you can still plan that dream spot the following year! Check out these mini-moon spots from Travel + Leisure
  2. Go Someplace New. We are totally guilty of vacationing to the same places, so this is the perfect excuse to try someplace new.  Whether you’re keeping it in the continental U.S., or venturing over seas, there are endless places to visit.  If you’re like us, the list goes on for days of dream vacation destinations.
  3. Add It To Your Registry! With new innovative registries becoming more popular, like Zola, you can literally add a honeymoon fund to your list! This allows guests to contribute money for your dream vacation, and can help take off some of the financial burden for the couples dream trip.
  4. Relaxation vs. Adventure. Choosing your destination may be impacted by what you’re planning to do on your vacation.  Consider if you’ll want to strictly relax, or want to have endless options of excursions and places to visit.  A city destination will probably be more on the go vs. a warm resort town on the west coast.  Looking for excursions and activities, maybe consider a mountain resort getaway or hiking through the Grand Canon or Smokey Mountains.
  5. Consider Connections.  Do you know family/friends that have vacationed in spots you’ve dreamed of going? Ask them for tips on places to stay and restaurants to visit.  Better yet, if family/friends have time shares that you can take advantage of, do it! Then you just have to worry about airfare, maybe a rental car and your day-to-day expenses! A honeymoon on a budget, is never a bad thing!

Whatever trip you plan, and wherever you end up going, will be a memorable trip!  Just remember why you’re going, it’s your first trip as husband and wife (husband/husband or wife/wife)!!

 

Image Sources: Top Left || Top Right || Bottom Left || Bottom Right

Weekend Recap – Sunshine & Friends

It was another perfect summer weekend. The weather was gorgeous and the company was enjoyed.  Friday night started with some porch drinks with our neighbors and a late dinner date!  It was a great kickoff to the weekend.

Saturday morning we got up early to attend a yoga class and volunteer through our friends new venture, Yogatta Give Back. It’s a combination of yoga and volunteering. First you start with the class, followed by volunteering wherever the spot is, it’s a wide variety of places and causes. We volunteered at Habitat for Humanity, and spruced up their community area. It was the perfect morning outside!

Saturday night we attended our first wedding of 2017! It was a dear former co-workers wedding, and it was the perfect night for these two to tie the knot.  They exchanged vows in front of a breathtaking back drop of endless views, and the reception was in a rustic and charming lodge on the property.  We had breakfast for dinner and they made 150 mini cakes, of their cake, for guests to enjoy. The bride is an insane baker (Snicklefritz Bakeshop), and so is the groom, so decadent treats were of plenty! It was a sweet night for a very sweet couple, their love and the love of everyone attending was so evident!

Sunday was filled with some pampering, sunshine, neighbors and even a run! I can’t believe it was the last official weekend of June, another perfect one for summer.

How did you spend your last weekend of June?

Latest Obsessions 06.17

Happy Friday!  Here are my latest obsessions for the month of June, a hodgepodge of personal and some new music faves for you to try!

Latest Obsessions 06.17 - the bee life

Our Patio.  Full disclosure, this was a project that B wanted done 10x more than I did (full reveal to be posted next week!), but I am so glad we did it. It’s like night and day, and we spend so much time out there. I can’t wait for more summer nights with friends, grilling out, plenty of laughs and drinks to go around! Not to mention, Moz loves it too.

Working Out. Yes. I’m finally there, pushing myself and making myself get out of bed when I really wanted to sleep in (like this morning) and on those hot summer days after work.  It’s that making that decision to say yes, and do it versus saying no and regretting. Our wedding countdown is getting shorter and shorter, and I still have big goals to hit – so I need to keep conquering them all!

Witness. Katy Perry’s newest CD officially hit the stores 2-weeks ago, and since I got concert tickets for her upcoming tour, Katy sent CD’s straight to my door!  This has been my new jam in the car, my favorite songs are Hey Hey Hey, Roulette and Swish Swish.   Also if you’re looking for some good music my two go-to playlists on Spotify are “Today’s Top Hits” and “Cardio

Share what you’ve been obsessing over in the comments below! I want to know!!

Weddings: Creating Your Sweetheart Table

One trend that seems to be increasingly popular is the idea of a sweetheart table for the bride and groom. I’ve read a few articles about the pros and cons of having a sweetheart table, and I am sure each bride and groom have their own reasons. For us, it’s simple. We have a small bridal party, and I think it would silly to make them sit without their sig-o’s at a table! Plus I love the idea of B and I having our own intimate spot to sit together and watch the magic of our wedding unfold.

And since we’re doing a sweetheart table, I wanted to do it right, which means pulling in the key elements to really make a statement with our table. Those key pieces to help make your sweetheart table standout are; the chair(s), floral accents, pop of personalization, and placement. Creating Sweetheart Table - the bee lifeThe Chair: Consider a furniture rental vendor that has awesome vintage chairs or a bold settee, these will stand out from the rest of your chairs in the venue signifying these are for the bride and groom.

Floral Accents: My personal favorite for a sweetheart table is a garland floral arrangement. This adds texture and depth to your table, while also calling it to be different from the rest of the tables.  Also consider bold arrangements that could be placed along side the tables or back flanking the space.

Pop of Personalization: The go-to seems to be adding Mr. & Mrs. on top of the table or a sign hanging from the back of the chairs. But consider other meaning full words that might be used or even using the initial of your new last name to make a bold pop.

Placement: When considering all of these elements for your sweetheart table, think about where this will be – if you’re going to have signs on the back of your chairs, will your chairs be in a place that others will be able to view and admire? Is a floral arch behind your table going to flow with the space or look out of place?  You can also work to make your sweetheart table to be the focal point of the venue if it’s lack luster our outdoors.

Pulling these key elements together will create a special place for you and your groom to dine to enjoy your first meal as husband and wife! Happy planning!

Image Source Inspiration: Top Left | Top Right | Bottom Left | Bottom Right

Weekend Recap – Now This Is Summer.

The weather this past weekend was quintessential summer; sunshine, cloudless skies with a mix of patio drinks, a summer festival and friends. Friday night was a late one, celebrating a much needed Cavs win in Game 4 of the NBA Finals. But we will leave it at that.

Saturday was spent doing things around the house, and then dinner and drinks on the impressively large patio at Collision Bend Brewery – the latest hot spot in CLE.  With a well known chef, like Zack Bruell behind the business, this place was bumping. We had a great spot outside, but under the awning, perfect views of the river and the warm night.  We ordered a mixture of food to share with the table, but the standouts were the roasted brussels sprouts, oven roasted mixed olives, and the salami and green olive pizza. They had a great selection of beers and cocktails, although I opted for some Rose.  We will definitely be going back to soak in more drinks and the fabulous patio.

Sunday we enjoyed some more local food at the Taste of Lakewood, an annual event that has transformed over the years, and is now a free event to the public offering tasty snacks at affordable prices to sample. We had VIP tickets, which for a toasty sunny day was the perfect way to enjoy the festival feel, without fighting the lines, sore feet and the glaring sun. With VIP we were in a private tent, with plenty of tables and able to order 2-different food vendors, that volunteers would run and cut the lines to collect! Not to mention, 2-drink tickets with our own private bar. Our neighbors joined us, so it was a nice little outing to break up our Sunday afternoon.

Beyond the summer cold, I’ve been fighting off it was a pretty great weekend with lots of sunshine, friends/family, and just enough nap time in between all of that!

Cheers to the first real summer weekend!

The Truth: Weddings & Registries

It’s that time of the year again, wedding season! And with every wedding season, comes the cycle of bridal showers, multiple registries to review, and the actual wedding gift…  As a bride-to-be this upcoming fall, and a guest to four-weddings before then, I feel your pain! But here are answers that will help ease some of those questions and help you conquer all your gifts with success this wedding season!
Weddings & Registries Guide - the bee life
The Gift. If you’re like me, you’re often conflicted with wanting to give the couple something unique and not on the registry.  But I’ve also heard from many past brides/friends say; “I just want the stuff off my registry!” I always thought buying off the registry was boring! But, news flash, it’s not about you or me!

Ultimately it comes down to knowing the bride/couple.  Will they like something specific and personalized if you stray from the registry? Or are they picky and have a specific style, so it’s best to just buy off the registry?  When in doubt, buy off the registry.

Money. Yes, it is tacky to talk about money, but it’s a topic many people struggle with, myself included! How much is enough? Especially if you’re attending four or more weddings in one year!  So I did a little research, and asked my friends and fellow brides-to-be. The consensus for a bridal shower gift was around $50. Although, there is an exception if you’re in the wedding party/close family friend.

Okay, so now how much for the wedding? The going response was basically covering the cost per person/per plate. As you can imagine, this could vary depending on the city, venue, type of food, but a low, but safe baseline is about $50 per person. So between you and your hot date, grand total/minimum of $100. But again, this all depends if you’re in the wedding party, family, or simply just a guest!

The Wedding. So back to that $100 for the wedding gift.  Do you just write a fat check? Or do you head back to that registry for more goodies?  Well consider this; a box of envelopes is much easier to transport after the wedding for whoever gets stuck with gift duty vs. 50+ different sized presents. Also, logistically as the guest, lugging around a gift during the ceremony and cocktail hour might not be the most enjoyable! The couple will most likely buy items they didn’t get off their registry (with a discount) with that cash anyways. So when it comes to the wedding, stick with cash/check.

Before I dived into all my registries, I jokingly talked about creating an online fund for our kitchen remodel! But I found something better, Zola Registry! Zola is a one stop shop for planning the big day, registering for your standard gifts from a number of known/unique brands, but also allowing couples to register for experiences, trips, and personalized cash funds for a kitchen remodel or honeymoon!

As a bride-to-be that has spent many hours searching for the perfect pieces, I’m learning a new found respect for gifting off registries and knowing when it’s okay to just gift with cash.

Happy Wedding Season!

Weekend Recap – College Showers

This past weekend was a good mix of work and fun.

We started yet another house project Friday afternoon, even though we’re working with contractors, so we aren’t doing too much of the heavy lifting, just heavily babysitting. *winks*  But that should be finished up by tomorrow, so fingers crossed we got all the snafu’s worked out.  Don’t worry I’ll share the full project at a later date! Friday night we attended a watch party to watch the Cavs murder the Celtics in game two of the Eastern Conference finals, only to watch them loose at a buzzer beater last night. *grrrr*

Saturday after some of the babysitting stress subsided, we made it out of the house, over to our friend’s to celebrate her 30th! The theme of the night was “party like you’re in college” so there was plenty of drinking games and even a keg of beer.  In order to keep on theme for the night, we gifted the birthday girl with a t-shirt that read; “I Can’t Adult Today” it was perfect! We of course partook in some of the “college party” fun and ran the beer pong table for a few games before we retired and became spectators, mainly because we lost to a few cheaters (you know who you are.) It was a lot of fun, although B and I definitely didn’t party like we were in college. #adulting

Sunday was one of my bestie’s bridal showers.  It was fun catching up with friends and meeting a lot of her family! It was a beautiful shower with mimosas and lots of sweets, so it was extra perfect. A was spoiled with all of her beautiful gifts, because she has amazing taste. I can’t wait for her wedding in July!

On a side note, I can’t believe this next weekend is Memorial Day – where did May go?! What are your favorite May memorials of 2017?

XO

TBT – #CoakleyEverAfter

This Throwback Thursday is all about my bestie, and the day she married Travis.  As their first anniversary quickly approaches (this Sunday!) I wanted to take a walk down memory lane and share some pictures that weren’t shared last year on #CoakleyEverAfter – Part 1 and #CoakleyEverAfter – Part 2! All the events leading up to the big day, were amazing from the bridal shower to the bachelorette party, to weekends planning and prepping centerpieces.  And then the wedding, it was so beautiful and perfect, because it was my best friend’s wedding.  I’m so lucky to have been so involved and closely by Katie’s side the whole day! I can’t wait for her to do the same on my wedding.

Happy first Anniversary Katie & Travis!

Photo source as indicated: Iburi Photography