Local Love: Home for the Holidays Pop-Up Shop

Looking to shop local this holiday season? Look no further — the Home for the Holidays Pop-up Shop is back! Going into it’s fourth year open, it’s found various homes in the neighborhood over the years.  And this pop-up shop supports all things local, by sourcing gems from small business makers in one place!

The best part is you’re not only supporting one local business you’re supporting 40! Home for the Holidays has a variety of gift options for everyone on your list, from baby, to dog mom, to husband or dad, coworkers, and of course your bestie.  Gifts include home goods, local snacks, honey, skincare, christmas themed, barware, and local gear, Home for the Holidays is truly a one stop shop!

With sections throughout the store it’s easy to navigate based on whoever you may be shopping for.  I personally gravitated to the pet section where there was a mix of goodies for your favorite furry friend, like toys and treats and then treats for mom like dog-themed candles and dog mom wine glasses!  And if you’re a human mom, or have a few sweet babes in your life you’ll be trying to decide between some adorable nursery or baby decor from lovefrombrooklyn or handcrafted blankets from Unsalted.
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Moving on to the men in your life. With plenty of amazing hand crafted options like CLE themed beer steins or leather coasters, key chains and valet trays from William & James Leather Co. (William & James also has some pretty amazing earrings available at Home for the Holidays shop, too!) You can also snag a Great Lakes Brewery bottle opener made from actual beer taps.  There are local tees, sweatshirts and winter gear with all his favorite local teams that make for a home run gift.

Speaking of jewelry, beyond unique one of a kind pieces from William & James — there are also copper and ceramic Ohio state necklaces, inspirational bangles and bold earrings that will truly make a statement.  There are also customizable pieces for a more personalized gift and even better stocking stuffer!
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HomeHolidays-beelife(4)To kick off my holiday shopping I stopped in to grab a few items and get inspired for more gifts, the best part is they are continually restocking and adding in new pieces. I grabbed a few handmade ornaments from GGDorothy Art, one of a Cleveland sky line (for us!) and then an Indians ornament for my aunties (shhh! it’s not Christmas yet).  I also grabbed a fun NYE card for a dear friend, a tea towel from Tart Boutique and sweet baby bows from lovefrombrooklyn.  I can’t wait to head back in the coming week to grab a few more goodies and see what new items are in stock at the shop!
HomeHolidays-beelife(1)Home for the Holidays is open Thursday – Sunday until December 23rd, so make sure to plan your trip for any and all of your holiday shopping, last minute gifts and something truly unique for your favorite people.  So if you stop in be sure to say hey to Maureen, the awesome owner behind Home for the Holidays, she is so sweet and hospitable!

Stay up to date with the latest from Home for the Holidays on Instagram and Facebook.
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Happy Thanksgiving – 2019

Happy Thanksgiving to all my amazing bee readers! What’re you thankful for this year?  Every year, I’m always amazed and reminder at how lucky B and I are for our life and all of the amazing people we have surrounding us.

I’m also thankful for winning a fun little portrait mini-session earlier this month (see below) by the talented MML Photography, Michelle Loufman. B and I did a quick little session and the photos just captured so much of our love and personalities while being timeless photos for us to have for years to come.
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Photo by Michelle Loufman at MML Photography

I’ll have to admit that I’ve been a little jaded over this Thanksgiving holiday, especially this year — all the demands of family wanted me to shut it all off and just hide.  But all of my amazing friends listened to my stresses, frustrations and as much as they supported me, they also worked to share a different perspective for me to maybe change my mind… which ultimately ended up happening (yes, I know I’m being cryptic – what else is new?!)

So, I’m heading into this holiday with patiences and gratitude — Happy Thanksgiving! bee

Latest Obsessions 11.19

November has finally been a month that B and I have been able to breathe.  Looking back at the last three months, we were literally booked everything single weekend from August through October — yikes! So needless to say, November has been a breath of fresh air with a little extra time to do more things we love, sleeping in and distressing from October.
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By finally being able to take a minute, I’ve been able to check off a few things on my to-do list (finally), make special memories and prepping for the fast approaching holiday season! These have been my latest obsessions this month.

Bathroom Organization. I’ve been trying to get my bathroom drawer stocked and organized since the beginning of October — and that’s just about how things have been going over here lately. BUT! It’s finally finished, and it’s perfect and beautiful and has a high-end feel for a small price of only $12. I wanted to make sure this bathroom was stocked for us and guests since our other main bathroom is two floors up!

Celebrating Two Years. Our anniversary was this past Monday, so B and I did a bit of celebrating and created new memories this year since we were actually home and not in sunny, Palm Springs. We went out Saturday to one of our favorite spots for dinner and drinks, then popped a bottle of bubbly when we got home. Monday we exchanged gifts – B really knocked it out of the park by creating roses out of cotton rounds (picture above), something he thought of all on his own.  He also had the vows he wrote me, but never shared since we had a Catholic ceremony, on cotton paper! These were the first time I read them and they were funny, sweet and brought me back to two years ago. We also went out to brunch and had a nice dinner at home that night!

Holiday Ready. …Well almost! I am trying to get there.  I’ve gotten a little jump start on some shopping and just started buying stuff, as I’m normally a December shopper. These next few weeks will be busy with Thanksgiving and then immediately jumping into December and hosting our annual holiday party.  So I’m getting my lists ready with ALL the things — from making a dairy free pumpkin pie for Thanksgiving to picking a day to get our Christmas tree! I’m excited for the holidays, but want them to go slow.

What’ve you been obsessing over lately? Are you stressing over the holidays or easing into them like me?

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Celebrating Two Years

It’s our two year anniversary! Part of me can’t believe it and part of me can — and part of me would love to relive that night all over again, in it’s pure magic, fun and perfectness. I loved our wedding, and I would plan another one (minus spending all that money again) in a heart beat.
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TBH. As much as the night was perfect there were a few moments that weren’t completely perfect, even though all the perfect moments out weighted those.  Like the fact that it was basically a tsunami from just before I left the house to head to the church to the end of the night when the party was shutting down. Which meant, our guests and ourselves were transporting two and from the church to the venue in a rush with strategic planning. But they say rain on your wedding day is good luck, right?

Another favorite memory of our wedding is the last two songs of the night.  It was big planning the last two songs with the DJ and he made an awesome choice of combining a song that B had recommended as a must play, Five More Hours by Chris Brown with Justin Timberlake’s Can’t Stop the Feeling just afterwards (which you can see a snip of it below.) But I’ll never forget when Five More Hours came out and I rushed to find B so we could dance to this amazing song — that now brings tears to my eyes with happiness whenever it comes on.

These last two years with B have been about living our life and doing more of the things we love together, house projects, traveling, spending time with friends and family, working on our physical fitness and creating new memories together.  They’ve been about making plans, growing together, learning from one another, laughing and strengthening our team.  Now it’s time for some brunch, to celebrate!

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Wedding photo: Timothy-Logan Photography

Two Year Wedding Anniversary Gift Guide

November is a special month — because it’s the month B and I finally tied the knot!  As you may or may not know there are “traditional” anniversary gifts for each year with a specific theme.  There is a list that has the traditional gifts paired with modern twists, and personally I like to try and stick to the traditional.  Last year I gifted B with papers sharing that I was finally going to change my last name (yes, after almost a year!).  So if you’re like me and on the hunt for something original, unique and spoiling your loved one, here are some Cotton-themed 2nd anniversary gift ideas with shop-able links!

The meaning for Cotton for an anniversary gift is “Cotton’s woven threads symbolize how you become more interconnected as time goes on and learn to be more flexible.”

Handmade Cotton Bud Ornament from Etsy. Etsy was the first spot I went to for inspiration, especially looking for something a little more unique and personalized.  One of the first things that caught my eye was this ornament — not only is it on theme, it’s also something that could easily be DIYed and even more customized as a anniversary keepsake. But for $14 with customization, you can’t beat it and I love ornaments to capture moments throughout our lives.
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Custom Embroidered Socks. This was another Etsy find that gives endless options to customize and make special for your man!  With so many different patterns and the ability to provide your own embroidered text with your wedding date, inside joke, wedding hashtag, or monogram — you really can’t go wrong with this.

His & Her Robes. Honestly, this was my first thought when I saw the second anniversary traditional gift was cotton. I jumped on Pottery Barn to see what was available — and even customizable. I liked the Vincent’s Men Robe, but it couldn’t be customized in the size I would need to get for B. I also loved this Bambo Waffle Robe from Williams Sonoma which also has monogram and different length options plus its on sale – not to mention there is just something about the waffle pattern that is so luxurious! Lastly I was searching on Land’s End for his and hers which had some other more holiday specific robes that would be perfect for Christmas pajamas!
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China is the modern gift theme which could be anything from a trip to China — a nice China dish to add for service — or even ordering Chinese food for a fun date-night in. The color is red, could be a ruby ring (hint-hint guys for the ladies) red garnet is also an option since garnet is the gemstone for two-years.

Have you already celebrated two years — do you stick to the anniversary gift themes? Or not?

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Latest Obsessions 10.19

If you just saw my October Weekend Roundup — you know that this month has been nonstop for us.  That post didn’t include the late nights working, family drama, bouts of stress/anxiety and early morning workouts — but don’t worry I’ll be opening up on some of the not so fabulous things soon, because I’m all about sharing the trials and tribulations of this bee life.  So all in all, October has been a mixed bag when it comes to obsessions, but a lot of them have been a bit more on the personal side this month.
LatestObsessions1019-beelifeblogSo with all the things happening, some amazing and some stressful, I’ve tried to focus on the positive, with a side of pumpkins and a bit of love.

My Fitness Routine. I have been feeling it, I’ve jumped in hot this October and am feeling great. In turn, I’ve also started to focus and streamline my food more.  I’ve been packing lunches consistently, having a light breakfast and not over indulging too much.  It has felt good to be back into a routine, and getting my butt out of bed, getting up on the weekends and even putting in extra work to make sure I’m getting those workouts in each week.

Basic Bee in the Fall. Yup, guilty! I’ve been loving up on all things fall, from all of our October fun, to rocking the booties, ponchos, and buying all the pumpkins and mums for our front porch. The leaves have also changed instantly overnight, so the runs and drives have been serving.  Even loving on the fall eats and drinks with pumpkin latte’s from our favorite local spot.

Two Years. With October coming to an end, I can’t help but look forward to November and all the love that this month brings. B and I will be celebrating our second wedding anniversary and I can’t help but feel all the feels — while also trying to plan a few surprises for B in the meantime to celebrate!

What things have you been focusing on this month?

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Weekend Roundup – October

It’s the final few days of October and I have to ask, how is this month already over? Although I feel like I’m a broken record lately saying that same thing every single month. But these last few months have just been a constant whirlwind, and although October is usually a whirlwind, there is something different and just something I love about October. Our weekends were packed with friends, late nights and fun… with a few quiet  moments, long walks and plenty of sunshine that was soaked in — I even got our front porch festive for fall!
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The first weekend we snuck away to the cabin again, and it was definitely feeling a bit more like fall then when we were there last month.  It was chilly and the leaves were finally starting to change. We did our typical trek to Southern Tier Brewing Company, but kept it a little shorter since we didn’t bring Moz and they were having an Oktoberfest event, so they didn’t have their typical food menu available. Whenever we’re at the cabin – it’s always a break and treat from reality.  Moz even got to see some piggy’s that were following us from the nearby farm on our morning walk!

The second weekend got kicked off a little early on Thursday for our big annual fundraiser event for JD Breast Cancer Foundation, the nonprofit I’m a board member on. We had a successful evening and were able to honor some amazing breast cancer fighters! That weekend we also had family in town for my aunties annual clam bake — which is one of my favorite things in the month of October. The clam bake is always a delicious meal, lots of laughs and always great seeing friends and family from out of town.
OctoberRoundup(2)-beelifeblogThe last two weekends consisted of more festive October/fall gatherings! Our friends hosted a pumpkin beer themed party and then we went to a Halloween party this past weekend — B and I don’t typically Halloween, as the Clam Bake is more our speed, but we had fun and finally figured out a cute and clever couples costume that felt like us! We were Jim and Pam from The Office, during Season 4’s episode featuring the Michael Scott Rabies for a Cure Fun Run.  Our hostess house was completely decked out for Halloween and we had a feast of delicious eats to enjoy with our drinks!
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I also was lucky to celebrate one of my best friend’s baby shower — she is a stunning mom-to-be and it was a beautiful afternoon with our little group of friends.  On top of all the fun, B and I have been volunteering with a local organization which has been filling in our free time between all the fun above — I’m excited to share more about in a future post about what we’ve been up too (because we love it!). And we love October — it’s always one of our favorite months filled with traditions and new memories.

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My Summer Reads

Reading is always on my goals list each year – as I love diving into good books – I just usually fall asleep when I’m reading, especially if I’m at home.  So, I don’t read nearly as much as I’d like too. But that is just another reason why I love traveling and flying, because I just hunker down on the flight and read away – even our PSP trips were spent reading and napping by the pool.

I wanted to get a few more books finished before Summer’s end, but I did get through a few goodies that were both for fun and also for some professional and personal development and enrichment.
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Ok so here are my summer reads;

Influencer: Building Your Personal Brand by Brittany Hennessy
I don’t talk much about my 9-to-5, but I’m very much in the world of social and influencers. And as a blogger myself I was intrigued to learn a bit more of the business side of being an influencer while also understanding the business side being the influencer coordinator because there are a lot of pieces and parts to the puzzle. This industry also has seemed to blow up over night! It’s a great read and includes case studies along with guides for getting your social profiles, blog and community up to snuff!

18th Abduction by James Patterson
This is a series I’ve been reading since at least high-school, if not middle school.  My mom read James Patterson and I got into the Women’s Murder Club Series, which releases a new book each spring.  I’ve grown and learned to love the characters over the years – this is always an easy ready with short chapters usually ending in cliff hangers, which means another chapter or five.  The main character is Lindsey Boxer a detective for the SFPD, her boss gal pals, a report, attorney and medical examiner who help solve crime, serial killings and much more. I also just saw that the next book is coming out October 9th so I’ll be diving into that these winter month!

She Means Business by Carrie Green
I’ve always had a ton of ideas about doing more of the things I love on a daily basis and this book is a guide to help you foster those ideas and start turning them into reality and something that is sustainable.  Not only is Carrie’s story inspiring, her motivational dialogue throughout the book is inspiring and empowering.  I am still working through Carrie’s book – but it’s definitely one I have been book marking, highlighting and taking notes along the way!

What books have you read this summer? Any good recommendations?

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Weekend Recap – 21st Night of September

I may or may not still be recovering from the weekend! For nearing the end of September, the weather was toasty warm and full of sunshine – it was perfect for porch hangouts, two year old bday parties, a wedding and even a nap outside on the patio.  Yup, that was the flyover recap of the weekend, but the highlight was definitely K&J’s wedding on Saturday.

Funny enough, this was the first wedding we’ve been too in almost 2-years, the last wedding we went to was ours! So we were feeling a little rusty with the whole wedding guest game. K&J’s wedding also happened to be the 21st night of September – queue the Earth, Wind & Fire’s song September.  The ceremony was intimate as it took place in a wine cellar with friends and family gathered around. In addition the the intimate setting, the vows were personal and special to the couple with plenty of laughs for all to be had – it was the perfect mix of what makes up K&J.  The reception was full of dancing, laughs, pictures, catching up with coworkers and bonding with the bride and grooms family. It was a beautiful night for the newlyweds, not to mention the bride was simply stunning!
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Other highlights from the weekend included getting a Saturday workout in and enjoying a homemade breakfast afterwards on the patio with B as we enjoyed more of the beautiful weather and sunshine.  We did some housework, cleaned up the house and just enjoyed the day being home.  On Sunday we celebrated our nieces second birthday with her big party! The theme was minnie mouse and the weather was absolutely perfect for an outdoor party – the girls even got me into the bounce house for a bit. I also got a major nap in on Sunday after the birthday fun, we had a late night from the wedding so apparently I needed it.
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It’s hard to believe we’re in the last full week of September with one more weekend left.  Where did this month go? Not to mention, Monday was officially the first day of Fall – but the weather definitely doesn’t feel like fall just yet, so I am still clinging onto Summer!

What were your weekend highlights?

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