10-Miler Recap – 2019

This past weekend was our 10-Miler race weekend, and officially kicked off our 2019 running season! We’ve ran this race for the last 5-years, aka 50-miles, and it’s always challenging in new ways but also always so rewarding once the race is finished. Last year’s race was a huge accomplishment and super significant in my fitness journey and my life journey – it’s funny how races can be like that.  This year my goal was to simply run the whole race without stopping.
10-Miler Recap - the bee life (1)
If you’re an avid runner, especially an average one like me, you know that every race is different, every variable is unpredictable, not matter how much you train or prepare.  For me, during this race I was feeling great until about mile 7, then the side cramps kicked in and the leg soreness started and stayed for the last three miles.  I slowed down a lot, but I also was able to pick up speed and I just didn’t stop, B stayed by my side too which definitely helped, even though we didn’t have the best finish time.

What was super awesome about the 10-Miler race this year was it was my friend K’s first big race! We ran back in October for K’s first 10k and after she kicked that goal’s but her next goal was to run this race –  and she kicked this goal’s butt too. I was so proud of her, she persisted through all the elements, through all the miles and crossed the finish like with pure victory!!
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Running is just as much of a mental game as it is physical and I’m always reminded of that with each race, but also realize that I’m able to face and conquer new challenges with each one and know that I am capable!

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How to: Create an Off-Centered Gallery Wall

Everyone has seen a bunch of how-to’s and pro-tips on how to hang your standard proportional gallery wall with matching frames – don’t get me wrong, I love a perfect gallery wall, we have one as our main focal point in our living room. But I was recently inspired in one of our guest rooms – formerly our master – to do a fun little off-centered gallery wall around another photo we had hanging.
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What inspired this was a few things: B and I went to a Paint Your Pup canvas painting class so we took home two awesome portraits of our sweet Moz – but didn’t have a great place to hang them, I mean I try and keep the dog portraits throughout the house to a minimum. *smiles* But this was just sitting on the wayside, so I had the idea of expanding and making a little Moz-dog themed gallery wall based on other art prints we had around the house and some more original artwork! Once you have your art pieces picked out and framed it’s time to start hanging them!

What You’ll Need:
At least 6-framed pieces of art, I kept all my frames white for a uniformed looked
– Hammer
– Nails and picture hanger hooks

Step-by-Step:

  1. Determine your focal point – Once you have your focal point established, you’ll want to build off from here and building parallel working to the left and going up and down.
  2. Pick your lowest point – From the focal point, it’s time to work down to determine the lowest point – be sure to play around with placement before committing even as you work through these steps – see how they work before fully committing.
  3. Start working to the left, to the left – Working in that parallel pattern I next wanted to work up and to the left from my focal point and I chose the canvas so I could build around it with other frames and mix up the types of art.
  4. Work down! Since I had four larger 11×14 // 8×10 prints and frames creating a  diamond shape rectangle
  5. Build your final row. Repeat the process with your final row – my last two pieces were smaller squares which was a nice way to finish off  and work from large pieces to smaller.
  6. Last piece to the puzzle.  I put the canvas on the lower part of the third row so that the canvas’ were away from each other – playing around with them next to each other didn’t work out, but I love having two of those to mix in, they work since they’re different shapes.

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How to pick your art? Choosing a theme or topic can be a good starting point for you to stay focused – even if it’s vintage photos, places you’ve been on vacation, or a mix of photography and inspiration words. I had almost all of our art pieces around the house: one is an old drawing B’s made from grade school (of a dog!) the other is a fun Puggle print I got off Etsy.  The second square canvas was a DIY print that Moz made with her paw prints and then the other square print is a fun dog collage illustration from Society6. Which, btw, Society6 has a great variety of prints if you’re looking for so unique pieces.  When picking the art, I wanted a variety of styles – photograph, painted, drawn, while also having a variety of shapes with these – this helps with the off centered part. #notsponsored
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I had a lot of fun pulling this together and using pieces that are special to us and also center around pups and our Moz!  This space worked perfectly since I like to switch up this room, this wall either houses the bed (currently) – so the pictures won’t get in the way of sleep OR the new dressers I just recently made over butt up against this wall, which would also work around the height.  Ultimately it’s all about creating a statement in your home that feels good and special to you!

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Fitness Friday 03.19

If you read my post about Life Lately & Bee or keep up with my Fitness Friday posts – you know my fitness routine and goals have been struggling a bit! But as I’m working to pull myself out of my winter slump – I’ve made an intentional change to my fitness routine within the last week. Woo! Fitness Friday 03.19 - the bee life
In the last week and a day, I’ve already worked out more than I did in the entire month of February! EEK! But it’s all positive now – I’m back on track, I’m making strides to fit ME TIME into my days and making my health a priority.  Not to mention with a birthday (tomorrow) – I want to continue to stay in my best health, and keep getting better after all the progress I made the last two years.

Looking forward and into the rest of the year – we have a 10-miler race (that we’ve run the last 4-years) at the end of April so I have to get my butt in gear so that I can have a successful run!  From there we need to sign up for another half or two, this year still and continue the running game while sticking to my cross-training.

Here’s to making more intentional changes, for good!

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Catch-up on other Fitness Friday’s: Eliminate Excuses | 2019 Fitness Goals

29 Birthday Reflections

For all my Bee readers, and even close friends that may be reading along – you know I hate getting older (sorry too all my friends who are older than me, ilu!) – but I’m working on that imperfection and fear of getting older each year by trying to embrace my birthday!  Ha! So in honor of the start of the last year in my twenties *starts sobbing* … here are 29 birthday reflections/hopes/dreams or just things about me.
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Thinking of 29 things – was actually pretty hard, so here we go!

  1. Still love birthday cake.
  2. I was blonde when I was little
  3. I was named after a man, my great grandpa, Emil
  4. I hated having my picture taken from the ages 2-5 (& have pictures to prove it)
  5. Within the last 3-years I’ve had to figure out a lot of my dietary issues & have a random list of cannot eat items; like cauliflower to spicy foods to Chinese food
  6. I’m also lactose intolerant
  7. As much as I loved Barbie’s I also loved to play with Legos & Matchbox Cars as a kid
  8. Jasmine was my favorite Disney princess
  9. I love hosting parties and entertaining at our home
  10. I was a cat lady before I was a dog lady
  11. I love taking pictures and a lot of my friend’s favorite wedding pictures are candids I took ❤
  12. This will be my first birthday with my new last name
  13. I want to go on 5-trips before my next birthday
  14. I love being on a board as part of a local nonprofit that helps people who are fighting breast cancer in our community
  15. My goal is to read more books – I’ve already started!
  16. I want to take more time to talk and listen to my friends
  17. I love organizing and making things look pretty
  18. I want to run 3-half marathons before my next birthday
  19. I want to play more golf
  20. My high school year book prediction was that I’d be the Queen of England. lol #TheCrown
  21. Note to self: Take more walks… with Moz & B
  22. I love decorating and designing spaces, even if it’s just setting the dining room table
  23. I have yet to travel outside of the country!
  24. I’ll gladly admit I’m wrong… any day… but I rarely am *tongue face*
  25. My parents never had cable and still don’t have cable
  26. As much as I have expensive taste, I love a good bargain
  27. Cookie Dough is my favorite ice cream (if I could eat it)
  28. Remember to slow down and soak in the little things
  29. I want to continue to face my fears

Did I miss something? I’m sure I did – leave a comment below!

xo
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Life Lately & Bee

I’ll admit it, the beginning of the year has been a little tough! I hate to use the cop out of the winter blues, but wow – they are seriously setting in. Anyone else out there feeling a bit of the blues during the start of 2019?

I’ve been reflecting a lot on why the winter blues are hitting me so much – and I’ve started figuring it out.  A few things I don’t mind sharing with my bee-readers is (1) I haven’t been as physically active as my workout routine is virtually nonexistent (no endorphins!) (2) My confidence has been low & I’ve let it creep into different aspects of my world (3) Things are changing – the news of some close friends leaving has hit me a bit harder than I anticipated (4) As a result, my anxiety just flairs up!
Life Lately - the bee life
But the beginning of the year hasn’t been all bad, we’ve been making good progress on our bathroom remodel, I had a girls night sleepover, celebrated a sweet friend’s baby shower, and have had lots of pup snuggles – oh and our house is cleaner than ever with all the weekends I’ve stayed in. My parents came to visit for some early birthday celebrations and we’ve had a few breaks in the weather which has helped getting out and about and the pups on walks. Plus we are planning trips for the near future, and even booked some. Yay!

Since I’ve nailed down a few of the winter blues triggers – I’ve already started to combat them by working to stay inspired through creative outlets, reading new books for motivation, planning and making the gym happen, and also getting in as much time with my people as possible so that I’m not stuck in my own head. xox. 

How do you combat your blues?

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Accessorizing a Black & White Bathroom

As we continue to work through our bathroom remodel and have made decisions on a lot of the major, more permeant pieces, I’ve started to explore the fun accessories to include in the space to really finish it off! Since our floor tiles are a pretty bold black and white pattern, I’m going to be keeping most of the finishes white – but want to incorporate a little color in to the space without competing with the tiles and letting them be the true statement of the room.
Bathroom Accessories - the bee life (1)Since our floor is going to be our statement, in addition to our shower – we really want to compliment the space, while enhancing the neutral colors and adding a little umph the space.  Since we have gold faucets, hardware and overhead vanity light, the look and feel that we’re going for, for this space is classic with a little bit of vintage glam.

Option 1: To help keep the classic, vintage glam feel – one color accessory option would be incorporating shades of blush pink and more white with towels, baskets and rugs.  If we go the pink/white route, it would still be really subtle and I would continue to work in some gold accents with the toilet paper roll, hand towel bar and maybe even a soap dish for the vanity!
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Option 2: As much as I love the pink route – there is also a part of me that imagines adding in big pops of color, like a deep mustard towels, accents of a dusky green or blues into the space.  Of course, I wouldn’t have all these colors in the space – just a few deep pops to play off our black and white canvas.  With a big pop of color, there would still need to be other supporting accessories of blacks and whites – like the the Jute Storage Basket (also comes in a Laundry Basket size) from H&M comes in this fabulous natural white – but also comes in a dusty rose that could be perfect for option 1!
Bathroom Accessories - the bee life (2) Shop the bathroom accessories:  Tuft Spa Bath Rug from Target | Gold Etched Metal Soap Dish from Target | Woven Pattern Washcloth Peach | Blocked Border Bathroom Towels, Set of 6 from Anthropologie | Brass Medallion Bathroom Hardware Set by Anthropologie |Textured-weave Bath Mat from H&M | Dark Mustard Yellow Jacquard-patterned Bath Towel from H&MSolid Bath Towels Blue from TargetMagazine And Toilet Paper Holder from Anthropologie | Jute Storage Basket from H&M

What do you guys think, Option 1 or Option 2?  I have to say I think I know which direction we’ll go down to help pull together the space.  But I also can’t wait to incorporate an old vintage mirror that was left at our house, maybe a plant or two and some other functional shelving or decor for the space.

Planning a bathroom makeover soon? I’ll be sharing a DIY checklist on an upcoming blog post!

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Why We Celebrate the Little Things

Monday marked our three year engagement anniversary and in May it will be 8-years together – I love all of our little anniversaries.  And although we are married and have other bigger anniversaries to celebrate, we still like to celebrate and reflect on these little moments that we’ve shared together.
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Why We Celebrate: From 3-months to 3-years, to the day we got the keys to our (first) house, a monumental trip, or the day we got our Moz – it’s these little things that lay the foundation of our relationship and the reason for it’s existence today, tomorrow and ten years from now. It’s celebrating these little moments that help keep the joy of those moments alive while looking forward to the future.

Sometimes we celebrate with a handmade card, sometimes flowers, or recreating a meal (like Chipotle and Champagne from the night we got engaged) or just sending a little text or picture about a memory from that day.  We save going all out for the bigger anniversaries!  It’s also fun reflecting on all the firsts we’ve had together, while also still realizing how many firsts we still have yet to have.

Cheers to celebrating the little things!

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Valentine’s Day – 2019

Hey love birds and all you haters! I’m a day early, I know – but I wanted to share a little bit of love going into the ‘holiday’ and also a fun playlist I’ve created for all the feelings of love, from loving yourself to heartbreak to being head over heels in love, this playlist has it all, check the link below to listen (make sure it’s on shuffle)!

Click here to listen to Heart Ache by The Bee Life on Spotify

View More: http://marinaclaireandco.pass.us/emily--alex
Photo by: Marina Claire & Co. 

The beautiful thing about love is that it takes all shapes and forms. It’s not just having the love of a partner, it’s loving yourself, your family, your friends and your life.  Love is also reflecting on the love lost and love learned in your life to where you are today and how that’s shaped you into the person you are today.  I firmly believe I’ve become the person I am today because I’ve loved who I’ve loved – friends/family and significant others – and the loss I’ve experienced from that love (I even have a tattoo sharing that sentiment!).  So this Valentine’s day remember to love yourself and always share the love beyond just this day or just get lost in music.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

xoxo

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5 Keepsakes to Incorporate Into Your Home Decor

When I decorate our home, I really try to incorporate personalized touches to each room vs. stock art or random pieces.  Now don’t get me wrong, I love some good stock canvas from Marshall’s but they have their time and place! So if you’re working to figure out ways to incorporate some personal touches and sentimental pieces into your home, here are a few of my go-to pieces I like to decorate with.

1. A Love Letter.  B purposed to be with a long two-page love letter – it was so thoughtful and special, I didn’t want to shove it into a box and find it years later.  So I found these two great matted frames from Marshall’s and framed the love letter – it hangs next to our bed and is one of my favorite parts of our master.

2. Vintage Family Photos.  We have these all around our house! From our gallery wall in our living room, to our built-in’s, dining room and even bedrooms, family photos are a great way to remember loved one’s past and hold onto family legacies’.  I borrowed family albums and made my own copies so I could have my own keepsakes – it was quite the process, but so worth it! Keepsakes - the bee life (1)3. Wedding Invitation or Keepsake.  We had a special map made that we put in our hotel welcome bags for all of our guests – this was one of my favorite pieces so again, I didn’t want to put this in a box and forget about it.  We have this framed in our bedroom as a fun keepsake – this would also be a fun idea for your wedding invites, save the date or other important announcements that are  a little extra special!

4. Old House Numbers.  Our house had ceramic house numbers that probably had some years with them, being our house is over a hundred years old.  I loved the ceramic numbers, but they were small and hard to read from the road – wanting to keep this momentum around I did a DIY with some frames that were left at the house by spray painting the frame, used some scrapbook paper as a background and framed the numbers.  This hangs in our entrance and I love it!

5. Vacation Photos.  I love picking one or two of my favorite photos from a recent trip and working to incorporate those into the house in various spaces or switching out the previous trip picture.  That way the memories are current, and when you go to switch out your picture you’ll see all the previous memories stacked (that’s one of my favorite parts!)  Keepsakes - the bee life (2)
Since our house has a lot of character and charm, I like to add modern pieces while complimenting the modern touches with a little added complimentary charm by incorporating these more personalized pieces that happen to be keepsakes from our family and the history of our home.  Depending on what keepsake you’re incorporating into your home, going the custom framing route is another way to really make this a show stopper and unique piece for your home!

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