December 31, 2012

Cheers to 2012!

What can I say . . . 2012 was an amazing year! I am truly blessed. It was a year full of excitement, love, and beautiful beginnings. I can't wait to see what 2013 holds!

Here are the biggest highlights from 2012 ~

I got married to the love of my life in a beautiful wedding on Jekyll Island in February! My wedding was a fairytale and I will always treasure that weekend.




My husband and I traveled to Bora Bora for an amazing honeymoon!
The island was truly breathtaking!




A little over a month after our honeymoon we found out we were pregnant!!
We couldn't be happier!




On November 29, our precious baby boy was born!





~ It's truly been an amazing year and my husband and I thank God for our many blessings.

Farewell to 2012 and hello 2013!

December 10, 2012

Welcome baby boy!


Welcome to the world Rowan!


My husband and I are proud to present our precious baby boy Rowan! He was born on November 29 and was 8 pounds 13 ounces, and 22 1/4 long. He is as sweet as can be! We are enjoying this time with him so much. We are truly blessed! 

We love you so much sweet boy!
What a perfect Christmas gift :)

November 13, 2012

Bumpdate: 37 weeks!



How far along: 37 weeks (and four days)

Size of baby: A watermelon!

Gender: Boy

Labor signs: None! No Braxton Hicks contractions yet, no dilation, and just a little effacement. Hmm, I guess baby boy is happy in my tummy for now. He is head down though!  

Maternity clothes: You bet! Loving leggings right now and a comfy tunic. It is still quite hot here so I can wear a lot of my summer maternity outfits and plan to make do the rest of the pregnancy.

Movement: Love it! Baby boy is still pretty active and I love seeing my bump move all around. He gets hiccups several times a week as well. He tends to hang out on the left side of my tummy - it's his favorite spot. 

Sleep: Not the greatest these days, but can't complain. I get up at least twice a night to go to the bathroom. Unfortunately I'm experiencing heartburn in the middle of the night now and it gets pretty bad some nights and keeps me up, but thankfully it's not every night.

Cravings: Cereal, fruit, sweet things. And the strangest of all - Icees. I crave Icees all the time! Ha!

Miss anything? My energy. I've slowed down now and get really worn out, but it is nice to take it easy.

Belly button in or out? It's out now! I had a super innie before, but it's definitely out now.

Wedding rings on or off? Sadly, they're off. It is still 81 degrees in Florida and the heat causes me to swell a lot. So, I took them off so they wouldn't get stuck. I instead picked up a $10 band from Target to wear for the time being because I felt funny without my rings.

Other symptoms: I've had pregnancy-induced carpal tunnel syndrome for the past couple months. It happens when I'm sleeping and I wake up with really stiff, sore fingers. My vision has also worsened, but hopefully it will go back to normal after the baby comes. Other than swelling and some heartburn, not much else. My back pain has gotten a lot better.

Best moment of the week: Our Christmas stockings came and it was so fun to see the baby's name on one along with my husband and I's stockings. Yay family of three!

What I'm looking forward to: Finishing up preparations for the baby and the nursery and my parents visiting next week for Thanksgiving. Also, this baby boy's arrival whenever it will be! 

October 18, 2012

Glitter is golden

I love stationery! Especially when it's pink and glittery and fun :)

I came across these flat note cards on Polka Dot Design and was blown away. Super cute! Would a set of these not make the most perfect gift for a friend? My favorites are the confetti dots and the pink and gold chevron glitter. A handwritten note is never out of style!


 

 


October 17, 2012

Maternity staples

I must say, I have quite enjoyed my maternity wardrobe! (Most of the time, lol.) I was lucky to find many stylish pieces to mix and match with and my sweet mom found many cute outfits for me as well. Since I was pregnant through the summer, I was able to get by with shorts, casual tops and dresses (except for work which was a bit trickier). I did pick up a few staples for fall, but it is still in the high 80s in Florida so I have not been able to wear those quite yet. Also of note, I was not one of those people who could get away with my regular clothes. Maternity clothes were a must for me! 

I had the most luck with Gap's maternity line. My store at the mall would frequently put their items on sale, which was great. Everything they had in stock would eventually go on sale. I also picked up a few basic items from Target and recently ordered a few things from Old Navy. I had great luck with all. Here are a few of my staples that I wear pretty frequently. If you are pregnant and want some of these items, check out the sales section online if you can't find them.   


Gap
Very comfortable and works for fall.
Gap
Loved this top with shorts or white jeans.


Gap
I got these in khacki and black.
I wear them constantly!
Gap
This worked well for summer, and will look
great with boots and a cardigan for fall.



Gap
Looks great with shorts or colored jeans.
Not with denim like pictured! Ick.
Gap
Love the color on this one!
Very flattering as well.



Gap
This top is adorable on and very comfy!
Old Navy
Love the gold dots for fall!




Old Navy
Great color and great basic top.
Old Navy
Comfy tunic and looks great with leggings.


Gap
I heart polka dots!
Great color for Halloween and Thanksgiving.
Old Navy
Bough these in a 2-pack.
Great fit and comfortable.


Happy baby bump shopping!

September 11, 2012

Fall is on its way

Although it is still quite hot in Orlando, I must say I am very much looking forward to cooler temps and all the fun that fall brings. There's a lot to look forward to!

At the top of the list is Epcot's Food and Wine Festival. This is one of my most favorite fall traditions! All of the countries currently at Epcot, plus the extra countries they add in each year, set up stands with food and wine local to their country. You can choose from all sorts of small plates (so you can try lots of things!) and desserts and wine pairings for a few dollars per item. The food is delicious and it's so much fun to eat around the world. Although I cannot partake in the wine this year, I certainly will be tasting the yummy food and dessert!



Seeing that my baby bump will continue to get bigger through the fall, I have the feeling I will be wearing lots of leggings and tunics to stay comfortable. And no heels for this pregnant girl! I picked up these Corso Como boots at the Nordstrom anniversary sale this past July and look forward to wearing them this fall.  



I love themed treats and I will definitely have to pick up a bag of these - candy corn M&M's just scream fall! 



Another favorite fall tradition is to visit the town of Celebration (where I used to live!) and see the annual Falling of the Leaves. During a few weeks during fall, Celebration has a nightly dropping of the leaves. Everyone lines up on Market Street and the leaves (colorful fake ones) are dropped and swirl and fall all over the street as the little ones run to fill a bag of them. So fun! 



And last but not least, pumpkin treats! I do love Starbucks pumpkin muffins and scones, and will definitely have to indulge in a decaf Pumpkin Spice Latte at some point. I love all things pumpkin!



What are you most looking forward to this fall?

August 29, 2012

Bump update: 26 weeks

Thank you all for the congratulations! Husband and I are over the moon and can't wait to meet our baby boy at the end of the year. 

I am currently 26 weeks (26.5 really!) and here is a little update. 


Date night!

Happy to be in Lilly!
How far along: 26 weeks

Gender: Boy!

Maternity clothes: I wear pretty much all maternity clothes. Let's just say my top half outgrew all my clothes before my bump did ;)  I have had great luck finding stylish options!

Movement: It has been so fun to feel and see baby boy kick and move around!

Sleep: I get up once a night for a bathroom break, but have been sleeping well other than that. I bought a body pillow this past weekend and it really has made a difference in getting comfortable.

Cravings: Iced tea and fruit. I could eat fruit all day long. I've given up caffeine, but Starbucks Iced Passion Teas are decaf and I drink and crave those pretty often. My sweet tooth totally went away in the first trimester, but it came back in the second, unfortunately!

Other symptoms: I have had pretty intense back pain. I work a 10-hour day at my office and it is getting so hard to sit all day with my back pain. I've brought in a pillow, so we'll see if that helps.

Best moment of the week: Trying out the bedding on the crib. I hope baby boy loves it!

What I'm looking forward to: A family baby shower this upcoming weekend and moving forward with decorating and setting up the nursery. 

Hurry up weekend! :)

August 23, 2012

Husband approved

My husband initially stumbled upon this recipe, but it definitely was a keeper as we've made it several times. I guess you'd say, it's swell! Like the name suggests ;)

It's great anytime, but perfect for fall, and pretty easy to make. If your husband is anything like mine, he claims he must have meat in his meal and this one will satisfy both your taste buds.  

Beef Swellington ~ by the Food Network


Ingredients

  • 1 bone-in rib-eye steak (we've done the rib-eye but also used a flank steak before)
  • Salt and black pepper
  • 1 sheet puff pastry, thawed
  • 1/2 cup English mustard (they recommend Colman's Mustard)
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Wild Mushroom Sauce, recipe follows

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees, and preheat grill to medium.
Season beef with salt and pepper and set aside.

Unfold puff pastry and evenly brush one sheet with mustard, covering entire surface. Fold over and cut into four equal pieces. Press the pastry edges with tines of a fork to seal and cut 3 small slits halfway deep in the center of each pastry rectangle to allow steam to escape when it cooks. Set pastry rectangles on a baking sheet lined with parchment. In a small bowl, whisk egg with one teaspoon water. Brush pastry rectangle with egg wash and bake 25 minutes, until golden and cooked through.

Brush beef with oil. Season with salt and pepper and grill until it's nicely caramelized, approximately three minutes each side. Transfer beef to a sheet pan and place in the preheated oven. Roast another 10 to 12 minutes. Remove beef from the oven and place on a cutting board. Let meat rest 10 minutes before slicing. To serve, place a puff pastry rectangle on each serving plate. Drizzle with Sauteed Wild Mushroom Sauce and top with beef slices.

Sauteed Wild Mushroom Sauce:

  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 sprig fresh thyme, leaves chopped
  • 1 1/2 pounds mushrooms, wiped clean, stems removed and sliced 
  • Salt and black pepper
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream (we substituted milk for the cream and added a tablespoon of flour to thicken the sauce)
  • 2 teaspoons English mustard (they recommend Colman's Mustard)

Enjoy!!

August 20, 2012

Snips and snails and puppy dog tails!

Happy Monday friends! It has been quite some time since I last posted. I must admit I enjoyed the break, but I'm looking forward to getting back into blogging again. I still owe you wedding and honeymoon photos and will get around to that eventually. For now, I am glad to be reconnecting with all of you once again, so thanks for bearing with me!

It's been quite an exciting year for my husband and I!

As the saying goes . . . first comes love, then comes marriage, then comes a baby!

Yes! The exciting news is that we have a sweet baby BOY on the way! We are over the moon with happiness and can't wait to meet our bundle of joy at the end of the year.

We got pregnant shortly after getting married and Baby V is due November 30. We couldn't be happier!

Progress is being made in the nursery and I look forward to sharing updates along the way. I'm currently 25 weeks along.

Here are a few recent pics:

20 weeks ~ found out it's a boy!
 

23 weeks!

Baby boy loves seersucker!

Thanks for sharing in our news! Hooray for snips and snails and puppy dog tails ~ that's what little boys are made of :)

March 25, 2012

28!


Happy Birthday to me!

Today I am counting my blessings, making a wish, eating cake and celebrating!

Cheers to love, laughter and happily ever after :)

March 22, 2012

Wedded bliss


Hello friends! I am so excited to announce I am officially a Mrs.!!

My wedding weekend truly was a dream come true and my wedding day was the most happiest of fairytales. It couldn't have been any more perfect for my handsome groom and I.

We were married on February 25, at Faith Chapel on Jekyll Island, Ga., with the reception to follow at Crane Cottage. It was beautiful!

For now, click here for a sneak peek of our wedding day by our amazing photographer Brooke Roberts Photography. She captured all the magical moments and was such a JOY to work with.

After an amazing wedding weekend, we honeymooned in Bora Bora, which couldn't have been more fabulous.

I am still overjoyed with my husband and I's new journey as newlyweds and look forward to sharing all the details of our special day in the weeks to come.

xoxo,
The new Mrs. V!

February 22, 2012

Wedding week!



Hello dear friends! Exciting times here - it's wedding week!! Just a few more days until I say "I do."

I will be headed to coastal Georgia to get married in this cute little chapel . . .


And celebrate at this wonderful reception site . . .



Then the new Mr. and Mrs. will be headed here for some fun in the sun!



I shall see you when I return as a Mrs.!

It's time for those wedding bells to ring :)

January 23, 2012

Here comes the sun with Marley Lilly!

From the moment I got engaged, honeymoon shopping has been on my mind. New bathing suits, a cute travel bag, sundresses, and of course a big floppy hat with my new married monogram!

I picture myself on my honeymoon just lounging and basking in tropical heaven with my hat, a good book, extra sunscreen and of course my new hubby by my side.

And where better to find said hat than Marley Lilly! So many cute options and colors — Marley Lilly's floppy hats are the perfect accessory for a honeymoon or any tropical vacay. Perfectly paired with a bathing suit OR a sundress, if you need to pack a hat for vacation, this is the one. Could it be any cuter?

I was so thrilled to pair up with Marley Lilly and receive this adorable floppy hat. New monogram? Yes! Matching colors with my new resort wear? Even better!

I chose the pink outline with my monogram in gold . . .  


And just look at how perfectly it matches with my new travel bag, bathing suit and gold skinny McKim's!


Honeymoon bliss, for sure. I'm counting down the days!

Marley Lilly also has all sorts of wonderful items - clutches, jewelry, travel accessories etc. - that are just perfect for those brides-to-be or vacationers. Three cheers for all things monogrammed and personalized!

Be sure to follow Marley Lilly on twitter here, on the website here, on facebook here, and on Marley Lilly's new fabulous blog here. Check out all the awesome products!

Thank you Marley Lilly for the fabulous hat! I'll be sure to wear it well . . . :) 

January 18, 2012

Wedding Wednesday: Engagement photos

Hello all! Thanks for the kinds words, my bachelorette weekend was fabulous. That is a post for another day :)

Today I'd like to share some of our engagement photos. Since my fiance and I met in Orlando, we decided to do our pictures here and use someone local, a friend of mine, instead of our wedding photographer who is located in coastal Georgia where our wedding will be. The wonderful and amazing Sandra Johnson took our engagement photos and she and her husband were a blast to work with.

Here are a few of our favorites:




















Love sweet love!
 
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