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underwater sunshine (or what i did on my summer vacation)

Posted in Living, Travel by

Where do these summers go?! For the second year in a row, the summer was jam packed in the best way, but it absolutely flew by. If I wasn’t spending afternoons by the pool, I was jetsetting somewhere every week, it seemed – it’s pretty amazing to finally be living the kind of life I really want. Here’s a quick recap of the summer:




I started the summer off with two trips to the water – first to see Dani in Boston, then down to the Florida beach with my family. There is nothing I love more than being on the beach and cooking in the sun with the people I love most, so this was a really great way to kick the year off (and a good indicator of exactly how busy I would end up being)!


IMG_2754IMG_2752Even though I made it a point not to travel out of state in July, I still managed to pack the month full. Hands down, Outlaw Roadshow was one of the best days of music I’ve ever been lucky to see, and the surprise Counting Crows set to close out the night didn’t hurt matters any. I went hiking to some waterfalls with some of my best friends to celebrate my Nashversary, and spent many afternoons napping by various pools throughout the city.


IMG_4124.JPGIMG_4121.JPGIn early August, I finally moved to Nashville proper after a year of commuting from the burbs, and honestly, I couldn’t be happier with the new place (no matter how stressful and time consuming moving ended up being.) Before I set off on another big trip, I finally got to see one of my bucket list bands when I saw Gin Blossoms play two shows in one night. No one will ever be able to tell me any differently – they are one of my favorite bands of all time, and I really had a great night. CF and Sixx came with me, and it was pretty nice to not be there alone!

The next morning, I flew to Montreal for my company retreat. Even though I have “known” my co-workers for almost a year, it was nice to meet in person for real, do some heavy bonding, and exchange treats with friends!

SupportMeeting  IMG_4221.JPG BZ Support Singles


September has been a really great way to end the summer. Over Labor Day, some friends from Charlottesville came to visit, and I had friends from college staying with me as well. It was a busy weekend for sure, but super fun to get out and sing some karaoke again (and have a band full of boys to buy me drinks all weekend :))

After that, I made a last-minute trip back home to the mitten. My best friend had her baby, and I was just homesick for water. Turns out the 10 hour drive isn’t so bad, especially when the trip back is broken up with visits to wineries and dinners with Sixx!

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Last week saw what I consider the most wonderful time of the year – Americanafest in Nashville! A full week of my favorite kinds of music, plus panels and meetings with some of the smartest and most talented folks in the industry. A co-worker came into town for the event, and we exhibited during the conference and at night, I ran from venue to venue checking out showcases and discovering new loves. (I managed to make it to seven Nashville venues in one evening, which felt like a world record.)

In the middle of all that craziness, because I wasn’t getting enough music or activity – I flew to Denver to see Counting Crows for the third time this summer at Red Rocks. It was really otherwordly – Red Rocks is like nothing else, and I can’t recommend going there enough.


Pairing Americanafest with Red Rocks and a comedy show at Zanies in Nashville on Friday night, I ended up seeing shows at ten different venues in 2 states within 48 hours. That is definitely some kind of record.

I have one more trip to Raleigh next week, then off to Cincinnati in mid-October, but other than that and Thanksgiving, my travel looks to be done for the year. So, yeah! It’s been a really great summer. I am so lucky to be able to get to do these amazing things and hang out with such great people. If only this summer heat could last forever, I’d be all set…

September 19, 2015

Stay Beach Organized / hoboroll review

Posted in Review by


The Hoboroll was designed by hikers for really outdoorsy types, which is great! Their experience has developed the perfect tote-along – I’ve even used it on race days before. Last year, they redesigned the bag and added a bunch of great new features, including changing the material to a much more lightweight and portable fabric. The Hoboroll now scrunches up into its own built-in pocket, which makes it great for travel – if you don’t need the extra organization on the way to your destination, it’s a great way to separate out your dirty laundry on the way home, or aide in fitting all your vacation purchases back into your bag. It’s small and lightweight, so it packs up nicely into a larger bag for travel, and the fabric dries quickly when wet (though it’s not completely waterproof.) They’ve also developed a padded shoulder strap, so it’s a totally hands-free pack now as well! Read more…

June 17, 2015

Book Report: Summer Reads Round 1

Posted in Living, Money by


Growing up, I was a complete bookworm. I would read non-stop, all the time, no matter where I was. The older I’ve gotten, the less I find myself reading, but lately I have really been on a reading spree. In about two weeks this summer, I’ve already gobbled up three books and hope to keep going at that rate because reading keeps me out of trouble (read: keeps me from shopping!). Here’s a brief book report on the novels I’ve finished already this summer and some ideas to keep costs down if you’re also devoting the summer to reading!

The Second Assistant: A Tale from the Bottom of the Hollywood Ladder was the first book I finished this summer, after it languished at the bottom of my pool bag last year after a summer spent crying at the hands of John Green and Cory Monteith. The story of a Hollywood agent’s second assistant trying to survive in LA after growing up in DC had me glued and even though I wasn’t 100% in love with the ending, I found out that there’s a sequel! Overall I enjoyed the book, she ends up with the guy I wanted her to end up with, and even though it didn’t feel like true Hollywood to me (not enough backstabbing,) it made me want to move to California even more.

Confessions of a Shopaholic was next on my plan of attack. I don’t know why it took me so long to get around to, because I was horribly excited to pick it up last summer. From a PF standpoint, I was really excited to read this one… and then I spent about 300 pages of the book being horribly annoyed by the main character and wanting to scream at her to take her ostrich head out of the sand. I liked it enough to want to see the movie and maybe read a few more of the books in the series.

Jemima J: A Novel About Ugly Ducklings and Swans, another Brit lit book, was about an overweight girl (although it was horribly obvious that the author has probably never been over a size 8 in her life – if you’re 5’7″ and 220 pounds, you are not incapable of sitting comfortably in chairs as happens to this character over and over) who reinvents herself for a man she meets online. The book was completely dated (written in 1999) but it was still a pretty cute read. And it doesn’t hurt that she flies to LA to meet the guy.

I was able to snag all these books for a grand total of $0 – and if I’m going to keep reading so voraciously this summer, I need to keep the total that low. Here are a few ways I’m going to save and still feed my reawakened bookworm!

Read more…

June 20, 2014

life lately

Posted in Living, Personal by

life lately


Happy Friday, everyone!

I haven’t really done a real talk life check-in post lately. This felt like a pretty appropriate time for one.


Since our pool opened on Memorial Day, I’ve devoted approximately 48 hours of my life to it. Sometimes it includes tequila, sometimes it includes books, sometimes it includes a friend. I’ve finished three books since it opened – that’s two more than I’ve read the rest of the year.

Speaking of Memorial Day, I went on a quick vacation with my cousins down to the condo in Gatlinburg. I got horribly sunburned, and look forward to going back with the rest of the fam in August (with much more SPF in tow.)

I went to see The Fault in Our Stars at an advanced screening. Yes, that’s a new box of Kleenex in the photo above. Highly highly recommend it (but even more, recommend staying spoiler-free and reading the novel first, of course.)


Other than that, my life has been fairly boring and a lot of the same, to be honest. I went to trivia this past week, but I wasn’t the best company or competitor. There’s been so much swimming around in my head lately (do I want to move? Yes, I have to move. Do I want to move and take a plunge without a sure job?) It’s been full of things of this nature almost constantly lately. If I’m not actively working on job applications, I’m thinking about companies in the regions I hope to move to and wondering if they have any openings. I’ve narrowed the field to two different places (even though my heart lies in Los Angeles, it’s not one of the contenders), and both have pros and cons. It might come down to wherever I get an offer first… or whatever seems cheaper at the end of summer, since I kind of gave myself a goal of having a new plan by Labor Day. It just feels like all the struggle I’m going through has to be for something, I must just be too close to it yet to see what it is.

My local social life continues to be non-existent.

And to top it all off, I went to the doctor this week after a couple months of increasingly severe knee pain (to the point where it hurts to even sit at my desk with my legs bent all day), only to be told I have patellofemoral pain syndrome, but after 6-8 weeks of physical therapy, I should be able to work out again. (Not to mention that the nearest PT office my insurance accepts is an hour away, and $40 a visit.) And on top of that, my tendinitis is getting worse and I’m in almost constant pain from that. My body is falling apart and it’s so frustrating. I understand why House popped vicodin like they were candy.

It is one-hundred-million percent likely that this is a midlife crisis. I’m trying to stay positive and keep my head up, but that is of course much easier said than done. I will just keep referencing Shonda Rhimes’ recent commencement address and keep on keepin’ on.

What’s your best way to cope with hurdles?

June 13, 2014

The Bathing Suit She Wore / spring into summer

Posted in Style by

summer swimwear bathing suits


I feel like I’m a woman on an island of my own when I say this, but I. Love. Bathing suits. Shopping for swimsuits doesn’t cause a minor breakdown for me, and I don’t get overly worked up or angry about sizing. (Ironic, since with every other clothing item, I live and die by the size on the tag.) This year I’ve lost enough weight that most of my 16 bathing suits (yes, I counted at the end of last season) are too ill-fitting to pull off anymore, so I’ve been in the market for some new, affordable swimwear. A few of my picks for this season:

Albion Fit Charade Swimsuit: I am in. love. with this suit (and it doesn’t hurt that it was designed by my friend Brooke White.) Albion Fit teamed up with the Girls With Glasses for a few pieces, all of which I love, but I could never pull the trigger on any of the pricey pieces – the matching rashguard would be a phenomenal pick for tubing down the river, though!

Zara Tropical Print Bikini: I’m a big fan of bandeau tops, since I hate tan lines and love strapless dresses. I also like pink, purple, and fun prints, so this set from Zara is a hit for me. It’s pretty affordable at $39.80 for the set, and both pieces could be interchanged with other swim sets.

Old Navy Striped Sets: Stripes seem to be on-trend for the summer, and I love them paired with retro-style high waist bottoms. (Actually, I love black and white stripes paired with anything.) Old Navy is featuring them heavily in their early summer swim line, along with bold prints like florals and paisley.

And a bonus: not swimwear, but definitely pool (and drool) worthy, Sam Edelman Dana sandals. These are so cute I could die. Since I usually don’t wear the cutest footwear (lots of flats and running shoes,) I like a bold, statement sandal. The cage and mini-heel make these super cute for summer resort vacations and work.

Do you love or hate bathing suit shopping? What’s your favorite beachside look?

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May 2, 2014