Monday, September 30, 2013


If you've been following me on IG (aileenpp) then you know I've had a great weekend. I had a stretch of days off of work (the upside of being a nurse!), and the Chef was going to Denver for work, so we decided to meet and enjoy a mini-weekend vacation. We thought it'd be a great opportunity to start celebrating our upcoming three year anniversary! 

I flew into Denver on Thursday afternoon and enjoyed walking the downtown area and seeing the sites and people. It was rainy and overcast but the mountains are in the background somewhere. 

Friday was extremely relaxing for me. I found the closest Pure Barre and took a class, which was great after a day of flying. It was much harder than expected: probably due to the altitude and not having taken class in five days.

Once the Chef finished with work, we packed our bags and headed for the mountains. Thankfully, we arrived before the snow and accidents happened. We arrived at the Vail Marriott and enjoyed this gorgeous view!

And our room wasn't too shabby either with our own fireplace.

We loved seeing our first snow of the season in Vail Village.

Apparently, we weren't the only ones excited about the first snow because the bar staff gave out free champagne for the first snow toast. #ChampagneJeff loved it. 

After walking through the crisp night, we enjoyed dinner at the Swiss Chalet. The restaurant had the perfect Alpine atmosphere, and we indulged in the cheese fondue which was the best part of the meal. I highly recommend going there for drinks and fondue but skip dinner: it was mediocre for the price.

More on our Vail weekend to come tomorrow. 

Linking up with Shami, LeeAnn, and Sarah

Monday, September 23, 2013

birthday weekend

We headed to my parents' house on Friday to spend the weekend celebrating my sweet mom's birthday.  Saturday morning, she made us breakfast. Once my sister and I were finally up and moving for the day, we surprised mom by taking her to her favorite tea spot.

She was so cute; when we drove up she was said, "Girls, they are closed on Saturdays" ...but not if you make a reservation.

We had the whole place to ourselves and enjoyed a delicious four-course tea tasting. We stuffed ourselves with scones, red velvet cupcakes, chicken salad, cucumber sandwiches, and peach, pistachio pies. We loved the pot of chai tea mom picked. 

I love getting to spend the day with my mom and sister. It was so much fun chatting, catching up, and celebrating having the best mom.  

After our afternoon tea, we did a little shopping in town. It was fun going with mom and helping her pick out a few tops. And my sister helped me pick out frames for a gallery wall I'm going to start working on. I also found this cute pillow to hopefully help complete our master bedroom. 

One of my favorite parts of going to my parents' is setting a beautiful table and enjoying a tasty meal with the best company. 

Dad grilled steak, the Chef made these twice baked potatoes, asparagus, and a fruit salad. For dessert, mom requested an ice cream cake, so while we were drinking tea, the Chef made a very rich ice cream cake. 

Happy birthday Mom! I'm so thankful for you and to have been able to spend the weekend celebrating you. 

Linking up with Shami, LeeAnn, and Sarah

Monday, September 16, 2013

happy monday

It's a happy Monday today because I don't have a to work and can completely recover from a fun weekend. Sundays are truly fun days when you don't have to dread work on Monday morning. 

We are already for football season around here! 

My friend, Mallory made a cute Auburn football door hanger, so I copied her but had a Redskins one made. I surprised the Chef with it and even put it on the front door. I bought it from this Etsy shop.

Sunday afternoon, we had a real Sunday Fun day at our friends Kari and Kevin's house. Check out the two TVs Kevin hooked up to watch multiple games. The best part was I had a great time chatting with Kari and eating wings and veggies. I'm not a football girl but love it when there is a party or a friend to chat with. I can't wait for more football days this season (never thought those words come out)!

Saturday night, I made these cute, tasty pumpkin bites to take to Amanda's birthday party on Sunday. They were delicious, and I will definitely be making them again this fall. Maybe my contribution to Thanksgiving dinner this year? 

And lastly, I celebrated Amanda's (in red) birthday with lots of nurses. What is better than a house party, drinks, and nurses? It was a lot of fun, and I can't wait to do it again sometime. 

On a completely unrelated note, the Chef and I are planning a trip to Denver and possibly Vail. Any recommendations for what to do/see/places to eat? Please let me know because our best recommendations have come you! 

Linking up with Shami, LeeAnn, and Sarah

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Emily Ties the Knot

I told you that I was back in Birmingham a few weeks ago for Emily's wedding but then never told you all about the actual here it is...

As you know, I arrived in Birmingham and got to catch up with my besties. After catching up with them, I headed to Alex City for a fun, lake-side bridemaids' luncheon. Emily's sister Elizabeth picked this gorgeous charm cake for us. Emily pulled the baby girl! So we'll see who is the first to get pregnant.

One of Emily's passions and talents is painting and she hand designed her beautiful wedding shoes. I'm in love with them. How sweet is it that she put their date and names? It's such a special touch.

After an afternoon of chicken salad, delicious cake, laughter, boating, and sunshine, we rehearsed the wedding before heading to the rehearsal dinner. Unfortunately, my iPhone photos of the table arrangements didn't turn out well because the tables were beautiful. Scott's family did a fabulous job, and the dinner was so sweet.

Isn't he the most handsome date?

Emily was the sweetest bride, and it was wonderful seeing her so incredibly happy with Scott.

The night before the wedding all of the girls stayed at a lake house with Emily, so she made these, so we would know the schedule. I loved them.

Whenever we used to talk about weddings in college, Emily always talked about how she wanted her whole wedding to be filled with flowers. She got her wish because the church and reception were overflowing with the most beautiful flower arrangements.

Before the wedding, one of the bridesmaid's mom's made a tasty spread filled with everything girly so that we would eat before the wedding and not faint in front of 300 guests. It was also sweet time spent with this glowing bride.

I absolutely love Emily's mom and sister; they are hilarious and made the wedding filled with laughter.

And just like that, she is a MRS! Her dress was gorgeous, and she looked absolutely amazing.

Emily's reception was a lot of fun because I got to see a bunch of old Samford friends. It was incredibly sweet getting to see my Phi Mu sisters like these two Meagan and Meghan. It makes me miss college days, our sorority house, and living in Birmingham. I told the Chef I will gladly move back if he ever wants to live there.

Us with the new Mr. and Mrs. J! I'm so thankful that Emily asked me to be a part of her wedding and start of her new marriage. She is one of the sweetest girls I know, and I'm incredibly happy that she found the perfect man for her. They are two peas in a pod or pair of matching snorkeling flippers. I hope they will be making a trip to Raleigh soon.

Linking up with Shami, LeeAnn, and Sarah

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

exciting news!

I hope you had a great Labor Day weekend full of sun, friends, and food! Last night, I was off of work so we enjoyed a delicious dinner at our friends' house with cold drinks and burgers. It's so nice having sweet friends, and it was a nice break in the middle of a stretch of shifts. 

Even though it was Labor Day the PICU was packed and busy. Here's to hoping tonight will be better! 

Our exciting news is that today, we found out we're going to be an aunt and uncle to a sweet NIECE come January! I'm excited for the first baby in our family and that she's a girl! It'll be so much fun buying everything that's sparkly and sweet for her. 
So what are your favorite Etsy shops for baby items? What are the best items to get for your baby niece? I'm ready to start shopping! 

Linking up with Shami, LeeAnn, and Sarah