Tuesday, June 18, 2013

My Backyard is Pretty Great

If you head north on hwy 287 and make a left to a little place called Red Feathers, in a little less than an hour you can be surrounded by gorgeous rolling mountains, cool mountain air, and a huge outdoor playground. We have been coming here since we stumbled upon this area in college with friends and have brought several family members and friends up here to camp.

This weekend we were joined by Nick's dad, his sister + her boyfriend. We hiked, fished, and hung out lazily in the sunshine. It was the first weekend in all of our times up there that we had two days with no clouds in the sky almost all day. The coolest thing that in the late afternoon of our first day we sat and watched huge thunderstorms roll past us only to find out when we got home the following day that they had brought golf ball sized hail into town. We sat and enjoyed a weather lightning show from the time we started dinner well into the late evening settled around the campfire.


 I drove up early Friday to claim us a spot and headed out for a solo hike with Oli after setting up camp. It was so peaceful and quiet (when I wasn't playing my tunes ;)) to spend some time alone, take in the views and the sounds of the tress. It was exactly what I needed to level myself after some trying weeks.

The one thing I love most about Nick is how he's taught me to see the beauty in the simple things and that happiness with life comes from within. Nothing reminds me more of that than a weekend with family, my dog, and perfectly clear night skies. I couldn't remember the last time I sat and stargazed. 



My week is filled with daily things, chores, a couple shots of reality, and lots of loads of laundry. And packing for this weekend's trip :) When your backyard is the Rocky Mountains, life can be simply wonderful. 

Friday, June 14, 2013

Friday's Fancies #133

We are escaping away to the mountain this weekend with my father in-law, Nick's sister + herbetterhalf, and of course Oli to camp and celebrate father's day. Right now I'm putting the finishing touches on my to-do list making sure we have all of our gear to fish, hike, and tent camp for a few days.

I can't wait to get back and share pictures with you. It's been a rough week and a few very busy weekends preceding this one, so I'm looking forward to get to breathe in fresh mountain air, hear nothing but the peace and quiet of the trees (especially in Red Feathers, CO) and just unplug from my day to day.

As much as I can't believe that it is halfway through June .. of 2013... the summer will be over before we know it and my favorite time of the year will be upon us: fall. One of the biggest events this year is our best friends' wedding (!!) in the beautiful Colorado mountains and this week's fancy topic was a perfect brainstormer for my possible attire. Nick will be standing up as one of the groomsmen and dressed in a sharp gun metal tux. Maybe it's the summer colors still so fresh on my mind, but my inspiration board came out very bright, feminine, and structured.

Wedding Season

Matthew Williamson shift dress, $1,250 / Alexander McQueen / Jones + Jones prom evening dress / Oasis lace dress, $94 / Little Mistress lace dress, $70 / Forever New sweetheart cocktail dress, $155 / Versace frilly dress / Ted Baker lace dress, $235 / Dorothy Perkins strap high heels / Giuseppe Zanotti platform shoes / Coach shoes / Ivanka Trump / Envelope clutch, $25 / Friis & Company , $53 / Mint green necklace / KENNETH JAY LANE turquoise earrings / Suzanna Dai vintage jewelry / Chalcedony earrings / Feather & Stone feather earrings, $140 / Kendra Scott / Feather hair clip

Personally I have never been a fan of the sleeveless look on me. But as of late I have shed some poundage and am gaining some definition and plan to show off some toned arms and legs ;) In addition to being inspired by everything feminine lately - thank you  Daisy Buchanan - I couldn't help but find myself very drawn to this style of dress.

Happy Friday

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Bedtime Routines

I love sleeping. I'm sure it must be very difficult to comprehend. But it's fantastic. Right?! Although I'm not much of a napper, when I am ready for sleep it's like a light switch. I can be on the couch, in the car, at a friend's house...when it's time for Jessica to go to sleep, nothing will stop me. And recently I've come 'out of the dark side' and switched back to my morning-person self. At first it was due to work schedules but now..my body feels that 5:30/6:00 am is go time; running, blogging, cleaning, watching the depressing news (ok - Boy Meets World),...are all among my favorite morning activities.

But back to sleeping. The zzzzz's - they're wonderful. However not always as easy to come by as we'd like, especially if we have these things called schedules, families, friends, jobs, school, errands, bills, deadlines, blah blah grossness...  :) not the family+friends part obviously. ... actually .. haha yeah the family + friends part goes in there too. We all love each other but if we're honest... c'mon.

But with these things on our mind it can be difficult to relax and unplug and let ourselves get the sleep we deserve and need. I've dabbed in all kinds of trouble with sleeping and have collected a few tricks and routines that help me unwind, relax and slumber soundly at the end of the day. When it's time to flip the light switch.

1. Liquid soothing

I have a soft spot for tea and before I found my love (and need) for coffee I drank it several times a day. The Sleepytime tea is one of my favorites and a frequent part of my bedtime routine. 

Another sleepytime drink that I swear by is the SLEEP by Neuro. A function drink that mixes melatonin with magnesium to help you sleep. This stuff knocks me out and I know from family and friends who've tried it that it certainly does its duty.  

2. Bedtime Yoga 

I have recently become a fan of this and haven't been able to stop just for the sake of getting in a small yoga routine on a daily basis. I found an easy routine here, welcome to any level of yoga skill on Pinterest (where else!). Nick and I have a mattress that needs serious replacing, so I can't say it's done much for my back soreness, but adding some of my favorite slow tunes music, some candles and turning off all the lights in the room and this routine helps me let go of all the day's and life's disasters, relaxes my mind, and perfectly prepares me to to curl up in bed and call it a day (if I don't fall asleep in savasana). 

3. Read a book, magazine - or your News Feed if you have to 

Just don't end your night drooling in front of the TV. I am still one of the worst offenders of this (hence I have this list) but it makes such a difference to turn of the box, brush your teeth, and climb into bed (with your steaming hot sleepytime tea) and allowing yourself at least 30 minutes for down time. 

But control yourself and try to avoid this: 

that goes for reading too :)

There are a lot of ways to help you unwind at night and find some z's. Having trouble sleeping, insomnia or night anxiety can have a serious impact on your daily life, immune system, and overall happiness. Remember that even 30 minutes can make a difference and doesn't take too much commitment. Sleep soundly and thank yourself later. 

What are some ways that help you sleep at night? Share the z's

Monday, June 10, 2013

So Much Love, so Much Baby

What a crazy amazing weekend! One of those that flies by so quickly you don't stop to realize how great it is  until you plop down on your couch at the end of the day feeling content, satisfied, and loved. Especially loved. 

Nick and I spent the weekend apart at different family events and talked each other's ears off for most of the evening about how much fun our weekends were. Summertime is being good to us and I am lovin every minute.

On Friday my dear Mamacita came to Fort Collins for an overnight visit and a night at Taste of Fort Collins! I was so excited to finally dust off my bike seat for the summer, especially since I was so proud of myself for fixing the flat tire on both mine and Nick's bikes...buuut I was left to ride the ride of shame back to my apartment 5 minutes after my mom and I ventured out on the bikes as the tire I had changed previously, was once again flat. whaaa whaaaa :/ I was right to doubt my handy man skills. But thankfully my mom can talk her hysterical sensitive daughter down from any mini melt down (it had been a veeery long day) and 10 minutes later I was in my mom's car and back to pick her up, throw the bike in the car and we were once again - on our way to the Taste! :P The rest of the night was awesome - complete with a sensational waffle from the Waffle Lab food truck (smoked Norwegian salmon over creme cheese on a waffle - aaaahmazing!) and a grass concert listening to Churchill. And I had my mommy all to myself? Yeah that's a pretty great Friday night.

 Today we celebrated the baby shower of my sister and her husband. Baby Luca, my first nephew (!) is due to arrive towards the end of the month. He's kiiind of a big baby and my sister an itty bitty thing, so the due date is going to be pretty much up to him. Making an entrance already, just like his mom :) 

It was the first time I was part of planning an event like this and what a ride! Planning, executing and making sure mommy-to-be is happy takes some awesome ladies (such as ourselves..a few pictures down) and we rocked it. The day was filled with so much love and excitement - dear Luca we cannot wait to meet you! 

Happy Monday!

Friday, June 07, 2013

Friday's Fancies #132

I'm not really sure how it is Friday once again, but time flies when you're having fun and this week was definitely in that category. My birthday on Tuesday was a freaking blast and so laid back. I had a half day melt down on Monday with a side of "what have I achieved so far?" and "I'm gonna be 30 soon?". But all was well and Tuesday came and the birthday love and sweet greetings showered me with so much warmth and happiness I couldn't help but be really excited it was my bday after all. I received the most amazing homemade cheesecake birthday cake from my dear friend and enjoyed a lazy day at the pool with Nicholas. 

On Wednesday, said friend topped it off by taking me out to dinner for a "progressional dinner" as we called it since we wandered into the Mayor for some tasty beers and then found a little table at Jax for the most amazing seafood appetizers I've ever tasted. Originally we had planned to end the evening at the Chocolate Factory, but those apps did us in and we were defeated by delicious truffled fries and shrimp. 

Today I filled my day with errands and renewing my 2 days expired driver's license - oops - and in approximately 30 days I will have a driver's license that actually has my married name. 2.5 years later is as good a time as any...  and killed the rest of the day with Nick. 

Before I leave you with this week's fancies I wish you all a very happy weekend! I'm excited that by the time it's over I'll have pictures to share from my sister's baby shower on Sunday! With the 90 degree weather we have forecasted for this weekend I'll be sure to pack plenty of fabulous shades in my weekender bag. I'm a sucker for sunglasses and if I had no will power I could fill drawers full of shades. But when I keep a wrap on my shopping habits I stick to three basic styles of sunglasses. In Colorado, where we see at least 300 days of sunshine a year, sunnies are a year-round staple accessories and an absolute must for rugged Colorado survival. :) 

Happy Weekend, y'all

Monday, June 03, 2013

Fancy Follow Up

For last Friday's Fancie's inspiration I picked a simple white t-shirt dress (from here) because it is one of my favorite staple items in my closet. I have a curvy boyish figure and I keep my every day look fairly simple, and a t-shirt dress always fits the bill. For now I'm on the look out for one in a neutral color, but love my striped bright version just the same.

watch, shades + shoes: Target, dress: H&M, necklace, bracelets + rings: Lucky Brand

The Monday After a Summer Weekend

Although my sleeping routines [of tossing and turning in bed once Nick is off to work at 3:30am and waking in a zombie state promptly at 6:00am] is becoming a bit annoying and unavoidable - I'm going to write it off this morning to this weekend's fun filled festivities and sunshine!! 

 Nicholas and I went to Denver to stay the weekend at his mom's to celebrate our technically little brother Adam's hs graduation party! Phew that was a long weekend title! But it was an absolute blast and it was finally Colorado summer warm, the whole Italiano family got together and I was reminded how loving, crazy, and entertaining they are. 

[ After Friday's fancy inspirations I knew I had to wear my new Lucky shorts (thanks Mom!) with a simply black + white combo. I was having too much fun to snap a better outfit picture, but I completed the shorts + tank with simple black two strap sandals (what else do I wear?) Next time I can't forget to ad a belt, like I did this weekend imo. check out these other black + white outfit creations by these fashionable ladies

these guys, having too much fun. including Oliver .. :) happy as a clam!



Happy Graduation Adam! 

On Sunday morning Nick and I were just a tad groggy and let his Maam cook her delicious eggs for breakfast. Once we got back into town just before noon, a spurt of energy hit us and we decided to take care of a couple more to-do's on our list to jazz up our patio. 


We headed into old town and ended up wandering around Ace Hardware and the rest of downtown for a couple of hours. We found a great gift for a special someone coming up and my husband took me out for a sandwich and ice cream. Just like the rest of the weekend, it was a perfect afternoon so I will let the pictures speak for themselves.



Tomorrow is my birthday and as hard as I'm trying to be excited about it because I absofreakinglutely love birthdays and cakes and love filled cards, the fact is I am fighting it with my whole body to be here. Not that I can do anything to stop it. I know I'm a little unhappy with "timing" in my life at the moment and a birthday that pushes me just a little past the quarter life mark is not really welcomed. That naive 19yo is nagging "I expected a little more from you by now". But my very content and positive self is reassuring "I don't want my life's timeline to reflect 'everybody else's'. Then it wouldn't be 'my life'." And the fact that I feel literally at a stand still today with minimum productivity I've decided to just close my eyes, let the day come and go and cook myself and Nicholas my favorite dinner. And when I decide what that will be I'm sure I'll let you know. 

For now I'm going to say goodbye to this great weekend, accept the fact that it is somehow June 2013, and  do something about my coffee cup that is still next to my keyboard. Happy Monday.