6 Months

Today is our 6 Monthiversary. Which we won't be celebrating, because it isn't even a whole year. However, I wanted to look back at the last 6 months here, because there's been so many amazing days I don't want to forget!

Most of Month One was spent in Africa, which I've been thinking about a lot in the last week (RIP Cecil). I can't imagine wanting to kill any of the animals that we saw; especially not in their amazing natural habitats. 

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In Month Two we wrapped up a little kitchen remodel. What a difference this little change has made on our entertaining! Also in month two I cut bangs, which was scary but turned out to be one of my favorite hair changes to date! 

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Month Three was filled with little baby chicks. The lived in the bathtub, let us hold them, and were adorable little fluffballs. We wrapped up the month with a visit from my sis and her boyfriend, which was a blast. 

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In Month Four of marriage, we met a new baby family member, I went to Chicago for our annual sissy weekend, and Travis and I spent Memorial Day in Chelan with some of our best friends. This was a month spent with lots of people we love! 

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Month Five we faced a huge challenge: building a chicken coop & run together. And we did it! I think that proves we're meant to be more than anything else, right? Also this month we got bikes and started riding together! 

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And this most recent month of marriage, Month Six, has been filled with our newest addition, Niko. I like to think I knew how amazing this family would be once we had a dog, but even I've been surprised by how much Travis loves him. 

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(The photo above is Niko and Trav in bed after I got up for the day - hard to see without much light.)

If our first six months are any indication, I made the right choice marrying this man. Can't wait to see what's next for us!


Posted on July 31, 2015 .

July Budget Recap

July was supposed to be a cheap month, but instead I went a bit crazy at the Nordstrom sale, picking up a few basics I really needed - and then a few things I didn't need but really wanted. I'm pretty happy with it all, though! 

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And now the breakdown:

  • Trench: Not sure if I'm keeping this one or not, but I have been looking for a non-black coat for work for a while now. This one was a great steal! $100
  • Green Dress: I've already worn this twice. No photos yet, of course (fail!). Work dresses with sleeves are on my list, still! $72
  • Two-tone flats: You've seen these already, so we know it was a wise purchase. $40
  • Zella capris: I have the legging version (and grabbed another pair) but have been wanting a summery pair, so these were the winners! $30
  • Romper: A Target purchase! Not sure if I'm keeping it, though...tbd! $23
  • T-shirt Bra: The basic Nordstrom day bra was already mine in navy, so it was time to grab it in basic black. $12
  • Fancy-back bra: The free people bra has an awesome back detail to it, so I had to have it! $20
  • Zella Leggings: Can't have too many black leggings, right?! $34
  • Silky top (2 colors): I love these tops, and with my effort to increase the amount of pink in my closet, these two colors won. $60 for two
    TOTAL: $391 
    Oops, plus the Nike running shoes for $100, so actually $491! 

Linking up with Franish's Budgeting Bloggers, of course! 

Posted on July 30, 2015 and filed under Budget, Work Clothes.

Closet Epiphany

When I put this outfit on the other day, I realized that I'd be really happy to have a closet made up of only neutrals and blush. When I look at my closet I don't see any logic: there's every color under the sun, half of which never get worn, and when I shop I try to buy colors I don't have yet, to "round it out." But what I'm realizing is that some of those colors just sit there - they don't match enough other things, they are brighter or bolder than I often want them to be, and they just go unworn.

You'll see later this week when I post my Nordstrom sale pieces that I've tried to simplify the colors I'm purchasing. After lots of thinking, and looking at old photos, and looking at my closet, I realized I'm happiest when in two main color groups: blues (gotta make those eyes pop!) and pinks (including blush, coral, and the like). So I think that's what I'm going to work towards - a closet filled with blues and pinks - and of course neutrals to round it all out. 

If I can get more organized, I'll share some of that journey here - what I'm getting rid of, what I'm going to hold on to for now, and what I hope to add in order to work towards a more intentional, curated closet. 

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Pants: H&M (similar)  |  Top: Le Tote
Necklace: Le Tote  |  Shoes: bp  |  Bracelet: Stella & Dot

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Unrelated, but I'm feeling much better about this clunky fitbit, too. The Stella & Dot bracelet I'm pairing it with here has been a favorite, but I've also been stacking other bracelets depending on what I'm wearing, and I'm super happy with it. I'm still missing my other watches though - I've realized I just need to get to my 10k steps each day faster so that I can switch into a real watch for the evenings and weekends!!

Posted on July 29, 2015 and filed under Work Clothes.

Trav and Bri, Recently - vol.18

Recently at home
In case you missed it, we got a dog! This means we've now built quite the urban farm here in our little Seattle plot of land. Thought it was time to do a little farm tour, starting with the original responsibility, Amos. His favorite thing lately is roaming the backyard with the chickens - he thinks he's going to attack them, but when they turn towards him he runs away like the scared little boy he is. I can't believe he's turning 6 this December!

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A few years ago, we decided to add more things to keep alive, so we built some garden boxes right out front. Not only do we want the produce from them, but we've got to keep them somewhat tidy because EVERYONE CAN SEE THEM. Currently growing: kale, peas (almost done), carrots, beets, lettuce, beans (almost done), squash, and cucumber. And of course out back we have our tomato and pepper pots.

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Then we got the girls: Gertie, Hattie, Charlie, and Dottie. They are growing up into big healthy ladies (they turn 4 months today!) who should laid their first egg on Thursday! Charlie and Gertie are still letting me hold them, so we'll keep our fingers crossed that will last. 

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And of course, now we have Niko.

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With the exception of the constant rotation of produce in our garden beds, I think we're probably going to hold off on adding more life to our family, at least for a couple of years. 

Recently purchased
So much stuff for Niko. I didn't like his leash, so we got a new one. His harness was too big for him, so we got a new one. He also needed food bowls, a couple of toys, and of course some treats. We're set for a while now, though! 

Recently styled
I've been loving the daily walks we take with Niko, especially because of some new gear I've added to my closet lately. I've been wanting black Nikes for YEARS and finally pulled the trigger. They are so comfy and versatile. And of course, during the Nordstrom sale I had to pick up some more Zella pants - I got one more pair of long pants and one pair of capris - both in black. They are my favorite workout pants. Lastly, these little bralettes are perfect for a casual walk. Super comfy, feels good to get out of a structured bra, and yet they aren't as restricting as a sports bra. The perfect dog-walking bra, and only $12! 

Recently consumed
Last weekend we headed to Portland (with Niko!) for a couple of days with my sis & her boyfriend. We had the best weekend - manhattans upon arrival, dog park visits, walks through town, amazing brunch at Olympic Provisions, ladder ball games in the backyard, voodoo donuts, oysters for dinner, and the main reason for our visit: Project Pabst. It was the hipster-event of all hipster events - in the hipster city of Portland with the hipster beer PBR as the sponsor and there were beards and curly mustaches and outfits that didn't make sense in 95 degree weather EVERYWHERE. We went primarily to see TV on the Radio and Run the Jewels and we had a great time consuming large amounts of PBR to beat the heat. 

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Recently in love
This weekend Travis and I are both out of town on bachelor and bachelorette parties for some friends of ours who are getting married next month. I'm loving all of the wedding festivities this year that aren't for me - it's so much more fun to be a guest and celebrate someone you love. Friday is our 6 month anniversary - can you believe how fast time has gone?! More wedding recaps coming eventually, I promise!

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A shot from our first look.

Coming this week
A look back at 6 months married.
A post about shopping and my closet goals.
July's budget recap.

Posted on July 26, 2015 and filed under Trav & Bri Recently.

Two Tone Flats

My leopard print flats have seen better days. Like way too many better days. So I've been on the hunt for some new ones, and when I saw these, I couldn't resist picking them up. I've already worn them 3 times in the week I've had them, so I'd say they are keepers!

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Flats: Nordstrom  |  Top: c/o Asos (long-sleeve version)  |  Pants: H&M (similar)

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These photos were taken frantically in the morning before Travis left for work. I hadn't finished my hair yet (but look! bangs are back! and I cut them myself!) or put on accessories (this bracelet and this fitbit) but it is better than nothing, right? Fingers crossed for more consistency around here in the coming weeks! 

Posted on July 22, 2015 and filed under Work Clothes.

Meet Niko

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So, we got a dog! Well, we're currently on a 2-week trial adoption with him, but we're both in love with him and will definitely not be giving him back. If you've been reading for a while, you know that I've been wanting a dog forever. And that we planned on getting a vizsla puppy after our wedding. After a lot of discussion, we decided that getting a puppy wasn't the right move for us, so we decided to adopt an adult dog. 

Niko is a Formosan mountain dog who was rescued from Taiwan a couple of years ago. He's almost 4 and is a total sweetheart. Some past abuse has left him with a clipped ear and a broken rib bone that never healed correctly. He loves other dogs, rides in the car, and sprinting around a dog park with as many other dogs chasing him as possible. He's been really well trained, walks well on a leash, sleeps in the same kennel he came to America in, and has Travis wrapped right around his little paw. He's a total keeper. 

Posted on July 21, 2015 .

Third Thursday Threads: Favorite Summer Outfit

Happy Thursday! I'm in the midst of our twice-yearly sales conference and have not had time to prepare for today's post. But I'm going to stick to my promises and today we have a link-up all about favorite summer outfits. Since I didn't have time to sleep, let alone put together an outfit, I thought I'd take a quick look back at my favorite outfit so far this summer. 

Earlier this summer I kicked off the warm summer days with my new favorite shirtdress - and while this hasn't made it onto the blog too often, I've worn it a ton. 

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Alright, now it is your turn. Not a tough one today - just link up an outfit that is a summer favorite, and be sure to link directly to the post, not your homepage. Link back here on your post, check out some of the other blogs linked up, and we've got ourselves a (link) party. 

Better Than Before - In Action

I mentioned a few months back that I've been reading Gretchen Rubin's new book Better Than Before. You guys - I have now read it twice, and I loved it. I don't often read books more than once (bad habit - I feel like there is so much out there I haven't read, so it feels like a waste to re-read!) but with this one, there was so much that I wanted to absorb and think about in my own life, it deserved a second read. I also read her book The Happiness Project a few times - and I'm thinking I may re-read it again this summer. But talking about how many times I read a book isn't the point of this post. The point is that I've been focusing on making little tiny changes in my life for a while. I don't love much more than I love moderation, and I truly believe that the best way for me to be healthy is to live a life of moderation. As part of this, I don't like to make big, bold statements and changes - I like to do things that are sustainable and that will not go away at the end of a week, or 21 days, or even a few months. 

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Gretchen inspired me to think about some of the little habits I've been trying to create (one of which I started before I even started her book) and I learned a lot in her book about how to stick with the habits I want to stick with - mostly by learning to understand what type of person I am when it comes to habit creation. I thought I should swing in and share a bit about what I've changed (and let's be real - it hasn't been that long, so I'm still working on making these permanent changes) - and maybe you guys can help me stay accountable. 

  • No Phone In Bed. If you guys follow me on Twitter, you know that I've started a "no phone in bed" rule for my nighttime routine. Historically, I would lay in bed and do one last check of email, browse of facebook and instagram, and maybe even some blog-reading. Now, I have created a threshold of my bedroom doorway - before I cross it, I check the next day's calendar and set my alarm, and then I simply plug my phone into the bedstand charger and don't look at it again until morning. And you guys - this is working! Travis helps enforce it and I've been falling asleep much faster every night.

  • Limit Drinking Calories During The Week. This one is a newer endeavor, but I'm really liking it. With the exception of my morning smoothie, anything I drink from Monday morning through Friday at the end of the workday is calorie-free. That means a rare glass of wine in the evenings (sad face) and no sugary coffee drinks at meetings during the week. In the last two weeks of this, I've had 3 work happy hours - THREE! - and I've stuck to water at all three of them. No one really cared or asked me why I wasn't drinking (they probably assume I got married and then quickly knocked up - don't worry, I'm not pregnant), and I felt way better about snacking on a slider knowing I wasn't also downing a beer. Let me tell you, though - come Friday after work, that cold beer or cocktail tastes extra special!

  • Take the Stairs. This one is so simple, but basically - if I can see the staircase, and I can see the destination, I take the stairs. I'm not digging around for exit stairways on my way to meetings, and I'm not taking 26 flights of stairs up to my desk in the mornings, but (especially) if the stairs are right next to the escalator, no more being lazy on that escalator. I'm a huge fan so far of those extra steps each day.

  • Schedule My Workouts. This one is huge for me. I tend to easily slack off when I have openings in my schedule, mostly because my schedule is typically so packed. When at home in Seattle, I want to lounge on the couch spending extra time with Travis since I rarely see him during the week lately - I don't want to go to the gym or even to a barre/yoga class, which used to be a love of mine. I learned through Better Than Before that in some ways, I'm an obliger - if it is on my calendar, and I feel like I am held accountable to someone (for example, if I sign up for a class, someone else can't), I will go. So I've been spending a few minutes every Sunday looking through Fitbit classes for the following week and signing up for the ones I can attend. Then I toss them on my calendar and all of a sudden, I'm sure I'll make it to a few classes each week. I'm so, so happy that this is working for me, because this travel schedule makes it easy for me to make excuses and skip the gym, which is NOT a good habit!

As you can see, these aren't huge changes, but they are meaningful ones that I can hold on to. Does this mean I'll never have a beer with friends on a Wednesday? Probably not. But it does mean that before ordering, I'll stop and think about it, and that's a really good place to start.

If you guys haven't read Better Than Before, I highly recommend you devote some time this summer to it! Next up in personal growth reading: The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up!

Posted on July 15, 2015 .