My New Normal

First and foremost, thank you to everyone who read and commented (or read and didn’t comment…I do see everything) on my last post. It was a big step for me to put that out there and the support I received was so wonderful. Many who commented (either via the blog or social media) said they hoped I would continue blogging. Well THANKS! That’s probably one of the nicest things a writer can ever hear.

My life has changed a lot in the last year. I touched on it very briefly in my last post but it’s a huge part of my life and I’m ready to talk about it. Or at least I think I am. Gah, I’m so nervous.

Ok here goes.

I am in a relationship with a great guy who has a 7 year old son. We all live together. Me, Great Guy (his name is Joe), and son (we’ll call him G for now.) G lives with us half the time and with his mother the other half.

Joe G Emily

Joe, G, and me. Currently, G is sporting one more hole where a top front tooth used to reside.

Well, shoot, that wasn’t so bad. 😉

I wanted to write about this for the same reason I wanted to write about my divorce. Putting this out there via my blog reaches most, if not all, of my internet friends (there’s no better way to describe you awesome people…fans? followers? Ew gross never.) all at once. Imagine me all of a sudden tweeting “OMG what is Minecraft and why does my stepson love it so much?!” Like, literally no one would have ANY idea what I was talking about. (Or at least that’s how I perceive things.)

To be clear: no, Joe and I are not married so I suppose technically his son is not my stepson in the standard definition of the word. But it’s SO much easier to say “stepson” than “my boyfriend’s son.” Less characters, etc. Besides, G is a big part of my life, affects a lot of things I do, and I have an impact on his life, as well. So yeah, he’s basically my stepson and anyone who wants to shit on that can kindly ignore me. 🙂

Having a 7 year old boy around is crazy and loud and frustrating and hilarious and fun all at once. A “blended family” (or step-life, as I like to call it) is filled with unknowns, blurry boundaries, and a fair amount of drama (which I can’t really discuss but will 10000% allude to because some of this shit is unreal.) Also, you guys? First grade homework is HARD. I’m not kidding. Clearly I didn’t go through the newborn/infant/toddler stages, but I’m currently experiencing the school-age stage and Common Core Math is the actual worst.

So there you have it! My new normal in a nutshell. There have been tears and there have been “what the fuck am I doing?” moments (or full days, if we’re being honest), but I’m happy.

Now really, can some one explain not only the appeal of Minecraft, but the appeal of watching YouTube videos of OTHER PEOPLE playing Minecraft? Because I’m lost.

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Opening back up

Wow radio silence on the blog for a looonnggg time, huh? I guess the thing to do these days when explaining an absence is NOT to say sorry. Or to say sorry and then say “I know I shouldn’t apologize but I feeeel bad.” So basically I’m going to say “Hi, again!” and fill you in on some…stuff that’s gone on in my life over the last year.

I’ve kept a great deal of my personal life off social media for over a year. With the encouragement of some very close (and wise) friends, I’m slowly inching my way back to coming out of hiding. I’ve kept a lot of things private out of embarrassment, what other people might think or say about me, and out of respect for everyone involved. So what happened?


::runs and hides::

::peeks out from behind the couch:: (why I ran behind a couch I’m not sure, it just felt right.)

Still with me? Great. The specifics don’t matter to anyone but the parties involved and for obvious reasons will not be talked about here or anywhere. What does matter is this: it sucked, it hurt, and it was for the best.

I haven’t known how to really come out and say all of this. Like, do I just randomly say on Twitter “YAY the #pumpkinspicelatte is back! Ps I’m separated from my husband.”? Mmm no. Do I just start posting about the guy I’m seeing and my current life? That would be weird. I felt like after blogging about my wedding and married life, I needed to explain myself a bit more. However, going back to what I said earlier (embarrassment, judgement, etc) I didn’t know *what* to do.

So I just kind of…didn’t say anything. Since Summer 2013 I stuck to posting about work or life with my friends/family (and the occasional selfie, of course.)

me pool

Lately, however, I’ve really missed sharing my life with my “internet friends.” Life is great, really it is, but I also have a lot of shit going on, to put it lightly. Having another outlet to talk about the good and the bad, get advice, and just get back to being myself…I need that.

I’ve lost a lot of friends, gained new ones, and developed even deeper connections with the ones who have been there for me. I’ve done a LOT of growing over the last year and things in my life have changed drastically. I’ve changed jobs, sold a house, bought a new one, started seeing a new guy (acquiring a 6 year old in the process), and adopted another puppy. WHEW. SO MANY THINGS I’ve wanted to talk about and I just didn’t know how or when.


But I think now I’m ready. I’m ready to share things like “The six year old doesn’t want his food touching and OH MY GOD Mom I’m so sorry for being like that as a kid.” I don’t know if I’ll keep this blog going, start a new one, or just share via Twitter/IG/Facebook, but I’m ready to open back up.

I hope you’ll follow along. 🙂

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Our newest addition!

Well hey there!

I kind of left you guys hanging back in January, didn’t I? Whoopsie! Welp, we’re in the house and it’s great. Really. 🙂 I have moments where I miss the city (and I think those moments will actually become more frequent as the weather gets warmer and I start to crave patio drinking) but for the most part I’m loving the house and suburban living.



His name is Frankie and he’s (we think) a Lab/Shepherd mix. We adopted him on March 18th when he was 10 weeks old and I think I fall in love with this dog more each day. Good GOD he’s adorable. Hands-down the best part of having this house is having the space for a dog. We have a huge backyard and a great walking neighborhood.

Ok, another Frankie pic:

Our biggest struggle so far has been crate training. As in he HATES his crate. Hates it. Thinks it’s his own personal hell. We’re adamant about crate training. I like my things and I don’t trust my puppy to roam around the house all day when I’m gone and NOT chew shit up. The thing is, when I’m at work I can’t hear the crying/whining/howling (I know, I’m the worst puppy mom. Whatever.) It’s nighttime that’s the problem. Some nights are better than others, but ALL start and end with the crying/whining/howling.

Since I know you’ll ask, here are the details:

-The crate was downstairs in the living room for the first 4 weeks. Last night we decided to move it upstairs to our room, which resulted in a GREAT night. He cried when he went in for about 10 excruciating minutes, but didn’t wake us up with his cries at all during the night or in the morning.

-We used to have it covered with blankets but that didn’t work well because he pulled the blankets through the holes in the crate and tore them up.

-We give him treats when we put him in and sometimes give him a longer-lasting bone/rawhide to keep him occupied.

-We praise him when he’s in there.

-He gets toys to play with.

Now that the crate is in our room, I’m expecting it to get much better. But I don’t WANT him in our room forever. Our room is for sleeping and *wink wink* time and I don’t want a dog or a cat or (eventually) a baby to interrupt that. So…any tips for getting a dog to love it’s crate? Does it get better? (Everyone said it does and I’m beginning to think all of you assholes were LYING TO ME!) (Sorry, I didn’t mean to call you assholes. Ok maybe I did. But I say it with love!) And seriously, how the HELL does anyone handle cry-it-out when it’s a human baby??

Ok one more Frankie pic because I just love him:

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How I’m really feeling

I want to preface this by saying I am really, truly very happy we bought a house. It’s a great house and I can’t wait to make it our home where we raise a family. We have a yard (for a soon-to-be-adopted puppy!) and tons of space to make our own. So again, I repeat, I am happy.

Having said that…I’m also incredibly sad to leave where we currently live. I’m not necessarily sad to leave our apartment, although it has treated us very well for the last year and a half. What I’m having difficulty with is giving up the “city” lifestyle. Literally hundreds of bars, restaurants, and shops are in a 5-10 minute walking distance. I can’t even explain how much I love this luxury and how much I will miss it. Our new house is a short drive from “fun stuff” (short being a relative term since it takes at least 30 minutes, if not an hour, to get anywhere in the DC area), but it’s just not the same.

We targeted Bethesda as a place to move not only because it’s where Josh found a job, but because we wanted to have a similar lifestyle to what we had in college (minus the classes, homework, and 3 day binge-drinking weekends and plus a bit more disposable income and responsibility.) Bethesda was the perfect solution! We became a one car household, Josh was able to walk to work, and we had a damn good time exploring our new city and enjoying everything that came with it.

Now, we’re packing up and moving to the suburbs. To a great house, yes. In a great neighborhood, yes. And it *should* go without saying that I’m incredibly grateful and lucky that we can afford to buy a house and blah blah (because I can just hear some one saying “Oh poor her, moving to a nice big house. What a sad life.”) The point is, I’m growing up and I’m scared. I think what scares me the most is becoming the dreaded (to me) boring married couple? Josh and I are fun, outgoing, party people. We like to go out to dinner with friends, have drinks, maybe go dancing or just go to a bar after. Homebody isn’t a word I would use to describe either of us (and god help me if it ever is…) and I just don’t want this to mark the end of my fun years.

Get ready, Joe! We're movin' on up!

But there’s no turning back now and I don’t regret what we’re doing one bit. Here’s to the next chapter!

Since we’re all around the same age, how are you all handling growing up? And how the hell am I ever going to handle having a kid?

Posted in Bethesda, Emotional, House Stuff, Life | 12 Comments

House Update!!

By this time next week we’ll be living in our new home. Our new home that we bought. As in, we have a mortgage. That shit’s for LIFE, yo.

When I last talked about the house, we had just put in an offer. Long story short, they countered and we accepted their counter offer. The inspection went relatively well and they agreed to fix certain things that were broken and/or credit us to fix them ourselves.

A wrench was thrown into the whole thing when a house across the street in the same price range popped up on the market. From the pictures it was gorgeous inside and technically we could still get out of our contract. Upon seeing the other house, I fell in love with the updated kitchen and bathrooms and the overall “doneness” of the house. Our house has a lot of work that needs to be done and I’m just so worried about all of the time and money and decision-making it involves. This house was already done for us! It was perfect! Except it wasn’t. The yard wasn’t ideal (it had a very steep slope and no fence) and the kitchen work was actually quite poorly done. After a mini nervous breakdown (and by “mini” I really mean I sobbed for a good 20-30 minutes) we decided to continue on with our house. It was really the best decision for us and I’m happy. 🙂

Signing wasn’t as painful as everyone told me it would be and we’ve slowly been moving things over for the last week. Our official big move is this Sunday!

I really want to post pictures of the house, but I think I’m going to wait until our stuff is in there. Just wait until you see some of the fun ‘lil things the previous owners left us. Let me just say this: the 70s lasted more than one decade in their house.

Ok maybe just one.

(This photo is from the original listing, which I’m not going to link.)

Please note the moose head above the fireplace. It isn’t there anymore (darn) but it will forever haunt our home. Also, I want to paint the brick but Josh says no. Humph.

And yes, that’s a birdcage.

Posted in House Stuff | 20 Comments

A Very Pinterest Christmas: Food, Glorious Food!

I’m linking up with Amy of The Bookworm Wife to bring you festive holiday finds from everyone’s favorite obsession, Pinterest! 

If you’re anything like me you’ve procrastinated in pretty much every area of Christmas. Gift shopping, hall decking, meal (and outfit!) planning, cookie baking, card sending, etc. And if you’ve already finished all of this, well, I’m not sure we can be friends because clearly you’re just way too organized (I kid…kinda.) But now, with just over 2 weeks to go until the Big Day, it’s time to haul ass and get our shit together.

Today let’s talk about something very, very important to me: food. God help me, I freaking LOVE eating at Christmas. I love Thanksgiving, sure. But my mom always gets creative with food at Christmas and oh dear, it’s just really good. No boring turkey here (ok, turkey isn’t boring but we JUST HAD IT…no need for it again.) Plus, I feel like Christmas is all about baking and I’m not really a baker (although scroll down to the end for some amazing sweets) so I wanted to highlight the savory side of Christmas cooking.

Here are some recipes I found (via Pinterest, of course) that are sure to wow your family!


Stuffed Mushrooms. These things are a pain to make but so, so, so worth it.


Mini Caprese Salad on a Stick. I haven’t made these but I adore anything “mini.”


Deviled Eggs. But you’re only allowed to make these if you promise that you will never, ever, EVER put anything chunky in them. No pickle relish, no onions/shallots, no celery. Blech. If you do this, you are dead to me. However, you absolutely *should* top them w/ crushed red pepper instead of paprika. Just a tip from me to you. 🙂


Main Course

Roasted Lemon Garlic Shrimp. My mom makes a version of this but with butter instead of olive oil. I personally think butter is the way to go here, but I’m sure the olive oil is absolutely delicious as well. Serve with spaghetti! We typically eat seafood on Christmas Eve.


Rosemary-Rubbed Beef Tenderloin. It truly does not get any better than perfectly roasted medium rare beef tenderloin. Cooked properly you should be able to cut it with no more than a butter knife and it will melt in your mouth. Uuuggghhh so good. We usually serve beef on Christmas Day.

Source: via Emily on Pinterest



Brussels Sprouts with Pancetta. I’ve made these before according to the recipe and they were really good, but my mom made them a bit differently and she said they were AMAZING. Basically the only difference is you roast the sprouts before you shred them. So roast, shred, add to pancetta, die of happiness.


Roasted Green Beans with Parmesan. Listen, I don’t like a lot of green foods. But properly cooked green beans? Are my JAM. They need to remain crisp and not mushy or bitter. This recipe is perfect as is. Make them now.


Roasted Potato Stacks. If you’re making the tenderloin, potatoes are a MUST. It’s like, a rule. These are perfect when you’re feeding a crowd. Everyone gets their own portion! Now I need a mandolin…Santa?


Dessert (I like the idea of offering lots of little things for dessert as opposed to a pie, cake or cheesecake. Although I’ll take any of those as well.)

Chocolate Pecan Pie Bars. I mean, these actually exist. And they’re legal (as far as I know.) I’m for SURE making these for Christmas. And New Year’s Eve. And my birthday (February 19th.) And President’s Day. And Martin Luther King Jr. Day. And…do I need to go on?

Source: via Emily on Pinterest


White Chocolate Peppermint. Apparently I need a candy thermometer to make fudge? Ok then, add that to my Christmas list.


Cinnamon Swirled Gingerbread Bars with Toffee Chips. Gingerbread is one of those quintessential tastes and smells of the holiday season. Combined with cinnamon swirly goodness and toffee chips? Die.


What are your favorite Christmas meals? Have you found any amazing recipes via Pinterest? Oh, and follow me on there. 🙂

Posted in Christmas, Uncategorized | 9 Comments

The exciting (and mildly terrifying) next steps


Right. So the post I published yesterday about house hunting was actually written 10 days ago. Apparently, a LOT can happen in 10 days when you’re house hunting!

Last Sunday we had appointments to see 3 houses. The first and third were fine, livable, but nothing that made me go, “Oh! I like it!” The second one, however, did catch my eye.

(Taken from the listing, which I’m not going to link.)

From the pictures, I wasn’t crazy about the the outside but I thought the rest of the pictures showed an interesting house. When we drove up and I saw the house in person, I changed my tune quite a bit. It was pretty much the first house (out of probably 10 we’ve seen) that made me go “I don’t hate this! I actually think I really like it!” Josh was shocked and hopeful. But I knew the inside would be the real test.

I’m not ready to reveal those pictures yet, but I will say the inside is very nice. There are things I would like to change, but I think that’s inevitable with any house. The bones of the house are good, the lot itself is perfect for us, and it’s in a great location (only 5-10 minutes from some very close friends!!) Walking through the house I got a really good feeling and could start to see myself living there.

That was Sunday.

By Monday I’d sufficiently freaked myself out. Things were moving so fast, numbers were being thrown around, and it seemed as if decisions were being made without me. Not good. Not good at all. After thinking about it, I realized I’d seen the house with two boys (who are best friends) and what I really needed was to see the house with a girl. Luckily, our realtors, Mike and Rachel, are a husband and wife team. I emailed Rachel that night and made an appointment with her the following day to see the house again.

Cue big sigh of relief. Not only did I still like the house, but I also felt much (MUCH) better after talking about decorating and “girly things” with her.

Soooo after really thinking about it, talking it over with Josh, my mom, his parents, his sister, and my grandma and THEN talking about it with Josh even more (clearly my decision-making skills need a bit of work), we’ve decided to put in an offer!!

That’s all you get for now…updates to come!

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So there’s something I haven’t told you…

**Originally written 11/8/11 in anticipation of making this announcement on the blog at a later date.

Now that we’ve told our families, I can finally announce that Josh and I are officially….


Ha, you thought I was gonna say “pregnant” didn’t you?

Josh and I haven’t talked about this with anyone except a few close friends (who also just bought a house in the DC-area), our friends who are realtors, our parents, and his sister. I’m the kind of person who wants to have as much information about something like this before putting it out there. I want to be able to answer any questions that come my way

It started back in late August when Josh sent me a link to a house he thought I’d like. (Well, it actually started months before that when we had our friend who is a realtor set us up with a search that met our criteria, but that was originally just for fun. But I digress.) Turns out, I loved the house from the pictures! It had a lot of charm on the outside and inside, hardwood floors (very important to me) and best of all, a red front door! We picked a day to see the house, along with a few others that caught our eye.

Since the little graphic up there says house “hunters” and not house “owners” you can probably guess that none of the houses we saw that day worked out. But it did make us think a little more seriously about home ownership. We’re not aggressively looking and we’re not going to open houses every weekend, but we’ve met with a mortgage lender who gave us really great advice AND told us what we could afford. Our realtor also showed us a few homes last week (again, none that made us want to put in an offer) which helped us further define our “wish list.” I’m excited to see where this process takes us in the next 3/6/9/12 months!

Current and former house hunters: any tips??

Posted in Uncategorized | 10 Comments

Oh, hey there!

Well. This is awkward.

I never intended to stop blogging for 5+ months. I even have a few half-finished posts I probably could have mustered up the energy to complete. But instead…yeah I just kinda gave up.


What had happened was event season got crazy, I took on a new role at work, my free time and weekends became non-existent and when I *did* have time to write, it was the last thing I wanted to do. I know I could have kept up with it if I’d made it a priority. But for me, spending time with my husband and my friends always comes before spending time blogging.

HOWEVER! I think I’m back. I can’t make any promises since the holidays are fast approaching and, well, I sometimes get overwhelmed this time of year. Hopefully I can get back on track and resume entertaining the masses (aka my 20 or so readers.)

So, what have I been up to the last few months?

We saw Kenny Chesney at Fed Ex Field for Josh's birthday

We went wine tasting in Virginia wine country

We traveled back to Ohio for Josh's cousin's wedding

Then we traveled to Ohio AGAIN to "rough it" in Hocking Hills

We spent a few days down in the OBX

We watched two of our closest "Maryland" friends tie the knot (and do the Hora!)

And I coordinated an EFF-TON of weddings (22 from May 1-Oct 31, to be exact)

If you read the caption in the last photo you’ll see how many weddings I did this summer. TWENTY-TWO. Good lord, I’m exhausted just thinking about it. I learned a lot in the last few months…but that’s another post for another day, my friends. 🙂

So, if you’ll have me, I’d like to consider this my “I’m back” post.

But in the infamous words of one Mr. LL Cool J…


Don’t call it a comeback. 🙂

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It’s no secret that I super duper pink puffy heart my blog buddies. I mean seriously, did you see the post about our DC meet-up? Good times, my friends, gooooood times.

Today I’m taking part in Blog Buddy Appreciation Day.

(Sweet badge thingy, KJ!)

I couldn’t do it last year because I was on my honeymoon, so I’m really excited to do it this year. Basically you talk about your blog buddies and how super sweet they are. I can do that! Of course, I love all of my blog buddies equally and if I could write a paragraph for each of you I would. But that would take, like, a long time. And it’s time I don’t really have right now. I know you understand. 🙂

The first blog buddy I want to highlight is Steph from Forget Me (Not).

Steph and I have become good friends not only online but also in real life. She’s one of the first real friends I made in DC and for that I am eternally grateful. Not only do Steph and I get along swimmingly, but Scot (her fiance) and Josh get along as well! It’s hard to make “couple” friends (especially *new* couple friends in a new city) so knowing that we can call up Steph AND Scot makes me really happy. Thanks for being such a fun, loving, and fun-loving blog buddy AND real-life buddy. 🙂

The other buddy I want to give some lovin’ to is Amy from The Bookworm Wife. (I don’t have a picture w/ her but someday I hope to meet her!) Amy and I followed each other’s wedding journeys and from there a friendship grew. I probably shouldn’t admit this, but Amy and I are not only blog buddies but also rant buddies. We DM each other on Twitter and just bitch. It’s nice to have some one who will listen to the each others silly rants that come up during the day. Plus she just seems like such a *real* person, if that makes sense. And I like that. A lot.

Did you participate in BBAD?

Posted in BBAD, Bloggers | 9 Comments