Goodbye 2014, You Were Great.

The very last day of 2014 is here so quickly. I can’t believe all the things that have happened in the last year, and all of the new memories I have made. So many things have happened over the past 12 months, and I feel so incredibly blessed to have had such a great year. Thank you to all of my readers friends that have followed along, I can’t wait to see what you are all up to in the New Year! One of my favorite things to do is look back on each adventure made this year, so here are some of my favorites!

January- Kicked off 2014 with Skiing on New Years Day. This was such a fun trip and a great way to prepare me for March!

February- I turned 23. This was a bummer because I wanted to be 22 forever, but now I will just be Feelin’ 22 for the rest of my life! I spent my birthday with some great friends in Atlantic City, we had a blast!

March- First trip to Colorado! Skiing in Breckenridge was amazing and now I am itching to get back out there on the slopes. It was a huge learning experience to get on real powder and it will be great to continue to get better.

April-

May-

June-

July- We got Engaged! The 4th of July was such a perfect day and I still get teary eyed thinking about how amazing it was. I can’t believe in less than 6 months I get to marry my best friend!

August- Dave officially moved in! He had been staying here very often, but we finally moved all of his stuff into my our house. I love living with my best friend! We also asked all of our bridal party this month!

September- Jamaica! We had such a wonderful trip with two of our best friends. I can’t wait to take another all-inclusive vacation and relax on the beach with a constant drink in my hand.

October-

November- Dave turned 25! I can’t believe he is already a quarter century old. This next year should be a blast. We also took a trip to visit friends in North Carolina, what a quaint place to live…maybe someday!

December- The end of an amazing year. There have been many changes, most of which are improvements, and I am sure 2015 will be even better. I am sending 2014 off in style with my family, Dave and some friends.

Heres to all of the new memories to be made in 2015 including stealing Dave’s last name, traveling to 5 new countries, visiting my favorite US city (Austin), and many many new adventures.

Change For The Good

I have moved my blog from totravelandbeyond.wordpress.com to totravelandbeyond.com! If you have not received a reply from me for the last 2 weeks, it is because I was basically locked out of this account. Thankfully I had several posts scheduled!

Over the next few days everything should change over and this page will redirect to the new page.

To read todays post, click here.

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My Favorites {2014 Entertainment}

2014 has been a great year in the entertainment category. From new movies and TV shows to great music, I want to share some of my favorites from this past year. Some are older, but had a special place in this year or I just found out about them.

Favorite Movies

begin

Begin Again- I left the theatre feeling inspired and full of happiness. This movie had a wonderful story line and I loved each twist and turn along the way. It doesn’t hurt that Adam Levine is in it and looks pretty great.

Divergent- Girl power! This movie is everything I love in a story, and actually compared to the book, which never happens. My favorite part of the story was left out, but all in all this was a great movie. I am so excited for Insurgent in March!

Guardians of the Galaxy- This movie turned out to be nothing like I expected. I was laughing, crying, sitting on the edge of my seat and more throughout it all and I couldn’t have been more surprised. I normally love general Super Hero movies, but this one was more than that.

TFIOS

The Fault In Our Stars- Another book that somewhat compared to the movie. I cried my eyes out, but it was a great movie with a wonderful storyline. Having experienced a lot of the medical situations with my Uncle, it was very relatable yet heartbreaking.

The movie I wanted to love but didn’t- Mockingjay Part 1. I am obsessed with The Hunger Games series, but I really didn’t love it. It seemed like the movie was about 1/3 of the book instead of half of it. It easily could have been cut shorter and made into one movie.

Favorite (new and new to me) TV Shows

Gossip Girl- I don’t know what I did with my life before I started watching GG in the spring. Dave even got into it! I compare something to Blair, Chuck, or Serena daily and I still can’t believe the ending.

gotham

Gotham- This might be my favorite new show of the fall. The twists in Gotham keep me excited week after week to see what is next. I love the way the characters of Batman are subtle, and there is a whole new story line involved.

Parenthood- Another Netflix binge watch for me. We normally watch a 2-3 episodes a night. I don’t know what took me so long to start watching this show, but I love it. I can relate to a little piece of almost all of the characters, and the story lines are so real.

The Flash- I will admit, it took me several episodes to get into this one. Dave’s favorite show is Arrow, and I can’t stick with that one for the life of me, but I wanted to give The Flash a try. They reminded me of each other a lot at first, but now that I realize The Flash is supposed to be such a corny character, I really dig the story line.

Favorite Music

1989

1989- Taylor nailed this one. 95% of the songs are amazing and I haven’t stopped listening to all of them at least twice a day. I am also even more excited because I will be attending the 1989 World Tour in June!

Bastille- I am obsessed with this band. I saw them live in May and I may or may not have cried a little. They were amazing, and I love the mashups they have been putting out lately. It’s my dream to see them in Europe one day! This is further proven by the email I receivedScreen Shot 2014-12-10 at 11.47.33 AM from Spotify

 

What have you loved this year?

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Getting In The Christmas Spirit

Between getting our house ready and redecorating we have been exhausted. This past weekend was supposed to be about cleaning and finishing up our house, but that didn’t happen when we were invited to a Christmas party Saturday evening. Dave was smiling from ear to ear at the thought of a Christmas activity before he surgery, we went home, changed into some red and green, and then were off to drink Christmas sangria with some friends. It was a really nice break from all of the madness.

While we have had some major setbacks in our redecorating time before Dave’s parents arrive next Sunday, we found time to decorate for Christmas! I am so thankful for my family who made things much easier for us and have helped with painting, sanding, organizing, etc. There is still some more to be done, but isn’t there always? We will be working hard the rest of this week to finish everything before Friday night, when we are hosting a going away party for two of our great friends. I am probably crazy for doing this in the midst of everything, but I couldn’t help but offer. Parties, Christmas and friends, what is there to say no about?

I am excited to share some updates on our house later this week, but for now enjoy some pictures of our almost finished Christmas Tree! I say almost because I can not find the tree skirt we had last year, I may have to make a new one in my spare time.

christmas ornaments IMG_4474 IMG_4475 IMG_4492 IMG_4482

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December Hopes & Plans

Here we are, December 2nd.

24 days until Christmas.

30 days until 2015.

33 days until I start traveling again, meaning a lot to get done.

202 Days until our wedding.

Where has this year went? It truly has been one of the best years yet, but I will leave all of those details for my last post of the year in just 4 weeks! I have a long list of hopes & plans for this month, so hopefully some of you can help me stick to them!

December Hopes & plans

1. Decorate- I put up our stockings over the weekend, but that is about as far as I made it. I attempted to start the outside lights, but then realized I don’t know what I am doing and stopped. Dave will handle that sometime this week.

2. Finish Downstairs- I posted last week about Dave and I finally having both floors of our house. Hopefully, we can get all of the painting, refinishing, furnishing and decorating done before his parents come to stay with us during and after Dave’s surgery.

3. Christmas Shopping- I only have 3 out of 14 people marked off of my Christmas shopping list. Can you say last minute? I never wait this long to have everything purchased and wrapped, but this year has been a whirlwind.

4. Schedule Posts for post Surgery- I have some topics planned already, I just need to sit down and type them. I may or may not have finished some DIYs last week that I can’t wait to share!

5. Send Save The Dates- We finally placed our order yesterday after all of the back and forth choosing the photos. Since we will be sending these right around Christmas, we won’t be sending Christmas cards this year. I can’t wait for next years with our wedding photos though!

6. Update our Wedding Website- I have some really fancy ideas that I am hoping can come to life on our wedding page. Since Save The Date’s will be going out everyone will be looking at our page, it would be nice if it was clean and beautiful!

7. Drive Around to see Christmas Lights- Dave and I normally do this a few days before Christmas before he leaves for Buffalo with his family, but since he will be staying home yet unable to be in a car we are doing this early.

8. Bake Something!- Since getting out of Culinary school 5 years ago I haven’t had the urge to bake much, and I also haven’t had the time. I will be home a lot towards the end of the month, so Christmas cookies will need to happen!

9. Begin Marketing My Business- With traveling so much for my full time job, I haven’t been able to step my game up with my Wedding Planning business the last few months. I have a few consultations set for the beginning of the year, but I would love to start getting our name out there more.

10. Spend Time With Family and Friends- Now is the time of year to spend it with those near and dear to you. I want to have as much quality time with my friends over the next month as possible. It has been a great year and I have been blessed in so many ways, it’s time to end the year on a great note with more memories.

I am linking-up with Amanda from Marry Mint for Hopes & Plans!

The Upcoming Months

Before I get emotional over the next few months, or forget to post for an entire week I want to share something that is about to happen in my life that will cause some changes for a while. I don’t want to go to into detail but I will share a summary about what is going on.

On December 15th, Dave will be having open heart surgery for a condition he has had since he was born. We have been assured that everything will work out fine especially because he is so young, but it is still a scary experience. The procedure will begin in the early morning and will last a few hours if everything works out correctly.

Dave will remain in the hospital for about a week, and come home between the 21st and 23rd depending on his recovery. The doctors have suggested that he remain on bed rest for about a month, and then slowly start with very minimal activity such as working at a desk for a few hours, and going for walks. It will be a while before he is totally back to normal, but I am sure in time things will get worked out.

When it comes to being brave right now, Dave really takes the cake. He has had several surgeries before for multiple reasons but never something as serious as this, and he is handling it so well. There have been a few nights of tears and worries, especially when we found out about this back in February, but he realizes that it needs to happen and now is the time. I am so proud of him for overcoming any fear that he had, scheduling the surgery and doing everything he can to prepare for it.

While our families, friends and myself are all bracing to help him through all of this, it’s hard to think about the one person that you love the absolute most going through something so rough. It really has a helpless feeling along with it, but Dave’s bravery makes it that much easier.

I will be posting some updates throughout the surgery and recovery process, but for the most part I am going to try and stick with a normal schedule. All well wishes, prayers, good thoughts, etc are greatly appreciated ❤

 

We Are Expanding!

Last month I mentioned that something would be taking over several posts for the next few months. Now that it is totally official I can share the news that our house is expanding! I have lived on the top floor of a split level house since last summer and the amount of space was perfect. I had my bedroom, an extra room which is my closet, a very large living room and a good sized kitchen. When Dave moved in a few months ago it seemed like the space shrunk massively. We both just had too much stuff.

We knew that we didn’t want to move but something would have to be done. Lucky for us, our housemates on the lower floor had started talking about moving. The possibilities of having an entire house within the next year made our hearts happy and our Pinterest boards grow. We were hopeful that the move would happen next spring leaving us time to pay off wedding things, and then begin paying more for our house, but then we got a call that they were moving in a week!

One week to get together all of our funds to begin the process of furnishing, decorating and renting an entire floor more than what we currently had. We really didn’t think we would be able to get ourselves together and the landlord would have to rent to somebody else who would take over for another year. But Dave and I sat down, figured everything out, and we are doing it! The entire house has been all ours for 2 weeks now, and we began painting last week.

We have now added another living room, two bedrooms, laundry room, kitchen and bathroom to our floor plan and it feels great! We have so many ideas for each room, and I am so excited to have a room to keep wedding things and craft in for now. Once the wedding is over the room will turn into Dave’s man cave, but for now he is letting me take over.

The first room we are aiming to have finished is the living room which will be our office. I can’t wait to actually have a large and organized space to keep all of my stuff together and work from home when needed. I have been using a small desk and coffee table for over a year now. The second room we are finishing is the guest room. Dave’s parents will be staying with us for 3 weeks in December so hopefully we can have everything ready for them to use.

Here are some pictures of what the space looked like before we started making changes.

Guest Room

Guest Room

Living Room/Office

Living Room/Office

Wedding Room!

Wedding Room!

I can’t wait to begin sharing updates as we change each space!