Tuesday, August 20, 2013


you should totally read the title to the tune of this...

but instead of being a bartender...i'll be a goaltender.

cuz i've got goalz, yo.

since getting engaged (!!!) my brain has been non-stop...a pinball machine-style idea creator.

have you seen my wedding pinterest board?  my mind is constantly pinging around, dresses, vibe, food, venue, favors, candles, accommodations, etc.  i'm not worried or panicked that it won't turn out perfectly, because quite frankly, i know it will be perfect.  (my kinda perfect that is.)

well, in addition to planning the event itself, i've got some shit to take care of in terms of #sweatingforthewedding.

i've been working out and eating right (mostly) for 11 months.  i've lost over 30 pounds, gained strength and lost fat.  i'm wearing pants 3 sizes smaller than last year at this time...but now it's time to kick it in to high gear.

(if you're new around these parts, i joined kdr fitness last september and have shared my weight loss journey, recipes, goals, etc., here on the blog.  it helps to keep me motivated and if it helps even one of you join the journey or stay on track, than i've done by job.  feel free to go back and catch up -- the labels on the right sidebar will help you find 'weight loss' or 'recipes' or 'goals'....or whatever you're looking for, like 'handmade' projects....which have nothing to do with weight loss, but they're fun!)

kdr recently started offering a new membership, total body, which i signed up for.  it's a small group class structure, but it's like having a three personalized workouts that you do at the same time as others in the class.  i like the small group size and the personalized attention.  they offer 6 total body classes a week, but one falls on a day that's hard for me to get to the gym (in more ways than one):  monday.  but i'm available tuesday, wednesday, thursday, and friday (and sometimes saturday).  there's no reason i can't get there out of those 5 class offerings, plus the other classes they offer at different times as well.

so, goal #1:  work out at kdr 4x per week.

i've also signed up to do the diva dash in massachusetts on september 7th.  we have a group of over 15 women (from kdr and a few extra friends) heading down to complete the 5k dotted with "fun" obstacles.  no fire or mud, but there will be obstacles that test our balance, strength, and agility.  our group opted to participate in a non-competitive wave, mostly because we're in it to do it, not to win.  we're all excited for our little adventure and have had a few 'diva bootcamps' including running, jumping over objects, etc., just to get us prepared for the madness.

so, on to goal # 2:  sign up for more events.

{image via}

i'm clearly in a serious weight-loss mode right now, as i want to drop at least 2 more sizes before our big day...if not more.  i want to make sure my extra flub is gone.  i don't mind having 'soft curves', but a bulging belly ain't happenin' next june.  i'm re-committing (yes, again.) to staying serious, eating right (with minimal cheating), maintaining my food journal, and gettin' this shit done.

here's goal # 3:  be serious about food.

{view recipe here}
i love eating.  i do, it's my biggest weakness when it comes to my weight loss goals.  but, i've learned one really important thing in this journey:  you lose weight in the kitchen, you get fit in the gym.  i love healthy foods.  i really do.  i love fruits and veggies...but the thing that makes me drive myself crazy?  there are times in the afternoon when it's time for me to fuel my body with some food (a protein, fruit or veggie, and a fat), and i'd actually rather not eat than eat the food that i like that i know is good for me (and it's honestly food i really do like!).  i'll go without an apple, a cheese stick, and a small handful of almonds for no good reason.  and, of course, there are also times when i'm busy working and stopping for a snack is just not a priority.  well, it is a priority.  it's fuel for my body to keep working properly.  i know this.  i just need to do it.

so, again, because it's important, goal # 3:  be serious about food.

{view recipe here}

the last part of this goal-tending post is less about food and fitness and more about life...specifically, life as a bride-to-be.

goal # 4:  stay calm and organized.

i'm a planner.  i love knowing exactly what's going on in the coming days/weeks and it makes me better at everything else in my life because i'm forced to, well, plan ahead.  i have my erin condren life planner helping me every step of the way.  (check out the website here.)  my planner helps me take notes on what i've accomplished as well as what is left to do.  with a wedding to plan, i've also started using a binder to hold all things wedding.  i signed up on and printed out a checklist so i'll know what things i need to accomplish as the months progress.

i'm also slightly neurotic.  the down-to-earth side of me knows this is crazy (quite literally), but i like things to be 'just so', and when i know i can make it 'just so', i want it 'just so'.  and if it's not...well, i get eversoslightly neurotic.

i just need to remember that while i love working out all the details and making our wedding my most favorite day the end of the day...

even if candles don't stay lit or 
flowers wilt or 
my makeup runs or 
someone gets sick or 
the food isn't hot or
it rains...

none of it really compares to the reality of the day:  i'm marrying my best friend.

so...i've shared my 4 goals for the next 312 days (luckily, is counting.)...stay tuned for progress, inspiration, and all things #mikeandandrea!

Tuesday, August 6, 2013


i've never been more excited or overwhelmed to write a blog post.  

so, on saturday...this happened:

mike and i are officially engaged!!!!!

it was such an awesome and amazing proposal...i'm still overwhelmed with emotion just thinking about marrying my best friend and spending our lives together.  it's crazy.  crazy awesome.

now for the details...(i know how all you ladies are -- you want the deets!)

here's how my day started:  mike and i got up kinda early for a saturday as he was going to help my dad clean the seats on my parents' party barge.  i had work to do at my part time church job, but first i headed over to my friend sarah's apartment to feed her cat, birke.  sarah was off to maine to run a 10k (she killed it with a time UNDER an hour!) and birke needed some food and company.  i hung out there for awhile and then grabbed an iced coffee at dunkin' donuts on my way to church.  after a couple of hours at church, my work was done and i headed to my parents' house.  when i got there, mike's car was gone.  i was surprised he wasn't there, but when i checked my phone i had a missed call from him.  my dad said he had gone back to our place to grab his fishing and boating licenses he had left on the coffee table.  when i called him, mike was just heading down the driveway on his way back to the lake.  i hung out with my parents for a bit and they showed me how amazingly clean the boat was.  within a few minutes, mike arrived and we were ready for a day on the boat...just like we had done almost every weekend this summer.  ordinary summer day.  (or so i thought.)

we cruised around the lake until mike found a spot he wanted to drop the anchor so he could try to catch some fish.  (we've had terrible luck fishing in the lake this summer, but mike's pretty patient, so it's fun to hang out while mike plays fisherman.)  he cast out his line a few times and i noticed we seemed to be floating towards shore.  i said something and got behind the wheel to drive us toward the middle.  mike wasn't having it.  he got the anchor out of the lake and he was so nervous with me driving the boat (which i've done 185,019 times before, just never with mike, i always let him drive).  i let him take control and i took my sunbathing spot at the front of the boat.

"here's good, right?" mike asked.  i'm fine anywhere, so of course it was good to me!  he cast out his line a couple more times, but he just kept reeling it in.  (that's usually my style.  cast, reel, cast, reel.  mike's patient and lets it hang out for awhile before reeling in his line.)  finally, he had had enough of fishing.  he went towards the back of the boat and then came and sat in front of me.  

"i love you so much honey," he started saying.  it wasn't until he was down on one knee that i realized what was happening.

i don't remember everything he said word for word because it was such an emotional blur.  but, of course, when he asked, i said "YES!!!!!"

once we stopped hugging and kissing and screaming and staring at my ring...(i'll pause to show you a close-up)...

want another?  me too!

...then he told me the back story.

overwhelmed with information and emotion, a few weeks back mike went to my best friend's husband, jason, for assistance.  since jay had gone through this process before (and he's practically my brother) he was excited to share the experience with mike and do something special for me.  jason brought mike to his friend that's a jeweler that he had done business with before.  i had already found a ring design (on etsy) that i fell in love with.  (last fall i emailed it to mike with the subject 'momma likey' and i never looked at rings again.)  the jeweler made my dream ring a reality.

so, on saturday morning, just like he planned, mike got up to help dad clean the boat.  he, of course, also had an ulterior motive:  to chat with my parents about proposing to me and get their blessing.  after cleaning and talking (and obviously getting mom and dad's approval -- after shedding a few tears), mike's phone rang.  he thought it was gonna be me saying i was done at church and was heading over.  instead, much to mike's surprise -- it was the jeweler and the ring was ready to pick up!  (he wasn't expecting it for at least a few more days.)  he ran off to grab the ring a few miles away in hanover (where there was a street fest going on, so roads were closing and parking was a nightmare...he literally ran to get my ring before the store closed) and stop at home for his boating and fishing licenses and turned around to get back to the lake.  

'today's the day,' mike thought...after the serendipitous 'the ring is ready' call he received right after talking to my parents.

mike was a nervous wreck.  well, not nervous, just overwhelmed with emotion, anxiety, and excitement.  not to mention the fact that he'd been keeping a secret from me for weeks.  it all started to make so much sense as mike and i talked about all the behind-the-scenes stuff.  no wonder he didn't want me to drive the boat!  no wonder he was so impatient fishing!  no wonder he's been so uncharacteristically quiet lately!

saturday, august 3, 2013 is a day i will never, ever forget.  for over five years mike and i have known we wanted to be together forever.  for over five years we've casually talked about our future together.  for over five years we've lived, loved, and laughed together.  and on august 3rd, 2013...after five years, eight months, and one day of officially being together....after five years and three days of officially living together...he finally put a ring on it!

after sharing the amazing news with our parents and a few of my mom and dad's neighbors that happened to be around, i was chomping at the bit to get to my bffs.  we had dinner plans with marileigh & jason and sara & jeff.  after we arrived at the house, i got within a few feet of my two favorite girls in the world (who i consider my sisters, and their men, who i consider my brothers) and i couldn't hold it in another second!

"we're engaged!!!!!!!!!!" i squealed!  there was screaming and hugging and smiling and crying and everything in between.  i was over-the-moon excited to share this news with the people who mean the most to me in the world.  and their reactions were nothing short of amazing.

over the next day we spread the news throughout the rest of our families and friends, which was also totally awesome.  and now i'm sharing my kinda perfect proposal day here.

the love and support we have received over the last 48 hours is miraculous.  beautiful words, long embraces, and lots of screaming...i just can't believe my eyes every time i look at my beautiful ring.

here, you can look at it again.  (you know you want to.)

i could stare at it all day.  it's just so sparkly.  i just love it.  almost as much as i love michael.  it's funny, i used to prefer square (or emerald or princess or cushion) settings.  for some reason, round diamond settings never spoke to me.  until i saw this design.  the way the band swoops around the center just looks so beautiful and organic.  it certainly is my kinda perfect!

i'm so excited to share this news with you all!  we don't have any of the details figured out yet...but i'll definitely be oversharing as we set things up!

let the journey begin! 

p.s.  to anyone out there that has any advice...i'm all ears! =) 

i love you mike...more than words can ever express!!!!!

Friday, August 2, 2013

the rug.

you guys... seriously, i have the best readers!  over the past week, since this post about my new favorite game show, 'hollywood game night', i've received so many comments and emails!  in case you missed it or are new around these parts (welcome!), i'm 100% obsessed with the rug on that show. it's colorful, contemporary, and totally my style. the only problem: all of my internet searches came up with nada.

here's the pictures i shared last week...

{image via}

{image via}     {sorry it's so fuzzy, but you get the idea}

one thing that i deducted from all of your emails and comments? all of you agree -- the rug is fabulous.

well....guess what?  i have a new hero, laura.

late last night, i received an email, 'is this it?'

{image via}

hellyesthatistherug!!  i squealed with delight and then my delight turned to lust very quickly.  there is just one itty bitty problem: it's a tiiiiiiny bit out of my price range. (and by tiny, i mean that the rug will remain as a crush for the rest of my life because all of the sizes are comparable to buying a car.  oops.)

thanks to laura, if you have a bank account that accommodates five figure rugs, you're in luck: it's found here. it's called 'spectrum' and it is from 'the rug company'.

here, look at that gorgeous beast of a rug again.

i'm drooling.

the description on the website says it's a "contemporary hand-knotted designer rug' made of silk and wool.

my description?  me-oowwww.

at the bargain basement price of $172 per square foot, the spectrum rug will remain on my lust list for now ever, but it will also serve as inspiration for our future home.

luckily, another (anonymous) email revealed a very similar version, the 'rodeo drive' from 'safavieh (#rd644w).

{image via}

that's pretty darn gorgeous too. (i found it online for around $530 for a 9'x12.) it's good to know i'm not the only one loving these gorgeous, contemporary, color block rugs...and that there are more budget-friendly options out there!

thanks to the awesome interwebs, laura contacted me after recommending the rug to a client!  thanks for your email!  i'll be drooling over that rug for a long, long time.

so, there you go. one week later and the coveted rug is found. thanks to the rug company for making such a beautiful and inspirational rug!

happy friday!

p.s.  happy birthday to my bff today! =)

{disclosure:  i wasn't compensated in any way to blab about this rug.  i just love it, think it's gorgeous, and will dream about it for a long time.}

p.p.s.  hey hollywood game night set designers -- i'll totally take that rug off your hands when you're done shooting!  you know...if you wanna send a giant rug across the country. =)

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