1 Year

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Anniversary Langham

This last year has practically zoomed by. We spent our honeymoon in Italy, took more weekend trips than we ever have, we both changed jobs, and all of the life things that happen in between absolutely happened in between…and somehow, June 21st was here again and we have been married for a year. Wow.

We celebrated our wedding reception at The Langham Chicago so we returned this past weekend to enjoy a place that has so many happy memories for us. The morning of our wedding, we went swimming, just the two of us and it sounds silly but doing a few laps in that gorgeous pool after our couples massage on Saturday just reminded me of the sheer togetherness, the team-ness of being married. It’s you and me, me and you and my goodness do I love being with that man.

Also wonderful- we received the nicest well wishes from friends and family celebrating our anniversary. Being our first, I didn’t know people did that and it was so…kind. So so so kind. A friend sent a bottle of champagne to the hotel, my parents sent chocolate covered strawberries,and I brought the cards we were sent to open in our room at the hotel. It was a beautiful reminder that the people who supported and celebrated us a year ago still do and still are.

Oh and it rained on Saturday night! During the cocktail hour of our reception, the sky opened up and it poured poured poured. I remember looking at the Wrigley Building and the river through the hard downpour and then back at all of our friends and family clutching glasses of bubbly, thinking that this was the only place on the planet I wanted to be. This year, we had just opened the bottle of prosecco and were biting into the strawberries when we looked out the window to see a similar scene. Watching lightening hit the rods atop the Sear Tower, I felt the same way- this was the only place on the planet I wanted to be.

I also felt that way when this insane spread was rolled into our room for breakfast- the Langham is a complete dream.

langham breakfast

So here’s to another year of the celebrations, the rain and always know that regardless, there is nowhere on the planet I would rather be.

love | nothing matters more.

Wedding Week: Little Touches

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You know those dinner parties you go to or when you’re a house guest and your hosts just make you feel so at home and thought of? That’s how I wanted our wedding to feel like, with little touches that were a nod to our city, our relationship and our guests…without going overboard (Like the day I came home and told Ryan I was going to make — on our back porch, mind you — champagne buckets out of ice for our wedding.). Here are some things I did that I think fit the bill and were super easy.

Signage: I am in love with everything Lindsay Letters and her lettering is such a nice touch to wedding decor. It felt tailored to our day but without the finding an artist/deciding what to say hassle/being super expensive aspect. The above print is sold out but I love the “love never fails” print and of course, the vows print would be perfect too. We put the “Toast!” print on the bar and will absolutely be bringing it out for when we host parties at our house!

Place cards: Chicago was obviously a huge part of our wedding aesthetic (the view from the reception was absolutely the star of the show!) and we wanted it to pop up in subtle ways. Etsy can be a rabbit hole of wedding everything but I found place cards with the skyline on them that I loved and were just a little nod to our hometown. They have tons of other city options too- the cable cars would be the cutest for a San Francisco wedding!

Cake: We were going to have cake anyways so we thought incorporating the skyline would be a good way to continue our Chicago-style wedding vibe. Elysia, of Elysia Root Cakes, is a sugar genius and the second I mentioned maybe, could we, would it be possible…she was saying yes and adding the skyline to her sketch of our cake.

Candles: Since we didn’t use a wedding planner, anything we were adding to the reception space needed to be done by us the day-of and I got a little overwhelmed whenever I would look at wedding blogs with so.many.things. decorating a reception. One word for you: candles. There is nothing more romantic or mood setting or easier than candles. Mix and match glass containers, we stuck to clear glass because we were anti-color for our wedding, but just get as many votives, tapers, and pillar candles as you can and light them. Boom. Done.

Flip Flops: For as much thought and money goes into wedding favors, when was the last time you went to a wedding and 1) remembered to take the favor home with you, 2) ever used it? Right. I have, however, been to a million weddings where I have refused to bring a change of shoes because I am determined to dance the night away in my stilettos and then am in massive foot pain by 9pm. So instead of favors, I picked up flip flops for our guests and put them in a basket to be passed out as soon as the dancing began. Old Navy always has online sales so they ended up being super cheap- way less than I would have spent on an ornament or wine stopper with our faces on it.

Mints: Okay, this one is a bit ridiculous but a majority of our guests have mentioned loving them so I have to…Mr & Mrs mints. It was my sole cheesy Amazon wedding purchase but they were oddly good and we set them on the bar and the bowl was empty by the end of the night. Best 8 bucks I have ever spent. Update: FedEx came while I was writing this and my husband ordered more of these mints. We are going to be eating Mr & Mrs mints forever…





One Month

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It’s been a month since Ryan and I got married and said our sacred vows in front of the housekeeper.


Our ceremony was beautiful and in this beautiful chapel downtown that just takes my breath away. Our officiant was a lovely woman who tended to forget things. Like our marriage certificate. And having us say the vows we wrote.

The morning of our wedding, we went for a swim and to the spa at The Langham for a little down time. I can’t say enough how important this was- we started the day calm, relaxed, and together. I sat in a heated chair reading Vanity Fair for 30 minutes. Amazing. So when the things that inevitably come up, came up (late flowers, hair taking longer than planned), there was no stress or drama around my reaction- it was what it was and would be fine. Which it will be. Always.

We were in our suite preparing to go our separate ways when Ryan got nervous about the vows and requested we go over them. So we recited our vows to each other while wearing hotel robes, barefoot, and while the super sweet housekeeper was straightening up the room for the day. She came out from the bedroom to this scene, the only time I cried all day, and exclaimed “you two are so cute!”. An unexpected moment but one I will remember for all of my days.

So those were our self-written wedding vows. To have and to hold and to support golf hobbies and green juice and morning walks and never forgetting that loving each other is the very best thing we do. They never saw the inside of that chapel and a month later, I still wouldn’t have it any other way. We’ve never done perfection well but love…we’ve got that one down.

The Time the Cubs Won A Game

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The day before our wedding, we took all of our guests to a Cubs game. Part of why we had such an intimate wedding was so we could do things like that- we love our city and giving our guests a full Chicago experience was high on our priority list!

After a some bloody Mary’s and sangria at our condo, our party o’30 walked over to Wrigley and settled in for what turned out to be an awesome game. Home runs! Bases loaded! Actual points being scored! Cubs win!

It’s safe to say that I have not been to many games like that.

I was going through the last bag of wedding things this evening when I found the above newspaper clipping. My parents saved the paper from our wedding day that had the Cubs score on it. Such a momento, for so many reasons.

Sigh. Family love.

Chicago love.

Cubs love.


Wedding Week

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An “enjoy your wedding week” bouquet from A New Leaf c/o my boss was the loveliest surprise to come home to yesterday. I am pretty sure they are the most beautiful flowers I have ever seen. Hydrangeas and peonies and roses and calla lilies, oh my!

I have been overwhelmed this week by the kindness of others. Every card and call and text…it’s kept me so grounded in what this week is and it’s not to-do lists. It’s celebration and people and love.

And now, flowers.

An Un-Shower Shower

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I was pretty against having a bridal shower.

Ryan and I aren’t 23 (spoiler alert) and have lived together for almost 3 years; the idea of a party designed to help us “set up house” didn’t feel quite right. And God help me with the shower games. The idea of being quizzed on how well I know Ryan gives me an anxiety attack just thinking about it and being stared at while opening gifts sort of does the same.

But my mom’s friends kept asking her how we were going to celebrate so my mom talked me into a luncheon with no mention of “bridal” on the invite. Celebration luncheon. A champagne celebration luncheon. I could do that. I wanted to do that.

Moral of the story: let the people who love you do nice things for you.

It was the most wonderful day. Women who have been influential in my life came together for bite sized food and mimosas and bellinis. It was so wonderful to see everyone, thank them for the mark they’ve made in my life and acknowledge that I am getting married and that is a really exciting thing.

Oh and guess what? I opened gifts and it was fine. It didn’t make me nervous, probably because I had known everyone in the room since I had a perm and I was so touched by the generosity and thoughtfulness of everyone who came.

Bubbly and dessert with people you love, all before 2pm? It was the best day.

Also- the Garrett’s Popcorn favors were a hit! It makes me happy to think that people enjoyed a bit of Chicago after they left.

Peace, love and desserts with tiny spoons,


Tea Time

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The wedding has become an excuse to do all sorts of lovely things and on Saturday afternoon, that lovely thing was Tiffin at The Langham. Apparently, the Langham invented high tea in London and let me tell you, they know what they’re doing across the pond too.

Tea, bubbly, savory treats, decadent desserts, a man going to town on the white baby grand. Seated by the window, I asked twice why the curtains were drawn, I didn’t want to miss such a beautiful riverfront view. I should have held my horses because the curtains are suddenly drawn back once the piano begins!

The drama of it all!

Most importantly, my mom and I spent wonderful time together, gabbing about all things wedding and family and future and…it was lovely.

Just like the Tiffin.



Sweet Season

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It was freezing (again) today. It was a hands in my pockets, head down sort of walk. I looked up and found myself on the block of the church where we are getting married. The door to the chapel was wide open so I ducked inside. It was warm and entirely empty.

We passed the 5 month countdown mark this week and despite my huge knit hat jammed over my ears and my winter coat that resembles a sleeping bag on, it hit me that I am getting married here. As I walked down the aisle to light a candle and say a prayer, I realized that my Dad and then Ryan will be by my side the next time. My favorite people in the world, the people who have supported us and been there with us in our relationship these last 5 years will be in those pews. Whoa.

I lit a candle and sat a few rows back for I don’t know how long. I thought about a lot of things but most of all, I thought about how sweet this season is and how I am going to soak up every last drop with gratitude.

And when I went back outside, it wasn’t so cold anymore.