A Little More Joy

I had a solid few weeks where I was in a real slump. Don’t you hate that?




Pay student loans for eternity.

The eternal optimist inside of me wants none of that. I never want to be, nor am I going to be, the Negative Nancy in the room that sucks the fun out of everything.  Who would ever want to be that person? Sometimes you just need to sign up for a cupcake decorating class, let your creative juices flow, and recharge.

Lancaster Cupcake offers workshops that provide a step by step guide on how to decorate a themed cupcake. Lucky for us, the theme of the night was cacti and succulents-my love language. A solid hour and a half of pastel frosting, sticky fingers, and graham cracker crumbs was exactly the recipe that my heart needed. Corny, I know, but so true.

Sometimes finding a little more joy can be as simple as making a pretty cactus cupcake, lighting a new pumpkin spice candle, or walking the dog an extra 5 minutes.

Processed with VSCO with hb1 preset

Processed with VSCO with hb1 preset





My Wedding

I was definitely absent from blogging this past summer.

But I promise I had a good excuse – I GOT MARRIED! I am finally the ‘Happy Wife’ part of my blog!

I may have seemed like I had my life together throughout the planning process but the stress of wedding planning is real (especially if you are an introverted person who doesn’t like being the center of attention). It really does kind of take over your life and I totally would get hung up over wanting to please everyone.

Don’t get me wrong, there were parts that were so incredibly fun! We collaborated with our friends, Emily and Virginia, at Cork and Chambers who helped style our dream wedding and made us the cutest invitations that I am still obsessed with. We also became good friends with our photographer, Andrea. I found her on instagram (@andreadaugherty) about 3 years ago before Brian and I were even dating and I knew she would photograph my wedding one day!

Throughout the wedding process, my anxiety was at an all time high. I went through some changes with my full-time job and life in general that contributed to my nerves. But Brian was a trooper the entire time. I think he was worried I would walk down the aisle and make a sharp left into the woods. Just kidding (kind of). I had this fear that the dance floor would be empty, our outside wedding would be a rainy, muddy mess, and that my dress wouldn’t fit!

But I can safely say:

We had the one beautiful day in a two week span of thunderstorms.

Our dance floor was lit. I don’t know if I am young or cool enough to say lit but it was!

After 5 alterations, my dress fit perfectly and the mismatched bridesmaid dresses looked so dreamy.

Brian cried happy tears when I walked down the aisle and chose not to run into the woods.

And the most important thing, we had a cookie table and an ice cream truck!

It was just the very best day!




















Photos – Onethirtynine Photography

Florals and Paper Goods – Cork and Chambers

Venue – Historic Shady Lane



Pom Poms, Tassels, and Everything Nice

When my sister was little, my mom got her this green sweater covered in bright multicolor pom poms that almost looked like flowers. She hated it. I hated it. My mom (style icon Sue) loved it! Flash forward 20 years later and I have become my mother. I so wish I had that juvenile pom pom sweater for my nearly 30 year old self.

This season, I have really been attracted to all things pom pom and tassels. They are such a fun and darling detail that gets me excited for the beach, summer cookouts, and sitting on the porch until the sun goes down with a pineapple shandy in hand.

I’ve gathered together some of my favorite and affordable pom pom and tassel pieces including the super lightweight earrings pictured below!

Processed with VSCO with hb1 preset

Screen Shot 2018-05-01 at 8.27.12 AM

Bandana // Tote Bag // Keychain // Summer Emergency Kit // Straw Hat // Bracelets // Earrings // Basket // Clutch

Turkey Quinoa Bowls

I always feel so accomplished Sunday evening after a good meal prep session. For awhile, we were in a meal prep rut. We had made oh, so many salads and sandwiches and needed a change. These turkey quinoa bowls have been our go to lunch for the work week. They are incredibly easy to make (literally, just look at the instructions), nutritious, and pretty to look at!

What you will need:

1lb. ground turkey

1 tbsp oil for cooking

1 – 8oz package of quinoa

1 – 8oz can of corn

1 – 8oz can of black beans drained and rinsed

1 tomato diced

1 packet of taco seasoning

Toppings of your choice (cheese, salsa, sour cream, jalapeños)


  1. Cook quinoa according to package instructions
  2. While quinoa cooks, put oil in hot pan and brown your turkey
  3. When turkey is done cooking, add half a cup of water, taco seasoning, and mix
  4. Now that turkey and quinoa are done, you can plate! Start with your quinoa, add turkey, beans, corn, diced tomato, and any other fixings! I just sort of do spoonfuls of everything until I have the perfect ratio I like. This easily makes 4 or 5 lunches for me. Enjoy!

Processed with VSCO with hb1 preset

Oysters, Craft Beer, and History all at my Fingertips

Being engaged to a history teacher has certainly expanded my historical knowledge of Lancaster County and the surrounding areas. A tradition that I share with my family is going to the Dill’s Tavern for their yearly Oysterfest extravaganza! The Dill’s Tavern, located in York County, was built in 1794 by John Dill. During the 1800s, the Tavern flourished through wagon-making, wheelwright businesses, and it’s distillery. It has served as an important part of my life because my dad has spent the last several years doing antique building restoration on the premises. I have loved going to the tavern over the years and seeing it come to life and finding old antiques that used to sit on the shelves at my parent’s house now atop the mantle in the parlor room. My dad was “just borrowing them” I suppose.

The tavern can now be rented out for casual or historical events. They conduct First Fridays, beer and whiskey tastings, music festivals, and archeological investigations. Through holding these investigations, there has been one item recovered that far surpasses the rest: oyster shells. Historians have found that oysters were traded from Baltimore for items in the distillery. Thus, Oysterfest was born.

I may not be a history buff, but I can rattle off a few facts about the Dill’s Tavern thanks to my dad and our annual oyster and craft beer spectacle. Plus, I think I earned some cool fiancé points from Brian.



FAC1CCF1-CF37-41B8-A6C1-A42152B4D4E5 2.jpg




Top // Jean Jacket // Pants // Sunnies // Earrings // Booties


Give me Gingham

Gingham is not just for picnic blankets. It is one of those classic prints that I find myself drawn to. I have had the same navy and white gingham top for the past 5 years that still manages to fit into my outfit rotation on a regular basis. I’ve noticed a great deal of gingham popping up this season in tops, bottoms, bags, swimsuits, and pretty much every other article of clothing. Here are some affordable pieces I’ve found including the adorable dress I am wearing!

Side note: I also had included a different straw hat that was incredibly cute only to realize it was for 6 month olds. I am a child at heart.

Processed with VSCO with f2 preset



Top // Skimmer Pants // Dress // Bandana // Hat // Mules // Slides // Shades // Mug // Clutch

What’s your Work Style?

I am such a homebody. My perfect night is coming home from work, putting on comfy (yet stylish) sweatpants, busting out the copper mugs for Moscow mules, and watching Leslie Knope save the world. Don’t get me wrong, I love dressing up and trying the latest farm to table restaurant that pops in Lancaster and going to see musicals at the Fulton Theatre, but I am just as happy curled up on the couch with my fiancé and puppy.

As I’ve started doing more freelance work and writing over the last couple of months, I realized a few facts about myself:

  1. No matter if I am working from home or working from a local coffee shop, I have to get myself together. I feel better when I am freshly showered, wearing clothing I feel confident in, and have my sparkly notebook from the dollar section of Target in hand. Some people can totally roll out of bed and get work done (power to them) but I am not one of those people. When I’m feeling good, my work, attitude, and productivity improve.
  2. I find comfort and motivation working in the presence of others. I think this is why I like going to coffee shops so much. I don’t directly have to talk or really interact with anyone but I like looking around feeling connected to the woman sipping her latte that is almost too pretty to drink and the man searching for the perfect seat that has an outlet nearby so he can charge his laptop.
  3. This may seem like a no brainer, but I’ve been so much more productive when I have made a schedule and allotted time for certain projects. I am not a conventionally organized person so this is probably harder for me than it should be. It has really helped me plan and be efficient with my work and life in general.

Today, I am enjoying my work day from Copper Cup Coffee. I am feeling in my element with my iced coffee, coffee cake muffin, and the table of girls sitting next to me instagramming their breakfast sandwiches with no shame. My people.

Processed with VSCO with f2 preset

Processed with VSCO with f2 preset

Processed with VSCO with f2 preset

Give me some of that Ruby Red

I am absolutely 100% someone that eats with my eyes. These dark chocolate covered grapefruit pieces sprinkled in seasalt are (almost) too pretty to eat. They are the ultimate combination of sweet and sour and salty! Dazzle your friends with this ruby red snack to match your ruby red lipstick! Bonus: super easy cleanup!

What you will need:

Grapefruit (or an orange!)

Dark chocolate melts



  1. Peel your grapefruit into segments just like you would peel an orange
  2. Microwave your chocolate in 15 second intervals and stir until smooth
  3. Dip your grapefruit pieces into chocolate and sprinkle with seasalt
  4. Let harden and enjoy!

Processed with VSCO with f2 preset

Processed with VSCO with f2 preset

Processed with VSCO with f2 preset

Processed with VSCO with f2 preset

Processed with VSCO with f2 preset

Off to the Market

One of my favorite Saturday morning rituals is grabbing the canvas tote and heading to the market! Lancaster Central Market is the oldest, steadily running public farmer’s market in the country. It is always my go to place when someone is visiting and I want to show them around the city. There is something magical about walking up and down the aisles, fresh coffee in hand,  and seeing vibrant, colorful produce, every kind of cheese, copious amounts of Lebanon bologna (my favorite), and the best rosemary olive oil bread you could imagine! Our mission at the market today was gathering ingredients for a real crowd pleaser: BLT sandwiches.

Easier said than done.

Just kidding. Brian and I actually did a really good job (high five, Brian!) and did not get too off course of our initial shopping list. After getting our iced coffee at the first stand of the day, Mean Cup, we did a walk through of the entire market. The sense of community radiates through each aisle, featuring all of the delicious food and diversity that Lancaster has to offer. From the smiling man selling flavored pickles to the jolly produce lady asking us our plans for Easter, I cannot help but leave the market will a full heart and full tote bag. Here are some of my finds:

Iced coffee from Mean Cup

Applewood smoked bacon from Lancaster Farmhouse

Rosemary Olive Oil Bread from Thom’s Bread

Spring mix and tomatoes from Meck’s Produce

Pineapple and turmeric muffin from Ric’s Bread

I also built my own flower bouquet at Inspirational Blossoms Flower Stand. The person in line behind me liked my little arrangement so much that she had them make the exact same bouquet for her!

Processed with VSCO with f2 preset

Processed with VSCO with f2 preset

Processed with VSCO with f2 preset

Processed with VSCO with f2 preset

Processed with VSCO with f2 preset

Processed with VSCO with f2 preset

Processed with VSCO with f2 preset

Get my look:

Top– J.Crew Factory

Jean Jacket– J.Crew Factory

Pants– Loft

Shoes– Nordstrom Rack

Avocado Black Bean Brownies

Cue Waitress Soundtrack:

I love baking. It is kind of therapeutic for me. Something comes over me when I bust out my KitchenAid Mixer. There is satisfaction that comes with throwing a bunch of ingredients together and making a delightful creation-especially when that delightful creation is your own!

I am all about the “Treat Yoself” motto. I do not have a huge sweet tooth (more of a Doritos kind of gal) but who doesn’t love a warm, gooey brownie? This is not your typical brownie recipe. These are flourless for all of the gluten free people in your life and contain beans and avocado. Not only are you enjoying a decadent brownie, but you are enjoying a decadent brownie chock full of fiber and healthy fats! So no guilt if you’re having seconds (or thirds!).

Processed with VSCO with f2 preset

What you will need:

15 oz can of black beans (drained and rinsed)

½ a ripe avocado

3 eggs

3 tablespoons coconut oil

A few drops of vanilla extract

½ teaspoon baking powder

½ cup sugar

¼ cup dark cocoa powder

¼ cup honey

½ teaspoon sea salt

½ cup dark chocolate chips (or nuts or coconut-you do you!)



  1. Preheat oven to 350℉
  2. Put your beans and avocado in a food processor and pulse until it is mashed up (I tried to mash them with a fork and it was way easier in the processor)
  3. Mix your wet ingredients
  4. Mix your dry ingredients in separate bowl minus chocolate chips or whatever add on you chose!
  5. Mix everything together and fold in chocolate chips
  6. Pour into greased pan and bake 30-35 minutes or until you can insert a toothpick in the center and it comes out clean
  7. Let cool before cutting and enjoy!


Processed with VSCO with f2 preset