Bliss: Wine Bar

Last week I had a big night out–I went to a book club/wine night!  For some it may sound super dorky, but I honestly was looking forward to it so much and it was way better than I had even anticipated.

I have lots of gals who love to read in my life and one who lives local started a little “Book Therapy” Facebook Group.  We don’t have to read the same books, but when we do read, we share the books we love and can chat about them etc.

A new swanky little wine and dessert bar opened recently, and the owners are SO sweet, down to earth and just adorable.  I could tell they put so much time, effort, energy and thought into all of the details of Bliss.  (It helps that I love the name, since it was my maiden name!!)

The wife came up with the idea to have a little book club at the bar, and this was their second meet-up.  She asks trivia questions and there are even prizes to be won!!

I had literally just bought my copy of this book, Elin Hilderbrand’s The Perfect Couple, so it was simply meant to be.  The book, in my opinion, was an excellent Summer read!! It had mystery, love, and lots of characters to help you get lost in the story line.  I won’t give away anything, but if you love a good chick lit mixed with a “who done it” vibe, grab yourself a copy and enjoy!

I reached out to a few my girls and a good book & some wine were all we needed to hear!  I realized as I was driving there, how little of this kind of thing I do for myself.  I’ll workout, I’ll go on date nights with Joe, I will do my hair/nails etc.  However, I do not spend nearly any time hanging out with other mamas/women and talking about something I love so much–reading!

For $25 we got to choose a glass of wine, (I went with the rosé), a small plate (I did the pizza) and a dessert (chocolate all the way!)  How fun is this?!

The cauliflower crust was something I wanted to try, as it’s all the rage, and it was SO good.  I love pizza and this legit curbed my craving. Artichokes, broccoli, herbs…amazing!  I was hungry so I actually finished the whole thing! It very much reminded me of a thin crust pizza.

The desserts both looked to die for– I had a hard time choosing which to indulge in, but I went with the chocolate.  I could barely eat half, I was so stuffed from dinner!

The atmosphere is so chic and cozy!  Dark walls, funky light fixtures and cool sculptures create such a cool vibe.  I think it will make an excellent retreat come Winter months! I can totally see myself and my hubby curling up in a corner booth with some red wine, or even meeting some girlfriends out for some snacks and drinks.

I can’t wait until the next “Book Club” meeting! Not only was the place itself fabulous, but allowing all of us readers to indulge in ‘dorky’ conversation about all the books we have read, plus one particular book was so fun.  We all had our phones out taking notes and taking screen shots of what we should read next, where to find the best deals/free books and how some books are just so whacky!

Being a former English teacher, I was right in my element and had so much fun discussing literary elements, character development and basic plot summaries.

More than the book discussion though, it was the female bonding time.  I know, I know I probably sound super cheesy, but seriously!  All of us feel like, “The worst mom ever.”  We all are so hard on ourselves and live in our own little bubbles…but here, we can air out our frustrations of motherhood and this beautifully crazy thing called parenting!  We lifted each other up and gave support, we shared how sometimes we give cereal for lunch or pull the takeout card too often, and inspired one another to maybe give a little bit more.  Isn’t that what it’s about?  It was also so crazy to hear how a mom of a 15 year old girl feels, vs the current state of being a mom to littles.  I know that all too soon, it won’t be cool to sit outside with me by a campfire, so I’ll take the ‘being pecked to death by chickens’ as much as I can for now. (with some more breaks like going to Bliss mixed in!)

If you are in or near Rochester, certainly take the time and check out Bliss!!  I will be retuning for the Cava bubbly–one of my FAVES!  Oh, and I will definitely be utilizing UBER so I can enjoy more than one glass of these amazing wines.

Cheers!

Happy 8 Years to Us!

It has been a crazy fantastic and wild ride, these last 8 years!!  We have been tested, pushed to our limits, had our fair share of frustrations…but isn’t that what makes the good parts so good?  No one said life would be easy.  Marriage is just as much work as everything else in life.  Parenting. Jobs. Being healthy. Being happy.  Choosing to give your best and do the right thing, even when you may not want to.

I will be as transparent as I can, and say that year 7 was undoubtedly the toughest year.  We added a business and with that, our daily routines changed, my role as ‘homemaker turned business woman’ really took off.  I struggle daily trying to find the balance of 1950’s housewife (which I LOVE!) and being an entrepreneur (which I also LOVE!)

I will tell you one of my secrets; just don’t quit.  I will rest, I will cry if needed, I will sulk momentarily, or throw myself a quick pity party, but then I get right back up and fight for my purpose.  I fell in love with my husband 10 years ago, silly kids back then.  At 26 I thought I knew it all.

At 36, I can tell you I know nothing!! haha

I know enough, but I don’t know it all.

I know that it’s important to compromise in a marriage, for it to work.

I know that communication is key.  Blabbing to others about problems will do nothing, unless you learn to work them out together.

I know that at the end of the day, we are both tired and exhausted, but to go the extra mile and make a fresh warm meal is what my husband needs.

I know that date nights and carving out KID FREE time somehow almost every day is essential to us.

I know that the more that I focus on my husband’s good qualities vs any negative, that is what I will get more of.  (he taught me that) No one is perfect, we are human and we are bound to annoy the crap out of each other, but look past the imperfections…like the laundry outside of the hamper, or the toilet paper that needs to be put back on the roll.

I know that putting away the iPhones, ipads, laptops, etc for a little awhile refreshes us and allows us to talk freely without distractions.

I know that one day, when the kids are grown and out of the house, and the dogs are really old, or perhaps no longer with us, we will still have each other.  That is why I work as hard on my marriage, if not more, than I do at anything else.

As for our anniversary?  We got some amazing news that our perc test passed at the land!!

To celebrate 8 years, we went to one of favorite spots, Pane Vino.

It was nice and warm, the sun was still out and we enjoyed an outside table.

 

I love this restaurant right on the river.

Lobster French!!

He gave me a super sweet card with a champagne bottle and inside said let’s celebrate…

After dinner he drove to the little beach we love and presented me with a gift of champagne flutes!! I still had not caught on what he was doing…

It was a moment later I noticed the Yeti cooler with a bottle of Rosé champagne and our beach blanket.

To say that I was surprised, is an understatement.

It was by far the sweetest gift he (or anyone really!) has given me!  Aside from the fact that he completely surprised me, just hanging out on the beach with my best friend, sipping on some fine ass bubbly and listening to some tunes…was pure bliss!

At the end of our days, if you have found someone whom your soul can connect, thrive, grow and love infinitely, only to create tiny humans who will grow big and find true loves of their own…that is the most precious gift.

That and to never take our health for granted.

 

Cheers to 8 years and here’s to many many more baby!

Thank you for loving me at my best and loving me even more at my worst.  For showing me what it means to trust, to honor and have faith that everything will be okay.  You continue to teach me to relax, even if it’s the hardest thing I struggle with.

You are my rock, my best friend, my sunshine on a cloudy day.  Thank you for choosing me to be your wife.

And I thought I loved you then…

Birthday Wishlist

With July comes another year around the sun! I love my birthday and always have. There’s something about being born into this earth that seems so special to me.

I know a lot of people, especially ladies don’t like to tell their age or get upset about turning older…but I love it! Sure wrinkles and sore joints are not always fun, but I truly look at each year as it’s own gift.

I also have been wishing for a few things so I figured I’d share what’s on my list!

1. Candles

I’m obsessed with Bath and Body Works candles. I like Yankee too but man oh man, some of these smell soooo good! With two dogs as much as I clean, I can’t stand the smell of dog when you walk into a house. I feel like these help?!

2. Sleep mask

I got a free one awhile back with some VS pajamas. I have been wearing it more now that the sun is up so early, and it does help me sleep “in” until 6:30! #momlife #puppylife

3. Magnolia Table

I fell in love with The Magnolia story and the Gaines family. I related so much to them and love their core life values. I’ve been eyeing this cookbook since it came out and have heard nothing but great things about the recipes!

4. Journals

I feel like these are always on my lists…but I love them and use them all the time! From keeping notes to actually journaling, I believe everyone could use a journal.

5. Notepads

Magnetic or not, I could use some more cute notepads! Lists are what keep me (sort of) sane and I’m always jotting down things we need from the store or notes to the Sitter.

6. Good Bubbly

This was on my list last year, and it was that good it needed to be back on this year! I love a good dry rosé bubbly. I can’t drink cheap wine. If I’m going to indulge I want it to be worth it.

Kid Free Weekend

We didn’t get a break from puppy training, but we are so grateful that my dad and stepmom took the kiddos Friday til Sunday.  It was Ugly Disco time and we had not had a kid free weekend since Joe’s 40th Birthday up at the Ritz in Toronto!  We were a little excited to reconnect, enjoy some delicious food & get our boogie on!

We hit up our favorite restaurant in the city, The Revelry.  We ordered our drinks at the bar; Joe’s favorite is the East Ender & I was super excited that they had brought back Rosé! We dined upstairs and had some fantastic oysters! They were so good, we ordered seconds.  We also tried the Corn Gnocchi –TO DIE FOR! Joe always orders the duck and this time I went with the butter poached lobster tail.  It was out of this world–black truffle sauce–the thought of it is making my mouth water at this very moment…it is that good.

I felt like wearing some snazzy Gita tassels with my LBD.

The next day we hit up a late brunch at McCann’s Local Meats.  We’ve had lunch here several times, and we always see photos of the Saturday brunch.  Since we had no plans, we knew we’d try it out after seeing it on Facebook. If you’re local and love meats, you’ve got to try it out.

I am a sucker for Eggs Benedict, and this was so savory, and creamy.  It was the perfect mix of sweet and salty and the ham had an incredible flavor.

Joe had the buttermilk pancakes, and I may have had more than just a few bites.  I couldn’t believe how good they were!

 

We went for a nice quiet drive, which has always been our thing.  Car rides are a great way to connect, talk and really hear what the other person is saying.  It’s not easy when our 3 and 5 year old are always chattering; life with littles is super tough sometimes.  That’s why moments like this and weekends like these are really special but also necessary.

He said I was weird, but I love this profile view of him. Something about the collar and his smile; it gets me every time!  I hope you know how happy you make me baby.  I love being in your passenger seat.

We cruised over to our land and talked about where the house will be, how far over the barn will go and how much dirt we’ll need.

I tried to take a quick disco nap but the new pup was barking non stop. (Probably because she slept on me while I zoned out on the couch.

After my attempt at napping, Joe ordered sushi takeout and then it was time to get ready!  I bought this outfit last year and I felt no need to buy anything new. I used as much curling spray, hair spry and glitter I could get my hands on!

Joe loves channeling his inner Rick James and bounces those curls all night long.  We have gone to the Ugly Disco quite a few times now, I actually want to say this was number 7? It’s for a great cause and we love supporting the Golissano Children’s Hospital.  Why would you not want to dress up in 70’s garb and boogie all night?!

The real stash and sideburns were a real treat!

I just felt like playing around with my iphone filters…haha

I was really playing around with my diet before this so I think I may share what I did to get into “disco dress” shape.  I by no means work out 7 days a week for hours on end, nor do I only eat salad.  I believe in the 80/20 rule and have started to dabble in some intermittent fasting. Anyone want to hear more about that?

My other #1 trick is get a good SPRAY TAN!  I went to Glow Sunless Tanning. The girl did a great job and their organic solution was awesome.  I’m also thinking of doing a blog post on how to prep/what to expect from a spray tan. (I was nervous before my very first one!)

Had to snap a selfie of me and my boa! I mean really, how often can you rock a boa?!  We danced til midnight or so, grabbed an Uber and totally hit up Steve T Hots for a Garbage Plate.  We have not done that in YEARS…so bad for you but oh so good.  Never heard of a garbage plate? Check it out… 

Sunday we had a late start, I took a nap (GLORIOUS!) and we drove out to get the kids.  We missed them and they had a great time, so it was happiness all around.  I knew I’d be in no shape or have zero desire to cook.   I also knew after all of the eating and drinking, we would just want simple: enter chicken in a slow cooker.

My attempt at being healthy once again: brussel sprouts.

I know that I’m barely making the “Monday cut off” deadline that is in my head for blogging.  It’s 11:03 and I’m about ready to hit publish.

I legitimately had zero time for myself (other than a quick shower!) from the moment my eyes opened until about 25 minutes ago.  I desperately needed that kid free weekend, more than I really knew.

Yesterday I could have done the dishes, washed, dried, folded laundry.  Grocery shopped. Blogged. Cleaned up all of the mess that is a home filled with dogs and children, but instead?  Instead I took that little nap on the couch with both dogs.  Something I’m not sure I’d ever be able to do if kids were here, because they’re usually on me!  That gave me so much determination and push to just keep going today.

And tomorrow? I’ve got a whole lot of new stuff going on and I am excited and nervous all at the same time.

 

Weekending {With a new Pup}

Oh my gosh; a new puppy is so fun but man oh man, it’s kinda impossible to get back into a groove or routine!! I hate excuses, but I will admit blogging is always the first to drop when life gets hectic…oh well. I’m here today!

Wednesday I took little man to Starbucks after dropping off Brooke to preschool.  He was so good!! Spidey of course came with us.  We just needed to break out for a bit and take a break from puppy time! Haha

Thursday the kids came up from the playroom with this whole setup.  They said it was my birthday and we had to sit down and enjoy tea and cake.  You better believe I stopped myself from whatever “busyness” I had going on and let them sing Happy Birthday to me.

I will say that this book has helped me SO much.  I cannot say enough good things about it.  I would love to go in depth, but I’ll save that for another time.  Oprah reads it herself so it’s an excellent audible!

 

 

These two have started to really bond!

Sunday we had a little Birthday party to attend; she won 1000 tickets!!  The kids had so much fun and it was from 10-12 which was the perfect time.

Sunday afternoon I made a yummy pasta with sausage and paired this delicious Cab Franc with it.

PS Target has some SUPER cute pajamas out now! I am always in Joe’s pants or ratty old shirts, so I picked myself up a cute top and some shorts…because I know it will be warm soon!

I have to say that my husband knows me better than I know myself too.  I told him I needed some “time” but couldn’t even explain what I needed time for–so Sunday afternoon he told me go to Target… we needed a few things and I really did need some alone time.  It’s crazy as a mom, we just give and give and give…and give some more.

I can’t explain why I need my alone time but I do.  And I know that I need more than just an hour at the gym.  Sometimes I feel bad for that, but then I realize that if my cup is empty, I cannot pour from it.  So thank you babe, for pushing me outta the house yesterday and giving me some time!

I do adore this little furball. She may keep me (and the rest of us!) on our toes for now, but she fits right in perfectly.

I cannot believe we have had her for a week!

She certainly bites, so we all are very careful–she has SO many toys!  She’s an angel when she sleeps, so most of the kids’ kisses happen when she’s not awake.

In random news…

I swear this “WTF” weather app is the best! I have to just laugh at our weather lately. I think it will warm up tomorrow though!