Here’s to a new chapter.

I left my best friend in Ohio.

Is that a dramatic statement? Yes. Are we surprised? No.

It has been five days since we moved my brother into the University of Akron, and this is a family shift that I am still getting used to. Yes, he is only three and a half hours away, but he is not home. When I moved away to college [30 mins away, but still], I didn’t realize how much of an impact this was on the rest of my family, simply because I was not there. I was on my own, busy, walking along this new path of life. But now that the roles are reversed, I see what my Mom was talking about for all those years.

The relationship that my brother and I have is one unlike many I’ve seen. I don’t know if it has to do with how close our family is or how far apart in age we are, but whatever it is, it is something that I am thankful for. Because we are so close, it makes the loss of him not being around 24/7 that much greater. I know it’s only been a few days, but I’ve already caught myself about to text him asking if he would want my leftover lunch, or if he wanted to run with me to the store later.

Although he is states away, he has talked to me every single day since he’s been gone, which makes me feel still so involved in his life when he fills me in on everything going on, and makes me feel like he isn’t out of town. Little things like this have already made the difference.

Today is his first day of college classes, whereas it is the last first day of college I will ever have in my lifetime [shoutout to grad school almost being over!!]. I am so overwhelmingly proud and excited for him.

Unpacking all of his things and setting up his dorm took away any ounce of sadness that I felt. In fact, it made me want to go back to undergrad, moving away, myself, because I remember that feeling. I remember the excitement I felt to be on my own, away from home, ready to start this new chapter in my life. Remembering this makes me feel like a total mom, because I am so excited that he gets to experience all of these things, too.

So, little bro, kick ass. Kill it. Good luck. Can’t wait to hear about your new adventure. xoxo.

21034585_10211275810465914_2534829403861507068_n

 

Splish, splash.

 

owWI1Scv

I am currently packing for a mini-semi-staycation though these next couple days, and I am racking my brain thinking about what to bring to a day to the beach, what clothes to wear to work, etc. etc. The normal, everyday stresses, really. When thinking of what to bring to Canandaigua tomorrow for a beach day with my family and boyfriend, I am trying to rack my brain about what I brought last week to the splash park in Erie which then spiraled my mind into thinking, *holy crap I never blogged about this day trip* so, here we are.

Eight days ago, my family took a day-cation down to Erie, PA. This trip all came about after the rain [go figure] ruined our plans to go to Darien Lake, a local amusement park,  for the day. We chose Erie because it is home to Splash Lagoon, an indoor family water park that would get us out of the rain while still packing on the fun.

MwwvGs06

I had not been there since my 8th grade class trip [10 years ago…], so I was somewhat excited to get back there and see if it lived up to my adolescent hype. On this particular day, the Friday before the 4th of July, we were expecting this place to be booming with people, squishing us into the park like sardines. But, what we got was the exact opposite! There were people there, yes, but not enough to make you want to lose your mind.

Erie, PA is about two hours-ish from my house, but it’s like a whole other world down there. That little city has so many things that we, in Buffalo, do not have such as Steak and Shake, Chick-fil-A, Krispy Creme, tax free shopping, rustic beaches, and so forth. So being there for the day was fun and I left full.

By late afternoon, the sun came out so we drove down to Presque Isle State Park, home of the most gorgeous, rustic beaches I’ve seen. Plus, there even was a mini lighthouse! The state park literally has ten beaches you can go to, like what?! On the way there, we drove through the cutest little town, a water park, and an amusement park that had a rollercoaster that went over top of the roads underneath. Crazy.

All in all, it was a great day trip and I am more than excited to get away tomorrow and go to the beach on my last day of summer before school starts on Monday.

What are some of your favorite places to go for a day-cation? xoxo.

Adventures.

ikea7

For the last week and a half, Jon kept telling me he had an adventure planned for us. The catch? He wouldn’t share where we were going or what we were doing – just to be at his house on Saturday [yesterday] at 8:00am. The master planner that I am, I sat stressing out the entire week wondering what the heck was going to happen, where we were going, what I had to wear, etc.

So, yesterday I followed suit. I showed up at 8:00am and we were on our merry way. I sat in the car with the clock ticking, ticking, ticking, ticking. Having absolutely no idea where the heck I was or what direction we were even headed [no shock here]. He had nothing plugged into the GPS. No clues whatsoever. This adventure was totally outside of my comfort zone, and I totally loved it.

Much to my surprise, a few hours later, we were in Pittsburgh! The last time I was there was probably 7-ish years ago for a hockey tournament with my family, and it was Jon’s first time, so this was very exciting. So, here we are driving around, exploring the city and in the back of my mind I am still left wondering, why here?

And then, I saw it ahead of me I was freaking going to IKEA!! I have wanted to go here for honestly over 5 years and, being the wannabe  homeowner / crazy Pinterester that I am, my soul was LIVING. My entire Pinterest collection and many of my dreams were coming to life before my eyeballs [minus the whole ‘having a house thing’ but WHO CARES?!?]. I kid you not, this was the best 3 hours ever spent, solely because I was in this store. I am still reeling in this moment over 24 hours later. Yes, I am a loser. No, I don’t care! The final purchases? We got a new desk, a new dresser, and some odds and ends like towels, plants, mugs, bowls, etc.

ikea.jpg

[Also on this adventure were trips to Jersey Mike’s, Primanti Bros., and the Grove City Outlets]. I am so lucky to be with someone who is always spoiling me, surprising me, and going on endless adventures with me. xoxo.