Instead of a Mother’s Day gift guide or something of the sort here on our blog, I decided to do an open letter exchange with the most amazing women in my life and share it with you. These letters are personal and I hope they help you recognize the blessings a mother figure in your life has given you, and reflect on how he or she has played a role in the making of the person you’ve become today.
Whether written or spoken, words are so incredibly important. Things can often go unsaid, and I think we should all make an effort to vocalize these things, even if it seems totally random and out of left field. I hope that this post encourages each and every one of you to express your love and the value you see in the people close to you.
To my mom, Cheryl
There are so many things I’m grateful for in our relationship and having you as a mother.
Looking back on my life, I was incredibly blessed to grow up in a home where my words were heard and I was free to be myself, whoever that may have been. I have you (and Dad) and Angela to thank for that. I was encouraged to try new things, and to be open minded and accepting of others. I was taught to be independent and self sufficient, and that it’s okay to play by myself and do my own thing. I was shown how to be kind to others and the importance of helping those less fortunate, as well as how to ask for what I need too. I was taught to have thick skin, that there’s always room for growth and that it’s never too late to start something new.
Naturally as mother and daughter, you and I are alike in so many ways. I honestly see more of you in myself every day. We’re both fiercely independent, introverted, hardworking, go-getters in life and in the workplace, coordination very seriously, go-with-the-flow and the peacemakers in most situations. We’re even tempered and hard-to-shake, strong women.
As funny as it sounds, you’re my hype queen. You’re the first one to tell me I’m fully capable of doing anything and everything I want to do, and you’re the first person I call if I ever need a pep talk. I exit all of our conversations, even the quick ones, feeling so much more confident in myself and my abilities. You’ve helped me grow into a women that encourages others, walks confidently through life and pursues my passions without fear of failure.
You’re incredibly selfless and giving — more than anyone else I know. You’re sensitive to other’s needs and seem to somehow know what someone is in need of before they even realize it themselves. You show up and perform no matter what the occasion is or how you’re feeling, simply because you feel it’s important to the people around you. You’ll drop anything and everything to be there for someone you love. You’re motivational and encouraging, and always helping others get to where they want or need to be, whether it’s by means of tough love or a confidence boost.
Thank you so much for playing such a huge role in the woman I’ve become. From the bottom of my heart, thank you for always supporting me, showing me the way, encouraging me in everything I do and loving me whole heartedly. You are beautiful, kind, strong, selfless and so loving — I truly couldn’t be more blessed to have you not only as a mom, but as a friend and role model too.
Happy Mother’s Day to the best woman I know! I love you!
To my sister, Angela
I know no life without you in it. In the very beginning of my life, my first day here on this earth I was greeted with many smiling faces one of which was our family and, the other was yours. Even at the age of three you anxiously awaited my arrival and it wouldn’t be long until we became the very best of friends.
I’d like to say that we have a bond that is so unbreakable not even the jaws of steel could pull us apart but isn’t that what all sisters say? Our lives haven’t always been perfect we have had some hard spots in life but I can’t remember a single one that we faced alone.
Any humiliation that mom hadn’t already covered, you were happy to fill in. Y’all were an unparalleled parenting duo.
Thank you for helping raise the chaos that is me. Thank you for always being supportive of everything I do, including the things nobody else could understand. Thank you for being the most stable person in my life, an unwavering certainty in a highly unpredictable world.
Charlie is truly the luckiest baby to have you as a mother. I am so fortunate to watch you both grow into such amazing roles In each other’s lives. You are by far one the best people I know, and honored to call you my big sister.
On your official first Mother’s Day, I want to make sure you know that you are the heartbeat of this family, the glue that connects us all. Because of you, and who you are as a person, everything is just better in our life. Over and over again, I would always choose you to travel this very special journey. It’s you and I til the very end. My sister, beautiful best friend, and wonderful mother to Charlie Boy.
Happy Mamas Day Sissy!
To my Aunts, Ange + Debi
To a women who were mamas side kicks —
We all have someone in our lives that impact us in the best possible way, by setting a “good example,” standing up for them no matter what or always being there for you. That’s an Aunt
There are so many reasons to love you both but, thank you for being who you are, always. Thank you for being in my life. Thank you for being the sisters to my mama. For helping her. For supporting her. For supporting me and Ange. For loving our family. I love you more than I could ever express in a few hundred words or a blog post. But I figured this is a small start.
I hope to be the aunt you showed me to be. I look up to being the best version of myself to Charlie the way you were to me.
Always remember that in a world of grey, you are and will forever be a bright ray of sunshine’s. I love you and you will always hold a special place in my heart.
The Getaway House has only been around since 2015, but since then, they’ve expanded into locations outside of 15 major cities across the US. Currently, you can get away from:
San Antonio, TX
Los Angeles, CA
New York, NY
Pittsburg-Cleveland (where I went!)
Each location was specifically picked so that you can reach a Getaway within just a couple hours by car, making it easy to break away even if you only have one or two free nights to spare.
In terms of cleanliness, the cabins are each naturally socially distant, being at least 50-150 feet apart from one another. In between stays, the cabins are thoroughly cleaned. And, if you need anything during your stay, you can text or call the staff for assistance.
Your family, best friends, significant other, your pup, or even byyourself (!) – it’s an ideal way to unplug, exhale, and get away from the grind of everyday life, even if only for a night or two.
They generously offered my followers a promo code if y’all ever get the chance to experience this. At checkout use code: INOURSTYLE to get you some $$$ off!
I’ve been doing spray tans for years now! After knowing how damaging and unsafe the tanning beds were for my skin — I knew I needed to make the change for myself. I have never been happier and truly feel the most natural when getting my spray tans.
I’ve gone to numerous places and let me tell you, nobody and I mean NOBODY compares to Michelle at LIQUID GLAM. She customizes to your wants + needs and there’s nothing like having a human eye doing the work instead of a machine. She is very detailed and is so passionate about her business. I will NEVER trust anyone to do my tans again.
Here are some products and tips I use to help my body before and after my tans with Michelle. My custom tan lasts me 7-10 days!
BEFORE TAN —
Exfoliate entire body no more than 4 hours before appointment
TIP: When our skin gets wet, our pores open. If you tan right after… when your pours start to seal, your tanner gets stuck inside and it can cause tanning marks/streaks/etc.
Dry yourself off, but don’t apply lotion. Many lotions/oils block the color from absorbing into your skin.
You’ll feel dry and “not finished” but I promise it’s worth it!
–SPRAY TAN SERVICE HAPPENS –
Once your whole body has been sprayed… bring a change of loose fitting clothing to prevent any lining from the process. I usually end up sleeping in what I wear there.
I always throw on a sweatshirt, sweatpants, & fuzzy socks. I do this so that no skin is exposed and I can sit on my bed or on the couch and relax!
THE FOLLOWING DAY
Rinse off in the shower (after you’ve waited the proper time according what Michelle has told you!) I’ve done both a 8+ process time and a 2-4 hour time. Honestly the longer you let it sit, the darker and lasting it becomes. So I truly wait til the very last minute to rinse off.
TIP: I try to keep my post tan shower quick and not use TOO much or ANY body wash or sit under the water too long. The less you shower/ use body wash the longer your tan will last!
Now do yourself a favor and book yourself an appointment with Michelle. You won’t regret it 🤍
The pandemic has been mentally and physically hard. For literally everyone. How in just one whole year has drastically changed the way of life. Social distancing, lockdowns, the increasing death tolls, frightening news updates across social media, joblessness, money-crunch, loneliness, literally the list goes on and on and on.
There are days when it seems next to impossible to even wake up and do things. It’s that exhausting mentally. Personally, I felt and feel lost sometimes. Somedays I wake up thinking of doing certain tasks and I only end up looking at my window, not having any energy to even move a bit. Sometimes, I even feel my dreams and aspirations are blurring away because of the amount of time that passed just in one year.
But then I look at these two photos above and realize how much I have changed in just that time frame. FOR THE BETTER. So much to be grateful for and happy about. The strength between these two photos and the lessons I have learned along the way to find strength in hard times are as follows:
THE CONTINUATION OF LOVE
Being surrounded by hardships helped me realize to cherish the people in my life for who they are. Giving these people my whole, authentic self without the fear of not being good enough. Lean on the ones who love you unconditional.
HARDSHIPS ARE PART OF GROWING
During childhood the harsh reality of life is often sugar-coated; growing up really is a hard pill to swallow. Part of living and growing up is experiencing unexpected troubles in life. We hear things about people losing their job, getting sick, or someone being critically ill in the hospital These are situations that tamper with our emotions and can leave us feeling outraged, lost or helpless. This year especially taught me or all of us for that matter to grow and stay ever so strong.
CHERISH THE MOMENT
Take a walk. Remove yourself from the environment; get some air, it helps in taking a timeout. Spend your time wisely and take a pause that is long enough to appreciate life. Life is meant to be lived, deeply felt, and enjoyed. We have little control over most of the external circumstances, but what we do have control over is the way we react. Yesterday can never be brought back and tomorrow is truly never promised.
YOU’RE NOT YOUR PAST
The past does not define us. You’re not your past habits nor the story you used to tell yourself. The future is a clean slate to become who you wish to be. Not letting myself have fear of the unknown dictate how I choose to plan my future. You’re allowed to change your own internal narrative. You’re allowed to use the past as a stepping tool. I know I plan to reflect the time I used and didn’t for my future plans.
YOU’RE IN CHARGE OF YOUR FEELINGS
Feelings change, people change, and time – our greatest limited resource – just keeps ticking. You choose how you feel this very moment! You can hold onto past mistakes, or you can create your own happiness. You’re allowed to feel any feeling you want. That’s what makes us fucking human.
To each of our own, we all went through something we never imagined we would in a lifetime. But we did. And it’s something we’ll remember for the rest of our lives. I’m choosing to be grateful of the time I created. For overcoming the most challenging, terrifying and emotional year I can ever recall.
Be gentle with your feelings and remember you are human. Stay humble and be kind. 🤍
It’s do or dye. A crewneck tie dye for all. Sharing three UO’s Renewal Recycled Sweatshirts today 🖤
“Oversized sweatshirt recycled by Urban Renewal with a tie-dyed treatment. Relaxed crew neck sweatshirt with long sleeves and rib-knit banding at neck, cuffs + hem.”
These have been a staple in my quarantine days and have full intentions on wearing them FOREVER.
About Urban Renewal Recycled: – Up-cycled pieces re-imagined by our Urban Renewal team – Updated by hand in the US, so no two are exactly alike – You will receive a completely unique piece that will vary from the item pictured here
Comfort in style! They are the softest material inside. Shop all these crews in the LIKEtoKNOW.it app!
When you support a small business you’re supporting a DREAM
What better opportunity to than today to round up all of FAVORITE small business. From Make-Up Artist to Apparel to Food Favorites we’ve got it ALL, right here for you. Grab your coffee, and enjoy! In no particular order! 😉
1. ERIE APPAREL
From women apparel, to onesies for Charlie, bandanas for Arna and coffee mugs for morning brew, it doesn’t get much better than this. Erie Apparel and In Our Style have worked hand in hand the last few years and we are so grateful for all the AMAZING QUALITY merch they have. You will not regret one purchase.
Our sweet and dear friend Ariel just opened her own virtual custom shop! She is so talented and has made tshirts, sweatshirts, wreaths and more- most recently she’s made the most darling sample ornaments that are customizable, perfect to gift or purchase for yourself to decorate for the holiday season.
This is our go-to local coffee spot. Offering coffees, teas, breakfast, lunch, and more- everyone can find something they love! They sell bags of coffee beans and ground coffee which would make great gifts along with a gift certificate and a cute mug. The shop always features the most fun and festive seasonal beverages too and, most importantly, their patio is dog friendly!
Tina has been my go-to creative mind and hands for many years. She’s created some amazing custom items for my wedding, our new baby, and other memorable milestones in between. She’s always up for completing one of my projects and I appreciate her so much.
Besides delicious popcorn the staff at Popluck is equally sweet! They always have fun flavors and their sample sets make the perfect gift! We were recently surprised with a 6 pack of popcorn delivered right to our door via GrubHub in celebration of the new baby!Red Letter Hospitality: we’ve done multiple blog posts and giveaways featuring our favorite RLH restaurants like The Cork and Molly Brannigans. Gift certificates to these establishments make the perfect gift. Even during the pandemic shut down The Cork operated with a special menu for take-out orders that never disappointed!
We’ve done multiple blog posts and giveaways featuring our favorite RLH restaurants like The Cork and Molly Brannigans. Gift certificates to these establishments make the perfect gift. Even during the pandemic shut down The Cork operated with a special menu for take-out orders that never disappointed!
Helen has been a dear friend of ours for years. This summer during the pandemic she found a fun craft that has become a huge hit! Customizes canvases made of local beach glass and stones! We’ve purchased a handful of them and every time they get better and better.
We’ve known Morgan for years and she is truly one of the craftiest people we know. Anything we’ve requested her way, she blows our minds. From baked goods to matching earrings and bows for our fur babes. She is truly so talented and loves doing just about anything!
The best custom hand made jewelers! We love that these gals work so hard and immediately sell out EVERY launch release. It’s truly incredible! We’ve purchased a few of their fabulous earrings and have received so many compliments!
Amy is one of Allie’s clients in the salon. She has brought this amazing craft as a part time job for special occasion events and personal items! Each project is unique and two are never the same! Macrame is seriously an art itself and VERY time consuming. We LOVE how delicate and amazing her stuff is.
9 weeks ago today this little lady was born. One week ago we welcomed her mini goldendoodle self into our home. Andy and I did months of research on puppies. We wanted to make sure we knew as much as possible before adding our little addition.
We researched different breeds, breeders and also considered adoption. We were determined to train her well! By no means are we dog expert and have no education as a dog trainer, but I thought it would be helpful to share what has worked well for us this last week in hopes to help others! Here are a few tips that made Arna’s first week home a successful one.
When Arna entered our room, her crate was setup with the door open. Inside we had a crate pad and the blanket we had the breeder use to have Arnas mama snuggle with. She sat on that the car ride home and immediately felt safe when it was inside the crate. She is really learning to love her crate! We read that the closeness helps the puppy to adjust during their scary first days/weeks in their new home, so we decided to locate the crate in our bedroom. We have even covered the crate with a blanket to make it more closed off. We were persistent about anytime she took a nap, we would guide her into the crate to remind her this was her cave and it was a good space.
A puppy’s crate is supposed to be his safe place and her natural instincts should prevent them from having accidents in it. I totally understand that this is not the case for every pup! When we brought Arna home she weighed about 7lbs. The crate our friends, Emmy and Jesse generously gave to us, was big enough that she had enough room to turn around, but not enough room to play. Too much extra space in the crate may cause puppies to go potty on one side and sleep on the other. We always make sure her heart beat puppy 🐶 is in there with her every night. The crate should only be big enough for relaxing – not relaxing AND potty. Arna to this date has had ZERO accidents in her crate. Because what puppy or human wants to go potty in their bed. Nobody 🤣
TIP TWO: STICK TO A SCHEDULE. DAY + NIGHT
Arna came home on Saturday night and Andy and I both were able to stay home the following two days. After that, Andy had the full week to bond, train, walk, and snuggle…. a lot. Starting on the first night, she wake up every two hours to take her outside. Not because she wanted out but her little bladder was going to explode. When the business was done. We tried to not make that potty time a big deal but remind her she was such a good girl for letting us know. Returning her back to her crate with no problems. We chose this method because we wanted her to understand that night time is for sleeping and going potty – not playing. To this date she has slept almost 6 hours through the night and she’s up for good around 5-6AM
Patience is not my strongest venture. Andy on the other hand, has the patience of a saint. Bringing home a puppy is without a doubt hard, sometimes stressful exhausting and fun all at once. But she has made it so easy!!! I try to remember, Arna was taken from her mama and seven other siblings and then just placed in whole new world. We tried our hardest to make the transition easy and comfortable for her. It is going to take some time for her to learn, but she will learn. Everyday we are so proud of how much growth she’s done in just one week with us. She is so intelligent and smart. The simplest things like plopping her little butt down when we bring her food over, or she’s praised by coming on the couch or bed for a short time. She already knows basic commands like, “sit, down, shake, up, no thank you, potty, in your crate” If there’s a small piece of advice I can give to new fur owners is that Don’t lose hope! The calmer you are, the calmer the pup will be too. We give the breeder some credit of her behavior too. She has been such a blessing and a very quick learner. Yes she’s a puppy, and has her puppy moments but other than her puppy biting – she is truly perfect.
Hard to believe this beautiful little fluff has been 7 months in the making. Back in March, Andy and I were ready to add an addition to the “A team”
Today, our sweet Arna is an 8 weeks old mini golden doodle and is the most lovable angel we get to call ours.
We brought her home yesterday and we are head over heels in LOVE. She has adjusted so well to the changes and has the sweetest personality.
We are so excited to watch her grow, chew and snuggle through life and look forward to taking you with us in every adventure.
Some basic essentials I was suggested from friends, and others that were puppy “must haves” before bringing her home.
I HIGHLY RECOMMEND THIS GUY. It truly helped her sleep during the car ride home and last night without her sisters or mama. Since she was one of eight pups, she slept right next to it without hesitation. It has a battery operated heartbeat to help puppies transition and feel like they are still with their liter.
All essentials were from Amazon and will link each item below!