Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Guest Blogger: Poptart Yogini

Last week, (when I thought I would be living it up on Mexican beaches--go here if you are wondering why I'm not there), I asked a few bloggers to guest post for me and I'm really excited to have poptart yogini as one of them!!


hi all!!  i'm the poptart yogini  and i'm so
thrilled to be guest posting for erin while she's soaking up the
mexican sun.  when i first volunteered to guest post i felt a little
intimidated regarding what to write about.  erin gave me some
suggestions and i finally settled on posting about the wollersheim
winery in prairie du sac, wisconsin.  
it is near the wisconsin dells.  here's why this place is so special to me:

my husband, king louie (his favorite disney movie is the jungle book)
and i decided to officially become a couple on thanksgiving day 2006.
we'd known each other for a long time at that point but i consider our
first date to be the wollersheim winery.  we went there on
thanksgiving friday.  king louie's family had been going to
wollersheim for years and he was excited to share the winery with me.
while wollersheim is near the wisconsin dells, it is not in the
wisconsin dells.  king louie lived in milwaukee at the time and as we
made the trip to the winery it began to snow.  wollersheim is in a
picture postcard town that looked like a Christmas village as we
approached.  i wish i could share a picture but i had no idea i would
be blogging about this trip as an old married lady some five and a
half years later.

not our original visit but there is snow on the ground and no grapes

we took the tour and learned about how the land was settled in the
1840's by a hungarian immigrant because it reminded him of where he
grew grapes at home. 

 the cave in the picture above is where one of the previous winemakers
used to store the wine barrels and before they built any outlying
buildings they even lived in it.  here the grapes are in full swing.

the wollersheims bought the land in 1972 and wanted to restore it to a
family run vineyard.  their daughter along with her husband, a
frenchman (always smart to have a someone named philippe help run your
vineyeard), run the winery today.  source
 the property looks
a bit different than it did with one lonely cave:

isn't there always a gift shop?

here are a few more sights of the vineyards:

and the most important part:

sitting around and getting yummy

our day at the wollersheim winery was such a magical way to start our
relationship.  on our ride home king louie drove so carefully in the
snow and tried to distract from the fact that it was hunting season.
i'm a suburban girl who isn't used to seeing bambis tied to trucks.
we even established 'our gas station'.  he bought me a diet pepsi and
a york peppermint patty.  the true way to this girl's heart.

his family loves that we love wollersheim.  they even incorporated it
into my bridal shower.  they gave us two bottles of wollersheim wine
signed by philippe:

i guess you'll have to trust me that they're signed

so, i thank you so much for taking the time to learn about this
special place.  if you ever find yourself in the vicinity of the
wisconsin dells and thirsty, i highly recommend stopping by.

and a thank you  to erin for allowing me to share her blog.  have a
wonderful day!

~poptart yogini~

Monday, May 28, 2012

Guest Post: Kim from Pink, Pearls and Polka Dots!

Last week, (when I thought I would be living it up on Mexican beaches--go here if you are wondering why I'm not there), I asked a few bloggers to guest post for me and I'm really excited to have Kim from Pink, Pearls and Polka Dots as one of them! :) Thanks Kim!!


Hi! I am Kim from Pink, Pearls and Polka Dots! I am SO excited to be doing a guest spot for Erin while she heads off to beautiful Mexico! I’m definitely a tad bit jealous too :)

In the spirit of vacations I thought I would chat about my all time favorite vacation destination. This is a vacation I took a couple of years back to Napa Valley California on my honeymoon!

Now I could talk about the hotel (we stayed at the Napa Valley Lodge and it was really nice),

And I could talk about the super cute red convertible mustang we rented to drive up to Napa from San Fran….

But what I really want to talk to you about the vineyards and the wine. I mean that is why you go to Napa Valley, right?!

My husband and I are not big drinkers by any means, and we definitely aren’t wine experts either. But let me tell you, you don’t need to be either because Napa is just beautiful, fun to drive around and explore. The shops are great, the restaurants are delicious, the hotels are all beautiful, and to just drive by miles of vineyard after vineyard is just gorgeous!

Here were our top three places we checked out!

Our first stop on a winery list was Sterling Vineyards. I heard this is one of the best to start with, and it surely was! The drive into the winery was gorgeous. The little road was just lined with trees and grape vines. Then the only way to get up to the winery is an arial tram because this place is up really high with spectacular views! Once you get up there you go through a tour of their winemaking process which was really interesting and cool.  Then you finish up with a roof top tasting with panoramic views of the area. Ummmm yea…it was amazing!!!


Our next stop was pretty spectacular too.

Welcome to Castello di Amorosa. This place is gorgeous! A huge beautiful castle! We did the self guided tour, got to wander around the castle and explore.  And then finished up our tour with a tasting the basement. But it wasn’t your typical basement…it was a castle basement. It was chilly, all stone walls, it was dark and mysterious. Just overall very cool and an experience I will remember forever.



AND…it was the best wines I tasted while in Napa! Check this place out if you ever go!
(And, if you’re a fan, a past season of the Bachelor taped an episode there too!)

My next favorite place. Beringer. I was excited to go here because you can actually buy their wine in liquor stores anywhere. And I believe it is one of the oldest wineries in the area. Beringer goes back to the 1800’s….but you don’t really need a history lesson, now do you!? Beringer was also the best tour of all the wineries we hit too. We got taste wine right out of the barrels, check out the “wine caves” where their wine is aging and being stored, and then tour finished with a tasting of some really fabulous wines (these people generous!). And like everything in the Napa area…this place was gorgeous and the grounds were just amazing.



 My top two favorite wines that I tasted and learned about while visiting Napa were Moscato and Gewurztraminer (say that 3 times fast!). They are both considered dessert wines, but to me they are just light, sweet, and fruity goodness! They sell them in various brands at whatever your local store may be, so if you like something light and sweet for the summer, I suggest chilling a bottle of  one of these. One brand I really enjoyed while visiting the Napa area was Sutter Home. Another one you can get almost anywhere…and for a great price too. They have a vineyard in the area and a great little shop to do tastings. We stopped there too and got a wealth of info before heading out to the big fancy places.

Please, please, please check out the Napa area if you ever get the chance! It was a wonderful experience, one I would love to revisit again when our baby (or babies someday!) are grown! I think this vacation is suitable for a variety of ages, a family trip, just your girlfriends, or a couple.

Talking about this makes me itch for another vacation!! Thank you Erin for letting me do a guest post and I hope you are having an absolutely fabulous time in Mexico!!!


things just don't go as planned! :( I was all ready (super excited!) to go gallivanting around the beaches of the Riviera Maya in Mexico with a few of my friends this weekend until.....

Friday afternoon, about 3:00-ish. I was walking down the hallway in my school when my walking cast boot slipped a little and my foot slightly twisted. It hurt at the time, but since it hurts most of the time anyway, I didn't think too much of it.

Fast forward 3 hours: Instead of getting ready for my last-date-with-the-boyfriend-before-I-leave dinner, I'm sitting on my bed, with my ankle absolutely throbbing and realizing that since I can't put any weight on it, I might want to get it checked out....and a sinking feeling about my flight early the next morning and a 5-day international trip started to hit me.

Several teary phone calls later, the boyfriend and I made the trek to the emergency room to get my ankle looked at....on Friday evening...on Memorial Day weekend...in a busy, crowded  hospital waiting room...ugh! That was one of the most crowded hospital waiting rooms I've been in and unfortunately, I've been in a lot.

A few hours later, I was told I had re-sprained my ankle (this one was described as a "bad" one, as if my other sprain was a good one? Really? Haha...) and was fitted in this lovely splint and given crutches and told to put no weight on my foot until I got into see an orthopedist as soon as possible....

I hate those crutches so much already! Grr!

So needless to say, I was not able to go on my trip but was SO SO relieved that I had bought travel insurance, so I will get reimbursed for my flight and I think I should be able to get at least a voucher for the resort, if not a refund. SO glad I bought that insurance!  And really, after a heart-to-heart with my boyfriend, I realized that things could be soo much worse and that I'm fortunate enough that I can even think/plan things like this trip and that right now my focus (and only focus!) is getting healthy again.

So although I would have loved to have this as my view this weekend 

One day, Mexico--you and I will get acquainted, I hope!

instead of this

Literally, this was what I saw all weekend. :(

I am very grateful that I have an awesome boyfriend who took care of me all weekend, since the rest of my family had already left for out of town trips before I had even hurt myself again! So great to have him there to get me food and water, fill my prescriptions, dry a few tears and keep me company during a slow and kind of boring weekend!

(And I'm glad we made it through the weekend together with only a few minor disagreements--apparently it's a universal rule that no one talks during the TV show Cops. Hmph. Well, I had never heard that rule before. Haha...)

And on a day like today when we remember those brave men and women who have sacrificed their lives for our country and freedom, I really should not complain about anything but instead feeling incredibly grateful for all the blessings that I have in my life.... :) 


Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Pinterest Wednesday

Whew! I'm glad it's Wednesday! Is it just me or is this week dragging on? Hmm, might just be me! I'm linking up with Michelle from The Vintage Apple for Oh, How Pinteresting Wednesday!

1.) Oooh, I love this! I sometimes do get discouraged if my "Plan A" doesn't work, so this is a great reminder! :)

Cindy via Pinterest

2.) HAHA! This is hilarious. I hate auto correct! Yesterday, it autocorrected "Hmm" as "Gmail". Um, really?

Kelley via Pinterest

3.) These pink pants are adorable! Fun spring/summer color!

Christine via Pinterest

4.) Oh. Hmm. This is so something I would say. Hah!

Amanda via Pinterest

5.) This is the cutest room ever! Must find a husband who would allow me to decorate like this. And in the likelihood that it would never happen, I guess I have to have a daughter one day (and of course she'll hopefully love pink! Hah!) 

Nora via Pinterest

Monday, May 21, 2012

This week....

Is going to be one crazy, busy week!

Tonight I went with some friends to Guapo's for dinner to get ready for our upcoming trip to Mexico (we leave on Saturday and I'm SO excited!), which was awesome! I have soooo many meetings and important things going on at school this week--I cannot wait for it to be Friday! 

Somewhere in the midst of this super busy week, I have to find the time to pack and get ready for my trip! Yikes! I've started organizing my things and swear that on this trip, I won't over-pack....(it's a little ridiculous--I have been known to take two or three bags, purses or totes with me on a quick weekend getaway to Richmond, VA, let alone a trip to a Mexican resort! This time will be different--maybe! ;) )

I'm going with three friends to the Riviera Maya, which is near Cancun and we are staying at The Mayan Palace! This will be my first visit to Mexico (and my first time navigating multiple airports in a walking cast with a still-really-painful ankle---boo!! Can't wait to feel like an old woman as I get wheeled around in a wheelchair, hah. Also? JetBlue--my friends are really excited that you will allow THEM to push me in the wheelchair instead of an employee. Omg--haha!) 

 Not looking forward to the actual flying part....Is it weird that I'm almost sort of hoping that my ankle is uncomfortable enough to distract me from being in a white-knuckled grip on the armrests for the whole flight state of mind? Okay yes, a little weird, but for real---I am not a good flier at all and get nervous about it, although I don't let it stop me from going places... 

Anyone have any great tips for the nervous fliers? I'm thinking if I just concentrate super-hard on beaches.....relaxing in a pool chair...80+degree weather...gorgeous scenery--maybe that will help! And seriously, I need to find a way to get airlines to stop seating me around other people who are afraid to fly because when I'm the calm, rational one who is reassuring others something is amiss.... Actually, I lie--when I sometimes always get seated by another nervous flier, we usually spend the whole flight talking about how afraid of flying we are, which totally makes things better...umm, not really! 

Oh well! I'm sure everything will go just fine and I'm excited to spend a relaxing and fun 5 days sunning it up in Mexico! Just a few more days and the adventure will begin! :)


Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Pinterest Wednesday--a little late!

This week has been so crazy and I just didn't have time to get my post for The Vintage Apple's Oh How Pinteresting Wednesday ready until just now! Well, it's better late than not at all! :)

1.) This is the cutest cake ever! I love the Lilly patterns! So pretty!

Hopsy via Pinterest

2.) These little "teacups" are so fun! I want to have a tea party right now! Haha...

Sarah via Pinterest

 3.) Ahhh hahaha! If only each day was just that simple. :)
Jyllea via Pinterest

4.) Oooh super adorable outfit! I love turquoise! (Is that spelled right? It looks funny!)

Destiny via Pinterest

5.) OMG! I would love to have a craft room desk like this! Wow....

Brittanie via Pinterest

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

What's Going On....

This past weekend was a busy but fun one! :)

 On Friday night, I spent some time with the boy and we met up to see a movie in Alexandria. I had wanted to see The Lucky One and since he's totally awesome, he agreed to go see it with me!

Well, I checked for the movie time on Thursday, but didn't think to check again on Friday and the theater pulled that movie! :( Booo! Erin Movie Fail: 1. Awesome, lol...

Luckily, we both also wanted to see Think Like a Man and there was a showing a little later. So we ate a quick dinner at Ruby Tuesdays and then saw the movie, which was SO funny. I would definitely recommend it--it was hysterical! I almost never see movies in the theater more than once, but I would go see this again! We had a great time hanging out and I just love spending time with him! :)

I also got to hang out with his adorable little puppy, Orville--I love this little guy! :) Isn't he soooo cute? 
So sweet!


On Sunday, I spent the day with my family celebrating Mother's Day and my wonderful, amazing mother! She really is the best! We had a delicious brunch at home, went out for a long drive in the country, walked around an abbey in the middle of literally nowhere, haha,  and then went to a winery and had a great time wine-tasting! And left with 6 bottles of wine, hah! (Hey, what can I say? The wine was delish....)

A field, somewhere in Berryville, VA!

Those bushes possibly could be grapes? Hmm, nature girl I am not, so I really don't know. Still pretty! Haha..

Sisters! And a random lady photobombing our pic! Lol...


These past few days of school have been SO busy with so much to do as we prep the kids for some very important tests coming up. 

The kids are very eager to show what they've learned this year as is shown in this exchange below that took place during math:

Me: "Now, does anyone else have any questions about our review packet or the problems we've gone over today?"
Girl Student: "I don't have a question about math, but I do have two questions for you: My first is, do you have a favorite member of One Direction and my second is, are you excited for Pretty Little Liars to come back on in 23 days?" 

Umm, seriously?!? We are in the middle of an important math review and that is what they are wondering about--omg! 

(Side note: How sad is it that I actually was able to answer those questions with "Well, I think I like Harry Styles the best because he has a great voice...and yes, I cannot wait to see what happens next with "A" on Pretty Little Liars!" Sad, but true...haha! These girls know me too well!)

And just to add a little bit more excitement to the already crazy busy day, we had a real, legitimate fire alarm--eek! I was sitting in the teacher's lounge, almost done with lunch, when the alarm went off and we all knew immediately that a drill would never be done during lunchtime. So I quickly ran hobbled to the cafeteria to round up my darlings and get them outside safely. Some of them followed me but a few others followed another 6th grade teacher's class to a different fire drill location (Not sure why exactly, but as long as they were safe, it's okay!) 

The kids who were with me kept asking me if I knew if those kids had "survived", which is actually really sweet slash amusing. Aw! Haha... It turns out that there was not a fire but one of the mechanical rooms (?) got overheated, which automatically set off the alarm. Even still, we were out of the building for about 35 minutes while the fire department checked everything out. Definitely a huge relief that everything was okay!

Today I looked at the calendar and realized that my trip to Mexico is less than two weeks away---yea! Super excitement/packing panic modes are in full force now! I'm going to go write my trip/packing list right now...!

Friday, May 11, 2012

Friday's Fancies: Color Crush!

Today is Friday--whoo hoo! Time for another Friday's Fancies with Long Distance Loving! This week's theme was Color Crush--one of my all-time favorites!


I chose to focus my outfit on the fabulous color of purple..mostly because just about every other outfit I create involves pink and it is probably time to branch out a bit....maybe!


Pretty Purple!

Pretty Purple! by eraff1483

1.) I just adore these shorts! The color is fabulous and they are the perfect casual summer shorts!
Dorothy Perkins purple shorts
$29 - dorothyperkins.com

2.) I thought these adorable shoes would add a fun touch to this summer casual outfit! :)
Vans top sider shoes
$45 - tillys.com

3.) Yes, this purse is quite pricey, but it is sooooo pretty! I love the shape of it too. 
Yves saint laurent handbag
£929 - farfetch.com

4.) Oh Michael Kors..you never fail to amaze me...these earrings are so fun! I might actually be in the process of buying them as we speak...sssh! Haha! One day when I become Michael Kors' wife  best friend he will so be hooking me up with of all of his amazing clothes, purses and accessories!
Michael Kors clear crystal jewelry
$85 - cusp.com

5.) I love the look of summer scarves and this one is such a gorgeous shade of purple!
Mango cotton scarve
£9.99 - mango.com

6.) Ahhh, I adore Deborah Lippmann nail polish! Such great nail polish!
$18 - bloomingdales.com

7.) Umm, okay weird...something happened to the black tank top that I had pictured above! I have no idea where it went..... Well, it's a T. Babaton Hayes Shirt from www.aritzia.com. I would love to know where the picture and info went, but I guess it's somewhere out in the blogosphere! Hahaha...

Happy Friday! Can't wait to see what other colors people are crushing on! :)