30 April 2015

What's up?

After a lovely week off from work spent with my family and brand new niece Vivienne (!), I am back in Seattle but already looking forward to May's vacation- San Francisco! Some of our best friends live in San Fran and Nate and I haven't been down to visit them since '09 (sorry, guys!) so we are pretty excited to take a long weekend and explore the city again.

In other news, I colored my hair- did a little balayage. Loving the caramel accents, I think it will be a perfect color for Spring and Summer.

Also, I am digging the white blazer right now. White on white.

Already planning to duplicate this outfit for a night out in San Fran. 

What else is new?

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01 April 2015


Nate and I have a trip planned to Mexico for our 3 year wedding anniversary this June and I am already counting down the time (85 days to be exact). We went to Mexico for our honeymoon and had an absolute blast (apart from me getting heat stroke and vomiting in an outdoor market while Nate haggled for the turquoise necklace I wanted). We decided to go the all-inclusive route this time as well, it just makes our lives easier and more relaxed while we are there (also so our mini fridge magically refills its self with Tecate light).  So what do I do to fill my time for 3 months? Shop for my Mexican vacation wardrobe, of course!

First off, I will need this clutch, for sure. 

I found a couple great dresses at really reasonable prices from Forever 21. 
Here are two of my favorites:
Coral and blue

I also loved these two from Billabong. 
Black and Blue

I need another swimsuit like I need a hole in the head...but I'll still probably browse regardless. Know what I actually need? Cute coverups, those are hard to come by in my opinion. Where is your go-to spot for warm vacation clothes?

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30 March 2015

Drink This, Buy That

Buy these shoes  and drink this tequila blackberry lemonade. As quickly as possible.

I bought two of these V-neck linen tee's from Gap, they are a total spring and summer staple if you're like me and are most often wearing a v-neck and jeans. Wear with cuffed jeans and the wedges you just bought!

Drink this champagne margarita while you're at it.

This dress would be perfect for our trip to Mexico in three months. Also this dress. I am already dreaming of time with my hunny, unlimited sunshine, countless margaritas, and guacamole on repeat.

While we are at it, lets chat. I feel like I've gotten my life back. Real talk, March was dark (emotionally). I felt drained and lethargic every day and had trouble finding enjoyment. But its amazing what one weekend of quality time with people I love, doing things I love can do for my spirits. I  was totally spoiled this weekend by Nate - he gave me almost 3 fulls days of activities that boosted my energy and filled me to the brim with happiness. Plus, he surprised me with my little sister (one of my best friends) and I did an ugly cry/surprise face at the restaurant when I saw her. I'm totally ready to move on from March and embrace the Spring and Summer and everything it will hold. Specifically, my new niece who should be arriving in April. I am so looking forward to my week off from work so that I can spend time with the new baby and my family, I remember my week off when Wesleigh was born was suuuuuper fun.

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28 March 2015

Twenty Nine

Today is my birthday! I wrote a long post last year around my 28th birthday so I thought I'd try and keep up with the yearly reflection. I actually love instagram for this purpose- I can see pretty much exactly whats been going on the past 365 days.

29 feels alright because it isn't 30 (haha). Last year of my 20's, woop woop! I feel good about how the past year has gone. I got a new job in the field I love most. I am learning so much and feel so lucky to have been offered this opportunity. Nate and I have settled into our life in Phinney and I am so looking forward to another spring and summer in our house.

Louis. The year of the puppy. The thing I have wanted most for years. I love having little Lou in our life. Louis gives us something to think about other than ourselves, something to do with our day that isn't purely selfish. He is teaching us how to care for another little creature who depends on us very much and requires a lot of our attention. Dogs are good for the soul, that much I know.

My first month of being 29 will bring me a new niece! There will be another little girl arriving earthside just about a month after my birthday and while I am so excited to meet her, I feel my heart might absolutely burst in my chest when she arrives. How is it possible to love two littles as much as I love Wesleigh? I am really looking forward to finding out.

My year as a 28 year old went pretty smoothly, I'd say. And lets be real, it went by at lightening speed.

Big things are on the horizon for this 29 year old. Starting with my all time favorite french toast at Portage Bay Cafe and a pitcher of mimosas for my favorite dude and I.


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27 March 2015

Friday Happy Hour

Happy Friday, lovelies!

Want to know what I love? Pom juice. And strawberries. And mojitos. Oh good thing this strawberry pom mojito exists. I'll take a double, thanks.

Full disclosure, this Friday Happy Hour will involve a lot of Trader Joes dark chocolate covered sea salt caramels. How do you say caramel? I say care-ah-mel. I thought you should know that about me.

My sister in law recently got a job working at Nate's friend's start-up. Why am I telling you? Because it has a lot to do with caramels, actually. Candy Jar is a new, smart way to buy candy online. Its like if Build A Bear and Willy Wonka had a child.

I filled my first Candy Jar order with only sour patch kids and swedish fish (my two favorite gummy candies) and felt like I hit the jackpot. What I am thinking though, (besides gaining 5 lbs from my favorite candies being shipped right to my door) is how great this website would be for parties (weddings, bridal showers, baby showers, birthday parties, etc). Because not only can you search and fills jars by type of candy (chocolate, gummies, hard candy) but you can search by color too, making the creation of a themed candy bar a real breeze.

Speaking of parties, how cute/cool are these cups and these balloons? They are the perfect thing for a bachelorette party.

So yum, Pineapple Sangria. I'm for sure making that drink this summer.

My husband is power washing our deck with bleach (because Louis mistakes our deck for a toilet), while I am downstairs blogging, drinking a glass of white wine, and alternating chocolate caramel with salt water taffy consumption. This is the good life.

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25 March 2015


I love Easter. It's a beautiful, symbolic day in the Church. It also really signals the start of Spring to me. Plus, any holiday that gives me an excuse to buy a new dress is a holiday I adore.

I'm digging floral dresses right now, so with Easter approaching, it gave me just the push I needed to order one. Here are some of my favorites right now from Nordstrom.

Dresses Left-Right, Top-Bottom:
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24 March 2015

Buy Nothing New

One day a week, we don't see any patients at the clinic where I work so that we can focus on all of our "admin" tasks. (yawn) But I oddly enjoy the quiet most weeks, it gives me a chance to really focus on time consuming projects. Recently I have been listening to TED talks while I work instead of listening to music- win win, learning and working at the same time!

One of the videos I listened to recently was about a creative gal who when packing her suitcase for her 7 day trip to the TED talks, packed only 7 pairs of underpants...and counted on thrift shopping for everything else she needed to wear. This is my kind of lady! What stuck with me was her mantra of "Buy Nothing New". Granted, if I adopted this mantra I don't honestly think it would be too difficult- I absolutely believe that I can find 98% of everything I "need" (clothing wise) at thrift shops and second hand stores.

That has nothing to do with today's blog post, I just wanted to tell you. ha ha ha. 

I don't have enough lifetimes for all the careers I want to have. Does everyone feel that way? A career that I tried on for size a couple years ago was a wedding/event planner. I wrote a blog about all types of events, helped coordinate some weddings, planned and hosted some bridal and baby showers....and loved it. Luckily, I am in a life phase that is chock-full of wedding showers, bachelorette parties, and baby showers. Bring on the paper straws, Pinterest, and excessive spending on Etsy.

I'm realizing that this post may not have a subject at all...

My Dad laughed out loud when I told him Louis goes to daycare twice a week. But in the spirit of totally embracing us owning a City Puppy, his daycare posted an article on their facebook page and I thought it was so interesting. "Can you imagine anything more quintessentially ‘Seattle’ than a healthy food supplement for dogs made from organic kale and coconut oil and handcrafted with love in a tiny production facility among the boatyards of Salmon Bay? No, neither can we." Hey, laugh all you want but I'm totally in. Check out Green Juju Kitchen

Okay, I'll admit that my motivation for really healthy food for Louis has two parts. 1) He's growing rapidly and his bones and brain are developing and so healthy, nutrient rich meals are really important right now. 2) Let me tell you a little story about how I am a horrible mother. For roughly a week, Nate and I were noticing that Louis was being extra naughty, like above and beyond puppy behavior. He was biting everything and just being generally really exhausting. Then one day, I went to pack his food for daycare and realized that the scoop we were using in his food was exactly half the size I thought it was (1/2 cup when I thought it was a 1 cup) so we had unknowingly been starving our growing puppy by feeding him approx. half of what he should have been eating. I felt so horrible, Hey little dude, I am an asshole when I am hungry too, I'm sorry for being a terrible mother. Here, have all the food you want! Don't report me to puppy CPS, please. We have since switched his food to a more quality brand (after doing a lot of research and comparing brands) and I am happy to report, he is back to being a happy little puppy with a full belly. Oy yoi yoi...

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23 March 2015

Freezer Meals

My sister is having a baby in just about a month and I am lucky enough to be able to take a week off from work to go help out. I have been thinking of some ways to be as helpful as possible while I am there and I remember with her first baby, making dinner was something easy we did to support the new family. This time with two babies under the roof, I think meals will be even more appreciated and important. Enter: Freezer Meals! My other sister and I are planning to make a day of prepping a bunch of freezer meals for the new family of 4. I want to try and prep meals that I know the toddler will also like, but she's a great little eater so as long as we aren't making super spicy food she will be happy. I'm really looking forward to it!

1. Chicken Taco Chili
2. Enchiladas, obvi.
3. Bolognese Sauce for easy pasta dinners
4. Chicken Meatballs and Baked Manicotti
5. Taco Lasagna
6. Tater tot casserole (my dad makes a mean tater tot casserole, we will use his recipe)
7. Calzones
8. Baked Spaghetti
9. Cheesy Chicken Bake
10. Of course, some good for the soul Mac and Cheese

For supplies, I'll need to load up on high quality gallon zip lock bags and the tin foil casserole pans with lids. Also, how cute are these labels? Definitely worth the .99 cents. I'm thinking I'll print a bunch on label paper so they stick to the ziplock bags without having to use packing tape.

I am wondering if I can freeze this recipe for my sister and her family...but first I need to make a giant pan just for myself. Paws off, I am not sharing. GET IN MY BELLY, shells and cheese.

Any tried and true freezer meals you can recommend?

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20 March 2015


Ugh, I have been feeling so un-inspired the last few weeks. I want to post to the blog more often but recently my energy level has been in the drain. I came down with quite a nasty bug last Monday that lasted almost 2 full weeks and also had a very difficult doctors appointment last week that I am still reeling from and processing. I know when I feel down in the dumps that I need to make an effort to do activities that give me energy and boost my mood...but I've been pretty lazy about that the past two weeks. I have been allowing myself to just feel low, but its about time I started trying to snap myself out of it. I'm pretty tired of not feeling like myself.

But hey, its the first day of Spring! The days will just get longer and sunnier from here on out, which I am thrilled about. I am really looking forward to another summer in our neighborhood, this time with a puppy!

New posts coming reallllll soon....

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09 March 2015


Happy Monday!

I survived being away from the puppy all weekend and had a great time with Nate and my family. Our trip was entirely too short, but I am happy we were all able to be together. I loved being able to use my camera and take as many pictures as possible of our Wessie girl.

Here are some of my favorite pictures from this weekend at the beach.

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06 March 2015


Today we are off to the beach in Oregon for some much needed rest and family time. I grew up spending Spring Break with my family on the Oregon coast so I feel particularly nostalgic that as the years progressed, our family expanded and we keep going to the beach- just including more and more people into the tradition. This year will be Wesleigh's first trip to the beach and also the first family trip with my new brother in law. I love how my family has morphed from Us Five, to now the 9 of us (almost 10!). Family time at the beach is so restorative, it does my soul good. 

Though, I am tearful at the thought of having to leave Louis for the entire weekend (in very capable hands). I will probably embarrass Nate if when I start crying when we have to leave Lou. Waaahhhhhh

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03 March 2015


I need to tell you something. My life changed this past Sunday. CHANGED.

Let me back up. There is a beer shop pretty close to our house that loves if people bring their dogs. I frankly can't think of too many things that are better than going out to get a drink with my hot husband and being able to bring Louis. Okay okay, so last Wednesday after we picked Lou up from "daycare", we decided to stop by for a drink at Chucks with him. The beer shop doesn't have a kitchen so there is a different food truck there every day (which is just awesome). I noticed their schedule for which trucks would be there when and what do I see? Seattle Biscuit Company comes on Sunday mornings/afternoons. Okayyyy, I feel weirdly passionate about a good biscuit. No joke. My enthusiasm for carbs is unparalleled.  So Sunday morning rolls around and Nate and I were up early working on the guest room so I suggested, hey babe, want to go to Chucks and get a biscuit? 

This is when my life changed. THOSE BISCUITS. Sunday was a trifecta of Kalea happiness- Nate, Louis, and biscuits. You can now date my life as Before Sunday Biscuits and After Sunday Biscuits.

And now you know.

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02 March 2015

What's for dinner?

Hey, hi there. Hungry? Don't know what to make for dinner? There there, darling, Kalea's here. I'll be all kinds of nice and share a couple dinner ideas that have been in my menu rotation. Because honestly, dinner doesn't have to be complicated. (nor expensive, or time consuming. but it does need to be yummy)
  1. Enchildas. I make these once a week (or at least once every other week). 
  2. Baked Spaghetti. Holy french fried onions. 
  3. Your basic street tacos (using the verde crockpot chicken). Corn tortillas, a small (chopped) white onion , cilantro, and you're set! (No, wait. Also get beer like tacate, pacifico, or corona). Add avocado, sour cream, and salsa to your tacos if you're feeling frisky.
  4. Speaking of tacos- Nate recently told me this was his favorite dinner I've made in the last year. So if you're in the market for a shrimp taco recipe, these are pretty darn delicious. 
Dinner options I make frequently that don't require a recipe and are quick and easy:
  1. Salmon, rice, and asparagus. 
  2. Pasta. Red sauce with chicken sausage and brussle sprouts. Or white sauce with chicken sausage and broccoli.  
  3. Fajitas. Get an onion and a couple red and green peppers. Chicken. Tortillas. Whammo, dinner served. 

What are some of your go-to dinner recipes?

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28 February 2015

Be our Guest

We are cleaning/organizing/decorating our guest room this weekend in preparation for Nate's sister to move in for a couple months and first on our list of "things to buy" is a dresser for her. The guest room closet is packed full of our stuff, so I doubt she will be able to use it (sorry sis!).

 I have a soft spot for the Ikea Hemnes collection (our bedside tables and downstairs coffee table are Hemnes) so I am leaning towards buying this dresser for the guest room. (undecided on white or brown)

I follow a blog about re-doing furniture and I fell completely in love with this dresser that she rescued and updated. I wish it was still for sale! That would have been perfect for the guest room. 

I hate the bed frame that is currently in our guest room (the color is the light beachy brown wood, yuck)- but it matches the bedside table and the desk... so if we changed the bed, I'd have to essentially change everything. 

Things I may add/change this weekend besides the new dresser: the room could use a rug, I might hang curtains (it has one small window so we will see), and hang something on the bare walls.  I need to sew new covers for the throw pillows on the bed because we recently updated the duvet cover in there. I also think I'll pick up a new sheet set or two. Everyone loves new sheets. 

What else should we do to make sure she feels welcome and comfortable in her new room?

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27 February 2015

Friday Happy Hour

Lets order these blood orange margaritas, shall we? And snack on this Cajun Shrimp Guac

How has your week gone? Tell me everything.

Wait. This is on my mind. I realize that creating too many parallels between parenting an infant and raising a puppy is likely diminishing the overwhelming effort it takes to be a new parent. I get that. But seeing as I am not a parent, all I know are basic facts about bringing home an infant and now also what life looks like with an 8 week old puppy....I digress.

This is whats hard for me right now: making time for myself. The past two weeks have been a daily/weekly repeat of caring for Louis. He adjusted the time that I wake up in the mornings. He adjusted my work schedule. He adjusted my normal routine after work (shopping, groceries, making dinner/juice, anything really). And you know, it's hard to carve out time for myself right now. I am definitely on the introvert scale (which I really should write an entire post about realizing and accepting that fact) which just basically means, I get a lot of restorative energy from doing things solo (I lovingly refer to shopping at Value Village by myself for a couple hours as "therapy"). I just feel my feelings pretty heavily and because of that, I also emotionally shut down fairly easily. Hows that for good dose of introspection?

Watermelon mojitos, anyone? You know, go ahead and just bring me two.

Also, have you seen this article? It's all I've ever wanted. Girl Scout cookie wine pairings.

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26 February 2015


I wish I could in good conscience go to Taco Bell for dinner. This is me imagining I am tucking into a bean and cheese burrito right now. yumm. 

Honestly I think we are starting to see the light with our new "Life with Puppy". He is sleeping through the night (praise Jesus, hallelujah) and I don't feel quite so overwhelmed. Puppy class went excellently on Saturday and he started daycare this week (which he loves, and we love because he is exhausted in the evening). My sister-in-law is moving in with us in the next week-ish so that will be fun and also a HUGE help with Louis. I have been coming home from work every day in the afternoon to spend time with him/go on a walk- which is getting really exhausting. I do zero actual eating on my lunch hour and 100% picking up dog poop. The up side is that I normally don't leave the office all day, typically eating lunch at my desk while working, so the mid-day fresh air is nice.

Because of Sir Louis....
-I haven't been shopping, literally since he arrived in my life. This is not normal. I usually am at Value Village at least once a week (twice if Nate doesn't notice, sorry babe). I am itching.
-I haven't made fresh juice since he arrived! I neeeeeeed some fruits and veggies.

I sort of feel like we are merely surviving puppyhood. I assume, just like with infancy, we will get the hang of it and get into a rhythm and I will get my life back. Right? RIGHT?! 

Saturday afternoon naps.

I just want to pinterest and blog and shop at value village- that's what I want to do with my days. Throw in a hearty cup of coffee and a splash of wine and I think I'm all set. Is that too much to ask?

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25 February 2015


Wine, Olives, and Cheese, theeessseeee are just a few of my faaavorite things (meant to be read in a Sound of Music fashion).

Moving along.

Occasionally a friend will come over just for a good long girl squawk and a class of wine (or 3) so we definitely need something to snack on. And while I am content in almost every situation just snacking on saltines...I understand that most don't feel the same way. And presenting saltines to your guest is, well, anticlimactic at best.

Enter the wine, olive, and cheese paring. Throw in some cured meats like prosciutto and salami and voila, you look like an advanced entertainer. I usually just pick up most of my meats/cheeses/wines for this type of thing at Trader Joes.

Here are two of of my favorite wine, olive, and cheese pairings (one white, one red)-

  1. Olive Medley with Parmigiano-Reggiano (also known as plain ole Parmesan cheese) & Chardonnay. The olive medley would be something like California green olives, Jumbo Calamata olives, Mammoth Black Greek Olives (the dream team of olives) – with big shavings of Parmesan cheese, washed down with a cold glass of refreshing chardonnay. 
  2. Extra Large Pitted Calamata (seasoned, optional) Olives with Feta & Pinot Noir. I can't get enough of this Greek inspired pairing. Calamata olives with feta cheese, a generous pour of Pinot Noir- put a fork in me, I'm done. 

Oh, and don't forget the starches: a loaf of crusty baguette or bruschetta (sometimes even a good cracker), you know the drill. 

Happy entertaining!

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10 February 2015

Wishes Granted.

"It was the best of times. It was the worst of times". Charles Dickens clearly had just adopted a puppy.

If you follow my instagram you know that our family has expanded by exactly 7.1 pounds of puppy. 

His name, is Louis. 

We brought him home from a rescue this weekend at a bitty 8 weeks old.  He always wants to be near one of us, ideally in our lap or in our bed with us. Lou has gotten feistier as the days go by, which I like to think is a sign that he is getting more and more comfortable in his new home. And we are exhausted. We don’t know much about what to expect, as we are new at this puppy parenthood thing and were given a vague description of his breed; He is part Beagle, part "your guess is as good as mine". It doesn't matter much to me. He is our little Louis. 

I immediately teared up when his foster mom brought him into the room to meet Nate and I. We instantly loved him very much and also felt a little overwhelmed that he was ours and we got to take him home. ...What do we do now

Louis is such a sweet little boy. He parties hard for 45 minutes or an hour- then conks out for a nice long nap. We are wading through the murky (disgusting) waters of potty training this little man and attempting to close the door on his crate without him bawling (quite unsuccessfully, might I add). He sleeps in our room with us (and in bed with us at 6am when I'd like a little more sleep). 

He had his first doctors appointment last night (nice and healthy) and will start going to a lovely daycare with his older girlfriend Nellie (our friends dog) 2 days a week starting the first week in March. 

Puppy parenthood is similar to what I know about bringing an infant home. It is overwhelming and exhausting and I typically feel like I have no idea what I am doing and that it will be a miracle (or random good luck) if he turns out okay....but I love him very much and am so happy to have him in our life. 

And it was pretty darn wonderful when he laid his head on my pillow this morning and tucked his little nose under my chin. Cue the heart explosion. (also note, puppy breath is a real thing)

He's our pokey little puppy.

Also, I feel like the walking dead currently but I fully plan on taking pictures of him with my real camera this weekend. Nate will be off skiing in Canada for 5 days so it will just be me and little Lou with nothing to do but go on walks and snuggle.

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