Life Happens…

Does anyone else feel like this year is seriously flying by or is it just me?? May went by in what seems like a blink and let me tell you what that blink was bittersweet. 

I feel like this is where an apology should be since I have been MIA but to be honest I don’t feel like one is needed. Life happens and sometimes to deal with that you just need some me time to decompress. This past month I have been been focusing on my own mental health and learning how to roll with the punches.

Life can be so funny. Sometimes you think you have everything planned out and then to be honest…shit just happens. Josh and I were so excited about moving and the next season in our lives but like I said life is funny. We just were not finding anything that made us feel like home. We made a hard choice but it was the best choice for us. We decided to pull our home from the market and plant more permanent roots here. 

Even though our season in this house is not over yet, we are looking forward to what life brings us next. Whether thats more pups or plants or even a little one, we are definitely looking forward to what the future holds for us. 

With all that being said, I am looking forward to the last half of this year. There are so many amazing things planned and in the works and I can’t wait to share them with y’all. 

On To Our Next Adventure

I want to start this post off with just thanking Josh. Since the day I met you, every single day has been an adventure. You make life so exciting and I seriously can’t wait for this next chapter of our life. I cant believe how fast and how amazing our journey through this strange thing called life has been. With that all being said, it’s now time for me to make the announcement of what has been taking up all of our free time…well besides being almost caught up and current on Game of Thrones (no one spoil this season for us please)…drum roll pleasseeeeee


Yes, Josh and I are going onto a new adventure in our lives. We have been working with the most amazing realtor in the Toledo area looking for houses and yesterday we have finally found one. I am putting this into the Universe..the house that we walked through yesterday WILL BE the house that becomes our forever home! Josh and I, but mostly Josh, have been working like busy bees to get our current house ready to go on the market and we are 95% of the way there. We just have a few minor things that we need to finish and if we can get Freyja to stop digging up her holes in the back yard that we have filled, we will be ready to go this weekend.

A lot of people have been asking and maybe a few of you are wondering why are we putting our house up for sale since we just moved in to our home last January. While this house has been the place where Josh proposed, we welcomed our fur baby into our lives, and where I planned the most epic wedding, we have actually outgrown our home in just a short year. So many things in our life together as a couple has changed and sadly it just doesn’t fit our current needs. We are ready for new adventures like growing our family and in order for us to grow, we need some more squared footage. We can’t wait to give our love to another fur baby and welcome a baby of our own into this new home, to host family and friends for holidays, and to create some amazing new memories!

Some of you might be wondering where in the world is it that we are going to live on this new adventure. While we have looked in so many places around Toledo, even looking at moving back to where I grew up in Michigan but Toledo is really where we want to be. The area that the house is located in and the house itself is everything we have envisioned for ourselves and our future family. It has everything we wanted and have been looking for including an office for this girl so maybe I can stop making coffee shops my office…it honestly does nothing for my iced coffee addiction except make me want it even more. 

We promise to keep everyone updated on our life and if you know anyone who is looking for the cutest little starter home in Toledo and thats in an amazing little neighborhood, please send them our way. We would love for someone else to make amazing memories in this house just like we have!

xo ashley

The Do’s & Donuts of Engagement

If you follow me on Instagram, (which you totally should be if not click here and follow me) then you know about how sweet my proposal was. Yes, Josh knows the way to my heart and that way is through donuts. Let me share my proposal story with you because I feel like it really was the sweetest. Josh and I had just moved into our first home in January. To me, this was the next step in our relationship. I knew in my soul that we would one day get married but I didn’t think a proposal would be so soon. It all went down on just a normal Monday night. I had came home from work and Josh was in the kitchen and he told me he had something to show me. If you know me, then the second I get home I like to get into my comfy clothes and then chill. So I went upstairs and changed and then came down to see what he just had to show me. I walk into the kitchen and there was a HUGE box sitting on the stove. He told me to open in and when I did I was like WHAT!?! Josh was holding a ring and I was crying and he was crying so I have no idea what he said but I said YES!! As any newly engaged girl in this day and age, I knew I had to take a picture to share. I first shared the photos with my family and 2 best friends and then we sent it out to the world. The next step was totally obvious then, eat those donuts!! Total side note…but if you live in Toledo and you are curious who made this magnificent creation it was none other than Chris at Holey Toledough!! Go check out his Instagram!!

Now that I have your sweet tooth’s attention, I wanted to let you know what I learned from my time being newly engaged. I have learned both what to do right away and what you can hold off on. Trust me, I know the feeling of being so excited that you just want to knock everything out in one night but I can promise you that some things take more thought and honestly something that you have been dead set on will change (trust the girl who bought a new dress 3 weeks before her wedding).  Change will happen so use this engagement time to gather your thoughts and then let the planning commence. 

Engagement Do’s:

  • Be Excited!! – Seriously, this is such an amazing time in your life because the person who you love so much is declaring to the world they want to spend the rest of their lives with you CELEBRATE IT! Whether that means keeping it to yourselves so you can bask in the moment together or blowing up your social media because you just want the world to know. What ever your preference…JUST DO IT!
  • Plan the Big 3 First – These three things are the most important part of your wedding besides you and your partner. Budget, Date/Venue, Guest Count. The first place to start is with picking a budget because everything else will revolve around it. The next thing that you want to plan out is an estimated guest count. My advice to couples is to make a rough draft because based on budget and venue this number could change. The last thing you will want to tackle is the date and venue. Some couples already have a special date in mind or they have a special venue in mind. If you are dead set on a date be prepared for some venues to possibly be booked or if you are set on a venue you might have to be flexible with a date. Personally, Josh and I picked the venue first and then we picked our date based off what was available.
  • Pinterest – I know that this is obvious and some if not most of you already have a Pinterest board or a few planned out for your big day. Something that I recommend for couples is to make one wedding board and then have sub category boards attached to it. That way when you are just wanting floral inspo all the florals are there and not jumbled up in a sea of decor and dress ideas.

Engagement Don’ts: 

  • Pick Everything Out Right Away – I know its so exciting when that ring is on your finger to want to plan a whole wedding in 2 hours but I urge you not to because things could get crazy and I promise you things and ideas will change and evolve. Don’t go try on dresses, pick your bridal party, or go by table numbers. Focus on the Big 3 that I talked about and then go from there. I promise you once you have those picked out everything will fall into place.
  • DIY – Now I am all for making your own decor and fun things for your wedding but this is not the DIY I am talking about. Wedding planning is not a Do It Yourself kind of adventure, after all there is another person involved in this wedding. Unless your partner wants nothing to do with the whole planning process you need to involve them because guess what…this is their day just as much as it is yours. Josh was very hands on with planning and he was involved with everything from the font on the invitations to the flowers to the decor. I do understand that some partners are not wanting to be as involved and that’s ok too! If this is the case, I would recommend finding a friend or a family member who you are close with and who’s opinion that you trust to help. If all else fails you can always find a wedding planner who can help guide you through the process and I know a pretty good one!
  • Stress – If there is one thing that I could go back in time and tell myself last year it would be don’t stress. Yes, this is one of the most pivotal days of your life but at the end of the day thats all it is…one day. The whole point of a wedding is to celebrate a marriage which will last a lifetime. I know there are so many factors that go into planning like what shade of purple is the best or what seasoning is on the chicken but thats all pretty much irrelevant to the feeling you have when you are locking eyes with that person who you are saying ” I Do” to. Another thing I know that I stressed about and I know others stress out about is having the day be absolutely perfect. I can promise you something will go wrong that day but guess what…no one will know but you. We had a few things that didn’t go as planned but none of my guests noticed and the day kept going on. If there is one thing that you remember or take away from this post please let this point be it. Just take a deep breath and know that the day will be perfect because you are marrying your perfect person.

xo ashley

The Ultimate & Free Treat Yo Self

Do you live in or around Toledo?? Do you love luxury skincare?? Are you interested in getting a skin care routine but have no idea where to even begin?? If you said yes to all three question then this blog post is especially for you!! If you didn’t know…Dillard’s at the Franklin Park Mall have the only Kiehl’s counter for about 100 miles..ok maybe not 100 miles but at least an hour away. Why is this such a huge deal you might be asking…well, let me educate you blog fam. You can always go to Sephora or even hop online to order anything from this brand but I don’t always recommend that and I’m going to tell you why.

Lately I have been having issues with my skin like a crazy lady which is  mostly likely stress induced. In order to help me with this skin and the stress, I made an appointment with my Kiehl’s girl Desiree. Here is reason number one why I don’t recommend purchasing Kiehl’s from one of the platforms that I mentioned above.. I made an appointment for a skin care consultation and a spa facial. Guess how much I paid for this…GIRL IT WAS FREE!! Yes you can make an appointment with either of the Kiehl’s girls to break it all down for you and pamper you for FREE. I know when you go to Sephora you have to pay for any service you get so why not just walk down the hallway of the mall a few extra feet for some free spa service?!

My Personalized Skin Care Routine

Have you ever gone to Sephora and looked around for someone to help you and you either A. can’t find anyone or B. once you find someone and you ask them a question, you have that feeling in your gut that they have no idea what they are talking about? I can honestly say that I know the feeling and it sucks. You hear about the hype of a brand or a product from an influencer but how do you know what product works for you?? This is why I prefer department store cosmetic counters. When you go to one you know that there is going to be someone there how will be able to help you AND you also know that they know what they are talking about. These girls work with this product exclusively and they are so highly trained that if you ask them a question you know that 100% they are telling the truth. The girls at this counter are no exception. I went in there and told her the issues that I am having and she hooked a sister up with recommendation based on my issues and my skin type. Who doesn’t love a customized routine just for you!!

Now, I am for sure a try before I buy kind of girl. I am normally a budget kind of girl when it comes to skincare and make-up. So if its more than like $15, then I need to do my research. My Kiehl’s girl knew this. Yes, I did have her give me the facial with the products that she hand selected for me but that was just a once over. I wanted to be able to use them at home and the next morning to really get the full effect for this. I was able to take home samples of everything she used on my face plus a face mask I was super curious about trying. I have never been to a spa or beauty store where they have made recommendations for me and I was actually able to take the whole regimen home to try myself. This is so key for me! If mama is going to spend some cash she wants to make sure she loves it. She sent me home with my little goodie bag and the best part is coming…she texted me to check in with me and ask me how my skin was doing. WHAT?!?! This is the best part of my experience. I told her I was absolutely loving everything she suggested and I will be in to purchase! The one on one experience you get from this counter is hands down amazing and I 11/10 recommend going in and speaking with Desiree or Ann to get your skin glowing and feeling its best!

Now that I have converted all of my Toledo area people…you need to go TREAT YO SELF!! The Kiehl’s counter is located in Dillard’s at the Franklin Park Mall They have the full line of product range and these girls are so knowledgeable. You can call them and schedule an appointment or just walk right in but I would recommend doing it this week because they are having a huge event this weekend. You can find some amazing products and they also have some really great deals going on too. Right now you can purchase items that total $75 you can get any item FREE and then when you purchase $100 you get a $20 gift card to use on a future AND there is a basket with over $500 of products that you can enter to win!! (Whew that is a deal!) You can contact the Keihl’s girls at 419- 473-9600 and ask for the Kiehl’s department. Go call and make your appointment and tell them Ashley sent you!!

The amazing gift et you can with with a purchase!!!

To Plan or Not to Plan…

To say that I am excited for this series to start on the blog would be the understatement of the year. I have been working and brainstorming for the posts that will be unfolding shortly on my favorite little corner of the internet. To me, my wedding was absolutely epic! It was the social event of 2019 and that is saying a lot since it occurred the first weekend of February. I 1000% fully enjoyed every aspect of planning my wedding from the second Josh proposed to the second we got in the town car, shut the doors and drove to our hotel. I loved it so much that I am actually going to start my own event company focused on planning weddings. There is just something about the hustle and bustle that really just inspires me. Was it stressful?? Absolutely, but I am a perfectionist and it was the most rewarding feeling when I look back on the photos of that whole day. Every little thing just fell into place that day and the feeling was just perfection.

So what will you find with this series?? The answer is EVERYTHING! At first I thought this series would maybe be 4 or 5 post. With all of the brainstorming, topics, and content I keep creating I think this might turn into a a huge series…after all this is what I would really like to do. Wedding planning just gives me so much peace and excitement (if that is even possible). I can remember myself as a little girl watching movies like The Wedding Planner with the fabulous J.Lo thinking thats what I want to do when I grow up (yes even fall in love with Matthew McConaughey but unfortunately I settled for Josh). I am so excited to go along on this journey with all of my current readers and my future brides to be.

I want to start this series by talking about honestly the one thing that I get asked most which is how do you know if you need a wedding planner or wedding coordinator. The answer is different for everyone. I personally knew that when Josh proposed that I was finally on the journey for something that I have been dying to do my whole life so I dove in head first and planned my own wedding. I did honestly everything and that worked for me. The only time that I ever seriously considered needing help was with the day of activities. Who was going to keep everyone on schedule, keep the day moving, and run all of the behind the scenes? I am very fortunate because this is something that my venue did provide for me. This was ok for me because they were able to keep the flow going for the day. They came and asked me what I needed and wanted and you know I had a schedule already made up. My amazing helper really helped me ease my stress the day of. The only thing that the venue did not provide to me was someone to set up my decor or do the tear down after the event. This was something that I had to do all on my own plus my amazing maid of honor.

The point of that whole story is before I started planning my wedding I thought a wedding planner and wedding coordinator were the exact same thing and I was totally wrong. Wedding planners sit down with you months in advance, sometimes even right after you are engaged. They sit with you and will help with everything from finding a venue and vendors all the way to logistically creating the whole day and making decisions for you. Wedding coordinators are someone you are working with just the month before to a few weeks before the big day. This would be for someone who just wants someone there the day of to make sure things run smoothly so you can just sit back and enjoy the day. When is comes to picking between the two, do you want someone to take the stress off of you, someone who can give honest recommendations of vendors, or someone who just makes sure you are staying hydrated and keeps everyone on schedule is what you need to ask yourself. If you are curious about the services that I offer or if you have questions about whether or not you need a planner or coordinator ASK ME!! I would love to help you out with any question you have about the planning process. Send me an email or find me on Instagram and ask away!!

i hope this both helps those of you who are newly engaged and who are currently planning weddings. I’m also hoping this gets y’all excited for the future of the series and for the new journey that I am embarking on. Coming up next week for Wedding Wednesday will be everything you need to know and do right when you get engaged. Of course I will be sharing the sweetest proposal brought to you by my amazing husband as well as what I learned from the engagement process. Until next time…

xoxo ashley

Photo Credit: Morgan Marie Weddings

M is for Macrame

First off I want to apologize for the lack of post last week, Josh and I have some amazing new adventures coming up and thats really where our focus was. So with that being said and in keeping with the Monday theme…I want to share my favorite things from last week and if you follow me on Instagram, which you totally should be, you can probably guess what it is. I have featured it on a few post and my stories…my amazing macrame earrings from Ally Rae Thread Co!! She is such a gem and she knows about my love of supporting local shops and artist so when she reached out to me about doing a collab, I couldn’t say YES fast enough.

This is Ally, the mastermind behind Ally Rae Thread Co and I say mastermind because she makes some beautiful masterpieces. She makes the most amazing handmade macrame art for your walls, ears, and everything in between. I love her use of bringing nature in with using branches for the bases of her wall hangings. All of her pieces are so intricate that you can tell that she really loves this craft. She has even made some super cute custom pieces for dogs.

I am being 100% honest when I tell you these earrings are amazing. The boho vibe that they send out are so rad. Ally has now made me macrame crazy!! She has an amazing color collection of the earrings in the design that I have as well as two other handmade styles. The wall hangings that she has will give your home that finishing touch. She also makes some amazing custom wall hangings in all shapes, sizes, and colors. Josh and I are currently eyeing a few for our home! Ally has been super gracious and is letting me give all of my followers and readers 15% off your purchase with the code ASHLEY15 and she always offers free shipping!! Seriously go check out all of her creations on her Etsy shop because she is beyond talented.

You can find Ally at her Etsy Shop and her Instagram.

March Favorites

In keeping with my theme from my last blog, it’s time for me to talk about my favorite things! As you can see from the title of this post these are all of my favorite things from March. To start it all off, the number one of my favorite things that March has brought me is my blog!! I feel like my post last week really covered what this blog means to me and what amazing things it has in store for me. I just wanted to say thank you again to all of my friends and family who have been so supportive in this journey.

Something that Josh and I have really focused on this past month is spending quality time together. Whether this means scheduling time once a week for us to go out for a date night or stay in and just watch a movie at home while Josh makes us dinner (this usually means pizza or Uber eat but hey he tries). This month our favorite date nights have been going to hockey games. Beside rugby our two favorite sports to watch are hockey and baseball. How convenient is this that Toledo has both semi pro teams at our fingertips?? We love going and supporting our local teams and who doesn’t love a good hockey fight with a side of soft pretzel??

While date nights are something important to us, I make a solid effort every day of this month to make dinner at home for us. Some days I was crazy busy so to make this happen on days like that, I need to give a shout out to my crockpot!! Who doesn’t like to throw some stuff into a pot and just go on with their life…I know I do. Your girl is cooking a sorts of things like pot roast, bbq chicken, and my new favorite bacon wrapped meatloaf meatballs (yes I will be sharing this recipe soon!) This and my Keurig are the two most used items in my kitchen.

So most of the people in my life know that I have been in the beauty and cosmetic industry for at least 5 years now and I have specifically worked with the Estee Lauder Companies. With that being said, your girl knows her way around some skin care. So I am dry/combination skin type so I have always been on the hunt for something to make my skin feel super hydrated especially during the winter. So I bought the Tarte Maracuja Oil after reading a ton of reviews about how it has helped heal winter skin. Well it for sure lived up to the hype. I use this every night as my last step in my skin care routine. All I need is one pump and it covers my whole face. I wake up and my skin feels so soft and amazing. I noticed too that when I started using this oil, my skin started to clear up, my skin was brighter and firmer. My skin feels 100% better now that I have incorporated this into my daily routine. I would 10 out of 10 recommend this product to everyone.

Style wise this month I have switched it up. Don’t get me wrong I am still loving leggings as my go to bottoms (yes, leggings are pants in my humbled opinion). I am just your basic girl when it comes to fashion. I love a good tee, leggings, and a jacket. Recently, I have really gotten into those front tie henley shirts. They just look so cute and effortless and they go with everything. I have seen them styled with skirts and I love the boho vibe that it gives off. I have gotten mine from Target, Urban Outfitters, and even Amazon. Actually, one of my favorite ones is from Urban Outfitters because you can wear it tied or just buttoned all they way down and loose or my favorite way which is loose and then the front tucked in. I think these are a fall and winter staple that should be in everyones closet! I’ll link 3 of my favorites here:

Tan: Urban Outfitters Green: Target Rust: Amazon

If you know me, you know that one place that I frequently a few times a week. That place would be Target (my happiest place on earth). If you follow me on Instagram, which you totally should, you’ll know that one of my favorite places at Target is the Bullseye’s Playground aka the Dollar Spot. I honestly think last months picks were the best. They had so many things for the home. I know that I personally purchased little wall decor items, my favorite apothecary looking soap dispensers, and my $3 sunglasses. There is something for everyone in the dollar spot. If you have kiddos or other Easter baskets to fill right now would be the best time to check it out. 

I hope y’all enjoyed learning about all of my favorite things for March. If you try or purchase any of my favorites please let me know and tell me if you love them as much as I do. I also want to know what your favorite things in March were. Leave me a comment and tell me your favorite things for the month of March!!