Duke Goes Apple Picking

Hey, what's up, hello! Long time no see! I've really been thinking a lot about this little blog, and how much I love and miss it. I'm dusting off the cobwebs today to share Duke's day of apple picking because FALL is finally here! This time of year is when I seriously come alive and thrive, ha! A lot of changes happened during the summer. We moved, Andy and I both started new jobs, we began talking more seriously about starting a family and discovered the stress and heartbreak that comes along with that sometimes; basically my entire life felt a little all over the place. Things are finally starting to slow down a bit, and I feel like I've adjusted to our new routines and day to day. I'm giddy over these cooler days and quiet nights at home with my little family and my giant collection of Fall candles (hehe). We thought we'd kick off the season by taking a drive to Oak Glen to pick some apples. This was our first year bringing Duke along, and although slightly challenging, I was happy to know Oak Glen was more or less dog friendly enough for us to bring our little fur ball!

On some of our previous apple picking trips, we've gone to Riley's Farm (you can checkout that post here!). Although Riley's Farm is also dog friendly, we found that it's very very busy. If your dog is anything like ours, large crowds are a big no no.  This year we drove just a tad up the street and visited Riley's Apple Farm instead! It's still just as beautiful but significantly smaller so the crowds don't get overwhelming. Riley's is dog friendly, and the staff is awesome! The only "downside" is you have to carry your dog through the orchards. No one wants dog pee on their apples, yeah? This wasn't really a problem for us because Duke is basically our toddler and we tend to carry him a lot anyway, haha. We also got there right when they opened, which really help with the whole crowds issue!

After picking our apples, we headed to Oak Tree Village, which is at the center of Oak Glen. It's the sweetest little village with tons of shops and restaurants where doggies are always welcome! Before heading home we stopped for fresh cider and BBQ at one of the many ranches in the area. Most are dog friendly, just call ahead! Overall I would say Oak Glen is a great place to bring your 4 legged pal so long as you're prepared to carry your little munchkin around a bit!

Riley's Apple Farm is located at:
12201 S. Oak Glen Road
Oak Glen/Yucaipa CA 92399

Psst, put your apples to good use and make a cocktail with them ;) apple and mint moscow mules HERE!
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Honey and Fig Wine Spritzer

My husband recently admitted that he had never had a fig before outside of Fig Newtons. To some people that might sound crazy, but he's not much of a fruit eater so I'm rarely surprised when he shares what fruits he hasn't tried. A few days ago I saw that Trader Joe's had rolled out their Tiger Figs and immediately I knew I had to find a way to get Andy to have some. At first I considered throwing them into a fruit tray for him, but again, I've married someone with a serious distaste for fruits (so weird). The minute I stepped foot into the booze aisle though, I knew Operation Feed Husband Figs was about to take off. I picked up a cheap bottle of Trader Joe's Charles Shaw (love you long time, $2.50 wine!), some rosemary and my trusted figs and went on my way. 

Fig season always feels so short lived but so, so good! It's a sweet reminder to me that Summer is coming to an end and Fall is just around the corner. The notion that opposites attract could not be more true for Andy and I when it comes to our love for fruits! Any who, I whipped up a simple wine spritzer because it's what you do when your wine is under $3.00 and I put it to the husband test.

Andy ended up loving his fig wine spritzer, and over the weekend he even ate a fig all on his own. O.F.H.F. (Operation Feed Husband Fig) was a success!  To make your own fig wine spritzer you will need:

-FIGS! Some for your cocktail, some for munching on.
-3 oz. white wine 
-1 oz. club Soda
-simple syrup (equal parts sugar and water in a saucepan, heat till dissolved, pop half a fig in for flavor while dissolving)
-light dollop of honey if desired (makes it extra sweet and yummy!)

Combine all ingredients, serve over ice and top with a little rosemary. There are a ton of flavors going on in this that work really well together!  

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Our Stay at the Flamingo Las Vegas

There's something you should know about me: I have mega butter fingers. Hand me something and there's an 80% chance I'm going to drop it. My phone is probably what I drop most often, so naturally it had a shattered screen for a while. Again, I'm a dropper, so a shatter screened has never bothered me until the home button, aka the main button on the iPhone, actually fell out of my phone leaving it looking totally nakey. I freaked out immediately after realizing that not only was my home button now gone, my entire phone was completely frozen. My tech life flashed before my eyes as I realized that I hadn't backed up any of my photos, and I hadn't connected my last Candy Crush game to Facebook. AHHHHH! K, but really. All jokes aside, I was fairly upset till a few hours later when my phone had a moment of rebirth. I frantically started backing up all my photos, which brought me to this little trip I forgot to share! There's always a bright side, am I right?!?

Although we took this trip forever ago (almost a year ago, to be exact), I figured I'd share it today because it's National Pink Day! We've been to Vegas a handful of times and I had always wanted to stay at the Flamingo because hi, it's pink and it's flamingo themed! Andy found us a pretty great deal and we decided to go for it. We booked a room for $35, and much to our surprise, we were upgraded to this INSANE suite when we got there. Since we had never been upgraded this way, we pretty much spent the entire time in the suite, drinking champagne and watching Bachelor in Paradise, haha.

We're itching to go back to Vegas later this Summer. More than likely back to the Flamingo because their service is impeccable and also, did I mention there's a lot of pink?!?
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June Goals

You know when you go a long time without seeing a close friend and then when you're finally together you just want to burst into insane chatter about anything and everything that has been going on in your life? That's exactly how I feel right now. Hi there, blog friends! It's been forever and a half since I've taken the time to stop in and say hey. First off, happy freaking June! Say wahh?!? How we're already halfway through the year is a mystery to me, but alas, here we are. April and May were serious months of change for me. I made the decision to leave a job I had been at for four years after feeling like I had reached my maximum potential. It's weird deciding to leave something you've known and felt comfortable with for so long. Working there opened my eyes and heart to a community I didn't know existed. It made me a kinder, more empathetic person, and it helped me discovered my passion.  Job hunting felt a little like knowing you've outgrown your high school boyfriend, but still being a little too timid to jump into college dating. Is that a horrible analogy? Was everyone else just cool with dating in college?? Ha! Anyway, job hunting. It was stressful and slightly overwhelming. I'm happy to report that I've found a new job that I am so excited about! It's exactly what I'd been looking for and more. I feel challenged every day, which is something I had been missing for a while. It's also slightly terrifying. I'm no longer in the comfort of what I knew for so long, and the bar is set a lot higher. In a few months I'll be taking a board exam for this job, which kind of makes me want to shiz my pantaloons every time I think of it. I suppose I'll cross that hurdle when I get there (the exam, not the shiz). For now, I'm eager to get back to a much more chilled out life again. Once long ago when I was a better blogger, I used to love to blog about my goals for the month. They always made me feel motivated and excited about the things I wanted to accomplish, so I figured there was no better time than June 1st to hop back into that!

June Goals
1. Post daily on Instagram. I really sucked at keeping up with Instagram the last few weeks. It's definitely still one of my favorite communities, but there's nothing inspiring or photogenic about me frantically job hunting, crying, and having emotional breakdowns in our messy home. Haha :) also, I've really been digging Snapchat, too! (username: HeyJessKeller)
2. Go to yoga three times a week. I went once in May. Eeek!
3. Continue with my "say yes" attitude. Last month I decided I had to put away the "I'm sorry I can't, I'm super busy" phrase. Instead, I started saying yes to everything! Which lead to sweet times with friends, new and old. I love that I didn't miss out on things by giving some lame excuse, and I actually felt rather refreshed after every activity I agreed to! I'm excited to work that attitude into Summer!
4. Read at least two books. I started Me Before You a few days ago and I am loving it (aka I am crying all over the place).
5. Take tons of photos and record a few videos. I just got a few camera accessories I'm super excited to play around with!

What are some of your goals for the month of June? I'd love to hear them!
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Springtime Grapefruit Cocktail

One of my favorite things about Spring and Summertime is all the fruit that's in season. Everything is so much brighter and juicier, and the grocery store feels like it's in abundance of tasty fruits! Mmmm! Right now, I'm on a serious citrus kick. Grapefruit, in particular has been my go to. I've been having one every day for the past few weeks, and I am so not sorry about my obsession. I've been loving it so much, I figured it was time to add it to a cocktail!

This cocktail is something you can whip up fairly quickly. It's incredibly refreshing, and you can make it with things you more than likely already have at home. I love fancy cocktails, but when it's hot out and I just want to sip on something while I catch up on The Mindy Project (best show, by the way!), my go to is always something simple yet satisfying. Here's what you need to make your own grapefruit cocktail:

-1/2 Grapefruit
-Splash of Malibu coconut rum
-Splash of pressed grapefruit juice (optional, I happened to have this on hand)

In a glass, muddle your grapefruit. Combine both the Malibu and juice in a shaker with some ice. Shake it like a polaroid picture, pour over ice, and enjoy!

What's been your go to in season fruit?
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A Sea of Flowers

Happy Monday! I know I'm a broken record on this one, but...time is flying. I can't quite wrap my head around the fact that this is the last week of April. Ah! This month has been insane. I spent a large chunk of April on a serious job hunt, which turned out to be much more stressful than I thought. It's tough putting yourself out there, and to be totally honest, I'm not used to rejection. I don't mean that in a snooty way, I just haven't had to do this in so long. By week 3 of not finding the right fit, I was a complete stress ball. I'm talking cry sessions and stress zits (insert Jimmy Fallon's ~ew~). The good news is, I found something that I am so incredibly excited about! Putting so much emphasize on work has left me feeling like I need to add something more to my life. Creativity, travel, new hobbies, you get the gist. I kind of like this feeling of the unknown. I can choose what I want to do with my time right now, and that's a serious privilege! So, now that you know more about where all my energy has been going, I thought I'd share a few pictures from our trip to The Flower Fields a few weeks ago!

The Flower Fields are a Spring time tradition for Andy and I. There's nothing more beautiful than walking around a sea of flowers with your best friend! We dropped by right when they opened on a Sunday morning and we were the only people there, which made the fields seem even more massive.

Oh, if Ms. Frizzle was in need of a Mr. Frizzle, my husband would fit the roll perfectly. His themed shirts for our dates are always my favorite!

What are some of your Spring time traditions?
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Hey there, I'm Jess! A DIY and glitter enthusiast. Obsessed with color, my husband, our dog, and Disneyland! Here you'll find colorful DIY's on a budget, boozy sips, and snippets of my life as a newlywed. Grab a cocktail, stay a while!



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