Whites before Labor Day

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{ vest c/o W by Worth :: shirt :: pants c/o W by Worth :: heels :: scarf from a street vendor in Paris, similar here & here :: watch c/o }

While I don’t traditionally follow the ‘no white after Labor Day’ rule, there is something about wearing crisp whites in the summer. And in my opinion, there is something very chic about monochromatic looks with a  slight pop off color. I received this gorgeous vest and perfect trousers earlier in the summer from W by Worth while it was about 100 degrees outside. Once the temperatures dropped even slightly, I jumped into this outfit and went straight to Central Park.

I quickly learned W by Worth makes the lightest, most comfortable pants in the world and this vest will be a go-to year round {told you I don’t follow the ‘no white’ rule}. Seriously though, if these two items weren’t already in my closet I would go pick them up immediately.

Where would you wear an all white outfit like this?

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 vest c/o W by Worth
shirt 
pants c/o W by Worth
heels 
scarf from a street vendor in Paris, similar here & here
 watch c/o Jord Wood Watch

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The vest & pants were gifted from W by Worth, but all opinions are my own.

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4 Years and 4 Lessons We’ve Learned

amp 6 four years of marriageFour years ago today Caleb & I were married before our family and friends. We have been together for about six years, but never lived in the same city until our wedding day. Moving in together was a big adjustment, but felt natural and fun from the beginning. As we are celebrating four years of marriage, I wanted us to each share four lessons we’ve learned over the past four years.  amp 5 four years of marriage

 

Chloé–

1.  Think before speaking.
Easier said than done, I know. Over the past four years I’ve learned just how selfish I am. I’m pretty sure I can count on one hand the number of times I have been frustrated with Caleb for being selfish. I, however, need two hands to count the number of times I am selfish- each week… I am working on biting my tongue and recognizing my selfish ways before verbalizing them.

2. Adventure is important.
We have a long bucket list of places we want to go or things we want to see. Sometimes, we just need a vacation (even if it is a staycation) to remind us of the honeymoon phase and how exciting it is that we get to do life alongside our best friend. We always return from our adventures (no matter how big or small) a little more connected than when we left.

3. Celebrate the little moments.
Caleb and I have learned to celebrate even the smallest of moments. No moment is too small to savor.  Even on the hardest days, there is still something worth celebrating. Whether that means opening champagne because it’s Monday or simply staying on the sunny side of the street to let the sun shine upon your face for a few extra minutes {even though the cross walk says it is time to cross}. Find little moments together and soak them up.

4. Conversation is crucial.  
I’m not a huge fan of sharing my struggles and I tend to bottle my frustrations up until I can’t handle them anymore- not healthy, I know. But in marriage, there is no way of hiding it. Sometimes, you have to have those crucial conversations and unload your baggage. Before we were married we came up with these seven weekly questions that we ask each other each Sunday. Are they sometimes awkward? Yes. Are they always helpful? Yes.

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Caleb–

1. You have to keep things fresh.
I am a person who does well working with a schedule and a routine. I can easily get in a rhythm and get lost in “trying” to be productive (please notice the quotation marks). Over the last four years I have learned how important it is to my wife and myself to get out of our routine and go to a Broadway show or out to dinner when we planned on eating at home. You have to be willing to get outside of your routine to continue to learn more about each other and love one another more deeply. 

 2. Marriage is about creating new memories and experiences.
So this isn’t necessarily an AHA kind of statement. I think we all know a whimsical lifestyle full of memories and new experiences is truly worthwhile. What I have learned in my four years of marriage is that making memories and having new experiences is crucial. Every chance we get to travel, try something new or indulge in a nice bottle of champagne is an opportunity to live this whimsical lifestyle we strive for.

 3. Flowers might not last, but the feeling they give your wife are lasting.
I was never the kind of guy to buy flowers. I looked at them from a more practical perspective. I thought the cost did not outweigh the benefit. After four years of marriage, I can truly tell you my philosophy was flawed. It isn’t really even the flowers my wife loves (OK, maybe it is); it is the thought and knowledge that goes into purchasing and delivering those flowers to Chloé (thank you brilliant flower marketers). If your wife or significant other is not a flower person, then please think about something they love that would be even more special coming from you. The thought truly does count. 

4. Being smart with money truly makes my wife love me more.
If you have taken the time to read through all of my lessons, then you are probably seeing the dollar signs line up. However, I can truly tell you there are not many things I can do to make Chloé love me more than being frugal. We truly try not to spend money when we do not have to. We save, save and save some more (thank you Dave Ramsey), so that when we have the opportunity to go make a memory or check something off our bucket list, we don’t have to think twice about it. In our 4 years of marriage I have learned the difference between being able to book that international trip or not, can truly come down to simply living a little more frugally for a month or two. 

 

What advice have you heard or would you give to a married couple?

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Photos by Ashley Monogue Photography

Savoring Summer

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{ skirt $25 c/o :: shirt $15 :: shoes :: watch c/o :: silver dollar necklace, made by my grandmother}

Summer in NYC is just a little sweeter. Maybe it’s the long winters we have here or maybe it is the pure excitement of everyone rushing outside to soak up a little extra sunshine before it hides behind a tall building. Either way, summer is special.

New Yorkers may have a fast-paced lifestyle, but I’ve never lived in a place where individuals are so intentional. From work to friendships, cultural events to food. Everything is an event and you must make intentional plans in order for something to happen. So as the end of summer draws nearer, I am soaking up every bit of it. Follow  my instastory {and sometimes snapchat- I still can’t make up my mind which is better, can you?} to see how we will spend our final days of summer.

How are you savoring summer?

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Also, I am seriously obsessed with this skirt from Rowme! The material is nice enough that you could add a proper blouse & wear it in the evening or throw a tank on {like I did} and wear it casually during the day. And for $25, can you really go wrong? I have my eye on a few items on their website, it is almost time to prepare for fall after all! Bring on the scarves and sweaters!IMG_6751skirt $25 c/o :: shirt $15 :: shoes :: watch c/o :: silver dollar necklace, made by my grandmother}

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The Quieter You Become, the More You Can Hear

 

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{dress under $15 :: shoes old, similar}

Have you ever lost your voice? Until this week, I had only lost my voice once in my life and for some reason this week it has decided to disappear again. While it is frustrating, it has actually been kind of nice. It has forced me to be still and listen.

This week I’ve been reminded that the quieter you become, the more you can hear. Not only am I hearing people and the Lord more clearly, but I am also noticing beautiful little moments in nature- like the perfect, peaceful breeze as I walk home from work {you may have seen a video of this breeze on my insta story last night}. This soft breeze spoke to me like a gentle whisper from the Lord, reminding me of His presence, of His love. With no voice, I can’t fill the silence. I’m forced to listen. I needed this challenge to be quiet for a period.

What might you hear or notice if you were intentionally quiet?

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{dress under $15 :: shoes old, similar}

 

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Wine Tasting in New York – Day 2

beyond blessed-84Rosé season is still going strong and many of us are hoping the summer will stick around a little longer because we aren’t ready to give it up. {anyone else there with me? i’m raising my hand} Day two of our wine tasting weekend in Long Island, New York was filled with delicious rosés and we may or may not have brought a couple home with us.

Our second day was spent visiting delightful farmers markets,  gorgeous sunflowers, great food, delicious wine, and thousands of honey bees… yes, honey bees. I fell in love with the boutique winery called Coffee Pot Cellars for three reasons- Beasley {the wineries mascot & cutest pug who welcomes you when you enter}, their fresh honey/honey beehive {who would have guessed you would go wine tasting & learn about bees}, and their Cyser {made from apples and honey- i’m already dreaming of sipping this while apple picking in the fall}. I didn’t love their wine, but the experience was worth visiting. We also visited Bedell Winery {my favorite New York winery- great ambiance and every wine was fantastic, specifically the blanc de blac and sparkling rosé} and Pugliese Vineyards {great live music, beautiful views, but not my favorite wine}.

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Below are my overall suggestions, but check out our first day in Greenport to learn more about the other wineries:

Hotel:
Rent a home on HomeAway or AirBnB. We LOVED the location of the home we rented and would absolutely return. Downtown Greenport is absolutely where you want to stay!

Wineries:
- Bedell
- Coffee Pot Cellars
- Lieb
- McCall
- Sparkling Pointe

Eat:
- Aldo
- American Beach
- Noahs
- Scrimshaw {it has negative reviews online & is pricey, but we snuck in during an evening rain & had a fabulous meal}
- The Frisky Oyster

Coffee
- Aldo

Shop
The entire downtown is filled with incredible little shops with some of the most interesting people! You could spend a day going in and out of each one.
{we bought six vintage pilsner glasses at the Shearer Shop Antique store and learned her husband was at Normandy on D-Day and was the only one from his boat that survived.} 

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{dress, under $20!! :: watch :: coral bracelet from Vietnam street vendor :: shoes old, similar here}

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Celebrate the Little Moments

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So often we overlook the little moments in life. Our morning routines, watching the rain fall through the window, commutes to work, evenings spent cuddled up on the couch… They may be small moments, but I believe they should be celebrated.  There is something beautiful about these seemingly insignificant moments.

This week, I want to intentionally seek the beauty in these little things.  Spend an extra moment savoring that first sip of coffee, embrace the slower movements in the rain, and let the warmth of the sun light linger on your face just a little longer before continuing on your journey. This week, let’s celebrate the little moments.

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 What little moment can you celebrate today?

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Angkor Wat and the Best Wats in Siem Reap

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Angkor Wat is one of those places that you have probably seen pictures of, but may have not realized what it was. When there, it really does feel like you are on the set for the Jungle Book- monkeys and all. After visiting it in person, I completely understand why it is one of the “Seven Wonders of the Ancient World.” We spent our first full day in Cambodia exploring the incredible wats.

Our hotel arranged tuk tuk driver to pick us up bright and early for a day of wat tours. Did I mention the tuk tuk driver only cost $10 for the entire day? Seriously. And all day access to the wats only cost $20 per person.

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We started our day at Angkor Wat, which I would highly recommend doing. It is actually the worlds largest religious structure and was built between 113-5 BC. {I’m a huge nerd and thought that was just too cool! If only those stones could talk!} We woke up before sunrise to a slight thunder storm, but hopped on our tuk tuk and made our way to the wat. Our hotel packed up fresh banana pancakes, fruit, water and coffee, which we ate on our tuk tuk ride {again a definite must. you will be walking all day and need a good boost of energy in the morning}.

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Once you get to the Angkor Wat, take the main path over the moat and all the way up to the main interior entrance {it’s a lot further then you might think- the wat is huge}. Once you get to main entrance you will see a pond to your left. Go find a space by the pond and wait for the magical sunrise. We didn’t do this because I didn’t realize it was there, but would HIGHLY recommend it to everyone in the future. Lucky for us, the thunder clouds parted just in time for the sunrise and the Angkor Wat made its grand entrance. It was stunning. {as i mentioned before, i accidentally deleted my disk and lost a lot of pictures… these sunrise pictures were some of them :( i did snag this one on my phone though}

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There are dozens of wats you can visit, so Caleb and I chose a handful and asked our tuk tuk driver to stop at each one. We stopped at a few other wats along the way, which we do recommend doing- but these four were probably my personal favorites:

  •  Angkor Wat {the main wat- we spent a couple hours here}
  • Phnom Bakheng {mostly because we were literally the only people who made the hike up, it was between Angkor Wat and our next temple, and it has gorgeous views of Angkor Wat and the surrounding areas- we spent about 45 minutes here}
  • Bayon {the wat with the huge faces- it absolutely down poured on us here, like crazy crazy rain… but it actually added to our experience and made us seriously belly laugh- we spent about 2 hours here partially due to the rain}
  • Ta Prohm {the wat with the trees growing on top of it- we spent a couple hours here}.

As we explored, we made friends with a few locals who helped maintain the temples and learned fun facts about each temple. They were more than willing to share their knowledge and it made our adventure even more enjoyable once we understood the details of each wat. We also learned most of the wats were originally Hindu wats but were later converted into Buddhist wats. The details and stories each wat told were incredible!

img4324-54 img4324-34 img4324-38 img4324-21 img4324-22 img4324-13 00001506 00001465img4324-44 ^^ right before it poured buckets! ^^00001471 00001502 00001497 00001480 00001491 00001504img4324-10 img4324-15 img4324-30 img4324-55 img4324-60 img4324-69 img4324-80 img4324-100 img4324-109 img4324-111 img4324-110 img4324-107img4324-49 img4324-102 img4324-97 img4324-92 img4324-93 img4324-87 img4324-86 img4324-81 img4324-78 img4324-76 img4324-75 img4324-67 img4324-57 00001444 00001447 00001457 00001476 00001477 00001498 img4324-18 img4324-25 img4324-62 img4324-66 img4324-71 img4324-77 img4324-105 img4324-108 img4324-113 img4324-112 img4324-106 img4324-103 img4324-95 img4324-91 img4324-83 img4324-98 img4324-94 img4324-72 img4324-64 img4324-58 img4324-52 img4324-48 img4324-46 img4324-42 img4324-39 img4324-26 img4324-24 img4324-14 img4324-11 00001459img4324-63

Tips:
  • Get to Angkor Wat early early early. Did I mention you should get there crazy early?
  • Wait for the sunrise behind the pond on the left side of the Angkor Wat
  • Eat breakfast along the way to your first wat
  • Bring a water bottle {our tuk tuk driver kept a cooler for us}
  • Women- cover your shoulders and your knees. Men- cover your shoulders {It was sweltering hot when we were there, so I wore shorts and bought my sarong skirt right outside Angkor Wat.}
  • If you can, split the wats into two days. It can be a bit overwhelming to cram it into one day and by the end you appreciate it a bit less. It was still magical though

Have you been to Siem Reap? What were your favorite wats?
Do you have any tips?

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Stay tuned for more on our trip to Vietnam and Cambodia!

Wine Tasting in New York

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watch :: top :: similar skirt  herehere & here :: boutique hat alternative herehere & here }

Anyone else love wine tasting? This past weekend Caleb and I joined my parents wine tasting in the New York wine country. We’ve always been a big fan of wine tasting in Sonoma, but this was my first time tasting in New York. And let me tell you, it did not disappoint! While I still prefer the flavors of California wines, the views from New York wine country were gorgeous! To our left we saw vineyards and to our right we saw salt water. It was the best of both worlds! And according to the wine houses, the New York wine will only continue getting better as the vines age.

One the first day we visited Sparkling Pointe {a champagne style house- we liked the blanc de blanc best}, McCall {we enjoyed their merlot reserves and rosé best, although they are known for their pinot noir}, Kontokosta {gorgeous view, okay wines- a must at sunset just for the view}, and Lieb {we enjoyed every red and sparkling wine we had here. and their cheese board was divine!}.

We stayed in a cute historic Victorian home built in 1905 in Greenport, Long Island. We were within walking distance to the marina, vineyards, restaurants and shopping. If you ever come out to New York to go wine tasting, I would HIGHLY recommend Greenport for a home base. It is the cutest little town with everything you could hope for! And I will almost always choose renting a home over a hotel on holiday- even if you don’t intend to cook.

Stay tuned for day 2!

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{top- i pushed the shoulders down :: skirt- sold out, similar here, here & here :: hat- boutique, alternative here, here & here :: watch}

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Cambodia and Vietnam

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We all have times when we just want to travel to relax or lie on a beach and do nothing. But I believe the trips that really stay with you are those where it’s an adventure, where you don’t plan everything. The trips where you leave room to be spontaneous and you witness another way of living. These are my favorite trips. The trips that open your eyes to a life so foreign from your own that it makes you question your priorities. 

Posts about my travels around Asia are beyond delayed. But in a way, I am thankful it took me so long to share these with you. Waiting has allowed me to cherish those memories in private, just a little bit longer. Caleb and I took a month and traveled around Cambodia and Vietnam, and to say it was magical would be an understatement. While I appreciated the trip then, I look back on the trip with such fond memories and a new perspective. Reminiscing has helped remind me of what is truly important and what I learned on this adventure.

If you’ve followed me for some time, you likely know I am a planner. But on this trip, we mapped out our destinations and the essential hotels/flights, but left the rest open. We gave ourselves the freedom to stay in each city for as long or as short a time as we would like. {We even stayed with local families for some time in Hoi An and Sapa- but more on that later.} Through this, I was pushed out of my comfort zone and we met some of the most beautiful souls. In my opinion, this is what travel should look like. Travel should stretch you and remind you that most of the daily things we worry about are trivial. 

The week after we returned from Cambodia and Vietnam, I accidentally deleted every photo on one of my disks- so I am not 100% sure how many photos I will have of certain events. But be prepared, the upcoming posts of Cambodia and Vietnam will be filled with color, culture, love, whimsy, and magic. I wish I had taken a beaucoup of videos on the trip to share more of the culture, but sadly I did not. {guess that just means I need to return again!} Stay tuned- photos and stories from Siem Reap, Hoi An, Hanoi, Tam Coc, Halong Bay, Sapa, and Hue are to come! {Posts about Bali, Chiang Mai, Phuket, Koh Phi Phi and Bangkok will come later too!} Until then, here are a few photos from Vietnam!

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Downtown Annapolis & a Video

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It’s official, I love Annapolis.  Our first day cruising around the Bay was absolutely gorgeous and I was sure the second day wouldn’t be able to compare, but goodness was I wrong.  We spent our second day exploring Downtown Annapolis and let me tell you- it was absolutely dreamy! I had heard nothing but good reviews about this city, but it still surpassed my expectations. Between the history, harbor, food, shops, and brightly colored homes- I was in complete heaven.  This city has something for everyone.

Have you ever been to Annapolis?
If so I would love your recommendations on what to do and where to go!

What other small cities in America would you recommend visiting?

Also, we’re headed out to NY wine country today, so follow along on instagram & snapchat for updates!

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{white skirt under $25 :: BCBG blue shirt old – similar here, here & here :: sandals old – similar here :: watch}

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