Thursday, January 28, 2016

Guys Behind The Blog: January

Hey guys, it's that time of the month where I hand the reins over to Mike for a little Q&A. This time, we are talking "currently" and I think you might notice a theme in his answers. Let me know in the comments if you can guess what it is! LOL!

In case you aren't familiar with Guys behind The Blog, it is a monthly link-up hosted by Betsy at Heavens to Betsy and Laura at According to Laura Jean. It spotlights the amazing men in our lives by asking them a few light-hearted questions. I always love hearing from the guys!
And without further ado...

Watching
College basketball, and lots of it. It's the time of year where my schedule - and let's be honest - my life revolves around North Carolina basketball. That's not too different from the rest of the year really, but at least there are real games happening now. I make sure time is blocked off to watch every Carolina game, but knowing the enemy is also important too, so when there's free time I watch whatever teams are close to Carolina in the polls, and other ACC games. And I just know Evelina just loves all the basketball on our TV! (eye roll emoji)

(UNC basketball game, Chapel Hill, NC - December 2014)

When I'm not tied up with basketball, we are watching Gossip Girl. I don't know why, but I love shows and movies that are set in High Schools. I also love seeing all the spots that we visited in New York.

Reading
I'm not really a big reader. I read a lot of news articles online, but I just don't really have the time or the patience to sit down and read a book. The last book I read was Pedro Martinez's autobiography. I've had every intention of reading Dean Smith's book and Roy Williams's book, but again, I just haven't been able to make time for it.

Listening to
The radio. All of my favourite artists seem to be on a hiatus from making new music, which has been quite disappointing. Kanye West has a new album coming on February 11th, so I'm pretty excited for that. Lately I've just been listening to the radio, with Sirius Fly (90s/2000s Rap and R&B), Lithium (90s Rock) and the decades channels (especially 90s on 9) getting the most play.

Dreaming of
Summer. I miss the warm weather, the sun being out until 9, playing softball, and wearing shorts and sneakers. It can't come soon enough.

(Szczecin, Poland - July 2014)

Eating
Pizza is always my go to, but right now I have a serious fried chicken craving. We have KFC and Popeyes, but I have a feeling like our Popeyes locations might not be as good as American ones. I've had a serious craving for Bojangles which hasn't left since we were in North Carolina a year ago, and I've yet to find anything that's anything close. There's a new place in town that is supposed to be good, so we'll have to give that a shot.

Learning

How to show restraint. I'm definitely more of a shopper than Evelina. Unfortunately, right now the Canadian dollar has taken a bit of a nose dive. An American dollar is worth about $1.40 Canadian. A few years ago they were equal, with the Canadian dollar actually worth more for a bit. Since my salary hasn't gone up 40% at the same time (would be nice to get a 40% raise though, wouldn't it?), it makes ordering online quite a bit more expensive. If I don't reaaaaaaaaaaaally want it, I've got to pass. It's been tough, but I'm learning to deal with it.

Wishing

For a Carolina National Championship this April. 

Obsessed with
Carolina basketball. I've detailed this at length numerous times. I am completely in my element right now at this time of year!

Loving
Life. It's human nature to complain, and believe me, I can complain a lot, but when I take a step back to reflect on things, I have a lot to be grateful for. I have an amazing  wife, a stress free job, a loving family that is close by, and terrific friends. When the biggest stressor in my life is whether or not Carolina will win their next basketball game, I have a lot to feel fortunate about.

Planning
Trips trips trips. We are for sure going to Poland this summer, and while we don't have any cross-border road trips set in stone, there are a few situations I'm keeping my eye on. Let's just say that North Carolina, Chicago, Philadelphia, and Texas(!!!) are all in play as potential impromptu trip destinations. I'm sure Evelina will keep you posted :)

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Valentine's Day Finds

Christmas has been gone for a while so I have started focusing on the next holiday! I have already started decorating around the house a little bit with touches of pink and red. I've been seeing more and more Valentine's Day things in stores and I've rounded up some of my favourites below!

  1. Rifle Paper Co. sells custom prints of you and your love! I am obsessed with all of their stuff and pick up their greeting cards every time I need one. These aren't cheap but so adorable!
  2. If you've been around the blog a while, you know I am all about Essie nail polish. And since pink is the official colour of Valentine's Day, this light pink shade (Peak Show) is perfect!
  3. I have this sweatshirt and love it! It's so cozy and cute for all the wives out there.
  4. My collection of aprons is way larger than it should be, but I just can't help it! This monogrammed one would be perfect to whip up Valentine's Day breakfast. Heart-shaped pancakes, anyone? 
  5. How fun is this swirly straw! Just $6!
  6. Home is my favourite place to be and I love this doormat to welcome me back. I saw it in Target a few trips ago and now my closest store is sold out. I may just have to pick this one up online. 
  7. This Valentine's Day cupcake kit from Anthropologie would dress up even the plainest cupcakes! The gutter gold is so cute paired with pink and white stripes.
  8. I have been wearing studs more and more lately and I love these little brushed metal heart-shaped ones. They are from the UK but at a great price!
  9. And of course, a little pink bubbly. The best way to end a perfect Valentine's Day with your hubby. 
Do you have your Valentine's Day plans set already? Do you have any annual traditions?

Monday, January 25, 2016

Weekending

How did everyone do with all that snow? Despite living in a stereotypically snowy country, we didn't get any snowfall over the weekend and there isn't too much on the ground either. Travel bans, shovelling, cancellations may have been on repeat in the Eastern Unites States but the pictures were stunning! My Instagram was blowing up with gorgeous photos of white winter wonderlands. Btw, I made a specific account for Fortunate House to focus on blog stuff. It brand new so make sure to follow at @fortunatehouseblog!


On to the weekend. We had my brother over for all three days and I haven't seen him in far too long so it was so nice to hang out and catch up. We filled up on pizza and spent too much time making funny faces and silly videos on Snapchat. I have officially become obsessed and possibly passed on my obsession to him.


Mike also took Philip to the batting cages and he actually did amazingly well. It was his first time swinging a bat at a moving ball and he hit most of them! I am sad I missed it but the boys had fun bonding over sports together.


Saturday night we went over to Mike's cousins' house for dinner. They recently took fancy cooking classes and wanted to try out their new skills on us. They made us butter chicken (my favourite meal of.all.time) from scratch and let me tell you, it was heaven. I had to seriously hold myself back from putting all of it on my plate.


Sunday was wii, Carolina basketball, and a quick trip to Ikea. This was the bedroom displayed right at the front entrance and I want to take all those items and stick them in my guest room. I especially love these flower lights! They are so whimsical and pretty.


We dropped Philip off and my mom treated us to a delicious dinner. So if you're keeping track, that's a total of zero meals cooked by me this weekend. I am not complaining. But now it's Monday and back to reality. That reminds me that I still don't know what we're having for dinner tonight. Yikes!

I hope you had a wonderful weekend! I want to read those snow stories! Have a good Monday!

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Linking up with Biana at B Loved Boston for her Weekending series! 

Friday, January 22, 2016

FH Travels: NYC (December 2015) - Part Three

Happy Friday everyone!

It's time for the final instalment of my NYC trip recap. I tried to divide it up by geographical location as much as possible to avoid bouncing around, like we actually did in our trip. We went Uptown to Downtown and back more times than I can count in just one day. In part one, I talked about our shenanigans in Brooklyn and part two was all about Uptown. So to avoid spamming you with any more photos after today, I am jamming everything else in this post.

In all honesty, I took well over 700 photos and it was super hard for me to select just a handful to share. But these posts also help me get a quick recap of our trips without spending a ton of time looking over every single photo when I feel like going down memory lane.

So let's start with what was my main reason for wanting to go to New York in December: skating at Rockefeller Center. This was on my bucket list and I am so incredibly happy to have done it. The tree is so gigantic and beautiful and going skating there with my husband felt as magical as I imagined it would. We went first thing in the morning (7am!) and watched the sun rise as we hit the ice in our rented skates.





Last time we visited New York, we saw Chicago on Broadway and it was phenomenal. I really wanted to see a show again and what better performance to watch during Christmas than the Radio City Christmas Spectacular? The Rockettes were amazing!! As a little girl I took dance and always thought the Rockettes were the creme de la creme. And they certainly did not disappoint.



New York dressed up really well for the holidays. There were decorations everywhere and the store displays were beautiful! We watched a gorgeous light show on the facade of the Saks Fifth Avenue building that was something like I have never seen before. Despite there being no snow (and record high temperatures!) the city definitely did a wonderful job keeping the holiday spirit alive.






I love that photo of the Washington Square Arch. I said this about a million times during our stay, but this may have been my favourite spot in the whole city.

To round out our trip, we visited the neighbourhood of Greenpoint, which is known as "Little Poland." Apparently it has the second largest Polish community in the United States. It was so nice to pop into some Polish stores, speak with some Polish locals, and buy a couple Polish grocery items. I was born in Poland and since moving to Canada, my family has always lived in areas that are heavily populated with other Polish immigrants. I went to Polish School on the weekends, we ate Polish cuisine and shopped at Polish stores but I noticed that the majority of cities in the States don't have these things available. (If you know of any in your area, please let me know!) It was so nice to walk through Greenpoint and be surrounded by others who share the same life experiences as me.


So that's it. That's our trip in what is one of the best cities in the whole wide world. I really love it so much and envy those who are fortunate to live there! While I can't wait to go back, it probably won't be for a long while, and that's ok. We have so many other places we want to visit and for now I am getting my New York fix by watching Gossip Girl.

Thanks for reading about our little vacation and I hope you have a wonderful (hopefully not too snowy, for those who might be affected by Winter Storm Jonas) weekend!

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

FH Travels: NYC (December 2015) - Part Two

On Monday, I recapped part one of our week-long trip to NYC, which started in Brooklyn. Today, I will continue, but we are going to shift ourselves to Manhattan. Uptown, to be exact.

Last time we visited New York, it was the hottest week ever and we tried to spend as much time as possible in air conditioning. And so we didn't give Central Park the time it deserved. This trip, we were blessed with beautiful mild temperatures (when we booked the trip, I was worried about below freezing temps and snow up to my knees!) We got a perfectly sunny, warm-for-December day to explore Central Park. We walked around, people watched from a bench in The Mall, and ate roasted peanuts by Bethesda Fountain. It was a perfect day.


 

 

 


I really love Central Park and the area around it. We also spent some time walking around the Upper East Side, munching on delicious macaroons while admiring museums and gorgeous highbrow townhouses.




We kept our eyes peeled for Blair Waldorf and Chuck Bass but I am sad to report we saw zero famous people (real or fictional) all week. Actually, Mike would not agree with that statement. If you read Part One, you know we bumped into some pretty important UNC people.

To close out our adventure in Uptown, we went to a bar on the Upper West Side for trivia night and WON! We named ourselves Team Canada, in case we didn't seem touristy enough with our map and camera.

Since there are already a ton of photos in this post, I will stop here and next time I'll chat about Downtown and Midtown. There is just so much to do in New York that's impossible to capture it all in one sitting and I so love looking back at these posts to relive our favourite vacations.

Thanks for reading!

Monday, January 18, 2016

FH Travels: NYC (December 2015) - Part One

It has always been my dream to visit New York City during the holidays and this year we did! Mike and I went the week before Christmas and had such an amazing time. So amazing that I didn't want to leave! New York is such a magical city full of life and excitement. We went a couple years age and I honestly wasn't expecting to go back so soon. So last time, we made sure to see all the big things like the Statue of Liberty, Empire State Building, a show on Broadway, a Yankees game, etc. This allowed us to do all the things we missed on this trip. And since we kept really busy, I am going to split up the recap of our trip into a couple very picture-heavy posts. 

We flew in a clear Friday night and got the best view of Manhattan from the airplane! 


The first leg of our trip was in Brooklyn, centred around the UNC game. I'm pretty sure that's how the idea of this trip first came into fruition. I didn't need a lot of convincing though. We happened to bump into the team before the game and Mike met all his favourite players and best of all, Coach Roy! I think that was the highlight of the week for him. 



The game was a success and we stayed to watch the Kentucky/Ohio State game afterwards. 




After the game, we went to Grimaldi's in Dumbo for pizza, and oh. my. god. My life changed during that meal. Best pizza I have EVER had. If you can only eat one meal in New York, this should be it. I have since tried to replicate the experience in other supposedly-similar restaurants, to no avail. 



Before leaving Brooklyn, I was set on going to see the Brooklyn Bridge and the Manhattan Bridge. We went at night and they were so beautiful! There were a bunch of photographers with tripods taking photos because the views were so breathtaking and iconic.





That last picture may be my favourite picture I have ever taken. Can you spot the Empire State Building through the tower of the Manhattan Bridge? It looks so tiny from this far away! 

So that was our little stint in Brooklyn. I really loved Dumbo -- the cobblestone streets and gorgeous views of Manhattan were perfection. 

Stay tuned for more! 

Friday, January 15, 2016

Currently...

BUYING
Nothing, because December was hella expensive. Between our vacation to NYC, gifts, and a ridiculous amount of money on stamps for Christmas cards, I am making a solid effort to calm the spending.

DOING
We just (finally!) took down the Christmas decorations last night. I know. I think I'm the last person on the planet and I'm not proud. While I adore putting up the Christmas decorations, taking them down is one of my most loathed activities. It's so messy and time-consuming that I try to ignore the task for as long as possible. Now I'm left with a ton of impossible-to-clean glitter everywhere.

DREAMING ABOUT
The days when I wake up and it's light out. I still have to turn on a lamp to see anything in the morning and it's not exactly conducive to feeling awake. Every day has been getting longer since December 22nd so my sunny morning is just around the corner!

DRINKING
The most amazing loose leaf tea! My brother and sister-in-law got me Peach Tranquility from Teavana for my birthday and it's the best! Taste description isn't my forte but it tastes like summer in your mouth. If you have the opportunity, I highly recommend it. I am a loose leaf tea convert.


EATING
All the clementines! Specifically, clementines from Costco. They are very mini but the perfect combination of sweet and sour. I come close to eating ten of those little things every day.

LISTENING TO
 Here by Alessia Cara. I love this song and I love her sound. And she's from my neck of the woods, reppin' the 905!

LOVING
Of course, my amazing husband! With the craziness of the holidays behind us, I love settling back into our regular routine and being able to spend time together without a looming to-do list. Nights in with him are my favourite.


MAKING
Snaps! Snapchats? I'm still learning the terminology. I recently downloaded Snapchat and have been making an effort to learn how to use it. It's actually a lot of fun! If you want to follow along, I'm evelinaFH.


NEEDING
Slippers. The ones I have now are a disaster and I am in desperate need of a replacement pair. Right now I have heart eyes for this pair but looking for a dupe that isn't as expensive.

READING
Blogs! I love keeping in touch with my friends from blogland!

WATCHING
(rewatching) Gossip Girl. To celebrate our trip, I wanted to watch a show set in New York. I was only planning on watching a couple episodes but that quickly turned into a full-out addiction. I am also hoping to watch as many Oscar-nominated movies before the Oscars as possible!

WEARING
My warmest clothes. We got a ton of snow recently so my parka had to be brought out. I am also sporting my favourite January mani: Ballet Slippers. It's the perfect milky winter white for the couple weeks between Christmas red and Valentine's pink. If you can't already tell, I take my seasonally appropriate nails very seriously.


WISHING
That my dog-in-law feels better soon. Mike's parents' sweet Golden Retriever had a series of epileptic seizures over the weekend and we are all hoping that he is able to make a full recovery.


WONDERING
What to get my bestie's little guy for his first birthday. Mamas, I need your help!

I hope you have a very wonderful weekend. See you on the other side!

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

28

My birthday was just after Christmas and I was on a little bloggy break to enjoy the festivities of all the holidays so I am here to recap it today! 

I turned 28 and am officially in my "late 20s." I remember a specific time when I was a little girl and my aunt was 28 and I thought she was so grown up. I thought she knew everything and had her life so together. I definitely don't feel like that now at the same age. I have so much more to accomplish, so much more to learn. I find myself in a very weird stage where sometimes I feel so much like a child still, and other times so much like an adult. It's all relative I guess. It depends who is around me. 

Maybe that never changes? I will continue to learn and experience new things and that's one of the best parts of waking up every morning.

I am very excited for my 29th year on this planet. We have some fun things planned for this year including a trip to Poland and possibly buying a new house. 

As for my actual birthday, I had a wonderful time celebrating with friends and family. And of course, with my family in Poland via Skype. We had low-key celebrations this year for both of our birthdays. Mike surprised me with beautiful white roses and I got an adorable video of my niece singing me happy birthday. 


Monday, January 11, 2016

Weekending

My first weekend wrap-up of the year! I had a great weekend that went super quickly. Have you seen that meme that says there needs to be a day between Saturday and Sunday? Time flies so darn fast on the weekend!

Anyway, we started the weekend off celebrating my niece's third birthday. It feels like she was just born but at the same time, I can't remember a time before her. She is so full of joy and energy and I just love her to pieces!



On Saturday, we made the drive to Syracuse to watch the UNC basketball game. I have never been to Syracuse and I was surprised that it was closer than I thought! Mike was in heaven! Actually, he was really nervous and animated throughout the whole game because it was really close. But Carolina won! Hurray!



Mike also got to meet two very important Tar Heels, Isaiah Hicks and Eric Montross. And I just have to say, that Eric Montross is so nice. One of the nicest famous people we have met. They both also managed to make Mike look incredibly short lol!


Aaaand I took my first ever snapchat at the game! Definitely the most complex social media platform  imo, but I think I am slowly getting the hang of it.


We got home Sunday afternoon and unwinded by watching the Golden Globes. I mainly watch for the fashion, but I also like to see what shows and movies are winning awards. Last year, we started watching Jane the Virgin just because Gina Rodriguez was so charming in her thank you speech. And now we're obsessed! Also, since the Globes are a good predictor for the Oscars, we watch to see what's good. My picks for best dressed are:



I hope you had a wonderful weekend!

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Linking up with Biana at B Loved Boston for her Weekending series!