My Ultimate Summer To Do List


It’s hard to fathom that we’re already well into July! The seasons fly by so fast that if we don’t stop and look around once in a while, we’ll miss them completely. I know that once summer is over, all I’ll want to do is cozy up at home and do all the fall things. But I also don’t want to wish away summer which is is why I compiled my 2017 summer to-do list. Honestly, we need to make the most of that sunshine while we have it, and writing things down is one of the best ways for me to hold myself accountable.

But what should be on a summer to-do list anyway? I think it should be easily attainable, not hard to plan, and affordable… We’ve got about 10 weeks left— we got this!

  1. Watch a movie in the park
  2. Order dessert from an ice cream truck
  3. Read 20 books (currently 2/20)
  4. Host a BBQ Game Night at our place
  5. Play beach volleyball
  6. Eat corn on the cob
  7. Go tubing in West Virginia
  8. Go blueberry picking
  9. Go to an outdoor concert
  10. Take a nap outside

image via


5 Free DC Events That Happen (Almost) Every Week


One of the things I appreciate most about DC is the seemingly endless list of events going on. Between outdoor concert series and events at the museums, there always seems to be something to check out. Whether you’re interested in art, working out, or good old fashioned drinking, DC has something to offer if you know where to look.

Here’s a few items on my budget-friendly bucket list this summer:

  • Free 3-mile “Sunday Runday” every Sunday 10 AM @ Union Market (NOMA): get your run on plus a free mat pilates class, and then head into the market and eat your well-deserved biscuit!
  • Free Comedy every Monday 8 PM @ The Passenger (Shaw): as the event page so eloquently states: “COME SPEND YOUR MONDAY’S WATCHING LOCAL COMEDIANS TALK ABOUT THEIR FLAWS AND INSECURITIES SO YOU CAN DRINK BOOZE AND FORGET ABOUT YOUR OWN!”  While this event is free, you do need to reserve your space in advance.
  • Free Summer Concerts every Wednesday 7 PM @ Strathmore (Bethesda): pack a picnic and trek north a bit for Strathmore’s Live on the Lawn concert series
  • Free Yoga every Tuesday 6 PM @ City Centre (Chinatown): hosted by CorePower, a free yoga series open to all.
  • Free Drive-in Movie Theater every few Fridays 7 PM @ Union Market (NOMA): free for walk-ups, $10 for cars in advance. You can bet your ass I’ll be there in a few weeks for Honey I Shrunk the Kids!

20 Light Spring Cocktails


When I think about warm weather, I immediately think of eating and drinking outside with friends. I’m lucky enough to live in a building with one of the best rooftop views in DC, so it comes as no surprise that during warmer months I have people over at least once a week. Some of my most memorable nights from last summer were spent upstairs on the roof playing games or just hanging out, sipping on a new-to-us cocktail.

I rarely make the same drink twice (there is one exception), since there are so many interesting options out there that I’m eager to try. I’m particularly drawn to cocktails that feature ingredients I’ve never used before, like pea shoots, cava or matcha! While searching for recipes for new drinks to try, I aim to keep things on the lighter side without sacrificing taste. Some are twists on old classics, while some are a brand new mixtures of ingredients.


Here are a few light, spring cocktails I’ll be trying out this year:








Gift Ideas for Valentine’s Day

Whether you celebrate Valentine’s day or not, this is a year when we especially need to celebrate those we love more than ever. It’s silly that we dedicate only one day to this, but February 14th does act as a helpful reminder when we’re so easily wrapped up in our day-to-day lives. In past years, I’ve hosted Galentine’s Day brunches and spent the weeks leading up to Valentine’s Day writing to my best girlfriends, sending little gifts to them to tell them how much they mean to me. I plan to do the same this year. Zach and I also will be carrying on our tradition of eating pizza and drinking wine, which I’m also looking forward to.

Here are some items I’m considering gifting this year to inspire your own Galentine’s Day gifting.

  1. a card for that [new] special someone you met on tinder
  2. nourish your own body with this sweet smelling body polish
  3.  a simple but sexy mesh bra that you’ll wear well past valentine’s day
  4.  give the gift of relaxation with this chic and sturdy candle
  5.  finally start planning that trip you’ve been talking about
  6.  hop aboard the essential oil train and uplift your drink, bath and life
  7.  everyone deserves a little “lol” with their morning cup
  8.  a pretty little coin purse for a night out with the girls
  9.  for everyone’s favorite cat-lover friend
  10.  flash your heart hands with this lovely little patch
  11.  this delicate but structured bracelet would make the perfect gift (hint, hint)
  12.  this refreshing drinking vinegar would make a great gift for almost anyone
  13. the perfect card to send to your long term besties

when maribel met the ocean | ocean city, new jersey

a few weeks ago, my family took a weekend trip together out to our shore house in ocean city, nj. the weekend started with my brother surprising my parents, who flew in for the weekend from san diego without them knowing. i don’t think i’ve ever seen my mom so shocked!


can’t visit ocnj without at least one stop here

we settled in after the initial surprise and immediately took maribel to the beach. even though we’ve been back living on the east coast for about a year now, we never managed to get her to the ocean. she was obsessed with the baby pool we bought her while we were living in austin, so i was so excited to see her first experience with the ocean.

as soon as we hit the sand she took off running. i’m in decent shape, but i’m so happy my super-fit brother was there to keep up with her as she sprinted toward the ocean. i don’t think i’ve ever seen her happier! she’s still a little unsure about big waves, but we determined that we definitely have a water dog on our hands.



2016-08-20 16.02.58.jpg
a welcomed, “more healthy” alternative to day-drinking beach beers: truly (spiked seltzer)



after what ended up being a highlight of the weekend for me, we spent the rest of the weekend doing what you do down the shore: relaxing on or near the beach, and eating and drinking way too much. we sprinkled in a few bikes rides and run here or there to keep things balanced.


panama hat (and yes of course, i bought it in size XL #bigheadproblems)

we took our last beach trip of the year a few weeks ago and while it was sad to say goodbye for a little while, i can’t say that i wished summer lasted any longer. i feel like we properly “did” summer.


i saw citizen cope live at the music pier, which was my first concert at that venue. it’s a beautiful location right on the water and i highly recommend seeing a show (any show) if you have the chance.


clams casino at the crab trap in somers point. THE BEST

this summer i also ate my weight in kohr brothers frozen custard, rode bikes to strathmere for mahi mahi sandwiches on the bay at twisties, had one too many bud lights at the beach/back bars in sea isle, drank coffee and read books on the porch, let my hair run wild, stayed up too late watching movies, and spending time on the beach at the 5 o’clock hour (the best hour on the beach, from a pitkin’s standpoint). 12this has been the busiest season of my life with all of our road trips and adventures (i’ll be writing a summer wrap-up). i’m so thankful for the weekends we were able to spend by the water.

and now that summer has come to a close, i’m really, really looking forward a relaxing and rejuvenating fall.









summer lately [via my iphone]

above: my handsome date and i from a wedding in philly last weekend [dress and braid]

august will be here in just over a week and i can’t believe how quickly summer is flying by. i’m not ready! it feels like just yesterday i was sipping my first summer love of the season and before you know it we’ll be pulling out our boots and watching the leaves turn colors.

i hope you’re hanging in there. this summer has been lovely, but also quite disorienting. hug your loved ones extra tightly today.

20160625_142341_resized_1 copy
a peaceful afternoon drinking beers and floating down the potomac
2016-07-10 15.08.44 copy
a beautiful afternoon spent wine tasting just outside dc
2016-07-16 00.00.06 copy
the most appropriate favor for a philly wedding
2016-07-11 10.00.38 HDR-1 copy
nitro cold brew from compass coffee is my newest obsession
2016-07-12 20.37.19 copy.jpg
taking advantage of the beautiful weather with an impromptu wine and cheese night
2016-06-10 10.41.05
breakfast with the boys at a friend’s bachelorette
2016-06-14 12.52.20 copy
i cried when i voted for hillary in the primary. i will cry whether she wins or loses the general election.
2016-06-14 13.27.22
the cutest vanilla bean confetti cookies i’ve made 3 times now
2016-07-21 13.44.33
soaking up summer as long as possible
a rare crowd-less afternoon at bluejacket brewery
2016-06-22 20.53.39 copy
work trips to austin in june call for sweaty outdoor concerts and wine

summer to-do list


this is our first summer back on the east coast and we couldn’t be more excited. we’ve got lots of roadtrips planned to visit family and friends, attend weddings and spend a few weekends at the beach. summer is all about taking things slow and savoring life. so while we’ve got a pretty packed few weeks ahead of us, we’re going to do our best to enjoy each moment with that theme in mind.

  • sample the tiki drinks at a tiki bar
  • score a prime picnic spot for an outdoor concert
  • float down the potomac at harper’s ferry
  • have brunch at a beer garden
  • break out my big hat at the saratoga horse track
  • stand in line at jim’s steaks for the best philly cheesesteak
  • cheers on the nationals and enjoy a hotdog and beer
  • create the perfect road trip playlist for weekends away
  • break out our hammock on a lazy sunday at the park
  • host wine and cheese nights on our rooftop as often as possible
  • ride bikes up and down the boardwalk
  • raise a glass at barrel oak winery
  • grill some peaches
  • go to an old fashioned, drive-in movie theater