A Little Update | We've Moved!

You've probably seen the Instagram stories and maybe wondered what's going on. We've been working on a lot of stuff behind the scenes around here between the wedding and business stuff, but what I'm sure you're all wondering about is...

We're moving.

Well, technically now we have moved. But there's a little more to it than that...

We LOVED our house. If you've purchased anything from me over the past 3 years and picked it up, you've probably stopped by my house and home office across from the river. This little house on the river has become my sanctuary and my home these past 3 years. The place where Joe and I became a family with the little Grohly Poly Oly; where we got engaged; where we've held so many get-togethers with family and friends. 

Last summer, we tried to buy it. At an early point in our lease, the landlord had mentioned that we may want to buy it one day, so we researched what we thought it might be worth, what we could afford and perhaps some upgrades. We took it to our land lady to start the discussion, feeling pretty confident. 

Unfortunately, she had other plans. She said she didn't think she was ready to sell, but would think about it. A few months after not hearing anything, we found out she sold it to a friend, and we were...well, we obviously weren't very happy. It took us a while to really get over it, honestly. We were almost angry. This was our home. And for someone whom had never even lived there or perhaps been there to take it away from us seemed very unfair.

But everything happens for a reason. 

In the last month, the dishwasher had to be replaced, the AC and Oven stopped working, etc. etc. If that house had been ours, we would have had to replace it all on top of paying for the wedding. While it's an amazing house and even better location, it's old and needs a lot of upgrades. Upgrades that we just don't have time or money for right now. 

As most of you know, Joe spent the last winter season in Colorado to train with a professional adaptive snowboard team. His goal is to make it to the 2022 Paralympics. And in order to do that, he has to go back to Colorado again this winter. 

So for now, we are moving into Joe's parents house through the wedding, and I'll stay there through the winter season while he is in Colorado training. Twila & Co. will have a new home with Darling D's and Vintage is for Lovers on Lafayette Boulevard, and you can (and should!) come absolutely come visit. I wanted to be here for the holidays as I have exciting new skyline products coming and can't wait to share! 

But next spring, things will definitely be changing even more around here.

Have you guessed our big news yet? 

Joe and I will be moving to Silverthorne, Colorado together full time from the spring of 2019 until the 2022 Paralympics. He has an amazing opportunity to follow his dream and he would be stupid not to go for it. And as hard as it will be to redirect my business for a bit and test out some new waters by moving out there, I think I'm ready for the challenge. It's taken me a while to get on the excited train for this; Fredericksburg and Virginia has been my home my entire life. But I'm finally feeling excited for this next chapter. 

Don't worry though! The Skyline products aren't going away and neither are wedding invitations or any other services! Catherine at Monkee's has agreed to continue to sell my skyline products even when I'm gone, and of course, the website will have them as well. We'll be visiting a lot and that will definitely include lots of skyline trunk shows! Maybe I'll even get some new ideas and products while I'm out there. 

And of course, if you're ever near Denver or in the mountains, PLEASE reach out! We'll be about an hour and a half outside of Denver in the mountains. Grohl doesn't know it yet, but he is going to LOVE that mountain life and he already has buddies out there waiting for him; and so do we. 

I could go on and on about this move and how much I will miss Fredericksburg and everything I have built here, but I'm going to save that until I actually leave. Until then, I'll just live in a little bubble of all things wedding and Fredericksburg as the wedding gets closer and so do the holidays. 

But I will say this, I love you all more than words can say! And I am so thankful for everyone that is a part of this journey. 

As if you needed more convincing to come visit us when we're out there...

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Laura & Richard | Fredericksburg Wedding

Ya'll, this love story is one for the books, let me tell you. 

Let's start back at the beginning. I've known the Erwin family since I could barely walk. Our families grew up living in the same neighborhood, and when we started school, we all went to the local catholic school of Montfort Academy. Which is where the Moran family went too. We all grew up going to Montfort, until it closed down and Holy Cross Academy opened in its place. 

It was a well known fact that Mrs. Moran and Mrs. Erwin were BFFs. They were awesome and so much fun to have around as room moms, neighbors and role models. So many of my childhood memories involved these families. 

Unfortunately, Holy Cross Academy only goes until eight grade, so for high school we went our separate ways. And as most do at that age and forward, we made new friends; we had life experiences; we moved in different directions with our lives. But timing is certainly everything, and God has a funny way of revealing his plans.

With Facebook and living in Fredericksburg, I've been able to keep up with everyone. So when I first saw some photos of Richard and Laura emerge last year after all of these years later, I couldn't help but giggle a little bit with Mrs. Moran and Mrs. Erwin in mind. I mean, isn't it all of our dreams that we have kids around the same time as our friends, our kids grow up with our best friend's kids, and then they fall in love and get married?! Not to mention, reconnecting with a childhood friend years later only to find a spark?!

I kept watching photo after photo pop up on social media, and kept smiling and hoping that this was really something...and sure enough, it was. And here we are a year later and they're married! 

When Laura emailed me about doing her wedding invitations, I was ecstatic! And when we got to sit down and meet to chat about her vision, I was just so excited to be a small part of their beautiful and special day. She was interested in watercolor florals with a lot of soft pinks, so I was able to practice some of my floral skills and was so happy with how they turned out. The suite turned out so elegant and clean; and for florals, definitely on the simple side, which I love.

The gorgeous photos below are by Carley Rehberg Photography and they capture the day so well! I just love the contrast of that light pink and grey against the beautiful evergreen. And those ring shots!

So, Laura, thank you so much for letting me be a part of your special day! I am beyond happy for you and Richard and wish ya'll the absolute best! 

VENDORS

Photographer  |  Carley Rehberg Photography

Ceremony Venue  |  Saint Mary's Catholic Church

Reception Venue  |  Stevenson Ridge

Invitations & Watercolor Map  |  Twila & Co.

Dress  |  Ava Laurenne Bride

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My Fredericksburg Bachelorette Party

I bet you're totally surprised that I had my Bachelorette party in Fredericksburg, right?!

Honestly, I just couldn't think of a better place to have it. I LOVE Fredericksburg and I wanted the chance to show it off a little to all of my out of town friends. And between the amazing food, things to do and history, it definitely did not disappoint!

Thank Yous

Before I get into what we did, I just wanted to take a second to thank you. First, I want to thank my amazing sister and best friend Jeri for all of the planning and organizing she helped with, as well as two of my bridesmaids, Courtney & Whitney for their help as well. Without their help, this weekend would not have been so smooth and fun. I had a vision and they all made it happen! 

Second, I want to thank everyone who came out this weekend to celebrate with me. I continue to walk away from these wedding-related events just realizing how lucky I am to have such amazing people in my life. I had friends from High School, College, my Sorority, work, Fredericksburg, and even friends I knew in Elementary School that came. I am still riding the high of this weekend and how many people came to celebrate and have fun! It was everything I could have wanted and more and I only wish it hadn't gone by so quickly! So thank you to every person who was there this weekend; you made my weekend so incredibly special!

And last, but most certainly not least, thank you to the small businesses that made this weekend so incredible (I'll be talking about them later in the post!). Every business we used this weekend was a local biz that is special to Fredericksburg and it made me so happy to be able to give back a little bit to my community by having my Bachelorette here. And they did an incredible job taking care of us and made me look really good in front of my friends! hahaha

What We Did

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For the entire weekend, we rented out Braehead Manor, which is about 10 minutes from downtown. Mary, the innkeeper and one of my good friends, did the most incredible job all weekend. She had everything set up for us, was the best host and everyone felt right at home! I had a large group of over 15, so it was really nice to be able to all stay in one place together. It makes it much more fun! 

Friday we had a spa day at Skin Touch Therapy + Spa, which was incredibly relaxing. They did an amazing job scheduling 10 girls manis, pedis and massages flawlessly and everyone left feeling relaxed and ready for the weekend. They did such a good job that we finished right on time and were able to swing by everyone's favorite shop, Monkee's

 Kybecca Wine Bar

Kybecca Wine Bar

That evening, we scheduled a two course dinner with wine pairings at Kybecca Wine Bar.  Because we had 15+ ladies, we were able to reserve their wine cellar downstairs, which gave us some privacy. The food was delicious, the wine was perfect and we had a really enjoyable dinner that wasn't rushed or busy so we could enjoy each others company. And after dinner, we just had a pajama party at the manor with champagne and popsicles in wine glasses that I decorated.

 Ready for the wine tour!

Ready for the wine tour!

Saturday was a Wine Trolley Tour with the Trolley Tours of Fredericksburg! We didn't actually get to ride in a trolley, but we had a really nice bus that took us from place to place. Because of the large group, we only did three wineries. We started at Wilderness Run Vineyards, then stopped at Harvest Market to pick up some snacks, then to Lake Anna Winery and then a final stop at Mattaponi Winery.  It was the perfect afternoon and I had so much fun surrounded by some of my favorite people!

 Bride's Babes

Bride's Babes

And of course, we had matching T-shirts with the Fredericksburg Skyline. What else did you expect? I had 'Bride's Babes' on all of my friends shirts in the mint green; my shirt said 'Bride to Be;' my sister and maid of honor's said 'Babe of Honor;' my moms said 'She got it from her mama;' and Mrs. Pleban's said 'the O.G. Mrs. Pleban.' They were so much fun and I definitely have to make a point to get better photos taken of them because they are so stinkin' cute. 

By the time we got back to the Manor, the pizza was delivered for dinner and everyone ate and had free time to nap, relax or (as requested by some of my friends) visit the Popcorn Bag. It was just the recovery we needed before a night out on the town. 

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If you've ever seen The Wedding Date with Debra Messing & Dermot Mulroney, you'll understand my bar crawl theme...which was golf and you have to order a different drink at each bar. It was so cute in the movie, and even more fun in real life because we got to wear skorts, tennis shoes, and sports bras, making it cute and comfy to  be out on the dance floor all night. We started at Sky Bar, which is the new rooftop bar above Castiglia's, then moved to Jay's Sports Bar, then to the Bourbon Room for some dancing and finished up at Capital Ale House for some french fries before heading home...although a few girls went back to the Bourbon Room for a little more dancing. 

My biggest planning tip

Planning ahead and including all pricing for EVERYTHING. When I sent out the cost for the weekend to my friends, I included the hotel/manor (which included breakfast both days), the dinner at Kybecca (a preset menu & wine pairing including gluten free and vegetarian options), the trolley tour with t-shirts, pizza for dinner on Saturday and snacks and wine at the manor all weekend, as well as spa treatments pending what people wanted. I paid everything the week before the bachelorette, so when showed up for all of the activities everything was completely paid for including tax and tip. No splitting checks, no adding tip or tax, nothing. The only additional fee was if you wanted to purchase wine on the tour or drinks out on Saturday night. It literally took so much stress out of the entire weekend and I highly recommend it. Plus, people are budgets and money can be tight! If you can plan ahead how much you'll be spending, it makes it so much easier to account for. 

BEST WEEKEND EVER

This past weekend was seriously everything I could have ever wanted in a bachelorette. I had the BEST time ever, and am mostly just sad it's over. I already wanna do it all over again! Thank you so so much to everyone involved and for making my weekend so incredibly special!

THE SET-UP

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friday night

 Most of the Gang for Friday Night Dinner

Most of the Gang for Friday Night Dinner

 Me & Brittany

Me & Brittany

 Me & Jael

Me & Jael

 The CNU Crew

The CNU Crew

 Whitney, a Bridesmaid, myself, Jeri, my maid of honor, and Courtney, A Bridesmaid

Whitney, a Bridesmaid, myself, Jeri, my maid of honor, and Courtney, A Bridesmaid

 Kaley, Joe's Sister and a Bridesmaid

Kaley, Joe's Sister and a Bridesmaid

 Phi Mus

Phi Mus

 My High School Besties

My High School Besties

 Of course we had to add an order of oysters because they are the BEST!

Of course we had to add an order of oysters because they are the BEST!

 Everyone after Dinner at Kybecca

Everyone after Dinner at Kybecca

 Popsicles & Champagne

Popsicles & Champagne

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Wine Trolley Tour

 Because who doesn't hang out in a beautiful porcelain tub with balloons?!

Because who doesn't hang out in a beautiful porcelain tub with balloons?!

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 Wilderness Run Winery

Wilderness Run Winery

 My Future Sister-In-Law, me and My sister/Maid of Honor!

My Future Sister-In-Law, me and My sister/Maid of Honor!

 Celebrating two engagements in our family!

Celebrating two engagements in our family!

 Hanging with Pierre at Lake Anna Winery

Hanging with Pierre at Lake Anna Winery

 My Mom & Mrs. Pleban

My Mom & Mrs. Pleban

Golf Themed Bar Crawl

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 My Work Wife and My Work Bestie

My Work Wife and My Work Bestie

 High School Friends!

High School Friends!

Wedding Hair Routine

Well, I won't lie: one of my favorite things about myself is my hair. Definitely not every day, there are plenty of days where it's up in a top bun because it just can't seem to handle itself, but I truly do love it. 

And I basically have two sets of hair: the hair that I straighten and give big curls/waves, and my natural curly hair. And there's a lot that goes into both styles and also keeping it healthy, growing strong, and style-able (is that a word? I'm not sure, but hopefully you understand what I mean). My natural hair is very thick, curly mess. So  when I want it straight, it takes time to tame it by blow drying, curling, etc. Needless to say, my hair goes through a lot. And if I didn't take care of it, it would be super dead, harsh and hay-ish, but thanks to these amazing products, it stays healthy, soft, and keeps its ability to be styled, which is especially important when you're getting ready to get married! 

straight with waves

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curly

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Here's my routine

I take one hair, skin & nail vitamin every day.

I wash my hair ever 5-7 days. I realize this may not be normal for everyone, but it's what works best for my hair. Only you know what's best for your hair type and how different products effect your hair. 

When I shower, I have a routine. I shampoo my hair first thing, not leaving my shampoo in too long and focusing on the roots.  Then I put in the first conditioner (Sake Bomb) and focus on the ends and let it sit while I wash my face. I wash a majority of the sake bomb conditioner out, but leave a little in, and I then use the Oi Conditioner (again focusing on the ends). I throw my hair in a bun and leave it in while I shave, use body wash, and do anything else I need to do so that the conditioner can really sit in my hair for the appropriate amount of time. And that's it! 

I usually leave my hair down on Days 1 and 2. Day 3 it's usually styled up for a styling break.

After Day 3, I use dry shampoo and that is what really helps make my wash last so long. 

Day 4 and 5, I can usually leave my hair down again, and style it. Days 6 and 7, it usually goes back up in a bun or another style. 


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It Works! Hair Skin & Nails

I know, I know. It's one of those direct sales companies. I get it. But I swear by this stuff. My nails grow longer without breaking, my skin glows, and my hair won't stop growing. These vitamins are amazing and if you have trouble keeping nice nails or growing your hair, I highly recommend this product. 


FOR STRAIGHT HAIR

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Sake Bomb Nourishing Shampoo

I love this shampoo and the below conditioner because they keep my hair soft and prep it to be styled. I notice a huge difference when I use this before I blow dry my hair versus when I don't. It's great for nourishing your hair, making it less frizzy and overall control for styling. 


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SAKE BOMB NOURISHING CONDITIONER

Pretty much the same as the shampoo above, just the conditioner. I definitely recommend using these products together for the best results. 


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OI CONDITIONER

This stuff smells SO FREAKIN' GOOD. It's my favorite. Whenever I use it and blow dry my hair, I feel like I just got out of the salon. It's also super nourishing and helps strengthen and soften your hair. And yes, I do condition my hair twice every time I wash it! I notice a huge difference and my hair stays so much soften 


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SUN BUM LIGHTENING SPRAY 

I know, I know. This stuff reminds me of the 90s when we used to put lemon in our hair. Well, this stuff is awesome. My hair naturally lightens in the sun, and I spend a lot of time outside in the summer, so this is just a way to control the lightening a little more and give it that beautiful gold color. I use this after every wash, regardless of if I'm going to be outside or not. It's not like it's going to give you crazy blond streaks, it literally just lightens and brings out your natural blonde in the perfect way. 


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Tresemme Volumizing Dry Shampoo

I don't know what I would do without this stuff. It's amazing. I've tried a lot of dry shampoos and this is by far my favorite (not to mention the price is perfect). It works both as a dry shampoo and a volumizer for the top of your head. I almost feel like my hair looks better on days 4 and 5 than on days 1 and 2, because the roots get such a good volume going. 


for wavy or curly hair


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Nourishing Coconut Milk Shampoo & Conditioner

When it's summertime, I LOVE all beachy smells. Especially coconut. This stuff smells amazing and makes my hair feel silky smooth! 


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Beach Babe Butter Masque

And to really enhance the shampoo and conditioner and give my hair a deep moisturizer, this butter masque is amazing. 


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Beach Babe Sea Salt TEXTURE sPRAY

As soon as I get out of the water at the beach or lake or even just the shower, I towel dry my hair and then spray a mix of this beach babe sea salt texture spray and the Bumble & Bumble spray below. 


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Bumble &Bumble Surf Spray

My hair does the best when it's at the beach. There's just something about that salt water. So I do my best to recreate it when I'm at home by using a mix of these two sea salt sprays. 


coloring my hair

Surprise! My hair isn't naturally blonde. Ha! I get balayage highlights on my hair about every 6 months or so, pending the time of year. Why do I love balayage? Because my roots can grow out and you can't even tell, therefore my coloring is lasting so much longer than regular highlights. Plus, using the lightening helps lighten it even more in the summer.

For the wedding, I actually got my hair done in April and most likely will only get a cut about a month prior to the wedding, but I won't get it colored again. If you do get it colored before your big day, do it at least a month before. You want to give it time to tone itself down a bit so it looks natural, and (heaven forbid!) something goes wrong, you have plenty of time to fix it!

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Davines Alchemic Silver Conditioner

This stuff is awesome! I use it about every other week. as my second conditioner to keep my color fresh looking. It's the best! 

Dog Food Allergies & the Clean Label Project

Mr. Grohl is on today's blog! I continually see a lot of people whose pups are having a hard time with their food and allergies. And we've been through a lot food wise with this little guy. When we first got him, he had allergies and itched all the time, and unfortunately, it didn't stop there due to what I was feeding him. So today's blog I'm talking about what we did to figure out what he was allergic to, and how we battled further stomach problems.

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