9.9.23 4

Are You More of a Homebody After the Pandemic?

I wanted to discuss this topic because this is a conversation I’ve been having a lot in all avenues of my life — with my best friends, my coworkers, my sisters, the strangers in line at the store: are you more of a homebody after the pandemic?

Before the pandemic, I was pretty much out of my apartment from 8am to 8pm. I lived my life on-the-go. I commuted, worked eight or nine hours, and then, most days, had plans after — whether it was a group fitness class, happy hour with friends, a date, or networking event. It was a rare day when I went directly home after work and spent the rest of the evening there. And, I traveled often — both for work and pleasure — often spending three or four weekends in a row out of town.

Then, March 2020 happened.

And we all know how that went.

I was suddenly home all. the. time.

And, it was a huge disruption to my routine — which is one of the reasons why I think the pandemic was so mentally challenging in those early, dark days. (Not to mention the isolation, fear of getting sick, worry for my loved ones and our essential workers, an economy in free fall.)

But once I got in the swing of my new, home-centric life that was forced upon all of us during the month of war — dare I say — I actually quite enjoyed it. It was nice to settle into a slower pace of life, with more meals cooked at home, more television binge watches, and more lazy weekend mornings with nowhere to be by a particular time.

At first, I wondered if a bit of Stockholm syndrome was at play, but as time marched on, it became abundantly clear: I’m a bona fide homebody now.  Read more “Are You More of a Homebody After the Pandemic?”


Life Lately

I hope everyone had a great short week after the long weekend! Late last week, the weather was truly perfect – in the 70s with no humidity, and it made me so excited for fall. I’m usually a warm weather girl through and through, but this year, I’m ready for a change of seasons – and excited to break out my favorite sweaters and sweatshirts. (I’m a little tired of my summer clothes – anyone else?) I just wish there was a way we could skip the cold, dark days of winter.

I spent Labor Day weekend down in Nashville, Tennessee, with my friend Emma. We’ve spent many a LDW together, and when we realized that Virginia and Tennessee were playing at the Titan’s Stadium, we knew we wanted to get tickets to the game. We had a great time tailgating and cheering on the Hoos, despite the outcome of the game — which truthfully, was to be expected. On Sunday night, we stayed at The Graduate Nashville, which has long been on my bucket list. Emma and I first stayed at a Graduate Hotel several years ago when we went to Oxford, Mississippi. They’re usually located in college towns, and have the best – and very Instagrammable — decor that gives a nod to the local area. The Nashville one didn’t disappoint! And, I was thrilled we were able to check out The White Limozeen, the Dolly Parton themed bar at the hotel with our friend — and fellow Hoo — Abbi. (If you want to go next time you’re in Nashville, definitely make sure you get a reservation!) I’ll be sharing a full recap of our fun weekend soon.

I hope you all enjoy the last few weeks of summer — and that the temps cool down soon. Here’s a little look at my life lately as we head into fall! x Read more “Life Lately”

7.18.23 2

On My Nightstand: Spring 2023

Hello + hope you are all having a wonderful summer! I’m back with the books I read in Q2 this year (April, May, June) and there were a lot of good ones that made their way to my nightstand. In Q1, I read 22 books and in Q2, I read 17 books. I think I will exceed that number in Q3 given I have some vacation coming up where I can dedicate my time to reading. (As a reminder, the reading goal I set for myself at the start of the year was 75 books! You can view my tips for reading often here.)

Before I recap all the books I read this spring, I wanted to remind you of my book rating system:

  • Five Stars: an amazing book I could not put down and/or stop thinking about once I finished it; would highly recommend reading it!
  • Four Stars: a great book that stands out above your average read that I would highly recommend reading.
  • Three Stars: an average book that I generally enjoyed, but if you asked me for a book recommendation, I’d probably recommend another title first.
  • Two Stars: a terrible book that was hard to finish; I would not recommend reading it.
  • One Star: a book that was among the worst I’ve ever read. You probably won’t see too many of these because I usually DNF (do not finish) these books and don’t count them towards my yearly reading goal.

I keep track of everything I read in real-time over on Goodreads and via my Instagram Stories if you don’t want to wait for these quarterly book roundups.

As is custom on these posts, I wanted to call out that I’m part of a program where Random House will send me some of their new titles each month. I’m under no obligation to post about any titles I receive, so I really can tell you my own opinion (good or bad!) about them. I’ve starred the books Random House sent me for free below. I’m so lucky to be sent books and am really grateful for the opportunity to partner with Random House in this way. And, as always, you can follow along with what I am reading in real time over on Goodreads.

Happy reading — and please let me know if there’s been anything good on your nightstand lately. Read more “On My Nightstand: Spring 2023”