Archive | Milwaukee RSS feed for this section

6 Tips for Surviving A Wisconsin Winter

2 Mar

tropical-oasis1. Plan a warm vacation for January/February.  After surviving last winter (remember the horrid polar vortex?!), Jonathan and I decided to plan a tropical vacation for February. It really made a big difference on our attitude going into winter because we knew we had our vacation to look forward to.  We decided to got to Florida because it is a direct flight from Wisconsin. We had a blast, and it was a great getaway from the cold.

tropical-dome2. Get a membership to the Domes.  I have talked about the Domes a lot but they are seriously amazing!  There are three domes all with different climates: tropical, desert, rotating.  It is so nice to go walk around and feel the warm air.  Sometimes I just take Ruby there and we get coffee and just sit in the Tropical dome.

eggnog3. Drink lots of warm beverages.  Jonathan and I drink so much tea and hot chocolate in the winter. Pretty much every night we fill the tea kettle with water and pick out our drink of choice.  I almost always pick hot chocolate.  It is something to look forward to in the evening.

flowers4. Buy fresh flowers.
Because they will brighten up your home and make you happier, I promise.

warm clothes5. Invest in warm clothing. Winter lasts a really long time in Wisconsin so it is important to have the right clothing.  I bought a crazy warm coat last year that was expensive but so worth it.  I wear it every single day.  For me, I believe it is important that you invest in a coat that is both warm and cute. You want to stay warm, but also feel good in what you are wearing since you use it so much. Good boots and scarves are very important too.

image6.  Delete your weather app. (Or at least all the cities on the West Coast). This may be my number one most important tip. I could write a whole blog post on just this.  The thing is, if you are constantly checking the weather (at least Wisconsin weather) it will disappoint you.  You will be depressed about the day/week before it even starts.  You will make a predetermined judgement about the weather without experiencing the actually weather conditions.  And, I can tell you from experience this does not help you survive the winter.  I have found it is much better to just be surprised each day.  If the day happens to be nice then I can be pleasantly surprised, but if it isn’t, at least I haven’t wasted the previous day dreading the bad weather for the present day.  Also, it helps to just not know it is -5 degrees outside. This all may sound weird but I promise it helps.

(image sources: 1 |2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6)

raising kids far away from family

10 Feb

father daugher florida

Today I wanted to share some of my thoughts on raising Ruby far away from home.  We decided to have Ruby while we are in Wisconsin and all of our family lives in Washington State.  Because we are new parents, we didn’t know what it was going to be like. But, I have to say now that we are three months in, it is equally a very special and challenging experience.

On the positive side of having Ruby so far from home, we get to create a bond as a family of three in a unique and beautiful way.  There are definitely daily challenges of feeling like you are all on your own with no one to help, but there is also something so special about learning how to rely on your partner in a new way.  The deep love I feel for Jonathan as we have entered this new world of parenting is hard to even put into words.  And, equally the love I now feel for sweet, little Ruby is so strong.  We are this small family learning to find our own way.

Some days Jonathan and I are bursting with so much love for Ruby that we miss her when she takes a nap.  And, sometimes we just lay on our bed and stare at her in wonder.  If you would have told me this is how I would feel before Ruby was born, I wouldn’t have understood.  But, now it is just so clear to me.  Having Ruby has been the very best!

But, on the other side of the spectrum, it is also very hard being away from home.  Sometimes I feel like I am keeping Ruby from her family.  She has such loving grandparents, aunts and uncles, and cousins, and it is hard knowing she doesn’t get to see them very much.  FaceTime is AMAZING, but sometimes it just doesn’t do the trick when you wish your sister could come over for some coffee and help you raise your daughter (#amiright)!  And, don’t even get me started on babysiting!  I would die for just one night away with Jonathan, and I know if we were close to family this would be possible.

For now, it is important that I accept that fact that we are on the other side of the country raising Ruby, and find joy in the special moments that opportunity brings us.

Have any of you had children far away from your family?  What has been your experience?

A Few Days in Chicago

2 Oct

chicago sept '14_with text

Hello!  I am sorry it has been so long since I have posted here!  I can honestly say I have missed keeping this place up-to-date.  I am hoping to get back in the swing of things here on the blog and post more regularly.

Today I wanted to share a picture from our Chicago trip last week.  Let me just say, Chicago is absolutely amazing!  I will never get tired of visiting this wonderful city!  One of my favorite things about living in Milwaukee is that we are a 90 minute train ride from downtown Chicago.  We can just jump on the Amtrak for $21 and be in Chicago in an hour and a half!  It is wonderful!  The Amtrak is also a really comfortable ride with free wi-fi and fun scenery.  Growing up in Washington, riding the train somewhere just wasn’t really an option (or at least not a very good option) so I hope to take advantage of this great resource as much as I can!

Once is Chicago, we spent time eating at some fabulous restaurants, explored the city, bought some cute baby clothes along the Magnificent Mile, and walked around the Navy Pier.  Because I am pregnant we had to take it pretty slow but it was still a wonderful time!  I can’t wait to go back!

Explore Your City // Original Pabst Brewery

8 Jul

pabst sign

One of the fun things about exploring a new city has been learning all about it’s history.  Milwaukee has such a unique culture/heritage and I have loved diving into it head first.  The other day our neighbors invited us on the Pabst Brewery tour.  Pabst started in downtown Milwaukee, and at one time it was the biggest brewery in the world.  We had so much fun learning about the Pabst story and seeing some of the old buildings.  Thank you Craig and Mark for bringing us along!