Celebration Month!

It has been a marvelous 4 weeks indeed! If you have been reading this blog, even for a short amount of time, you might have noticed that it has been an explosion of celebrations.

Let’s just say Nick and I have a very busy beginning of summer. It starts with my birthday in mid-June, our anniversary, B’s birthday, and then ends almost exactly 4 weeks later with Nick’s birthday. True to most years we have had plans for every single one of the weekends during that period.

This past weekend was no exception, but it was all in the name of celebrating Nick’s birthday, and as a wonderful present, his newest Apple app was featured on App Advice (Simple Mic) check it out!

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We were in Connecticut and we were able to spend a few days in Nick’s parents pool

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On Saturday night we gathered a few of our friends and headed to Krust Wood-fired Pizza & Bourbon Bar in Middletown, per the recommendation of Caitlin!

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The birthday boy & Cait

I will be honest, I am not always super pumped for pizza, it’s okay Nick calls me Un-American because of it. However, I knew I would be okay with Krust because their menu has very unique pizzas. I also don’t like bourbon, but don’t worry, everyone else at the table had their fair share of bourbon, especially my husband.

I have to say, I was immediately blown away by Krust’s customer service, while they do not take reservations, we were able to give them a heads up that we had a large party and what time we were planning on coming in, and Kevin (owner and bartender extraordinaire) realized there was enough space for us right before we arrived and they set up a table so we could sit right away. He also came by the table multiple times to see how everything was. Fabulous!

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We obviously started with drinks, Cait had me order the Onyx Apple Pie, it wasn’t listed on their menu so I am not sure exactly what was in it, but it was delicious, a bit to strong as I was driving later in the evening, so I drank about 75% of the drink and Cait finished the rest. I love a friend that will step in for me, ha!

Not long after we started our drinks, we ordered our food. Krust has an everyday menu, but they also post their daily specials on Instagram!

I knew I HAD to have the Brussels pizza, that had fresh garlic, fresh mozzarella, parmesan, roasted brussels sprouts, roasted onion, evoo and salt. Krust is extremely accommodating, I added an egg and the kale medley that was on the special pizza of the day to my Brussels pizza. I don’t think I can eat pizza at another place again.

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This picture doesn’t even begin to do justice to the pizza. I even dipped my krust into Cait’s Gazpacho, which I told Kevin was the best Gazpacho I have ever tasted. I couldn’t finish the entire pizza so I sent my leftovers home with Cait for her and her mom.

I ordered a second during dinner, my traditional margarita.

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Krust is next door to the best cupcakes in CT, NoRA Cupcake Company. Anyone in CT that I have told the name of my blog too has told me that I NEED to get to NoRA ASAP. Krust sells their cupcakes for dessert.

I went with the obvious, the Margarita cupcake.

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Margarita with a side of…margarita. They have an entire cocktail line, I need to get my butt back their and try the Bubbly Cupcake.

It was nice and fluffy, the cake was moist and full of flavor, not dry at all. The frosting had salt sprinkles and it tasted just like a margarita. The sweet and savory hit the spot. I can’t wait to go back and try another flavor or four.

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Cait & I. Bloggers in crime.

Again, I want to say a huge thanks to Kevin (and the entire staff at Krust) for being awesome and making sure our party was always happy. The staff at Krust was awesome and I would suggest you all make your way to Middletown for great pizza, bourbon, and cupcakes!

While this month has been extremely busy (and felt like I was constantly on the go), I wouldn’t change a thing. I was able to spend our special moments with our amazing friends and families, and our friends who are just like family. This past month has helped me realize it’s about having quality friends in my life and not quantity. Thank you all for being a part of our special days.

Five Years!

Don’t forget my one true shoe love is in stores today. I suggest you hustle to your nearest retailer then have a blissful run home!

I can’t believe it has been 5 years since Nick and I were married. It seriously has felt like it was forever ago and also like it was yesterday. Crazy how that happens. We’ve had an apartment, bought a condo, bought a house, sold our condo and have had an amazing little boy. Life is beautiful and I am so happy to share this journey with Nick. I didn’t have a blog when Nick and I got married so I figured I would share a few pictures of our wonderful day.

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The Groomsmen & Nick

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THe Bridesmaids & I

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My sister, sister-in-law, and good friend. These girls I love to death!

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In the limo on the way to the church, this is one of my favorite photos and those earrings were lent to me from our jeweler, amazing.

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Dad & I. I was so incredibly nervous, not to get married, but to be the center of attention, and my dad was trying to remain composed.

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I love this moment between Nick and his Papou (grandfather).

To give some background, we got married in a Greek Orthodox church. The ceremony consists of two parts which are distinct and separate from each other: The service of the Betrothal and the Ceremony of the Sacrament of Marriage. Everything in the ceremony has a special meaning and significance, especially the repetition of each act three times to symbolize and to invoke the mystical presence of the Holy Trinity.

The highlight during the service of the Betrothal is the exchanging of the rings. The priest blesses the rings. The koumbara (religious sponsor) then exchanges the rings three times. The exchange signifies that in married life, the weakness of one partner will be compensated by the strength of the other, the imperfections of one, by the perfection of the other. By themselves, the newly betrothed are incomplete, but together they are made perfect. The rite of the betrothal ends with the priest praying for betrothal of mutual promise, officially given before the church, may prove in true faith, concord and love.

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The Wedding begins as the white candles are handed to The Bride and The Groom. These candles symbolize their spiritual willingness to receive Christ.

The crowning is the focal point of the marriage ceremony. The crowns are signs of the glory and honor with which God crowns them during the sacrament. The wedding crowns (stefana) are joined by a ribbon which again symbolizes the unity of the couple and the presence of Christ who blesses and joins the couple and establishes them as the King and Queen of their home, which they will rule with wisdom, justice and integrity. The priest takes the two crowns and blesses The Bride and The Groom. The Koumbara then steps behind The Bride and The Groom and interchanges the crowns three times as a witness to the sealing of the union.

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The common cup, the cup is denoting the mutual sharing of joy and sorrow, the token of a life of harmony. The drinking of wine from the common cup serves to impress upon the couple that from that moment on they will share everything in life, joys, as well as sorrows, and that they are to “bear one another’s burdens.” Their joys will be doubled and their sorrows halved because they will be shared.

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Parents & Grandparents

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The ceremonial walk. The priest then leads The Bride and The Groom in a circle around the table on which are placed the Gospel and the Cross. The Bride and The Groom are taking their first steps as a married couple, and the church, in the person of the priest, leads them in the way they must walk.

You are never announced as man and wife. The bride and groom kiss but this is when you are married. It is obviously different from a traditional Catholic marriage ceremony.

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Coming out of the church

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Nick’s sister was our Koumbara and my maid of honor, and we had a bit of an emotional moment following her speech. They have such a wonderful relationship, I can only hope the same for my children.

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Nick’s best man was ready to give us some laughs! Another wonderful speech.

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My sister and I, love her.

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This photo is amazing and currently hanging in our living room. Bride and Groom, Maid of Honor and Best Man.

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First Greek dance of the night.

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Greek Dancing

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Father/Daughter Dance

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Mother/Son Dance

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Nick and his Dad play a lot of gigs with their Greek band, and they both ended up sitting with our band and played during the wedding.

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My man has moves. Nick is dancing, the money on the floor is a traditional Greek thing, people throw money during special dances etc… some couples take the money, some give it as tips to the band. We chose to do the latter.

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Nick, his sister and I dancing.

I had such an amazing wedding, so happy to be here 5 years later. Here’s to 95 more, I love you.

Have you ever been to a Greek wedding? What was your favorite part?

A Fancy Dinner…or Two.

First, go check out the Healthy Living Summit Blog. I am honored and ecstatic to be one of the top five contenders for the Wild Harvest® Breakfast Showdown!

Now onto our regularly scheduled post!

If you read Caitlin’s blog you know that she loves to have a good meal out, and so she was asked what her favorite restaurant is. Her response was J.Gilberts in Glastonbury, CT. J.Gilberts is a short ride from my in-laws, and since I was going to be down in CT for my birthday, I decided I wanted to give it a try!

The day started with a nice hot run around the neighborhood.

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My husband gathered some of our closest friends for dinner. The meal started with fresh bread and a peppercorn butter.

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To start my brother-in-law and I shared the Ahi Tuna Tartare. Unfortunately, I did not get a picture, but trust me it was amazing. I also started with champagne tasting trio.

For dinner, per Caitlin’s suggestion, I got the 4 oz filet combo with a jumbo lump crab cake. For sides I got grilled asparagus and roasted potatoes.

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My brother-in-law got the bourbon maple shrimp, so we made a little trade. It was all amazing. The filet was cooked perfectly and the crab cake was a legit crab cake. Not a lot of filler, the right way to make a crab cake.

Since it was my birthday Nick and I shared the Chocolate Velvet Cake for dessert.

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This should be where the story ends, but a little over a week later was Nick & I’s wedding anniversary. We usually just go out to a nice dinner, but it had been a long couple weeks of traveling and spending and we weren’t planning on really doing anything.

Then Ms. Caitlin posted a message about good old J.Gilberts and how she was eating there and had a coupon…she even said I could get the coupon too. From there it wasn’t too hard to convince the husband that we should celebrate our anniversary at J.Gilberts.

Again we started with bread, and we were going to order the Calamari, but because of the heat the breading wouldn’t stick to the calamari and they didn’t want to serve a sub-par dish. Instead we got a Caesar salad.

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That giant cracker thing, it was pure cheese, not really my cup of tea, but the rest of the salad was delicious.

Again, I got the 4 oz filet and crab cake, but I decided to get different sides, garlic broccolini and a loaded baked potato.

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Nick just got a bigger filet with smashed potatoes and lobster mac and cheese.

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I stuck with wine for dinner but both Nick and Caitlin rave about the Manhattan, I am not a fan of bourbon, but they claim it was one of if not the best.

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And that is how we ended up with 2 fancy dinners at the same restaurant in almost one week!

What is your favorite fancy place?

4 Years!

Today we have been married for 4 years! It is hard to believe it has been 4 years already. It was crazy this past weekend, my sister-in-law got married at the same location as we did and had a few of the same vendors, it was like déjà vu!

Here we were 4 years ago:
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Greek Dancing
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And here we were last weekend

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Oh how times have changed!
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Happy Anniversary, Nick, I love you! :)