turkey week.

we’ve officially entered thanksgiving week. which also means, the holidays are upon us! ahhhh. the happiest time of year.

my absolute favorite part is being together, with family. and the traditions, new & old. growing up thanksgiving was always at my [parent’s] house. I knew the drill.

but add another element, that’s [J]. and another hometown, that’s 200+ miles from mine. and you have yourself a tangled web of plans & towns. all of equal importance.

so, today …

[J] & I are making the trek to iowa.

to see my parents. for a few days. [not seeing them was not an option]. we’re going to eat, drink, relax, and be together ..like you should during the holidays.

and on thanksgiving morning, we’re going to get up with the sun. get coffee. and happily drive back to illinois, for a proper thanksgiving feast with [J]’s family.

I’m beyond excited we get to be with both of our families, all the while enjoying our first turkey day together.

here are a couple snapshots of {thanksgiving last year}. at my parent’s.

the table setting. “I am thankful for ..

our thanksgiving tree. each person wrote what they were thankful for inside their name tent. and placed it on the tree. we read each of them aloud at the end of the meal. tears were shed.

then we had a friendly game of flag football in the backyard. the perfect way to burn off that meal.

did I mention I love the holidays?

I couldn’t be happier they’re here!

if you’re traveling, travel safely. if you’re patiently waiting for thanksgiving break, you’re so close. if you’re already on holiday, cheers!

[I’ll be here all week long, so stop back! but for better ‘coverage,’ visit me on instagram: @chelset]

happy monday.

october date. [two days late].

[*update: I have since re-created this date! the photographs are easier on the eyes + the instruction is much better. see it here].

as I’ve mentioned, possibly 500+ times, [J] & I are alternating planning a date each month.

august I took him for {italian & a stroll through the city}. september he took me to a {pumpkin patch}. and october I DROPPED THE BALL. then proceeded to beg & plead for a slight extension. and then really felt the pressure to perform plan an amazing, unforgettable date.

so I did.

on friday, november 2nd ..two days after my “date month” passed us by ..I planned a great, worth the wait, scavenger hunt-esque date.

I gathered six envelopes. & created five clues.

the clues took us from our front door, to the front doors of our favorite restaurants in the surrounding area, plus one we’ve been dying to try. at each place I kindly directed him what to order.

he read the first prompt, which directed him to the car – where he found his FIRST clue.

that read …

which is definitely an inside joke from our college days, but it did the trick. and directed him straight to ..

where he ordered as told :)

then came his second clue

I had him fooled, for a split second, with this clue. but he caught on. and we arrived…

after our cocktail [& some megatouch] ..he got his third clue ..

which lead us to ..

and he ordered as told. [“ocean water UP” is key for “dirty martini”. I think it tastes like salt water. you get the idea].

he is thoroughly enjoying himself by this point. and I am just excited. SO excited I want to give him all the clues at once. hahaha – I didn’t. the fourth clue ..

this led him to the place we’ve never ventured to before, but had been wanting to try.

the onion pub & brewery. [the atmosphere was great, the micro-brews were scrumptious, & we can’t wait for our return trip].

then came the fifth & final clue ..

[he didn’t want it to end].

which led him to this ..

[I set everything up on the tray before we left. and hid it in the closet. when we got back to the house, I made him wait in the car while I lit the candles, grabbed the cake & the wine out of the fridge and put them into place].

the end.

I don’t mean to toot my own horn, but I’m pretty proud of what my brain thought up. [J] loveeeeed it. and I was just so happy that he was! it had NOTHING to do with the fact we were drinking & eating our favorites ALL IN ONE NIGHT [bahahaha, ok maybe a little].

I would recommend this to anyone. we both had the best time.

I consider myself REDEEMED.

happy monday.