Date Your Spouse

Date Your Spouse

Greg and I have tried to consistently to go on dates for the length of our relationship because we know how important it is to keep communication open.  Typically we go out to dinner and a movie or find somewhere to shop and hangout.  I love it when there is something fun to do in the area like a festival or event but typically we take the kids with us for that. I really believe that those are two different things (Date Night/Family Night).  Ive heard people say that marriage is 2 people both giving 100% of themselves to the other how do you do that when we are always so spread out.

In our home we have 3 young children (2 are from my first marriage) so being a divorced and now remarried woman I know the feeling of defeat when a relationship doesn’t work out.  Its super easy to point the finger and say what the other person did wrong but its very hard to reach down inside and find your part in it.  I can’t go back and fix my 22 year old self but I can work on the me I am today.  I know that when I had Christian, my oldest, my world revolved around him and his schedule I didn’t take time to work on my relationship.  I think thats the failure today with so many couples, they date, get married, have kids. Who we become after we have kids isn’t the same as when we were dating or newly married.  This is reasonable because our experiences shape us into who we become and continue to help us grow and learn throughout our life.  Im going to get to a point……

If we don’t date our spouse throughout all these changes, how are we going to continue to get to know them?  And if we don’t care enough to know them, how will they feel loved?  And if they don’t feel loved then, How will our relationship stay sweet?

I will never claim to be an expert in any area that I ever write about but if you sit back and think about it, this makes sense.  We will never have a true relationship with our spouse unless we continue to date them, be it going to the movies, going out for coffee, for lunch or for a romantic weekend away…we need it!

Greg and I get to travel together for work so we naturally have a few get-aways a year but we do like to intentionally go away for a night even if its here in town. Next on our list is a stay at the Hotel LeVeque, in downtown Columbus.  This Marriott Autograph Collection is the perfect place to have a night or even a weekend Getaway. I recently went to check it out and fell in love with the beautiful Art Deco details and decor.  I think a stay here and a stroll through the Short North or German Village are a must for Greg and I before the fall is over!

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Isle, Cha Cha Dress available at Cheesecake Boutique

Isle by Melis Kozan has some fabulous date night dresses that I chose to wear for this shoot.  They are all available for purchase at The Cheesecake Boutique in Upper Arlington and directly on Isle’s site here.  Sometimes I dress up and sometimes Im more casual when we go out.  All three of these dresses work for nights out but each have their own feel

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The Golden Gate Taylor Dress plays off of the rich details throughout Hotel LeVeque

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This Cha Cha Dress was so fun I had to do a little dancing in it!  The Cha Cha was the first dress made by Isle and is very flattering to all body sizes.

 

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TheChrysler Drop Waist Dress is perfect for boots or booties and is dressy but casual at the same time plus its Art Deco which is the theme of Hotel LeVeque!

Woman Like Cars Too

Woman Like Cars Too

Over the years I’ve bought many cars and they all have one thing in common…I made the decision on my own of what/where I was going to purchase.  My First car was a 1988 Honda Civic Hatchback that I found in a newspaper article that I searched out and went to purchase on my own (I actually bought my first car before I turned 16)!  My Dad, of course went with me and made sure that I wasn’t getting a Lemon.  That car got totaled and I went on to buy two more cars in high school one of which was also in an accident…my nickname became crash, lol!  I have purchased 3 used cars as an adult woman and 3 new cars,  I won’t claim to be an expert but I have learned a thing or two.

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I will never forget the time I went to a certain dealer here in Columbus (Im not going to call them out by name) to purchase a minivan and had a horrible experience. I had a Used Mercedes R350 that I had purchased from the Toy Barn in Dublin which I LOVED and was the perfect car for 2 kiddos.  The kicker was when I got pregnant with Jaden I knew with the size of a large stroller, 3 car seats, and whatever else needed to be in my car I had to move to a MiniVan.  I will stress that the absolute only reason I was changing was due to size.  I had Identified that I really wanted to get a minivan for at least the years when Jaden and Cameron were in a carseat because I didn’t want to climb in and out of a big SUV to buckle everyone in.  Toy Barn didn’t have any so I just decided to go with a new one to get all the bells and whistles that they had in 2013.  Well I go into this dealership to see what would compare to my Mercedes, and If you know me at all I am a jokester usually. I tell the salesman, I need something as pretty as my Mercedes so in other words,  I want most souped up van that you have.  Now Greg, my husband was with me but he knows that I’m an independant woman and that I have always done the car buying on my own so he went more just to be with me then anything else.  The salesman takes us to their “most souped up” version of a van that they had.  I looked at him and said, “This is nice but I was really wanting something that had a luxurious feel to it like my R350.  Are there any other available options?”  Let me remind you this is the 3rd time now that I have told him what I need, this time more descriptively.  He looks at me then turns to Greg and says “Why does it need to be pretty, this is the best van on the market mechanically.”  Greg tried to help the guy, bless his heart and said, “Don’t talk to me, my wife is buying this car, its her money, her car, her decision.”  So at this point I’m annoyed because this guy obviously doesn’t respect me but I really wanted this car I just needed to know if it could upgraded. I asked him one more question and honestly its blurry as to what it was because I got so mad with his response I essentially told him that he had made a mistake because I was going to buy from them but now I Im going to go to their competitor. You remember Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman? Vivian: “You people work on commission, right?” Shop assistant: “Yeah.” Vivian: “Big mistake. Big. Huge. I have to go shopping now.”

I recently asked the question on Instagram, Whats your worst Car buying experience? and got a ton of responses.  I heard all kinds of things from women like: “I went in to buy a particular car for a price and when I went back it was so different.”  “Very misleading!!!!!!!”  “I hate when they assume I know nothing because Im a girl!” “I got harassed by the manager and left crying” “I haven’t felt confident to buy a car alone because of a situation that happened…” “The guy would only talk to my husband.”  and the list goes on and on.  My Photographer/Friend, Chad Diblasio shared the question and got an overwhelming response as well.  WHY IS THIS!?!?  The car buying experience needs to change or we all need to go where what we are asking for gets shown and we are not treated as if we can’t make the decision on our own.

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I mentioned that I have purchased one car from the Toy Barn (My husband Greg has purchased two sports cars from them).  Our experience has always been an amazing one.  When I decided to write about the car buying experience as a woman I knew that I wanted to highlight The Toy Barn.  This is not a sponsored post, although it would be cool if I got a car out of it, lol!!!  I spoke with Marc Snyder, The Operations Manager and he said that The Toy Barn really wants customers to have an experience with their car.

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They don’t just have expensive toys either, they just added a lot dedicated to cars that are priced under $30,000.

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They search out specific cars with low miles and have a lot of referral business and repeat customers. In my mind that is the key to their continued success! I can personally attest to the experience with my R350 purchase and my husbands Jaguar and Corvette Purchase.  Another thing that he said that was very interesting is that they want the cars that they sell to have an emotional draw. I remember the sales manager Greg calling us when he got in a Bumble Bee Camaro back when Christian was 4 so that he could come over and check it out.  He knew that he was into Transformers and would love to see it and sit in it.  Every time I come across those pictures i remember how excited he was and how Greg almost wanted to buy it just because Christian thought it was the coolest thing ever!

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Here are 3 4 Tips for Buying a Car

  1.  Understand your goal.  Sometimes shiny objects get the better of us.  Know in advance what you need.  Do you have kids and need space?  Is this a fun car?  Can you get away with One large car and one sedan?  You don’t want to get a car and then realize it doesn’t meet all of your needs.
  2. Count the Cost. If you are going to by a foreign vehicle sometimes sticker shock can set in on the maintenance. Is the dealership full service and stand by their vehicles.  Is it a large SUV that is going to take premium gas and/or fuel efficiency.
  3. Do your research.  Know what you should pay for the car, stand your ground and don’t be afraid to walk away.  I spoke with a single client at my practice once who said the deal went bad quickly when the price was more then she was given on the phone, the color was wrong but he pressured her so bad that she bought the car anyway.
  4. Bonus- Sleep on it.  I really believe if a car is meant to be then, it will be there the next day.

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Fall Pattern Mixing with Leota

Fall Pattern Mixing with Leota

I love color and pattern mixing.  I always get asked how I choose what to mix.  Honestly I don’t really think about it.  I am unapologetically myself and I really don’t follow many fashion rules.  Having said that if I look back at outfits that I’ve put together usually there is a common color involved when I pattern mix.  In the case of this Leota Dress, I knew immediately that I wanted to pair it with something Leopard. Another way to pattern mix is to mix the scales.  The scale of the leopard spots is bigger then that of the flowers in this Enchanting print.

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I love using Leopard in the Fall and it would be absolutely tragic if Leopard ever got tacky.  Wait its not tacky, is it?!?! I think that given the right stripe you could actually style this dress with a striped jacket if you are really bold!  But this Leota Jacket would be really cool as well even with the Top thats in this Enchanting Print.

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The fabric on this Maya Dress is really versatile, I dressed it down with these camel colored suede booties and a denim cropped jacket. I styled it on my instagram with just heels for a dressier look.

While, the Leota team graciously sent me this beautiful dress, I have mentioned before that I fell in love with the brand from buying a couple of pieces in the Cheesecake Boutique in Upper Arlington.  Jessica at CB is a genius at finding fits for your body type and the bonus with Leota is that most of the fabrics travel really well.

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Oh I forgot to mention that founder, Sarah Carson uses women of all shapes and sizes in her campaigns, which I absolutely love!  I love what she says on her site, “Dry cleaning is expensive so we make our product machine washable.  They are wrinkle free because we have better things to do than iron.”

Thank You! #Leotainthewild

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