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Adjusting To Life Without Our Sweet Delly

It's been several weeks now since we had to say goodbye to Delly. It's been a huge adjustment. I'm so glad we have the other pugs, because her absence is felt. I can't imagine if we didn't have any dogs in the house. I think about her every single day, usually multiple times a day! We really miss her, but we are happy she's not struggling anymore. Life has gotten easier in some ways. Our day really revolved around her. The other dogs don't need bathroom breaks as often, for example. Even the color of our dryer lint has changed! Going from 3 dogs to 2 is actually a huge shift I wasn't expecting. 

I finally took her harness off the hook by the front door. I'm keeping it in a safe place, the pug hair and all. We also received her paw print from the cremation people.  I never thought I would want to have something like that, since I'm not very sentimental. But, I'm so glad we opted in for it. It does warm my heart to see it each day. 

Special Meaning Items

My mom semi-recently became the power of attorney for a 90 year old long time family friend that has no children. She is living in an assisted living home, and so we are in the process of selling her house. It has been cool to see some familiar items there that I remember from childhood. She lived 2 streets over, so we often walked over after school. She's able to have quite a bit of personal items at her apartment in the facility, but there is a whole house and lifetime worth of things to sort through. 

I was able to take home such a cool treasure! This really neat globe. Globes and maps have always been something mesmerizing to me. This is just a cool, and still very functional, piece that I'm happy to see in our home! Plus, it feels special since we are keeping it in the 'family'.

My Uncle also recently brought down some items that belonged to my grandparents and great grandparents, so we are swimming in nostalgia and interesting photos. 

Here's my little PSA: do you elderly self a favor and go through items and collections long before you get old and have to have your family figure it out on their own. 

Auntie Life

Sharing a couple of fun Auntie things. My nephew Lennox just graduated Kindergarten! I was able to take his graduation portraits, and they turned out unbelievable cute. I'm going to share that in another post because I have several favorites. 

Additionally, my niece Gia had a dance recital and she was such a little star. You could tell she loved it, and had been working so hard to get the dances just right.

And, my nephew Carter has been making me so proud lately too! He got his grades way up, and now I owe him $100 because of a promise I made him when he wasn't doing as well. 😂 He's been messaging me through Google Chat, and it's brought me SO much happiness. I love talking with him. One thing I think is hilarious...when I tell him I love him, he says 'same'. 😂 Every once in awhile I'll get an 'Love you too'. 

New Diffuser

I've always loved the YL Aria diffuser, but I sure haven't wanted to spend the money on it. I found this Dupe on Amazon. The 'on' button isn't the greatest, but otherwise this really does give the look of the Aria. I had fun getting a rainbow of oils from Grove, and they just looked so good lined up!

If you are new to Grove, you can use my link for 30% off! I normally share my Grove hauls, but I haven't really gotten many orders lately! I've been able to get most of my favorite cleaners from Walmart, but there are still several things I like to get from Grove. 

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Just 4 Things

Friday, May 24, 2024

The fourth stop on our Alaskan Cruise, was Victoria British Columbia! What a beautiful place. We heard ahead of time, from multiple sources, that Butchart Gardens are an absolute must. Because our ship was in port during the evening, we did the cruise sponsored excursion to the gardens. The gardens would have been closed otherwise. I'm so glad we did! It's a far drive from the cruise port to the gardens, and we were brought over on a very comfortable bus with an extremely informative driver. 

I can not overstate how amazing Butchart Gardens is. It's INCREDIBLE. And overwhelming. We spent a few hours just meandering and snapping photos left and right. It's truly a taste of paradise.

They also have free clear and complimentary umbrellas everywhere for those pop up showers this area is prone to. We were there in the evening, but still had plenty of light for exploring. 

The Gardens also has a great little cafe, and gift shop which we had fun perusing. 


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Port of Call: Victoria, BC | Starring: Butchart Gardens

Thursday, May 23, 2024

The 3rd port we visited during our Alaskan cruise was Juneau! This city was really cool, and I felt that it was the most accustomed to large quantities of cruise tourists. LOTS of shops and tours right there off the ship. 

We are so happy that we chose to do the Sled Dog tour while visiting Juneau. This was the coolest thing! If you are a dog lover, it's a must. This was a legitimate operation - these dogs actually race in the Iditarod and the Mushers were extremely knowledgeable. The tour included an extremely fun ride on the sled! I can't believe how fast and strong these dogs are. It's amazing! They clearly love to run too. 

There was also a cool swinging bridge, and it overlooked a beautiful river as this camp is set up in the woods. The only sad part was there weren't any puppies! There were 2 momma-to-be dogs, and the pups were due in about 2 weeks. I really wish we got to see puppies, but the big puppies were fun too! 

We also enjoyed some time at Alaskan Brewing, which was great, but crowded. The views from there are awesome, I'd just go when there aren't 4 ships in dock. You have to try some King Crab while you are in Alaska! It was a whopping $60 a pound, but gosh it was worth it. 

The only thing I wish we had time to do was walk down to this amazing whale sculpture that was at the other end of the harbor.  We drove past it, and I just wish we had a chance to stop. 


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Port of Call: Juneau, Alaska

Wednesday, May 22, 2024

In case you missed it, 2 of my cousins and I are attempting to cook our way through the Dinner Tonight Cookbook together. We are taking turns choosing a recipe to make, and are reporting back to each other via text.

This week's recipe was the Creamy Dijon Penne with Kielbasa on page 88!

Blake and I gave this recipe at 7/10. It was good, and I enjoyed it -  but Blake's assessment was that it needed cheese. I kind of wonder if that's my conditioning though, because, normally when I make kielbasa I pair it mac and cheese. You have to like Dijon to like this recipe, because it's a strong flavor. But! I will say the kale really added something and I always appreciate an extra veggie. 


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Dinner Tonight Cookbook Club #14

Monday, May 20, 2024

The second port we visited on our Alaskan cruise was Sitka! What a cute town! The port is just outside of the downtown area, so you are shuttled by bus to a visitor's center. The center itself is in a perfect picture spot. This is the most photogenic city! 

We elected to walk to the Raptor center there. It was offered as a cruise sponsored excursion, but I'm very happy we did not do that. The center itself is quite small, and only took about 15 minutes to tour start to finish. I would have been irked at paying a hefty fee just for a bus ride and that short tour. It was a very nice place, and I think they intend to expand in the future. Very walkable distance though, and if you'd like to see it - highly recommend the DIY version.

We walked along the water, pausing every once in awhile for a photo. We also stopped to watch a bald eagle that was really close by in a tall tree. Once you walk along the harbor/marina, you quickly end up at the National Forest which has a great trail that's very easy to do. Plus LOTS of photo ops along the way. I wish we spent more time walking the beach and climbing the rocks. 

After you walk through the forest, you just cross the highway (at nicely marked crosswalk) and you're at the Raptor Center.

The Raptor Center also had a really great trail. At first we hesitated to do it, but I'm glad we did! It's short (3/4 mile) and it ends up at the most peaceful river shoreline. 

After our trek - we walked over to Harbor Mountain Brewing. Excellent beer and the pizza also looked fantastic. 

There are also quite a few touristy style shops downtown, and we loved the crab salad sandwich we got at a food truck. If you want any kind of chowder, get it early! Everywhere sold out by the time we went looking for it. 


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Port of Call: Sitka, Alaska

Sunday, May 19, 2024


Hi friends! I'm Kristen, and this is the Life and Style of an early 30's Floridian living the Best Life Ever, with her husband and three pugs. Runner | Avid Reader | Small Shop Owner

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