My Life Is A Cluttered, Pug-Filled Beautiful Mess

August 8, 2014

Route 66 From Chicago to Los Angeles

Life has been a beautiful, cluttered mess for the last few weeks.  I’m happy to say that through the planning, the stress, deliberation and budgeting, there are some fun moments that have emerged from it all.  In the last few weeks we’ve tried to keep up with a brand new pug puppy, our little Matilda, and still chug along with life and planning for our wedding in June of next year.

I work as a social media manager for a living, and it’s been a tumultious summer on top of wedding planning and supporting my fiancé through his first marathon.  It’s meant long hours for both of us, aches, pains, strains…..some stressins and some blessins too.

Cacti down at the ranch

One thing that’s always kept me sane is a garden.  We don’t have much room here in our little place, but we have a deck area that gets enough life to keep the succulents and herbs alive, even if we can’t grow vegetables.  Taking a few minutes out there to water everything resets my day.

One of the biggest worries I had moving from to Chicago from California was that I wouldn’t be able to have succulents and cacti, since I love them so much and they remind me of home.  My cacti survived this last horrible winter so I’m hoping they suck up as much sunshine as they can this season…because, winter is coming.

I don’t want to even think about fall or winter. It needs to be summer in Chicago forever.  Is it weird that every time it’s a beautiful day here, I think “winter is coming?” not just in a funny, Game Of Thrones way, but like, in an actual dread.  There is a lot I love about Chicago, but my loathing of the polar vortex sometimes overshadows all else.


My birthday with bestie..wuv

I celebrated my birthday two weeks ago, and got the most amazing care pack from my bestie of over 17 years. I’m fortunate to call her my bestie and now my Maid of Honor (obviously, right?) and she knows how to put together an amazing birthday surprise from even 2,000 miles away!

On my birthday, I got a box that was specifically labeled, “OPEN THIS SIDE,” and could not wait, to see what was sent “with love from California.” Sure enough, upon opening the box, it exploded with awesomeness…  color, and plenty of fluffy tissue paper.

Inside, was amazingly hand crafted, hand curated awesomeness.



I love my best friend

Mason jars, in my wedding colors.  Route 66 decor. Domo in glasses and a Mickey hat. Wrapped in colorful tissue papers, with a handmade card and sealed with washi tape. Handmade craft supplies also in wedding colors.  Head, nearly exploded.


Domo Arigato

My bestie carved a Domo stamp for me… the crafty, Kawaii, handmade love… all came together for a super-sweet gift that traveled from California to Chicago.  It was so fabulous, I had to bust out the camera while we got dinner ready to take pictures.   Honestly, the older I get, the more I love the thoughtful details. Really, adore.

The best gifts are ones where you work to get the details right for someone else- the imagery, the characters, the colors…but it comes together when you have so much of yourself poured into it.  The handcrafting, the presentation.  A gift that is for someone else, is also so wholeheartedly you- those are the best gifts between friends. Thank you bestie!


Matilda and Max


Is it just me or does Matilda look like a Muppet? Max looks like a Cabbage Patch doll to me.

I may have lost my mind.


Max The Muppet Pug

It’s been a crazy few weeks, but it’s been a sweet summer.  We’ve been planning for, and saving for our wedding- at times, it’s been frustrating, but it seems we’ve made some progress.

I have to bunker down and get serious again about saving for the wedding.  We need to have at least $20k in the bank to cover the expenses of the wedding, and we’re at about $14k- which is amazing but that $6k we need to come up with before December to actually pay for what we’ve budgeted, well, that’s not going to show up out of thin air.  We’ve come so far, but $6k to pay for the DJ, photographer and seating… that’s still a ton of money for me.  #hereshoping.


Get Your Kicks On Route 66

This week, I finally placed an order for a wedding dress online.  (!!!!)  I’m so nervous, excited and curious as to how it will all turn out.  It should be here in 3-4 weeks and let’s hope I measured myself properly.

We’re also planning a virtual fun run, which will have some amazing medals with pugs on them, to raise funds for the Northern Illinois Pug Rescue.  I’m not sure how much money we’ll be able to raise, but we’ll be able to do some amazing good for pugs in need while also having the first ever (that I know of) pug running medals.


It’s crazy, the house is a cluttered, but beautiful mess- full of craft projects I’m working on for the blog and stuff that is strewn everywhere from busy weekends of his marathon training and my 24/7 workaholism.  We clean it up every weekend, but it seems to get crazy by Monday night all over again.


Do you have any advice to keep the house uncluttered when you’re busy?




The house is a mess but I’m happy.  Pug toys and our stuff is strewn everywhere- but it’s a happy, circus of a home.

7 comments so far.

7 responses to “My Life Is A Cluttered, Pug-Filled Beautiful Mess”

  1. Ashley says:

    When things get insane here I tend to have a trail of trash ( things I need) follow me around. I always make sure the “public” areas of my house are picked up within 24 hours, and mostly shove crap in my closet till the weekend. It is a hidden mess, and I am behind on two weekends of crap in my closet due to family visiting, but my house was clean everywhere else 😉 Really I just want a robot. . .

    • Shannyn says:

      A robot would be really nice. I seriously cannot get a hold on the clutter and the mess…I tackle it, then turn around and the sink is full again. Sigh.

  2. What a great package! I’ve also found myself WAY more appreciative of the thoughtful details lately. So much more meaningful then just flashing $$!

    • Shannyn says:

      Handmade gifts are by far my favorite. I still have some handmade stationary, cookie tins and momento boxes from like 10 years ago from people- they’re just so special to me!

  3. I don’t know how you survived that awful winter in Chicago, it wasn’t near as bad here in PA and I was a mess. I HATE WINTER. If I had my way, it would be Fall all year long. The pugs are the downright CUTEST. I can’t handle it. Soak up the sunshine, my friend, because yes, winter is coming. 😉

  4. Your pugs are cute! The best way that I keep clutter cleaned up is by eliminating clutter altogether. I try to put things back where they go after I use them, it usually only takes about 30 seconds to do so. I’m also trying to get rid of things that I don’t actually need/use or want. the less stuff you own, the less there is to make a mess.

  5. Georgina says:

    Your pugs make the best faces! Cheers me up to see them.
    Strict rules help control the clutter, I find. Will it take less than a minute to tidy/clean? Then do it. I also spend ten minutes at the end of the night having a quick tidy round. It doesn’t do it all, but it helps keep it at a manageable level.


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