Last night, I was scrolling through the pages of the blog–searching for a particular photo–when I realized that things have been looking awfully curated lately. I love pretty photos as much as the next Pinterest-loving girl, but I appreciate humanizing ones, too.

My life isn’t just about photographing my outfits. In fact, that’s a really tiny part of it. (It seriously takes no more than five minutes!) I try to talk about the other parts often, but I was thinking that a monthly “Real Life” photo column might add some depth to Kelly in the City. :) Agree? If not, don’t click the “more” button, haha.

Anyway, my first attempt is in no way a comprehensive overview of what I’ve been up to lately, as much as I wish it were. I’ve discovered that I’m a rather sporadic iPhone photo-taker, that I sometimes forget to pull out my phone for weeks, and that most of my photos are taken when wine is involved. ;) But whatever! Here we go.

Side note: Tune back in at 10 am CST/11 am EST today for a really fun bonus post! (Hint: it involves Kate Spade and a whole lot of bows!)


Celebrating Shaheen’s birthday. While I’ve only known Shaheen for a year now, it feels like so much longer! She’s truly one of my best friends, and I’m so grateful to have her in my life. <3 What a great night! Remember how much the waitress disliked us? ;)


Eating breakfast on the water. I’m not exactly a morning person, but I try my best to wake up extra early every once in a while so that Mitch and I can eat breakfast at Montrose Harbor together. It’s a surreal experience, as we’re usually the only ones out there!


Exploring the suburbs. We haven’t seen a ton so far, but we’ve ventured up to Evanston and Winnetka, and it was such a great escape from the city! Where should we go next?


Deciding not to purchase this TV. Kidding; it was never in the running! We’re hoping to mount a TV over the fireplace in January when the fireplace gets little update, so we’re starting the preliminary search!


Singing karaoke. Not sure why we thought “The Lion King” would be a huge crowd-pleaser, but we went for it. (I’m photographing here, but I eventually stepped in!) Who knew Emily and Jess were karaoke stars?!


Meeting new friends. Hello, Chester.


Buying a palm. It was something like $30 at Home Depot, and it’s made a huge difference in our living room. Thinking about getting another one! But you should have seen us trying to get the thing home, haha. (Also please note my side-view mirror. Crashed into one of those orange barrel things. I really shouldn’t have a license.)


Walking Noods. Hi, Noods!


Eating Free Taco Bell on the docks. Because it’s Mitch’s favorite, and how could I say no to Free Taco Bell Day? (Or whatever it’s actually called.)


Visiting the park with Mitch’s parents. They surprised him by driving up to Chicago for the weekend, and it was the cutest. Mitch thought we were going to dinner alone, but low and behold, they they were when we got to our table!


Falling in love with this house in Old Town. THEY EVEN HAVE A MATCHING CAR.


Celebrating my birthday with Mitch. We went to Stella Barra, and it was delicious. Mitch told them it was a special occasion, and we were seated on a chesterfield couch. Birthday MADE. ;)


Finding the perfect front door color. We’re hoping to repaint the trim on the outside of the house, and replace the front door sometime this year. I LOVE this navy color. But I also love red. And black. Sheesh…


Pumpkin-patching with friends. This was AWESOME. It was held at the Lowes Hotel’s rooftop, and you’d better believe that I’m going back next year!


Hangin’ with old friends! Mitch and I lived with Eric (and Shawn) in the East Village for a year, and we had the best time. Can’t we go back to being 25?


Lounging with Noodle. Look at that tail!


Grabbing dinner with girlfriends in Bucktown. These are some of my favorite nights ever! So much laughter.


Throwing together a last-minute Halloween party. Can you guess what Shaheen was? Hahaha. Also: We got so many trick-or-treaters! It was incredible.


Okay, sorry. That’s enough.


Getting my dream buffet from MegMade. I’m going to be doing a full post on it soon, but holy goodness, guys. Is this not EVERYTHING?!


Trying Kit’s signature burger at Trenchermen. SO GOOD! (And so proud of you, Kit!)


Lunching with Mandi and Harriett. They flew in from NYC to visit me for a few days! (Love you both.)


Having breakfast at our new farmhouse table! Full how-to and reveal posts to follow, but Mitch, you crack me up.


Spending the weekend with my aunt, uncle and cousins! They flew in from NYC for the Northwestern – Penn State game, and it was so much fun. I love you guys!


Hi, Annie!


Hi, Chase!


Wandering down Burling Street. Sir, you are ridiculous.


Watching the Prius fall in love. Hehe.


Accidentally ordering way too much food at “half-off night” with Maya. This was Mitch’s idea. ;)


Thanking Dad for his years of Service in the Air Force. Love you, Dad!


Spending the weekend with BOTH brothers! I only thought that Danny was coming, but when I arrived at the airport, they both jumped in the car! I’m a very lucky sister. This was the funniest photo from the weekend: our sit-down Pizza Hut dinner. (Danny’s favorite, but there isn’t one near him!) The day after, we went to Summer House. ;)


So gorgeous!


Purging like crazy. Since losing the basement, we’ve been a little tight on space, and hyper aware of how much stuff we own that we don’t need. So we’ve been selling anything and everything on Craigslist! It’s been great. We have, however, made a couple of small purchases from our earnings… and one of them is this awesome Nest! (Also purchased for a steal on Craigslist.) We installed it last night, but I’m really excited to learn all about what it can do tomorrow. Mitch, I can, like, turn up the heat whenever I want now, right? Eighty-degree days in November?! ;) Aloha!

Reminder: Tune back in at 10 am CST/11 am EST today for a really fun bonus post! (Hint: it involves Kate Spade and a whole lot of bows!)