Invicto + One Feeds Two

I recently worked with a local kick ass influencer, Jenin Paradise and an amazing restaurant in Naperville, Invicto. I love working with this girl and with local businesses to promote their amazing food, products + of course, ambiance. I get to meet some great people, shoot fun stuff, and learn more about our wonderful local community. Check out some of this fun, on location session and go check them out ASAP. Everyday that goes by you are missing out on some delicious authentic food and an overall fun experience ….. so make it a date!

We could not have planned this any better to have this festive dress from  Dane Vintage  go so well with our shoot! It was spot on with that amazing pop of color and flair. The perfect combination, for sure! If you are looking for some fun vintage clothing, she is your go to and she is local! Gotta love shopping local! Oh and she is pretty kick ass too! Triple bonus!

We could not have planned this any better to have this festive dress from Dane Vintage go so well with our shoot! It was spot on with that amazing pop of color and flair. The perfect combination, for sure! If you are looking for some fun vintage clothing, she is your go to and she is local! Gotta love shopping local! Oh and she is pretty kick ass too! Triple bonus!

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This was the first time I tried a horchata and I could not believe I have been missing out on this goodness for so long! Delicious!

This was the first time I tried a horchata and I could not believe I have been missing out on this goodness for so long! Delicious!

And this wall inside the restaurant with the cutest pineapple sink just brings this place together and the combination totally makes this a MUST do go to in Naperville…It is Fun, Festive + Fabulous! And who doesn’t love pineapple!?

And this wall inside the restaurant with the cutest pineapple sink just brings this place together and the combination totally makes this a MUST do go to in Naperville…It is Fun, Festive + Fabulous! And who doesn’t love pineapple!?

Look at this food! It tastes even better than it looks!

I mean, holy guacamole!

I mean, holy guacamole!

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Over 8000 meals provided in 2018! Let’s help them blow up that number in 2019!

Over 8000 meals provided in 2018! Let’s help them blow up that number in 2019!

One Two Feeds is another reason I love this restaurant. If you don’t know about this organization, you need to! Read up here for the back story about how it got started + what wonderful things they are doing around the globe! + while you are at it…check out the US founders! You may even see a couple of them at Invicto while you are there.

Here is a little information about the founders from the One Feeds Two website. Also, be sure to like them Instagram!

David Sloan(see David below)

David Sloan is the former CEO of Naf Naf Grill, Co-Founder of INVICTO, and the Managing Partner at Venture Kitchen. Under his leadership, David grew Naf Naf Grill from 1 to 38 restaurants in 7 years when he exited. David was ranked in Nation’s Restaurant News “Power 50” as one the leading restaurateurs in America and led the company to win Nation’s Restaurant News Hottest Concept Award. David graduated from Austin Peay University and has his MBA from Loyola University Chicago.

Franklin Wiener

Franklin Wiener is the Co-Founder of INVICTO, Partner at Blackwood BBQ, and Partner at Venture Kitchen. Previously as the COO of Naf Naf Grill he held full accountability for unit level profitability, infrastructure, and operational excellence. He executed a strategy that successfully grew the company from 3 to 38 locations across 7 states and from 25 employees to over 700. Franklin is a graduate of Tulane University and Vanderbilt University Law School.

Patrick Wartan

Patrick is Chair of Food and Beverage Practice Group at Taft Stettinius & Hollister LLP, a firm of 400-plus lawyers with a strong national presence across several industries. Patrick is also an Adjunct Professor at Kendall College where he teaches a course on Hospitality Law, and an Adjunct Professor of Law at Chicago-Kent where teaches a legal writing course. In addition, he serves on the advisory council of the Illinois Restaurant Association.

What a fabulous group of guys + what an amazing organization to have here in the states.

David Sloan at  invicto  ** check them out on Instagram!

David Sloan at invicto ** check them out on Instagram!

I had the pleasure of meeting David and I have to say, what a wonderful guy! I won’t lie, I did not know he was a founder when I shot this and I am just in awe of his successful history and how genuinely friendly and welcoming he is. He is kind of a big deal! If you get the pleasure of meeting him you will see what I am talking about. Big hearted, welcoming + clearly an amazing humanitarian! Oh..and he makes an amazing drink!

Be sure you take a trip to enjoy the food, ambiance and the people at Invicto. You will not be sorry!

Cheers, Carrie

10,000

10, 000 seems like a fairly high number. Right? I mean if it was money, I would be happy getting that! If anyone is offering, let me know. I will give you my paypal information.

Last week, a week ago Monday, I officially resigned from my full time job. Let me tell you, hitting send was not an easy thing to do. In fact, I paced the house for a while before I did it. Then when I hit send I quickly shut my laptop and walked around some more. I didn’t pace because I was unsure it was the right thing to do…. more so because it was/is emotional for me and frankly a bit scary. It is scary to leap from a salary to no salary.

That being said… I knew it was time.

Today, it hit me how fast time goes when I realized it’s been a full 7 days, over 10,000 minutes already! This in some ways is another confirmation of why sometimes we just need to do shit. Take a risk + let go of the lifeline! Even at, scratch that, ESPECIALLY at, my age.

I have raised my kids. We, my husband and I, are coming full circle…so why not. Before I am too old to try something new. Or atleast think I am!

I am headed to a conference in California this week. A last trip with the company. It will be bittersweet. I will say some goodbyes in person. Enjoy some time at the edge of the sea…looking out to that amazing ocean and sunset and take in this past decade, this past season of life and say goodbye and then hello to my next season/chapter.

Life is full of small things, big things, happy shit, crappy shit and just about everything in between. So, I’ll take it day by day and take all the happy in that I can … work past the crappy shit and learn as I go. Life is good. I am breathing. I am healthy. I am blessed with loved ones who support me.

February 2019, you are a final chapter and a first chapter. I will never forget you.

“There will come a time when you believe everything is finished. That will be the beginning.”

xo- Carrie

Life Changes.

Life changes…

Okay, I mean we all know it does.

Life changes daily.

Some changes are amazing.

Some changes are less than stellar.

Change can be difficult.

Change can be exhilarating.

Change can be down right frigging scary.

I took a giant leap this week + I will be honest, I am slightly terrified.

I am praying I can figure it all out. Praying I did not make a mistake. Praying I can see my family through this.

Here comes one big ass life change.

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Let's Stay Home.

My sister and I have had some amazing conversations lately. Today, we had one at great length (about probably 10 different things)... but one thing I have thought about since we hung up has been how much we love the lives we have.

We are not ones to be on the go all the time and if we are it's normally for something with our kids. Now, I am past that phase in my life (grown kids), but her kids are in the thick of things. So if we are not out doing something that involves them, we are pretty much-doing something at home that involves them. So in other words, we are in love with doing things with our families! We would rather curl up at home with them than be anywhere else in the world.

To some, this may be a boring sort of life. That's okay. We are totally okay if 90% of the time we stay in. I love seeing my friends out and about and on occasion, I like to join in. But for the most part, I am loving my life at home. In fact, the older I get, the more I enjoy my no makeup, messy hair, sweat pants sort of days. To each their own, of course. I know my life is not for everyone and some may even say to me "you will have lived a life without experiencing these other things...you are sheltered" but my answer to that is simple .... most things... I can live without. And the things I "need" or want to experience we will do out best to do. But here is the thing... some people don't experience being in a home they love. Some people don't experience knowing their grandparents or even their parents, or the love of a puppy, or reading to their children before bed....and I have been blessed to do all of those things. We are not meant to do it all. What the hell does that even mean anyway? There is so much pressure on us all the time to be it all, want it all, need it all, do it all. We can get caught up in the crazy of it all and forget that in the end, the things that are the most important are the quiet moments between all the noisy other stuff.

My greatest treasures in life are my memories with the people I love. I may joke about the Jeep I loved, and my favorite boots...and yes, my new coffee maker..(which I do love) but there is no greater happiness to me than the moments in my home, or wherever I am with my family laughing, loving and being with the people I love.

I love my simple life. Let's stay home tonight.

Hello! Welcome to my blog!

Welcome to my tiny little corner of the internet.

The idea behind my blog is to share my love of photography, my passion for books and quotes, my ever changing home decor (or what some may say is my disorder for moving furniture) + every now and then changing things up a bit. I may also from time to time share my thoughts or dare I say my "opinions" about life in general. At my age, I have only a few things that truly matter to me. Most are nothing like what I felt was important at age 20 or even 30. As I approach 50 (in a few short years) I find the simple things are what I love the most.

My family, my home, the pleasure of a good book, a comfy blanket, our family pup laying nearby and my husband sitting next to me are on the top of my list of total joy. I also love to meander in a bookstore and walk the aisles of Target and Home Decor stores. I am on a constant pursuit of grays and cream colors for my home and I am a total sucker for pillows + books. I love a mix of old and new and even though I love to follow boards on Pinterest I love to do my own thing. I am not a fan of cookie cutter homes, or having the same things as everyone else. BUT .... I laugh a little as I type that because I have Rae Dunn in my kitchen and I absolutely LOVE her pottery. Being a rule breaker, even my own rules, is fun. No one likes someone who follows the rules ALL the time.

I hope you come back often to say hi. Please feel free to comment, I would love to hear from you! Slowly but surely I will add content and open up more and more as we get to know each other. Grab a cup of coffee and get cozy! Friends are always welcome to sit on the sofa, get comfy + stay a while!

Peace!

Carrie