Valentine's Day Gift Guide: For Her

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Can you believe it?! February starts next week!

And... that means, getting ready for Chinese New Year, a four day weekend (President's Day!) and of course Valentine's Day - the official day to wear all things red, pink and sequins.

And to all my single ladies, I love the holiday even more when spent with the best of girlfriends watching sappy rom coms, eating chocolate and consuming tons of vino... hello, Galentine's Day!

Whoever came up with Galentine's Day is seriously a genuis. I love the idea of spoiling the besties with a simple reminder of how much they mean to me. Whether it's a candle, lip gloss or wine tasting on me, my girlfriends all deserve a little something. They've been through the good and bad times with me. No judgments whatsoever; they're always going to be my side to celebrate or commiserate (with a glass of my favorite wine!). Below are a few gift ideas to celebrate Valentine's Day with the gal pals.

What are you getting your best gals?

wedding planning, episode three

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Apologies for going AWOL here... but as you guys may understand from watching re-runs of "Say Yes to the Dress", I'm turning into one of them... those bridezillas, and until the day is over, I have nothing but the wedding to think, dream and talk about. Just kidding... but really, who am I kidding?

Wedding planning is seriously no joke. Wonder where I've been these past months? Either working, getting back in shape, or planning the wedding. Many have asked why I didn't go ahead and hire a wedding planner/coordinator.. and the answer was... I'm a control freak and thought this can't be too hard, right?

Welp... I was wrong. It's not easy. The decisions are endless, but thankfully, I'm blessed with an awesome fiance, Mama Nguyen (who's just as much or more of a control freak as me), and seven doting aunts who are beyond thrilled to contribute some part to the big day. BUT with that many people, it can be overwhelming. You are just bombarded with so many opinions, and then it all mushes into one big, confusing jumble of madness.

Luckily, all the big decisions had been figured out this past summer (venues, photographer, the dress and DJ), so now with six months and counting, it's just the (many) little things we need to figure out such as:

Florals, hair and makeup, shoes, tux rentals, party favors, and the list goes on and on...

We even went back and forth on whether we needed a videographer, too. We weighed the pros and cons, consulted our recently married friends and badgered our family for their opinions. In the end, we ended up getting one. Why? Because what are the only things left after the wedding that will help remind us of the day? Photos + the Video.  Boom. As soon as we realized that, it was a no brainer. So we reached out to our photographer, Bryan, and asked for a reco. There you have it, Watertown Films then became a part of our #HappilyEverAxten support crew.

Okay, okay -- so  some of you are starting to think this "comeback post" is boring since it's me explaining about how my wedding has taken over my life... but I promise... it won't be all about the specifics of my wedding. Over the next few weeks, I plan to share some of the neat things I learned along this #HappilyEverAxten journey, and I'm very excited about it. (You heard that right! The blog is backkk!). Stay tuned for general wedding tips and tricks -- which includes everything from creating the perfect registry, selecting music for the big day, making the official wedding hashtag, and more. And of course, I've got some other fun things up my sleeve. Valentine's Day is right around the corner.. and you know what that means.... gift guides. 


hello fall. hello home.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Wow, time has just flown by. How did it already become mid-September? This past summer has been a whirlwind with our engagement (#HappilyEverAxten), wedding planning and then of course, the house hunt -- so as you can imagine, we've been up to ears with to-do lists and a bit overwhelmed. Oh and work doesn't slow down when big life moments pop up. It actually gets crazier... strange, right?

Regardless - amidst the craziness, my main squeeze and I are blessed and thrilled that everything is coming together.

WE BOUGHT A HOUSE and have been working hard on transforming our cute little bungalow of a house into our happy home. Follow #TheAxtenBungalow on Instagram for a few snippets of the makeover. Painting countless walls, ripping up carpet, bargain shopping for furniture and endless Pottery Barn catalogs later -- it's really starting to look a lot like home.

Here is a sneak peek. Excited to share a before and after photo shoot when it's all done!

Any home decorating tips? Send them my way please!

Cheers to Three Years!

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Today marks three happy years with my main squeeze! Beyond thrilled to celebrate with him and looking forward to year four when we officially say "I do". Cheers to many more years of love, fun, adventure and fantastic memories. 


Also in other news, we are well underway with the renovation of our happy home. Can't wait to share before and after photos on here in the coming weeks. We're building our dining room table (from scratch.. eek!) and will finish painting our living room window benches this weekend. What's the inspiration behind The Axten Bungalow? Check out my Pinterest board here


Brooks Running Tour and Fall Preview

Friday, August 7, 2015

A few weeks ago, I had the pleasure of touring Brooks Running HQ and got a preview of their new fall collection

I had never even been to the Brooks store before and was just blown away by the very cool, industrial design of the place. 

During the tour of HQ, my favorite room was seeing the Brooks Lab. Innovation at Brooks is defined by their overarching goal to make the run better, faster, safer, more comfortable and more enjoyable for runners. As such, they take feedback very seriously, and at their Brooks lab, they use hard data and insights to get a deeper understanding of biomechanics -- how each person's body responds to a run -- which then impacts how they design and produce their awesome gear. 

In the lab, there were treadmills where they do tests with their products and see how the human body is affected during a run with their gear. There were also machines that test the longevity and impact certain materials can have over long periods of time. 

It was such a beautiful space and I could definitely see how innovation is at the core of the brand. The space is an open, collaborative environment... and check out the view from their roof. 

Breath taking right? That. View. 

After the tour, we headed to their main store to check out the new fall collection... and I must say.. even though I'm not a runner, I was obsessed with everything, especially this amazing LSD jacket -- windproof, lightweight and water resistant, it's perfect for any Seattleite. I snagged this beauty in grey, and have already worn it at least a dozen times on the way to the gym.

I also picked up a pair of compression capri tights that are super comfortable, one of their comfy and supportive sport bras and the shoes below. What's so neat about Brooks is that they were super technical about how I picked my shoes. I hopped on a treadmill and did a little test run for the pros. From there, they analyzed the arch of my foot, if I had weird running patterns (which I thought I totally did.. hello, I'm a crossfitter...we don't run often), and then picked a pair based on those insights. How neat is that?! 

The shoes we ended up with were the PureFlow 4 -- most lightweight, flexible and neutral running shoe. I let them know that I did Crossfit, so this was as close I would get to a minimalist training shoe. BUT it still had Brook's magical comfort and cushion-like support. 

If you're looking for some new running gear or active wear this fall, I highly recommend giving Brooks a try. The colors are on point! 

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