Happy Hour No. 6

To us, Happy Hour is a time to sit back, relax, and catch up with friends. It’s a time to chat about everything and anything, and that’s exactly what we bring to DIY Playbook’s monthly Happy Hour. happy-hour-graphic

We want these monthly posts to be a chance to catch up with friends and bring just a little extra happy to your day. So grab your coffee (or champagne) and let’s catch up!

Love It


  • I recently added this lens to my photography equipment. We shared this lens before between the 2 of us, but loved it so much that we each wanted one. It’s definitely pricey, but has taken our photos to the next level!casey-fine-work-party-black-dress
  • I wore this dress to our work holiday party (and for New Year’s Eve) and find that it’s my go-to LBD. So comfortable, flattering, and a great price! Plus how cool is this GIF photo booth?! I had never seen that before and we had a blast using it!
  • Bridget got me this candle for Christmas and I’ve been burning it constantly. Smells amazing and such a pretty glass jar too.
  • Just got this eyeshadow palette from Sephora, and holy smokes I’m now a big fan of Urban Decay. So many gorgeous shades, I love playing around with all of the color combos.


  • I’ve been eyeing this print for YEARS now and finally decided to splurge on it. I love the simplicity of this print, but more importantly I’m obsessed with this message because it’s exactly what my parents instilled in my sisters and me. My mom and dad are the most hardworking and kindest people I know and every time I look at this print it reminds me of them, and how much I hope to be just like them when I grow up 😉
  • I bought this new tripod and I LOVE it! If you’re in the game for a new tripod, I highly recommend it because it’s so sturdy and versatile, without being too heavy! familyroom_no_coffee_table-2
  • I sold my coffee table and I can’t wait to replace it with something that is more my style! I’m thinking something round or maybe marble? I’ve been doing a lot of online browsing and hopefully next time I check-in, I’ll have some updates for you. But before that, does anyone have any suggestions?!

Link It

  • An insightful look at creating a successful marriage
  • We’re big fans of Monica from East Coast Creative and think it’s so cool that she created her own game for couples (might be a cool gift for Valentine’s Day!)
  • I recently watched the Minimalist on Netflix and LOOOOOVEEEED IT! I’m a huge fan of documentaries so when my cousin sent me this list of the 20 best documentaries on Netflix right now, I was extra excited to check them out.
  • We were so excited when Michaela invited us to speak at the Bloom Bash Workshop in Chicago. If you’re a blogger, photographer, or creative then this workshop if for you! We’d love to see you guys there this July!
  • Studio McGee does it again! #hearteyes
  • We are so honored to have the opportunity to speak next month at the Old House New House Home Show in St. Charles, IL. If you’re a local reader, we would love to meet you! You can get more information on this Home Show here… if you plan on coming, you’ll have to let us know so we can say hi!

Casey Updates:

casey-yoga-workout-fitnessI’m not a big New Year Resolutions person, but I do enjoy looking at the year ahead with intention. This year both Bridget & I decided to choose words that we want to encapsulate 2017. I chose the word “mindful.” To be honest, I feel like I’m not very mindful of the way I spend my time. I say “yes” to way too many things that don’t bring me joy, and I find myself going through the motions some days. This year I’m trying to be more mindful with the way I spend my time, money, and daily life. I’ll keep you guys updated as to how it goes, but so far so good!

casey-mike-finn-fashionFinn & I chose the word “explore” as our family word for the year. With babies in the near future (not pregnant, but starting to chat about that next step <— just typing that was scary!) we want to take this time when it’s just us 2 to travel as much as possible. We’re planning a Europe trip in September (probably Greece & Italy, but totally open to hearing your suggestions!). Then we’re planning a trip to Iceland with Matt & Bridget this summer. Apart from those international trips we also want to scatter in some other domestic trips throughout the year. We’re excited to really EXPLORE in 2017!


Speaking of exploring, Bridget & I did a bit of travel earlier this month (apart from our Mexico trip). We headed to NYC in mid-January for a trip with HomeGoods. We’re big fans of New York and have gone there quite a few times together. Because we couldn’t miss much work, this trip was less than 24 hours. But it was still so wonderful to do a quick trip to our favorite place and see blogger friends!New_York_City_Travel-4

Bridget Updates:

I’m going to dish even more details about my word for the year in tomorrow’s style post but to kick things off I will give you a little background today. My word for 2017 is “stronger“. First and foremost I want to get physically stronger in 2017. Like Casey and Finn, we have started discussing the possibility of expanding our family and before we do that, I want to make sure I am as healthy as possible before that happens. I also am turning 30 this year so I want to make sure I close out my twenties and enter into my thirties as healthy as I can.

diy_playbook_headshots_BridgetBut beyond being physically stronger, I also want to be stronger in all aspects of my life. I want to be a stronger communicator, stronger emotionally, and just generally a stronger person. It’s only January but I do think I’m already taking baby steps, outside of my comfort zone at times, to chase these personal goals.

Bridget_Casey_Headshot_rookies-3And speaking of stepping outside of our comfort zone, we are doing just that next month at the Old House New House Home Show. We were invited to host a class at this local home show and right away we were hesitant because we don’t consider ourselves naturals at public speaking. We’re both pretty outgoing girls and love meeting new people, but we wouldn’t say we love being in front of a large crowd. But after lots of discussion, we decided that stepping outside our comfort zone was a great opportunity to try something new and hopefully grow from the experience (#STRONGER). So we said “YES!” and haven’t looked back since. In between DIY projects and blog posts, we plan on being very busy creating and practicing this presentation over the next few weeks. The show is on February 12th (more show details here) and if you live in the Chicagoland area, we would love to meet you!



  • Trang

    I’m not a fan of documentaries in general, but your suggested list may give me the opportunity to give it a chance. I saw the Amanda Knox one; it was OK.
    I love the words ‘mindful’, ‘explore’, and ‘stronger’ for 2017! You should read the book “Present over Perfect” where the author speaks about saying ‘yes’ to too many things in her life and how saying ‘no’ to some things makes her life happier and provides more time for the things that do bring joy. Traveling is my favorite thing to experience because I think life is about experiences. My motto has always been (and I have this sign in my kitchen as a daily reminder): Eat well, travel often. So excited for you upcoming travel plans. Iceland is definitely on my bucket list! Hubby and I plan to go to South Korea and Vietnam for 2 weeks in early October!

    • That book sounds like something we both need to read! Saying “no” is really hard for us, so that would be a great read for us.

      Soooo exciting that you’re going to South Korea and Vietnam. That sounds absolutely amazing. We will, of course, blog all about our Iceland trip so hopefully that will be helpful when you plan your own trip there!

  • Erin

    we have plans to go to italy this september, but work is kind of trying to mess our travel dates up!

    as for greece — YOU MUST go to Chania!!!! it is truly amazing. We ended up renting a car so we could travel to the different beaches on Crete. Our little travel group thought santorini was cool, but it was pretty over rated. Basically we did 2 days in Athens, flew to Crete & stayed in chania for 4 days — took a ferry from heraklion to santorini and spent 2 days there. then flew back to athens before flying home. Santorini airport is soooo disgusting, BTW. but this really worked for us & we stayed in airbnb the entire time!!!

    • Erin this is SO HELPFUL! As we start to really get planning, would it be okay if I reached out to you? I want to make sure we’re being smart with our time there and you seem like you’re a pro!

    • Erin

      Yes for sure!!!! I have lots and lots of tips to share. it was a memorable trip for sure!!!

  • shawnna griffin

    Hey girls- love the post! I can’t wait to have a baby, I turn 40 this year (ugh) crazy to type that ha! but… Lord willing and the creeks don’t rise that will happen sooner than I think!

    • Shawnna, congrats on such a big birthday year! That’s so exciting.

  • Kelly
    • Kelly you are the 2nd one to send us this same table! Maybe that’s a sign?! Love the sleek look & circle shape. The only thing I’d be worried about is constantly cleaning the glass??

    • Katie

      I have a glass coffee table and not sure if you’re one to put your feet up but I am and it gets cold!

    • I do put my feet up so this info is helpful — thank you Katie!!

  • I fully support and encourage the international travel before (thinking about) babies! We went to Europe (England, Ireland, Scotland, Paris for the day) the year before we became parents and I’m SO GLAD we did. I know people do it with kids…but it was stressful enough without. ENJOY!!!

    • So happy to hear that Diana! We’re trying to get to as many places as possible before babies come!

  • Leisa

    YES to traveling! My hubby and I dedicated 7 years of our lives to exploring the world. We moved to London (from New Zealand) as a base to travel through Europe (and many other places). In all my adventures, I have never met a single person that regretted traveling and exploring.
    Greece and Italy are two of my fave countries in Europe. Santorini is as stunningly beautiful in real life as in pictures. Get lost in the cobbled streets. Watch the sunset in Oia. And make sure you visit the Amalfi Coast in Italy. Ah, and the history in Rome. So many amazing places, so little time. You are going to have a ball! I warn you, once you get the travel bug, its hard to stop!
    I would also suggest getting in the long haul flights before having kids….. say to somewhere like New Zealand? ? Most beautiful country in the world. #justsaying #totallyunbiased

    • Leisa what an amazing 7 years that must have been! Wow wow wow! So jealous. And thank you for the tips about Greece & Italy. I cannot wait to start planning. My sister just got back from a 3 week trip to New Zealand and can’t stop raving about the beauty she saw. Add New Zealand to the list..haha!

  • Kristen Ayotte

    Your travel plans sound so fun! My hubby and I have gone to Europe twice and been very fortunate to travel around the US a bit too. If you want any tips or information I love talking travel with people so let me know!

    Hoping to come you gals at the home show…I’m just in Naperville so it’d be a quick drive! Good luck, I’m sure you’ll be great!

    • Thanks so much Kristen! We’d love your tips as we’re in the initial stages of the planning! Bring em on 🙂

      And yes…come to the home show! We would love to see you in-person.

  • Thanks so much, Kate! I bought my shirt at H&M very recently and I LOVE it. I am obsessed with the fit and the versatility. I dress it up for work and dress it down for the weekends, I highly recommend it! Plus, the sleeves are a little bit longer than normal (but still form fitting), which feels much more flattering. I just saw it again at H&M in black and a plain cream and I think I’m going to go back and get the other colors because I love it (and wear it) so much!!