I promise I didn’t mean to ghost you…

You guys. A LOT has happened in the past however many months that I’ve unintentionally ghosted you all. Apologies for that. This is going to be a word vomit type post, but I just feel like I have so much to update you all on and have some changes coming to the blog that you might enjoy.

First off, we’re engaged! Honestly, it feels like we got engaged forever ago, but it was really  just last May. Josh and I took a trip to Iceland, Paris, and Nice at the end of May 2018 and he wound up popping the question in front of my FAVORITE place in Paris – le Sacre Coeur Basilica. He knew how much I love le Sacre Coeur, so it was really special. He must have been taking notes over the course of our 6-year relationship because he knew how important it was to me that someone captured the moment on camera and actually hired a professional photographer to snap the candid shots, which is seriously impressive. I may write an entire post just on our trip [more on this in a sec], so stay tuned…

Since May, we (mostly me, let’s be real) have been chipping away at wedding planning. We’re getting married this September (!!!!!), so it’s coming in hot, but have had SO much time to plan that I’ve been as cool as a cucumber thus far. To this day, my mom will tell you that my only “bridezilla” (ew, that term is bleh and I hate it) moment was when I was trying to refuse MORE MONEY from my parents. Strange, yes, but really the only time that I ever got a little heated because I’m stubborn and want to do everything myself. See below for more proof…

As if my full time job and wedding planning wasn’t enough, I’m still going to school to get my MBA degree. Josh is actually back in school too, but to get his masters in information technology/techie systems/things I don’t understand, etc. We’re both taking the fall semester off to enjoy our wedding, seeing family from out of the state and country (shout out to my fam from Wales) and honeymoon (we’re going to Greece!), which I’m looking forward to. I’m paying for my MBA out of pocket (insert stubbornness [or badassness?] to accept loans here), so I’ve been taking my time and have only been taking one course per semester. At this rate, I won’t graduate until 2021, but I’m alright with it.

Now to another fun fact: We moved! Against The Grain DET is now Against The Grain CHI. Our 3rd city together in 4 years. CRAZY. Josh got promoted (YAY!) and relocated to the burbs of Chicago. There was no way in all things holy that I was going to pick up and move to the suburbs of Chicago after having lived in downtown St. Louis and downtown Detroit, so we compromised and found our cozy apartment in Lincoln Park where we’ve settled in quite nicely. I’m obsessed with our apartment and am looking forward to sharing some snapshots with you all so soon.

“So what does all of this mean, Amanda?!” is the question I’m sure all 7 followers that I have are asking. I jest – I may have 10 followers – luh you guys. Anywho, this means that 1) look forward to some gluten-free recommendations in the Windy City, 2) I’ve been cooking up a storm recently and have plenty of GF recipes to share and 3) you’re going to hear a lot more about my life than in the past. I want ATG to be more than just a space to share good food spots and recipes – I want it to be more of a LIFESTYLE blog. I LOVE food, but I also feel like being gluten-free is a lifestyle beyond just what I eat on a day to day basis. There are struggles that come with a Celiac diagnoses that I want to share with you. Beyond that though, I want to share what I’ve been up to – the good, bad, and ugly – including trips, itineraries, wedding planning, health and fitness, shopping (my fave), and just overall wellness. I’m going to start the Contribution Series back up, too, so look forward to hearing from some voices besides mine. It’ll be a fun little adventure that we’re all going to take together. Above all, I want to hear from you! What do you want me to share? As always, thank YOU for following along – all 7-10 of you 🙂

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