A few of weeks ago, we were invited to try Centro Bar & Kitchen’s NEW menu! We had just gotten back from a weekend full of no-tech, so I was so excited to pick up my camera to get some shots of the new food and drinks! Let me tell you, it was amazing!

Check out the new menu (PS – I realize this is probably hard to fully read, but I really just love the look of the photo and Kit’s wedding band, so you can check out the clearer menu here):

Hibiscus Pisco Sour

Centro started us off with this Hibiscus Pisco Sour, which was pretty yummy! I am a very slow drinker though, and didn’t love how the flower petals started getting in my straw/in my mouth, but if you are a quick drinker, it is really good! Plus, the little details that Centro takes for the topping of the drink are amazing!

Hamachi + Ahi Poke

The first dish they brought out was the Hamachi + let me tell you, I do not like raw fish (with the exception of Ebi and Ahi – do those count?). However, I am always up for trying something new and this hamachi was so fresh and delicious, I could have eaten 10 more! Thanks for being partners with Sierra Gold Seafood – best fish here!

The second dish was the Ahi Poke and I was in HEAVEN. Seriously, I could eat this all day, every day. It was so fresh and the flavor palette was on point. Centro – ya got me, you stole my heart with this Ahi!

 

Kale Salad + Scallops

The next dish prepared was a Kale Salad. If you like Kale, this salad is for you! I am not a blueberry person nor do I like Blue Cheese, but oh.my.gosh – this combination was divine! I skipped the blueberries, but that whipped blue cheese with the grapes, almonds, and kale was so freaking good!

Okay, if you know me you know I love scallops – enter the next dish…YES YES YES! Scallops + jalapeños? Count me in. The scallop was amazing and so were the jalapeños! I’m not a huge fan of the corn and fennel, but I could dig it when paired with the scallop.

El Tamarindo

Hello tequila! If you love tamarindo infused bozal mezcal, tequila, lemon, grapefruit, and tamarindo syrup, this drink is for you! Let me tell you, they don’t skip you on the tequila here!

Pork Belly + Lamb Chops

Let me ask you, would you eat apples with your pork? Yeah, me either – then enter the Pork Belly dish from Centro. Why oh why do you have to taste so good? And why do apples complete this dish? Have the answers, yet? Because I don’t. The chef is so darn good.

Move on to the Lamb Chop. Anything with Ricotta Cheese or cheese in general, an Italian’s DREAM! This lamb chop melted in my mouth and the pairing with ricotta, cous-cous, and tomato – yep, we have a winner.

  

Vieux Carré + Donut Holes

Alright whiskey & cognac lovers – here’s a drink for you, yeah you, you sly, sly husband of mine. This is the perfect drink to pair with ITSELF. Drink it alone, drink two, drink three, drink it with some grub, just drink it. Kit loves this drink, I’m on the lighter side of alcohol in terms of taste, so he was happy to drink two!

Now let’s get to the finale. The donut holes. The berry compote. If you know me – I LOATHE donuts – the smell, the taste – not my jam. But these donut holes had more of a funnel cake tendency. They were yummy! I skipped the berry compote – hello blackberry allergy, but Kit said it was such a good combination!

Thank you again, Centro for having us! The new menu is rad and we cannot wait to see what the future holds for you, us, and our local Reno community. 

Check out some behind-the-scenes from Instagram Stories during the new menu preview where we got to meet some local celebrities (like Edible RenoTahoe’s Amanda & Jackie and City of Sparks folks – not pictured because everyone’s enjoying the food!) There’s nothing like great food and good company!

xo, L + K

I know some of you have been curious about all the changes you’ve been seeing on the blog! Well, we have made a decision to completely rebrand. The process was amazing with Salt Design Co. and I cant thank them enough. I’ve been blogging under my maiden name Leanna Ranieri, but we’ve completely rebranded the name to Change With Us and to be honest, I couldn’t be happier. We are all about changing not only the world around us, but ourselves and it seemed like the perfect time to do, once we got married.

Why the Rebrand?

The rebrand just felt right and by adding Kit, my husband to the blog I believe there is an opportunity for our readers to see our different personalities. Don’t worry we will still have lifestyle posts including some style, DIY, and design – but they will also have a more raw feel to it.

Let’s be REAL

Ya know why? Because we are over fluffing it up, we are over trying to have this perfect social media presence – ya know the pressure stay relevant because it’s harder in today’s society to feel like you are enough. We are focusing on being authentic and real with readers about life. Life is a hot, stressful mess and this will be a place to connect with people going through the same thing! So let’s be adventurous, creative, and REAL.

We love you all and look forward to the future of this blog – so come CHANGE with us!

Just a Note

I am still @leannaalways on social media for now, but that will be changing shortly to @mrsleannacarson. You can find Kit at @thekitcarson on Instagram and @mrkitcarson on Twitter.

Website: ChangeWithUsBlog.com

So come connect with us! Making new friends is our jam!


The past few months, Kit and I have really embraced using our tech mindfully. You know, by having real, genuine conversations without our phones in our face – yeah, that kind! Our new thing is to phone stack at meals (when we forget to be mindful) and we put our phones down the second we get in bed. We are trying to implement a sunset hour for our tech, but haven’t gotten there yet, who has?! In comes the Camp Out Yonder Recap!

A couple weeks ago, Kit, myself, and our bestie, Lorian ventured to Camp Out Yonder for the weekend. Camp is a mindful, tech-free campout for adults, and this year it was hosted at Grizzly Creek Ranch in California. I guess we should back up a bit….

Rewind to July

I was at a networking event and Nellie, owner of Camp Out Yonder, was the speaker that night. Let’s just say it was fate that she not only spoke, but that I was able to meet her!

Anyways, Nellie is ALL about mindful-tech and I felt like she just understood the struggles of technology using us instead of using it what it was meant for and that’s it! She’s giving everyone some great tips and knowledge and I’m just in heaven. Then, there it was – she was giving away a ticket to camp to a lucky person…guess who that was?

Kit was able to come too for a great price and off we went! So here’s my Camp Out Yonder Recap!

3 Days with No Technology

3 Days in a teepee, on a cot, in a sleeping bag. No phones, just my camera (and a disposable one -remember those?), and great company! I’ll spare you the details, since you’ll be able to see the awesome photos, but it was amazing and event-filled:

  • Great Food + Drinks

  • Tie Dye

  • Rock Climbing

  • Kayaking

  • Swimming
  • Nature Hikes

  • Fun Facts
  • Star Gazing
  • Yoga

  • Friendship

Minus the mosquitoes – I think I may be more of a glamper, but get me in a nice cabin and I’ll camp like this more often! 

  But seriously, it was super rad and I met new people and didn’t have to worry about them being on their phones 24/7. You had to actually REMEMBER things, because Safari and Siri weren’t going to help you. Best part, I walked away with a new community and some more great tips on mindful-tech that I cannot wait to share with you!

xo, 
L

Here’s some more photos!

10-Things-You-Probably-Didn't-Know-About-Me-Change-With-Us-BlogToday, I was thinking about how much or how little some of you know about me. I guess you could say it could be a good thing or a bad thing, but I figured I would share a few tidbits about me. Some may be obvious or you may know them, but for most… it’s a change of scenery.

10 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Me

  1. I love to ORGANIZE.
    I’m a bit OCD and I love things being clean AND in their designated spot. It’s a love-hate relationship. I could spend hours reorganizing my house and be completed satisfied doing that. Kit and I don’t argue much, but when we do it’s over “little” things like CLEANING/ORGANIZING (well to him at least it’s little!). If you need a little TLC in the organizing arena, check out these Starter Tips on How to Organize Your Life.
    get ready every day, hair braids, off the shoulder
  2. I get ready EVERY DAY.
    By get ready, I mean I wake up, clean my face, do my makeup and my hair, and put on some nice, clean, clothes. My close friends think I am crazy for always being “dressed up”, but I don’t think of it like that at all. Getting ready each day is like a motivational thing for me – if you don’t look the part, you aren’t conquering your world. Even if I am just staying in most of the day, it is important for me to always feel and look my best for ME and no one else.
  3. I love DEALS. 
    You can find me at every GOOD sale or free event. There is something about scoring a great find that is so deeply satisfying. Plus, most of the stuff that you see me wear, accessorize with, or have in my home (like this DIY Marble Coffee Table) – there is most likely a sweet story behind it. Like how I haggled over $0.05 at Target for bringing my reusable bag or how I semi-conned a teenager at a garage sale to sell me vintage books for $0.25 each. It’s all in the wording, people. Don’t hate the player, hate the game.
    purple bean, coffee, coffee time, coffee drink, reno nevada
  4. I don’t LOVE coffee.
    I’m not a huge coffee drinker. Yes, I go to coffee shops daily, but I always get tea or some version of a souped up, sugar filled, coffee-ish drink, that most likely contains little coffee. Hey! It is what it is…Kit on the other hand —> coffee since birth, ya’ll.
  5. Blogging is HARD.
    When I say that, it’s because I have the experience (this little baby was born in July 2011). Blogging isn’t easy and as much as I love it, posts can take hours to curate; between the words, the photos, the editing… oh and coming up with something to write about – yep, that one’s important. I give props to bloggers who have 5-7 posts up every single week. Never missing a day and having flawless photos. This girl, here? Yep, don’t have the budget, time, or 1-5 people writing for me as me (ghost writers). Woo, blogging is a whole post in itself… I’ll save that for a later date!
  6. I’m a SNACKER.
    As much as I love my main meals each day, this lady’s a snack lover. I would rather snack all day with one main meal, then eat three big meals. One, I don’t care for breakfast and if I do eat it, count me in for avocado toast or a big ol’ Belgian waffle. Two, I love red meat, so screw lunch and give me all the steak and ribs for dinner. In between those meals, I’ll be staining my fingers with Hot Cheetos, an Arbonne Protein Shake, protein bar, or avocado, NO SHAME.
  7. I have a BS in Marketing AND a BS in Management.
    I was actually a Neuroscience Major for 2 years, before I realized that my passion was for service, social media, and coordination. So, I chose to Double Major, no problem! Two years crammed with 4 years of work and still graduated on time. Thank you 22 credits a semester, summer and winter sessions. Oh and thank you WINE, my dearly beloved Moscato.
  8. I LOVE kids!
    Okay, okay, you probably know this one, already, but if you don’t — the love is REAL. I think I’ve had baby fever for as long as I can remember. Stepmom owned a private daycare, been in childcare professionally since I was 15, and have nannied for the past 5 years as a career. I’m definitely ready to have some of my own and there is never really a perfect time, but it’ll happen when it happens. 
  9. I love to SING! 
    I’ve been singing in the choir since I was in 3rd grade. In high school, I was the section leader for the Alto section, sang in All-State, and competed in various events. I still love it to this day, but I no longer practice as much as I should. Oh, and I would definitely need to brush up on reading music before I debuted some infamous solo to you. 
    West Shore Wedding, Lake Tahoe Wedding, Mr. and Mrs. Kit Carson, The Carson Coupon, Carson Wedding
  10. I’m married!
    Alright, if you’ve been around for a while, you definitely know this one already. But if you’re new or just haven’t followed my adventures for a while – this one’s BIG! Kit and I tied the knot on June 2, 2017. Surrounded by family, friends, beautiful Lake Tahoe, and love. It was a dream and the most perfect day ever – that’s a thing right? See our wedding video teaser here

You feel me, yet?

Hopefully you’re liking what you’re reading + want to stick around! 10 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Me – Kit’s Version, should be making it’s debut soon. 

xo, L

How to pick your perfect wedding venue
It seem’s unreal that my wedding was a little over a week ago. I’m a married woman – whoa! I often get asked how we chose our wedding venue. If you are new around here, we got married on June 2 at West Shore Cafe & Inn in Homewood, CA (Lake Tahoe). 

Choosing a venue was easy… just look at this crazy, freaking spreadsheet I made. 

Carson Wedding Venue Organizer

I didn’t do it by myself, though! Kit, my sweet friend Rachel, and I sat down for an hour and looked up a bunch of venues that had a list of things we were interested in and just started typing a long. This was the result. ^

We narrowed it down to our top 3-5 and started emailing away. Okay, maybe we didn’t go as in depth once we started looking at the venues online, but  we did narrow it down!

How to pick the PERFECT venue for YOUR wedding

  1. Research, research, research —> seriously though ; this one is BIG. Know what your budget is!
  2. All-Inclusive or just the Venue? I opted for an in between option. I wanted the venue, cleanup, food, and some items to be included. But I wanted to choose my own videographer, photographer, florist, and others. Which one gives you what you are looking for?
  3. Sound Check —> are you a late night partier? Some venues must have music off by 9 or 10pm!
  4. Are guests in-state or out-of-state? Is there an airport near by, rental car shop, and hotels that fit people’s budget?
  5. Are you paying for the location? The view? The name? What is important to you in the venue you choose?
  6. Narrow down your options to 3-5!
  7. Book Appointments! Tour the Venue!
  8. See their catalog on pricing, do they give discounts on certain days?
  9. Talk it over with your significant other, can you swing it? Is it within budget with room for everything else you have to spend money on?
  10. Book it! Often, you must have a deposit to put down to book your big day, so make sure you have it!

Sweet, ya did it! I know it isn’t the easiest thing to decide on, but it’s the biggest part of the wedding planning process. Once you have the venue chosen, everything else will start falling into place and you can start booking other vendors. 

How did we pick the PERFECT venue for OUR wedding day?

Well, we basically followed the exact steps listed above… AND we also knew we wanted the venue, food, beverages, clean-up, and some hotel rooms to be available for guests. We were okay with spending more for the VIEW (Lake Tahoe Pier) and less on decorations. 

Some things that were important for us in picking a venue were that we wanted to bring in our own photographer, videographer, florist, coordination, cake, DJ, and other goodies!

On our list of 3-5 Venues, we went to our top pick, fell in LOVE with the venue and the view, asked what dates were available, attempted to negotiate the pricing (REASONABLY), and booked that day! We didn’t even look at the rest and it was so worth it!

In the end, what matters is what is important to YOU and your significant other on that day. It doesn’t matter what anyone else wants (parents, family members, friends), unless someone is helping to pay for the wedding. In our case, we paid for everything on our own and it was the best decision ever. 

*P.S. – the photos above were taken by my sweet friends Brooke (@brooke_batten) and Lorian (@lololorian).*

Where are you getting married? Tell me in the comments below!