Catching Up

Wow, my last post was March 15th. I’m doing an excellent job with this, aren’t I?

I have no excuses for my absence other than that I just haven’t felt like blogging lately. But, today, I do. Let’s just go with it.

I really want to write about a bunch of fun things that we’ve done in Austin this summer- we’ve been knocking things off my bucket list left and right- but it doesn’t feel right to jump into that without addressing the gap of time between March and August. So, I’m going to speed through that chunk with a quick recap today, moving on to more recent fun the next time I feel motivated to write. Cool? Cool.

Here are my top two favorite memories from each of the past five months:


GRRM event

Meeting GRRM. Are there any Game of Thrones fans out there who will geek out with me about this? For Christmas this year, I gave Stephen tickets to a private dinner and tour of A&M’s Game of Thrones exhibit in the Special Collections Library. George R. R. Martin attended too! We’d been looking forward to this night for MONTHS, and it did not disappoint.

Cookies from Make It Sweet

Easter cookie-decorating class at Make It Sweet. My friend Claire nabbed a Groupon deal and invited me to join her. We had an awesome time and learned a ton of easy decorating techniques. I’m glad we were able to take our creations home, because there’s no way I’m ever baking and decorating sugar cookies in my own kitchen, on my own time. Fun, but WAY too time-intensive for this Crock-Pot cook.


sunset at the Oasis

Mini college reunion in Austin. The six of my closest friends from college are spread across the country (and Brazil), and this was the first time we’ve all been in the same city since graduation four years ago. We had drinks at the Oasis, rode a mechanical bull on 6th Street, hiked and swam at Reimer’s Ranch and Hamilton Pool, and cried our eyes out when the weekend came to an end.

Dave and Kristy

Oh! And my brother proposed to his girlfriend- my soon-to-be-sister- Kristy this same weekend!

Avon Walk 2013

2013 Houston Avon Walk. For the third year in a row, my aunt Nancy and I walked 40 miles through Houston to raise money for breast cancer. I look forward to this weekend with her all year long. It’s a really special event, made even more special by the help and encouragement of my uncles, my cousin and Stephen.


Getting Ready

Sasha’s bachelorette party. One of my closest friends from high school got married this summer, and she picked Austin as the destination for her bachelorette party. I was so excited to show the ladies around my favorite city! We celebrated with champagne and silly games, a sunset at the Oasis, SUP on the river, lunch at Whole Foods flagship, and a night out on 6th Street.

Bryce Canyon

Hiking and camping in Bryce Canyon and Zion. I’ve been dying to see Utah’s national parks for years now, and Memorial Day provided the perfect timing for a visit. My friend Tracy (see college reunion above), her boyfriend Stefan, Stephen and I met up in Vegas and drove out to Bryce Canyon and Zion for five days of scenic hiking and back-country camping. This trip really deserves like three blog posts of its own; hopefully I find the motivation to write more about it soon.



Sasha’s wedding. The same lady who rode a mechanical bull in a tiara in May became a wife in Williamsburg, Virginia less than a month later. Everything about her wedding was beautiful, from the bride herself to her husband’s grandmother’s touching reading from the Velveteen Rabbit. Tears. Everywhere.

Visiting family in Virginia. Stephen and I normally come home to Virginia for two long visits twice a year. We both work remotely, so it’s really easy to pack up our work laptops and log in from whichever city we’re living in that day. With Sasha’s wedding on the calendar, it made sense to extend our trip to include a few weeks with family. Stephen’s mom, dad, and my parents all live within three miles of each other. We’re so lucky!


Cedar Creek Lake

4th of July at the Reisers’ lake house. The Reisers own two incredible homes on Cedar Creek Lake outside of Dallas. Carrie invited Stephen and I to join for the 4th of July, and we spent the long weekend tubing, swimming, playing board games and eating delicious food. Their lake house is seriously my happy place.

Probus Family Maine

Matt and Whitney’s wedding in Maine. Stephen’s cousin Matt and his beautiful girlfriend (now wife!) Whitney planned an intimate wedding in Camden, Maine a few weeks ago. We were SO excited to attend. The wedding was on a Monday, so we had several days beforehand to explore the area. We hiked in Acadia, explored downtown Portland, and soaked in as much family time as possible.

So, that’s the scoop! Hopefully I’ll be back again soon to chat about Austin fun!



Scenes from Saturday

Hello, there! How was your weekend?

Ours was great! Stephen and I spent most of Sunday running errands around town and furniture shopping; we crossed “rug” and “sofa” off our never-ending list for the new house. I don’t have any photos from Sunday, nor would anyone want to see pictures of Lazyboy and Lowes, but I have plenty of shots to share from Saturday’s adventures.

Portland scenery lobster salad and Bar Harbor by night

No, I’m not in Maine. I wish! My parents are cruising the New England coast this week, enjoying crisp fall weather and lobster rolls for lunch. They’ve been sending me picture updates, and seeing them wearing long sleeves and fleece vests left me aching for some seasonal fun of my own. Thus, on Saturday, Stephen and I set out to find the apple orchard I’d heard about in nearby Llano.

After an hour of driving, we were disappointed to learn that warm winters are a bad thing for fall apple harvests. The orchard only produced 30% of normal levels this year. When we arrived, the early harvest had already been picked over, and the late season varieties wouldn’t be ripe for another few weeks. Not all was lost. They still had plenty of apple pie for sale, and the owner was very friendly and welcoming.

With pie in the tank and an afternoon to kill, we decided to drive another ten minutes to Enchanted Rock for a quick hike.

Hokie on Turkey Peak

VT Hokie on Turkey Peak, how fitting 🙂



Neat boulder at Enchanted Rock State Park

Lone slab stone at Enchanted Rock

One of the things I love most about Enchanted Rock are the random boulders everywhere. They’re always in such silly positions. This one looks like it wants to go sledding.

Climbing at Enchanted Rock

Silly pose on Turkey Peak in Enchanted Rock

East Loop Trail Enchanted Rock Park

We left the park before 6:00 and made it back to Austin just in time for the PRIDE Parade along Congress Avenue and 4th Street.

DJs warm up the crowd on 4th Street for the Gay Pride Parade

Spectators of the Gay Pride Parade on Congress Avenue

Royal Blue Grocery provided snacks for our curbside picnic dinner. I love that store; it fueled me through SXSW 2012.

Right after sunset, police officers shoved aside barricades and the parade began.

Motorcycle rally leads the Austin Gay Pride Parade

Whole Foods Austin shows support for LGBT community in Austin


EMS crew in Austin shows gay pride


Crazily decorated car at the Gay Pride Parade

Venus Envy at the Gay Pride Parade in Austin

Crazy balloons in Parade on Congress

We had SUCH a blast. The floats and costumes were really creative, and it was wonderful to see so many groups and organizations come out to show their PRIDE and support. I really liked the “Organic Love” theme of the Whole Foods float, and Venus Envy is just about the best name I’ve ever heard for a ladies clothing store.

Awesome parade and awesome weekend. Have a great Monday!

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