Semi-Wordless Wednesday {Mom Life...}

I'm sorry, I couldn't resist... this was my view while peeing the other day. 
Thanks for the company, guys! 😂 #momlife


Summer Vacation

Friday was Gwen's last day of school, her last day of First Grade. Now the summer vacation officially starts!

Gwen was both happy and sad... she really, really loved her teacher and class this year, so she was not so excited to leave them. She is definitely looking forward to our apartment pool being open though. I'm not going to lie, I'm equal parts excited and nervous!

Her summer vacation is actually not that long, just over 2 months, as she goes back to school August 14th; but that is 11 weeks of the two of us spending a LOT of time together! Ha. That said, 3.5 of those weeks will be spent traveling back and forth to the East Coast (mid-July to early-August), and the last week will be spent preparing for school. June is the majority of the time that we'll be kicking it together 24/7, but I have a plan for that too!

Starting next week I'm working on planning play dates... one day a week, have a friend of hers over, and one day a week, I drop Gwen off with a friend! I'm very excited about this as I think Gwen will love it, and it really gives me 2 days off a week. One day where, yes, I'm in charge of two kiddos - but they always entertain themselves so much better with a friend around; and another day where I have a few hours of not being responsible for anyone!

Talking that all out, I'm feeling more excited then nervous suddenly. There is a lot of fun stuff to come in the next few months, and while I'm sure we'll have days of watching too many movies (and driving each other absolutely crazy), I think it will be a fun summer indeed!


2017 Wedding #2 - A Family Affair

Two weeks after I flew to Pennsylvania for Cassie's wedding, I was back on the East Coast for my cousin Brendan's!

Here I go again...

This time it was a red eye, which is always exhausting, but you do get to watch the sun rise from 39,000 feet!

Plus then I had the whole day ahead of me!

I took the train out in the direction of my parents. They picked me up, we ate some lunch, then we were on our way to the beach! We settled into our AirB&B place in Cape May Courthouse (if you ever need a rec for a place near Avalon, let me know... this place was fabulous!), Ethan and Elise arrived that afternoon, and it was so damn good to see them.

We spend much of the day just relaxing and catching up, but that evening was the first wedding event. The Welcome Cocktails were at The Reeds in Stone Harbor. They had another wedding's after party going on at the same time. Ethan and I made a new friend, who really wanted to take a selfie with us (we weren't taking selfies at the time...), and honestly, she fit right in.  😂

The sunset I was actually trying to get a picture of was pretty lovely too.

The thing I'm most excited about with two of my weddings this year, are that they are for cousins on opposite sides of the family. So I'm going to get to catch up with everyone this year! Aunts, Uncles, Cousins, family friends... I talked to them all! Plus, the fun of new family.

Saturday was the actual wedding, but it wasn't until the evening. So we did lunch some family, Ethan and I did some yoga, we read and relaxed. Finally it was time to get ready and head out. The wedding was on the beach, and despite being a little windy and chilly, it was beautiful.

My cousins, and brother's of the groom...

There was a happy hour to follow, then we headed into the ballroom for dinner and dancing.

The whole thing was beautiful and fun!

Sunday we woke up, got ready, made sure we were fully packed, then headed to the bride's parent's place for a goodbye brunch.

I had to pop by the beach one more time and grab a shell for Gwen!

It was nice to have one more chance to conversation before ending the weekend. I really have the best family.

After a bit it was time to head to the Lehigh Valley and my parent's place, just for one night. Then Monday my parent's and got some brunch before I got back on the train to make my way to the airport. Thanks to a cancelled coffee date, I had a lot of extra time to kill, so I walked all over the airport looking for exactly what food I wanted to take on the plane. Then to combat an aching back (my bag might have been small, but it was not light!), I did some airport yoga!

The flight itself was fine. We hit some turbulents both ways (though I tried to sleep through them on the way there), and I've realized that however much I do it, flying will never be my favorite. I'm fine, and looking at me I don't think you would suspect I was anything but breezy the whole time... but really, I tense the first time shake or bounce in the air, and I don't relax until after we land. That said, I'm so grateful to be able to take these flights, so I won't complain!

Trav and Gwen were waiting to pick me up when I arrived, and we headed home. I miss Pennsylvania and my crazy lovely familoy already, but it's really good to be back.

That said, see you in July, East Coast!!


Wordless Wednesday {Baking Decedant Things}

Make THIS amazing, deep, rich, dense, experience of a chocolate loaf! Make it when you can share it and thank me (and Sarah!) later!!


The Coffee Shop Tour Continues

Since December the coffee shop tour (with SaraMarie) has continued with jaunts to Stella's, Pablo's Coffee, and Black Black Coffee.

This past week we headed to Black Eye Coffee.

They had the best chai tea of all the places we've been so far! The quiche was pretty fabulous too.

SaraMarie also surprised me with one of her beautiful flower wreath paintings!

Even more fun, next month, we're venturing out to to a tour of the Celestial Seasons headquarters!

I love this unique way of discovering more about my new city!


Beer and Bacon, and Bumblebees

Its not officially summer for almost another month, but by the end of May it starts to feel very much like summer. Memorial Day kicks it off unofficially, especially since this year that is Gwen's first day of summer break, but Trav's birthday (Monday) always seems to call it forth. The impending season has its place, but has never been my favorite. It has always been just a bit too hot and dry for me (especially here in Colorado).

However, I will recall some of my favorite things. There's the feeling of freedom... this lingering sense that adventure awaits. It definitely starts in the spring for us, warmer weather signals camping trips ahead and new places to explore; but that freedom peaks in the summer, before we slowly settle into our winter hibernation. There's the wildlife and their song. The birds awake in the spring, but as we approach summer, they bring forth babies who join in the chorus for the warmer months. I love big fat bumblebees, swooping along their own paths; not little ones, but the round one, full on summer clover, buzzing with contented hard work.

I won't say that I anticipated summer (though there are plenty of trips that I'm anticipating), but now that were on the cusp, I'm ready to dive in.

I'm flying back from Pennsylvania Monday (for the second time this month!), but Trav celebrated his birthday a little early this year. It worked out well that the weekend between my trips held the Beer and Bacon festival, which I bought him tickets for and sent him off with a friend. It was a much needed break for him, and some time together for Gwen and I.

He had a great time and it was nice for him to have some alone time too between full-time Daddy duty! I'm so grateful for all he does for us, and for him holding down the fort so well while I took these trips.

Happy Birthday Trav! And Happy Summer... soon enough.


Not So Wordless Wednesday {Trees and Thoughts on Pennsylvania}

The weirdest thing about my trip to Pennsylvania was how not weird it was. I swear in some ways it was like no time had passed, and by day 3 of my trip there, it felt as if Colorado might not even really exist. I literally had trouble remembering what our day-to-day life was like here. It was all so surreal.

It was rejuvenating too. I forgot how green it is there, how I know those trees, and I felt at home in them immediately.

But it wasn't the same all the same. I steal an hour here or there with people I used to have days with, I walk a city that is so familiar but is changing constantly and full of things I don't know anymore, and I know that even if we returned it wouldn't be to the same house, the same jobs, the same life. That's a good thing of course, but its is ... odd. 

It was okay leaving, knowing I'd be back in less then two weeks (I head back tomorrow night!), even though most of the coming trip will be spent in New Jersey. It think it will actually be way easier to be able to visit with a large part of my family there, where I have no particular ties, where I can just enjoy the visit instead of feeling like I'm being pulled back into a former life!

I need these trips to the East Coast, they strengthen my roots. I do wonder though if I'll ever get to the point where I don't feel torn between two worlds?


From the Morning into the Night

Sometimes I wish I were a morning person. On the rare occasions when I do find myself awake before everyone else, it's so peaceful. The light in the morning, milky and mild, is unlike any other time. There's something really magical about starting your day slowly and easily - some yoga, some hot tea, and may be a good book. Your mind and body unfold without effort, taking their time.

But I don't normally start my days easily. I jump into them two feet, not with yoga but with rushing to get dressed and fed and into the day ahead. I'm a night owl by birth. The quiet that you find in the morning is a quiet of birdsong, lovely for sure; the quiet you find at night though is that of wanderers.

In the darkness maybe you hear nothing but the wind or the soft tremble of a creeping animal, but often there's the distant thrum of a few lone cars heading off somewhere undetermined. When you hear cars in the morning they seem to be off just to a normal life, work or school, but cars at night seem destined for bigger things. In the night I feel destined for bigger things.

Unencumbered by the awakening bright light of day, my biggest stories and tales stretch before me in the night, like a lit path. La Luna comes out at night, and her light is not the hot, jarring touch of the sun. La Luna's light is cool; it's an icy caress, trailing silver and glass. It's fantasy and daydream.

Yes, truly I am a creature of the night. While I will always appreciate those rare quiet early mornings when they appear naturally, where you will find me settled in, is the evening hours. Curled up with a hot drink, a good book, a soft puppy next to the lone light in the house my body settles and my mind unfurls. Nighttime is my moving, fluid meditation.


2017 Wedding #1 - A Trip Back East

I was so honored to be a bridesmaid in the wedding of one of my girlfriends from high school this past weekend. Cassie asked me to be a bridesmaid almost two years ago, when they first got engaged, so this has been a much anticipated weekend! 

I think I unlocked my expert level packing badge...
That bag holds 5 days of clothes, a bridesmaids dress, 2 books, and 5 magazines!

Thursday morning we woke like normal, got Gwen all ready, then Trav drove us to Gwen's school. I gave her all the extra hugs, then when she went in, it was off to the airport! 

Its always so surreal being in Pennsylvania! I definitely made the most of my trip. Thursday night neighbor Joe picked me up from the airport, drove me back to the old neighborhood, where I was able to get a glimpse of the old house before borrowing one of his old cars and heading off! The rehearsal had been that night, but I got in too late to make it. Instead I headed straight for Cassie's Mom's house where they were having the rehearsal dinner. A little bit of visiting, then it was off to my parent's to settle in.

Friday was an all about Cas day. She didn't want anything crazy, and didn't really want the traditional parties, but instead just wanted to enjoy some time with her bridesmaids.

We did mani-pedis first, then hit up the Continental Midtown for food. That was a sweet familiar treat for me... their Lobster Mac is the stuff of my dreams!

We walked around the city a little after that (I bumped into an old coworker!), then headed to Painting with a Twist.

After that we headed back up to the Lehigh Valley. The whole day was a lot of fun, and Cassie was happy... so, success!

Saturday was a free day of sorts. So I hit up one of my old yoga studios in the morning, and headed into my old neighborhood for lunch with Joe and fam, and our other neighbor Kathy. After that it was back up to my parents for our only evening/dinner together!

I will never tire of this view...

It was great to just relax with them and eat a nice dinner.

Sunday was wedding day!

We gathered at the beautiful Bally Spring Inn to get ready together. Unfortunately it was too chilly and drizzly for the outdoor wedding they'd originally planned, but the day was still wonderful!

At the bride's request... yoga in a bridesmaid's dress!
They had a quick, beautiful ceremony and handfasting. The bride and groom cried, so I cried. 😊 Then the weather cleared enough for some outdoor pictures, before we headed into another of their gorgeous buildings for the reception.

Cas looked gorgeous... and my shoes were amazing.  HA!

(L: Cassie - the bride, and one of our other good friends from high school, Sebrina.
R: The bridesmaids!)

There was good food, a gorgeous cake, dancing, and lots of laughing! I was a little worried since I really only knew the Bride and Groom and one other friend, but it was a great night.

It was a gorgeous evening as we wrapped up the night - no one really wanted to wrap things up. They had a game room that we spent some time in, then it was time for me to drive back to my parent's under this gorgeous moon! Thankfully sans rain at this point!

Monday dawned slowly for me. But it picked up with a quick visit with Ro and Casey at a park, followed by coffee with Apoc, and then back-to-back yoga classes at my other old studio!

Tuesday it was time to get ready to head home. I returned the car to Joe, took the mile walk to the train station and headed into the city. My coffee date for the morning was sick, so I headed into the park to enjoy the sun and a little bit of movement!

Lunch was with my Tally-le (at The Dandelion, mmmm), and I managed to squeeze in a quick visit with my Mama Jan before heading to the airport.

The flight can be a little long, but it was pretty uneventful other then a little bit of winds as we were landing. I was back home just in time to kiss Gwenie goodnight!

One more week and I do it all again!


Semi-Wordless Wednesday {Celebrations and Springtime}

My BFF for the past 30+ years got engaged at the beginning of April! To say I'm over the moon is an understatement!

Her fiance, Keil, is amazing and I'm so glad that they found each other.

Look forward to some of the coolest wedding pics ever coming your way in September!

These next 4 pics really sum up springtime in Colorado... the top two pictures were taken less then 24 hours apart!

The shoes picture cracks me up... I wore all of those (snow boots, rain boots, sandals, sneakers) within 72 hrs.

Springtime in Colorado baby!

A little baking to help me clear my head: zucchini bread!