Anthony and I recently celebrated our second anniversary. Anthony was still in Malaysia at the time, which was a bummer, but it turned out okay because I had more time to work on his gift. I’m using the traditional anniversary gift list as a guide to giving gifts. I think it’s fun to have a specific material to use each year. Last year was paper. This year is cotton. So I bought a sixty year old, hand-stitched Turkish quilt that I cut and sewed onto black cotton to make removable throw pillow cases. I made two, because, well… two years. Simple math here. I’m looking forward to next year’s anniversary, not only because it means I get to celebrate another year with Anthony, but also because the traditional gift is leather. We’ve been making lots of goodies with leather recently, so it should be fun to see what we come up with!
Wishing a very happy anniversary to my husband. Today marks our second year of wedded bliss. Every day I say a little prayer because I know I’m a very lucky girl to have found someone so special that I get to call my husband. Here’s to many more blissful years, my love!
This weekend Diego and I headed north to visit Leah and Derek in Oldenburg. I couldn’t think of a better way to spend the weekend than hanging with those two! On Saturday Leah took me to this tiny treasure of a town called Metamora. It’s one of those places you have to see to believe. The canal town features charming shops housed in historic buildings and Indiana’s oldest (still operating) water powered mill. Leah and I bought Amish made cheese (smoked horseradish cheddar!) and shared a root beer float as we walked through the town. It was a good time!
Leah told me something this weekend that I thought was so true, for both of us. She told me that Derek said to her, “I love when your sister is here because you’re so happy” and that couldn’t be more true for the both of us. I just love being around her. I’m complete when I’m with her.
It’s been a lonely couple of days for Diego and I as poppa left for Malaysia this week. He’s playing drums in a band that’s touring there for two weeks. Traveling in a foreign country can be tough. I made sure Anthony packed lots of snacks… you never know when hunger will strike! Once, when we were in Italy, I cried myself to sleep because I was so, so hungry. It’s a memory that will haunt me for the rest of my life! For that reason alone I always bring snacks when I travel! I hid a special goodie bag filled with candies (and a little love note) in his backpack with the hopes of making his insanely long flight a little more enjoyable.
The thirteen hour time difference hasn’t been too troublesome, surprisingly. We email back and forth all through the day. He keeps me updated with his travels and funny stories (his description of people asleep on the train in Tokyo was a riot). Anthony only had wonderful things to say about his time in Tokyo, so much so that I’d guess we’ll both be taking a trip there one day, as he really enjoyed the city and people. After two days of traveling he arrived in Malaysia, where he’s eager to get some rest before the first show. I let Anthony take my camera with him (he had to pry it from my hands though) so he could document the trip. I’m very eager to live vicariously through the photos. If you’d like, I’ll share his adventures with you too!
It’s been pretty quiet around these parts lately. I’ve been feeling a bit uninspired for whatever reason. All the colorful leaves have begun to fall, leaving many of the once vibrant trees bare. I haven’t been carrying my camera around with me much either. I’m trying to get back into the habit. I snapped a few photos over the past few weeks here and there. Anthony and Diego both celebrated birthdays this month. We had a low key celebration for Anthony. I made him homemade cookies and restricted myself to only buying gifts he wanted, which paid off. He said it was his best birthday yet. Diego turned five. He’s become especially slow in his old age and increasingly naughty. Anytime we leave the house he breaks into our room to curl up in our bed.
Anthony leaves in a little over a week for Malaysia. He’s touring with a band for a couple of weeks. I’m not looking forward to him leaving. I kinda hate being away from him. This is the longest we’ve been apart from each other in, well, years. That’s a strange thought. At least I have my naughty Diego to keep me company and I’ve even planned a weekend trip to visit Leah and Derek in Oldenburg.
Palm Springs was a last minute addition to our California Adventure. When my friend Bianca invited us to visit her cousin in Palm Springs we thought, why not? I’d met her cousin Jeff and his partner Cristian the last time I was out and couldn’t wait for Anthony to meet them. They are so, so fun! Just as I’d expected, we all had a blast! Jeff and Cristian are. a. riot! You know when you smile and laugh so much your cheeks hurt? Yup. That was going on big time! It was 106 degrees most of the day, so we laid out by their pool cooling off, then in the evening, we all lounged in the jacuzzi admiring the view of the night sky. We went out to dinner that night, where more silliness ensued, then somehow found ourselves at a karaoke bar. My first public experience with karaoke happened (Spice Girls “2 Become 1”) as well as an epic rendition of “Rapper’s Delight” by Cristian! The night wouldn’t be complete without witnessing a nasty bar fight on our way out. Sometimes, it’s the things you don’t plan for that end up being the most fun!
The next stop on our California adventure was Santa Barbara, which is about a three hour drive south of Big Sur. We stopped in San Simeon near Hearst Castle to kayak in the sea, specifically the San Simeon Cove. It was my first time kayaking. I didn’t want to risk bringing my camera in the water, as the chance of us flipping was high. We never flipped the kayak. Instead, we spent a couple hours out in the sea watching harbor seals, sea otters and even dolphins pass us by. It was pretty spectacular!
We rented a yurt from a family through airbnb in Santa Barbara. The yurt is part of a 10 acre community they call Bjorklund Ranch. It felt more like a bohemian commune hiding in the foothills. We quickly realized that our yurt was nestled up to a, well… they called it peaches on their map, but all we saw (and smelled) was marijuana and lots of it! I won’t go into too much detail, but I will say that our experience on the ranch could best be described as bazaar. We couldn’t wait to high tail outta there the next morning!
We spent a day exploring Big Sur, specifically partington cove and tan bark trail. Both trails were recommended to us by Tree Bones’ staff. We lucked out finding the trails as they weren’t marked from the highway. It was one of those drive north six miles, look for a dirt road and you’re there kind of things. We didn’t know what we were in for as neither of us hike. Luckily, it was early enough in the morning that it was just the two of us left to explore the area. We climbed rocks, watched the waves crash into the rocky beach and even built our own stack of pebbles. Next, we hiked up to the sixty foot tunnel that leads to the cove where we did a bit of off-trail exploring… Anthony’s idea. We climbed things that no first time hiker wearing skinny jeans and fashion boots should climb, but we made it without falling into the ocean. We found a secluded spot in the rocks with a killer view to have a picnic. We sat listening to the waves and watching seals play in the ocean while eating our little lunch of tuna and egg salad sandwiches. It was one of the better lunches of my life.
After we dropped some of our early morning pre-hike layers off at the car, we walked across the highway to tan bark trail. As we made our way into the woods, we noticed that the majority of the redwoods were charred. We later read that a 2008 forest fire burned off most of the area (it just recently opened back up after being closed for four years). We understood that the trail was 3 miles long, lead to a tin house, then looped back down 3 more miles. We assumed the trail would be marked. We were wrong. We had to do a bit of trial and error hiking before we got on the right path. It was through that trial and error that we came across a waterfall. We hiked along the bottom of the canyon, then climbed up the side, following the narrow dirt trail. We hiked for hours. Hours! My skinny jeans were sticking to me, and my shoulder was aching from the intense hike up. Every twenty minutes Anthony would say, “I think it’s around this corner… it must be!” and it wouldn’t be. We never saw the tin house. I was exhausted and kept thinking we were being stalked by a mountain lion. I was loosing it. It took us forty-five minutes to get down the canyon. As soon as we got cell service we looked up the trail and realized that we were in fact so very close to the end. Anthony was bummed, but I was proud of how much we’d accomplished on our first hike. We learned a lot, like, don’t wear skinny jeans, walking sticks look dumb, but definitely serve a purpose and most importantly, always research the trails before you head out!