birthday mania

Sorry I've been MIA lately, we've had birthdays out the wazzoo.

I'll be sure to check back in ASAP with a fabulous post about how wonderful I am. I know how much you've been missing that!


familes that dance together, stay together

sisters make the most fun
me, lauren and taylor
drama queen, doctor and lawyer
bossy,picture-taker and random-fact-giver

I think we may have crashed Susan and Ben's uber-fancy Myer's Park Country Club wedding. Oops. But what is a girl to do when her husband can't make it to the wedding and her sisters are dragging her onto the dance floor? It was good. Really good. Border-line awesome even! I was so, so, so, so glad that Taylor was able to make a break from law school and that Lauren and Jon got in from Cabo in time for the service (yeah, rough life, eh?)

In all seriousness (what?!) the wedding ceremony was beautiful. It was an honor to be there to support Susan and Ben. I loved that they were so known by their pastor and that Jesus was the center of the service. It was a very moving ceremony. Many, many, many blessings to Mr and Mrs Huber! Enjoy your 10-day cruise in the Greek Isles (yeah I kind of hate them now too.)


early riser

I literally jumped out of bed this morning. Before my alarm went off. This was all after staying up way too late last night. So why didn't I fall out of bed 20 minutes after my alarm went off like I usually do? Because I got thangs to do. Like make my husband homemade cinnamon rolls for breakfast.


I made dough, from scratch, last night while Josh was at Young Life club. I even managed to have the whole kitchen cleaned up before he got home, so the evidence of my plans were totally erased (except for the giant bowl of dough in the fridge. but i'm pretty sure he didn't notice that since he only goes into the fridge for milk and nutty bars. yes, he still eat little debbie cakes, but that's an entirely different story.)

So this morning I got up, beat the dough, rolled it out, coated it in butter, sugar and cinnamon, threw it in a pan and TADA:

Ok, that's not technically a picture of my cinnamon rolls, I actually stole this picture (and the recipe) from The Pioneer Woman.

Why the surprise breakfast this morning? Was it his birthday? Was it our anniversary? What was it?! (I'm sure Josh was asking himself all these questions too.....except it was probably more like, 'dang! what did i forget?!') Well, the truth is that I'm trying out some recipes for 'thank you' gifts for our YL donors. I want to make sure they taste good, cook correctly, look presentable, etc. And that's why we're up to our ears in dough and cinnamon rolls. I'll see you later.....I'll be the one with the cinnamon and maple sugar coated face. I'm drooling just thinking about it!

**I'm trying to perfect the whole freezing/thawing thing....so if you're willing to be a taste-tester for me, please holler!
ps: I did go against my better vegan-judgement and tried a bite of a roll this morning. How do I describe the heaven-ness?! It was like a gooey-hot-now-krispy-kreme-doughnut topped with sugary-maple-coffee-hinted deliciousness. Or perfection. You can use whichever description you like.


HPV has a birthday

Yep, you read that correctly. HPV turns 19 years old today.
Let me introduce you to Hannah Paige Vaughn, known to us affectionately as HPV.

And what could possibly be better than having your initials spell out the acronym associated with genital warts? Maybe having your best friends make t-shirt that say "HPV is taking over"

I went to eat lunch with Hannah today at the GWU caf and the whole time people were walking up to wish her a 'happy birthday' and saw that they were all wearing these shirts. Its the best birthday surprise I've seen in a long time.....and I'm glad that Hannah has a sick sense of humor, or this could have all been more than a little awkward!


Taylor Swift, how do i love thee?

I'm in love with Taylor Swift. I wish that we were friends. Better yet, I wish we had gone to high school together.....she's captured nearly every feeling that I felt in high school with the perfection that only teen angst can uncover.

I love music. And I love all kinds of music....seriously, check out my computer/ipod; its got everything from country to classical to rap to christian. But I especially love music that moves you; it might be the spot that makes your heart well up, makes you want to go out dancing with the girls, makes you want to book a vacation, makes you feel like you could run forever or maybe even makes you want to start a fight (hey, I didn't say that music always makes you want to do good things.)

And Taylor Swift's latest album makes me want to do all of those things. 'You Belong With Me', the much discussed award winning video, is one of my new favorites. It would have been my 10th grade anthem if I was 15 again (as would her song '15'). I love how accurately it captures that 'what-the-heck-is-wrong-with-you-stupid-boy-can't-you-see-how-much-better-we'd-be-together-than-that-crazy-girl-you-think-you-want-to-be-with' feeling that all girls go through during high school (and college and basically all dating atmospheres).

The video for the song exceeded all my expectations for the lyrics, Taylor and her ability to transport be back to high school (but with the ending we hoped for!)

Check it out!

here's her live performance at the VMAs


photographer friends.

I have four friends that are photographers, and boy are they talented. I love having friends with a unique skill; I feel cooler just by association. (Its probably really hard for you to imagine me not being cool on my own merit, isn't it?)

I really do feel lucky to be friends with Sharon, Lindsey, Cat and Sunday; they're all so fun, energetic, loving, kind, anthropologie-looking....on one hand I want to introduce them all so we can all be friends together but secretly I'm keeping them from all hanging out with each other because they'd figure out that I'm not really cool/stylish/talented enough to really be their friends....and then I'd have to just be a stalker, which I am so not into.

Lindsey (known by her dear friends as leelee....see how close we are?!) took a few pictures of us at a friends wedding. She was the photographer for the wedding, but I couldn't help but ask if she would take a couple quick pics of me and Josh. I certainly don't mind being annoying, do I?

I love this picture of me and Josh.
I'm going to have to order a copy!

Lindsey definitely did not ask us to pose like this.
We just did.
I like to call it our prom/Vogue/hurry-up-and-take-the-picture-i'm-about-to-die-laughing picture.
(check out that headband! its so Blair from 'Gossip Girl')

Check out these girls a book a session today----you won't be dissapointed, I give you my word...which is as good as law in 8 counties.


jane of all trades

I had some trouble with my car battery the past couple of days. The bad news is that I was nearly stranded a couple of times, the good news is that Chris (at Monroe Tire) replaced the battery for free since it was less than one year since I bought it and I re-learned how to jump start my car. I practically a pro. This is definitely a resume booster. J/k. (Kind of.)

I had dinner with Chelsea last night at Cantina 1511 (do get their queso, DO NOT get their vegetable picadillo. so. gross.) On our way to grab a cup of coffee after dinner, we saw a guy in the parking lot next to our restaurant trying to start his car, but the hood was up in typical 'broken-down-on-the-side-of-the-road' fashion. Then the adventure began.

We asked him if he needed any help, or if he needed us to call anyone for him. He started talking, but then it went all Charlie Brown's teacher on my and all I heard was "blaaaah blaaaah blaaaah" and all I saw was his lanky build, short stature, metro outfit and girly voice. Chelsea and I made eye contact, both realizing that he was no match for the two of us gym rats and proceeded to grab the jumper cables out of my car.

While Chelsea explained common starter connection problems I began connecting the jumper cables. I then followed up with a brief explanation of alternators and batteries. The guy looked like we were speaking Finnish. He cranked his car, which started flawlessly, and then we encouraged him to drive straight home. He nearly burned rubber leaving the parking lot. I'm not sure what scared him off: our vast car knowledge or general hotness.....probably the hotness factor.


Black Eye Peas dance on Oprah

How did I miss this?!?!?!?!

I'm not the biggest Oprah fan, but I do LOVE this song.....and I love these kind of giant group dance.

At first it looks like no one is really digging the whole Black Eyed Peas song except for the one over-the-top fan on the front row. And then 10 of her friends start joining in on the dance. And then 50 more. Before you know it the whole crowd is dancing...20,000 fans all dancing in sync. How crazy is that?

It turns out the the Black Eyed Peas contacted 800 Oprah fans via Twitter and Facebook and taught them the choreography for the dance. Then those 800 fans-turned-dancers taught the rest of the group.

Oprah was totally caught off guard. And so was I. Today is going to be a good day!

my nephew sam

Let me introduce you to my nephew Sam:

Ok, he's not in my family. And his isn't Sam, its Julian. But man! I wish he was in my family. He's so cute! FYI Rachel, he is too young for you to date.


the buff

My friend Kelly told me about 'the buff' about a week ago. She referred to it as "what the contestants on Survivor wore all the time" and said that some of her Young Life friends bought some to wear on the three-day cross-country trek to Colorado. I'm always interested in new accessories, especially ones that help hide greasy hair.

According to The Buff website, "Buff is the leading brand and creator of the first seam-free multifunctional tubular wear. It is an extremely versatile garment that can be worn in a number of different ways while offering protection from the elements during a wide range of outdoor activities like hiking, running, skiing, cycling, motorcycling, etc. An excellent design also makes it ideal as a casual wear accessory."

I bought my buff at Diamond Brand before Josh and I went backpacking last weekend. It was $18, but they were having a 20% off sale. Yay! I wore it all weekend:

There are tons of colors to choose from. I picked a hippie color, because I'm a poser and wanted to look authentic while backpacking. At least I'm an honest poser? Is that an oxymoron?

I've also used my Buff on the lake (perfect for keeping hair out of your face while riding on a friends boat) and at spin class (I swear it has some kind of wicking property.)

The website lists a ton of different ways to wear the buff, even calling one 'the blind chicken" which is really just a blindfold. Go get yours today---its awesome!


why i love young life

Girl Leaders: one of the many reasons I love Young Life.

I have a weekly Bible study at my house for girl young life leaders. We have a rich time of getting into the Word, sharing life and eating desserts. I love the time and look forward to it all week.

And this is one of the reasons why: I never know what to expect. Case and point: what the Junior girls wore last week:

These girls, all roommates, came dressed in solid color outfits:
Casey: all grey= groutfit
Bryanna: all black= bloutfit
Sarah: all blue= blutfit

Can you imagine living with these girls?
How do they ever get anything done??

**I should also note that Casey wore solid-color outfits everyday of our fall leader lake retreat....red (routfit), purple (poutfit) and brown (broutfit).


labor day weekend

I've sat here for about three minutes trying to figure out what to call this post. I thought about something witty. Maybe something involving lyrics from "Green Acres" or "I Will Survive." But nothing seemed to really capture the enormity of this past weekend. And now I've given up. Which is already a bad sign about this entry, this day and maybe even this week.

The weekend started out fabulous---dinner at Barley's with some of my favorite girls. (Happy late-Birthday Lindsay!!) I met Josh back at our house (he'd been hanging out with some guys) to finalize our plans for the next day.....because we were going backpacking. Yes, you read that correctly. Backpacking. It seems I have totally lost my sense of reality and judgement. Can I still blame all of this on the bike wreck??

Josh has loved camping since childhood....which he may or may not actually have grown out of, the jury is still deliberating. We've gone car-camping a couple of times, but the dream of us actually braving the wilderness together has always been just out of Josh's grasp.

Let me clarify what I did this past weekend: hauled all my camping crap up a mountain, chopped down a (dead) tree for firewood, (watched Josh) set up camp, peed in the woods, pooped in the woods, didn't sleep for fear of a bear or murderer catching us off guard, watched Josh fish, read a book and relaxed in a hammock. Josh did all the cooking and cleaning. I especially loved the lack of cellphones and TVs...and the Josh cooking and cleaning part. All in all, it was pretty fabulous---besides the dirt and bugs part.

I made it to the campsite alive.
It felt like lugging a giant suitcase up a set of stairs.
You know that you really need everything....but still consider throwing stuff out along the way.

Ahhhhh, coffee.
Some things are mandatory no matter the setting.

My man the fisherman.

Proof that I made it out alive.
And also that I'm some kind of rebel.
I'm not sure about the pose...
I don't think I should be responsible for any actions after spending the weekend in the woods.


the day josh made me go outside

Josh asked me to go on a hike to Upper Creek Falls. I reached for the phone to call 911, because clearly he was suffering from a brain injury. Me? Go for a hike? Does he even know me at all? Then he told me there would stop for homemade ice cream on the way and I was officially on board.

We rode up with a bunch of friends: Jordan, Baird, Hef, Grace, Austin, Joey and Alyson. Here are some pictures from the trip

Thank goodness for good friends.
Hef, Grace, Baird and Jordan

Josh getting ready for the hike.
Don't worry, I made him get a haircut.

Baird jumping off a cliff.
She is so hardcore. And pretty. And sweet.
I kind of hate her for it.

keeping a safe distance from the cliffs

group shot!

proof that alyson and i survived the hiking



Sorry about all the recaps---our life can get a little bit crazy. At least I'm getting some of our fabulous stories up here though, right? I mean WHAT would you do with your day if you couldn't read about all this fabulousness?!?!?!

Two Saturdays ago Josh and I went to our first children's birthday party. It. Was. Awesome.

Our friend Miles turned one year old. We're actually friends with his mom and dad, Leigh and Brad, but we like Miles too....especially when he invites us to a party at the lake. The party was at this sweet house on Lake Norman, the food was super yummy, the babes were totally well-behaved and they had jet skis!

the birthday babe

the only couples without kids. we had so much fun!

we were loving the salt-water pool

Can we talk about how freaking amazing the food was? Thanks for making us all look bad Leigh!

what a sweet sweet family

Images by Freepik