Monday, December 31, 2012

closing out the year.

i'm very, very excited for 2013 to start as i know i've got a ton to look forward to and a lot to work towards. i've decided that as far as my 30before30 list goes, i'm going to focus on crossing off #15: visit spain, #2: start learning to speak portuguese fluently, #7: starting a movie night tradition, & #13: decorate our "forever home" to reflect both my husband & i perfectly.
i know i shouldn't play favorites, but...i'm most excited about #13.

but before i get too excited about 2013, i might as well do a photo recap of what happened around these parts in 2012 (aka: a photo dump).

a craft night at my house making sugar and salt scrubs, starting to get a yoga routine together, visiting new orleans with tucker for our one year anniversary and checking off a vineyard tour with the ladies.

redoing our backyard and making a promise to spend as much time as we can out there, went to lots of shows this year {picture is at the black keys concert}, started training for my half marathon {and learned how to enjoy running!}

had an amazing 25th birthday spent in the bahamas with some of the best people around

now to end the year juuuust right, we're staying in with a few friends, a big pot of chili, lots of ice cold shiners (and champagne too, don't worry), and a fire pit in the backyard. 
i really could not have asked for a better year and i'm so, so excited to get started on crossing off goals for fact, one of them technically got crossed off last night, but i'll get in to that later this week.

happy new year!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

#11: read at least one book a month for one year - DONE

i get to cross off another goal today!
goal #11 on my 30before30 list was to read at least one book a month for a year. i started my first book of 2012 in early january, and instead of stopping at 12 books, i actually made it through these 15 books:

some of them i loved & some of them...not so much. but i'm not really one of those people who can start a book and just set it down halfway through if i decide i don't like it. once i've invested time in it, it's getting finished.
do you put down books halfway if you just hate them? or do you force yourself through them?

in case any of you are interested in my very non-professional literary opinion, 
i had a really hard time getting through the receptionist (very slow and anti- climactic), cloud atlas was also a bit too slow in my opinion, and the same kind of different as me was not at all what i was expecting (turned out to be a very religion-focused book which i was not interested in. i can be really interested in a book about religion if that's what i set out to read, but in this case - i didn't).
my favorites were the non-fiction books: wild, arcadia, unorthodox, blood bones & butter, unbroken & half broke horses. in fact, i absolutely loved all of those books and i would highly recommend them to anyone who loves reading memoirs, auto biographies, anything non-fiction.

although i was able to check this off the list this year, i still want to make sure i read a lot next year, too. so i'm beginning to put my 2013 book list together and will come back with an update on that semi-soon.
have you read any books this year that you absolutely loved?
or hated?

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

in the planning stages...

goal #15 on my 30before30 list is to visit spain & luckily, that goal will be crossed off next year! the husband & i know that we're in the planning stages for a trip over to europe, and we know that spain is involved...we just don't know what other country is also involved. since the tickets over there are so expensive and the flights so long, we figured that going to just one location doesn't really make sense - why not make the most of it and hit up as many places as time/money can afford? originally, greece was in the agenda for this trip, but the airline that we're going through (using tucker's miles from work travels) doesn't fly to/from greece, so that may be tossed out of the picture (too bad, since that's also on my list!)

we've been taking our time and doing research on several different places that we've considered visiting after a week in spain. (italy isn't being considered since i've been there, and we want to go somewhere that's new to both of us).
here are two options we've considered:

consideration #1
flight to london + paris by rail

and on to paris,

consideration #2
flight to ireland

we're not going on this trip until late summertime, so we have plenty of time to make decisions. but being the planner that we are my husband is, we want to iron out all of our details sooner than later, hence the research starting now.
plus - let's be honest, it's just really, really fun to think about trips for months in advance and have something great to look forward to!

will we be eating meat pies followed by macarons and strong coffee? orrr whiskey and irish stew?
suggestions welcome!

Monday, December 10, 2012

#8 - participate in some sort of marathon or race - DONE

technically, i've checked this off my 30before30 list twice before this year (here and here with 5k's), but this one is the one that really counts for me - i finally ran the half marathon that i've been scared of since i signed up for it in august!
i'm not going to lie, i wasn't too excited the night before the marathon. in fact, tucker had to talk me in to doing it probably about 5 different times (at least). i was super, super nervous that i wouldn't be able to do it under my goal time and in turn, i'd get really frustrated with myself. but of course, i had signed up for it, paid for it, trained for it, we drove to dallas & picked up my bib and packet for the race. it was just going to have to happen, regardless of how many times i fake coughed and pretended i was sick & couldn't run.
so on saturday night, the night before the race, i slept approximately an hour and a half. and when i woke up really early to eat my banana, my carb-loaded breakfast bar & black tea, my stomach was in knots. but by the time we walked over to my corral and got me all set up and ready to go, i got over the nerves. i was already there - it was going to have to happen, so i might as well just get over it. my biggest concern was that i didn't train enough, and hadn't run far enough to get through this easily. and i was absolutely right - it wasn't easy. but, it actually went a little bit better than i thought, i'm assuming because of all the adrenaline and endorphins that were running through me. i will say that it would have been much more enjoyable if it was colder...running in 76 degrees is not nearly as fun as running in 50 degrees. 
at mile 9, i was so, so tired and started walking and about 30 seconds in to walking, a woman came up behind me, patted me on the back and said "no no, keep running. you & i have been at the same pace throughout the whole run" - so i sped up and started to run again. thank you so much, mile 9 lady in the pink tutu! 
and thank you thank you thank you to my handsome, sweet husband that told me he was proud of me about 50 times, wore a shirt that had my name on it and gave me a hug & kiss at the end of the marathon, when i was at my grimiest and sweatiest. 

Monday, December 3, 2012

weekends were made for...

this weekend was an awesome one. it was made up of snuggly cats, one amazing (and free!) gary clark jr show, downtown pizza dinner dates outside, beers at the ginger man with my ginger man, seeing my dad & little sister who came up from mexico for the weekend, and...see that last picture up there? that was my sunday. all. day. long.
i'm completely sucked in to unbroken, and couldn't stop reading it yesterday. it helped to have some abuelita hot chocolate to make me want to stay in bed, too. 
[i just realized there are a lot of things in those sentences above that i want to suggest to you all. never heard gary clark jr? do yourself a favor and go listen, like now. haven't read unbroken? please go buy/download it immediately. oh, and abuelita hot chocolate? it'll change your life]

i am now officially less than a week away from running my first half marathon, and i'm extraordinarily a little nervous, but excited! when i first signed up for the marathon and saw that it would be in december, i thought: surely i'll need a good long sleeved running shirt, and maybe even something to cover my ears? false. that's just false. it was in the 70's all weekend and the weather during today's run was 67 degrees, so...that's kind of a bummer, actually. i prefer to run in colder weather, but what can ya do? 

i hope your weekend was just as relaxing (ie: lazy) as mine was!

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

2012 is nearly over.

is that dramatic to say? that 2012 is nearly over, when it's not december yet? oh well, i've been known to be dramatic here & there. really, i know this is one of the most cliche phrases ever, but i'll say it anyway - this year has gone by so quickly. 
it's making me start thinking of which goals i want to focus on for 2013. i'm hoping that by the end of december/2012, i'll be able to have 5 goals crossed off my list (i realize that's not very much time, but i'm working really hard on it!).

so, since accomplishing goals has obviously been on my mind, i figured should ask -
do you do new years resolutions? if so, how often do you actually accomplish them?
last year on new year's eve, the husband & i went out to dinner and started talking about the things that we wanted to accomplish in 2012. he set his mind on 4 main goals and is very close to accomplishing all of them, which is great! me, on the other hand, not so much. but now that i've gotten the hang of things and set a timeline up in my head for some of the things on my 30before30 list, i think i should be good to go for next year, and then the next 4 years after that.

maggie's mighty girl life list is the one that got me motivated to start my 30before30 list. some of the goals on her list that i love are:
ride a camel in the desert,
make a peaceful living space,
institute chocolate and champagne wednesdays (what a great idea!),
set foot on all seven continents,
and sleep in a treehouse (that's on my list, too!)

what are you going to work on for 2013?

Monday, November 26, 2012

weekends were made for...

lots of family time, hangin' with furry friends and human friends of 18 years, sunny bike rides, and the start of christmas decorating at our house.
as of today, the husband & i are officially 100% done with christmas shopping, which i'm so excited about. i get beyond giddy at the idea of giving my favorite people gifts, getting creative with gift wrap & holiday cocktails!
obviously i'm in the holiday spirit - hopefully you are, too.
(ps. all of this holiday spirit does not mean that i'm excited about the idea of christmas music. i hate christmas music, you guys)

Tuesday, November 20, 2012


i've never been very good at taking photos of people, but it's something that i'd love to be great at. when i actually try to get out there and use my cameras for something other than instagram snaps, it's usually focused on something like architecture - and typically only happens when i'm out of the country (soon to change!). but my dad is an amazing photographer who has taken lots of beautiful portraits throughout his life, and i've always been really inspired by his work.
so, because one of my 30before30 list is to master taking photos the way i picture them in my brain, i wanted to share some inspiration i've come across in the past few days.

1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5 // 6 // 7 // 8 // 9

see more photography inspired posts here and here.

Monday, November 19, 2012

weekends were made for...

hosting some of my favorite people at a pre-holidays/fall party.
the weather really cooperated with us and it was perfect outside - it actually felt like fall! remember in this post a few weeks ago, i posted some inspiration for a fall party? i tried to do at least a few of the things from that post, and it turned out really well. at least i had a good time.

(these photos are from a few different cameras, so please excuse the size difference everywhere!)

i know this is a lot more pictures than what i usually post in my "weekends were made for" monday posts, but...i just couldn't pick my favorites!
it's bittersweet knowing that we'll be leaving this house fairly soon, because there's really nothing that compares to hosting some of your favorite people & spending hours in the backyard. especially when you're hearing the guys somehow turn a game of ladder toss in to a gambling fiasco, or when marshmallows end up all over the patio due to failed s'mores experiment. for the record - almond joys + marshmallows + graham crackers = heaven, apparently.
speaking of s'mores, i've been able to check off a few things from my fall to-do list!  so far, i've been able to check off 'have fun with pumpkins' - we have 2 painted pumpkins in the backyard can see a tiny peek of one in the 3rd picture up there, and the other one here. and thanks to the party this weekend, i can cross off s'mores making. i've been wearing plenty of scarves, too...which means that all i have left to be officially done with the fall to-do list is to bake something pumpkiny (any recipes you want to share??) & make it to the drive-in theater with the husband. i think that's doable.

i hope your weekend was filled with as much goodness as mine was! i'll be back later this week.