Tuesday, May 20, 2014

checked off: #4!

i am so, so, so happy to say that goal #4 has been checked off my list: to own an original art piece.
this one was not an easy feat, guys. 

i try to give back stories with some of my goals, so here's this one:
tucker & i went to new orleans in 2012 to celebrate our one year wedding anniversary. we spent a lot of time going to art galleries, and came across a gallery that had some show stoppers for us. we had talked before about how hard it is to find a piece of art that two people agree on - i mean, if you're spending money with the intention of something being on your wall forever, it's sort of a big deal! but, this gallery had a few pieces that both of us absolutely loved.
and then we looked at the price tag. and suddenly, we didn't love them so much anymore. but the goal of owning an original piece was something that we both left new orleans with, and we thought it would be something we'd work towards over the next several years.

fast forward to december, a few months ago.
we go to guadalajara to visit my family there, and stay in one of my dad's new houses - above the master bed there is a huge painting of a tree, and literally at the same time, both tucker and i thought "i want that and i want it now", veruca salt style. so we get some information from my dad about the artist, and it turns out that she's a local artist there in guadalajara who he could get us in contact with, and who could provide a huge original for a fraction of the price of one in the states. we were able to provide her with the exact size we wanted for our wall, and pick our colors as well as talk about the style of the tree we wanted, which was great. this all sounds fine & easy & great until you try to ship a 6ft oil painting that can't be bent from guadalajara to austin, tx without an importer's license.
so, without getting in to the story too much, i will tell you that it took a little over three months to get to us once it was completed, the border agents actually wanted a photo of it because of how familiar they were with trying to ship it, my brother mario's help was crucial and we wouldn't have gotten the painting without him, and now we are so happy that it's here. 

so here is what my 30before30 list looks like now:
1. visit santorini, greece - 2. learn to speak portuguese fluently - 3. go on a girl's weekend trip to a vineyard - 4. own an original art piece - 5. learn how to bake my own bread! - 6. give birth - 7. start a movie night tradition - 8. participate in some sort of marathon or race - 9. plant a thriving vegetable garden - 10. go on an annual camping trip - 11. read at least a book a month for one year - 12. master taking photos the way i picture them in my brain - 13. decorate our "forever home" to reflect both my husband & i perfectly - 14. start a sunday night supper tradition - 15. visit spain - 16. see radiohead live again - 17. become crafty - 18. ride in a hot air balloon - 19. visit maui for 5 year wedding anniversary - 20. start teaching my children how to speak spanish fluently - 21. start a regular yoga practice - 22. sleep in a tree house -23.  see northern lights - 24. host thanksgiving at my house (insead of a parent's house!) -25. take a weekly photo of my child/children for an entire year - 26. take a road trip (more than like 12 hours of driving!) - 27. learn to tango with my husband - 28. take my own (professional looking) newborn photos of my children - 29. surprise my husband with the best birthday gift ever (still don't know what that is....) - 30. end this whole thing with a 30th birthday bash that's worthy of being blogged about

Monday, May 19, 2014

mexico trip 2014

time for picture overload. 
also, let's not mention the fact that i haven't posted in months. we'll just move on from that.

last week, tucker and i got back from a vacation that we had kind of been putting off for a long time. about 2 years ago (or maybe even more), we bought a groupon on a whim for a 4 night stay in baja california sur, mexico. it was one of those things that seemed like such an incredible deal that it'd be stupid to pass it up, and it turns out that was very accurate. i say that we had been putting it off, because with work, moving in to the house, other personal travel, etc, it just wasn't happening as quickly as we thought it would. but long story short: we made it to cerritos surf colony and completely fell in love with the place. it was one of the best trips we have ever been on, and we're so, so glad we finally made it out there.

this was one of the few beachy places i haven't been in mexico, so i was really happy to get to check another place off. i can say that i've never been to a beach that's as isolated as this one was - there were never more than about 20 people on the beach at a time, so it was like we had it all to ourselves. 
our little casita was right on the beach and we were lucky enough to wake up and fall asleep to the (super loud) ocean sounds every single day. 
we spent most of our time either reading on the beach, in the cute little town nearby eating shrimp tacos and looking at art galleries, or having a beer in the pool area. we were even able to get a massage on the beach right in front of our little villa! it also helped that there were 2 kitties that lived on-site, the food at the pool bar was amazing, and we found a top secret half-mile beach that we had to ourselves***. 
both of us really, really hope we make it back out here sometime in the next few years, it is definitely a place that has left a mark on our minds, and we hope it never gets spoiled!

***i have to give major props to my husband here. the picture below is the walk-in entrance to the secret beach that we found. not pictured is the mile-long hellish road that we had to drive down to get there. while i was saying "ummm maybe we should turn around?! i don't think our rental can take this road!!!" in a high-pitched voice that usually only dogs can hear, my husband politely ignored my complaints & drove like a champ over approximately 6,732 huge rocks, dips and cacti so that we got to this gem.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

weekend adventures in lost maples

over the valentine's day weekend, the husband & i made our annual trek to lost maples - this is our 5th trip (4th year) out there, and it's a tradition we hope to continue forever & ever. lost maples state park is in vanderpool, texas and is about a 2.5-3 hour drive from our house, but it feels like it's forever away.
we've stayed at the same cabins every time we go, it's a little cluster of 5 cabins up a very windy, hilly road that makes you think you're not in texas at all. there's no cell reception/wi-fi except for at a general store on the way to go hike the trails in the park, which brings me to my next point - the hike is the best part of it all! the park itself is absolutely beautiful, especially in the fall, and we always go up the west trail which is about 5 miles, 3 of which are uphill.
we've become pros at packing for lost maples and have our traditions of making skillet burgers, drinking cheap beer (lone star, usually. but this time we brought along my new favorite gluten-free beer), playing cards and in the mornings we read out on the porch (swinging porch bed!) with our coffee.
one of the goals on my 30before30 list is to have an annual camping trip, but i'm pretty sure i'm going to have to do some editing and maybe change it to an annual glamping trip? because i really enjoy having a toilet to use.
texans - what are your favorite camping/glamping/hiking spots?


Friday, January 10, 2014

2014 & my 30before30 list

i know i'm a few days behind (9, to be exact), but i've decided on which 30before30 goals i'm going to focus on for 2014:
-learn to speak portuguese fluently.
i've mentioned this before, but my mom is brazilian and unfortunately i never learned portuguese from her. my brother & i both learned spanish first, then english...and it was probably going to be pretty overwhelming to throw in portuguese in there, but i'm still just a little bit bitter about it. i definitely understand 90% of it because it's so similar to spanish and because we've heard my mom speak it most of our lives here & there, but it is time. it's time to sit down & really learn it, so that next time i go to brasil, i can sound really fancy.
so, last night i started on rosetta stone! it was only 30 minutes, but it's something. and just for the record, i got a 96% on my pronunciation. just sayin'.
-own an original art piece.
this is not something that the husband & i expected to do for a few years, but on our recent trip to mexico we came across an artist that we became slightly obsessed with, and now we are working on getting one of her pieces. more on that later! but this is also in the works.
-decorate our forever home to reflect both my husband and i perfectly. okay, so this is actually pretty much done. it's just the pictures that haven't been taken, and the goal above - the original art piece - that we're waiting on.
-go on a road trip. planning for this goal is already underway, so i'm pretty sure this one will be a really fun one to cross off this year.
-plant a thriving vegetable garden. luckily, i got started on this last year and now have the perfect box garden for it. i'm hoping to get kale, watermelon, jalapenos, tomatoes, mint, green bell peppers, and carrots throughout the year.
okay, that's it. there are 2 or 3 more that i'm pretty certain i can accomplish in 2014, but those are the 5 major ones that i will get done, no matter what!
there are also a few things that are not on my 30before30 list that i'd love to do this year, like going to a fun cooking class with the husband, volunteering at urban roots again (any austin friends want to come with? it's really fun!), and reading more (in 2012 i crossed off a reading-related goal that i'd maybe like to try again).