Found along our walks in a city aptly named “The City of Roses”.
All of these were taken at Washington Park at a section known as the International Rose Test Garden. You can find over 10,000 bushes of roses with more than 650 different varieties. It’s a stunning sight to behold.
Not much else to say here because the beauty of these flowers speak for themselves. ❤
As delicate as flower, as tender as rose petals, choosing to be tender and kind in a harsh environment is not weakness, it’s courage. Luffina Lourduraj
Colchuck Lake, The Enchantments
Wenatchee National Forest
The mountain has left me feeling renewed, more content and positive than I’ve been for weeks, as if something has been given back after a long absence, as if my eyes have opened once again. For this time at least, I’ve let myself be rooted in the unshakable sanity of the senses, spared my mind the burden of too much thinking, turned myself outward to experience the world and inward to savor the pleasures it has given me. Richard Nelson
We are six months into 2020, and I think we can all agree it’s been quite the year. Not only are we all fighting a global viral pandemic, there’s a fight against racial injustices, gender inequality, and police brutality happening all at the same time.
With everything going on, I couldn’t find a way to shut up off my mind. My phone was alerting me that I’ve been on it for far more hours than usual. Our conversations at home seemed to revolve solely around what was happening in the world. I’m pretty sure I’ve cried more in the last couple months than I have in my life. I’ve definitely experienced hate and racism, but learning about the violent injustices towards our black community has been devastating and heartbreaking.
On top of this, Michael lost his dad, my father-in-law, from his fight against kidney cancer. There’s nothing that can really prepare you for this type of situation. Nick is truly one of the good ones and to lose him like this, makes life seem so unfair. I wish we could have had him be Pappy to our kids one day, but I know he will be there with them in spirit. Several months ago, Michael wrote something that we never posted. So I want to share it here.
My dad is the epitome of the protector of our family. He showed me what it meant to be strong and that family always comes first. When he started dating my mom (who already had two kids: me and my sister), he wasn’t that much older than I am now. I have so much respect and appreciation for him taking on that responsibility and stepping in as our father figure without any hesitation. If my life continued with my biological dad in it, it would be completely different in the worst way possible.
I wish I didn’t struggle with knowing how or when to express my feelings of gratitude and love for him as a son because I do. Without a doubt, he has helped me become the man that I am today.
It’s hard to grasp how life is going to be without him. There’s such a fear of the unknown for me.
Miss you and love you, Nick.
We realized we both deeply needed some self care. We don’t know a better way other than going outdoors and having no phone service.
A lot of campsites and outdoor areas are still closed, but when we found out this hike was actually open, we had to do it. It’s been on our list ever since we moved here and oh my GOSH is was incredible. All-in-all, we hiked over eleven miles, and it really kicked our butts. Our legs were killing us towards the end of the hike. But this view… is therapeutic. Alpine lakes are magical and so worth the hike up to them.
We still cannot get over how stunningly beautiful this hike was!!
After enjoying the view from a higher spot, we wanted to continue along the trail to see if we could find a spot down closer to the water.
And we found a spot closer to the water!!
After hiking, we found this lovely dispersed camping site near a lake. It rained all morning and night. I love our conversations together when it’s just the two of us like this. Life together has been a dream and I am just so excited for what’s to come.
Sending a lot of love out to you all.
Times are extremely wild and sensitive right now, so I hope you can take some time to find some mental peace and joy.
Making bread is a whole adventure in itself… and during these quarantine days, food adventures at home works for us! Hope everyone is staying safe and staying sane. 💙
I used to be really intimidated by baking and bread making in general, but I’m starting to warm up to it. There is something so gratifying about it and Michael freaking loves it, too! I’ll take it. I love when I can get him in the kitchen with me to play around with new recipes. He kind of geeks out on yeast and bread and all the different types of flour and their protein content… I could go on, but you get the point hahah.
Anyway… if ya’ll are cooking at home and are craving indian food, you have to try these recipes! They’re sooo good.
Tikka Masala recipe – I did adjust a few things for my own taste, but overall, it’s an amazing recipe.
Naan recipe – we didn’t make the garlic butter. Half Baked Harvest is seriously my favorite food person/blogger ever.
Not gonna lie, combining my love for food and photography has been bringing me so much joy these days. I haven’t been this excited about something in awhile. It’s been funny though because I’ve been cooking a lot, which leads to a lot of leftovers. But we’ve been doing some porch front or garage deliveries for some friends (gotta keep that social distancing up!) I know it’s silly… but it makes me so ridiculously happy to share!
Find something you’re passionate about and keep tremendously interested in it. Julia Child
There’s not a whole lot of adventuring going on these days, so here’s a few throwbacks from a summer road trip to Horseshoe Bend and Antelope Canyon in Arizona!
In a previous post, I wrote about our separate (and totally different) road trips that we took across the country when we moved from Texas to Oregon. These two stops were some of my favorites. So much so that I sometimes bring up to him how much I want to move to Arizona or Utah for a little bit. Maybe one day!
Horseshoe Bend, Arizona
Antelope Canyon, Arizona
On the tour to get to Antelope, I sat next to this beautiful family. They noticed I was alone and was so incredibly friendly by sticking by my side during this adventure. Very grateful my paths temporarily crossed with these folks. I think I even still have the daughter’s phone number somewhere. Anyway, thanks to these three for their kindness and the memories.
You have to leave the city of your comfort and go into the wilderness of your intuition. What you’ll discover will be wonderful. What you’ll discover is yourself. Alan Alda
We finalllyyyy received all of our Vietnamese wedding reception photos and (sorry, not sorry) I want to share some of the moments from one of the best days ever. 💕
We decided to have our reception almost seven months after we got officially married because of a few personal reasons. It was a little unconventional, but it ended up being perfect for us.
Vietnamese Tea Ceremony
This ceremony took place at my parent’s house. There’s a lot of symbolism in these traditions that I’ve only grown to appreciate now as I’ve become older. I never imagined doing a traditional tea ceremony, but now I am so so happy we did.
Love is in the Details
Our decorators, florists, and photographers made everything so beautiful. Michael and I also got to create and print out the seating arrangements and made our own signature cocktails for our bartenders to serve!
The Girls & The Boys
Ya’ll are the best and we had such a good time with you all by our sides.
These just make us smile so damn much.
One of our favorite traditions of having a Vietnamese reception is that we have to visit every single table to just give them a little love, a cheers, and show that we appreciated these guests for celebrating with us. The only caveat is… the younger tables typically have a game of some type that leads to a gift.
This day could not have been possible without these incredible people and vendors. They were amazing and I can’t thank them enough. 💕
This weekend, we decided to just go outdoors to get away from the craziness that’s happening in the city and to try to distance us from other people.
We hiked Neahkahnie Mountain and ended the evening with a stunning sunset at Cannon Beach. We did this hike when we first moved here and it was amazing to come back. The view from Neahkahnie is absolutely breathtaking! It’s a little rocky at the top, so if you go, watch your step. Once you find a spot to sit, all you have to do is enjoy the view. 💙
Neahkahnie Mountain, Oregon Coast
Cannon Beach, Oregon
This is such a classic spot in Oregon. As touristy as it can be, it’s such an amazing spot to visit and spend the evening. Last night was an example of how beautiful it is there. The pinks, purples, blues, yellows, and oranges in the sunset were a sight to see.
I see a lot of people being like, “I would survive the coronavirus. I’m taking my chances.”
The way I see it is yeah, I’d survive it. But I might carry it to someone who wouldn’t. And that, folks, is the problem.
There’s a lot of hysteria going on right now regarding coronavirus, which is understandable to some degree. Michael and I both work in healthcare, and I work directly with immuno-compromised cancer patients. It’s definitely weighing heavy on my mind that even though I have a very small chance of becoming severely ill from this, I could potentially carry the virus to my patients. Michael and I are trying to distance ourselves from people as much as we can. The temporary sacrifice is worth it, especially if it can help in anyway.
I’m hoping people are staying safe, being smart, and thinking practically in the next few weeks as it this unfolds even more. 💙
If you visit or live in Oregon, you have most likely visited this magical place! And if you are from a totally different state, like how we are from Texas, this place will never cease to amaze you. What hike in Texas or Oklahoma, or even California would you ever get to see ten waterfalls?!
Anyway, here are some of the waterfalls we captured and I even attempted to label the names of them 💙 :
Silver Falls State Park, Oregon
Lower North Falls
Lower South Falls
We are all naturally seekers of wonders. We travel far to see the majesty of old ruins, the venerable forms of the hoary mountains, great waterfalls, and galleries of art. And yet the world’s wonder is all around us; the wonder of setting suns, and evening stars, of the magic spring-time, the blossoming of the trees, the strange transformations of the moth… Albert Pike
I haven’t shared a recipe on here before… but this was too freaking delicious to not share!
Oh my goodness, you guys. When I made this, Michael and I were looking forward to dinner every single night we had this.
A warm, cozy bowl of rich red curry broth with fresh noodles and roasted peanuts??! Sign. Me. Up. Michael hates mushrooms, but any time I can sneak them into a meal without him really noticing is a win for me!
I am pretty sure the biggest way I show my love is by cooking and feeding others. I’m not sure why, but I feel so much happiness from sharing any sweet treats or meals that I make. And I don’t think I ever stop thinking about what to cook next and who I’m going to share my leftovers with.
Cheers to always eating good with even better company surrounding you. ❤️