Sunday, July 31, 2011

Adventures in renting

This loveliness. Came home from work yesterday to the sinks being about half full of some really amazing water that was gurgling up from the pipes. Put it a service request, they told us since it wasn't an emergency (what?) that they wouldn't be able to get to it until Monday. Whatever, what do you need your sinks for anyway (everything when you cook ALL THE TIME). So an hour or so later I'm chillin' on the couch and I hear water splashing from the kitchen. Yes, the sinks were overflowing. Fortunately not from the front, the water was leaking down through the faucet into the back of the cabinet underneath. STILL leaking stinky nastyness. So I freak out and tell Brendon, who is at work, and I begin carting pitchers full of this muck to the bathroom. All the while getting it all over my hands/legs/etc. Sophie is watching me much amused. Brendon calls our apartment complex again while I'm doing this and they say they'll TRY to get to it today. WHAT? This is an emergency, nasty ass water is flowing forth from my sinks! So after Brendon told them that it would get moldy and gross and probably made some sort of threat there was a lovely man at my door in no time. He opened a drainage pipe outside our apartment to let all the nasty water out. Why it wasn't open before, I don't know. Bottom line is it took like 3 seconds for him to do something they were telling me could wait until Monday, I got covered in nasty water, and our apartment smells like poo and garbage mixed together. Still. Have I told you how much I love this apartment? Endless charm y'all.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Flour tortillas

Yesterday was my big cooking day. For some reason I got into into my head that I wanted to make tortillas. I remember making them in elementary school so it couldn't be too hard right? Correct! I used this super helpful recipe, and they came out great. They take a little time but they are easy peasy and really fun to make. Plus they're delicious and way better than anything that comes in a plastic bag. They're thicker than average tortillas, which I like, something like a tortilla/pita hybrid.

All you need is:

2 cups all-purpose flour
1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons vegetable oil
3/4 cup lukewarm milk (2% is fine)

These are things that we always have so I can just throw them together whenever. Love that because I am the queen of not having all my ingredients. Mix the dry and wet ingredients separately first and then mix them together.

After you've got some dough, knead it for a couple minutes. My dough was super sticky so I had to add quite a bit of flour to my board to make it managable. Then you cover it with a damp towel and let it sit for 15 minutes.

Then separate them into 8 balls of future tortilla-ness and let them hang out under the towel for another 20 minutes.

Then comes the fun! Roll those babies out, one at a time. It helps if you flour your rolling pin and board after each tortilla, the dough is still pretty sticky. I made mine as thin as I could, they kinda reached a certain point where they wouldn't stretch anymore. Don't worry they're magical and thicken up like crazy when you cook them. And perfect circles are for squares (you like that shape pun?). Wonky is the way to go.

Then throw that baby on a dry griddle or whatever flat heating device you have. I had mine on medium high. And they cook fast! The recipe says to cook it for 30 seconds on each side but I just eyeballed it. When they reached the above pictured point of bubbliness, I flipped them. The bubbly part is the coolest, it looks like a swamp.


The other side cooks super fast so watch it closely. Because those raised bubbles are touching the pan first they'll get burned if you don't watch them. Maybe 20 seconds or so, you kinda get a feel for it as you go. I'm sure this all also depends on what you're cooking them on and how hot.

And viola! You've got some fantastic tortillas. We had ours last night with chicken fajitas and it was aaaaamazing. Favorite meal in a long time and I don't even like chicken. I made them ahead of time and reheated them in the oven like the recipe suggests. I don't think we'll ever buy tortillas again, these are far too yummy. Now I just need to learn how to make regular bread and we'll be in business.

And thus completes what I think is my first official food blog post! Many more to come I'm sure, as cooking is slowly taking over my life. I even have battle scars, I burned my arm yesterday and am now sporting a super cute red thumbprint sized mark on my forearm. 

Oh Austin

One of the odd things about Austin that I can't get used to is the massive amount of homeless/down on their luck folk asking for money everywhere; at intersections, while you're walking, etc. Since I've stopped waiting tables I don't carry cash, so I don't have anything to give them. And I'm not really in a position to be giving away money anyway, but believe me if I was loaded I'd help them out. I'm all for giving to the needy, but I feel like the situation here is a little out of control.

For instance, while waiting at a light I had a man step in front of my car, and start making the motions with his hands of eating. As usual I didn't have cash so I smiled and mouthed I'm sorry and shook my head. He then proceeded to start blowing me kisses. All while standing IN FRONT of my car. Luckily he moved before the light turned green, but jeeze! And then the other day Brendon and I were out and a guy was asking for money, making signs etc pretty persistently next to our car, we smiled and tried to make it clear that we weren't going to be able to give him any cash, and then I guess at some point he ran into the guard rail and cut his knee. He then proceeded to get really mad at us. Like pointing at his knee and yelling at us. I was honestly scared, like what would have been the right thing to do there? Brendon wanted to give him napkins but I was terrified of this raging man so I told him to just keep the window shut. He flicked us off as we drove by. I mean whaaaaat? This is totally not the norm, there's a very nice man near our place with the coolest beard that is always waving and smiling regardless of whether you give him anything and plenty more like him I'm sure. But the persistent scary moments I could really do without. Especially when I'm alone. Is that me being paranoid?

On another brighter note, Brendon's mom and his little bro are coming up tonight! It's so nice to have family visit! Aaaaand I think Sophie is sleeping with one eye open. Like wide open. Creepy cat.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Keeping that chin up

If you've been reading this blog for any amount of time, I'm sure you're aware that lately life has been a little less than perfect lately. We moved to Austin weeks after returning from our honeymoon, and basically exhausted all our resources between the honeymoon, moving, and paying deposits on the new place. Then I had the hardest time ever finding a job. I decided to not transfer to Hooters down here in Austin because I badly wanted to depart from the company. Now, I see that as something kind of selfish and reckless of me. Although I was very ready to be done working there, it would have been a good income right away and we would not be in the situation we're in now (although Hooters is a black hole and I know I'd get sucked in for a while which is exactly why I didn't transfer). So I was unemployed for a month that I like to think of as my month of housewifery. And then I got pneumonia, which was stupid expensive. Thankfully I got the job at Coffee Bean, which has helped, but I'm not getting the hours I need and the pay is significantly less than what I was making at the hoot. Now that our new store is open I am hoping to get more hours.

Through all this Brendon has been unbelievably supportive and wonderful and just the best ever. He is amazing and I am so thankful for him. He is behind me no matter what, telling me it will be okay. And it will, I know it will. This is just a rough spot, we'll get through it and be stronger for it. And smarter.

We had it made in Denton, we just didn't know it. We blew money like crazy, going out all the time, shopping, doing god knows what else but definitely not saving. This was a reality check for sure. We've had to make major changes. We basically don't go out if it requires spending money. And if we do, we're smart about it. A matinee movie is our favorite date. We've found free things to do around Austin, unfortunately many of them are outside and it's hot as hades out there, but they're fun and help us to get to know our new city. We've gotten creative with cooking, and in the process have found some pretty dang good recipes to add to our repertoire. We spend a lot of time watching movies, hanging out on the couch, playing domino's or cards, etc. It's definitely not an exciting lifestyle, but I don't care. It's me, Brendon, and the cats. And we have fun. Sometimes we get down, but not for long. We're good at cheering each other up, if one of us is especially pouty the other will set them straight. We really have no room to gripe. We have a roof over our heads, food on the table, jobs, and each other. That's a lot more than so many people have. These past months have been eye opening and I think we're infinitely better for it. Live and learn y'all.

And since that was a little on the down side, I'll leave you with this photo that always makes me smile and laugh and be so grateful for this amazing life we lead.

Yep. Bringing it back. Dancing with Brendon is my favorite. We're both terrible dancers (if you were at the wedding, you know and I apologize for sorrily busted moves), but we have a blast doing it. I am thankful for this. Thankful for Brendon. Thankful for this crazy good life we have together and everyone who is a part of it. And thankful for the fantastic Led Zeppelin that I am listening to.

Dream schemin'

I'm itching to paint. After a 6 month or so hiatus from art, I'm ready to get this party started. After I graduated I was very burnt out. My last semester was rough; I had artists block, wasn't happy with what I was making, plus I was dealing with health issues (when will my body get with the program?). But I obviously had to crank the art out for school, so I did. And like I said I wasn't happy with it and kind of had a negative attitude towards my work. I was getting a lot of conflicting feedback from teachers/students, and was listening to it all far too much (oh the woes of art school). So after I graduated I needed a break, and I took one. Haven't painted or drawn, aside from doodles in the ol' sketchbook, since then. Now I'm ready for the break to be over. I am ready to paint for me, what I want to paint, regardless if it turns out to be a giant flop. And I'm very interested to see how I function outside of school and the pressures it provides.

But to do all this, I need a few things first. An easel for starters. And of course we don't really have the extra cash to buy an easel (or art supplies for that matter, but we'll get there) as they are insanely expensive. So, when we do have a little extra moola, I am thinking of building my own easel with help from my Daddio. I haven't talked to him yet, but he's a big fan of projects (I wonder where I get it from), so I'm sure he'll be game. I've found these plans that this kind man, Benjamin Grosser, has put online for all of us starving artists to use.

This is the desired outcome. I'm hoping we can achieve something similar.

The plans look a little complicated to me. But I'm not really familiar with carpentry. My skills go as far as building canvas stretchers, but I think we can do it especially since my Dad is a construction pro. And I guess we'll let Brendon help. I think he took wood shop in high school, but I've watched him hammer nails and it's a little scary. Maybe he can just watch.

So that's my next big project. And if it were up to me I'd start it tonight, I love making things! There's been a creative void in my life and I'm ready to fill it. Eventually I'll get this studio at home thing down, just need to figure out how to keep the cats out of paint.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Mundane Monday

Nothing exciting has been happening lately. Nothing than I can think of anyway. Just working and chillin' out. We open our store Thursday, so today was our first day to be actually in the new store. It's pretty cool, it's in an awesome old building that used to be a theater. Parking sucks though.

Thursday Sophie went to the vet to get a checkup and her rabies vaccine updated. She was a boss! Got an A on her exam and was so brave. She only tried to get into the cabinets a couple times. We're taking Greg next month, and that will be an entirely different story. That cat has issues, he's such a weenie. We warned the vet ahead of time.

Yesterday we were expecting my family to come visit, but they didn't. So Brendon and I had a date night instead! We had a burger and a steak at the Fridays downtown (which has a great view of the lake and the Congress bridge. It would be a perfect place to bat watch!). Then we then ventured over to check out the Austin Symphony's Concert in the Park. We split a bottle of wine, laid in the grass with the ants (they thought we brought the blanket for them), and listened to a very lovely woodwind quartet. If you're ever in need of something to do on a Sunday night in Austin, go to one of these summer concerts. They've got four that they rotate; woodwinds, brass, strings, and big band. Last time we went we heard the big band concert, I liked the woodwinds better, but I'm partial to classical. And it's free! And even though it's like a billion degrees, you're on a hill and you get the best breeze. And then afterwards you can follow the river down to the Congress bridge and watch the bats fly out. The timing is pretty perfect, the concert ends just before/around sunset.

Brendon starts pharmacy school in less than a month!! I'm so excited for him. And a little jealous. In my original dream plan I would be starting grad school now too. But that is not the case. So I will live vicariously through Brendon! Seriously though, he's going to have a blast. He has his White Coat Ceremony just before school starts, where they give him his white pharmacy coat (I know I know, who'd have guessed), and I'm probably going to cry. I'm so proud of him, he's such a badass.

In other pointless news, my hair is out of control. I need a haircut bad, but I feel like that's a silly thing to spend money we don't really have on. So until then my hair is large and in charge. It would probably look more civilized if I bothered to fix it, but psshh, why do it if I don't have to! Usually I just sport the ponytail if I work, or if I'm off I throw it in a bun or rock what I think of as the "half-Hermione". My hair isn't curly, but it's not quite straight and there's a whole lot of it, so it gets big. Poor Brendon. No more polished girlfriend, just a messy wife. That's whats supposed to happen when you get married right?

Why not take smirking pictures of myself? It's my blog, I'll post 1,000 pictures of myself if I want to. ;)
And in all fairness to my hair, I wore at hat at work this morning, so that can't have helped the situation.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Harry Potter

Warning: what follows is probably the nerdiest thing I've ever written. Prepare yourself or skip it.

Obviously there's a lot of Harry Potter discussion happening everywhere, and of course I have to weigh in on it because I am a devoted Harry Potter follower to the core.

I got the first book waaaay back in the day before there was all the craziness. It was the only book out then, I got to be a little fan girl for every book release! In 5th grade I won a free book from a book-fair at school (probably by being a uber-nerd and reading 5,000 books on some list) and while I was browsing, the librarian suggested Harry Potter. She said it was supposed to be big in England. I decided what the heck, it's a free book and the cover was colorful so I got it. And finished it in like two days. From then on, I was completely addicted. I was severely disappointed when I never got my letter from Hogwarts. And imagine how badly my little teen self lost it when I found out they were making the movies! I crushed on Daniel Radcliffe so hard (too bad he grew up so short!) and was jealous of every one of them for being able take part in such greatness. I've read the books more times than I can remember and will continue rereading them. It never gets old.

Of course I married a fellow HP nerd, it would be out of the question not to. Who else would I have in depth conversations about side characters with? Brendon has actually read the books more times than I have. We even had Harry Potter star in our engagement pictures. And we had a quote from Dumbledore in our wedding ceremony thanks to our fantastic officiant. HP for life y'all, that's our motto.

So needless to say, we were a little excited to see the Deathly Hallows Part 2. The Deathly Hallows was my favorite book, I loved reading every line. And the movie did not disappoint. Of course, they strayed from the book a bit as every movie does, but I think they did a fantastic job regardless. It was beautifully done. Insane to see how all the actors have grown, we grew up with these kids! When they were little, we were little! Everyone played their parts beautifully. I cannot imagine the experience it was to BE these characters, to grow up as them. They were all on fire in the film. I was especially impressed with Neville (he had the most dramatic change growing up, he's so tall!) and of course, my man Severus. Snape is probably my favorite character (aside from Harry), and seeing the back story on him and Lily was one of the things I was looking forward to most in the film. And it was great. And I cried.

It was a very emotional movie for me, I was literally in tears throughout the whole thing, seeing all the moments I loved so much about the last book brought to life. Watching everything finally unfold and come to a close was beautiful, especially since it was so well done. I cried about happy moments, sad moments, about it being over, lost in my Harry Potter love. It was truly the end of a great story. No more books, no more movies. Luckily there are seven books and eight movies for us to reread and rewatch until we are old farts sharing them with our grandkids. And that sounds like a fantastic plan to me.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

No longer a teen

20 years ago today my beautiful baby sister Julie was born. I cannot believe she's twenty! No way. She will always be that little 13 year old that I carted around town while we sang Ashlee Simpson songs. Though sometimes she frustrates me endlessly (as sisters do) I love her to death. She's a special little lady. Happy birthday Jules!

We're going down to NB tonight to have a birthday dinner with her and my mom. Have I mentioned how much I love that my family is just a short drive away? Now only if we didn't drive gas guzzling suv's!

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Denton, TX

I miss Denton. A lot. I am glad we are in Austin and it's everything we've wanted for years and years, but I really really really miss Denton. I miss how small it is, not being able to go anywhere without seeing someone you know. I miss the laid back vibe. How weird it is. I know, I know, Austin you're the "capital" of weirdness, but Denton is pretty weird too. I miss the food; Mr. Chopsticks, Roosters, Greenhouse (I'm drooling now). I miss UNT, more than words can describe; the late nights in the studio, meeting Brendon between classes for lunch, sleeping in the GAB. I miss the lack of traffic, all the back roads, and short cuts. I miss how spread out everything is, yet how you can still get across town in 10 minutes. I miss the weather, which doesn't exist in Austin. No more crazy storms, tornado alarms, or snow days. I miss that ghetto gross Applebees that for some reason everyone flocks to. I miss afternoons on the square, eating Beth Marie's and people watching. I miss wandering around Recycled Books and Records and that crazy giant antique mall. I miss our old apartment, good old 4022 with your beautiful caramel walls and your wonky stairs. And of course most of all, I miss the people. I met so many amazing people in Denton and I miss them so so much. It hurts my heart to be so far away from you all. Move to Austin please?

When I think of home, I think of Denton. My five years there shaped me into who I am today. I think I feel so connected to Denton because I "grew up" there. When I left New Braunfels I was a mess and had no idea what I was doing. But I figured it out. And when Brendon moved up a year later we started our own life there. There are so many good memories connected to that town that makes perfect sense to miss it.

I know we'll learn to love Austin. I moved to Denton all alone and hated it at first. But it grew on me, and I'm sure Austin will too. This is the next chapter of our lives and I'm sure we'll look back on our time here just as fondly as our time in Denton. Although these last months have been hard, everyday here gets a little easier and I feel more at home. But Denton, you will always hold a special place in my heart. And today, I really miss you.

Half a decade of sexyness

You know how facebook will have those little random pictures on the side of whoever's page you're on? You know what I'm talking about. Well today these two pictures popped up on Brendon's page today and I just thought they were a lovely, and ironic, juxtaposition. Kinda creepy how facebook works sometimes.

The picture on the right is from our senior prom in 2006. LOOK AT THAT HAIR. And that pinstriped suit! What a little stallion. The one on the left is Brendon this year buying his suit for our wedding. Mind you he's making weird faces in both (what's new), but drastic change much? Needless to say, I think he's aging very well and I do not miss the afro. I was crazy about him then and I am crazier about him now. I'm sure I'll be totally bonkers by the time he hits 50, bring on that distinguished gray hair!

Thank you facebook for this walk down memory lane.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

The Lonely Goatherd

Yesterday we went to Pedenales Falls State Park to do some outdoorsy stuff. Unfortunately the river was so low that swimming was kind of impossible. The river bottom and rocks were reeeally slippery. We busted ass a few times and somehow I broke my toe nail and got something (a piece of rock I think) wedged under it. Cute right? But aside from that it was pretty, there was a good breeze, and we did some excellent reading under a tree. Very relaxing trip, but the hike back to the car was very hot. I think this would be a great place to visit in the spring (or not in one of the worst droughts ever).

While there we had some friends join us. Tons of goats!

They were everywhere! Subsequently there were little goat turds you had to look out for everywhere as well. They were so cute, getting drinks and eating the crap out of everything green. You could hear them bah-ing (I'm sure there's a more official term for their calls that I'm unaware of. Bleating?) all over the hillsides. The hills were alive, with the sounds of goats. Sound of Music anyone? Basically one of my favorite movies ever.

Remember when I said we read under a tree? Yesterday I finished Perfume, the Story of a Murderer. It was pretty good. Not super great, but interesting. We also rented the movie last night, and I think they did a good job sticking to the book. They over sexualized his relationship with his victims and left out a few scenes, but that's Hollywood. Over all I think they captured the mood of the book and it was entertaining to see it put into action. Worth a watch if you're interested.

And I leave you with this, a photo of my adorable husband on a trip with his mom and bro to Barton Springs.

He makes me happy and I can't wait for him to get off work.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Your mission, should you chose to accept it....

This heat is insane. How can it be this hot all the time? Jeeze. I am counting down the days until fall, hurry up and get here! Went to the pool today and came back looking like this:

Please excuse my creepy long fingers. This photo really doesn't do my lobsterness justice. I'm a very lovely shade of burnt-as-hell-red all over, except one side of my forehead? Whatever. The sun hates me and my skin hurts. Boo.

Life as a barista is okay so far. I'm over halfway through training, I can make all sorts of fancy coffee and tea drinks! This weekend and today I worked opening shifts. Saturday and Sunday we're there at 5:30am and Monday through Friday 4:30am. I got up this morning at 3:25am. Insane. That's not even getting up early, it's staying up late with a nap. It's super nice to get off before noon though. Almost worth getting up in the middle of the night.

Brendon and I are in the midst of watching the Mission Impossible movies since there's a new one coming out and we've never seen any of them. They are so corny! So much ridiculous, over the top action. Explosions! Fast cars/motorcycles! Kicks to faces! Make out sessions! Tom Cruise is pretty cute though, even if he is nuts. Too bad he's so short.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Sick husband and the 4th

Poor Brendon is a sicky little baby. He's got a cough and is feeling crappy. I'm reeeeally hoping it's not pneumonia! That would be a nightmare, I keep telling myself: no way is our luck that bad. Poor baby, he's still sleeping and he has to work tonight. Booooo, I wish I could make him feel better! I miss my perky husband, he never gets sick. I'm usually the one who catches everything, guess his good luck could only go so far. In the mean time I get to return the favor and get to take care of him.

I forgot to talk (type?) about the 4th of July! Because I'm lazy, there are zero pictures. Brendon had to work during the day so we got a late start to our festivities. We headed down to my dad's around 6 and had some family time and some very American cuisine; hot dogs, hamburgers, potato salad, fruit salad, and peach pie with my absolute favorite ice cream, Blue Bell Homemade Vanilla (seriously, the greatest ice cream on the planet). So yummy! Unfortunately we are in a nasty, nasty drought so we were unable to blow up some of my dad's firework stash and they canceled all the shows around San Antonio and Austin except for some in Kyle, Roundrock, and maybe Kerrville. Lucky for us, by the time we were driving back up to Austin and passing through Kyle, the fireworks show had began! So we pulled over on the access road with a billion other people and watched them from afar. Not as great as seeing fireworks up close, but at least we got to see some! I LOVE FIREWORKS! Growing up we had always done our own at home, perks of living outside city limits, so I had only gone to my first "professional" firework show (that I'm aware of) a couple years ago at UNT. I was seriously impressed. Last year we saw some in Coppell with our friends. Although doing your own fireworks is fun, the professional ones are way cooler to look at. Plus no burning your fingers off. Hoping that next year will be a little wetter and more shows to chose from!

In other news, it's still insanely hot.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Slingin' coffee instead of beer

About to embark on my first day of training, hope it goes well. Orientation was good, got to meet everyone that's opening our store. Seems promising. Quite a few other people with degrees, makes me feel a little better. This economy is so wonderful isn't it? Everyone seems really nice and it seems like a great company with lots of room to grow. And it's owned by Nolan Ryan and his family! What I'm most excited about though? Working in jeans, a t-shirt, and my hair in a ponytail. No more tiny shorts, panty hose, or fixing my hair everyday. Hallelujah.

Wish me luck y'all. Hopefully I don't spill hot coffee all over myself. I know it will happen eventually, just not on the first day please.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Honeymoon part 6 - Ketchikan, Alaska and heading home

Ketchikan was our last stop in Alaska. We just took it easy and explored the town, did a little last minute souvenir shopping, and had some seriously overpriced crab, but how are you going to go to Alaska and not have crab!

This fire boat was welcoming us into the town with a little water show!

Cute little town! Much warmer than Skagway and Juneau.

We ran into Sarah Palin.

 Neat little tunnel.

Brendon and his bear.

That mountain behind the city was sooo big and so white! I wanted to ski down it. Bad.

Totem pole!

I loved all the moss growing on those rocks, such a pretty green! That water looked so fresh, but so cold!

The stream ran though and under these cute shops and then out into the ocean.

 We rode this little... thing? up to a lodge where there was a great view of the city and the surrounding area.
I found Dumbledore! This was a Christmas Shop (there were actually a bunch of Christmas Shops, and Russian shops. Russia is just a hop, skip, and a jump away I guess), they had tons of Santa figures everywhere, and there was this one sitting on a chair that turned out to be a real guy posing as Santa. It scared me half to death when he moved. We should have gotten a picture but I was pretty freaked out.

I love those clouds!

That is the Disney ship that had been following us around. We were both in port that day so we saw tons of people decked out in Disney. Brendon kept saying things like, "Mickey sucks!" while we were walking behind them. We went over to their ship though, and it was pretty impressive. Even the sides of the ship were decked out in Disney. Can't imagine how expensive it would be though!

Off to mainland America, bittersweet and beautiful.

Our last towel animal, a monkey!

These guys and the guys below were our sweet table mates at our dinners. Canadians are awesome!

More Canadian friends!

 Our wonderful dinner family. We really lucked out with our table, everyone was so fun and our servers were the bomb. And yes Brendon is wearing a Hawaiian shirt. In Alaska.

 We came back to the states in Seattle. It was just as soggy as we imagined.

On our drive to the airport we went past Starbucks' headquarters! Now that I'm employed by a rival coffee company, they're a no-no.

After we arrived at the airport, like 6 hours early, we did a LOT of waiting. I got my hands wiped down for explosive residue going through security. I also had to go through that body scanner thing on the way to Vancouver, apparently I look like a threat. We had a TERRIBLE trip back to San Antonio. Worst flight experience of my entire life. We had a connecting flight in Denver, but on the way there we hit some wind shears, whatever those are. It was so bumpy and shaky and terrible. They tried landing on the strip 3 times (like descending and then dramatically pulling up and turning as we reached the airstrip) before giving up and flying to Colorado Springs to refuel. I felt like I was going to pass out and throw up at the same time, like shaking and sweating head in between my legs the entire time. In the row next to us were these poor girls from China who were all puking their lives up in their barf bags. It was truly terrible. Eventually we made it to Denver, only to find that our flight to San Antonio had left 15 minutes earlier without half their passengers (who were all on our plane). And of course it was like midnight so there were no flights until the next day. So we were stuck in Denver for a night with no luggage, and since missing our flight was caused by weather, we had to pay for our hotel. Such a mess. Luckily the hotel we stayed at was very nice and had toothbrushes, deodorant, etc. We were not looking cute the next day, but eventually we made it to San Antonio. And we are never flying Continental/United again.

But other than the delays on the flights leaving and coming home, the honeymoon was absolutely phenomenal. Looking through the pictures makes me miss it all so much! We had so much fun, I want to travel with Brendon forever. Can't wait to go on our second honeymoon. We're thinking Austria or Iceland. Haha, dream big right? Thank you all for enduring 6 posts and countless pictures of our trip. Sick of seeing mountains and our faces?

Also, I would like to welcome July into our lives with open arms. June was terrible to us and I have never been more happy to see a month go. We are very optimistic about the coming month, hopefully our finances will get back into order now that I'm working again and I will not catch some ridiculous sickness. Be good to us July. We need it.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Honeymoon part 5 - Skagway, Alaska

Okay, first off I want to apologize for the extreme amount of photos in this post. Out of all of our wonderful days on our honeymoon, this one was my favorite. We took over 400 pictures, and I'd say about 300 of them were mountains. Lucky for you guys, I edited it down to about 35.

Our second stop in Alaska was Skagway, a tiny little town that goes from 600 residents in the winter to over 2,000 in the summer. Skagway was such a neat place. So quaint and cute and surrounded by the most beautiful mountains I had ever seen.

 This was what we saw off our balcony when we woke up. That's a train track right next to the ship! And all the paintings on the rocks are captains and ships that have sailed to Skagway, they went back to the 60's!

Our train awaiting us! We took a train ride up to the White Pass summit to the US/Canadian border. We went from sea level to 2,865 feet! I was so excited for this. I LOVE trains. And they have been making this trip since the late 1800's! They even have and occasionally use some of the old passenger cars.

 VERY excited!

Check this dude out! Look at that beard! So authentic.

 We followed this stream up the mountains, although it was eventually thousands of feet below us.

 The scenery at sea level is verrrry different from up top. It's such a dramatic change, just wait for it.

 Already pretty high, that body of water way back there is where our ship was docked and where we started.

Getting snowier! Check out that cloud action, so thick.

The coolest thing about the train ride is that you could stand in between the cars! It was amazing, I spent most of the trip up out there.

We weaved around mountains, that track on the opposite mountain is where we're headed!

Chugging along! I was pretending we were on the Hogwarts express.

 Giddy about mountains!

Up in the clouds!

 We went through two tunnels, it was crazy dark. So surreal that you're going through a mountain, and even crazier that they made this track in 1898!

Even farther away from the water.

Although they stopped using this bridge in the 60's, it is still amazing! It's considered an engineering wonder of the world up with the Eiffel Tower.
Lots of snow, so different from where we started. And how cute is that train?
 At the top, the snow was piled up almost as high as the train.

 At the border. Look at the cabin!

 Frozen lake on the summit of the mountain, so neat. It was the prettiest shade of blue. Apparently it's extremely deep.

 Frozen face! That air felt wonderful though, if I could pick a "last breath" it would be air from these mountains.

To head back, the engine took the track next to ours to move to the back of the train and we headed down the mountain. The seats on the train were on hinges so you just flipped them over to face the other way. Geniuses.

Although it was nice out on the way up, some of the cloud cover burned off so we had an even better view of the mountains on the way down.

We really lucked out with weather, supposedly it had been raining nonstop and the day we were there was one of the first sunny days in weeks. They said that normally you can't see the "teeth" on the top of this mountain. I was so glad we were able to, it was breathtaking.

I ended up dozing off on the way down, it was so relaxing. Not pictured on this wonderful train ride are the moose and bear we saw! We tried to get pictures but we were moving too fast. They were both just standing around (separately of course) watching the train go by. Alaska is wild!

Brendon is trying to perfect the bear look and that lady is judging me.

 Such a cute little town! Skagway, like a lot of towns in Alaska, was originally a gold rush town. I loved the old west vibe. Plus look at the backdrop! AHH! We're moving to Skagway when we retire.

Such a cute pose.

Okay. The views on the ship as we were leaving Skagway were so beautiful, it hurt my heart. No lie, I felt like I might cry constantly. Why do I not live in such a beautiful place?! Views like this were on both sides of our ship.

 It was unbelievably windy at the front of the ship. You couldn't look into it and keep your eyes open!

My hair thoroughly enjoyed the wind.

 That's a town beneath those mountains. I need to live there.

 They're hard to make out, but those things on the rocks are sea lions! Hundreds of them. You could hear them barking. I'm telling you, Alaska is nature at it's finest.

That snakey thing in the middle is a glacier (remember how I love those)! AHHHH. I can't get over it.

 Oh you know, just me dying of happiness. If you ever go on an Alaskan cruise, upgrade to a balcony. It is beyond worth the extra money. We were seeing all this beauty right outside our room. And the sun was so warm we ended up losing the jackets. Also things we didn't get to take a picture of, whales and dolphins everywhere. Swimming next to the ship, blowing water out of their blow holes. So much goodness.

 Evidence of the warmth. Just chillin' out barefoot looking at endless snowy mountain goodness.

 Lighthouse! Although it's electronically controlled now, one man used to live there alone for months at a time. Probably incredibly lonely, but I bet it was an experience of a lifetime.

 Our swan!

Such a wonderful ending to a wonderful day, we were graced with the prettiest sunset. It doesn't get any better than this. I wish I could relive this day over and over! And I've got to give credit where credit is due, Brendon took this picture, and a ton of other awesome ones, with our dslr on manual! We're still very much photography beginners, but he's got some skill.

The last honeymoon post will be coming soon! I know I know, aren't 5 honeymoon posts enough? (No, of course not!)

Yesterday was our two month anniversary! We celebrated by seeing Transformers, taking a looong nap, getting a new video game, and playing it far too late into the night. Are we not the coolest husband and wife team ever? I think so.