Saturday, September 19, 2009

Oh the Places We've Been

Summer '09 was the complete opposite of Summer '08.

Last summer we had one long "Staycation" and we loved it. We had just gotten Ella and we needed to be here in her puppy stage. We also enjoyed being Austinites and took advantage of what this amazing city has to offer.

This summer, we ended up taking several trips (one, a pleasant surprise) and we are ready for a relaxing fall...maybe. Since I have been really bad about blogging all summer, I have decided to do a quick recap:

Trip #1: Jen and Brad's Wedding in Santa Barbara
-Not only was the wedding beautiful, elegant and SUPER fun, but we loved Santa Barbara. We can't wait to go back. It's very quaint with its local restaurants, shops and hotels. Plus, you get the ocean breeze so the weather is perfect. A few highlights for us were: breakfast at Sambo's (they sell re-published books of Little Black Sambo that my grandmother Margaret used to read to me), the wedding photo booth, s'mores, chocolate chip cookies and shots of milk and just being with good friends. We also got to see our friends Julie and Ryan in LA during this trip and meet their puggle, Kenzie, for the first time. Kenzie was the inspiration for us to get Ella, so we were excited to meet her!

Trip #2: The Caribbean Cruise
-We flew back from California after the wedding and left the next day on our cruise. Luckily we left out of Galveston so Jeremy's mom, Renae, took us down there and bid us farewell. As one might expect, we had an amazing time on the cruise. It was a seven-day cruise that stopped in Jamaica, Cozumel and Grand Cayman. We ate A LOT, got some sun, ate some more, went to the beach, zip-lined, drove a beach buggy, ate again, played Blackjack and then rolled off the ship 20lbs. heavier. :) Hey, we were on vacay.

Trip #3: Jordan and Berto's Wedding in Tomball
-Two of my worlds collided the first weekend of August when one of my closest friends from Baylor and my cousin got married. It was such a fun wedding because I got to be around my family and many of my good friends. I sang a David Phelps solo and then sang The Prayer with my good friend Matt Butler. The wedding was beautiful and we had a blast at the reception where there was candy galore! Each table had a candy theme, and we were at the "gummy bear" table. There was also a candy bar, so we pretty much got our quota of cavities for the year after that night!
Trip #4: Lollapalooza Music Festival in Chicago
-SO MUCH FUN! This was our pleasant surprise. Preface: The weekend we were in Santa Barbara, we got a call (actually lots of calls) at 6:20a.m. Jeremy had entered a random radio contest through KGSR, and they had called his name as the winner of the all-inclusive trip to Lollapalooza! Since we were in Cali, we had no idea. Luckily, we have several good friends (thank you Daniel!) who were listening and called us just in time for Jeremy to call in and claim the prize. Highlights of this trip include: Kings of Leon, Ben Folds, Decemberists, shopping at H&M, eating some yummy Chicago-style pizza at Giordano's, the Willis (formerly Sears) Tower Sky Deck and the fact that it was pretty much FREE! :)

Trip #5: South Padre with my Family
-Trips with my dad's side of the family are always an adventure. This one was no different. We rented a condo on the beach through VRBO. Normally, you can trust this site, but the woman who rented this condo must have been on drugs when she told us how great it was and that it would sleep 11 people. I guess she meant 11 small children. We got there and even though it had a great view right on the beach, it was a mess. The area around the condo was still being rebuilt after the hurricane last year, so we were basically in a construction zone. Also, the sleeping arrangements were far from ideal. We all found a place to sleep but it pretty much consisted of pulling mattresses off bunk beds, cramming three people on a couch bed, etc. BUT, just like always, we made the most of the situation and had a blast. The guys golfed, several of us parasailed, we played on the beach, ate A LOT, played games and watched my dad throw a fit when he lost at Texas Hold'Em and Mexican Train! :) (Love you Dad!) My Mimi cracked me up when she called the South Padre police dept. to get a Mexican food recommendation and they actually gave her a good one.

All in all, we had a great summer. We are still trying to recover and we cherish every moment we have at home. I think the next trip we have planned is Baylor Homecoming so we don't have far to go. I am so blessed to have a husband who loves to travel and expand his horizons like I do, but who also loves just being home. There's no place like home.