Wednesday, January 22, 2014


This past Saturday was my birthday.  Besides having to be at work at 7:30 for just an hour for a meeting, everything about the day was great.  

Grayson got me a zoom lens for my camera that we've been wanting for almost a year, & then we went to the San Francisco Zoo to try it out!

A few of my favorites...

That night we went to my Blueline Pizza, my favorite restaurant in Campbell.  And maybe practiced a bit more with the camera...

Not always such a willing participant...

Friday, January 3, 2014

2013 Favorites

As kind of a year in review (& because I think this will be fun to look back on a year from now), I thought I'd make a list of some of my favorites from this year.  Not necessarily things that came out this year, but things I discovered & loved during 2013.

I got a kindle & rekindled (yep) my love for reading this year.  I got it in July & read 14 books since then.  I haven't read that much since middle school (& I think I've managed to take a step up from Babysitters Club & Lurlene McDaniel).  Favorites that I read this year:
  • The Swan House by Elizabeth Musser
  • Divergent (whole series) by Veronica Roth
  • The Sweetest Thing by Elizabeth Musser (one of my new all-time favorites)
  • Cape Refuge (series) by Terri Blackstock
  • Hinds Feet On High Places by Hanna Hurdard

TV & Movies
  • We started watching Chicago Fire this year & are addicted.  It's by far been our favorite of the year.  We also loved the Following!
  • The Impossible & Catching Fire.  Nothing else even came close to those two.
  • Oceans by Hillsong (the whole Zion album really)
  • Forever Like That by Ben Rector
  • Beneath the Waters by Hillsong
  • Clear the Stage by Jimmy Needham
  • Dead Sea by The Lumineers
  • Crown Him by Chris Tomlin (whole Burning Lights album...)
  • anything Taylor Swift (especially when performed by Grayson Carr)
  • We Both Know
  • Call Me Maybe by Carly Rae Jepsen (really can't help's catchy...)
  • Wrap Your Arms Around Me by Gareth Dunlop

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Lake Tahoe

A few weeks ago I asked Grayson what he wanted to do for our anniversary.  I was really just asking if he wanted to try out a nicer restaurant we'd never been to or something like that, but he suggested going to Tahoe for a long weekend!  I've wanted to go ever since my friend Emily was a summer missionary there in 2007 (we even got to see her church on our trip!), so as soon as we started planning to move to California, it was in my plans to go since it's only a few hours from us.

We left Saturday morning, drove to Kirkwood to get our ski rentals so we could start first thing Sunday morning, & then just drove around some, walked on a snowy beach, got checked into our hotel, & walked around South Lake Tahoe a bit.

Sunday morning we were at the ski slopes before the lifts even opened.  We both love to ski (Grayson usually snowboards), so it's great that we're just a few hours from good ski slopes!  We skied most of the day on Sunday.  It was a perfect skies & no wind, so it wasn't too cold. 

We went back to our hotel & got ready for dinner.  Grayson had read online about a little Italian place in South Lake Tahoe, so we went there for dinner, which included creme brulee style cheesecake (combining two of my favorite desserts!).

Monday we left early to drive around the whole lake.  We were talking on the way home that night about how I am such a planner, sometimes too much, & Grayson is much more spontaneous.  That's good for us though.  I would never plan to just drive.  I would have every hour of every day booked with what to do.  But I've gotten used to Grayson's drives & have come to love them...when we go somewhere with no particular schedule, we just stop when we see somewhere pretty or interesting & it's a lot of fun.  (And on the flipside...I give him a schedule, so he has clean clothes & food in the pantry!)

Tahoe is definitely our favorite place.  We said that when we went to Yosemite a few months ago, but when we stood on a beach by the lake & saw the sun set behind the mountains, it won us over.

It was just the perfect weekend.  Even the drive home was so nice.  We were both talking about our favorite parts of the past year.  We have been so blessed during our first year of marriage.  We both just feel like God has clearly met every need.  He has provided just what we needed in every way, from finances, to a place to live (even picking one online from across the country), to friends, a church, & a great friendship with each other.

Some of our "greatest hits" of this year...
  • The whole wedding day.  Every bit of it was perfect.
  • Honeymoon.  We loved our 2 days in Atlanta & I can't wait to go stay at the Westin downtown again one day.  Then we had such a relaxing, fun week in the Dominican.
  • Coming home & our apartment being our home.
  • Our visit to California in February to consider moving.  Our prayers answered as God made it perfectly clear that we were supposed to move.
  • The move.  You know how after all the chaos of planning a wedding, the honeymoon is such a great, relaxing week?  That's kind of how our move was.  Even though it was a drive across the country, once we were in the car, it felt like the honeymoon.  At that point, everything was done, we just had the drive.  And we made an adventure of it.
  • Our weekend at Yosemite.
  • Finding friends & a church here.
  • Watching every episode of Friends together.  This may seem dumb.  But I love Friends.  So it was a requirement that Grayson see every episode.  We started when we were dating & finished up a month or so after we'd been married.  I loved seeing him get attached to the characters & laugh at all my favorite parts.
This has been such a great year.  Can't wait to see what all is in store for 2014.