Snippets of California.

Monday, August 29, 2011

After the chaos of last week, our wonderful, relaxing California trip feels like a lifetime ago already. Nonetheless, it's fun to think back on the good times. It makes today's load a little lighter.

The food.
We were very spoiled by all the fresh sushi, the fish tacos, the abundance of gluten-free menus, farmer's markets, and avocado added to about everything. Oh, California. You make some delicious food.

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The ocean.
Every time we got a whiff of that salty air, we found ourselves hunting for where we could get a glimpse of the ocean. There's just nothing like it. We especially loved this beach in Del Mar (below). It seemed the whole little town had gathered next to the ocean on picnic blankets, just enjoying the cooling night with footballs and frisbees, wine and sandwiches. It was a delight to be there.
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The friends.
It's kind of amazing how many of our friends live in California, whether short term or long term.
Our friends the Casters hosted us and welcomed us so well. We shared lots of meals, shopped with them, traveled with them, stayed in their guest house, and so enjoyed their company. (This is just a couple of them.) :)

Ashlyne was my super talented, sweet friend in high school who is still super talented (I mean... she opened for the NKOTBSB tour this year!). It had been years since we'd seen each other, and it was so fun to catch up with her and her boyfriend while they showed us around their current hometown of Santa Monica. The beach, the shopping, the sunshine... oh my. We love Santa Monica. And we love Ashlyne. :)


This dog.
She cracked us up. Never have we met a dog who actually enjoys having sunglasses on her face. She'd just sit there so proud and would keep them on for however long. She's hilarious.
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Can we please go back next week? 

He makes us smile. A lot.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

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Peter & Linzi.

Friday, August 26, 2011

On our last night in California (I'm skipping ahead), we had dinner with our sweet friends Peter and Linzi. Peter was in our wedding almost 3 years ago, and that's the last time we had seen him! It was such a refreshing time being with them. It was just us, the cutest dogs, the most delicious gluten-free meal, and a lot of laughing. We wish we lived closer and could see them more often!
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We love you guys!

Not so different.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

I started school on Tuesday, and I'll just be honest: it's been brutal. The thought has crossed my mind more than once: "I think I should just quit." It started with a chaotic orientation where we left with more questions than answers, and still not knowing my complete schedule is pretty frustrating. They weren't kidding when they said this would be our most demanding semester, but somehow I didn't really think that meant clinicals every Friday night. So I'm realizing there are some things I need to cut out of my life temporarily in order to stay sane.

Yesterday was very interesting. We had a long morning orientation for my community health class, then we headed out in pairs to meet our assigned refugee family who we'll be visiting for the next six weeks. It all sounded right up my alley. I love this kind of thing. The married couple assigned to me are just 18 and 19 years old from Bhutan and moved here a few weeks ago from a refugee camp where they've spent most of their lives. As I read about them in their social work chart, I just kept thinking, "I can't even imagine." And I also kept reading, "No English" which happened to be underlined several times. Uh oh.

So we arrived and I knocked on their door. A little man (maybe five feet?) opened the door and just looked at me with a blank stare as I introduced myself.

"English?" I asked.

Blank stare.
Then just as suddenly as he'd opened the door, he bolted past us, walking fast and purposefully outside.

"Where is he going?!" we asked each other.
We stood there very confused.
A few minutes later, he returned with a broad smile across his face, and his grown son walking behind him. The son seemed to understand a little more than his father, but it was hard to tell. We stood in the doorway pantomiming awkwardly, not sure how to explain that we'd be back next week.

So this story doesn't really have a point, except to say that I'm sure he felt a little like I've been feeling the last couple days as I begin this semester: confused, overwhelmed, like someone is speaking a foreign language to me.

But probably my favorite part of the visit was what I saw when his apartment door was standing wide open. We looked inside out of curiosity and saw a couple couches, a small kitchen table, a Chinese-style lantern hanging from the fan, and... wait for it... a life-size Justin Bieber poster. I'm not sure what to make of that, except that maybe we're not as different as we think.

They're Hindu. I'm Christian.
They speak Nepali and Bhutanese. I speak English.
They are 5 feet tall. I am 5'5".
They like Justin Bieber. I like Justin Bieber.

Do I show up next week with "Bieber fever" shirts?! :)


Wednesday, August 24, 2011

I can't get over this video.
Not only does he have an anointed voice, but I really think he understands what he's singing.
I hope you worship right along with him!

Toluca Lake.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

It's not every day that you get to take a long, slow bike ride through the streets of Toluca Lake just as the sun is setting. 


And it's not every day that you pass by houses and hear, "That's where Denzel Washington lives." Or Jennifer Love Hewitt. Or Steve Carrell.
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And it's not every day that you get to reconnect with old friends like this one and just enjoy an easy bike ride around his hometown. He was a great tour guide.

And it's not every day that you run into these three, just enjoying the loveliest day in the neighborhood.


Monday, August 22, 2011


We're home from California, with lots to show and tell because we had the best time. But for now, there's so much to catch up on. School starts tomorrow, Etsy orders need filling, clothes need washing... you get the idea. So in light of the new semester beginning, you'll probably be seeing lots of California posts this week. I think I'll need them: those sweet, refreshing reminders of our dreamy vacation by the sea. We are already missing it!

A much needed break.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Taken at my sweet friend Whitney's kitchen table. Vintage perfection.
By the time you read this, I'll be in the great state of California where Shawn and I are taking a much needed vacation.

There will be fresh yummy food,
reading this and this,
hanging with sweet friends,
sitting by the ocean,
and Disneyland.

There will not be much blogging (if any),
answering many phone calls,
keeping up with an Etsy shop,
thinking about school.

It will be glorious.
See you next week?


Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Baby Ellie, waiting for the antique store doors to open.
Yesterday, my friend Justine and I took a quick trip across the Kentucky state line to visit our friend Whitney in Bowling Green.

The occasion? Antiquing.
Competitive antiquing at that.
There's a very unassuming antique/thrift/little-bit-of-everything shop in Bowling Green that has one special booth with incredible prices. And the insider antiquers know all about it. So at 10:00am when the doors opened, 6 or 7 other women (and a couple men) filed into the shop to see the newest findings from the weekend. And to claim your future purchases, you have to pull the price tags off. A couple of us (not mentioning any names) had their fingers completely full of stickers.

It was a little too intense for pictures at the moment - I mean, there were vintage crates and dishes and books at rock bottom prices waiting to be claimed - so about 95% of the pictures I took of the visit were really just of baby Ellie. But who could blame me? She's a beauty.
Whit's beautifully curated, vintage-decorated home. Didn't take enough pictures of it!
The star of the show. And her golf ball.
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Thanks for having us, Winkler women! We loved our time with you. 

One proud auntie.

Monday, August 15, 2011

I know I'm a little biased, but this is one stunningly beautiful little girl.

We've watched her grow from this...
To this... 

To this... IMG_5888

And now to this little munchkin.
So privileged to be her auntie!

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