Over the Weekend(s): Part 1

The last two weekends have been really great. The weather’s been getting nicer, the days are getting longer and I’ve been living life as best as I can.

Let’s back-track to two weekends ago. Derek had a conference to attend in Erie, PA and I needed to make a trip back to Cleveland to check in with my office. We combined the two into a five day road trip and took advantage of the fact that Niagara Falls was on the route home.

I intended to spend Saturday exploring a state park in Erie, but the weather didn’t cooperate and I had to deal with car trouble so I did a little shopping instead. After D’s conference ended Saturday night, we drove two hours to Niagara Falls where we spent the night.

ImageIn the morning, we made our way to the border crossing where we parked the car and headed to the Canadian side on foot. This ended up being a really great decision. Not only was it a perfect day for walking around, but it was so much less stressful than driving across.

We opted out of the tourist attractions and just walked along the river for a while. We eventually found ourselves sampling the local beers on a patio overlooking the falls–it was such a perfect afternoon. The sunshine, the scenery and the beer put D in such a blissful mood that he willingly discussed honeymoon options. (His fiscally responsible, practical side can be a bit of a buzz-kill for my daydreamer, explorer side; but not this day.)

ImageAfter a few hours in Canada, we decided it was best to head back to the car and start our seven hour drive home. It ended taking closer to nine hours, but most of the drive was scenic and easy.

It was one of those days where I felt so full and happy. You know the kind? Spring weather had finally arrived and, with it, the promise of even more sunshine and happy memories to come.

Stay tuned for Over the Weekend(s): Part 2, a recap of Boston Calling.

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We Ran, We Drank, We Napped

ImageSpring has finally arrived in Boston and we were treated to spectacular weather over the weekend. Well, mostly. Our weekend started earlier than usual with a morning 5k along the Boston North Shore. It poured for most of the drive but the rain slowed to a drizzle just before the race started. It was a little chilly, a little foggy, and a lot humid–but we survived. Our running time was 33 minutes, which is a little slower then I thought we’d do, but that’s ok.

We came home, cleaned ourselves off and promptly fell back to sleep. The sun was shining when we woke up so we decided to walk to a new-to-us bar and have brunch. We were able to enjoy the perfect weather in their hidden outdoor patio. The beer was delicious, the food was satisfying and the company was adorable.

ImageWe weren’t ready to go home yet, so after brunch we hopped over to another bar and sampled a few more beers. We got in touch with some friends who decided to come meet us in a few hours, so we (wisely) went home to nap, shower and eat before going back out. Once the crew was gathered, we enjoyed ourselves at our two favorite neighborhood bars and then ended the night with a few episodes of The Inbetweeners (do yourself a favor and check it out).

Sunday got off to a slow start due to the aforementioned all-day drinking, but we managed to tackle a few overdue chores, go for a walk in the sunshine, call our moms and take yet another nap. I mean, that’s what Sundays are for, right?

The weather is even better today, making this Monday quite enjoyable. Add to that the fact that we’ve got a short week at home and you might say this Monday is actually a good one. We leave on Wednesday afternoon for our road trip to Cleveland (for my work); Erie, PA (for D’s conference); and Niagara Falls (for fun!).

Love,

A

Oh hi….

Remember when I used to blog? Well, I’m ready to get back into it. I’m gonna start this off with a speedy-quick recap of the last nine months. Sound good?

September and October

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  • Lauren’s beautiful wedding
  • A visit from D’s parents
  • Electric Run 5K
  • Meeting my precious nephew
  • Not pictured: An overnight trip to Salem with my ladies

November and December

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  • A trip to NYC
  • Home for Christmas
  • We’re engaged!
  • SEA-HAWKS (Thanks for the awesome tickets Dad)
  • Not pictured: Thanksgiving, Ugly Sweater 5K

January and February

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  • Ringing in the new year with my favorite people (and celebrating 5 years with D)
  • Seahawks win the Superbowl
  • Aunty Sharon and Uncle B move to Tennessee 😦
  • Surprise engagement party for D and I
  • Not pictured: Tubing with friends

March and April

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  • Work trip to Mexico…not so bad, right?
  • Rebecca visited!
  • Pentatonix
  • New shoes, new habits
  • Not pictured: Easter with Gram and Gramps

I’m a little bummed that I took such a long break from blogging. As you can see, some really amazing things happened since last summer and they definitely deserve more than a bullet point. But at least it’s better than nothing.

May’s shaping up to be a great month. I’ve got a road trip, an epic concert and a visit from my cousin to look forward to over the next few weeks. Stay tuned!

Doug and Megan Got Married!

Megan was a beautiful bride and Doug was a sweet, teary-eyed groom (turned dancing machine after the ceremony). And they threw the best party! It was so great to celebrate D + M, see all my old friends again, eat vegan wedding cake and dance the night away.

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While the ceremony was only about three minutes long, it was uniquely Doug and Megan. Their good friend Mike D. officiated and they wrote their own vows. Doug got emotional as he read his commitment to Megan, which made me a little weepy too. They said their “I do”s, sealed it with a kiss and walked back down the aisle as a married couple. It was simple and sweet and left plenty of time in the evening for the party everyone was looking forward to.

We took some family photos on the dock before dinner which proved to be a little challenging since no one told the photographers that Doug’s immediate family was 15 people, but we made it work.

And then it was time for dinner. At that point, I was so hungry and so thankful that the meal was entirely vegan. I loaded up my plate (using restraint not to grab the entire bread basket and bring it back to my table). After we ate, Megan’s sister and Doug’s best friend gave toasts. They both did an excellent job–their stories captured the best qualities about Megan and Doug and reminded everyone why they make such a great couple.

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With dinner finished, it was time to get our party on. There was dancing (including some fun window/instructor/copycat dancing), drinking, cake eating, more drinking and more dancing. It was the best time, like grown-up prom where you can drink and only your best friends are invited!

When the DJ shut things down at 11pm, we weren’t ready to end the night so we loaded into a limo, a van cab, and two cars and headed downtown to a dive bar. Since it was Thursday night and the bar wasn’t very busy, we were able to commandeer a separate room just for us. Amongst the talking and shot-taking, Doug taught drinking games at one table, Derek played pool with a poorly dressed British man and Jake threatened to kill anyone who looked at him the wrong way (he was drunk-joking, obviously).

Finally just before 2am, we called it a night. There were 12 of us staying at the hotel upstairs so we made our way, split into our rooms and fell asleep to the promise of brunch in the morning.

Mego’s Bachelorette

Thursday morning I returned home from a month-long trip to the West Coast. Oh man was it a blast. I’ve got a lot to catch up on, so I’m going to break it down into a few posts. The primary purpose of the trip was to see my brother marry his sweetheart–so I’ll start with this first wedding activity: the bachelorette party.

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We may have been a small group, but it was still a really great night. We started at Mego’s apartment with some drinks and primping. Then we headed downtown for dinner, more drinks and dancing. The night started a little late, so our first choice restaurant didn’t work out. Since we were all starving, we went to the next closest place open. I don’t even remember what it was called, but I do remember that the Seattle Police Pipes and Drums band came into the restaurant and played two (or three?) songs. And then a little while later, the restaurant was invaded by clowns. I wish I was kidding.

After scarfing down our food, we started walking towards the dance club that Megan had chosen. Along the way, we saw a bar with a sign for half-price drinks so naturally we had to stop. Since it was two-for-one, we each had two shots and then continued our walk. We got to the dance club two minutes before 11pm–which is when the free cover ended. The woman at the door tried to say that the cover charge began at 10:30pm, but I sweet talked us in for free. 🙂

The club ended up being really small–and mostly full of men who weren’t into dancing–but we still had a good time. We had a champagne toast, did another shot and danced for a little while. When we had all had enough, we headed back to Megan’s favorite neighborhood bar for some karaoke.

At that point, I was exhausted. I wish I could blame it on the time difference, but at that point, I had been on the West Coast for two weeks. The truth is, I’m getting old.

After Megan sang, I convinced the group that walking up the enormous hill to her apartment was a terrible idea so we grabbed a cab to take us home. We got home just as Doug was getting off work, so Megan told him all about our night while the rest of us got ready for bed. The night ended with a 2am showing of Pitch Perfect but, in my usual fashion, I only stayed awake for about 10 minutes.

The next morning, Megan, her sister Tess and I went into Ballard for manis and pedis. The women at the salon were super sweet and it was a really relaxing morning/early afternoon. We finished up our girl-time with some sandwiches and a quick walk through the Farmer’s Market before parting ways. It was the perfect ending to her bachelorette.

Stay tuned, the wedding recap is coming next. 🙂

Sunshiny Summer Weekend

I know it’s Tuesday now, but I’m still smiling from the wonderful weekend Derek and I had. It sort of started early–I had a convention to attend in NYC on Thursday and Friday. So while I was technically still working, we were able to spend some time in the evenings exploring the city.

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We drove in early (really really early) on Thursday morning–arriving at the hotel by 7:30am, I spent the day at the convention and then after a quick nap, we got fancy and went out for a date. We ate at a cute Asian fusion vegan cafe, then walked up to Central Park and ended the evening with some beers and street vendor snacks. It was perfect. Until I had to get up early for day 2 of the convention, but whatcha gonna do? After the convention on Friday, we picked up some burritos and headed back to Central Park for a little picnic dinner. We left the city around 7pm and drove to my grandparent’s house in Connecticut for the night.

roses

After taking us out for breakfast Saturday morning, Gram and Gramp showed us the rose garden at Elizabeth Park in Hartford. It happened to be Rose Weekend, so there was a little festival going on and the speaker informed us that it was the one weekend a year when all 800 rose varieties are in bloom. The flowers were beautiful and the company was great. We wandered around for an hour or so and then headed back. Derek and I drove back to Boston and had a low-key Saturday night. Our bodies were tired from the long days and all the NYC walking.

Sunday was another beautiful day and I was determined to spend some time outside. We met up with Derek’s brother Tyler and his boyfriend Mark on the waterfront for some drinks on the patio. While it was just a little too hot in the sun, the shaded patio was perfect. Several drinks later, we all felt refreshed. We walked along the harbor for a bit, before making our way to Boston Common where we parted ways. Tyler and Mark, smartly, went home. Derek and I went to another bar.

beer

After our fourth drinks of the night, at about 9pm, we realized we hadn’t had dinner yet. So we hopped on the T, back to our neighborhood, and headed to our usual spot for more drinks and dinner–a basket of pretzels for me and a quesadilla for him. We ate. We drank. And then we eventually went home. I crawled right into bed and sleep happily until my mean alarm told me the weekend was over.

It was just one of those perfect weekends, the kind that exemplifies summer: carefree, sunshine, time with family, beers on the patio. I hope you all welcomed summer with equally amazing weekends. Here’s to many more!

An Overdue Update

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Hi friends, It’s been too long. Since I last wrote many exciting things have happened including:

– a visit from Chantha

– a girl’s night trip to a Connecticut casino

– a job interview

– many date nights

– the start of a running routine

– a job resignation and a job acceptance

– a Duck Tour around Boston

– a lovely Memorial Day weekend at my Aunt’s lakehouse

– a fun dinner party with some (former) co-workers

For the sake of brevity, I won’t go into all the details. But I do want to tell you a little more about my new job! About a month ago I started working for a new company. It is in the same industry (that would be print and promotional products), but the company is much larger than my previous place of employment. My position is fairly similar to what I have been doing since moving to Boston, managing the marketing efforts of the company.

This new company is based out of Cleveland…but I’m not moving there. I was fortunate to take the position as a remote office–which means I primarly work out of my tiny Boston apartment with the occasional trip to the Cleveland office. That means Derek and I spend a lot of time together at home. 🙂 And the best news is that I have more flexibility in my schedule so I’ll be in Washington for almost a month this summer! Working, of course, but still–I’ll have time to see you all.

It’s been an adjustment, but so far I’m really happy with my decision. I’m thankful that I no longer have an hour commute each way to work. It’s a teeny bit lonely without the social aspect of an office, but I’m getting to know my new colleagues and making lots of plans with the friends I made at my last job. The pros definitely outweigh the cons.

So that’s my big news. What’s new in your life?

xo,
A

My Neighborhood, Episode 2

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This stuffed pony is for sale on the sidewalk. (It’s $60!).

Weekending

photo-1This weekend started a little early for me as I wasn’t feeling very well and left work a few hours early. I didn’t make exciting use of the extra time, though. I ended up sleeping for about 16 hours. But, thankfully, that must have been what I needed because I woke up Saturday morning feeling just fine.

It’s still pretty cold in Boston, but the sun was shining so Derek and I went for a long walk. We’re estimating that we explored about 4 miles of our neighborhood before walking ourselves over Sunset for drinks. I’ve recently decided that I love sour beers, and the Monk’s Cafe Flemish sour they had one tap was delicious. D had a big glass of Irish stout and we shared some fries (we’re fancy like that). We got home around 6, cooked dinner and watched a movie. All in all, it was a pretty awesome Saturday.

Today, we met up with Lisa for brunch at a new vegan/vegetarian restaurant that just opened in Newton. The food was good, but it is very obvious that it’s a new restaurant with a very new staff. Nothing went seriously wrong, but they have some kinks to work out in their service.

Derek and I were feeling crazy after a yummy meal, so we went to The Container Store and got our organization on. When we brought our goodies home, it started a chain reaction in which every closet was emptied and reorganized. It was kind of a disaster in here for a bit, but it was worth it. Our place looks gooood. Wish I could have you all over for dinner. But we only have two dining room chairs, so it would be a little cramped.

Now, as the days winds down, we’re both sitting at our computers dreading the terrible necessity that is Monday Morning. The good news is, next weekend is Easter. And Easter means pudding shots. Alcoholic pudding plus a family get-together is enough to get me through the week ahead. Hope you all have things to look forward to as well.

Miss you all,

A

My Neighborhood

On my walk home from yoga a few nights ago I saw a man taking his ferret for a walk. The ferret was harnessed and on leash.

Tonight, there is a man in the laundromat washing his clothes sans pants and shoes.

So, yeah, I live in an interesting place.

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