over the easter weekend

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this was such a lovely weekend. saturday was gloriously warm and sunny. i attempted to run for the first time since the hike, but my foot pain forced me to ease up and walk. it was annoying at first, but it did allow me to appreciate the budding trees and blossoming flowers around town. i love watching the world slowly awaken after a long winter. i had a tasty lunch, then i was able to lay out on the deck, soak up some rays, relish the quiet afternoon.

in the episcopal church, we celebrate the great vigil on the saturday night before easter sunday. it is my most favorite service of the year. we begin in darkness with lit candles outside, then file inside reverently to fill up the pews. the liturgy follows the full scope of Christ’s life and ministry, including even the prophetic passages in the old testament, and chronicles his death and celebrates his resurrection. after about two hours, we proclaim ‘he is risen indeed!’ and toast to new life. and eat yummy food and drink champagne. i love my church.

sunday, was slow and relaxed. because we are at church til about 11pm on saturday, we don’t really go to easter sunday service. but i did roast a most delicious leg of lamb, marinated in rosemary and garlic, with potatoes and lemons. sautéed some kale for the side. isaiah got a hollow chocolate bunny.

now it’s monday and cloudy and dreary and all i want is the sun to come out. but i’m thankful for the weekend i enjoyed.

buffalo river trail

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last friday morning, matt and i embarked on the hiking adventure of a lifetime. well, that might be a bit of an exaggeration, but it was a big deal to us. a couple months ago, we decided to hike the 37 mile buffalo river trail from boxley to pruitt. it was four days and three nights of grueling outdoorsiness. we were super excited for the challenge and change of scenery. what we didn’t know was how bleeping hard this trail is.

our backpacks were crazy heavy. mine weighed about 30 pounds and matt’s was probably closer to 50. we carried those things up and down some serious terrain. parts of the trail were so steep, it almost felt like we were going straight up. but climbing up was so much easier than going down. the trail would sometimes skirt the side of the bluffs and if you had one false step, you were going to plummet to your death. but the vistas at the top made the climb worth it, and the beautiful streams and rivers at the bottom made the trek down worth it.

the scenery was ever changing as was the weather. the nights were bitter cold. we’d make camp at the top of the bluffs and the wind would whip through and we’d sleep curled up in little balls inside our mummy bags. i also use the word ‘sleep’ lightly. i typically hovered between slumber and wakefulness all night as i tossed and turned trying to find a spot between the rocks and roots that poked out of the ground. it rained on us, it sleeted on us, and a couple afternoons were hot and sunny.

along the way we saw few hikers, and no one doing the entire trail. one guy was hiking in a ralph lauren plaid button down. i thought that was funny. and we found some abandoned articles of clothing, like a knit hat, pair of jeans, and a bath towel. but we saw deer, elk, and had animals sniffing our tent at night. we both got tick bites and were attacked by a family of red wasps.

my phone died at about 4:30 on friday so i only got a few shots of the trail. but matt brought the camera and we took loads of video and will be producing a wee documentary of our trip. i’m really excited about this part. i’ve been journaling our experience and that has been a great thing for me.

we’ve never done anything like this before. it was the hardest thing i’ve ever done and i’ve given birth and ran five marathons. but i learned so much about myself. i’m stronger than i thought i was, both mentally and physically. i learned that God is faithful and creative and loving and gracious in a much more real and tangible way than i ever knew before. learned that there is no one i’d rather do a hike like that with than matt, and there is no one i’d rather do life with than matt. it was a totally different bonding experience for us. we leaned on each other, looked to the other for help and encouragement. matt is such a fantastic leader and protector. i fell in love with him in a deeper way this weekend. a way that had very little to do with romance, but one that is far more intimate.

this wasn’t a ‘fun’ trip. but it was still a life-changing event. it was enjoyable and satisfying and beautiful and terrifying and soul searching. i really loved it.

spring break adventures

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SPRING BREAK 2015!!!!

it’s really not all that exciting. it started off with matt going out of town and the city shutting off the gas to our house while they moved the lines underground. that was super fun. cold showers anyone? however that all got taken care of and isaiah and i went on grand adventures around town. he was finn the human and i was lumpy space princess, because OF COURSE. we had lunch with friends and i laid out on the deck. then matt finally got home (yay) just in time for isaiah to get sick and vomit all over his room. loads of laundry later, we watch Adventure Time basically non-stop (because going on our own adventure with a sever tummy ache is not gonna happen). then the tornado warnings fly and the hail rains down and the twister narrowly misses us by 10 miles. all of that and it’s only thursday. maybe spring break 2015 is kinda exciting!

we made dinner the other night

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ok, i think i say this every single time, but this really was my favorite cooking night meal to date. so full of flavor yet light enough for the first day of spring.

we started with fresh gulf shrimp that matt lovingly shelled and depooped. i took a carton of grape tomatoes and halved them. then i heated up some olive oil in a skillet and threw in chopped garlic. in went the tomatoes and salt and pepper and a bit of red pepper flakes, cover and sauté for 15 minutes. while that is smelling up the kitchen nicely, i spiralized 3 smallish zucchini and chopped some fresh basil. matt cooked up the shrimp in a separate pan, simply with olive oil, salt and pepper. then i threw in the zucchini noodles and basil, cooked for about 3 more minutes and served! it was so absolutely knock out tasty. i plan to make a version of this dish all through spring and summer. easy, delicious, nutritious. i gave this a solid 4.75 out of 5 stars.

life lately

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so i’ve totally dropped the ball on blogging here lately. but i won’t apologize for it. nope. because i’m just gonna be a jerk about it. also, i know none of my readers have been waiting with bated breath to see what i’ve been cooking lately or what i did over the last weekend. all except for matt. he kinda got on my case about not updating. so here we are.

these are just some of the things i’ve been up to over the last couple weeks. i have been playing this DMB album pretty much non-stop since it arrived. geeeeeeeeeze, i love me some dave. old school, 90s dave. as soon as ‘crash’ comes out on vinyl i’ll punch anyone in the face who stands between me and that purchase. best album OF ALL TIME.

i got to have a sushi date with my lover recently and it was the most delicious. i’m already jonesin’ for another sashimi/nigiri throw down at sushi house. i could eat raw fishes every day. every damn day.

also, my kitty is super cute and i’m still making yummy food and letting my friends feed me tasty coconut treats.

oh yeah, and i got to meet Rob Gronkowski (or Gronk, as he lets his BFFs call him) at a stupid early saturday morning meeting at the walmart home office where matt works. it was totally worth the 5 am wake up call. we side-fived, so yeah, we’re basically besties.

last weekend was so gorgeous and warm and lovely. i laid out, sipped tea, and went on a family adventure walk with my boys. i have decided to give up my turtlenecks for the season. i’m a little sad to see them go, but it’s only for a while. let’s face it, i’d way rather wear sleeveless dresses anyhow.

bring on the spring!!!!!

over the weekend

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on friday, i packed a bag for an overnighter at camp mitchell. it’s an episcopal retreat center in the heart of petit jean state park and it’s absolutely gorgeous out there. the sunrise can take your breath away.

i’m on vestry, which in the episcopal church is kinda like the governing body, and this was our yearly meeting to get to know each other better and do some hard core planning and organizing. and while this was really a business trip, there were still a few opportunities to get out, walk around the camp, take in the views.

it was pretty peaceful.

over the snowy weekend

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it started snowing friday afternoon. by early evening, there was a light dusting on the ground. i roasted up a bunch of root veggies because that’s my comfort food and settled under my blanket. my kinda night.

matt and i went on a beautiful yet cold run the next morning. there is something magical about running while the snow is still falling. everything is hushed. even our footfalls are muffled. the park was just gorgeous with snow cover and cloudy skies. matt’s beard was epically coated in white.

unlike most people, i didn’t go to the store before the storm hit. we basically had no food in the house. so we went to 28 springs for lunch and shared a bottle of rose, because why the hell not. it was fun and cozy. and the snow was still coming down.

sunday we watched a ton of documentaries on netflix and dreamed and schemed about going on a weekend hike in the spring. and about moving somewhere it’s always warm. i took a bubble bath with my gin and tina fey. only 30 pages into ‘bossypants’ and i already absolutely love it. and i realized this weekend that even though i hate winter so hard, i secretly get giddy inside when it snows. makes me feel like a kid. today it’s ugly and gross and i’m back to hating winter, but in the midst of the snowfall, i am peaceful and happy. and i’m in awe of the beauty of it.