A Guide on Taking Meaningful and Beautiful Travel Pictures
(Horse and Jaunting Buggy at Muckross House in Killarney National Park, Ireland)
Every once in awhile, I have the pleasure of guest blogging over at Grace Belle Blog. If you haven’t checked them out, you should. It is a super sweet blog all about travel, beauty, living authentically, and more. This post was featured last week on their blog but I have wanted to share this is all of you too!
This week has been a crazy one. Busy, lovely, blessed and so crazy. Andy and I finally got to see each other again after almost 3 weeks of being a part, read more on that here, and we were able to soak in a mini college reunion with some of our dearest friends. Andy’s roommate from our senior year in college was tying the knot and it was the perfect mix of fall leaves, love, friends, hot apple cider and cupcakes and corn hole.
I wish we could have stayed for there a little while longer. Nestled in upper Minnesota near North Dakota, we relaxed in a quant lodge with a beautiful little lake outside. Even though the air was a little chilly, the fire from the stone fireplace and the comfort of being back with each other made me realize just how much I love fall.
Even with the leaving at the end. After 3 blessed days, we traveled back to Minneapolis and waited till our planes arrived.
I left first. Tears in my eyes and a heart full. You can tell yourself 3 weeks isn’t long, and it really isn’t in the grand scheme of things, but when you are looking through glass at the one you love, knowing he won’t be there when you get home, 3 weeks is an empty abyss.
man oh man.
It was such a good weekend. The bride was beautiful, the colors were vibrant and we laughed. We laughed so much. I wouldn’t change anything about that weekend, even the tears. It means I’m blessed to have someone who loves me much more than I deserve.
It never gets easy. No matter how much you prepare for it. It sneaks up on you and it’s time to say goodbye.
This is Saying Goodbye x 2.
We had to put our sweet little boys, our animals, on a plane on Saturday to ship them home. We both were sniveling messes as we said goodbye to those little faces peaking our of their kennels. It doesn’t help when they whine and look at you with their sad eyes. O my heart just hurt. But then…
Andy and I have always been together since the day we were married. That’s 5 years! There have never been more than 7 days that we haven’t seen each other face to face. Until now.
We just spent an amazing weekend with our friends in West Virginia, celebrated a union of some friends in Pittsburgh and were able to have a small group reunion at the best wood fire pizza place ever. But through the happiness, that anxious dread kept eating away at the fun.
And soon it was 8:30. We had just finished eating dinner at our favorite Sushi restaurant in Morgantown for the last time and Andy needed to leave. He packed up his clothes, hugged our friends and we headed down to the car.
Ah. I just wanted him to stay just till morning, just a little while longer! To hold my hand and be near me. But he had to go. We hugged for about 10 minutes and he prayed over me. Again, I do not deserve this man. I cried, he held me and we both just stood there. Then we talked about being home together and how much we have wanted this for so long. Our boys had made it safely and were waiting for us. We were so close. Just a few more weeks and we count our blessings that it is just one month. I don’t know how military families do this. It is absolutely miserable.
Then he got in the car, I stood on the balcony of our friends apartment and he drove away. Tears. My best friend Anissa just held me as I waved goodbye. You guys, you must be saying, it’s only a month. I know! But I don’t know how to be me without him. He makes me want to be the person I am. I can’t wait to see this man again… so hurry up October. Let’s get this over with!
If you just had to say goodbye to someone, let’s chat. We can commiserate together!
The past few days , no, really, weeks have been a blur. We are home from Disney World, where we spent an amazing 5 days as a family acting like children again. Look for that post to come soon. Now we are back home and the piles of laundry are beginning to look like one of those mountain roller-coasters without the fun attached. Yikes!
Before this epic family vacay happened, Andy and I had a little adventure of our own. The weekend of Labor Day, Andy called me on his way home from work on Friday. Our conversation went a little like this…
Andy, “I’m on my way home.”
Me, “Yay! What do you want to do tonight.”
Andy, “I don’t care. Anything, I guess. My boss left for Colorado.”
Me, “O man, really? I wish we were going home too.”
Andy, “Well then let’s go.”
Me, “Seriously, don’t play with my emotions.”
Andy, “I’m serious. Let’s go.”
Me, “Ahhh, ok, let me get off the phone, I’m gonna look up tickets.”
Andy, “Are we really doing this?”
Me, “You can’t go back on your word, I will never forgive you!” (all in jest of course, but seriously)
Andy, “Ok, I’m speeding home now!”
Cut to less than 24 hours later, Boo was dropped off with a friend, you can read more about his weekend adventure here (it was a little scarier than ours), Tron had tons of food and water and we were on an airplane at 5:30 am headed home to Colorado as a surprise for Andy’s family.
It was amazing! Andy’s sister, Courtney, picked us up from the airport and we soaked up some much needed time with our niece and nephew, Andy’s parents, his grandma and our old church family. We immediately felt the tug of home. The place we knew we were supposed to be. Those Rocky Mountains in the distance were calling to us. Cue in my Sound of Music moment…
As we spent those precious days in that sweet Colorado air, we both began to talk about moving home and what that meant. Our lease was up in June of next year and I had a job starting in DC later that month. Andy had a few projects he had to finish up at work and we could easily move next summer. Yes, that is what we were going to do. Move home next summer. It just felt right.
But then… seriously, out of now where, I was offered a job. An amazing job. One that I never imagined would be possible. One minute we were sharing our trials from the past year and then this “gift” was laid in my lap. Man, when God delivers, he truly delivers.
Andy and I went to bed that night a little different from the night before, trust me, if you haven’t read about Boo’s adventure, you need to. We knew lot’s of things had to fall into place for us to be able to move home sooner. I’m talking like move home in a month sooner, but we knew if God wanted us home, the things would just fit. It has been amazing to see this giant tower of Jenga pieces magically move into place to give us a foundation to move home.
1. Andy had to make sure he had a job here in Colorado. Sure enough, his company said he could transfer no problem! Huge prayer answered.
2. We needed a way to get out of our lease. We can, but we need to find new renters! Please pray for this!
3. I have to move home a month before Andy to start my job and we somehow have to get the animals home. Please pray for safe travels for Boo and Tron. Flying is never easy on animals.
3. Andy and I move at separate times. We don’t know how this will really work. Please pray that this will be seamless and no problems will arise.
So friends, this is truly happening. Andy and I are moving home. I move home at the end of this month and Andy moves home at the end of October. It is bittersweet because we are leaving many good friends, experiences, this cute little apartment, and an amazing church. But there is not doubt in my mind this is what God has planned for us. He has made this happen for us, and when He calls, we follow.
Even with the massive flooding and the wildfires, we can’t wait to be in our sweet square state and get some of Rocky Mountain Love. Your at 5, 280 feet, breath deep!
It is happening. It is finally happening. After 20 plus years of asking to go, my family is taking a vacation to Disney World!
Andy and I, along with my parents will be traveling to the Sunshine state to meet up with my brother and his girlfriend for some serious fun in the sun. Six grown adults with no children will be taking the greatest place on earth by storm. I feel like that little kid in the commercial who is too excited to sleep! Ah! So excited!
We can hardly wait to go, but since we have never been, we would love to hear whatever tips and and suggestions you have. We have three days total in the park and we are staying off the resort in a house.
If there is food there, I will likely be there too!
One of my favorite things to do in the city are adventures and DC is full of them. Sometimes you have to do a little research for the really fun things but when you have a friend on “the inside”, it makes it so much easier to find really neat things to do.
My friend, Katharine, happens to work for the American History Museum and she sends me all the fun things going on at the museum, including Food in the Garden. All through out the summer, the AHM hosts these events in their victory style garden on the side of the museum. They serve food from local farms, drinks and cocktails that are either locally made or from a distillery nearby. It’s wonderful. I haven’t been able to attend them all but this last one was incredible.
In honor of Julia Child’s birthday, we were served amazing finger food with this chocolate almond cake pop that was to die for along with truffles and gin cocktails from a local distillery. After the food, we had a private screening of Julie & Julia in the theater at the AHM. It was a mini private garden party. I wore my pearls and everything.
If you are in DC in the summers, definitely check these fun events out. It’s a perfect way to experience DC life and the AHM and you get the chance to eat some pretty amazing food.
Also, quick little side note, if you love gold and prints, you will want to check out StorefrontDeals tomorrow. Just FYI….Hint, Hint, Wink & Smile.
We live in a really cool neighborhood in DC called Adams Morgan. It’s rich in history, culture, art and most of all food! You can find anything from old books, great drinks, records to vintage clothes. You can eat breakfast, brunch, lunch, mid afternoon snack, happy hour, dinner, dessert and late night drinks all on the same street or even in the same restaurant. We haven’t touched the surface of all the great places to eat and drink in our neighborhood.
This past Saturday we decided to venture down 18th Street before the rain came and enjoy our neighborhood. We ate at a new place that makes amazing empanadas and stopped into our favorite record store, Crooked Beat, for some new music. Come along and enjoy our neighborhood, see our Saturday Adventures in pictures.
One of the things on my wish list when we moved to DC was I wanted to live near the Zoo. I wanted to be able to walk through the zoo whenever I wanted and possibly even hear the animals during the day. I was so excited when we finally found our apartment just up the road from the National Zoo. You guys, I can even hear the Lions Roar when we take Boo for a walk. It is a dream come true.
Well I like animals and Andy likes beer so when you put the two together you get one fun Thursday night for the Cassedays. Brew at the Zoo. We walked down to the Zoo about 6 pm and it was a perfect balmy 80 degrees. Maybe a little hotter than we would have liked but it was fun just the same. You can totally see my frizzy hair in the picture!
If your Zoo hosts one of these nights and you get a chance to go, definitely go! It’s worth it.
There were over 60 breweries, lots of food and the Big Cats were playing. It was one of the best nights we have had in DC this summer. We even ran into some fellow Colorado Rockies Fans. Check out our adventure!
Please excuse my photos. We didn’t take the nice camera because of the torrential rains we have been having, so we had to settle for a point and shoot!
Things have finally settled down since we have come back from our trip. We have found ourselves back into our routine and things are getting back to normal. Which means I have had time to edit our more “professional” photos (the ones taken with our serious camera, my Nikon D700). If you aren’t tired of our pictures I thought I would share a few more. If you ever get a chance to visit Greece, Italy or Turkey. Take it, you won’t regret it!