A couple months ago our neighbors mentioned in passing that they were going to Yosemite for a weekend. Brock and I over-enthusiastically mentioned how much we had always wanted to go there. They said, “You guys should come!” We booked it soon after, eager to see what all this national park mumbo jumbo is about. I’m still not convinced it wasn’t a pity invite, but I have no regrets because Yosemite was AWESOME.

First, there are mountains. Cliffs, really. It feels like you are stuck in a giant rock maze, but in the best way possible. It was cold and crisp most days. And guys, there was fall. I got to experience a season that is nonexistent in Southern California. The leaves actually crunched and there were colors. So. Many. Colors.

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Brock and I stayed in a little cabin in Curry Village, where all the hard-core campers come to brave the weather and live off the land (not us). We decided to forego the tents and take residence in cabin 5B. It had two small beds and a teenie tiny bathroom. I felt like I was at summer camp all over again, except this time I wasn’t in middle school in a cabin full of screaming girls (score). We cranked up our tiny heater and I sat right on the floor in front of it during the night while we played games. I am the reigning Connect-four champion. I’m putting that on my resume.

Each morning we would apply about a hundred layers of clothing, yet it was still shocking when you took that first step out into the cold air. However, the scenery quickly stole the show and the temperature was an afterthought. Did I mention the colors?

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I spent a lot of time doing this. How could you not? IMG_1797 IMG_1800 IMG_1812 IMG_1850 IMG_1982


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I mean, look how cute my husband is climbing up to Yosemite Falls. Natures looks good on him.IMG_2010

We spent the days exploring and hiking around Yosemite. And by hiking, I mean walking. We were all in agreement that vacation doesn’t include any more exercise than necessary. Once the sun sank behind the cliffs, we would go back to Tom and Rick’s room to play game after game after game. All I know is 4 adults can totally have fun playing Jenga and Clue. Even if we don’t always know all the rules. We decided that diets and healthy eating are only for non-Yosemite residents, so bring on the chips and Hostess treats. Which then lead to another game of is-that-cheeto-dust-or-zinger-frosting-on-the-jenga-pieces? We are still unsure.


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Thanks to a very confused German man, we have no group picture of the four of us. He insisted that he look at least 5 pictures of us, however there were none to be found. Just imagine us all together in front of Lake Mirror, which actually isn’t a lake at all. So imagine us all in front of a sandy field. A glorious sandy field.

This was one of the most fun mini-vacations Brock and I have ever had. Thank you Tom and Rick for allowing us to tag along on your vacation. We hope to impose on many more in the future.



Sometimes you are a bad blogger.

Sometimes it is because you are a full-time student who also works. Sometimes it is because you have writer’s block and aren’t sure what to write about. Sometimes it’s just because you are lazy.


Sometimes it’s because you are spending more time exploring your new city. Or playing with puppy neighbors. Or making new friends and staying up too late with them. Or perfecting the perfect summer drink.  Or slowing turning your new apartment into a cozy home. Or eating at every restaurant. Or going to all the bars. Or ordering pizza and staying in for the night. Or meeting up with old friends and laughing the whole night. Or making plans to travel in the next month to a place that used to be home and a place you have never been. Or just overall enjoying life.

Sorry about that.



















U-hauls and the Sappy Posts They Cause

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I moved this weekend.

Moving is a funny thing. It comes with a lot of stress because you upheave your whole life, pack it into a rickety truck, barrel down the freeway hoping nothing breaks, then plunk it down in a new, unfamiliar place where you have to decide where the cheese grater and nail polish go (not in the same drawer).

Among the chaos of moving this week, I also got a new job. I now work in the President’s Office at USC where I handle administrative tasks and support the Executive Office. It’s really an amazing opportunity and I feel so lucky to be a part of the team. However, there is a lot of stress that comes with starting a new job. You do all sorts of fun things to yourself, like not sleeping at all the night before and leaving 4 hours early even though it takes you 25 minutes to drive there. Oh and spilling coffee. Always spilling coffee.

So anyway, with all this happening, we were in desperate need for help moving.

Luckily for the husband and I, my in-laws flew in from Oregon to help us with this fun task. It was also Mother’s Day and my father-in-law’s birthday, so I can’t think of a better way to celebrate than carry someone else’s couches through a small doorframe.

Yet, they did it anyway. Thank goodness. We wouldn’t have been able to do it without all their help. Somehow we managed to pack up all our things, get them in the truck, unload them at the new place, unpack the boxes in the new place, then clean the old place, all in 48 hours. We even managed to sneak in a little fun along the way. We explored our new city of Long Beach by walking downtown, eating at new restaurants, and taking a very brief ride on the Metro (where a lady was cradling her scary looking doll….Happy Mother’s Day?). We also took a trip to USC so I could give everyone a tour of the campus and show them the building I work in.


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Without getting too sappy, I am so thankful for my in-laws. First of all, they are so good looking. Just look at them.

Dusty is one of the most hardworking people I have ever met. Every single time Brock and I have moved (there have been many) he has dropped everything to help us. It doesn’t matter what city or state we are living in at the time, he will be there. He lives his life with such integrity and work ethic and I hope to be like that one day.

Jodi is one of the most incredible women I have ever met. Saying she has a big heart doesn’t do it justice because that saying is used too freely. She is a gentle and loving spirit who is willing to do anything for the people she loves. She has been a friend for me to lean on. She has been a shoulder for me to cry on. She has been the person I laughed with until I cried. She has been a mother to me when I didn’t have one.

Both of these people have taken me into their family without hesitation. Not only that, but they have given Brock and I a wonderful example of marriage. They are real, honest, and hard-working in their relationship. They have taught us so much about how real love requires sacrifice and selflessness. We are so thankful for that gift.

So much for not being sappy. Wait, I thought this post was about moving?

Husbands Are Cool

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As previously mentioned, I met my husband when I was only 17 years old. We stared dating almost immediately and the rest is history. We have done so much together over the last five and a half years and I’m so thankful for every minute of it. I wanted to show a little appreciation because I forget to do that sometimes. So here are some of the reasons why my husband is my favorite husband I have ever had:


To my hottie with a body husband,

You love me even though I get a sudden burst of energy every night right as you are trying to fall asleep.

I have slowly added all of your comfy shirts into my “sleep shirt” collection and you pretend not to notice. Probably because we both know you are never getting them back.

You make my coffee with the perfect combination of milk and vanilla. I swear it tastes better just because you made it.

You are always wearing shoes. Even on lazy weekend days when we relax, you shower and put on your shoes first thing. Usually before you even put on a shirt.

Thanks for using your muscles to open every jar, bottle, box and can. We both know my arms are for show, not functionality.

You are the best audience for all my car ride musical performances.

Sometimes you fall asleep when I’m in the middle of a sentence and wake up 30 seconds later and try to play it off like it never happened.

Once a day I check my phone and have 5 missed calls from you because I always have my phone on silent. You love me anyway.

You like all my Instagram pictures, even the lame ones.

You come home for lunch on the days you work. On a related note, you never judge when it’s past noon and I’m still in pajamas. Some of my best work happens during pajama hours, okay?

You wake up in the middle of the night and run out in the living room with a knife because I heard a creak. I watch too many murder documentaries.

When I do the moonwalk you tell me I look just like Michael Jackson. My moonwalk confidence is through the roof because of you.


Anyway, those are just a few reasons why you are the best husband West of the Mississippi. And East. And all the other directions.

I love you Brock!

Day Adventures.


Yesterday was incredible. Last month I got Brock tickets to see Adam Carolla live at the Hollywood Improv for his birthday. Hundreds of famous comedians got their start there and I have always wanted to go. So we decided to make a day of it and hang out in LA. It should be noted that we planned to leave our house early, but got distracted by things like soccer games and cinnamon rolls. You can’t win them all.

We hit the road at 11am and went straight to Abbot Kinney, which is the coolest place in Venice. It reminds me so much of Portland and feels like a little piece of home, except sunnier. We went to Gjelina for lunch. This place is heaven. Heaven. I never thought there would be a day where I would devour a kale salad but this restaurant does not make a bad dish. As we are eating, Steven Tyler walked in and SMILED AT ME as he went by our table. I’m still not over it. I wanted to send a drink over to his table but Brock wouldn’t let me.
We hung out more on Abbot Kinney, going to little stores and getting a juice box. I ran into a pile of puppies along the way. I wish that happened more often actually. A foundation was doing adoptions on the street so I went and pet a bunch of the cutest puppies you have ever seen. It is probably a good thing we weren’t in a Huntington Beach or Brock and I might have accidentally taken one home. Or five.

We were on Abbott Kinney a little longer than planned because I was 90% sure Steven Tyler parked his Mercedes SUV (blacked out windows with a dream catcher hanging inside) right next to my car, so I hung out there waiting for him like a crazy person. Finally Brock forced me into the car because you can’t wait all day for Steven Tyler (or can you?).
Next we went to the Grove, which is a huge outdoor mall in LA. It has the biggest farmers market I have ever seen, and there are so many fun things to do. We ate at our favorite little pizza place in the farmers market and walked around looking for celebrities. I saw Joe Zee, who is a famous stylist and the creative director for Elle magazine. He was wearing a Lady Gaga shirt so I couldn’t have asked for more.

Finally, we left and headed over to the Hollywood Improv. We got drinks and some snacks while we waited for the show. People handed out Mangria samples, and if you don’t know what that is then you should definitely order some! Right before we went into the theater area, Brock and I spotted Dr. Drew standing about two feet away from me. I was pretty surprised because it had not been announced that he would be there. Then a minute later we see Eric Stonestreet standing three people in front of us! I think we were both in shock. They went backstage and we filed into the theater. The three of them got on stage, and this show was the hardest I have laughed maybe ever. It was a live podcast, so if you want to listen to the show it should be up on iTunes within a couple days, and it’s free! After the show we got to meet and take a picture with Adam Carolla and Brock got his Mangria bottle signed. We spent the rest of the night raving about how amazing the whole day was, how many people we got to see, and how much we love living in a place where we can do things like this.