What we Read, Watched, and Ate this Weekend

For the Portlandians reading this, are you sad the snow didn’t come?! I mean the BIG SNOW - the “snowpocalypse”. The city was in a frenzy Friday when the forecast said we were getting 15+ inches, myself included! I was so excited to get out in the closed down streets and finally play in the snow come Saturday. We hopped across the street to Trader Joes Friday night to get everything to make lasagna and it was literally like the scene from Jumanji. You know the scene where the monkeys are throwing paint cans and the canoe goes shooting through the store? People were in a panic and had SWIPED the shelves clean, I couldn’t believe it! There wasn’t a can of beans or mere onion left in the joint. Come Saturday we woke up expecting our apartment to be enveloped in a winter wonderland - yet the branches were barely dusted with snow 🙄 The sun was shining and it was a beautiful weekend nonetheless! At least the folks who stocked up for the 'lypse won’t have to buy groceries for the next 6 months 😆



  1. I just started Girl, Wash Your Face! I’m only two chapters in and I already love it. Rachel Hollis is absolutely hilarious and inspiring. Every page I read it makes me more and more motivated to make changes to reach my goals!

  2. Reading this article on Savannah, GA makes me want to visit there even more! I still can’t believe I haven’t been there yet!


  1. Nothing like a good rom com :) In our impending snowstorm on Friday we watched As good as it gets! I love a good jack nicholson flick.

  2. For the last few days we have been watching One Strange Rock on Netflix with Will Smith as the narrator. It is so freaking amazing! It’s incredible how our planet works and how magnificent it truly is. This is definitely not a boring science show ya’ll - it’s worth a watch!

  3. Thomas finally got me to watch a James Bond movie! It’s not that I was ever opposed to them, but I feel like it’s kind of like Star Wars, if you start one than you have to watch them all and that just seems like too large of a feat at this point in time lol. We watched From Russia with Love with a young Sean Connery (cue the Sean Connery Jeopardy skit from SNL 😂)


We made cast iron lasagna in our dutch oven! The best rich meat sauce, béchamel, and lots of layers! The cast iron sides makes it almost caramelized and crispy in some spots - SO GOOD! Putting the recipe on the blog next week.
- for breakfast we made Turkish eggs! I’m going to also post this to the blog as well soon since It’s becoming one of our faves. Pita bread topped with a lemony yogurt, poached eggs, a spiced chickpea and walnut mixture in a buttery sauce, and then topped with fresh dill.
- leftover lasag for lunch because duhhh
- smoothie bowls for dinner because we were so full from lasagna lol - Here’s our go-to favorite açaí smoothie bowl!
breakfast was leftover risotto from last week with a fried egg on top! Because Sundays mean fridge cleaning day.
- I did a Valentine’s Day cheese board shoot for the blog, so I ate my weight in cheese and fig jam for lunch.
- For din I made a variation of HBH’s sheet pan chicken shawarma bowls. SO good! I love the combo of hummus, spicy chicken and cucumbers!

Have a great week friends!

Our Favorite Romantic Dinners to Make Together

When I see the giant heart boxes of cheesy chocolates in the grocery store during this time of year, I roll my eyes just a little. But at the same time i’m bursting inside because I am your typical girl and go nutso over mushy gushy stuff and love any excuse to celebrate anything and everything! So while I do love this day dedicated to love, I feel like every day should be like valentines day. It doesn’t have to be this grand gesture of buying flowers, chocolate, expensive dinner and gifts ALL on one day. But we do expect this throughout the year, right ladies? 😂 Just kidding - but in all honesty doing special things together should be EVERY WEEK, not just on February 14th and your Anniversary every year.

Making a romantic dinner at home is something we do as often as possible.. There’s nothing better than breaking open a bottle of wine, turning on some good tunes, and making a great meal. Don’t get me wrong, I love going out to a fancy dinner occasionally, but for us this is our definition of a perfect date night 💕🍴 Here’s a list of our favorite recipes to make together!


1. Seared Scallops

Whenever i’m thinking of a romantic dinner at home, scallops are the #1 thing that pops into my mind! These little vessels of sea goodness are super easy to prepare if you’re careful, they look pretty, and you won’t feel super bloated after dinner - you know, so you can save room for dessert… 😉

My recipe for seared scallops with butternut squash purée is so good with sautéed mushrooms and an arugula salad on the side. Keep the salad simple with just lemon juice, good extra virgin olive oil, grated parmesan, and salt and pepper.

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2. Pasta

Nothing says ‘date night’ more than a good pasta dish and a bottle of red wine. It’s our go-to for Friday night or anytime really! I love those nights after we’ve finished our pasta and we’re sitting by the candle light finishing off the bottle and instead of turning on the tv to watch a movie or show, we just keep talking into the night. Sometimes life gets so hectic and you forget to just slowww down and enjoy each other. So my friends, break out your best bottle of cab or bubbly, make this sweet potato gnocchi with balsamic sage brown butter or oxtail ragu pappardelle and have yourself an old fashioned date night at home! 💋

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3. Lamb Shanks

The first time Thomas made me a lamb shank I seriously thought to myself “hot damn I better marry that man” ;)

I don’t know how, but for some people lamb isn’t there thing, and I just don’t get it. Lamb shanks especially, is melt-in-you-mouth-fall-off-the-bone perfection. For date night, I love our slow braised lamb shanks with basil mint pesto, with small roasted potatoes, and roasted mini carrots.

Or if you are wanting more of a stew, this lamb and butternut squash curry made with lamb shanks is one of my all time favorite cozy dinners.

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4. steaks

It’s hard to go wrong with a good steak for date night. We don’t have a grill since we have downtown apartment living, but I have found that a pan seared steak can be pretty darn good. I love searing a filet in a really hot pan with little butter and olive oil and then adding a spring of rosemary and smashed garlic cloves to the hot butter, spooning it over the steak as it finishes cooking. GAHH that’s good. All you need is silky mashed potatoes and broccolini on the side and you’ve got yourself a snazzy date night meal.

Or for a really show-stopping date-night meal, beef wellington is always so fun! I love this deconstructed beef wellington I crafted up this past holiday season. A lot easier and pretty to look at :)

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5. Chocolate Cake

okay, i’m sorry - I know this isn’t a dinner, but who needs dinner when you’ve got dessert?! If you feel like forgoing the dinner and going straight to dessert, than there’s nothing better than chocolate cake! We have made two chocolate cakes together and both are equally delicious. Chocolate rose cake for two is a fun treat for Valentine’s Day, but the double chocolate cake is extra rich and decadent.

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I know i’m being extra lovely on the blog for Valentine’s Day, but I hope you treat most days like V-Day with your other half and make date nights a weekly routine ❤️

Tell me in the comments what your favorite date night meal is or favorite thing to do together?!

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What we read, watched, and ate this weekend

Hey hey! How was your weekend? We had the best cozy cabin weekend with friends in Black Butte, a quaint ranch vacation community in Central Oregon near Bend. My friend Danni’s parents own a cabin there and it’s always the perfect relaxing weekend getaway! We headed up early Friday afternoon and spent the next couple of days with our four friends, eating good food, drinking too much wine and playing in the snow with their dogs Cooper the golden and Kodo the Aussie.

We didn’t do as much “watching/reading” as a usually weekend, but we sure did a lot of eating! 🍴



  1. I just finished reading Sarah’s Key, If you haven’t read it then you should definitely put it on your list. I just ordered Where the Crawdads Sing and Girl Wash Your Face on Amazon today.

  2. On our 3 hour ride to Black Butte, I read through a new cookbook, Six Seasons. It’s by chef Joshua McFadden who owns Ava Gene’s and Tusk in Portland. His way of cooking and using seasonal produce is incredible. Simple recipes at home centered around the seasons best vegetables. I already made a comforting cabbage farro soup from the book and I can’t wait to make more!


  1. We watched the Fyre Festival documentary for a 2nd time at the cabin since a couple people hadn’t seen it and were curious. It’s honestly so mind boggling to me that really happened and what a loser he is. It’s definitely entertaining if you haven’t watching it yet!

  2. Other than the doc, the TV stayed off which was a nice change! We played a lot of King’s Corner and One Night Ultimate Werewolf, which is such a fun game! Especially if you’ve had a few cocktails!



our friends Danni and Nick were in charge of dinner Friday night! They made spaghetti with bolognese with salad, crusty bread, and lots of red wine of course.
- for our night cap we made our favorite Old Fashioned’s using bitter housewife aged bitters!

- for breakfast Thomas and I made our favorite shakshuka with couscous recipe that I adapted from Molly Yeh. This is honestly the breakfast recipe we make the most in our house, and occasionally for dinner for that matter!
- for lunch we headed into Bend and had lunch at Deschutes Brewery. We had beer flights (I loved the grapefruit sour), and I had French onion soup and the Nashville spicy chicken sandwich for lunch. I have to say, our spicy fried chicken sandwiches blow the socks off of that one.
- for dinner, our other friends Gabe and Linzy were in charge and they made our french onion pot roast with creamy polenta from the blog! The most cozy of all cozy comfort meals.

- we woke up leisurely, had our coffee, and then Thomas and I made Huevos Rancheros for the group! We made a pot of black beans seasoned with salt, pepper, and cumin and cooked them down with a little beef stock and made them really creamy. We put the beans on top of a tortilla topped with a fried egg, homemade pico de gallo, avocado, sliced radishes, jalapeños, scallions, cilantro, and crumbly queso fresco cheese.
- after breakfast we took a long bike ride and before we knew it we had to rush back to the cabin and get packed up since there was other renters coming in. So once we were packed up we headed back to Portland and made asian-y pork burritos for dinner and the Super Bowl! If you want to follow-up along on Instagram stories, I am challenging to post on there everything we eat for dinner the rest of the year and saving it in my highlight reel! 😄 I thought it would be neat for us to look back and see everything we eat, plus I can re-make some of the stuff that we make on the fly that ends up turning out good! You can screenshot the recipe in my stories if you want to make it as well!

Have a great week!

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New Year, Big Goals!

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Almost every NYE that we’ve been together, we have gotten dressed up, made a great dinner with friends, and sipped champs until the early morning hours. Is it ironic that the first year that we’re married we stayed in, wore our comfiest attire, and didn’t even open the bottle of Prosecco in the fridge? lol I have to say though, I would not have had it any other way this year. We had a rough couple of days traveling back from a friends wedding in Ohio (we got stuck and had to stay the night in Dallas) plus I have a pretty nasty cold, so by the time we made it back to Portland in the afternoon of NYE I couldn’t think of anything I wanted more than to stay in and have a relaxing night at home. We did muster up the strength to make a pretty epic oxtail ragu with pappardelle, and then we watched one of my favorite movies of all time, Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood We fell asleep on the couch and woke up 5 minutes before the clock struck midnight and kept our eyes open just long enough for a kiss - then slumbered away for a much needed 9 hours.

New Years Eve is always bittersweet. In one way i’m sad the the holidays and celebrations have come to an end, but i’m also excited to reset, reflect on the year prior, and create goals for the new year. 2018 was an amazing year; We got married, we attended 5 other weddings, went to the Bahamas for my bachelorette party, visited Austin, TX for the first time for another Bach party, traveled to Bali for our honeymoon, and to the Dominican Republic for my work contest trip. On the career front, Thomas switched from helicopters to airplanes with the path to become a commercial airline pilot, I continued to grow in my role as a recruiter at my day job, I did my first two restaurant photography shoots, and I continued to grow this little blog of mine. I am so proud of everything we have accomplished together so far, and I can’t wait to see what 2019 has in store!

2019 goals!


Buy a home - I am constantly drooling over Pinterest and dreaming of a house. Our big goal for 2019 is buy a home where we are going to be for the next 5-10 years.

Saving - Saving money is a big part of buying a home, so I guess these two kind of go together. However, I overall want to be more conscience of what i’m spending my money on, like coffee for example. I have a perfectly good coffee maker at home and at my office, so there’s no reason to buy Starbucks! If I added up all the money i’ve spent on coffee out the last few years, would have a good chunk of money to put down on our house…no joke!

Spend less time watching TV - I’m a multi-tasker when watching a show, but i’m sure I would get a lot more done if I turned it off completely and had my full-focus on whatever i’m working on. I love a good show or movie on Netflix, but during the week my goal is to keep the TV off and focus on things for the blog, reading, or practicing Norwegian on Duolingo.


Kicking off our inaugural anniversary trip! - This is one that i’m really excited about. At my brother’s wedding we met a couple who for the last 5 or 6 years since they’ve been married have alternated planning a surprise anniversary trip! How fun is that?! It’s something to look forward to all year and will be amazing as well once we have kids and need a little vacay lol. I am kicking it off planning it for our 1st anniversary March 31st and Thomas will have no idea where we are going until we go to the airport (eh, or get in the car?) - stay tuned on where we go :)

Sticking to a weekly date night - I think connecting and being away from all social media/tv/the outside world is so important, whether it’s a cozy night at home playing board games or going our to a restaurant we’ve been dying to go to! I feel like we’re good about date night already, but I need to be better about ditching my phone!


Read one blogging/business article a day - Constantly learning and staying up on new trends is so important and I definitely want to make this more of a focus.

Post consistently - I go through spells where I do 3-4 blog posts a week, then I’ll lose focus and only do a handful in a month’s time. I’ve already ordered my 2019 planner, so I am going to be proactive with planning content in advance and using my weekends and time off as efficiently as possible.

When it’s all said and done, the most important thing I want for this year and every year in the future is health and happiness for the people I love the most. Anything else is just a bonus :)

I hope you all have an amazing start to 2019!

Hosting our First Friendsgiving

Thomas and I hosted our first Friendsgiving last Saturday! I had all of these big plans to set-up a photo shoot and take a ton of pictures for the blog, but I definitely underestimated how much work goes into preparing for a Thanksgiving feast! I was talking big game the night before that I can do it all by myself, “it’s going to be easy”, and “I can just make a plan in the morning”. Thomas was going to be working all day, so I started feeling the panic when my eyes popped open at 6am thinking “shit! I better get a move on!”. It was such a fun first experience and we had an absolute blast.


Here’s a little timeline of our day!

The night before: brined the turkey! I used bon appetite’s dry rubbed turkey recipe! It was some of the juiciest turkey i’ve ever had!

6am - eyes pop open in full-panic mode. The apartment is a mess and I don’t have a plan finalized for the day! I break out my bookmarked websites and bon appetite’s Thankgiving edition mag for some inspiration! After an hour of deliberating, I decided on creamy potato gratin, sausage fennel stuffing, roasted brussel sprouts, glazed kabocha squash, cranberry sauce, carrot cake for dessert, lots of gravy and the big fat turkey of course. Praying that Thomas’ flights get cancelled at this point so he can come save me.

7am-10am - Deep cleaned the house, had the Friends Thanksgiving episodes playing in the background, and stuffed everything possible that looked cluttered in the apartment behind our door in our bedroom. Our apartment has NO storage space, so anything that doesn’t have a place gets shoved under the bed or behind the door…I’m learning to be more of a minimalist ok?!

10am- Thomas walks through the door and says his flight was cancelled and he’s home for the day to help me! I cry tears of joy on the inside, but pretend like I had everything handled on the outside.

10:15 - head to Fred Meyer to pick-up all of our groceries! In our neighborhood we live walking distance to three grocery stores, which is such a luxury! We can see trader joe’s from our living room window, so we are definitely spoiled in that sense. If we ever forget a major ingredient I never sweat it since I know I can run right across the street!

11:15 - Got home and started making the homemade carrot cake! I used this recipe by Inspired Taste, but just used two of my 6 inch cake pans and made 4 layers! More frosting right?!

11:45 - While the cake is baking, Thomas starts making the turkey stock with all of the giblets from the turkey (sounds gross but is delicious), and I ran out to buy a couple more white plates from a thrift store down our street that has the best dishes! I also stopped by Kitchen Kaboodle to get cloth napkins candles, and then trader joe’s for all of the greenery/flowers for the table.

12:30 - Took the cake out and put the turkey in! You always want to use a meat thermometer to make sure it’s perfect, but a turkey takes roughly 15 minutes to cook per pound, so we were shooting for 3:30 for it to be coming out of the oven and rest for an hour.

12:30 - 3:30- This was a blur of cutting veggies, washing 1,000 dishes, frosting the cake, basting the turkey every 30 minutes, going nuts on potatoes with a mandolin, peeling god forsaken kambocha squash that has merciless thick skin, singing along to the happy hits playlist on Spotify, yelling at Alexa to turn it down when there was too much going on, sneaking kisses with my hot chef who was frankly saving my ass from having a meltdown had he not been there, setting up the table, lighting all the candles, and then answering the doorbell at 3:30 to a florist delivering flowers from my sweet Nana who knew I was hosting a party!

Pheww, I’m tired just re-living this!


3:50 - Our friends Maureen and Eric were supposed to be coming at 4, so I quickly texted her saying we are a little behind sched and to come at like 4:30. I scrambled and took the fastest 2 minute shower ever to wash off all the powdered sugar and turkey drippings, threw dry shampoo in my hair, did a quick little makeup, and was back in the kitchen by 4!

4:00 - Poured ourselves our first glass of rosé which tasted like sweet nectar of the gods at this point in the day. That’s all the really matters here.

4:00 - 4:30 - Did last minute preparations and put everything in the oven that hadn’t been in yet. Here’s everything we made for the night! Dry-rubbed roast turkey, classic potato gratin, sausage & fennel stuffing (swapped out cornbread for sourdough), cranberry sauce out of a can because that’s how I like it, Thomas’s turkey gravy, simple roasted brussels, and kamocha squash with a spicy red wine glaze on top!

The rest of the night: Our friends arrived around 4:30ish and we had drinks and snacks before everything was ready to come out of the oven. We put broil on to crisp the potatoes, but forgot the turkey was in there, mind you this was about 3 glasses deep, and we burnt the top of the turkey! Thankfully enough that was the only mishap of the day and it was still delicious but maybe not as pretty.

We sat around candlelight until late into the night drinking 8 bottles of wine between the 6 of us, breaking out aquavit and rod stewart on the record player, and having one of the best nights ever. I love how a tradition forms when you don’t really plan on that happening, but I know Thomas and I will be hosting a friendsgiving like this one many more years to come.


Fall Bucket List

Fall! My favorite time of year. Beautiful leaves, crisp cool air, and all things cozy! I swear the second October hits, I switch out summer scented candles for apple cinnamon & pumpkin spice, swap dresses for sweaters, and turn on the oven almost every day to make something warm and cozy. I try and fit as much into this season as possible, so a much needed Fall bucket list is order! "‘Fall-ow” along and you will definitely feel like you did the season right!

Fall Bucket List

  1. Go to the pumpkin patch and carve a pumpkin

  2. Watch all of the classics: Hocus Pocus, Nightmare Before Christmas, Beetlejuice, Halloween, Ghostbusters, and Young Frankenstein to name a few!

  3. Bake a pumpkin pie from scratch, homemade crust and all

  4. Go apple-picking

  5. Make caramel apples

  6. Visit a local brewery and try some of their seasonal beers

  7. Have a afternoon picnic complete with warm spiked apple cider in a thermos

  8. Make a pumpkin spice latte at home

  9. Have a cozy night in and make a Fall-inspired cheese board, light all the candles and pop open a bottle of red wine

  10. Make pumpkin pancakes and have breakfast in bed

  11. Go to a Halloween costume party

  12. Visit a scary haunted house

  13. Walk around the farmer’s market on the weekend and shop for fresh produce, seasonal flowers, and apple butter

  14. Go for a hike when the leaves are changing

  15. Have a technology detox day and spend the day reading and exploring the neighborhood

  16. Read a scary novel

  17. Make a pot of chili, like this one, and homemade cornbread

  18. Plan or attend a Friendsgiving

  19. Host a wine tasting with cute appetizers

  20. Send notes to friends and family for Thanksgiving telling them why i’m thankful for them

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Weekly Crumbs

Ok, we may look ridiculous but I’m really in the Halloween/dress-up spirit alright?!

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This was from coolest photo bus at my brother’s wedding in Tennessee this past week! It was such a beautiful and quaint wedding with around 50 people at the Dancing Bear Lodge. It was so great to be with my family since I hadn’t seen them since our wedding 6 months ago!

However we did have a little mishap before the wedding…

On the flight from Portland to Knoxville, we had a layover in Chicago and we accidentally left our garment bag on the plane that had Thomas’ tux and my bridesmaid dress in it! The worst mistake ever right before a wedding! After filing a lost and found report and some serious sweating and anxiety on my end, United Airlines shipped it directly to the lodge the day before the wedding!! Some serious praise is indebted to United for delivering it so quickly! I had major doubts that it would arrive before the wedding since most of the time things like that take forever to get back, but they definitely delivered. Thanks United! :)

Anywho, we’re back in Portland and I’m in full Fall/Halloween mode! And the weather in Portland right now is incredible- blue skies, cool air, and the leaves are changing! I hope you all had a great weekend - Here’s some things i’m loving this week!

- We watched all 4 episodes of Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat and it is my new favorite show on Netflix. So so good. I just want her job!!

- I’ve been scheming up my halloween costume for this year, i’m not revealing yet what it is since i’m not 100% sure, but I loved all of these in this slideshow!

- Loved this 40+ list of the best Halloween movies! The classics like ghostbusters, Adams Family, and Hocus Pocus are my favorite 🎃

- I stumbled upon this list of the coziest cabins in the world. Can I please make my way through this list?!

- I love this fall reading list. I needed a good new book, so this is a great place to start!

- the best chicken recipes of all time from Food52. Definitely bookmarked!

- Fall recipes that I’m planning to make from other bloggers this week:

Have a great week everyone!

Weekly Crumbs, Vol. 14

Last week nothing particularly exciting happened Monday-Thursday, so I thought I would just do a little recap of our weekend since it was such a good one! Every weekend is good, but this one felt exceptionally long and fun-filled! I hope you all are feeling just as rested and relaxed this Monday morning! 😌


Normally on Fridays I love nothing more that staying in, cook a yummy meal together and share a bottle of wine. But this Friday it was such beautiful weather all day, 70’s and not a cloud in the sky, so we knew that we should soak up every ounce of good weather while we still have the chance! Thankfully we live in the best part of Portland in my opinion, so we just wandered out our door a couple of blocks and sat outside of Jo Bar and Rotisserie on 23rd ave. We drank their new seasonal cocktails, a fig old fashioned for him, a reposado cocktail for me, snacked on the best oysters with a tequila mignonette, drank several glasses of bubbles, talked and laughed and people watched. A quick happy hour turned into an unexpected date night, which is the best kind!



Saturday we showed our support at the PurpleStride walk on the waterfront in Portland. Several of our friends parents have passed away from pancreatic cancer, so it felt good to be there to support them and help fund such an important cause.

Afterwards Thomas planned a surprise for one of our good friends’ birthdays - To take us all up in a plane! It was our friend Linzy’s birthday, and Thomas and Linzy’s husband had it planned for weeks and us girls had no idea! Unfortunately the weather ended up being too bad to go up once we were already at the airport, but she was still really surprised and we made a plan to make a day out of it the next nice day that we have in Portland! It will be my first time as well going up with Thomas in a plane, so i’m excited! We still had to kill time though since we were planning a surprise party for Linzy at her house, so we ended up going to Edgefield for a couple of beers before saying our “goodbyes” and then racing ahead of them so we could get to their house to be in on the surprise!



Sundays is definitely my favorite to sleep in and move extra slowly in the morning. We fell asleep at like 10:00 Saturday night since we had such a long day, so after sleeping over 10 hours we woke up feeling rested and refreshed!

If anything is on your agenda for this week it’s to make this toast that I made Sunday! Sourdough topped high with an herby dill and parsley yogurt, sun-dried tomato pesto, wilted spinach, fried eggs, crumbled goat cheese, and finished with more herbs and Everything but the bagel seasoning! SO good. Around noon we headed out to Cornell Farms which is a beautiful nursery and garden center right on the outskirts of NW Portland. We made a cute little herb garden and then sat on the porch at their cafe and had coffee, quiche and a blueberry granola.

Afterwards we decided to check out Uwajimaya, a huge Asian food market in Beaverton. I have been wanting to go for a while now and it did not disappoint! They have everything you could ever want and we definitely took advantage! We spent part of our future child’s college fund but no big deal, it was worth it 😉 I made traditional miso ramen from scratch for the first time and I will never do it another way again! Posting the recipe soon!

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Our Essentials for a Camping Weekend

Ok - we may be more ‘glampers’ than campers just to get that out there. I would like to think that I could carry just a backpack, hike 15 miles to our camping spot, and eat freeze-dried food but that’s just not appealing to me when I am wanting a relaxing weekend in the outdoors. All the more power to you though if you’re a serious hiker like that! I always tell Thomas I would like to do a backpacking trip someday…but for now I am good with coolers of food & snacks, our comfy tent with an air mattress, and lots of beer & wine, s’mores and board games!

Here’s our essentials for a camping weekend!

  1. Find a good camping spot. I love scouring The Outdoor Project for recommendations.

  2. Pack a couple of coolers to the brim with good food and drinks for the weekend! I love Yeti coolers as well as their ice packs to keep everything cold.

  3. Speaking of good food - meal plan for breakfast, lunch, and dinner so you bring the perfect amount. We usually do eggs and bacon for breakfast, sandwiches or hotdogs for lunch, and steak, veggies, and potatoes on the grill for dinner.

  4. Even though we love cooking over the fire, a Coleman stove is essential for making something quickly or boiling water for coffee in the morning.

  5. Speaking of coffee, a French press is great since it’s easy to just add boiling water and not deal with any filters.

  6. Board games - Yahtzee and cards are a must.

  7. An air mattress - we use a battery operated pump which makes things easy. It’s always hilarious when it starts to deflate and you both end up crammed in the middle!

  8. Libations - I love sitting by the stream or lake during the day with a cold beer, and then cozying up by the campfire with red wine at night. Or hot chocolate of course :)

  9. Bug spray and citronella candles. Those little suckers are intense! Our last camping trip there were a ton of wasps and I luckily had this natural lemongrass bug spray that actually kept them away from the camp!

  10. S’mores of course! Hershey’s chocolate all the way. I bought a thicker bar of chocolate last time that I thought would be good, but the chocolate didn’t get as melty as Hershey’s does.

  11. Dry shampoo. This is very necessary. 3 day- greasy-camping-head is not a good look.

  12. Something to read. Spending the quiet mornings and afternoons reading is my fav! This last trip I brought my newest issue of bon appétit and i’m also reading Sara’s Key which is so good!

  13. The last essential is to completely disconnect. Not that we have any service anyways when we normally camp, but regardless we always turn our phones off. Besides the occasional picture, completely disconnecting from social media feels so good for the weekend.

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The Ultimate Summer Craft Beer Guide

In my last years of college I was a bartender at World of Beer in Gainesville and it was a job that I am so happy that I had! I know a college kid who gets to pour beer and sip on tasters throughout their shift  would of course be happy to have that kind of job, but it was so much more than that! For one thing, working there introduced me to a world outside of Mich Ultra's and Guinness. But don't get me wrong, I still love Mich Ultra for a hot day on the lake or beach. Is that just a southern thing? We went to Austin for a Bachelorette party a few weeks back and hardly anyone from Oregon had had a Mich Ultra besides me!  ALSO FUN FACT: I used to think Guinness was SOO heavy but it actually only has 15 calories more than a Bud Light! 

Before starting at World of Beer we had to take a test in "beer school" and I always tell people I studied harder for that test than any other exam in college! I don't know if that's sad or glorious, but regardless it's fun knowledge to have nonetheless! I used to be so involved in the craft beer "world"  that I knew about any special releases and every sought after brew region to region. Now I live in the Pacific Northwest which is one of the greatest regions for craft beer in America, and sadly I choose Pino Noir over a brewski most of the time these days. My metabolism can't quite handle the Double IPA's and the Belgium Triples I use to throw down often - but that doesn't mean I still don't appreciate them from time to time! 

In the winter I am a Porter and Imperial Stout lady, but in the summer I want something light and refreshing! This past weekend we attended the Portland Craft Beer Festival which was walking distance from our apartment and it was spectacular! With 65+ breweries there we tried so many incredible beers, but my favorite of the day was the blueberry muffin sour ale from Great Notion! It wasn't sweet but it still reminded me of a fresh baked blueberry muffin and was so refreshing for a hot day! Thanks to one of the Festivals sponsors, Bridgeport Brewing, there was an awesome flower wall to promote their seasonal Rosé IPA!

Here is a guide to summer craft beer styles as well as my favorites in each region! I have to be real though and since I am a Florida/Oregon girl all of the South and West beers will be from there ;) Cheers ya'll!

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Pilsners & American Lagers

These are going to be your lightest beers that are crisp and highly carbonated. The alcohol content is only going to go up to about 5.5% so this is your best beer to drink at the summit after a long hike or on the lake wake-boarding. 

South- Gainesville, FL:  An ode to my homeland and alma mater: Swamphead - Loggerhead Lager 
Northeast- Brooklyn, NYBrooklyn Lager- definitely a pizza or burger beer!
Midwest- Kalamazoo, MI: Bell's Lager of the Lake's - Never been to the Great Lakes but excited to drink this on one of them the day that I do!
West- Portland, OR: Deschutes Pacific Wonderland - It makes it that much better when the brewery is in your neighborhood!


Sour Ales 

Tart and sour but often refreshing in the summer! Some common styles are Gose, Lambics, and American sours. 

South - Dunedin, FL:  7venth Sun "It Puts the Cucumber on it's skin or it gets the Gose again"
Northeast - Brooklyn, NY:  Evil Twin Mission Gose - Started in Denmark, now in NY
Midwest - Minneapolis, MN: Surly Inside the Upside Down - Imperial Sour...9%...tryyy ittt
West - Portland, OR: 10 Barrel Cucumber Crush - My go-to for a hot day

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IPA's are the top selling craft beer selling around the country and is the most entered category in the Great American Beer Festival. Sometimes IPA's can be too hoppy for me in the summer, but there's a ton of sessionable IPA's to choose from!

South - Tampa, FL:  Cigar City Jai Lai - A Floridan favorite
Northeast - Warren, VT - Lawson's Super Session #2
Midwest - Chicago, IL: Vallejo IPA - tropical and summery but packs a punch at 6.7%
West - Portland, OR: Bridgeport Rosé IPA- #Roséallday

Summer Wheats

The beer that will get you through the summer heat - think Blue Moon! A way to recognize them is their cloudier appearance. 

South: Tampa, FL: Cigar City Florida Cracker - Another one of my summer faves
Northeast: Cooperstown, NY - Brewery Ommegang Witte Wheat
Midwest: Kalamazoo, MI: Bell's Oberon - Not summer without this one!
West: Portland, OR: Widmer Hefe - Would this post really be worthy without this classic??

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Seminyak Travel Guide

I don't know about you, but one thing that I love almost as much as food is traveling. So imagine getting to eat your way through a new country and experiencing a whole new culture with the person you love the most?! BEST. THING. EVER. 

We returned to Portland a few weeks ago after our two week honeymoon in Bali and I am in total bliss. This was my first time going to Indonesia, and to an Asian country in general, and it's everything I hoped it would be and more. Our first stop on our Indonesian adventure was Seminyak. On the west coast of Bali, Seminyak is all about fun in the sun – and delicious food of course. I'm sure my happiness arriving in Seminyak was largely due to being in newlywed bliss, but I LOVED everything about the city from the beginning. The hustle and bustle of the motor bikes zooming by, the smell of satay cooking on a coconut husk coal bbq, being greeted with kindness everywhere we went by the Balinese, and retreating to our incredible villa after a long day of exploring. If this place wasn't on your radar, it should definitely be now. Read on for  my guide to this incredible town! 


where to stay

We loved our stay at The One Boutique Villa. Everything about it was simply perfect. From the moment we walked down a lush green path to our own private villa complete with a huge swimming pool - I was smitten. The mornings were bliss sitting in the outdoor seating and kitchen area listening to the birds chirp while sipping our coffee. The staff cooked an incredible complimentary breakfast every morning, both Indonesian and western fare, accompanied by fresh tropical juices. It was definitely very hot and humid when we were there, so after a long day of exploring out and about it was so nice to dive into the pool or cool off in the air-conditioned bedroom. And don't even get me started on the bathroom! Right outside our bedroom you walked out into this little tropical oasis where we had a huge tub and outdoor shower. I want an outdoor bathroom in our house someday after experiencing that! And the cherry on the cake was that all of the staff at the villa were some of the nicest people we've ever met! We told them we can't wait to come back on our 10-year wedding anniversary :) 
I would definitely suggest The One, but we saw many other beautiful villa's on tripadvisor and Airbnb. Just make sure you read the reviews first! 

       complimentary breakfast at our villa

       complimentary breakfast at our villa

   so in love with the outdoor bathroom and tub

   so in love with the outdoor bathroom and tub

Where to eat & drink

Okay, so you had to know we were going to stake out the best spots in Bali didntcha? There are SO many great spots to try, but here are our highlights and recommendations! 

Cafe Organic - This a very popular and trendy spot in Seminyak -I normally like to find the hidden gems, but Cafe Organic is still a a great spot to grab a really fresh breakfast or lunch and a cup of coffee. I loved the herby feta toast!

Bo & Bun - Our first night in Seminyak we went to Bo & Bun - a Vietnamese spot with a fun and buzzy atmosphere. We tossed back $2 Bintang's and lychee martinis and chowed down on sticky pork ribs, Vietnamese salad topped with crispy pork belly bites, and our first bowl of 'crack & slurp' noodles which were literally crack. Recipe recreation coming soon!

Shelter Cafe/Nalu Bowls - This was our favorite spot in Seminyak! We originally went to try the Nalu smoothie bowls, but then we discovered that Shelter Cafe was a cozy restaurant perched on top of Nalu, so we got smoothie bowls AND great food. YOU MUST get the "shades of shelter" platter to share. It's a harmonious assortment of hummus, dips, whips, and other yummies to snack on. We also got the "big burger" and a smoothie bowl to share. You can't go wrong with anything here - and all of the plants and decor are the best. 

Ling Ling's - LL's is kind of a quirky asian fusion spot but I enjoyed it! It's a fun place to grab happy hour and sit at their patio out back. The Korean bulgogi tacos are delish and I was a fan of the chicken Bahn mi sandwich, Thomas not so much. By the time we got to Ling Ling's on this particular day, we had been motorbiking in the sun for so long that I practically held the Bintang to my forehead before guzzling it and I think anything would have tasted good - but Ling Ling's still makes the list regardless!

Warung Eny's - If you're looking for authentic Indonesian food then this is your spot. From inside the restaurant you can see the open kitchen with all of the fresh vegetables piled high, and you can watch the Eny family prepare your meal in front of you. We got the whole red snapper that is grilled on the coconut husk bbq, giant grilled prawns, Tum Ball which is spiced pork steamed in banana leaves, and Nasi Campur which is a bunch of small dishes served with rice on a platter. 

Potato Head Beach Club - If you want to splurge a little and have some fun in the sun on the beach then Potato Head is your place. The beach front spot was walking distance from our villa, so before we could check in on our first day we lounged on day beds soaking up the sun sipping spicy mango cocktails. The perfect start to our honeymoon. I loved the fresh ceviche, lobster roll, and romaine salad. 

Bambu - Authentic Indonesian food with a gourmet twist! If you're wanting a romantic restaurant in a fine dining setting then I would go to Bambu! I loved the outdoor setting, and when you walk through the entrance you have to walk across floating steps across a beautiful pond littered with candles. We had the huge tiger prawns, crispy soft shell crab, lamb curry, and seafood noodle soup. 

                                                             Breakfast at Cafe Organic

                                                             Breakfast at Cafe Organic

Bo & Bun - The dish closest in this picture is      'Crack & Slurp' noodles. SO GOOD .

Bo & Bun - The dish closest in this picture is      'Crack & Slurp' noodles. SO GOOD.

          Whole red snapper at Warung Eny's

          Whole red snapper at Warung Eny's

                                                     'Shades of Shelter' Platter at Shelter Cafe

                                                     'Shades of Shelter' Platter at Shelter Cafe

           Seafood noodle soup at Bambu

           Seafood noodle soup at Bambu

 The family cooking us dinner at Warung Eny's

 The family cooking us dinner at Warung Eny's

                                                            Happy hour and Ling Ling's

                                                            Happy hour and Ling Ling's

        Ceviche, lobster roll, and Caesar salad with fried anchovies at Potato Head Beach Club

        Ceviche, lobster roll, and Caesar salad with fried anchovies at Potato Head Beach Club

What to Do in Seminyak

 First things first, rent a motorbike!

It costs less that $5 dollars a day to rent a motorbike in Bali. I was a little confused with the conversion from rupiah's to dollars at first, but 100,000 rupiah's is roughly $7 dollars, so that's a good way to quickly calculate in your head. Driving a motorbike is pretty hectic in the city because there's so many people on bikes AND you're driving on the opposite side of the road.  Because we wanted to easily get around and take multiple day trips, a motorbike was a good fit for us, but taxi's are a great option as well. If you go the taxi route use Blue Bird. They have a meter and they won't try and scam you. 

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Take day trips 

I loved taking off on our bike and not really knowing what we would discover. We spent one day driving through rice fields, down alley ways, and winding through the roads surrounding Seminyak. We hung out in Canggu, which is a small village about 20 minutes north of Seminyak where we stumbled across the cutest cafes and shops. We popped into Sunny Cafe, a cozy spot with a vintage feel. I loved the vintage balinese pictures hanging on the wall and the record player playing classic tunes. 

My favorite day trip was when we drove over an hour on our bike to Jimbaran and found a secret beach where we soaked up the sun and swam in crystal blue water.  

                     cute street in Canggu

                     cute street in Canggu

                                 Sunny Cafe

                                 Sunny Cafe

                                                               beautiful beach in Jimbaran

                                                               beautiful beach in Jimbaran

        lookout point at Balangan Beach

        lookout point at Balangan Beach

                            Balangan Beach

                            Balangan Beach

Nourish your body

On every corner in Bali, there's a spot to grab an incredible smoothie bowl, fresh pressed juice or freshly cracked coconut to drink. It's good to indulge on vacation, but in Bali I felt perfectly balanced because of all the healthy fruits and veggies. 



Fresh beet and green goddess mocktails at Potato Head Beach Club

Fresh beet and green goddess mocktails at Potato Head Beach Club

               young coconut at Shelter Cafe

               young coconut at Shelter Cafe

Go shopping! 

If you love finding a good bargain that you're going to love Bali. You can definitely negotiate a good deal with the vendors and boutique owners. They are always going to shoot high, so don't say yes at the first price! We got these incredible set of three handmade wooden bowls, a ceramic coffee serving set and multiple other things for our kitchen. I love buying things like that when we're traveling because now every time we use it we'll remember our trip! 

Eat local food

My favorite thing about traveling to a new place is trying the local cuisine. Yes, Bali has amazing cafes and western fare, but it's way more fun to try a dish that you have no idea what it's going to taste like! Try the nasi goreng or mei goreng which is fried rice or noodles, babi guling which is slow roasted pig, or nasi campur which is an assortment of small dishes surrounding rice. 

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Most importantly, enjoy yourself!

Seminyak is an incredible city. I am so happy we chose it as our first stop on our honeymoon and we will most definitely return someday. Please write a comment if there's anything else you're curious about when staying in Seminyak and I would be happy to help! I can't wait to share our next stops, the Nusa islands and Ubud with you! 


Our Wedding

Hello dear friends - it's been a while! 

I'm sure many of you have noticed, but if not WE GOT MARRIED! it's been a very blissful month to say the least. We spent the weeks leading up to the wedding with both of our families and all of our closest friends. Even in the hustle and bustle of making last minute wedding arrangements, hanging lights, painting signs, doing yard work, and running errands, we got to spend time with the people we love the most. It was such an incredible experience to have everyone we hold dearest to our hearts all in one place. It's only a couple of times in a lifetime when that happens and it was magical to have everyone there on the greatest day of our lives. 

The wedding was at my father's house in my hometown in Pierson, Florida. Since my dad is fern grower, it was really important to me to have fern be the main focus in all of our décor. Since the house is so rustic, I wanted neutral colors so that the fern and white flowers would really pop! I'm so happy with how everything turned out and it was amazing to see my vision come to life! You know how much we love food, so I think that was one of the hardest details to really nail down on the wedding. Since it was a rustic backyard wedding, we didn't want anything too pretentious and stuffy, but we also didn't want a straight up bbq. It ended up being exactly what I hoped for - and to be honest I was so consumed with the speeches and chatting with everyone that I wasn't even concerned about the food! My dad knew a cook who had a giant smoker, so he grilled the most tender filet mignon I've ever had and lemon pepper chicken (which I forgot to even taste!). For all of the sides we had roasted potatoes, grilled asparagus, and mushroom risotto and that was brought from a caterer! 

The hours leading up to the wedding were amazing being with all the girls going through the emotions of excitement and nerves. We spent the day sipping mimosas, opening gifts, jamming to Shania and Spice Girls, and they helped me deliver Thomas' note and gift to him. Since we both did speeches at the reception and traditional wedding vows at the ceremony, we wanted to exchange letters before the wedding that were essentially what we would have said had we written our own vows. It was one of the sweetest moments getting to read that letter beforehand - by that time I was SO ready to walk down the aisle to see him standing at the end.

Just a quick side story, at my college graduation Thomas and I had only been dating about 5 months and he got me a Marc Jacobs watch as a graduation gift. He engraved the underside of it with "what if we are extraordinary" with his name and the day we met. How freaking thoughtful right?! So for our wedding for his gift I got him a Hugo Boss watch and engraved it with "We are extraordinary" with our wedding date ❤️ I was so so excited to give it to him! You can see in one of the pictures below where we are holding hands around the corner of the house without looking at each other - and I'm looking down at his watch because he had just opened it! 

My biggest take-away from our wedding and from what I've heard from every single bride I've talked to, is to enjoy your day and do not sweat the little details because you're not going to know about it anyways. Apparently during our cocktail hour, there was no plates for our cheese board and people were just using napkins. Before the wedding, that little detail would have mortified me, but on that day I could have cared less and I didn't even know about it because we were taking pictures! After we had danced our butts off until 1 in the morning, everyone came up to us and said that it one of the best weddings they've ever been to, albeit them holding brie in their hands... So even if you have a small thing screw up, don't stress - it will be magical no matter what. 

Below is the sneak peek of our pictures! Carly Robertson did such an incredible job and captured our day perfectly. This is only 20 pics and I am so in love with them - I can't wait to get the rest! We also have a wedding video coming and I am dying to see it! I'll share that as well as soon as it comes.  I was so happy with all of our vendors and they are the best people to work with, so if you have a Florida wedding definitely use these folks! I have referenced everyone at the bottom of the post! 


Wedding Details & Vendors 

my dress - BHLDN // bridesmaids dresses - David's Bridal // Thomas' suit - Hugo Boss // groomsman ties - The Tie Bar // bridesmaids robes // Etsy // Photography - Carly Robertson Photography // Videographer - 5 Star Productions // Floral - Holly Pugh // 
Makeup - Camila Santos // Wedding Coordinator - Coastal Coordinating // Catering - Cocktails Catering  // Rentals - Special Event Services