Saturday, April 14, 2018

FIVE YEARS TOGETHER

**Mushiness Warning**

The other day, when we were folding laundry or some other mundane task, Heather looks at me and said "Thanks for doing all the life stuff with me. Not just the fun, exciting stuff." And I totally melted. We have fun doing silly, stupid stuff, and it's really the simple moments that mean the most. One of the things I love most about Heather is how she makes "something out of nothing" (a Shovel and Rope lyric I quote a lot), like lighting candles and turning on the record player before I come home from work. (She knows how I feel about lighting... its important things like this that make a relationship, right?!) Making normal life moments something to remember.

While we did all the big life stuff pretty early, like getting Mozey and buying a house in 6 months 😁, we didn't rush the traditional commitment stuff. The last 2.5 years of being engaged and married have been hard. We lost Heather's dad, planned a wedding with no family in our city, and generally had a lot of ups and downs. I won't bullshit you and say we haven't fought and taken each other for granted. But in the end, I am always grateful to have a partner that I love and trust, and who I know loves and trusts me right back.

Last night Heather and I celebrated 5 years together! I cannot believe it has been FIVE YEARS! Half a decade! Five spins around the sun! In five years, we've bought one house, one camper, adopted Mozey, seen the birth of our two nieces, adopted a 2nd dog (Gertie post coming soon), had countless Florida and PA trips and left the country together once (finally!). I don't know if most married people celebrate their dating anniversary, but 4.13.13 was an important day in my life and one I'll never forget, so I intend on celebrating it forever! Last year, I was deep in wedding planning hell (have I mentioned that I hate planning?!) and missed writing an update. But, if you are so intrigued, check out my posts from two years and three years!


We didn't have any set plans last night, which meant we went where the wind took us, and it was lovely! We started out at a new West Asheville beer spot called The Whale and each had a tasty, obscure IPA. It was a gorgeous day and we both wanted to spend some time in the sun with the pups. Also, adorable pups means people come say hey and you get to make them take your photo. Win win!




We tried walking to the nearby Oyster House for a snack and another drink, but it was totally crowded and we got really overwhelmed by the barking dogs. Our two dogs and Heather's crutches became too much, so we took the pups home and decided to take advantage of her Handicapped Parking pass and brave downtown on a Friday night. Most locals avoid downtown Asheville (almost always, but ESPECIALLY on a weekend) but we were feeling brave! 

We ended up at Hemingway's, the new rooftop bar at the Cambria hotel and it was lovely. Waiting 30 minutes for a drink was not, but the view made up for it! We had ceviche and plantain tostadas and they were both delish! 




The Cambria is right by the Grove Arcade and as we were leaving Heather suggested we stop by the Battery Park Book Exchange and Champagne Bar, where we got engaged! It is one of the coolest bars anyway, with the winding passageways and stacks of books, but it clearly has special meaning to us. 




It was a beautiful night and our no-plan plan just rolled smoothly - I love when that happens! Here's to many more years with my favorite human!



Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Easter Weekend 2018

This long Easter weekend was simple and beautiful!

We kicked things off camping in Brevard at the Davidson River Campground. Brevard is a totally gorgeous little town with a cool connection to music and right in Pisgah National Forest. It's where we got married and this particular campground was Heather's late father's favorite spot. So, needless to say, it was a no-brainer for our first camping trip of the year!



Anyway, it was a beautiful weekend, if not a bit chilly! Our friends Aubrey, Eric, Allie and DJ joined us and we feasted, laughed and frolicked around the campground. As you do. Oh, and took a million photos of our dogs next to/near/around the camper. I mean...















Back at home Sunday morning, Heather and I walked to a church that meets near our house and really enjoyed it. It was a tiny group of people, sort of conversational and very welcoming. Felt right for Easter! We also camp home to a package from my parents. Every year they send us the same chocolate easter eggs with our names on them that my sister and I got as kids. A sweet little local chocolate shop makes them and it's still exciting as an adult! The rest of the day, we mowed the lawn, hung up hammocks in the back yard and drank some beers with our friends. Twas lovely all around!




Sunday, March 4, 2018

A Unique Heart Day with Cottage Cooking

This year for Valentine's Day Heather and I did something a little different. Usually, we are boring and cook a nicer-than-normal-meal or go out to eat. But one of my dear friends (Thanks, Caro + Alex) gave us a cooking class as a wedding present, and we decided to redeem it on Valentine's Day.

Liisa and John at Cottage Cooking could not have been kinder hosts. Our certificate actually expired at the end of last year, but they let me use it in February, AND I emailed them about Heather being on crutches and they were quick to assure me they could accommodate her.


We arrived, BYOB vino in hand, around 6 and got right to it! We started out slicing the main ingredient to make Hasselback potatoes, something I've seen and never made. Next up, was brie and raspberry jam in puff pastry and the main course: Salmon en Papillote. En Papillote means "in paper" and this is such a genius and cool way to cook it. We wrapped green onion, lemon, asparagus, garlic, compounded butter and white wine in the parchment paper with the fresh salmon and it turned out moist and delish!




When everything was ready, we all sat down to eat together! Our hosts and the other couple had all traveled extensively and Heather and I had just returned from France. Travel and bucket list dreaming is always an easy topic of conversation and it was cool to learn about everyone's favorite destinations.


After dinner, we made creme brulee! I have to say, I really want a blow torch now, it was so satisfying!





It was cool to make dishes I would regularly deem too fancy, and realize how simple they were! I never go for presentation, always flavor. Now I am inspired! We are planning to cook this menu for my mom while she is in town and hopefully she'll be reallll impressed. Although she does live with an amazing cook, so I'll have to bring it.

After leaving, Heather and I agreed it would be a super cool activity to do with friends or another couple. It would also be a cool way to meet new people if you are new to town. I highly recommend Cottage Cooking for a cool date night, girls night or as an individual! Huge thanks to our friends for a very cool and original gift!