celebrating love with a backyard soirée
celebrating love with a backyard soirée
We went to Sonoma.
We saw. We conquered. I plan to blog about it in full detail soon… I took entirely way too many pictures (is there such a thing?) and I’m semi-depressed it’s over.
We will return, hopefully sooner rather than later.
What a dream trip!
A syncing of photos from the iPhone to the Air reminded me I had a story I wanted to post. Over Christmas holiday, I was reunited with my five close girlfriends from high school. Most of them attend our annual girl’s trip. We had a 2-hour time span where our schedules would overlap and we could spend some time connecting. It was decided, a midweek brunch at The Kenwood. Fresh snow had fallen and we stomped our way into this beautifully-decorated dining spot.
Plaid wall paper, horse hooks for your coat and mismatched framed art with vintage lamps.
In true Minnesotan form, we wore “your-car-might-get-stuck-in-the-snow-and-you-have-to-walk” boots of all kinds. A staple in any Midwestern girl’s wardrobe.
The great part about this group is, we can be literally ANYWHERE and fully appreciate the time we spend together. We will laugh on the side of the street in Vancouver. Bundle up in white bathrobes and be morally supportive of the tallest girl singing “Bohemian Rhapsody” to a half-empty room on a cruise ship. Enjoy a day drinking shopping spree in downtown Chicago. We can be anywhere, at any time, and enjoy every moment of it.
In true fashion, brunch was spectacular. We dined on a handful of delicious plates, I had an Omelette Florentine and we all toasted to friendship and forward momentum.
And what happens after we dine + cheers? We laugh and pass around Carla’s beautiful wedding ring (does AJ know this is a tradition?) as we talk about the future and everything we are looking forward to.
These ladies make me whole again. Cheers to a new year and another year of being blessed with these girlfriends.
Carla (Florida), Molls (Minn), Meg (Colorado), Rach (Georgia), Kates (Arizona), and me
So incredibly happy,
One more selife to complete the adventure. The last two standing. Waiting on the tram platform to take us to SeaTac.
I’m going to miss getting coffee-to-go and dancing in the streets. Giggling and taking the sights in. Dayshopping in Gastown and sampling pastries at Nelson the Seagull. Dining at The Lamplighter and watching coked-out Canadians holler inappropriate commentary at the top of their lungs only semi-fearing for our lives.
Good mornnnnnnnnning, Vietnam!!!!!!!!! I mean, Vancouver! What an early morning. This apartment has many rooms and 90% of them are lined with windows that show off our spectacular view on the 16th floor of this building.
We found that the large mirrors in the foyer turn out to be great group photo tools. And we all know I love photos.
We searched for a solid breakfast joint and we absolutely found it. Well, it took a little bit of adventure on E Hastings Street where literally, all of the heroin addicts of this providence are located.. Slightly nerve-racking, more about that later.
Breakfast takes place at a coffee + waffle spot called Cafe Medina. It’s a spot where there’s a wait, always, and well worth it. There’s fresh waffles in the entryway window. We ordered coffees (lavender latte for me) and enjoyed the fresh air out front while we waited. Foam heart etched into mine. #lucky
Half hour wait and then we’re in! The place seemed to have 15-20 tables and every single plate brought out from the kitchen looked fabulous. We perused the menu and decided on cocktails to start. It doesn’t matter that it’s 10am when you order your first cocktail when you’re on vacation. Moll had a Moroccan Mimosa while the rest of us ordered Medina Lemonades: sparkling water, lavender, gin and mint.
For $4.15 you could order a single homemade waffle and unique topping. We ordered the waffle + white chocolate pistachio rosewater. And another waffle + fig orange marmalade. The rosewater pistachio was stupid good. Like, are you kidding? What is this stuff? Heaven??
For an entree, Kate’s and I split the Saumon Fume: open faced ciabatta sandwich- fried egg, smoked salmon, caper cream cheese, sliced avocado, arugula, peppadew and artichoke salad. Yum.
The rest of the afternoon, we wandered round Gastown and peeked in different boutiques. One called Meadow. Cute little gifts and baby things. This mug called my name – the quote speaks true to my life – always on the go.
And there was a small white shelf of little stuffed handmade animals. I knew my mama woulda bought them all, cause she’s cute like that. They made me want a child immediately. Then I remembered said child needs diaper changes every 90 minutes and has screaming tantrums on the daily and I decided a photo would suffice…
We grabbed java at Smart Mouth Cafe – cute presentation and the creamiest chai teas.
I kept seeing my new Brooks running shoes in a new light and falling in love with them all over again. No buyers remorse here.
Different boutiques had necklaces, pictures, glassware, throw pillows. Everything was lit with shadows and modern lines. I found a horse print I wanted to buy my mama but thought $1,500 was a tad pricey. Sorry mama…
A clothing boutique had a circular book stack for their dressing room. Really?? What a cool touch!
After we thoroughly explored Gastown, we kept hiking and out front of Nelson the Seagull I realized I had to pee right NOW! In exchange for a bathroom visit, I bought a chocolate croissant.
Apparently on Wednesdays they have free yoga in the middle of their cafe and afterwards, everyone has a big family dinner. How awesome? They make their own bread and the emptied tables looked as though the patrons had been there for hours and talked about the deepest of secrets together. What a great spot.
We jumped to a highly recommended place called Rodney’s for bloody Mary’s. I mean, Caesars… they use clamato juice and therefore their bloodies are called something different. We spent a good two hours there, quizzing the oyster boys and enjoying ourselves at the bar. Our bartender, Joel, even shredded fresh horseradish for us – divine!
Megan texted and said she’s finally made it so we paid our bills and hightailed it out of there. We hiked back to the apartment, found Megan, and lounged for awhile at home. Dinner took place around 9:30pm at Tap & Barrel. I was too full from the day, but everything the girls had looked amazing and made me promise I would experience the spot at some point.
I love love love these girls. And I love our memories.
Tomorrow is Friday. A new day in ‘Couve
Drum roll… here’s my new Facebook timeline. I really like to customize my messenger bags and iPhone cases when I can. This particular photo is a mug of the house coffee brew at St. Francis in Phoenix, AZ. We enjoyed a relaxing brunch there on a Sunday morning. Our second annual girls trip took us away for a weekend to Arizona where K is living. (side note : we have a standing trip each year – girls vacation – and 2011 took us to the beautiful Monte Lucia Resort & Spa nestled on Camelback Mountain in Scottsdale.)
We gather from all over the nation (MN, KS, FL, AZ) for a weekend of debauchery, drinking, laughing, delicious meals, pool time, spas, and lots of sun worshipping. These are a few of my closest and dearest friends on the planet.
The backdrop was a beautiful mountain, and one morning it rained – causing large puddles in the grass. I choose the morning activity of dance-stomping in the rain puddles, at the base of a mountain, with all of my best friends as witnesses.
It didn’t matter what time of day – we cheers’ed to friendship, life, love, the pursuit of happiness – every chance we got. I’m a big fan of cheers’ing, toasting, acknowledging togetherness. Starting with Iced Soy Caramel Macchiatos at the airport, and finishing with bloody marys and mimosas.
It’s true when they say the greatest part about life are your experiences and interactions with people : your relationships. I would be nothing without my friends.
I have been so fortunate to grow up with a solid group of ladies. We currently are spread across the nation (Arizona, Florida, used to be Kansas & Wisconsin, and good ole’ Minnesota). The fact that we all have iPhones [of course], facilitates the high number of group messages we send back and forth on a regular basis. I don’t know what I would do without these fabulous women. They are inspiring and encouraging, hilarious and courageous… when I look forward 50 years… to my lifestyle at the age of 74… it is with these incredible ladies that I will be rocking on my wooden chair – facing the west, watching the sunset – or maybe skinny dipping in the lake after a round of Apples to Apples and St. Germain cocktails. Wherever life takes us, money couldn’t buy the caliber of people that I’m blessed to call my girlfriends.
[this doesn’t discount my other girlfriends outside of high school… or the large number of men I call my best guys… there is plenty of love to go around… just needed to shout to the Original6 for a moment]
Katie, Carley, Megan, Molly and Rachel.
i heart you.