This spring I took a long weekend with my Mikey to Austin. We had a serious talk about how hard we work, and how that allows us to play as hard as we'd like. During that conversation I promised myself that I wouldn't let this mantra die, and I made a silent promise to myself that I would travel somewhere every month, at least for the summer, but hopefully for the rest of forever.
So far, so good.
Our trip to New Orleans was pretty epic. There was good food, great drinks, drag queens, and stories we'll never tell anyone. I had multiple craft popsicles from a cute shop called Meltdown, a fantastic French 75 from Café Soulé, and came really close to buying a couple of voodoo dolls (and might have gotten cursed by a voodoo mistress).
All in all, I could not have asked for a better birthday weekend, or to have spent it with more fabulous people (except for maybe you, La).
As for my summer travels, we're thinking a weekend in Chattanooga may be on the books soon, and definitely some fun in Nashville. And, just maybe, New Years in New Orleans. Because we flippin' love that fabulously smelly place.
This past weekend my bestie Mikey and I (M+E) took a little trip to Austin.
Before I get too deep into our adventure, there are a couple of things I feel that I should lay out about Mikey and myself:
- Mikey and I have been friends for almost 11 years, and he's been my main plutonic squeeze for most of these. We're the finish-each-others-sentences, order-each-others-food, and can-have-a-whole-conversation-with-a-single-look kind of friends. It's pretty disgusting.
- We have a shared obsession with our jobs, the internet (he's IT, I'm web), lighting fixtures, and really ridiculous music. We both hate being sentimental, being any kind of formal, and poorly planned out restaurants.
- You either love us or you hate us. We're loud, maybe a little nuts, super opinionated, and painfully honest. We tend to be more than a little intimidating, but, if you can stand to be around us, I'm pretty sure we're some of the most fun people in the world.
- We have never traveled together. Somehow, we don't know, we've never been more than a couple of miles away from home together.
So, after years of planning trips that never happened, we finally just bought plane tickets to go see our friends Laura and Josh in Austin. It would be our big adventure. You know, the one that determines just how tolerable we are of each other. And which one would be the champion and come home still alive.
Come to find out, we're still awesome and alive, and the trip to Austin was one of the best trips I've had maybe ever.
On our little adventure to Austin we did lots of fun stuff, like a trek around the Mansfield Dam area of Lake Travis, a couple of nights partying on 4th and 6th street, shopping and eating on South Congress Ave, and some yummy dinners and laughs courtesy of the magnificent cooking abilities of our friend La.
The trip was actually pretty nuts, with a concentration of moose knuckles, a couple of weird encounters and propositions, an exotic hamburger shirt, and a horse head. We listened to Work by Iggy Azalea too many times, and maybe had a few too many Cape Cods and Gin and Tonics. Maybe not, though.
And with that we're planning trip #2. We're going to test the bounds of this friendship to the extreme. I think our goal is to find a city that will actually kick us and our shenanigans out.
If you want to see our photo fest from this trip, checkout my Instagram and all the #meaustin images.
Photos above are a mixture of iPhone and DSLR images, taken by Mikey, Laura, and myself.
Every time I sit down to write a blog post these days all I can think about writing about is how insane our schedule is right now. Launching Indie Spaces, launching the Silver Screen Project, having a 4 year old, and still trying to catch up on Christmas emails and new projects; it's all quite intense.
It's not something that I want to talk about all the time. And I'm having problems getting past that to think up actual blog topics.
This is one of the biggest reasons I'm so excited to be leaving it all behind tomorrow for a 5-day retreat to Salt Lake City for Alt Summit.
Alt Summit last year shaped my entire year. It fueled my rebrand, introduced me to people that have been pivotal in my businesses and life, and fed the flame of my creativity.
I won't lie, though. I've thought many times about canceling this trip altogether. I'm not going for the talks (I have never seen myself as a blogger, though I guess I really kind of am), I'm going for the people. I'm going for the inspiration and networking. I'm going to hang out and dream big with my creative pals. I'm going to widen my tribe of awesome women (and a few men, too).
And, for those reasons, I'm returning to SLC this week to revamp my creative drive. And a little snowboarding, too. And... maybe to snag a peek of Jessica Alba. Because that's just cool.
Now, I still have to figure out what I'm going to pack.
This is our last weekend in the mountains.
When we moved to the mountains in May of 2010 we knew that we would not stay here long. We got here knowing we'd be out in about 2 years. That was almost 2.5 years ago.
David graduated from his master's program in June, and he's been job searching ever since.
Though life in the mountains is pretty inexpensive, and comparably lush, we'll soon be trading in our 3-story cabin townhouse with it's spectacular views for a much smaller place in our hometown.
We could stick it out in the mountains a little longer, as we'd originally planned to do, but the prospect of cutting our monthly expenses by over 60% is a little too good to pass up.
And so, next week we'll be packing up and moving back to our hometown.
While David continues his job search we'll spend the coming months living near our families, being around our friends, and living in a city with a Target.
Oh, and I'll be able to see the local wine shop from the front yard of our downtown apartment, just a mere block and a half away. Can't forget that.
Here's to our next adventure. Home or bust.
The past three weeks have been a fabulous whirlwind of family and friends.
In mid-June we packed up our car and headed north. Stop number one was northern Indiana to visit my grandmother.
We hung out in rural Indiana for a week, playing Skip-Bo, eating food that made me miss my childhood, and visiting Lake Michigan. It was wonderful.
Our second stop was our hometown. I got to see my family, and half of David's, as the other half was waiting for us down south. We spent a few days resting before piling in the car for our third stop.
Soon we found ourselves in Gulf Shores, meeting up with the rest of David's family. We hung out on the beach, played in the pool, and ate seafood. Lots of seafood.
We drove north again for another stop in our hometown, this time filled with catching up with friends, attending my bestie's engagement party, and playing lots more Skip-Bo.
And then, three weeks after we first set off, we headed home to the mountains. The trip, in all, was a huge 3,000 miles, and worth every one.
But boy is it great to be home.