Sunday, March 22, 2015

Midnight Oil

Hello, friends. I'm here to tell you about some things that didn't get on the blog last post (which was ONLY 7 days ago; so yay me for blogging more than once every other month).

So last month my family and I made our way over to California for my Grandpa's memorial service. He passed away last fall and so it was finally time to celebrate his life amongst family and friends.

We got to California a day before the service, so we took some time out to do something you can't do in Arizona...go to the beach. There's definitely none of those in Arizona. I've checked. So on a Friday afternoon we walked along the most empty beach I've ever seen in all the times I've been to California. I guess a week day, in the middle of the afternoon, in February has that effect on beaches. Either way, we certainly enjoyed the solitude. Even Nate. He goes, "You know, it's nice not to have like, an agenda or anything to do. We can do whatever we want right now." That means Nate was relaxed. And Nate's never relaxed so that was a bonus.

We even let our inner 10-year-old-selves come out as we charged every flock of seagulls we came upon...
...Cause I feel like as 28 year-old adults we just don't get that chance often enough.

My parents and sister finally arrived not too long after we did.
We were exchanging video messages all morning on our way over since we were in two different vehicles so we thought we should rub it in that we got to the beach first and that we rule and they drool. So we started recording a quick snippet and Nate laid down the hammer with, "Just cause you're old doesn't mean you have to drive like it." And then my mom threatened our safety and called us names. Well deserved, I suppose.

After making a pit stop for a soft pretzel with cheese, some nachos (also with cheese) and a few Diet Cokes, we finally made it to the pier at Huntington Beach:
By the time we were on our way back it was basically sunset, and the wannabe yogi in me couldn't resist a yoga pic:
In another life I teach yoga and my yoga account is Instagram famous and I get paid to record yoga videos and I get free yoga pants that have different variations of sunflowers on them. But that's not this life, that's another life. That's completely and totally made up. And will never happen.

The next day was the service at the country club my Grandpa had been a part of for so many years.
My sister and I and our cousins, his granddaughters.
Building antique cars was his thing for most (if not, all) of his adult life, so his friends drove theirs to the service as one last ode to my Grandpa. It was cool, and neat, and touching for everyone.
The microphone was passed around throughout the afternoon and many of his closest friends and family members stood up to speak. They told a funny story, or described a favorite character trait of his, or even had a good laugh at some of his worst. Hearing these things helps you forget the sadness for a little while and instead become immersed in the absolute best of times. The kind of memories that take you there so much so, that you're jarred back to the present when you're finished remembering.

My grandpa built a car called Midnight Oil.
He built it, and he tuned it, and he raced it for a lot of years. He won awards with it. He repaired it when it needed repairs. He improved it when he wanted it better.
You could say the same about his life. A self-made, hard-working kind of man. He built it, his life. He tuned it, so that it was the kind of life he wanted. And he was rewarded for it, with a wonderful family. ...and also lots of rounds of golf in retirement. 

May your car fly fast, and the midnight oil burn forever, Grandpa.


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Sunday, March 15, 2015

The Catch-up Kind of Post

So I decided I should blog today and when I went to click on the "Blogspot" bookmark I have saved in my browser, I almost didn't recognize it. Blogger?? What does that do? BloggING?? What's that?? It's been over a month since I blogged. Ugh. I really don't mean for it to be that way, in fact, when every Sunday afternoon comes around I'm like "I should get the blog caught up!" But then I end up just sitting on the couch watching a game and drinking wine instead. Oops. Productivity is not my strong suit....I have no idea how I made it through college.

Anyway, let's try and get up to speed eh? So let's see, we basically have all of February to catch up on; so we celebrated birthdays - namely, mine and my sisters'. The dirty thirty for her and the not dirty thirty for me (yay for being the youngest!). Happy birthday to Audrey:
Happy birthday to me:
Please just look at this cake my mom made me for my birthday:
It's an ice cream cake with a brownie bottom, with ice cream with Reese's and Butterfingers blended in, hot fudge, Cool Whip, and then topped with candy and more hot fudge. I told her she should open an Etsy shop for ice cream cakes.

So then to celebrate my birthday I wanted to do something fun over the weekend. We decided on taking the quad out for a ride - unbeknownst to me that rain was forecasted over the weekend. So when it was brought to my attention that it was supposed to rain on Saturday we just bought some rain gear and packed some extra layers. But boy did it rain. Like, so much that it was no match for our rain gear and extra layers.
Just for the record, in this photo I'm wearing jeans, rain pants, a long sleeve t-shirt, a hooded sweatshirt, a wind breaker, and my rain jacket. 
And I still got pretty wet. That's ok though, cause it was an adventure and it was still fun and it makes for a good story. Like how we had ended up having to turn around and come back cause we were literally driving into the storm and the rain stung so bad when it hit your face as you drove. My father-in-law said, "It stings like shit!

Also, mud-face is a good look for me right??

Birthday festivities continued a la a mexican food date with Kailey since she was out of town for my actual birthday (rude). But she made up for it with said mexican food, beer, and selfies in the bathroom.

We also celebrated Valentines Day in February in which Nate and I didn't do much, but I will say, he made me breakfast in bed:
Really though, he gave me these and I immediately opened them ate them for breakfast while still in bed. Like, well over half of the bag. Nate goes, "I figured you might do that."

So far in March I've spent time with girlfriends over dinner and drinks and telling funny stories about when we were young. I've known these girls since we were kids at church, which means we can all share in the pain that is wanting to go home right after church but your parents won't. stop. talking. to people. Life is rough when you're a kid and you just sat through a boring sermon and all you wanna do is go home and change into your play clothes but your parents just won't stop socializing with their friends.

We celebrated another birthday; my little niece Miley turned two and she just gets cuter and cuter by the day.

She gets the same look on her face when she eats cake as I do...

Also, here's a picture of Nate and I with the dogs that I kind of love:
Gang's all here.

I think that's where I'll stop for now. I have more stuff but not enough brain juice to get it up on this here internet machine and put some sentences together to make it sound interesting. Hopefully it won't take me another six weeks to get it posted...can't make any promises though (insert winky face emoji with tongue sticking out).

Happy Monday peeps!


 photo Carissa_zps53ecb502.png

Sunday, February 8, 2015

The Hap Chap

Hi. I'm here to write about what's been happening lately. Or, as my mom sometimes says when she texts me, "what's the hap chap?!" So, I'm here to tell you the "hap;" cause it's been two weeks since I've showed up around these parts. Not that there's been a lot going on. In fact, the rest of this post will probably be a little boring...cause my life is a little boring. But I like my life so it's ok, you don't have to feel bad for me.

One of the less-boring...scratch that, one of the fun things that happened last weekend included a day trip to the lake for some fishing. You might not actually call it a "day" trip cause we weren't really out there all day since we ended up getting rained out. But we were there until like, the afternoon which is more than 50% of the day so we can round up and call it a day trip right? Either way, what I'm trying to say is...it was fun.
We spent a good chunk of the morning (I'm being dramatic, it was probably more like 30 minutes) fishing for not fish, but for Nate's bait that got snagged and stuck under a rock. Why do you spend 30 minutes trying to retrieve your bait that got snagged under a rock?? Cause it was $17, that's why. You can't just leave $17 sitting underneath a rock in the middle of Canyon Lake.
He got it un-stuck though, so don't worry. Cause he's Nate and he figures everything out.
We took a break from fishing and cruised around the Lake for a little bit, which leads us to the next segment of this blog post:
 Let's play, how many Bighorn Sheep can you spot in the following photo:
The answer is three. And you can't see them here, but in total we spotted nine Bighorn Sheep - two herds and one loner. Just hanging out, scaling the side of the canyon, like the Bighorn Sheep they are.

Next game: how many waterfalls can you spot in the following photo:
The answer is three. There's three waterfalls. Oh Arizona, you are magnificent and I love you so much.

Per the usual, I wanted to get a picture with Nate to document the day's events. I'm like, "Nate come take a picture with me." And he's like, "I'm fishing." So then I was like, "yeah I know, but come take picture anyway." And then he said, "I take fishing seriously, Carissa.
I didn't say it but I wanted to be like, yeah and I take picture-taking seriously, Nathan, so put the pole down for just a minute and come stand next to me puh-lease. Although, that's the usual battle that ensues when I want to take a picture. For example:

Switching gears slightly, wanna know what my new favorite thing is? It's this:
Smirnoff light flavored vodka and sparkling water. This is probably nothing new to everyone else, but since I hardly ever venture out of the wine aisle, this is new to me. I tried it for the first time with my girlfriends before we headed out to the Eric Church concert two weeks ago, and now it's my go-to. I mean, nothing can replace wine (duh) but I'm pretty sure this has less calories than a glass of Pinot. And that's what I need these days - less calories. Although they never put nutrition facts on bottles of alcohol so what do I know. Anyway, try it. It's tasty.

You know what else is tasty? Fried mac and cheese balls. I ate them Superbowl Sunday. I wasn't by any stretch of the imagination, invested in the Superbowl this year, but I told my mom hey, if you wanna make a bunch of food and have us over and call it a Superbowl party, I'll come and eat all your food. And that's what we did. We ate homemade fried mac and cheese balls, fajitas, and all sorts of chips and dips and drinks and things. We even brought the Cornhole inside and got in a game or two.
I showed up ready and reppin' my team:
Wait hold on, there's no baseball in the Superbowl?? Damnit.

Anyway, I'll leave you with this picture of Gunther, cause he's so desperate for attention as as though he doesn't get enough...
Hi it's me. It's Gunther. Don't forget I'm right here. It's Gunther, just a reminder. I'm here and I love you and please pay attention to me. It's Gunther.

Happy Monday friends!

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