December to Remember

Tom and I have been spoiled these last few months with how much we’ve been able to hang out with his parents. Just a few weeks after we left Alaska, Tom’s parents came down to San Francisco! We had such a wonderful time hitting the town with them. We saw a couple of movies, ate some delicious food and went on a small, but the best, wine tour ever.

So, I don’t have many photos to share of the fun that we had. It’s seems as though we were enjoying each others company so much so that we forgot to take out our cameras.

Here’s one of the Golden Gate as we crossed it to get to Sonoma.

We will have to plan a trip soon to see my in-laws. I don’t think I can wait until the summertime!

So, this past weekend, Tom and I went on a little adventure in the Oakland Hills. We discovered this amazing park with tons of hiking trails.

Mushroom hunting season started about two weeks ago, so there were some pretty large groups of them trickled along the trails. None that we could take home and cook though, which was a total bummer. But, nonetheless, we still had a good time.

Yesterday morning, Tom and I said farewell and good luck to our awesome and dear friend Mr. , oh wait, I mean Dr. Cameron Thrash. He will always carry a special place in my heart and I hope we get to visit him soon. Here’s my favorite photo of Cameron and Tom (: Good luck with your new adventures Cameron!!!

Another month has come and gone…

sophia and her baby blue eyes close up

Well, I know that most of you are probably thinking the same thing, but man oh man is time flying right now!

November came and went. It was full of working, tutoring, purse making and much, much more!

For the past 10 days or so, Tom and I vacationed in Fairbanks, Alaska and hung out with his family. Emily, Tom’s sister, just had a beautiful baby girl, so we spent a great deal of time oogling over her (:

a baby girl takes a nap on her uncles chest

There was a “birth”day party for Sophia, with a delicious cake that even had the number zero on it!

detail shot of a strawberry birthday cake

Coco got a bit jealous each time attention was poured over Sophia, so I made sure she got a little time in the spotlight.

dog walking towards to camera

Thanksgiving was full of yummy dishes made by all. Buck took care of some of the traditional items, Sue made a cool looking jello-mold that was filled with yummy-ness.

carving a turkey

family hanging out in the kitchen

Mike made salmon with pasta, Tom made samosas and green bean casserole. Emily made bananas fosters ice cream and I made pumpkin cheesecake, pecan pie and sweet potato pie.

We had enough food to survive for months! Eating leftovers the next day while still in my pajamas was the best part (:

Although it was 30 below when Tom and I arrived it warmed up to a bit above zero, so we took advantage and took a couple of walks in the snow.

lauren holding coco the dog in the middle of alaska snow

I also had a wonderful photo session with Emily, Mike and Sophia. Below are two of my favorite photographs. Very photogenic family!

sophia and her baby blue eyes close up

a man and wife kissing while holding their newborn baby girl

father holding his baby girl on his arm

Happy Halloween!

holding up a plate of yummy indian food

Tom and I were planning on making our way through the Guinness Book of World Records largest corn maze in celebration of this year’s Halloween. Unfortunately, the corn maze was damaged by storms and high winds last week, so we were forced to change our plans.

Instead, for our Halloween day, we decided to spend some of our wedding gift cards at Crate and Barrel and Cost Plus! We stock piled our kitchen with new pots and pans and got a few new baking items. My kind of shopping day.

a dog sits and watches his owner open boxes of stuff

For our Halloween night, we decided to stay in, order take out Indian Food YUM! and watch scary movies. It was really nice to relax at home with my wonderful husband and our spoiled perfect dog!

holding up a plate of yummy indian food

Hope you all had a wonderful Halloween. Here’s to an awesome November!


Seahorses Live!

jelly fish floating in an aquarium

happy couple in front of the ocean

Tom and I have been so happy to have our weekends back together. We’ve been enjoying them a great deal these last few months.

This past weekend Tom took me to see SEAHORSES! at the Monterey Bay Aquarium.

a happy girl standing in front of a seahorses exhibition

I never knew there were so many different types of them. We also saw a great white shark that was recently rescued, an octopus, penguins and a ton more animals.

a smiling bashful handsome man in front of a ship

peeking in on some sea life

jelly fish floating in an aquarium

GlobeTrotters U.S.A

a family standing in front of the yellowstone sign

Tom and I have been really lucky this summer in terms of getting to see our family.

Getting married was one excuse and we all know how fun that was. Since then, Tom and I have been to Wyoming, Catalina Island, and Michigan to see our family.

Cody, WY

We visited with the Ushers, Foxes and Calls. We all stayed in a huge cabin just outside of Yellowstone. Amazing views! On our first day we saw a Mama Moose with two of her youngsters. One the last day we saw the Papa Moose! What a sight that was. Grandma Usher had not met her two youngest great-grandchildren, so that was a treat for her. It was awesome to have all of us all together in one space. We drove down some excellent roads, ate some delicious meals and laughed a lot!


Catalina Island, CA

This was a quick trip, but worth it. Tom and I met up with Mom and Dad, Taylor, Maggie, and Tennyson, Daniel, Sam and Braden and Betsy and Dylan to relax and hang out. That we did. We toured around the city of Avalon for about half a day, then got ice cream and walked around the harbor. Braden and Dylan got to play in the sand for a couple of hours. Constant entertainment for me.
Grand Rapids, MI

Both of Tom’s Grandparents (on his Mom’s side) turned 80 this year! There was a family reunion organized to get everyone together to celebrate. I met Tom’s Grandmother, Lorraine, for the first time. We discovered where Tom gets his sarcastic edge (: Got to see Grandpa Bill again–always a treat. Emily and Mike made the trip, so we got to see her preggerbelly which is always fun. Also met Aunt Barb, Cousins Justin and Karen, Uncles Pat and Jim and some other folks from around the way. We learned how to play a game called “CornHole” Addictive and fun!

The same weekend we went to Michigan we took a day trip to Denver to see Matt and Liz get hitched! We only got to stay a few hours, but I’m glad we did. Had some great conversations, got to see the two love birds say “I do!” and hang with Gabe and Katie for some fun times!

Matt and Liz's Wedding

Along with traveling non-stop, Tom and I have also been enjoying the fruits of Tom’s labor. Our garden has been pretty darn successful considering the crazy weather we’ve had this summer. We’ve eaten fresh salads, used our herbs for chicken, and are awaiting our tomatoes that are just starting to turn red!

two white bowls filled with spinach tomatoes and dressing