10 Things: Fall Edition

1. This is my first “10 things” blog post and I am going to start doing them seasonally! I think they’re a great way to catch up and share little life details that otherwise wouldn’t make it into a blog post. There is magic in the mundane! I also love reading other bloggers “10 things” posts so that’s kind of what inspired me.

2. This is my first time experiencing fall in Virginia/on the East Coast and let me tell y’all, it’s the real deal. Summer has always been my favorite season but fall is a close second. It’s been somewhat of a late and dry fall but the Blue Ridge Mountains are covered in deep, dramatic hues of yellow, orange, and red. It’s such a beautiful, romantic time of the year.

3. Apple picking. And apple cider donuts. Enough said. Check out my previous post.

4. I’m really stoked for Halloween this year! There are tons of kids in our neighborhood so I’m excited to hand out candy to all the cute little trick or treaters. We never got trick or treaters when we lived in Boulder so it’ll be fun for us. And our next door neighbor is having a Halloween party!

5. We are still in the process of decorating our house and I don’t know if we will ever be “finished” haha but I’m really enjoying the process of finding our personal home style as a family- minimalist, clean, cozy, modern, and organic (aka lots of indoor plants).

6. My not-so-new favorite Netflix show is Friends. Jennifer Aniston is goals. I think everyone can agree on that! Tyler and I recently watched all 10 seasons.

7. I’m grateful that we will be spending Thanksgiving here in Richmond this year. I’ve traveled home to Louisiana every Thanksgiving for the past 6 years (except 1 year) and it’s nice that we can just stay here, be with family, and relax. It’s one of my favorite holidays but it’s also probably the most expensive and stressful holiday to travel. We plan on making a bunch of vegan dishes! It’s all about the sides.

8. I started a new job last month as a recruiting consultant. High five to adulting & paychecks!

9. We have been thriving and loving eating a whole foods plant based diet. I never feel deprived because we make so many delicious plant based meals at home. I feel amazing and more in tune with my body than ever. This is legitimately how humans are designed to eat for optimal health. Plus I’m not contributing to any animal cruelty! Now that it’s gotten cooler we are making more soups, stews, and warming foods.

10. Tyler, Waldo, and I escaped to the mountains this weekend and it was so rejuvenating. Much needed time as a family in nature. We cooked, hiked, and just unplugged. Here are some photos from our weekend!

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Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park

This post is long overdue but better late than never! Tyler and I rented an Airbnb in southwestern Colorado about 2 weeks before we got married as a little pre-wedding getaway! Our Airbnb was an awesome, remote cabin in Cimarron, Colorado on multiple acres in the mountains. We knew the chaos and excitement of all the wedding festivities were going to start up soon so we figured it would be good for us to have a mini vacay. We both went on our separate bachelor/bachelorette trips but we wanted to go somewhere as a family (Waldo included, of course) before we officially tied the knot! I highly suggest doing this with your spouse just to ground yourselves and relax before your big day. We made campfires and s’mores every night and just enjoyed being in nature together. Waldo had a blast running around in the woods. It’s such a beautiful and underrated area of Colorado!

One day we explored the Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park. This was my 5th National Park! Forewarning, if you are afraid of heights or get vertigo easily, this is not the national park for you haha. All the lookout points along the main park road were literally right on edge of the cliffs looking straight down and some of them even hanging out and over into the canyon. The canyon is deep, steep, and vast carved out by the Gunnison River. It was truly breathtaking! Our favorite spots were Chasm View and Painted Wall. This was by far the biggest, most beautiful canyon I’ve ever seen!

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We Moved to Virginia!

In late July, we started a new adventure and moved to Richmond, Virginia! We will miss Colorado and always reminisce on all the wonderful memories we have from our time living in Boulder. I lived there for about 6 years and Tyler for about 5. We both had the BEST college experience at CU Boulder. We made such amazing friends, had SO much fun, took full advantage of the beautiful Rocky Mountains, and went out with a bang by getting married at Chautauqua. But it was time for a new adventure for this little family!

Boulder is very much a college town, which makes it such a blast, but we eventually grew out of that party scene, especially as a young married couple. We also both really missed the South. Richmond is Tyler’s hometown and where most of his family lives. This was definitely an attractive factor because family is important to us. Tyler’s family is so awesome and I’m blessed to call them my family now! We thought long and hard about our decision to move and made the choice very intentionally, considering all factors.

Richmond is a really cool/hip, charming, sleepy Southern city with so much to do! You get the best of both worlds because it’s an hour to the Blue Ridge Mountains and 2 hours to the beach. We are living in a great house in a precious neighborhood and we are loving it! There are cute little neighborhood grocery stores, restaurants, and old pharmacies. The weather is also another underrated factor we considered, Virginia truly has 4 beautiful seasons. It’s the dead heat of summer right now and it’s honestly pleasant (plus I love the humidity). It’s truly the perfect place for us to start our lives together and we look forward to all our adventures on the East Coast!

Here are some beautiful pictures that Tyler took at Pippin Hill Vineyard and Farm when the limelight hydrangeas were in full bloom. Virginia is so dreamy y’all. I’m falling more and more in love with Richmond and the Blue Ridge Mountains!

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Kaua’i Paradise

The last of our pictures from our honeymoon in Kauai!! I fell in love with this island. We already want to go back to do more and see more of its wonder! These are miscellaneous pictures that we took throughout the trip. Here is a little mini travel guide of things we recommend doing in paradise!

Kauai To Do: 

  • HIKE the Kalalau Trail along the Na Pali Coast to Hanakapiai Beach (4 miles roundtrip)
  • SNORKEL at Tunnels Beach, Ke’e Beach, & on the Na Pali Coast
  • BOAT with Na Pali Experience along the Na Pali Coast into the sea caves
  • SWIM at Hanalei Bay Beach (and jump off the pier!) & Queen’s Bath
  • EAT as much seafood, fresh fruit, & sushi as possible but a few of our favorites were Trucking Delicious, Sushi Girl, The Dolphin, St. Regis Makana Terrace, Wishing Well Shaved Ice, Kauai Bread Co., Shaved Ice Paradise, & Foodland (they have tons of yummy local stuff and their poke is delicious)
  • DRINK fresh coconuts from fruit stands, Kauai Juice Company, Kauai Coffee Company, Aloha Maid canned drinks, Aloha Juice Bar, & Koloa Rum
  • LUAU at Smith Family Garden in the Wailua River State Park
  • MEET locals at Ha’ena Beach Park, Hanalei Beach Pavilion, Hanalei Pier, & Hanalei Farmer’s Market
  • PACK as light as possible, only the essentials (no closed toed shoes!)
  • RENT a jeep, snorkel gear, & surf or SUP boards
The prettiest church ever in Hanalei. They have a ceremony in Hawaiian every Sunday.
In a red ginger forest fairyland. Pure bliss!

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Napali Coast Adventures

We stayed in Hanalei, Kauai for our honeymoon and it was such a dream!! The island of Kauai is magical and absolutely breathtaking everywhere you look. We explored pretty much the entire island however, we spent most of our time on the north shore. A few of our favorite things were the flowers, waterfalls, rainbows, food, marine life, mountains, beaches, seafood, and tropical fruit. Kauai is definitely called the garden island for a reason! It was seriously the best week of our lives!! We have so many pictures from our trip so our trip to Kauai will be broken down into a few blog posts.

The highlight of our trip was definitely the Napali Coast! We boated, hiked, and snorkeled the Napali Coast. We set out on an early morning boat trip on our second day with Napali Experience which was amazing! We chose this trip mostly because the type of boats they use are best for going in and out of the sea caves along the coast. The snorkel spot we went to was also pretty killer! We saw many spinner dolphins, sea turtles (Honus), flying fish, and a MONK SEAL! It was super special to admire and float around with a monk seal. They’re endangered and super rare to see. The majestic old man was just hanging out near the reef where we were snorkeling and we were just checking each other out. He actually reminded us a lot of Waldo hahaha!! Unfortunately, I didn’t get footage of this because I put the GoPro back on the boat.

Another day we hiked the Kalalau Trail  to Hanakapiai Beach which is a 4 mile roundtrip hike. It was cool to explore the Napali Coast on foot and to hike through the jungle. The views were spectacular the entire trail! We relaxed and wandered in the caves at Hanakapiai Beach. It’s crazy to think that all the sea caves completely fill up with water in the winter months. Tyler was brave enough to crawled through a cave into another which was pretty cool. Hawaii changes the game with hiking to beaches. It’s the best! One day we will definitely backpack the entire Kalalau Trail (22 miles roundtrip)! After our hike we snorkeled at Ke’e Beach (which is at the trailhead) to cool off 🙂

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Boreas Pass Camping Trip

Over the weekend we camped at the summit of Boreas Pass near Breckenridge in Summit County! We were all itching for an extended dose of mother nature so we packed our packs and hit the road. Spontaneous camping trips are so fun! It was not a far drive from the Boulder/Denver area at all and it was so incredibly beautiful! We camped pretty much right at tree line so around 11,000 ft. There were even still a few patches of pink (bacteria) snow on the mountains. We found the perfect camping spot nestled in the trees with a stunning panoramic view. There were tons of wild bluebells, indian paintbrushes, and purple daises all around. We ate completely paleo while camping- cashews, apples, sliced turkey, hard boiled eggs, and cracklins/pork rinds. It’s most efficient to bring protein rich foods backpacking and camping. I love unplugging and running around with Tyler and Waldo in the mountains!

home is wherever we are together
home is wherever we are together
view from our spot
view from our spot

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Recap of Aspen Vacay + Life Lately

I want to share some more pics from our Aspen vacation and from my Dad’s wedding on top of Aspen mountain! We had so much fun. It was great for our family to all be together in such a beautiful place. We ate lots of good food, drank lots of champagne & sparking rosé, enjoyed the Aspen farmer’s market, tubed the Roaring Fork river, some daredevils of the group (not me haha) cliff jumped at Devil’s bathtub, and just relaxed! The Roaring Fork valley is definitely a special and stunning place. I feel like it’s necessary for me to take a week off from work a few times a year just to unplug and get back in touch with myself and my family.

Tyler & I at the Little Nell after my Dad & Heather got married
Tyler & I at the Little Nell after my Dad & Heather got married
me, our grandmother Lele, and my cousin Katherine Ann on top of Aspen mountain!
me, our grandmother Lele, and my cousin Katherine Ann on top of Aspen mountain!

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