In which we go to a wedding: Bri & Ian edition

You know it’s been a long time since you’ve blogged when wordpress changes it’s format.. obviously I have a lot of catching up to do, so let’s start with our first August wedding. Bri and Ian were married on Decatur Island up in the San Juans – it’s a special place to their family and it was so sweet to watch the ceremony in his grandparents’ back yard. I’ve been stalking their wonderful photographer’s website for pictures to include in this post, but ultimately decided that 1) it’s taking a long time since summer is prime wedding season and I’m sure she’s still editing and 2) those are really her photos and it’s unfair to put them on this blog. So here are mine from that EXTREMELY fun and gorgeous weekend:

We arrived on Decatur from Anacortes by private very boat. The Washington State ferries don't run to this particular island like they do to the larger San Juans.

We arrived on Decatur from Anacortes by private very boat. The Washington State ferries don’t run to this particular island like they do to the larger San Juans.

Happy to have escaped only mildly sea-sick!

Happy to have escaped only mildly sea-sick!

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The view from our cabin was gorgeous - we watched otters play in the bay below.

The view from our cabin was gorgeous – we watched otters play in the bay below with high def binoculars.

At the rehearsal we ad a preview of the gorgeous view from the ceremony site as well. You could see all the way across the straight to Mount Baker

At the rehearsal we had a preview of the breath taking view from the ceremony site as well. You could see all the way across the straight to Mount Baker.

Walking back to the cabin after the rehearsal dinner took a little extra time - there are no road signs on the island, so we got a bit lost.

Walking back to the cabin after the rehearsal dinner took a little extra time – there are no road signs on the island, so we got a bit lost.

But the views of the bay at sunset were worth it.

But the views of the bay at sunset were worth it.

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Boats in the bay

The next morning the bridesmaids were picked up in a pickup truck to go get our hair done.

The next morning the bridesmaids were picked up in a pickup truck to go get our hair done.

It was a little windy!

It was a little windy!

Obligatory bridesmaid dresses shot

Obligatory bridesmaids’ dresses shot

The day had robin-egg blue skies and great views of Mount Baker across the water.

The day could not have been more perfect: robin-egg blue skies and great views of Mount Baker across the water.

Hydrangea bouquets

Hydrangea bouquets – These had to be carefully guarded as the deer on the island were clamoring to get them all weekend. One unfortunate guy got his head caught in the garden gate that was containing them and almost had to be “taken care of”, but escaped at the last minute. 

Hair done

Hair done!

Hair all done!

Make-up done!

At this point I put down the camera for a while, so there are no current pictures from the amazingly gorgeous ceremony, but trust me, it was amazing.

Jeff and I at the reception

Jeff and I at the reception

Dental residents: Ian, Karen and I!

Dental residents: Ian, Karen and I!

At the end of the night we all headed down to the beach to light paper lanterns:

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Lighting it up...

Lighting it up…

...getting hot..

…getting hot..

... and LIFT OFF!

… and LIFT OFF!

Someone commented that Jeff's eyes looked crazy in this picture. Really this moment is capturing his thoughts that his dear wife has had several glasses of prosecco and is innately clumsy, we're holding a lot of fire and if something happens we will need to be (expensively) airlifted off this island. I think he's being rather calm given the situation.

Someone commented that Jeff’s eyes looked crazy in this picture. Really this moment is capturing the thoughts that his dear wife has had several glasses of prosecco and is at baseline rather clumsy, we’re holding a large, highly flammable object and if something happens we will need to be (expensively) airlifted off this island. I think he’s being rather calm given the situation.

The next morning we had to wait until the tides came in to head out on the ferry – Kat and I used this time to wander around the beach, look in tide pools and poke at seastars.

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It was so much fun seeing all my co-ressies one more time. It's going to be a long year without them.

It was so much fun seeing all my co-ressies one more time. It’s going to be a long year without them.

On our walk we ran into Bri!

On our walk we ran into Bri!

Soon it was time to get back on the boat and leave.

Soon it was time to get back on the boat and leave.

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I’m smiling in this picture, but I’m actually really sad this is the last time for a while that I’ll be near these lovely ladies.

I was sad to leave the island, but the ferry ride back had some spectacular views of Mount Baker and friendly porpoise sightings to smooth the way.

It was sad to leave the island, but the ferry ride back had some spectacular views of Mount Baker and friendly porpoise sightings to smooth the way.

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In which I went to Whistler

This quarter system in grad school is fast. As in, you feel like you can’t take a week off of work and ever except to catch up. That’s why I tried to cram as much social life as possible into the beginning this time and by getting to work early and staying late every day these past two weeks, I think I’ve managed to do it and not already fail out.

Last weekend I made a last hour decision to go to Whistler in BC with a bunch of co-ressies. While I don’t know how to ski (that one time in high school I never made it off the ice covered southern-east coast bunny slopes), I did have a wonderful time playing in the snow!

We drove to Vancouver Friday after clinic and stayed at some of our Canadian co-ressie's homes before heading up the Sea-to-Sky road in some early gorgeous pre-dawn light.

We drove to Vancouver Friday after clinic and stayed at some of our Canadian co-ressie’s homes before heading up the Sea-to-Sky road in some earily gorgeous pre-dawn light. We kept reminding ourselves that rain at this level meant snow in the mountains.

Whistler was the site of many of the 2010 Olympic events. I'm in love with all things Olympics (the basic reason we got cable was for the 2012 summer games). So excited that they start up again in a few weeks!

Whistler was the site of many of the 2010 Olympic events. I’m in love with all things Olympics (the basic reason we got cable here was for the 2012 summer games). So excited that they start up again in a few weeks!

Ice skating took place down in Vancouver about 2 hours away, but Bri and I thought we could practice a few moves here.

Ice skating took place down in Vancouver about 2 hours away, but Bri and I thought we could practice a few moves here.

The snow was beautiful. They'd double their snow pack in the day we were were there.

The snow was beautiful. They’d double their snow pack in the day we were were there.

While some of the group hit the slopes, I practiced my apres-ski techniques by eating delicious lobster pad thai, drinking and cheering the Seahawks to the NFC West championship and getting a massage at one of the spas.

While some of the group hit the slopes, I practiced my apres-ski techniques by eating delicious lobster pad thai, drinking and cheering the Seahawks to the NFC West championship, dipping in the snowy outdoor hot tub and getting a massage at one of the spas.

The next day a few of us went snow tubing with all the little kids.

The next day a few of us went snow tubing – we were definitely the oldest kids there.

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Glad for duck boots to keep my toes warm in the snow and slush!

High school Elise and Rachel: the last time I went “skiing” was over a decade ago in West Virginia. Mostly I just slid down the bunny slope and prayed not to die.

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Karin, Christine, Kevin and Bri

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Leslie, Gloria, Karen (our wonderful trip organizer!), Karin, myself and Bri

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Super fun trip! Now to talk Jeff into trying a day out on the slopes..

In which we start a New Year

Welcome 2014! We spent the past week ringing in the new year with Jeff’s parents in Pittsburgh. I think the sign of a good trip is that you were too busy visiting to take that many pictures, but here are some from our trip:

Paul and Fran's high school senior year portraits.

Paul and Fran’s high school senior year portraits.

Jeff's parent's wedding photos.

Jeff’s parent’s wedding photos.

A couple of times in college and dental school I went to Pittsburgh to celebrate New Year’s with Jeff and his high school friends. This year was like an adult repeat version of all those fun times. Joe and Jess graciously hosted us at their new home – it’s fun to know grown ups our own age!

Ringing in the New Year and Jess and Joe's new house.

Ringing in the New Year and Jess and Joe’s new house.

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Lauren, Molly, Joe, myself and Jessica

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Blinging in the new year

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Lauren, Molly, myself and Jessic

We also got to visit with Jeff's Aunt Joyce and Uncle Bill on New Year's Day. It was so much fun to catch up with y'all!

We also got to visit with Jeff’s Aunt Joyce and Uncle Bill on New Year’s Day. It was so much fun to catch up with y’all!

Jeff and I and his parents

Jeff and I and his parents

All too soon it was time to leave. This is what it looked like when we got to the Pittsburgh airport at 7:00am...

All too soon it was time to leave. This is what it looked like when we got to the Pittsburgh airport at 7:00am…

… and this is how much it had snowed by the time we were boarding our 9:30am flight. Fortunately we weren't connecting in Chicago, but the Hercules storm messed up flights all over the country!

… and this is how much it had snowed by the time we were boarding our 9:30am flight. Fortunately we weren’t connecting in Chicago, but the Hercules storm messed up flights all over the country!

Flying into Denver. Nice to see the snow capped Rockies in the distance. Note the blue sky - the weather there was great, but the Hercules snowpocalypse had wreaked havoc on the other planes' schedules so we were delayed six hours here.

Flying into Denver. Nice to see the snow capped Rockies in the distance. Note the blue sky – the weather there was great, but the Hercules snowpocalypse had wreaked havoc on the other planes’ schedules so we were delayed six hours here.

Our unexpected six hour delay gave me time to go through security into baggage claim to see some conspiracy theorist murals I’d read about. This is a good article (with some better pictures) on the theory that the Denver airport houses an underground bunker to house the New World Order in case of economic collapse or all out warfare. I’m not really into conspiracy theories, but a lot of the Denver airport doesn’t add up: It was finished 2 years late and $3.1 billion dollars over the initial $1.7 billion budget. They buried 5 buildings that had been “positioned incorrectly” rather than destroy them. Oh, and Denver had a perfectly good airport at Stapleton before all this that was closer to town (this airport is a 45 minute drive away, a fact that Jeff and I were pissed at because had it been closer or had good public transit we could’ve gone downtown for a beer and thus added another state to our checklist. Being in the airport doesn’t count).

The murals start with biological warfare destroying the planet.

The murals start with biological warfare destroying the planet.

Fire and brimstone and destruction. Oh, but we're going to preserve the penguins, sweet!

Fire and brimstone and destruction. Oh, but we’re going to preserve the penguins, sweet!

But it's okay, because this German boy is going to bring peace to the world's children.

But it’s okay, because this German boy is going to bring peace to the world’s children.

Indian and Pakistan are going to get along too. (Not pictured: Israel and Iran working together on the other side). Lolz.

Indian and Pakistan are going to get along too. (Not pictured: Israel and Iran working together on the other side). Lolz.

And then the final mural with peace in the Garden of Eden. The story these tell is basically of a horrific mass genocide, followed by a more peaceful, less populated world.

And then the final mural with peace in the Garden of Eden. The story these tell is basically of a horrific mass genocide, followed by a more peaceful, less populated world.

Also, the decorations above each of the train stations between the terminals look reminiscent of the Star Wars' stone temple set of Episode IV. All in all: You're so weird, Denver airport!

Also, the decorations above each of the train stations between the terminals look reminiscent of the Star Wars’ stone temple set of Episode IV. All in all: You’re so weird, Denver airport!

So I came back through security to wait another five hours at our gate.

So I came back through security to wait another five hours at our gate.

Watching Parks and Rec and the sunset seemed safer than wandering into some secret underground bunker, never to return. No thanks.

Watching Parks and Rec and the sunset seemed safer than wandering into some secret underground bunker, never to return. No thanks.

We made it back to Seattle 17 hours after starting our journey and minus one bag. It’s the first time I’ve checked my luggage in probably five years.. and so that serves me right. Lesson learned. All in all it really was a great trip and now we’re ready to start the new year and the new school quarter with no real resolutions, because everyday should be a new day.

 

In which the sun still shines

I think if you don’t live in the northwest, some wintertime sun isn’t anything to write home about. But here, it seems like it started raining one day in October and never stopped, so bare with my iPhone photos of the sunshine. It brings warmth to my heart, a renewed faith that this isn’t the Noah’s Ark redux and some breath taking views of the snow capped mountains around us.

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Other than some brief reminders that the skies won’t always be grey, it’s been back to sklerk (Jeff’s combination of “school” + “work”, but accurately spelled schlork).

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And to end the day, one of my favorite groups singing one of my favorite hymns: Mumford & Sons – Come, Thou Fount of Every Blessing