Weekending

You know when you just have one of those perfect weekends? Where you strike that perfect balance of knocking things off the to-do list while still enjoying two work-free days? Lately, those have been scare around here. CFA exam prep, weekends away planning our wedding. Mondays would come and go where neither of us felt that true satisfaction.

Well, last weekend was definitely the exception. And hopefully we’ll have plenty more to come.

Our friends from Seattle came to see us, we shopped for honeymoon clothes AND we snuck in a mini trip to wine country. Holla.

Saturday afternoon Kyle, Melissa and their daughter M arrived and instantly our weekend had begun. It has been an absolute joy to watch little M grow before our very eyes from a little baby, to the curious, precocious and beautiful 2-year-old girl she is today. I simply adore this child and Mel has an awesome blog you all MUST check out.

We unpacked and settled in a bit before hitting the waterfront for a little stroll before dinner. M couldn’t decide which was better, the stroller or stretching her legs and walking along the path – stopping to examine everything from flowers to rocks to puppies and the hissing Canadian geese (yes, they hiss and it is SUPER weird). We hit up Nike Town where the boys found some treasures and I realized my workout attire is in DESPERATE need of an upgrade. Unless for some reason, my sister’s old soccer shorts and pitted-out cotton tee shirts come back in stlye…

For dinner, we headed to NW 23rd street to meet up with some other friends and share a meal. The Lucky Labrador Brewery was the perfect setting for adults and kids alike, featuring an outdoor patio with picnic tables, dogs and lots of good food. Our gourmet veggie pizza was great, but watching the kidelts play and try to feed each other had to be the highlight of dinner.

Afterwards, Mel and I walked over to a NW 23rd namesake, Salt & Straw. With lines wrapping around the block on the daily, we surmised that getting a pint and getting the heck outta there was our best bet. I ran in, got 10-15 dirty looks and grabbed a pint of sea salt with caramel ribbons (drool). Then we headed back so M could go to bed and we could dig in. The ice cream was life-changing good and we quickly understood why people wait hours for this stuff.

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JOY!

The next day Kyle and Bryan did us a solid and ran down the waterfront to procure two Portland delicacies we desperately wanted to try. Stumptown coffees and Voodoo Doughnuts. I’ll admit the Voodoo Doughnuts thing is over-hyped. Lots of locals hate the place but tourists can’t get enough of the quirky, deep-fried creations. Personally, I don’t discriminate against any doughnut SO BRING EM ON.

Bry and Kyle returned an hour later toting Stumptown mochas and an array of sugary sweet doughnut combos that, admittedly, turned us all into giggling little kids. We got bacon maple bars, a chocolate doughnut with Cocoa Puffs, some staples like an old-fashioned and cake and then mine – The Loop. Yes, my friends. A vanilla frosted ring of sumptuous glory, dipped in none other than Fruit Loops.

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Turns out M was just as enthusiastic about my doughnut so we shared, much to the chagrin of her parents who shook their heads at her tenacity towards the rainbow-colored cereal covered in bits of vanilla frosting. When in Portland, kid. When in Portland.

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After breakfast (if you can call it that), we decided to walk off some of those delicious calories and head into downtown for a bit of shopping. Obvs the Rack had to be pillaged and I was happy to see everyone find some awesome finds (tax-free!).

For lunch, we went to the Nordstrom Café per Melissa’s recommendation and it turned out to be EXACTLY what we needed. Good food, good prices and speedy service. How does Nordstrom always get it right?

After lunch we reluctantly bid adieu to our friends, gave M MASSIVE hugs and sent them on their way back to Washington. Bry then mentioned the idea of heading over to McMinnville for a little wine tasting and wandering. Hmmmm…”OKAY”, was my reply.

The little downtown of McMinnville is literally SO cute, lined with restaurants, little boutiques and of course plenty of tasting rooms. We sauntered around a bit before hopping in the car to visit Eyrie Vineyards.

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Apparently this place bottled the first ever Pino Gris in America back in the 70’s…which is my fave wine. Who knew!?

Next we wanted to try someplace with a view. And we totally found it at Durant Vineyards! The tasting room was very well appointed, with rustic and tasteful décor and a really nice sampling of wines to try. Bry and I decided to just get glasses since they were closing down and headed outside.

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It was heaven.

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His and Hers

All in all, a very successful weekend indeedsy.

Happenings

Random stories from my life:

Recently, I have gone into the city TWICE for dinners with Bryan. I always feel so grown-up and jet-setting, when I drive into the city for dinner. I like to think that it’s no big deal. I imagine myself a spontaneous, totally together woman who weaves in and out of traffic, tossing my perfectly coiffed hair and listening to french hip-hop. Sadly, that’s not the case with me.  I am only willing to brave such journeys at the promise of champagne, a good meal and ALWAYS the ballet. Last time, it was Place Pigalle. A french restaurant tucked away in Pike Place Market which has become a favorite of Bryan and I’s.We shared some delicious food, drank our bubbles and even ordered dessert, a rare but welcome occurrence.

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New tights!

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Champagne and creme brulee!

Another weekend, we met our friends Lacey and Danny for cocktails at Lot. 3 in Bellevue. We arrived at 4:30 and the hostess was like, “we can seat you but the table needs to be available by 7:30 for a reservation”. In all my years in food service, I have not encountered such a request. But whatevs, we sat down and thought for sure 3 hours would be enough time. But, as drinks with these two go, we were basically planted there. They did make us get up and move to the bar at 7:30 which I did with only a modicum of contempt. Obvs it didn’t stop our party and canijustsay, I love a couple who knows how to GET DOWN. An unexpected round of tequila shots? Hear, hear! These guys always bless us with such great conversation, its easy to lose track of time.

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PB&J + Bacon Slider = perfection

My parents bought me a cute little vanity for Christmas. I opened the enormous box on my birthday and squealed with delight. But then. It was broken, so we sent ‘er back. A million years later, the replacement arrived. No directions. No screws. No vanity stool as pictured. The mirror needed to be attached somehow to the table and we did not own power tools. POOP. My mom was in cahoots with the owner so she asked him to please send us directions, screws and the stool. 82198 days later, the stool arrived and then there was the matter of procuring a power drill. MY LIFE. The predicament ended happily, with Bryan successfully screwing the mirror to the base with our newly-purched Ryobi drill. We were both sweating and kindof mad at no one in particular but we did it. And behold! HEADQUARTERS:

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So happy and so scraggly

Also, we painted the walls of the bedroom pictured above. More appropriately known as “the ladies quarters”, this room is where I have been doing my makeup. The AWFUL blue color HAD to go, it was so unsettling!  So, one weekend I got all motivated and went to Home Depot, picked out a color and that was that. 3 days later I had a perfectly “cottage white” room. YES, it took me 3 days. Multiple coats and ceiling touch-ups were needed. I’m such a homeowner right now!

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BEHR Cottage White

And here is how it looks on the walls:

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Definitely NOT our house 😦

Upcoming excitements include:

  1. spray painting an old nightstand
  2. mom and megan coming in two weeks to do wedding things!
  3. the bag of original goldfish crackers in my desk

That is all.

Girls Weekend in Leavenworth

One of the best things about playing volleyball for the majority of my life has undoubtedly been the friends I have made.

Ladies who will be my lifelong buddies. My posse. My PICs, yo.

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THROWBACK

Three of those ladies, I got to meet up with last weekend – for a delightful 2 night stay in Leavenworth, the little Bavarian mountain town right smack dab in the middle of the state.

My pal Carey was kind enough to organize a short stay at the wonderful Sleeping Lady Resort, a small and completely charming little cluster of cabins nestled comfortably in the trees. Carey is SO good at these kinds of things. Nails it ‘err time.

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From the website

I arrived on Friday night, after a two hour drive through the snow. Bryan drove me because he is nice and because I am the worst driver ever my driving skills need work.

We had dinner at Kingfisher restaurant and it felt SO great to be back with my girls. We had wine, great food(albeit, expensive) and ended up closing the place down.

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Back in the room we sat around in the AMAZINGLY soft beds, sipping wine, eating chocolate and talking about issues such as full-bottomed underwear and the best wrinkle cremes. I realized, yeah – we’re definitely not 20 anymore. We are women. W-O-M-E-N. We have husbands (and fiances). We have children. And mortgages and our backs hurt.

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Although so much has changed within the four of us, our friendships have remained the same. Conversations pick up right where they left off. We wish we could be at every birthday party, job promotion celebration, or major life event for one another. But we can’t. So we text and we call. And sometimes we don’t even do that. But we all know that no matter what happens, we’re still there.

OMG you guys this is sooooooooo sappy. Okay. On to the rest of the weekend before I puke.

The next morning I awoke to the musical stylings of Bekah, who will NEVER disappoint me with her half made up/half real songs and little jigs. What a gem, she is! Getting out the door is challenging with us, it’s like herding cats. Everything takes 1,000 more minutes than it should. In this case, it was totally my fault, but eyeliner application will do that to ya.

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SORRY

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Nature’s fridge

We headed into the town for lunch at Munchen Haus for brats and a round of pints. The place was buzzing despite the low temps and so we quickly grabbed a table and clinked our steins.

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After lunch, we wandered into a few stores. Our favorite by far was Paprika the”Sophisticated Hippie”.

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Bek found a friend!

Then we were off to beer garden no. 2 – Leavenworth Sausage Garten. How much do you love that it’s Garten, not Garden?

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So Normal

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The local beer went down real nice and then we all bought chocolates. Oh lawd – SO bavarian.

Then we decided it was time to head back to the hotel to warm our buns in the hot tub. We rang for plastic cups, popped the champagne and headed down the path to the outdoor hot tub lookin DAMN SEXY.

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Holly with the presentation

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Check out them boots

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The four of us alone in the hot tub with champagne- you can guess what went down. A FULL ON Kelly Kapowski style swimsuit competition, where each of us pulled the sides of our bottoms up past our hip bones and slooowly walked up the steps out of the hot tub. So. Hot.

After hot tubbing, we headed back to our room to change for our dinner at The Grotto. The interior was quite cozy, with a fully stocked bar and  a menu offering a modest selection of small plates, pizzas and calzones.

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Little Pink Unicorn!?!? OMGGG

My calzone was decent. Nothing great. I may a bit biased however, because Bryan happens to make the best pizza ever and his dough is particularly scrumptious.

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After dinner, we skipped dessert in lieu of wine and chocolate back in our little cabin. The highlight of the evening had to be Holly re-living her childhood dream of starring in the “Hold On”  music video by Wilson Philips. She acted out the whole thing, complete with serious/sad faces and it was AWESOME. After, we all huddled around Carey’s cell phone (the ONLY one of us who had reception) and watched the real music video, and I must say…Holly nailed it.

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The next morning we woke up to falling snow and the sadness that our weekend was coming to a close. We group hugged for a solid 5 minutes (which isn’t weird to us, or anyone who has played volleyball, btw) and said our goodbyes. It was truly a weekend of love, deep conversation and large sausages.

It was sad, but in the paramount words of Wilson Phillips…

Hold on for one more day….

What We Ate in Maui

I don’t know how food bloggers do it.

Re-living all these meals for this post had me salivating. Literally. I have swallowed like twice as much as usual #TWSS.

But anyways, here’s what we ate in Maui. I realize we went in October and that I don’t have pictures for every single meal. DEAL WITH IT.

Friday – Sansei Restaurant

We went here our first night in Maui for two reasons: the online reviews and it’s close proximity to our condo in Kapalua. Oh! And I wanted sushi the worst. We ended up eating here twice it was so good.

We had:

    • Edamame
    • California Roll
    • Spicy Tuna Roll
    • Spider Roll

Saturday: Cheeseburger in Paradise

This place is a Nash family tradition and one that Bryan and I upheld. We each got the classic “Cheeseburger in Paradise”, split a basket of fries and had mai tais. Hit the spot.

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Sunday: Aloha Mixed Plate

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We went here after I had read tons of good reviews online, praising it’s Hawaiian-style menu. The prices were cheap and the food, delicious. I ordered the Aloha Mixed Plate, which came with chicken, beef and fish with two scoops of white rice and macaroni salad. Bryan had fish tacos but definitely wished he had stuck to the original.

Monday: Merriman’s

Bryan wanted to try this place out since we were staying in Kapalua and we heard great things about the food. Well, to say we were impressed would be an understatement. After dining here, we decided to cancel our reservation at Mama’s Fish House since our desire for gourmet food, amazing service and beautiful surrounding had already been satisfied.

The amuse bouche:
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We shared:

      • Warm Crusted Big Island Goat Cheese: Kula Strawberries, Maui Onions, Strawberry and Garden Mint Vinaigrette

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      • Peter’s Original Caesar Salad: Triple N Farm Baby Romaine, Fried Green Tomato Crouton

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    • Merriman’s Original Wok Charred Ahi: Curried Ninole Hearts of Palm, Black Forbidden Rice, Pohole Fern Salad, Wasabi Cilantro Vinaigrette

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Tuesday: Leilani’s
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I feel like Sydney Fife from I Love You, Man when I talk about the fish tacos at Leilani’s. They are on-another-planet good. It is planetary. You get me. We ate here twice because of the fish tacos. Once for dinner and then for lunch. Oh, and we also ordered a caesar for balance.

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Wednesday: Breakfast at Pioneer Inn

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COCONUT SYRUP

Macadamia. Nut. Pancakes.
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Wednesday: Mala Ocean Tavern

We dined here after a recommendation from Bryan’s mom and found it to be completely charming. Maybe a tad overpriced but perhaps we just ordered too much? Sitting on the deck was awesome and so were the fresh-made chips and pureed edemame they brought to the table.
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For dinner we ordered:

    • Mark’s Hydroponic Caesar Waipoli Caesar Salad: Flax seed croutons, white anchovy and grated egg
    • Fresh Mahi Mahi Special
    • Ahi Tuna Sausage Flatbread with goat cheese

Thursday breakfast was none other than Krispy Kreme.

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For dinner we went right on back to Sansei!
This time it was:

      • Edamame
      • Sansei’s Shrimp Dynamite: Crispy tempura shrimp tossed with creamy garlic masago aioli and drizzled with an unagi glaze
      • Bagel Roll
      • Panko Crusted Ahi Sashimi Sushi Roll: Sashimi grade Hawaiian ahi, arugula and spinach wrapped into a sushi roll, panko crusted, flash-fried and served with Sansei’s mild soy wasabi butter sauce
      • Takah Sushi Special Roll Named in Honor of Takah Sama, Aspen, Colorado: Shrimp, ahi, crab, avocado and cucumber, inside-out and crusted with masago

Friday: I’O

We went here on a recommendation from our server at Hula Grille and were SO glad we did. The food was totally amazing, as was the service and the view. Totes romantic.

We shared:

      • I’o Crab Cakes: Panko crusted crab and goat cheese cakes with roasted red bell peppers, garlic and a caramelized Maui onion and miso aioli with green papaya slaw

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      • Waipoli Road Salad : Assorted O’o Farm greens & vegetables, fresh herbs, Olowalu tomatoes with Maui onions and feta cheese tossed in a citrus mustard vinaigrette

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    • Rainbow Catch Mahi Mahi: Oven roasted fish with a lemongrass pesto & Olowalu tomatoes, goat cheese fondue sauce & white truffle oil accent over rice and dill cucumber salad

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For dessert we went to Lappert’s for ice cream and slowly made the way back to the car by stopping under the banyan tree. I could do this every single day of my life.

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Serious face.

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It’s all ONE tree!

Photo Cred

Saturday: Everything bagel at the Coffee Store

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Dinner at Sea House and Hula Grille
For our last night in Maui, we decided to watch the sunset from Napili bay, while sipping mai tais. We ordered coconut shrimp and it was delicious.

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Happy Camper

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For dinner, we shared a burger at Hula Grille with our feet in the sand and listened to the ukulele man. It was the perfect ending to a perfect trip.

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