About Me

I grew up in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia where I also attended college and met the love of my life. I lived in NYC for five years with my husband and Westie, Mack Brown before recently moving all the way across the country to Los Angeles. I'm an amateur chef, total foodie, lover of Westies, sports fanatic and self-proclaimed book worm. You'll find a little bit of all these things I love on this blog. And...most importantly, I'm a new mom to the most precious baby boy, Austn Robert, born this past October.





Austin Robert

Austin Robert

Mack Brown

Mack Brown

Friday, July 6, 2012

A Trip Down Memory Lane...

I've been such a bad blogger lately {really since the beginning of February}.  As a result, I haven't blogged about many of the fun and exciting things that have been going on in our lives.  So as boring as this post may be for many of you, I wanted to take the time {finally!!}, to record the last SIX {yikes!} months of our lives{even if it's admittedly mostly for my own memory's sake.}  I love having a place where I can look back at the places we've been, things we've done and the food we've eaten.

I'm going to go month by month, briefly commenting on where we were, what we were doing and who we were with, so I apologize at the start for the length of this post.  Feel free to stop reading at any point if you get bored :)

Without further ado...


Brad and I celebrated Valentine's Day with dinner at Il Ristorante di Giorgio Baldi in Santa Monica.  I don't have any pictures from our dinner, but I still wanted to include this because every year we try to remember what we did/ where we ate the previous year, and we are having a harder and harder time remembering! Ha!  We were SO EXCITED about eating here, as we had heard great things about it, but we were SO disappointed.  Although we had a reservation, we had to wait an extra hour and a half to be seated.  Once we were seated, we were stuck outside in a cold corner, and to top it all off the food was more than disappointing.  Small portion sizes, terrible, slow service, and just average taste.  But, we still made the best of the situation, and enjoyed a fun, memorable night together.

A few days later my parents made the trip out to LA to visit us.  This was my dad's first trip to the west coast, and my mom's first time visiting California since she was a child, so we really tried to make the trip as memorable for them as possible.

We took a sightseeing bus tour through Hollywood where my parents got to see Grauman's Chinese Theater, the Hollywood Walk of Fame, Hollywood High School (where the outdoor bleacher scene in Grease was filmed), and learn many fun facts about Hollywood old and new.

For my mom's birthday, we spent the day visiting wineries in Malibu.

Don't worry.  I wasn't really drinking here :)

We hiked down to our favorite beach spot in Malibu, El Matador Beach.

And, we took a VIP tour of Paramount Studios, which was my favorite part of their trip.  {I think my parent's favorite part of the trip was our visit to Trader Joe's. Ha!  They LOVED TJ's great wine prices, but the again, who wouldn't?}

We had such a great time with them here!!


March was a sad month for us, which you can read about here.  Brad spent most of the month at home with his family in CT.


I finally had the chance to head back to NYC for the first time since moving west, and I got to spend a few days with Brad, his mom and his sister.  We began cleaning out and packing up Brad's childhood bedroom in preparation for Marsha to sell the house.

After my trip to NY/ CT, I flew down to Virginia to help host by sister-in-law-to-be Kelsey's bridal shower with several of my mom's girlfriends.  We threw a wine and cheese shower.

Unfortunately, I can't find a copy of the cute invitations we sent out, but here was the inspiration:

                                           Wine Party Invitation and Tags

 We also included a wine tag in each invitation and asked guests to bring a bottle of wine for Paul and Kelsey to share during their first year of their marriage.  {I don't think they're going to run out anytime soon!} Here is a horrible, blurry photo of the the wine table.  We also had everyone sign a wine cork when they arrived for Kelsey and Paul.  If you look closely, you can see that basket on the table as well.

Sorry for the lack of pictures...my camera battery literally died after the first couple pictures.  Sigh.


The month of May, as always, was a busy month for us.  Sarah came to visit during the first week.  We took her to Disneyland and California Adventure for a couple of days while she was here.  It was here first time visiting any of the Disney parks, and she we all had a blast...even though I had to do a lot of sitting around and waiting.  Don't worry, I was a total nerd, a brought a good book along, so I didn't get bored.  

Sarah's favorite ride by far was California Screamin' at California Adventure, and she LOVED Fantasmic at Disneyland Park.  We had a delicious dinner at Ralph Brennan's Jazz Kitchen in Downtown Disney, and enjoyed a peaceful night's rest at Disney's Grand Californian.  Such a fabulous hotel, by the way, if you are ever visiting Disneyland and need to place to stay.  The hotel is not only situated right in the middle of Downtown Disney, but it also has a entrance in and out of California Adventure.

Yes, we made her wear this button the entire trip!

After Sarah left, Brad and I headed to Maui for our babymoon/ upcoming 5th anniversary trip.  This trip deserves a post all to itself.  So, I'll just leave you with a few "teaser" pictures.

On the 25th, Brad celebrated his 30th birthday.  We began the day with breakfast cupcakes, we met up with friends after work for birthday drinks at Palihouse and sushi at Matsuhisa, and we ended the day with homemade birthday key lime pie.

The birthday boy!

The next day, we celebrated five wonderful years of marriage.  I woke up to a vase of five calla lilies (one of the flowers from our wedding) and bacon, egg and cheese bagels (my favorite!).  I treated him to an afternoon movie (The Avengers, for the second time), and we ended the day at an AMAZING little Italian restaurant in Venice called Ado.  Everything we ate was beyond delicious, but they are known for their homemade pasta, and it certainly did not disappoint.


We headed back to the New York area for a couple weeks to celebrate the life of Brad's dad, which you can read about here, and to celebrate Brad's 30th birthday {again} with two of his closest friends {Jeremy and Tom} who were also turning 30 that month.  They celebrated by throwing a joint party at Randolph's Beer with a flip cup tournament and beirut.

Such a fun night.

And that, I believe, catches us up, {and I'm beyond impressed if you actually made it this far!).  We just enjoyed a wonderful 4th of July weekend with our dear friend Lindsay who was in LA visiting her brother Steve, who just moved out here, and is now working with Brad. Lindsay just might be the last visitor to get to actually sleep in a bed in the guest bedroom, as over the next few weeks, it fully be transformed into a nursery for baby H!  I promise to keep you updated on our progress!

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