In the quivering forest

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I love old trees. The more gnarled and twisted, the better.  The cypress groves on the coast south of Monterey are amazing, and as we admire these old beauties, it’s hard not to wonder about their long lives and all that’s come and gone while they’ve been here, clinging to the side of a cliff high above the sea.

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It’s Friday, I’m in love

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After another lovely week spent in Monterey, we’re packing up our bags and heading north to Sonoma for a few days.  This is the first visit for both of us, so we are excited to explore the area.  Wine is definitely on the agenda, as well as a few bike rides and, hopefully, some amazing food.

Hope you have a great weekend!

But my heart cried out for you

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Never look down by the maple

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While hiking out on the Cypress Grove trail at Point Lobos, we took a turn on the path high above the crashing ocean waves, and stumbled on this grove of red-stained trees.  The contrast of bright red growth on the white, white bark was dramatic and spooky, and we felt a little like Hansel and Gretel, walking through an other-worldly forest towards unknown dangers.

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There is your song from me

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Wonderful hours spent listening to the sounds of the waves crashing against the rocks.

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Wanderings: California summer

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As much as I longed for summer during the long winter, late June is when my part of the East Coast starts to get uncomfortably swampy.  Lucky for me, we’re in California for the rest of the month, and the mix of sun, fog and the ocean breeze have me in a very happy place.

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It’s Friday, I’m in love

Palms and sunsets

It’s been a long and hectic few weeks here in DC, and I’m relieved to be heading for California today.  Though I’ll be working remotely for most of the time that I’m there, there is something so rejuvenating about a change of scenery.  Here’s to cooler days, bike rides by the seaside, and a little taste of wine country.

Have a great weekend!

I hear the birds on the summer breeze

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Picked up these beauties at the farmers market this past weekend, and had fun riding home as the girl with flowers in her bike basket, which is every girl’s dream, right?

On the balcony and I’m singing

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If you don’t get it, then forget it

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Quiet dear, I’m blooming within

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Sure, wildflowers grow just about everywhere, but nothing compares to my memories of them in Texas.  The harsh sun means wildflowers there are of a hardier stock that the delicate beauties that grow in the north, and throughout the spring and summer, the state bursts into fields of bluebonnets, paintbrushes, Mexican hats, and black-eyed Susans.  While I was in Austin last weekend, the firewheels were in bloom, lining the highways, and filling people’s gardens and all the fields with the only kind of wildfire that is welcome around here.

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If you don’t have a song to sing you’re okay

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I have always been a little superstitious, especially about numbers.  Even numbers are better than odds, though for some reason, sevens are lucky.  I’d rather the year was 2014 than 2015, and I’d rather be 34 years old than 33.  Also nonsense, like, what happens on New Years or a birthday speaks to what will come in the year ahead.  Nothing in my experience backs up my superstitions: twenty-five was one of the best years of my life; while twenty-four was one of the most painful.  I don’t believe in fate, but these silly things still get to me.

My birthday is on Sunday.  Getting older has never bothered me, but this year I have to work over the weekend and the Mister will be away for school.  In the past, I would have gone off on a trip or taken a dance class or invited a bunch of friends over for dinner, so I’m a little frustrated to be stuck working at home.  Is it a bad omen about the year ahead?  Most likely not, and we have belated birthday plans in California in a couple of weeks.  Still, it’s like a little raincloud over my head that I just can’t seem to shake off.

Ate ice cream in a desert dream

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Leave all your love and your longing behind

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Wanderings: Austin

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A few happy days with my wild, gorgeous loves in the wild, gorgeous city that will always be home.

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Wanderings: Chasing spring in Albany

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In late May, we spent a night in Albany, a city neither of us had visited before.  A friend of the Mister’s recommended great neighborhoods to walk through and a fantastic little Italian restaurant, where we happened to be seated next to Carlos Santana, who was in town playing a show.  Most importantly he sent us to Washington park, which, to our delight, was still overflowing with tulips.

That’s the lovely thing about spring, I suppose.  When the tulips finish in DC, just go a little further north and find them in New Jersey, and when Jersey is done with them, go further north still, and Albany will still be bursting to the brim with brightly colored bulbs.

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It’s Friday, I’m in love

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I’m Austin-bound today for my sister’s high school graduation.  Being home and surrounded by family always feels so good, and I’m looking forward to Mexican food, a few hours at the pool, and spending some time with my parents and siblings.

The photo above, of my little sis, is about six years old, but it’s one of my favorites.  She has always been my favorite muse, and I’m excited to see what she’ll do in the world.

Have a lovely weekend!

Vermont at home

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As tempting as it is to bring home a chainsaw bear carving as a reminder of Vermont, we live in such a small apartment that we tend to focus on more practical souvenirs.  We had fun digging through thrift stores and antique shops, and met some charming locals along the way.

While poking through vintage pyrex bowls and baking dishes, we joked with one fellow antique hunter about whether we ever saw other people and felt nervous that they might be searching for the same thing we were.  I bought a milkglass vase and couple of vintage hats at a thrift store, and the saleslady chatted about how long she’d been in love with one of the hats I’d picked out.  On our last day, we met the friendly owner of a hardware and military surplus shop.  I bought a waterproof bag for my camera, and he laughed that it had been a slow day and that he would happily put my $3 towards some coffee and a donut.

We’ve already incorporated our finds into our home, and I’m happy to have such happy and useful reminders of our visit.

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Dusty roads we wandered on

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A few memories from Vermont.

Take me home, country road

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One day in Vermont, while half our friends were napping and our husbands were hiking part of the Appalachian Trail, my friend and I spent a lazy afternoon visiting Taylor farm, a 180 year-old working dairy farm.  We wandered among the goats and bunnies, were charmed by hungry cows and a friendly donkey, and wondered why pigs seem to love lying around in smelly mud—to cool off, I’ve since learned.  Chickens roamed freely, and as we admired their speckled feathers, a couple of roosters got into a spat, which was fascinating to see.

In a stroke of luck, we happened by a few farm workers who’d gathered around a guitar and a drum, and were singing folk and country songs.  My friend bought a cold beer, and we sat in the sun on the porch, enjoying the breeze and the affections of a farm cat, as the men next to us harmonized to John Denver.

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I was walking far from home

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The Mister and I love cluttered country antique shops and thrift stores, and we got lost several times in Vermont looking for them.  After a few wrong turns in tiny town, we spotted a sign for a covered bridge.  I’d never seen one before, so the Mister kept driving until we found it.  He insisted on driving through it, and afterwards we pulled over for a few minutes to take photos, admire the storm clouds gathered around the mountains, and talk about how much we loved Clint Eastwood and Meryl Streep.  All told, we saw seven covered bridges while we were in Vermont, though none were quite as charming as the first.

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