The way we celebrate

The way we celebrate

Husband and I celebrated three years of marriage last week. Certainly, it’s not long compared to my parents’ 36 years or my grandparents’ 60 years, but each and every year is something to celebrate.

I love that we are still new to this. It’s an adventure unlike any other and we are navigating it and enjoying it to the best of our abilities.

So to mark the completion of our third year, we chose to do one of the things we love best: camping.

We packed up the truck, the pup and a weekend’s worth of food and took off for the Blue Ridge Mountains. This is one of our favorite places in the whole world. Given the choice, we would move to the mountains in a heartbeat. (But there are little things to consider that keep us where we are, like employment.)

It was three days and two nights of bliss, just Husband, the pup and me. We hiked, we photographed, we made campfires and cooked delicious meals. The things I love to do, like reading and knitting are oh-so-much better done by lamplight in the great outdoors.

We even saw a black bear (I’m sorry to say I didn’t get a photo because it was only for a moment…then again, I’m glad he didn’t stick around).

Happy Anniversary, Husband. I hope and pray each year is even better than the last.

Sherando Lake


Collecting firewood


Trickling waterfall

River rocks


Tree bark

Cooking Thai curry


Our lovely little mountain tradition

Our lovely little mountain tradition

Yesterday we celebrated one of my favorite holiday traditions–getting our Christmas tree.

But our tradition is no ordinary trip to the local Home Depot. No, we cut our own tree.

Of course, we live in Virginia Beach, where there aren’t any Christmas tree farms…so, we drove four hours out to the Blue Ridge mountains in western Virginia to hunt down a cut-your-own tree farm. And find one we did =).

Have I ever mentioned my long time dream of someday owning a Christmas tree farm?

Searching for the perfect tree

Ginger looking for a Christmas tree

Pine needles

It took a while to find the perfect tree to grace our home for the next month, but we were successful. (I did learn that it’s slightly difficult to be the dog-wrangler, tree-sawing-helper and photographer all at once–talk about being pulled in different directions!)

Our Christmas tree!

Measuring our tree

Preparing to cut our Christmas tree

Cutting down our Christmas tree

Heading home with our tree!

After our tree we happened across an antique store and happened to mosey our way in and happened to find just the right item to go alongside our Christmas tree (I’ll share soon, I promise!). And then we hit an adorable German restaurant called Edelweiss, and had a yummy meal while listening to live accordion music and sitting next to a warm, wood burning stove (never mind that it was in the 60s outside!). And before long we were heading on home, another four hour drive =).

To top it off, Ginger was a great little traveler–something we doubted she would ever be when as a puppy she would get sick just looking at the car.

I’ve talked a lot here about establishing tradition as newlyweds and how important that is. Now celebrating our third Christmas as a married couple, I’m delighted to feel more at home with our new life and new traditions than ever before. It takes some time to develop just what your life will look like together, and it will continue to take time. But things are coalescing beautifully, and we are finding our own, unique rhythm.

Three days away

This past weekend was truly wonderful. In celebration of our first anniversary, Husband and I took a long weekend away from civilization.

We packed up the car (my tiny, two-door Mitsubishi) with everything we needed for three days in the woods. I wish I had taken a picture of how stuffed my little car was, but somehow we managed to fit it all in. (The other vehicle option available to us was Husband’s truck which doesn’t have a back seat, so Ginger would have been sitting on my lap the entire way…very bad option considering her propensity toward car sickness).

Both Husband and I grew up in camping families–it was probably the most affordable vacation option considering the size of our families, but it was also just plain fun. Already one year into our marriage and we had never gone camping together, only cabin-ing, which is fun, but it isn’t camping. Read more