30 July 2018

The Second Year

It's no secret that we're over here getting excited for football season {33 days to go!} and all I can think about is that it'll be our tenth football season together. Ten?! How is it that even possible? I'm having a hard time wrapping my head around that for some reason. We've been doing life together since I was 21 and Patrick was 23.

You know, since the days of sitting on the front row in our respective student sections for home football games.

It's our tenth Clemson / Carolina game together which means that, finally, finally, finally, we can even out the score in our house divided family {if Clemson pulls off the win against Carolina in November}.

But before we get to football season we've got a bigger milestone to celebrate: today is our 2nd anniversary!

Two years ago today looked a little something like this...

We were surrounded by our family, our friends, and all the people who helped us survive nine years of Clemson/Carolina games. It was the best day! It's one that I could relive over and over and over... and if you catch me daydreaming today, you can safely bet I'll be daydreaming about our wedding day. I've already started. I spent all day yesterday with "you know, we were right here in this church sanctuary two years ago today for our rehearsal" moments and I'm sure anytime I see the time today, I'm going to be thinking about what I was doing at that exact time two years ago.

Year two was filled with all kinds of adventures for us, but none quite as big as finding out that we were expecting. I daresay that year three is going to be one wild ride and there's nobody that I'd rather go on that wild ride with. Here's to our third year as we become a family of three!

19 July 2018

A Kiawah Kayaking Adventure

One thing I've always wanted to do on Kiawah but hadn't checked off the bucket list: kayaking!

Somehow I made it through the first 30 years of my life without ever attempting to kayak.

There are several different kayaking companies that you can take a tour with, but we went with Tidal Trails and our guide, Ryan. I cannot possibly recommend them enough if you want to kayak on Kiawah! We had such a great experience, especially since two of us had never kayaked before and two of us had only limited kayaking experience.

It was a great morning to be out on the water. It wasn't incredibly hot, there was a little bit of a breeze, and plenty of blue skies. After sunscreening up and going over a few kayaking basics, we were in our kayaks and ready to explore.

I'm not sure how far we ended up paddling, but we wound our way through the tidal creek for around two hours. Our guide told us plenty of interesting things along the way about the area and the wildlife to keep us entertained. We also saw a dolphin! She popped up out of the water three times - once at a distance, once like 5 feet in front of us, and once right behind us as she continued on.

I'm happy to report that nobody went overboard! I ran into everyone's kayak at least once {including our guide} and I think each of us ended up in the grassy part of the marsh at one point or another, but we all survived.

If you're planning a kayak adventure on Kiawah, you definitely need to look into Tidal Trails. They've been leading daily tours around the island for over 20 years so they know what they're doing! Before our kayaking fun was even over, I was already plotting to purchase kayaks for Patrick and myself. We live near a lake and a river, and spend enough time at the beach to where we could definitely get our use out of them.

18 July 2018

A 30th in the Low Country

Let's rewind back to January... back to when I first started planning my 30th birthday. Patrick and I had an epic weekend planned in Charleston. We were going to take Friday off, head down to the low country, and do a solo day of brewery hopping before inviting my friends to join us for a Saturday of even more breweries. We had our favorite hotel in Charleston {The Venue} booked and we were ready to roll for a weekend similar to how we celebrated my 29th.

Fast-foward to my actual birthday and with a little one on board, we had to improvise just a tiny bit.

On Friday, we packed up the car and drove down to Charleston with a pitstop at the outlet stores. With a growing baby bump that's getting more and more difficult to fit into my regular clothes at 21 weeks, I was on the hunt for some bump-friendly clothes. Y'all, I'm not sure they exist. I walked out of the outlets empty handed from my search.

Our next stop was... a brewery?

But of course. We can't drive into Charleston without stopping at Holy City Brewing. Patrick enjoyed his favorite beer there and I chowed down on a basket of their incredible French fries.

Onwards to Charleston! I'm positive that I popped into every single store on King Street and tried on dozens of dresses only to walk away with one. One dress. Hours of shopping and that's all I found to wear.

Patrick had been on a guys weekend in Charleston recently, where he spent some time at Edmund's Oast Brewery. I wanted to check another brewery off my list, so we headed there next. It's tucked away in an area of Charleston that's quickly becoming a brewery neighborhood - it's the same area of town that you'll find Palmetto Brewing, Revelry Brewery, and Fatty's Beer Works, among others.

I could totally see myself hanging out at Edmund's Oast on a regular basis if we lived in Charleston! It's a cool place with plenty of indoor and outdoor seating as well as space for kids to run around. It has a very community feel to it and we wound up staying here for over an hour before making our way to Kiawah for the remainder of the weekend.

My parents took us out to dinner at Freshfields at a new-ish restaurant called Fuji Sushi Bar and Grill. I skipped straight past all of the sushi dishes and went straight for the teriyaki chicken hibachi dish.

Y'all, I might still be dreaming of my dinner from there! I love a good chicken hibachi meal and this one definitely did not disappoint.

We checked off one big thing on my bucket list Saturday morning: kayaking around Kiawah! Would y'all believe that this was my first time ever kayaking? It's something that I've been trying to do on Kiawah ever since my parents bought their house down there but had never been able to find time to do. I'll be sharing more on this later!

But hands down, my very favorite part of my 30th birthday was our doctor's appointment on Monday afternoon. It was finally time for our anatomy scan! We got to spend some quality time watching an extremely active baby girl flip and twist around while the ultra sound technician did her thing. It was unbelievably weird to see the movements on screen that I was simultaneously feeling, but kind of reassuring to know that some of those weird feelings had definitely been her somersaulting around in there.
{that's the one & only dress I found from my birthday shopping trip!}

Was it the original birthday celebration I had planned back in January? Not even close. But you know what? It was so much better.

09 July 2018

An Edisto 4th of July Celebration

Y'all, I counted down the days until our trip down to Edisto for months. I was so excited to have five full days at the beach with Patrick's family that I could barely contain it. It had been a few years since I'd been able to vacation with them for more than just a weekend, so I was packed and ready to go on the Tuesday before we left.

The first thing I did when we got down to Edisto a little after 8 o'clock last Friday evening? Grabbed my bike out of the truck, jumped on, and pedaled over to the beach to catch this incredible sunset.

Perfect way to start a beach vacation, right?

Early on Saturday morning, Patrick's dad fired up the smoker outside to cook up some incredible barbeque and ribs for our gender reveal with our families later that day.

While he was busy cooking, the rest of us were busy biking around the island and hanging out on the beach.

Saturday evening was a super special night with our families. We found out that baby GIRL was on the way {!!!} and for the first time ever, we had all of our siblings and their significant others in the same place at the same time. We didn't do the best job documenting it... or did we? Because I think the sibling picture pretty much captures us {even though nobody is really paying attention to the camera}

We spent the next four days of our vacation doing the same thing: biking, beaching, and spending plenty of time with Patrick's family. There was plenty of time on the beach, lots of laughs on the screened in porch in the evenings, quick naps in the hammock below the house, trips to the market, barbeque leftovers for days, more jellyfish than any of us would prefer, all the popsicles one could possibly want, an evening walk to grab ice cream, and so much fun.

When the World Cup is on, soccer must be played on the beach.

It wouldn't be a trip down to Edisto without a stop on my favorite dirt road for a photo.

It also wouldn't be a trip down to Edisto without going to Edisto Seafood by golf cart to buy shrimp for a low country boil.

Hammock naps? Yes, please!

Early morning walks on empty beaches before the rest of the island is awake are always one of my favorite things to do on Edisto.

Y'all, this rainbow was unreal. We woke up to storms on the morning of the 4th but when they rolled out of town, they left behind this gorgeous rainbow! Patrick and I hopped on the golf cart in our pajamas to chase it down on the beach.

Absolutely beautiful!

But... all vacations have to come to an end at some point.

It was such a good trip down to the low country! It was a little different to spend the 4th down on Edisto since for the last five years, we've spent the holiday on Kiawah. Don't worry Kiawah - I'm coming back for you next year!

I'm sad that we had to leave, but it's always nice being back home, too. It probably doesn't hurt that we'll be back down at the beach again this weekend {and a few more times this summer, too!}

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