Sunday, October 16, 2011

Shenandoah National Park

Chris and I ventured south this past weekend for a quick roadtrip through Shenandoah National Park. We traveled south down I-95 on Friday afternoon to Waynesboro, VA. On our way into town, we took a side-trip through the country roads to Veritas Winery for a wine tasting. It was a beautiful family-owned vineyard located in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountain. We were impressed with most of the wines we tasted and left with a rose, chardonnay, and red table blend.

On our way to the winery, we past a brewery so we stopped in on the way from the winery to the hotel for a beer sampling and appetizer.

We woke up {somewhat bright and early} on Saturday and, after breakfast and Starbucks, entered the Shenandoah National Park through the southern entrance. Skyline Drive is the scenic road that runs 105 miles through the park, with several outlooks, campgrounds and lodges, and hiking trails along the route. We stopped several times throughout the drive {listening to the A&M/Baylor game inbetween} - for a 3 mile hike to two waterfalls, for a break at the central lodge, for a few photo opts at overlook points and again for a 2 mile hike to a summit.

We continued about three-quarters up Skyland Drive before exiting outside of Sperryville. Outside of the park, we came across an apple stand, so naturally stopped to fill up a bag consisting of a variety of apples. In Sperryville, which was the kind of town that if you blinked you would miss it, we stopped at the Copper Fox Distillery for a tour of the distillery. From the outside, it was had the appearance of a rundown warehouse; yet it was actually a very impressive mom-and-pop operation. From there we headed back home with one final stop for the evening - Pei Wei.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Klooster Wedding {9.10.11}

A few weekends ago, we made a much anticipated trip to Texas. I {Lyndsey} had been there for a quick weekend trip mid-summer, but Chris had not been back since December. We were going to celebrate Chris' sister, Jenni, and her fiance, Dave, tie the knot. Every aspect of the wedding weekend, from the festivities leading up to the big day to the ceremony and reception, were carefully crafted with personal touches, meaning, and thankfulness. It was a very thoughtful, intentional time that incorporated community worship and family blessings as well as a precious reminder of the beauty and sanctity of marriage.

Our flight into Dallas/Fort Worth was delayed Thursday night due to thunderstorms, so we arrived late that night. On Friday, I joined Chris' mom and sister for manicures and pedicures and a bridesmaids' lunch at the Reata, while Chris picked up his tux and ate lunch with the groomsmen. We spent the afternoon running errands, followed by the rehearsal and rehearsal dinner at Ruth Chris. Saturday started early with a hair appointment, then picking up food to munch on pre-ceremony, then pictures at the church. The ceremony was at First Baptist Church Hurst, followed by a dinner and dancing {and a coffee bar!} at the Fort Worth Hilton. On Sunday, we ate breakfast with my parents in downtown Fort Worth, then joined Chris' family while Jenni and Dave opened gifts at the Markos' house. Afterwards, we drove into Fort Worth to meet up with some friends for dinner at Yucatan Taco Stand.

{with the newlyweds at the reception}





{my parents and I}

Thanks to my parents who picked up our "first anniversary" cake topper from the bakery on their way into town, we enjoyed tres leches cake to celebrate our first anniversary {a few weeks late}.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

April, May, June, July

Welcoming the warm, bright summer days after the chilly, gray days of winter, the summer days now seem to be numbered, as soon they will give way to the crisp, colorful days of fall. Despite the heat and humidity of a DC summer, we have been {and continue to be} enjoying the summer days. With moving into a new apartment, busy work schedules, and long weekend trips, life has kept us occupied these last few months. And since I have fallen behind with documenting that life, this post will a little glimpse into those last four months.

Chris' parents came to visit us for a long weekend in early April. It was whirlwind weekend of touring, eat, shopping and visiting. We spent half a day at Arlington Cemetery, where the new spring was in full blossom {despite the need for jacket!}.

In late April, we took a two hour roadtrip north to visit by brother in Carlisle, PA. It's a quaint college town made up of historic buildings, locally-owned restaurants, and scenic spots. Right off of this spot by the river, which was dotted with fishermen, the Appalachian Trail zig-zags through an open {possibly corn} field leading up through large rolling hills.

In April, we also took a quick trip to Philly for a night, where we met up with my brother. We stayed in downtown and spent most of Saturday exploring the area within walking distance, including a stop at the Reading Terminal Market for cheesesteaks, a quick viewing of the Liberty Bell, and long walk up many, many steps to the Art Museum.

{above: view of downtown from the Art Museum}
{below: Chris posing with the famed Rocky statute}

Of course, we also celebrated Easter. After church, we went out to lunch with friends {thankful for friends here when we cannot be with our families}.

May went by in a blur, the highlight being Memorial Day Weekend where we went into DC to watch thousands of motorcycles ride through the Mall and the Memorial Day concert on the Capitol Lawn. We even went to Arlington Cemetery {second year in a row for us to try this, you would think that we would learn!}. This year we actually made it on the trolley to the amphitheater, but after waiting approximately half an hour to enter, we were told that it was at capacity and the crowd could gather at the back on the grassy area. Instantly, everyone herded over the grave stones in hopes of a view of the ceremony {Obama was actually there this year}. We found it very distasteful that the secret service was only allowing people to stand in contained area that was among the graves, so decided to head out of the cemetery.

In June, we moved into a new apartment. We joke that we left the Ritz Carlton for the Holiday Inn; in truth, though, we've settled in now and, although a significantly tighter fit, it isn't that bad. We also went to a U2 concert at M&T Stadium in Baltimore. Despite the warm weather and 80,000 other U-2 followers, it was a great concert!

In July, Chris took a long weekend trip to visit family in Cleveland and then drove to Michigan with his family to attend a shower for his sister and her fiance. I left the next weekend for a quick visit in Longview with my family.

And that brings us to August...