Eight Pictures for Eight Months (Now With More Pictures!)


<waves sheepishly>


So time got away from me pretty bad there. I mean, I was doing so well about posting, and then suddenly so-so, and then BOOM I’m gone forever. Like a ninja.

Which wasn’t my intention, I promise. I just got super distracted by everything else happening. I thought about writing in the blog and I can’t tell you how many unfinished drafts I have* written up.  But instead of making tons of excuses (there really aren’t any), I’m going to sum up the past eight months in a photo series, because a picture is worth a thousand words, right?

(Side note: there’s a great little movie on Netflix called Words and Pictures that deals with this concept between a highschool Art and English teacher. I enjoyed it and you would to. You love Netflix anyway, so you might as well check it out).

*Turns out I only had six drafts. But I have over twenty in my head!



Glacier Point! Totally worth the drive.

Parker and I spent Thanksgiving in Yosemite, which we did the first year he moved out to California. Road trips with Parker are the best, as they are filled with junk food (gummy bears! pirouette cookies!) and podcasts. We binge-listened to Serial, which is amazing and, if you haven’t already listened to it, DO IT. Then do yourself an even bigger favor and watch the SNL Serial Christmas skit.

Next time we go to Yosemite I’m vowing that we camp in the park. The past two trips have been at an amazing lodge right outside the west entrance (thanks, GroupOn!) but we’re ready to do some serious camping from here on out.



I would have DIED without this twenty year old parka.

SO MUCH HAPPENED IN DECEMBER. It’s hard to find one picture to do it justice, so I’m settling on a picture of a new experience: shooting.

December was jammed packed with quality family time. Parker and I spent Christmas with my family in Orlando, complete with a pinterest fail an attempt at Rudolph pancakes for my niece and nephew, many Christmas movies, a walk through the Osborne Light Show at Disney World, and much cheer and merriment.

Post-Christmas was with Parker’s family in upstate New York, which was bitterly cold compared to Orlando. So cold, in fact, that I had to borrow with ankle-length parka pretty much anytime I went outside. We went shooting one frigid day and here I am holding the only evidence that I can aim. It was a fun experience and there’s a lot of ranges out here in San Diego (turns out there are some SoCal residents that are intense about their guns) that we may try out at some point. The smile you see in this picture is one that was frozen (literally! haha!) to my face for the duration of both of these trips.



A reminder that my love of cheese knows no bounds.

January is always a pretty quiet month*, especially coming off the busy holidays. Parker and I focused on the house for a little bit (like mounting this awesome cutting board to double as decor) and hiring some tree trimmers to deal with our ever-growing palm tree.

*Facebook tells me that I did nothing in January expect take this photo and watch Parker eat chicken wings so spicy that I was concerned for his health. The chicken wings were called the “Deer Hunter” wings, so we should have known that no good would come from eating them.



I pack like a boss. Why? Because that duffle is packed with donated sports uniforms and the rest is for me for TWO WEEKS. 

I always feel like February is a blur of a month. It’s already short, and add to that a two week trip to South Africa and the whole thing is WOOSH!, gone. This was my forth year going back to South Africa and I’m already planning on going back for a fifth year.

God bless email and Skype. What would I do without them?




March was Parker’s 33rd birthday and the continuation of a our new favorite pastime: Modern Times brewery, laser tag, and sushi. While we didn’t get sushi the night of his birthday (instead it was God-awful Del Taco. NEVER AGAIN!), we’ve been doing the laser-tag/sushi for a while and we love it. It helps that all of these establishments are within walking distance of each other.

So if you come to visit, we’ll most likely take you on the Beer-Lasertag-Sushi combo tour. You know you want to!



A Very Merry Bill Murray Birthday Party (not pictured: all those that left at a reasonable hour).

April was a great month*. I turned 30 in April and had one of the best themed parties to date: a Very Merry Bill Murray Birthday Party. Everyone had to dress up as a character from a Bill Murray movie, so of course I chose the Stay Puft marshmallow man from Ghostbusters (by far one of the most comfortable outfits I’ve ever worn to a party). The outfits were fantastic and the company and games were even better. A very memorable night, indeed!

*April was also a great month because that’s when the new Star Wars trailer came out, and I’ve been watching it about once a week since then.



Photobooth strip from a friend’s wedding in May! A photobooth will be making an appearance at our reception.

By this point I had totally fallen off the bandwagon to run the Rock n’ Roll Half Marathon (oops), but May was a great month. To celebrate our 7 year anniversary, Parker and I embarked on a “7 Things for 7 Years” adventure over the course of the weekend. We went to a Padres game, got a zoo membership, got the Explorer Pass for all the Balboa Park museums, ate lunch in the park, and saw They Might Be Giants at Belly Up in Solana Beach. This is a tradition we’re going to hope to continue, especially now that we’ll have two anniversaries: the day we started dating (May 3rd) and the day we get married (September 25th). The idea, we think, will be to do our “X Things” between those to dates. So as we hit 10, 15, 20, 30 (!) years we’ll have to do x number of those things in that time span. Wish us luck!



Parental selfie!

Hello, summer! Well, at least at the end of June it was summer for me. My parents came for a nice long visit and we spent our time getting to know Sequoia National Park and Yosemite pretty well! Yosemite is definitely different in the summer (hot! crowded!) but much more alive than in the winter. It was a great trip and we clocked nearly 1500 miles on the rental in one week. This trip also marked the beginning of a National and State Park-filled summer. Woo!



This place is called Molly’s Knob. That is all.

July was spent traveling back and forth from East Coast to West Coast and back again. We spent a week cabin camping with Parker’s family for his dad’s 60th at Hungry Mother State Park (which got its name from a very depressing story), and I met a lot of Parker’s extended family for the first time.

We spent our days hiking, avoiding the rain with board games, eating lots of food, and hitting up the beach in the afternoons to soak in the rays and jumping off the diving board platform in the middle of the lake (which, interestingly enough, is so old that it was grandfathered in to the current park and will remain in operation only until it falls apart).

Bonus Picture! 


Indiana Jones never leaves his hat behind.

Last year I won a free one-day ticket to Comic Con (which I spent waiting in line for the X-Files 20th Anniversary Panel– worth it!) and this year Parker surprised me with tickets for both of us. Instead of waiting for hours for the big-name panels, we spent our days checking out some of the smaller panels (like one on Indiana Jones) and hitting up some favorites, like The Oatmeal and Cartoon Network’s Adult Swim (the highlight of which was the panel for the Mike Tyson Mysteries. Note: Mike Tyson is insane and hysterical).

August (now with more pictures!):


The bridal shower was hosted at Dr. Bombay’s Underwater Tea Party. I loved it, of course!


Back in Athens with L and E! We were a coven of witches, obvs.


Surprised by my San Diego ladies with a cooking class at Sur la Table. A perfect start to a very memorable day!


The bachelorette concluded with drinks (!!!) downtown with more friends

August has been a month of celebrations, for sure. A whimsical and wonderful bridal shower at a tea shop in Atlanta with close friends and family, followed by a relaxing weekend in Athens with my two best college friends (also bridesmaids!), and another bachelorette in San Diego, filled with cooking classes, delicious food, and drinks out on the town. I’m certainly not one to shy away from the spotlight (duh), but it’s taken me a while to get used to being showered with this kind of attention. Luckily I have such wonderful family and friends that they’ve made everything really fantastic!

It’s been a year since Parker and I got engaged and, looking back, I know I’ve been hesitant to talk about the wedding on any form of social media. I’ve posted a photo here or there (addressing invitations, Parker getting his suit altered) but I’ve been pretty mum about it. I didn’t want to be one of those people who talk about my wedding nonstop for a couple of reasons. First, many of the people that would be reading the details aren’t actually invited, and that seemed wrong and boastful. Second, I want some of the day to be a surprise for people that do come!

Wedding planning has been really smooth sailing, thanks to the Internet and my kickass wedding planner who lives in Virginia (where we are getting married). I’ve pretty much followed my gut reaction on nearly everything to do with the wedding, from hiring vendors (my photograph and DJ are spot on and I heart our officiant) to the decor and food. People keep asking if I’m stressed (no), excited (yes), nervous (nope), and giving me lots of unsolicited advice like “you won’t eat during the reception, but make sure you hydrate!” Ummm…do you not know me? I will eat ALL THE FOOD. My wedding planner is making sure of it.

Some bonus August pictures!


My entire family (pictured, though Aidan is probably off running around somewhere) took a trip to the Smokey Mountains, our old stomping ground.

Parker and I FINALLY got around to redoing the closest adjacent to the kitchen. It involved a lot of cutting, sanding, painting, and staining. Worth it!

Parker and I FINALLY got around to redoing the closest adjacent to the kitchen. It involved a lot of cutting, sanding, painting, and staining. Much much better.

Tomorrow is the end of August and I’m hoping that I keep up with this blog in a more timely fashion. The countdown to the wedding is 26 days (!), but only one day until I start cold-calling people that have yet to RSVP.

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One Response to Eight Pictures for Eight Months (Now With More Pictures!)

  1. Airlia Lotz says:

    Thanks for taking the time to post, Karen! My oh my, you guys have been busy creating wonderful memories! Kudos for making time for adventures! Can’t wait to see you both in less than a month!!!

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