11 August 2014

six years

Here is our six year picture:
We accidentally had our camera set to to only take really small pictures. -_-
(Why did we even try to use a real camera?) 
Should have just stuck with the old iPhone picture in the back of the cab

On our anniversary we went out to dinner, as we do. Summer has been pretty busy (broken record) and we haven't had a lot of time to hang out, just the two of us, so dinner sort of felt like a catch-up time. I was thinking about it yesterday and really this past year has moved faster than the others. Is that how it will always keep going? 
Anyway, six years, and it is good. 

25 April 2014

"But though it was the most resonant and real-seeming thing that had happened in a long time, I didn't want to spoil it by talking about it"

I really should blog about this, right? If anything is blog-worthy it is a week in Spain with two of your best friends and a week in Paris with your husband, right? I want to remember things, I want to remember the places where we went and the things that we ate but I also want to remember what it felt like, the narrow streets, the sunshine, the history, the conversations, the quiet. This will hardly do it justice.

I knew that whatever book I read while traveling on planes and trains would somehow become a part of the trip, a traveling companion if you will, and I'm pretty glad I picked The Goldfinch to be that book. It was really a gorgeous book and appropriately moody. Traveling always makes you pensive, no? Of course, not having the regular schedule or responsibilities helps to free up the mind, but it's so much more than that. Going on vacation is like being given a permission slip to feel it all, to soak it all up.

We started in Barcelona. That is, Kristin and I flew from New York to Barcelona and Julie took the train from Madrid to meet us there. We watched the Veronica Mars movie together on the plane and drank the free wine and barely slept and ate awful airplane croissants for breakfast.

[as an aside, I guess Barcelona has been in the back of my mind since listening to The Rentals (1999!). We listened to that song more than once while we were there.]

Highlights in Barcelona (besides, you know, JULIE), in the order they appeared, as follows: brunch at MilkPark Guell (didn't get nearly enough time there), la Sagrada Familia, and the beach. That cathedral pretty much ruined me for cathedrals the rest of the trip; it was truly awe-inspiring. And, I'm a bit afraid of heights, I learned, at least with the narrow walkways and open windows in the tower [shaky legs].
I'm pretty sure that there is a lot more to do in Barcelona, but I got a little food sick the first night and missed out on the tapas at Sensi (which looked delicious) and the absinthe at Bar Marsella.

Onward to Madrid! Monday we took advantage of having our tour guide/translator with us (before she had to go back to work) and we had tapas and vermouth at Bodega de la Ardosa (recommend!), walked down through Calle de Fuencarral to Gran Via, saw the Banco de Espana and Edificio Metropolis, and ended up at a rooftop bar overlooking the city (have I mentioned how much I love rooftops?).

I'll be honest, left to our own devices on Tuesday, Kristin and I really just wanted to go to the park and sit in the sun. And that's pretty much what we did. [And it was perfect.] We drank a lot of coffee too (shout out to my best buds at Vertical Caffe!).

On Wednesday, we took a day trip to Toledo, Spain, while Julie worked. Everyone said to go there and I did not really know why but now I agree, go there! It was wonderful. We walked around the little city, visited the cathedral, and had lunch outside at Ludena.
On the train to Toledo the thing I really wanted to listen to (while Kristin was watching her nutrition videos on her phone) was Lifted, but just the last six tracks. It was right.
Back in Madrid that evening we went to Bar Tomate for dinner (YUM) and Tupperware for drinks. Kind of a perfect day.

Thursday was my last day in Madrid so Kristin and I resisted the urge to sit at the park, and instead went to the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia [to see Guernica (mostly)]. We also went on a little walking tour to see a few more sights in Madrid, including Mercado San Miguel (so fun), Almudena Cathedral, the Royal Palace of Madrid, and the Plaza de Espana Madrid [we managed to sit for a while by the fountain here].  

That evening we took the train down to Sevilla and spent the next day riding bikes across the Alamillo Bridge (and back) and along the water to Plaza de Espana Sevilla (amazing!), and back to Las Setas (beautiful). We went to the rooftop bar (I'm telling you) and had tinto de verano (which in my head obviously meant "wine of the roof"). It was pretty perfect.

Saturday was a long day of two train rides, a plane ride, and a taxi ride but I finally made it to Paris and to Elliott. And I'm just going to have to save those stories for another day.

Conor Oberst: Live in The Greene Space (+playlist)

I'm just going to leave this here.

10 January 2014

is there anything left to say?

I laundered my phone on Monday. The phone was on the bed, I pulled out the laundry to sort, I grabbed a big pile--phone included--to take to the washer. I noticed almost instantly [panic upon returning to my room, wait WHERE'SMYPHONE NOOOO], but it was too late, the water had done its damage. This was an expensive mistake of course, Apple's Care doesn't include water damage, but also, my phone hadn't been backed up since July! So I lost a lot of pictures. Will I even be able to remember what happened last fall? I certainly wasn't blogging about it.

I should at least point out that the weekend before the marathon was my ten-year high school reunion in Arkansas. And it was so fun. I was surprised how happy I was to see so many people I graduated with, and how much fun we all had catching up. Facebook doesn't tell you everything, I learned.

Here is one picture from Thanksgiving. We enjoyed Thanksgiving in our house this year with many of our favorite friends. We ate some delicious food and played Scattergories.
In December, Elliott and I both got really sick (first me, then him) and I watched almost all of the Carrie Diaries. It was kind of good? I guess if that is what sticks out about December it must have been good.

We went home to Little Rock for ten days and we were happy to spend time with both of our families, and this trip, with lots of friends too. It rained and rained the first two days we were there but the rest of the time was mild and sunny. I celebrated my 29th birthday driving from Oklahoma back to Little Rock and enjoyed tacos for breakfast AND dinner.
Being back in New York with a new year feels relatively quiet and peaceful so far (and really really cold). We even had a chance last weekend to finally hang some art on our walls. And there are things to look forward to in 2014, but I am glad for now for a mostly empty schedule.

Did I make resolutions? Not really, but two things I have been thinking about: 1) start journaling on paper again. I've had a lot of anxiety over the last six months and I think writing out some thoughts will help with this, and 2) if I say to someone, "let's grab a drink sometime" or "we should all get dinner," follow through! It's so easy to get busy and push things aside, but despite my introvert tendencies, I truly do value relationships with people and I want to make sure my actions communicate that. Also, now that we are somewhat settled in the house, Elliott and I want to be sure to invite people over for dinners. We have a dining room table! No reason not to. 

07 November 2013

26.2 || NYC Marathon

[mile 11]

The NYC Marathon was this past Sunday, November 3rd. Remember how it was cancelled last year due to Superstorm Sandy? After training for two years in a row, I finally got to run.

Training this year was harder than last year. I had a bad attitude some of the time, and a lot of the time, it was just hard to connect with the fact that the marathon was [most likely] happening. (You mean these miles won't be for nothing?) The early Saturday morning wake up calls felt earlier and crueler, and my foot injury in September felt like I was never going to make it to that finish line.

But I am happy to say that it happened and it was wonderful. I never thought I would refer to a marathon as fun, but it totally was. For the NYC Marathon, you start in Staten Island and run through each borough (Brooklyn, Queens, Manhattan, Bronx, and Manhattan again) finishing in Central Park. The marathon course is pretty much lined with people cheering for almost the entire 26.2 miles (save for a few lonely stretches in quieter neighborhoods and of course the bridges). I had my name on my race shirt so I heard "go Katie" at least every few minutes on the course. And the best part was that I saw friends every few miles, and in Williamsburg/Greenpoint/LIC, practically every few blocks. Marathon Day is always an incredibly supportive and communal day in New York City, and I felt that firsthand.

Thanks to my charity and the training provided, I felt physically and mentally prepared for the race. I felt strong. I knew I needed to start the race slower, I knew where the hills were, I knew that when you think you are almost done you exit Central Park at mile 25 only to reenter at mile 26. I knew what was coming, and as a result I didn't feel discouraged when the race seemed tough. I also had little mental mantras to focus on. One of those is 10-10-10: the first 10 miles is all about being mentally prepared, the second 10 miles is when your training and strength is important, and the last 10k is all heart.

I'm not sure I would want to run just any marathon, I really felt that the spirit of the day in New York made all the difference. I was smiling the whole time.

Okay, now what?
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