Another holiday season has come and gone, and that means Cliff and I are back to the daily grind after spending some down time in our beloved Nebraska. We make the annual pilgrimage every year for the holidays, and, per tradition, I always try to find time to take photos of this place I love so much. On this particular trip, I came across this gem -- a lonely boot on a lonely, old fence post. Cliche, I know, but that's one of the reasons I love it.
I can't wait to share more photos from my trip home. Until then, I leave you with this:
Like a lot of people, the upcoming inauguration has been weighing heavily on my mind. For me, though, it goes deeper than just the transition of power to a new president. Inauguration weekend is also my birthday weekend. Since I work in and basically eat, breathe and sleep politics whenever I'm not behind the camera, Cliff and I decided to give ourselves a break from the madness. We used some down time to research getaways and found the Applewood Inn, a quaint little B&B in the Shenandoah mountains. The best part? They have llamas!
4. Seeing childhood friends and meeting gerbils!
One of the best parts about going home is reconnecting with the friends I grew up with. My good friend Kristy over at Goldenrod Photography invited me to her iaido martial arts class, which was incredibly entertaining. I took some photos (be sure to check back soon for highlights!) and learned a lot about the ancient art. Another friend recently welcomed some pet gerbils into her home. Fun fact: I grew up with gerbils and absolutely adore them! It was pretty awesome catching up and teaching my friend tips and tricks for how to care for and handle her new pets. Finally, Cliff and I caught up with some college buddies, one of who we hadn't seen in ten years. TEN YEARS!!! We're both a little embarassed about that time gap, but also really happy we got to hang with our friend Mike and his lady Kelly, as well as friends Kathy, Fran and Tina!
3. Going back to old stomping grounds!
A lot of people don't know this, but my background is in journalism and writing. Before moving to D.C. I worked as a reporter for a weekly paper in the tiny town of Aurora, Nebraska. I haven't been able to make it back to Aurora since I left, but this year that changed. I spent an afternoon with friends I hadn't seen in years at Espressions Coffee Shop, and even visited my former boss and the office where I worked! That's the good news. The bad news? I forgot my camera! I'm still kicking myself for that mind slip, but I guess it means I'll just have to go back!
2. Hanging with my niece and nephew!
My niece and nephew are two of the coolest people I know. Because one lives in Nebraska and the other is in Connecticut, we don't get to see each other often, but when do we spend time together it's always a blast. My nephew, 3, is really into TMNT right now, so of course we talked about our favorite turtles and what makes Splinter the coolest of them all. My niece is about to be a teenager (WHUUUT?!) and loves music, fashion and clothing design... but don't go thinking she's a girly girl. One of the things I love most about Miah is all the ways she busts gender stereotypes. In between opening presents and roughhousing with her cousin and uncles, she painted my nails and Cliff's nails!
1. Taco Inn!
This goes without saying. Taco Inn is my favorite restaurant of all time, and is always at the top of my list. This year I only ate there three times. My record is getting a little shabby :/
(P.S. If anyone is wondering, the South 48th location is the best).