The Start of Something New

Hi peeps!

Don’t worry, I’m not talking about anything crazy here, just the start of the new semester. Since the summer is officially over (at least here in NC) I figure it’s about time to get on a semi regular posting schedule again. Ya know, in addition to organizing everything else and setting up for the upcoming year

So. Let’s see.

Last week I joined the ASSIST Center at Sourcing at MAGIC (not an actual magic show as in two sorcerers battling it out but a textiles and fashion expo) in Las Vegas!

Our research was being highlighted as the latest in wearable technology so we were front and center of the thing! Here’s a picture of me, taken with a potato, wearing our EKG shirt at a corner of our booth. I may look less than thrilled as this was the last day of the expo and we had just seen……




Insert girly freak out here


It was everything my 10 yr old self could have asked for and then some! I didn’t have much of a voice the day after due to all the loud singing and such 🙂

We also made a point to drink some obscene slushies every night (can you tell I’m really good at taking pictures with my potato??)


Which eventually led to decisions like this….


Apparently balloon hats are rather suspicious to airport security, although FYI they will let you on a plane with them.

Steve had a great time trying to herd two dogs (the puppy is pretty high energy) with a bad knee, but I’ll let him tell you about that experience.


Classes are back in action (I’m taking one class this semester) and it’s weird having to be responsible and make good decisions again…i.e. my half marathon training starts this week…..after not working out for….2 months??….it’s gonna be awesome…..

I’ll be back soon with more!

A New Addition

So it’s been pretty quiet over here on the blog but it definitely has been anything but quiet in real life! As of last Friday, we  are now a 12-legged family….



This cutie is Luna! She’s about 11 weeks old right now and is a very exciting addition to the Steve/Amanda household. Indy has adjusted about as well as could be expected….



Especially since she’s Luna’s new favorite chew toy, but overall they really get along well! Indy has taken on the role of “Mama Dog” and is intent on showing Luna what’s what in life. Indy has also taken on the role of treat thief and shameless beggar whenever Luna is around, so we gotta work on that a bit.


In people news, Steve had reconstructive surgery on his ACL that he tore in Prague.  It’s been my job to dispense ice and narcotics at regular intervals for the last week or so.

Since Steve is out of commission (he’s just now starting to hobble around on crutches) puppy wrangling/herding has been my new 24/7 job in addition to my grad school job and my Steve’s caretaker/”responsible adult” job. It’s a lot to take on at once and I haven’t slept much, but every dog and Steve is worth it!

I’m just going to finish off this post with a bunch more pictures of Luna because the world needs more puppy pictures!

She has questionable sleeping techniques…







But she sure is cute! And we can’t wait for her to get old enough to not annoy Indy 😉


Drink sangria, eat tapas, repeat

Barcelona! This was the most fun city of our trip. I’m not entirely sure if that’s because of the city or the many liters of sangria we drank. Upon arriving at our hostel we checked out the bar where you could get a glass of sangria for four euro or a liter for 10. Guess which one we chose 😀 20150612_174118

The hostel had all these cool paper lanterns hanging in one of the common areas so we sat under them and enjoyed our drinks. We met a Scandinavian family there who after learning that it was our first time in Europe insisted that we had to visit them in their tiny hometown and they would board us and cook for us. Just one more example of the friendly nature that so many people we met displayed. It made us feel all warm and fuzzy inside, although that might have also been the sangria now that I think about it.20150612_174122If we learned anything in Berlin it was that the walking tours are awesome so we went on another to learn about Barcelona. Below you can see one castle where Christopher Columbus asked for money for one of his voyages and was rejected. The first cigarette ever was also apparently smoked here.


There was a combination Picasso and Salvador Dali art exhibit in the city that we really wanted to go to but ended up just not having time. We did see a couple pieces of his work around the city though. Below you can see a piece he donated to the city from his stick figure period.

And next we have a classic piece from his famous blue dressed anthropomorphic bunny period.


We also saw some amazing architecture with Gothic, Neotraditional Gothic and Catalan Gothic architecture. Below there is one of the last remaining pieces of the roman aqueducts.

This game of thrones fountain was pretty impressive. We got a nice stranger to take a picture of us in front of it but you get the non-selfie version because we love you ❤


After that we had to spend a little time on the Mediterranean Sea beach to relax a little. When I was returning some towels we rented I used the Catalan greeting we had learned, Bon dia, and was mistaken as a native Spanish speaker. Blending in with the locals was our favorite challenge in each city so I was pretty happy about that. My high school and college Spanish classes also came in handy. It was nice being able to communicate a little better than in the previous cities.

Finally on to the tapas. We had tapas at a small restaurant our first night where we had mussels, fried brie, octopus, traditional bread with red sauce and you guessed it, more sangria20150612_205112


On the second night we took a tapas tour. It was only 14 Euro and we got to eat at 3 or 4 different tapas restaurants. Each place gave us tapas and some wine while one place in particular gave us wine and beer in these cool drinking vessels that were invented in the medieval ages so that people could share drinks without spreading disease. It was basically a watering can for people that you tilted back to pour wine into your mouth without touching it with your mouth.



After copious amounts of wine, beer, sangria and Schnapps we were feeling pretty awesome. Here we are at the end of the night with Amanda keeping it classy and me… well you can see the picture for yourself 😀


I was talked into buying these two roses which I don’t regret because Amanda looked so pretty holding them and on the metro ride back to the hostel (which we barely remember) I gave one away to an older couple after the train shifted causing the woman to fall into the man and I suggested it was a good opportunity for besos (kisses) which they thought was hilarious.20150613_222245

The next morning was… how should I put this…

We had a 6 am flight to London and I’m pretty sure we didn’t get back to our hostel until 2 or so. We slept a little later than we meant to, woke up still reeling from the night before and hurried off to the airport. When we got there the airport was empty, great news right? No lines! Until we get over to the check in spot for our airline which was apparently the only one flying so early and there were hundreds of people waiting in horribly long lines. Amanda and I split up so she could get our tickets stamped while I got us checked in and bags checked which took well over an hour so after this we’re sprinting through the airport sweating out the last of the alcohol from the night before. At security we realize the bag we didn’t check had all our souvenirs in it which had continuously caused issues at security checkpoints and this was no exception. Amanda was stopped and had her entire bag unpacked while she told me to hurry on to the gate which ended up being another half mile sprint through zig zagging corridors and customs lines. Finally I get to the gate thinking for sure we would have missed the flight but it ended up being delayed enough for us to make it!

This final picture pretty well sums up how we felt after plopping down in our seats on the plane as we took off for London.