Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Get ready...

I have some awesome blog news coming soon about a project I am working on. Oh and people...don't go assuming I am pregnant and that I am announcing it on my blog. It is a project not an important life announcement.

I will be posting this amazing announcement soon, so for now hold on tight and be prepared so that you are not blown away...

Oh and since I haven't blogged since June 2013 here is the fastest recap known to man, starting from June 2013 - November 2014:
  • Camping in Maryland (with the largest spiders known to man)
  • Beach day with Nicky Baker
  • Fourth of July in Boston
  • Left job
  • Got new job
  • Travel to Pennsylvania x2 (we love Gettysburg)
  • Travel to Salt Lake City for wedding
  • Travel to Salt Lake City again for conference & Brandon's Japan Mission Reunion
  • Renaissance Faire
  • The most epic Friendsgiving yet with the Phillips (15+ dishes)
  • Travel to Las Vegas and Lucerne Valley for Christmas
  • Wedding in LA
  • MAGFest
  • Travel to Austin to check out houses
  • Took cake decorating classes
  • Travel to Mexico/ Mayan Rivera
  • Put Virginia house for sale
  • Travel to China
  • Travel to Palmyra/Upstate NY/Niagara Falls/Canada
  • Kidney surgery in TX
  • Shilo visits us, Mom and Dad visit
  • Travel to Orlando (Universal Studios and DisneyWorld)

Love, peace and Michael Jackson.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Playing Catch Up- May 2013

Last blog was about our cruise in February. 
March: It was Shilo's Birthday. I won't blog about it because you can read about it here
April: My parent's came out for a visit and it was Brandon's birthday.

And that brings us to May.

We saw The Great Gatsby with our awesome friends who aren't afraid to dress up with us and who have amazing authentic outfits (and even know how to pose in 1920s style!!)

Later that month was our anniversary (5 years!!). We painted and redecorated our master bedroom. Super romantic huh?? :) I will post pictures of that later. Here is a teaser:

Then we (Shilo and I) threw a bridal shower for Mallory. The theme was white/rustic. Here were the invitations, all made from scratch:

Here is a picture of me decorating the cake with Brandon photo bombing (as usual). Our awesome friends let us borrow all of their cake decorating tools and even taught us how to decorate a cake for the shower. We have amazing friends. PS: Don't mind how janky the cake looks right now.

Shilo made caramel corn to go in these mason jars as party favors. 

My aunt sent us homemade soap to hand out as prizes. The soap holders were made by my uncle. I mean, it doesn't get any better than this!!

 Side Note: We hate bridal shower games but we played this AWESOME one called "Who's got the groom?!?" Where everyone had an envelope and inside the envelope was a famous actor (that Mallory was a fan of) in a tux. One person had David in a tux and that person won. It was simple and fun to see all the hot men in tuxes!

This is a collage of some of the food and decorations

The finished cake! I will NEVER make mums again....NEVER!!

Food Table

Proud sisters

The Bride-To-Be

Right after the shower we drove to Orange, VA to take some engagement pics for the happy couple. Since I am not too sure if they want their pics on my blog, here are some vague shots

That is it for May! June was crazy you guys...just you wait and see! I am almost caught up, yay!

Thanks for stopping by! Peace, love and caramel corn.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

I'm On a BOAT!

In February we went on a cruise. It was freaking magical. Here are a BOATload of pics for you to go through. Yes, I like puns. Don't you know me by now?!?!

"Auf Wiedersehen ___hole!" (Bridesmaids quote)

First (non cruise) stop: BAHAMAS! 

Don't worry, no alcohol here. 

I said "On the count of three, give me a face that shows how you feel about being in the Bahamas!" And this is what happened:

Why is the Rum gone?!?

Random cat. I knew I would love it here.

Sculpture at the Atlantis- reminded us of Game of Thrones

We stayed across the street from The Atlantis. We got to use all of the amenities. Awesomesause.

Waiting for a fancy car to take us to a fancy dinner

Brandon got dinner recommendations from a co-worker. The place was called Dune at The One and Only Club and it was delish. 

Random cat #2. I called her Priscilla. She was precious.

The next day we were all scheduled to go scuba diving. I woke up with a migraine and was vomiting my brains out. So Shilo, Mallory and Brandon went without me. When they got to the cove, Brandon's ears were not popping as he was decening into the ocean so he couldn't go diving either. So just Shilo and Mallory went. Apprently they had a good time. The sad part is, that was supposed to be the highlight of the trip for Brandon :(

Later that night after we all felt better, we went down to the fish fry and ate our weight in fried fish. 

Then we went to the aquarium. Jellies!!!

The third day in the the Bahamas we went to Atlantis water park  They have a water slide where, at the end, you are floating in a see-through tube and sharks are swimming around you. HOW COOL IS THAT?!?!

Two sharks:
One was right above me!

Shilo and Mallory were in front of us
Down we go!

Nice picture huh? Shilo's finger in the corner and B looks naked. Haha, I die.

Those (below) seemed like a good idea at the time. I'm hot, dehydrated, sun burnt  in a bikini and hungry. I should totally get nachos. I wont regret that at all! - Ashley logic at its best.

Atfer the waterpark we went to the beach, B and M went on a wave runner and Shilo and I made fun of people layed out on the beach

Seriously?!? To BOTH of you people!
Sister toes!

I don't know if you knew this but my sister is kind of a gangster

Ok, funny story moment: There was this HUGE school of fish that swam by. Then this huge ugly fish stopped swimming and stared at this man in the hat. HE stared at him for like five minutes. This man kepts looking around like "is anyone else seeing this?!?!" We did sir, we did.

Mallory took a picture with the stare-asaurus. 

Me and Shilo mimicking the fishy.

That evening we went across the water to downtown Nassau. 

If you EVER go to the Bahamas, try the Guava Duff. IT is the greatest thing you will ever eat down there. I promise you this. 

After leaving the Bahamas, we went back to  Florida to get on the boat and start the 7 day cruise. 

As we were leaving the port, we were escorted by the Coast Guard. They were playing around with a huge gun on the front of the boat...natch. 

Floridians waving to us. How sweet!

Ft. Lauderdale coastline

We were lucky enough to have a balcony attached to our room so we hung out there a lot. 

This is where you would find me most of the time, planning our days (and B playing his game)
Our room during the day

Our room with the bunk bed for the girls

This happened. Whatever floats your boat I guess(!)

I don't know...

They had themed levels on the boat. This one was like hippie/nature.

Planning another day

Girls getting ready

Our first fancy night

It wouldn't be a photoshoot without funnies. Don't worry, we didn't go overboard (!)...

This is our grumpy cat face.

This picture brings me so much joy.

She is the fairest of them all...

This drink was called Miami Vice. Half Strawberry Daiquiri half Pina Colada- virgin of course. AMAZING

FIRST STOP: Cozumel, Mexico

Look at these "COOL" (read: totally terrible) water shoes that B and I wore!

Our excursion was an Amphibious ride through a rain forest to a jade cavern to swim with bats. At least that's what the brochure said. What we ACTUALLY did was see cool animals at this animal preservation place- no pictures were allowed which is a total bummer because I got to hold this amazing python a feed a parrot with my mouth- then we got on these totally uncomfortable four-wheeled vehicles (with NO power steering, so Brandon's hands and arms were killing him) and rode to the cavern where bats were above us and then we rode back to the animal preservation place to have nachos and coke. Oh and we wore bandannas because the dust was so bad. I. wanted. to. die.
Oh, did I forget to mention the large mud puddles we drove through?
Cavern...the water smelled so bad!

All of those dark black things are hanging bats. Pretty cool huh???
Mallory was the only brave soul to jump from the side.
The after pics. We were SO DIRTY!

We stopped at a Mexican restaurant after we showered off. After I saw this picture I asked Shilo what she was doing and she said "I was doing you a favor!"

A guy with no pants at the restaurant. NBD.
I am not sure what is going on here...

SECOND STOP: Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands

This is the town called Hell:

We went to a turtle farm. These guys were HUGE!!
These were the bay-bays

After our turtle farm adventure, Mallory and I decided to go kayaking. It also came with snorkeling gear. SWEET DEAL!!
Funny story: The lady at the kayak office looked at me and said I could have a kid life vest. It was the kind that was flat and then you blow it up by tube on the shoulder when you are on the water and the strap goes between your legs and attaches in the front.. So when I put it on at the store it fit. When I blew it up on the water, suddenly it got a lot smaller...meaning the strap that goes in between my legs was up my butt the ENTIRE time I was trying the snorkel. It was the most uncomfortable thing ever. I am pretty sure it caused permanent damage. I feel sorry for whoever has to use it next. 

The next few pictures show how hard it is to put on snorkel gear on a kayak. 

Cool wreckage beneath the water

THIRD STOP: Falmouth, Jamaica

Our excursion was just supposed to be a bamboo raft ride down a river. As we were finding out on a daily basis, the excursions always had other activities added on (sometimes not always a good thing). After the raft ride, we got a BBQ lunch, alcohol tasting (waste for us) and a tour around the banana farm.

This bamboo ride was interesting. It was peaceful, except the part where the "captian" tries to tell you his sob story to get you to give him a large tip. They even give you a paper during the begining of the ride to tell you not to believe what they say because they are trying to scam you. Thanks Jamaica!!!

This guy was a riot though. This was one of our conversations:
Capitain: Do you guys smoke?
Us: Nope
Capitan: I do.....not cigarettes though....(as if we didn't catch his drift, he ended with)...marijuana. 

Jamaica is beautiful!!!

He gave me limestone pedicure. Oh yeaaaahhhhh

We stopped to have a coconut. He chopped it up with a machete first. Yikes!!

Banana farm tour

This old man was mixing drinks. I am pretty sure he is drunk 24/7

We drove by Usain Bolt's school so we were paying homage :) 

FOURTH (and final) STOP : Haiti 

(aka: USA owed part of Haiti where it is just an extension of the cruise, just on a beach)

We finally got to go paddle boarding. I wanted to do it the entire trip!!  It was called a YOLO-YAK though, haha. WHY????

I was looking for fishys!!

Drinking cold smoothies in the sun. Life couldn't get better!!

The sunset leaving Haiti

That night we had formal dinner. We LOVED our waiters :)

Dessert before and after:


We were at sea the last day of the cruise so we just hung out and didn't do much. 

We watched the cruise's A-Capella group sing. It was entertaining to say the least. That dude below looked like Theon Greyjoy.

It started pouring. Not cool when you are on a boat (and the Carnival Cruise fiasco was just happening)

Stormy seas!!!

That night we went to a show and dinner. And then to a club. That is how we roll.

And here are pics of me dancing on the bed for fun.

I hope you made it through this long post. We took a Celebrity Cruise line and I definitely recommend it! If you have any questions about where we went, let me know!

Peace, love and Guava Duff.