The Year of 3

Today Mumbles and I celebrate our third wedding anniversary! I don’t know if we still qualify as newlyweds but the joy, bliss, love and happiness in our partnership astonishes me in the new ways it continues to grow.

“He is more myself than I am. Whatever our souls are made of, his and mine our the same.” –Emily Brontë

We’ve been together nine years now and in this third year of our marriage we will become a family of three (humans…Baxter makes four). We have so much to be grateful for, especially our family and friends who constantly fill us with laughter, support, encouragement and inspiration. Thank you.

Cheers to three years, Mumbles, and to many, many more!

wedding party



[photo: Brandon Kidd Photography]


Happy Birthday, Mumbles!

A happy Friday to you, my friends, and a very happy birthday to my dashing husband, Mumbles!  Cheers!


the handwriting on this cake looks a bit like Hagrid’s (a little Harry Potter humor for you cool kids out there…)


Mumbles and I in San Fran where we’ll be celebrating his birthday soon! Can’t wait!

2nd Anniversary in San Fran

Two years ago my best girlfriends and I went to San Francisco for my bachelorette weekend getaway. Minus Sunday morning napping on a couch in the hotel lobby and the nauseating plane ride home, it was all the perfect fun and laughter this bride-to-be could handle. We had champagne in our room with a view of Union Square, got dressed up like flappers and went to Bourbon & Branch in the Tenderloin (no matter we didn’t know they didn’t serve food – we found an awesome pizza place open late!), went out dancing, had a marvelous breakfast downstairs at Sears Fine Food, a delicious dinner at Pinnocchio Trattoria where our waiter and some foreigners called us all “Bella” throughout the evening…oh, it was just lovely!

This past weekend was another such lovely trip to the Frisco Bay. Wedding related, yes, but oh-so-different. Mumbles and I flew to San Fran for our second anniversary and were so lucky to spend quality time with our cousin/friends Ryan & Page and our friend from college, Muki. The weather was gorgeous; so much so in fact that it almost felt like we could manage living there (we couldn’t; I think 75° is cold sometimes plus the wind and my hair? Forgedaboudit.).

We had a delicious lunch outdoors on the patio at Momo’s across the street from AT&T Park, home to the Giants. I had the most delicious Basil Ginger Lemonade and now I crave it every day! Following our lunch, we took a stroll around the ballpark and even got to watch an inning in the outfield from this neat little tucked in space where you can look on through the fence or watch a flat screen tv (very cool that you don’t even have to pay!).


That night our friend Muki picked us up and took us for a drive through the Financial District and to dinner at House of Nanking, a very popular place – so popular that you line up outside on the street to get in and then are seated alongside other diners at tables pushed together. It was intimate, funky and fun, plus the food was delicious!


After dinner Muki played chauffeur and took a drive up to Coit Tower for phenomenal views of the city.



The next morning, Ryan, Page, Mumbles and I crossed the Golden Gate Bridge up a windy mountain road to get to Muir Woods for a glorious hike through redwoods.





Our destination was the Nature Friends Tourist Club for Maifest. They are celebrating their 100 year anniversary and we were happy to join in the festivities with beer, sausages, sauerkraut, pretzels, cabbage, and polka. Hikers, hipsters, and lederhosen all mashed together in one place…too much fun!


Cheers to love, fun adventures, beautiful weather, great friends, and weekend getaways!

Be sure to check out Page’s charming blog, Page on Paper, and tell her how awesome she is. (She is, promise).

How I Met Mumbles

Some of you reading this know the story because you were there, or because maybe you read about it on our wedding website or I’ve told a version of the story over dinner or drinks upon being asked or you patiently listened unwilling when I gushed about every detail there ever was after Mumbles proposed.  But for those of you that haven’t heard it, I thought I’d share the story of how I met Mumbles.  If memory serves, yesterday would have been the anniversary of our first date eight years ago. 

It was a spring semester at California State University, Fullerton, when sitting in Geology class in an ordinary, cold classroom in McCarthy Hall that I first laid eyes on Mumbles.  I thought he was oh-so-dreamy and whenever he’d saunter into class, I’d perk up just a little hoping to catch his eye.  A first year member of sorority, I soon noticed that Mumbles was a member of the fraternity that happened to be paired with our sorority for that year’s Greek Week event in April, noting his dashing good looks were a bit diminished with his enthusiastically competitive Mohawk. (okay, yes, I kinda liked it.)

It was days after said event that I noticed him on campus speaking with one of my sorority sisters and decided to do some Nancy Drew-esque investigating, which in this day and age involved some serious sleuthing: sending said sorority sister an inquisitive text message asking for information about the cute fraternity guy I had been drooling over in class. From a somewhat terse reply I learned only that dreamy guy’s name was Johnny and that said sorority sister seemed displeased to have been asked about him. Not understanding why she seemed upset, another sorority sister offered an explanation: they’re dating. “Of course the boy I think is cute is already dating one of my sorority sisters,” I reasoned. And I left it at that.

But it wouldn’t be left for long. Later that week, I bumped into Mumbles on campus while he was campaigning for student office.

“Hi, I’m [Mumbles], we’re in the same geology class,” he said.

A little bit in shock at the name he gave so nonchalantly but secretly happy that cute fraternity guy was chatting me up, I wondered what kind of jerk gives a girl the wrong name. Wrong phone numbers, sure, I’ve heard of that…but the wrong name? Wow, college guys really step it up a notch! (I did eventually learn the truth about the name mix-up: sorority sister had been talking with Mumbles when I spotted them but the pair were very quickly joined by Mumbles’s roommate, Johnny, after which Mumbles then walked away. Thus, she had been standing with the real Johnny when the crucial text message had arrived. Gah!)

Mumbles explained to me that while he’d been visiting our professor, Dr. Knott, during his office hours to go over material, he was wondering if I might consider studying with him for an upcoming test. Blushing, I agreed (not confessing quite yet that I actually found geology to be interesting and, in fact, used to collect rocks as a child – in case you’re wondering: no, that’s not ideal pre-first date material). It wasn’t more than a few days later that Mumbles was knocking on my parents’ front door answering questions from Stick Girl’s Dad about his intentions and devouring baked goodies made by Stick Girl’s Mom.

With all the time Mumbles and I spent studying together, we probably should have received A’s, but chapter reviews and vocabulary memorization gave way quickly to long conversations about life, faith, family, and love. Feeling butterflies in my stomach but also very comfortable around him (is there such a thing as calm butterflies?), I surprised myself when I asked Mumbles to take me to my sorority’s spring formal just a few short weeks away. I was shocked yet again when his reply was an indecisive, “Can I get back to you about it?”

Huh. College guys.

Later agreeing to take me to the formal, I wondered if it we were simply study buddies or if perhaps (fingers crossed) the butterflies he possessed happened to be the rarest, most calm species of stomach-dwelling butterflies the dating world had ever known. Getting ready with mutual friends just before the big dance, I thought I had my answer when – one lip gloss application from being ready to go – Mumbles was nowhere to be found. Asking around, a few people mentioned seeing him leave. (!)  And just as I was about to write him off and tell those butterflies to move on, Mumbles gallantly reappeared with a bouquet of flowers in hand.

And that’s the story of the beginning – how a girl who used to collect rocks as a kid now finds herself with a rock on her finger, having tied the knot with her best friend, Mumbles, the handsome fraternity guy from Dr. Knott’s geology class.

Our [nameless] new dog

My dream has finally come true – we have a dog! Mumbles found a stray dodging cars and wandering around in his office parking lot. He sent me the photos and although his white fur was practically black and a matted mess, he had such a sweet face. I demanded he bring that dog home and that’s just what he did. Good husband.

Poor pupster was covered in fleas so Mumbles lovingly gave him a flea bath and we could tell he was relieved already. Over the weekend his personality really started to shine through. At first we were a little concerned; he didn’t play fetch, eat treats, or make any noise, and he was extremely mellow. Now he’s playing ball, gnawing on bones, running up and down the stairs, and rolling over on his back for lots of lovin’ and giving kisses like crazy. He’s a goofy guy and Mumbles is enamored. So am I. I even wake up early to take him for walks, which, if you know me, really means something as I am not a morning person. We’ve been crate training him and it’s breaking my heart to leave him for work. Your heart would break, too. Just look at his little face.


Perhaps the funniest thing about this fluffball is that sometimes he sticks his tongue out and his lips move so it looks like he’s mumbling. It’s a match made in doggy heaven!

So, what do you think we should name him? I always wanted a dog named Ravioli, but he really doesn’t look like a Ravioli. I might get over it because I love the name, but here are some other names we’ve been trying out too, and feel free to suggest your own:

What’s for dinner: BBQ Ranch Salad

Mumbles is like a lot of guys in that he has to have meat on his plate to consider it a meal. This was pretty tricky for me in the early dating stages, as I’ve been known to have meals that consist solely of bread, cheese and wine. (I later learned to add salami and nuts to round it out a bit for him). Even sometimes now when I’m not up for cooking meat I get a little worried… that is until I decided to make myself like black beans. Dr. Merrett can attest to the fact that I’ve told her [probably a million times over] of how I learned to love tomatoes while living in Spain with BFOTB, forced myself to eat pickles until I began to crave them, and even tried to partake in the party staple deviled eggs (that one hasn’t stuck yet). So, I’m proud to present the new Mumbles and Stick Girl go-to favorite for when we don’t want to cook meat but still want to pack a punch of healthy protein in a meal: the BBQ Ranch Salad.


I cut up a bunch of fresh veggies like celery, tomatoes, carrots, and bell peppers (and would have used corn if I had any). Next I added in half a can of black beans and some pepper jack cubes to give a slight kick to the salad, then added the leafy greens and tossed everything together with light ranch dressing and barbecue sauce. The finishing touch was crumbling some tortilla chips on top.


It was super delicious and because I was too lazy to dirty up more dishes/find it somewhat romantic to eat out of the same bowl (again with the two forks, one bowl – this is really starting to stick! – or just completely make people throw up in their mouth a little. gosh, we’re like the kind of couple that sit on the same side of the booth at restaurants… okay, yes, we do that, too, sometimes. stop judging me.), we were fighting back and forth over all the yummy nuggets of goodness in this tasty salad.

What are your go-to recipes when you don’t have/want meat?