Paper Anniversary

I love Eric Oberly! This past weekend, Eric took me to NYC to celebrate our first year of marriage. I remembered thinking last year on our wedding day that there was no way anyone could love another person more than I loved Eric. And yet here I am, one year later, finding myself loving him more now than I did even then. Yes, the rest of this post will likely be this mushy. Consider yourselves warned!

The first gift in paper form were train tickets from Alexandria to NYC. When we got there, we walked up a few blocks to the Distrikt Hotel, a charming yet modern hotel tucked away behind Port Authority, close to Times Square. We were told by several friends that the top of the Rockefeller Center was the way to go as far as getting a great view of the city. They were absolutely right, but unfortunately we were unable to get any great photos to prove it. This one will have to do:
We grabbed some pizza on our walk back to the hotel and got washed up to partake in the second gift in  paper form... tickets to see "Wicked". This was our first time seeing it and I wish I could put into words what it did to me. I thought it was absolutely amazing, and was embarrassingly giddy after leaving the Gershwinn Theatre. 

We had amazing front-row balcony seats:

The next day was designated Central Park day. We walked around beautiful Central Park, visited its zoo, then followed up with a visit to the American Museum of Natural History. We stopped by McGee's for lunch (McGee's is the bar that inspired Maclaren's in "How I Met Your Mother"). While there, we ran into some Colts fans that told us that Keats was where NYC Colts fans caught the games. Of course, we headed there!

The next morning and the entire day, it poured in NYC. We already had tickets to take the ferry to Liberty Island, so we sucked it up and went. Because of the rain, we were unable to get any great photos with the Statue of Liberty, but believe me when I say she was a beauty! Before heading back to the hotel room to relax, we took the subway to Momofuku. I had heard great things about their pork belly buns and their compost cookie and will report that I very much enjoyed both! After lunch, Eric and I gave our feet and legs much needed rest before getting dolled up to go to Daniel Boulud's restaurant, Daniel. This was, hands down, the best meal of my life! And as good as the food was, the service was equally great. We were completely spoiled there, as our server knew it was our anniversary. I don't know who told him that sweets were the way to our hearts, but we ended our 3 course dinner with 6 (count them) desserts! The restaurant was way fancy, and I really hope we'll get to experience something like that again. 

And as if those 3 days weren't enough, Eric surprised me with a present that was a year in the making. He started a journal in October 2009, comprising thoughts and memories we shared throughout our first year of marriage, with intentions to share them with me for our 1 year anniversary. He definitely still knows how to make my heart go pitter patter. 

It was such a wonderful weekend. I can't even tell you how great I still feel from the high of it all. I love my husband, and I am really looking forward to all the things our second year of marriage will bring!


sew what do you think?

Its officially Fall, and we've had a couple of beautiful days here in Virginia, but after the few beautiful days come the bitter cold days of Winter. What this means is bye-bye dresses, hello sweaters, which I hate. Don't get me wrong, I enjoy a pretty snowfall now and then, but putting on layer after layer is a total drag. My Winter wardrobe is fairly boring-- I stick to a formula consisting of a sweater, scarf, and coat. As such, I have a closet full of plain, solid colored sweaters that frankly I am bored of but need to keep me warm as the weather changes. I decided not to invest in more sweaters that I don't care too much about, and save some money by adding flare to my existing sweaters.

The first victim of my fabric surgery operation was this olive green sweater I got from Target for maybe $20 (Photo was taken last year on NYE):

So with this, I hopped on to etsy.com and searched for a lace applique. Found one I liked for $8. I received it in the mail today and first thing I did was pin it in place

(edit: my older sister so kindly pointed out that the tag on this sweater looks like it says 2x, when in actuality my macbook mirrored a photo of the label that reads xs. That's my story and I'm sticking to it.)

The lace was so delicate that I didn't feel confident about running this under my sewing machine. So I went old school-- threaded a needle and sewed it down by hand. It's not a very huge transformation, but I like the little detail adds to it. 

And here I am being a dork and modeling my new-old sweater:

Sew.... what do you think? I'll be happy if the darn thing doesn't fall apart after one wash...



Bill and Leslie welcomed us into their lovely home not only to feed us delicious food, but also to show us how to brew our own beer. The Oberlys know better than to turn down good food and beer!

About a month ago, we came by for Eric and Bill to actually mix the beer potion. Ok, that's not the technical term for it and in actuality it seemed like a very complex process, but I was baking cupcakes with Leslie while they were doing that part of the beer brewing, so I'm not 100% sure what went on then. But we came back tonight to bottle the beer that was made, and this time I got to be a part of the action.

It all started with this Ale Pail, with its ever-so-handsome design:

But make sure your children don't taint the beer!

Bill fills the bottles with beer (with Leslie in the background, fully supporting my blogging):

and Eric puts the caps on the bottles, as I pretend to be helpful:

And here are a few of the completed bottles of Oktoberfest beer that we bottled tonight. They got a couple of weeks until they're ready for drinking:

It was a very fun and unique experience. It's nice that Bill and Leslie totally know what they are doing; I can only imagine the mess that Eric and I would have made if we were to take this on ourselves. We got to sample some of the pumpkin beer that they previously made. It was delicious, and I'm not even a beer drinker!

Here's hoping we'll get to do this again soon! Thanks Bill and Leslie!


Cali 2.0

Post vacation blues are definitely hitting me hard today. Aidan and Brooke truly are the wonder twins. I have the best parents and siblings anyone could ask for. And needless to say I'm head over heels for my husband. I am so blessed with an amazing family, and I miss them all very much right now.

Eric and I spent Labor Day weekend in California visiting family. We got to spend a lot of quality time with family, and Eric finally got the chance to get to know Aidan and Brooke. Luckily, they took us quickly. Namely because Eric became the mayor of water town:

We also took the kiddos to the sea life aquarium in Carlsbad, after visiting Ba Noi:

The majority of the weekend was spent eating Anh Chi Hai's delicious cooking, swimming, taking A & B to the park, and just hanging out and being goofy... and I wouldn't change a thing about it. I can't tell you what it is, but this was one of the most fun visits to California, and sure I say that every time I visit, but I also mean it every time I say it. 

Thank you family, for a wonderful visit yet again!