Category Archives: Travel

Neat November: Monthly Goals and My Life in Instagram! {Asheville, NC Wedding and Boudoir Photographer}

October went by remarkably fast. I feel like it may have not even existed. It was by far my busiest month of the year. I feel like I’ve edited until my eyes bled. Although work was slammin, I was also able to spend a lot of time with friends and had a lot of great times. We had a party, danced the night away, I joined my first CSA, saw the world’s largest sweet potato, ate that sweet potato, Kyle brought me flowers for no reason, sat by a river, had the first snow fall of the season, played poker, saw a house fire, started planning my first novel,  and Charlie {the dog} took his first ride in my car.

You can see most of that here on My Life in Instagram!

 

Since the month was cr-azy, I was mostly just able to stay on top of the things that needed to be done NOW. So, there are a lot of things on this list not crossed off. But, that doesn’t mean I didn’t get things done. Just not things I foresaw at the end of September. Ok?

 

What most of you probably know by now is that Kyle and I are leaving for Panama TOMORROW!!! We’re going to spend half of our time in Panama City being all adventurous and traveling out from there. Then, for the second half of the week, we are parking ourselves on Playa Bonita at a resort and doing nothing except lounging, drinking, and  kissing on the lips.

I’m looking forward to this for a million reasons. Mostly because people who own their own businesses don’t get a lot of vacations. Also because I can’t wait to see new things, smell different air, and try strange food. Once we get back, I’m hoping the rest of November will be made up of preparing for the coming year and drinking lots of hot chocolate!

 

with love and vacation,

Sarajane.

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A year of things to be grateful for! {Happy Thanksgiving!}

 

In my opinion, Thanksgiving is an underrated holiday. It gets sandwiched between Halloween where people throw candy at you and you get to be someone else for the night, and Christmas where you are showered with presents and holly. It’s hard to compete. However, Thanksgiving has always been a day that I treasure. My family doesn’t do a big Christmas and I don’t really like candy. So growing up I cherished Thanksgiving. Some of my favorite memories are of the entire family coming over to our house and waking up to people drinking coffee and laughing in the other room. I loved walking into the living room at 8am and getting asked why I slept so late {we’re a family of early risers}.

I also love the chance to reflect back on what wonderful things the year has brought me so far. I’m a firm believer that if you’re sending gratitude out to the world, you receive blessings in return. Though I struggle constantly with being a content person, I’m always ready to move on and start something new. I love taking this day, looking back, and knowing that I’m right where I’m supposed to be, when I’m supposed to be there, with whoever I’m supposed to be with, and doing exactly what I should be doing! It’s a treasure. So, for today, the top 10 things I’m grateful for this year so far.

1. A loving and patient husband who never tells me ‘no’ and always challenges me to be better and more loving everyday.

2. Dear friends that I believe to be family.

3. A family that continues to show me what selflessness looks like and creates a longing in me to be the same.

4. Great literature.

5. The opportunity to try amazing coffee all around the world and the U.S.

6. A job that I adore and beautiful clients that I love!

7. Our cute little town of Waynesville. {come visit and we’ll show you why you should move here too!}

8. All of the spinach farmers out there that keep growing my favorite food. ; )

9. Great conversation that pushes me to be a warmer, more loving person everyday.

10. The chance to see the most beautiful parts of our country with a man that I love more than the world.

***If you’re new to the blog: Kyle took this photo of me at the Colorado National Monument earlier in the year during our 6 month roadtrip to all 48 continental states.***

with love and Thanksgiving,

Sarajane.

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Here’s to “Normal”!

Today is the day we sign the lease on our new apartment. I am so excited to have a place to call our own. It has been exactly one year today since we’ve lived anywhere. Isn’t that insane to think about. We moved out of our apartment in Wilmington and we’ve been traveling around since. No place to call home, all of our things have either been sold or in storage. A month spent backpacking Europe, months visiting friends and family, a brief visit to Puerto Rico, and 6 months seeing all 48 continental states. That has been our life for the last year. After all of that, who would have thought I’d be just as pumped to decorate my kitchen or learn how to plan meals ahead. “Kyle, we can MAKE our own TV dinners! Like for real. People do this!”

After today, we are legit people, living in a house and paying bills. Cooking and not on a camp stove or Jet Boil. When we left Wilmington, we thought we’d be happy to leave all of that behind. And we were. But, we never would of expected how excited we would be to get it back. Although, I am increasingly overwhelmed at the idea of owning stuff again, it will be nice to not wear the same four outfits in rotation or to have an actual office space to work in rather than the many many many coffee shops that we’ve frequented throughout the year.

So, here’s to ‘normal’ and to restfulness, and to making a home with the man of my dreams.

Also, here’s a shout out to Lola, the Ford Escort that drove 25,000 miles in 6 months while simultaneously being our home. {Lola is currently in the shop waiting for us to get her fixed. It may be a while. Keep her in your thoughts, we hope she’s not getting lonely and that the other broken vehicles let her into the cool group.}

with love and a life more ordinary,

Sarajane.

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A life filled with everyday adventures! {Life Update}

It feels strange writing a post about our lives when we’re not doing anything interesting. But, I have a lot of people asking me about where we’re going now. Our lives haven’t exactly slowed down, we’re running around working hard and getting everything together for a new stage of life. One in which our main goal is to pay off my student loans in under 5 years. On top of that we plan to live a life full of love for each other, God, ourselves, and everyone else.

Well, the last that most of you heard, we were moving to Chattanooga, TN. Upon a recent visit to the city we realized that the area of town that we were so in love with is significantly out of our price range. In order to live there and afford to pay on student loans we’d be living in an area that just wasn’t special. We took a look at our list we made during our roadtrip of places we both could live. On that list was Waynesville, NC. It’s just such a cute town with lots of shops, coffee shops, restaurants, and it’s close enough to Asheville that we would have all of those perks as well. So, we began apartment hunting a couple of weeks ago.

I’m more than excited to tell you that we found the perfect apartment for us! It’s right in town, we can walk anywhere we’d like to go. It has hard wood floors, and the rent is significantly less than we set our budget to be. So, it looks like things are falling into place! Kyle is still applying for jobs, but, he’s pretty amazing and I’m 100% confident in his ability to do a great job at anything. So, we’re on a good path at the moment.

I’m looking forward to hanging out with old friends as well as making new ones! If you know anyone in Asheville who likes to do really girly stuff or play sports, send them my way! Also, Kyle needs people to play in the dirt with him, ’cause it wasn’t in our vows that I step foot into the woods.

**This is us on the day we left for our 6 month road trip. So bright eyed and bushy tailed!**

As we set out to settle down for the next 3-5 years {which feels like an eternity for me}-we find ourselves looking forward to the strangest things, things we didn’t have on the road. The joy of cooking for yourself with fresh ingredients, dancing in the kitchen, days off where we do nothing, establishing a community of friends, finding a spiritual center, and appreciating the small everyday adventures.

with love and everyday adventures,

Sarajane.

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Top 5 Cities to Visit! {Roadtrip Recap}

We’ve gotten asked this time and time again since we’ve been back. “What was your favorite place you visited?” That’s a hard question to answer. But, I can tell you the 5 cities that I would recommend others check out. So…

1. Chicago, IL

Those who know me aren’t surprised. I LOVE Chicago! I think what makes it special is the way it is broken up into neighborhoods. I love the convenience of a city with the feeling of a community.

2. Santa Fe, NM

Great food, rich culture, and a unique environment all together. I love the size of Santa Fe, not too big, but, with big city conveniences. There were also tons of local restaurants and coffee shops.

3. Burlington, VT

Definitely a place I could live. Burlington is tucked away in the rich forests of Vermont overlooking the lake. It’s like a smaller version of Asheville, NC (my hometown). Everyone seems to be like minded when it comes to the environment and there are plenty of things to do day and night.

**Kyle took the one below**

4. Providence, RI

Kyle and I were blown away with how pretty Providence was. With plenty of old buildings and pretty parks it’s a photographers dream! Kyle grabbed this photo of the Capitol Building…

5. Seattle, WA

With plenty of coffee shops on every corner, I knew I would like Seattle as soon as we drove into town. I like the way people are individuals but there’s significantly less pretentious people than we saw in a lot of other cities that had the same quality. People were generally friendly and the city itself was laid out well with lots of water and parks and little pockets of entertainment. We’d move there if we could handle the rain.

with love,

Sarajane.

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Top 5 Meals! {Roadtrip Recap}

Ok, we didn’t eat a ton of good food. Honestly, we ate a lot of ramen! But, when we did eat well, we were so lucky to find great local spots almost everytime! So, I absolutely can’t do this without giving you our top five meals. {This is only eating out, not home cooked meals-some of which would beat this out.}

1. Gladys and Ron’s Chicken and Waffles! | Atlanta, GA

I loved the atmosphere here, very soulful and it felt like everyone was family that worked there. Me and Kyle split an order of chicken and waffles and the hot wing appetizer. I love that savory sweet and spicy combination!

2. Tia Sophias | Santa Fe, NM

We loved this little spot that our couchsurfing host took us to for breakfast. The best breakfast  burrito I’ve ever had! It also got us hooked on Green Chile Sauce. We dream about this place.

3. Chinatown | San Francisco

I honestly don’t know the name of the place we ate at. But, it was the best and most authentic Chinese food I’ve ever had in the U.S. I almost left it off because the name was in Chinese and I couldn’t find what it is in English, but, it was probably my favorite of the trip and I wouldn’t be honest if I left it off!

4. The Yellow Sushi Lounge | New York City

Kyle used to work right up the street from this place, but, never went in. He didn’t like sushi until me : ) Now, it’s one of his favorites, and it is my absolute favorite food in the world. So, when we were visiting New York he brought me here on a date. I loved the variety on their menu, not to mention the half off deal that they had going on!

5. Taste of India | Seattle, WA

You know this place was good if I did a post specifically dedicated to our time there. We went twice in two days and enjoyed it just as much the second time. I’ll give my props to the butter chicken and the free refills on both hot and iced chai. The chai was the closest thing I’ve had to real Indian Chai since I was in India. Please, go here if you get the chance.

with love and good eats,

Sarajane.

 

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My Top 5 Latte’s in the U.S! { Roadtrip Recap!}

Ok, I often refer to our trip as a coffee shop tour of the United States. So, it goes without saying that I enjoyed my fair share of  latte’s. I have to share my top 5 with you! Please, if you go to any of the cities listed, please, please, please, check out these coffee shops! They sincerely deserve your business!

1. Hope and Union | Charleston, SC

The lovely Tess Rogers took us here when we were visiting Charleston at the very beginning of our trip. Among a ton of other great qualities, Tess apparently has great taste in coffee! I loved this place because they served both Stumptown and Intelligentsia beans {great roasters} and it was in an old house only to be noticed as a coffee shop because of a tiny sign saying, “coffee” out front.  It also was decorated very simply and clean. On top of all of that, the latte’ was to die for!

2. Octane | Atlanta, GA

This isn’t a new place to me, but, we did do a Line up With Love there and I can’t deny the award winning latte’s from this place on my list. Seriously, they win awards all the time!

3. Coffee Bar | San Francsico, CA

The atmosphere in this place wasn’t awesome. They weren’t super welcoming if you weren’t eating a meal which I found strange since their name is “Coffee Bar.” They even had the majority of their tables marked as meal only tables. So, if you were just getting coffee there was hardly anywhere to sit, I actually saw employees ask people to stand if they were sitting in one of the MANY available meal only seats even though there wasn’t anywhere for them to go. That rubbed me wrong. However, they do coffee right! It’s serious quality here. To be honest, I’d much rather be recommending “Philz” to you for coffee in San Fran. But, they don’t serve latte’s and this was one of my top five of the trip for sure.

4. Woodlawn Coffee and Pastry | Portland, OR

Ok, yes, Stumptown has great great coffee. However, all of the ones we visited came off seriously pretentious. But, Woodlawn, where our friend Josh Casper works, they serve Stumptown beans and with a much better attitude! I was only able to visit once. But, the latte’ I received was near perfect, not to mention, the sweet home-like vibe of the shop itself. A definite recommendation if you’re in the Portland area!

5. Intelligentsia | Chicago, IL

Hands down the best latte’ I’v e ever had! Honestly, I kind of figured it would be. I could have spent days in this shop, actually, I did. It was so inviting and absolutely delicious. There’s a reason they’re so famous for what they do, that’s for sure!

with love and caffeine,

Sarajane.

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