I’m driving to Moab for the wedding with Forrest and Sprocket today. Rocking out to this is probably happening…

We’re rolling with our black (not yellow) dog down I-15 (not I-95) but that’s close enough for me.

Support “Photo Journey to the Mecca of Epic”

When we got engaged last July and started planning our wedding, we knew that we wanted some awesome pictures to document the event because 1) it’s our wedding and 2) it’s Moab!

I scoured the internet searching for the perfect person to photograph our wedding. After more hours than I care to admit, I wound up finding Amanda through A Practical Wedding. Forrest and I sent her an email (or ten) and the three of us had an awesome Skype conversation. The fact that Amanda was super excited to come out and take pictures of our wedding made it easy to know that she was the one we wanted to come out to Utah. We’ve emailed back and forth as our wedding plans have developed and had an awesome Skype chat last week which left me pretty much grinning.

This morning, a post popped up in my Google Reader: Amanda’s Big Adventure Means Loot For You.

“So, a few hours with Google Maps, a calculator, and a few big cups of coffee, and I’ve got numbers.  Big numbers.  Numbers like 5000 miles, 68 hours of driving.”

A 5,000 mile road trip? To do what she loves? Now I know we picked the right person to shoot our wedding.

Amanda’s got some big plans to hit up some classic spots in the west and make pictures all along the way. She’s planning on shooting film and digital. Traveling. Exploring. Taking pictures. Simply put, she’s doing the thing she loves. (And you know, shooting our wedding in there too.)

To help support her trip, she’s started an Indiegogo campaign called Photo Journey to the Mecca of Epic with some pretty sweet perks including postcards, calendars, fine art prints, and more. Click over to her campaign and take a look at what she’s offering. Over at 3Up Adventures, we’re always psyched to see someone get an opportunity and run with it—Amanda’s Big Adventure is totally one of those kickass dream chasing ideas.


Wedding Cake

The guiding principle of our wedding planning has always been, “We’re doing this our way.”

My way involves birthday pies instead of birthday cakes. Forrest has always been okay with birthday pies.

And then he said “But you have cake at weddings.” I might have looked at him like he had two heads. The boy who has advocated no invitations, adamantly believes we should have no seating chart, and no amplification for the ceremony thinks that cake is a necessity at the wedding.

I’m not a cake baker. I actually really like cake but I’d rather my cake be unfrosted. I don’t really like frosting. I don’t mind eating buttercream frosting from the bowl but in the end, I think frosting mars my cake yuminess. I’d much rather have pie but since Forrest actually has much more of an opinion on this than me, cake we shall have.

Attempt #1

My first attempt at a practice wedding cake was Sprocket’s birthday. I made the vanilla buttermilk cake and frosted it with the Swiss buttercream from Smitten Kitchen. I loved the frosting and wasn’t crazy about the cake. I’d made some adjustments to it according to the Joy of Cooking’s high(er) elevation directions (the >2,000 feet but <5,000 feet ones) and that might have been the problem. Turns out, Forrest doesn’t like buttercream.

Attempt #2:

I decided to simplify. I made a “wedding cake version” of boxed cake. That’s right. I took a normal white cake mix and doctored it up just a bit (according to miscellaneous internet recipes to give it the necessary density). SCORE.

Forrest convinced me to try a basic white frosting…fail. The frosting tasted like it belonged on a Safeway birthday cake. Fortunately, Forrest had convinced me to only frost one layer of my cake experiment so we had another layer waiting for me in the freezer for frosting attempt #3.

Attempt #3:

The good ol’ boxed wedding cake came out of the freezer after almost two weeks nice and moist. Win.

This time I tried Ms. Humble’s Whipped Cream Cheese frosting. I’d heard that whipped cream frostings wouldn’t hold up under warm conditions. Fortunately, my house sits at about 80 degrees with low humidity all the time in the winter which just so happens to be a whole lot like Moab in September. The frosting didn’t seem to have any issues at all.

Attempt #3. Yummy.
Boxed Wedding Cake:
1 box white cake mix
1 small box instant vanilla pudding
4 large egg whites
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 c. sour cream
1/2 c. milk
1/3 c. oil
Mix on low 30 seconds then on medium for 2 minutes. Bake in greased and floured pan according to the box directions. (I suspect the vanilla made it more yellowy than white but you can’t see it until it’s cut and then you’re about to eat it so I’m sticking with it. It was yummy.)


October 7, 2010-October 6, 2011

Today marks a year of living in the Silver Valley. I cannot believe how much has changed in our lives.

Moving: A year ago today, I’d just finished up moving all of our stuff (Forrest’s tools and bikes included!) from Missoula to a storage unit here. I’d arranged to live in the basement of a real estate agency for three weeks while we waited to move into our rental house (we were picky and wanted a place we could heat with wood). I was waiting for Forrest to come back from North Dakota.

Sprocket is a lazy packing helper

Continue reading “October 7, 2010-October 6, 2011”

Lazy Weekend

As a rule, F and I do not have lazy weekends. (I’m lucky if he lets me sleep in until 7!) The plan last weekend was to finish siding the house and that didn’t even come close to happening.

We got back down to the house Saturday morning at about 9 and sort of thought about getting to work on the house and then just didn’t. Instead, Forrest and I took a motorcycle ride. And then we went to bed early.

Sunday, we meant to get to work on the siding again. Instead, we lazed around the house all day alternately discussing wedding ideas, calling friends, and just chilling out. (Forrest: “Wedding planning is kind of fun.” Also, post wedding activities were planned that included climbing a 12,700′ mountain.) We did manage to go for a quad ride with some friends to BBQ some bear sausage at the cabin for dinner before heading back to town.

Back to work for four days…going to Oregon to pick up (another) stove this weekend but I think we’re going to get in some hiking and even a little beer tasting!

Wedding Cake and Sisterhood

My best friend from high school got married last Friday. The ceremony was lovely and moving. The reception was held at their home (mini-farm!) and featured fabulous food and wine, and a great dance party (early to bed me danced until 3am). There was also a wedding cake made by Katie, the bride, with a little help from The Sisterhood.

Katie, Kaitlin, and I dubbed ourselves The Sisterhood back in high school. We were fantastic friends who gallivanted around the Pacific Northwest checking out Victoria’s Parliament building, skinny dipping, hiking, and making pilgrimages to Powell’s. In college, we met up in Switzerland, visited each other at school, and tried to meet up whenever we were back in our hometown.

We were all reunited for the first time since a July 2007 hiking trip for Katie’s wedding. While I was very glad to be able to fly back east for the wedding, I was kind of sad knowing that Katie would be plenty busy with miscellaneous tasks and that we probably wouldn’t get any “Sisterhood time.” Fortunately, a promise Kaitlin made to both Katie and I when we were high school seniors came to the rescue. Continue reading “Wedding Cake and Sisterhood”