weekly wellness

One of my favorite bloggers ever, Laura Marie, started a wellness series this week on her blog.

Well, I'm all about that!
Especially since this week was all about hydration!
(and I'm sure some of you know how passionate I am about water. And drinking tons of it. I know I know, just when you thought it couldn't get any weirder...)

Anyways, about a year and a half ago, I made it a goal for myself to drink a gallon of water every day. 
At first it sounded incredibly outlandish, but it has made the BIGGEST in how I feel every day!

If my stomach is bothering me, I just need to chug about a liter of water and it subsides.
If my skin is looking peaky, I just drink and drink for a few days and I'm positively glowing!
If I'm suffering from the 3 o'clock blues, another of liter and I'm happy Helen.
If my mind feels a little hazy, another liter and I'm like freaking Albert Einstein.

My point is, I've that drinking A LOT of water is incredibly good for you.
And I definitely notice the difference on the days when I slack. 

So even though I'm a cheater and this week because I didn't really have to make any lifestyle changes to accomplish a hydration goal, I still stuck with it and still felt great!

Try it.
I dare you.
You won't regret it for a minute.



Last weekend, we had the chance to visit Valley Forge and Philly.
It was an all out blast, to say the least.

Christian and I feel very blessed.
I will admit, I came here with a less-than-hopeful attitude about making friends.
Especially since I am "justhewifeofanintern".
I am happy to say I was very wrong in my expectations. 
EVERY SINGLE PERSON here is wonderful. 
And our network of married friends is the absolute best. 

Unfortunately I have no photos of said friends, but plenty to document the trip Brooke&Christian style.
And with that.... enjoy.


Some highlights:

- Medal of honor grove. It made missing fall in Utah a little more bearable. It was seriously gorgeous.

- All the cutsie old houses and cabins
(that's probably not what the old residents thought, but whatevs that was 200 years ago amiright?)

- Sleeping in separate (and REALLY uncomfortable) twin beds
(actually not a highlight... just really funny)

- Authentic cheesesteaks
(even though mine was kind of awful actually...)


- The best ice cream ever. EVER.

- The ACTUAL CHAIR George Washington sat in during the Constitutional Congress.

- The movie at Independence Hall that maayyyyybe had me a little weepy.

All in all, it was a terrific weekend.
And I am officially in love with Pennsylvania.


5 months and some thoughts on marriage

Before I got married, I had an intense annoyance towards all those couples who would gush over their 
"1 month, 2 month, 3 month etc." anniversaries.

I have been humbled, and learned that we should celebrate that.
Because during the whole first year, those are the only landmarks you reach. 
(I mean, I guess you could celebrate weekly, but somehow that seems like slight overkill....)
And these months are precious.

And so here I am,
like a complete hypocrite,
celebrating my 5 month anniversary with my forever sweetheart.

I'm not even going to lie and pretend it's been easy.
On the contrary, it's been anything BUT easy.
3 moves all across the country, 5 jobs, and tremendous adjustments later, life has taken a toll on, well, everything.

But, I am happy to say that we are resurfacing.
We kept our heads above the water, resulting from the torrential downpour, and we are still madly in love.

Which in this world, seems like an amazing feat. 

One thing I am learning is that life is unbelievably hard. 
And marriage is equally as hard. 
But you can make life a whole lot easier by clinging to the one you're married to, 
which, thankfully, also alleviates much of the difficulties in marriage!
of course that's a lot easier said than done, but when you do it.....

....It's a beautiful win-win situation. 
As long as both parties are willing to learn to be unselfish (this is a daily process!), 
and just LOVE LOVE LOVE (even if it feels like the last thing you want to do! which neeeevveeerrr happens to us of course....)
your marriage can survive what the world throws at you. 
And maybe you can even laugh about it in hindsight.

And ultimately, as we are put through the refining fire, called life, TOGETHER, 
(notice how the word is "fire"... implying that you won't escape some painful burns here and there)
we come out stronger as individuals and more welded together as a couple.

And there you have it.
My ever so wise words after 5 whole months of marriage.

Here's to forever, my darling!


tales from my childhood: the grudge

The summer before I turned 15, my family  moved to Florida. 

It was a hard move, but it ended up being one of the BEST and most influential events in my life. 
I made some wonderful friends, who I still adore, which is a good thing because guess what?
This summer, my family moved back to that EXACT SAME PLACE.

Of all the weird, right?

Anyways, a few weeks ago, a funny discussion on facebook reminded me of one of the most, ehm, INTERESTING, experiences I had while living there.

After our church Halloween party one night, it was suggested that we go see the movie "The Grudge" with a group of the young women.
And boy was I gung ho!

(this is as big as I will post this picture... any larger and I will probably have nightmares....)

You see, I used the THINK I like scary movies.... until this night, when I was proved embarrassingly wrong.

But I think we should backtrack for a minute, because
Here I was, a 14 year old girl who had spent most of her life doing things like watching animal shows, practicing the piano, and being obsessed with Josh Groban.
I mean for crying out loud, I didn't even know what "Baby got back" meant until like my junior year in high school! And I thought I liked scary movies?!
Oh Brooke.
Dear, sweet Brooke.

I don't need to go into the gory details of the movie, but let's just say by the ending credits,
I was literally bawling because I was so terrified.
And seeing as how all other memories escape me, I had probably peed my pants too and was just unaware.
It was SO. BAD.

And now I'm just looking back and dying over that experience, because we did it as a church group!
And not just a church group, but a bunch of girls!
With our mothers!
Ah, definitely one of my better moments in life, for sure.


titanic tuesday

I woke up with great plans for the day.

That was at 7am before I fell asleep for another 3 hours.
Now I'm sitting at the computer, still in my pajamas, listening to Mumford and Sons (!!!!!!) and blogging.
Let's just say those weren't exactly my great plans for the morning. But I'm happy.

So a lot has gone on in the last week...
I finished 2 tv series and 2 books,
(if you haven't watched Sherlock or Downton Abbey yet, jump on the freakin bandwagon already!)
walked about 24 miles around the city,
went to parks, museums, and the botanic gardens,
ate out WAY too much,
and visited Valley Forge and Philly!
(The latter is the most important exciting)

My phone is on the fritz, resulting in not being able to share any pictures from our weekend in Pennsylvania. 
So I'm going to make your day awesome and share this video instead.

You're welcome.


on being nice

A few weeks ago, I had a lovely experience that I wanted to share. 

One afternoon, I got a call from the woman I nanny for informing me that a couple would be to the house shortly for a job interview via skype. 
(He needed a quiet, empty house for said video interview.)

Anyways, they were incredibly nice, but I didn't have a chance to chat much until they were about to leave. 
A few minutes before they walked out the door, the wife came over to me and said:

"Would you like a pupusa?"

As seemingly insignificant as this sounds, it was an amazingly kind gesture.
This woman, having never met me before, and who probably won't ever see me again,
bought me lunch when they bought their own lunch.
Simply because she felt bad that they would be eating in front of me while her husband was being interviewed.

I was blown away. 
And it reminded me of something very simple. 
An act of kindness, no matter how big or small, can be very uplifting 
mood changing
and inspiring.

I want to be so much better at that.

Now let's all go out and love each other, shall we?


dream a little dream

I'm about to get reeeaaaalll personal here....

The other night I had a dream that I was in a star wars movie. 
(betchya weren't expecting that!)

Basically all the good guys were getting chased around in their pastel colored space ships when all of a sudden, one of them gets shot down. Guess what happened next.

Every one on board turned into caterpillars. 

And I was the one who found all of the people-turned-pre-butterfly, and this is literally what they looked like in my dream. Hipster glasses, clown nose and all.

Two things.
First, that doesn't even look like a caterpillar.

And second, way to go brain.
That's more epic creativity than I could ever muster in real life.


wanna be your friday night

Yesterday we saw some of our favorite things in the District yet:

National Portrait Gallery and American Art museum:
This was a sneaky, "notsupposedtotakepictures" picture.

ate at the Shake Shack:
How's that for a grainy photo

Kramerbooks AND street music!
How's that for grainy photo #2?!

Cutie patootie.

And finished the night by watching What's Eating Gilbert Grape.
It was...... interesting. 
I much prefer a "Jack Sparrow" Johnny Depp to "Little Mermaid" Johnny Depp, to say the least.

Then today we continued our DC adventures by visiting Arlington cemetery and watching the changing of the guard, followed by the H street Festival.

(Otherwise known as the
"why the H am I here" festival.
Seriously there were so many stinky people, and so much loud music, I wanted to die.
On the upside, I DID see two bulldogs that almost gave me a heart attack from cuteness.
Thanks pals.)

Anyways, happy weekend!


a midweek date night

A few nights ago Christian and I went on a little date-night walk through Georgetown. 

After spending 10 buckaroos on Ben & Jerry's ice cream
(Still can't decide if that was worth it or not....)
and wandering through quite possibly the most expensive stores EVER,
(who seriously has money to afford things from Madewell and Zara? I mean really)
we stopped at this cutie bookstore.

Love this boy. 
Even when he makes faces like a true goober.


halloween lovin' granola girl

So yesterday I went to the national arboretum....

And the granola girl in me near went insane.
(This is a big deal. Normally she's rather reserved. Something about abhorring sweat and bugs??)

It was so unbelievably beautiful!
And there was this precious garden that had the most aesthetically pleasing arrangements and colors....
I just had to take a million pictures.
Sorry about the following onslaught, 
but humor me and appreciate this gem of wilderness in the middle of our nation's capitol.

In other news, I am so freaking excited for Halloween I can't even stand it. 
I'm not even going to lie and tell you I haven't been listening to Thriller at least 4 or 5 times a day.
Because I totally have.

Here's the thing about that song. 
It was the first music video I ever saw. 
Fall/Halloween is kind of a big deal at my house, and at the impressionable age of 9, that song has since immortalizes a lot of my halloween-ish memories.

And let's not forget that my birthday is the day after halloween, which is awesome too.
So basically I'm spending the next few weeks getting pumped for the month of October by listening to Thriller because it's about the only Halloween song out there other than Monster Mash.

And who's trying to listen to Monster Mash more than once a year, amiright?


hot or knot?

What up bun head?

So I have this thing with pulling my hair up.

I did it every day, all summer log.
And thanks to some very warm days and long walks to work, I still can't kick the habit.

I just can't handle my fine tresses all over my neck in muggy DC weather! 
*Wimpy alert!*

Poor husband has to REQUEST for my hair to be let down these days. And when I do, it's the grandest event.
(Secretly I LOVE going a long time between "down hair" days. 
Christian is way more obsessed with me when I don't look like a 

So when life presents you with the question 
"Hot? Or knot?"
What do you do?
Am I the only woman destined to look like a secretary for the rest of my days?
Or am I on the fast track to a short hair cut, because I'm simply can't take this any more? 

Oh, to have these 1st world problems!


killers and cupcakes

Yesterday on the way home from church,
Christian and I got chatty with a..... shall we say..... nice looking man on the bus.

Here are a few snippets of our conversation, courtesy of said man. 
They were just too good not to share:

"I need two hip replacements!"

*looks at Christian*
"Boy, you've got excellent taste!"
(I don't think Christian appreciated that one much...)

"...because sometimes you just need to touch a woman, you know?
*looks at me*
It's a guy thing"

"Where have I been the last ten years? The hills of Virginia!

"It was all self defense, let me tell you."

So basically we met a murderer yesterday. 
No big deal. 
And based on his demeanor, he didn't think it was either. 
Way to go pal.

Also on Saturday we went to the National Geographic Museum for the 1001 Inventions Festival, celebrating Middle Eastern inventions and their contribution to society. 
1 dance concert, a neat-o art exhibit and some delicious falafel later, we were happy campers.

Then we got stuck in the rainstorm of the century
Thankfully we had some free cupcakes to brighten the mood. 
Sprinkle's knows what's up.

Also, I don't know why food determines my happiness level so often, 
(actually I do. It's called being a woman)
but I hope Christian reads this so the next time I have a complete meltdown he knows what to do.

(Hint: It starts with "coconut lemon" and ends with "cupcake".
You're welcome lover)



The last few days have been slightly rough ones 
(read: I've had PMS on steroids. Love that)

So true to form, here are some thankfuls.
Because if I didn't focus on the things I have to be happy about, I might just collapse face first into a
bowl of ice cream as a sobbing, inconsolable mess. 
But anyways.

Today I'm thankful for:

- The temple. 
Beautiful in EVERY possible way!

- Cooler weather. Yesterday morning was pleasant and instead of dripping with sweat by the time i got to work, I was only slightly damp! It was refreshing!

- I'm thankful for the fact that I DON'T 
and will not EVER 
own a greyhound. I'm sorry but....... 

- I'm thankful for the laugh that these Trader Joes wasabi peas gave me. 
Even though they are disgusting and burned off my nose hairs.

- Im thankful for a short week! 
Today is Saturday already!

- The little munchkin yelling from her bed "heee buuukk" (hey Brooke) so that I can retrieve her from her crib. 
Precious and hilarious.

- Date nights.
We the Pizza totally rocked our socks off last night.
As did our night time stroll around the monuments.

Such the dramatic water drinker!

Sorry for looking like a dementor in this picture.

Isn't it nice how being thankful can make the whole world seem better?
I'm so thankful for that!


saturday is a special day

Come to think of it, so is Friday.
Basically the whole weekend.
Especially.... 3 day weekends!!!!!
Eeep for Labor Day!

So let me tell you about yesterday.
It started S-L-O-W. Here's the thing. I'm the queen.... 
no more like Empress.... 
of getting out of bed slowly, most especially on days without an agenda. 
I mean what's the point of waking up early right?

Anyways, when noon rolled around and we were finally ready to go, we heading over to Eastern Market for the weekly farmer's market. And let me just tell you a few things:

1. I never understood people's love for farmer's markets until yesterday.
Basically I was freaking out over all the cool stuff.
(Okay mostly just the fruit samples and the jewlery. But still. Next weekend we are going armed with a lot more money, let me tell you! Also we bought these white nectarines that are TODIEFOR)

2. Also. There was a rainstorm building all day long, PLUS it was pushing 95 degrees. 
So you can imagine the unbelievably heat and humidity.
I'm pretty sure I was sweating more than I was breathing.

So after exploring, Christian and I headed North in search of the apparently famous "Fast Gourmet" restaurant, where the sell Chivitos... a Uruguayan sandwich that he fell in love with on his mission.
a man with his prize.
Second to me of course.

That sandwich was so divine, I would be willing to trek back through that sketchy part of town any day.
And actually it wasn't even THAT sketchy, so win win!

Afterwards we went to Target, which is always an interesting experience here.
But fun nonetheless!

And just a rewind to what we did on Friday night:
Trip to the Shake Shack with friends Sara and Keaton, and then a little free concert at the Kennedy Center, which we saw approximately 1/30th of before it ended. 
Who performs for only 45 minutes? 
That's what I want to know.
The rest of our evening ended up being pretty boring, mostly because I was exhausted and had lost my
"going out vigor", if you will. What can you do?

And now, hopefully the weather will comply tomorrow so we can have an awesome Labor Day!
Hope you have a wonderful holiday (and day off work!!) as well!

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