wedding

Sleep Over

Over the weekend I had the pleasure to help a friend celebrate her upcoming wedding! My friend, Samantha, is getting married in August and we had her bachelorette party over the weekend.

I’ve known Sam for over 11 years. We worked together in my last job. She was the “floater” who would cover the people on vacation or leave so we met one day when she was covering for someone in my unit. We became friends right away. Sam is an awesome, funny, smart, strong lady who is the QUEEN of PUNS. 😀

On Saturday a group of people got together for lunch to start the party! We met at Matador–one of my favorite restaurants (and where we had our rehearsal dinner!).

I got the street tacos and the brussels sprouts. The sprouts were AMAZING! So delicious! I got a Mojito (they usually have Boneyard on tap but not this time, bummer!). There were 12 of us there to celebrate this awesome lady.

After lunch we had some time to kill before we could check in at the AirBnB so we stopped for gelato:

After that we all headed to the house that was rented. It was in Sandy, so not far from Mount Hood. I was the first one there and got to poke around before everyone else saw it. WOWZA. That house was stunning! There were several rooms with king sized beds and then a few rooms with bunk beds. But that view…words cannot describe how gorgeous it was.

Oh and…there were a lot of animals heads. LOL

And a fire pit:

We were pretty high up but the view was stunning and we could still hear the Sandy River below.

Every body else arrived and we unpacked and unloaded the beverages and picked out our sleeping arrangements. Then settled in for the evening. There was a lot of just hanging out, especially on that deck. I mean, how could you not?

Sam made everyone dinner, despite numerous and frequent requests from guests to help or do it for her. But she wanted to cook everyone a meal to show her gratitude and love. I mean, what an awesome person, right! She made a tofu curry that was absolutely delicious!

There was some wine and some of the ladies brought whisky and tequila (no thanks!!).

Group shot!

Then the fire and roasting marshmallows and making s’mores.

As the sun started to set, Mount Hood poked out of the clouds for the first time. It was breathtaking. There were bats flying around, it was a warm summer night and no one was in a hurry to do much of anything. Before we knew it, it was dark.

We had this gorgeous cake for dessert:

And just hung around around the campfire. My favorite summer activity! I think we all went to bed around 11:30 (party animals!) and it was a nice, quiet house for sleeping. I slept pretty good with my bunkmate in the king bed. She joked that we had the same bedtime routine: eye masks and ear plugs!! I woke up a few times kind of early in the morning because I could smell someone downstairs making coffee. It wafted through the house but I was so sleepy and lazy feeling I just kept going back to sleep. Then up for breakfast with the ladies.

Fresh fruit, granola, yogurt, coffee and mimosas for whoever wanted them) and someone made a “buckle” coffeecake. I’d never heard of it before but it was SO GOOD! It was basically coffeecake with a ton of fruit in it. It was a pretty slow morning. I enjoyed some coffee out on the deck in the sun. It was already a pretty hot day. Then it was time to pack up and say our goodbyes.

I had SO much fun celebrating my friend! She’s an awesome person and I’m so excited for her wedding. And I got to widen my friend circle and made some cool new friends. It was a very fun, relaxing, empowering weekend of ladies!

After leaving I went swimming and then home to my boys!

Two Date Nights

Michael and I lucked out and got TWO date nights this weekend!! The first was Friday night. Daycare had a “parents night out” and they were open until 10pm. We took advantage of that and got dressed up (sort of) and went to Chart House for dinner.

A coworker has been talking about how this is their date night spot because happy hour lasts until 7pm. So we decided to take advantage of that. We got there and it was valet parking only (free) and the bar is downstairs of the restaurant. It’s perched on a hill in SW Portland with amazing views!

The picture above was the view from our table, right by the window. It was a nice view of the river and downtown Portland. We could also see Mount St. Helens and Mt. Hood in the distance.

We got drinks–I got a white wine and Michael got a beer.

We got the calamari with kim chee (and it had deep fried veggies in there, too). It was really good and flavorful! And who doesn’t like deep fried veggies?

We shared the mahi mahi fish tacos. They were pretty good but needed some spice or something. They were a little on the bland side.

We shared the lettuce wraps. It was chicken with cucumber and carrots and a soy sauce glaze. I thought they were pretty good. Very messy to eat!

Lastly, we got the prime rib sliders (they had cheese and caramelized onions in it). Michael wasn’t a fan of the sliders but I thought they were really good! I loved the caramelized onion flavors and gooey cheese (and let’s be honest, the bread!!!)

We split a piece of cheesecake for dessert. It had caramel, crushed macadamia nuts and a little bit of Heath Bar crumbles. It was REALLY good but very, very decadent. Thank goodness we split it!

It was a really nice experience. We hadn’t really been on a real date night and been to a nice restaurant since February when we went out to sushi. 😀 It was definitely time for us! And it was perfect timing because this week was our 9 year anniversary. Hard to believe 9 years ago we had our first official date. <3

Then Saturday it was time for date night #2: my cousin’s wedding. My parents drove down from Seattle and got to spend some time with Logan and then we left Logan with Michael’s mom and drove to Ridgefield for the wedding.

It was at Bethany Vineyards. I’ve never been there before but it was a really beautiful wedding venue! It was off the freeway in Washington near Vancouver, amongst countryside and farms and lots of trees. I guess there was a brewpub nearby, too.

Her flowers were gorgeous!

The wedding was outside. It was a sunny, bright day, but unfortunately it was also 100 degrees (not exaggerating!). Here are a few photos of the venue:

It was too bad they didn’t have some kind of tents set up for the tables because we were in direct sunshine, no shade, and it was very very very hot! Thankfully they had tons of ice water.

The ceremony was kind of off to the side near the vineyards and there was a bit of shade over there, so that was nice.

And we got to spend some time with another cousin and her husband, whom we don’t get to see very often but it was a really fun night hanging out and catching up.

Since it was at the vineyard, they had plenty of the wine for drinks or tastes. I tried the Pinot and it was really good so I ended up buying a bottle. 🙂 My other cousin and her husband and I snuck into the tasting room for about 15 minutes after the ceremony because it was air conditioned and SO NICE in there (LOL) so we did a small taste and their Cuvee was excellent!

almost bought that bottle, too, but decided to be an adult and just buy one.

The signature drink for the wedding was a white wine spritzer, which I had never had before but it was quite lovely! It was the Bethany Vineyard Riesling with tonic water and fruit. In 100 degree weather it was very easy to drink those!

Very refreshing! I drank a ton of water and tried to stay hydrated as much as possible.

My cousin looked gorgeous in her dress and guess what? Her aunt HANDMADE the entire thing for her! It was absolutely stunning! And what a cool heirloom to pass down to your daughter or granddaughter someday. The ceremony was lovely and the food was really excellent! It was heavy Hors d’oeuvres –fruit and veggies, pasta salad, green salad, meatballs and these really yummy cold sandwiches. It was actually the perfect food for a hot, outdoor wedding.

There were these little chicken salad sandwiches on croissant rolls that were to die for! So good! Then it was the speeches and cake cutting and they had cute cupcakes, too:

I had one of the cupcakes. They were really good. By then I was pretty stuffed. So the homemade macarons that my cousin made as favors came home for later…

I’d like to say it was starting to cool off by then, but it was still nearly 100 degrees when we left at 6:30. We had to get home for Logan. It was a really nice wedding and it was nice that it was an afternoon wedding. I remember when Michael and I were planning our wedding we considered a Sunday brunch wedding (we loved the idea!), a vineyard wedding, or an afternoon wedding. I’m very happy with what we did but it’s still fun to experience other weddings and think about what it would have been like if we’d done that.