Aug 3, 2016

July Photo Diary

We started off the month with a relaxing, long 4th of July weekend at the in-law's lake house in the beautiful Texas hill country. It is always a special treat to visit the lake house since it was Greg's grandparents' home before they both passed away. I love hearing stories of Greg visiting the house as a kid, whether waterskiing at 6am or building forts in the forest area on their land, it's always fun to hear about his adventures as a kid. We luckily only live an hour from the home, so we've been able to visit it quite a few times in the past year. We rented a pontoon boat and tested out my uncle-in-law's new jet ski. This was my first time swimming in a lake (or any body of water) in Texas and I kept saying, "It's so warm!" I'm from the Pacific NW, so lakes, oceans, and rivers are freeeezing cold, so this was fun!
On of the nights, we had dinner at my favorite restaurant in Canyon Lake: Gennaro's Trattoria. It has delicious food and is perched on a hill where you feel like you're in Tuscany. The grounds of the restaurant are so beautiful. Greg and I dined here on Valentine's Day and loved it. Now, with several months for the vegetation to grow, it looked even more beautiful and green than I remembered. 

I started working in the ER of a children's hospital in July. This brought up a lot of anxiety, worrying of inadequacy and insecurity. Greg was encouraging, supportive, and patient with me while I shed tears and experienced pretty much every emotion on the spectrum this past month. He is such a blessing, especially in this time of transition in a new job. I am learning a lot and trying to give myself grace because this is all very new and I haven't been practicing as a pediatric nurse practitioner for a year, so it will take a bit of time to get back in my groove. 

I visited Portland during the second week of July to help out with the family business while my parents were overseas on a much-earned vacation to their motherland, Romania. 

I got to hang out with a very dear friend who had just gotten back to the US after serving in Sierra Leone along with her husband as nurses. It's always a joy to catch up with her! I also got to jog around a trail near my parents' home that I grew up using pretty often. It's nostalgic and refreshing to jog around the trail (refreshing because it was in the mid-60s while San Antonio was reaching the 90s!). And I got to spoil myself in my mom's gardens, picking fresh hydrangeas, lavender, roses, and mint for bouquets for my room as well as for friends and family I visited during my stay. 
My nephew and niece are the cutest! It is so great to spend time with them during visits to Portland! They are full of spunk and personality. I miss them so!
My sisters put together a belated birthday tea party in my parents' dining room. So sweet! They know exactly how to make me feel special!
My best friend recently moved back to Portland and I got to hang out with her! I hadn't seen her since my wedding nine months prior. It was such a sweet time together! And our food was amazing! We dined at Harlow, an organic, gluten-free restaurant on Hawthorne (the best foodie street in Portland, in my opinion).
On my last night in Portland, several of my siblings went to my brother and sister-in-law's house for a bonfire. My nephew and niece had their first s'mores

Along with these fun events and starting my new job, I also started volunteering as a librarian at our church (the book nerd in me is so excited about this!) and spent plenty of time with friends here in town. 

What were some of your highlights from July?


  1. Joy shows up in each photograph.

    Truly ...

  2. Beautiful memories! and many blessings to you on your new job! Such an awesome opportunity to show God's love through the work we do:)


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Elle Alice