Our dear friends shared some fantastic news with us last Wednesday. I am pretty sure I must have squealed with delight multiple times as Kelly was attempting to share her own excitement! (Sorry Kelly if you had a headache after our phone call!)

Gene and Luke have been friends for quite some time. I remember meeting Gene in college to pass the litmus test before Luke and I started dating. Fun times. And then not long after we met  Kelly and I knew we’d all be dear friends forever.

So join in the cheer, delight, and excitement with them and go give them some blog love! We can’t be more excited to journey on their new adventure with them.

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I love winter. Perhaps one of the main reasons I enjoy the season are the traditions that come with it. Picking out the Christmas Tree is no exception…

Now we venture to “tree farms” at the nearest intersection to find the most decent tree that fits a preconceived price that might have been formed in one’s mind on the way to the lot. Not so much when I was younger.

When I was little my family journeyed to the mountains in search of the most perfect tree. The day after Thanksgiving we would bundle up and head to Miramonte to visit the Shipman’s Tree Farm. Up the hill we’d begin and would split up and out on the mountain terrain until Mom would announce she’d found the tree. We would saw the tree down, our decent down the hill would commence and soon after we’d begin the drive back down the mountain. But wait. Why am I reminiscing about Christmas in July? Background knowledge my friends.

Somewhere between purchasing the tree and piling into our 1980’s Bronco for the eventful drive home would always be a quick stop to see the geese. I was fascinated with the pet geese Mrs. Shipman kept behind a chicken wire fence. My hands were the perfect fit to squeeze between the tines and despite the warnings I’m sure I received a bite once or twice. I’m not sure exactly why I was so fascinated, but I’m pretty sure that was my main reason I looked forward to the journey to Miramonte.

At the home of our fabulous former life group’s hosts is a goose. And once again I return to the 5 year old wonder of emotions and giddiness at harassing innocently peering through the fence at the neighbor’s goose. Now goosey did not become near as entertaining until she decided to hiss at me through the fence as I walk by. Somehow she must have known about my fascination. I would like to think she’s fondly greeting me… somehow I’m not quite sure that’s the case.

Those of who you follow me on twitter know that I had my eyes dilated last Friday. Wearing glasses for nighttime use was the resulting prescription. I was a bit disappointed that the doctor’s office didn’t have any of the options to select for my glasses as far as the fashion goggles worn by Talespin’s Baloo or Disney’s Mr. Toad. I can only hope that I like my glasses as much as I did when I selected them last week with my poor dilated eyes!

Three years ago Hubs planned our honeymoon. By himself. Completely. I loved it. After following many clues from maps (that were sectioned off for specific parts of our drive) and hints from my custom made travel binder we arrived to stay for the first part of our trip at the Sonoma Chalets, in Sara’s Cottage. Our first night in town we dined at one of my now favorite restaurants in Glen Ellen and noticed that besides having a fantastic menu, that down below the restaurant was a grove of secret cottages… if ever we returned we decided that would be a must stay.

touring

Now three years later, we still plan our surprise trips. It was Luke’s turn (being an odd year) and much to my surprise and thrill we returned to Glen Ellen Inn Restaurant & Secret Cottages to stay. We love the quaintness and charm of the inn equally to the delicious meal & gracious hospitality that the restaurant had to offer. It was a delight to chat with other guests there and celebrate their special occasions as well.

cheesetasting

We returned to places we had enjoyed visiting previously in addition to making new memories and trying out recommendations from the locals we encountered throughout our day as to tours to embark upon, cheeses & chocolates to taste, or galleries to peruse. It was refreshing to slip away for a bit from our busy schedules in town to chat with local shopkeepers & enjoy just being with one another in the simplicity of the season.

stroll

Today I have done 2 things that I haven’t done recently. Towards the end of the school year my posts & gym attendance became officially less frequent, no nonexistent. The arrival of summer and endless amounts of free time did not help with my procrastination. We’ve simply been living life- laundry piles, grocery lists, and always more laundry. Luke is much more motivated than I. I can’t compete with his posts or gym attendance (especially the strange going-ons in the locker room).

But today I decided to try.

After inhaling my Luna iced oatmeal bar & with trusty Nalgene in hand I remembered my locker combo & gym id number and arrived with much anticipation. Would the blond hair receptionist make a comment when she saw how long I’d avoided the treadmill? Would a smirk ensue? A chuckle? Nope. Nothing. Just a “thank you” and I was set free back in the land of fellow worker outers. 1 mile later on the treadmill my jello legs thanked me as well and I was left to finish off my time with the free weights & machines.

Pretty uneventful after all my creative excuses & procrastination. I must admit it felt nice to be able to fit something back into my schedule of laundry piles & grocery lists. We’ll see how the rest of the week goes…

Hubs and I took a quick trip to visit one of our new favorite spots on the coast for a few days during Spring Break. It was a much needed & very relaxing visit!

Usually we spend quite some time investing in where we should go, stay, & dine ahead of time but this trip to Avila was of the spontaneous sort. After gathering recommendations from many friends via Twitter we embarked on our journey. Mundy trips have somehow begun with the tradition of enjoying breakfast burritos on our way to our destination and after a quick stop at our neighborhood burrito spot (don pepe’s how we love thee) we were officially on vacation. Mundy vacations usually involve doing something new and so in true fashion we stopped at Charles Paddock Zoo and soon learned a wonderful way to spend 2 hours on $10 being highly entertained.

my favorite creature

my favorite creature

hubs favorite creature

hubs favorite creature

Once finished frollicking with the wildlife back on our route we returned. Our fabulous friends had introduced us to the best coffee house a few Mundy trips to the central coast ago and upon investigating we learned that this little piece of our coffee consuming heaven had branched out to also include a beach stay.

So stay we did! The accomodations were comfortable & affordable within view of the beach… the staff was charming… and last but not least the coffee & pastries were delicious!

puppies

Monday night dinner was at Giuseppe’s located in Pismo Beach. Atmosphere was quaint & enjoyable. Service was reliable and honest. Food was amazing.

delicious dessert & cappuccinos!

delicious dessert & cappuccinos!

We took out time meandering back to the central valley from our short but sweet stay. Tide pool & pier exploring is always a must!

explorers

explorers

If you are in the Avila area you must visit Joe Momma’s or stay for a treat! Not bad for being spontaneous. Not bad at all.

Have you developed any traditions for vacationing?

pierside

There is no better way to celebrate spring’s arrival than with sweet treats!

Baking with lemons is something I look forward to as the danger of frost disappears from the valley.

The bright sunshine hue accompanied by their citrus aroma melts my heart…

Today has been the first time in awhile I’ve logged into my wordpress account. I was surprised to see that my stats did not reflect my habits! Thank you to those of you who have continued to check in  time to time to see what thoughts of mine might await. There has been much  to share over the past while, yet my thoughts haven’t been able to concretely be placed in written form. This past season has been an amazing time of growth, reliance, & waiting on God. Those of you may remember my new year’s desire…and He has showered me with more than I knew to expect.

For the most part I am a very private emotional person. Emotions take longer for me to process, unwrap. From the surface I can appear to “deal” with them, but actually understanding or feeling often comes much later-after the fact. That being said, I have had within the past few weeks a few conversations with some unbelievable beautiful friends that have refreshed & validated  me. I have been constantly challenged to be transparent with how I am and to go further than the common response so many of us often give, “I’m fine, how are you?”, and to realize it’s okay if I’m not fine at the moment. People really do care in asking & desire to speak words of wisdom or comfort in your life. I’m learning not to place limitations on that!

Hopefully in a way this is an encouragement and challenge to you. As I’m freshly discovering the art of just being me, I want to encourage you to just be you. Those around you will appreciate & be able to speak into your life in an unbelievable way…and they want to! I love these words shared recently to me…

“We don’t know what the future holds, but we know who holds the future…and there’s gotta be  truth to that…Sometimes it’s hard to wait on His timing, but in the end His timing is amazing.” (words of wisdom shared by someone fabulous)

So that leaves us here… how do you share?

Today I am introducing you to a member of my extended family…the brother in-law. When I first met Patrick he had just graduated from 8th grade, enjoying the summer before he began high school and the fabulous freshman experience. Since Luke’s dad is also named Patrick, Luke’s brother had up until this point of his life been referred to as Aaron (which is his middle name). Time for a change, celebrating saying good-bye to those grade school years he opted to have people start calling him Patrick. Try to imagine with me, being introduced to Aaron, who tells you to call him Patrick, while others are calling him AA, Patrick Aaron, A-ron P, ahhh!!! mass confusion for the new girl in the family.

So to simplify things, I took matters into my own hands and thus PAM came to be added to the list. In the time it took PAM to graduate from high school, he had surpassed all of the Mundys in height, had been Luke’s best man at our wedding, and decided to enlist in the Air Force (among other amazing adventures). We spent time with PAM during the last leave he had and were excited to hear about the man he’s becoming and his hopes for the future. PAM currently is a member in the Red Horse Squadron of the Air Force and was recently promoted to Airman 1st Class. Way to go PAM! I am so proud of you!!

mundykids

patrick-promotion

This post has been a part of Positive Post Tuesday.

Luke and I had the opportunity to spend the weekend with around 40 high schoolers as a part of Well Student Ministry’s (WSM) winter retreat held in Cambria. The theme of the retreat was Kill the Chameleon-a challenge to students to live their lives for themselves,being authentic in their choices and personalities. It was refreshing and entertaining to listen to Mark Pitman who was the speaker at the retreat and Luke did an awesome job as  the fabulous worship leader extraordinaire. We also spent lots of time getting to know many of the students during the weekend and I loved seeing my friend Becky as well!

fashionistas

Those of you who visit the blog know that often food tends to be a popular topic of mine. Saturday night with WSM I learned many valuable lessons how to order dinner. I wish I had saved the menu for the evening, perhaps if you’re interested this guy may be able to help you…

dinner??!!

For starters the rules of dinner were to order 3 items for course 1, 6 for course 2, 4 for course 3. Sound simple? The menu items were selections of kerplosh, servette, basically nonsense words that we had little to no chance of figuring out! All 6 of us had to eat the course as it was, finish it before receiving the next course, and throw away all materials from the course we had just “enjoyed” to start fresh for the next food experience.

Saturday night dinner for my 6 friends consisted of:

Course 1

spaghetti & meat balls, napkins, strawberry shortcake

Course 2

after dinner mints, salad, forks, spoons, lemonade, green beans

Course 3

1 knife, garlic bread, water

Yum Yum.

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