summer 2016 recap

What an insane couple of months it’s been in Utah. Summer is SO different here than in Ohio.

I’m not used to the desert by any means. I’d never been in the desert for longer than a few days before we moved here, and by desert I mean “California desert”, so I really didn’t know what I was in for.

Don’t get me wrong, I loooove the heat! I’d definitely choose it over the snow any day. Let me tell you though, 105° kicks. my. butt. Every time I walk outside, I start sweating.

The only relief is shade – it’s about 10° cooler out of the sun and feels amazing.


While it has been roasting here, we’ve had quite an active couple of months.



So much hiking this summer – fitting I guess. This is from our Bonneville Shoreline hike. Look at the city back there!


I splurged and got my hair dyed UBER blonde in June. It was such a drastic change for me! I’ve never changed my hair that much, but I’m pretty obsessed with it.


Bells Canyon. Hike #2 of the summer. Now this was by far the toughest hike I’ve ever done. The trail was full of large rocks, it was a pretty steep incline too. It truly felt like hiking up a mountain. But the end made it so worth the struggle! Such a beautiful waterfall.

Nick also started a new job in June!! It has been the biggest blessing and an answer to many prayers. He works with so many great people that have become friends in only a few months.


Oh dear, this was the month of short trips with a lot of travel time and not a lot of rest. The first weekend we went to Chicago for less than 24 hours (ah!) Nick was not a fan, to say the least.

Side note: If you’ve never flown Frontier, just know, you get what you pay for. You basically sit in a turtle shell and you have a tiny little tray table that is practically just a metal plate. According to Nick, we will be paying more to be comfortable from now on. No arguments from me!

The Chicago River view from our teeny hotel room. Next to Columbus, Chicago is hands down my favorite city.

Our hotel was beautiful, but only one of the elevators was working, so we were a bit antsy by the time it came. Hehe.

Flying for 6 hours to be at your destination for less than a day  doesn’t really seem worth it, unless you get to see family you haven’t seen in 2 years. That made this tiny trip more than worth it.

Needless to say I was very excited and this night did not disappoint.My cousin Andrew married the most beautiful bride, Brooke. It was stunning. First of all, look at the table we sat at…

It was so so beautiful!! We sat at a table with all the cousins on my family’s side, and then the bride’s cousins were at the other end of the table (to the left of Nick in the photo above). I was blown away, I could barely soak it all in. Thank goodness for iPhone pictures. They do NOT do it justice though…

This picture sucks, but you can catch a glimpse here of just how immaculately this was designed and decorated. Earlier on in the evening, they got married under those circles of flowers. Yes, I definitely cried. Fun fact: Olivia Munn was a bridesmaid and she sat two feet in front of me during the ceremony. If you know me, you know I freak out about famous people. I sat on my hands to keep myself from taking creepy pics or asking her for a selfie. Apparently that’s not good etiquette at a wedding – good to know. Aaron Rodgers was there too, but eh. (sorry, Nick).

Eeeek! I love weddings with my forever wedding date. He looks so cute in his suit.

This picture I will treasure forever. This is my cousin, Scott. People like him are the reason why I feel so blessed to be a piece of this huge family. He stood and talked to me after this for at least an hour, about my job, his job (he answered all my dumb questions) and never made me feel like he had anywhere else to be. He was holding this white wine for his sister (I think he’d want me to make that clear). Bless his heart.

I can’t wait to get a better phone so I can take better pictures! The one above is my cousin (one of 16) and his bride. This picture doesn’t show you how beautiful they looked, but goodness, look at her dress!! She fine. And they will make the cutest babies ever.

This wedding was incredible. They had a live band that played covers of popular songs and I danced with my cousins and myriad of aunts of uncles all night. Seriously, we left at 1:30 in the morning. I did not want to leave.

Look at this photo booth!! Amazing.


This is framed on our wall right now. ^ #fierce

Hahahaha. The opposite of our feelings about this wedding. Now get ready for my beautifully massive family:

(stupid fingerprint on the screen, sorry Margaret)

I will remember this night forever. My heart was bursting and looking at these pictures makes me all weepy.

Aaaaaand the morning after. I’m not sure where I got that coffee, but it was awful.

Oh Chicago, you have a piece of my heart. Especially after that trip.



I need one of those fancy cameras so more of my pictures can look like that ^. We got home from the city and needed some wilderness. American Fork Canyon provided.

The next weekend we took off from SLC on Thursday and left for San Diego. My cousin (on my dad’s side now) had gotten married a few weeks before and this weekend was their reception. On the way to SD, we stopped in Vegas. Haha, ugh.

Since that weekend, I have told a few friends about it and I have heard from most of them that I just didn’t have fun because “you don’t know how to do Vegas, Erinn”. That may be true, but I don’t know if I want to know how to “do Vegas” anymore. I hated it.


Me: “oh look how cheap! That’ll be fine.” HAHA NO.

This castle smelled like smoke and sweat. Bad start.IMG_1854We were in Vegas for one night. This restaurant was definitely the best part. It’s called Battista’s – my dad suggested it and (as always) he was right on the money. The wine came with the meal (mhm) and it was bottomless. There were buckets hanging from the ceiling and pictures covering every inch of the wall. So much character in one room! We loved it.


Here’s a picture of me pretending to be happy that we’re in Vegas. Proof that we went and got blisters on our feet and left with less money.


The next day was the reception. I only have this picture because sometimes, I love leaving my phone behind. One of the best things about living in Utah is being closer to family that has always lived out west, so I haven’t seem them often. What a blessing family is.


We love photo booths in my family. Blurry, but my favorite.


Ah, Coronado. I could have spent my whole day on this beach! That’s my dad and my step-mom, by the way. Seeing them less is a negative of leaving Ohio – but they’re visiting so soon!


The next day was the beach in Del Mar – this is about 20 minutes before the tide rose and soaked me. Thanks to Nick’s catlike reflexes it didn’t soak my phone…oops.


The tide attacked me twice so I was over it quickly, but such a beautiful beach! Del Mar was a really cute town. We love living so close to California/the ocean. Definitely making more trips there.


Sunday we celebrated my grandparents’ 80th birthdays. Don’t worry, they both got cakes. I come from a family of “bad sharers”, haha. JOEY DOESNT SHARE FOOD – basically all of us. My uncle is a fabulous chef, so obviously he made dinner for us that night – scallops and steak. Unreal. Hehe, I know my grandma reads these so I don’t know how she’ll feel about making a cameo – hi grandma! (:

Also – my new cousin is hilarious and we did FaceSwap for a while and basically forced everyone to participate.


Me & Caitlyn – can you even tell we swapped?!




AHHHHH! Haha, my uncle Joe and his wife Denise – this made us all cry laughing. Unbelievable. I’m so glad I have this picture for future embarrassment opportunities.


The rest of July was a whirlwind, as the entire summer has been. We had Sunday brunch with friends, went on spontaneous dates, had our friend Matt visit from Ohio for a weekend and hiked up Brighton!

IMG_1946IMG_1996Matt! We want him to move here. If you know Matt, tell him to move here. k thxx. IMG_2003IMG_2026IMG_2018IMG_2023IMG_2012IMG_2022IMG_2037IMG_2038

Silver Lake I think? There’s so many in that area, we thought we were at a certain one and we definitely weren’t. Either way, so beautiful.


This month was the biggest whirlwind of them all. A few weeks into July, I got an unexpected call from my cousin to tell me that my 94 year-old grandfather had a stroke and may not have long. It was jolting. I cried a lot. But I also got to talk to him on the phone, which was a miracle. He could talk, listen, and remember just about everything he could before the stroke. I felt so lucky to get to do that. It was only two minutes, but I will be forever grateful to hear him say “I love you too, honey” in his deep, calming voice one last time. On August 2nd, he passed away peacefully just two weeks shy of 95. Being in Utah, this was so difficult. We couldn’t make it to the visitation or the funeral, and that broke my heart. I will see him again, though. And I can’t wait to hug him when I do.



The weekend of my grandpa’s funeral, my best friend visited from home!

IMG_2056Ain’t she the cutest?

I showed her around downtown SLC and we hiked up Donut Falls. IMG_0994IMG_1009IMG_1019IMG_2365IMG_2372IMG_2379IMG_2382

That same day we also climbed the Living Room hike in 90° weather. We didn’t make it all the way to the couches made of rocks, but this view was amazing just the same. IMG_2396IMG_2399IMG_2400IMG_2408IMG_2415IMG_2448

Can’t forget about the driveway photo shoot – thanks for visiting and making me giggle the whole time, Dre. Come back soon.

The Tuesday after Dre left, it was my birthday. Nick threw me a surprise party and I was oblivious – you can see I’m definitely not dressed for a backyard party! He did a great job. I felt so loved!


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These girls, though. Utah has given me amazing friends. The following weekend I spent with the girls in the pic above (plus a few more) in the cabin below.


I wanna go back!! Look how beautiful..IMG_2125IMG_2141

Tucked away in the mountains for a weekend with my favorite girls – it was exactly what I needed.

We have been trying to hike more since we have been forgetting how close we live to this beauty.


This is the top of the living room hike I mentioned earlier. The sunset up there was unbelievable.

For my birthday, Nick bought me tickets to the musical Newsies. It was the most incredible musical I’ve ever seen. Everyone is so talented and AMAZING dancers. This is a MUST SEE!!

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This guy knows me so well. My heart was so full!! I love musicals and anything in theatre. Ah! It was a dream.

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This first summer in Utah was packed full. Props to you for getting to the end of this!! It has been so fun to reflect and go back through what God has done in the past three months. What a joy it is to live in a place like Utah where there is so much adventure. Since September 1st, Nick has not stopped talking about snow and the winter coming soon. While I am not a fan of that season, I must say I’m ready for the heat to pass. I actually can’t wait for fall weather!! I promise I’m going to post more so these aren’t all this long. I love you for reading this! What are your favorite parts of fall?! I’m definitely excited for sweaters and cuddling under blankets on the weekends!

With love, 


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