While I spent most of the summer in St. Louis, I squeezed in a few summer trips – partly because I knew a change was coming, and I wanted to see as many people as possible before it went into effect. It was so fun to catch up with friends and family in several different cities along the way!
A Wedding and a First Communion in St. Paul, Minnesota
The bride is a St. Louis friend who moved to Minnesota shortly after I returned from Switzerland in 2016. She got her Masters at Miami, and we originally met when a mutual friend connected us after her graduation. It was wonderful to celebrate her and her new husband! Their ceremony was so beautiful!
I stayed with some Miami friends while I was in town and brought one of them along as my +1. I promise we weren’t bridesmaids; we just really like green!
While in town, I got to see another Miami friend, and I hung out with some pretty fun kiddos!
It just so happened that the wedding was on a Saturday in St. Paul, and that my friends’ daughter had her First Communion in Minneapolis on Sunday! I had never been to a First Communion before, but I was excited to have an excuse to catch up with friends who recently moved back to the US from Switzerland.
Factory Visits all over the USA
I wasn’t visiting friends on this trip, but I spent a week traveling to all four of the Nestle Purina Cat Litter factories in the US with an awesome team of people. I learned so much and asked A LOT of questions. I wore a hard hat every day, met some wonderful people, and even got to eat some In-N-Out! It was a jam-packed week, but I loved it!
Concert at Red Rocks
One on the things on my unofficial “Life Goal List” is to see a concert at Red Rocks. For a few years, I was checking the schedule to see if any artists I loved were playing on a weekend. This year, I forgot to check, and it was only by chance that I found out Third Day was playing their final concert as a band at Red Rocks in June. I discovered this on a Sunday, and they were performing on Wednesday – just a few days later. I decided to do something really impulsive…I went!
I flew out on Wednesday afternoon (after working in the morning), went out to dinner with her family to celebrate her birthday (which was that day!), went to the concert, spent the night at a hotel at the airport, and flew back to St. Louis early (EARLY!) Thursday morning and went straight to work. I was gone less than 24 hours, but it was awesome! It was great to see my friend, and the venue is just awesome!
Tour of the Midwest
During the week of 4th of July, I took a week-long road trip to visit friends and family in Indianapolis, Cincinnati, Columbus, and Louisville. I saw 40 friends and 41 kiddos (we’re officially outnumbered!!), and my heart was so happy!
[Meet up at the The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis with some of my sophomore and junior year roommates! This place is HUGE! Highly recommend for anyone with little ones.]
[Wonderful friends! We caught up over homemade pizza and salad at their home.]
[Lunch at Sleepy Bee Cafe – yum!]
[A friend met me for dinner at Senate and introduced me to their amazing hot dogs and truffle fries!]
[Madeira 4th of July Parade]
[Ready to march in a 4th of July parade!]
[4th of July cookout & pool party!]
[This sweet friend lives with her family in Macedonia. I visited her there in 2011, so it was wonderful to finally catch up in person while she was in the US for the summer. She has had three more littles since the last time I saw her, and it was great to meet them!]
[Delicious breakfast at Kittie’s in Bexley with a Pac Rim friend and his family!]
[Crazy to be able to say we’ve been friends for 20 years!]
[Oh my goodness! This salad at Ramsi’s Cafe on the World in Louisville was SO GOOD! Time with this sweet friend was even better.]
As always, I forgot to take pictures with everyone I saw, so this is only a sampling. It was such a wonderful week!
I decided to head to Youngstown for a quick weekend trip while both of my parents were there visiting. I saw all of my aunts & uncles (with the exception of one who lives in St. Louis), both grandmas, my English nanny, and some of our family friends from the church I grew up attending.
[SURPRISE! Happy Birthday to my uncle! He didn’t know I was coming for the weekend.]
[My uncle is an amazing grill master, and he prepared some fantastic Brazilian barbeque for us to enjoy!]
[Gramma, her five children, and me]
[First time crashing my mom’s annual reunion with her Youngstown friends]
[My sweet English nanny]
Work and Play in San Diego
I attended the Network of Executive Women (N.E.W.) Executive Forum in August in San Diego. It was a great conference with some really fun colleagues. Before and after the event, I also spent time with some Vevey friends, my freshman RA, and my dad.
[We stayed at the Omni La Costa Resort & Spa in Carlsbad, and it was beautiful!]
[Lunch with my freshman RA and her husband at Sugar and Scribe in La Jolla]
My dad and I did a lot of fun things together, but I only took a couple of pictures. (Oops!) We had dinner at Barbusa, visited USS Midway Aircraft Carrier, had lunch at Brigantine on Coronado Island, and went to the Saturday morning Farmers Market in Little Italy. We also had In-N-Out (of course!). I enjoyed the quality time with him.
[Watching the sunset in Mission Bay]
I went to Nashville for a customer presentation and made the impulsive decision along with a few other colleagues to go to the Beyoncé & Jay-Z concert. The event was so poorly organized at Vanderbilt Stadium, which really took away from the experience. I also realized I mostly know her old music, so I think it was my first and last Beyoncé concert.
[The view from the rooftop of our hotel in The Gulch]
[Lunch with this sweet Miami friend at L.A. Jackson – great rooftop restaurant with views of downtown Nashville]
As usual, the summer passed too quickly, but I’m thankful for all of the fun and new memories made with these friends, family, and co-workers.