In Summer!

Once again, it has been a while since I updated the blog. My sister has started to encourage me to get back to writing and I’m encouraging her to dive into it, so here I am once again.

This summer has flown by! I cannot believe it is July 15th or I cannot believe it is only July 15th. I’m not really sure where I am today. All I know is the next 2.5 weeks are going to fly by and then it is back to work I go.

Anyway, I thought I would share my summer via my Instagram. I am doing my best to try and maintain a balance of living in the moment while also taking pictures so that later on in my life I’m not saying to myself “I just can’t remember what I did when I was 25…”

Nat and I started off our summer in what has become a 2 year tradition: the Knoxville Expo 10k!


We both have tried and are still currently trying to keep up our running habit throughout the summer. It was fun to start off the summer with something fun like a 10k, but I will not lie, the next day I slept in with no regret.

We then took a fun, quick weekend trip to Washington D.C.! IMG_2405

We took the Megabus up and back. The bus ride on the way up was great. We both got to read/nap/talk/whatever we wanted and we left the driving up to someone else. For a 8-9 hour drive, especially through the never ending (slightly boring) Virginia, it was nice to not have to worry about switching drivers, or in our case trying not to be a bad passenger and sleep while Nat drives. Anyway, the ride up was great. We got into the city around 7, caught a cab to our hotel and then we got dinner near our hotel and could go to bed slightly early so we could spend the next day sightseeing.

We had a lot of fun touring museums and seeing the monuments. On our last day we even went to the National Zoo which was so fun! The zoo is free to the public and because of that we noticed a lot of runners going through the park. I would love that. I think it would make me less reluctant to run some days if I knew I might see a lion or something more exciting than my neighbor’s dog.

We also were able to see my wonderful bestie Courtney while we were in the city. She is seriously who I want to be when I grow up and I am so proud of her life in DC. You go girl.

After many, many hours of sightseeing and being on our feet- we headed back to the megabus for our travels South. I’m not going to lie to anyone about my sleep habits and my attitude toward sleep. I love sleep and I need a lot of it. The overnight Megabus does not allow for it. So, if you are like me and get sassy when your sleep is interrupted choose the day bus. You won’t regret it.

All in all it was a great trip and I am so thankful we were able to go up for a weekend on our own.

After our trip to DC we spent time just hanging out and resting. A school year can really be exhausting. We celebrated our 2nd anniversary and my 25th birthday



Our next trip took us to the great white North….Wisconsin!

My parents moved to Wisconsin almost a year ago to retire. Forget sandy white beaches- they were looking more for slushy white snow. Anyway, the winters may be rough but the summers are absolutely gorgeous. My brother and sister and their spouses and Nat and I all headed up for a few days of family fun.


I can’t forget the most important guest…Ezekiel! My sweet nephew is the pride and joy of our family. I seriously can’t get enough of him so to have 5 days to spend with him was a great addition to my summer.

We spent our days on the lake, at the waterpark, and doing what we do best- just hanging out. It had been since Christmas since we had all been together so it really was just a treat to be around the people I love most. One of the nice things about my parents living up north is the ability to see some of our extended family- which rarely happens. We had a get together that consisted of lots of food and a southern staple- CORN HOLE




It was such a fun trip and I am blessed by a family that I can’t get enough of. I am always looking forward to the next time I get to be with them and even though there seems to be more time between each get together as we get older, it seems like no time has passed at all.

We had a wild one day in between our trip to Wisconsin and our next big trip to EDISTO! Every year (2nd annual) we and 4 other couples go to the beach together. It is such a fun trip and we are so lucky to have a close knit group of people to be around.


We spent 7 days on Edisto Island and it was pure bliss. It was so nice to be a 2 minute walk from the beach and everyone could just come and go as they pleased. We ate a lot and played lots of games- a lot of sweet, funny memories were made. I am anxiously looking forward to next year!

This year’s trip had a bittersweet aspect to it. One of the couples just moved from Knoxville and another moved shortly after our trip. It was weird to think of everyone being in different places. That week though was sweet because regardless of where we are in life, our friendships are still in tact and will continue to be. I am a very blessed girl because of these friendships.


And now here we are…in present day. The big trips are behind us and we are looking forward to a new, exciting school year. Every year I feel a little anxious about school starting back and this year is no different. This year, however, is filled with excitement, which is new for me. I am starting my 3rd year or teaching and for the first time ever I feel like my feet are slightly on the ground. (I would say the tips of my toes- but that is better than nothing!)

I am thankful for a fun summer to rest and recover. There are a couple more weeks left and I am going to love them for what they are!





End of Summer…

I have officially recognized that summer is over. We have been back at work for a week and in 2 days students will come back into the school building and another school year will begin. Where did the time go?!? Seriously though, it has been a very quick summer. I think the fact that I travelled for over half of it added to the feeling of a short summer for us. I am so blessed to have had the summer I did, and I can’t believe all of the things I got to experience.


We got to spend an amazing 10 days traveling in Europe where we celebrated our one year anniversary! I can’t believe time has gone by that quickly. Heck, as I write this post we are over the 14 month mark 🙂

DSC_0762We went on our first annual friend vacation to Charleston, SC. We love having good friends to travel with. What a blessing!

We spent a good amount of time this summer with family and friends, and we grew our little family by one!

IMG_1119We love our sweet Baby Avery!

Anyway, this was a major season of change for my family. My parents moved to Wisconsin and my sister and brother in law moved to my parents’ old house and now my brother gets married in a week.

I feel like this last year or two has been quite huge in the change area. Nothing has stayed the same, but I am so grateful for everything that has happened.

This school year is definitely going to be a test of my patience, sanity, and ability. I am shifting gears from teaching low level students to the high performing IB students. I am seriously dumbfounded that I was chosen for this position and completely humbled, but I am ready to get this show on the road and see where this year takes me.

Anyway, I have made some goals for this school year and by the grace of God I will keep them. I didn’t do very well this first week of inservice, but really, I am giving myself a little time to get adjusted to getting back to work.

Goals for the year:

  • have a quiet time @ least 5 days a week (I get really bad at doing this and making excuses, but seriously, my attitude is so much better when I stay in the Word)
  • update blog @ least 2-3 times a week
  • Run 15-20 miles a week. We will see how this goes. I desperately want to be in good running shape, but I need to learn to block out my thoughts when I talk myself out of it.
  • Encourage the heck out of Nat. Last year was really difficult for us learning how to be a teaching/coaching family. I am seriously praying that I can bite my poor attitude in the butt and be supportive, rather than a thorn in his side about football.

Anyway, that is where I am at. Tomorrow I am posting about making sweet tea, or rather, Nat is going to “guest post” because my sister has been asking for it for a month. Happy Weekend!

Mid-Week Things (a day late!)

To all of my teacher friends: Happy Summer!

I am sorry this is a day late. Summer break makes me forget the days of the week, and it wasn’t until 9 o’clock last night that I realized it was Wednesday. Anyway, I am only one day behind so that is forgivable, right?

1. Nat and I ran the Expo 10k in Knoxville on Saturday. I finished in little over an hour, and ran .06 more than I was supposed to. This is the 2nd race I’ve run with my Garmin watch and have realized i’ve run more than I was supposed to. It was a great race, and I feel really encouraged after running. I have been stuck at 4 miles for awhile and haven’t been able to push myself to run to 5 miles, but now I know I can and I can do it well!

2. I am excited for summer because I have a lot of good foods I want to make. I am finally going to try the brownie cupcakes and near the end of the summer it is my goal to make a bunch of freezer meals to help Nat and I get through the fall. I think that will really help me in the first few weeks (months) of the school year as I get used to the rhythm of the school year and football season.

3. IMG_0936We celebrated two of our friends getting married this weekend and it was so fun! It was nice to just spend time with our friends and be joyful. I can’t say it enough- we really have great community in Knoxville and we are so blessed to be where we are right now.

4. This week I have felt really challenged to make my summer purposeful and to spend time thinking about next school year, and also what I want to do in Knoxville since we have decided to make this place our official “home town.” Our community group has been reading David Platt’s “Radical.” At the end of the book Platt lists a challenge to live a radical life. I have already felt like I should be more intentional in praying and reading the Bible, and part of his challenge is praying for the World and reading the Word in a year.

I want to spend the summer really reading the word and also being more intentional in my prayer life. My prayers are usually “Thanks, God for the food and for my blessings..Amen.” I feel like I need more than that.

5. The other day, as I wasted time at work, I came across this article on It had me laughing (even though it really isn’t funny) because it was so Nat and I. We both love running. We both count ourselves as runners. We love to run races and to challenge ourselves, but WE DO NOT RUN TOGETHER. Let me make that clear: we do not run together. I will ask Nat to run with me, but then 15 steps into our run, I automatically regret it. Nat loves running and naturally excels at it. I love running, but it is painful for me. I have to really motivate myself to get going. He gets frustrated with me because I am slow. I get annoyed with him because he is fast. After a few tries at running together, we both came to the agreement that we just wouldn’t run together. The only time we run together is if Nat is done and he turns around to come find me and get my butt into gear.

He is such a good husband. He doesn’t let me quit.

I hope everyone is having a great week! Happy summer!