July 31: I put my watch on this morning and panicked when I saw it read August 1. My first thought was how in the world did I miss the last day of July?! After checking my phone and resetting my watch to the 31st, I found it interesting that- even for a brief moment- I actually believed I skipped over a day. But that's how every day in July has felt for me, the days have flown by.
July 30: Monday was the first day of orientation for grad school. It was surreal and slightly overwhelming but overall so exciting. I cannot wait to begin this next chapter of my life. I'm going to be a social worker (eeee!!!)
July 29: For Kevin's birthday in April, I purchased Kenny Chesney and Tim McGraw tickets thinking I was such a great girlfriend for sacrificing my music taste just for one night in order to experience some country music I know my boyfriend loves. Before this summer, before Nashville- but most importantly- before Kevin McMahon, I never (ever) enjoyed country music. And now I love it. Sunday was a blast.
July 28: Wedding season with this guy is the best. From goofing off to twirling around on the dance floor, he always makes sure we have a good time.
July 27: Finally got to see Kaitlin (!!!) Kevin and I had a wedding in Birmingham over the weekend and stayed the night with the Greene's on Friday. She and Perry just moved into their new home and we were honored to be their very first house guests. It was SO good to see her and catch up! I could hardly recall the last time I was with Kaitlin but we never have a problem picking up right where we left off.
July 26: My past roommate and future roommate putting a computer chair together. Tedious process, which is why I was watching instead of helping.
July 25: Moving day. Miraculously, my mom and I managed to pack up the u-haul all on our own without any other family member's help- unless of course Maggie counts- she was there for moral support. Oh, have I mentioned I'm moving to Cleveland?
July 24: This is Lily. She's a percheron draft horse and was donated to the barn I'm working at earlier this spring. Lily is one of my favorites- not only because she's a sweetheart but because she's always so patient with the kids.
July 23: Last summer my exercise of choice was tennis. This summer it's long walks on the beach. Sounds cliché but I love it.
July 22: Sunday evening I drove down to Saugatuck to have dinner with the Bells. Hayley cooked us dunner, she made gnocchi mac and cheese and a blue berry balsamic salad (which was SO yummy) and after we tuned in for the finale of The Bachelorette. I've never felt so emotionally invested in a season and was super excited to see Jef and Emily together in the end.
July 21: I joined the Johnsons in South Haven for a long, relaxing day. We spent Saturday by the beach, played with baby Orrin, had a delicious dinner, went out for ice cream afterwards and walked the pier. South Haven is darling, I want to go back asap.
July 20: Went to Dark Knight Rises with my mom and brother Friday night. It was incredibly good but difficult not to think about the horror that occurred in Colorado the night before.
July 19: Cooked dinner for Kevin and everything turned out SO good. Usually we cook together but he had to work late so I ended up preparing it all on my own, which left me feeling super accomplished and appreciated.
July 18: Not the best picture, but a great story. I was in Cleveland on Wednesday to meet with my field placement advisor and on the way back to Kevin's apartment I got lost and flustered and wound up paying double for parking. By the time I got back to his place I was in tears and Kevin happened to have these glasses waiting for me to unwrap. It was a complete surprise and quickly turned my mood around.
July 17: I get to see these two when I go to the barn each week and they're the cutest. I've considered smuggling one or both of them into my car a few times but have decided against it.
July 16: Lucy's chicken salad sandwich, a long walk down the beach, Dairy Treat ice cream and The Bachelorette: Men Tell All with my besfrenn was the perfect way to spend a Monday night.
July 15: We had Glen Lake all to ourselves Sunday morning: boating, water skiing, wake boarding and tubing. We left Glen Arbor exhausted and worn out- aching for more time but thankful for the weekend up north.
July 14: I love Glen Arbor. I love time spent with Kevin's parents and good friends. I love beach days that last into the evening and I love sangria, homemade salsa, packed lunches, gossip magazines and goofy card games. I love Arts Tavern. I love weekends at The Homestead.
July 13: Friday morning walks around Reeds Lake have become a regular occurrence for me this summer. Meg joined me Friday morning (along with a few iced lattes) as we walked the four miles around the lake.
July 12: Warm summer nights spent outside are my favorite. I drove into Holland Thursday night to catch up with my ex-roomies. We ended up walking around 8th street, talking on the porch and grabbing a few beers out on the deck of Boatwerks.
July 11: A spontaneous trip to the mini-golf course ended up being WAY more fun than we all anticipated. Meg managed to consistantly shoot the ball off the course, Eric got a few hole in ones, I accidentally hit a car (the ball flew past the course and beyond the fence) and we all learned a little something about one another's competitive side.
July 10: Lazy afternoons on the couch, hanging out with maggie and chatting with my momma: a few perks of living at home this summer.
July 9: Twice a week I volunteer at this facility that does equine therapy. Not only has the exposure been a good learning experience but working around horses and kids has been so much fun.
July 8: Spent the entire day driving home from Tennessee. I had this beautiful sunset to keep me company on part of my way home.
July 7: The day started with a surprise lunch date with an old friend I worked on Young Life summer staff with and ended with the most beautiful wedding I've ever seen. Too much happened in between: I met up with Steph Kahn (no photo evidence) and our trolly broke down on the way to the wedding (which ended up being way more fun than it should have been). Lots of long stories short: the day was absolutely wonderful, packed with good friends and good times.
July 6: Exploring downtown Nashville, relaxing by the pool, playing yard games, eating delicious southern bbq, hanging out with Kevin's college friends, watching live music, smoking cigars, singing karaoke and twirling around in circles with Kevin McMahon all night long. The. Best. Day. Ever.
July 5: Driving to Tennessee Thursday night was the perfect start to an even better weekend. Kevin and I met in Indiana and drove to Nashville from there. We hadn't seen each other in a few weeks and had the best time driving late into the night, finally arriving in Nashville around four in the morning.
July 4: Growing up, my family spent a week each summer vacationing in Grand Haven at a cottage down the street from where our home is now. Throughout the years we've become very close with a group of families and this year the majority of us where in town for the fourth. We celebrated with a big dinner and fireworks down town. I cherish this group of friends so much and we've been fortunate to remain so close over the years.
July 3: Meg Johnson has been tightly woven into my summer and I've been so grateful for the short 40 minute drive that separates the two of us. The night before the 4th, Meg and her friend Amanda came into Grand Haven for an impromptu night out on the town.
July 2: On my last day in Colorado I went on a short hike through the mountains with Caitlin and I captured THIS view. Denver was such a blast, catching up with close friends, wandering in and out of boutiques, eating from food trucks and getting a chance to relax was the perfect way to spend a vacation.
July 1: I was in Colorado visiting Ali on the first of July. It was my fourth day in Denver and with tempuratures teetering near 100 degrees, we decided to create a make-shift slip and slide. Caitlin joined us as we spent the day in the sun and things quickly escalated into a college-style Sunday Funday.