A Letter to My 16-Year-Old Self

Dear 16-year-old self,

Oh girl, you are climbing a mountain. I know each day can feel like a hurdle, never enough and yet you have done so much. Life can be so cruel to teenagers – the constant comparison, the threat of college applications, the gossip from different friend groups, oh and let’s not take a moment to fret the awful hormonal acne.
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Green Bay Trip Recap | amandabixler.com

RECAP: GREEN BAY TRIP

A couple of weeks ago we took an unforgettable and amazing trip to celebrate the hubby’s big 30th birthday. He is a huge Green Bay Packers fan and grew up watching Brett Farve slay defenses, so a trip to Lambeau field was like a landmark trip to Mecca. With my new work responsibilities and schedules, we have opposite days off which means this trip was the first time we’ve spent more than 8 hours in a row together since Labor Day. Can any of my girlfriends relate? If you work opposite days as your main man, how do you manage schedules and quality time together to continue to grow your relationship? Help!
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ORLANDO VACATION

We still technically have a couple more weeks of summer, but it does feel like it’s rapidly coming to a close. Honestly, I’m perfectly okay with that! While it’s been nice to slow down some this summer, try and process life post-graduate school, and adjust to full-time work, I absolutely love fall.

FALL IS MY FAVORITE.

Burnt orange colors, the crisp feeling in the air, the changing of the leaves. Fall in Colorado is absolutely gorgeous and I can’t wait to experience it for the second year. This summer has felt more full than times past – from our trip to California, celebrating my graduation, getting settled into our new home, A’s trip to Africa, and hosting several people in our home. Goodness, I’m looking forward to the fresh routine the fall typically brings.

BUT BEFORE FALL, WE HAD ONE LAST TRIP – A FAMILY REUNION + VACATION!

Orlando Family Vacation | amandabixler.com

This trip has been on the books for about a year, a time for my dad’s side of the family to gather in Florida. My last remaining grandparent, my paternal grandmother, passed away somewhat suddenly last November. My dad and his two siblings chose to use some of their inheritance to pay for the family to come together for a long weekend at the beach for quality time, rest, and celebrating my grandmother’s life.

Orlando Family Vacation | amandabixler.comOrlando Family Vacation | amandabixler.comOrlando Family Vacation | amandabixler.com

IT WAS PERFECT.

The weekend was full of sunshine, a little too much humidity (especially compared to life in Colorado!), tons of laughter and good stories, late nights and early morning sunrises, and delicious food.

Orlando Family Vacation | amandabixler.com
A little family competition game of croquet (with matching t-shirts – I know, don’t be jealous!)Orlando Family Vacation | amandabixler.comOrlando Family Vacation | amandabixler.comOrlando Family Vacation | amandabixler.com

Everyone else in the family started to return home on Monday (Labor Day), but A and I extended our stay an extra day. We woke up early Tuesday morning and spent all day exploring and hanging out at Epcot at Walt Disney World. It was a dream. We absolutely love travel, learning about different cultures, and eating good food – and all of that done in Disney style? Perfection. It also happened to be the Food & Wine Festival, which meant there were dozens of booths set up around the World Showcase with food and beverages from all over the world. Apple strudel from Germany, specialized pita “nachos” from Greece, cool udon noodles and tempura from Japan, and creme brûlée from France. If you’re a foodie, I would highly recommend planning a visit during the Food & Wine Festival.

Orlando Family Vacation | amandabixler.comOrlando Family Vacation | amandabixler.comOrlando Family Vacation | amandabixler.comOrlando Family Vacation | amandabixler.com

No rest for the weary though! Shortly after we landed at the airport, A had to jump into work, the to do list grew rapidly, and we’re quickly trying to recover and get back into the swing of things. Which leads me to this question…

HOW DO YOU HANDLE RE-ENTRY INTO “NORMAL” LIFE AFTER VACATION? DO YOU EASE BACK INTO YOUR ROUTINE OR TAKE A COUPLE OF DAYS OFF?

Orlando Family Vacation | amandabixler.com

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August Favorites | amandambixler.com

FAVORITES: AUGUST 2017

What a month August was! I’m serious when I say I’m not sure where the month went – did I take a two week nap? It’s been a whirlwind of a month with extra work events, transitioning to full-time, NOT preparing to start school (for the first time basically since I was 5 years old), and a couple of small trips. But today, before we jump into a new month and new season (HELLO FOOTBALL!), I’m kicking off a new series where each month we’ll recap favorite moments, items, media, and food from the month.
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SUMMER RECAP

I can’t be the only one who keeps asking this question: How is it already August??…right?! Please don’t tell me I’m alone. It has been a whirlwind of a couple of months but I am trying to live in the tension of savoring the final days of summer while also craving the routine that fall and new seasons beg. In fact, I’m actually okay that summer is coming to a close. This fall will be the first time I won’t be going back to school, yet life right now is still offering some small fresh starts. And who doesn’t love a fresh start?
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LIFE LATELY, AN UPDATE

Hello sweet friends! Goodness, it’s been a long time. The first three months of this year were a little crazy and extra full, forcing me to really step back from some commitments or extra things to focus on what matters most. If ya’ll have been around for any extended amount of time, you know I’m passionate about living simpler, saying no to things I don’t have to do, and seeking rest over rush. While things aren’t technically slowing down over the next two months or so, I wanted to pop in, say hello, and give a little life update!
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Gratitude: Some of my most loved, read, watched, and cooked memories from December 2016 | amandabixler.com

GRATITUDE: DECEMBER 2016

Goodness, how is it already January?! How does this happen? But truly, as much as I love Thanksgiving and Christmas, the quiet that the week between Christmas and New Years brings is so calming, so peaceful, so lovely. Having time to pause and reflect on the past year and make plans for the new year is one of my most favorite things – remembering our big move, reflecting on how faithful God has been to us adjusting in Colorado, growing this blog and making amazing blogger friends (shout out to Grady at Grady Bird Blog who writes awesome inspiration, especially for any stepmoms out there) – it’s truly been a year for the record books.
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What We Did on Vacation in Boston, MA | amandabixler.com

VACATION RECAP: BOSTON, MA

Last month, A and I got to celebrate my amazing brother’s wedding in Charlotte, North Carolina, and then decided to celebrate our anniversary a little early and take an extended vacation up through Washington D.C., Delaware and Connecticut, before ending up in Boston, MA. Neither one of us had ever been to Boston so we weren’t sure what to expect or how we’d feel, but it was by far our most favorite place we visited – good food, historical sites, awesome people, what more could you want?
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