House Hunting Re-Cap

Luke and I got back from our house-hunting trip in Washington this past Wednesday. It was a long week as we tried to find a place to live and became more familiar with the area.

Even though I have visited Centralia several times since college, I had never stayed there for this long, beside a town can change a lot in ten years.

We were blessed to spend part of the trip with a family I  used to babysit for back in California. It was great to catch up with them.

We spent the first two days looking at houses and getting to know the neighborhoods. Out of eleven homes in two days we found two we considered putting an offer in on. Unfortunately, we can only do offers with contingencies upon our house selling.

The good homes are not on the market for long, even in the fall. So by the time we got home both of the homes we had considered had already accepted offers.But at least now we know what the market is like.

On Sunday and Monday we looked into rentals and apartments . This was also difficult because we want month-to-month and we have a dog. After several dead ends and a few applications we found one rental that allowed dogs, was month to month, and fit into our budget.

The only downside is Kira will spend all time outside, which she will probably love during the day, but won’t be happy about at night. But it is temporary.

We are grateful for those who helped us on this trip and that Luke’s parents were able to pick us up and drop us off at the airport. We feel we have a much better sense of the area and are excited to move very soon.

We are now in the count-down. We both have only two more weeks of work left, a few goodbyes, and a lot of packing to do.



Celebrating 4 years

As of today, Luke and I have been married for four years!


The past four years have been a great learning experience. Being completely on our own on the east coast we have learned to how to give each other space and still enjoy large amounts of time together.


Most of the time we have lived here we have been each other’s only family and at times only friend. This has drawn us very close together. During this time we bought our first home, learned how to train a puppy, and bought a car. We have learned what our roles looked like as husband and wife, and how to balance our responsibilities since both of us work.

We are now ready and looking forward to learning what it is like to live as a couple near friends and family as well as to start a new life for ourselves, with new friends.


This year’s anniversary celebrations are a little different. This past weekend we went to the Cohocton Fall Foliage Festival and picked up our annual apples, cider, and cider doughnuts.


It was great that this year there was no cold rain to dampen the fun, but the air was definitely chilly.


We plan tonight on going to Ember, our new favorite restaurant in the area to celebrate after I get off work.

Normally I make an elaborate apple dessert in memory of  our wedding in apple country in SoCal. But this year we do not have time for anything fancy. So I will probably make some fried apples to go with any leftover apple cider doughnuts.


The reason for our subdued and hurried celebration is that tomorrow afternoon we leave for Washington state for almost a week trip to try to find a place to live. We are looking forward  to exploring the area we will be living in and re-connecting with people we know in the area.

Naples Grape Festival


Around this time last year we drove through Naples and noticed several grape pie and grape sellers along the main street. I looked up Naples to find they host a very large fall grape festival and pie contest. If you have never heard of grape pies it’s ok, neither did we, this area is actually where it all started.



We decided to go to the Naples Grape Fest on Sunday afternoon, hoping this popular festival would be less busy at that time; I was wrong. We parked almost a mile from the vendors and walked in. Unlike other festivals  the main route through town stayed open (although moving at a snails pace). This made traveling along the sidewalks slow.



There were vendors with everything from clothes, to wood carvings, glass work, candles, produce, and fair food including all things grape flavored. Along the way we picked up local cheese, maple syrup, and grape jam.



Behind town hall was a fenced-in wine tasting area, with a large selection of wineries and a few breweries present. Next to this was a music tent where we listened to a  folk country/bluegrass group called Ruddy Well. We enjoyed them so much we ended up buying their CD’s.




About half way through town, we found the main food court. I choose to eat at Effortlessly Healthy a Rochester based food truck that serves dairy and gluten free meals with vegan options. I had a bowl with cole slaw sweet potatoes, ground beef, chicken, and avocado it was perfect. They also have their own store in Rochester where they serve healthy lunch options and provide delivery meal services.


On our way back  we stopped at grape pie stands. Luke got a slice to-go from one. Fortunately I was able to eat a mini open tart’s filling from another, it tasted like concord grapes (the most popular grape in the Naples area). Some vendors sold pie filling. Too bad they didn’t offering tastings  or I would have bought one to make my own barley-free pie.


On our way out of town we stopped for dessert at Lynnie Lou’s a homemade ice cream and custard shop . We were happily surprised to see them open; most ice cream stands  close after Labor Day. Luke got a grape and vanilla swirl custard and I chose vanilla custard with warm apple pie filling.

It was another great date day.