I know I am a few days late on my wishes, but we were away from home in Kentucky visiting with my husband Mark’s family for the New Year! Happy New Year to you ALL!! I rang in 2012 with my hubby, Mark, our pooch, Seri, and all of Mark’s family! We celebrated Christmas and the New Year in one shot and it was really fun. We got to spend some quality time with Mark’s rowdy and amazing Momo (Grandmother), Mark got his fried chicken, we exchanged gifts, ate a ton of cheese from Grandpa’s Cheesebarn in Ohio, (a guilty pleasure stop we love to make on the drive down there) and I even made my tortilla soup for Mark’s Dad and girlfriend, Cindy, on New Year’s Day! It was a fun trip indeed.
2011 was an absolute amazing, whirl wind of a year for us. At the start of the year, with all of the traveling and the client projects we had on the horizon, we decided to close our boutique of nearly 5 years, a decision that didn’t come easy, but one we haven’t regretted once since making it. 2011 brought many more trips and travel than any other year before, so it is hard to look back on the year and not think about a trip of some sort, whether for pleasure or business. Being based in Buffalo, traveling has become an important part of both our business and our sanity. I thought about sitting down and writing about everything that has happened this year with me, both personally and professionally, and I realized how much that actually was. 2011 was a crazy, hectic and amazing year for us. So, I decided after thinking about all the travel I did this year, and how much of my memories of 2011 involved our trips, to actually sit down and write it all out. A little year in travel review, if you will. It actually makes my head spin that we were on the road as much as we were this past year, but it was fun to go through all the photos and relive all the amazing places we were blessed enough to visit in 2011!
So without further ado, here it is, 2011 a year on the road – what I was doing when I wasn’t designing, printing, cooking, baking or at yoga.
In January we took a trip down to Kentucky to celebrate our niece, Kendall’s, 6th birthday and to visit with Mark’s family. This is a trip we have taken for the past few years, a nice way to see them all without the craziness of the holidays. Plus, it has always been fun to make a special visit centered around Kendall, since we don’t get to see her as much as we’d like to.
In February, I took a fun and relaxing trip with my Mom to Loveland, Colorado to spend time with our good friend, Jane. This is the second year in a row that I have made this trip. It is so incredibly beautiful out there. The words “breathtaking” and “refreshing”, hardly do it justice. I loved starting my year out with that trip and spending some quality time with my mom.
March marked our yearly drive down to Austin for the SXSW Music Festival and Flatstock, the rock poster convention and of course lotsa BBQ eatin’ and hanging with our super good friends from all over the country! This trip is always a fun one since Mark and I get to spend so much time together on the drive and the weather in Austin is always so beautiful and needed, especially after a long winter of snow and cold temperatures in Buffalo.
April, just days after we closed our store to the public for good, we drove to New York City for what became the first of many trips to the city last year! We had work in the opening gallery show at Tara McPherson’s new Boutique Gallery, Cotton Candy Machine, in Brooklyn and our first meeting with our clients at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in Manhattan. This first visit of the year was also the first of many times that Mark and I took over our good friends, Mike and Karen’s, Brooklyn apartment in 2011! They have been absolutely amazing to us, allowing us to crash on their air mattress, making all of our trips out to the city, affordable (well really, making them possible at all). Besides being incredibly talented designers, they are amazing hosts and we are so thankful to have them as friends!
Towards the middle of April we also drove to the State University of New York at Fredonia where we spoke to students there about Hero, our history, our process and everything design, illustration and printmaking related. We then continued our drive down to Pittsburgh to stay with our friend’s Allison and Craig and participate in Handmade Arcade.
In May, Mark and I took our yearly trip to South Padre Island off the coast of Texas in the Gulf of Mexico to celebrate our 4-year wedding anniversary and to just slow it all down! That is my favorite trip we take, every year! We rent a house on the beach and do nothing for a week straight. Even though Mark and I spend every single day together, this trip feels so special since our time is uninterrupted and it’s just all about us. We sit on the beach, we take naps, I drink tequila, Mark eats fried seafood – neither one of us could be any happier than when we are there (well maybe we’d be a little happier if we could take the dog with us, but that’s it).
At the end of May we took another trip to NYC for the first job we did with the Met, a poster for an acoustic performance by Glen Hansard of the band, The Swell Season, who performed in the Temple of Dendur at the Met in conjunction with their Guitar Heroes exhibit. What an incredible and humbling experience that was, I still cannot believe that the Met is one of our clients!
In June, we traveled back to NYC once again, this time for the Renegade Craft Fair in Brooklyn. We love this event, it is outside in a park in the middle of Brooklyn and the patrons are some of the nicest we come across in all of our travels. We also got to ride the East River Ferry on it’s inaugural day, what beautiful views! Are you getting tired reading this? Can you believe all of this happened in just half of a year? I get tired just reading it all.
In July, we flew to San Francisco for the Renegade Craft Fair, where we stayed with our friends Matt and Maria and we really had a great time, we even took a day off to drive up to Napa and Sonoma. After the craft fair was over in San Fran we drove down the coast on Highway 1 to make our way to Los Angeles. We spent the night at a lodge in Big Sur on our way down and that was when I really fell in love with California! We continued the drive down to Los Angeles and stayed with our good friends Pat and Summer in Long Beach and participated in the Renegade Craft Fair L.A. We of course took a day off in between it all to go to Disneyland, which was absolute magic! After spending a few days in Long Beach, we fell in love with all of it! You will probably be hearing a lot more about it as we plan a move there in 2012!!!! YES!!! I said move! OK more on that in another post when I have more to tell. After our trip out west we actually had a full 4-weeks off without any major travel, which seemed unbelievable and quite nice!
But the travel must go on…in August, we went back to NYC again for another event with the Met that we were commissioned to do a poster for, this time it was St. Vincent live on the rooftop of the Met! (OK, so it actually got rained out and she played live in the Temple of Dendur, but it was amazing none the less). Another wonderful event that had the two of us pinching ourselves that we actually get to work with the Met.
In September, we drove out to Chicago for the Renegade Craft Fair, where we stayed with our friends Margaux and Jason and their adorable son Desmond. We spent time with our friends, I drank too much champagne with our booth neighbors at the fair and we drove home! At the end of the month, we went back to NYC again for the Met’s Oktoberfest event at the Cloisters, that we again were commissioned to do a poster for. It was an amazing event, I just wish I could have drank the beers and eaten the pretzels, ha! I had never been to the Cloisters before, it was so beautiful out there. It is hard to believe that you are still in Manhattan with those views. If you haven’t made it to the Cloisters on one of your trips to the city, make it a point to head up there. You won’t regret it.
October seemed a bit quiet after the crazy summer we had, but we did have a short trip to Birmingham, Alabama where a client of ours is based. They flew us out to see the city, meet with investors and just take in all that Birmingham is, so that we could be inspired for the project we were working on together with them. I was pleasantly surprised at what a forward-thinking and progressive city Birmingham is. The movement and excitement there is so inspiring and refreshing. The weather was perfection, too. So that didn’t hurt.
November, we headed back to New York for one last very short trip. We had a gallery show of our work at Cotton Candy Machine in Brooklyn, so we made it out for the opening, has some short but quality hang time with clients and friends, we marched in a rainbow parade with other creative folk and then turned right back around and came home to attack all of the work we had to complete.
The first weekend in December, we took a road trip to Chicago for the Renegade Craft Fair Holiday Sale, stayed with our friends Billy and Anne, and we got to spend some nice holiday time with our good friends that live there. We even took time to check out the most decorated house I have ever seen in person! For the rest of December, we busted our butts on work, shipping orders and we celebrated Christmas, enjoyed family and then took our trip to Kentucky this past weekend!
So yeh, that is our 2011 year in travel – it actually amazes me that we accomplished all of that traveling, some pretty huge projects and so much more. I am so proud of everything that happened in 2011 and even more so, I am so incredibly inspired and excited for all that lies ahead in 2012! It proves to be another year of amazingness! I mentioned above that we plan to move out west in 2012 and that is definitely happening, we just don’t know when, yet. We have to finish up some small things on our house here and get it up on the market. When it goes, so do we! So it could be a few weeks, it could be a few months! We have no idea. The anticipation of the move and all the unknown that lies ahead has me so full of enthusiasm. My heart and mind are full with the possibilities of what will be and I am so ready for a new chapter and unkown adventures.
I plan to do the obligatory top 10 recipes of 2011 post, I have another recipe to share from the holidays and I plan to post some cleansing new years recipes, but I really wanted to share our year of traveling with you guys. I tend to forget to make time to post about all the amazing things I get to experience in my life. I should make more time to share that with you. 2011 was the most magical and memorable year that I can remember, yet. I feel so blessed to be able to live a life full of so much happiness and positive experiences. I am also so thankful to all of you that find time in your very busy lives to read this blog, this year really made Tasty Yummies feel real to me. Looking at the amount of visits I get, reading your comments and hearing about you making my recipes, really means the world to me. I am very much looking forward to 2012 and all that it brings both in my kitchen and the rest of my life and I plan to share more of all of that on here, when I can.
What was the most memorable part of your 2011?
I hope you all had an incredible 2011 that you celebrated surrounded by the one(s) you love most! Here’s to an incredible, tasty and inspiring 2012 – filled with many more magical moments!