Sam and Kayce bought a house!

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

This blog title pretty much gives away the content of this update... but our siblings purchased a house last week! Wahoo! And in true Strader form, less than 24 hours later, they had the place half demolished and on the way to an incredible makeover. A makeover that I already have permission to blog... :)

Here's what you need to understand, is that Sam and Kayce are incredibly gifted. I believe all people are gifted in different ways, but they possess particular skills that I think are really neat. :) Sam has developed incredibly construction and woodworking skills, and Kayce has a great eye and is wonderful with execution. They make awesome homemade Christmas gifts. All of that being said, their new home is going to be beautiful!

Ben and I are so thankful for our older siblings. (Sam is Ben's older brother, and Kayce is his wife... but we're all just the Strader siblings these days!) From the very moment we got engaged they have constantly been their to lend advice and support as we established our footing in married/adult life. We are truly blessed with the closeness that our family shares.

Here are some photos from the first time we went to visit their new house, about a month ago. Stay tuned for more updates!

Cali, Baby! (Part Two)

Friday, June 21, 2013

One of the places we visited while on vacation in California (part one can be read here) was the Danish capital of America. It's okay if after reading that sentence there are little cricket chirping noises in your head. I wasn't super pumped about it either, until we were there. It was recommended to us, and when we got to Solvang, CA, we found the cutest, happiest little place.

Even the simplest buildings were so charming! 

The only photo of all of us from the whole trip... stinker! We had other plans, but you'll hear about that in the next few updates from our trip. Love these people! 

Ben will have a heart attack when he sees I posted this photo. Call us nerds, but something silly we've picked up during marriage (ALMOST SIX MONTHS, PEOPLE!) is chunking the peace sign to each other at silly and random moments. Example... yesterday, Ben is bringing around the car to pick me up from the front of a store. We both throw up our peace sign when he pulls up. It's just something silly we'll probably grow out of, but for now... enjoy this photo. :)

Something my gardener hubs LOVED about California was that there were succulents EVERYWHERE. Like literally succulents are the weeds of California. 

Something fun about having a brother in law is that he will pose for you with the large Danish clog! 

You're welcome for the flattering photo of myself modeling clogs. 

Only a few days in, we were already missing our sweet pup so badly. It was so fun to stumble upon the "Bulldog Cafe". Benjamin's hand is kind of covering the "B"... but trust me on this one. Now that we're home, Matilda has settled back into her snoozy habits, but has been a little rebellious with her bathroom habits, ahem. Am I just imagining it or is she punishing us for leaving her? What a diva!

Next stop, a vineyard, wahoo!

Cali, Baby! (Part One)

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

There has never been a more appropriately titled blog post. If you follow me on Instagram (@victoriastrader) you may have noticed that this past week the whole Strader clan packed up and jetted off to California. The motto of the trip was "Cali, Baby!".... and it was good. :)

The occasion was a family friends wedding. The wedding looked like this: 

But seriously, doves were released upon the presentation of the happy couple. All of our country bumpkin jaws were on the floor by that point. Just kidding. :) Sort of. I love Texas from my head to my toes, but this wedding was incredible enough to make me want to say "Everything's bigger in California!"... because this wedding was downright beautiful. The whole thing was at the bride's home, conveniently located atop a mountain looking down on the family avocado orchard. It was the most incredible wedding we'll probably ever go to. Every detail was so carefully planned and overall, AMAZING. It made me want to shadow the wedding planner to get the inside scoop. :)

We rode up the hill in a shuttle, which resulted in one of my favorite photos of the evening.

We were excited to say the least.

After reaching the top of the hill, we signed the guestbook and sipped basil infused lemonade. Y.U.M. It may not sound good to you, but let me tell you.... I think my new hobby might be making delicious lemonades for funzies.

After the lemonade, we found our seats in the ceremony area. The female guests of the wedding were invited to grab a parasol to keep the sun away. We were all over that.

Overall the wedding was lovely, and it was a fabulous reason for us to vacation over to the region north of Los Angeles. All of these photos were taken with my iphone, because I thought it might be obnoxious to haul my DSLR in anticipation of the wedding's beauty. Especially given my distant connection to the happy couple.

However, my camera was along for the rest of the vacation, from the Danish capital of America to Rodeo Drive to Strader surfing...  and I'm excited to share little bits of our trip over the next few days! Yippee! Hope you're having a wonderful week!

Here's a small preview:

I was giddy watching Ben and his brothers get their surf on. The wetsuit reminds me of Batman. :)

Anyone have any fun vacations coming up? Or weddings to attend? :)

The Taylor Family

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Happy Tuesday, friends! Hope you had a restful and lovely Memorial Day weekend. On Sunday, Ben and I got the chance to meet up with some old friends, and meet their precious daughter, Jaciee! We snapped a few photos of them and I'm excited to share those here today! Even with my beginning photography skills, it was hard to mess up photos of this adorable family! Hope you like these pictures, Lee and Kayla, I'll be sending the rest your way soon! 

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