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Today's Gratitude

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

I've been waiting for the go ahead to post this for like a week now because of some exciting news I include. It's been a good couple of weeks in the world of Abby. Here are some of the things I'm grateful for lately. 

Going to my first Reggae Sunday in St. Augustine with Dana, Martin, Will, and Milton. What a place for people watching... Old man with crazy, salsa-like dance moves all around the dock and funky smelling tent, old lady with crazy bejeweled hair net and... chest squares? It looked like she used the jewels preteens use to bedazzle their cell phones for a chest decoration. We said these two probably "came to Reggae Sunday 20 years ago and never left."
We're such "consistent smilers." 
Will and I had a Cute Niece Contest. Adaleigh won with a forfeit after one video of the precious angel baby's smiles. 

A surprise birthday dinner to celebrate Mr. Chad Baker. I've been back in Jax for like 10 months now and had probs only seen the kid for like 10 minutes. I had the most expensive but best dinner at new favorite restaurant, Black Sheep. Great boiled grapefruit calamari appetizer, best salmon I've ever had, perfectly sweet Riesling, and deliciously unique chai creme brûlée. I had written them a review before even leaving the restaurant. We continued celebrations with some drinks at O'Brothers. It was a great night with some awesome people. 
A Suns baseball game with Dana and Martin, that included a meet and greet with a player. Several dates have followed and he's been racking up the points ever since. A gentleman even the Salt Life waitresses and roommate are impressed with. (Roommate is probably more telling with his big brother-style protection). Glad we relocated to the seats near the relief pitchers... 
Paddle boarding adventures with Dana and Martin (lots of good times with these two lately) complete with yoga, dolphin sightings, headstands, cannonballs, racing, conquering shark fears, relaxing, and chicken fights. I expected it to be pretty cool, but it seriously surpassed my expectations. 

A delicious and special dinner shared with Brother Matt. We enjoyed the rooftop of Black Sheep overlooking the hip old Riverside area, (two weekends in a row), rocking shrimp and grits and a burger, and excitement over his proposal plans the following day. Grateful to have had this night with him. Crazy these happen so few and far between being in the same city! 

A successful proposal for those two love birds, giving me another amazing sister-in-law-to-be. My brothers pick some good onesMatt's engaged! Welcome to the family, Rachel!
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Stranger Friends and a Beach Frolick

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Had yet another beautiful slap in the face reminder to get out of the house yesterday. The last couple days, I've come home wanting to just laze it out and watch movies and sleep. Fortunately, today I saw a post from Lynch's Irish Pub reminding me of the art walk going on just down the road

Just as I was contemplating heading to Publix to get the supplies to make baked goods (paleo at least) and veg on the couch watching Frozen to catch up with the kiddo culture, I realized I now had an art walk to pass through. Definitely getting out now. 

I rode down the street to find surprisingly unique artists along the sidewalks. I think I was expecting the typical palm tree paintings, hippie clothes that are supposedly handmade but mysteriously look the same as every other hippie booth, and some sea shell jewelry. Not so. There were definitely some cool ones here. I found some sweet art and artists alike for some future gift ideas and good conversations. Jax Beach Art Walk. I'd recommend it. 

Then I decided to stop to talk to Jesus Loving (and sign holding old man) on 3rd and Beach. I've passed him a lot and he's always waving and happy, so I figured I'd stop for a quick appreciation and introductory conversation. We/he wound up talking for like 20 minutes. He offered a sweet prayer, like half his life story, and advice. Sweet dude, that David is. 
"I love everybody. Those people driving by with those red lights? I don't know what they look like. I don't know what they do. But I love em." 

On my way back, I met a cool couple back at the art walk with art ranging from pretty flowers to owls, skulls, and grim reapers. I opted for the skull with a flower. Pretty sweet. They were cool conversation too. The girl said I looked a lot like her old Roomie. I said I was, I was just seeing if she'd notice. 
To end the night, I went for a quick swim and float in the ocean followed by lots of child-like frolicking complete with handstands, cartwheels, back bends, and sand angels. The swim was shorter than I'd have liked... It was pretty dang dark. And once that image of a shark or sting ray popped in my head, I could only hide it for enough time to get the invigorating dive or two and appreciative float below the stars in. "No one would know if i died..." I tried to justify. Which I suppose was true. But I probably could've floated a little longer. 

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Wild Man, Willis, and Kiddos

Friday, August 1, 2014

Happy Friday and First of August, friends! This week's been an interesting one for sure. The highlights could basically all be dedicated to Willis but I'll include a couple others. 

1. Number one will go to hanging out with a new friend we're appropriately calling Wild Man on Monday. We stuffed our faces with awesome burgers at Poe's, played some laughable games of pool, and attempted dumpster diving for some flowers. None were to be found and we were a little disappointed in our grossed out reactions. Gotta keep trying. I haven't laughed as much as I did this night in maybe ever. 

2. Now. Local Friend Willis. After meeting him on Sunday, Wild Man and I took his much desired Coke to him. After swimming, grocery shopping, and cooking (some delicious fish tacos), we came back to find him still dancing away in the ocean. Tonight I took him fresh baked chocolate chip cookies. "Do you like chocolate chip cookies? These are right out of the oven!" 

"Ooh yeah! I like German chocolate cake too!" 
"Ah, I've never made that but maybe I'll give it a try sometime."
I learned he does his dancing for 12 hours a day and he's trying to "get back to the right weight." (Willis is as tall and lean as could be.)

3. One of the hilarious girls at work yesterday "protecting us from zombies." 

4. Getting news that I'm officially full time and continuing at Lindamood, plus getting some cool new responsibilities like testing these chillin. I'm excited to hear their often creative, hilarious answers and give them nothing but praises.

5. My day being made today with Wild Man texting me that Willis had a bacon, egg, and cheese biscuit for breakfast today. Every time I thought about that, a smile grew on my face. 

This sunrise was a pretty awesome highlight too. 
Linking up with Lauren Elizabeth for High Five for Friday  

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