Friday, January 9, 2015

Hello 2015

I hope everyone had a great Christmas and New Years! Matt and I were able to travel to see both of our families over the holidays and we had a great time. It was good to relax and enjoy everyone's company with comps officially being over. Plus the food was amazing, so there's that!

We did our traditional Texas Triangle: DFW -> El Paso -> Houston -> DFW, though we had a few detours this time. For Matt's birthday, we spent the night at Indian Lodge in Fort Davis. We really enjoyed getting to hike in the mountains and the stars were absolutely breathtaking! As we were pretty much out in the middle of the desert, we were able to see the largest number of stars I have ever seen. It was very cool and I highly recommend it!

The lodge was built by the CCC in the 1930s-- so cool to stay in a place with its history

The white building you see in the distance was the lodge.

I <3 Texas
Mule deer!
We also went to College Station to see some of our college friends get married. It was fun being back at A&M, albeit briefly, and getting to catch up with our former classmates was great. Overall we had a lot of fun and very appreciative we got to see both sides of the family again.
Matt got his birthday apple pie!
One of Matt's brothers took 'family portraits' of us with Matt's new drone.
Matt thought it was a great idea to have the drone hover in
front of us. The wind had other ideas. Glad I have fast reflexes!
My niece posing by one of Matt's presents that turned out
to be a very tall bluetooth speaker. Awesome gift :)
One of the things we gave our niece was a Goldie Blox building set
We had a lot of fun showing her how to make gears and
 other moving components (hey, I'm not the engineer here) work
Now we're back at home, getting back in the swing of normal life. I'm working on my dissertation right now and will also start teaching my first class on Monday. I'm a little nervous to have my own group of undergrads, but I'm excited about the subject material (Crime & Justice Policy) so I hope it will go well! 

Matt is keeping busy at work and we are also in the house-hunting process! Since I will be starting a 'real' job at a local university in the fall, we decided now is the right time to move and buy a house. We are currently deciding between building new vs. buying a pre-owned home, but I am excited for whatever the result. We will for sure be getting a garage which will be a HUGE upgrade from life right now, especially with this cold weather. Plus, we will be able to get a dog once we move in, so I'm very excited for that! 

So that's a brief life update right now. I hope everyone's 2015 is off to a good start! Any house-hunting advice you would have to offer? We're all ears!


  1. Love the photo of the mule "dear", dear!

  2. When you're selecting your house or plans, just remember to make room for visiting relatives!! Love, Paula

  3. yay! exciting things on the horizon for you! good luck with the house hunt and yay to the idea of getting a puppy!

    Not a ton of advice on house hunting but I think if budget allows and the opportunity arises - I'd say build - it's so fun to pick out all your own stuff and just makes it feel way more "your own" IMO, good luck!

  4. We can't wait to see what the final result is, Jessica. It is certainly worth anticipating where you will go with the house hunting. Maybe you can go with building a home from scratch, so that you can more closely inspect the construction process and put in what you want to see on a foundational level. I guess proximity to your jobs is a factor, as well. Thanks for sharing your insights.

    Naomi Walters @ Chicora