Summer in Wisconsin 2014

DSC_0588

Author: Pete

Location: Seymour, WI

 

Hit the ground running in Wisconsin after what will become, I’m sure, a most well known jaunt around the top of Lake Michigan. We were immediately off to Gramma’s to make pickles and bread for the upcoming wedding party.

DSC_0576

 

Spent some time getting the ‘shop’ (an airplane hanger sized pole barn) ready for the wedding party. Since Miranda’s family is so big, many people weren’t able to make it down to Cartagena last February. So we decided to have a big celebration back home. Preparing the shed involved moving out the massive tractors, fork lifts, and equipment, installing new lights, laying down gravel in the driveway, and power-washing everything clean.

IMG_1556

IMG_1552

 

The day before the party, Seymour had a hot air balloon rally that was pretty spectacular. We drove around spotting the globes.

DSC_0664

DSC_0613

DSC_0601
DSC_0614



The following day, everyone arrived a little early for the party and we fired it up right away. Family and friends all flooded in and made merry. We even had a pretty good contingency from Michigan come over to represent!

DSC_0471

DSC_0457

DSC_0388

DSC_0401

DSC_0490

DSC_0744

DSC_0417

DSC_0602

DSC_0583

 

 

Took a nice photo shoot during the day in my ‘dowery’, a beautiful 1965 Ford Mustang that Miranda and her dad had fixed up when she was in middle school.  Pretty fun.

DSC_0688-2

DSC_0523

DSC_0708

DSC_0528

DSC_0711

 

DSC_0557

DSC_0576-2

 

 

 

 

After a little clean up we headed north to decompress at the cottage the Pashouwer clan always goes to in the summer. We played on the water, fished, ate, and made more merry.

DSC_0925

DSC_0849

DSC_1006

DSC_0884

¾g|룒27㥎Q4v(ÔIP0'á4 Ù¿ÌàTTjÊ©â TžŸ*Ó"K ‘a‘¸=NT;oÐä8™R!m!27¤yPì<>üxÓÀ‰ñ¸*Œ t!¶ß!Ä˅ê‘r°Q‚–àÌŠn¿Ã	’�TŸÓ‚ê@‚jNÛôíô␀·ÖfVH^$'÷lÔÞ§Äo¶(?š>¬…‹‰±XÔô¦Æ¿¯x§ÏBœ¾·[P¬]jIûCã%~?gÝSeyçYæ2Gs*„²‚’Ê�ª–$}¯åÄFglbo6]‰è#¸™UU@T¡ñäW•~+“á=ůŒw¨rò7F„Dœª%FŸ{qbª@8áð¤ÇÅ	$’_>¦nþ²Å–ƒÒ¦ßÍS¾€ß4á©a¾°<¨å˜E5aCЎÙ/Ë÷°üÊôûAHþ#ûDԓó$áPs©¾Ÿ¨6ßdԏó¦Í7’„ºDÈi4Šµ14Ç­9«§ÿÖåÛ·k„ú̌«]@iÔ6l·uà‹gðÝÀ~Ä š�P’G2¦ÔÎÞòcÀӇE¯zäi•§VÌ®´e#Àö#Ç"Y…·Ú†Ÿ§…7·pÛ©û&WTÿ�‰–cÅ9ý Ëú¬e 9šbúþ£¤Gr.oõlôÆNSݳT

DSC_0914

DSC_1054

DSC_0936

DSC_0822

DSC_0819

DSC_0833

DSC_0825

 

Along the way were numerous other shindigs and outings including a wedding of our friends Kendra and Chris, a dinner with Cody and Marsha, and some diesel tips from Miranda’s pops.

P1120800

DSC_0931

IMG_1749

DSC_1328

 

 

And then with some trepidation we were off to Burning Man in our penultimate gig before Florida!

Summer in Michigan 2014

P1120780

Author: Pete

Location: Charlevoix, MI

 

A guy can become pretty darn antsy waiting to get a significant sailing trip under way. Hurricane season in the Caribbean has been mild tempered this year, apparently. However, we’re still sticking to our plan and waiting to go down to Florida to start up the boat search until mid-September just to be safe. Until then we’ve been entertaining ourselves in the Midwest seeing family and friends.

P1120425

 

Eventually had some time at home with family and friends. Met up with our friends Gordie and Em, and their two ridiculously adorable munchkins. Made a bonfire in the back yard and enjoyed the summer night just like when we were that age.

DSC_0189

Then I was another year older, if none the wiser. Charlevoix holds a weeklong celebration of my birthday each year, regardless of if I’m actually home or not, called the Venetian Festival. I don’t know why it isn’t called the Pete Festival… it’s always my birthday week. We celebrated by having a barbecue with friends, going downtown to see some music, and having birthday celebrations.

P1120451

DSC_0378

DSC_0369

summer2014vert

DSC_0394

petedenny

P1120431

DSC_0411

 

Unbeknownst to me, it was decided that for surviving three decades I should be thrown out of a perfectly good airplane. What a birthday present! I couldn’t decide if I was flattered or freaked out. An old friend from high school, Ryan, was my tandem instructor. We strapped in and took off facing backwards in the tiny Cessna.

DSC_0435

DSC_0444

P1120447

Skydive 1

Skydive 5

Skydive 8

DSC_0464

 

Prompted, I think, by the possibility of the jump not going well, Miranda decided that we should make our marriage legal. Since a marriage license cost $20 in Michigan and $100 in Wisconsin, we went by our checkbooks.

DSC_0498

 

Our American Sailing Association certifications came in from our course in June! We’re documented sailors!

IMG_1737

 

Kept our sea legs up to snuff with some windsurfing, waterskiing, and kayaking.   I have a million wetsuits, but I’m gravitating to the 1980’s vintage shortie with ridiculous colors and almost no stretch.  Life on the water in the summer is one of Charlevoix’s many beauties.

 

P1120783

P1120168

P1120400

P1120142

P1120193

 

Spent some time with Hal and Taylor, who were up scoping wedding venues. Went out a few times to the Tap Room for beers and over to Hal’s for some killer salmon.

IMG_1686

 

The summer flew by with assorted fun bits that deserve a good review.  Here’s a few more…DSC_1291

DSC_1183

juleps

DSC_1320

 

Finally, the day before Miranda and I were to head to Wisconsin our shipment came in from Chile. It should’ve arrived much sooner, but there was a dockworker strike in Chile. When longshoremen finally went back to work they picked pretty much the last day possible for us. Worked out great. It was sort of like Christmas opening the nineteen bags and boxes that filled the crate. All of the superfluous crap that we accumulated over four years in Chile had been sold or given away and all that was left was the good stuff. Favorite gear, artwork, clothes, that we had forgotten about in the exciting rush of summer.

IMG_1741

 

And then we were off! Loaded up the 1994 Plymouth Voyager and headed north around the lake. Seemed like an odd direction when our destination was Florida!

IMG_1679

Tied the Knot

1130-_MG_2284
Author: Miranda

On February 1st of 2014, Pete and I, along with seventy of our gringo friends and family, were part of the greatest party that I have yet seen.  We got hitched in Cartagena, Colombia.

We actually argued for many months on the location of our wedding.  Being what I’d like to think of as a simple, downhome girl from Wisconsin, my main priorities were lots of friends, lots of family, plenty of beer, and a rip-roaring good time in a someone’s old barn.

Pete thought differently though.  He was adamant that we get married in a location that was meaningful for us.  I also remember him saying, “but Miranda, we have this crazy travel-filled life, we need to have a crazy, out-of-the-ordinary wedding.”  In the end he was spot-on.  Our relationship began in one of the most beautiful cities this side of the prime meridian, and what better location to get married.

What did me in were two factors.  One selfish, and one not… as…  selfish, I suppose.  First, the pictures!  When things looked they were at a stalemate, Pete pulled from his sleeve his last remaining ace, and found wedding pictures from Cartagena, and I was immediately ooh-ing and ah-ing.  The photos we could take in the old city, up on the 16th century walls, on carriages winding through cobblestone streets, the sunsets, the lighting… I was starting to lose my nerve.

The second, and real reason for my eventual concession was the opportunity to share our passion for a life on the road less traveled with those whom we love most in this world.  We absolutely adore our expat life that we’ve created, but deep down I always harbor some insecurity that no one back home really has any idea WHY the hell we’d do this.  Our wedding could be the perfect opportunity to share not only our decision to spend the rest of our lives together, but also share a piece of ourselves with our loved ones.

The third, honorable mention, reason for jumping on the destination wedding bandwagon was simply the amount of time you get to spend with your guests.  Instead of just one day, we had an entire week of festivities!

 

Tuesday was everyone’s initiation to latin culture by way of salsa lessons.

Started with a late lunch at an Argentinian Steakhouse.

IMG_6492

Most were fairly tired from early flights, but they rallied well, and we headed to the Getsemani neighborhood for our lessons.

IMG_6496

I was told the instructors would speak English, which didn’t turn out to be true, but my gringos were just fine without it.  Hard to be mad at these two adorable Costeños.

IMG_6503

IMG_6499

 

We organized a party bus, called a Chiva, for Wednesday night.

IMG_6583

P1110433_600px

 Complete with live band and free rum!

P1110427

P1110437

 

A trip to Playa Blanca and the Rosario Islands on Thursday, along with our Bachelor and Bachelorette parties that same evening.

P1110464

P1110490

P1110496

P1110505_600px

P1110511

P1110519

P1110521

 Our last pic before parting for the bachelor and bachelorette parties:

P1110561

 

On Friday, we rented a coach bus to take our guests to the Castillo San Felipe and La Popa, two of the major sites in Cartagena proper.

060

078

Our rehearsal dinner, on Friday evening, was open for all to attend, which made for one big group!  The views were killer, atop the walls, at Casa de Cerveza.

DSC_7977

DSC_7984

DSC_7986

DSC_7987

DSC_8001

DSC_8025

DSC_8034

Saturday was the big day.  Along with our wedding party and our parents, we moved from our hotels to Casa Estrella, a stunning colonial house with antique decorations, loads of space, and a central courtyard big enough for the dinner, dancing, and possible jump in the pool if enough libations were had.  Here is Casa Estrella:

DSC_8257

Pete and I both got ready in the house, him with his favorite boys, and me with my very special ladies.

0007-_MG_1628

0107-_MG_1671

0121-_MG_1687

0149-IMG_0681

0280-IMG_0747

0071-IMG_0635

0300-IMG_0765

0321-IMG_0785

0331-IMG_0791

0343-IMG_0798

0365-_MG_1833

0370-_MG_1837

0376-IMG_0811

0380-_MG_1841

0431-IMG_0832

0438-_MG_1884

0467-_MG_1913

0484-_MG_1928

0495-IMG_0844

0527-_MG_1948

0538-_MG_1954

Our ceremony took place at on the roof-top of Hotel Movich, which was just down the street from Casa Estrella.  The boys walked stud-ly down the street, and I was taken by carriage with my Pops.  It was a quick, but touching ceremony, and my always stoic aunt came up to me after and said, “I even cried.”  Being hilarious because aunt Patti never cries… and even she knows that’s a big deal.

0564-_MG_1979

0601-IMG_0894

0583-IMG_0883

0630-IMG_0910

0658-IMG_0923

0709-IMG_0951

0676-_MG_2046

0773-_MG_2087

0763-IMG_0987

0759-IMG_0986

0742-IMG_0974

0721-_MG_2068

0861-IMG_1039

0818-_MG_2115

0947-IMG_1090

0954-IMG_1097

Pete and I left our poor guests on the terrace to mingle, down mojitos, and take in the view of the sunset while we took a spin around el centro with the photographer in our carriage.  The city did not disappoint, as you can see. 

1041-_MG_2226

1058-_MG_2239

1082-_MG_2250

1086-_MG_2256

1116-_MG_2272

 

1130-_MG_2284 1135-_MG_2293

1154-_MG_2302

1184-_MG_2314

1196-IMG_1236

We beat our guests back to Casa Estrella to fix a few wardrobe malfunctions.  Nothing serious.  Just some bustling and rogue fake eyelashes to deal with.  Once everyone arrived at the house, we sat for dinner and listened to the speeches (another one of my favorite moments).  Much too much crying on my part, but nothing a little live band couldn’t fix.

1159-IMG_1211

1175-IMG_1223

1212-IMG_1247

1127-IMG_1195

 

1250-IMG_1274

1271-IMG_1284

1299-IMG_1306

1315-IMG_1320

1349-_MG_2400

1373-IMG_1363

1417-_MG_2436

1427-_MG_2443

1449-IMG_1412

1457-_MG_2457

1526-IMG_1462

1541-IMG_1472

1566-IMG_1489

Our first dance started out slow and sweet, but soon knocked our guests in the teeth!

1577-_MG_2508

1579-IMG_1497

1603-IMG_1511

1613-IMG_1517

1614-_MG_2525

We danced into the wee hours of the night, until eyes starting falling to half-mast, and high-heels were long tossed by the wayside.

1625-IMG_1528

1648-IMG_1552

1734-IMG_1624

1757-_MG_2561

1764-IMG_1648

1788-_MG_2569

1804-IMG_1684

1807-IMG_1688

1835-IMG_1716

1849-IMG_1732

1859-IMG_1742

1865-IMG_1748

1870-IMG_1753

The climax of the night was the Hora Loca, which Pete and I kept as a secret from our guests.  Seeing their faces when a troupe of dancers, in costume, and a new band, banging hard on their drums, surfaced… their looks of “what the hell is going on!”… was priceless!

1884-IMG_1769

1900-IMG_1785

1911-IMG_1797

1912-IMG_1798

1915-IMG_1801

1921-IMG_1807

1939-IMG_1825

1947-IMG_1833

1952-IMG_1838

1992-IMG_1879

2001-IMG_1888

2005-IMG_1892

2037-IMG_1925

2045-IMG_1935

2062-IMG_1953

2065-IMG_1956

 

Sunday, our guests came by Casa Estrella to swim in the pool and relax in front of the T.V. to watch the Super Bowl together.

DSC_8058

DSC_8060

DSC_8109

DSC_8115

 

On Monday, we had to check out of Casa Estrella.  Sadness!

DSC_8171

Before leaving the house, the boys made sure to get plenty of time playing with the resident parrot.

DSC_8167

Many guests still found time to head to the beaches of Bocagrande, Zona Norte, or to the Botanical Gardens.  In the evening, we got the whole group together one last time for dinner at San Pedro.

446

 

DSC_8187

DSC_8178

DSC_8188

DSC_8194

DSC_8200

DSC_8208

Tuesday was the heart-wrenching day when most of our guests flew back to the states, leaving the tropical dreamland, and heading back to work.

 

Tuesday, for us, once the smoke cleared, the flights took off, and everything went eerily quite was characterized by three competing emotions: sheer and utter exhaustion, heart filling make-you-want-to explode happiness, and gut-wrenching sadness that it was all over.  A fourth one always snuck in though, and consistently beat out those first three to the top… and that was gratitude.  We could not have been more blessed with a group of folks more fun-loving, gracious, flexible, and caring.  How did we ever get so lucky?  Truly.  Thank you, each and every person, who was there with us (and there in spirit).  We’ve never felt more love.

Can we please, pretty please, pluuuulezeeee, do it again sometime!  😉

With much love,

Miranda and Pete

 

for the full set of pictures highlighted by our photographer, click here: Miranda & Pete, Cartagena – Blog Matfotografia