Road trippin’ to Yellowstone

IMG_98128Yellowstone is one of the few places that Derek and I had both been to, but had never been together. So we were so excited when Derek’s dad, Randy, decided that that’s what he wanted to do for his birthday weekend.41


3We drove up to Yellowstone on a Friday morning,  and other then a quick stop in Salt Lake to grab lunch with Whitney, we drove the whole 10 hours from home. Whenever Derek and I go on a road trip, I think back to the time when we first road tripped together. That’s when I knew I wanted to marry him. I thought if I can spend this many hours in the car with him without getting annoyed or bored, I could easily spend the rest of my life with him.576We stayed in a cabin at a place near the park called Island Park. It was perfect! We met up with the Derek’s family, who drove up the day before, and had dinner at a cute little cafe. We also met Jake’s girlfriend, Hattie, for the first time. And even though we felt sorry for her having to deal with our craziness, it instantly felt like she was one of us. We spent that night hanging out at the cabin, enjoying the hot tub and the beautiful stars. It was the perfect ending to a long day spent in the car.

139101211We spent the next two days in the park, admiring the natural geysers, all of the pine trees, the wild life, and the cooler weather. It was so nice to spend some time in nature. We’ve been traveling a lot this summer, but we haven’t visited the mountains much, so this trip was much needed. In my option, the mountains are one of the few things that are always good for the soul.191817

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2021On Saturday, we all spent a total of 12 hours in the same car driving around the park, and even though that seems like a very very bad idea to put someone in a car that long with their in laws, it wasn’t. We laughed way too hard and enjoyed each others’ company. Like I always say, I lucked out in the in law department. And days like that one remind me just how lucky I really am.23221524


252726We spent Sunday morning in the park again and drove down to Idaho Sunday afternoon, to visit with and stay at Derek’s grandpa’s house. Derek’s family drove home Monday, but we stayed in in Salt Lake for the Paramore concert with Alyssa (which will be in a later post!)28313035IMG_9807It was such a fun little weekend getaway. We made some amazing memories, had much needed family time, enjoyed the beautiful park, and loved every second of it. IMG_9821IMG_9820Until next time Yellowstone!

Onto the next adventure, Wren




Newport, California Video

I have been quite the busy little lady lately. Between starting my new job position, and leaving town every other weekend- I have hardly had any time for my personal little hobbies. (Like making videos!)

I finally found some time today to finish this one I have been working on since I got home from California last month. And SURPRISE, I am going back there in just two weeks.

Capturing the memories and being able to look back on these moments with my family makes me so happy. Just like blogging, I am not a professional video maker, but I probably won’t ever stop recording and capturing this life I am proud to be living!


Thanks for watching!

Onto the next adventure, Wren

The Final Warped Tour

IMG_9152We all have those certain things that take us back to a certain day or a time in our life. Things that make us feel nostalgic, but extremely content at the same time. Things that connect our brain to the happiest memories, certain people, and the simpler, easy days before we grew up. I can name quite a few things that personally do this for me, and I am lucky to say that Derek shares similar things that personally do this for him.

One of them being: Emo music. 


I know what you’re thinking, “Wow, wren you were one of those depressed emo kids who wore black skinny jeans in the middle of summer, listened to screamo music, used eyeliner and a flat iron way too often, and had an attraction to guys with facial piercings and dyed black hair??”

Surprise! Yes I was.

MPMW0037BHJM8763EJRL7418I was in middle school-freshman year when the “scene kid, emo phase” was big. I had 3,000 friends on Myspace and spent most of my free time finding the next best emo band to show my friends. (My few real ones, and my online ones of course.) In fact, Myspace is where I started talking to Derek. We had met in person, but didn’t talk much. One day, I accepted his friend request, we direct messaged for a while, started texting and hanging out, bonded over our shared love of the same music, and the rest is history. IMG_9159In 2009, we spent our first summer together driving around town blasting Taking Back Sunday, hung out with our friends while the Used played in the background, and when we decided to go to Warped Tour together, I realized that this bond we had was way more than just a “best friendship”. We basically fell in love over emo music, and had one of our first “we’re a couple, not friends” dates at Warped tour. Since then, Derek and I have both never loved a music genre as much as the “warped tour, myspace, emo” one. Maybe because it’s always held such a special place in our hearts and takes us back to the very beginning of our relationship.

QQDE2352PFOI4836 And so, with all of this history and memories, you can only imagine how bitter sweet it was attending the last Warped Tour together. We went to one other Warped tour since our first one together, but we stopped going when our favorite bands stopped going. We’ve attended multiple concerts together since including Mayday Parade, Dashboard Confessional, and Taking Back Sunday, but since this was the last Warped Tour, we felt like we just had to go.

Luckily, a few of our favorite bands felt the same way.

TNJS8738XONF4333IMG_9122RRNV0800 (1)HBON5151OMJT3520RZVO7805RNQK5531

NKXX4373ITBX1980We saw The Used (for the 2nd time together) Mayday Parade (for my 5th time, Derek’s 4th) We The Kings (for my 4th time) This Wild Life (for our 2nd time together) The Maine (for my 3rd time) And for our first time: Senses Fail, Simple Plan, Crown The Empire, Falling in Reverse, and multiple others.

We drove up to Salt Lake with our friends Amber, Ryan, and Erik late Friday night, stayed in a hotel, attended Warped tour all day Saturday, and drove home Sunday morning. We also met up with our friends Kayden and Auston, and saw many other friends from our home town.IMG_9175IMG_9130IMG_9144IMG_9174IMG_9120It was a quick trip, but it was worth it and we were so happy that we went. It was bittersweet seeing all of our favorite musicians older, and realizing that none of us are as young as we once were. But at the same time, it was so great to listen to those favorite songs live-for maybe the very last time. 

Warped Tour, 2009




MKWK7612So… Cheers to the final Warped tour, and to good music. Cheers to the good old days, and the good new days. Cheers to falling in love, and staying in love. Cheers to the end of era, and the beginning of so many new ones.

With so much love from my little emo heart, ( 😉 )

Onto the next adventure, Wren


Happiest Little “Beaches”

LPCX7284My sisters, mom and I don’t remember the last road trip we all took together because it had been that long. Yes, we’ve gone on weekend getaways together here and there, but spending more than one night together without kids or guys (boyfriends, husbands)? I think it’s been about 10 years.MMKB6226CZQA8405We used to visit Orange county all of the time when we were growing up, so when I found this vacation rental in our price rage 2 blocks from Newport beach-I booked it. I mean, do you blame me? Look how cute it is!EZQG2492



IMG_9003If you are planning on visiting Newport soon, I highly recommend this place.




IMG_8753QMFB8348We have been planning this little beach vacation for months, and we had the absolute most fun we could have with 4 women in a 500 sq foot airbnb. 😉IMG_8826IMG_8829.JPGWe spent most of our time at the beach, and admired all of the charming beach houses on the way. I once promised myself that I will not die until I live by the ocean, and every time I visit, I am hoping that promise is made sooner than later.IMG_9010.JPGIMG_8847IMG_8838We also walked everywhere! We hardly used our car since we didn’t have to go anywhere far, because we didn’t really make plans. We walked to the grocery store, and back to the beach, then to the restaurants and shops, and again, back to the beach. The only time we drove was to go to a nearby mall, because is it really a girls’ trip without a little shopping?DKOC2823





HSDW3439I don’t know what is in our blood, but the ocean is my mom’s, both of my sisters’ and my happy place. And we had a very very happy time. It was such a relaxing weekend, and exactly what all of us  little “beaches” needed.EPGW4488IMG_9070.JPGKBMM0307UUGF1109Life gets busy, we grow up, find our separate dreams and paths, and most of the time find it difficult to do things like this. But today I am thankful for the happy places, for having three life-long best friends, and for these memories that will last a lifetime. I am also thankful that all of us made it home alive (because we almost all killed each other at one point. 😉 ).


Onto the next adventure, Wren









Our 3rd Anniversary in the mountains

AXNT9526BZTE8560If you know Derek and I at all (or have been a reader of my blog for a while) you know that we are not gift givers. We always celebrate our anniversary and birthdays by doing something, rather than spending money on gifts for each other. If we do happen to get gifts, they are nothing extravagant. This year for our anniversary, I surprised Derek with the video in my previous post and he surprised me with a bottle of wine and a bouquet of my favorite flowers. Simple, but cheap and heart felt. Just like our lifestyle 😉AQCP7401We spent our first anniversary in Moab all weekend, hiking arches, and spent our second anniversary in Salt Lake at our training for China. We knew we wanted to celebrate(obviously), but since our anniversary fell on a Tuesday this year, it was hard to plan anything extravagant with our work and school schedule. We decided to drive a couple of hours to one of our favorite places and escape the heat. We thought that a long drive to the mountains, a quick hike and an easy dinner would be a great idea, and it was.AEKG3274MOXJ1698It was about 65 degrees in Brian Head, which was 35 degrees cooler than home that day. Since I was wearing shorts, I was almost cold, but I was not complaining. Harvey loved every minute of it. We took a short little hike, played Frisbee with Harvey, grabbed pizza at our favorite pizza place, took the truck off roading, and of course, took pictures.PDHI7294ESQF0373Since we’ve left town the last two years, this was our first anniversary spent with Harvey. He sure was happy to come along this year and we were happy to have him. Even though I told Derek, “Oh no, it looks like our anniversaries alone are slowly coming to an end.” 😉OSQC6479OCCD0578On our long drive home, we reminisced over our marriage and our last three years together, and realized that we’ve done A LOT. Way more than I ever imagined I would accomplish by the age of 24, especially with a husband. I used to think that 24 was the perfect age to get married for many reasons, but looking at this list and thinking back on the last three years, I can’t imagine it any differently. I wouldn’t change a thing. I made this list for our sake, to look back on and laugh and see how far we go in the next 3, 10, 20 years. But read it if you’d like. 🙂

Things we’ve accomplished together in our first three years of marriage:

  • Left the country together for the first time and spent a week in the Caribbean.
  • Bought our first home, and remodeled it all ourselves.
  • Adopted our Harvey boy.
  • Checked Arches National Park off my bucket list (Derek had already been).
  • Drove 2,500 miles down the West Coast and experienced Seattle, Portland, and San Francisco.
  • Derek lost 55 pounds.
  • Experienced Disneyland together for the first time as husband and wife (We also went when we were dating, and engaged).
  • Took a break from everything we knew, and moved across the world to China.
  • Spent a weekend in Korea, and experienced our fourth country together.
  • Spent 14 weeks straight without leaving each other’s side, and felt the happiest we’ve ever been.
  • Experienced Disneyland for the fourth time together-in China!
  • Held each other through all of the good times, like being apart of our favorite peoples’ weddings, and celebrating our favorite holidays.
  • And the bad times, like saying goodbye to Derek’s childhood dog, Duke.
  • I also got my event planning certificate, and Derek went back to school for his bachelor’s degree.
  • And most recently, we spent a week in Costa Rica with some of our best friends- making it our fifth country we’ve been to together.




EWXJ3741RLCF0635We’ve celebrated, adventured, struggled with personal issues, laughed until we cried, cried until we laughed, made memories with our families, sang and danced everywhere together– from the shower, to the car, to live concerts. We’ve created new friendships, held on tight to the old ones, experienced culture shock and jet lag, had intimate, embarrassing, and vulnerable moments. And most of all, been together through it all. My marriage is my favorite thing about this life of mine, and at the rate it’s going, I don’t think that will ever change.QLGG9294IMG_8425Here’s to three years, and many more. I can’t wait!

Onto the next adventure, Wren

Travel Diary |Costa Rica

Hola friends, welcome back!

I know, I know, another post on the beautiful country of Costa Rica. I promise I will stop soon. 😉

This is one of my favorite travel videos I have ever made. I had so much fun capturing these little moments, and putting them all together. I’ve probably watched this video 60 times since I finished it a couple days ago, and I am not even ashamed.

It makes me nostalgic, it makes me happy, and it makes me so grateful for this life I’m living, and that is the exact reason why I make these.

Also, I decided to post this video that our friend, Hoku, made from our trip. Just don’t compare it to mine. 😉 He’s amazing at what he does! You can find him on Instagram @hokucurnan

Thanks for watching!


Onto the next adventure, Wren

Costa Rica- with our Costa Crew

IMG_0264Hola again my friends, the post travel depression has officially hit. I have been scrolling through these photos for the last two weeks, and as happy as I am to share them, I can’t help but wish I was still there. (I know, I know-DUH!) Also, I just finished my travel video and I am so excited to share that with you, but first- Blog Post!IMG_0143ACYH8582NGTE8661Do any of you that travel with friends often have names for the groups you go with? Our group we went to China with has a group chat called ILPeeps (since the program was ILP), then we have our bestchinafam- who are our best friends from China, and now we have our Costa Crew. IMG_7887IMG_7480FDVW2238Our Costa crew started back in summer of last year when Derek and I talked to our friend Nik about planning a trip with a group of friends. We talked about Thailand and Costa Rica. A few of our friends decided that they were going to Costa Rica in the fall, and since we would be in China, we wouldn’t be able to go. We thought that’s okay, we will make it Thailand next year.


IMG_7882IMG_7884When they ended up not going to Costa Rica in the fall, we talked to Nik about planning our trip when we got back. We mentioned Thailand again, but just coming home from Asia and dreading that 22 hour travel time again, we decided that Costa Rica would be a better option at the time. A few weeks past, we invited friends here and there, and since we didn’t want it to end up being a thing we just once talked about like it was last summer, we bought our plane tickets with our next paycheck.UJBV8346

IMG_0133IMG_7906Our Costa Crew was made up of old friends, new friends, friends of friends, and complete strangers. And it was perfect. There was 12 of us that went which made it the perfect size group for renting our airbnb’s (for cheap!) and using two rental cars.IMG_7900IMG_7605IMG_7672IMG_7370We spent our days in the sun-surfing, boogie boarding, skim boarding, swimming, zip lining, and hiking, and indulging in way too much food.IMG_7821.JPGJLZVE0722IMG_7795IMG_0243Leslie and I also went through a butterfly observatory, and I hugged every puppy I saw.IMG_0310IMG_7565IMG_7762We spent our nights having heart to heart conversations, laughing until we cried, and dancing the night away. (Seriously I don’t think I have ever danced so much in one week.) IMG_7481IMG_7522IMG_7654IMG_7506Being to three new countries in the last year all with a different group of people, I have learned a lot about traveling with people, weather they are friends or complete strangers. And me being me, I am going to share a few of those lessons I have learned:

  1. Everyone travels differently, and that is okay. Some people prefer fancy hotels, while other people are fine camping on the beach. Some people prefer having a detailed itinerary months before they depart, and other people buy the plane ticket and just figure it out. Everyone has different personalities, accept this before you leave and learn to go with the flow. It is part of traveling with groups.

VXAX1176IMG_77592. It’s up to your mindset how the trip goes. You know me, I believe in the power of the mind, but it is true. Things are going to go wrong, spending 8 days straight with the same people may drive you crazy. Not everyone is going to always agree on things, but if you have in your mind that you’re in a new part of the world with people who have similar interests and dreams as you, it will be hard not to have the time of your life. IMG_7683Processed with VSCO with m5 presetProcessed with VSCO with m5 preset

IMG_76503.The bond you make with these people will be strong. Like really strong. From drunk dancing to backstreet boys at 3AM to having to translate and play charades to the locals together- you will have very intimate moments with the people you travel with. The strangers will become friends, and your friends will become better friends. I may not see these people often, or even talk to a few of them again, but I will always cherish the memories I made with them just because they are a part of some of the best memories of my life. And that is a bond that we would never make sitting at home.IMG_7720

IMG_7888IMG_7889Just like my China fam, I will love my Costa crew forever. This week was the perfect week to kick off our summer, and it makes me so excited for the new memories and adventures in our future. I hope you are all following your dreams, finding your people, and taking advantage of this beautiful world we live in.

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Now where to next?

Onto the next adventure, Wren