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Zack’s 31st Birthday Surgery Weekend

10 Nov

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I wasn’t looking forward to my birthday this year. After finding out I had arthritis in my foot, I wanted to schedule the surgery to fuse the joints as soon as possible. I wanted it to be after Halloween, since I was excited for our costumes, but I figured a long weekend over my birthday weekend would be a good time to do it. That way, I’d get to have a long relaxing weekend at home and would hopefully be healed in time to walk around LA, Vegas and San Diego for our January trip. Still, that meant no going out or drinking or Fun Fun Fun fest* on my birthday, as has been the plan every year since I moved to Austin. I told Caitlin I really didn’t want to do anything, but she insisted on doing something special** and she ended up making it one of my favorite birthdays yet.

*This was the hardest pill to swallow.

**I wanted to be the Leslie Knope to Zack’s Ron Swanson this year and not do some big huge party that he didn’t want, but rather allow him to choose his own adventure. Continue reading

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A Very Wittbloom Christmas – The Fifth Edition

31 Dec

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When I wrote the title of this post, I had to count twice to be sure I was counting accurately. Yes, this was the fifth* Christmas that Zack and I celebrated, and I’d say his excitement level in participating in the tradition of this gift-giving holiday with me is rising back to levels close to where it was five years ago! Every year, Zack embraces a little bit more: our annual viewing of It’s a Wonderful Life**, our adding at least one ornament to the tree each year, a day lounging in pajamas and opening stockings filled to bursting with delicious candy. There’s a lot to love, the most of which is the aspect of sharing the holiday with your closest family and friends. While we only got to spend Christmas Eve with two of my favorite other guys in the world (my dad and brother), Zack and I still had a quieter, but just-as-cheery*** Christmas this year.

*It is wild that we’ve now had five Halloween couples costumes, Thanksgivings and Christmas’ together, even though we’ve only been together a little more than four years.

**I went a little overboard, calling it my favorite movie at one point. I won’t go that far, but my new life goal really is to be the George Bailey of Austin.

***Even though we both had to work on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, we made the most of the holiday.

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Walking Away From a Car Crash

20 Jul

crashThis feels weird to write about. I try to remember the details, but they’re hazy. This was the first serious car crash either of us has been in. The first time I’ve ever seen air bags go off. We got off lucky. A drunk driver runs a red light and crashes into you, you don’t expect to walk away completely unharmed. We were on our way to our first catering tasting, with East Side King, for the wedding. Caitlin had her planning book in her lap and was reading questions to me aloud. “Buffet or family style?” “Ethnic or comfort food?” “Dinner or appetizers or late night snacks?” And then the questions stopped.

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A Very Wittbloom Chanukah 2013 – Return of the High Heeled Shoe

11 Dec

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I love dating someone who was raised under a different religion, particularly one as richly cultural as Judaism. Although Zack and I never attend temple and agree that any future…ahem…ceremonies will remain largely non-denominational, we love celebrating friends’ weddings with a good Horah or glass breaking, or inviting friends over for our yearly Chanukah party. We’ve been told by more than one friend that this is a party they anticipate with fervor, and it’s easy to see why — there’s gambling! With a dreidel!! For quarters!!! Latkes! Donuts!! Wine!!! And I love sharing Chanukah with all my Shiksa and Shegetz (non-Jewish) friends. Having Emily earnestly ask, “How do you say thank you in Chanukah?” will have me laughing for eight days, minimum. 

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The 2nd Annual Wittbloom Chanukah Party

11 Dec

chanGoing into our second Chanukah party, I figured it would be a lot like last years. The ingredients for the party would be pretty much the same. I’d make latkes, Caitlin would bake something amazing. We’d play dreidel for quarters, invite mostly the same people and we’d even listen to the same Spotify playlist of Chanukah songs*. For whatever reason, this year felt different in a lot of ways. If I had to pinpoint why, I’d say that it was because more than twice as many people ended up coming, Scooby was here to keep things interesting and people drank a lot more which led to it getting so loud, we had to abandon the Chanukah playlist and play records. I have no complaints about any of this.

*I felt like a bit of a fake when this Spotify playlist showed up in my account, being a Shiksa and all, but we had to use my MacBook Pro to get the “best” Spotify sound. Continue reading

2nd Annual Pumpkin Carving Party

22 Oct

Our pumpkin carving party has quickly become one of my favorite traditions we’ve started together. We have a handful of friends come over a week or two before Halloween, carve pumpkins, drink pumpkin beer and orange ‘ritas and have some pumpkin snacks. I like to have both hands free to eat and drink, but I enjoy watching other people carve and this year I had the added bonus of being in charge of keeping Scooby from terrorizing everyone*.

*If you shut your eyes and believed he was a wolf, he added to the atmosphere with his constant howling and barking, really. Continue reading

Dreidel! Dreidel! Dreidel! and other Chanukah adventures

22 Dec

As I was raised Catholic, I had never celebrated Chanukah before in my life. I was aware of the Dreidel song, and knew about potato pancakes because they make ’em in Germany and call ’em Kartoffelpuffen — which, incidentally, was my favorite German word for a long time and thus became my nickname in middle school. Anyhow, the only Jewish tradition I’d ever been able to participate in before was a friend’s Bat* Mitzvah, and I didn’t even go to the awesome party** part at the end. So I was very excited when Zack said he wanted to throw a Chanukah party to celebrate the beginning of the 8 days. He made delicious latkes, I made our long-awaited Dublin Dr. Pepper cake, we invited our dearests over and asked people to bring red wine and $10 for quarters. It was time for a party.

*Caitlin pronounces it Bat (Like the guy who fights the Joker or the nocturnal upside-down black flying dudes who hang out under the Congress bridge. If you’re wondering, it’s pronounced Bahh-t)

**A perfect metaphor for young Caitlin. She went to the boring, school-ish part and not the party. She’s now sticking her tongue out at me while reading this. I assume.

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