Our Year in Review – 2017

Our Year in Review – 2017

Dear Tawny,

It seems unreal, but here we are nearing the end of the year. As always, I know that you start to forget everything that we did since January and I consider it my duty to remind you of all (or at least a great deal of) what we’ve accomplished. We had a lot of apprehension about this year because we had a new element to take into account: our very own Holden Brave. We weren’t sure if we would travel, if we would have time for one another, or if Holden would love the world. As it turns out, 2017 was a wonderful year despite our many worries. Take a moment to be thankful for what we’ve done so far.


We went to Hawaii (a few times) and you looked so beautiful each and every time.

You achieved the life-long goal of staying at the Royal Hawaiian.

We hosted a “Winterfest”

We had the opportunity to be a part of one of the best short films every made, directed by the talented Ben Herndon.

We flew to LA and we started a company, Brave World Media with our dear friends Carol and Travis.


Holden achieved his lifelong dream of staying at the Westin in Waikiki.

We hiked.

And we partied.

And the whole time, you looked extraordinary!Taw

Then we returned to Hawaii, this time with some of our favorite people.

We did some work with Disney and Holden got over his fear of water. Just in time…

To turn ONE YEAR OLD! With an authentic (and GIANT) Filipino birthday party complete with a roast pig.

We went to Universal Studios Wizarding World of Harry Potter AND Volcano Bay. We even got wands. We (as in I) drank over $100 of Butter Beer. So, there’s that.

And through it all, you were a smoldering beauty.


Our tour company, Pretty Gritty Tours, signed a contract with the City of Tacoma.

Pretty Gritty Tours


We beat Seafall, the best/worst nerd game ever.


We explored the sea in real life too, so you don’t have to worry about being too much of a nerd. (Even though you are.)


We photographed/video recorded/officiated/and participated in over 6 weddings. Some of which were the most beautiful ceremonies we’ve ever seen. (Other than our own, of course.)

We also discovered that a garter snake can excrete a smell like rotten flesh when threatened. It wasn’t great.


We sailed so much. Not enough, but a whole lot.


We explored Portland and McMenamins Grand Lodge. 


We even went to the zoo pretty regularly.

We got to be a part of two of our dearest friends’ wedding.


And you looked so beautiful.


Plus, those legs…

We got to meet up with some of the greatest people in the world.

We crashed a honeymoon in Scotland.

And Holden was generally thrilled by all things Scottish. 


We flew a hawk



We even went on a hunt to discover the ruined castle that was the first home of my ancestors in Scotland. I’ll never be able to thank you enough for joining me on that quest. One that I had wanted to do since I was 16.


We played around in here.


We finally made it to Dubrovnik!


Where we immediately spent a fortune on gin.


And I carried our sleeping child up and down those damn steps from Game of Thrones while people kept yelling “shame” at one another.


We stayed here.

Holden was pretty obsessed with swimming in the Mediterranean.


You just looked gorgeous through out it all.


We traveled with my brother on his first trip out of the USA.


We ate here.


And swam here, in Krka National Park.


We lived in a local apartment in Croatia for quite some time.


And we had dinner on the stone docks of Zadar before we jumped into the Adriatic for dessert.


And I got to travel around with you, which was really the best part for me.


Some very nice Croatian gentlemen pushed us out of this hole in the street that I drove into to escape a tram that was coming at us head on at full speed.


It was glorious.

Holden found out the wonder of Coco Puffs.


We had that meal… oh Tawny, that meal at the view cafe, under Lotrscak Tower. Everything was dripping in truffle oil and cava.


We took a day-trip to Lake Bled.


And then we were like “Well, hell. Let’s do Austria too.” Then we got wrapped up in that random festival that we still don’t know what it was for.


Hell, we flew business class on our long flight home. Worth every mile we spent on it. Also one of the best steaks I’ve had, weirdly enough.

We survived jetlag.


We delivered some pretty extraordinary tours. Even a couple for our Alma Mater, Pacific Lutheran University.

We also led some successful Ghost Hunts.


We filmed in the Finger Lakes with our favorites.


We enjoyed time with friends.


We explored nature.


You, of course, looked exquisite.

We hosted the 11th Annual Castle Staudinger Archery  Tournament.



We also created SUPER TENT.


We celebrated fall with the utmost passion!


We even got mistaken for Chip and Joanna Gaines.

And somehow you convinced me to GO BACK to Hawaii.

Oh yeah, our biggest moment yet… somewhere along the way we created a brand new person who we get to meet next May!


Oh Tawny, the year isn’t even finished yet and look at all that we’ve accomplished so far. Don’t you forget. We work hard for this life together and I couldn’t be happier to be sharing it with you, Holden, and one more on the way! I love you babe, here’s to a glory laden 2017 and an even greater 2018! Maybe we’ll start sleeping again in 2025.

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