OKTOBERFEST, BABY!

one day last week, my love and i were driving home, discussing whether we should or should not head over to a local brewery for some beer. just because. well, the weather was pretty damn near perfect – deep blue skies, a chill in the air, warm sun. i mean, peeeerfect. we decided to save money and drink a bottle of gaelic (highland brewing) each at home on our balcony – smart girls, huh? truth: we were a little dejected and disappointed. but, we felt responsible.

as soon as we got home, though, i got a text from my brother that basically said: “this is by water weather”. the bywater is my favorite outdoor watering hole (it’s where we held out 70th birthday party a few weeks ago). lina and i looked at each other, pondered what to do for a minute, then i texted my brother: “we are leaving in 5!”

at the bywater, sitting around a campfire, watching the sun dip down behind the mountain on the other side of the river, we began talking about the upcoming weekend. nick was going over to help my parents hang some beadboard on their walls. (they are settling in nicely!). lina and i decided that we’d get tickets to oktoberfest in downtown asheville, happening on saturday!! FUN.

IMG_8587

IMG_8595

so, the rest of the week came and went. we stayed home thursday + friday nights = good, responsible girls. but, saturday, we celebrated oktoberfest the asheville way. with local breweries. woooo.

a street in the south slope part of downtown (the new, up + coming hip area of asheville) was blocked off and we stood in line to get out tickets – luckily we had bought tickets early, because the event was sold freaking out. paige was even able to snap a ticket a the last minute line.

at 1:00 pm, the gates opened, we received out little souvenir stein, and we were ready for beer – along with tons of other people. a german polka band was playing music on an outdoor stage and tents & tents of breweries lined the street. all we had to do was stand in line for a minute, hand them out stein, and they filled it with beer. amazing!

the event was from 1-6, and i did not anticipate staying the whole time, but time flew by and we were there the entire 5 hours. filling our steins. talking. people watching. laughing. dancing. drinking. and having super fun. of course, we had a method to our madness… when we walked through the gate, we went straight down to the end of the road (the farthest tent away, walking past everything), so we could start at the end and work our way back up, thereby missing the crowds at the beginning who were all crowded at the first few tents. and, we would also be at the entrance/exit at the end of the day. perfect planning.

IMG_8697

IMG_8775

IMG_8703

IMG_8707

IMG_8729

IMG_8713

celebrating our first taste + our free pretzel/beef stick necklaces given to us by highland brewing!IMG_8738

a guy sitting under a beer tent, writing poetry on the spot. just name a topic and off he went! IMG_8759

IMG_8762

IMG_8766

IMG_8772

IMG_8769

weird photo, i know. but we are smelling the most wonderful smelling/tasting pumpkin ale in the area – courtesy of catawba brewingIMG_8776

IMG_8768

IMG_8778

there was even a place near the entrance/exit that we visited at the very end of our day: a breathalyzer tent. so, now, after drinking beer for 5 hours, we could test and see how drunk we were. i won’t revel that other girls’ scores, but let’s just say that they were not legal to drive. one was just over not legal. and one was waaaay over legal. i’ll never tell which was which. hehe.

me? i blew a 0.067, which is totally legal and quite below the legal limit of 0.08. i’m not sure if it’s a good or bad thing that i can drink so much and still not be drunk. at the same time, i’m always the designated driver, so at least we are safe. ha!

IMG_8771

we left this year’s oktoberfest behind, taking with us lots of memories and a yearning to try oktoberfest in munich, germany best year. stay tuned to see if that happens!

now, it’s time to be responsible liz again. it is monday, you know. hope your weekend was a good one!

love + light.

the adventures of a girl in love with autumn

autumn tree red

so, autumn is in full swing here in asheville, north carolina and it just could not be more cozy and beautiful. october is absolutely a stunning month up here in the mountains. but, i’m telling you, this is only the beginning. the beauty, the coziness, the autumn amazingness will only grow more + more.

here’s an example: right now, as i type this, i have candles lit in my living room. a blanket on my feet. a glass or red wine by my side. halloween lights glowing outside my door on the balcony. the debate for north carolina’s next senator on tv (we vote in just 4 weeks – and it will be a big one). and tons of photos to share with you in this post.

yes, i am enjoying a very low key, relaxed night after about 2 glorious weeks of adventure, fun, and  friends. i gotta get my balance on, you know. so, here are bunches of snaps from the past 2 weeks – snaps of food, drinks, nature, laughs – of sharing life with one another. and, just as a bonus, they include lina’s high school friend from sweden who came to visit us for 10 days. take a peek!

happy october!

IMG_8055 IMG_8074

dinners and beer out on the town – gotta share the avl secrets w/ our swedish friend!
IMG_8081 IMG_8086 IMG_8115 IMG_8116 IMG_8132

vintage store obsessions
IMG_8140

ah-freaking-mazing moments: 7:30 am yoga class + midday mountain ride + $2.50 cans of beer and slices of pizza.

IMG_8143 IMG_8177 IMG_8194

a huge fika group (20 were there!) and then some alone time at my “secret” hiding spot
IMG_8216 IMG_8242

pub crawl. i mean, we’ve got 15 micro-breweries in asheville. what else to do?!IMG_8258 IMG_8260 IMG_8266

a small mountain town visit + railroad tracks + true bluegrass + the best burger ever at a lonesome country barIMG_8283 IMG_8292 IMG_8294

live music + another brewery + asheville’s drum circle (there is nothing quite like the downtown drum circle. anywhere. ever)IMG_8305 IMG_8310 IMG_8331 IMG_8334

biltmore estate + wine tasting IMG_8338 IMG_8344 IMG_8361 IMG_8364

the first frost + golden sun + the blue ridge parkwayIMG_8391 IMG_8398 IMG_8399 IMG_8405 IMG_8407 IMG_8429 IMG_8437 IMG_8452 IMG_8458 IMG_8467 IMG_8475

a celebratory last night out with our swedish friend (she left this morning)IMG_8511 IMG_8520 IMG_8524

dedication: 7:30 am yoga class – even though it was dark + rainy when i left home
IMG_8535

autumn peaceIMG_8541

you see? i told you it was a lot. hehe. i sure do hope that your autumn/spring has gotten off to a beautiful start. sending you lots of peace and happiness.

love + light. xx

the magic of a camp wedding

camp pinnacle

well, friends, i did it. i had my first real ( = paid!) photography gig today. and it was totally amazing.

i spent my day shooting the wedding of a former co-worker, who hired me just after i posted my photos from ulrika and micke’s wedding in sweden this summer. today’s wedding was also outside, but it was at a camp – camp pinnacle in hendersonville, north carolina. about 45 minutes from asheville.

the setting was gorgeous. the festivities were festive. and the whole thing was relaxing, fun, and real. the bride and groom had rented out the camp for the entire weekend, so all of their friends and family could stay at the camp – in cabins or in tents – if they wanted. what a fabulous idea.

so, as i walked around, ran around, hunted photos, and took the traditional, expected wedding photos, all i could think about was how lucky i was. how lucky i am. and i was honored, totally honored, to be a part of this day – to witness two people share their love and commit their lives to each other with their friends & family.

i thought back to the days when i worked as a minister, and how i had the incredible privilege of being a part of very intimate, special moments in peoples’ lives: births, weddings, deaths, major life changes and decisions. it was humbling work.

today, i felt that exact same feeling. as i walked around, shooting the couple as they wiped the tears falling from their eyes and reciting their vows, i knew that i was witnessing a very special moment. and that is something i don’t take for granted. and to have the amazing honor to get to capture those moments with my camera, a front row seat (though i wasn’t sitting at all, of course) to the biggest day of their life, and a sneak peek into their families and the love that they share… i was truly humbled. down to my soul. magical.

the other thing that i felt today, as i wandered around the camp, taking candid shots and nature shots, preserving memories of their venue, was that i realized that i was born to do this. i should have been dong this forever. it felt soooooo right. i was somewhere back in the woods, among the trees, alone alone for a few minutes while i took some shots of the bonfire area (where the ceremony would be). in those moments in the woods – just me and my camera, i felt such deep peace, that i knew i was exactly where i was supposed to be. and this was exactly what i was supposed to be doing in that moment.

so, on the eve of the week of my 40th birthday, i cannot imagine any greater gift than feeling such deep peace as i felt today, a true sense of knowing who i am, and the opportunity to chase and follow and make my dreams come true. to spend this day photographing happiness and love… it was perfection.

and now, my friends, i am tired. exhausted. but, in an beautiful, wonderful way. so, i’ll bid you goodnight. and i’ll keep you posted on when the photos from lain a and jason’s wedding today will be up on my photography website. for now, here are a few sneak peeks from my iPhone today:

camp pinnacle adventure IMG_7600 camp pinnacle camp pinnacle camp pinnacle camp pinnacle swimming

camp pinnacle camp pinnacle camp pinnacle wedding bonfire IMG_7569 camp pinnacle camp pinnacle IMG_7562 cabins camp pinnacle wedding reception wedding prep wedding reception sunset camp pinnacle wedding

eeeeee!! i am so happy and excited! peace + love, my dears.