Updates and the New Year

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Well, hello, you all!

I went a little blog-MIA for a while, which turns out to have been a very good choice. My administrative role at Soochow University turned into a major project management role, which turned into a traveling and cat herding position. I got back in mid-December from a 2 1/2 week concert/ audition/ recruiting tour to Seoul, Taipei, Singapore, Hong Kong, Shanghai, and Beijing. And within 1/2 a day of my return, I went back to the airport to pop over to Ohio to shop, visit family, and make the final arrangements to bring my critters to China. 

It was my first time to many of these places, so for that reason, managing the recruitment tour was awesome. And I've done a lot of planning and organizing in many of my past career incarnations, so I know I was a good point person for handling and planning a lot of the logistics and press materials. But, wow, was it exhausting, and completed on a way-too-abbreviated timeline. Never again.

Gangnam  Street Vendors in Seoul. So many fruits and dried fish. 
Singapore views. There's a pool and casino on the top of that boat shaped thing.
View of Hong Kong from up on the Peak. I was so glad for a relative day off during the trip with Rob to show off my sister and brother-in-law's ex-city of residence.
Hong Kong's Peel Street. It's steeper than it looks.
Beijing Bell Tower near the hutongs where we bought a bunch of great little percussion instruments.

As soon as I got done with the tour, I hopped on a plane to go to Ohio for a preplanned pick up trip for the animals. Really sucky turn of events was that my grandmother passed away the day before I was due to leave. Really wonderful turn of events was that the memorial brought ALL of my dad's side of the family together, including all four of us siblings and cousins minus one. The family time was beyond a gift, and exactly the kind of joyful reunion my grandmother would have treasured. We won't talk about the inappropriate high-five I gave my cousin in the funeral home on accident. 
Four siblings and a Dad photobomb. I couldn't love it more.
One of many Euchre games in the hotel lobby. My cousins were all learning at a second game going on behind me.

I returned to China with the dog in baggage and the cat as cargo, so, as of Christmas, my critter kids are finally here and home for good. I'm still working full days until Soochow's Holiday Break (which centers around the Chinese New Year) in mid-January. And Rob is heading back to America for a few weeks to visit with friends and family, but I'm staying in China! A quiet house, no real responsibilities, a schedule that is really all my own. I can't wait! Most of our friends on faculty are leaving to go elsewhere for all or most of the Holiday, but at least one of my Office colleagues is a Suzhou native, so we're here together. Oh. My. Gosh. Girl Time. And loving on my critters. 

My babies in their new apartment. The adjustment is slow, but going okay.

The whole fall season of blogging was also relatively piddled away due to three things- 

1. My computer is getting scary slow and can't hack photo editing and uploads very well anymore. I'm grateful it's lasted our family for 4 years of intense use (Rob's DMA studies and music writing software, then on to me this past winter and all my literally thousands of photos), but it's time to say hello to a new computer instead. 

2. My daily looks in the office are dictated by what can be layered like crazy for warmth and simplicity. Whole-building heating systems aren't a "thing" over here, so between having to be long-john compatible for travel on public transit and a more walking-lifestyle (something I really love about living here), it has to be a good balance of warmth and appropriate layers for wearing inside in the office all day, too. Which is tricky. A lot of my really great winter layering outfits from years past are now total crap because 3/4 or J Crew-esque rolled sleeves in any capacity are going to make my fingers purple all day. Ditto for a single undershirt layer. Lots of black pants and black sweaters- boring as hell, but you can pack tons of layers under a black sweater and somehow still look like you aren't the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man. Boring? A little. Perfectly professional looking? For sure. Allows me to be lazy as sin in the mornings? Oh, my gosh, yes. Fool-proof.

And the big (well, still relatively little) 3. There's a kid on the way. I was keeping it pretty quiet from colleagues through December so I didn't get the wilting flower treatment during the Tour, because there's really nothing more degrading for a capable person than to be babied when you're conscious about not hoisting heavy crap and wearing sensible shoes during early pregnancy. Aside from a little help lifting my suitcase and avoiding sushi and wine, I didn't want to detract from what had to get accomplished during our travels.

A Mid-May kid! We are  both so happy and I'm pleased as anything that this kid finally looks like more than a big lunch. 

So, joining the crew in the middle of May, there's now a little 20-week dumpling that has made my pants tight and my bathroom runs frequent. And aaaanyone who's read this blog for longer than a minute knows I've been impatiently waiting for mommyhood, so I'm so thrilled about the opportunity to experience this crazy journey in our new international home! 2014 is, somehow, going to kick 2013's ass in the big, cool, exciting life changes department. 

Bonus, we're not finding out the gender- how many huge, awesome surprises do you really get in a lifetime?!- but Rob is still really pumped about a gender-neutral dinosaur theme. It's the most lovely thing.

Dear friends, Happiest New Year to you all. I may have disappeared from the community of blogging for a little while, but I've been reading up on what everyone's been up to, keeping tabs on all the Thanksgiving and Christmas fun, and enjoying the heck out of the joy that's been so present across the fashion blogging realm lately. All best to each and every one of you as we step into this fresh start and the new year.

Loud Fall Looks

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

A month between blog appearances is normal, right? Whoops.

So, what's been up in Suzhou, China?

1. My cool new job at the School of Music got really ridiculous really fast. I am now the International Recruitment Tour Manager for a joint audition/ recruitment concert tour in Seoul, Taipei, Singapore, Hong Kong, Shanghai, and Beijing. Which is awesome. But it morphed out of a very casual concept and there's big holes in information and I'm still learning what got glossed over and what was a very informal arrangement versus a venue booking. Which has a lot of bearing on press materials. Oh, and we're only 30 days away from departure now. Way stressful and complicated for being thrust into management of a major project.

2. But, I get to travel with the group for all 6 cities! Many are brief stops (2 jam-packed days), but I will add three countries to my list of "been there's." That's pretty cool!

3. I also travel back to the US in mid-December to pick up my babies. My critters will have been MIA from my life and couch for almost 5 months. And it's been literally the worst. I am a pet owner, through and through. I'm meant to take care of fuzzy things and fall asleep with fur in my face. I'm beyond excited to have them here.

4. Other points of excitement for the trip to the US include buying coconut oil, baking soda, rubbing alcohol, and clarifying shampoo. My options for bathroom stuff here has been slim. Whitening lotion (my skin is plenty pale, thank you), creepy tonics to clean scrapes, and moisturizing shampoo which make my hair lay plastered flat to my head in greasy strings are not doing it for me.

5. Despite the crazy-busy of getting a brand new school up and running, life is good! We're adjusting, finding great places to eat, found our favorite veggie vendor, we're making friends and figuring our new city out. A few pop-over trips to Shanghai and Wuxi (for the nearest Ikea!), a little hanging out at local expat haunts, a lot of enjoying the fall weather.

Jeans: Gap Always Skinny...Sweater: Gap...Scarf: H&M...Bag: Longchamp knockoff...Shoes: Sperry via DSW

Lesson Learned

Monday, October 7, 2013

Just a hint of cool in the air. Living south-ish is so strange during the fall. The mornings are gorgeous, the afternoons are baking hot, the evenings turn me into a weenie, shivering and pulling my hands into my sleeves.

This jacket and I are still figuring one another out. It was my very last purchase in the States before we left for China (thanks, Ebay) and I'm very, very glad I own a great quality mid-tone trench. But, it's heavy weight and the belt loops are quite far back, so I'm always nervous that the belt is slipping out. Is that a legitimate qualm?

I have a bunch of other coats, jackets and blazers, as well as more shoes!, arriving soon in our shipment (which we had picked up in Houston in late June). We were supposed to receive it last Sunday before the week-long National Holiday, and the Customs tracking system even told our agent the paperwork was ready and customs would be open for pick up on Sunday, the holiday "make up" day... but the employees of the warehouse all decided to just up and take the extra two days off. So, we are rescheduled for a Friday delivery this week. Moral of the story: if you move to China, expect to pay an arm and a leg anyway, so cough up the cash to pack a third suitcase or just coerce your friends and family into bring two 50-pounders when they visit. It will take just as long to get your goodies by visit as it will by shipment.

Well, now we know.

Jeans: Gap Real Straight...Tank: thrifted...Trench: J Crew Madewell via Ebay...Shoes: Nine West...Bag: Longchamp knockoff

Like Sardines

Friday, October 4, 2013

Isn't it fun when life gets busy and fun and you get super blasé about documenting anything for your blog?

And when you return you have this junker outfit that you managed to capture? Nothing actually fashionable, or creative, or interesting.


We've been occupied, and I like it. Hop over here for a quick rundown of what we've been doing.

Jeans: Gap...Buttondown: Banana Outlet...Shoes: Sperry via DSW...Bag: Longchamp knockoff

And a quick story: it's National Holiday, which means almost everything of significance is closed. Like President's Day or something. Except it goes on for 7. whole. bleeping. days. Which should be awesome, except it means everyone either travels, clogging airlines and trains, or plays tourist in town. We thought we'd do the cool thing and do more exploring our new city and wound up in a sardine-like nightmare bus getting out to Tiger Hill. I don't know if you guys saw it on Instagram a while back (@katebmcclure and @robertwmcclure) that we started a hashtag #tallguyinchina. Rob is so out of place in so many situations, standing literally heads above the rest of the population, but a packed bus is a special form of torture. His rear end usually ends up right in line with someone's oversized backpack, or his head gets mangled in the plastic hold-loops in the standing room area. I love the idea of public transit, but, sometimes you just gotta buck up and pay way too much for the bodily comfort of a speedy, just-the-two-of-us cab ride back across town.

We will not be going anyplace interesting for the rest of the week. We'll try again during a normal weekend.

Hope you guys are well! Any absurd stories?

Long and Slow

Friday, September 13, 2013

I've been in the midst of a funny couple of weeks. 

First: the news. I am going to be working at the School of Music office! Since the School is brand-spankin' new and kind of groundbreaking in its intention to teach music curriculum in English here in China, there's a lot of materials that are going to be put out bilingually. And some of the ladies already on staff have international experience and a pretty great English foundation, but it needs a little polish... so I get to put my thumbprint on reworking and crafting exciting new English language documents and press as we're getting off the ground. 

But, in true China fashion, getting the details worked out, contract drafted, and registration completed is taking forever. So, I'm still not working and didn't get to help prepare for the opening premier concert this upcoming Sunday. Which is a bummer, since this is our first POW! introduction to the Suzhou/Shanghai music community. And it sure would have been nice to place a critical eye on the materials, but oh well. Next project. When I'm officially on the team!

Also. We tried to prepare the paperwork for getting our shipment of boxes through customs and because Suzhou is in Jiangsu province and Shanghai (and the port through which our stuff arrived) is kind of its own thing, we needed stamps and approval from both customs' offices. Meaning backandforthandbackandforth travel to Shanghai- a day-long waste of a day trip each time. Foooorget it. Rob's colleague swooped in and saved the day by calling her shipping agent from earlier in the summer, who will be managing the rest of the paperwork and having our items delivered for us. And she's crazy capable, so I'm very grateful.

Moral of the story. It all takes literally four times longer than you think it should and is at least 7 steps more complicated. All of it.

Sigh. Of relief!

Jeans: Gap...Tank: Banana Republic...Cardigan: thrifted...Shoes: Target

Worn over and over and over

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Sweet Audrey of the deservedly popular Putting Me Together is hosting... One Piece Many Ways. And since I've been sweating my way through most of the crappy looks I've been wearing, taking a walk down memory lane seemed like fun.

So... what have I worn the crap out of?




This maroon skirt is so easy to grab and go when I'm feeling rushed, and it works with the majority of my tops. Does it create looks that are super diverse? Maybe not. But it's a great basic and easy to wear. Blacks work, tans work, greys work, leopard, turquoise, orange, crisp white, taupe, bright red. A nice, plum maroon skirt is one of the few bottoms other than jeans that made the cut when I purged and moved my little wardrobe. And I wore it through all four seasons. 

What are you wearing the daylights out of? Is it easy to remix or is it a statement piece that you feel great in? I want to know!

Plain Jane

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Being on the far side of the Pacific has, style-wise, been a little funny for me. First, I chucked some of my long time favorite articles of clothing because I literally wore them until they shouldn't be worn any more. Loved them to pieces and put them into a garbage can in the days before we left Houston. So, I'm down about 30%. Second, I kept a lot of my simple, classic, wholesome American gal clothes. Simple skinny jeans, a few buttondowns, lightweight t-shirts. Things that aren't risky or fashion-forward, but are just solid workhorse items. A glorified capsule wardrobe, if you will.

And I didn't keep summer clothing, you guys. Bad choice.

It's a great mix of perfectly slouchy sweaters and layer-able stuff with slim-fit pants. So, come fall and winter, I'll be golden, but for now, I'm sweating my buns off and rotating between this skirt and shorts (which I hate on my skinny legs- ugh, chicken knees) and a few tanks and tees.

And this desperate deficit of options, lack of first-month-in-town positive bank balance, and having a simple wardrobe means I'm stickin' out like a sore thumb. China's a little funny with fashion. Sometimes ladies look so mis-match chic, young and fresh in their boutique fashion (there's literally thousands of small clothing stores along the coolest shopping avenues here), I look like a bowl of vanilla ice cream. But sometimes these adorable young women wear the dowdiest or hodgepodged or hello-kittied looks. Perhaps another day I'll take my camera out and about with me.

Skirt: H&M...Blouse: Target...Belt: Target...Shoes: Nine West...Bag: Longchamp knockoff


Monday, August 26, 2013

I'm alllll alone today! It's Rob's first day of the school year, and he's off to meet 'n greet the first ever new class of students.

On the docket? As many girly movies online as I can find. I'm 45 minutes into Little Women. Yes, yes, yes.

Skirt: H&M...Blouse: thrifted...Belt: Target...Shoes: Chacos...Bag: Longchamp knockoff


Tuesday, August 20, 2013

What does one wear for meeting the Dean of the School of Music for the first time? Especially when the group dinner is being held at an undisclosed location? Rob and I (and all of the other new faculty we've been spending time with) all freaked out and didn't have an answer.

Neutrals. Definitely neutrals. And not too fussy.
So, this super lightweight sweater for the warm evening should do the trick. Loose, it won't touch my torso too much and make me sweat, but it's pretty covered-up.
Pants or skirt? Skirt. No, pants. The sweater looked a little weird tucked in. 
Heels or flats? Well, heels would look nicer... Crap, all my nice pumps are in our shipment. These flats will be fine.

Maaaaan, I got brutal with purging my wardrobe before this move. My dress and shoe situation is a little pathetic. And my "getting ready and looking decent" routine is a joke.

Jeans: Gap...Sweater: thrifted...Shoes: Aldo, via Buffalo Exchange...Belt: Target...Scarf: Liberty of London, thrifted...Bag: Longchamp knockoff

This is Certainly a First World Problem

Saturday, August 17, 2013

So, we've decided to cough up the cash for a second VPN of my very own. Rob is a technology nut, so he loves to have access to "checking" all of his stuff (read: screwing around in a cycle of email, facebook, Detroit Tigers score, overandoverandover). And some of his screen time is legit, but mostly he likes to spend his down time mindlessly surfing and hogging our mode of bypassing the "Great Firewall," so I insisted that I get my own VPN to blog.

Oh, a VPN is a Virtual Private Network. It essentially skews signals to indicate that my computer's IP address is in America when, in fact, it is physically in China. Since I am physically in China. Normally, Chinese internet blocks websites such as YouTube, Facebook, Blogger, etc.

Being in a country that blocks most of the online goodies has been a little strange. Without the VPN turned on, I can read through my blog list on the Bloglovin' app, but not on the computer. Feedly flips me the bird either way. Pinterest works both online and through the app, so at least that's good entertainment. I can see and post Instagram photos, and can even send them straight to Facebook for our friends to see. But, I can't go to Facebook, can't post new content on Blogger, I can't click on almost any blog to comment, and, most importantly, I can't see Marion's content below the Read More line. Big fat bummer. 

Without competing with Rob for use of the VPN, I will be able to blog in peace, take my time uploading photos, writing and linking all at once in the Blogger editor (I've been writing word documents and copying them in. The formatting boogers itself every time, which is obnoxious). 

So, in short: I've been super absent, and I'm sorry. Before the move, I didn't have time or focus enough to blog, and now I don't have easy access to it. And, even though I've been reading a whoooooole bunch of  your blogs, I haven't been able to say hello, compliment all of the lovely looks you ladies have been featuring lately, cheer you guys on in your recent life-stuff, or sympathize with your head or heartaches. I hope this technological coup lets me say "Hey" a little more often.

Pants: Target...Tank: thrifted...Shoes: via DSW...Bag: Longchamp knockoff

Pros and Cons: China Edition

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Things I am finding that I miss.
  • Cotton Balls. I used a "cotton pad" to remove my nailpolish, and it's like a disintegrating wet nap.
  • Rubbing alcohol. I had no idea how useful this stuff was in my every day life until it was gone. 
  • Paper towels. While I appreciate the reusability of rags, I would really prefer to do some of this move-in massive not-a-dustbunny-of-my-own-creation cleaning with a paper towel and then throw that shit away. 
  • Ditto on Swiffers.
  • Trustworthy fish. I would really like to try to cook a wok-prepared steamed salmon meal at home, but everyone is telling us to steer clear of fish. 
  • Granola Bars. Except I dispelled this one earlier today- we found some really overpriced Oats and Honey bars at a specialty international grocery. Beaucoup bucks, but comforting and great energy. Now, if only I could find Nutella...
  • Access to furniture shopping. It really isn't a "thing" here. There is no Target furniture section or Pottery Barn. The nearest Ikea is 2 hours away by public transit and train. And my furniture is all really crappy. 

Things that I kiiiinda prefer over here.
  • My nail polish remover smells vaguely of vanilla, rather than chemical and fake vitamin E.
  • Way less wasteful packaging and a cultural norm of tiny garbage cans. Our trash situation is heavenly. 
  • A cultural norm of daily produce shopping. Um, fresh and fabulous.
  • Using an umbrella daily as a sunshade. Pale skin is fashionable, so I'm like the queen bee already, but practically, it makes walking around on these hot hot days a little more bearable. 
  • Having no choice but to slow down. It's too hot and I know too little of the language.
  • Ginger scented dish soap. 

The evenings are getting down to only 88 degrees now! We're sweating like mad still, but at least I have some kind of desire to look halfway decent after 7 pm when we go out for dinner with friends. That's a step in the right direction!

Dress: Target...Belt: Target...Sandals: Chacos...Bag: Longchamp knockoff

Dog Days? Nope, just an extended record high.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Uuuugh, I'm getting really sick of these hot days. Suzhou and Shanghai have been "Red Alert" and record highs (highest recorded temps in 140 years) for days on end, and no real relief in sight. One day last week, the government flew planes over some clouds south of the city and dumped dry ice to force some rain to bring a little relief. Which lasted about 4 hours that night.

Two problems:
1. I'm sweating through all of my summer clothes (my hot weather collection got largely donated because it was either some poly blend or falling apart).
2. My "summer looks" are a rotation of the same four tees and the same one pair of shorts. Because I don't wear shorts. But I have to wear shorts. Or I'll croak.

Two perks:
1. With no dryer, our washed items are hung on the outdoor patio and are dry in literally 45 minutes.
2. I'm more hydrated than I ever have been before.

We're really wishing we could do more exploring the city, but it's way too hot out. We feel like we done our fair share of trying out the busses and successfully doing runs to the market, so we'll sightsee in September when it's cooled down a little. Function before fun for now.

Oh, and if you guys want to hear more about life over here in China, hop over to McClures in Suzhou. Warning: you might see photos of dead chickens and baby tushes in slit pants. Both are normal over here.

So, what have I been wearing?

Booooooring. But it's too hot for anything else.

How I Spent July

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Well, hello, dear friends! I wrote a little note to you all yesterday to tell you that we've successfully made it to Suzhou, China. Today is our fourth full day in the city and we're finally feeling a little more adjusted to the time zone, have the essentials handled for our new apartment, and have been able to order and accurately pay for several meals. Big successes, all around!

Starting July 30, we moved out of our sweet apartment in Houston and drove our last few belongings that would be placed in storage (favorite dishes, good knives, artwork, etc) along with our four large suitcases for the flight to China in a trailer behind the Jeep. We took two days to get up to Ohio, stopping along the way to spend the night with a dear friend from grade school who is living in Missouri. A visit and the stopping point couldn't have been more refreshing.

We spent three weeks with family and friends in Ohio and used our time to the fullest! Half-way through, my sister was married in a stunning and perfectly simple ceremony along Lake Michigan, and I was so grateful to be able to take part in her bridal shower, last minute preparations, rehearsal dinner, meet and greet time with her husband's family, and a little bit of family vacation time in the rented house after they took off to honeymoon. (I'm pretty sure I owe you all a thorough post, the wedding was beyond perfect).

We spent a rainy Saturday hosting an open house get together and a really great group of friends and extended family made the effort to come spend the day with us to catch up and say farewell for a while. In the age of Facebook, it sure is easy to check in on people, but there's truly nothing like spending time together. Other highlights of our time in Ohio included nephew visits, godson and best friend playtime, acquainting my doggy to life at my parents (we hope to bring both the beagle and our cat over in a few months), visiting and re-getting-to-know-time with my brother, who is now a big bad 18 year old adult, and a haircut from my favorite long-time stylist (nothing drastic, just took 3 scraggly inches off the ends and shaped it up, but I received exactly ZERO good haircuts in 4 years in Houston, so this was a big highlight).

In my focus to spend time with family, I preeetty much spent all three weeks in 6 articles of clothing, not including dresses for special events. Here's a little rundown of how I looked for the entirety of July:

Hope you all have had a good month (I've sort of been reading along with my favorite blogs, but I've been pretty technologically disconnected for a while).

Catch up with you all soon!


Saturday, July 27, 2013


Go ahead and google that translation. And have a mini panic attack with me.

We arrived safely to Suzhou a few days ago and have managed to get a lot done! Our flight was incredibly easy (direct from Detroit to Shanghai), our baggage arrived safely and we didn't lose any pieces, we powered through the flight and didn't sleep so we would be sleepy in time for China's evening. We met our driver with relatively little problem and arrived in Suzhou by 6:00 in the evening to meet our representative from the University and be taken to our apartment (it's so dusty, but we're working our way through cleaning still). She helped us get SIM cards for phones, we found a small market to buy pillows and sheets, along with some fruit and a weird pastry for breakfast. The following day we walked way too far with 101 degree 9:00 am temps, saw the university library and Dushu Lake. We met up with another professor who lives in the next building over, who helped us get in touch with our landlord to figure out the internet situation in our apartment, and our VPN is working great to gain access to our US websites (Blogger included!). We also met up with the musicology professor, who called the university driver and took us to a big (like Walmart, but tripled) supermarket to buy household essentials. We did dinner and plenty of talking, the driver's English is limited, as is my Mandarin, so the musicologist did a great job of translating back and forth and we had a lot of fun. Yesterday, Rob completed the registration for working at the University and is signed up for a bank account for payroll. We have to wait until the middle of August for our first payroll cycle, though, which is a bummer. We got dropped off in the middle of a lovely older part of town, and were able to both successfully buy a map of the city as well as lunch for ourselves. Aaaand, we successfully hailed a cab, gave decent directions for our apartment (which he actually understood), and he enjoyed trying out his English on us.

We are in pretty good spirits, considering how biiiig this change is and how out-of-our-element we are. Only one meltdown for each of us so far. Doing our best to walk and explore is tough since it's so bleeping hot, but we'll find our way soon enough. We're getting along great with the other new professors, who have been truly wonderful and helpful these first few days. And, for now, we're taking great satisfaction in the little things we can control, like a nice shower, or mopping the floor.

We've taken exactly zero pictures. I'll jump on that soon!

Farewell Week and a Road Trip

Monday, July 1, 2013

Hey, friends! I'm writing a quick hello from the road. We are currently driving through Wagoner, Oklahoma and will be stopping to stay the night with a friend from high school who has wound up in Lebanon, Missouri, a perfect halfway point for the drive from Houston to Toledo, Ohio.

In the last few days, here's what's been going down.

Friend time. Lots of friend time. A BBQ on Tuesday with over 30 people we adore, a work friend cocktail night/ bromance Whiskey truck packing party on Thursay, PrideHouston festivities Saturday during the afternoon and sweated our butts off, Frame Dance show on Friday and Saturday and more friend time goodbye party after. I cried no less than a dozen times this week, and the gravity of our departure hasn't fully hit me yet, so I'm probably due to be a weepy mess halfway through the drive tomorrow. 

So far in the drive: Eddie barfed up breakfast, Critters have done extremely well in the backseat together, I guesstimated to the mile a distance to our turnpike turnoff (I love using an atlas vs. GPS), we ate our last Pattymelts, and sang our guts out to 90's playlists. But, ugh, the Jeep has a tiny engine and our puny trailer of stuff is heavy enough to make hilly areas into a 50 mph zone. The Google map directions claimed a 11.5 hour day and a 10 hour day. I think we're looking at 13.5 and 12 at minimum. That's a loooog time to be in the car driving a manual with no cruise control. 

Mmmmmm, goodbye for now, Houston. I know we're off to new adventures and change is always good, but H-town was a great way to spend our mid-20's. And thanks for a really wonderful collection of lifelong friends and tremendous neighbors and co-workers. 

Eddie. I died laughing when I saw I captured this gem. 
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