Category Archives: Adventures

30 Before 30: Flying Trapeze

September 26, 2013


When I lived in San Francisco, I happened upon an aerial arts school that taught flying trapeze but I never had the chance to go. I kept this wish in the back of my mind after I moved from SF and continued to look for similar schools with each city I moved to. Seattle did not disappoint.

I finally took the leap… no pun intended… on Tuesday with Emily and Amy. Amy had been a few times before and was on to more challenging tricks. She was gracefully from get go. Emily, who was just as green as I was, picked up the tricks without a second thought.

Me? Well, I was a bit awkward… but we knew that would happen before I even started. It’s my brand. And yet – I jumped off, did a trick, and made a catch.

When I first made my 30 before 30 list, people were encouraging but they also thought it was a little silly. What is does a catch on a flying trapeze accomplish? This, and the other 30 before 30 items, put me out of my comfort zone. They force me to try something new and risk failing.

I am not going to lie… I have watched the videos from last night over and over again. I am not ashamed to say I am so proud of myself. I was really scared and I didn’t think I could do it. But I still tried, risked failing, and was rewarded with a catch.

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    1. Get a pixie haircut.

Completed Dec 12, 2012

    1. Go on a vacation alone.


  • Karaoke.



  • Camp.



  • Learn to longboard. Or at least attempt it.



  • Complete a catch on the flying trapeze.


Completed Sept 24, 2013


  • Throw a fancy dinner party.



  • Run a marathon. (But I will settle for a half)



  • Visit Canada.



  • Travel to a country I have never been before (not Canada).


Completed May 9, 2013 with Amsterdam

  • Revisit my best friend in Florida.



  • See a football game in the south. War Eagle.



  • Learn to grill.


Completed April 2013


  • Attempt snowboarding… again.



  • Take a cooking class. 


    Completed Nov 11, 2012 at Pantry at Delancy
    Pie Ninja



  • Hold my future niece or nephew.



  • Treat my parents.



  • Make a pie from scratch.


Completed Nov 21, 2012 with a Ginger Apple Streusel “Pie”


  • Find the perfect swimsuit.



  • Decorate a christmas tree.



  • Ride a motorcycle.



  • Explore 5 states I have never visited before.



  • Conquer my reoccuring NYE resolution of reading 50 books in one year.



  • Learn to french braid.



  • Take a 2 week vacation: 2 consecutive weeks.



  • Build something… that doesn’t come from Ikea.



  • Do one cartwheel.



  • Matchmake a couple, successfully.



  • Wear my navy blue special occasion Florida dress.



  • Be apart of something momentous, memorable, and national. Subjective… deal with it.


BONUS: Be awesome every day.


Although I have lived in Seattle for 1.5 years, I am still pretty ignorant to the city. This is precisely why when I was going to Discovery Park I assumed it was a park or maybe a beach. So I put on a swimsuit and then changed it for a sun dress and converse tennis shoes right before I walked out the door. This may seem like no big deal to you but to my friends Discovery Park is considered a hike and I showed up looking like a princess.

Thankfully, a princess that can hike in a short black dress and kicks. But, I am jumping a head here. This day was perfect and I will tell you why.

I start most of my Saturdays the same way…

I roll out of bed and into my Zella Live in Leggings and the closest (and cleanest) workout shirt I can find. I bobby pin my hair back, splash water on my face, brush my teeth and then I am out the door to walk to my workout class that is 2 miles away. After my 60 minutes of workout torture, I start the journey back home.

Every Saturday that is how my day starts.

On this Saturday as I was on my way home, I got a call from my sister to meet her for lunch. So instead of walking all the way back, I caught a bus and scooted to the top of the hill. We talked… we ate… we watched her dog bark attack a little girl…then we hid in shame.

After our “ladies who lunch”-sweaty-from-working-out lunch, I got a call from Curtis & Doug to go to Discovery Park. I believe they phrased it in terms of “skipping rocks” and “a short hike away”. I, of course, thought they were joking on the skipping rocks and “hike away” meant we could walk there from their house. Either way, I quickly showered got on my bathing suit, took off my bathing suit, put on my black dress, and met up with them at their place.

Enter Discovery Park:


I had no expectations for what was ahead but I was immediately speechless for the beauty that lived a few miles from my house. How in the world had I never been here? The views, the easy trails, the fresh air and travel companions filled me with delight. It was perfect.







Most of the afternoon was spent here and I have the tan lines and sand in my shoes to prove it.

This amazing Saturday didn’t end there but kept going with other friends and Red Mill shakes while the sun set.

Pretty much perfect, right?

Last year I had high expectations for spending someone elses money to get a christmas tree and then watch them decorate… unforunately, it didn’t go as planned and they went without me.

But not this year:






Emily invited me along to her adventure of finding THE tree and (between you and me) it was a good thing I went. She wanted a 6ft high tree to fit in her living room but once we got there she only had eyes for 8-9ft high and just as wide. She was bound to be living in a tree house for the next month.

Although I had to burst her bubble a few times, she was resilient… determined to find her one.

And find her we did.

She stood 7ft tall in a corner one of the fields. She had no holes, no brown edges, no sagging limbs and a top perfect for an angel. She was unassuming but beautiful, just waiting for a “She’s All That” makeover. Emily knew that this tree could be prom queen with a few strands of lights and jewels to dazzle.

Emily squealed.
Emily hugged her.
Emily named her Edith.

Then Emily took her home.

(Tree Hunting Style: Hoodie circa 2004, chambray shirt, Paige Skyline Skinnies c/o Paige Denim, Hunter bootstech glovesred hat)


June 29, 2012

“Who here has rafted before?”

As I looked around the circle that included the seven other people I would soon be rafting down the Wenatchee River with I saw that my hand was the only one that was not raised.

My guide, FedEx, a former marine turned weekday police officer and weekend raft guide, looked at me and smiled, “A rafting virgin! I have something special for you.”

As if my nerves leading up that point weren’t already shakey his comment put me in full on fear mode.

FedEx briefly taught us how to row and what commands to listen for and then we set off in the water. I was stationed in the back next to FedEx and although he instilled fear in me earlier, our personalities were a match and we quickly hit it off. He was surprised by my affinity for turning normal sentences into a dirty joke and that I could keep up with his banter. (It truly is a talent that no one appreciates nearly as much as I do. Especially my mom.)

Halfway down the river, Fedex turned to me, “Put your oar in the middle.”

This was it. He was going to dunk me. Or push me in. Or make me swim a rapid.

I wasn’t scared of the water. I’m like a fish that needs to plug her nose. It was getting back in the boat that sent a chill down my spine. HELLO, hot mess flailing to be dragged inside. NO ONE, looks good getting pulled back in.

Everyone started giggling and staring at me.

Suit up, Dani.

“Ok now go sit at the front of the boat.”

I clumsily climb up three rows.

“No, sit on the front of the boat.”

I turn back to him, “You have got to be kidding me!”

“Do it! Feet in the water”

I slowly sit on the front with my toes dipping in the water. I have my butt pushed as far back as possible to protect myself from falling in and hoping I fall back instead.”

“Now don’t get my wrong, I love the view Dani, but quit sticking your butt out and sit on the seat. And hold on.”

Our team gets the command and we start rowing down the river. Apart from our chant to keep our rows in time, I just keep repeating “Oh my gosh” with each stroke.

As I look ahead on the river, I see the boats start to hit the next rapid. It looks fast and then


Boat by boat you see them amongst the rapids and then hit a dip that throws the front of the raft four feet in the air.

“If you believe in God, now would be the time to talk to him…” FedEx joked.


Within seconds, my only view is rapids and our speed is intense. Then we hit the dip and we free fall down only to meet a wall of water that flew me in in the air. I feel my body lift off of the raft and my grip tightens on the rope. I only have a second to recover and then another wall of water hits my face.

It felt like 10 minutes of rapids (more like 30 seconds) and then we were back on calm water.

“High Five! I can’t believe you stayed on! Go ahead and make your way back.”

My body was convulsing with shakes.
I wasn’t sure I could move.

I slowly brought my legs inside the boat one by one and then attempted to walk to the back. My feeble attempt ended up having everyone one of my seven rafting mates hold my hand and help push me back.

“That was amazing. The last time I had someone do that, they got cork screwed off the boat!”

Oh. Now you tell me.









My dad is a prolific white water rafter.

My mom joined him on a few runs.

Heck, even my sister has rafted the Nile.

Me? Not even once.

It was finally my time and with a gang of close friends we joined LivingSocial to raft the Wenatchee River with River Recreations.

We started our adventure in downtown Seattle, bused to Moniter, WA, struggled into wet suits, then raged the rapids down to camp. After grilling up some BBQ, we journeyed back and stopped in Leavensworth for some beer and live music before finishing the trek home.

It may have been one of my top days ever and definitely a perfect end to an amazing weekend.

These are pictures from my super handy and difficult to use water proof camera.


February 17, 2012

Brunch at Oddfellows in Capitol Hill?


The decor is shabby chic.
The food is new american.
The crowd was Capitol Hill eclectic.

I will be back to check out what Oddfellow is like during the evening but I can guarantee that I will be walking here from work for a quick cup of coffee and biscuit with jam asap.

A few years back I worked for a nightlife dot com and ran it’s San Francisco division. I worked with an amazing team of photographers, DJs, promoters and venues. But I had a favorite: AplusD of BootieSF fame.

Their bi-monthly event was one of the best dance parties I had ever experienced.

Their music was exquisitely crafted and the crowd was there to strictly dance.

Their parties were one of the few that I myself would go out to cover just so I could work for a bit then spend the rest of the evening dancing.

As soon as I learned that they had a Bootie Seattle, I started planning.

A group formed and the night arrived.

We got there at 10pm… which is early in my nightlife book… and the venue was already full. By 10:30 it was shoulder to shoulder dancing and when the clock hit 2am and the last song was played the floor was still lively.

They are coming back on March 2nd for a Mardi Gras event. I’ll be there. Will you?

Special thanks to AplusD for hosting me that night.


Pitbull Little Noah

February 8, 2012

I’m a little pitbull.
Defender of the little man.
Advocate for the underdog.

Which is why on Saturday I took on a 6’2 “Bro”.

It was girls night. We started with dinner and drinks, drove back to my place for freshening up, then walked down the hill for a lively scene and more drinks.

I was set on perfecting my “Have you met Ted?” line. It’s a simple wingman move… Tap on the shoulder of the guy standing next to you, ask him if he has met one of my beautiful friends and then turn around to continue my conversations with other friends.

Saturday night: 75% success rate… That is if you define success as meeting a guy at a bar.

Let’s roll with it.

One of my girlfriends ended up connecting with a guy and they talked for nearly the entire time we were there. As we kept checking in on her, they were hitting it off… flirting, exchanging numbers, inching closer and closer together. But after an hour our friend came back upset… “he has a girlfriend.”

Five minutes later he came over to apologize and ask for his coat back. She said she didn’t have his jacket.

Bro: “I know you have it, I saw you leave with it.”
Friend: “I don’t have it.”

Pitbull Little Noah steps in.

Me: “E, do you have his jacket?”
Friend: “No.”
Bro: “I saw her pick it up.”
Me: “She doesn’t have your jacket.”
Bro: “She took it.”
Me: “As you can see, she isn’t wearing a jacket and it’s not in her hand.”
Bro: “I want my jacket back.”
Me: “It isn’t here”
Bro: “I saw her.”Me: “She says she doesn’t have it so back off!”

Bro leaves. Bro’s friend comes over heated. Demanding the jacket.

Me: “She didn’t take his jacket!”

It was clearly time for us to go. These guys were only going to keep coming back and I, along with a few other girls, were over the scene.

All of the girls grabbed their jackets and purses.

But there was one left over.

In my lap.


Oh, frak.

“We’re leaving NOW.”

Eat, Drink, and Belly Ache

September 9, 2011

My weekend in a nutshell would best be described as: Eat, Drink, and Belly Ache

I took a long weekend off from work and drove up to Seattle to spend time with my sister and brother in law. We had Bumbershoot on the calendar but I was also warned that Ashley had a weekend booked full of adventure.

On Friday I was on my own for the day time which meant an early morning walk, a bit of exploring Queen Anne and Seattle, being ragged on on Facebook and Instagram for being a hipster, discovering a new coffee shop and then hanging out on campus waiting for Vik and Ashley to finish work. Post work, we literally ate and drank till late in the evening. First stop was Tavern Law for drinks and appetizers. This bar reminded me of a brighter Violet Hour (Chicago) and even had a secret door / upstairs room for the truly special. Afterwards we had dinner and wine at Sitka and Spruce. From 5pm until 11pm, every dish and drink I had was absolutely amazing. I am still stuffed just thinking about it.

On Saturday, naturally, I was the first to rise and shine. But being an early riser allowed for a quiet morning walk and excellent cup of coffee. Then my day took off with watching boats in the harbor, college football, and Bumbershoot, Seattle’s yearly outdoor music/art festival.

Finally, Sunday didn’t allow for any rest with an amazing breakfast by Vik then straight into wine tasting with a limo bus of friends and far too many wineries.

This weekend was perfect in every way.