Two Year Anniversary

The Case Files have been pushed to tomorrow because I felt like writing this post today. Deep breaths, you’ll all be OK.

We’ve been a busy bunch.

My first weekend in Seattle, we went to Tofino. This past weekend, Jesse and I celebrated two years of dating bliss. For our first anniversary, we went to San Fransisco, visited Sonoma and went wine tasting. So, we figured since we’re in an area known for wine this year, we might as well make it a tradition. Because of the chaos with graduating and moving, Jesse kindly planned the entire anniversary from start to finish. It was exciting because I love surprises and dates with Jesse. Two of my favorite things.

We went to Yakima, Washington. It’s about 2.5 hours southeast of Seattle.

It was really cool to drive through Washington and see all the lush greenery and then, boom, hit desert. I had no clue that the rest of Washington looked like that. I know it’s naive, but I just assumed everything up here was all green and rainforesty (yes, that’s a word). When I thought harder about it, of course it made sense that one side of the mountains was green and the other was dry. That’s like geography 101.

The first night we rolled in and got checked into The Orchard Inn Bed & Breakfast. If you ever go to Yakima for any reason and you need a place to stay, go here. Karen (who runs the B & B) is one of the nicest and friendliest people I’ve ever met. The rooms are cozy, the sheets are soft, the food is delicious, and it’s nestled in an orchard. You really feel like you’re in a tiny paradise when you drive in. Plus, when Karen found out it was our anniversary, she sweetly left us some of her husband’s homemade blackberry liqueur as a nightcap. It was delicious.

We headed out on the town and ended up at a bar with a pool table. No surprise since Jesse has picked up playing pool as a new hobby and it seemed like just the type of dive meant for us.

We got hungry pretty late and the only thing that was open was Mel’s Diner, a 24-hour throwback restaurant that looked like Denny’s weird cousin. Naturally, we got normal diner fare – milkshakes.

On Saturday, we woke up and hit the road towards Prosser, a town about 20 minutes east of Yakima with a whole row of vineyards called Merlot Road. Fancy. We slowly rolled through the row as the day got hotter (100 degrees in dry heat, I loved it) tasting mostly red wine. We rounded out our tasting with what ended up being our favorite tasting, Milbrandt Vineyards.

Milbrandt does seated tastings with each taster purchasing a flight of three wines for tasting (Jeez, do I write about tasting much? I’m just going to leave it. I’m feeling lazy. Enjoy my redundancy). Jesse got the Red flight and I got the Fusion flight. Turns out we probably would have been better off just getting one because we ended up being overwhelmed with choice. They were all so good, we ended up having to have them duke it out in a head-to-head battle royale. We ended up tasting and loving a new grape called Tempranillo. If you’re into trying new wines, give this grape a try. We loved every vineyard’s tempranillo.

We also went to the local vineyard + restaurant dubbed Wine O’Clock. The name sounded a bit cheesy, but I was willing to give it a shot. I’m glad I did because I ended up having some of the most delicious pizza of my life. Granted, that could have been the hunger and a little bit of the wine talking, but it was delicious nonetheless. Also, check out that sweet sign for group therapy.

We came back to Yakima and took a nap. All that pizza, wine, and heat had worn me out! The big event was in the evening. Jesse took us to a wine, beer, food, and jazz festival! It was so fun. The weather was just perfect, the sky was warm and hazy, and the company wasn’t too shabby either. ;)

I had a veggie dog that changed my life. Yes, it changed my life. From now on, I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to consider having a veggie dog without pepper jelly and cream cheese. Don’t knock it until you try it. When you try it, come and thank me. I’ll be here saying, “I told you so.”

The next morning we sat around the table at The Orchard Inn, ate a nice and filling breakfast, chatted with the lovely Karen, hit up the Yakima Farmer’s Market, and then headed back home. Patronus seemed almost as tired as we were by the time we got home. Maybe that, or he was pissed we left in the first place. Hard to tell with him sometimes.

Yesterday was the “official” anniversary date (hence no post) and it ended up being delightful with even more surprises! Jesse brought home the most beautiful bouquet of giant head-sized sunflowers (my favorite) + Beecher’s mac n’ cheese. Yeah, I know I said we’re going vegan. It’s a process. Plus, things like decadent macaroni and cheese might just have to be a treat every once in a while. It was mind-blowing.

We went out for dinner then walked home and drank a bottle of wine from the Sonoma anniversary. Thank you to Jesse for a wonderful celebration and a fantastic two years. You’re my best friend, my favorite roommate, and the best guy this girl could have asked for. You’ve helped me make my dreams come true and you’re my tireless supporter of all my crazy ideas and weird quirks. Not to mention, you’re also quite easy on the eyes. It’s pretty awesome. I love you.



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Posted on by Jen Bingaman, M.A. LMHCA Posted in Adventures, Fun., Grubbin', Traveling
Jen Bingaman, M.A. LMHCA

About Jen Bingaman, M.A. LMHCA

Hi, I’m Jen. I’m a mental health counselor newly residing in Seattle, Washington. I strongly believe in the mind-body connection as the cornerstone of my professional ideology, along with the healing possibilities of puppies, a good glass of red wine, the smell of a new book, and the importance of travel.

  • rebeka

    Oohh I love this post! I am going to Yakima on Friday for a wedding and I am really excited. Also, I lived in Pendleton, OR last summer for an internship and ended up driving back to Seattle almost every weekend so I drove past the Merlot Road all the time and I always wanted to stop. Maybe this weekend?!
    I am so glad that you guys had such a great anniversary and that you are finally together in the same city (and not living across the country from each other). You two are the cutest!
    Also Beecher’s Mac+Cheese is totally worth breaking veganism for, once and a while!!

    • Jen!

      Yes! Stop by Merlot Road! Get yo’self a bottle of wine, it’s delish! It’s really weird and awesome being in the same city as your boyfriend after 8 months of being 3,000+ miles away from him. Kind of exciting. After having Beechers, I don’t think I could ever truly be completely vegan, cheese is just good ya know? It’ll be a treat once in a while. Have fun at the wedding and enjoy the heat! :)