Second anniversaries aren’t exciting like the first but they are pretty darn validating. You are solidly out of the “newlywed” phase which was actually a great phase – even though people like to smugly say stuff like “Oooooh, they’re neeeewlyywedddssss.” Ugh, gross. Get over yourself.

Anyway, we had a limited amount if time to celebrate our second anniversary so I decided we should try something new and fun. My 2014 goals include developing a couple decent hobbies and being engaged in life down in Stafford – but that’s a whole ‘nother blog post. We’re pretty active, like to be outdoors, and won’t drive too far unless it’s for an amazing hike or vineyard. I was googling around as one does, literally browsing the internet, looking for something that would maybe meet my goals and those three requirements. My search history looked like this:

Fredericksburg hikes
Fredericksburg fun things to do
Fredericksburg festivals
Fredericksburg vineyard
Fredericksburg swimming
Fredericksburg kayaking
Fredericksburg paddle boarding

BOOM. JACKPOT. The cool way to abbreviate Fredericksburg is FXBG. It’s like a little bid between businesses where they acknowledge their up-and-coming-ness. So when I found FXBG SUP I knew I was on to something. They offer lessons, board rentals, tours, and more. I loved their website – easy to navigate, tons of great information, and a great online booking system. (I hate our online store at work so I ALWAYS make note of awesome sites that could be an alternative.)

We ended up being able to schedule a 12:30 lesson at Curtis Park just 25 minutes from our house. Shawn had emailed me a confirmation and reassured me that my very tall, athletic husband would be totally fine on their boards. It was SO easy to figure out where we were going because all I did was open up their website on my phone and click on “Directions to Curtis Lake” which then popped open my google maps app with the location. It couldn’t be more idiot proof.

The weather was amazing – a warm with a cool breeze and beautifully mostly-sunny. I wore hot yoga capris and just a work out tee, but Luis decided to wear a bathing suit. (I was NOT going to fall into the water but my clothes would’ve quickly dried if needed.) We threw some apples and water bottles in the car as well some towels, just in case. When we got to the lake Shawn was already all set up and had a little paperwork for us to sign. It asked about injuries and joint issues so Shawn and I had a quick discussion about my shoulder problems. Then we got down to business.

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Shawn showed us how to properly size and hold the paddle, explained the basics, and was just so so encouraging.  We headed down to the water and easily pushed off the boat landing, kneeling and paddling away from the shore.  We spent some  practicing, finding our balance, and just generally learning the basics of control.  Luis and I are both experienced with boats (kayaks, sailing, speed boats) so we understood how momentum and steering works out on the water – this definitely helped.  (Or we’re fast learners… or Shawn is just a super good teacher.)  Eventually Shawn demonstrated how to move from kneeling to standing and kneeling again.  Some where soon after Luis was “testing the board” and ended falling in.  I never did 🙂

I wish I had more photos – when we go next time I’ll borrow a life proof case for my iPhone.  Shawn brings a GoPro Camera that is attached to his paddle board and towards the end we paddled up to take a photo.  The photo was the NICEST touch to the lesson – a sweet little souvenir for such a fun day.


I really can’t say enough about how wonderful Shawn was.  I’ve already recommended FXBG SUP to everyone who will sit still long enough for me to get all the praise out and now I’m recommending them to you.<