Sunday, July 24, 2016

Weekend Review - Grand Junction

Another fun weekend (and they are going to keep coming for a few weeks!)

The Colorado State swim meet was this weekend in Grand Junction, and Kate was chosen to participate in a medley relay. That's a 5 hour drive to swim one time across the pool! So early Friday afternoon the kids and I drove across the state to Grand Junction (Matt, unfortunately, had to work this weekend).

We stayed in the little, historic downtown area which was lovely. Had dinner outside at the Rockslide Brewpub and then walked around downtown while eating ice cream (and catching Pokemon! I could not believe how many people were walking around playing!!).
Pokemon everywhere!

Saturday we were up and out early for 7am warm-up. Lucky for us, Kate was just in the first event and swam the fly leg of the 200m medley relay. She did great & dropped over 4 seconds off her 50m fly time.
Pretty Dive
After a second breakfast at a cute bagel shop in downtown, we made our way to the Colorado National Monument. We saw all the main sites, stopped in the visitor's center, and got junior ranger badges. It was just too hot to do any longer hikes, so we'll have to go back sometime soon with Matt.
Grand View

On our way back east, we stopped in Palisade. I bought a painting that I found in the local co-op gallery, we had an amazing mid-afternoon meal at Palisade Cafe 11.0 (um, yum!), and bought some just-coming-into-season peaches.
Fresh Peaches
My new painting

Spent Saturday night at our place in the mountains. Made peach crisp topped with ice cream and called it dinner. Our mountain neighbors were having whipped cream fun, and Jack happily joined in the fun!
Thought we would make a few fun stops on the way home on Sunday, but we were tired and headed straight home. Spent the rest of today unpacking, packing for our next adventure, doing laundry, catching up on life, etc.

Monday, July 18, 2016

DayBook 7.18.16

Outside my window... sitting outside on my front porch again. Absolutely beautiful morning.

I am hearing... Tripper barking at squirrels in the backyard. They tease him relentlessly from their tree perches. (I actually just went and brought Tripper to the front yard with me - too much barking for 7:30AM!)

I am thinking... about all I want to get done this week. I'm going to be a busy girl!

I am thankful for... mornings where I wake early and the kids sleep in. I can get a while day's worth of work done in those few hours.

From the kitchen... going to take it easy in the kitchen this week. Kids are asking for French dip sandwiches. I'll also make some Greek salad pasta. Maybe a flank steak. And maybe a chicken.

I a wearing... black workout capris, a super cute tank that crisscrosses in front, and a loose sweatshirt

I am creating... quilts. Going to piece a quilt-as-you-go baby quilt top today. Also would like to get a lap quilt basted and quilted this week.

I am going... to take Kate to breakfast before swim practice.

I am reading... just finished Everyone Brave is Forgiven and starting Kitchens of the Great Midwest.

I am hoping... that I can get rid of my tennis skirt tan this week!

Around the house... is fairly clean and calm. Not a lot of projects right now. So nice!

In the garden... basil is out of control. Need to make & freeze pesto this week.

In the homeschool room... nothing formal. Need to gear up to test Jack before school starts again. 

How I am exercising... Pilates early this morning. I've done a few runs. Starting a 2 week booty program. Also want read Power of 10 and try it out soon.

A few plans for the week... all our normal swim practices/tutors/etc, a little tennis, gaming for Jack, haircut for me, a few other appointments, an evening party, and the state swim meet.

Sunday, July 17, 2016

Weekend Review

My friend Ashlee and her three kiddos visited this week, so it felt like the weekend began with their arrival Wednesday evening. Love having a few days of fun!

Thursday we took the cog railway to the top of Pikes Peak.
Bit chilly at 14,000+ feet

Lovin' being in the clouds!

I had a tennis match Thursday evening. My car was in the shop so Matt had to come get me. We attempted to figure out Pokemon Go on the drive home... still don't get it...
Catch him, Matt!!

Friday we headed towards our place in the mountains, stopping for a few hours along the way to tube again in the river. Matt and Kate joined us later that night after work and swim practice.
More river time

On Saturday after having a leisurely morning, waving goodbye to our friends, and napping a bit, we hiked Mayflower Gulch. Easy but beautiful hike that we had never done before. Extra enjoyable that there were mining ruins to discover along the way and a bunch of old log cabins at the top.
Christmas Card photo?
The Girls
(I have a great photo of the boys also, but it's on Matt's phone. 
Will come back and update this post)
Sunday morning Matt & Jack went mountain biking, I did a 7 mile run (with a lot of walking!), and Kate relaxed at home with the dogs.
This boy is loving mountain biking!
Mid-afternoon, Matt & the kids went to the pool while I showered and packed and took (another!) nap.

Now we are home, and I sent the kids on their bikes to the Tastee Freeze for dinner. I'm about to have a light dinner of blueberries, Noosa lemon yogurt, and granola. Then it is off to get organized for the week!

Sunday, July 10, 2016

Weekend Review

Another fun weekend in the books.

Kate swam one event for her weekend swim meet on Friday evening. That night we had dinner at our house with Matt's medical school roommate Todd and his family. I haven't seen Todd since they graduated almost 20 years ago and have never met his wife and three boys. We made it an easy dinner with Il Vicino pizzas and salads. Kids had a great time running all over, and we loved checking out their RV.

Saturday morning Matt went to work, Kate & I went to her swim meet, and Jack slept in.

That afternoon we went to see The BFG. Loved it, but we already love the BFG in our house. It was Kate's favorite book when she first started reading, and I have fond memories of all the giggling over whizz popping! We had a family dinner that evening - grilled BBQ chicken, strawberry & avocado salad, roasted potatoes, and grilled yellow squash.

Sunday morning was much like Saturday morning... Matt went to work, Kate & I went to her swim meet, and Jack slept in!

Sunday late afternoon we headed up into the mountains with friends for a dinner picnic and tubing on the river. So much fun! The water was refreshingly perfect, the food was great (fried chicken cutlets, smoked salmon & veggie pasta salad, watermelon, and Texas cowboy cookies), and there was even small forest fire nearby which caused much excitement as the fire trucks raced past.
Sharin' a Tube!
Funny girls 
Picnic Spot
Dinner in a tube 
I swear that I feed him!!

Tuesday, July 05, 2016

Holiday Weekend Review

Fun holiday weekend for us. My parents and my brother's family were all staying with us. I love having a full house!!

Friday my parents arrived, and we had a great dinner on the back porch. I made flank steak, grilled asparagus, strawberry & avocado salad, and roasted potatoes. Kate made a blueberry pecan cake for dessert which she decorated beautifully!
Kate showing off her cake skills
Saturday my brother and his family arrived. After settling in and playing and visiting, we went to Garden of the Gods and did the Siamese Twin trail (as a side, I've never seen GOG that crowded! Apparently Saturday of a holiday weekend is NOT the time to be there!) That evening we walked to the Tastee Freeze for burgers and ice cream. A storm rolled in just as we arrived, so it was a bit chilly as we gobbled our food down.
Cousins on Garden of the Gods hike
Joey & Mira
Joey & me
Mira & Me
Kids warming up after cold, rainy dinner
We had a leisurely Sunday morning and then visited Helen Hunt Falls and drove across Gold Camp Road. That evening we had a big meal on the back porch - grilled chicken pesto skewers, buffalo mozzarella, roasted potatoes, kale salad, and corn on the cob.

Ama & Kate making a red, white & blue cake
Helen Hunt Falls
Ama & Mira 
The morning of the Fourth, the kids participated in the annual, neighborhood bike parade, and then some of us hiked Mt. Cutler.  Later we had some friends over for BBQ, snow cones, slip-n-slide, sponge bombs, poppers, etc.
Brother's family at top of Mt. Cutler

(Tripper might have loved it the most!)
Great, exhausting weekend!!

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Weekend Review

It has been a full weekend around here. I just wish I had taken more photos!

Kate had a sleepover with friends on Friday evening. They dressed up and modeled (oh, I so remember doing that when I was 12... I have photos somewhere but they are way too embarrassing to ever share!). Jack had a sleepover with a friend at our house. They entertained each other while I got ready for the garage sale.
Pretty girl!
Up early Saturday for our neighborhood garage sale. So many people and so much haggling. I kinda hate it and kinda love it. Always a good time to connect with all our neighbors. We got rid of a ton of stuff, and made over $1K! Now the goal is to not re-accumulate...

I was exhausted after the garage sale, and Matt was working Saturday evening. The kids and I sat around reading and watching TV. It felt so so good to be lazy!

Matt worked Sunday morning, and the rest of us went to a swim birthday party for our friend/neighbor turning 4. I had a tennis drill Sunday afternoon while Jack had a playdate with a friend. Sunday evening we had a family dinner with the same friends/neighbors. I brought a great kale salad (with kale from the garden! Left out the apples but still great) and made a raspberry walnut birthday cake that was as yummy as it was pretty.
Pretty Yummy!
Today is also my friend Michelle's birthday and my parents' 45th wedding anniversary. Special day in many ways.

Hope you had an enjoyable weekend also.

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Summer Goals Review

Since it is now officially summer, I thought it a good time to review my summer goals. I set these just over 3 weeks ago so I am pretty satisfied with my progress. Planning on reviewing again in 2-3 more weeks. Hoping that more frequent reviews will remind me to keep making progress.

  • Maintain Mvelopes - ongoing - so far, so good, although I am behind this week
  • Review midyear finances with Matt - to be done in July
  • Participate in neighborhood garage sale - next weekend! I've got piles and piles in the basement ready to get out
  • Set up backyard hammock - DONE and being enjoyed
  • Plant summer garden - DONE and growing rapidly
  • Plant lavender and rhubarb plants - DONE although I planted the lavender in a different spot than originally planned & I replanted the rhubarb a few times because I couldn't figure out where I wanted it!
  • Trim back lilac bushes - a little. It's a neighbor issue.
  • Plant front porch containers - DONE - looks good
  • Plant around front tree - DONE
  • Plan a second eating are in the back yard - I altered this and got a sectional outdoor couch and coffee table. It looks great, and I'm so happy with it
  • Figure out what to do to deter wasps - we've hung up a few of these traps, and they are definitely catching lots of wasps. It feels like there are fewer roaming the yard. The traps have caught no honeybees (which was my great fear) but they did get a few ladybugs and one butterfly - that was DEVASTATING to me - so we've moved them to an area that doesn't see much butterfly action
  • Clean out the homeschool room and potentially set up as a sitting room - DONE - literally moved everything out of the homeschool room and only put back what we wanted/needed. Feels so much lighter. Moved a couple chairs to see how I like it as a sitting room.
  • Plant window box flowers - this might get put off until next summer
  • Learn to use the new grill/smoker - not yet, still solely Matt's territory
  • 2016 Reading Challenge - so far this year, I've read 43 books out of goal of 60 books 
  • Complete 3 quilts this summer - I have 3 quilt tops done that need to be basted and quilted, and another top in progress; need to make time to figure out my new sewing machine
  • Work on daily routines - nope
  • Complete Upstream Field Guide class - nope
  • Sign up for my goat cheese making class - nope, but I looked up the phone number
  • Blog more - a bit better?
  • Plan 1:1 dates with kids at least every other week - I have not been intentional with this, but it has worked out that I've had some good alone time with each
  • Don't go insane driving them everywhere they need to be all summer - FAIL! :) But we scheduled most of our busyness in the first couple weeks of June. Things slow down a bit from here (in a good, intentional way), although I'm still driving to swim practice twice a day. Even though it is less than 10 minutes to the pool, the drive is already getting old.
  • Join library summer reading program - DONE - Jack has been good about tracking his books, but I think Kate is feeling that the program (despite being geared for teens) is below her

  • Bake bread at least weekly - no, but I'm going to mix up some dough tomorrow
  • Make a list of favorite summer meals - I've thought about it, and I've been going through old cookbooks
  • Maintain weekly Pilates class - so far, so good. Thinking I want to add a second class.
  • Try a new yoga class - not yet
  • Maintain 2x/week bootcamp workout - I've run hot & cold with going. 6am is just so early!
  • Choose, train and run a 5K - nope, but I've been running more regularly
  • Do the 30 Day Green Smoothing challenge - starts July 1
  • Make and complete summer hiking bucket list - Made the list, but we haven't made much progress on it. Kate's morning swim practice and Jack's evening swim practice take up prime hiking time. Might have to adjust this goal.
  • Make and complete summer restaurant bucket list - Made this list and have been proactive about trying some new restaurants. However, I think we would have to eat out twice a day all summer to actually cross off all the places I put on the list! But the real goal is to get out and try some new places.
  • Make and complete summer outing bucket list - Made the list and making an effort to get some things done. Again, the first few weeks of June are the busiest of our summer, so we'll make more progress on the bucket list in the coming months.
  • Go camping - we camped at the Meadowgrass Music Festival, but I'm not sure I want to count that.