Tuesday, August 9, 2011

You know you're in love when you can't fall asleep because reality is finally better than your dreams. ~ Dr. Seuss~

It's FINALLY time for my summer wedding recaps. This summer johnny and I had the pleasure of attending not only one but two fabulous weddings. Both weddings were unique and perfect for each couple. 
I would like to include a disclaimer that there are no food pictures in this post because I wanted to focus on the celebration of love. With that being said both weddings had INCREDIBLE food and thank god for silk dresses because they provide plenty of room for cake :)

Aaaron and Amy, wedded bliss in a secret garden

Johnny and I arrived at the botanical garden a bit early. He has never been and it was the perfect opportunity to take photos and pick out our favorite flowers :)

Look at that handsome man, his date must be one lucky gal.

If you think its a good idea to take a picture of yourself sitting on top of a bronze tortoise thing again, it was EXTREMELY hot!

Love is in the air.

Okay, okay enough of us and onto the real love birds...

They rode into the garden on a tandem bike for two instantly bringing tears to my eyes.

Aaron and Amy wanted to keep their neptuals small and intimate. She wore a stunning cream colored dress with a black bow. Aaron wore a matching cream shirt with slacks in essense they both looked perfect for a cool sunday afternoon ceremony. 

Aaron and Amy held a quaint, casual, country style wedding in Steamboat's botanical garden. The botanical garden is a gorgeous place to get married with everything from its beautiful blooming flowers to grass lawn next to a pond. 

After the vows we headed over to the reception area to enjoy speeches, dinner, cake and dancing. 

I know I promised not to show pictures of food but their wedding was catered by Rex's and had the most incredible mac 'n cheese ever (it had bacon)!

I might have received a few glares when I went back for thirds, fourths, fifths... I think if they had a scale for my plate it would have weighed 3 lbs but thats what weddings (Thanksgiving and the Superbowl) are for.

Once we had full bellies it was time to boogie down. Even though I haven't been to too many weddings this was the FIRST wedding that include hula hooping.

We had a blast and feel so honored to have been invited to share in their special day.

Kevin and Jessica, a fairy tale wedding in Vail

I feel it is my duty to show (tell) you the whole truth and nothing but the truth. In this case the truth is my hair is stickily straight and gains the little curls I attempt with the help of old lady curlers. In honoring the truth I am forced to show you this silly photo of myself on the car ride to Vail. In my defense Johnny was an usher for their wedding and we had to rush from work to Vail so I worked my magic in the car.

While I sat in my curlers Johnny drove us as fast as he could to Vail. Once we got to Vail we had an incredible dinner at Campo de Fiori, it was a huge coincide that their rehearsal dinner happened to be at one of our favorite vail restaurants. As promised I did not take photos but was extremely pleased with my dinner :)

One of the greatest parts about weddings is getting to see long lost friends like Andy and Angela. Andy and Johnny met when they were in pull-ups and have been friends ever since. I met Angela through Andy and simply adore her. It's truly wonderful when we get time to catch up with old friends. 

In case you are wondering Angela is holding up the money clip Kevin gave Johnny as an usher gift. I love that idea it was engraved with his initially and that way Johnny can carry a piece of them with him everyday!

After an amazing night of dinner, dancing and catching up with old friends it was time to head to bed because Johnny had a very important job to do...

In Johnny's words "he was made to wear suits." He looked amazing :) In my opinion he had the third most important job of the day (aside from the couple and the priest) to make sure that no one walked down the isle before the ceremony. 

When he caught me trying to sneak down the isle (yeah right) he made this face

It looks like he successfully completed his job. Congratulations to Kevin and Jessica,  may your marriage be long and joyful filled blessings, love and laughter. 

We took a few photos outside of the church before heading to the reception.

As soon as we found our table I reached into my purse to take a picture of the adorable name holders. Each person had a tiny pair of wooden skis to hold their name tag to fit into the ski town theme. 

Jessica told me that she and her mom did all of the wedding details without a planner! I must commend her because they did a fantastic job and the reception was absolutely breathtaking. 

Photo opp time....the handsome groomsmen Andy (redhead), Andy H (the big guy) and Greg (franchise). 

Notice the differences between the before and after. In the before its light out and Andy Hill is yet to give his best man speech, in the after the sun has gone down and its time to celebrate with the bride and groom.

May your love be as endless as the circle of your wedding rings.

Monday, August 1, 2011


This weekend Johnny and I made the hour and a half drive to his parents condo in Copper. On Sunday I competed in my first triathlon (post coming soon) and we figured we would make a weekend out it. After sitting in the car for what seemed like forever I was famished, surprise-surprise. I used Johnny's fancy iphone to yelp search restaurants in Frisco and came up with the "Lost Cajun," it had received 4 stars and sounded like a little piece of southern heaven in the middle of a Colorado ski town.

From the outside it looked quaint with its log cabin exterior and cozy picnic tables. After finding a seat at a table outside we were presented with the menu and two samples of red beans with rice and crawfish etouffee. It was refreshing to have samples before choosing what to order.

After the log drive I decided to order a glass of white wine and was surprised to find the plastic cup it came in. I know it was a laid back atmosphere but the wine tasted like it came from a box (not that I had a problem drinking it but it tasted like freshmen year of college).

After being disappointed with the wine I felt very flustered to say the least of what to order. I asked the waitress if they had a salad because everything on the menu was fried and her response was "we have coleslaw."I do love fried food but was in the mood for something a bit lighter.

Johnny's interpretation of my indecisiveness....

Since Johnny knew it would take me awhile to decide what to order he followed suit and ordered an Abita, a Louisiana beer, that they poured into a paper cup (odd).

We bravely decided to test our luck with the fried shrimp po-boy and seafood gumbo.

The food failed in its photographic appeal and taste.

The gumbo was EXTREMELY salty and almost inedible. I was brave enough to try the potato salad which tasted like it came from the grocery store pre-made display. Honestly, I was very unimpressed to say the least. I stole a couple of bites of Johnny's shrimp po-boy and french fries. Both of which were salty but made a little better with ketchup (the universal problem solver).

After being thoroughly disappointed we made the executive decision to head down the street to Vinny's one of our favorite restaurants for a recovery drink. We left so fast that johnny left his sunglasses and we had to get them the next day if thats any indication of how we felt about about our dining experience.

Since Sunday was race day we decided to enjoy the breath taking view from his parents condo and grill out on Saturday night.

The gorgeous view makes me feel so fortunate and lucky to live in such a beautiful place (it's okay if it makes you a little jealous ;)

His parents bought the condo when he was eight and he has had the pleasure of riding the super bee lift ever since.

Sometimes the most amazing meals come out of simple ingredients. Considering we were leaving in the morning we didn't want to buy too many ingredients. The perfect solution to getting your veggies and CHEAP.....salad in a bag!

Our grilling ingredients...

The grill master (he knows how to perfectly butterfly a sausage, because thats the ONLY acceptable way to eat a link)!

A romantic table for two.

Could you imagine if a $2.00 bone was the key to your happiness.

Sometimes happiness comes in the form of a big drolly smile :)

Or happiness comes in the form of a chicken apple sausage you can devour in one bite!

Stay tuned for upcoming posts about my first triathlon and wedding season. 

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Tour de Steamboat

As many of you know my grandmother Dalorie "Dal" Finkel passed away this past September after a LONG battle with cancer. Dal was more than a grandmother she was my best friend. 

Since her death I have tried to raise money to help families with cancer patients. In the spring I participated in the Penguin Plunge. My friends and I collected money from sponsors and jumped into the Catamount Country Club freezing cold water to raise money for cancer. 

Our team raised over $2,000 to aid Yampa Valley Medical Center Cancer Services! Raising money for people in need felt so rewarding and made me feel closer to my deceased grandmother. 

This summer when the Tour de Steamboat presented itself I knew it was something I would be interested in but wasn't sure that we would be in town. Last week when I knew that I was going to be in Steamboat I immediately registered. The Tour de Steamboat is  is a century+ non competitive road ride that starts and ends in beautiful Steamboat Springs, CO. The initial event was hosted as a race by the legendary frame builder, Kent Eriksen, in the late 1970’s. The event was resurrected in 2004 as a non competitive road ride by Kent’s wife, Katie Lindquist and partner Brad Cusenbary. In 2008, Katie and Brad decided to turn the event into a benefit ride to not only raise money but awareness to the Sunshine Kids Foundation. It is the goal of the Sunshine Kids Organization to provide young cancer patients with opportunities to participate in positive group activities which promote self-esteem, personal accomplishment and just plain old fashioned fun!

The event offers three courses a 26 mile Sidney Peak ride, a 40 mile Stagecoach out-n-back and a 110 classic tour de steamboat. Since I am new to road biking I knew that I could handle the 26 or 40 mile rides, the 40 was full so I registered for the 26 mile ride.

On Friday before the ride Johnny and I attended the Sunshine Kids benefit pasta dinner. (Usually I post pictures of my food but this is about the charity not the AMAZING pasta, salad, garlic bread and brownie dinner). Johnny and I had fun bidding on items at the silent auction. We were outbid on everything except a BAP costume soft-shell jacket, lucky me :) 

On Saturday morning I put on my new Orange Peel jersey and was ready to ride. 

The ride offered an organized mass start at 7:00 am in front of little toots park but riders were welcome to ride the marked course at anytime throughout the day.

I loved the excitement of seeing everyone ready to ride and on their bikes. Partaking in the mass start was great experience for my upcoming sprint tri (in two weeks)!

My bike ride was incredible. I felt at one with myself, nature and my grandmother. I knew she would be proud of me and looking over me as my legs peddled. 

Johnny was very proud of me too, he rewarded with me buckwheat chocolate chip pancakes when I got home. Johnny makes the worlds (BIGGEST) best pancakes!

I took this photo before I added strawberries, peanut butter and blueberry agave syrup (thank you whole foods)!

My incredible ride and delicious breakfast set the tone for a fun filled saturday. Go see Winnie the Pooh, it will make you smile :) 

Saturday, July 16, 2011

afternoon delight

On Wednesday Johnny and I meet on my lunch break to try out Mountain Brew, a new coffee shop. Mountain Brew recently relocated from the mountain to a new downtown location at 427 Oak Street. The day before I went to Mountain Brew for a business networking breakfast and was dying to go back to try out breakfast or lunch (I obviously only waited one day).

Mountain Brew offers a unique selection of coffee and expresso drinks like "alice in wonderland: latte with vanilla & raspberry," "apple pie: apple & cinnamon latte-just like moms," or the "turtle: chocolate carmel and peanut butter." Since I have been off the brew (meaning coffee) for over three years I went with my typical summer drink of iced green tea.

The iced green tea really hit the spot. I love iced green tea during the summer and some might consider my daily indulgence an addiction. I found Mountain Brew's green tea to have hints of fruit while allowing the smooth flavor of fine tea to shine through.

Johnny on the other hand is a brew man. He is also a big candy fan and tried a coffee drink called "snickers: chocolate, vanilla and carmel."

I think he liked it because he drank it so fast it was hard for me to snap a photo.

In addition to coffee and pastries, Mountain Brew serves breakfast and lunch items. I ventured out from my norm of going with a salad and ordered the "vortex: tomato, cucumber, avocado & hummus" sub sandwich.

This sandwich was the perfect summer sandwich with its light veggie ingredients and crunchy bread. I love thick rolls but I don't like the extra inside bread so I usually ask the restaurant to excavate the bread (yes I know what this word means). In this case the bread was perfect, the french begat was not overly stuffed and had the perfect crunch with every bite.

Johnny went with a quesadilla the "stampede: blend of cheeses, chicken, and roasted red pepper, sliced avocado and salsa."

His quesadilla was very tasty (I traded him a piece for the other half of my sandwich). It was cooked perfectly with a little crunch on the ends. My only suggestions would be to put the avocado inside of the quesadilla and to serve it with more salsa, you can NEVER have too much salsa in my opinion.

Overall we both left happy and full :) We did share peanut butter cookies but those were devoured even before we got our lunch.

After lunch we walked down the street to take a look at the community garden. Leadership Steamboat created the garden in 2010 so that people would have a place to grow fresh vegetables while learning local agricultural heritage and healthy lifestyles.

There are park benches and a nice shady tree to sit and read. Visiting the garden made us want to grow our own vegetables but for now I think we will stick with the tomato plant which is doing awesome!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

It's "Sposta" be good

Most importantly, I would like to apologize for the delay in posts.  I have recently switched professions and promise to post about the big change soon. Today I have decided to dedicate my blog post to things that you may (ARE) be missing out on.

Have you ever tried mango as a bagel topping because you should!

I must confess that last week I purchased and learned how to cut a mango. I am pretty much obsessed with a little blog called Run Eat Repeat and Monica taught me how to cut a mango with her youtube video. Check it out! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n-boXxOmPqA&feature=youtu.be

I ate my mango on top of a cinnamon raisin bagel thin with peanut butter. If you can't tell how excited I was to try it you should note the bite missing in the photo :)

Additionally I would like to confess my unhealthy obsession with Justin's mini peanut butter and almond butter packets because they are the perfect size to fit in your purse and they taste amazing!

The main point being you are missing out if you are not eating mangos, cinnamon raisin bagel thins and peanut butter.

You are also missing out if you have not tried Spostas Steamboat's newest sushi restaurant. Truth be told Spostas has been around for awhile as a delivery only restaurant but now is located at 825 Oak Street.

Last Friday night Johnny and I decided to try it out and were not disappointed.

I started out with the traditional miso soup.

I loved how the miso soup came in a non-traditional bowl. Since they are a new restaurant they are working out the kinks with mix matched plates and paper menus. I don't need all the glitz and glamour as long as the food comes out in a timely manor (check) and is delicious (check).

If you know me at all you know that I am a boring orderer (insert salad) and almost always make alterations.  In this case I did order a salad but it came with rice. I figured I couldn't go wrong with my selection because ultimate was in the title. I ordered the ultimate sushi salad : tuna, imitation crab atop rice and romaine with yellow bell peppers, sprouts, and avocado. I ordered it with poppy seed dressing on the side. If they would have let me back in the kitchen I would have drank the dressing from the bottle it was so incredible.

You are missing out if you do not go try this salad. This bright, colorful, flavorful dish is a must have. I thought it was interesting how the salad came with rice but it was nice because it made it a mix between a rice bowl and salad. The fusion of the rice and salad was hearty yet fresh and light.

Johnny went the traditional route by ordering sushi (ordering sushi at a sushi restaurant who knew) with untraditional ingredients like pepper jack cheese and ground beef. He order the yampa valley roll: Colorado grass feed ground beef pepper jack or sharp cheddar cheese, dill pickle and teriyaki sauce. He also ordered a K2 roll: tuna, tempura fried asparagus, green onions, avocado, teriyaki and firecrackers sauces.

Even though the ingredients in his rolls were a little unusual they worked really well together. Overall I would definitely go back for dinner or even lunch, they have an awesome lunch special 11:30 to 3:00 two rolls for 9 dollars.

In Pearl's case she is missing out on some of her lady parts and is not a happy camper.

No puppies for us = one miserable Pearl Ann

I'm off to take care of puppy Pearl, have a good evening!