Thursday, November 13, 2014

Recovering the blogging Mojo

Well, we got thrown a little the past few weeks and getting back into the swing has been a challenge. It really started with a lot of craziness and people not following through on what they said and ended up with the sad passing of Dave’s son. I really hope it’s all over.

Although I just realized Blane’s birthday is Monday. This Monday. I’ll be in Vegas. Getting more behind at work and not at all ready for Blane’s 30th Birthday. Not. At. All.

I have a feeling that Christmas is going to be a little bit frantic this year……

However, back to the present—stay focused--We did do some things in October.  I know we did.

Cody and Marel came to visit, and brought Dylan along too.



Cody and Marel went hiking. Cody was disturbed that Marel didn’t have the correct shoes so she had to change to her tennies-


Leopard print, right?? She got perturbed when Cody took her picture on the trail and didn’t get her shoes (“that you made so much fuss over”) in the picture. I personally love them.

And we went out to dinner in So Minneapolis


And we drank this delicious berry martini thingy!


I’ll take two please.

We drove over to the Wisconsin side to watch a Packer Game with the Meldes

It was fall weather but I had a hard time getting a good picture of fall for some reason—could have been the speeding car or something like that.



I don’t know. This was in my back yard.


Fall in the Country Club Manor….

I  tried to teach my friend Tiffany how to knit.

Tiff is going with us to Vegas for Rock and Roll this weekend. And she ran with us two years ago in Seattle at Rock and Roll-and was a Ragnar team mate-

Space Needle

That’s her in the middle at the space needle. After the race in Seattle in 2013. Not sure why she looks so refreshed and we look a little bit beat up (that’s Cathy on the end)

Anyway, I tried to teach her to knit but a bottle of wine sort of got in the way.


She did exceptionally well. Lesson two minus a bottle of wine coming up.

So-that’s the October update. Sort of. November has the boys in suits, a short trip to Tacoma, another trip to Vegas.

Stay tuned--Film at 11!


Sunset out the back door.

Saturday, November 8, 2014

No good way to say….

We’ve had a death in the family. Dave’s youngest son Seth passed away from complications of his Cystic Fibrosis. He’d had a lung transplant in April and did have some good months of no oxygen and vest treatments. He apparently could live a sort of normal life for a while.

Anyway, funeral is today and then we will go on with that thing called life, which is what the living do.

I will resume blog posts next week after all is said and done.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Laura Mix-Worst. Idea. Ever.

Actual things that happen in our house that we blame on Laura.


Dave-What. Now.

Me-Jack is in the toilet. Again.


Me-He’s playing in the toilet. Not just taking a drink like Chat. His HANDS are in the toilet

(Chat preparing for a cool refreshing sip)


Dave-Shut the lid. Problem solved.

Me-Well, I don’t want to ruin his fun. You know, this all started at Laura’s house.

Dave-This is ALL Laura’s fault. It all started with her great idea to get that cat water fountain. It was the worst idea  EVER.  After that Jack turned into a water whore.

(This is where the problems started….)

Jack and Freckles

Me-I KNOW it. I think it’s quite possible that Chat learned the toilet trick from Laura because I never saw Chat do it before living in that house.


Dave- Well, I never saw Laura drinking OR playing in the toilet. But it was after living in her house hold that our cats turned into toilet freaks.

Me-Do you ever have the urge to put YOUR hands in the toilet, I mean since living there?

Dave-What? And Jack get your toilet hands away from me.

Me-Never mind.


Seriously, I’m using the toilet here….


Wednesday, October 15, 2014

A Little Beer, A Lot of Retreat

I went to an open house for Insight Brewing in Minneapolis.

Some of you might remember Cody and his friend Ilan.

They met in 7th grade. That’s a while back. They have been great friends ever since.


graduation 013

Ilan has been in the process of opening his own tap room/brewery. He has some partners of course, but we like to think of Ilan as being the king of the brewers.

(I do continuously tell the story of how Cody and Ilan tried to make liquor in Cody’s bedroom. Ilan says that was his first batch. Blane says they could have killed themselves, the “little chemists” and I say parenting was a challenge…..)

Ilan spent a year in Europe and the Orient learning the ropes of how to brew.  And did it pay off. He and Cody also biked across part of Europe that summer, the summer of Cody’s 150 dollar root canal in Belgium. (We decided it would be cheaper to have all your teeth fixed in Europe, including air fare, than to do it here. Just saying. It’s a destination dental visit…anyway….)

Last month he had an open house to introduce some of the beers and the venue. It was really really nice and the beer? Fab-you-lous.

Big shiny holding tanks (I have no idea what they would be called in real life).


This is the back room where the magic happens.


There was  quite a crowd. (I stole this pic from FB because I couldn’t do the crowd cam)

Photo: Thanks to everyone who came to our Open House on Friday night!  It was an incredible turnout and we're working hard to officially open ASAP!

People come when there’s delicious free beer. Or maybe just free beer.

And of course Ilan--

Insight 4

Another high school pal of Cody’s, Dylan, was there working the venue too. He doesn’t work there full time, he has another job, but I guess he can fill in when needed.

Insight 2

And here’s a charming picture of all of them from high school-

Interestingly, Ilan and Dylan (on the right) were at the brewery and Nate (on the left) will be working there too. The other two are doctors. (Cody and Mike)

The future of America. Who knew?


Go there-Insight Brewing-I can’t say enough good stuff about it. The beer is phenomenal.

The first weekend of October was the annual Pine Needles Eagle Bluff Retreat. It’s truly the highlight of the year.

The Traditional Retreat Breakfast of Champions--


And lovely views--




Beautiful sunny days, Fog in the valley, Sunrise over the Root River. What more can you ask for?

Well, there is some sewing going on too--

Suzie and Connie’s sister Deena were there


Marcia thinking hard on a crabby quilt


Connie and now her daughter Megan


And, of course, Sheryl, aka Murch, came all the way from Florida. Yayay.

She brought me a present-my new sock monkey jammies--

This is us doing what we call “the George Clooney”


george-clooney-19-962 (2)

Right? Not sure Sheryl has quite the same expression as George, but I am right on with Amal’s glamour. (Thank you People Magazine for the pics). We had quite a discussion about George Clooney. He’s really quite fascinating. In more ways than one. Just Google George and plastic surgery. That’s all I’m going to say.

Because what happens at retreat mostly stays at retreat.


This is Marcia’s work of art!

This is the mystery quilt-I really liked it although the colors were totally out of my comfort zone.


Super easy-and quite bold. Not really the colors of my comfort zone.

The pattern can be changed around to make the squares different designs AND different sizes. Nice.

So, another fall retreat over. I wish it was more often, but then maybe it wouldn’t be so special. Right?

I forgot to post this event that happened at the beginning of Sept (Labor Day). Blane came down to visit so we took a picture.


That’s him at the train station getting ready to leave. It was a nice visit. He’ll be back at Christmas.

Cody and Marel are here now. Let’s hope I remember to get a picture with them. Jeesh.


Jack says hello.


Thursday, September 25, 2014

Traveling Blog

So sorry for the delay.

I must say it is my pet peeve when I go to someone’s blog and it’s all out of date. Usually by a couple of years.

I’m not that bad. And I have an excuse--I have been recently traveling. Yes I have.

Last Thursday, which was 9/11, I flew to Seattle at the height of rush hour so my sister could fight traffic to come and pick me up at 5:50 pm.  You’re welcome. It’s a character builder.  Fortunately she left her house 20 miles away from the airport by 2 PM so was pretty close to on time.

The purpose of getting to Seattle on Thursday was so that we could get up bright and early Friday and take Grampa to Sun River.

Last year at the gala Grampa bought two nights at Sun River. After that I moved back to MN and handed the responsibility reins to Martha  who planned to drive them down to Oregon. As it turned out, she would be driving by herself so  I decided it would be as good a time as ever to come back for a work week and to add in a little vacay to central Oregon. I do love me some Sun River. And no one should have to face a trip like that by themselves. Survivor-Old People Edition. It’s just not right.

Anyway, we didn’t actually stay at the resort-we stayed in a house within the Sun River, #2 Butternut. But more about that later.

We had a lovely drive down. We took I-5 to Salem, had a delicious lunch at The Wild Pear.


That is what I’m talking about.

We took a left at Salem and started over the Santiam pass. It was lovely.


Beautiful Rivers

IMG_2626 (2)

Wooded hills


There’s a mountain between those trees


This is a big burn that happened in the past. It’s like a tree graveyard and kinda spooky.


Long straight hiways


This selfie needs no explanation.


We arrived at our destination around 6ish or so. We decided that the area has definitely changed since we hung around there about 35-40 years ago. Funny how that happens. Sisters, a town we remember as rather dumpy and not all that inviting is now a huge tourist destination complete with traffic jam. Who knew?

Sun River is  lovely place. When we got there we rested a bit, then off to the brewery for delicious dinner. Sweet.

Saturday was another beautiful day and Martha and I started out with a brisk morning walk in which we promptly got lost. We saw lots of people walking their dogs. We tried to keep the ladies on our phones who were giving us directions quiet but every time someone passed by they’d start yelling at us-RECALCULATING. It was only slightly humiliating. After a 5 mile stroll we found the place we were looking for about a mile from our house. Jeesh. We only took one wrong turn on the way back. 


Sunrise out the back door.


Hey-you scared us. But not for long because we are used to humans and we like eating tasty shrubbery.

Mt Bachelor over the meadow.


We finally got home and rousted the old people and travelled over to the head of the Metolius. As Martha says “It’s a river that comes out of the ground fully formed”. I believe that says it all.

On the way over we saw some beauteous mountains-these are the Three Sisters.


I think this is Mt Washington


Mt Jefferson


Black Butte-where the Head of the Metolius is


Here’s the educational roadside plaque.


And, selfie at the viewpoint. Ha. Selfies. This trip was completely dedicated to the selfie. I tried to make them tell a story. Like the one above… I mostly took them to send to Dave. I don’t think he was impressed much.  (I can see why-not my best selfie-yet)


Selfie with mountain in the background which I am not looking at or even interested in at this moment.

We resumed our search for the Metolius. It took a while to find it. Because Martha and I were really good at finding things this day. We again took the long way. But-----


Here’s the sign at the head of the trail. My goal was to take pictures of signs that can’t be read.  So far so good.



Blue Skies


Arty shot


And the Head of the Metolius-fully formed about 200 feet long at this point.




(I need to find the edit that removes saggy neck skin-but I have a new computer and I haven’t found that command yet)

After this, we headed back to Sisters and Martha and I went to the Stitchin’ Post-a sort of famous quilt store in Sisters.

I didn’t take one dang picture. Not even a selfie. What was I thinking?

I didn’t take this, I stole it from the interwebs.  Lovely store AND there was also yarn. Win win, right?

By this time the old people were tired so we went home and fixed them lunch. Martha and I walked some more because we didn’t get enough walking in. We got yelled at by a biker wanting more walking trail because obviously we were taking up way too much of it. If I hadn’t been so frightened by his shouting at us I think I would have come back with a decidedly unfriendly retort.  We walked 9 miles that day. Which made up for the two 7 hour travel days of only walking to rest stops and to get food-both basic bodily needs.

We had dinner at the SunRiver Lodge. The Meadows it was called because it overlooked some  meadows. There were river otters out there in the Sun River too. I didn’t get a picture of them. I got a picture of the twilight.

Mount Bachelor at sunset.


We left Sunday early.

The old people were super tired from all the fun and games.


No, I’m not laughing at them sleeping or making fun of them in any way, shape, or form. Not. At. All.

Breakfast somewhere in Oregon with a bear theme.


Martha escorting old people who are blinded by the radiant sun.




I look a little worse for wear too. It’s ex-haus-ting keeping the old people in line. They are deceptively cunning. Just saying. They are easy to lose too. Not that we tried to lose them, they just got lost a couple of times. Hey, it happens.

We arrived back in T-town, and I picked up my rental car at the airport.

Seriously, it’s almost the Blueberry-(those in the know, know)

Laura thought it was classic and I should get my picture inside it. But I couldn’t stand another selfie and a selfie wouldn’t capture the whole ambiance of me in the actual blueberry.


I worked all week long and let me tell you-there’s a reason I do better outside the office, about 1700 miles east. Really. There is.

Because at the end of the week I had to go and get this--

A mini Growler. Which I drank. All by myself. And a couple of Stella’s to top it off.


Cubicle dwelling will do that to you. The real surprise is that I wasn’t drinking this while in the office. Although, note to self, maybe next time.

I went back to the graves in Portland on Saturday to do some business with the G-Pa.



It’s really a beautiful place  to ride bikes and enjoy the peace and quiet because dead people are really quiet.

On the way home I saw this and thought of Dave-his own personal Mecca.


Who knew this existed in the great Pacific Northwest-land of organic fruit and honey?

got back to T-town and returned to Nina’s, where I was staying, and we went out to dinner with her friend Brian (are you tired yet because this trip kicked my ass so bad I was ill on Monday and couldn’t go to work at the quilt store-I am just pointing out that right now you should be saying to yourself-what? She did more? Wasn’t she tired? How did she do that?  She must be SUPERHUMAN. And…you would be right).

Here’s a bad selfie we took at dinner. Yes, graded on the curve against all the other selfies it’s, well, not that great but amused us to no end.

Nina and Me

This is what happens when you know someone for 45 years. That’s forty five years. Nina is about 8 hours older than me. Doesn’t she look it?? I tell her that all the time.

The view was pretty nice too.


That town is old Steilacoom. Someone should move that tree.



And finally, on Sunday, 10 freaking days later, I returned back to the fold, Sweet Home Minnesota.


See ya in November, Alaska airlines. Thanks again for the precheck.

Lastly, one morning at Nina’s, I fed the cats. Well I fed them every morning but this morning it turned out a little bit differently--


Heyyyyy, knock knock Laura Mix.

My friends call me Stubby.