27 December 2009

Christmas Time

Elizabeth and I braved the snow, sleet, ice and rain to make it back to the farm for Christmas. The roads were great when we started out, but started to get worse as the trip went on - to the point that it took 2 hours to get to my parents house from Madison (it normally takes an hour or less). We had a great time spending the holiday with my parents and extended family.

On Christmas Day, we headed out on the road again to her parents' house (the roads were a lot better by then). We had a great time spending the day and weekend with her family. Our niece and nephew are the cutest kids ever! Allison invited us to join her and grandpa and see the movie, "Princess and The Frog" which was pretty good - even for adults!

23 December 2009

Splendid Night With Friends

It has been a long, long time since the two of us have been able to get together with the Kooyers. But we finally were able to find a free night on both sides for everyone to hang out. Adam & Heather had us over for dinner and to finish off the remainder of the wine they bought in Italy.

Adam made stuffed manicotti for dinner. Along with the wine. a nice salad and some Italian bread with olive oil & balsamic vinegar, it was a Feast of Italy! The manicotti was delicious - Adam made enough for a large family, which was great because they gave us some to take home. For dessert, Elizabeth and I picked up a French Silk pie at The Baker's Wife in Minneapolis. It was gigantic, but so incredibly yummy - we'll definitely do that again! As payment for the take-home Italian, we left the pie...much to their delight!

It was great to visit with our friends again and hopefully we'll be able to match up our schedules and do it again really soon.

12 December 2009

Happy Anniversary

This past week we celebrated our 4th anniversary. We decided ahead of time that we weren't going to get each other presents, but you pretty much know how that always turns out - there were presents after all! Elizabeth wanted to surprise me - and pretty much did so, as she led me out for dinner and a night's stay at Sofitel. It's a french-themed hotel & restaurant that she has always wanted to stay at. I bought her a gift certificate at Banana Republic, one of her favorite places to shop. We had a great time and it was nice not to have to work the next day (at least for me - wifey still had to work). :)

07 December 2009

Vikings Lost!

The Arizona Cardinals dominated the game almost entirely, winning 30-17. I was smiling. :) Brett Favre wasn't a savior, the defense was exposed and Adrian Peterson wasn't even an issue. Now, the perfect follow-up would be if the Packers end up winning tonight against Baltimore. *crosses fingers*

Update: The PACKERS won their game! *woo-HOO* =)

04 December 2009


The wife and I went to my parents farm for Thanksgiving weekend. I haven't been back home since June, so it was a welcome trip regardless of the holiday. Instead of spending time with the extended relatives, Mom thought it would be nice to just have a small celebration and be thankful in a small fashion. I agreed! We arrived just before the Packers game started (as scheduled) and there was plenty of turkey, stuffing, potatoes and carrots to go around. Mom also made these butter rolls that were to die for! =)

On Friday, Elizabeth and I wanted to go to Galena, Illinois to stock up at their winery and visit the little shops in the historic town. We were a little freaked out to find that our favorite popcorn place was gone - but then were joyous when we found it had just relocated further down on the other side of the street. Have you ever had Grape Popcorn?!?! Splendid...

Elizabeth wanted to run 10 miles in preparation for her next marathon, so I plotted a course through the hilly countryside. She finished it, but I'm sure she will want to look for flatter terrain in the future.

Mom wanted me to put up Christmas lights on the balcony, so that was my task for Saturday. Dad was 'volunteered' (to his dismay) to assist and it made the job a lot quicker. I also helped Dad get the pool ready for winter - the water was 32F. Needless to say, we didn't go swimming.

I ended up getting almost an entire batch of homemade chocolate chip cookies by the end of the weekend. I like going home to visit and it's great to spend time with my family. 2-3 times a year just isn't enough, though - so I hope to be able to make it a little more frequent in the future.