Sunday, March 25, 2012


I mentioned a few months ago that we had some sections of fence blow down in the wind storms, and between vacations, snow storms, work and other wind storms we just got around to putting the fences back up. Bill again came over to have some 'fun' with the fence, and we got it done in just a few hours.

First up was demolishing the old fence, which I did off-camera (haha) and it left us with quite a bit of wood that we could reuse for the new fence. The hardest part by far was digging the holes for the support beams to stick into. The first hole we dug involved removing about 3 feet of rotten wood from the existing hole, which finally came out after a lot of sweat by Bill and I. The hole on the top of the hill also had wood in it, but this one did not come out easily at all. After a few minutes we decided to move the hole down a little bit, and that worked like a charm!

Julie and I had run to Lowe's to pick up the materials earlier in the day, so all that was left was to mix and pour some concrete for the posts.

We let the cement for the posts dry overnight, and discovered that the brackets we bought to connect the wood to the posts were the wrong size. We had bought 1 5/8" posts, and the brackets were for 1 7/8" posts, while that doesn't sound like a lot, it cost us about 2 hours at Lowe's while we searched for solutions, and eventually found a screw that would tighten the brackets enough. The next day we cut some 2x4s and hammered the fence together.

All in all it was a good thing to get done, and hopefully the new fence will hold through our crazy windstorms for years to come!

Thanks for all the help Bill!!

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Today was awesome!

Hi, I just thought I would share our day with you! We started out waking up very late for us, we couldn't believe when we woke up at 9 am that we had slept that long. Our original plan was to go for a hike and then spend the rest of the day at home... well not too long after we woke up we thought about hitting up REI.

Mikey wanted to go look at bikes, and I said sure, we can go look, we don't have to buy any bikes today. Well, after about ten minutes looking at bikes, we were testing riding them in the parking lot! I think we were both very happy with the bikes we had chosen to test and we both decided we would get them! I am not sure if you guys are member's, but if you are you probably have received your dividends and have spent money already too! It worked out pretty well, we got 20% off for being members (they have coupons 4 times a year) and we both used our dividend balances! My bike is pretty girlie, I think I might have to get a basket to put on the front of it! And we might have to move close to a beach!

Here are the pictures of our bikes from the REI website!

After we paid an arm to REI we loaded the bikes up in the Jeep and headed to the Santa Fe Trail, it runs through town. We rode about 4 miles when Mikey thought his tire might have been getting a little flat so we turned around and headed back to the car. It was a great little first ride and the weather was fantastic! Sorry we didn't take a camera with us, so there are no fun pictures of our first bike ride :(

After our little ride, we headed home and unloaded the bikes and then headed off to the movies! Did you already go see The Hunger Games?? Well, after I read all the books, I talked Mikey into reading them too and we were ready to go see the movie! I thought it was really good, they did a great job covering the important details from the book. Even though it's a bit of a rough subject, the government forcing kids to be selected to enter a game of killing where only one survives, I would recommend picking up the books or heading to the movies!

So to finish off the day we were going to pick up some stuff at the grocery store for dinner, but we drove by Wich Wich on the way home and noticed that it had it's OPEN sign on. They just opened this week! It is a great sandwich place that we had tried in Denver before and we were excited when we saw it was coming in our local shopping center so we decided that it would make a great dinner instead. Hope everyone is doing well and that you are also getting to enjoy some wonderful weather!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

TWD: Baking with Julia - Irish Soda Bread

Hi! This week the recipe from Baking with Julia was for Irish Soda Bread, and it was an easy one! It only had five ingredients since we decided to added dried cherries! You can check out the recipe at My Culinary Mission and Chocolate Moosey.

It was really easy to mix up the ingredients and stick it right in the oven. It was even easier since my Mom came and helped cut up the dried cherries! Here are just a few pictures of us getting everything together and yes that is buttermilk in my hand. My Mom helped as much as she could, look how happy she was so to get me a pie dish to cook the bread on!

Below is the bread before and after is was cooked! The recipe said to let the bread cool before eating, but it didn't last that long! I think the cherries made the bread delicious.

Making the Irish Soda Bread was pretty much the only thing we did this weekend to celebrate St. Patrick's Day. I am not even sure I wore green on Saturday. And I didn't even wear my green barrettes that I have kept just to wear on St. Patty's Day. Oh well... I am sure we will write another blog soon about what we did with our weekend!

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Deer Defense!

I am not sure if you remember reading about how I planted tulips in my front yard. Well, they started to come up and before I knew it they had been eaten by the deer in our neighborhood. All of them were eaten and not a single one survived.

Well this year when I started to see them sprouting through the ground, I knew we needed to fend the deer off somehow. Chicken wire was the answer! I had Mikey help me build a fence/cover for the tulips. So far so good, there are still tulips growing!

The tulips coming up:

It looks like Mikey did all the work, but it isn't true, he just got in all the pictures!

Volunteering with Rick Steve's

Our week seemed to be full of excitement! Through my work, we got to volunteer at a lecture from Rick Steve's. It was put on by Rocky Mountain PBS and a local radio station. We volunteered to help usher all the guests to their seats. It was supposed to start around six, but the star was running late and it started around seven.

Once the show got started, he started with a slideshow of some places he was updating in his travel books for 2012 then talked about all kinds of fun stories he has had traveling Europe. After a short break, he came back and talked about packing light, where to sleep and to how to avoid as many of the other tourists as possible. He even let a few people in the audience ask questions. Then he finally wrapped up a little after ten. We hung around to get our picture with him at the end and we were surprised with our own copies of his latest 2012 book about all of Europe that they had held for all the volunteers. He signed them for us and we headed home. It was a late night, but really worth it!

Here is a picture of him speaking and then a picture of us with him!

Note the custom name tags!

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

TWD: Baking with Julia - Rugelach

Did you just ask yourself what a rugelach is? Well hold on and I will tell you.... it is a Jewish pastry. This is the first time I ever tried a rugelach and the first time I ever made some. After trying them, I decided they were pretty good! They were so tasty that Mikey has asked for them to be made again.

They are a cream cheese based pastry crusted filled with Lekvar, dried fruits and nuts. Did you just ask yourself what Lekvar is? Well it is a really thick jelly or jam. The recipe called for Apricot or Prune Lekvar, but I ended up just buying some apricot jam at the grocery store. I was going to make some apricot Lekvar, but it turned out that the dried apricots in the pantry were a bit past old, so I ended up tossing them and heading to the store. Here is the assembly...

First I made the crust, then rolled it out and then layered it with the jam, dried fruit, and nuts. I used dried cherries and raisins for the dried fruit and I used macadamia nuts, walnuts, and almonds for the nuts. Then I rolled them up, and after rolling them up I decided I put too much filling in them, but figured I would give it a try. I refrigerated them for a while and then sliced them up and hoped for the best while they cooked!

I might have cooked them a little bit too long and after I took them out of the oven I was sure I had put too much filling in them, it kind of went everywhere, whoops! But the finished product wasn't bad and they tasted great! I have definitely taken notes for the next time I make them!

I only made half the recipe and decided that I shouldn't leave them in our house or we would eat all of them. I took a bag full of them to work and had my co-workers help us out. I think they enjoyed them because they were gone pretty quick. You can check out some pretty versions on the hosts sites - My Baking Heart and The Urban Hiker.

We have some other stories coming up... not just my baking adventure!