New Belgium Brewery

















We visited the New Belgium Brewery in Ft. Collins, Colorado last week.  Its about an hour away from us, but completely worth the drive.  It seemed like such a cool company with lots of personality, and the tour was great.

First Snow






Here are some pictures from around our neighborhood the morning after the first snow.  Its almost all gone now.  The trees with leaves on them were completely weighted down with snow, creating these willow-tree like canopies of frozen colorful leaves.  It was cool.



Changing Seasons




We've survived our first snow!  It snowed around 6" this past wednesday and today (saturday) is the first time its been well above freezing since.  It was a good snow, you know, the snow-man-making kind that comes down in big flakes.  It may snow again this Wednesday.  I wonder if this is how its just going to be from here on out?  The mountains are really pretty with snow on top.  Opening weekend at the slopes was this weekend.  We'll have to plan a day trip soon!
*
We've had company the past week and have been doing some serious exploring!  I'll post pictures soon.  I'm going to spend today on the couch doing nothing.  :)

Can You Knit?



I wish I had the talent to help this cause :(  Knit a penguin a sweater!

Fall and All Its Glory!













I finally convinced my husband to take me to the pumpkin patch nearby :)




Dining Room - Check!

One of a Kind


This is how my dog sleeps.  Ferocious, huh?

Woohoo!


We found dining room chairs and our table gets delivered this weekend!  Our stuff from Kuwait STILL isn't here - but soon we'll at least be able to eat at a table.

The Pink & Blue Project



This was featured on Jeanie & Jewell this week, its a study of the concept that pink is for girls and blue is for boys.  The pictures are great and I thought it was interesting.  I personally don't believe in the concept of color coding your kids, so I like the ridiculousness of the photos :)

The above pictures are from JeongMee's official website.  To see more photos and read about why he's studying this, visit his website here.

Small Project


I started a batch of homemade vanilla extract this weekend!  I've wanted to do this for a while, ever since a friend of mine in Kuwait did it.  We couldn't get vanilla extract off the local economy there because it had alcohol in it.  Instead they had this gross substitute called vanillin.  I used it once and it gave my chocolate chip cookies yellow spots.  After that I either had family ship it to me or I could sometimes find it at the military base.

Anyways, I started a batch yesterday.  Its really simple if you want to try it.

1) All you need is 2-3 vanilla beans per 1 cup quality vodka
2) Cut the vanilla beans lengthwise down the center (leaving about 1" still connected on the end)
3) Combine vodka and vanilla beans in airtight container (I just added the beans to the vodka bottle)
4) Store in cool dry place for 2 months, giving the bottle a shake every once in a while

I'd really recommend shopping around for vanilla beans.  The off-brand ones above were about $4 per bean.  I found some at Whole Foods that were $11 per bean.

I'll let you know how it turns out!  Good luck if you try it yourself!

Buy Local!




Hey Ohioans here's a cool ceramic artist from Columbus.  Thought I'd share!

Running Paths

 
 
I hate snakes!  I saw a little one yesterday on my run and because of it and the threat of a visit from any of its friends, I spend most of my runs staring at the ground instead of looking up at the view!  When will it be too cold for them to be out sunbathing?  Soon I hope. 
*
On another, stranger, sadder, note - we have had a plague outbreak among our prairie dogs.  I haven't seen too many lately and I've seen signs posted warning us about it.  I don't take General, our dog, into the "open space" where the prairie dogs live.  There are enough paths to walk him around our neighborhood, so the risk of him coming into contact with one doesn't worry me.  Weird though, huh?
*
Here's more information on the outbreak, if you're interested