Friday, May 11, 2012

L and V

Two weeks ago today Ryan's parents visited us for the weekend.  You could say China was just a little excited to see her Grammies.

It's pretty much a tradition that every time Linda and I are together we drink margaritas so Ryan took us to Tequila's.  I guess he decided not to repeat a prior experience at El Senor Sol, which was the first (and only) time we drank margaritas as big as our heads...literally  You can imagine the shenanigans that ensued.

That Saturday, we had wanted to go on a hike but it was a bit cooler than we had hoped it would be so we headed to Hammond's Candies for a factory tour.  Hammond's Candies has been in business in Denver since 1920 and to this day only has the one factory in town that supplies nationwide stores like Dean & Deluca, Whole Foods, and Nordstrom.  Apparently Martha Stewart is also a big fan and has featured the candies on her shows and also places large personal orders.  We learned all about the candy making process from soup to nuts and then we got to leave with candy cane samples!  Of course I couldn't make it out of the building without a few extra items:  Mitchell sweets, caramels, flat taffy, and peppermint cocoa stirrers.  It was definitely an activity that both kids and adults could enjoy.

Then we headed to Vintages in Fort Collins.

Vintages creates custom made wines from grapes they purchase from around the world.  We went in for a complimentary wine tasting where you learn about the process and the different wines that can be made.  They also can help you determine what types of wine you like and can tailor it to your specific tastes.  For example, they showed us the difference between a wine that was heavily oaked versus that same wine lightly oaked.  I found out I don't care for heavily oaked wine.  Another interesting thing about the wine they make there is it is much lower in preservatives than wine you purchase at the liquor store because it goes straight from the winery to your home and doesn't need to be able to withstand huge changes in temperature or being stored improperly, etc.  With less preservatives, many people tend to not get headaches sometimes associated with drinking wine.  Although I'm sure if you drank a couple bottles by yourself you'd still get a headache...  Also, the cost of the wine is very reasonable compared to going to your local liquor store and picking up a bottle because there are no shipping costs and you get to go bottle everything yourself!  You even can design your own label!  Ryan liked this one that was displayed at the winery.
As if we hadn't had enough fun, we headed to Ameristar Casino to celebrate Vearl's birthday with some gambling and crab legs.

On Sunday we all went to church and Linda and Vearl got to meet our coffee crew.  Everyone absolutely loved L and V and Marlene even told them they should move out here because she thought they could have a lot of fun together.  After another full day of running around town we headed home to rest, enjoy a walk, and play some games.

Then, too early the next morning they had to head back to KC.  Time always flies by too quickly when we're having fun.  We had such a great time and are so thankful to have such great family in our lives!

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

To Give or To Get?

I know I wrote in my Liebster post that I prefer giving presents to getting them but I may have to eat my words because I was mighty excited when I received a giant package at work that contained this:

How did Ryan know the exact brand and style of purse that I have been drooling over for the past several months???  Even though I'm completely obsessed with my new gorgeous purse, the real prize was how special it made me feel to know that he was thinking about me and he cared enough to put so much thought into picking out the perfect surprise.

Oh, and my office looked like a disaster area before I picked it up a bit to take photos.  I went at that package like a 5 year old at Christmas. 

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

You Can Take the Boy out of "the Dotte"

but you can't take the Dotte out of the boy (Wyandotte County, KS for those not from Kansas).

We're getting The Church Lady painted so to prepare for it Ryan stripped the car and removed all the fixtures including the trunk latch.  What better way to secure the trunk for the drive to the car shop than using speaker wire?  Except the speaker wire didn't seem to hold too well when crossing the railroad tracks and the trunk flipped wide open so we had to stop to retie it down.  :)  I say "we" figuratively because clearly I sat inside my Hondallac giggling and taking pictures.  

Here is a picture of the poor Church Lady completely stripped. 

In just a short while she look like new, though.  And I know Ryan can't wait.


No, we don't celebrate 4/20 but a lot of people in these parts do!  Although Boulder did crack down on the annual smoke out at the CU Campus so apparently it was a much subdued celebration this year.  That weekend, Ryan and I ran some errands and I enjoyed a Starbucks latte, which is quickly becoming a bad habit that I need to curb before I become addicted to caffeine again. 
In the picture above I'm wearing my red dirt hat that a colleague brought me back from Hawaii.  The Red Dirt company was originally a screen print shop but a hurricane in 1992 blew in red dirt and stained all the white t-shirts.  The shop decided to go ahead and print on the stained shirts and sell them that way and they were a hit.  So now everything they sell is stained with Hawaii's red dirt.

That Saturday night we enjoyed dinner at the Olive Garden as the neighbors we share our back fence with were so kind to give us a gift card in thanks for all the work Ryan did to fix the fence.

On Sunday that weekend Ryan went to a Schwinn spinning certification class.  Ever since taking our friend Sue's spinning class he has loved spinning and cycling and hasn't found a class that he really likes ever since our old gym closed down.  So he decided he would just go ahead and become certified to teach.  Now we just need to find an opening he can take over! 
He was gone all day and I don't really remember what all I did but it must have involved a lot of playing with the fur babies because I seem to have a lot of pictures of them.