The 3rd of July

Right now, my brain is a jumble of thoughts like, “wait, what day is it??”  “Which member of the family has a teeth cleaning today??”  “Will I have this headache forever??”  “Were the past three days real or just a perfect dream??”  We spent two days in a tiny house village and it was the most entertaining!  Bobby and Becca got married and the wedding was SO perfect!   The 4th of July was low key, with spur of the moment dessert plans and our dog didn’t give a $&!% about firework noises.  So despite how discombobulated I feel, everything is actually very fine and good.

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The wedding was in Lyons, so Joey and I decided to make a mini-vacation of it and spend a few nights up there.  We headed up Monday night, where we proceeded to check into our tiny house and were SO delighted by it!  I think we’d been there all of two minutes when I proclaimed “I live here now!”  In all seriousness, staying here was the most fun… but only for two nights 😛

Afterwards, we walked to dinner.  We had our hearts SET on this taqueria for WEEKS but found out that morning that it’s closed on Mondays!  WHY?!  But it was okay because Oskar Blues was our back up and despite it’s mediocre star rating on Yelp, it was actually really great.  I loved my beer and the fish tacos were perfectly fried and had an amazing buttermilk sauce.  Only acted slightly like children when we got back to our tiny house but to be fair, any space with a ladder, is a space not to take yourself too seriously in.

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Saturday morning, we walked over to The Stone Cup and had an impressive-for-a-coffee-shop breakfast of Huevos Rancheros x2 then did a little bit of exploring at the LaVern M. Johnson Park.  That water was FRIGID, but it was very hot outside and we could not bear the thought of walking all the way back to our village so we forded the river, like the true adventurers we are.  We also walked into town so Joey could eat a triple scoop of ice cream (“you only let me have three scoops yesterday!” is a real thing he said to me the next day…) but mostly the day was really low-key and I even finished Order of the Phoenix and moved onto Half-Blood Prince!

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The wedding started at 4 PM and what can I say except that it was PERFECT ♥  So well organized, so pretty (The Lyons Farmette is just lovely!) and just so full of love.  Not to be too sappy, but witnessing this couple’s love for each other and all their family and friends’ love for them was truly incredible.  I felt so honored to be a part of it and just so happy for the two of them.  Also drank approximately 50 glasses of wine, danced to Backstreet Boys, petted an alpaca and just had thee most fun.

Also, Marriage Advice: Find someone who wants to act a fool on the dance floor as much as you do!

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Honestly, this 4th of July felt so weird!  Everyone on was out celebrating and I just felt like “but the big celebration was yesterday!”  Our 4th of July felt like a haphazardly thrown together afterthought, but that being said, it was actually really great.  A couple of weeks ago I was considering prepping some ribs ahead of time so we could grill but then Joey told me he’d round up a few meal options and we could just decide day-of what we felt like.  HE’S A GODSEND.

We ended up feeling like pizza so, after picking up breakfast burritos for the road, retrieving Andi from my parents, inspecting our garden (snap peas looking good!) and resting for a bit, we headed to Whole Foods for pizza ingredients and made the spontaneous decision to try no-churn ice cream for dessert.  It all turned out even better than expected!  We did one red sauce/mozzarella/roasted garlic/black olive/basil pizza and one olive oil/mozzarella/fig/goat cheese/arugula/walnut pizza (+ shishitos grilled to perfection) and I loved both so much.  Plus, the ice cream turned out SO GOOD.  It was MEGA-CREAMY and we threw some peppermint extract (1 teaspoon) and mini chocolate chips in.  This feels life-changing!  Also, our neighbors set off fireworks late into the night but Andi didn’t even lift his head at any of them.  THANK GOD.

I hope you all had the best 4th of July but for me, it was all about the 3rd 🙂

Weekend Things: Family Time in Estes Park

This weekend was just so so good.  When it comes to vacationing, I find I always have my sights set on far off locations and forget about the places, like Estes Park, that are only a few hours drive away, in our very own state.  And I always forget just how refreshing and re-energizing that fresh mountain air and time spent with loved ones can be!

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We stopped in Lyons to grab a beer at Oskar Blues Grill & Brew and look, I thought I didn’t like Oskar Blues beers, but then I had the Nooice Saison and loved it so much.  So I guess I don’t know who I am or what I like 🙂  They have an old school video game arcade that Joey and Adam were pretty into but my childhood mainly consisted of Mario Party on Nintendo 64 so I guess the nostalgia was kind of lost on me.

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Once in Estes (we saw three elk on our way!), we checked into our BEAUTIFUL condo, maybe locked ourselves out within three minutes of being there — four adults should be smarter than this, right? — made a very important beer run then had dinner at Tavern 1929, because when the lodge you’re staying at has its own restaurant and 18 microbrews, you obviously make a reservation.  We all dubbed Joey’s elk chops the best dish of the night and considered ordering dessert but then decided to retire to our condo for some hot tub/puzzle/sad sad Rockies game time.

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Saturday morning waffles for all!  Remember how I mentioned Joey made a bunch of buttermilk waffles last weekend?  Purposely, because we froze the extras then packed them up and just popped them in the toaster for everyone on Saturday morning.  I’d never tried this re-toast and revive method but they were great!  Plus, drinking coffee outside in the crisp mountain air is MY FAVORITE.  And I never pass up a coffee-mug-with-the-mountains-in-the-background picture 🙂

At 10, we made our way into town for the event of the weekend: The Scandinavian Midsummer Festival!  I didn’t even know A) Joey’s family had Scandinavian roots or B) that those painted horses are called Dala Horses and are a Swedish thing!  We totally had one of those in our house, growing up.  In all seriousness, the weather was beautiful, the festival was packed and it was cool to see all the Scandinavian culture.  We had lunch, made a stop at the taffy store and grabbed ice cream in town before heading back to our condo to rest up before dinner.

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We had a bit of a dinner party at our place later on.  Everyone came over with food and Joey and I cooked salmon with a recipe we’d never used at a size we’d never cooked but it all went swimmingly (sorry, had to make a fish pun) and this beet salad always impresses.  And I learned what potato bologna was and even got to try it for myself.  Had many Swedish learning experiences this weekend, guys!

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Okay, all I have are food photos from the beginning and the end of Sunday, but in between was a bunch of good stuff, like a quick and painless drive back from Estes, lunch at BriDer, couch lounging, garden surveying (my parents watered for us while we were gone and I love them for it ♥), running (amen for a quick weekend cool off in Denver), kombucha brewing and dinner cooking.  It felt like there were 10 extra hours in the day and I was not mad about it!  Joey made garlic scape pesto with scapes from the farmers’ market and, get this, chard from our garden.  Yes!  It was so good and we used it in some pasta for dinner and all was right in the world.  Except the Rockies… WHAT HAVE WE DONE TO DESERVE SUCH PAIN??

Please tell me what you did this weekend, I’d love to hear!