Weekend Things

If you thought getting a new phone, with a much much better camera than my previous iPhone 7 (Portrait Mode, finally!!!), meant I’d have a slew of weekend photos, you thought wrong.  What I do have is a giant tree branch that fell in our yard, deck progress, a Rockies game and, you know, like five meals I ate.

Don’t worry, I’ll fill you in on the rest, but first I wanted to do a quick summer check in.  How has yours been so far?  As we were biking home from the Farmers’ Market on Saturday, I was thinking that I’ve already, without much planning or effort or stress, checked off a lot of things that we usually like to do in the summer.  It’s making me feel extremely chill and I like it a lot!  Hope you’re feeling chill too 🙂

cae59322-d8e9-40d2-b169-f62d5a5978bd

It rained overnight on Thursday, so we woke up to this giant tree branch hanging between our hammock and, shudder, our string lights.  Thankfully, it didn’t damage either one, but whoa!

25108124-72ce-4acc-a70e-129dc3503aea

In other Friday news, we took a trip to Verizon, followed by a trip to Home Depot and when we finally got home, all we had energy for was takeout pizza, dinner in the backyard and a movie on the couch.  It was 9:30 when we started Spiderman: Homecoming so we only made it about halfway through, but don’t worry, we finished it up last night.  Look, Tom Holland is extremely charismatic and definitely more age-appropriate but I always loved Toby McGuire as Spiderman (then again, I never saw Spiderman 3).  Plus, that Stark-made suit just felt way too tech-y for me.  Still excited to see Spideman: Far From Home though!

Also maybe used my new vacuum while Joey was out picking up our pizza so, hi I’m 30 now.

b2f4dfc4-27d3-40b4-acf0-b722753e211d5335824e-62c4-412e-a881-31db5806ac63fd1fd9f8-8b6b-4b2e-ba1f-f0f13708af0c

We woke up too early on Saturday, so I had time to make us pancakes before we headed over to the Farmers’ Market.  I am still on the lookout for shishitos but happy to report we are fully in peach season, plus I love this little stand that will sell you a single sprig of herbs for 25-50 cents.  We saw so many fluffy pups on our bike ride there and back too!

The rest of the day involved a little bit of garden clean up, a trip to the grocery, lunch, reading and making a BBQ side dish for me and major deck progress by Joey.  He has the upper arm sunburn and backache to prove it!  But really, it’s coming along so well, and I don’t take having a handy husband for granted AT ALL.  We picked a color and ordered the deck composite so that should be here this week and I can’t wait to see it!

We hit up the  annual Summer Bash at the Zehnder’s later on and, as luck would have it, a giant storm rolled through not long after we got there and we all had to seek shelter inside.  Oh well, there was good BBQ, a carefully curated playlist and we got to see our friends Grant, Kelsey and their son Peyton, who just moved (back?) here from Florida!

cb8b9e67-4e1f-4bc5-87c8-8014361695f8b30fdbdd-5afe-4fb4-9a9e-002d5ab1f325

We slept in on Sunday, then got up and did a few chores before making the semi-spontaneous decision to head to the game early so we could grab lunch at Biker Jim’s.  Back to back bike riding days maybe doesn’t feel that great today, but gosh I love that ride to Coors.  I tried the Chicken Peach Chipotle dog and let’s just say it wasn’t my favorite but all BJ’s dogs are good dogs and sidewinder fries are always the very best.  We had shade seats but then the whole game was blissfully cloudy and we were able to sit with a group of friends that were there to celebrate (another) Lauren’s birthday.  We won!

9b67fa70-df94-49e3-a39b-25f1e77a9fcb

Back at home, we finished our previously discussed movie, made a summer salad for dinner, walked our dog and watched Big Brother.  Just a good weekend all around.  Please tell me about yours!

4th of July & a Birthday Staycation

We have been off from work since 3:45 PM on Thursday and I am definitely experiencing “WHAT DAY IS IT??” syndrome.  Feels as if a whole lifetime — a lifetime that included a hail storm, a grill feast, the wonderful third season of Stranger Things, a morning coffee shop trip, a delivery of wood for our deck, a manicure, dinner at The Preservery, breakfast and the Farmers’ Market, a 7-minute ride on the light rail, a full day of acting like a tourist in our own city (more on that soon) and that Sunday night feeling of going to bed with a heart full of gratitude.  I can’t wait to tell you all about it!

img_9281

Got our firework fix at the Rockies game on Wednesday night

Maybe you’re one of those people that can’t fathom the idea of working on the 4th of July or maybe you’re like me and would rather have the 5th of July off and get an extra long weekend.  So we worked Thursday, but skipped out a bit early, hit up Home Depot for flowers, got home to plant them and then watched them get beat up in a totally weird hail storm??  Oh well, they looked pretty for a minute there!

We had to wait out the rain before we could grill dinner and then it had to be an indoor Independence Day Feast but it was okay because our lamb was amazing — let’s forget the moments of terror as we cooked these over an unusually flame-y grill — and also because I maybe wanted to watch Stranger Things anyway 😛

Andi didn’t seem to mind the fireworks last year but our neighbors were setting off some extra noisy ones that kept occasionally flying into our yard and our pup was not exactly having it.  We caved and let him sleep in our bed with us!

d2bce83d-c763-4b6e-ac0e-261b99fe66ba328c45b3-fce3-400e-a698-3c770abd45fb

Feta Yogurt Dip with watermelon (that I didn’t know was yellow until I cut into it!)

ee5cbce8-e86e-463a-bd27-9c6fa3cd7042

Armenian Lamb and Grilled Vegetables with pita

f3973267-790e-41ac-98b1-456c73b205cb

We had a plan to start our day off on the rooftop at Blue Sparrow and it was momentarily wonderful but we had to rush out when our Lowe’s delivery showed up with a bundle of wood for the deck Joey is building us.  Please give me full credit for helping move all the wood into our garage.  We probably could have been productive afterward but instead… more Stranger Things!  I did eventually have to make it to a manicure appointment though and get this, on my walk over to Base Coat, an older man in a convertible pulled up beside me and said “need a ride?”  Are you serious??

Anyway, after my color changing polish mani, we took our pup over to my parents’ then took ourselves to dinner at The Preservery.  I’d maybe been saying I wanted to go there since it opened… three years ago.  It was GREAT!  Back at home, we watched all but the final episode of Stranger Things which, in retrospect sounds insane, but I was definitely going to fall asleep during the finale if we continued on.

23569ad7-8708-4acc-a4eb-ddb06b759f83b490f45d-eec8-4d40-b782-1aab38c2ca3a9ea79735-bf73-4429-ad89-f9974be699a7fa88f6cd-e4da-4f1a-a258-88361f4adba7

A Saturday Staycation!  Look, I know some people like to go big for their 30th birthday, but that ain’t me.  I was more into the idea of a weekend trip, but then I remembered how much time it takes to travel and decided a staycation sounded best!  We looked into a handful of Denver hotels and landed on The Maven because we thought it would be cool to have a balcony overlooking downtown Denver, be within walking distance of Union Station and the MCA, and have so many good food options right at our fingertips.  I think it was the perfect choice!

First things first, though.  We biked over to the Farmers’ Market per usual but then did the unusual and had breakfast at Mercantile.  Turns out they have a pretty great little menu and it’s a casual order-at-the-counter-and-seat-yourself set up so we got to enjoy our food out on their patio.  Joey complained that it’s NOT a calzone unless it’s all closed up but looked pretty good to me, plus my ricotta pancakes were delicious!  Most importantly, peaches have arrived at the FM and I am so happy!!!

11d04b99-3f06-49ef-8d64-2598ab36add6

Back at home, we quickly packed up and took the 7-minute light rail ride back to Union Station, then walked over to the Dairy Block to leave our bags and do a short walk through of the shops before heading to the Museum of Contemporary Art.  It was penny day!  So for 2 cents, we got to spend a little over an hour perusing the art then chilling on the rooftop patio (still one of my favorite Denver secrets ♥) before heading out to find lunch.  We maybe checked the menu at three other places before making it all the way to Hearth & Dram to find it closed for lunch.  But, conveniently, there were a bunch of scooters out front so we each hopped on one and rode toward the 16th Street Mall and had a lovely patio lunch at The Kitchen.  It didn’t even rain!

We walked the mall after lunch and it had been a while since either of us had done that.  It was, uh… interesting.  If you come in from out of town, my advice to you is just don’t go to the 16th Street Mall.  It’s just chain restaurants and questionable happenings.  Joey continues to refer to this walk as his favorite part of the day just to annoy me…

img_9196img_9197465dcc61-a9e2-413f-b175-949990b130f9dc2a4621-f967-4928-89e2-8d025aeec08faf40c3fc-ecdf-4413-a827-d7dd82af4fcb94caa7c4-56ed-4e4d-a77f-aeb0982c58e6531b8b58-04f2-4896-a935-878dc223dcf1

By this point we were able to check into our hotel room, where we spent some time relaxing.  Our patio had a great view of none other than Coors Field!  Plus an airsteam trailer in the lobby serving up one complimentary drink per person 🙂  Most importantly though, we bit the bullet and finally booked flights to Italy for this October.  I am beyond excited and only a little bit nervous about that long flight and finding hotels ASAP.

Around 8, we made our way back over to Union Station for dinner at Ultreia, which turned out to be just okay.  I wasn’t impressed by my drink and the food was pretty lackluster overall, but we did grab Little Man ice cream at Milkbox afterward so it wasn’t a total loss.  Watched like 20 minutes of Wildlife in bed before we realized we were exhausted and went to bed.  A truly amazing day!

cfee7ff5-d0ed-4f71-a328-47427a7bcac534b721a1-d3a8-435a-9232-2036765029bb

Sunday morning, Joey ran downstairs to grab us complimentary coffees from Huckleberry (how perfect that our favorite coffee roaster has a location inside The Maven!), plus toast for me and a breakfast burrito for him and we ate both on our little patio.  Denver was much quieter (but no less beautiful) in the morning ♥  We checked ourselves out shortly before 11 AM, took the light rail (only a four minute ride on the way back!) home then picked up our little pup.  All in all, just a truly wonderful little weekend “trip” that I feel so happy to have experienced.  P.S. We watched that final episode of Stranger Things and my heart could hardly handle it.  “Please make this scene end!” is a real thing I said, while fighting back tears.  Also, Scoops Troop Forever!

And as if that wasn’t a good enough end to my 20s, my mom showed up at my office today with a red velvet cake!  How did I get so lucky??