Archive for February, 2013


Thursday, February 7th, 2013

Hey, Blog!

Yikes! I finally have a not-so-busy week (relatively speaking) now that my big birthday is over – I just had a very round-number birthday, and celebrated it in style a couple weeks ago. My awesome husband threw me a party at a nice farm-to-table restaurant in town with an awesome drinks menu and a private party room called Eat Street Social. I didn’t have to do all that much work before the party, other than make sure as many people as possible were invited and fret over whether or not anyone would actually show up…

As it turns out, we had plenty of people show up, and it was a blast. We had athletes from the gym…

The current generation of family (and man, we have a good-looking family!)

We had some neighbors and old college friends….unfortunately, neither Joe or I are very organized or decisive when it comes to making social arrangements, to a large contingent of this category were unable to get babysitters, so it was largely underrepresented. Still, they did end up mixing some with the other groups and seemed to have a good time. Hey, when there’s free all-you can eat appetizers and an open bar it’s hard not to have fun, right?

I managed to make a short but successful speech when it was time to cut the cake (it was about how I can’t believe how wonderful my life and friends are, and how my coach calls moments like this “I love you man” moments, but you would have had to be there.) And speaking of the cake, Joe hit the nail on the head – I have an obsession with the perfect chocolate cake, and he got it from Turtle Bread Company. (OMG I’ve been going to this place for pastries and lunch for years and years, but if you have not checked it out, you truly must. The Linden Hills one is the original and my favorite.)

I know it looks good, but I wish I could hand out tastes to everyone reading here. It is the best chocolate cake ever – spongy cake, real butter cream frosting – all high-quality ingredients -oh my! It’s a good thing that it was not a giant cake – I knew that a lot of my friends were on a super clean-eating cleanse thingie, so they wouldn’t eat much if any, and also I didn’t want to take it home and binge on it for the next two days. Instead, I got to eat two very small slices at the party and send a few slices home with guests. We had picked up cupcakes for the girls and the babysitter to eat at home while we were out, too. Everyone was happy.

Even Joe. And especially, me.

Yikes! The party part of this post was supposed to be a sidetrack/prelude to the other stuff, but I’ve already gone long, and my time is up. I was going to mention the post in my head where Julie’s dolls go exploring in the house (she was a little jealous when Sophie’s skunks had a party without them)

Here they are as I found them – I think they were hung over from too much partying the night before maybe? I actually have all the pictures here, if there is enough clamor for it, I might get around to writing the post!

I was also going to mention all the crazy Girl Scout business we’ve been up to. Last weekend, Julie did Feed My Starving Children with her troop, then we went out both days to sell cookies in the neighborhood (Cookie Go Day was last weekend), then we hosted 11 girls from Sophie’s troop for a sleepover in our basement. Yikes! By Sunday night, I could barely hold my head up to watch the Super Bowl! But it was honestly worth it – so much fun! Just don’t ask me how much work went into clearing out our basement rec room enough to make it presentable. The answer is months’ worth, culminating in a frenzy the week before. But now the basement is almost presentable at the moment!

We also had two snow storms, which meant getting out and shoveling and I finally got to try out our new giant snow thrower. After three years of indecision, Joe and I finally agreed that we needed a two-stage machine that can handle the heavy snow and manage to throw it up onto the 6-foot snow banks that often build up by the time March rolls around in Minnesota. Funny story – he used to do all the snow removal back when I was out of shape and had to small children that couldn’t be left in the house alone or trusted to play outside without intense supervision. He would come in and tell me that we needed a bigger snow thrower. I had no understanding of it, so I shrugged my shoulders and said “Well, if you think we can afford it and we *reeeeeally* need it, go ahead.” So he lived with what he had for longer.

Then, last year, I decided it was time for me to take over more responsibility when it was snowing while he was at work and the kids were in school – I felt like it was unfair for him to have to come home in the dark and work outside till ten at night after stressing out in an office all day. So I learned how to use the old snow thrower and discovered its limitations. So early this winter, I suggested maybe we should go ahead and get the bigger one. He scoffed. “No, ours is fine. It does the job.” But then one weekend early on it snowed, and he went out and did his manly snow-removal duties in daylight. He came inside and said “Are you serious about ordering the new one?” and I said “Yep. Go figure out which one we need.” So we ordered it from somewhere online where he found a good deal, it showed up on a giant pallet on a giant truck a couple weeks later, and we haven’t had a serious *serious* snow since.

The snow I was removing a couple days ago was only a couple of inches of the very light, fluffy stuff, but I really wanted to try the new monster out. Oh, boy it is a monster! It took me half an hour to figure out how to start it, and the thing can drag me all over the driveway. I think I’m in love.

I felt a little wild and crazy in that moment. I know I looked that way trying to manage this huge new machine! I really must go glance at the owner’s manual.

Well, now we get to the Blarg! part of the post. All that running around, exposure to petri dishes in child form, lowering of my immune system by wearing myself out first at the gym and then shoveling snow (I actually did more shoveling than machine operating!)  along with over-indulging in Girl Scout cookies (damn you, Thin Mints!) lead to me succumbing to a nasty GI bug the last couple of days. Which is why I had an extra hour to spend sitting at the computer instead of swimming four thousand yards in the lap pool.

The lull is almost over, I have to go prepare for Sophie’s birthday party this weekend. She’s turning seven.