Sunday, January 31, 2010

This is the post in which I reveal our dirty, discusting office.

Please do not judge. I promise we don't really live like this.  You see, when you live in Minnesota and the temperature rarely reaches above 10 degrees for months on end, it makes it a bit challenging to clean out our office which is outside above our garage. The picture really doesn't do this justice. You may not be able to see the little Chloe poops all hard and crusty in the corner. Or the stench, oh it's even worse. It smells like we put a dog inside here for 8 hours a day, turned up the heat in the dead of winter and shut the door without ever letting a whif of fresh air circulate. Oh wait, that's exactly what happened.

Andi's office is also in this room. While he doesn't work in here everyday, he has been spending more time working out here lately. The other day I walked in to kiss him good-bye in the morning and the smell was overwhelming. I'm not sure how he was sitting up there with all that ickiness. Andi said he felt like he was on the tv show Hoarders. But come on now, it's not that bad.

So today I decided to be a good wife and clean the office.  Chloe will surely appreciate it too.

It may not look all that much different. But it surely smells better. My husband will be so thankful when he walks in here on Monday morning.

I know what you're thinking...Andi has a bed in his office? Yep, that's how we roll. Did I forget to mention we use the office as a guest room too? Oh now, don't be afraid to come and visit. It's all clean now :)

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Salon Woes

Got my haircut on Friday. I decided the asymetrical bob just wasn't for me. No one got it. All the crazy looks from people because my hair was longer on one side were enough reason for me to even off my haircut. Do you ever feel drastically inferior as a woman when you go to the salon? Two things happen every time I go to mine:

ONE I feel uber self-conscious about how I'm dressed. Why are all cosmetologists so fashionable and cute? They're all wearing leggings with cute heels and dresses. Perfect hair and makeup. I rolled into the salon at 5:30pm on Friday, tangled hair and tired looking clothes. I even wore a cute belt with my outfit for this very reason. And yet, I still didn't feel cute enough. I hate that feeling.

TWO I hold my breath and pray she doesn't realize I've been coloring my own hair. I'm sure she can tell; there's always a comment or two about how I have some re-growth or how it looks like it's about time to get my color done. This time she flat out asked if I had colored my hair recently. "Nope," I replied. "But I'm definintely due!" Oye. She know. But dang, it's over $100 every time I color my hair there. And $10 for a box of color at Walgreens. Sorry salon, you lose.

My hair's back to the same length as this summer (similar to the wedding pic at the top). I had to go back to this to fix the asymetrical bob. But I think I am going to grow out my hair. I see all the pretty girls on tv and magazines with long, long hair. I have a case of long hair envy.

Friday, January 29, 2010


I'm turning 29 in a few two weeks. You better believe I've been mulling over what I'd like to do on my special day for some time now. Here's what I'm thinking so far:

- Get a massage + facial at Ivy Spa in downtown Minneapolis
I'd like for Andi and I to do this together for our Valentine's Day celebration since Andi has a pond hockey tournament on VDay. This spa is awesome - they have a full whirlpool / lounge area, steam room, sauna, relaxation room and some of the best masseuses I've ever experienced. *Wink Wink Andi, book us some appointments!

- Watch a video compilation made just for me
I'm not sure what the video compilation should be of, maybe just photos of us or of our first 6 months being married. I feel like I'm wearing out our engagement video, wedding video and state fair video. Time for some new material.

- See a movie
There's a bunch of good flicks at the theatre lately. I wouldn't mind seeing Valentine's Day, Lovely Bones, Leap Year, When In Rome or New Moon. Maybe a matinee? One of the downsides about having a birthday the day before VDay is that all your typical 'date night' activities are packed around my birthday.

- Cook dinner together
Instead of going out and fighting all the crowds, I want to make dinner with Andi at home. Buy a locally grown steak, salad, and a vegetable and just relax together.

Maybe Andi already has something planned. And if he does, I'm sure whatever he comes up with will be perfect. These are just a few things that would make my day. Ultimately though, all I want to do is spend my birthday with my hubby.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Ooh la la

Have you seen this delicious cover of Rolling Stone magazine?

Woooeeee. Is he ever sexy!

I'm seriously one of John's biggest all-time fans. Have been since my senior year in college when I first heard Your Body Is A Wonderland on the radio. I've seen him in concert 4 times. Every time was better than the last (especially the one where Jessica Simpon was in the same building! And I love, love, love Jess too but that's for another day).

But this cover. These pictures with his shirt off and all those tattoos. Mmmm. Mmmm. Wow.

Monday, January 25, 2010

It all started with Eve and that damn piece of fruit.

And now, a gazillion years later, we women are still takin' it in the pants.  There's a lot of stress that goes into being a woman. The other day, I went to the women's health clinic for my annual exam. It's one of those things all girls have to do and I get why, but I absolutely dread going there. It starts with the waiting room and all the, well, waiting that happens. The more I sit there, the more tense and stressed I become. The nurse finally calls you back and asks you to step on the scale. With all my clothes on and my winter boots (which drives me crazy because that's about 10 extra pounds than my actual weight). DON'T WRITE THAT IN MY CHART! Too late. Now I'm 10 pounds heavier. Awesome.

Then she leads me back to the exam room where I wait patiently for the doctor to come in. By the time she gets there, I'm literally near tears because I'm so worked up. The older I get, and the closer the time comes to when we'll be trying to have a baby, the more anxiety I have about these appointments. I don't know why, but I'm desperately afraid I won't be able to get pregnant someday. I worry about this I have absolutely no reason to suspect it'll be hard for me as I've never actually tried to get pregnant (in fact, I've spend the last 8ish years trying to prevent it). And we're not even in the place where we're trying yet. Maybe it'll be super easy, who knows. But maybe it'll be super, super hard and we'll try for years and years to no avail. And here I am getting all worked up just thinking about it. This is my single biggest fear in life: to not be able to get pregnant.

I think if I had a doctor that remembered who I was, and actually seemed to give two craps when I ask questions about my body, my history or future pregnancies, I'd feel better. It makes me nervous when I have to tell her repeatedly about my chart; so much so that I've taken to researching everything she says on WedMD immediately following the visit. I get that she probably has thousands of patients and can't remember everyone but could she please read up on me before entering the room? That'd make me feel sooo much better, thanks.

I don't know what the real answer to this anxiety is. I guess when the time comes, we'll see what happens. And I know that God has a plan for Andi and I; everything will work out, it always does. Do any of you have this feeling? Sometimes I feel like I'm out on this island all by myself.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Currently in January

Hard to believe January's nearly over! Winter's flying by and I'm soooo glad.
Here we go ... currently in January:

Current Books: Still reading my Daily Bible (which has been a challenge in itself). Lately I'm so tired at night, it's taking a good self talkin' to in order to stay with this every night. But well worth it so far. I'm learning a lot about the history of Jesus and it makes me feel good to reflect in the Lord everyday. 

I also finished My Horizontal Life by Chelsea Handler this month. A funny book; very quick read. I was actually really suprised about all the drug use that she talks about in that book. Like it's the most popular thing happening in LA. Which maybe it is. This might be me living in my own little bubble again...

Current Playlist: Confession time. I'm really not that good at music. This month I listened to talk radio during my commute to/from work and a little Top 40's stuff on the radio. That's it. Don't I suck at this catagory? Also my iPod is MIA which makes playlists kind of difficult.

Current Guilty Pleasure: Junk food. The holiday were a slippery slope I'm still sliding down. I've probably put on 3-4 pounds in the last two months. Gotta get with it! Have to wear a bikini in a few months!

Current Color: Black, always.

Current Drink: Still diet coke and iced coffee. I bought some Sunny D this month (which I haven't had in years!)

Current Food: Still into salads. Also loving Organic Valley cottage cheese. And we've been eating a lot of pasta lately (which is sadly contributing to those pesky pounds I've put on as of late)

Current Favorite Show: Big Love is back and it's sooooo good!

Current Wishlist: For these hockey tournaments to be over. I miss my husband on the weekends :(

Current Needs: A massage. Think that's what I'm getting Andi and I for Valentine's Day. A spa day. Much needed.

Current Triumphs: Finally getting around to deep-cleaning my house. It's always gross when you dig in deep instead of weekly quick cleans. Not that my house is super messy or anything, but getting in all those little corners, base boards and the shower walls is way over due. Ick.

Current Bane Of My Existence: This new rewards program at work. It falls under my list of responsibilities and we were all set to launch two weeks ago when it was pulled at the 11th hour by our client. Taking some heat on this one and therefore, I wish it would just launch already so we could all move on.

Current Celebrity Crush: George Clooney. We saw Up In The Air last weekend. He's just so handsome and ornery. And very sexy.

Current Indulgence: Baked Ruffles

Current Blessing: My husband. He's my soulmate and somehow he choose me to be his wife. I'm so lucky.

Current Slang: Dude ....

Current Outfit: Sweatpants and a zip up. I look hot right now; bet you wish you could see. JK.

Current Excitement: My birthday! It'll be here in a few weeks. Let the celebration begin!

Current Mood: Relaxed. I love lazy weekends.

Current Link:

Saturday, January 23, 2010

And today it all began

One year + one day ago today, all I could think about was getting married. Like a love craze had come over me, everything I thought about, talked about, dreamed about was getting married.

And then on January 23, 2009, one year ago today, it happened.  Andi asked me to be his wife. We decided to take a little weekend getaway to Duluth, Minnesota - something we usually do about once every six months.  Andi booked all the plans and hotel reservations (which is pretty customary in our relationship) so I didn't think much of our spur-of-the-moment weekend trip. I was however, hoping and praying that this maybe the moment. You know, the ONE. Although, when all you think about, talk about and dream about is getting engaged, a lot of moments feel like they 'could be the moment.'

We drove into Duluth late Friday night. Andi stopped at a rest stop just on the edge of town (a rest stop that happens to overlook the entire city of Duluth). "Could this be the moment?" I asked myself. "Oh, God, please don't let this be the moment, we're at a rest stop." It wasn't. And who knows if it'll even happen this weekend, right?

We pulled up to the Beacon Point Resort on the banks of Lake Superior. Andi asked me if I wanted to run in with him to check in. I said no. He came out a few moments later with our room key and we started to unload the car. Meanwhile, my mom was calling me about some photos she wanted help uploading to "Err, just give me a minute to do this for her," I said to Andi. As I opened my laptop in the hotel room, Andi mentioned something about us being in the wrong room and going downstairs to ask for a different one. "Yep, ok, whatever," I said.

He texted me a few minutes later saying we were in fact in the wrong room. "Come to room 204" he said. I loaded up our bags and went down the hall to room 204. The door was propped so I went inside and sat there for a minute. It was quiet, no one was in there and all the lights were off. I wasn't exactly sure what was going on. Then Andi came into the room and said "oops, I meant 203." I followed him inside room 203, a suite overlooking the lake, and found candles, chocolates, cheese, wine and crackers. Andi said he wanted to do something nice to celebrate my upcoming birthday a little early. We talked for a while, drank some wine and looked outside at the water. Then Andi said, "do you want to go to dinner or open your birthday present now?" Naturally, I said PRESENT! We grabbed our drinks and Andi led me into the bedroom where a tv was cued up. We sat down on the bed and he played this:

Andi & Heathers Engagement from Andi Dickson on Vimeo.

Did you notice something special at the end? A shiny new sparkly diamond on my left hand in that picture? At this point, my body was shaking and my mind racing. Was this really happening? Yep, I think so. OMG. Andi said something about our life together and sharing more memories together for the rest of our lives. Truthfully, neither one of us can really remember what he said. The only part I remember is "will you spend the rest of your life with me?" And I said yes.

Marrying Andi is the single best thing that's happened in my life. I'm so thankful for all the special things he does for me each and every day. Thankful for all the unconditional love he shows me. Thankful God has partnered me with my absolute soulmate. I'm the luckiest girl in the world.

A few photos from our engagement weekend:

Calling my parents a few moments after we got engaged

The view of Lake Superior outside our window
That's steam coming off the lake - yep, it was that cold

Lake Superior

The day after we got engaged

Beacon Point Resort

My engagement ring / wedding band - which I love love love

ps...a few funny notes about our engagement.
1) My mom had no idea Andi was proposing. A few weeks earlier at Christmas time, Andi asked my dad for my hand in marriage. But my dad never told my mom. She just randomly called ten minutes before we got engaged to ask for help uploading those photos. Which in the end, was the perfect ruse to keep me preoccupied.

2)  Andi had arranged with the hotel to put us in the wrong hotel room when we checked in. In his plan, he would tell me he was going down to the front desk to ask for different room, but actually he would go to our real room to set up the candles, cheese and wine. Texting the wrong room number to me afterwards, however, was not part of the plan. When Andi text room 204, he actually meant 203. I'm not sure who's room I was sitting in that night or who the door was actually propped open for, but good thing no one was there or that could have been very awkward!

3) In hindsight, Andi's probably very, very sorry he ever decided to propose with that video montage. It took him two month to make it (before he had his handy-dandy Mac where making videos is child's play) and now I insistently make him watch it ALL. THE. TIME. It's no secret I love video montages, especially if they're about me.

4) The weekend bartending job Andi picked up a few months before he proposed was actually part of his plan to pay off the engagement ring. Sure, now that makes sense, but at the time I was more than annoyed as Andi was, oh how did I put it? 're-living his college glory days.' Foot officially inserted in mouth.

5) And finally, after all those months of painstakingly waiting be be proposed to, it goes down in my book as the best marriage proposal of all time. I learned later that the wedding ring was tucked away deep in our basement for months ... way before I started badgering Andi about getting married. Guess good things come to those who patiently wait, and those who nag about it too.

Happy (sort of) anniversary honey!

Friday, January 22, 2010

Girls Night Sleepover!

It's stop #3 for the pond hockey tournament Andi's company is producing this winter. This weekend's tourney is in Glencoe, IL so he left early this morning for the event. What's that mean? Girls weekend!  For all those moms out there wanting a little quiet time ... you know where to find me. Come on over! My house shall serve as a refuge.

Tonight, Lindsay invited Chloe and I to a sleepover with Andi's little cousins Ellie (8) and Mia (5). We're thinking of taking them to dinner at Chatterbox, a restaurant just a few blocks away our neighborhood. The restaurant has board games you can order right to you table which would be super fun for little kids. Oh, and their own hand-crafted beers, which is peeerfect for big kids like Lindsay and I. :)

Then we're thinking of renting a movie and making popcorn or scrapbooking with the girls at home. Should be a fun night!

Also on this weekend's agenda?
-- girl's day with my friend Julie
-- deep clean my house
-- catch up on some laundry
-- watch the Vikings STOMP the Saints :)

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Speaking of Sandra Lee...

I was reading a favorite blog of mine today and the writer was commenting on her 'enemies' list. On the list: The Food Network's Sandra Lee. Which got me thinking, I used to LOVE this network and now ... not so much. In fact, just last weekend I turned it on because there was absolutely nothing on tv (which is a whole different topic - over 400 channels on our Dish and absolutely nothing of interest is on tv? How is that possible? But I digress.)  So, I turned on Food Network thinking "there has to be something on here" .. and eh, not really. What happened to this channel?

Truthfully, it's just not same ever since Rachael Ray went and got all famous. You may love her or hate her but RR, back in the day, was worth watching. She was real and fun and you'd actually learn a thing or two watching her cook. But her new daytime show sucks; she just feels so rich and famous to me now. Sandra Lee - always annoying. What's up with her decorated theme kitchens? Who actually has time to decorate their table with presents and name tags every single time someone comes over for dinner? And her cocktail recipes? Clearly she likes the booze. That's all I'm saying. Giada - she's pretty but notice she never eats anything she cooks. Yea, that's annoying. And finally, those new show hosts they're producing with Next Food Network Star. So American Idol - they're great during the contest, but when they finally get their own show (or record deal, whatever) they're boring as hell to watch/listen to.

Whatever the case, the Food Network needs a refresh. Stop with the 'tv show for every ethnicity'; stop with the fancy dancy ingredients. And stop saying 'anyone can make this recipe with ingredients just laying around your pantry.' I just told you, I have nothing laying around my pantry. I've spent years watching you cook and I'm still a major fail in the kitchen. Just my two cents.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Vaca's - God bless 'em

Pending my vacation request at work goes through, Andi and I are heading to Maui in March. WAHOO! How awesome is this trip my wonderful husband cooked up:

March 15-23 (8 1/2 blessed days away in sunny, warm Hawaii)
Flights paid for by frequent flyer miles (which, in large part is thanks to our trip to Thailand in August and all the miles we racked up flying across the world.  We also banked quite a few miles by switching from a Northwest credit card to Delta's AmEx card).

Four of our seven nights paid for by our Shell timeshare. Sure, we essentially paid for that when we paid off our timeshare, but there's no money coming out of my pocket today and that's all that really matters, right?  We could have had all nights paid for if we staying in Kona on the Big Island, but Andi and I have already been to Kona together so we wanted to go somewhere new. 

[Side story: Not long after each of us had started working at Red Bull almost 10 years ago now (gasp!), Red Bull hosted their national meeting in Kona for all employees - 7 days - all expense paid. How awesome is that?! And, they even flew in Snoop Dogg for a private concert for all of us. I remember dancing to Snoop with Andi which is a funny memory to think about. Did I know at that moment he would be my husband someday? Absolutely not.]

One awesome thing about our timeshare is that it's a suite with a full kitchen, living room, bathroom, bedroom, and laundry so we can hit the grocery store and load up on pop, snacks and food so we don't have to eat out every meal. It's great for adventuring during the day - we usually pack a picnic lunch and hit the road!

So, basically the only things we'll have to pay for on the trip will be rental car, food and fun. I'm super excited to get away for a few days and explore Maui. Have any of you been there? They say it's one of the most romantic places on Earth. I can't wait to experience it!

Meal Planning 101 (continued)

With the advice of a dear friend (who just so happens to be a dietitian), I ...

[wait for it]

... created a menu for next week. [Cue applause]. Aren't you proud?

Friend Laura gave me some great tips on gradually beginning to plan a weekly menu so Andi and I can stop being in the place where we make bad meal decisions solely based on what's convenient. In that 70% of my problem is grocery shopping and being overwhelmed by prices and varieties and people, I decided to give CobornsDelivers another try. While it's a few more dollars to have the items delivered to my door, it allowed me to sit at my computer, Google recipes on the internet and search for the exact items I need for recipes. The groceries arrive this afternoon and then I'll start cooking!

Here's my menu for the next few days:

Beef Strogonoff (in the crock pot)

Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup (make a big batch and save some for leftovers)

Shredded BBQ Pork Sandwiches

And a few frozen meals like Amy's pot pies, einchiladas and pizzas.

Now the challenge will be coordinating schedules to see who's home what nights, and when.
Wish me luck!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Meal Planning 101

What's inside your fridge?

Are you the kind of wifey that has tons of food available for your family? Always plans meals out in advance so you're eating home-cooked meals together at night? Or do you never go to the grocery store (only stocking up on necessities like Diet Coke and chips at Target) and dumbly stare at your husband every flipping night, night after night, saying 'what should we make for dinner?'

I think you can see where I fall.

Meal planning + me = FAIL. I'm just no good at it. Can't think ahead; not able to plan out all the possible ingredients I'd need to make a dish; and when I do they usually go bad because we never get around to making it anyway.

I need help. Any tips you want to share? I feel like a domestic failure sometimes. This is what I'm suppose to be good at (being the girl and all) and I'm just not.

Until then, Husband and I will continue to make bad, bad choices. Like tonight, thank you Chinese delivery.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Marriage is all about ... negotiations.

At church this morning, Pastor preached about temptation.

Afterwards, Andi said he's been tempted lately to buy one of these:

A bigger, fancier flat screen tv for our living room replace this:

our completely funtional medium-sized flat screen tv currently in our living room
...which would replace this:

our completely funtional small-sized flat screen tv currently in our bedroom.

So I told Andi that lately I've been tempted to have one of these...

Think we can strike a deal?

Saturday, January 16, 2010

7 Quick Takes: My week in a nutshell

It's been a week since I've visited you Blog. I didn't forget about you - it's just been one of those 'blink and it's over' few days. The positive? I didn't blog at work all week and was way more productive! (Wonder if this says something about you time-suck internet? Maybe). Also good? Andi's been home at a decent hour lately, so when he's here I try to make a conscience effort to shut the computer lid and devote my attention to him. Spending time with my hubby is always a good thing.

So let's catch up on this week, seven quick takes in my bubble as of late:

Have you seen the Bachelor this season? I'm not necessarily a fan of the show, but learned this week that a girl I went to college with is one of the bachelorettes this season! She's also the cousin of my old college roommate! Watch for Elizabeth from Imperial, Nebraska -- let's hope she wins (or at least gets a hometown date! How cool would it be for her to take the Bachelor to Nebraska)?

Warm air, sunny beaches and quality time with my honey is on the horizon! We're booking a vacation over Spring Break in March. Haven't decided where we're going yet but thinking somewhere in the Caribbean or Hawaii. Somewhere without spring breakers which may be hard to find that time of year, so we'll see. But a vacation is in sight which is good news any way you slice it!

Just another day at the office!

We're starting a new customer rewards program at work on Tuesday. And it involves a monkey - that is the JAMonkey. I was a little unsure about this program when it was introduced to us a few months ago, but now am excited for something fun and different at work. My student interns are super excited about it. I thought I'd have to beg and plead them to get in the monkey but they're actually fighting over who gets to do it! Should be interesting ...

It was a super busy week at work the last few days. I had the opportunity to conduct several trainings for our full-time and student employees on Thursday and Friday. I absolutely love presenting but it's so draining. All the preparing, prepping and actually being "on stage" presenting with energy and confidence. Good experience though, and I hope a few more people learned about our environmental programs on campus.

My new tv show addition? Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew. Have you seen this show? I can't believe the destructive effect drugs has on people. It's sad and scary .. and like a train wreck you just can't stop watching.

Speaking of tv ... what in the world is happening to NBC and late-night talk shows? I'm a Conan fan all the way here ... I liked him before when he was on Late Late Night.  Fight on Conan!

And finally ... my heart goes out to all those affected with the tradegy in Haiti. I can't even imagine what those people must be going though. It's times like this you wonder why God makes these things happen. But it gives me stregnth to know He is with all those people and they're rebuild better and stronger thanks to all the generous donations around the world.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

How do you handle problems?

At the risk of getting too churchy on you all, I wanted to post about something I heard today that I found both interesting and comforting. It really made me think about life and why things happen the way they do ... so read on, k?

Still with me?

Ok, good!

So, the church Andi and I go to features 'sermon series' every few weeks where we review various sections of the Bible. Sometimes there's a tie to the time of year (ie: Christmas) or other times it's just walking through different books of the Bible and talking about how it applies to our lives. We started a new series today in the book of James and specifically talked about problems, and how we react to them.

We all have problems, right? We worry about health, or money, or fertility, or loneliness or whatever - ultimately we all have times where things just don't seem to be going our way. And when things don't go our way, we often ask God "why is this happening to me?" ... "am I not a good enough person?" ... "what did I do wrong to deserve this?"  James:1 tells us problems are inevitable. They happen to everyone and the only thing you can plan on the fact that life is unpredictable.  But we also take comfort in knowing that God only gives you as much as you can handle. And there's a reason He's giving you this challenge: to better develop your character. God can take the biggest challenge in our lives, give us strength to get through it and then make us better for having experienced it. And, ultimately, we shouldn't ask God "why is this happening to me?" but "what do you want me to learn from this experience?" ... "what are you trying to teach me?"  All we can do is pray and trust in our faith.

A little heavy for a Sunday post? Maybe. But I felt so comforted hearing this message. Life's bigger than what's happening today, what problems or challenges we might be facing. Tomorrow's another day and a better, brighter one at that. Thank God for that!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Sometimes, it's the little things

Today I made a fantastic discovery, deep in the dark quarters of our basement. A discovery that will surely change our lives forever (well, at least the next few months for sure). But first, let me start at the beginning...

Two years ago, Andi bought me an electric blanket for my birthday. I remember something like "blah blah blah ... it's waaaay to cold here ... all I want for my birthday is an electric blanket" and he finally got me one. I was ecstatic. It was even a high-tech electric blanket with controls for heat on each side of the bed. (We, too, have the classic man is always hot / woman is always cold debate in our house). So after receiving the blanket, I excitedly put it on our bed and used it daily ... almost refusing to turn it off because it was so nice and toasty. Andi had to peel me out of our bed, literally - if I could have spent every waking (and sleeping!) moment in our bed, I surely would have.

And then?

You guessed it. Much whining ensued by my husband "blah blah's too never get out of bed and sores are surely in your future" (OK- I made up the last part!) until I finally agreed to take it off our bed. I stuffed the electric blanket in a tote somewhere in our basement and forgot all about it.

Cut to winter 2009/2010: I swear it's colder this winter than it ever has been. Maybe I'm just getting older and turning into an even bigger weeny. But even Andi's freezing which makes me think the weather is frightful. Two nights ago we were laughing about it; Andi wore to bed wool socks, his warmest sweatpants, a t-shirt and hooded sweatshirt. I wore wool socks, slippers, sweatpants, longsleeve shirt and a stocking hat (OK, the hat was just to be funny). We joked that babies are probably rarely conceived in Minnesota during the wintertime because it's too damn cold to take your clothes off! Ridiculous.

And then today, I remembered the electric blanket. Ah yes, the glorious electric blanket! How could I have so quickly forgotten? After some digging, I found it folded ever-so-nicely in the basement. I put it on the bed, along with some fresh flannel sheets. When Andi comes home tonight, he's going to be so happy. And this time, I think he's going to like it ...

Monday, January 4, 2010

You're wishing your life away

Ever heard this saying? Sometimes I feel like I do that - wish my life away. So excited to skip ahead, I forget to smell the roses along the way. I thought about this saying a few times over the weekend as I was having fun with our couple friends on new year's eve, or while I was getting a much-needed massage on Saturday with some girlfriends.  Why can't I enjoy where my life's at today? I should soak up all the fun we're having as a newlywed couple; flying by the seat of our pants, traveling where we want, eating out every night if we feel like it, having money to buy all the things we think we need.  All this will change someday when we have a little one.

But I can't help myself for wishing that day was tomorrow.

So another new year's resolution I'm destined to break: slow down; soak up life to the fullest; enjoy being married to the best husband ever. Think I can do it?

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Hockey Tourney - Duluth

Today was our last day in Duluth and the second day of Andi's pond hockey tourney.  After the boys left at the wee hours of the morning to setup for the tournament, the girlfriends and I slept in, went to lunch at Pizza Luce and then headed to the site to check out the event.

I am so proud of Andi for pulling together such a cool tourney! Ten teams participated in the event and over 200 people stopped by to spectate. Two Duluth news crews were even there to cover it.
Here's a few photos from our day:

Twin Ponds Ice Rinks

Me - Bundled up for the freezing Minnesota outdoors

Andi & I (with the city of Duluth in the back drop)

Charlie - Andi's partner in the event
(next to the pimp event Ranger)

These are Charlie's boots. Think it was a little cold there?
Yep folks, that's ICE

Derrick & Ellie

Only six more weekends of tournaments for Andi ... which isn't so bad. By the time he's done with this event, it'll be spring!

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Here's to Health (and Beer)

This morning when we woke up in Duluth it was -22 degrees. That's right, -22 degrees without wind chill. It's unreal why we CHOOSE to live here. Andi was up bright and early to get to his event site and kick off the first day of the open play hockey tournament. I was worried for him (and the rest of the players) because it was so cold ... at what point is it not OK to be outside in temperatures like that? In Duluth - it doesn't seem like temperatures matter. No one was phased and Day 1 of the tourney was a success. Or so Andi says ... cuz us girls were at the spa!
My friends Ellie, Sarah, Kendall and I decided to hit the spa while our boys were freezing their behinds at the event. We arrived around 11am and each had massages/facials/pedicures which was an all-day affair.

Sarah & Ellie waiting for spa treatments

Kendall getting a pedicure

After the spa, we went across the hallway for beers and lunch. Super healthy, we know. We had a great time catching up, telling stories and nourishing our very relaxed bodies. The poor boys, meanwhile, we're frozen to death and wrapping up the event.

Tonight, we went to dinner with the entire group (hockey guys and all) and then hit the hot tub afterwards for one last beer. Once you're married you're definitely not out to impress - this was Andi's attire to the pool. Very sexy ...

Just another night in Duluth ...

Tomorrow we're braving the cold for Day 2 of the hockey tournament. Brought my snow pants, boots, scarf, hat, gloves and the warmest winter coat I own. Hope I'll survive ... and the event goes well!

Friday, January 1, 2010

Happy New Year!

Well, it was an interesting New Year's Eve celebration for sure.
We spent our night in Duluth with our friends Derrick & Ellie, Brian & Melissa, Charlie & Katie and Josh & Katie. After much consideration about what to do, we opted for dinner at Hell's Kitchen which was just across the street from our hotel in Canal Park. The restaurant was slow and we had our own little party room which made it feel as if we had the whole place to ourselves. Food was good, cocktails were flowing and we laughed loud enough for everyone to know it was New Year's!

Derrick and Ellie sipping martinis

Andi goofing around inside a skeleten statue outside the restaurant

After dinner, we contimplated where to go to ring in the new year. There were plenty of options, but none of us wanted to risk taking a cab home (and waiting 2+ hours for the seven cabs that run the streets of Duluth). We asked what the closest bar to the hotel was (considering it was 2 degrees outside and we weren't up for a marathon walk home in 3 degree weather) and the answer? Saratoga Strip Club.

...and so we went to the Toga. Pretty seedy; felt like a VFW inside but we took it for face value and bellied up to the stage for the show. We had a great time actually; it's easy to have fun wherever you go when you're rolling with a crew of 10. Shortly after the clock ticked midnight, Andi and I bailed and walked back to the hotel. The rest of our friends continued on to another bar about half a mile down the road. Last laugh this morning as everyone else was hungover and Andi and I felt great.

So it was definitely a different kind of New Year's. But fun none the less. Here's to 2010 - may you keep the adventure alive!