Monday, December 22, 2014

Christmas Baking (Why I Need to Stay Away from the Oven for a While)

Huh. This doesn't look too bad, does it?
I'm trying too hard, aren't I? I mean, I go "off the air" so to speak, for like... I don't know, what, 6 weeks? 8 weeks? And now... deluge of blogs.

Yea, I probably am.

But I finally have some brain space to blog again, and right now, everything is freaking funny.

So, because I apparently didn't learn my lesson about baking or the perils of Christmas, I attempted to make brownies the morning before our annual Christmas Vacation party.

Son of a...

Friday, December 19, 2014

Spanks, Fat Pants, and Other Consequences of the Holidays

At the present moment, my office is awash in sugar. Since Thanksgiving, diabetic coma inducing treats have shown up with such frequency that I'm going to need an insulin pump by the end of the season since, as you all know, I have no self-control.

Monday, December 15, 2014

O ($h*#)! Christmas Tree

So, every year since I was born (at least, every year I can remember, and for those of you who know me, you know I can remember a really, REALLY long time back...) I have ventured into the woods with family to cut down a tree for Christmas. When Eric and I got married, this tradition continued, and, while we were living in Indiana, this meant driving up to Michigan for Thanksgiving with family, then going to the cottage for the weekend where we went to a Northern Michigan tree farm with the rest of our "Jet" friends and cut down trees.

Eric cutting the tree in Pike National Forest.
Since we have moved to Colorado, the adventure has continued. However, here, you can buy a permit for just $10 from the Forest Service, head into the woods, and cut nature's finest, freshest tree.

However, Pike National Forest is most definitely not a tree farm. What you find in the forest are not tree farm trees, that have been pruned and shaped.

Our first year, our tree was a little sparse on the branches, but straight and evenly spaced enough. Last year, our little scrap of a tree was missing more than a few branches, but we made it work.

This year's tree might kill me.

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Baby Shower Invites, or Why I Refuse to Go on Pintrest but It Ruined Me Anyway

Pintrest (or Pin-Interest, as my mother refers to it) may be a font of ideas, but it is the DEVIL for simplicity. Seriously, the consequences of life in a Pintrest world have driven me to drink.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Southern Thailand

At the end of our Thailand journey, we spent a couple days on the beach in Southern Thailand near Krabi. We ate seafood, walked the beach, and I swam and snorkeled (thanks to Adele for letting me borrow her mask) in the warmest ocean I've ever been in. I also swam like a crazed dolphin out to two different rocks in the middle of the sea, while Eric watched (and probably worried.) But sometimes you only get to do some things once, and well, swimming to a rock island in Thailand might be one of those things.
Our hotel in Aaong Villa.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Children in Thailand

The kids take their shoes off before they go
into the building.
While we were in Thailand, we had the opportunity to visit a child development project close to the northern border of Thailand and Burma. This relatively rural area in Chiang Dao, has a church of only 44 parishioners, but hosts 150 children 6 days a week.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Animals in Thailand

So, in Thailand they don't necessarily have the same rules about animals as the do in the US. While we were specifically told not to feed the monkeys (and yet watched other tourists do it while I was busy running AWAY from said monkey blocking my trail so he wouldn't bite my face... ok, he never made an attempt to bite my face, but I wasn't taking any chances,) it apparently is perfectly acceptable to pet tigers and ride elephants, as long as you pay the appropriate fee. Which we did, although since a tiger mauled a tourist two weeks after we left Thailand, I don't think we'll be doing that again any time soon. At least I won't be - Eric was much more at ease in the tiger sanctuary than I was.

Monday, December 8, 2014

We went to Thailand

Yep, I'm behind... but stuff happens.

At the end of September, I met Eric in Thailand. He had gone the week before to the General Assembly for YFC, leading young staff. I met him at the end of the trip, and we stayed on. We spent a day in Bangkok, then flew up to Chiang Mai, where we met up with my co-worker and friend, Adele. Adele, as it turns out, it super fun to travel with and didn't mind schlepping us around Northern Thailand. We had a grand time, and even crossed into Burma and Laos for a bit of time.
Water Taxi in Bangkok, taken from our own water taxi