faaaalllll colors!

We’ve made it up to the mountains 3 weeks in a row and hopefully won’t be breaking that streak this weekend either.

Then life might change.

Because I may have gotten another part-time job.

It’s all about the discounts, people.

Anyways, Colorado has beautiful Aspen trees that change to a glorious shade of yellow in the fall.  You have to be really quick though, because the colors are only at their prime for a week or two. Because we’ve been up to the mountains on a regular basis (compared to what the usual) we’ve been able to watch the progression.  Catching fish and reading books is just an added bonus. It does our bodies good to be spending most of Saturdays outside and out of the city.  We’ve found that apartment living is refreshingly low maintenance and is freeing up so much of our weekend time.

IMG_1409

 IMG_1453 IMG_1421IMG_1417

sunday football

We love where we live except we currently get a total of 1 T.V. station.  Sometimes.  We sometimes get 1 T.V. station.

And we’re sometimes lucky enough to get it when our teams are actually being broadcast on that station.

We know we could get cable and have much better station luck but we are too cheap for that.  So instead, we spend most of our Sundays coming up with inventive ways to get the station in…

IMG_1079

IMG_1083 IMG_1085

 

You’re welcome to watch the game at our place anytime!

georgetown lake

This was the view on Friday morning on my way to work…

September Snow

 

I sat in my car for a good 5 minutes because I refused to start the scraping process in September.

 

Luckily, today we had absolutely fabulous weather and because we had no plans, we made it up to Georgetown Lake for a day of fishing.  Or snoozing.  Depends on which one of us you’re talking to.

After many trips with less than successful fishing outcomes, I had one happy fisherman on my hands who caught 5 lake trout.  None of them were necessarily big enough to keep but it kept the fishing interesting enough for us to stay up for almost 5 hours.

The perfect amount of time for a nice sunburn, 2 long naps, and finishing a book.

Plans are already in the works for the next great fishing trip.  When the lake is less than an hour away from home and in the mountains it’s really hard to resist spending a nice fall day relaxing lake side.  We’ll be open for visitors come Spring!! :)

IMG_1381

IMG_1323

 

IMG_1322

the view from here

A quick snapshot of life lately…

 

We’ve been rather obsessed with this particular piece of land lately.
IMG_1344

 

 

Fabulous day for a Labor Day hike with the family.

IMG_1069

 

 

Saturday morning French pastries on the way to the Farmer’s Market.

IMG_1373

 

 

Cale, in his version, of music heaven.

IMG_1074

 

My sister moved :(

Nightly FaceTime with her and my mom to stay up-to-date on the latest apartment decorating extravaganza.

And hot neighbor boy updates. Maybe. Maybe hot neighbor boy updates.

Just the important stuff.

 

IMG_1075

fall preview

You would never guess it at 2 on Sunday afternoon but the mornings and evenings in Colorado have definitely turned cooler with a reminder that summer is almost gone and fall is upon us. I’m not sure if it’s the cooler weather or if I’m finally crawling my way out of the small apartment cooking doldrums but this household is finally eating meals that require more effort than spreading peanut butter on bread or throwing a frozen pizza into the oven. In the spirit of all things fall-like, these next 5 recipes are on my September menu must-haves.  I hope you’re all enjoying the long weekend, the start of football season, and the waning summer days!

1) Beer and Bacon Mac and Cheese

Seriously, all good things are topped with cheese.

  0.jpg     2) Crock Pot Pulled Chicken

I’m generally a big fan of pulled pork sandwiches to signify the opening of football season. Sub chicken for pork- an equally delicious way to celebrate my beloved Minnesota Vikes making their debut appearance next weekend!

bbq-chicken-9018.jpg   3) Chicken Tamale Pie

I’m a not-so-secret lover of tamales of all shapes and sizes.  If my husband liked them at all I would be at every roadside tamale stand this side of the Mississippi finding the best vendor.  This seems to be an easy disguise to still enjoy the same great flavor.

chickentamalepie1.jpg   4) Roasted Potatoes with Sausage, Apple, and Maple Mustard Glaze

Does this title scream fall to anyone else?  I actually cheated and already made this recipe (with a few substitutions of course) and it was amazing.  And fall-y. And easy!

maple_mustard_potato_bake_large.jpg   5)  Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

My mom and I took a cooking class together a couple of years ago and made the best chocolate chip pumpkin bars.  To me, the flavor of pumpkin and dark chocolate go together like peanut butter and jelly.  Can’t wait to try the cookie version!

IMG_2964-1.jpg

the current state of things

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our current state of life in 5 pictures…

 

 

IMG_1036

 

The washer machine chose to make this weekend the weekend where a sock would get stuck in the hose causing the whole thing pause right before the spin and drain cycle.

This equals a load (or two if you’re slow to catch on) sopping wet and unable to be dried any time this century.

And then, after my husband fixed the whole thing and I had the simple task of handing back screws, I might have dropped one and it can’t be found… anywhere.  I might have.

I’m so helpful.

P.S. When you live in an apartment the size of shoe box and your washer breaks, everything stored on top of and around washer must be removed.  Which makes the rest of the apartment an utter disaster.  Plus, how does a sock get through the washer drum into the hose in the first place?

IMG_1032

 

To further entice everyone to come visit us out in sunny Colorado, let me brag to you about our real tomatoes that we sell at our local Farmer’s Market.

 

IMG_1033

 

My mom made the our day a little bit brighter by scoring a fabulous deal on some sweet shoes for me and my sisters.  Unfortunately my sister-in-law was working this day but imagine 3 fabulous pairs together.

IMG_1311

 

Jenny and I planned on running a 10k at the end of summer together but since we neither trained or had the will power we ‘ran’ a 5k together instead.  Let me clarify, the 5k was to benefit me only. She totally would have dominated the 10k.  To make it better, I made my sister shuffle… with purpose… for the entire thing.

But we matched.. so that was cute. :)

surprise! we’re in Nebraska!

Cale’s dad turned 60 this year, so Cale’s siblings surprised him with a 60th birthday party.  They were able to gather all of ‘the kids’together on 1 weekend which was no small feat and took a 8 month advance warning.

Not only that but they were also able to gather all of my father in-law’s siblings and some of his close friends for an afternoon party at the park as well.  Cale and I claim absolutely no responsibility in pulling off any of the surprises and were able to go and enjoy all of the hard work that went into planning the entire weekend.

We were also able to see our nieces and nephews, some of which we had never met (!) and the rest we hadn’t seen in a year and half.

Terrible tragedy actually.

We came back home absolutely exhausted after countless games of freeze tag and playing princess.

Except I was never a princess.

I always had to be Sven.

The moose.

 

I played moose all weekend.

 

IMG_1250

IMG_1233

 

IMG_1214

IMG_1221

IMG_1237

rocky mountain weekend

My sister in-law’s family is part owners of a cabin in the middle of the Rocky Mountains.  There are about 10,000 reasons why I love the cabin but one of the best parts is that it is completely removed from the tourist area/ ski resort towns.

Don’t get me wrong, the tourist areas/ski towns probably make it into the top 3 of my most favorite places to go but you’re not exactly getting away from everything.

Back to the original story though, she (and my brother, I guess) gifted my dad a week of their allotted time as his Father’s Day present.  My dad nicely picked a weekend that we could all go.

We being all inclusive of everyone but my little brother.  We missed you, Corey!

Cale, Jason (my brother), our trusty dog-phew Henry, and I busted out of town after work on Friday and made it up in time to see the sun set over the mountains.

We had fabulous afternoon thunderstorms which the whole family used as nap time.  The amount of snacks that were brought for 7 people was unbelievable.  I seriously had to have gained 5 pounds because every time I moved from one chair to another I grabbed more food.

The guys + Katie tested their fishing skills and Katie stood up well for the girls by being the only person to catch a fish.

Oh, and I was also sore.  I tried racing the dog up a solitary hill and not only did I loose miserably, my thighs were sore for days.

Getting old. Darn it.

IMG_0984

 

IMG_0988

 

IMG_1028

Why am I the only who looks like taking a selfie is the most exciting thing I’ve ever done… ever?

 

it’s always sunny in santorini

Our last leg of our European adventure was Santorini (a small island of the coast of Greece).  I’ve wanted to visit Santorini for a long time but knew for sure I had to go after watching Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants.

 

True story.

 

So in true Cale and Megan fashion we decided to go for it without giving it much of a second thought.  After purchasing the tickets (and second thinking things) we realized lounging on the beach for 4 days would probably be what we were craving after scrambling around to catch all of the sights in Rome and Athens.

We stayed at a hotel right on Perissa beach, which is the black sand beach of Santorini (compared to the red or white sand beaches that exist elsewhere).  The most famous city, Oia, is where the iconic blue domed buildings are usually photographed although they also exist in other cities across the island.

This was also the only stop where we booked an activity before we left the states.  On the last day we took a catamaran tour around the island.  So much fun!  Although it was the most expensive part of the entire trip we would take the exact same catamaran tour again if we ever go back.

 

The weather was warm but not hot and the water was cold.  The surf on days 1-3 was quite high but it made for a beautiful couple of days of walking around and laying on the beach.  Of our entire trip to Europe this would be one stop that we would go back to just to relax.

And eat Greek food.

 

I’m telling you people, we couldn’t get enough.

 

That, in short, wraps up our dream vacation to Europe.  I told Cale I feel old now since that has been my dream vacation since… I don’t even know when, and now it’s over.  And I’m old.

 

Time to start dreaming our our next grand adventure….

 IMG_1155

it’s all greek to me!

IMG_0941

 The second part of our European vacation was Athens.

We left Rome around 9 o’clock in the morning, had a layover in Serbia (!), and arrived in Athens around 4.  While we were brave enough to navigate the public transportation in Rome, Athens didn’t appear to be quite as straight forward.  Combined with some (unnecessary) concerns about safety and the fact that it was equal in price, we booked our transportation directly through our hotel.  Oh, and have a mentioned the fact that Greek is definitely not English?  And knowing what the Greek symbols are in math actually don’t help you out at all when trying to figure out signage or language.

I knew that subject was worthless.

Joking but not joking.  Calculators people

Oh, and sorry about that one long sentence up there.  Whew.

I have one thing to say about Athens.

Food.

Okay two.

Food. Acropolis.

yum, wow, yum, wow, yum, wow, yum, wow.

That is all you need to know about Athens. While we planned our trip to have 3 days per location, based on travel and flight times it ended up to be more like 3 days in Rome, 2 days in Athens, and 4 days in Santorini.  And that was almost perfect.

Athens as a city is not too spectacular.  Sorry, had to say it.  It’s modern-ish, clean-ish… you get the point.

But the food.  When we talk about the food we ate on the trip we talk about Athens.  Maybe not the most gorgeous to look at but amazing.

And then the Acropolis.  No words.  Really.

If you’ve never wanted to go to Athens I wouldn’t recommend it as a must see.  But if you’ve ever had any desire to see the Acropolis in person.  Go.  Totally worth it.  No regrets.

Since I can’t really describe the food, and anything we were to say about the Acropolis wouldn’t do it justice.. the pictures are below.  Not that the pictures really do it justice either but… better than words.  :)

IMG_0885  IMG_0938

IMG_0920  IMG_0851