Boring rambles

Warning - rather boring, rambly post ahead. You can turn back now if you want!

We didn't have a terribly exciting weekend. Nate's fighting a cold and I'm fighting that lovely syndrome known as "being a woman" (sorry to any dudes, I'm a girl, deal with it). So between the two of us we have been pretty "blah" for the last few days!

On Sunday I did get out of the house for a little bit and visited my friend Stef and her new baby Annabel. We had a nice afternoon catching up a bit. Since I was already most of the way to White Bear, I also ran over and picked up Donatelli's for Nate and I to enjoy for dinner. We hadn't been there in awhile so that was awesome. We watched a movie while we ate that and then after that I watched the Oscars which I thought were kind of lame this year. I was happy with who won, but the show itself was kind of "meh." I'm beyond thrilled that my Muppets took home the award for Best Original song though!

Otherwise we're going one day at a time and hoping to be feeling better soon. I'm excited for coming events - we're going to a bed and breakfast in Duluth in about a month so that's exciting and then we are hopefully going to Itasca with a bunch of people in Nate's family in August - just found out that the plans are in the works for that and I really hope it works out, I've been missing Itasca. I told Nate the other day if this all works out, then this year we'll visit both of my favorite places in the world - Duluth and Itasca. Is it sad that my favorite places in the world are just about in my own backyard? I'm a simple minded girl I guess.

I can't believe it's already just about March. Feels like time is moving kind of fast these days. It could slow down a bit, I'd be ok with that.

As I often say, on we go.


Sunshine and roses

I'm back to sunshine and roses today! Ok, maybe not literally, but I am feeling better today. Yesterday was just a blah, dull day. We all have them.

Reason number one today is already better - I found out that because Fairview met it's patient satisfaction goal for 2011, all employees are getting a bonus check. And even better, the amount of the check is about half of the cost of the repairs on my car! Um, score!! Happy surprise!

Reason number two today is better - I am wearing a sweater with yellow stripes, how can you not be happy wearing yellow stripes?

Reason number three today is better - Nate is making dinner so I can more or less crash when I get home if I want!

Reason number four today is better - there is only one more day until the weekend where the only thing we HAVE to do is Mass on Saturday and the rest of the weekend is ours for what we choose

Reason number five today is better - It's payday!

So there you go, five reasons I'm in a much better mood. I will continue these positive vibes into my weekend!


A true challenge

Day one of my Lenten challenge is already proving to be just that...a challenge. Not the shopping ban, but the "non-complaining, trying to be more positive" thing. I swear it's almost like I'm being tested or something.

I'm remembering this post and this post and have been reflecting on them a bit. Both posts kind of apply to how I'm feeling today, which is really making it difficult to keep up on my challenge. Yet, I am willing to fight and win this battle. I am not going to succumb on day one.

I decided what might help is instead of putting it out here on such a public forum all the time, I'm going to really try journaling for myself in the 40 days of Lent. I think it'll make a difference. And then I'll just check in here from time to time on how the challenge is going.

Each day is a new day and I know some days will be easier.

And to quote Forrest Gump, "that's all I have to say about that."

Back to your regularly scheduled fun loving Beth tomorrow.


Some Tuesday Thoughts

It was another whirlwind weekend. Another Praise Project gig, another friend's birthday party and a baby shower took up most of the weekend. Somewhere in there I managed to go for an outdoor run though and we had a chance to veg and watch a movie, so it wasn't all hectic.

Today I'm finally having my car worked on. I am not excited about the grand total of repair cost, but I'm not going to complain. It could always be worse - got an email today that one of our Praise Project friends had a fire in their home. Thankfully her whole family is ok and most of the house is still ok, but still, what a glaring reminder that things could always be worse.

Tomorrow begins Lent and while I don't always do the "give something up" thing, I'm attempting it this year - I'm going to go on another shopping ban for one. I had joked about it a bit but after hearing what I have to pay for my car, well, it just makes sense. Then I'm joining my mom and trying hard to give up complaining. Life is too short to be negative all the time, especially when we're surrounded by so many negative things at times.

It'll be a battle, but we'll go one day at a time and see how it goes.


Fabulous Friday - a return!

I can't promise that I'll be doing this on a weekly basis again, but I felt like doing a Fabulous Friday today. Here is what I'm finding fabulous this week!

1. The Butcher Block - it was spendy but it was so worth it. Best dinner out for Valentine's Day ever! I'd go back just for the rigatoni in truffle sauce. Yes you heard me right. Truffle sauce. Everything else we had was fantastic too, but man. That rigatoni. Drool....

2. Muppets Bandaids - I heard awhile back that Band-Aid brand was going to have Muppets Bandaids, probably to go along with the movie, available at Target. Big Muppet Nerd me really wanted to have them, but Target did not have them. Imagine my surprise when I stumbled onto them at Cub of all places. Yep, the box ended up in my cart without any other thought. Is it wrong that I want to be clumsier so I have an excuse to use them?

3. My new kitchen pantry thingy from Ikea - I still need to take pictures, but I am in love with this stupid pantry. I think I'm changing my tune on my feelings towards the Ikea.

4. Pinterest - it's stupid addictive for list-making junkies like me. Enough said.

5. The weather - yeah I know, it's not normal and maybe it's global warming and we should be more concerned, but I am really loving the fact that it's been so easy to deal with the weather as of late. Still cold enough for a sweater each day, but no need for a super heavy coat and driving has been a breeze.

There you go! What are you finding fabulous today?


Happy Heart Day!

Happy Valentine's Day!

I've talked before about how I don't need a special day to tell my husband that I love him and that this holiday is so commerical it's crazy and we don't make a big deal out of it and things like that. But in the last couple of years we've compromised and said no gifts, but instead we treat ourselves to a nice dinner (usually followed with a super nice bottle of scotch that we both enjoy). This year is no exception and I refuse to feel guilty about it.

I've seen a lot of negative posts on the subject of Valentine's Day and such today, but I'm just not letting them get to me. With the week we just had and really, the last oh I don't know, 8 or so months Nate just had dealing with being the solo Mac guy at work, we more than deserve a special treat today and I intend to enjoy it! Besides, it can serve as part celebration - Nate finally has a teammate at work again. The 2nd Mac tech started last Monday and it's my hope that things will finally even out for him again. I've already seen the change, he's a lot more relaxed than he's been in quite some time.

So what are we doing for our special outing? We're trying out a restaurant in NE Mpls called "The Butcher Block" - it's Italian. We discovered it when we were researching meat markets online and decided to give it a try. I'm mildly nervous as I read a few reviews today (yeah I know, way to procrastinate) and it's kind of a mixed bag - but I'm feeling hopeful because the postive reviews were extremely so and there were several very recent postive reviews, like in the last few days. I figure you have to take what you read on the internet with such a grain of salt. Some people complain for the sake of complaining.

If anything I'm looking forward to some quality one on one time with my most favorite person in the entire world. I would not have it any other way!


Let's play catch up

So I am so behind on everything it seems, but I'm attempting to get caught up this week. Here is a rundown of everything we've been up to besides funerals and what not!

~Winterfest was fun this year. I am in awe of all the new breweries that have popped up in MN even since last year. There was no way we could have gotten around to them all in one night, honestly. There are a couple of newer breweries we'd like to check out in person sometime. It is pretty awesome that there has just been this crazy beer boom here!

~Nate has delved into the world of making sausages and other meat products. We got the meat grinding attachment that goes with our Kitchen Aid mixer and not surprisingly, he has done a ton of research and is giving it a go. So far he has made bratwurst. They were not bad, there are some changes he'll be making for the next go round, but he's going to keep at it. He hopes to make his Grandpa's Russian Sausage recipe in his honor soon. He said in a way it's perfect, beer brewing is better in the summer, so now he'll do meats in the winter!

~Because of the meat making and the fact that we've been trying out various meat markets and trying to stock up on meat, we decided it was finally time to replace the freezer in our basement that totally tanked last winter. We visited our friends out at Steve's Appliances in Mounds View and managed to find a lovely upright freezer that will fit through the basement door. I cannot say enough awesome things about Steve's - they will haul away your old equipment at no extra cost, you just can't beat that! The new freezer will be arriving after work today, I'm excited.

~Also in the storage genre, we realized we won't likely be remodeling the kitchen quite yet because of some major work we'll be doing on the exterior of the house this spring, yet, we wanted to re-arrange, re-organize and kind of overhaul the kitchen a bit. We made a trip to Ikea yesterday and found a lovely cupboard/organizer that is helping us immensely! Now we have to relocate our library table, but I think we know what we're doing to make that work. It's the little things sometimes!

So, you take all of that and throw in Praise Project gigs, birthday gatherings for friends and other various family things and we've been pretty crazed lately. I'm really glad that we're taking time out just for the two of us tomorrow to celebrate Valentine's Day. It's not to say we haven't enjoyed some of the fun things as of late, but it is nice to spend time just the two of us as well!

I think that more or less catches us up! Hopefully things will continue to be a bit more "routine" for awhile now!



Yeah I know. It's been a week since my last post. Pretty rare for a long stretch of silence like this. I wanted to write this week about Winterfest and Nate's new sausage making hobby and other fun and light hearted things of that nature. But life kind of came crashing to a halt last weekend and I just haven't felt like blogging about those things. Last Saturday, Nate's Grandpa Pete passed away. He was in ill health but it was still rather sudden. The funeral was yesterday. So needless to say, we've been a bit preoccupied this week.

I was thinking about it yesterday and I realized that I have known Nate's grandparents for pretty much the entire almost 14 years we've been together. I still remember when I met them for the first time. Nate called me up one Sunday after we'd only been dating about a month and said "hey, we're going over to my grandparents this afternoon for a bit and I was wondering if you'd like to come over and meet them." And 16 year old me is like "OMG he wants me to meet his extended family? Parents are one thing, but wow, this must be serious!" I was so floored, but delighted. Nervous as I was, I agreed to go over to meet them.

They were nothing but kind the minute I set foot in their house. I remember feeling so comfortable and welcome that my nerves disappeared immediately. I believe one of his aunt and uncles were over that day as well. We sat at their kitchen table and they taught me to play Mexican Dominoes. When I left that day they said they hoped they would see me again. And of course, they did see me again. And I always felt the same comfortable, welcoming atmosphere as I did that very first day.

I didn't really get to grow up with a grandfather as my Grandpa Miller passed away before I was born and my Grandpa Gilles passed away when I was only in 1st grade. So I feel blessed and fortunate to have known and had a relationship with both of Nate's grandfathers, but especially Grandpa Pete because he lived here (Grandpa Ray lived in St. Louis and has also been gone from this world for about five years now). So my heart is sad even though this was expected, it's never easy to say goodbye to someone.

Yesterday we had a nice celebration of his life and it was interesting to see how they do things in the Russian Orthodox church. I have no doubt in my mind that he is in a better place now and I am so glad he suffers no more.

Things should slowly be returning to normal and hopefully I'll be able to post about all those other things soon! But for now, that is the news from here.


It's Ok Thursday

I've done these lists before, totally stolen from Glamour Magazine's "Hey It's Ok" list. I just felt like I needed to give myself permission to not feel guilty today, so here are my things that I'm saying are totally cool for today.

Today I think It's Ok....

1. That the most exercise I will get today is going up and down the stairs at work a few times because I chose to sleep in instead of getting up to work out.
2. That sometimes I choose two pieces of cinnamon toast and hot chocolate for lunch instead of something else more "lunchy" or even more "healthy".
3. That sometimes I wish I would get in a non-injury related accident so I can collect insurance money and buy a new car instead of making the needed repairs on my current one.
4. That my music selections as of late have been songs I enjoyed when I was a pre-teen and teenager, but that I would not go back to that time for anything.
5. That I'm excited for the Super Bowl this weekend for anything other than the game itself, but instead the commericals, the halftime show, eating tasty appetizers, drinking beer and spending quality time with my in-laws. It's our tradition and I wouldn't change it for the world.
6. That the only football game I'll even have seen this season is the Super Bowl itself.
7. That my current favorite purse I keep going back to is not flashy or fancy but is a simple black leather bag bought at a vintage shop.
8. That I get more excited to go vintage shopping right now than I do any other kind of shopping.
9. That I have all sorts of exciting plans in the works for my house that I haven't gotten around to starting yet and call this time "the dream phase."
10. That I chose to write this list partly because it would be a time waster.

There. It's so cathartic sometimes to do that! What are you giving yourself permission to feel ok about?