Summer is upon us

So this past weekend, Nate and I celebrated six years of marriage.  Holy cow.  Where does the time go?  We're more than halfway through our first decade of marriage.  And don't get me started on time together as a whole, next year will be 15 years.  Crazy.

And May has just flown by too, seriously, it was like a flash.  I suppose having weekly activities like golf lessons has made the time go faster.  Not to mention during the week we were going to the driving range at least once in the evenings too, so yeah, blink and May is over.  I do not want the entire summer to fly by like this!

Last summer really kind of sucked.  And fortunately it did go by fast, but there's just no other way to say it, it sucked.  We were busy all the time, Nate was so stressed at work to the point that he was making himself sick,  it started out cold and rainy (remember Rock the Garden last year?) and then it was hotter than hell the rest of the summer.    We did have a fun family vacation (yes I said fun, I know there were issues on that trip, but looking back it was mostly fun).  We did do some fun activities as we were able, but overall looking back, I did not enjoy Summer 2011.

This summer I really, really want to try to enjoy more.   Some things I already know will be better - Nate has a partner again at work so that will help, plus, he's getting his Flex Fridays back for the first time since his first summer at MSIT.  So he is going to be far less stressed I think.  We get to go to our favorite place in the entire world, Itasca State Park in August.

As for the weather, well we can't control that.  Who knows if it will be hot, cold, rainy, dry or average this year.  I just plan to make the most of the good days as much as possible.  For example, today it is nice, we will go to the driving range.  If it's hot on the weekends we plan to take a clue from my parents and get up early to golf before the heat of the day.  Or get our yard work done earlier or what have you.  We might be turning into old people, but Nate was laughing with me the other day that he realized he can get so much more done in a day on the weekend if he's up earlier.  Especially on a day we have a Praise Project gig.  It might mean we don't stay up as late on Friday night, but you know, it's not such a bad thing.

There are other plans in the works for this summer but not going to stress about them.  We will do as much as we can, biking, swimming, running, golfing, barbeques with friends, eating on patios, whatever we can fit in.

I am just going to stick to my one day at a time mantra as much as I possibly can!  I say it all the time and I struggle with it, but I'll do my best to lather, rinse, repeat.  And this summer WILL be better than last year!


Good and full weekend

She's posting again?  GASP!

I just felt like sharing about our weekend.  It was a good one, even if it was super full.

Friday and Saturday were full of Praise Project stuff, a rehearsal and a Mass.  And somewhere in there was our 2nd golf lesson.  But, we had a fun date night at a new restaurant in NE Minneapolis - Eli's East.  There is also an Eli's Downtown, but the East location is not terribly far and quite easy to get to.  And they had outdoor seating.  That was kind of my only requirement for dinner on Saturday.  I didn't care where we went as long as we could sit outside because Saturday was all kinds of gorgeous outside.  We even briefly considered sitting out on our own deck and having dinner at home, but then I remembered I wanted to try Eli's (my parents tried it first actually - can you believe that?  Usually I introduce them to new places!) so we checked to see if they had the outdoor patio and they totally did.

I love this restaurant!  They have a couple of local breweries on tap but even without that the food was really good!  We split this crab cake appetizer that was to die for.  I then had a smoked salmon Caesar salad since smoked fish is my new obsession.  It was so good and was nice and light - perfect for an outdoor meal.  I was also worried it would be super busy and packed there, but it still wasn't terribly busy as we were leaving around 7:00.  It was steady, just not packed.  There are plenty of other things on the menu we want to try, so I think we'll be going back there soon!

Sunday was Mother's Day and my furry children did not gift me with much more than just tons of cuddles and love.  I swear they were both extra affectionate yesterday which was kind of sweet.  We got up a little early and took my mom to Caribou and then to Isle Bun and Coffee, awesome bakery in Uptown that has the best cinnamon rolls in the Twin Cities.  We were nervous when we pulled up - the line was out the door and halfway down the street.  My dad is like "they are not going to keep up with demand, we'll be in line for an hour or more" but we decided to chance it.  It actually wasn't so bad, we got through in about a half hour.  Mom and I chose strawberry rhubarb scones instead of the cinnamon rolls - because they are some of the BEST scones I have ever had and they only have them around this time of year.  Dad got a cinnamon roll and Nate got a caramel bun.  We took our goodies down to Lake of the Isles and sat for a bit.  Came back to our house so mom and dad could get some kitty love for a little bit.  Then they headed home.

Later in the afternoon we went to Nate's aunt and uncle's house in Lino Lakes and had a barbecue with his family.  It was so nice, we sat outside the whole time and visited and ate goodies.  The guys cooked for the ladies, even this lady who technically isn't a mom didn't have to lift a finger!  Just got to sit and drink margaritas and beer and relax!  All the fresh air really wore me out though, we got home last night and crashed in front of the TV for about three hours and zoned out.  Slept good last night though!

This week calms down considerably.  I have a girls movie date tonight, but then the rest of the week is calm and quiet and in fact, I took Friday off!  It's been crazy at work and just in life in general.  So I'm really looking forward to a me day.  We all need them!


I'm ba-ack!

You knew I wouldn't avoid blogging here forever right?  If you did, then you don't truly know me.  Those who do know me, know at times I need Bloggers Anonymous.  Hey, at least I'm back writing in an existing blog instead of coming up with yet another one!

Quite frankly, I have nothing that exciting to say, but I wanted to babble about what we've been up to lately, just cause I felt like it.  And hey, maybe no one is reading anymore after my last post, but that's ok!  I'll just babble for myself then!

So first of all, Nate and I have started intermediate level golf lessons.  Four weeks plus a round of golf at the end.  It's not a bad deal all in all, each lesson is just an hour and should help us kind of fine tune our skills a bit.  We chose the intermediate level because we both have played golf and know about golf, so I felt we'd be bored in the beginner level.  We had our first lesson this last Saturday - squeezed in right before the monsoon, hooray for that.  We worked on putting and already I learned something new.  Always room for growth!

Secondly, back in March Nate bought a smoker for smoking his own meats.  At that time we did some bacon and a pork shoulder that was then shredded for pulled pork sandwiches.  It was so delicious and I've been on him to try it again and also do a brisket.  And other than our golf lesson, this last weekend was totally free and clear on our schedule so we decided it would be a good time to do it.  Then Mother Nature decided to go all wonky on us and we weren't sure if we could do it - but Nate is a smart man (which is why I married him of course!) and figured out a way to put up a canopy on the deck that the smoker could sit under.  Problem solved and the meats were fantastic and worth it.  I'm such a friggin carnivore.  I love meat.  Mmm, meat.

Otherwise, it's been day to day normal stuff.  I'm dreaming of vacation.  Several people I know have just taken amazing looking long weekends away - and I'm craving it.  We are going to Itasca with Nate's extended family in August and I am SO looking forward to that - but I think even more I'm craving the adventure of going somewhere new or even somewhere I haven't been since I was young.  Unfortunately with house repairs and car repairs coming up I don't see us really having a chance to travel like that for awhile.  But it's not going to stop me from dreaming.  Sometimes I wish Nate and I could get in the car and just drive until we feel like stopping.

I'm also seeking creative outlets - I don't know what I'm looking for, but I have had this sense of wanting to do something meaningful or inspiring to others the way others inspire me.  If that makes any sense whatsoever.  I guess that's a big reason that I'm back to blogging here, I just need to explore myself a bit.  We'll see if I find any answers anyway.  Or I'll wake up tomorrow and be like, self-discovery?  Too much work!

So here we are.  And we move along.