Saturday, March 31, 2012

Project 365: Day 36

We left San Diego bright and early and headed out to Pheonix to catch one of the very last Rockies spring training games at the beautiful Camelback Ranch - Nick is in heaven, opening day is only a week away!!!

Friday, March 30, 2012

Project 365: Day 35

A relaxing day at Pacific Beach with Nick and Chelsa!
After a long walk on the beach, we went to a roof top bar, and enjoyed a couple brews while soaking in the sights and smells of the beach - and getting our first sun burn of the year!  This is what vacation is all about.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Project 365: Day 34

Friday was our day to go to the San Diego Zoo, and I'll say we had a fabulous day! It was gorgeous outside, we (at least Nick and I) were feeling pretty good, and Jamie got called off work so he could hang out with us the whole day (and night - we later went out in PB with Chelsea).
Day 34 Picture of the Day:
We saw 4 awesome things at the zoo that I have never seen before:

(1) We just happened to come across tigers (Jess's favorite animal!) at snack time! The zoo keeper brought out a bowl full of chunks of raw meat and threw it into the den where the tigers would jump up on their hindquarters to catch it in their mouths. It was awesome!

(2) We also just happened to be walking past the jaguar enclosure as the zoo keeper was placing meat around the den for his snack time. Jess and I were front and center when they let the big cat out and it came running right over to us to grab a bite. It was literally two feet from us, chomping away on a big ol' bone - freaking cool!
(3) Nick spotted a monkey and an otter playing together!! YES I said a MONKEY and an OTTER. When have you ever seen such a thing!? They were in the same enclosure and it was a swamp monkey and a river otter and they were horsing around like two little puppies - it was awesome. And then a couple of the younger monkeys came over to harass the otter and the otter's older monkey playmate splashed the young'uns with water to keep them away from his otter friend. It was awesome.

(4) As we were rounding the back of the elephant enclosure, we came across an elephant getting a pedicure! seriously! They had these massive cages that are used for grooming, etc. and the cages have two holes in the front: one for the elephant's foot and one for it's trunk. So they have the elephant stick his foot out so that they can remove his calluses and all the while the elephant is sticking his trunk out of the other hole and another zoo keeper is continuously feeding him lettuce leaves to keep him occupied. It was hilarious, I loved it! (p.s. after walking around the zoo all day in flip-flops, they probably could use the same tools on my feet! haha)

All in all... spectacular day at the zoo!!!

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Project 365: Day 33

After a HUGE (I mean seriously the most massive I've ever seen) breakfast at the Hash House, we ended up making our way to La Jolla to check out the beach. Unfortunately it wasn't actually warm enough to actually make a day of the beach (it was 15 degrees warmer in Denver than it was in SD!) but La Jolla is a beautiful town with a great bit of coast line.

As Jess and I met up with the boys (who got there 15 minutes before us) they were very excited to point out this one little seal who was swimming out in the ocean. They had been watching him for quite a while and we collectively marveled over the lone seal for a couple more minutes before starting our walk down the beach. Not 2 minutes later, we came upon this:
An entire beach full of momma and baby seals! It was awesome, they were all sunbathing just along the shore and every time a wave would come they would lift their heads and tails to avoid the cold rush - as if they didn't spend their entire lives living in cold ocean water.  The funny thing was, somehow these animals with no arms and legs had to actually move on the dry land to find a resting place.  Watching them try to maneuver over the sand, but basically just plopping around, was awesome.

Around each corner we came across more and more seals - I really had never seen anything like it before. There was one rock that must have had a hundred seals on it all sitting on top of each other. Some of them were literally poking their heads out from underneath a pile of bodies, yelping and barking for their compatriots to get the heck off of them so they could breathe! (well I imagine that is what was happening)

While Nick, Jamie, and Jess marvelled at all of the seals, though, I was completely enamoured with the enormous dinosaur-like birds that were flying all around us - this is my picture of the day
I had seen pelicans before, but I had never seen them in flight just feet from my eyes. It was amazing. It was literally like watching a pterodactyl (who knew that word had a silent 'p'). I couldn't take my eyes off of them.  Every couple of minutes a pelican (or 5) would fly by and I would shout "Guys! LOOK! Pelicans!!" even though after the first couple birds went by no body cared but me. Then we walked around another corner and found an entire cove absolutely covered in them! It was like a wonderland of seals and pelicans! What can I say, it was an amazing afternoon!

P.S. Pelicans are now my favorite birds in the world.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Project 365: Day 32

Vacation is going well. Unfortunately, I don't yet have a picture for day 31 because I lost my brand new camera somewhere in my apartment on Monday. I am determined to locate it, but unfortunately wasn't able to do so before we left for San Diego.  When I do find it, I'll post an awesome picture - taken by an old guy - of my family at disc golf.

In the mean time, I will have to make due with pictures from my Blackberry, like this one, my picture of the day for day 32:

Mr Jamie Hammer! We landed in San Diego at 6:30pm and spent a lovely evening out with Jess and Hammer celebrating our reunion. We ended the night at a local bar filled with lovely characters including a guy with dreadlocks who sits at the end of the bar creepily stares at the patrons and a 50-year old hippie who approached Jess and I with the pick-up line "are you guys single?" To his credit as soon as we told him we weren't he promptly moved on. It was probably the most efficient pick-up attempt I'd ever encountered. Unfortunately, a much younger guy sitting next to us took it as an opportunity for him to make his much less efficient move. Upon hearing us respond "no, our boyfriends are right here" he responded "can you believe that guy? So you like disc golfing, me too.... "

Ahhh the good times. We had a great night catching up and are looking forward to three more days in the 'Diego with good friends!!!

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Project 365: Day 29,30

Day 29: After some Yoga in the morning and a nice brunch at Jelly, we headed up to Breckenridge. Here's me and my mom right outside of our hotel in Breck.
Day 30: Spent the morning cross country skiing at the Breckenridge Nordic Center. It's probably the last weekend they'll be open... the trails were pretty sparse in some areas, but we had a really nice morning. It was an absolutely gorgeous day - and after three hours of skiing we were on the road back to Denver, to meet my dad!

Friday, March 23, 2012

Project 365: Day 28

Mommy's here!!! After a BRUTAL day, it's finally vacation!
Tonight after work, my mom came into town and Aimee came over for dinner. My original plan was to take a picture of all of us at dinner (i cooked some more pinterest recipes!)... but I forgot.

Then we went to Yogurt Land and I thought it would be the perfect opportunity to snap my pic of the day.... and I forgot.

Soooooo this is it folks. My mom laughing on my bed, begging me not to post a picture of her. :-)
More to come!!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Project 365: Day 27

On a bike ride today, stopped by my favorite statue in Denver to snap some pix...(with the new camera)
One more day till vacation!!!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Project 365: Day 26

Today I took a trip down to Pueblo, Colorado to visit a customer for work. It's a two hour drive south on the interstate from Denver and it was a beautiful day for a drive. As I was cruising down I-25 past Colorado Springs, I saw a sign for a scenic overlook. Typically I probably would have just drove right past, but with Project 365 in mind, I took a minute to stop and smell the mountains....

This picture was actually taken on my Blackberry (which, btw, is the worst phone in HISTORY) because my digital camera died yesterday. Technically Nick's digital camera that his mom bought for him for Christmas right before we left for Taiwan.

It was a faithful camera that's been to almost 10 countries, but it's time finally came. I think the end was brought on by an unfortunate incident in which it was dropped on a cross country ski trail (yes, in the snow) and left there for probably 10 minutes until someone found it. That was several weeks ago, so I'm surprised it lasted this long, but alas it's time has come.  But don't worry, I stopped at Best Buy on my way home from Pueblo and bought a new Canon Power Shot, so tomorrow we'll get to see what the new camera is made of!!

Until then, goodnight friends!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Project 365: Day 25

What's for dinner? Tonight I made chicken with a honey balsamic glaze (equal parts balsamic vinegar and honey simmered for ~1 minute, easy!), broiled asparagus, and mashed cauliflower (which is a surprisingly delicious alternative to mashed potatoes).

It was a bit of an experimental meal, as it's only the second time I've tried the chicken and the first time I've tried mashed cauliflower. The chicken was good - I like the glaze and it's super easy to make. I even think I could tinker with it a bit and make it even better.

The cauliflower was pretty good too. If I had a blender or food processor, I probably could have gotten the texture closer to actual potatoes, but Nick said he really liked the texture, and I did too - even though it's not what I was picturing. It was really easy too, I just boiled the cauliflower, mashed it up with some butter and milk, and added some garlic and Parmesan cheese.... voila!

Not too shabby for a thrown-together dinner.

Project 365: Day 24

Well today was pretty much a grind... Lots of work to catch up on before my vacation next week! After a 9-hour work day, Lamar's class at the Y, and dinner of canned soup I finally sat on the couch for some much needed un-winding (and a new episode of Castle). It was at that point that I realized I hadn't snapped a picture for the day.

Nick was completely averse to letting me snap a pic of his face and thought it would be a great idea to take a picture of his feet in front of the TV, highlighting his Philadelphia Eagles PJ's.... I actually did try it - I snapped about 5 of them, but needless to say, I wasn't impressed with the outcome.

So I decided to share a picture of one of my latest Pinterst projects. It's a piece of scrap wood from Home Depot with Modge Podge newspaper and black acrylic paint... pretty cute, huh?

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Project 365: Day 20, 21, 22, and 23

Day 20:

Thursday was my last day in North Dakota, I had one meeting in the morning, a 4 hour drive back to Fargo, and then a couple of hours to wait for my flight. My drive through ND was pretty chill - I really like the 75mph speed limit and the billboards. Over the course of my drive I saw a series of billboards that said "Be Kind," "Be Patient," "Be Grateful," and two that said "Have a Great Day!" What a friendly state!! I had been sitting all day long so when I got to Fargo I decided to take a walk through town. I took my picture of the day during my walk. Unfortunately, I stepped in some doggy doo doo as I was snapping this picture. You can't win them all I guess!

Day 21: Friday night Aimee and Kev came over for dinner on our balcony and then went to see Galactic at the Ogden. The show was awesome!

Day 22: St. Patty's Day!!

Up bright and early at 6:45 to get breakfast ready for our pre-parade gathering. Friends showed up at 8:30 and we feasted on breakfast casserole, fruit salad, bacon, lucky charms, and mimosas. Great way to start the day!

Day 23: My New Bike!!

Today I was on a mission to purchase a bike. Jessie, Robyn, and Matt took me out to a bike shop and helped me pick out the best bike EVER!!! It's a Schwinn Sierra 21 which is apparently what is called a hybrid comfort bike. It's got a light weight aluminum frame, 21 speeds, ergonomic handles, a big comfy seat, and by the end of the week it will have a basket on it as well. I LOVE my new bike!!! It feels like Christmas!

I have to give a shout-out to my parents and Nick's parents for their generous birthday gifts! Thank you for my new bike!!!!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Project 365: Day 19

Minot North Dakota... huh?
Exactly... where the heck is that? Well it turns out it's exactly in the middle of nowhere!  A solid 3-4 hours drive west of Fargo... and I thought the Denver airport was in the middle of nowhere!

I snapped this picture on my way to Minot, as I was driving down the highway at 80 miles per hour on cruise control.
Tomorrow, I go home!!!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Project 365: Day 18

I have to say, having states like the Dakotas, Kansas, and Nebraska has it's perks. On one hand it's a lot of ground to cover, but on the other hand... it's a lot of ground to cover! For example, today I had one meeting at 11:30am. I had time to wake up early, do Yoga, and get some work done before heading to the meeting. Then after about an hour and a half, my "work" for the day was done and I was on the road for a 4 1/2 hour  drive to my next locale.
Now a 4 1/2 hour drive isn't typically my idea of a fun time, but I have to say, I kind of enjoyed it. It  gave me lots of time to listen to NPR - which I really love - and just spend some good quality time with myself.

Had I been in Chicago or St. Louis, I could have had three appointments today with barely any time to think - let alone turn on the radio - and so I'm thankful for the occasional trip that involves some serious time on the road. Of course driving through the Dakota's isn't necessarily the most efficient or effective way for me to use my time, but on the other hand, I think there is huge value in making social calls to our customers and absolutely hate for my first visit to be after they are already funded for an instrument. I think it's important to build that relationship with them beforehand, so that we have a good foundation when it comes time to do the real work together. So I really don't mind coming out to places like this every once in a while, and actually.... I kind of enjoy it. 

Tonight, I'm staying in Fargo. Thanks to a great recommendation by my customer, I had dinner at HoDo's downtown during their monthly "Science Cafe." It's a little event put on the by College of Arts and Sciences at NDSU where faculty members are invited to speak about their research in an informal setting. Tonight the speaker was Linguist Dr. Erin Conwell talking about how children learn language and it was pretty interesting. Definitely a nice change of pace from eating dinner by myself all the time - AND I sat next to a girl who was from Taiwan! We had lots of fun talking about how much we miss Taiwanese food!  After the talk, I took a little walk down Broadway in Fargo and snapped my picture of the day:

Monday, March 12, 2012

Project 365: Day 17

On the road again.... This morning I flew to Sioux Falls, South Dakota for a 4-day trip through North and South Dakota. In the span of 4 days, I will visit 5 customer sites and drive approximately 17 hours - 3 of which I knocked out today going from Sioux City north to Brookings and then south to Vermillion. After a meeting a U.S.D. tomorrow morning, I'm headed up to Fargo! Thankfully I've got my GPS and my rental car (a VW Bug!) has an auxiliary input so I can hook up my iPod to the stereo. Some sunflower seeds and coffee, and I'm good to go! 

My picture of the day today is a view out my windshield of the open road in South Dakota... I have a sneaking suspicion that this is pretty much all I'll be looking at for the majority of my 17 hours on the road, but if I find anything else, you guys will be the first to know!

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Project 365: Day 14, 15, 16

Yay for the weekend. It was absolutely gorgeous in Denver this weekend - unfortunately on Friday I was cranky and exhausted and just didn't get my act together to take a picture. Right before bed I tried to get nick to pose for a picture but he was not feeling it... so I'm actually missing a picture for Day 14.... sorry!

Day 15: A bike ride through the city.

Day 16:
Disc golf in Arvada - good times with good friends!!!
And now, I'm off to North and South Dakota for the week!

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Project 365: Day 13

For almost the last year, Nick and I have been going to a class at the local Y called "Extreme Fitness," but we just call it "Lamar" after the instructor of the class (As in "are you going to Lamar today?")

Lamar is awesome. He's like a high school coach, you want to show up for him and you want to work your ass off for him  - and he won't let you down. The class is like a boot camp, there's running, agility ladders, plyometrics, weight lifting... it's got it all.  AND it's 4 days a week! When I'm not traveling, I try to go 2-3 times/week, but when I'm on the road, sometimes I miss it all together.

Anyway, this week I was home all week (YAY) and got to go to class Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday, so my picture of the day is of Lamar. He's great!

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Project 365: Day 12

As I mentioned a couple days ago, this week is restaurant week in Denver, so tonight I went out with a friend of mine, Natalie, to Strings on 17th and Humboldt.

The meal was amazing - I have to admit it was leaps and bounds over Kevin Taylor - every course was mouth watering. I will definitely be recommending this place to friends and taking Nick out on a date here some day soon. And a fun fact is that they actually do a $52.80 dinner special every Sunday night, which is an amazing deal because as I said, the food was fabulous.

Just for fun, I copied the description of my dinner from their menu:

White Bean and Carrot Soup ~ Garlic Chips and Carrot- Cumin Crème Fraiche

Seafood Capellini ~ Mussels, Shrimp, Calamari and Spicy Tomato Sauce

Confit Pork Cheek ~ Asparagus, Snow Peas, Fontina and Truffled Cream

Key Lime Tart ~ White Chocolate Cream, Tropical Fruit Relish, Mango Coulis

Yum yum yum!

I knew all day long that this was going to be the highlight of my day so I was saving my picture of the day for my dinner, but I didn't want to be snapping pictures of the food throughout the whole meal.. so I cheated a little and had the waiter snap a pic of us at the end of our meal. It's not exactly 'my' picture of the day - but well, it's not like there's a Project 365 rule book... so here's my picture of the day!

Good friends, good food, good times!!!

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Project 365: Day 11

Another beautiful day in Denver! But instead of a photo of the blue sky I thought I'd share a picture of one of my latest pinning projects:

I found the project on Pinterest, (from this blog). And the idea was to take a canvas, cover it with some cool fabric, mask off a quote that I like, and spray paint the thing black.  A couple of weeks ago I found this awesome fabric and attached it to my canvas using spray adhesive - The blog recommended a staple gun but (1) I didn't read the blog very closely and (2) I don't have a staple gun anyway and (3) I kind of have a thing for spray adhesive these days.

My next step was to find a good quote. I was planning on going with something from Dr. Seuss, but was unexpectedly inspired by the air freshener hanging up in Aimee's car this weekend. 
So, once I had my quote and I had my canvas, I was ready to go. As I mentioned, I didn't read the blog very carefully or else i would have known that contact paper would have been much cheaper and more effective way of doing the project. Instead, I bought some stickers from Michael's and used some painters tape for the boarder - neither of which stuck very well once they got wet with the spray paint. 

Here's a picture of the project after one coat of paint

I was pretty shocked that it took so much paint, I used an entire can on the thing before the whole thing was covered. A note for anyone else attempting this project: I would probably skip the spray adhesive because I think it caused my spray paint to come out a little funny and the fabric to bubble up a little bit.   I might go over it with some acrylic paint to get rid of the weird sheen in some areas, but I think I'm going to hang it up in my room... overall I'm pretty happy with it.

And that is the story of my picture of the day! Yay for pinning!

Monday, March 5, 2012

Project 365: Day 10

What a GORGEOUS day! It reached almost 70 today - the sun was shining, there wasn't a cloud in the sky, and I had a document that I had to walk to Fed-Ex first thing in the morning, so I got the enjoy the day on my errand.
Man that girl needs a tan!!!

Walking through town on March 5th in a tank top - doesn't get much better than that! Unfortunately we're looking at 30's and snow on Wed/Thurs this week - but should be sunny and warm(er) for the weekend, so I can't complain!

Life is good in the D-Town!

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Project 365: Days 7, 8, 9

Time for weekend photos!! You can't blame me for not being able to post pictures EVERY day... this was a fun and busy weekend and now I have my pictures-of-the-day to share.

Day 7:
Friday night, Nick and I had late reservations to Restaurant Kevin Taylor in downtown Denver for Denver's Restaurant Week where tons of restaurants throughout the city offer special menus for $52.80/couple (get it.... Denver is 5,280 feet above sea level!?). So naturally, we picked one of the fanciest and most expensive restaurants in the city to take advantage of the deal. My meal was pretty good, but Nick's meal was absolutely delicious! Just fabulous. So my picture of the day is Nick showing off his yummy plate: sirloin steak and brisket
He even got dressed up for dinner and I wore a dress! It was lots of fun and nice for us to go out on a date together. Good night!

Day 8:
Saturday we woke up BRIGHT and early (5:40am) to head up to the mountains to ski. Finally, after a whole season of mostly mediocre snow we got some pretty nice conditions - great tree skiing, some untouched areas of powder, and lots of fun moguls... the only down side was that it was absolutely FREEZING (with the windshield it was about -5) - I think it was the second coldest day I've ever been skiing, aside from the time my mom flew out to learn to ski!  On our first lift, I snapped a shot of all four of us for my photo of the day:
That's kevin and in the reflection of his goggles is me, Aimee, and Nick - fun, huh? Unfortunately, in order to get the shot, I had to take my gloves off and by the time we were on our next chair lift I was practically hyperventilating because I thought I was getting hypothermia in my fingers. I managed to warm them up during the lift ride, but I have to admit, we didn't last very long. We got on our first lift at 9:20am and were walking to the car by 12:30!

Day 9:
Sunday! So for the third week in a row Aimee and I had a date to "Pin" - by which we mean work on crafts projects that we found on Pinterest. I was going to post a picture of my latest Pinterest project, but decided instead to go with a picture of the most amazing sushi delivery that I've ever had (from Taki Sushi in Denver). Nick and I devoured it in a matter of minutes and it was a great way to end a fabulous weekend!

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Project 365: Day 6

Ahhh... the life of a traveling salesperson... doesn't get more glamourous than this!