Monday, November 29, 2010

It's Christmas card time again!

Every year since we've been married, Andy and I have sent out a photo card at Christmas. Or rather, I have forced Andy to sit for pictures and I have created and mailed out the cards.

Since we had the bunnies they have played a staring roll in our annual card. This year I've been planning the bunny's Christmas photo since September. I'm very excited.

This is the original bunny photo. The one that started it all.

One of the most important things to consider when I'm planning our card is what the design should be. I always try to pick out a design that matches the photo in question. This year I've been browsing though Shutterfly's stock of Christmas and holiday cards, and I'm having a really difficult time choosing which to use. There are so many great designs that would go with our photo this year. The possibilities are endless.

This one is one of my favorites:

If you are like me (a slacker) and haven't mailed out your cards yet, head over the Shutterfly and check out their great selection of cards. They also have photo books, mugs, calendars and a whole selection of other things that would make great Christmas gifts! Also, if you are a blogger and want to get some free photo cards, go check out their site, write a little review on your blog and go here to sign up for this great holiday promotion!


I've decided to share the love this year. If you would like to receive our Christmas card just send an email with your mailing information and I'll be happy to put one in the mail for you.

Send your card request to:

Happy card making!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

A day of Gratitude

Today I wish you all contentment in a full belly and a warm embrace from someone you love. 

While this isn't the "perfect" Thanksgiving that I've grown accustomed to in my life, and I'm not "home" with my family, I am in my new home with my husband who I wouldn't trade for anyone. And I am comforted by the knowledge that I have much to be thankful for.

Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours.



Tuesday, November 23, 2010

One track mind

It hasn't really stopped snowing since we arrived in Colorado. There were a couple of sunny days last week, but mostly it's just been snowy. Andy has to travel further to work here than he did in NC, so he spends every night glued to the local news before he goes to bed so he can see the weather report.

Last night, he turned on the news, and then, for whatever reason, decided he wanted to take a shower. I was using the laptop, so I muted the television, but when a segment came on that I wanted to see I would turn the sound back on. The weather was one of the segments that I turned the sound on for.

Andy came out during the segment after the weather and this is what happened:

Andy: Do you know what they said on the weather?

Me: (eyes glued to the computer screen) They're forecasting more snow.

Andy: Yes, I knew that. (pauses) Was the meteorologist a man or a woman? 

Me: (looking at Andy now) Ummmmm... I don't remember.

Andy: So, you don't really know what they said.

Me: No, I guess not.

What can I say? The laptop was right in front of me and it was way more interesting than the weather. What I do remember about the weather forecast is this: Blah, blah, blah, snow. Blah, blah, cold. Blah, blah, blah, blah, more snow.

Hopefully Andy learned his lesson. Probably not, though.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Project 365, week 46

Week in pictures November 13-19

Stream that runs behind our apartment

"This is chili weather." -Andy

Beginning of a big snow storm

 I love this hat. It was my mom's

I woke up with a giant swollen stye

A big change from the first of the week

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Earning my stripes

When Andy and I had a roommate in the spring and summer it wasn't really like having a true roommate. It was a temporary situation & even though we told him to make himself at home, there was always that "house guest" vibe about the whole situation.

Now? Drew lives with us, it isn't temporary. At least, it isn't temporary for as long as we have this lease. He has made himself at home in every sense and so have we.

But y'all, men are gross. I mean, Drew is kind of OCD about some things and he cleans up after himself pretty well, but there are other things. I was talking to Andy about it the other day and he said it best. "It's like you're living in a locker room." Yes, that must be exactly what it's like, except we're all dressed.

In truth, it really isn't all that bad. He's a good guy and he's pretty respectful. But I will say that it's a good thing I have a dull sense of smell because I get serenaded nightly by their fart trumpets. Seriously, I downloaded the "big fart button" on my smart phone for a laugh and since we've all moved in together it has been rendered completely unnecessary. If you ever come to visit me I advise you to pack a gas mask. Maybe I'll just buy some to have on hand for unprepared visitors.

Also, Drew's sense of humor is not unlike that of a 13 year old boy. I think every man's humor development stalls out at 13, so Andy suffers from the same affliction. Except he has lived with me for four years and that has helped to curb some of the completely unnecessary, juvenile jokes. But with the two of them together it's gotten worse, and don't even get me started on how they completely ignore the don't-talk-when-Joanna's-shows-are-on rule. I think I'm going to make a sign to post over the television so when they start to giggle like a pack of prepubescent man children I can just point to the sign while simultaneously turning up the volume on the television.

One and a half weeks down, fifty and a half to go.

Oh! Oh! One more thing. Drew's sweet tooth rivals mine and there is a possibility that he loves chocolate more than I do. So even when I haven't baked anything new there is still something sweet laying around waiting to attach itself to my midsection. Also, he loves Doritos. Doritos, y'all. I only let myself have a bad of Doritos once, maybe twice, a year because I love them so much and if there is an uneaten Dorito in my presence I have to eat it. It is physically impossible for me not to eat it and I can finish a bag in under 24 hours. But now there are ALWAYS Doritos in the cabinet.

Someone please send reinforcements. Or a lock for the cabinet door.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Reconnected and reacquainted

The first week here was hard. We got here on Sunday night and then first thing Monday Andy had to jump right into his new job. Also, we were both seriously screwed up with our schedules. Not only were we two hours behind our normal time zone, but we traveled across the country on time change weekend, so that put us back three hours instead of two. Or ahead I guess. Whichever, all I know is that each night around eight o'clock I would think, "Oh my gosh! Isn't it bedtime yet?"

We both spent last week really tired. Also, I've been having a hard time sleeping, which is apparently a sign of altitude sickness, but we left our beautiful king size bed back in NC and have been sleeping in the queen that came with the apartment. We are not cuddlers, and while I don't sleep as well when Andy isn't in the bed with me, I prefer to just know he's there rather than having a constant physical reminder in the form of his knees and elbows.

Another sign of altitude sickness is decreased appetite. I wouldn't say my appetite has been decreased because I've been ravenously hungry the entire past week. But when we sit down for a meal I can't eat it all. I've only been able to eat about half as much as I usually do.

All of this, plus the time and energy it takes to get semi-settled in a completely new place made last week kind of hellish. On Thursday night at dinner I looked over at Andy and said, "I feel very disconnected from you since we've been here." That statement pretty much sums up our whole first week in Colorado.

But Andy was off all weekend since his store isn't open yet and we spent two days getting reconnected with each other and acquainted with our new environment.

On Saturday we drove to down town Breckenridge and walked on Main street. I have to say that this will probably be my "go to" place to take family and friends who come to visit. It has tons of shopping and restaurants mixed in with brightly colored Victorian homes, most of which are original to that part of town. It was really an idyllic place and there is a gondola that takes you from town to the top of the slopes.

Saturday evening we spent some time on our own Main street in Frisco. We've come to realize that Frisco is more of a place for locals, which is good because when the ski season really gets started we'll be a little more separated from all the chaos. While our Main street isn't quite as idyllic as Breck's it is very quaint and we've already found at least four or five restaurants that are on our "must try" list, all within walking distance of our apartment. While we were out though, we stopped into a place that was having happy hour (side note: happy hour is a big thing here) and we had some drinks and ordered an appetizer. Fried pickles, y'all! I ate the whole basket myself and came home with a massive stomach ache. But it was totally worth it.

Sunday we slept in and then went to Silverthorne to walk around the outlets they have there. It was a really good workout. The outlet mall is comprised of three strip centers that are connected with a walking trail that runs along the Blue River. The Blue River is a popular haunt for fisherman. There were even some dedicated sportsmen out there in the twenty degree temps yesterday. Anyway, it was a nice walk and we got to see all the stores they have. Andy was glad to know that the river was there so when I decide to drag him along on shopping trips he can pack his fishing pole and when we get tired of each other he'll have something to do.

We came back home in the afternoon and I started a pot of chili for dinner. Then we did some laundry and went to check out the clubhouse here at our complex. We have a pool, sauna and hot tub, all of which we are very excited about. It's so nice to finally live in a place that offers real amenities. Andy and I both plan on making good use of the pool and hot tub. There are windows all over the clubhouse so we can watch the snow fall while we swish around in the nice warm water. Ahhhh. (There is also a stream that runs behind our apartment. We've got to get Andy a license soon, before his head explodes)

I'm afraid I really didn't get any pictures. I wanted to see what was around me with my own eyes instead of through the lens, so my camera stayed in my purse for most of the weekend. But at least now when someone asks, "So, how is it?" I can respond with something more than, "Well, I know where the post office is."

Friday, November 12, 2010

Project 365, week 45

Week in pictures* November 6-12

Snow on fall foliage. The only snow we saw was in NC

Surprisingly good travelers

1st sunset in CO
 Almost home! Going through the Eisenhower tunnel
 No center support for the clothes rod
 Huge & straight up. View out the front door
 Andy's shiny new toy**
Adjusting pretty well to their new home.
As always, they love looking out the sliding glass door
Still living out of boxes.
Weekend project: Fix the closet rod

* These pictures are all from my phone. I don't know what's up with the grey band at the bottom of all of them. It's new & I'm still learning how to use it. 
** Sorry Kathryn. There was no making him wait until Christmas. 

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

"So what's it like?"

I've been asked that a lot since arriving in Colorado on Sunday evening.

And the answer is that I haven't really been out much yet. We've been unpacking (or trying to unpack) and Andy's been working and we apparently brought the winter with us because the mild fall weather Colorado had been experiencing came to an abrupt end yesterday. It's cold people.

There has been a little snow fall, that was very, very slippery. & there wasn't a scramble to instantly clear and salt the roads. In truth, it wasn't really necessary because we only got a dusting, but it's kind of different for people not to freak out about the snow. It's refreshing.

Our apartment is tiny. I guess tiny isn't the word, but it is much smaller than we're used to. Also it came furnished, which was great because we didn't, yet, need to haul all of our furniture out here. But the person who owns this unit seems to take "furnished" to mean "catch all for the shit she doesn't really need, but doesn't want to throw away." We have two linen closets that are filled with miscellaneous pillows and crappy blankets and one set of sheets even though the apartment has three beds. So, it's been interesting trying to find places to put our stuff. I think we're going to have to invest in a small storage unit to keep some of the unneeded items.

Something I didn't mention before: we have a roommate. His name is Drew and we've known him for several years. I know this is kind of shocking since I complained so much about our last roommate, but there are some distinct differences between the two situations. First is that we moved into the same space with Drew on purpose. Whereas, with the last roommate we had our own apartment that he needed to crash in for a while. It's very different setting up a new space with someone else versus being alone and then having someone new there all of a sudden. Also, the cost of living is much higher here and since Drew just moved here as well, we decided it would be best to split the cost for a year until we can all get a little more established.

So, that's what it's like so far. Andy is off on Saturday, so we're going to spend some time exploring. I'll try to have some more interesting things to report after that.

One more thing. We do have a very quaint main street that kind of looks like a page out of a children's story book. I've shared this link with a lot of people, but in case you haven't already seen, here is the live web cam that is set up on Main street. We live about a block away. If you scroll down the page there is also a web cam of the marina and Nordic center, but I'm pretty sure the Nordic center cam isn't working or turned on at the moment.

Happy hump day!

Friday, November 5, 2010

Project 365, week 44: The Farewell Edition

Week in pictures, October 30 - November 5.

Farewell, Family

Farewell, Giant Kitchen

Farewell, Bible Belt

Farewell, Friends

Farewell, World's Greatest Pizza

Farewell, More Family

Farewell, Hulk

We leave at 6 am tomorrow morning. It's sure to be quite an adventure. Andy has been giving me "rules" for the trip, because apparently I'm five years old now. Also, we are going to be in a regular cab pickup with both the bunnies, who hate riding.

I'll be chronicling our journey on twitter. My twitter feed is on the left hand side of my blog & I've changed it to show more posts at a time in case you still want to follow along, but don't want to click into twitter to read it all.

Check back for frequent updates!

Monday, November 1, 2010

Home is where the heart is

Once when I was small, maybe five or so, I remember going shopping with my mom in a nearby city. We always went out of town for shopping, because our town was so small and didn't offer a lot.

I had recently learned about people in foreign countries and how they spoke different languages. I didn't really understand the concept of what a foreign country was, and anything outside my everyday world was foreign. A ten minute trip in the car felt like an eternity. So as far as I knew, we traveled to "foreign countries" to go shopping. So, on that particular shopping trip I was surprised that the people working in the stores could understand what my mom was saying. I wondered why they weren't speaking another language.

Now I look back and laugh at how small my world was, but as I'm looking down the barrel of a complete life change, I feel like I'm five years old again. I've only ever lived here, not just in the south, but in North Carolina. I was a child in the foothills and became an adult in the blue ridge mountains. I've never known anything else, and while I'm much older and wiser than that little girl out shopping with her mother, I can't help but feel like I'm about to embark on something completely foreign to me.

Don't get me wrong, I am so excited. Ever since Andy sent in his resume and cover letter I have felt completely at peace with this decision. There aren't a lot of times I can say I have felt this way. Once was when I made the decision of where to attend college, and I felt this way again on my wedding day. But I cried when my parents left me on move in day, and I cried on and off the whole day of my wedding. These big decisions are never easy because no matter how good they are, there is always some bad mixed in. Someone or something always seems to be left behind, and I've already shed a few tears as I've been saying goodbye to so many people I love and the only home I've ever known.

A few months back, my friend Jessie asked me what my definition of home was. The first thing out of my mouth was that Andy was my home. The second was my family. Andy and my family are my home, regardless of where I am, and that is something that has been true for me since I was a child. Not Andy, I didn't meet him until I was a teen, but the people I love have always played a big part in what makes me comfortable, and to me, home should always be comfortable.

So, since I'm taking part of my home with me and leaving a large part of it behind, I guess that means I'll have two homes.

In college, I once said to someone, "I'm going home for the weekend." They laughed at me and said, "Home? You mean to your parents?" I gave them a strange look and said, "Yes. That will always be my home."