I can't stop writing

I finished my thank cards today. I've sent 5 packages in the last 2 days. Prepped for my first Science club that started this morning. Sent numerous e-mails. Still, I have the need to be writing. I guess I could bore my journal, but instead I'll bore you.

This past Sunday we drove down to Penrose, CO with the dogs to go pumpkin picking. Dewey almost made it the whole trip without losing the contents of his stomach, but that last mile really got him. He's getting better though. Anyway, at the pumpkin patch we let them wander with their leashes still attached and they stayed pretty close. There were a lot of kids around so didn't let them run off leash, but I wish we could. They are still just a little young for that. We got three pumpkins and can't wait until it gets closer to Halloween so we can carve them!

I started teaching again this morning at an elementary school in its second year. The art room in which I taught has floor to ceiling windows with the most incredible view of Pikes Peak. I guess I to would be inspired to be artistic with a view like that. What happened to small, rectangular windows 5 feet off the ground? Kids today don't know how good they have it.

Our lawn is looking the best it has all summer. I am so proud of Dave for not giving up on it and making it look beautiful. I think he is somewhat relieved to know that he has a landscaper in him after all. He mowed it today and I actually want to go sit on it. I haven't said that about our lawn yet.

Honeycrisp apples are in season so get to the store and buy them while they are delicious! I got some organic ones at Whole Foods the other day and have to go back and get more. They also had concord grapes from MI. They are either pre- or post season, but I had to have them. Concord grapes, white peaches, and honeycrisp apples are the absolute best varieties of fruit at the peak of their season. I am nearly salivating just thinking about them.

Since this post has been pretty scatter-brained I am just going to through some photos in here for the heck of it.

(Dave & the dogs at the pumpkin patch)

(my handsome boy Dewey sleeping)

(Pretty Piper looking coy)

(Putt-putting in August)


Excuse me Matron

Yesterday my best friend and Maid of Honor in my wedding asked me to be her Matron of Honor for her wedding on July 25, 2009. Yeah!!

For those of you who read my wedding planning blog you already know how important she is to me and I am touched and honored that she wants me to be an integral part of her wedding. Becky is my sister without the whole same parents thing. We talked on the phone yesterday for over an hour and it was nice. Even though we live 1300 miles apart she is still right here with me all the time.

My only grievance would be that she had to wait until I got married so now I am a Matron. That makes me feel so old!



We're back!! We arrived back in Colorado on the 25th after traveling for about 20 hours. Tired, but content is a good description of how you feel after a trip like this. Ireland was beautiful! It did not rain once while we were there. Locals kept saying it was the nicest they had seen it since May. My Mom says the weather was courtesy of my Grandpa Sprague!

Anyway. I could write pages about our trip, but I will just write a summary for now. FYI - a summary written by me may be as long as some peoples entire view.

Wednesday, September 17th - My birthday and the first official day of our honeymoon. We flew from Denver to Newark and stayed the night at my new in-laws. Joan made brownies for my birthday and they were delicious!

Thursday, September 18th - Our flight didn't leave Newark until 7 pm so we ran some errands in NJ and hung out with Bob & Joan until it was time to leave for the airport. Once at the airport, we realized that our seats weren't next to each other and the guy working the desk did not care. Fortunately, the gentleman sitting next to me switched with Dave. Unfortunately, they were exit row seats that didn't recline. It was a long flight and we didn't sleep very much. At least the destination was worth it!

Friday, September 19th - We arrived in Dublin around 7:3o am, got our luggage, went through customs and picked up our rental car. We decided to get a GPS for the car, which was the best idea ever. We had brought along a road atlas and that would not have cut it with those roads. We went to our hotel and then caught a bus into downtown Dublin. We were tired but wanted to try and make it through the day. In Dublin we saw Trinity College, walked around some shopping areas and went to the Guinness Store House at St. James Gate. This is the original Guinness factory and it is stil brewed there today. After the tour you get a free Guinness in a round glass bar on the top of the building. It looks out over Dublin city and is amazing! Then we went to the hotel and slept for a long time. Did I mention that the hotel had two single beds? Awesome first night of the honeymoon!

(Dave at Trinity College)
(Me at the Guinness Store House)

Saturday, September 20th - We left the hotel and Dublin behind us to drive across the country to Ennis, Co. Clare. Along the way we stopped at our first of many OPW (Office of Public Works) sites. We bought a pass for 21 euro that allowed us entry to all OPW sites. This first place was called Emo Court and was beautiful!! There are over 1,000 different types of trees on the property, which has plenty of paths. We also took a tour of the inside of the house. It was very informative. Then we continued our drive and went to the Cliffs of Moher on the west side of the country. It is a popular tourist attraction and had gorgeous views of the cliffs and the Atlantic Ocean. We walked around for a bit and then headed to our first B&B, ate dinner in Ennis and went to bed.

(Me at Emo Court)

(Me and Dave at the Cliffs of Moher)

Sunday, September 21st - We left our B&B and started towards the Dingle Peninsula in Co. Kerry where our 2nd B&B was located. This was probably my favorite day in Ireland. We stopped first in Adare, Co. Limerick where we saw the Adare castle and some of the beautiful town! Adare Castle is another OPW site. It was built in the 13the century and is just ruins now, but it was a very nice tour and offered great photo-ops. Then it was off to the Ardfert Cathedral in Ardfert, Co. Kerry. The Gaelic Games All-Ireland Final between Co. Kerry and Co. Tyrone was going on so all the roads and sites in Kerry were virtually empty.

The Cathedral was pretty neat, but the lady behind the desk recommended we go to the old Friary about 1/2 mile away and we figured what the hey. So glad we did!! The Ardefert Friary was my favorite part of the whole trip! It is completely unattended, there is no admission and you can walk through and explore without boundaries. We were the only people there and had a blast! We walked up stairs, through corridors, into dark rooms and rooftops. So cool! From Ardfert we drove to Dingle, Co. Kerry, found our B&B and then had dinner in town.

(The Rusek's at Adare Castle)

(Dave exploring the Ardfert Friary)

Monday, September 22nd - From Dingle we drove towards Killarney, Co. Kerry to see Muckross House and Gardens in Killarney National Park. The house is really more of a mansion with most of the original furniture. There are some really nice pieces that were built specifically for Queen Victoria's visit in the mid-19th century. The gardens around the house are also very nice and well manicured. From there we headed to Blarney Castle in Blarney, Co. Cork. It was definitely a tourist trap, but I would still recommend it because they castle is very beautiful and you can walk through it and imagine what it would have been like hundreds of years ago. I almost didn't the Blarney stone because you are perched over an opening like 5 stories high, but I closed my eyes and just did it. After the castle we headed to Kinsale, Co. Cork to our B&B. Kinsale is the culinary epicenter of the country and we had dinner at a very yummy restaurant called Man Friday.

(Me & Dave b/w Dingle and Killarney)

(Kissing the Blarney Stone)

Tuesday, September 23rd - We decided that after driving so much we were just going to stay around Kinsale on Tuesday. We went on a historical walking tour of the town with Don. It was so informative and Don was just the cutest old Irish man! After the tour we went to Charles Fort, a star shaped fort used until WWII. There were a lot of ruins and great views of the Atlantic Ocean. I think Dave liked this place the best. I got tons of great pictures! The sun was working in my favor this day. After Charles Fort we headed up the Blarney Woolen Mills to get our obligatory Irish wool sweaters! Then we went back to Kinsale for dinner and to our B&B for sleep!

(Me in Kinsale)

(Dave at Charles Fort)

Wednesday, September 24th - This was a day of a lot of driving. We drove about 140 kilometers to Waterford, Co. Waterford and then another 12o kilometers to Ashford, Co. Wicklow to our B&B. We toured the Waterford Crystal Factory which was pretty neat. We got to see glassblowers in action and then people carving the crystal. Our B&B was only 12 km away from Glendalough which has some great monastic ruins along with some great mountain views. We walked for about 3 hours along the many paths around the two lake in the valley, went to dinner and then back to the B&B.

(Me at the Waterford Crystal Factory)

(Dave at Glendalough)

Thursday, September 25th - We woke up at 6 am so we could head to the airport for our 10:55 am flight to Newark. We got our VAT taxes back and then waited for a plane in which we got not only seats with extra leg room, but they reclined!!! We had about a 3.5 hour layover in Newark so we ate and read then hopped on our plane to Denver, drove home and slept for about 10 hours. We picked up our dogs the next day and now life is back to normal.

I hope you enjoyed my super long summary!!


Things I should be doing

  • Cleaning the litter boxes
  • A load of laundry...maybe two
  • Spraying all the stains in the carpet compliments of Piper
  • Finishing packing
  • Filling up my gas tank
  • Walking through the house checking windows and plugs, etc..
  • Asking the neighbors to get the mail
  • Spraying the couches with deodorizer (the dogs are at daycare already)
  • Taking a shower
  • Figuring out where I want to treat myself for my birthday lunch...if I have time
  • Getting the light timers ready for Dave (he's so much better at this stuff than me)
That is all I can think of at the moment. Two things that shouldn't be on that list are blogging and watching television, which are the two things I am doing at the moment. Oh well! So much for my lists.


Dewey lounging

At least someone gets to enjoy our patio furniture!

"Sunday morning coming down"

I love Sunday. I have always loved Sunday, but Sundays during fall are the best. Put on jeans, a hoodie, grab a cup of coffee and enjoy.

Today our neighbor came over because he just got a job selling Kirby vacuums and he needed to practice his spiel. I will admit, I got hooked on the vacuum but not the price tag. He took it and vacuumed one of our mattresses. The dead skin and dust mites that came out of it were disgusting!! The cool thing was that he shampooed our front room carpet where there were dog and cat related stains. It looks much nicer now.

Once Alex left, I started making lasagna for dinner and Dave headed outside to be king of the yard. He started filling in the dead spots on the lawn yesterday with peat moss and grass seed and is finishing today. He actually looks like he knows what he is doing. At least one of us understands the mysterious ways of the lawn. I'll stay in the kitchen!!

Speaking of the kitchen, here is the lasagna I just made! (The eye-fi for your camera is the best thing ever!!!)

I used no-bake noodles and layered with cottage cheese, parmesan cheese, zucchini, corn, bell peppers, pasta sauce and kalamata olives. I love meals that require no recipe and you usually have everything you need already in your pantry. Once Dave is done chatting with our neighbors in the backyard I'll call him in for dinner.

About 3 months ago I made book plates with my leftover sticker paper from our save-the-dates. I was waiting until after we got married to put them in my books though. I didn't want to jinx anything my writing my new name on them before it was legally mine. Anyway, I put them in my books today and am very excited about that. I am easily excited apparently! Here they are...

Now I am going to finish enjoying my Sunday instead of just blogging about it!! Happy Sunday to you!


1 week married!

Today is our one week anniversary and we had a busy day! I made Dave wake up early so we could get to the Chefs Warehouse sale. It happens twice a year and really great, quality kitchen items are extremely discounted. We got a 10 quart Calphalon dutch oven for $30, a Bodum beer mug for $5, some really cute Onion and Garlic metal tins for $10 and a whole bunch of place mats and cloth napkins for $1 a piece. I love kitchen stuff!

After shopping we helped one of Dave's co-workers move into a house about 1/2 mile from ours. They have a lovely house that makes me want to finish our kitchen and open the stair leading to the basement. One day. It is nice that they moved so close b/c we watch each others cats and the proximity will make it much easier in the future. Also, I like Tina and Dan!

Once we got home Dave watched the U of M football game and I set to work in the kitchen. We moved a lot of the unused kitchen stuff to the basement to make room for all the nice stuff we have received for our wedding. Now we just need a dining room china cabinet and more shelves in the basement. There is always something when you own a home. Oh well!

After reorganizing I made a really yummy chipotle and corn soup and then brownies for dessert. I was in a mood to use all my fun, new cooking and baking supplies.

I think I am tired and babbling at this point so I am going to go to bed. Tomorrow we are going to sit down and plan what we are going to see in Ireland. That should be fun!


I wear short hair

So after waiting about 2 years I finally got my hair cut today! Dave said that it makes me look beautiful, but he is biased! Anyway, here we go....

Let the marriage begin!

We're married! September 6th in Ann Arbor turned out to be a beautiful, dare I say perfect, day for a wedding. The sun was shining, the humidity was virtually non-existent, and the temperature was a breezy sweat proof 75ish. Dave looked handsome and I didn't look so bad myself!

Now that we are married though, I am really not going to have many more adventures in wedding planning. So I have created a new blog all about our adventures, or lack thereof, here in Colorado with our two dogs, two cats and each other!

We got home yesterday after two days of driving to our clean, but cold, house. Apparently the temperature has been getting into the 40s at night and of course we didn't turn our heat on when we left. It was August after all!! The first thing I wanted to do was unpack and hook up the Keurig Coffee Maker from Steve and Sharon. So while I did that my wonderful husband went to work putting everything else away! When that was all done, we each brewed a cup of coffee and watched all the Tivo'd programs we missed this past week.

Now I am going to get my hair cut. I have been waiting for this day for over 2 years! I rally cannot stand hair on my neck so it must go. I will post pictures later!