Tag Archives: travel

Goodbye, 2012!

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2012 highlights

January– I visited my sister for a mini ski vacation.

Vail in Jan

Vail in Jan

February– Went to Rob’s cousin wedding. It was another excuse to purchase a new dress!

Wedding in Feb

Wedding in Feb

March-We became Godparents!.

Godparents in March

Godparents in March

April– Rob went to visit my sister and learned to ski, in Vail—while I stayed at home and worked.

Skiing/working in April

Skiing/working in April

May– 10.5” of my hair was donated to Locks of Love and I became a “pixie”—my ballet production team performed their last time to Hoppipolla, a 4 minute ballet I choreographed, of which I’m really proud of!

Ballerinas

Ballerinas

Hoppipolla Ballet   (I’m working on getting this video so you can see)

June– Ran a ½ marathon in Milwaukee with my buddy, Maria! Celebrated 2 years of marriage in Door County, WI. Had a great visit from some of my MI friends.

half marathon

half marathon

anniversary

anniversary

July– Packed up the house, danced at Jenny’s wedding, and celebrated in Chicago for Kristen’s Bachelorette party.

Party

Party

August– We moved me and our stuff to Ithaca, NY…

moving!

moving!

September– Rob became Dr. Rob and joined me in NY and my parents visited!

Rob's Defense!

Rob’s Defense!

parents visit!

parents visit!

October– I stood up in my friend, Kristen and Ryan’s wedding and was able to dance the night away with my sister and her surprise (to me) attendance at the wedding.

Oct. Wedding

Oct. Wedding

mac and me dancing

mac and me dancing

November-Hosted our first Thanksgiving, even with a broken oven!

thanksgiving

thanksgiving

December– Celebrated a super wonderful Christmas in the Pacific Northwest with lots of smiles.

PNW Christmas

PNW Christmas

2012 brought us many adventures of which, we were able to spend time with loved ones and create new relationships to cultivate in 2013.  We’re ready for the next 365 days to see what brings smiles our way.

Oh hey, NYC!

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This past weekend I drove myself to Brooklyn,  NY to visit Rob’s cousin Katie and sister Molly.

I know it was a TV show… but, seriously, how did Carrie Bradshaw wear heals in NYC? I had my Tom’s on and my feet ended up very unhappy with me.  I’m pretty sure we walked about 8 miles on Saturday alone.

NYC

NYC

Anywho, one of our first stops was at a FANTASTIC little, itty bitty, tiny, bagel shop.  Ahhh, it was so yummy! I had a bacon, egg, and cheese bagel.  All the yummyness was baked on the inside and had cheese & bacon melted on the top.  So good. From the Bagel Shop, we ventured to the Union Square Holiday Market.  We wandered around looking at the different vendors goodies and even found a few Christmas gifts.  After the market, we shopped, ate lunch, shopped some more, got facials, and found our way to Rockefeller Plaza!  What an amazingly beautiful tree.  I was jumping up and down in excitement to see the tree. Really, I was actually jumping, you can ask Molly and Katie. Getting this close was quite the adventure, there were so many people! After gazing at the tree it was time for more shopping, eating, and drinking, so we did just that.

Rockefeller Plaza

Rockefeller Plaza

It was a very fun and fast trip. Next time Rob will have to join me! Thanks for a great weekend, ladies!

A NJ “Graduation”

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A few weekends ago we visited Rob’s sister and her fiance in NJ for a housewarming party.  On our way we picked up a few items at the IKEA behind the Newark Airport.  We arrived so prepared with a list of exactly what we wanted and were still in the big box store for 2.5 hours.  Now, we didn’t know our way around that IKEA.  Had we gone to the IKEA in Schaumburg, IL I’m sure we could’ve made it in under an hour and a half.  I’m aware of IKEA’s plan to get you to buy more by snaking you around left and right, but come on, we knew what we wanted and desired to get in and to get out. But…I fell into the IKEA trap and purchased a few little items that weren’t on the list.  I am glad we went, we were able to put most of the finishing touches on our home thanks to that trip.

Robs sister lives in a cute little neighborhood and we had a great time at their housewarming party.  We met their friends/coworkers, and even Robs cousin from NYC came in!  Robs sister makes a mean spinach and artichoke dip.  Halfway through the night she surprised Rob by playing  the Pomp and Circumstance March,  pulled out a cap and gown, and popped some champagne!  It was a really fun and cute way to celebrate his PhD!

"graduation"

“graduation”

It was a quick trip and great to visit with everyone! Wish we could’ve stayed longer but the boarding kennel where Meiko was staying has very strict hours of operation. As usual, Meiko was pretty happy upon our return…and we missed our little pigbaby.

happy meeks

happy meeks

Tour Guide Penny

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I love showing off Madison.

It’s such a great city full of constant entertainment, activities, beautiful views, and wonderful restaurants.  Everyone that visits me gets a tour of the (in my mind a really gigantic) campus, complete with picnic point, observatory drive, and the Union Terrace.  I take visitors on a little detour so they can see the beautiful entrance into Madison down John Nolen Drive. I explain the lakes and the isthmus…and those large scary spiders that come along with living in between two lakes.  I make sure to drive by the yoga studio where I practice, down Willie Street, and up Gorham so they can see James Madison park. I really love it here.  Of course, I point out the Capitol and where we are in relation to it with every turn.  I make a pretty good tour guide, if I do say so myself.

Of the restaurants to go downtown; I always start with The Great Dane.  There is a beautiful garden patio behind the building with ivy growing on the cement walls and a slight breeze.  The atmosphere makes it one of the most perfect places to enjoy a beer that was brewed there and a yummy meal.  You really can’t go wrong with The Great Dane.  Obviously, in the winter you wouldn’t want to sit in the garden patio, so it’s a good thing the inside is just as welcoming and delicious.  Another restaurant I recommend if staying for longer than one night is The Old Fashioned, especially for their cheese curds. I have two favorite pizza places in Madison, The Roman Candle and The Glass Nickel.  The Roman Candle offers really unique pizzas, my favorite being the pestoral and Glass Nickel has really yummy standard pizzas. For a quick bite, Burrito Drive serves unique mexican fare. The early risers get to enjoy Marygold’s Kitchen where they cook up breakfast and lunch made from local vendors.  I’m sure there are some really yummy restaurants that I didn’t mention; these are just a few of my favorites.

A few weekends ago 3 of my friends from back home came to visit….here we are at The Great Dane after I showed off the city I love. Thanks for visiting ladies! I’m so happy I was able to be a tour guide Penny one last time before we move.

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Great Dane Photo

A True Madisonian

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I was taking a look at the newest edition of Madison Magazine.  One of the feature articles informed the readers of 62 activities they think every Madisonian should attend this year.  Activities included checking out the Museum of Contemporary Art, take Meiko to one of the many great dog parks, shop on State Street, tour the Capital building, go to a concert at the Barrymore or Majestic, and many more cultural events around the city.  Among these activities was a checklist “You’re not an official Madisonian until you:”

“Enjoy an ice cream or beer at the Memorial Union Terrace.

  • I’ve had both-It’s one of my most favorite places to be in Madison enjoying beer and ice cream overlooking Lake Mendota with friends.

Me and Rob at the terrace

Scream your lungs out rooting for the badgers at a college sporting event.

  • Ada took me to a Badgers football game last year against Penn State.

looks like we had fun tailgating, too

Stroll down State Street.

  • My favorite shop on this street is called Pop Deluxe!

Take in the sights and sounds of quintessential Madison festivals: Willy Street Fair, etc.

  • Rob, Meiko, and I went our first year in Madison to the Willy Street Fair.

Experience Madison’s lakes-on the water by boat or skis, around the water on foot or bike, or out on the ice in winter.

Lake Mendota

Make a lap around the Capitol Square during the Dane County Farmers Market.

  • I LOVE the farmers market-pretty flowers, homemade baked goods, and fresh veggies/fruits.

mmmm freshly made that morning!

fresh cut flowers!

Catch a show at the Overture Center for the Arts.

  • I’ve caught shows at the Majestic, the Orpheum, and at the University—don’t they count?!

Andrew Bird Concert

Watch fireworks set to music at Rhythm and Booms.

  • I watched this my first 4th of July in Madison—I was two weeks old to Madison.

At least thumb through David Mollenhoff’s Madison: The Formative Years.

Cheer for the Mallards at the family friendliest of baseball games.

  • Robbie and I went with a great group of friends last year-for FREE- I just flashed a smile and got us tickets.

Pack a picnic and listen to Madison’s favorite outdoor music session: The Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra’s Concerts on the Square.

  • This is always so much fun, packing wine and snacks while sitting with the rest of Madison on the lawn of the Capitol square listening to really talented musicians.

concert with Ada and Meiko

Develop an opinion on Frank Lloyd Wright and his Prairie Architectural Style.

  • I have opinions.

Realize that having so much fun stuff to do makes Madison great- even if you can’t get to it all!”

  • Madison is a great place to live!

I’ve completed quite a few on that list. I want to give a great big “THANK YOU” to Ada for opening my eyes to many of the great activities that she has showed me!  I guess I need to embrace I’m a true Madisonian, well at least for another 2.5/3 years until Robbie is done with his PhD and we get to explore another wonderful city!

A Vaily Good Time!

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After spending 34 hours in the car and a whole week on vacation with Robbie I can officially say I’m not sick of him! Good thing since I decided to marry him!! I was sad on Monday morning when I realized I didn’t get to spend the whole day with him and had to return to work.

Rob and Me skiing

Robbie and I skied a few days at Vail.  Only about 28% of the Mountain was open due to lack of the fluffy white stuff, which seems like it’s not that much but we didn’t even ski all of the 28%; it’s that big!  One of the afternoons Mac was able to meet up with us and take a few runs, It was easy to spot which way she went in her green jacket and red snow pants!

Mac and Me at the top of the Gondola

MacKenzie works at a really fancy/expensive seafood restaurant called Montauk where we visited her at the bar and had really yummy lobster macaroni and martinis.  The wait staff was really confused when they saw me sitting there and then saw Mac bopping around.  Some of them caught on that we were twins….I heard a “there is a girl that looks JUST like Mac at the bar!” a few times.

Me and Mac and Montauk

Karrisa and Rob at Montauk

The  hockey team Mac and Karrisa play for had a friends and family night since everyone’s family was in town for the holidays so Rob was able to play with everyone and I sat in the stands with Meiko.  I believe Rob was the only one WITHOUT full pads, he had some under his Redwings shirt but I bet he would’ve like to have had butt pads, too! Here’s Rob trying to score a goal on Mac…

Rob in Red, Mac in Yellow--blocking the goal

Meiko's watching the game

Four of our meals we ate at Moe’s in Lionshead at Vail.  They have amazing pulled pork sandwiches, banana pudding, and macaroni! For only $9 you get the sandwich, your choice of 2 sides, and a drink—for anyone that’s been to Vail, that’s a STEAL! Everything is overpriced in Vail, so overpriced the gas stations don’t even put the prices up on their displays.  I guess that’s the price you pay for living in paradise.

us at Moe's!

Going on vacation with Meiko was a real treat! It was so nice to come back from skiing and be tackled by her kisses and love.  She was such a good traveler, sleeping 16.75 of the 17 hours there, and 17 of the 17 hours back! I think Meiko had a great vacation too; she was spoiled with love and got a few special presents from her GrandPawents; A snuggie and some very durable squeaky toys!

meiko in her snuggie

Robbie got some really great shoes, and I got the best present ever….spending time with Rob, Mac Karrisa, and Meiko.  I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, I’ll get made fun of because it’s really not that funny… I had a VAILY good time –get it? Vaily instead of very… I know, I know.

sorry for the poor quality photos, I neeeeeeeeed more than just my iphone camera.

On The Road Again.

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We’re all set for our 17 hour road trip to Vail; we’ve got a full tank of gas, best friend (meiko) in tow, and a car full of smiles Here’s to a safe drive and good music to be played.

As my father always said while making sure we had everything we needed for our trip, “ski’s, boots, poles, gloves” I think we have everything needed to make this a great trip!

See you soon MacKenzie and Karrisa!

–update–we’ve made it through Iowa, now it’s robs turn to drive :)