Tag Archives: summer

Sunday Afternoon Coffee [Sixty-four]

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If we were having coffee this afternoon, we would be sitting on a patio somewhere. Summer finally showed up around here and it feels so good. The Sexy Master Electrician and I went camping in early May in Yellowstone before all the tourist showed up and it was so great to not be constantly stuck in a traffic jam. We even went to watch Old Faithful go off.
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If we were having coffee this afternoon, I would tell you how proud I am about my baby sister graduating from nursing school. I went all the way home and across the state of South Dakota to see her walk an celebrate after 5 years of hard work. Now she just needs to pass her boards and she all set to start her new job. Great work Lil’ S!
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I would also tell you that I am now officially an aunt by blood. Very odd thing, but my little brother just had a massive baby boy named George. Thanks for taking the pressure of me to do such things, Michael!

If we were having coffee I would tell that I am super excited to see Garth Brooks in concert next weekend! My five year old self is freaking out. He was my first crush. I could sing the extra verses of The Thunder Rolls to the radio edited version. This is gonna be amazing.

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Speaking of concerts, there have been quite a few good ones around here lately. In the country world, I just saw Tim McGraw and Faith Hill. I forgot how amazing Faith is and I’m pretty sure she’s gonna have a major come back. Bastille was also in town and had an amazing show with Mondo Cozmo opening. In the fall we have Florida Georgia line with Nelly coming to town. Things are getting interesting.
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If we were having coffee this afternoon, I would show you this card I came across that just keeps cracking me up. I am a dork, I know.

Some of the Things that Happened Between Then and Now

So… I’ve been MIA for almost a year. Not for lack of thinking about it. Not sure I can blame it on lack of time, though that is probably part of it. Lack of motivation? Maybe? I definitely do not come home and turn my computer on every night like I used to do. I’ve spent more time reading books in bed than reading blogs or fussing on my phone. I’ve been outside. A lot. And I love it. I also loved this record of recipes, things I’d done, places I’d gone and people who’ve done it with me. I do come back here with frequency to tell someone where I was or what I did on a trip or a project. I guess I set a New Year’s goal, with out thinking about it, to return to this place and continue on so I keep having a place to return to and get lost in the fun of the past from time to time.

Here are some of the things that happened in the last year that stick out. Some of them will be flushed out in real posts later on. Consider this a really long over due Sunday Afternoon post in no particular order.

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I guess the biggest event of mine for 2016 was the fact that The Sexy Master Electrician and I decided to co-habitat. After a long and stressful search process we finally found a place we could both agree on with minor concessions on both sides. We are currently in a three bedroom condo with a garage. I had to send Princess Chunk home to live with my sister for the time being, (we were having little to no luck finding pet friendly rentals), and he had to keep the garage clean enough so that I could park in it during the winter. “The garage is too small anyway” so TSME has a storage unit for all the crap that I still have no understanding of how it fit in his previous one car garage.

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Thanks to this change, I refinished a lot of furniture this summer. We are talking two tables, a dresser, a desk turned TV console, a side table and other random items here and there. There were several lessons learned and things left half finished for months until my parents came to visit and I kept my dad busy finishing them up. I am pretty proud of how some of them turned out some could be better, but they work just fine now.

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We also decided to purchase a grown-up couch with help from our friends at The Architect’s Wife. It looks awesome. I am so happy we finally landed on this one.

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And we had to get lots of plants. I potted them. TSME is responsible for keeping them all alive. My spider plant is doing so well I was able to give a “baby” away to a friend and it actually made it!

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We had guests for our usual Forth of July celebration in Livingston. TSME’s sister and boyfriend came to visit with one of the most adorable dog ever. Before heading over the hill, we did some hiking and brewery hopping around Bozeman. We stayed at Chico this year and went over to the Natural Bridge before the rodeo. The only hiccup was the rock that found it’s way into one of the wheels and made a terrible sound. The tire had to come off to get it out. Dang gravel roads.
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The rest of the summer was filled with kickball and flag football league, hiking, stand-up paddle boarding, some biking and boating, and a few longer weekend trip around the state.
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Oh and a trip to New York City for Kurt and Melissa’s wedding in Brooklyn. I love that city. It was a great week to be there. TSME had a great time. We stayed with friends and also got an AirBnb for a few nights. The wedding was lovely and we spent time in the Wythe Hotel, at a lot of my favorite pizza, Fornino’s and took TSME to some of the places I didn’t have the chance to our first time there together.

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We made a little trip to Pine Creek Lodge to see Diarrhea Planet in person. My friend K and her boyfriend are groupies and convinced us that we needed to go see this band since they were going to be so close. The location is great. I want to stay over next time I go out there. And the band was super fun. I would go see them again.

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I also went to Missoula to see Nathaniel Rateliff and the Night Sweats. So. Much. Fun. Would love to see them again.

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#bestdressed
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Still snow in May…
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In other big news, though it’s not mine, just family related, my brother got married this Spring. My cousin, Rachael, my little sister and her boyfriend all came to Montana to hang out after the wedding. They went down to Yellowstone. I took them up to storm castle. It was super fun. And I was able to enlist them to help me move out of my tiny apartment into the condo.

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Our office had a “Domestic Dispute Retreat” in Pony at one of my coworker’s cabin. He smoked ribs, I made pie, we played cornhole and went down to the Pony Bar. Yes, there were horses and dogs at the bar. A very successfully weekend sort of off the grid. Great “bonding” experience for our little office.

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At the end of the year, we hosted Thanksgiving. TSME and his bestie had a smoke-off to see who could smoke the best turkey. They both turned out amazing and it was a fun day with friends and my parents. After that is was rush, rush, rush to the end of the year.

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We went out and cut down a tree for Christmas. My first Christmas tree since some time in college. It was adorable.
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Bozeman office and the big man
Then I had my company party in Billings one weekend. I wasn’t sick this year or the newbie so it was pretty fun, minus terrible weather.

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Another was reserved for my annual candy and cookie party, which my sister was here for with a friend. There was the Christmas Stroll. Downtown and in the “Northside” neighborhood. Plus we had to go skiing.

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We went to South Dakota for Christmas. We had to run to Rapid City one day, so we went up to Dinosaur Hill. I found out is on the National Historical Registrar and has been there since 1936. I remember them always being up there and going once or twice when I was little. but hadn’t been up there in a very long time. It was kind of neat. Kind of sad since they clearly need to repair work done if they are going to survive another 80 years.

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My parents got a new puppy, Belle. Cutest thing every. It was so fun to play with her and almost made being stuck at home an extra day, due to a storm snowing us in, worth it.

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We made it back to host Kurt, Melissa and Aubie Katz as well as TSME’s other sister and boyfriend for New Year’s. Kurt and Melissa stopped on their move to Portland and TSME sister and boyfriend were up here to ski. We hit up the hot springs, breweries, downtown, and of course, Bridger Bowl.

And that, I think, is a wrap. For the most part.

Backyard Summer Soiree

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via Domino

I have no yard. I borrow my friends yards or force them to throw the parties I want to have. I have been wanting to host a dinner party forever. So when the image above landed in my inbox at the start of the summer and knew I had to have this party. I sent the picture to Dr. K who sent it to her roommate, S, who agreed that this was a party that needed to happen. So we sat down over a bottle of wine one night an planned.

It was to be a bohemian summer party. Something whimsical and relaxed, but still requiring people to dress up. We wanted to make everything ourselves and we wanted it to not cost an arm and leg. This being the case, we knew we couldn’t feed all of our friends, so we went through the painful task of figuring out a guest list. We figured 12 to 16 people total would be all we could handle. In the end, the best way to decide  was to invite people who knew all three of us and mostly knew each other in some way.

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Once the list was settled, we started looking the menu and decor. Dr. K took over the food for the most part, and I defaulted to the decorations and drinks. S was our go between helping make decisions. We got a couple sheets of plywood and cinder blocks to make our low table. We found some lovely table cloths and rugs to sit on with pillows. Untitled
Around the yard, we strung up twinkle lights that extended down the table top. I found some lovely air plant containers to hang from the trees with candles in them instead and I strung up some lamp shades in the largest tree.
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At the bar, I used the suitcase side table my sister made me and a large flower arrangement.
UntitledWe had mason jars with candles and flowers all over. By the time we finished decorating, S declared that it looked like someone should get married back there.

For the menu, we planned things that would be able to be completed ahead or would need little prep. I had a few whole chickens in the freezer, thank you mom and dad, so we decided to roast them with veggies. We had grilled asparagus and a huge salad as well. For appetizers, there was my favorite avocado dip, brie baked with honey, olives, and chips with salsa. Dessert was a yummy chocolate cake and for the non chocolate people a rhubarb and strawberry pie. Untitled
I made the most wonderful Summer Sangria ever, recipe below.  It was a bit deadly, most people did not realize how much alcohol was in it, but it was so good. Everyone loved it.

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Final prep, getting the dang candles to stay lite- via S

Everyone did a great job of dressing up for the party and we were so excited. We did have to send some pictures and explain a time or two what exactly “bohemian fancy” is. Basically we wanted fancy hippy, not dirty hippy.   Untitled
The ladies
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Some of the boys via Erin
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They all did well. We had a cocktail hour before we actually sat down to dinner and everyone who didn’t know each other was introduced. Dinner was delicious and no one had trouble sitting on the ground. We were not sure if people were going to hang around after dessert or not. A few people left, but most hung around and the music eventually changed and we had a little dance party in the backyard. It was so much fun. I was so happy with how everything turned out after prepping all day for it and throughout the week before. We were up until 3 AM and maybe not quite ready for bed even then. Untitleds
Even the dogs had to get in on the fun- Via S

Now I need to come up with another awesome party idea and you need to try this sangria!

Summer Sangira
Make 24 servings

  • 12 oranges
  • 12 limes
  • 8 lemons
  • 2 cup sugar
  • 20 ounces frozen raspberries
  • 4 cups vodka
  • 2 cups Limoncello (I had to use little bottles, so I think we ended up with a tiny bit less)
  • 4 bottles of Prosecco, chilled
  • Juice 8 oranges, 8 limes and 4 lemons to measure approximately 2 cups of juice. Combine the citrus juices and the sugar in a saucepan and warm over medium heat until the sugar is dissolved. Cool.
  • Thinly slice the remaining oranges, limes and lemons.
  • In a large pitcher, combine citrus slices, raspberries, vodka and Limoncello and stir.
  • Top with Prosecco; stir gently.
  • When ready to serve, gently add ice and stir again.

Enjoy!

Virginia City [and The Brewery Follies]

UntitledAfter visiting Butte, K and I took a drive down to Virginia City and Nevada City. Both are old mining ghost towns a few miles apart in the Ruby Valley. Virginia City has a few residences but Nevada City is a true preserved ghost town. They an hour and a half from Bozeman and two from Butte. Everyone has said they are one of those places you just have to go see, so we did. The drive from Butte was beautiful. We could have hopped on the interstate for awhile and dropped south, but instead we went on Highway 2 through the mountains. It was beautiful. I had never been back there. We need to see if there is any hiking back in there to check out next.

Because we came from Butte, we ended up in Nevada City first. We stopped for just a bit. You can wonder down the open shops that are on the main road, but everything else is gated off. If you like can pay to see the rest of the town and reenactments. On top of that you can take the little train ride between the two cities. We were a bit over the ghost town after touring the one at Museum of Mining earlier that morning  and we were short on time so we passed on hanging out and headed to Virginia City.

Most of the little town is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. As you walk down the street you can read the plaque on each building explaining what it used to be and why it is important. It’s also very much a tourist town. Most buildings have operating shops, restaurants or bars in them. Some are just historic displays, set up as they would have been in the 1860’s. We wondered up and down the street checking out the different shops, galleries, and historic buildings. Untitled
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We found some delicious ice cream. It’s made right there, you can watch it being churned in the barrels. K insulted the owner by saying that she was not a fan of his new flavor, but there were plenty of others she did like and the guy behind her liked the new one, so we made it out alive without spit on our cones. Untitled
 Ice Cream in the making

One of the main draws for us to head to Virginia City was the Brewery Follies at the old brewery. The brewery is tucked down by the creek, off the main road. They left the interiors as is and only modified to add a little stage. Twice a day you can head down for the four person cabaret show. We were told that it was hilarious, a main reason for a “local” to go to Virginia City if you didn’t have kids. We were a bit apprehensive about how good it could really be, but it was hilarious. It was so good, we are planning on returning with a big crew of friends to see the other cast before the season ends. Untitled
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Follies Bar
We were seated right in front of the little space and they serve you drinks before and during the intermission. The actors are your bartenders, so you can’t get anything during the show. We had a great time. The small cast of two guys and girls were really funny. The musician was great as well. It was fun to sometimes watch him to see what was cracking him up this round. For the most part the skits are rehearsed, but there were spot here and there where they were clearly improving. For the most part, it was 2 hours of laughing.

I’m really glad we decided to swing through Virginia City on our way home. It is definitely one of those you gotta see it places. And I highly recommend the Follies, though not if you have kids, unless you use earmuffs.

 

Sunday Afternoon Coffee [Labor Day Edition]

Sunday 37If we were having coffee this afternoon, I would tell you to try this odd, but good coffee concoction of The Sexy Electrician’s. He put it in the blender. There’s coconut oil and butter in it. The idea of butter in a hot drink gave me flashbacks to drinking awful butter tea to be polite to our hosts in Nepal.  This was actually pretty good. TSE claims it’s brain food. I’ll drink it when prepared for me.

If we were having coffee this afternoon, I would tell you that I cannot believe it snowed last weekend. That’s right snowed. In the higher elevations, but it was still there for days after. I was out of town on a trip (I promise to getting around to telling you about it!). We were worried that the weather was going to ruin it, but it seems that we missed a lot of it and had a great weekend. But I would like the snow to wait a few more months please.

Sunday 37 4If we were having coffee this afternoon, I would show you these fortunes from the cookies from lunch earlier this week. Pretty good I’d say.

If we were having coffee this afternoon, I would tell you that this is a really interesting read about a blind architect. Fricken awesome.IMG_1759

I am incapable of taking a good picture when TSE does. I had  to give us each a good one.  Annoying.

I am incapable of taking a good picture when TSE does. I had to give us each a good one. Annoying. Top pic- first night with the family, bottom pic- at the wedding reception.

If we were having coffee this morning, I would tell you that I had a bunch of fun a couple weekends ago at The Sexy Electrician’s cousin’s (the couple has some how been knicknamed TnT) wedding. It was at the beautiful Sacajawea Hotel in Three Forks, about a half hour away. It was a super fun wedding with great food, cake, and dancing.  I met TSE’s parents and his two sisters. I don’t think they didn’t like me.

IMG_1773If we were having coffee this afternoon, I would say that we have been hanging out with TnT quite a bit lately and having a blast. We’ve been doing some backyard barbecuing involving a lot of wine. We went out to Stacy’s for dinner a couple weekends ago. It was so good. I had not been out there before and I loved it. We are going to need to go out there more often.

Sunday 37 2If we were having coffee this afternoon, I would tell you that you will have to check out a new interiors store, The Architect’s Wife, going in on Babcock. My boss and I went over to check out the progress. Abby’s design studio will move in a couple weeks and the store will open in October. It’s going to be bad ass, if the signs above say anything at all.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you I am really excited to have some time to sit down and watch these films on Rebel Architecture.

If we were having coffee  this afternoon, I would show you this funny comic. So true.

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Cops clearing the street after the music is over

If we were having coffee this afternoon, I would tell you that I cannot believe Music on Main is over for the summer! It’s one of the first signs that the summer is starting to end. To top it off, MSU started classes last week. I’m not ready for fall quite yet.

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Helicopter flying the flag for the National Anthem

If we were having coffee this afternoon, I would tell you that I had a blast at the Bozeman Stampede. My friend, Ben, is one of the organizers, so I have been hearing a lot about this rodeo and looking forward to it all summer. There were fireworks, helicopters and some good riding.

Sunday 37 1If we were having coffee this afternoon, we would be talking about how nice it was to soak in the hot springs at Chico yesterday. It was gloomy and rainy all day. Daiquiris and hot water, great combination.

If we were having coffee this afternoon, it would probably be outside while we soak up the sun on the last day of August! the boys are already planning the next ski trip. I still have so much to do before the winter!