Chicago Weekend 2019

As a side note … I’ve been slacking on the blogging. We did Pumpkin Nights and I thought about blogging about it … but then didn’t. And we did a teeny tiny trip to Tucson where we *gasp* actually ate at some different places … but I really didn’t take photos so there’s that. But we DID also do a nice long weekend trip to Chicago for a wedding, so here I am. Again. Finally.

Thursday, October 31:

Our original trip plan was November 1-4, but then B realized he booked us our yearly physicals on the 4th, so the trip got shifted up a day. Therefore, we left on the 31st. DEN-SLC-ORD … and we almost got super delayed in SLC thanks to weather in Chicago. The storm we had moved eastward and, well, sorry.

We got in mid afternoon, so we hopped the train from ORD to downtown and then considered walking to the hotel … but since it was snowy and slushy and we had an extra bag (garment bag for B’s suit), we hailed a cab instead. Totally worth the $6. We got checked in to the Marriott Magnificent Mile, got in a super quick workout, and then did an early dinner at Gino’s East since B really wanted some deep dish.

IMG_7634

Deep dish really isn’t my thing, but we split a pizza with two different halves – B did the Meaty Legend and I did the Spinach Margherita. A bit too spinach-y for my tastes, but it did the trick.

Friday, November 1

We woke up fairly early, got in breakfast at the hotel, and then went for a run. Our goal: the Bean (yes yes I know it’s called Cloud Gate officially but I also know the creator is an asshole, so BEAN.).

IMG_7644
Just past sunrise. No one there!

IMG_7645
Look up.

IMG_7758
And yes, that’s snow on it.

We continued down to Buckingham Fountain
11-1chicago4
and then ran the river walk a bit before getting coffee and heading back to the hotel.

IMG_7768

We did some admin stuff at the hotel, I got my lift in, we showered, and then we headed out for the day. First stop was to B’s cousin Peter’s place to say hi. Peter also gave us his Art Institute member’s card so we could head there the next day. Post-Peter, a quick snack at Jimmy John’s (… ugh, but their new tiny Little John’s sandwiches are the perfect snack size), and then off to our main goal for the day – the Field Museum and SUE the T. rex.

IMG_7780

IMG_7785

IMG_7787
SUE, the Rockies (baseball team), and Blair Braverman: the three reasons Twitter is not a complete hellscape. Seriously, SUE is hilarious. And they retweeted the selfie I shared of myself, SUE, and the kidlets.

11-1chicago11
My dinosaurs with the majestic murderbird.

11-1chicago12

11-1chicago14

IMG_7799
Took a quiz about SUE/T. rexes – is it any surprise that I aced it?

IMG_7800
The end of the exhibit.

IMG_7802
Maximo the Titanosaur who took SUE’s place in the great hall.

From SUE and the Field, it was on to the Shedd Aquarium which is basically next door.

IMG_7805

I remember loving the Shedd when I was a kid (… I was also fairly obsessed with sea creatures …) and our first reaction was kind of underwhelming. Okay, to be completely honest, our first reaction was disappointment in learning that their stingray touch is only seasonal and we missed it by a DAY. No flap-flaps for us. Booooo.

We started at the bottom level and worked our way up … and it definitely got better as we moved up to the main floor. I took a decent amount of pictures but didn’t really save many except for the awesomeness that is the mantis shrimp.

11-1chicago20
Hey buddy! Thanks for not completely hiding underneath the rocks like your relative was doing in Denver last time I saw it.

We also did grab a snack while we were there at one of the cafes – mediocre breakfast sandwich thing that B grabbed. My apple danish was AWESOME … and the weird licensed Starbucks in there really needs to learn that Pumpkin Spice Lattes (my first of the season) come with whipped cream, dangit.

After the Shedd, we walked back to Peter’s where B’s parents finally made it into town (they were staying with Peter and his husband while we chose to stay in a hotel). Then we all convened at a Latin American fusion restaurant, Carnivale, for dinner.

IMG_8238
Inside. I can totally believe that this place used to be a nightclub.

I had salmon over some quinoa mixture and it was really pretty good.

IMG_1490
Emilio took the picture so he wasn’t in it, but from L to R: B, me, father-in-law, mother-in-law, Peter.

Saturday, November 2:

Day two started off with a workout in the hotel gym (seriously, it was one of the nicest hotel gyms I’ve ever seen), then breakfast, and then out and about again.

GXKN4071
(played the “we’ll happily take your picture if you can return the favor for us” game to get this one. it was a candid shot the guy took but it ended up being my favorite of the bunch.)

IMG_8244
River.

IMG_8248
Yes, we went back; I wanted to see how busy it was.

IMG_8250
10:30a on a Saturday looks a lot different than 7:30a on a Friday did …

11-2chicago
Cool little installation also in Cloud Gate Plaza.

Our main stop that morning was the Art Institute of Chicago, as it contains B’s two favorite paintings. As we were meeting the family again for lunch, we unfortunately didn’t have time to explore the whole museum. I guess that means we’ll just have to go back …

11-2chicago3
Grant Wood, “American Gothic.”

IMG_8261
Favorite painting number one.

11-2chicago4
“Nightlife.” I forget the artist. But I love the piece.

11-2chicago5
Edward Hopper’s “Nighthawks.” Favorite painting number two.

There was an Andy Warhol exhibit going on, so we checked that out as well.

11-2chicago6

11-2chicago7

11-2chicago9

11-2chicago10

11-2chicago11

11-2chicago12

11-2chicago13

One of his famous Campbell’s Soup can pieces was in the exhibit, but photos of it weren’t allowed. I’ve never been the biggest fan of Warhol, but I definitely appreciate him more after seeing this exhibit.

IMG_8282
Lion outside.

IMG_8283
Now I’ve officially been at the beginning point and the ending point of Route 66 … as well as seen some other random parts of it.

Lunch was at Vapiano’s, which is kind of like Eataly if you’ve ever been there. It’s kind of like a made to order cafeteria/food market. Hard to describe, but it was really tasty.

IMG_8284
Split that caprese salad with B and I got some pasta with cream sauce and mushrooms and I added shrimp to it. It was delicious.

IMG_8290
Leaving lunch. Had to snag a picture of the elevated tracks. Peter played mini tour guide for a few quick buildings post-lunch with all of us.

IMG_8294
The floor inside what was the old Chicago Athletic Club.

We split back up from the family – my mother-in-law’s knee was hurting her and B and I wanted to do a little bit of shopping/wandering on the Magnificent Mile. B stopped in a Garrett’s for some popcorn while I wandered into the doughnut shop next door.

IMG_8300
The chocolate was meh; the glazed twist was pretty good.

We only did some window shopping – the Nordstrom in Chicago is glorious compared to the ones we have back home – but I will admit, I almost spent a decent chunk of change in Roots. The main thing stopping me was luggage space. I consoled myself by reminding me that we’re planning a trip to Calgary in the spring.

We got back to the hotel to start getting loosely packed up and to get ready for the actual reason we came to Chicago – B’s cousin’s wedding. I was excited since I haven’t met a lot of people on B’s dad’s side (Peter, for example, is on his mom’s side).

IMG_8316
All dressed up!

IMG_8350
This is the cake topper? These are my people.

IMG_8351
The ceiling in the cocktail hour/ceremony space. Everything took place at the Museum of Contemporary Art. I regret not taking the time to wander around, but: heels.

IMG_8353
To that last point re: heels … the shoes were fine if I was sitting or moving. Long periods of standing and the feet killed. Knew I should have found a spot to sit during the ceremony …

IMG_8361
Us.

We didn’t stay very long at the wedding – cut out about 90 minutes early (at least) as we had to catch an early flight back to DEN. The time change helped, but still. 3:30a wake up calls suck regardless.

Sunday, November 4:

As everything had melted, we walked to the train station that morning … and were rewarded with a nice night view of the river.

IMG_8364

Got to the airport with plenty of time … and even enough time to stop in the Sky Club for a tiny bit of breakfast (sweet, sweet breakfast). We chose to go through MSP on the way back and that layover is where coffee was consumed. SLC was our original plan, but flights through MSP looked shockingly good (usually they’re AWFUL to DEN) and that flight got us home a few hours earlier. Totally worth the earlier alarm.

I hadn’t been to Chicago in years – hadn’t really visited it since the mid-90s and hadn’t done anything at all there since 2005 (just a Cubs/(ironically) Rockies game with the ex driving back home from college) – so I was excited for this trip. I’m happy to say that it lived up to my expectations and I can’t wait until I go back again.

Vegas/LA Fall 2019

I didn’t write about our last trip to Vegas (back in late July/early August) because it was a super short trip just to sell B’s crash pad car. However, he bought a new crash pad car and we needed to drive it out to LA. So … we did that.

Sunday, September 29:

At the last home game of the Colorado Rockies season, the players come around and hand out stuff to the fans and it’s all fun and great. When we booked our 15 game package, we made sure to do this game as we enjoyed the experience last year. As our Vegas stay was booked starting the 30th and it’s a 12-13 hour drive … we figured we’d just leave after the game and make it as far as we could.

Wellllllll the Rockies decided to go into extras and it finally got to a point where we had to leave. So we did, sometime in the 11th. We listened to the rest of the game during the first part of the drive, happily learning they won in the 13th.

In any case, the delay meant no Utah, but almost – just a few miles from the border in Fruita.

(obviously we could have made the state of Utah, but the best option for hotels once you cross the border is like 100 miles in and that would have put is in super late.)

Food Eaten: (on the trip) Dinner: nachos and beer at El Tapatio.

Monday, September 30:

Woke up fairly early in order to get on the road as soon as we could. As caffeine is needed in our family, a stop at the Starbucks in Fruita was a must. And as Fruita has had some dinosaurs found there … it might be my new favorite Sbux.

IMG_5732
Looooooook at all the dinosaurs!!!

From there, a steady drive to Las Vegas. We drove straight to the Bellagio (do we stay anywhere else? not really) where we proceeded to have issues post-check-in for the second time in a row. A few months ago: get to our room and the keys don’t work (electronic lock thingy had dead batteries). This trip: our room that we thought had been ready … wasn’t. Got transferred to a new room, but still, annoying.

We got settled and headed to the fitness room to get a quick workout in (treadmill run and lift). Back upstairs to shower and then out for an early dinner. B had been really craving pizza, so we went to Giordano’s across the street at Bally’s. B had a mini personal deep dish and I had a chicken broccoli fettuccine alfredo.

Gambling might have happened too, but I’m not 100% sure.

Food Eaten: Breakfast: hotel, Starbucks, random gas station snacks (I got a second cup of coffee and gas station coffee goes down better with a snack). Lunch: … I think maybe a bite at Taco Bell? and then just random snacks. Dinner: Giordano’s. Dessert: gelato from Cafe Gelato.

Tuesday, October 1:

We woke up and went for breakfast and coffee, stopping in a quiet conservatory along the way.

IMG_5766
So much nicer when it’s not packed with people.

On the way back from coffee, I bought a necklace from the art vending machine inside the Cosmo, but I forgot to keep the picture I took for this blog. Oops. We then went back to the fitness room to bust out a workout before our main event for the day.

IMG_5774
This doesn’t have much to do with anything … except the fact that the amount of dinosaurs we travel with now has doubled over the years. Oops …?

Anyway, the main thing we had booked was the Happy Place, which had a pop-up in the Shoppes at Mandalay Place. I had first heard of Happy Place when it had a pop-up in Boston and I had friends who went and it looked totally cool. Completely designed for the instagrams? Yep, but whatever. When I learned it was coming to Vegas and that our drive out coincided … I talked B into going. #worthit.

IMG_5776
First room.

IMG_5777
(yes I totally also took a picture of me not smiling in front of this wall)

IMG_5798
You could also lay down and make confetti angels. Which I did for the boomerang for the instas.

IMG_5825

IMG_5829
Sadly, the free cookies weren’t very good.

IMG_5830
Super bloom room!

IMG_5837

IMG_5840
Wish I had done my instagram research to make the shots from this room more believable.

IMG_5855

IMG_5886
My husband totally looks like a serial killer here.

IMG_5888

happyplace9

IMG_5891

IMG_5904

happyplace10
There is a picture of me on the lips couch behind the o in the previous photo, but I figured this super awkward photo of B was way more amusing to share.

IMG_5910

IMG_5911
Sure, Cornelius. Absolutely.

IMG_5914

IMG_5915
Very, very true.

IMG_5919
Always look up.

IMG_5970
Quite possibly one of my most favorite husband photos ever.

IMG_6021

IMG_6052
Yes there were people in each room to take pictures of you if you needed it. I’m serious when I say this place was basically designed for social media.

IMG_6066
This ball pit was B’s favorite part of this whole thing. Because dude. Ball pit.

IMG_6079
Confetti in my eyeballs … but still fun.

IMG_6161

IMG_6162
Yes, yes we did, Happy Place.

In case you’re wondering … YES I COMPLETELY AND TOTALLY RECOMMEND THIS PLACE. Pop-ups live now in Vegas and in Philly. GO. If it ever comes to Denver I’m going again. SUPER fun. And I probably should have given it it’s own blog post. Meh.

Afterward … we did a tiny bit of gambling at Excalibur (cheaper craps tables for the husband) before stopping at Eataly in Park MGM for food.

IMG_6167
B had a panini. I went simple with steak and potatoes. Next up was Margaritaville for a quick drink.

IMG_6174
Saw this across the street. We were there on the second anniversary of the shootings.

We went back to the Bellagio for a little bit to chill out and gamble some and also gather our energy for dinner.

Dinner was at Black Tap inside the Venetian. We heard about it watching “The Flay List” on Food Network – Black Tap was the place Bobby Flay’s daughter Sophie liked for burgers. It looked fun, we found out there was a location in Las Vegas … we decided to go.

blacktap_burger_edit
We didn’t get one of the fancy burgers – just the All-American – but it was delicious. My only complaint: bun needed a tiny bit of toasting. And the fries (regular and sweet potato) were mediocre.

blacktap_shake_edit
They have CRAZY milkshakes. We went fairly subdued with the Brooklyn Blackout. Only thing that was a disappointment on it were the brownies – super dry and almost seemed hollow when you bit into them. Shake itself was delicious, if not extremely rich.

Didn’t gamble as much back at the hotel as the MLife system went down, but that’s probably not a bad thing.

Food Eaten: Breakfast: Sadelle’s, Starbucks. Lunch: Eataly (separate drinks at Margaritaville). Dinner: Black Tap LV.

Wednesday, October 2:

We had no rush to leave Las Vegas, but kind of decided to head out of the hotel fairly early anyway. We grabbed a small bite at the hotel before heading to a place we tried last visit, Saint Honore, a sister concept of our favorite coffee shop, Cafe Lola. We tried a regular doughnut last time, but I really wanted to try the beignets this time around.

IMG_6196
Pretty dang good.

A hop across the street to Target to pay my bill and then up the road a block or two to Cafe Lola. Because of course.

IMG_6199
All decorated for the holidays. Also: spot the dinosaur.

IMG_6201
Our coffees and my favorite, the pasteis de nada.

After B got a bit of work done, it was off to LA. We were tossing around the idea of Palm Springs or somewhere else in California … but ultimately decided to just explore LA some more. Ended up being a fairly low key evening with a run and some food.

Food Eaten: Breakfast: Cafe Gelato, Saint Honore, Cafe Lola. Lunch: random drive snacks. Dinner: our standard Whole Foods in Manhattan Beach. Also a later evening snack at Taco Bell (and a gas station Haagen Dazs bar).

Thursday, October 3:

We decided to do one of our favorite little places for breakfast in Hermosa Beach in Martha’s 22nd Street Grill.

IMG_6217
Mostly because of this view. Ah, ocean.

After breakfast, off to the LA Farmer’s Market. B got some coffee and then it was time to wander around. We really didn’t buy anything, but it was pretty cool. Bonus is that it was right next to the Grove (fancy shopping center) which had a Sprinkles in it. Sprinkles makes the best pumpkin cupcake I’ve ever had … and their cupcake store/ATM shut down in Vegas (booooo). As we’re in the season of all things pumpkin/pumpkin spice … I wanted the damn cupcake. So this location was a bit fortuitous.

IMG_6223
Tried a doughnut in the farmer’s market.

IMG_6227
So pretty.

From there, a few miles away so I could visit the actual store of Trashy Lingerie. It was different from what I was expecting, but I’m glad I went. Didn’t buy anything, though.

IMG_6231
Street art across the way.

We had a touch of car trouble after this (seriously never buy from the used car lots on West Colfax, people) so our afternoon plans kind of got thrown out the window. Thankfully we didn’t have many. I’m not going into details about all of what happened … but know that it sucked. Hard.

And also made us feel a lot better about dinner that night.

IMG_6237
Mmmm, In-N-Out.

I wanted to try to catch the sunset at the beach as I usually try to do, and we kind of made it.

IMG_6238

The peace of walking along the shoreline hearing the waves crash along the shore was exactly what we needed.

Food Eaten: Breakfast: Martha’s 22nd Street Grill, Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf, Bob’s Donuts. Lunch: Norm’s, Sprinkles cupcake, Whole Foods. Dinner: In-N-Out Burger.

Friday, October 4:

Early wake-up call to get to the airport as B had to leave on a trip and I had to get home.

Also, did you know that the Delta SkyClub has a toast bar so you could make your own avocado toast? Well, now you do.

Food Eaten: Breakfast: Delta SkyClub. Lunch: Athenian Restaurant once I got home. Dinner: … random stuff around the house.

Third Quarter Style: 2019

Just two posts this quarter. Peak IRONMAN training means not a lot of dressing up and me forgetting to take pictures on one of our date nights. Oops. Or, well, I have a picture, but it doesn’t really show the outfit. C’est la vie.

7-4outfit

Worn on the Fourth of July.

Dress: Vineyard Vines for Target
Headband: Skirt Sports
Earrings: don’t remember
Necklace: A New Day (Target)
Bracelet: Express
Shoes: … I think Madden Girl

9-27outfit

Worn on our yearly Corn Maze visit.

Shirt: Merona (Target)
Shorts: Paige Premium Denim
Belt: … don’t remember. Kohl’s? Target?
Sunglasses: Target
Earrings: gift from ages ago
Bracelet: MantraBand
Watch: Garmin
Purse: American Eagle (from DSW)
Shoes: Vionic

an explanation for the clouds

i saw them only once, early in the morning
the passage of the
plains ghosts
wisps stealing across the sky.
the sun was burning through the clouds
creating an eyeball,
watching,
guiding,
urging.
steadily they floated
methodically they made their journey
going south to north
venturing wherever it is they go
all the while
i kept driving
watching the solemn parade.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
an explanation for the clouds, 9.26.19

(Driving across NE Colorado on that trip to Wisconsin, I saw some strange clouds and they begged me to write their story.)

IMG_4414
The wisps.

IMG_4415
It gets lost in the photo, but it really did look like an eyeball to me.

IRONMAN Wisconsin Trip 2019

In which we road tripped to Madison, Wisc., so I could go race another IRONMAN.

Wednesday, September 4:

As we do, we left early on Wednesday morning.

IMG_4412
Sunrise leaving town.

Our hotel reservations didn’t start in Madison until Thursday, but the first day of race check-in was ALSO Thursday, and I know if I don’t want to wait in a long line, I get there the first day. So we left Wednesday and drove to Dubuque, Iowa (much like I did for my Shinedown trip back in May).

Mostly, a long boring day in the car. Thanks, head winds. But I didn’t get lost this time! We also stopped at the same Chick-fil-a in Dubuque I did back in May to get a whole bunch of chicken sandwiches with extra pickles for bike food on Sunday (go read the tri blog linked above for more on that).

Food Eaten: Breakfast: egg and oj, Starbucks, Chick-fil-a (mmm chicken egg and cheese on a biscuit). Lunch: KFC/Subway. Dinner: salad at Hy-Vee, Culver’s.

Thursday, September 5:

First things first, I realized I was missing an IM road trip tradition, so I took care of that.

imoo9-5

Then, it was on to Madison … with first a stop in Verona to get a cappuccino at n+1 Coffee and Beer (inside Rocket Bicycle Studio) because I really liked it last time I was in town.

IMG_4434

Plus we got to talk to one of the owners, Jessica, who gave B a whole bunch of good tips for coming down and spectating on Sunday, as the bike course goes by their shop twice. After coffee, we stopped at the cute little grocery store in town for a doughnut (as I remembered them being good) and a few other things (bottled water for my water bottles, apples for some fiber (mostly for B), mini Dr. Peppers for special needs) before heading off to Madison.

Our hotel room was ready when we got there (stayed at the Hilton Monona Terrace), so we got checked in, unloaded the car, and then I headed literally across the hotel sky way to the Monona Terrace Convention Center to go get checked in for my race.

imoo9-5b
This is on the tiles outside.

After I got all checked in, I was starving, so we quick dumped off my IM crap upstairs and then headed to the Great Dane for lunch. We ate at a couple Madison “must-dos” on this trip, and the Dane was one of them.

IMG_4441

IMG_4442

IMG_4444

IMG_4445

IMG_4446

Overall, it wasn’t bad. We split the massive pretzel as an appetizer (B was doing his best to shove a lot of food in my face this week). I had a different type of fish sandwich (salmon) and B had a Nashville hot chicken sandwich and onion soup.

We went for a ride with a friend that afternoon and then for dinner, we decided to do another “when in Rome” and go eat at State Street Brats.

IMG_4460
There are fiberglass Bucky Badgers all over town. I tried to emulate him here.

IMG_4461
Hockey Bucky!

IMG_4467

We ended up doing a mini tour of cheese curds on this trip, and State Street Brats was the first place we tried. Weren’t bad. Brat was okay, too. We sort of found a part of an empty table to stand at because apparently the Green Bay Packers were playing that night and it was packed. Also packed with college kids. I’m telling you, at 36 I don’t feel old in general … unless you throw me in a bar on a college campus filled with undergrads. Then HOLY SWEET JEEBUS do I feel ancient.

Afterward, we tried a local ice cream shop that B’s ex (who is from Wisconsin) recommended in the Chocolate Shoppe.

IMG_4468
I had the Latte-Da. It was tasty.

Food Eaten: Breakfast: hotel, n+1, random donut. Lunch: Great Dane Brewing and Pub. Dinner: State Street Brats, Chocolate Shoppe Ice Cream.

Friday, September 6:

Friday morning was taken mostly up with a practice swim, as I wanted to get in Lake Monona at least once pre-race. I also went to an athlete briefing, as, well, I was in town for a race and that was something I needed to do. I was also super happy I had checked in the day prior as the lines for that? So long.

I was planning on doing the Undie Run … but lost confidence, so B and I just did a short mile shakeout run to lunch. Lunch was sushi at Sushi Express on the UW campus as we always like eating sushi a day or two before a race. Plus it is (or at least can be) a lot lighter of a meal which was definitely needed.

IMG_4479
Mmmm, fish.

After lunch, a shower and then mostly chilling out starting to get my bags prepped for the next day.

IMG_4483
But also a picture of Lake Monona and the top of the convention center from the room we ate breakfast in every morning. I swam there.

For dinner, we met up with B’s cousin Nicole, who lives in Madison. Our first thought was the Old Fashioned … but they had like a 90 minute wait and I didn’t want to eat dinner at 8p. So, we wandered off to another place and tried the Tipsy Cow. I didn’t take pictures, but they weren’t bad. Tipsy Cow ended up being stop two on the cheese curd tour, and theirs were better than State Street’s. I ended up having some chicken caprese sandwich thingy that was actually really pretty good (if a bit heavy on the balsamic). I think B ended up doing fish fry (fish and chips) and I can’t remember what Nicole had.

Food Eaten: Breakfast: hotel, Starbucks. Lunch: Sushi Express. Dinner: Tipsy Cow.

Saturday, September 7:

The main activity this day was the Madison Farmer’s Market, which takes place around the entire square.

IMG_4486
Some of the gorgeous flowers on display.

We ended up getting a few things. Brandon got some apples, I bought a cucumber to just eat, and we got a large bag of 5 dozen ears of corn so I could attempt to make tamales when I got home. (Which I did. It was a disaster. Hilarious, but a disaster.) We also got a pumpkin cream cheese muffin from a vendor for my morning pastry as I wanted to get coffee from a local place that morning … which I did, in Colectivo Coffee.

IMG_4487

IMG_4489

After that, back to the hotel so I could prep all of my gear bags and B could head down to his volunteer shift checking in athlete bikes.

I packed up my gear bags and took them and my bike down to get racked and placed for the next day. I ended up seeing a few friends at bike check-in, as I ended up hanging out for the rest of B’s shift. We saw our friend Loberg from out here in Colorado (and I took a picture to send to my friend Katie, who’s her coach) and then chatted with an old SMASH teammate, Taryn, post-check-in shift.

After talking with Taryn, we were both fairly ravenous, so we went off to lunch to go try the Old Fashioned again.

IMG_4506

Lunch was still crowded, but we were able to find an immediate seat at the bar as opposed to waiting 20-30 minutes, so that was nice.

The cheese curd tour continued (and ended), and I think they had the best of the three we tried (with points taken off as they might have been the greasiest, too).

IMG_4507
(I will honestly say though, I think my favorite curds are still the ones we get at the Minnesota State Fair.)

IMG_4508
I got this delicious heirloom tomato BLT. I have no idea what B ate.

After lunch, it was time for me to stay off my feet until dinner, so that’s what I did.

Dinner was at the Bassett Street Brunch Club, as I needed to do my usual breakfast-for-dinner. We were joined by more of B’s family – Nicole, and then his cousin Peter and his partner Emilio who drove up from Chicago.

IMG_4513
Inside.

IMG_4515
When a place makes their own doughnuts … you kinda have to get one.

IMG_4517
B’s chicken and doughnut (with Nicole’s savory french toast waaaaay in the background).

IMG_4518
My standard ol’ breakfast. Not the best I’ve had, but it did the trick.

Emilio (Thai peanut noodle something) and Peter (steak frites) did normal people food.

Food Eaten: Breakfast: hotel, Starbucks, Colectivo Coffee, random farmer’s market stall. Lunch: Old Fashioned. Dinner: Bassett Street Brunch Club.

Sunday, September 8:

Race day for me! Pretty much spent all day on the race course. Again, go to the tri blog if you’re curious.

B did a great job cheering and supporting … but I have no idea what he ate all day, so the food below is just me.

Food Eaten: Breakfast: hotel. Lunch: food on the bike. Dinner: food on the run, post-race.

Monday, September 9:

I actually slept well post-race, which doesn’t always happen for me. B actually had to poke me awake so I could go downstairs to the convention center and buy my finisher’s jacket.

Breakfast was after that, and then it was all about packing up the car to leave. And meeting my friend Jen who lives in the Springs to get the five cases of salsa she bought at the farmer’s market to transport home for her.

The rest of the day was mostly spent en route to Minnesota, as we decided to visit B’s parents since we were basically in the neighborhood.

Food Eaten: Breakfast: hotel, Starbucks. Lunch: the Ground Round. Dinner: Green Mill. Snacks: Dairy Queen (my throat hurt from so much breathing during the race; needed something to make it feel better), apps at the in-laws.

Tuesday, September 10:

We woke up super early to leave B’s parents as he wanted to try to make it back in time for bowling that night. Sooooo … that’s what we did, not even stopping for breakfast until … Owatonna, I think. Then, just a long day of pushing through with quick stops.

But we made it back for bowling.

Food Eaten: Breakfast: Starbucks. Lunch: Taco Bell (along with random car snacks. lunch kinda wasn’t really a thing). Dinner: whatever B ate at the bowling alley, whatever I scrounged up in the kitchen.

untitled song

(verse 1)
a dream hits
when i see you
star struck

i can’t breathe
you noticed me
what luck

sharing glances
touching fingers
taking chances
bodies linger

take my hand
lead i’ll follow
hold on wait
this is hollow

(chorus)
so drink some water or some wine
please explain it to me in time

i worry and i wonder
i hurry then i shudder

i need to run
i need to hide –
i’ll fly away

(verse 2)
a tear falls
heart in my throat
no voice

your cruel eyes
a heavy weight
no choice

dirty licking
heavy crying
feeble kicking
slowly dying

no one comes
there’s no savior
just disgrace
but not failure

(chorus)
so drink some water or some wine
please explain it to me in time

i worry and i wonder
i hurry then i shudder

i need to run
i need to hide –
i’ll fly away

(bridge)
like a phoenix i will rise and soar
this will not define me at my core
shattered broken
words unspoken
know i’ll return and be strong once more

(chorus)
so drink some water or some wine
please explain it to me in time

i worry and i wonder
i hurry then i shudder

i need to run
i need to hide –
i’ll fly away

i’ll fly away
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
untitled song, 8.26.19

(I had the first part of the chorus for some reason stuck in my head. I mean, I make up stupid little songs all the time, but this one demanded to be fleshed out.)

temperature gothic

you never thought it would happen to you.
the heat, the oppression, you craved the former not knowing it was the latter that would get you.
i hate the cold, you thought.
i hate how it seeps into my bones, penetrates my very marrow.
how the sun stays hidden behind a veil of clouds, always teasing, always taunting, but never gracing us with its presence.
how warmth is always elusive, no matter how many coats or blankets or cups of hot chocolate, how it stays just out of reach.
i bet you wish you still had that chill now.
now in the unrelenting summer that never ends.
you can lay, naked, motionless, with a thousand fans on you, and still, you will perspire.
the permanent tinge of a rosy cheek has been replaced with the permanent shine of sweat, a dark spot on your lower back that never seems to depart.
i love the heat, you thought, the warmth like a hug.
the hug has turned constrictive
and you cannot escape.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
temperature gothic, 7.27.19

(So I’ve been on Pinterest and keep getting tumblr ____ gothic posts in my feed and, well, they spawned this.)