Jun 30, 2015

Weekend Update: Home Renovations

What a crazy week this has been! Friday was such an exciting day. I could not contain myself when I read the news about the Supreme Court's decision that same-sex couples have the right to marry. Such a happy day!

Friday was also "Bring Your Dog to Work Day." Since I work from home, every day is bring your dog to work day for me! They are not amused that I have to go back to my office.

My weekend started off with watching the FIFA Women's World Cup - US versus China game with some of our softball teammates. USA! USA! Can't wait to see who wins the semi-final game on Tuesday. 

The rest of the weekend was spent doing home renovations and running around town getting things done.

One thing we got done was getting the pups trimmed up for the summer. Gus went to the groomer, and Raisin Bread and I did Carson's hair. Not bad, but it took us three days to finish it. He was so fluffy and knotted.

Our current home renovation project is redoing the hallway. The plan is to redo the floors and paint the trim and walls. Here's what it looked like before. 

Here's what it looked like after one day of work.

 And here's what it looks like currently. Still got some more work to do, but it is coming along!

Jun 24, 2015

Weekend Adventures: Time to Play Tourist

Hello, friends! Raisin Bread and I had a fun and busy weekend. His friend/ex-co-worker from Virginia came for a visit so we spent the weekend seeing some of the sights of Albuquerque and Santa Fe.

On Saturday, we drove the Turquoise Trail to Santa Fe. We made stops in Sandia Park and Madrid.

I think I need to invest in a pair of cowboy boots. Thoughts?

After lunch, we went to Cerrillos to view Kevin Box's Origami in the Garden exhibition. I forgot to mention that this weekend was the hottest weekend we have had since moving to New Mexico. It was a high of 105 degrees! Being an outdoor sculpture exhibit, it was a toasty one. Carson had had it by the time we were half way through and we had to take turns carrying him.

Rock, Paper, Scissors

The artist working

We made it to Santa Fe in the afternoon and walked around The Plaza. There is so much to see in Santa Fe that we visit different shops each time we are in town.

In the late afternoon, we headed up to The Bell Tower Bar, which is located on the rooftop of La Fonda on the Plaza for some drinks and appetizers.

The pups love how dog-friendly New Mexico is!

On Sunday, we headed to an old favorite of mine: St. James Tearoom. This month's theme was "A Pirate's Life for Me."

In the afternoon, we visited The Albuquerque Museum of Art and History. There was supposed to be an event going on, but we missed most of it. Instead, we decided to see the Killer Heels: The Art of the High-Heeled Shoe exhibit, which is something I wanted to do anyway. 

Lady Gaga's shoes

Awesome men's boots


That evening we had dinner at Sandiago's at bottom of the Sandia Peak Tramway. I do not recommend, by the way. We barely made it on the tram for sunset because the service was so slow. 

This was my second time on the tram, but my first time during sunset. The mountains are so beautiful. I guess this is why they are called the Sandia (watermelon) Mountains! 

We stayed on the top until the sun fully set and waited to the city below us to light up.

Lights of the city

It took us an hour and a half of waiting to finally get down the mountain! We had to wait for three trams before we were able to make it on.

So that was the end to our weekend of playing tourist. It is always so great to have visitors!

Jun 19, 2015

Carson's Runway Debut + DC + Parents' Visit

Now that I have completed all of my posts on our road trip vacation, it is back to our regularly scheduled program and an update on some recent happenings.

The first week of June was insanely busy and it took me a few days to recover from all of the running around.

Carson made his runway debut at the Reel Dog Fashion Show, which was the opening night event for the Albuquerque Film and Music Experience.

He was all dressed up in his tuxedo and bow tie and did a great job.

The fashion pre-show was open to anyone who wanted to sign up, so I jumped at the chance to get Carson out on stage. He was so adorable. 

We stalked the other dogs while waiting in the green room for the show to start!

The pre-show walkers lined up and ready to go. 

Photo credit: Allen Winston
Then it was time for the "real" fashion show. 

The next morning, I was up before the sun and made the journey across the country again to our nation's capital.

I scored a bulkhead seat and there was no one beside me! Double score!

DC did not seem to get the memo that it is supposed to be spring. The weather was rainy and gloomy the two days I was there, and as usual, that meant I didn't want to do much.

I did stay at the Hotel Helix, a new-to-me hotel this trip and I thought it was adorable.

The room was fashionably furnished and I loved that the tv was on a swiveling shelf, so I could watch from the desk or the bed.

Since there was not going to be any exploring that evening, I hit the treadmill for a nice 5 miler.

For dinner, I picked up sushi and watched home renovation shows for the rest of the night. 

The day after I returned from DC was our fourth wedding anniversary, which I wrote about before. 

Then on Friday, my parents came to visit us from California. On Saturday morning, we headed to the Indian Pueblo Cultural Center

We took in the exhibits and there was a native dance and song performance in the courtyard. 

The courtyard is surrounded by a number of huge colorful murals.

Then we headed to The Grove Cafe and Market for a late lunch. I had a matcha latte that was delish. 

Then I had the spring kale salad. I am addicted to kale. Why is it so yummy?

Carson decided to show how bad he can be by stealing my dad's house slippers and running around with them. 

On Sunday, it was Gus's first birthday. I got him a cake.

I even got him to wear a birthday hat! Gus has been a joy to have in our household. He is such a loving goofball.

We brought Gus and Carson along and spent the day with their grandparents in Santa Fe. My folks headed back to California on Monday. It was great seeing them!

Jun 17, 2015

Roadtrippin' 2015: Ouray, Colorado and heading back home

Our final stop on our 10-day road trip was Ouray, Colorado. Raisin Bread visited Ouray once before and has raved about it since. It was sort of on the way back to Albuquerque, so we decided to make a stop here.

As we made our way into the mountains, it was obvious that the weather gods were not on our side.

Ouray likes to call itself the "Switzerland of America." Unfortunately, for me, I think Colorado hates me. I have visited Colorado three times, and each time, the weather has either been awful or I got sick. This time was no different. The weather was terrible pretty much the entire time we were there.

The temperatures hovered around the 40s for the entire weekend and it rained off and on the whole time. Since our main interest in being there was to go hiking, the weather put a damper on those plans. We even considered just going back to Albuquerque but we would not have gotten any money back on our lodging, so we decided to stay.

After making the drive from Moab, which took 3.5 hours, we were at a loss on what to do. We took a dip in the hot tub and then took a nap.

Carson napping

We also walked around Main Street as much as we could, visiting the shops.

Grey, rainy and cloudy Ouray

We did, however, have a fantastic dinner at The Outlaw. It is an great steak and seafood restaurant, decked out in old saloon fashion.

On top of that, they have a live piano player by the bar. Bonus points!

Raisin Bread had a huge slab of prime rib.

While I had the surf and turf - filet mignon and a king crab leb. The steak outside of the steak was a little too overdone for me, but the crab was amazing!

The next morning, the weather looked like it was going to hold up for a couple of hours so we completed the Ouray Perimeter Trail, which basically goes around the entire perimeter of the town.

A word of warning if you decide to do this hike, the trail is not marked well at all. We lost some time trying to figure out which way we were supposed to go and back tracking when we made a wrong turn.

Although the weather still could have been better, the scenery was beautiful. I love all of the colorful trees.

The trail was very muddy because of all of the rain and the pups got so dirty! We even had to carry them in about three spots because the mud was so deep.

Towards the end of our hike, we arrived at Cascades Falls. Reaching a waterfall always makes me feel like the hike was worth it.

In total, we did over 5 miles along the Perimeter Trail. We headed back to the hotel and it started raining pretty hard. We had to give the doggies baths because they were covered in mud and soaking wet. 

Finally, we were able to head out for some lunch. We decided on Maggie's Kitchen for some big juicy burgers. 

After lunch, I walked around town for a bit and picked up another ice cream cone before heading back to the hotel for a quick nap.

Our last night of our road trip was met by an unfortunate dinner. We dined at Bon Ton, where I was served the worst lasagna I have ever had. What a disappointing end to our fun road trip. 

The next morning we were back on the road with our destination being home. The mountains were still covered in clouds and rain.

Hello, New Mexico!

Our last and final stop on our roadtrip was Serious Texas Bar-B-Q in Bloomfield, New Mexico. I had a yummy brisket sandwich, which filled me up quickly. 

Well, that concludes our road trip! I love experiencing all of the things that our country has to offer and oftentimes, the best way to see all of the interesting small towns and sights is to hop in your car and drive!