Thursday, June 26, 2008

My Very Favorite Things about the Telluride Bluegrass Festival 2008

1. Making a patch of grass and a tent home for a week

Our bed included an air mattress, two down sleeping bags, a down comforter with flannel duvet cover, and a fleece blanket to top it off! (it gets into the 30s at night...and I like to be cozy) Thanks Dad for letting us borrow the Taj!
2. The VIEW from camp!!! Seriously!
3. The best Telluride neighbors yet!
Erik and Andrea from Massachusetts (they even fed us bacon-wrapped filet mignon one night!)

Steve (mmm...Steve) from New Mexico

4. mid-festival Scrabble games
5. Squeezing into the super-tiny Fly to the Moon Saloon, battling sleep deprivation and claustrophobia, all for the love of Cadillac Sky

6. Kermit the Frog
7. Getting to Telluride a couple days early, leaving us enough time to hike the Bear Creek Trail
8. To THIS waterfall...

9. And finding this guy (our friend Bill) on the trail
10. The Hydration Station (cold, clear, local mountain water)
11. An unexpected hailstorm

12. An even more unexpected marshmallow fight!

11,000 people throwing thousands of marshmallows (no one knows where they came from) while the Swell Season played in the background. Every single person was smiling.

13. Brian's $5.00 designer cashmere sports coat (from the Telluride yard sale)

14. The SLANKET! (see, it's a blanket with sleeves....perfect for late night festivating)

15. Random Acts of Kindess (two women walked through the crowd Saturday night with a hot, homemade lasagna to share. And to serve it, they'd give you a warm piece of garlic focaccia and pile a piece of lasagna on top!!)

16. The Kids Parade...

17. And my very favorite thing about Telluride 2008? Being in this midst of all this magic and fun and beauty and amazing music with my two favorite men in the whole world!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Book Club Trip to the Peterson Cabin

Two weekends ago I had the best weekend ever with 5 of my favorite women in the whole world. My in-laws, the Petersons, were so kind to let my bookclub take over the Peterson cabin for the weekend. The cabin is located in Twin Lakes, Colorado, between Leadville and Buena Vista.

This is the view from the porch! (That's Mt. Elbert, the tallest mountain in Colorado...)

It was a weekend of utter relaxation and luxury. I spent a lot of time with my book and my journal in this chair...Lily also spent a lot of time in the same chair...It's amazing how much we can talk when we all get together. Most of the weekend was spent at the kitchen table chatting.

We ate great meals, we played games, we drank wine, and we slept and napped.

We painted our toenails using the patented Kathryn Tyler pedicure method. (I swear they're supposed to look like this).

It was a nice break for the mothers in the group (two of whom are also pregnant) to get away for the weekend.

We went hiking on the Mt. Elbert trailhead on Saturday afternoon. From the left....Charlotte, Marjorie, Maura, and Sarah.

And I took all the ladies for a ride on the ATV. That was lots of fun (and we promised to not tell Sarah's husband that she was cavorting around the countryside on an ATV; she is pregnant after all :)
We were utterly surprised to wake up to a snowstorm on Sunday morning, June 8! It was the best weekend. I feel very fortunate to have these amazing women as my friends. Thanks Petersons and thanks bookclub ladies for a wonderful weekend!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008


I'm having a year of great health, and I've never felt better.

Since December 1, 2007, I have lost 41 pounds (!) through Weight Watchers. WW is a great program, especially when you have a monster appetite like I do. Rather than being some fad diet, it is a sensible nutrition and exercise program that any nutritionist, doctor, or trainer would recommend. There are no official WW foods that you have to buy to be in the program.

It consists of education about portion sizes and following the 8 Good Health Guidelines:
1. Eat at least five servings of vegetables and fruits each day.
2. Choose whole-grain foods, such as brown rice and oats, whenever possible.
3. Include two servings of milk products – low fat (1%) or fat-free – each day.
4. Have some healthy oil (olive oil, canola, sunflower, safflower or flaxseed) each day.
5. Ensure that you are getting enough protein by choosing at least a serving or two of meat, poultry, fish, eggs, or dried beans each day. Many dairy products are also good sources of protein.
6. Limit added sugar and alcohol.
7. Drink at least 6 8-ounce glasses of water a day.
8. Take a multiple vitamin-mineral supplement each day.

I've also been giving a lot of thought to where my food is coming from and what types of preservatives, pesticides, etc. I'm putting into my body through the food I eat. One way I've started addressing this issue is by purchasing my fruits and veggies through a wonderful Colorado company called Door-To-Door Organics. Every Friday I get a delivery of fresh, local, organic produce delivered right to my front door. The cost is reasonable, I'm supporting a local business and Colorado farmers, and I feel better about the food I'm eating.

Here's a picture of a recent week's haul: carrots, spinach, red-leaf lettuce, fingerling potatoes, squash, zucchini, peaches, onions, mangoes, and lemons! Not bad for $22.00!

Another habit I've changed in the past year is drinking coffee. Now don't get me wrong, I LOVE coffee! I'm sure I will be a life-long coffee drinker; it's the one drug habit I can rationalize. However, I felt like I wanted to cleanse myself of the caffeine for a while. I do enjoy not having that mid-morning coffee crash and getting headaches when I miss a day of coffee.

So, instead of coffee, I have been starting my day with green smoothies!!

  • Green Smoothies are a blended mixture of raw leafy greens, raw fruit or veggies, & water.
  • Green smoothies are easy to digest. When blended well, all the valuable nutrients in these fruits and veggies become homogenized, or divided into such small particles that it becomes easy for the body to assimilate these nutrients.
  • Green smoothies, as opposed to juices, are a complete food because they still have fiber.
  • By consuming two or three cups of green smoothies daily you will consume enough of greens for the day to nourish your body, and they will be well assimilated.
  • When you consume your greens in the form of green smoothies, you can greatly reduce the consumption of oils and salt in your diet.

My favorite green smoothie recipes so far:

2-3 cups kale, one apple, one pear, 3-4 mint leaves, , lemon zest, lemon juice, 1 cup water

2-3 cups spinach, one banana, one mango, 8 strawberries, 1 cup water

I feel great these days. I'm sleeping well, and I have more energy during the day. Although my food and beverage changes over the past year haven't been easy, my body is thanking me for it.!

It's About Time

We live in Castle Rock, Colorado. Here's the "Castle Rock". Hence, the name.
Fun facts about Castle Rock:
Castle Rock is now the 19th most populous municipality in the State of Colorado.
Castle Rock was founded in 1874.
At that time, the settlement consisted of just a few buildings for prospectors, workers, and cowboys.
It was not gold that put Castle Rock onto the map. The discovery of rhyolite stone made the reason to build a settlement that would become Castle Rock.
We have lived in Castle Rock since October 2006, and yet, we hadn't hiked "the Rock" until a couple weeks ago! We used my aunt Cathy's visit to our house as a good reason to finally do it.

The trail is in great shape and slowly winds its way around the base of the castle towards the top. There are sitting/viewing areas at the base of the actual rock.
We left Cathy and my mom (and Lily) at the base of the rock and Brian, Adam, and I (with two 5 year old kids as tour guides) scrambled up a clearly "unofficial" trail to the top of the rock.
During the holidays, this star is lit every night.

What a view! It felt so good to stand up there and look out over our new hometown.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

It Started With A BIG Surprise...

This past Saturday my family and I hosted a BBQ at my parents' house to celebrate my mom's retirement (after teaching for 30 years at the same school!). The party has been planned for months, and despite our intention to take care of everything so my mom didn't have to do a thing, she had a hard time relinquishing of course she had a big hand in all the party planning.

But there was something she didn't know....her sister Cathy and her aunt (my grandmother's sister) Sylvia came to Colorado to surprise her from Tampa and New Jersey! Cousins Sara, David, Ken, and Pat were also surprise guests (from Tampa and Washington D.C.)
Adam and Mari were in on the surprise too. Adam took one for the team and told mom he had to play golf the morning of her party (she was none too pleased with him...). Actually, he was in charge of going to the airport and delivering the surprises.

Mom could not believe that we pulled it off (we all almost blew the surprise at one time or another leading up the party). She kept saying, "I'm supposed to know everything!"

Cathy arrived with this shirt as a retirement gift..."The Legend Has Retired". Isn't that the truth...she is a legend.

Mom was so happy to have her family members there with her to help celebrate!

We had the party catered by Big Papa's BBQ (they are the same restaurant that fed us BBQ at our rehearsal dinner). What a spread...

It was a beautiful day (for once it didn't rain at an Ingersoll family event :) so we were able to have the party outside on my parents' beautiful deck.We were so happy with the turnout of all the wonderful family and friends who made time to come help my mom celebrate.

We ate a lot, we drank beer, we enjoyed each other's company....

The Conjurskes were there...And Mom's friends Amber, Wendy, and Frank from Deer Creek...The Petersons came all the way from Colorado Springs....

And the newlyweds were there also...

The Davises brought a photograph of my mom in her first teaching position in 1974!

And other than those who flew from other states, Allie Pelayo wins the award for traveling the furthest to be at the party. She drove 10+ hours to come to the party, and then turned around less than 12 hours later and drove home again! Now that's a good friend....

Hey, look! It's the yellow-shirt gang....

And here's the craziest bunch at the party...the ladies from Deer Creek (past and present). Trish, Diane, Julie, Judy, Allie, and Delly. You could hear this group from miles away.

And Brian would like me to point out how nicely his wings/sideburns are coming in....

Thank you so much to everybody who helped us

celebrate Delly's amazing career as a teacher! Mom, we wish you the best of luck in your retirement!

Enjoy! You've earned it!