Thursday, October 30, 2008

Happy Halloween

We had a theme this year.
Notice the snaggle tooth on the left pumpkin. It's actually an exact replica of Lucy's.

Lucy decided she wanted to be a chicken for Halloween.

And then she decided that being a chicken wasn't it all it was cracked up to be, and ran back to her 'room'.

Have a happy Halloween everyone!
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Word of Warning

Found this online. Thought it was hilarious! Given the fact that I, at one time, along with a million other people were or are planning on going as Palin for Halloween, I just had to post this.

Here is a sign for all Halloween-Party Hosts' to post at their front-door.

Happy Halloween! Nate and I are carving pumpkins tonight so get ready for some spoooky pictures tomorrow!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Great Food: Episode 18

It was another night of delicious fresh fish at the Hanson household as we tried our hand at
Fish Po'Boys.

Let me tell you about how delicious these things were. We got a Take N Bake Baguette that pretty much just sent this sandwich over the top. Key Learning: the bread selection is important.

But the part of this meal that sent it over the top was a homemade spice tartare sauce that we made with light mayo, chopped up dill pickles, jalapenos, and some spices. YUM...and I don't even like tartare sauce.

To be fair, Nate did all the cooking on this one. He has been great to do lots of cooking so I can get my school work done and enjoy some of the evening.

So for all of you fisherman out there, catch yourself some fresh Crappie, and go to town on this recipe, because it is 'fishtastic'. That's right...I just said that. Because it's true.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

San Diego

I had to travel to San Diego this weekend for a work outing, and we decided that Nate should come with so that we could celebrate our anniversary when I wasn't working. I went there for a cholesterol screening tour that we are putting on.

The weather was INCREDIBLE. 80's and sunny. We were seriously considering moving to San Diego by the end of the weekend, and I am still considering it since it was snowing when we got home.

Anyway, Friday we checked out the tour, then headed to La Jolla and went for a long watch on the beach, watched some surfers, and had a good dinner. Then we did some swimming and hot-tubbing on the roof of our hotel.

Saturday, we woke up early and participated in a Pumpkin Patch 5K. Now first, let me tell you that this was quite nostalgic since it was literally 1 year from that day that we ran our race in Maui. Second, the marketing of this event was quite misleading.
Pre-race Post Race

- The trail was a dusty, gravel road that you ran half way out and back. You knew it was the half-way point when you got to the truck blocking the middle of the road, and it said half-way.

- They said the race would be in the pumpkin patch. Neither of us ever saw a pumpkin patch, and in order to even get close to a pumpkin or any of the other fall festivities we were hoping for, you had to pay an admission fee above the $30 to run the race. The only pumpkins we saw were through a chicken-wire fence.

- They marketed 'cow alley' as part of the course where the cows were lined up. What it should have been called was 'good luck running while holding your breath in the last 200 yards of the race because the cow-urine stench is so bad that even a Wisco girl felt her nose hairs curling--alley"...because in all honesty that sums it up a little more honestly.

But it was a good story, we finished the race, and had a great morning.

Later in the day, we went over to Coronado Island (which sparked Nate's singing of Hotel Coronado..sung to the tune of Hotel California--very creative...all day long). A little TOF birdie encouraged us to have a few adventures for the anniversary so the first one was to rent some cruiser bikes that we took around the island. Thanks Cathy! It was beautiful, and we had a great time.

After some more mexican food and mojitos, we decided it would be a really good idea to drive to Tijuana. Yep...liquid courage. But, since I only had 1 mojito the courage died off quite quickly, and as soon as we saw the "LAST USA EXIT" sign, we quickly veered off for fear that once across the border, we wouldn't get back...given that we didn't have our passports this was probably a good idea. I seem to remember a 'pep talk' from my father that went something like "I WILL NOT COME BAIL YOU OUT OF A MEXICAN PRISON" right around spring break time when I was in college, and I figured the same would apply here.

It was a great weekend. Now I just need to get through my midterm tomorrow and more fun can commence!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Wanna Play?

I came across the latest and greatest drinking game today. It sounds perfect for my closeted-geek husband (although I argue he isn't so closeted).

Wisest Wizard drinking game
While fantasy role-playing games like Dungeons and Dragons are largely associated with nerdy kids, this drinking game has been gaining in popularity amongst both college students and the mid- to late-30s set, perhaps mainly for its endearing geek factor. The rules vary, but basically playing Wisest Wizard requires cans of beer and duct tape. After each player finishes a beer, they use duct tape to attach a new can on top of the empty one, thus building up their "wizard's staff." Each empty beer can signifies a level, and when players reach agreed upon levels they go to battle (i.e. take a shot of liquor). Other variations include wizard staff jousting. While we don't condone underage or binge drinking, this does sound a lot more lively than the classic card games we played in college.

Now, I don't really like beer, but if someone agrees to play this game, I would throw back a few just to make a wizard's staff.

Who's with me?

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Great Food: Episode 17

Last night we needed a quick meal, and we needed it to include minimal ingrediants because we have little food in our house right now.

Pasta with Proscuitto and Peas fit the bill, although we did still have to go to the grocery store for Proscuitto. And by we...I mean Nate.

Those of you who know me well, know I have a few quirks when it comes to food. And one of those is gristly meat. Once I catch a bit of gristle..I am done.
The tricky thing with this dish was that there was a fair amount of parmesan cheese and it melted on to the Proscuitto so while I kept thinking the proscuitto looked super gristly, it was always the just the cheese.
Anyway, I am weird and I know that so I guess self awarenes is the first step right? Nate loved it, which is good because he has about 3 days worth of leftovers!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Doesn't Get Old

So regardless of whether you are from a red state or blue state, a McCain Supporter or Obama supporter...everyone can (or should be able to) hold hands and laugh at some of Sarah Palin's finer moments.

Check out this interactive Oval Office (make sure your sound is up):

And, here is the Weekend Update SNL rap. I've heard of way to many people who didn't see it, so I wanted to make sure everyone was able to enjoy this as much as me!

While the Palin humor doesn't seem to get old for me, all of the crazy ad's, over-hyped polls, and media coverage do.

Two weeks from today we will all know who is the next president (assuming Florida doesn't have any hanging chad issues this year).

Sunday, October 19, 2008

One Year Ago

One year ago today--
Wedding bells were ringing

Flowers were being delivered
Nerves were high
Hair was being done
Vows were recited
The sun was shining brilliantly
Final preparations were being made
Friends and family were arriving
Speeches were made
Dances were danced
Two lives and hearts were joined

The first year went fast, and was full of many good memories. Looking forward to many, many more years.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Open Forum: To get a Flu Shot or Not?

Ok people...

Nate and I both don't ever get flu shots. I'm not sure Nate's reason, but mine is that I never get the flu. That is of course until last winter. BUT, last winter EVERYONE got sick because the flu shot didn't work, and I blame me getting sick on everyone else already being sick. (Poor logic I know).

Apparently Nate is experiencing some hardcore pressure at Target to get the shot, but really doesn't want to get it.

So, what do you all think?

Get the shot or not?

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Becca's Amazing Race

This past weekend Nate and I trekked to Chicago to help cheer Becca on during her 1st marathon. It was so much fun to be down there and experience the energy of 40,000 runners plus who knows how many thousand spectators.
1st: Becca did AMAZING! She was a champ through all of the heat (to give you an idea of the heat--I had tan lines from my tank top IN OCTOBER), and finished with a great time. To read more about her adventures from her perspective click here:

2nd: Spectating in a city that you don't live in proved slightly more challenging, but Nate and I considered it practice for our next Urban Dare. Plus, once we met up with Meghan and Emily we were pretty solid.
So, the Cheer Squad consisted of Meghan, Emily, Nate, Nick and I. Nick was on his bike, so we saw him every now and then.

We were making fun of Emily, who was aptly renamed "Flip Flop"--the whole time because she wore flip-flops--didn't plan ahead for the walking/running/jumping up and down---but it didn't phase her at all and she didn't slow down! :)

Here are some good action shots of Bec at Mile 13 and 17. Look at that stride, that form, those killer legs. GO BECCA GO!

And of course the finish line:

CONGRATS Becca! I am so proud of you. You did an amazing job!

Monday, October 13, 2008


Friday night was my October Secret Date Night, and I decided that Nate and I needed to get into the festive Halloween Spirit. So I took us to ValleySCARE. They basically turn the entire Valleyfair theme park into a big Haunted House.

There were about 9 different Haunted Houses, and they wre all scary in their own right. I was definitely hoarse the next morning because I screamed one too many times. It didnt' help that Nate thought it was funny to grab my hair, touch my face, etc.

We got to go on a few rollar coasters too, and I have definitely declared myself past the age of enjoying rollarcoasters. I didn't feel good, it wasn't that fun, and standing in line with gobs of teenagers acting like total troublemakers was less than fun (although slightly entertaining).

All in all, it was a great night! More to come on the HIGHLIGHT of the weekend (i.e. Becca's MARATHON!)

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Great Food: Episode 16

So we really have been cooking up a storm this week.

First, we made Fish Tacos. I have to say there was a special element of pride witht his meal since Nate and I had a hand in actually catching the fish. Very old fashioned...and a little creepy so I try not to think about it too much. BUT..the main point...very delicious.

The toppings were Red Cabbage, Cilantro, Sour Cream and Jalapenos. Mmm Mmm.

Then, this Sunday after lots of rain and cold outdoor spectating of the marathon, we fired up the oven and tried to make the Rustic Apple Tart. Notice I said tried. Yup...didn't go very well. Although the end product ended up tasting alright, just didn't look the prettiest.

It's true..Baking is a sciency and I was never a star science student, so it is clear more practice will be necessary to get good.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Marathon Season

So Nate and I met up with Katie to cheer on Summer and Joe as they both ran their FIRST marathon this past weekend.
Let me tell you a few fun facts:

1) It was mmm...about 45 degrees out

2) It was monsooning (Is that a word?)...torrential downpour, In the picture it looks like snow, which it may as well been.

3) These crazy people ran it in well under 4 hours (did I mention this was their first marathon).

4) Every time we saw them, Summer had a huge smile on her face...loving every minute of it (wasn't that an 80's song?).

Congrats Summer and Joe! Nate and I were so happy to cheer you on. You guys dominated the course!

Next up: Becca's first marathon!! Oh yeah! We are making the trek to Chicago to cheer her on. Did I mention we are bringing cowbells? YOU CAN DO IT!!!!!

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Great Food: Episode 16

It is officially autumn people!

But....we still have some recipes from the Summer section that we were dying to try, so we are goign to delay autumn (at least as it relates to Great Food Fast) for a few weeks!

This week we made Pasta with Green Beans, Potatoes and Pesto. Again, another very creatively named dish from Martha. I forgive her though because the time she saves on creative names she uses to make killer recipes, and this one was not an exception!

Overall, we give this a thumbs up. It was really quick, required very little preparation and was pretty tasty. The bigget trick was getting everything cooked the right way (i.e. NO mushy Beans!)

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Great Urban Race

Nate and I put on our running shoes this past weekend and got ready to hit the pavement for the Great Urban a big one-day amazing race.

Since we had some prior learnings from Urban Dare earlier year, we thought we were brilliant by going to find and purchase fanny packs for "quick access"....

I know..we are stylin. Don't be jealous. But the joke was on us, because they totally sucked to run with.

BUT, we were able to overcome and placed FOURTH out of 225 teams. Shout-out (Palin style) to Katie's seriously crazy internetting skills to help us solve our clues quickly, and to Amy for agreeing to help literally 2 minutes before the race started since Nate's friend pooped out.

So the day was filled with fun! There wer a lot of riddles and word puzzles to be solved this time, which was definitely my stronghold. Nate did a great job mapping the route and knowing the best way to get everywhere.
One of those riddles let us know that we had to take a picture with a street sign that has double letters. Check it out...Nicollet Mall. We wanted extra credit, but we didn't get any. :(

One of the clues led us to the Mary-Tyler Moore statue:

One of the challenges was to get 4 people to do a cartwheel in front of Candyland. Finding Candyland was no problem, since I literally have dreams about that place every night. Luckily, we snagged another team to conspire with us to get the job down.
We had to find Galooney's Pizza in Uptown and feed eachother a slice...Mmmm Mmmm it was good, especially after 7 miles of running!

We qualified for Nationals in Las Vegas but are goign to forgoe that event for a better event: The Packers/Vikings Game. We got killer seats, and are ready to cheer the Pack on.

Here was our clue sheet for the big race:

It was a ton of fun and we will definitely be doing it again next year!