Monday, October 20, 2008


Ok, I couldn't resist posting this picture. Mike showed it to me last night and it just makes me laugh (out loud) every time I look at it.
So there ya go :)

New Duct Tape Wallets

I just got done with some commissioned pieces, thought that I would share: Steelers wallet for someone Mike works with:

Camo set:

Penn State for Mike, he was in desperate need of a new wallet, hopefully he likes it!

Anyone need a wallet?

Home Update

AND finally, an update on our progress at home. I can say that I am VERY close to having all boxes unpacked now. I think we're down to about 6, and they are mainly books. So that is an awesome feeling. I even put up some pictures on our walls!

My goal last weekend was to finally get our garage organized. It was where we were storing all of our boxes and trash and such, so it feels so good to finally be able to see the whole thing.

(just one last pile of junk to get rid of)

My garden center :)

Halloween is a fun time to have black cats. I sometimes try to pose the cats with pumpkins, this year ended up with them laying at the end of the table. It's funny to see them doing the same thing though, minutes apart. (Abner above and Myra below)

Before I really got into unpacking the rest of our stuff, I was talking to Mike and couldn't decide whether or not to just unpack everything first and forgo holiday decorations, or just go straight into the decorations. Mike voted for Halloween, so I went all out. It was fun to have everything out again. I don't think that I did too much last year.

Oh yeah, and thinking about fire places, we finally got some wood yesterday, so we should be nice and cozy all winter.

I also finally got Flash into his new home. I've been saying for years now that once we get a house I'm going to get him a new tank and filter. So Mike got me a filter for my birthday and we got the new tank about a month ago. This is a HUGE improvement for both him and me. He now has tons of room for swimming (he's a super, strong swimmer), and the filter is so great! The old filter that we had was really crappy and made for a small fish tank. I had to clean it at least twice a week and completely clean the tank once a week (which was an hour long process, take all the water out, wash the tank, clean everything in it and then put new water in.) But now, I haven't had to do anything and we're going on two weeks! I am soooo excited, and so is Flash!

I also transformed his old tank stand into a nice table in the sun room. Perfect!

And here is another fun addition to our home. Mike got a pool table a few weeks ago. $50 off Craig's List - we couldn't turn it down. It's not full sized but it's in great shape and does the job. Add that to the dart board and kegerator, the basement's not too shabby.

Rainbow leaves on our red maple out front.

Abner being a love-bug.

Ithaca Beer Soars!

October 9-11 was the Great American Beer Festival in Boulder, CO. (Mike and I went last year) but did not head out this time. Bill and Chief did make the trip though and had a great time. The best news of all is that Ithaca Beer Co. won TWO metals! This is such an awesome accomplishment because this is the biggest beer fest around! There were over 400 breweries at the fest and each category usually had around 40 beers entered. So it's pretty cool.

Here are the awards!

CascaZilla - Silver Medal - American Style Amber/Red Ale

Excelsior Brute - Silver Medal - American Style or German Style Sour Ale

Three Gorges Hike

My work is finally slowing down for real now. Labor Day usually marks the beginning of the "slowing" but once the leaves begin changing, traffic picks up. Lauren and I have been continuing programs on a regular basis, almost more than during the summer, at least it feels like it because it's just two of us instead of four. Anyway, Columbus Day truly signifies the end and so to wrap up the season we do a 3-gorges hike. We start at the top of Robert H. Treman State Park, hike down that gorge, then up Lickbrook Gorge and then down Buttermilk Falls State Park. Total, it's about an 8-mile hike. It takes a good part of the day, we have lunch along the trail and stop every once in awhile to do some interpretation. The hiking is relatively easy until you hit Lickbrook which is a straight climb up the side of the hill. I think we go up about 600ft. in elevation in MAYBE 1/4 of a mile. It's a tough one! We had a fantastic group this year though, a total of about 17 people. Everyone was in good shape and great spirits - so it was a big success!

Pretty fall leaves - I wish I could eat them - I'm addicted to colors!

Shadows at Treman

Teri was able to make it on the hike too! I'm really glad because we were able to spend another full day together.

Looking down from part-way up Lickbrook (taking time to breathe - it's a healthy thing to do :)

Lake Treman at the top of Buttermilk Falls SP

The crew at the finish line!

Six Years!

Mike and I just celebrated our 6th year anniversary earlier this month on the 5th. We actually had a full day of activities. We had breakfast at the Ithaca Diner and then in the afternoon we headed south to the Iron Kettle Farm for some pumpkin fun. We went with Patina, Bill, Dylan, and Patina's mom and sister and brother-in-law. It was a lot of fun.
They had a decent corn maze in which we were actually challenged to find our way out.
Only a few people cried :) Just kidding!

Dylan with Patina and Nan

Goofy Mike, Mike, Nan, and Sarah

Dylan just turned two! Happy Birthday Dylan!!

Then we also had a special treat, my friend Teri (who I worked with last year and then she moved to Oregon) came for a visit. We had dinner with her and her friend Alvin at Taste of Thai. It was so nice to have her here. She was able to stay with us a night and then the next day we relaxed and made our rounds around town. She wanted to hit a couple of places on Cornell's campus (she graduated there last year) so I got to visit a couple of new spots. This stained glass is from the Sage Chapel on campus. It was so beautiful.

Here we are at Taughannock

Mike and I at Buttermilk Falls

Friday, October 3, 2008

Peek at Fall

--Happy Pumpkins--

Yes, it is true, fall is here! I LOVE (and I mean LOVE) fall with such a deep passion. What really gets me are the colors. Sometimes I feel like I can't breathe because the trees and landscapes are so beautiful! It's even hard to drive because I can't take in all the beauty! Anyway, we are definitely entering into "peak" season here in Ithaca. If you haven't been on a road trip recently, this is the time to get out there - come to the Northeast and be prepared to get caught up in the beauty! And by the way, if you've ever wondered about my use of "maple," this is why - sugar maple trees produce the BEST colors - hands down!

Happy mushrooms in our yard

Sumac - reminds me of Skittles

Pollinating bees on Aster - lazy bees because it's soo chilly - they were barely moving!

Plunge Pool at Buttermilk

American Toad out at Watkins


Leaves that I pressed