Sunday, November 16, 2008

Home On The Hill

A pretty rainbow across the road yesterday:

Abner & Myra recovering from a vet visit which will go down in the books as the worst yet.

We've started to have some flurries here and there, and they're calling for snow everyday this week! Hopefully some of it will actually stick!
Some Queen Anne's Lace with snow caps :)

Mike working on the fire - our fireplace has been working really well so far to keep us heated.
(Take a last look at Mike's long hair - as you saw from the wedding, it's short now and the beard is beginning to emerge.)
Have a great week!

Ithaca Beer Dinner

Last Tuesday, Ithaca Beer Co. & Simeon's restaurant had their first "beer dinner." Mike and I were able to go and had a really nice time.
Here is the menu:

Bones & Apricot Wheat

Green Curry Salmon with CascaZilla

Choucroute & Old Habit

Braised Short Rib & Nut Brown

Chocolate Raspberry Tort & Gorges Smoked Porter

Mike, Alta, Nicole & Rose

Me, Mike, Greg & Allison

....and Chief :)

Chimney Bluffs State Park

About two weeks ago, I had the chance to visit Chimney Bluffs State Park in Huron, NY. It's all the way up on Lake Ontario, which takes around 2 hours to get to from Ithaca. This was my second trip up there but the first time I could actually hike around. This park is BEAUTIFUL!! The bluffs are actually drumlins, which were created by glaciers during the last ice age. The erosive power of wind, rain, snow, and waves — both from above and below — has formed the landscape into razor-sharp pinnacles. (taken from Wikipedia :) Some of these bluffs are as high as 250ft from the shoreline!

I just find it so hard to believe that we have these things here in NY.

If you walk along the beach, you'll see that it's covered in these perfectly sculpted pebbles and rocks. The colors and shapes are like eye candy. This one was one of my favorites.

The reason that I got to go to Chimney Bluffs is because we had a visitor with us at work. Just this year we got a new head of New York State Park's Interpretive and Environmental Education departments for the state - Ray Perry. So he's been traveling around to each of the regions to check out how we run our departments and what each region has to offer in their natural surroundings. After 3 days of touring around Ithaca and then a few more northern parks, I think he left feeling pretty excited about the Finger Lakes.

This is the crew that I work with!
(Lauren, Lynn, Danielle, Sue, Tom, Ray, and me)
We were at Robert H. Treman State Park

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Ryan & Sarah Tie the Knot!

Last weekend was Ryan & Sarah's Wedding in Atlanta, GA. Mike and I flew down on Thursday and stayed till Sunday. It was such a great weekend. It was first so good to finally see Ryan and Sarah again since it had been about a half a year since they moved. It was also great to see lots of family and to all be together to celebrate Ryan and Sarah's love.

Since their wedding was on Saturday, November 1st, that meant that the rehearsal fell on Friday (Halloween)! This had actually been part of the plan from the beginning because they thought it would be fun to have a costume party for the rehearsal dinner. As things unfolded though, it looked like we would have to be at the church in costume too. So as you can imagine, the entire evening was pretty hilarious. Thankfully the priest was a pretty upbeat guy and was willing to go along with it all. (I think we might have freaked him out slightly though.)

This picture is great - Ryan as a Rock Star and Mike as Beetlejuice at the alter :)

Sarah was the cutest guitar ever...

The wedding party all dressed up.

This is Sarah's Matron of Honor - Brittney and her husband Vince.
(or Frankenstein and his bride)

Ryan, Steve the muscle man, Josh the 80's track star, and Scott the Chef

This is Sarah's brother Bobby and his wife Kelli. Kelli is pregnant so they thought it would be fitting to go as the kids from Juno.

Ms. Betsy - Superhero! Her super powers were to "bee positive" and she handed out all these great inspiring and positive quotes.

Mike's dad as a Chef (Dad Smith)

This is Sarah's mom dressed as a pregnant Ms. Alabama redneck. She was sooo funny!

Mike's mom dressed appropriately as a butterfly (she works in the Entomology department) - so beautiful!

Here is Mike and I - Mike was Beetlejuice and I was Lydia Deetz. I actually made Mike's jacket out of duck tape. It was so much fun - too bad I ran out of time before I could get to the pants. Oh well, I think you could still tell who he was :)

The rehearsal dinner was held at Taurus, where Ryan and Sarah used to work and it was where they met. The room was decorated so great. Roxie put a lot of time into getting it all together. Tons of skulls, and bats and a fun Halloween feel to it all.

Mike's grandparents put the favors together - they were a great idea - everything looked so nice!

The bridesmaids (me, Holly, Kelli, Brittney, Sarah, Beth, Jen & Jenna)

My parents were dressed up as Chinese opera singers - very fitting since they just got back from China

Nick and Valerie (I think you can guess who they are)

Aunt Toni and Uncle Walt - they're so silly

Betsy, Ryan, Sarah, me, Mike

The rock star and his guitar!

Mike's Grandma was a flapper - I thought she looked so great!

Oh my

This looks too natural

The restaurant even carved a pumpkin for them - how sweet.

Then the morning of the wedding, a group of us headed to the reception hall to decorate it. They did a fall theme.

Each table had these great red, glass candle holders and leaves spread out all over.

Everyone was able to take home a matchbook that said "Fall in Love" and a beautiful handmade bookmark by Betsy. They were so pretty!

At the wedding party table - I brought real leaves from Ithaca to decorate with :)

The working crew (from LtoR: my mom, Donna, me, Betsy, Nancy, Roxie, Aunt Toni)

Mike, Bobby & Ryan setting up the drinks

Sarah with her gorgeous Cinderella dress and pretty red shoes :)

Doesn't it look like she's floating?

(So I didn't get any pictures of the actual wedding because I had given my camera to my parents and of course the battery died right away. But I'll try to post some pictures as soon as I get them)

The happy couple

Beautiful wedding cake - each layer was a different flavor and even the leaves were edible!

The groom's cake (still another flavor) A boar because Ryan loves pigs (particularly to eat them), a chef hat and Penn State.

And as I'm sure you can imagine, they had fun feeding the cake to one another too.

The three sibs - notice Mike's hair is gone now :)

Mike and me :)

I love this picture - Betsy, Sarah, Aunt Toni, Roxie & Dori

Then on Sunday, the Smith's hosted a great breakfast at the hotel so we had more time to visit with the family. It was so nice to see everyone and to share the weekend together!

This is the papercutting that I made for Ryan and Sarah. I included utensils for Ryan, a skull for Sarah, their cat and dog (Porter & Spikes), a leaf for their fall wedding, two love birds, the bull from Taurus, some pumpkins and ATL & NY for their two homes :)

Congratulations Ryan and Sarah and we wish you all the joy in the world. Thank you for sharing your love and special day with us :)