Saturday, September 26, 2015

Into Enemy Territory: Chargers vs. Bengals

Josh and I went to Cincinnati this last weekend (September 20th) to see my family and go to the Chargers vs Bengals game at Paul Brown Stadium. 

Before we left, Josh and I stopped by the County Line Orchard to get some of their famous Apple Cider. 

We arrived at my parents new house around dinner time on Saturday. My dad made steaks and risotto. YUM! My brother, sister in law, and two nephews live just down the street so they came over for dinner too. 

The next morning my dad and Josh made breakfast before we left for the game.

[Got our Chargers gear on!]

We had pretty awesome seats down in the corner. 

[Ryan, dad, mom (hiding), me and Josh]

The game was a lot of fun! The Chargers were down, with the ball, and under 2 minutes to go when Rivers decided it would be a good idea to throw an interception! UGH! 

So we lost. Bummer! The game was a lot of fun and it was nice to spend time with my family. 

After the game we changed into our Packers gear and went to my brothers house to watch the Packers vs Seahawks game. Packers won! :-)

Thanks mom and dad for letting us stay with you!

Opening Game at Soldier Field: Packers vs Bears

Since Josh and I are going to be missing a lot of the NFL season this year, I decided that we should go to the Packers vs Bears game at Soldier Field in Chicago on September 13!

We drove a few miles up the road and hopped on the South Shore Line train. The train took us right to Soldier Field and it was only $8/person. Quite a deal!

Before we went to the game I looked online for any food that we had to try while at Soldier Field. I found a lot of great items but one really caught my eye: a hotdog with a pretzel bun covered with mac-n-cheese and bacon! WHAA?! 

The first thing we did when we got to Soldier Field was find this hotdog! Mission Accomplished! 

What diet?!

We found our seats (50 yard line, 16 rows back, in the shade, on the Visitors side) and enjoyed our hotdogs before going to the Nuts on Clark stand to get some carmel popcorn and cheese popcorn. Again, WHAT DIET?!

[The Packers warming up]

[Game on!]

It was tight there for a while but in the end the Packers won! 

[We moved closer to the field once all the Bears fans started leaving. Here is our victory picture!]

The game was a ton of fun and there were a lot of Packers fans (Green Bay is only a few hours from Chicago) at the game! I was very vocal and Josh was embarrassed but we had a great time! :-)

Next stop, Paul Brown Stadium in Cincinnati to see my Chargers take on the Bengals!

Saturday, September 5, 2015

40 Before 40

Well here it is! My 40 Before 40 List:

(1) Bungee Jump or Skydive*
(2) Buy a House
(3) Do a Historic Sites/East Coast Road Trip (Philadelphia, Independence Hall, Betsy Ross Home, Boston, Richmond, Washington DC, Gettysburg*, Mt. Vernon, Monticello, etc.)     DONE 11.2016
(4) Do a Triathlon*
(5) Eat at One of the World’s 50 Best Restaurants    DONE 11.2015
(6) Get better at Speaking Spanish
(7) Go on a Hot Air Balloon ride
(8) Go on a Humanitarian Aid trip
(9) Go on an African Safari
(10) Go see Paul McCarthney in Concert
(11) Go to a Continent that I haven’t been to before (South America or Antarctica)
(12) Go to a National Park that I haven’t been to before     DONE 10.2016 
(13) Go to an Andrea Bocelli Concert
(14) Go to Disney World    DONE  2.13.2017
(15) Leave a Hefty Tip for Excellent Service
(16) Meditate (have quite time) Once a Day
(17) Participate in a Protest or Rally
(18) Read "1984"
(19) Read "A Tale of Two Cities"
(20) Read "Pride and Prejudice"
(21) Relearn how to Play the Piano*
(22) See Another Broadway Show*     DONE  12.21.2016 
(23) See Another one of the Newly Appointed 7 Wonders of the World (Taj Mahal, Christ the Redeemer, Great Wall of China, Machu Picchu or Petra) or one of the 13 finalists (Alhambra, Angkor Wat, Kiyomizu-dera, Moai, Neuschwanstein, Red Square or Timbuktu)
(24) See another one of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites     DONE 11.2016 
(25) See the Northern Lights*
(26) Start a Family    DONE 8.8.2017
(27) Stay at the Icehotel in Sweden
(28) Stay in an Overwater Bungalow in Bora Bora
(29) Swim in the Blue Lagoon in Iceland
(30) Take a Wine Trip to Napa Valley
(31) Take Josh to Hawaii
(32) Visit all 50 states (2 more to go!)
(33) Visit Jerusalem
(34) Visit Niagara Falls     DONE 10.2016
(35) Visit the Auschwitz Concentration Camp
(36) Visit Tikal
(37) Watch "Ben Hur"
(38) Watch "Casablanca"
(39) Watch "Citizen Kane"
(40) Watch "Dr. Strangelove"     DONE 10.01.2016

The ones with an * are left overs from my 30 Before 30. There are also six on my 30 Before 30 List that I am going to do by the end of the year. So I didn't add them to this list. 

Here we go!

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Jessi and Ally's Wedding

Jessi (Josh's sister) married her long time girlfriend, Ally, on Saturday (August 29) at the Brule River Barn. They were married on the five year anniversary of the first time they met! Aww... :-)

Josh and I made the 8 hour trek from Indiana to Superior on Friday. We arrived in time for the BBQ Rehearsal Dinner at Grandma and Grandpa Carlson's house. Clay and Grandpa cooked and the food was delicious! It was also fun to hang out with the brides, bridal party, and the family before the big day!

The next morning Josh and I went over to the Brule River Barn to help Jessi set up. Ally has been planning this wedding for two years! She made all of the center pieces herself and they all looked great!

After setting up I went back to the hotel to get ready. I came back to the venue immediately (just in case I was needed) and I'm glad I did because I was able to see the brides to their "First Look" photos. It was so CUTE!

During the photos we all hung around and waiting for the ceremony to start.

[Bridesmaids: Karla, Miranda and Danielle]


[Jessi and Ally]

[Josh and Jessi]

[Cousins: Kennedy and Cassidy]

[Karla, Miranda, and Jessi]


[Junior Bridesmaid and the flower girls]

[All the ladies like the beard]

At 3:30 I grabbed my seat (front row!) and the processional started.

The ceremony was very sweet. There were a lot of tears and laughs.

Jessi said "I do" a little prematurely (like I did at my wedding).

The rings.

The brides then went over to the paint canvas where they created a painting.

They came back over and they were announced wife and wife!

After the ceremony there was a cocktail hour and family pictures.

[Grandma, Grandpa and 4 of their great-grandchildren (just missing Brodee)]

[The painting]

[Man of Honor and Maid of Honor as witnesses to the marriage license]

[Girls putting flowers in Josh's beard]

After pictures the bridal party did a "Run Away" which means that Jessi's bridal party took Ally to get shots at a local bar while Ally's bridal party took Jessi to a local bar to get shots.

Once they all got back dinner started. We all sat down in the barn and heard speeches from Josh and the Maid of Honor. Josh did such a great job. I know he was super nervous but he made the speech short, sweet, and funny! Perfect!

The girls were not nice to each other when it came to the cake cutting!

Then we all headed upstairs to watch the first dance between Ally and Jessi.

Then Ally danced with her dad and Jessi danced with Suzi.

The beer and wine continued to flow through out the night. There was a dance party and also a money/selfie dance with the brides!

[Me and Ally]

After the dancing we went outside and lit lanterns in honor of those who had passed away.

We spent the rest of the night dancing and hanging out with friends! 

[Dave and Karla]

It was such a great wedding! Congrats again to the happy couple! We love you both!

The next morning we got up, went back to the Brule River Barn to help clean up and then we hit the road!

About 135 miles from home we got a notice on the dashboard saying that our speed was limited to 55 mph! UGH! The DEF System was acting up and if you don't get it fixed within a few hundred miles then the speed will drop to 4 mph! 

Luckily we were close to Chicago and the speed limit drops to 55 mph (not that anyone goes less than 80), but at least we could stay in the right lane and not get run over!

Always an adventure!