Weekend of May 31 to June 2
My mom flew out on Thursday afternoon, after a fabulous week – I wished she were staying longer! However, I was distracted from missing her by the arrival of Craig, who I picked up from the airport just a few minutes after I dropped my mom off. That wasn’t planned, but it was nice to have it work out that way!
After Craig and I got home, we were in for the night – since Craig was just getting back from six weeks of traveling, he was dying to cook! We headed to the grocery, then made several Spanish tapas so we could have a little bit of everything: olives and cheese while we were cooking, an arugula salad with lemon-thyme dressing, and then I made a saffron-paprika chicken main dish while Craig cooked a spicy poblano pepper and corn melange.
Friday was a workday for me, but I bookended it with some good stuff: a trail run that bled into my first conference call of the day, and some volunteering at A Precious Child at the end of the day. In the last year, I’ve found that for certain calls where I need to listen and absorb information, I’m actually better off being away from my computer and on a run. While the scenery is beautiful, it’s not distracting the way that my computer / phone are – so being on a run helps me to focus and pay attention.
And after APC, another quiet night of cooking and having a glass of wine at home. This is one of my favorite ways to spend a Friday night – recovering from the week and resting up for big adventures!
Because big adventures were indeed on the agenda for Saturday. We took our time getting going in the morning, but then headed to South Mesa trailhead to attempt a summit of either Bear or South Boulder Peak. (They share a saddle, so we didn’t decide ahead of time which to do.) Turns out that when you don’t start hiking till 9:30am, the trailhead gets busy! We parked a half mile down the road, which meant a little bit of extra mileage on an already-long hike.
It was sunny and beautiful until we were about halfway up the mountain; then, some clouds started coming in and we got a little sprinkling of rain. I wasn’t at all concerned about the rain; I just wanted to make sure we were done before a thunderstorm rolled in.
Fortunately, Craig had just finished up a week of storm chasing in Oklahoma, so he was pretty well-versed in what type of clouds were out there, how far away the storm was, and whether we could expect it to pass over us or go a different way. I was getting a little nervous at the saddle, but he assured me we still had time to summit and make it down – and he nailed it. Totally dry and safe, and some beautiful pictures at the top!
After all that hiking (5.5 hours!), we were absolutely famished by the time we got to the car – so rather than heading home to clean up, we headed straight to Louisville from the trailhead, to meet my friend Mike for food and drinks at Twelve Degrees. Twelve Degrees is one of my absolute favorite breweries in Colorado, since I love Belgian-style and their flatbread pizza and Belgian fries are incredible. We had a blast catching up with Mike, and ate enough that when we got home, there was no need for a real dinner – just some card games (Phase 10 is the best!) and then an early bedtime.
Sunday morning came before I knew it, but I woke up to find my legs were surprisingly not that sore, despite the 3,000 feet of climbing we had done the day before. I popped out of bed and shimmied into some fresh gym clothes, then headed down to the kitchen to whisk up Budget Bytes’ banana bread oatmeal. It only took a few minutes to mix and pop it into the oven, which was just enough time for my coffee to brew; I then headed out to the trails after setting an alarm for Craig to take the baked oatmeal out of the oven for me. So nice to be able to go for a run while it was baking rather than needing to have it done ahead of time!
Sunday was National Trails Day, and one of Superior’s citizen advisory committees was hosting a whole slate of events for it. So when I heard that my old boss at Deloitte was coming to town with his family and wanted to go for a run together, I suggested he come up to Coalton with his family so that we could run while they enjoyed the festivities. It worked out perfectly – the kids enjoyed the raptor presentation and learning about prairie dogs, while Josh and I took to the Open Space for an easy run and catch up.
When Josh and I worked together, we both lived in New York; now, he’s a partner at EY in Switzerland! We definitely had a lot to catch up on, and it was fun to discuss the consulting career path with someone outside of my own firm, who’s still known me a long time.
After we finished running, Craig met up with us – and brought me a big, delicious bowl of the baked oatmeal! Remember how I tried the the carrot cake oatmeal at cookblog club (and didn’t like it), then a few days later in the correct pan (and loved it)? Well, liking it was no fluke – baked in the correct (9×9″) pan, the banana bread oatmeal came out stellar! Fluffy, hearty, and yet surprisingly healthy – this is really my new favorite breakfast.
We stayed at trails day a little while longer, then headed home for a quick shower and some lunch. Then, we headed down to my friend Chris’ house to go for a ride to the bike park with her family. While that might seem like a pretty boring suburban adventure, it was made much more exciting by a giant snake sitting in the middle of the sidewalk on the way to the bike park, and a thunderstorm actually rolling in while we were there. Fortunately, we managed to avoid both – taking a different longer route to get to Autrey Park, and then pedaling our butts off to make it home before the rain.
After the bike park, Mark jokingly asked Craig how he liked suburban life and what he thought of Costco… but it ended up being no joke, as Craig requested a trip to Costco as soon as we left Chris and Mark’s 🙂 I never became a Costco member when I moved to Superior, since it didn’t seem like it would make sense for a single, but Craig wanted to sign up. We had a blast trying all the samples (some multiple times, and Craig cracked me up by pretending each time that he was brand new with a “hmmm, what could this delicious-looking treat be?”), and came out with several pounds of whole trout to cook for dinner.
We ended the weekend with a cooking experiment: we rubbed all the trout with butter, inside and out, then seasoned each one differently. Out of dill, tarragon, Asian sesame seaweed blend, Spike, Trader Joe’s lemon pepper, and regular salt and pepper, dill was the clear winner… though all of them were pretty tasty. I had never cooked whole fish before, and despite the spectre of accidentally eating a bone, I loved it – so much flavor!
On this first true summer weekend, It felt so fabulous this weekend to cook a lot and get some hiking and biking in. I haven’t been eating the healthiest lately, but this felt like a step in the right direction to get back on track… and I had a blast in the process! I am really excited for what the rest of summer will bring 🙂