Sunday, September 09, 2007

Slow Ride

This past weekend we closed out the holiday with a slow ride with the Moser's. We had such a busy weekend with the Chile roast that it was a nice change to just ride our bikes and spend some time with old and new friends.

We started by driving to the Moser's place in Gardnerville. From there, we rode about 3 or 4 miles to the Garcia's place near Douglas High School where we were treated to a bbq and refreshing beverages.

The kids played a game of tether ball in the back yard.

And caught a frog or two.

And played on the trampoline.

After dinner, we headed out for our night cruise. Most of the bikes had lights and the streets are safe, I don't think I even saw one car the entire ride.
Mike Garcia has a TON of cruisers in his garage so he loaned some to his friends that were there for dinner too. I think they are going to buy their own now.

At the park we ran into this wino, he was pretty friendly. We let the kids play at the playground until the lights (which are apparently on a timer) shut off and they came running to us. Funny how we could not get them to leave before that.

Since I did not want the wino to feel bad I decided to drink with him. Actually, that is our friend Jeff - and he really is not much of a wino he likes beer way more.

It was a beautiful night the food was fantastic as was the company. The Moser's did a night cruise almost every night the last month of summer. We are going to rig up all our cruisers with lights and do our own around our neighborhood. We could probably even sneak a few in this year before it gets too cold out.

Ruybalid Chile Roast

Fall is nearly upon us, time for the annual Chile Roast. This year it was held at Brent's sister Tracy's house in Sparks. It didn't feel much like fall though, it was HOT all weekend long. Friday night me, Brent, and our girls headed up to help Tracy set up for the weekends events. The party starts on Saturday at about noon although it was already going when we got there. The process starts with 25 pound bags of raw Anaheim Chile peppers imported by Brent's dad's cousin Randy from California. Here you can see our nephew Brit and his girlfriend Maddie roasting the chiles on the gas grills.

From the grills they are taken by runners (the younger ones) to the cutting table to have the stems removed and then drain before being placed into freezer bags for freezing to be used all year until the next roast. Here are Shayna and her boyfriend Jeremy working at the cutting table. Madison spent a better part of the day working the cutting table. At one point there was a huge mound of chiles to be cut and she was all alone and said to anyone who walked by "I could use some help here, anyone..." it was cute.

Of course in between all the work there is some fun to be had. It is nice to see the extended family and get caught up on what has been happening in everyone's lives. It is also time for the kids to play with cousins that they don't see but once a year. Here are Logan, Madison, and Anjeanette near Logan's snow cone stand. He is quite the entrepreneur he was selling his cones for "tips" during the roast.

Another of the highlights of the day are Aunt Louise's margaritas. She starts blending as soon as the roast starts and keeps everyone hydrated throughout the day. Here she and Brent are discussing which blender he is going to borrow to make a batch of his salsa.

The roast is held on Labor Day weekend so when it is Reno or Sparks we get to attend the Best in the West Rib Cook off. We don't go for the ribs, we go for the music. Our friends The Heather Combs Band were playing that weekend so we headed down to see the show on Saturday night. Here is Brent with Kevin who took care of us that night. He got us a table, and the band got us a parking pass so we did not have to fight the crowds. Kevin also bought all our drinks that night, he is way too good to us.

Remember the margaritas I mentioned? Well lets just say that, and some beer makes Brent a happy boy. Here he is with Shayna at our table while Madison and I are out on the dance floor.

This is our friend Jeff he is the trumpet player in the band. We love watching him play, he is amazing. He is signing a CD for Brent's cousin Richard, we told him that his name was "pain in the ass" it was pretty funny. There were also some plays on the name Richard ending in weed if you know what I mean. Good times.

Here I am with my sister Trish and nephew Brit, you can tell we have been sweating all day we are all shiny. It was fun to unwind after a day of hard work.

Lastly, here is my baby girl. I think she worked the hardest of em all that day other than the time she spent inside in the air conditioning playing on the computer of course. She partied like a rock star that night.

Next year the roast is at Aunt Martha's house in Concord...stay tuned.

Highlights of the Last Week of Summer

After the
Slow Rollers Poker Run she decided that she wanted a new beach cruiser for her birthday.

She picked the Black Betty which had to be ordered so it finally came on our second day of vacation. She and I had soccer practice that night so while we were at practice Brent went to the bike shop and got the bike and set it up for her to be surprised when she walked into the living room (that is her happy dance).

Because there is no summer camp the last week of summer, it has become a tradition for me to take the week off work and spend it with Madison.

Since she had her new bike we decided to go up to Tahoe and ride the bike path at Camp Richardson. Our friends Kristy and Charlie joined us and we made a big day of it. Kristy also got a new bike for her birthday so she was excited to get out there and ride.

We started the day with lunch at Sprouts, then some shopping at the Pearl Izumi outlet (husbands gave us each a list), a ride on the bike path, and finished with ice cream at the ice cream parlor. We had a bit of trouble loading the bikes so we got a later start than we wanted to but we did it and we were proud of ourselves for that.

We just got a new
movie theater in town and it has been a long time coming! The old theater was so gross that we would drive 20 to 45 miles to see a movie. I took the girls (Madison, Shayna, and Anjeanette) to see the movie
No Reservations
, it was pretty cute but predictable and sad at times.

We also did our back to school shopping and hair cut which was exhausting. I am not a big fan of shopping particularly when I HAVE to do it. So the girls and I headed out for a day of power shopping after Madison's hair appointment. We got an early start and did really well. We found some great deals especially on their DC shoes. We had a nice lunch and then finished up our shopping and headed home so Shayna could go to soccer practice.

Madison and I had so much fun at the Lake with Kristy and Charlie we decided to do it again but just the two of us. We ate lunch at Sprouts again, and I had to stop at the Pearl Izumi outlet again to get a jersey to match the shorts I bought earlier in the week. On our first ride Madison's seat was a bit too high and needed to be cut down so we were unable to finish the bike path. We took the bike to Dan and had it cut and now it is perfect. She was excited to finish the bike path and wanted to do it again.

This section of the bike path was Madison's favorite because it was like a natural tunnel.

We packed our beach towels in my basket so that we could hit the beach on our way back to the car from our bike ride. Because we rode our bikes into the beach, we did not have to pay to park. It was pretty cool to just ride up to the beach, park the bikes, and lay down our towels. Of course Madison made a friend in the first 5 minutes of being there. It was funny because the girls name was also Madison, they had the same cell phone, and they both had a tooth missing in the same place. They built a sand castle and buried the other Madison's little brother in the sand.

It was a great week but I have to say the best day by far was the last day, we can't wait to do it again next year.

Cooking Mama!

Madison used to help me cook dinner almost every night and then she lost interest. That was until she got a game for her Nintendo DS called Cooking Mama. She has been using a real knife since she was about 8 mostly helping me by making the salad.

On the menu that night was three cheese tortellini with marinara sauce, garlic bread, and green salad. Madison also helps me peel and press the garlic. She does not necessarily enjoy this job because it is hard for her small hands to get the leverage needed to press the garlic.

Like me, I think she enjoys the creative part of cooking. She likes it best when I give her a job and just let her do it on her own (shocking huh?).

That night I put her 100% in charge of the salad.

Here is the finished product, almost too pretty to eat.

One of her other favorite games is Cake Mania which I also got addicted to. So now she wants to be a pastry chef when she grows up. Now if I can only find a game that makes being a doctor or lawyer seem interesting to a 10 year old...

Sand Harbor with the Binghams

Our friends the Bingham's invited us to spend the day with them at Sand Harbor about a week before school started. We had never been to the lake with them and were in for a special treat. We met Todd through Fall AYSO soccer last season he then became Madison's basketball coach in the winter. Madison and Hannah hit it off right away and have been good friends ever since.

Todd is a big kid at heart and he has a LOT of toys. When we arrived at the lake we had to trek quite a ways to get to what can only be called "base camp". I could list the toys here but I think it is best illustrated with pictures.

Madison and Hannah started off the afternoon by building a sand castle. The sand was imported from the other side of the harbor by Todd and Hannah via the kayak. Evidently the sand at base camp was not architecturally sound for castle building.

Then it was time to attack the boys in the blow up boat with water guns. Todd shows Madison how it is done here.

Since the ground attack was not successful, it was time to take it to the water. Here are the girls and Todd preparing to attack by sea.

Then it was time for Madison to try out the remote control boat. Todd caught a crawdad with his bare hands which he then placed in the remote control boat and Madison gave a ride. He was later released back to the lake unharmed.

Shirlee and I also played paddle ball in the sand and our feet kept getting impaled by hidden stakes in the sand. Madison used the folding shovel to remove them for us. My feet hurt for days after that but it was fun and good exercise. There are no pictures of us because we are the photographers. I am sure we looked super cool doing it though.

After a beautiful day at the lake we headed back to town and our respective homes to clean up and get ready to regroup for a bbq at the new Bingham home. Todd and Shirlee are great hosts and a good time was had by all.

Good friends, good food, good times!

High School Musical 2

Just before school started the geniuses at Disney released the sequel to the smash hit High School Musical. I had the bright idea to have a premier party for Madison and her friends. Turns out, I was not the only one with this idea. Her friend Natasha also had this idea along with another of her friends. So she had to turn down 2 other invites!

We got HS Musical plates, cups, and napkins and had pizza and (root)beer. Everyone came to the party in their pj's a couple of the girls even had HS Musical jammies. When Shayna heard what we were doing she decided to stay home from her moms that night and invite her friend Katie over to watch the movie. The Disney channel had a countdown to the premier with the cast so the girls were excited about that. Evidently Zach is "hot" personally, I think he is too pretty for a boy.

How was the movie? It was ok, it picked up where it left off in the first movie I guess it is best compared to our generations Grease but is not nearly as good if you ask me. The numbers beg to differ it broke all sorts of records for a made-for-tv movie and I hear the 3rd installment is going to the big screen...I can hardly wait.