Wednesday, August 31, 2016

a few fun ideas for a labor day gathering


we're looking forward to celebrating labor day with our families this weekend.  here are a few fun ideas if you're having a labor day gathering . . .

d.i.y. giant jenga (my friend nicole did this at her wedding!)
> skillet s'mores dip
sun tea
> tin can windsocks
red, white, and blue rice candle holders
red, white, and blue water flower vases
patriotic cheesecake stuffed strawberries

love, laurie

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

saturday in god's country - part 2

we had a great time visiting ryan's family on saturday at ryan's aunt and uncle's cabin.  for lunch on saturday, we all drove up to sprague's farms in portville, new york.  they are known for being a maple syrup and turkey farm, and their restaurant grounds are really pretty.  they had black-billed swans and little quail on the property.  we walked around to check out their elaborate wood carvings and maple syrup system too.  here are a few pictures from sprague's . . .  

love, laurie

Monday, August 29, 2016

saturday in god's country - part 1

on saturday, we took at trip to ryan's aunt and uncle's cabin to visit his family.  this is a trip that everyone has been trying to organize for a while, so it was really nice that it finally came together.  the last time we were out that way was three years ago when we got our tandem bicycle, but i had never been to the cabin before. 

driving out to the cabin is like driving to the middle of nowhere.  it is absolutely so peaceful and remote.  the area is actually nicknamed "god's country" and when you're there it's easy to see why.  everything is so gorgeous.

we visited with ryan's family and took a walk in the woods to enjoy some incredible views of the area.  we really lucked out with perfect weather.  it was such a nice day.  after that quick trip this weekend, we can't wait to go back.  it would be especially beautiful in the fall when all of the leaves are changing colors.  here are a few pictures from our time at the cabin on saturday . . . 

^ryan's uncle ed and aunt sandy have the world's coolest doorbell.  i can't believe that i didn't get a picture of the bell itself!  the rope below the deck moves a huge metal bell on the deck.  it's pretty neat.^
^i'll give you one guess as to what ryan now wants for christmas this year!  (and as a side note, i have never seen so many bee nests in my entire life!  thank goodness they are no longer inhabited!)^
^the outhouse is cute and all, but i am very grateful for indoor plumbing!^
^the most inviting pathway leading to spectacular views!^
^this picture really made me chuckle.  ryan's uncle ed was talking about his property and everyone was listening so intently.  all i could think of was that scene in the lion king when mufasa says: "look, simba.  everything the light touches is our kingdom."  ryan's aunt and uncle own 30 acres!^
^talk about a view!  now ryan is dreaming of building a cabin on the empty lot next door.^
^thank goodness for tripods and cameras with self timers so that we could actually get a picture of everyone!^
love, laurie

Friday, August 26, 2016

"all the small things"


i was never a huge blink 182 fan, but they sure were popular when i was in high school.  i can still remember when "all the small things" was released in 2000.  it was pretty much the only song that radio stations and rollerskating rinks played.  i haven't heard that song or thought about that song in years, until last night.  now i've had it stuck in my head all morning because last night ryan and i worked the blink 182 tour that was in town.

it was a huge crew call (the largest call of any concert at that venue this summer) and it was easy to see why.  there was just so much that went into that show.  i often wonder if concert goers truly understand what happens behind the scenes to make a concert like this happen for them to watch from their seats.  the answer is no . . . i know that, but it really got me thinking that it really is "all the small things" that make this giant big thing happen.  around 100 were on the stage just to load this show out.  it was like a whirl wind.  at one point i just stood there kind of stunned at the whole process.  (after all these years of working in a performing arts / entertainment industry, i still find it remarkable what it takes to pull a show together.)

before we started working, we were standing and waiting for the band to finish playing so that we could load out the show and it could move onto its next venue.  i wasn't paying much attention to what the band was doing (because ryan was trying to fit me into a hardhat, the road crew guy was trying to tell us about how he needs a root canal, and the pyro is so loud it's deafening) until i heard "all the small things" as the encore.  it immediately took me back.  i thought to myself, "honestly, who is going to a bink 182 concert in 2016?"  well, apparently a lot of people.

we didn't get home until a crazy hour at night (well, technically it was this morning.)  thus, i feel like a zombie today, but we'll power through because weekend is upon us in just a few hours!

have a great one!
and i hope you don't get that song stuck in your head all day too! ;-)
love, laurie

Thursday, August 25, 2016

the most beautiful spot in every state


while perusing the internet this morning, i came across a list of the most beautiful spot in every state.  as someone who knows her home state pretty well, i was curious to see which spot was chosen in pennsylvania.  i was pleasantly surprised to see that cherry springs state park was the spot picked in pa!  cherry springs state park is very remote which makes it an ideal spot for stargazing.  astronomers from all over are attracted to this location because the dark skies uninterrupted by light pollution make the perfect backdrop for viewing constellations and meteors.

ryan's aunt and uncle actually own a cabin in this part of pennsylvania, literally right at cherry springs.  i thought it was rather ironic that i found cherry springs on this list this morning because we're actually going out to cherry springs this weekend to visit ryan's family for the day!  pretty funny.

love, laurie  

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

the harford fair

we had absolutely no plans of going to the harford fair this year since we just went to the wayne county fair two weeks ago.  however, we were watching the local news on monday and saw that the fair was offering a tiger show and performing pets show.  after seeing that news segment, it didn't take much convincing to get us to go.

last night after work, we headed up to the fair.  we walked around the exhibits, got a bite to eat, and saw three shows.  the first show was the tiger show.  there were 6 humongous bengal and siberian tigers that did tricks and stunts.  they were some really big kitties!  then we saw the performing pets show (which is what really drew us to the fair) where 3 dogs and 6 cats did all sorts of tricks.  i truly can't imagine how people train animals to do these types of things.  we finished off the night by watching the tractor pull which is always entertaining!  i left my "real" camera at home for the night, but we did manage to snap quite a few pictures on our phones . . .

^totally amused that this tractor wheel was taller than me!^
^a gingerbread house replica of the fair's hall of vegetables.^
^these llamas had such great personalities.  they were fair celebrities and they knew it.  they were so friendly and were so excited when people would come over to visit them.^
^this guy was a miniature clydesdale.  i had to take a picture for my mom who is in love with clydesdales.^
^i know it's awful, but i'm just going to come right out and say it.  every time ryan and i see animals in these white outfits at fairs, we think they look like they are wearing ku klux klan outfits.  right?!  please tell me someone else thinks this too!^
^this rabbit had a face that looked just like a chipmunk!^
^we got the biggest charge out of this bird.  he kept posing for the camera.  he was really friendly and liked ryan a lot.  he had a sign on his cage that said "i'm stressed please don't try to touch me!"  he didn't seem too stressed to us.^
^very big kitty cats!!!  the wrangler said that they each eat 15-20 pounds of raw meat per day.  i would not want that grocery bill!^
^after seeing this, we are now convinced that leko needs a pink mini coop too!^
^not a fan of this trick!^
^ryan sure loves watching these crazy tractor pulls at the county fairs!  i can't believe people put so much effort and money into this activity!^
love, laurie

. . .

ps: last year at the harford fair