Sunday, June 30, 2013

Asher Brewing Company

I suppose that when I tell you I will do a beer review on a Saturday, I should do it.  However, we just don't always roll that way around here...  Sometimes I just have to collect my thoughts before I write the post.  But here it is for you, in all of its beer-loving glory.

Friday night, we decided to round up the parentals and make our way to Asher Brewing Company in Gunbarrel, CO.  Asher prides itself on being the first ever organic certified brewery in Colorado, and we were really curious to see what that meant for the overall flavors and selection of beers offered.

Asher had 7 beers on tap:  Green Lantern Kolsch, Tree Hugger Amber, Green Bullet IPA, Greenade Double IPA, Green Monstah Strong Ale, a seasonal Ginger flavored beer, and a cognac barrel aged strong ale called "Funbarrel".

Everything except the Funbarrel is shown here.

Thoughts on the Kolsch;  It's a light beer, good for people just getting into microbrews.  It reminded me of an American Pale Ale.

The Tree Hugger was Ammon's favorite beer.  While I normally am the amber drinker, I found it a little too hoppy for me, it rated a 40 on the IBU scale.  I tend to prefer a little more mellow Amber ale.  Ammon found it very drinkable and balanced.

Green Bullet IPA; The first IPA that Ammon has willingly drank most of, it was his 2nd favorite beer.  Not too bitter for an IPA, rated also at a 40 on the IBU scale.

When I had happened upon reviews of Asher on the internet, many had noted that the Greenade Double IPA is a go-to beer for them, and I was really curious as to why.  once I tried it, I understood.  Despite being more bitter than the Green Bullet, it was a really smooth, drinkable beer.  Had I been in the mood for a full pint, I think I might have ordered this for myself. 

My dad ordered a pint of the strong ale for himself.  At 10% ABV, it's obvious why this bad boy is a "strong" ale.  This was their darkest offering by far, though still not very dark.  It was somewhere between a brown and an amber in terms of flavor.

My mom was adventurous and ordered the seasonal.  The ginger flavors were certainly there, though they weren't overpowering.  I really liked this one as well, it was really refreshing.

Least favorite for everyone was the Funbarrel.  They had warned us that it had a powerful nose... but that most people found it more drinkable than it smelled.  While that may be true, it was a burden for 4 of us to finish a 2 ounce taster.  Ammon and I are finding that for the most part, we do not prefer barrel aged beers.  They seem to better appeal to those who are into sipping spirits, or have a very discernible palette.  We just like to drink beer and have a good time. 

Overall, while we each found something we liked, I don't think Ammon and I are going to be rushing back to Asher.  We really missed having a darker offering like a brown, stout, or porter.  We also felt like everything got its flavor from the hops they use, and that on the whole, the beers tended to be more bitter than we typically prefer.  If Asher were on the menu at a Restaurant, and my beloved 90 Shilling were not, I would certainly order one of their beers again.  I just wouldn't go out of my way to drink their beer.

Thank you to Asher Brewing Company for letting me and my family come by and sample your stuff!  We had a blast.

Friday, June 28, 2013

It's Friday, Field trip day!

Guys, this was a crazy long week for me.  Even though I only worked 4 days, and had tons of fun.  Recovering from a wedding is HARD.  But some really cool things happened this week, and I wanted to share.

1)  We decided that children are in our near future.
2)  This YouTube video.  It made me laugh hysterically.  It's irreverent.  You have been warned.
3)  Ammon officially started the job hunt, and his earning potential (from what we've seen so far) is substantial.  Woot Woot!
4)  So many people have told us how awesome our wedding was.  I have to agree, we threw down a pretty dang good par-tay.
5)  One word.  S'Mores.
I'm really hoping that Ammon and I will go to a brewery tonight after work... It's been far too long.  If we go, check back tomorrow for our highly official review!

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Let us present the evidence

It has been decided:  Ammon and I officially feel "ready" for bringing little people into our lives.  I present to you now the supporting evidence.

Exhibit A:  Ammon's youngest nephew was entirely sick for our rehearsal and wedding.  Like, sick behind a tree 10 feet away.  All we could think was "that's so terrible.  It breaks our hearts so much.  But really, we're glad his pukey little self is here, and not anywhere else".

Exhibit B:  Monday, Ammon and I went with "Gram", "Pap", Ammon's Aunt, and all three kiddos on a day full of magic and wonder.  We antiqued, ate at Cafe Rio, antiqued some more, and then Ammon and I kidnapped the children to visit the local rec center and playground.  We helped the kids order lunch, monitored consumption, had story time, played on the water slide, and let children "dunk" us in the lazy river.  We loved every second of it.

Exhibit C:  Ammon adjusted his rear-view mirror from "driving" position to "Dad's watching you" position when they were all in the car.

Exhibit D:  The kids would start fighting, and I would make them all apologize, hug, and say "I love you" to each other.

Exhibit E:  If our kids are even 1/100th this cute...

Then something wonderful will happen each and every day, and there is no way that we can miss out on that kind of fun.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

And then we...

I decided on Wednesday night that I should recap both Thursday and Friday for you guys in their entirety.  They were long.  They were ridiculous.  I would do it all again if I had to.  Worth it.

Thursday morning started at 5:30 am.  I saw this as I squinted through the blinds:

I took a shower, and tooled around in blogland for a few quiet minutes while I drank coffee #1 of the day.

Next, I grabbed Heather, and we went back to my house to grab things we forgot before we headed to breakfast.  Heather got to play errand girl with me all day.  I had coffee #2, and took coffee #3 to go.
And away to Denver we went.  I had forgotten to give Connie (mother in law) some stuff a few days prior, so our first stop was her house about an hour and a half away.  We were also in Denver to pick up our brother in law from the airport, but his flight didn't come in right away (BIG delay), so we went to the bank and Hobby Lobby.
Wives of woodworkers: Do you find yourselves taking pictures of things in places so that your husband can make them for you, and at a much lower price?  Ammon says that you probably do.

After a long interlude at Hobby Lobby, we made our way to the airport.  We had been told it was an hour and a half delay, with the flight getting in to DIA at 11:30.  We got to the airport at 11:06am.
We promptly checked the arrivals board, only to learn that the flight was delayed until noon.
It turns out that Heather loves people watching at airports as much as I do, so we decided to watch the arrivals come off the train.  As a result, we learned there was a huge girl's travel soccer tournament happening.  I haven't seen that many teenage girls in one place since sorority rush.  Doug's flight finally made it in around 12:15, and we got his bags and ditched the airport by 12:45.  By this point, we were all starving, so we decided to stop at a Qdoba near our next destination, the florist.
After an infusion of food and caffeine, we went to pick up the flowers.  There were a ton of them.  I was really glad we had brought a big strong man with us. 
We took the long way back to my place so that the Texans could see some of CO.  They totally dug it.  When we finally arrived at home, we had to process the flowers (we bought wholesale and then assembled the bouquets and arrangements).  Doug really loved that part (sarcasm), but he was a good older brother-in-law, and did what needed to be done.

Doug was meeting up with the boys at 5, and Heather needed to get her nails done, so they both rushed out around 4:30.  I collapsed on the couch and didn't move for an hour and a half.  When I did move, it was to go to dinner with my sisters-in law, my bridesmaids, and a couple of other friends.  We knew we needed to knock out the bouquets for Saturday after dinner, so we tried to behave on the drinking front.  The bridesmaids, Victoria's mom, and I went back to the apartment to finish the flowers.  It was far more entertaining than it sounds, and the girls had a blast assembling their own bouquets.  It made the whole thing so much more personal for all of them.

Victoria spent the night, and we passed out at 1am.  A very long day, but so full of great people and landmark events.

Monday, June 24, 2013

I took a Bye

It turns out, bye weeks are not just for sports teams, they can apply to just about anything in life.  Last week, as we were crazy busy planning a super short walk in front of our friends and family, I decided that trying to stay on the Revolt Fitness bandwagon was not going to be possible.  First off, we were running around like banshees, and couldn't eat on schedule.  Second, staying up until 1am and getting up at 5am, most days does not lend itself well to workouts.  Third, we were with friends and family the majority of the time... who wants to be drinking a protein shake at a time like that???

However, I did certainly reap the benefits of my previous hard work on Revolt.  I did a lot of the wedding set-up myself, and was hauling around folding tables and 6' benches like they were no big thing.  That was a pretty good feeling.  Oh yeah, and my dress fit too.  Biggest win of them all...

I seriously can't wait to see the pictures my photographer snapped.  My phone pictures don't do the event any sort of justice.

I will be getting back on the bandwagon tomorrow.  I'm going to do my best to get a workout in today, but I'm not going to kill myself with eating plans just yet.  Too many leftovers, and too much champagne still. 

Tomorrow on the blog, I'll be documenting the Thursday before the wedding.  It was ridiculous, and you should all be a part of it, so come on back to see, please!

Thursday, June 20, 2013

In which I spill the beans

Right now I am starting this post at 11:24pm on Wednesday night.  If this post gets a little loopy, you will understand why.


As I was [trying] to catch up on blogs this week, I found out about a "Tell us about your wedding" link-up.  So far, I have tried to avoid getting all wedding-y on y'all, because that drives me insane.  I spend countless hours talking about the event and working on it already, why would I want to talk abut it during fun time?  Alas, life has gotten a little more crazy and intense on the wedding front, and this caught me in a moment of weakness where I wanted to blog as much as I could this week, but I didn't quite know what to say.

For those of you link-up readers, my wedding is this Saturday at 11:00am.  Yes, that is soon.  No, I'm not yet really excited.  Yes, I am out of my ever-loving mind.

First off, I'm marrying this dude.  His name is Ammon.  We like to unintentionally twin.

We are getting married on a beautiful farm about a mile and a half from our apartment.

Image from their website
We are having a vintage picnic theme.  Our theme was inspired by a photo idea I had:  I really wanted the bridal party to do the tug of war, like this:

From Pinterest
And from there, an entire theme developed.  I am officially obsessed.

Our colors are green and blue.  My new last name starts with an "L", and instead of having everyone sign a guestbook, they are going to sign a wooden "L" with a paint pen.  We're then going to mount the Ls on our wall around a framed wedding photo.

I am making my own wedding dress.  In fact, I am writing this post during a break from finishing the hem on the dress.  Yes, I do realize my dress is not yet done and we're only a couple days from the wedding.  Yes, this is making me difficult to be around.  I have the best friends and family in the world.

Speaking of friends and family, Ammon's mom and step-mom made all of the bridesmaid's dresses, and their own dresses.  They are all Vintage Vogue Pattern re-issues from the 1950's and 1960's.  They are absolutely fabulous.

We are also making our own flowers.  I just found the cutest ribbon for the bouquets:

Isn't it darling?  I also picked up some that is polka dotted.

We are having lawn games during our reception.  While we will still have a DJ, guests can choose between dancing, Cornhole, Croquet, Frisbee, Bocce, and Ladder golf.  I will be really concerned if they don't find something they want to play.

And right now, I'm really overwhelmed with the number of items that still need to be purchased, it kills me.

There are a bajillion other details, but we would be here for days talking about them.  It will be so much better when I have wedding photos and I can show you!  Also, on Saturday if you want all the latest and greatest, we'll be posting to Instagram under the hashtag #622AKDay.  We hope you'll follow along and enjoy!

Ooops, it's 11:47pm.  Time to get back to the grind...

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Tomorrow I walk willingly into chaos

Happy Wednesday!

This is probably the last day of semi-normalcy that we will have before we descend into the 5th circle of hell wedding chaos.  Ammon's dad, step-mom, little sister, and nephew are coming in this afternoon, and we are glad to have them here.  Ammon's step-mom and sister can tackle craft projects better than anyone I know.  I have no doubts that any project I set them to will be done 4x nicer than I hoped for.

 Seriously, like Martha, but much nicer.

Since the cavalry is coming this afternoon, I'm hoping to have a peaceful-ish morning.  Which means that as I write this on Tuesday evening, I'm hoping to sleep in later, but what will really be happening is a lot of cleaning, errand running, and stress.  Did I mention that we haven't cleaned our house in well over a month???  Whoopsie.


Also on the agenda, but for after the arrival of the cavalry is ripping apart a petticoat, and finishing my wedding dress.  Yup, it still isn't done.  I'm well aware that I'm cutting it close, but sometimes, you just have to roll with the punches. 

Also, tomorrow there's an awesome link-up that is related to all things wedding.  Since I am no longer capable of talking about anything else, know right now that I will be participating, and it will be your big chance to see what I've been working on for the last few months.  After that, you'll just have to wait until after the wedding to get the FULL story.

Okay, off to find some sanity.  Wish me luck!

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

I'm heading for the chair...

Today on the pre-wedding docket is continuing work on the dress, shopping for yet more wedding crap, and getting my hair all gussied up.

The hair appointment will be the longest part of my day, that I can assure you.  My hair dude is stupendous, but the slowest hair cutter ever.  The shortest amount of time I have ever been in an appointment was 75 minutes.  For a hair cut with no color.

It's going to be a blast.  I was a nanny for his first kiddo, and now he and his wife have a newborn again.  I'm going to spend the whole time making googly eyes at pictures of a sweet new baby in pink, while dodging questions about how I'm getting married, but my wedding dress isn't even done yet.

Sine I am indeed headed for the chair, I thought it would be fun to do a montage of some of the different cuts/hair colors I've had over the years.  I can't seem to keep the same cut for more than a year before I get bored.









My best and most favorite hair cuts were between 2008 - 2010.  They were hard as heck to maintain, and the blonde could be a real pain in my rear, but I just loved what we pulled off during that time.  So many good cuts in those 2 years...  Anywho, check my Instagram later today @RadiantKristen, I'm sure I'll be posting pictures of the new 'do!  Have a great day!

Monday, June 17, 2013

A big, big Revolt victory

I'm amazed I still know how to write a blog post, I'm so inconsistent these days.  I would say I'm sorry, but I'm not.  You will be sick of me as soon as this wedding thing cools off.

5 days, by the way.  5 days.

Not that I'm freaked out in the slightest by that particular factoid.

Today I'm talking non-scale Revolt victory.  A big one.  I decided not to do photos or weight this week, because they haven't changed.  Of course, you all know that this is on purpose, so I'm really glad about this news.  But that is not the victory I'm referring to.

So, remember how I signed up for a half marathon on August 10th?  Well, I guess I forgot too, because for 10 weeks or so now, I haven't run more than a mile.  And when I ran a mile, I had crazy blood sugar crashing issues.  Then I remembered that I'd paid money to run this thing in August, and I figured it might be a good time to do something towards that particular end.  So Saturday night, while Ammon worked away on wedding favors, I put on some pretty new workout clothes and set out to run around a local lake.  I estimated the run around the loop to be about 3.5 miles, and I was sincerely hoping to struggle through running 2 miles without a walk break.

The first 2/3 mile was absolute torture.  I was sure I was going to be walking the majority of the loop, or worse yet, turning around partway.  I told myself to make it to one mile.

At 1.4 miles, I started to feel okay.  I knew I was moving slow, and I knew that this would be a tortoise run.  But I was still going, so I decided to not knock it, and to accept whatever came.

Around 2.7 miles, I realized that I still hadn't taken a walk break yet, and that I was actually feeling like I could run at least a 5k.  This made me insanely excited to keep going, even though outwardly I'm sure I looked anything but excited.

3.11 miles.  Why not keep going and see where I get?  At this point, I figured I was close enough to finishing that I might run the whole way without a walk break.

At 3.8 miles, I seriously questioned the validity of that conjecture.  The longest I have EVER run without a walk break was 4 miles on a treadmill back when I was running 4 times a week.  By 3.8 miles, I realized that this run would be longer than 4 miles.

At 4.05 miles, I spotted my car.  I decided that it made no sense to be the girl who stops just shy of the goal.  I was going to do it, gosh darn it.

4.33 miles.  Owned.  In 50:14, no stops, no walk breaks.  My longest run to date.  All of that without having run any significant mileage in almost 10 weeks.

This is what Revolt Fitness gave me this week.  It gave me a victory that was tangible in a way that progress photos, or a number on the scale never will be.  It gave me physical evidence that I am changing my body in many ways.  At the end of 4.33 miles, I opened my legs up for a sprint, and still felt good at the end.  In fact, I may have been able to run for longer than 4.33 miles.  I don't know.  But I do know that there is no way I would have felt that strong without all of the cross training and careful nutritional monitoring I've been doing as part of the Revolt program.

And that, my friends, is a priceless non-scale victory.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

In which I interperet an 80's teen movie

In 10 days, I am marrying a guy who is perfectly, wonderfully suited to me.  His mama made him extra special, just for me.

And then just 9 days after that, I celebrate the day that I made my own grand entrance into the world.  28.  It seems totally unreal to me that this is already upon us.

My impending birthday has been overshadowed by the wedding this year.  I'm okay with that, it's not as if I want my birthday to have that much attention!  However, when even I forget about it, I think that's saying something about our current state of affairs.  It's all "16 Candles" up in here, except that I'm the bride and Molly Ringwald, all wrapped into one person.

While it's too much to hope that I'll be getting too many gifts this year, ya know, given the efflusive gifts already coming our way, I'm hoping I can treat myself to a new iPod.  Mine bit the big one a month ago, and it makes running no fun.  Can't imagine getting in long runs this summer without musical interference.

Also for my birthday, I would really love it if Ammon and I re-started our brewery tour.  I miss it a lot.  It's something to look forward to when it's Wednesday, and you just need some sort of shining beacon to move towards.

One for you, Glenn Coco.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Currently ripping off...

In attempts to be a better blogger, I'm stealing prompts today that I saw on Michelle and Alissa's blog, but I guess originally came from a blog I don't read and a link-up.  Whatever.  I don't care about originality in anything other than my wedding at this point.  And even there it's getting doubtful that I have an original bone in my body.

Currently dreaming about:  Being married, and not having to wedding plan anymore.  Can you imagine the nightmare that would be never-ending wedding planning?  That must be its own special circle of hell, am I right?

Currently wishing for:  My Paid Time Off to magically kick in during the next week so that I don't have to take 6 days off unpaid.

Currently loving to wear:  Maxi dresses.  I am seeking ways to make them work appropriate, even.

Currently listening to:  The birds chirping outside my window.  It is pretty awesome.

Currently watching:  Community.  I'm halfway through the second season so far.  It's hilarious.

Currently Reading:  A fantasy-romance called Tairen Soul by C.L Wilson.  It's pretty good thus far.

Currently spotted:  pretty, pretty dotted swiss :-)

Currently loving:  My diet plan this week.  So much good food.  And that all of our friends and family are going to be with us in just a few days!

What are you Currently all about?

Monday, June 10, 2013

6 weeks of Revolting

I think I forgot how to blog for 5 days.  I hope you didn't mind.  This whole wedding planning thing is really putting a damper on my hobbies.  But don't worry, if you like all of that kind of stuff, we will have lots to talk about together, AFTER June 22.  Until then, I might be... distracted.

Nothing could stop me from giving you the low-down on my first 6 weeks of the Revolt program, though.  I've been dying to show you the comparison photos that detail my progress over 6 weeks.  But first, a few victories from the last few weeks:

1) I have 2 pairs of pants that have not consistently fit in the last 4 years.  They are borderline too loose now.

2) I have managed to drink over a gallon of water every day of this 6 weeks, except 1 day.  I don't think I have ever been this hydrated in my life.

3) I don't HAVE to have coffee every morning to feel human.  Don't get me wrong, I'm still loving my coffee, but it isn't a requirement for general tolerability these days.

4) I can do 10 push-ups in a row on my toes again.  Doing modified push-ups is no fun.

5) I have lost 6.8 pounds!  I now weigh 142 pounds.

Now that we've talked about all of those intangibles, let's show you the evidence.  That's what you're all here for, right?  To see me strut it in a bikini?  The low down with these pictures is that I am using the pictures I took during weeks 0, 3, and 6.

Front view:

Side View:

Rear View:

At first when I looked at these pictures, I was kind of underwhelmed by the results I saw from weeks 3-6.  It seemed like I hadn't made much progress, despite what the scale said.  I felt this way, because I was totally focused on my waist!  Then I started noticing something magical... my dreaded inner thigh fat is getting smaller!  I was cursed with saddlebags that have persisted even at my smallest.  It's a big deal to me when I can stand with my feet hip-width distance apart and my thighs don't touch!  My booty is also lifting,  and I think my arms are getting smaller, too.  And from the side, you can tell that my stomach is starting to pull in, which is always a good thing.

This program... it works.  So much so, in fact, that I'm trying to not lose weight between now and the wedding!  My progress has been so significant that there are concerns that my wedding dress might not be able to be altered down enough so that it fits properly.  So last week and for the next couple of weeks, I am really going to be taking it easy with the diet.  I'm still going to follow the workouts, and mostly follow the diet plan, but if I want my wine, I'm going to have it, and when Ammon tells me I need frozen yogurt, I'm not going to turn him down.  It's all about moderation for the next couple of weeks, and then back to hitting it hard come June 24th!

I don't know when I'm going to blog next, so let me just say this:  thank you guys in advance for bearing with me over the coming few weeks.  I'm sorry that I'm not reading blogs, commenting, or even being here.  I'm sorry that I'm disappearing, but it's all for a purpose.  I love you guys!

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

A smoothie for you too

Good morning!  Or good day, or good evening, I suppose.  I'm blogging in real time today, so I'm saying good morning.

I promised you guys a smoothie recipe a week or so ago, and today, a smoothie recipe you will get.  The proportions of everything on this recipe can be scaled... Ammon's portion is about double mine, simply so that he hits his caloric needs.  The recipe as follows is for a woman following the Revolt Now Fitness level 1 diet.

Strawberry Shortcake Smoothie

Instructions for making the day of:

To a blender add:
  • 1 scoop vanilla flavored protein powder
  • 1 T milled flax
  • 1/4 cup old fashioned oats
  • 1/2 banana
  • 2/3 cup sliced frozen strawberries
  • 2-3 cubes ice
  • 8oz water
Use the "ice crush" setting on your blender for several pulses, until it looks like your ice and other ingredients are all broken up, and then set on a "high setting for several minutes until frothy.  This makes a GIANT smoothie, so get out your favorite large glass, and enjoy!

For making in advance:

Add all ingredients except the water and ice cubes to a freezer bag.  Label as needed, then pop into freezer.  When you're ready to use, dump the bag into the blender jar, add water, and you're ready to blend!  An added bonus to this method is everything is already super cold, so there is no need for extra ice!

Ammon likes these so much, he's requested them a second week in a row.  They really are very tasty, and quick to prepare!  If you give them a try, let us know how they turn out.

Have a great day!