Tuesday, February 16, 2016


Well, it's still winter here.  We had a few warm days where it got into the 50s, but for the most part it's been miserable and cold.

This past weekend we made national news for cold temperatures.  The high on Saturday was -11 and when I woke up on Sunday, it was -20.  I bundled up to go outside  and snow blow, but then stayed in for most of the weekend.

When Brian deployed to Afghanistan a few years ago, he bought a faux "mink" blanket.  He grabbed the first one off the shelf and didn't realize it was a Winnie the Pooh blanket.  Not only that, but it is the creepiest Pooh Bear blanket you will ever see complete with floating half-finished heads.  I doubt that this is an officially licensed Disney product.  Regardless, it is incredibly warm and I spent most of the weekend hiding underneath it.

We have a small studio apartment attached to the back of our garage.  I discovered on Sunday that the pipes in the apartment froze due to the cold temperatures.  After many calls and texts to my dad, I was able to get them thawed yesterday (thanks Dad!).  I had to climb in and out of the crawl space with a hair dryer about a million times...now I know to keep the water dripping when it gets that cold. Hopefully it won't happen again. This is my view sitting on the edge of the crawl space while using the hair dryer to thaw the main shut off valve.  I learned a lot about plumbing this weekend.

The winter weather and early nights make it hard for me to get out much, but I like to think that I am becoming a master chef while Brian is gone.  My parents got me a wok for Christmas and my new absolute favorite thing is to make a stir fry.  It's so easy and delicious and you can pretty much put whatever you want in it.  Yum!

Friday, January 1, 2016

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year to everyone! Diesel, Kitten, and I spent New Year's Eve on the couch watching How I Met Your Mother and reading Harry Potter.  We are not big partiers in this household.

I woke up the other morning to a blanket of snow on the ground.  It was the first real snow of the year.  I have been anxiously dreading using the snow blower, so I thought I could just shovel the driveway, since it was only a few inches.  Wrong! This was the heaviest snow I had ever encountered.  All the neighbors had been using their snow blowers so I decided I had to suck it up and use ours.  We have a fancy snowblower that came with the house as part of the purchase contract.  Here it is:

After I got it started and struggled through a few passes, a kind hearted neighbor heard that it wasn't running quite right and came over to show me how to adjust the choke.  After that, it was much easier.  

I was very proud of my first attempt at snow blowing.  I had to do it again today, and found it much easier this time.  It's so much better than shoveling, but still quite a workout - I ended up with around 5,000 steps afterward each time.

They keep the roads incredibly clear here.  In Colorado, when it snows, it will normally take days to clear all the roads. They don't use salt on the roads and there aren't enough snow plows, and as a result, it's a mess and very dangerous to drive after it snows.  Someone from Colorado needs to come here and learn how it should be done.  It's very impressive how quickly and efficiently they clear the roads.

I am not a big fan of snow, but Diesel Dog loves it.  He thinks it's great fun to chase snow balls and loves it when I kick the snow up so he can catch it in his mouth.  I've been making sure to shovel a path for him on the deck so he can get down into the back yard.  If the snow gets much deeper, he's not going to be able to move around down there!

Saturday, November 7, 2015

An Update

I've been pestered from many directions about writing a new blog, so here it is!

This morning was the first weekend morning in a while where it wasn't raining, so I decided to ignore the leaves in the yard and take Diesel for a walk on the Black River Trail.  My mom and dad did this trail when they visited, and they told me how nice it was.  It's entirely paved and super well maintained.  The trail runs along the Black River, which I like to call the Raging River of Death because it has some crazy looking rapids.  The section of the river along the trail is fairly calm, though.  There is a hydro power plant at the end of the trail, which was pretty neat.

This afternoon, I went to see the new James Bond film, Spectre.  I really recommend it, it was very good!

My mom just sent me a text message with the following picture, created 23 years ago tomorrow.  I don't think a lot has changed since I was 5!

Tomorrow I will be mowing the grass and raking more leaves.  I rake leaves every day on my lunch break and have spent about 10 hours each the last two weekends raking.  It is never ending! One of the trees is hanging onto its leaves still so I will probably be raking until the snow starts falling.  I'm just glad there hasn't been any snow yet!  Here's some pictures of leaves so you can feel my pain:

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Winter is Coming

This weekend I got my first taste of New York snow.  Luckily, it was just a small amount and it didn't stick.  Still, it was enough to make me dread the upcoming winter.

Over the past few days I've been busy raking up the leaves that are falling.  We have an acre lot with 10+ mature trees on it.  The trees are great in summer and provide a lot of shade, but now it seems that they have endless leaves. Raking is a lot of work, so this weekend I plan to mow over the rest of the leaves and mulch them.

After our taste of winter last weekend, I decided that I needed to stock up on everything I'll need to make it through the winter.  I ordered a set of Carhartt quilted bib overalls (in pink!) and a pair of snow boots.  The boots are rated down to -32 F...Hopefully that will be enough.

Some days I wish that I could go live with my sister in Phoenix where it never snows.  What are you doing to prepare for winter?

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Cider Tasting

Brian leaves for a 9 month deployment this weekend, so I took Friday off to spend the day with him.  We decided to drive about two hours south of here to visit Beak and Skiff Apple Orchards in Marietta.  Beak and Skiff makes 1911 Cider and Spirits, and I've tried their Cider a few times since living in New York and really like it.  They also have a huge apple orchard where you can pick your own apples and a cafe/bakery and general store on their property.

Their facility was really beautiful, and we were surprised at the amount of people that were there on a Friday afternoon.

1911 produces several apple ciders, two apple wines, and vodka and gin that are distilled from apples.  Apparently distilling the vodka from apples allows it to be gluten free.  We were able to taste all of their product and they were all quite delicious!

After visitng the orchard, we headed to Syracuse to go to the mall.  Syracuse is home of Destiny USA, which is the second largest mall in the US (behind the mall of America).  They have a lot of shops and a lot of fun attractions - a go cart track, dave and busters, comedy club, and ropes course among others.

Today is Brian's 30th birthday (happy birthday sweetie!) and we celebrated a little early. Some of his favorite gifts were a nice bottle of scotch, new tumbler, and whiskey stones to keep it cold.

I'm going to miss him so much, but it was fun to spend some extra time together before he heads out!

Sunday, September 27, 2015

World's Worst Blogger

Well, after a multi-year hiatus, I think I have officially captured the title of World's Worst Blogger (or maybe I am tied with my sister Dana?).

The big news in the Moose household is that this past July, we packed up our belongings and moved across the country from Colorado to New York.

Moving such a long distance is stressful and incredibly frustrating at times, but we arrived in one piece and had no major damage to our belongings, so we'll consider it a win.  After everything was packed, all our worldly possessions only filled up about a quarter of this truck.  We decided to have the Army move us rather than doing it ourselves, and I think that is the only way I will do it in the future - much less work than doing it yourself!

The drive across country took three days, and was quite the adventure with three vehicles (one on a trailer), a cat, and a dog.  I had the pleasure of driving with Miss Kitten, and was very thankful that she only meowed for the first few hours, and then preferred to hide under her blankets for the majority of the trip.  If you've never stayed in a hotel room with a cat and a dog, it can be quite the experience.

Diesel guarding our hotel room
My driving partner

 In New York, we made a big step and decided to purchase our first home.  It's a home that was built in the 1930's and has been remodeled inside within the last few years.  It sits on over an acre of land and we absolutely love it.  It's been so fun to try to make this house our own.

Our new home!

We still like to represent Colorado even though we're far away!

Brian leaves for a 9 month trip to Korea next week.  This is slightly scary for me since it will be the first time he's left that I haven't lived close to family.  I look forward to learning more about our new area while he's gone - hopefully I will survive the harsh winter here!

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Happy Anniversary!

I am a day late posting this blog, but since I have failed miserably at my blogging goals, I figure a late blog is better than no blog, right?

Yesterday was Brian and I's second wedding anniversary. It's hard to believe it's been two whole years.  I am looking forward to so many more!

Unfortunately, we didn't get to spend the day together, but we did get to talk on Skype a little bit, which is always nice.  I am very thankful for the technology we have that allows me to talk to Brian so much while he is deployed.  I know it hasn't always been that way and I try not to take it for granted.

Yesterday I received these beautiful flowers from my hubby! They came with a teddy bear which one certain teddy bear killer at home has been eyeing.

Happy anniversary sweetheart! I love you so much!