Shredding the Gnar

And lovin every minute of it!

Bryan Crushing Pow

As of late, I have basically been shredding the gnar and taking names. You heard me! On Sunday I successfully skied from 8:45 am to 3:00 pm. Almost bell to bell.

The kicker?

I didn’t fall ONCE. This is a big deal for me. We’re talking about Jackson Hole Mountain Resort here people! JHMR has over 3600 vertical feet of skiing, which is the most skiing on natural snow and the most snow of any major resort in the lower 48.

Allow me to back-up. Saturday night, Bryan treated me to my favorite restaurant in JH, Trio. In preparation for our little date night, I followed my pointedly neurotic habitual getting ready routine.

Music ON. Biebs blastin. I did my hair by utilizing  the wrap-your-hair-around-the-curling iron method, to achieve perfect “I didn’t even try” tousled waves. While sipping a vodka + soda, I then moved on to makeup application. I applied my new-to-me Makeup Forever HD foundation with all the accoutrements, including my Smashbox primer and high def micro powder. After smearing my face with various other over-priced cosmetics I nodded in satisfaction as I moved onto wardrobe.

After getting dressed, we were off! We made a proper reservation but got to the restaurant a bit early and opted to sit at the bar. We ordered CT’s, watched the pizza chef manipulate his dough into gorgeous artisan ‘za and snapped a photo.

We ordered 2 appetizers and then split this little beauty:

From the website:

Pan Seared Hawaiian Ono

sage infused gnocchi, crispy prosciutto and brussels sprouts salad, capers, lemon and brown butter

The next morning I surprisingly awoke around 8 am. Maybe it was the promise of a great ski day? More likely though, it was the smell of coffee and egg in the hole  for breakie. We quickly ate and got ready to hit the slopes.

Ski Braid

When we arrived at the Village we were greeted by no line for the Teewinot lift. Perfect for some warm-up laps.

View from the Bottom of the Gondola

We moved on to AV and Casper after that and I felt great! Considering I learned to ski last year and have been out less than 5 times this year, I was pretty proud of myself.

I should probably mention that by NO MEANS am I to the level of 90% of the skiers out there or 99.9% of the locals. I am simply, a somewhat un-coordinated, ex volleyball player from Washington state who considers 20 mintues on the elliptical a viable workout and loves candy. Take me or leave me.

Exemplifying 100% Perfect Form

After a few more runs on Apres Vous, Bry and I traversed over to the Casper lift, skied down and ducked into Casper lodge for the most earth shattering drink I’ve ever had (well, since gimlets).

Concocting

Allow me to introduce my new little friend…

Hot Shnocolate

This would be 1 part coffee, 1 part hot chocolate and 1 part peppermint shnappes. And a little whip. Holla.

After I was warm and toasty inside and out, it was time for more epic runs.

We ended the day by basking in the small pocket of sunshine that opened up and knocking back some well-deserved PBRs.

What’s better than the feeling of actually being excited for the next snow day?

Not much.

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Happy New Year!

Happy New Year Cookies!

Ok, so I know I’m very with this post. Most people are already on to posting about a new diet, 2012 vacation plans or still trying to return the hideous Christmas watch from Sears only to learn it is now worth $1.99. Hello re-gift!

I got back to Jackson about a week ago after spending nearly two weeks in the fabulous state of Washington, namely the Tri Cities. Looking back on the time I spent at home, I realize how different it is from most other people’s “home for the holidays” stories. Why is this? It’s simple. Our family is close. We don’t drop everything, plan cheesy Christmas-time pajama parties, sit around eating gourmet meals and especially, hug…Instead, we go about our lives. And I love to come along for the ride. So this Christmas, while the Danielsons of course enjoyed our normal Christmasy festivities, I also partook in lots of other day-to-day fun times which I love doing.

  1. Fighting the crowds at Columbia Center Mall. Who, I ask allows their pre-adolescent children to stroll the mall at a glacial pace for hours, stuffing Cinnabons in their makeup-laden faces and “macking” their pimply boyfriend during the holidays? We encountered dozens of such cases at CCM and when all you want to do is collect your $10 birthday gift at Victoria’s Secret, this can be quite the annoyance.

Success

  1. Going to the eye doctor. Tried on some specs, made it rain.

Making a Comeback

3. Going for walks. We took Chloe the ill-tempered Chihuahua for a much-needed walk along the levy. God bless Dad and Amy for later trimming her nails.

4. Shopping at Ranch and Home. This is a must-do if you’re ever in Kennewick.

Humongous Safe

5. Reading, relaxing and coffee. I was able to pound out this little beaut in a little under 4 days.

6. Turning 28. Ew. At least my crown was fabulous.

Decor

7. Going to Christmas Eve Mass. We thought it was the kiddie version, with the little Mary and Joseph skit but it turns out it wasn’t. Fail. At least we got to hear my Dad play!

8. Consuming wine. Kestrel Platinum is my fave – not sure why…?

Oh, a cute bottle. Duh!

9. Opening presents on Christmas Morning Night. We ended up opening presents on Christmas night. Sister Amy wasn’t getting back from her job in Spokane until about 5 pm so we waited until after dinner to finally open presents.

Nan and Nat

Amy in Flannel

McDougal on Christmas Watch

I also got to spend a little time in Seattle! My Mom and I went over for 2 nights and we able to hang out with the Policars (cousins) who are just about my favorite people ever. I also got to spend time with Bryan and his family which was so much fun and very, very Christmasy. One night, we sat around the fire place, chatting and sipping Grand Marnier while I opened my birthday presents…majesty!

Speaking of presents, I got some amazing things. Bryan really outdid himself with this necklace and earring set from Pearls by Shari. Ever since I moved to Jackson, I’ve had my eye on this necklace. It is always in the shop’s window and for me, it just represents my life in Jackson. It is beautiful, unique and just so…me! Corny, yes. But I effing love it.

J'adore.

Another great day was getting to see one of my dearest friends, Lacey and her new baby Winston. We  hadn’t seen each other in SO long and it was due-time for a visit. Winston is of course, the sweetest little boy ever. He is a mama’s boy and I can see why. Lacey is a wonderful mother and friend. If you’re reading – I love you Lacey and Winston!

I was very sad to leave Washington, my family and friends. I feel so at home when I’m in Washington and while coming back to Wyoming isn’t the same, it was so great to see Bryan, Holly and be back at work.

NYE was totally cray-cray.

Sparkly Tank-Top Holla!

I kid. We actually went to bed around 11 and tried to stay awake by watching the Lion King. We stayed up long enough to mutter, “Happy New Year” to one another and quickly drifted off. I think all the Christmas boozin’ got us outta the NYE mood. Oh well, there’s always 2013!

A Very Kennewick Christmas

Happy Holidays little darlings!

Tomorrow I embark on my journey home to Kennewick, Washington. It will be an epic, 2 week journey filled with laughter, tears and of course, candy cane shakes from Burger Ranch. Am I excited to go home? Well, yes I am.

When I tell most people from Jackson, Wyoming that I am excited to spend almost 2 weeks in the Tri Cities, Washington the normal reaction is “oh, the dry sh*tties?” or, “oh gosh…I’m sorry.” Why must people say this? For some reason, the Tri Cities is some sort of anomaly. You can be from Washtucna, Touchet, Sprague or dare I say it…Benton City (nothing of which, is wrong with these places) and most people say “oh, that’s cool”. But the Tri-Cities? You may as well throw yourself into a ditch for all the negative attention it draws.

WHY is this? Are any other Tri-Citians sick of this ridicule? Yes, Hanford is technically a toxic dump and we may not have the best culinary scene but we do have some gems. Including, but not exclusive to:

  • The home of the original Zips (by the cable Bridge). Boo yes.
  • The highest grossing 7-11 in the country. On Clearwater, what what?!
  • Desserts by Kelly. Perfectly ghetto. Cake nazi owner. What could be better?
  • The boat races. White trash? Yes. But also a great excuse to wear dirty white Old Navy flip-flops with zero shame.
  • Casa Chapala, Chicos and other various taco trucks that beat the snot outta any Mexican food within a 150-mile radius.

Other faves, circa 1997 would have included:

  • Skate West (the site of many school skate nights where I was the awkward tall girl who looked like an alien and didn’t know how to “shoot the duck”.)
  • Sunburst Video. 5 videos for $1 back in the dizzle. Be kind, rewind.
  • The Minute Mart. Ohhhh, the Minute Mart :-).

On a more serious note, the Tri-Cities happens to be booming. The weather is warm. The wine flows like Columbia River and hello, we have a Coach store.

But enough of that. Here’s what been going on in Bry and I’s neck-o-the-woods.

I’ve been baking and cooking some new delights!

Southwest Eggrolls

Mock Levain Bakery Chocolate Chip Cookies

Coconut Almond Spice Granola

Bry and I attended an open house for a new store in Jackson called Lucky You. They had hot cider and tons of adorable cookies.

I’ve been busy at work…

Cupcake Apron

Christmas Apron

The folks at Elevated Grounds were so awesome too. Look at the birthday cupcakes I recieved as well as the awesome gifts!

Christmas Basket and Cupcake Jar!

Jackson is so awesome during the Christmas season. But I can’t wait to spend time with my family. Playing shanghai rummy and Balderdash with everyone. Eating mounds of caesar salad. Making bombs-away drinks with Megan and Rachel. Watching Wee Sing Christmas with Amy. Watching my Dad squish his gifts before opening to ensure it isn’t a “soft” present (meaning socks or another clothing item). Having 2 glasses of wine with my Mom and watching her laugh her head off at every You Tube video I play for her. And lastly, Chloe ferociously biting  my hand for trying to pick up my shoe.

Merry Christmas! I hope everyone enjoys this time of year as much as I enjoy wearing blush ;-).

Christmas Fun in Jackson Hole

Ahhhhh December.

The month of poinsetta! Of eggnog and candy canes! Of mid-afternoon sugar crashes because I ate a whole box of these:

In ONE sitting. Jealous?

What a glorious month it is! People bustling around with shopping bags, gingerbread baking hot in the oven and me – drinking vodka gimlets while singing “It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year”, Will Ferrell style. What a visual.

Other haps?

It was -12 degrees today! Definitely makes you want to sing Ding Dong Merrily on High.

Bryan and I went to the Christmas tree lighting in Town Square and saw none other than…Santa Clause! He made his grand entrance on a dog sled. Sooo Jackson Hole of him, really. Then we strolled through the shops in Gas Light Alley and grabbed hot toddies at the Caddy with our pals Josh and Katie. These are the times when living in a ski resort town is quite fun, I must say.

I bought this adorable Christmas Hello Kitty plush from Albertsons. How could I say no to this sweetness?

Also, Bry and I constructed a lovely gingerbread house from scratch a box. Look how cute!

Complete with Bryan's Booty in the Background

And currently I am obsessed with the following:

  • Sephora.com.  Not sure what brought on this spontaneous need to purchase non-grocery store makeup but I am relishing it, as I have indulged in products like this:

The Sephora Favorites Glitz and Glam Pack

So long Wet n Wild. Natalie’s classin it up.

  • Clif Kids Ropes in Strawberry.  Have you tried one of these? One of the most delicious things you can put in your mouth. Bible. TWSS.

  • PINTEREST. If you don’t know what this is than please get off my blog. Seriously. Actually just shut down your computer all together. Kidding, a little :-).
  • My new Xbox Kinect! Bry gave me this godly piece of equipment as an early birthday present. It has been earth shattering. Using the Kinect, where your own body is the controller is the most fun I’ve had with a video game since Maniac Mansion or even Oregon Trail. Another amazingly cool feature of the Xbox Kinect (or Shirley as I’ve appropriately named her) is that she takes pictures while you play! Here are some highlights:

I’m loving these captions! What a sweet job that would be, inventing the names for the captions on Xbox Kinect game-pictures. Can you major in this? Further research is needed.

Also notice how we have to scrunch up all of our furniture (which sadly includes a tiny loveseat and even tinier coffee table) to make room for our vigorous play. Right now, we only have one game that came with the system which includes 5 different activities to choose from. I’d say “Reflex Ridge” is by far the most challenging. Moving side to side, jumping up and ducking down to avoid obstacles make you SWEAT while playing this. What a great ski fitness game!

I’m getting the Black Eyed Peas dance party game next. Anyone feel like throwin on some spandex and sweating to some Fergie with me?

Lastly, check out the gorgeous sky the other night.  I took these right off our balcony.

The sky was pink. So obviously, God did it all for me ;-).

Pumpkin Dumpster and a Partidge in a Pear Tree

Happy Holidays All!!!!

Let’s start this off appropriately.

"Merry Christmas, merry christmas and happy holidays!"

I LOVE that Christmas song by N’Sync, it has remained a fave since high school!

Yes, that is a genuYne Christmas tree sweater. Not to be confused with a Looney Tunes lettermans jacket…which will eternally remain on my Christmas list.

So who else is PUMPED about the Biebs coming out with a Christmas Album? Ah hells yes.

I am SO pumped.

The Danielson celebrated Thanksgiving in Issaquah with the rest of  my awesome, crazy family and I was sad to miss it. AND they get to spend Black Friday shopping in Seattle which is even more sad. Here in Jackson it’s slim pickins, unless your in the market for a new saddle…or backcountry ski setup (don’t worry Bryan already has his).

Since my fam is in Seattle, they instructed me to send them ideas for gifts. Especially since homegirl’s birthday is on CHRISTMAS EFFING EVE. Over the years, I have tried to whip my family into shape: demanding no birthday presents be wrapped in Chistmas wrapping paper. Ensuring there is NO fancy dessert or ahem, tirimasu. Ensuring there IS a Desserts by Kelly cake, preferably red velvet. Commanding attention and adoration at all times.

As I sat down to compile my short reasonably sized list, I enlisted the help of the internets. I found many sites that will help you neatly organize your list, provide links and price points to items AND customize your list by changing the theme. I chose the “candy” theme for obvious reasons. I’ve provided a link to the work-in-progress Christmas list here in case anyone is feeling generous this year ;).

My wishlist

Yesterday was Thanksgiving, duh. B and I celebrated privately, much like Michael Scott celebrates Groundhogs Day. Twas magical. Kicked off by working out solo in the bank gym while watching the inevitable decline of Kimmy K and her scrunched-up face soon-to-be EX the Hump-Dog. I love E!

We then ventured out on the Elk Refuge for a nice, 4 mile walk. It was a beautiful day!

Then we stopped to get vodka mixers. When we got home, it was nothing but pure Thanksgiving goodness. We ate Chex Mix, watched Home Alone and Elf and drank wine and cocktails.

We decided on making the following T-Giving faves:

  • Turkey – Just the breast. Less jibbly bits, innards and overall jarnickles.
  • Stuffiing – Outta the bird ok? I’ll take my stuffing, hold the sickening turkey tummy lining thank you.
  • Mashed Potatoes – LADEN with salt.
  • Green Salad – Just to mix things up a bit.
  • Rolls – Carbs, meet my bagel.

(For those of you who don’t know what a bagel is, make a circle with your thumb and middle finger and press it directly into your tummy, using your belly button as the bagel hole. Mine resembles a plain bagel right now. During the summer when I’m really tan, it’s more of a pumpernickel).

We also enjoyed a favorite Danielson family recipe known quite simply as, Pumpkin Dumpster. Not sure how this dessert procured it’s splendid little name, nor do I care. Here’s how to re-create the majesty:

  • 1 large can pumpkin
  • 1 13oz can evap milk
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 box yellow cake mix
  • 1/2 tsp ginger
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 tsp cloves
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg

Blend the above ingrediants except the cake mix and pour into a 9 x 13 pan. Cover with 1 box yellow cake mix (dry) Top with chopped puts (optional). Pour 1 1/2 cubes melted margarine over the top. Bake 50 mins at 350.

Pumpkin Dumpster Whirring Away

Today it is puking outside and tomorrow is opening day at the Village (or Teton Village). Highlights for tonight include tightening up my bindings so my skis don’t go shooting off every which way like they did on the pass. Also leftovers, which I have to admit I’m excited for.

Ok, I’m off to paint my nails gold!

Totally Whelmed

Chastity: I know you can be under-whelmed and I know you can be overwhelmed, but can you ever just be “whelmed”??

Bianca: I think you can in Europe..!

What a great motion picture. Awww…RIP Heath.  And btw, whatever happened to Alex Mack?

As of late, I have been feeling a bit whelmed. Allow me to deconstruct:

  • I started helping out coaching volleyball at the high school.
  • I have been working part time in an art gallery.
  • I am still working full time at Elevated Grounds.
  • I have been planning/preparing for Carey’s (bestie) bachelorette party and wedding!

Helping out at the high school for volleyball has been a blast. Apart from my arm literally falling off on the first day, I am loving it. One of my favorite “Top 5” lists of all time, includes “The Top 5 Most Embarrassing Things You Can Do When Playing Volleyball”. I should note that I have not only seen these things happen before me, but also completed each one myself.

  1. Shanking a serve straight into the ground, only to have the ball bounce quickly off the floor and hit you in the face.
  2. Getting faced with a serve.
  3. Setting the ball to yourself and hitting it over…in a game.
  4. Backspin, chicken-winging and running into the ball cart.
  5. Hitting the back wall of the gym with a ball during hitting lines. No topspin.

So far, I have not displayed any of these awesome, yet rare acts in the gym. Thank the Lord.

FAIL

Moving on, I have started working very part time in an art gallery. Grand Teton Gallery to be precise. I have always been an art-lover. I know about the greats, Picasso, Renior, Dali. However, galleries here in Jackson Hole are quite a bit different. Enter cowboys, indians, mountain landscapes and the occasional billy goat. It’s taken me a little while but I do think the art is beautiful.

Lastly, Carey’s wedding is this Saturday. HOLLA. I am pumped. My other besties Holly and Bekah are hosting her bachelorette party along with me and my sis Megan and mom are helping out too.

Vintage

I’m also pumped for the wedding day, where the bridesmaids are doing pre-wedding yoga, gettin our hairs did and prolly having a bottle glass of champagne.

Yes, we did this all the time in college

I cannot wait to see my nephew Jackson, who is going to be a little old man by now. I also get to spend some much needed QT with my little sis Amy. She basically rocks my socks off and I anticipate LOTS of YouTube watching, froyo eating and “Wee Sing Christmas” quoting.

The sad part? Bryan cannot make it because he is in another wedding on the exact same day, here in Jackson. I tried to get Lorie (the bride of the wedding he is in) to change her wedding date,  but apparently the fact that invites had already been sent, down payments had been paid and family from all over the US had already purchased plane tickets meant that changing the date was a no-go. Some people can be so selfish :-).

Other recent haps/obsessions of B and myself:

  • Floating in oddly shaped intertubes down String Lake. And downing delicious BLLs.
  • The Tudors.  Which has been contributing to Bryan using his British accent far more frequently and finding myself looking at tiaras on ebay.
  • Eating semi-sweet chocolate chips for dessert. Straight outta the bag.
  • Going to Koshu and roboting hard until 1 am.

It’s a good life.

MIA, 3rd World Democracy

We got more records than the KGB.

Apologies for being MIA the last week or so. You see…Bryan’s parents are here! Shout out to Mary and Greg! We are having an absolute blast together and I have felt like I’ve been on vacation along with them, well aside from the 8 hours of work per day :-). Dinners out, hiking, trying to spot bears (eek!), drinking wine and amazing conversation is what has kept us busy this week. So awesome ya’ll.

Oh! And last week we went camping again. I’m basically a pro now. Here are some snap shots from that epicness:

Kicking it off right

Essentials: FN Mag, Pink Cards, Citronella Candle, Bug Spray, OFF Fan, Hand Sani

By Slide Lake

M' Drink of Choice

Dinna: Grilled Cheese w/Tomato

Snagletooth

Majestic Tetons

In other news, I leave for San Francisco on Saturday!! Cue toe jumping and mini-claps. I cannot WAIT to visit the city, shop, eat cupcakes, but most of all…see my sister Megan and my mom. I miss my two best friends.

I promise to post pictures of our visit with the Nashs later, but for now, I’ll leave you with some thought-provoking visual treats.

True.

Even though I don’t condone the “B” word I agree. Go Paula.

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