Catching up!

Wow…So I am literally the worst blogger ever. I guess I decided to take a little 4 month break. Here are some of the highlights from the past few months.

DECEMBER

Ice Fest aka that time I got frost bite on my toe and ended up losing my toe nail.

Bozeman Ice Fest 2014

Bozeman Ice Fest 2014

Christmas in Big Sky. Skiing with Santa!

Big Sky Christmas

Big Sky Christmas

JANUARY

New Years Eve in Big Sky

Getting rowdy at scissor bills

Getting rowdy at scissor bills

More ice climbing

G1

G1

FEBRUARY

Car accident. Total bummer but I’m ok!

The escape after the accident

The escape after the accident

Visit from Alicia and Heather!

Alicia, me and Heather at the Boiling River in Yellowstone

Alicia, me and Heather at the Boiling River in Yellowstone

Cooke City weekend

The crew in Cooke

The crew in Cooke

Gretchen’s many birthday celebrations

Night Zipping in Big Sky

Night Zipping in Big Sky

MARCH

Run to the Pub 10k – beat my personal record!

Whitney and I before the race

Whitney and I before the race

Outside Bozeman contest that we sadly didn’t win😦

America

America

Gretchen and I bought our tandem bike, Baby Beluga

Jen and Gretchen taking Baby Beluga for a spin

Jen and Gretchen taking Baby Beluga for a spin

APRIL

Biked from West Yellowstone to Old Faithful (64 miles round trip)

Made it to Old Faithful by bike

Made it to Old Faithful by bike

Work is starting to get busy but I am going to try to keep up with the blog!

November

Hello there! I have been on the run the past month but I finally found some time to blog.

I took a little trip to my company’s corporate headquarters on November 9th for the annual GuestPath conference. It was a great experience! There were a lot of great presenters and we did some fun team building activities.

At the GuestPath conference with Yellowstone's regional VP and General Manager

At the GuestPath conference with Yellowstone’s regional VP and General Manager

After the conference I flew to Philly for a few days to visit friends and family. It was so great to catch up with everyone🙂 I also picked up a few Pumking’s and lots of Trader Joe’s goodies to bring back with me!

Me, Roy, Diana and Lianna

Me, Roy, Diana and Lianna

I got back to Bozeman on a Wednesday and it was nice to relax for a few days before returning to work on the 18th. Liz and I went on a fun cross country skiing adventure on Friday and on Saturday, Gretchen, Josh, Shawn and I went ice climbing.

XC skiing in Hyalite with some interesting obstacles

XC skiing in Hyalite with some interesting obstacles

Nice and warm in our belay jackets

Nice and warm in our belay jackets

Thanksgiving weekend was tons of fun. I started off the holiday weekend with Bozeman’s annual Huffing for Stuffing 5k.

Heather and I before the race

Heather and I before the race

A bunch of us went up to Big Sky to celebrate! Naturally Liz and I were wearing matching red plaid shirts.

Thanksgiving 2013

Thanksgiving 2013

Liz and I

Liz and I

We were up late on Thursday so Friday morning was a little rough but Gretchen managed to make it to work on time and the boys (Josh, Aaron, Rob and Steve) went up to the mountain to ski. Liz and I were planning on snowshoeing at Ousal Falls but there wasn’t enough snow so we just hiked around then went up to the resort to hang out and get a drink with the boys.

We hit up Lone Peak Brewery for dinner on Friday night then we went to some bar in Big Sky (I can’t remember the name!) to see our friend, Hedi’s boyfriend’s band play. They had the Elysian Night Owl Pumpkin on tap which is one of my favorite beers! It was a fun night.

On Saturday, we packed the car up and Liz, Steve and I headed to West Yellowstone to do some XC skiing. It was a beautiful day and we ended up doing just under 5 miles on the Riverside ski loop.

Skiing in West Yellowstone

Skiing in West Yellowstone

Aaron and I went up to Hyalite on Sunday to ice climb. It was a great day. I’m getting so excited about the Bozeman Ice Fest!!!!!!!!!

Tying my knot

Tying my knot

Last and longest climb of the day

Last and longest climb of the day

It was a great month and I am looking forward to December. We are going up to Big Sky again this weekend to volunteer with Eagle Mount and do some skiing and we are having a fun girls night on Sunday! Hope everyone else is having a great week.

A Little Update

Well I haven’t blogged in almost two months so I guess it’s time for a little (big) update.

Gretchen and I went to Thailand the weekend after Labor Day. We had the best time! Unfortunately we stillllllllll need to go through and edit the photos so I only have one picture for this post.

Elephant trek in Thailand

Elephant trek in Thailand

I flew to Philly after Thailand for Natalie’s wedding! It was such a fun weekend🙂 Natalie and I headed down to Cape May on Friday afternoon and her parents threw a lovely cocktail party that night. On Saturday morning Natalie and I went on a run by the beach, followed by beach yoga led by our friend Noreen. It was such a wonderful way to start the day.

Beach yoga

Beach yoga

Three legged dog

Three legged dog

Alicia, Natalie and I headed back to Natalie’s parent’s house to get ready for the big day. It was so much fun spending time with Natalie and Alicia. I love those girls and we don’t get to hang out enough since we all live in different states. Natalie was the most beautiful bride!!!!!

Damien and Natalie

Damien and Natalie

I got to see so many friends from college and high school. It was awesome to catch up with everyone!

Love these girls

Love these girls

I was kind of in a funk after I got back from Thailand/Philly/Cape May. It wasn’t really one particular thing but there were just a bunch of little things. 1 – I was sad that the trip was over and jealous that Gretchen was still in Ton Sai. 2 – There was some crazy work stuff going on with the government shutdown. 3 – Fall and Spring in Bozeman are kind of crazy weather-wise and you never know what to expect, making it hard to get out and do stuff. October is usually told cold for climbing or biking but not cold enough for ice climbing, skiing and snowboarding.

Sad, snowy day in Yellowstone

Sad, snowy day in Yellowstone

Anyway, it’s not like I was just sitting home on my butt. Liz and I went to the demolition derby, I did some mountain and road biking, we did some (chilly) rock climbing one day followed by a trip to Chico hot springs, and we had a super fun pumpkin carving party.

Sitting on each other's laps at our pumpkin carving party

Sitting on each other’s laps at our pumpkin carving party

Our pumpkins!

Our pumpkins!

This past weekend was actually a lot of fun. Thursday night was the “Women Who Workout and Wine” event, sponsored by Bozeman Running Company which is always a fun time. The night started off innocently enough but of course we got a little rowdy.

Women Who Workout and Wine

Women Who Workout and Wine

On Friday, Gretchen, Jen and I headed to Missoula. Gretchen and I had tickets to the Hank 3 concert and Jen was surprising our friend Meg with a visit.

Pre Hank 3 concert

Pre Hank 3 concert

We had to get Hank shirts of course.

Reppin Hank

Reppin Hank

We went out with Meg and Jen after the concert and it was an awesome night. I love Missoula!

On Sunday, Gretchen, Aaron and I went up to Hyalite to do some dry tooling. Unfortunately, Aaron cracked a rib dirt biking last weekend so he wasn’t able to climb but he did belay us which was awesome. The routes we were on were pretty hard but it was definitely good practice for ice climbing.

Belaying Gretchen

Belaying Gretchen

Gretchen getting after it

Gretchen getting after it

It’s getting pretty cold this week so maybe we’ll find some ice to climb next weekend😉

Gorge.

Hello there! I have been crazy busy this week but I finally had a moment to blog about my amazing weekend at the Gorge.

A few of my co-workers headed to Washington on Thursday night but Liz, Rob and I waited until Friday afternoon to leave. Liz picked Rob and I up around 2 on Friday and we packed up the car and headed West.

All packed up for the Gorge

All packed up for the Gorge

The drive is about 8 hours but it totally flew by because we were super excited. We arrived around 9:30pm and didn’t have much trouble finding our friend’s campsite because they had this awesome firedancer flag hanging up.

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On Friday night I discovered that sleeping at the Gorge is…interesting. We weren’t surrounded by toooooo many partiers but we were close to a walkway and there were definitely some crazies walking around late at night. I got up pretty early on Saturday and spotted a guy walking around blasting the DMB song, “Everybody Wake Up”. It was pretty funny but probably not to those who were trying to sleep. We started the morning off with mimosas and Cara made us a lovely breakfast of sausage, spinach and swiss omelets before we headed out on the boat.

Going out on the Columbia River was such an amazing experience. The pictures don’t do it justice.

Columbia River

Columbia River

Obviously we had to hit up the sandbar which was one giant party.

sandbar partying

sandbar partying

Here is an awesome shot of the entire group🙂

great group at the gorge

great group at the gorge

After having some fun at the sandbar we headed out on the boat for some water skiing. It was my first time skiing and I was able to get up so I was pretty stoked!

getting ready to go

getting ready to go

water skiing at the Gorge

water skiing at the Gorge

Saturday was one of the best days of the entire summer. How can you go wrong having a good time with friends on a beautiful day at the Gorge?

When we got back to the campsite from boating we had about 5 minutes to change and head down to the venue. My post-boating hair looked amazing, as I’m sure you can imagine – ha! Right after we got through the ticket gate Liz somehow managed to twist her ankle when her foot went into a hole. It was so scary! She was a trooper though and the guys helped her get into the concert. We set her up with some ice and she was good to go.

Eric helping Liz with her ankle

Eric helping Liz with her ankle

The venue was absolutely beautiful. We had ridiculous seats on the lawn thanks to Cara and Dan and a few others in the group who went in early to get us an awesome spot.

Gorge.

Gorge.

Dave put on an amazing show of course. Here is the setlist: Gorge 8/31

Highlights for me included Seven, Cornbread, Song That Jane Likes and this little jam – sexy motherfucker shakin that ass.

Walking back to the campsite post-show was kind of a cluster. There are about a million people all walking in the same direction so it’s kind of hectic but we made it back and cracked open some beers and fired up the grill.

We hung out and had breakfast on Sunday morning but sadly we had to pack up and leave because Rob and I had work on Monday😦

AM tailgate

AM tailgate

breakfast at the Gorge

breakfast at the Gorge

The drive back to Bozeman was a lot less fun because we were all exhausted but it was totally worth it. I am definitely planning on going for all three nights next year!

I am headed to THAILAND on Saturday so hopefully I will be back to blogging the week of 9/23🙂

The Past Few Weeks In Review

Long time no blog. To be honest, I just haven’t felt like blogging lately. I thought I’d do a quick review of the last few weeks before I leave for Thailand though (11 days!!!!).

The weekend of the 10th was a lot of fun! Rob, Aaron and I went down to Hebgen Lake to meet up with a few co-workers to camp, boat, wake board and water ski.

Hebgen Lake

Hebgen Lake

It was a beautiful day out on the lake!

Aaron and I on the boat

Aaron and I on the boat

I totally spaced and forgot to get any pictures of the water skiing and wake boarding. Oh well! It was a fun day!

The following weekend started out with a hike in Hyalite with Heather, Chris, Mary and Elizabeth.

Walking around Grotto Falls

Walking around Grotto Falls

It was a lovely day and the smoke wasn’t too bad. Montana has been super dry the past few weeks and we’ve been having a lot of wild fires😦

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The last time Heather and I were at Palisade Falls together was in January when we were snowshoeing.

Post-hike, we had a nice little picnic down by the water then headed back to Bozeman.

Picnicing at Hyalite

Picnicing at Hyalite

Later that night, Liz, Mary and I went to the Pour House downtown because they were having dueling pianos. It was so. much. fun. Liz told them it was my birthday so they brought me up on stage and serenaded me to a lovely Tenacious D song.

Fake birthday

Fake birthday

The pianists were hilarious. It was a great night.

Rocking out

Rocking out

I didn’t take too many pictures this weekend but Gretchen and I went to the Patagonia outlet sale in Dillon, MT on Saturday and I got a lovely action shot of her practicing some ice climbing moves in her new shell.

Getting ready for ice climbing season

Getting ready for ice climbing season

On Saturday night, we went to the Emerson for an outdoor showing of the Talking Heads documentary, Stop Making Sense. It was awesome!!!!!!

Screen on the Green

Screen on the Green

Gretchen, Josh and I went to Allenspur on Sunday to climb which started off as a lovely day but ended up being kind of a disaster. I was belaying Josh and all of a sudden I started feeling dizzy so Gretchen came over to take over the belay and I ended up passing out. It was really scary! I probably just overheated and didn’t drink enough water. I sat in the shade for a while and started feeling better but I was kind of “off” the rest of the day. I’m back to 100% now though!

Last night, Gretchen, Liz, Josh and I took a fun little trip to the ER. We decided that we should probably test Gretchen’s peanut allergy before we go to Thailand and what better place to do it than in the hospital parking lot?

The peanut allergy test materials

The peanut allergy test materials

Yes, that is a box of merlot along with the peanut butter and peanuts.

The test was a total success. She must have grown out of her allergy because she was completely fine. We also got to witness a beautiful sunset at our ER tailgate.

Beautiful Montana sky

Beautiful Montana sky

I hope this week flies by because I am going to the GORGE this weekend to see DAVE. SO exciting!!!! I will die if I hear good good time. Hope everyone has a wonderful week🙂

First Weekend in August

Hello all! I hope everyone had a great weekend🙂

Mine started off with a Friday evening mountain bike ride with Rob at South Cottonwood. The weather was perfect and we only saw a few other people out on the trail. If you are unfamiliar with this trail, please note that there are a few points where you need to cross the creek. Each creek crossing has a big log set up so you can walk across with your bike but obviously Rob had to try to go straight through the creek.

Rob crossing the creek

Rob crossing the creek

Rob got this video of me going through a puddle.

Here we are a little muddy post-ride.

South Cottonwood

South Cottonwood

On Saturday, Rob and I headed up to Fairy Lake with a paddle board and a kayak. It was a gorgeous day, despite some crazy wind.

Rob SUPing

Rob SUPing

I took a more casual approach with the SUPing and sat down with a Montucky obviously.

Sit down paddle boarding

Sit down paddle boarding

They also have an awesome rope swing at Fairy Lake! Check out this video of my jump.

When we got back from the lake, Rob took me out on his bike. We took a nice little ride up to Bridger. It was so much fun!

Out on Rob's bike

Out on Rob’s bike

I was up bright at early on Sunday to head into Yellowstone with Chris and Heather. We went to the Lake area and rented a boat.

Beautiful day in Yellowstone

Beautiful day in Yellowstone

Rowing was much harder than it looked!

Out on the lake with Heather

Out on the lake with Heather

It was a great day but definitely a lot of driving! The whole trip was just over 300 miles.

I was a little bummed that I didn’t get to climb this weekend but Gretchen and I are heading to the pass tonight. Pluuuus we are expecting some fun visitors this week and I expect that we will be doing plenty of climbing!

Natural Bridge 2013

Happy Monday! I’m in a great mood today for several reasons:

1. It’s my birthday🙂
2. I just returned from a super fun weekend at Natural Bridge
3. I’m flying to Philly on Wednesday
4. Diana and Pete are getting married this weekend
5. Gretchen is making me dinner tonight

Here’s a little recap of Natural Bridge.

Gretchen, Josh, Liz, Aaron and I headed out after work on Friday night after lots of preparation and packing. We had so. much. food (and plenty of beverages as well).

We set up the tents and camp fire and Gretchen and Josh worked on dinner – cheddar jalepeno brats and veggies – yum!

We celebrated my birthday on Friday night and I got quickdraws! Thanks guys🙂 Please note the lemon bar in my left hand. Obviously I couldn’t put it down, even to open the present.

Best wrapping paper ever

Best wrapping paper ever

DJ Lisa (Elizabeth) brought her party cube so we danced pretty hard.

Dancing!

Dancing!

We all slept really well on Friday night and we didn’t get up until Alex, Ben, Noah and Milo got to the camp site. We made breakfast (so much bacon!) and headed out to the trailhead for some climbing.

I broke my new quickdraws in leading the Chocolate Muffin Warmup.

New quickdraws!

New quickdraws!

Then I belayed Heather on a few climbs and she rocked it of course.

Belaying Heather

Belaying Heather

After a few hours of climbing some of us decided to go for a swim. That’s me diving off the rock!

Gorgeous day at Natural Bridge

Gorgeous day at Natural Bridge

The water was freezing but it was nice to cool down! After we dried off we headed back to the parking lot.

Aaron and I

Aaron and I

When we got back to the campsite we started the fire so we could put our pizza rolls in the coals. Gretchen pre-assembled the pizza rolls so we basically just added some extra tin foil to be safe and threw them right in there. I didn’t help make them but I think she said she made some pizza dough and rolled them up with cheese, chicken and veggies. They were delicious – great camping food. We played a few rounds of beersbee while they cooked and Noah and Aaron dominated. Alex’s birthday was Saturday so we had a little birthday celebration for her around the campfire and it was lovely!

We made a ridiculous breakfast on Sunday morning – tons of bacon, eggs with veggies and cheese and fruit salad. I think we brought 4 packages of bacon(!) on the trip. Rediculous. After we packed up, we headed back to the wall for some more climbing.

We love our Montucky hats

We love our Montucky hats

Liz and I decided to head back to Bozeman after a few climbs but not before taking this awesome photo. Sadly we forgot to get one on Saturday when the whole group was there. Oh well!

Sunday group shot

Sunday group shot

It was an amazingly fun weekend. I can’t wait until next year!

4th of July Weekend

Unfortunately I didn’t have a 4 day weekend like everyone else in America because I work in the wonderful world of seasonal employment and YGS tends to be quite busy in July. I made the best of working on Thursday by wearing my amazing homemade American flag jorts as pictured below.

Patriotic jorts

Patriotic jorts

After working for a few hours, Scott and Aaron picked me up to go fly fishing. I didn’t catch any fish but it was still a lot of fun and it was a beautiful day to be out on the river.

After fishing, we met up with the rest of the crew at the Madison River for some floating.

4th of July floating

4th of July floating

I was very upset to find out that my tube from last year had a hole in it so I had to share flotation devices with Scott and Gretchen.

Scott and I floating down the Madison

Scott and I floating down the Madison

At one point Gretchen, Aaron and I were all sharing a float…

Yes, we brought a flag with us on the river

Yes, we brought a flag with us on the river

I was pretty drained from all of the sun after floating but we rallied and got changed to head down to Music on Main. I guess it wasn’t all that eventful because I didn’t take any photos.

I worked on Friday so nothing fun to report.

Gretchen and I went climbing at the pass on Saturday morning. We saw these mountain sheep on the way up.

mountain sheep

mountain sheep

Gretchen totally sent it on Saturday and led 2 5.10 Cs. We will be climbing a lot the next two months because we have a very exciting climbing trip coming up in September. I will probably write a separate post about the trip once we start doing some more planning.

climbing at the pass

climbing at the pass

On Sunday, Elizabeth, Jennie Lynn and I went mountain biking at Bracket Creek. When we left to head up to the trail, it was drizzling and the weather was not looking great, but it turned out to be a lovely afternoon and we had a great time!

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It was a beautiful ride and there were wildflowers everywhere! I am constantly reminded of why I love Montana so much.

I hope everyone else had a great holiday weekend!

Bozeman Triathlon

Great weekend here in Bozeman! I took it easy on Friday/Saturday in preparation for the Bozeman Triathlon. I actually went out to eat quite a few times this weekend. On Friday night, Heather and I had dinner at Vera Fare which was lovely. I highly recommend the waffles. On Saturday morning, Elizabeth and I had a wonderful brunch at the Cateye Cafe then we popped into Meridian to check out some dresses for a wedding I will be attending in July. They have some beautiful dresses but I am still on the hunt for the perfect dress. Scott and I went to MacKenzie River on Saturday night. So basically I spent all of Friday and Saturday carb loading for my race on Sunday which was completely unnecessary. I was actually getting really restless on Saturday since my weekends are usually spent climbing, hiking, biking, camping.

I woke up bright and early on Sunday morning to get everything together for the Bozeman Tri. Heather and Elizabeth came with me to cheer me on🙂 They were seriously like professional race spectators. I saw them as soon as I got out of the water, heading out on the bike, getting into transition from the bike, out on the run, at another point during the run at at the finish line. A big thanks to these ladies for their support!!!!!!

Pre-race with Elizabeth and Heather

Pre-race with Elizabeth and Heather

It was quite cold on Sunday morning. I think it was 40ish degrees when we got down there and the water temp was 65. I was going back and forth about whether or not to use my wet suit. I just got it a few weeks ago and haven’t tested it out yet so I wasn’t really sure about wearing it. I’d say about 70-80% of the racers ended up wearing a wet suit but I made the executive decision to go without. The chances of me falling and/or hurting myself in some way trying to take it off seemed too high to risk it. Yes I am serious. I am extremely clumsy. No regrets but the water was COLD. Like take your breath away cold. Once I got around the first buoy I started warming up and getting into my groove though. I literally came out of the water in the exact time I did last year – 15:10. Weird.

Anyway, I was happy to be out of the freezing water. I threw on my long sleeve shirt, helmet and bike shoes and I was off. The bike was pretty uneventful, although the dude in front of me at the dismount fell off his bike. He looked a little shaken up but he was ok.

Coming into transition after the bike

Coming into transition after the bike

My legs were a little heavy when I started the run but they were warmed up after the first mile or so. I saw Heather and Elizabeth right before the last mile and I was all smiles.

last mile

last mile

I ended up finishing 7 minutes faster than last year so I was pleased!

2013 Bozeman Tri

2013 Bozeman Tri

After the race, I went home and got changed because Scott and I were planning on climbing. We went to practice rock in Hyalite so I could work on leading trad. If you aren’t familiar with trad climbing, here is a pretty good explanation. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Traditional_climbing

I didn’t fall at all and according to Scott I am doing well so it was definitely a successful day.

Scott and I at practice rock

Scott and I at practice rock

Fingers crossed that it doesn’t rain today so we can do some climbing after work.

Happy Monday!

PS – The Philly countdown is on. I will be there exactly one month from today!

What I Have Been Up To The Past Few Weeks

Hello sirs! I have been quite busy lately. Work is crazy, crazy, crazy right now. All of our seasonal associates are starting to arrive! Very exciting!

Rolling hard in the mini van at work

Rolling hard in the mini van at work

Of course I have been trying to maintain a positive work/life balance so I have been having a lot of fun on the weekends. I led my first climb last week!!! I didn’t get a picture of the lead but here is another climbing pic from last weekend at practice rock in Hyalite.

climbing!

climbing!

In other exciting news, our lettuce has been thriving. This is basically the only plant that has ever done well under my care so it’s a pretty big deal. The other plants (strawberries and tomatoes) haven’t been doing so well after getting caught in a snowstorm a few weeks ago😦

fresh lettuce

fresh lettuce

On Sunday, Scott and I took a trip up to Red Lodge to meet up with Gretchen and Josh for some backcountry skiing/snowboarding at the Beartooth pass. It was wild. I still can’t believe I was skiing on Memorial Day Weekend.

Gretchen dairy loading in between runs

Gretchen dairy loading in between runs

It’s been raining like crazy all week but we are hoping for some sun this weekeend! Not 100% sure what’s on the agenda but I’m thinking Brethelight yoga on Saturday (only$1!!!!!!), mountain biking, road biking and climbing. Gotta love spring in Montana.