Tuesday, May 26, 2009

The Roxie scare

I had a little bit of a scare with Roxie this past weekend resulting in Roxie staying at an Emergency Clinic for almost two full days. Roxie had pancreatitis which could only be treated by continuous IVs. My vet isn’t exactly sure how she got it, but it is developed after eating something very high in fat or something spicy. The result is a lot of vomiting and diarrhea anytime Roxie ate or even smelled food.
Roxie is doing great now. She is on prescription dog food and some medicine for the next week, but is back to her normal self. I am still planning on continuing to make her homemade dog food, but making a few adjustments after talking over the diet again with my vet.
The whole experience has really taught me a lot. First, I have a gained trust for my vet and his staff. I always trusted them before, but Roxie has never had anything out of the ordinary happen to her, so I had never really seen them take emergency actions before. They far exceed my expectations, even when she had to be transferred out of their facility to a 24 hour clinic. My vet still considered Roxie his responsibility, and was in constant contact with the clinic. Second, when it comes to my dogs, I am not a tightwad. For those of you that know me personally, you know that I am quite frugal. When it came to Roxie, I even surprised myself at how much money was no object. I didn’t care what a 48 hour stay at an Emergency clinic cost, or how much an x-ray was going to run me. I signed those authorizations so quick, the ink of the pen got warm. Third, Roxie is such a lover, which I knew before, but was reminded of constantly when I called to check on her at the clinic. I love the fact that even though she is an excitable dog, people can still see that she has such a good heart and really just wants to be loved.
And last, I am an emotional wreck with stuff like this. I managed to keep it together Saturday during all of my Aunt’s wedding festivities, but Friday afternoon after I check Roxie into the hospital, I was in a terrible panic. I didn’t cry in front of anyone, but you better believe I lost it in the car on the way home. It was all just so scary, and I really hope I don’t have to go through that again anytime soon.
Everyone go home and hug your animals a little tighter tonight.

Monday, May 25, 2009

My Aunt's wedding

On Saturday, I had the privilege of helping to cater my Aunt's wedding reception. I was excited about it, because even though I love to cater events I rarely do it anymore. I was so glad that my sister snapped a few pictures so I could share them with you.

Here I am concentrating hard on kiwi placement. Don't you love my cayenne apron? It used to be the apron I would wear almost everyday in my Mom's restaurant.
The full table not quite finished. The empty trays represented where dollar roll sandwiches would be. There are also some gaps for large bowls of salads but it is hard to tell in this picture.

Here is the most difficult part of the fruit cascade...the part that actually has to stand up.

All in all, everyone was blown away by the set up. As I was finishing up, my Dad said, "I hope people know they can eat the stuff. You know, Teresa, the small town folk aren't used to this fancy stuff, they may not get it isn't all decoration." Funny, but true. Later I heard a guest say to another guest, "No you are supposed to eat all that!"

And I couldn't conclude this blog without giving major credit to my sister for her help on this part of the set up. I gave her some instruction on how to make the cascade effect, and then she practically did an entire half of the table.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Giveaway (with a few strings attached!)

Some of you know that completing Couch to 5k is a goal that I have set for myself. It has been very tough, but here I am at Week 7 thinking I may actually reach my goal. What better way to celebrate then actually run a 5k, right? And what better 5k to run then one for a great cause like the Komen Race for the Cure.

By now you probably figured out what the strings attached are....I am asking for donations to this amazing charity. BUT.....I wanted to give my blog readers a little incentive. Which ever (local) blog reader donates the most money will be receiving a gift basket full of Teresa made goodies to include fresh mozzerella, assorted breads, flavored olive oil, marinara with home grown tomatoes, pizza dough, almond biscotti, and anything else I can come up with. LOTS of gourment goodies for you!!! But those out of town, I have something for you too!! Since I can't ship this stuff, anyone not in/around STL will have to settle for a $25 Amazon gift card if they win.

Deadline to donate and be considered for the prize is Friday, June 5th. I will annouce the winner on this blog and then we communicate via email the details of claiming the prize. I reserve the right to alter the giveaway at anytime, but I highly doubt that will be necessary.

Any donation will be loved even if it is just $10. And it won't really give you an extra chance or anything, but reposting this on your blog would be a greatly appreciated since this is such a good cause. Thanks in advance for supporting my own personal big accomplishment and contributing to charity!

My donation page

Friday, May 15, 2009

Geez...grammar much?

I swear I read my last post before I published it, but as it just popped up in GR I caught some grammar mistakes.

I seriously HATE when I don't catch them. I sincerely apologize to the grammar enthusiasts for the bruises that I have caused when you start banging your head on the desk.

Crown Valley Brewery review

As part of Nathan's birthday celebration, we visited Crown Valley Brewery. I was so anxious to see the brewery that I think that I may have gotten a bigger kick out of the visit then Nathan did.

Crown Valley had beer making in the works for awhile. In fact, this time last year we visited another CV site and one of the Crown employees said that the Brewery was actually originally set to have it's grand opening July 4th, 2008. Hmmmm....only 10 months late.

But let me just tell you, so worth the wait. Overall I was very impressed with the nine beers they offered. And since I figured the experience may turn into a blog worthy post, I took the time to rate the beers on a scale of 1 to 10 and asked Nathan to do the same.

In order of the way the brewery suggests tasting them:

Barwood Blonde Ale
This beer was described by our waitress is close to a mainstream beer like Budweiser. I found this statement to be pretty accurate. It is very smooth and a beer that would be good for consuming multiples of while watching a game.
My rating: 8, Nathan's rating: 7.5

Antique Amber Ale
I don't remember much about exact tastes of the beer because I didn't enjoy it that much. I was surprised too, because I usually like Amber beers.
My rating and Nathan's: 6

Old School Pilsner
90% of the time I love Pilsners and now was no exception. The Pilsner had a nice touch of bitterness to it, not quite as much as say, a Heinkein, but just enough to balance out the lightness of it.
My rating: 8.5, Nathan's rating: 7

Horseshoe Pale Ale
If I would have been drunk, I would have sworn this was Schafly's Pale Ale. In fact, I am still not convinced that the brewery didn't run out of pale ale and go buy some Schafly Pale Ale to substitute in. Of course, this meant the beer was yummy.
My rating: 7.5, Nathan's rating: 6

Worktruct Wheat
Typical Hefeweizen. I felt like it was lighter than others I enjoy, but still very good.
My rating: 8, Nathan's rating: 5

Raspberry Wheat
I am really picky about fruit beers, and while I didn't mind this one, there are about 5 others I would drink before I would drink this one. Nathan was being super critical the entire tasting, but he seemed to enjoy this one.
My rating: 7.5, Nathan's rating: 8

Sleighbell Spiced Ale (Limited Edition)
I have to take a breath before I write this....OMG. BEST. BEER. EVER (ok, almost). I am so in love with this beer my mouth is salivating just thinking about it. It is basically Pumpkin beer without the pumpkin flavor, but still the flavors of cinnamon, ginger, and orange. To me, this beer equalled happiness. In fact, during my post tasting glass of this ale, I made the statement three or four times, "I am so happy drinking this beer, I can't stand it." I just totally ignore the fact that it is a Christmas beer being served in May and go with it.
My rating: 9.5, Nathan's rating: 9.5

Plowboy Porter
This Porter is very Guiness like. I really don't mind Guiness on occasion, but this was no of my least favorite of the line up. The description said barley and chocolate malt, but I didn't taste those.
My rating: 6.5, Nathan's rating: 6

Big Bison Ale
So if I can't have my Sleighbell Spiced Ale, I'll take the Big Bison. A quite yummy Belgian style Dubbel (according to the description). And also the beer that with our combined scores, Nathan and I liked the best.
My rating: 8.5, Nathan's rating 8

A little more about the Brewery itself....

I loved the set-up. Instead of crowding around a tasting bar you could grab a table, look at a list of descriptions, and have a waitress bring your selections. Very different then what Crown has done at their wineries and wayyy more relaxing. And even though I love a free tasting, the brewery actually has a very good deal. For $7 you get 8- 3 oz beers plus a tour. Not bad at all considering Nathan and I recently went with some friends to a local, very popular, new beer bar and a 7 beer taste that came from a clueless waitress was $14. But I digress....

Some of the beers are bottled and in addition they have a bottled cider. It wasn't available for tasting, but Nathan ordered one and enjoyed it. Another option for taking the beer home is getting a growler, which is a little bit of an initial investment, but has discounted refills when you bring it back.

Now the not so good stuff, no hot food served. Now come on Crown.....if I am drinking beer I don't want a cold turkey sandwich or cheese and crackers, I want a burger or some onion rings, or even a frozen pizza that is reheated and marked up at a ridiculous amount because it is at a brewery in the middle of nowhere. With their wineries it doesn't bother me that they don't have a lot of food options because I always enjoy packing a picnic basket, but wine drinking and beer drinking are two totally different worlds.

Another down side which doesn't really affect me is no other alcoholic beverage is offered but beer. While this doesn't really bother me, a non beer drinker was with Nathan and I and only halved enjoyed the cider, so therefore it bothered them. However, there is a bright shinning light for those non beer drinkers out there. If you have read anything about the brewery you may have noticed the official title is Crown Valley Brewing and Distilling Company. Well, the Distilling part is in the works and will include Crown Valley's very own vodka and bourbon. No telling how long it will be before those are complete though.

As I said before, I was very impressed. I agree with STL Hops that it appears that no expense was spared in the brewery. If you are thinking about heading down to Ste. Genevieve for a visit, do it!!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Finally, a little more to say.

Things have been quite busy in Teresaland. In the week since my last blog I've had a killer cold and a bladder infection. It was also Nathan's birthday, and luckily most of the celebrations feel in between the two. One celebrate included a trip to the new Crown Valley Brewery, so stay tuned for a review.

Work is looking up. One of my accounts is expanding their vending, adding an element that I have never worked with before, so on Monday I am off to Indianapolis for a little bit of a learning trip. Unfortunately, with this expansion I don't anticipate much relief on my stress level...at least not for awhile. Of course, this will be an exciting, good amount of stress.

With my sickness I have gotten off track with 5k training, so I am really in need of some focus considering I am registering for a 5k in June!

In other news, Nathan took a part time/side job with a local DJ company. He has done a few weddings and a prom already and he absolutely loves it! I am slightly bummed that I don't get to see him as much on the weekends, but since he is back on day shift during the week, I haven't been missing him too much.

Everyone have a great week!!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Hello everyone

If you are an avid reader of this blog, you may have noticed a pretty big absence from myself the past few weeks, because really, who are we kidding? A random dog pic shouldn't count as a blog (even though I know some of you love the pics).
I could give you a million reasons why I haven't been posting as much, but mostly it comes down to one simple fact. I haven't had much good to say. And while I love using this blog as an outlet, even I get bored reading some of the stuff I post when I don't really have anything good to say.
I am hoping the next few weeks bring back some of the "good" to blog about. Because one of the only things I have right now is this:

Those little green babies are from my cherry tomato plant. Which means I haven't killed them yet and there is still hope I may not!!

Have a great night!