Scandinavian Cruise

IMG_0081We just returned last week from a lovely vacation. We took a Scandinavian cruise. We flew to London on the 23rd and got on the ship (Caribbean Princess) in Southampton later that afternoon.

Our first day was in Belgium. We got into port at Zeebrugge and took a bus to Blankenberge where we got on a train to Brugge. In Brugge we took a brewery tour, looked around the town and had some Belgium waffles (life-changin), and chocolate before catching the train back to the ship.

The second day was a day at sea where we relaxed and hung out on the boat perfecting our Gin Rummy games.

The third day we were in Copenhagen, Denmark where we started with a walking tour of the city, and then found ourselves on a canal tour before we grabbed some dinner, visited the Little Mermaid statue, and walked 5 miles back to the ship (in hindsight, we should have taken the shuttle).

The fourth day we were supposed to go to Sweden, but the weather prevented that, sooooo… another day at sea.

The fifth day we landed in Oslo, Norway. We visited a number of museums in Oslo, including a viking museum, the Con Tiki museum, and the Fram museum. We then explored the downtown area, grabbed some lunch and did a bit of shopping before heading back to the ship (it started to rain).

The sixth day was another day at sea.

We arrived back in Southampton on the seventh day and disembarked. We met our transfer driver and made a pit-stop at Windsor castle, where we took the tour. From there we made the rest of the trip to our London hotel. We got in earlier than we had planned so we explored London a bit. We worked our way down to Buckingham Palace, Big Ben and House of Parliament. We were down at the Thames River and someone handed us an unused boat tour ticket, so we took a trip down the Thames and saw a number of other London sights before heading back towards our hotel. We made a quick stop at Harrod’s department store to grab some gifts and pastries.

The next day we scheduled a tour of the Tower of London (with Beefeater Steve) and then met up with a friend for lunch before wandering around London for the rest of the day. Considering we were only in London for a day and a half, we saw quite a few sites.

The trip was a lot of fun. A smaller collection of photos are up in the gallery, or all of the trip photos (400+) are up on Google Plus.

Season’s Greetings

Holiday Card


(with a few added photos below)

Gingerbread House Time Lapse

We are super-fast at decorating! We should shoot another one when we eat it.

No Shave Nobember

It’s No-shave November so… I didn’t shave. You can watch the beard progress through the month.

Thanksgiving Extravaganza 2014

Another Epic Thanksgiving Extravaganza has come and gone. It was a busy few days again this year with many family members in attendance. With the Iowa/Nebraska football game in Iowa City this year (and and unfortunate outcome), we hosted a very large Thanksgiving gathering again. I believe we had 19 in attendance this time around. It again included a fried turkey in our front yard, and a smoked turkey from Ben’s front yard, and many other sides and desserts. I think everyone had a good time, and had PLENTY to eat.

On Friday, several us braved the cold weather to watch the Iowa-Nebraska game, and an unfortunately loss in overtime. We then came home for some chili to warm us up, and some cake to celebrate National Cake Day (our family’s made-up holiday). Check the plethora of photos (and turkey fry video) below.

¡Bienvenidos a México!

We recently returned from a wonderful trip to the beach in the Riviera Maya area of Mexico. We stayed at an all-inclusive, Gran Bahia Principe Sian Kaan. It was a great escape from the real world for a little while. We mainly sat on the beach and drank Mojitos, but did take a few excursions. One of them included visiting the Mayan ruins of Tulum and retaking our engagment photo.

We also visited some other ruins at Chichen Itza, swam in a cenote, and swam through a cave at Rio Secreto.

You can check out all of the photos from our trip in the photo gallery.

About that Piano…

After a 190 mile drive in the back of my dad’s pickup, a piano arrived at our door last Saturday morning. Fortunately we had a good number of people (thanks again!) to help move the 500 lb. beast… downstairs… two flights of stairs… with a narrow landing. After some back and forth, and some math and science (it helps to measure) mixed in, we managed to get it down and set up. Even after not being played for 10 years, it’s not too out of tune. Anybody want to stop by and tickle the keys?

Happy Holidays!


Wishing you every happiness this Holiday Season and throughout the coming year!
(with a few other photos for your enjoyment below)

Skiing in Steamboat

We just returned from a great trip to Steamboat, Colorado. We met Corey and Becky in Ames and then made the LONG trek west where we met Jon and Liz (who had a shorter drive from Denver). We skied for three days, and while the weather was cold (-18 on day one), we wore a lot of layers and had a great time.


Deep in the Heart of…

We recently took a quick jaunt to Austin, TX. Jess had a couple of law school fairs to attend, and I tagged along for the ride. We were able to hang out with several friends while we were there as well as eat some good food. While Jess was law school fairing it, I camped out for what I was told was the best BBQ ever. I had nothing better to do, so we waited in line for four hours, and I can now say that the wait was worth it. I think it was probably the best BBQ I’ve ever had. Thank you Franklin Barbecue!