Sunday, November 22

Just following orders

Ok, so any of you who are facebook friends with me know what I was up to on Saturday.

I met Pioneer Woman!

Along with 550 other people crazy enough to stand in line for hours just to have her sign her new cookbook.

What time did Mark and I get there? 9:20
How many people were ahead of us? 3 including Erin
What time did they start handing out wrist bands? 10:30
What time was Pioneer Woman scheduled to appear? 1:00

Yeah, we stood in line for a while. And Mark was there for it all. I was pretty surprised when he told me he wanted to come to the Pioneer Woman cookbook signing. He was a little surprised when I told him we would be leaving at 8 in the morning on Saturday. "But I thought it didn't start till 1?"

He was a great sport about it, hung out with us girls the whole time.  At one point I look into the sea of people behind us and all I could see were chicks.  

Finally after much anticipation, she appeared.  And was just as nervous as we were.

After answering a few questions from the crowed she settled in and started signing.  She was so sweet, I found myself tongue tied as I sat with her.  She asked Mark if he got to go shopping while we waited in line and we said nope, he was right along side me the whole time.  She suggested I cook something for him.  

I should have added that Mark is usually the one that does the cooking so I would definitely have to treat him to something from her cookbook.

Seeing Erin's cheesy grin made me feel better about the crazed smile I have on my face in my picture. We were a little giddy to be meeting her.

As I was waiting to meet Ree I suddenly found a camera in my face and a familiar looking woman asking me if she could ask me a few questions. She asked me what I liked about The Pioneer Woman and how I felt to be meeting her.  The following is the video segment that was on Fox9 news that night.  

My 15 seconds of fame! Ha!

So before I knew it, it was over. I meet Ree, got some books signed, got a free adorable t-shirt, and Mark got to see a new nerdy side of me. The day didn't end there.  My coworker, Mark and I got some sushi, then mark and I went to see New Moon, did some shopping and headed up to Mara's for the "Diego & Mara's Parte de los Nombres de Muchos".  Lots of chic stuff?  Yeah, that's what I was thinking.  But Mark seemed to enjoy every minute of it.  

I think he's a keeper.

And because PW told me to, I made him her buttermilk biscuits this evening to go with our dinner. tasty.  This cookbook is awesome. Allot of it can be found on her site, but it's so beautifully done that I think it's worth having in print.

As Erin put it, another must do item to check off the life list!

*Photo Credit* All photos were kindly "borrowed" from my wonderful sisters blog: LeFebvrePartyof4

Wednesday, November 11

Cotton Mansion

After dragging Mark to the great north woods, on Sunday we wandered over to Duluth for a couple of days.  A few weeks ago we found this place online:

And we knew we had to stay there.  It was built in 1908 and still has most of the original interior.  Initially we went to Duluth to see the sights but we didn't want to leave this beautiful place!
Center staircase that greets you when you walk in the front door.

Everywhere you looked had beautiful touches like original silk wallpaper and ornate lighting.

The main floor had three grand fireplaces like this one in the living room.

More unique lighting, these were every 8 feet or so going around the living room.

The dinning room where we had (amazing) breakfast every morning had the 
original hand carved table and chairs that were built at the same time as the 
dinning room using the same wood and same carving styles.

The library with another marble fireplace. We spent a lot of time in here reading.

Mark relaxing.

More library.

Our room with the gas fireplace and views of Lake Superior from both windows.

Our bathroom had the original sink, bathtub, and toilet. 
The owner even had to give us a toilet flushing lesson when we checked in.

Even though we didn't want to, we did manage to leave the mansion to do some sight seeing. We drove up to Splitrock Lighthouse and on the way back stopped at Betty's Pies for some lunner.

Proof that we did leave the mansion:

It was a great few days and I would highly recommend the Cotton Mansion Bed and Breakfast for a relaxing getaway.  The owners were friendly, accommodating, and you rarely saw anyone else except at breakfast. You really felt like you were at home and could dream what it could be like to live that kind of lifestyle in 1908. 

Sunday, November 8

Bringing the Boy Home

Right of passage for couples: visiting where we grew up. Check.

Since Mark is a cityboy and grew up in the twin cities area I've already seen where he grew up and have meet his family. And while Mark has met my family, we hadn't traveled north to visit where I grew up. We were wanting to see Duluth before schedules started getting full of holiday activities so we decided to head north this weekend.

And what a weekend to pick to travel to northern Minnesota to visit my dad before heading over to Duluth. Deer Hunting Opener. But really traffic wasn't too bad heading up, and the local place with the best burgers and Brew City fries was even pretty quiet for a Saturday evening. We just won't venture too far from the house without blaze orange.

It's funny to show someone where you grew up and the things they notice. We drove by a sign and he remarks: "Deer moose?" I believe my brother-in-law also commented on that sign when he first came north with my sister. "What's a deer moose?"

Driving along the dirt road approaching the house I grew up in he adds, "You were right, you did live in the middle of nowhere."

We've been here less than 24 hours and we do notice one thing. How relaxing it is up here. We are so used to visiting his parents in the city and wanting to go here and pick up something, and got here to check something out, run to costco and stock up on something.

But I bet the deer aren't as relaxed.