Like usual, we had a great Thanksgiving holiday.  Willie's parents and his brother Adam came out.  We had a great meal and had so much fun relaxing.  We had our after thanksgiving hike and found a great cave.  We watched movies projected on the wall with David's projector.  I learned how to crochet and am in the process of making a granny square blanket.  Kathy and Adam went home on Saturday morning and David came with us to the dinosaur museum and down to play by the river.  What a great few days.  I just love thanksgiving.

Below is a picture of a lamp that we bought from Jon Rizzo.  I'm not sure that is going to be the actual shade, it might be too small, but we love the lamp.

We played music with some friends thursday night.  The picture of me on the bass was taken by Jeremy Rizer.

We had a great hike in Bangs canyon.  We had fun in this cave below.  I posted a few polaroid pictures of the hike on my photography blog.

After the dinosaur museum we walked down to the river and threw rocks  Wyatt is getting so good at skipping rocks.  He's been pleased with how many skills he's been learning.

Wyatt has declared that he wants to be a professional mountain climber when he grows up.  His first major goal was to climb Mount Garflied here in Grand Junction. This is a steep hike, you gain 2000ft in 2 miles.  Willie and Wyatt did a few training hikes and went for it on Saturday.  Wyatt was so pleased that he made it to the top.  He has now started a mountaineer book and I've attached a few pictures from the book.  He is the most adorable little mountaineer.

Here are some pictures Willie took with his iphone.

I fully realize that my obsession with the apple crisp I made last night might be because of the no sugar goggles I have been wearing for the last month or so, but I loved it so much.  Here is the recipe.

2 cups peeled, cored and thinly sliced apples, such as Granny Smiths
2 tbsp sucanat (granulated sugar cane juice)
1/4 cup apple juice
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
2 tsp cornstarch
1 tsp ground cinnamon
 pinch of nutmeg

oat topping ingredients:

1/2 cup walnuts or almonds, finely chopped
 1/2 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
 1/2 cup sucanat
 2 tbsp whole wheat flour
 2 tbsp softened unsalted butter

Preheat the oven to 350.  Coat an 8-inch square shallow baking dish
with cooking spray.  In a large bowl, toss together the apples, sugar,
apple juice, lemon juice, cornstarch, cinnamon, and nutmeg until well
combined.  Set aside.

Make the oatmeal topping:  In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted
with a paddle, gently combine the walnuts or almonds, oats, brown
sugar, flour, and butter at low speed.

Place the apple mixture in the dish.  Sprinkle the topping evenly over
the apples and bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until the apples are cooked
through, the juices are bubbling, and the topping is browned.  Serve,
hot, warm, or at room temperature.

Willie and I had such a great trip to New York.   I had to blog about some of the details.  This was our first trip away from our kids together, ever.  That's right, we finally made it happen, 6 years later. I had no idea how fun this could be.  I'm totally addicted.  Here is a link to my facebook album of pictures I took there where there is more thorough photographic coverage of the trip.

So I work for my brother and his two friend's company studioCase as the finance manager.  I keep the books, invoice, collect A/R, pay bills and all things financial.  I'm also the medical benefits administrator, insurance guru and a bit of an executive assistant.  Last year they brought me out for the yearly work party and I was so happy to hear that I was coming out again. I have the best job in the world!  Since Willie and I just celebrated our 10 year anniversary and we were planning to have my mom come out for a small get away for us, I thought it would be fun to have her come for my New York trip and then Willie could come with me.

I can't thank my mom and David enough for coming out and sacrificing sleep and free time to keep the kids so happy. I didn't worry at all.  My mom even let Hank sleep in bed with her for the first few nights.  He is a huge fan of snuggling with grandma.

The trip out was great.  Traveling without kids is relaxing.  We slept on the plane, watched a movies on the plane (documentary on Townes Van Zant on the way out and The Royal Tenenbaums on the way back)  and talked at length.  We took a crazy cab ride into the city from the airport and met Travis and Enoch at Grand Central Station to ride home with them.  

Spending time at studioCase was great.  I love how they eat lunch together, family style, at the big conference table. We took a look at several projects they were working on and I got the feel that everyone on the team just loves their job.  They are so good at what they do and they enjoy creating beautiful art. I got some portraits of the team, though I ran out of time before we were all catching the train to Scarsdale and missed out on Jeff, Tony and Enoch.  

We went to the International center for Photography museum which was so interesting.  I'll post on my photography blog about this.  We also went to a women in photography exhibit at the MOMA which I really enjoyed.  I posted on it here.  The night of the International Center for photography is was raining so hard.  So East Coast. We ate at good restaurant called Virgil's BBQ.  We saw someone get hit by a taxi on our way to eat.  The cabby tried to drive away after he hit her and she was lying on the ground.  Several people stood in front of the cab to stop the driver from getting away. We didn't see what happened but it was kind of disturbing.  Once my mom and sister and I saw someone get hit by a cab in Instanbul.  The cab driver just picked up the pedestrian and threw him in the cab and drove on, I'm assuming to the hospital.

I had such a great time taking pictures.  Not having kids to chase around, meant I could really spend time looking around for interesting things to photograph.  I'll admit, my camera and two lenses were a bit heavy for all the walking around we did, but I don't regret it at all.  I'm not surprised since I took my camera and one lens on a 12 mile roundtrip hike at ragged mountain.  You do what you have to do to get the shot.  This might be a good time to mention, I am TOTALLY in love with my camera and my lenses.  I'm so lucky.

The studioCase party was great just like last year.  The party was like a family gathering.  There were kids running around crazy,  games,  great food, people talking in every corner and even an impromptu jam session.  I think of my past jobs and what a work party was like and it's so different.  I just love how studioCase runs their company.  There is so much warmth and friendship.

Something I really love about being in New York is all the different kinds of people, everywhere.  When I see people coming home from work, I wonder what their story is, what their home looks like, if they are lonely.  I'm not a permanent city dweller, but I need a little more city in my life.  I came home feeling so refreshed.

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