Our very first batch of homemade wine is finally bottled!  And I even helped out quite a bit on this part (less math and science, more tasting and filling).  We've got 28 1/2 bottles of delicious Malbec to enjoy and give away (we accept bribes).  Well, actually we have 27 bottles left now because we brought a bottle over to my parent's house last night to taste and since the last bottle filled only made it halfway before the wine was out of the carboy and into bottles, we brought the half bottle too.  Anyway, it turned out really well if we do say so ourselves!  My dad, a definite wine connoisseur, liked it better than the wine they had at their house and it's only going to get better with age.  You're supposed to wait three or four months before you start drinking it, but we sampled it yesterday as we were bottling and it was pretty good so we decided to have a couple celebratory bottles last night.  And now I'm done bragging about our wine.  Here's some pictures!

Below are some impromptu labels I came up with and made in five minutes.  We decided that our first batch should be our signature batch, so here you go, 2 Cork Tollis!  There's a story behind the name...

Our first tasting!




This past weekend the hubs and I, along my my mom who was taking classes for her Master's Degree, headed about 120 miles north to good old Fort Collins.  It is such a unique little town with character and good people.  Ryan and I both went to school there, but I don't think I realized how much I loved it until I graduated college and was more focused on things like going out to dinner and city parks as opposed to finals and, well... other weekend activities.  A few years back it was named the best small town to live in and it's no wonder.  Now, I know we recently decided to pack up and move down to Colorado Springs and you're probably wondering why, if we really love Fort Collins so much.  The answer is the people.  We've got both of our families down here, some immediate family and our best friends.  Plus, it's just home.  I could maybe see us moving somewhere else in the future, but that of course all depends on the job situations and other plans.  I also think a big part of it all is just the simple fact that our paths crossed in Fort Collins and have turned into one path ever since.  Just that makes it very special for us... we had our first date up there, lived there while planning our wedding, and so much more.

Now that I've got some reflecting out of the way, here's a photo-journalistic recap of our weekend, albeit, not a very professional-looking one as far as the picture-taking abilities go.  And yes, all the pictures are of us eating or drinking beer, because that's pretty much all we did the entire weekend.

A must if you're in Fort Collins.  Order the cheese artichoke dip, it is ah-mazing.

Love, love, love Elliot's martini bar.  Here I would recommend the Expressed Consent martini, delicious.  Watch out for some of the others though.

Wandering around the bookstore... the hubz representin' his alma mater in a hot pink flat bill he tried on there.

Ryan's house the last year we lived up here.

Our first date was here!

More Coopersmith's, of course.

New Belg!  The brew tours are definitely one of the town's best qualities.

Second brewery!

My hoppy little husband :)

Dinner at Zequilas, best margarita in town.  Yes, definitely better than the Rio... and there's no limit.  Not that you would want to have three... whew.

Another must-do in the Fort.  Choice City.  It is some of the best food you'll find, especially their banana bread french toast and pretty much all of their sandwiches.

It was an amazing weekend and brought back so many memories of our wild n' crazy days, haha.  We miss it tons, but you know, we are happy to be exactly where are right now.



This past weekend, Ryan, my parents and I headed up to Frisco to do some cross-country skiing.  Now, I've never done this before and given the fact that I grew up in Colorado yet do not ski or snowboard (very well at least, I've done both but I'm terrible) made me excited yet skeptical.  But hey, it's flat right?  Shouldn't be too hard... and it wasn't really!  It was fun, and let me tell you, the workout of my life.  We went on Sunday, today is Thursday, and I am still sore.  Here's the first picture of the day, my husband trying to recover from a fall faster than I could whip out my camera from my coat pocket with gloves on.

I definitely fell a few times myself (with much more drama of course) but that's why I carry the camera, right? 

So we skied the day away, my mom would have gone for several more hours but the rest of us were dead, and headed to a local brewery to replenish every last calorie we burned with beer and potato skins.  Yum...  Anyway, here's a few more pics I was able to take in the midst of my first cross-country skiing adventure.  I seriously remember thinking "Is this picture really worth it?" every time I got my camera out.

It was a lot of fun, I like the whole idea of having your skis in tracks because it makes it much harder for them to cross, as mine always did when I was younger... although I did still manage to cross them a few times.  I also managed to get going too fast and skied right on top of my dad's skis in the track coming from behind him.  Oops... oh well, fun day!



We are now at the last stage in our wine-making before we actually bottle it up and let it sit!  So far it's been a great hobby for the two of us because Ryan likes to make the wine and get all geeky with it, and I, well I like to drink the wine.  This past weekend, we moved it from the plastic carboy to the glass one, stirred in a few additives, and put it in a cool, dark place to... do whatever it needs to do.

So there we go.  We moved it, added the necessary ingredients, stirred it up with a power tool, and even had some help from Cira with reading the directions.  At this point, we let it sit for a week or two more and then we can bottle it!  Of course, after it's bottled, we let it sit for at least 4 months before drinking it.  We have had some tastes along the way though, and so far it's pretty good for our first time.