Friday, October 31, 2008

Fall Getaway

Last year, Noah and I were able to spend a week in the lovely northeast joining the "leaf-peeping" ranks. I was feeling slighted that Utah's fall left a bit to be desired this year. (Why is that? Rainfall or something? The fabulous orchard Rileys are probably all rolling their eyes at my tree ignorance.)

Fortunately for my fall fetish, Candace and I headed to Roanoke, VA last week to wrap up the Fresh Fit contest (of creepy obese teacher assembly fame) and hit the town at a beautiful time of year. I love this picture Candace caught of the press event where we recognized the contest winner. After our event and a delightful lunch with Becky, we attempted to drive the Blue Ridge Parkway and we thought we were on it - what, with all the "Blue Ridge Antiques" and "Blue Ridge Burgers" and "Blue Ridge Bowling" buildings and shops along the route. After driving 45 minutes in one direction and turning around, we found the turn-off to the actual Blue Ridge Parkway upon our return. My bad, Candace. Thanks for capturing these fabulous shots of our romantic fall foliage drive anyway :).
Isn't it gorgeous? I love my job.
Call it fate. A few days before I left, I learned - via Cash Cab, the source of all my new knowledge as of late - that Virginia happens to have the highest concentration of vanity plates per capita in the nation. Riveting, yes. But you know what? For REAL. They are everywhere! Candace captured ALL these in one parking lot. One half-full, twenty car parking lot.

And just for good measure, for anyone who called Wednesday evening and got the ol' "in a restaurant that doesn't allow cell phones excuse," here's your proof...

Tuesday, October 28, 2008


Our MPG.

That's right.

We went 515 miles on our last tank of gas.

Bless your heart, little white car, bless your heart.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Hopeless Romantic

To understand this post a little better (or for a frightening glance into Allison's psyche) - let's delve, shall we?

I'm a cheap person. Ah, that's harsh. I'm frugal.

It's not that I refuse to spend bucks, but I'm pretty selective about how I spend them. I prefer to save up for something better (completely subjective, I know - notice I didn't specify 'more expensive' - just 'better' in my mind) than to spend the same amount over time. It can drive Noah totally nuts that I refuse to pay full price for yogurt ($.64?! No thanks, Yoplait. I'll stock up on the 20/$10. Yes. A fourteen cent discrepancy. That really matters to me.) or debate over paper towel brands and in the same breath notice a $600 mirror I must own. Not all at the same store. But you get the idea.

I'm all about maximum utility from my purchases. And for me, I derive that utility from a) saving a little longer for something I really dig, or b) getting a ridiculously good deal. Uh, hello. Have you met my fabulous green armoire I scored for 75% off?

Enough exposition already. So, for faithful readers of the blog or anyone who started reading yesterday, you know yesterday was our anniversary. Part of our love for the fall anniversary centers around our love for fall travel. We had our first three anniversary trips practically planned before we tied the knot. This year is Guatemala, and we're headed out next week. So in my previously described mind, that factors in nicely. Big trip, lots of fun, eat Top Ramen until we leave. Kidding, it's not that extreme. But something low-key for the day-of.

I figured we'd spend a nice evening in or maybe find a fun restaurant in the area we've never tried before. Noah, the hopeless romantic, had a different idea.

He decided to surprise me with a night at a fun little B&B in the area, or maybe even find a little place in Park City for the evening. But understanding my ... er, frugality ... he opted for to find a great last-minute deal. However, not understanding, we ended up with a seriously-not-a-cent-cheaper-than-the-standard-rate room at the Red Lion.

Before I sound like a total snob, there is nothing wrong with the Red Lion. In fact, they were very kind and even upgraded us to a suite when Noah told them we were celebrating our anniversary. But let's refer back to our utility conversation. A three-star hotel six blocks from my home at its everyday rate doesn't exactly summit the utility scale. Even its possible selling points - downtown! Great view of the city and mountains! We live downtown with a great view of the city and mountains.

Noah told me about the conundrum when he came to pick me up from work. After my initial, "but babe... I have this thing called a utility scale..." reaction and "is it too late to cancel our bank account and drop off the face of the map?" query, we went home, packed a bag, vacuummed the rugs (this detail is not important, except that we finally got a vacuum and I was STOKED to vacuum the rugs) and made our way to the hotel. For an additional $17, we added Cafe Rio and a RedBox to the mix. Because when you're gonna go all out, you may as well go all out :).

In the line at Cafe Rio, the guy behind the counter took one look at us and asked Noah, "wow - did she get mad at you?" An immediate look of concern crossed my face. Was I really so transparent with my emotions? Was I honestly such a brat that the Cafe Rio guy could see it in my face? Yes, maybe. But I forgot Noah was still sporting a shiner from basketball a few weeks ago. With all the "did she hit you?!" jokes we've encountered this week, I'm shocked I didn't catch on more quickly.

All in all, we did have a really nice evening together. We laughed over and over while we packed our bags, as we pulled up to the hotel, in the elevator - I think I might need to add one more criteria to the scale - c) will result in hilarious memory for years.

Monday, October 20, 2008


It's been two whole years, and I'm still madly in love with this guy...
October 20, 2006 was a pretty excellent day. And windy.Like most couples' big day, the day was busy - but I loved that it didn't feel frantic. We enjoyed a nice wedding brunch with close friends and family. Our wedding ceremony was performed in the Salt Lake City Temple by a dear friend and fellow USU alum, Val R. Christensen. We partied at our beautiful autumn reception, tossed the bouquet, cut the cake and ditched the scene.

(I was looking for the picture where we're giving off a very 'peace out' vibe. Can't find it. Ashley - was it from your camera? Ah, well - the 'just cut this cake so we can leave' shot will suffice.)

By the day's end, I felt a little like Barbie in the scene from Toy Story (ah, yes. only the finest cinematic works need be referenced on this blog...) - my face was killing me. And my feet were also a little worse for the wear. So I popped a few Tylenol before heading to the inn where we stayed that evening. Ahem - I popped a few Tylenol PM before heading the inn where we stayed that evening. I was out cold before we even hit the freeway.

Just the beginning of oh-so-many such antics Noah would have to put up with over the next two years and counting.

But I have a hunch he's still pretty head over heels as well.