So this week is freaking flying!I am having such a fun time hanging with some (but not all) of my favorite Aceholes in Park City, UT. 
New years, I told you about, we had a great time, recovery the next day was a little rough, but not too bad.  We all kind of hung around on the first, had some food, lounged… napped… it was recovery day. 
Monday, pretty much everyone had to work. Not all at the same time, but at some point throughout the day. I slept in when Jess left and hung around the house for a while… visiting with the roomates while they filtered in and out of the house. 
Talked about books and climbing and boating with Dan for awhile… then decided it was time to take advantage of the giant bathtub in the master suite.  
A brilliant decision…. I soaked, read a chapter or two of my book… ate mashed potatoes… 
Aaah… ultimate comfort.  
wait. mashed potatoes in the bathtub??
Yup. I made a cup of instant spuds as the tub was filling  and decided just to eat them while soaking. 
Being that I’m not really looking for a whole lot of “special attention” lately, and as a raft guide, I’m not really in the habit of doing it anyway… I’ve been a little lax on the whole shaved legs thing… 
I’m not trying to impress anyone, I’m wearing pants every day, why bother? 
But… I was in the bath, so I went ahead and took care of that… and after putting in such an effort, it seems a waste to not go the full 9 yards and get dolled up afterward.  
It was an absolutely gorgeous day out. we’re talking upper 50s, sunny… not a cloud in the sky… so I then decided to take my poochie out for some explorations… I drove around old Park City and up to Deer Valley where most of my friends here work.. Then up a random road into a fancy high end mountain neighborhood on a sun drenched hill.  Parked near the top and Shelby and I went for a walk in the sunshine. 
Following this little adventure, we went back down into the historic part of Park City, which is a cool area with lots of shops and restaurants… a little hoity toity… but i like it anyway. We wandered around and did some window shopping.
I went back to the house for a while… I ended up getting most of the house (5 or 6 people)  to nerd out and watch a few episodes of Dr Who with me. hehehe yay!
Later that night, I went with Julie and Jess to meet up with our friend Kip who is super awesome and hooked me up with skis for the week and a few passes to DV!  Then we followed him up to the house he was getting ready to move out of just because he wanted us to see how (in his words) redonkulous it was.  Oh, and it is. Holy poo this place was huge and beautiful. and what a view! 
We spent some time over there, enjoyed some of Kip’s scotch and some munchies and good conversation. 
around 12:30 we realized what time it was and decided to head home. 
A very pleasant day, I’d say. 
The next day was even better! 
Jess and I originally planned to go skiing… which I have been a bit apprehensive about merely because I haven’t been on skis in about a decade. We ended up sleeping in later than we planned and by the time we got up… the weather was absolutely gorgeous. 
Now, I know it’s January and WE DEFINITELY WANT SNOW.  However, if it’s going to be too warm to snow, I can’t help but be glad that it’s beautiful and Sunny out instead of being 38 and rainy. 
Anyhoo… Jess and I decided instead of skiing, we would go for a hike. 
 And Jess had an absolutely brilliant idea for afterward….
So we took both my dog, and Brian’s, and headed over to a hill with some trails.
We ended up hiking all the way to the top… stopping every now and again to take pictures.
Squishing through the mud where the sun had melted the snow, the dogs loving every minute of it. 
Shelby would run ahead and back past us and ahead again leading us up the mountain while Ahlula would do her best to trip us up as we hiked up the hill. Silly dog took “on you heels” to a whole new level… until she found her stick.  
So picture a 20 pound Boston terrier, now picture here dragging a 4 foot long by 1-1/2 inch diameter stick up a mountain covered in sage brush. Oh! and, she would only carry it near the middle. She would not drag it by the end! Poor little dog kept clothes-lining herself  because the stick would get caught in the brush every 3 feet or so. But the stick made it all the way up and back down to the car. we estimate this hill to be a good 800 vertical feet from the road… but we probably hiked 5 miles in all of the zigzagging we did. maybe more!
Following the hike, we hit the grocery store and I started a pot of chili and a big batch of cornbread for everybody in the house to enjoy. 
Then it was time for Jess’s brilliant idea. She found a massotherapy school in SLC that had 2 openings at the same time this evening. so we and got hour long massages for $30 each. It was wonderful. 
looking up toward the top of the mountain.. the moon accompanied us on our hike. 

A view of Park City Resort (i think) thru the shrubberies.

Jess, trying to catch the moon. 

I think one of my favorite things to photograph is reflections.  I made her hold still for a while until one came out to my standard. i did not edit this photo at all. 

Shelby, leading the pack, with Ahlula still carrying her stick as we begin our descent down the road on the back side of the hill… It didnt take us long to decide to bushwhack down the sunny side of the hill to get back… 

quick stop for a photo op on the way down

this hill was seriously steep… the photo can’t really  show it from on the hill… 

What was left of Ahlula’s stick. on the way down, i stepped on it a few times to help her with maneuvering… I was shocked when she lust left it there… no interest in taking it home. 

Ahlula wore herself out!
Today(wed 1/4) was a blast too!!
Jess and I met my sister, Julie, and her roommate, Matt, at Deer Valley for some skiing. 
I (of course) figured out what it was I felt like I was forgetting all morning… 
My lift pass… 
Fortunately, my lil sis had not yet left to meet us so she grabbed one of her guest passes for me to use.
For weeks I had been anticipating eating a lot of snow. I remember falling ALOT as a kid on skis. 
As it turns out, I remember how to ski decently afterall! I actually did not fall at all today!
I guess there’s something to be said about a decade of visualization… 
apparently that’s how you break bad habits… just don’t do the activity for a while and picture yourself doing it right, instead of as it actually is… then when you try it again, you end up with better form!
at least, i did… worked with gymnastics too!
I had a blast skiing today, and while by western condiions, the snow was crap… From an east coast perspective… it really wasn’t so bad. sure there was some ice.. but overall, it was fairly soft, considering… And it was beautiful out so it just felt like great spring skiing. AND I didn’t fall! not even once!
we’ll see how it goes tomorrow… hahaha i’m getting braver… thats dangerous. 
Something’s missing…

A view from the top

Being artsy on the lift…

My entourage at the horizon line.  I think waterfalls freak me out a little less actually.
Julie and Matt can see their house from here… sort of.

Again with that amazing Moon. It’s following me 🙂
well there’s your catchup for the moment… have a good one!
My new years resolution for 2012 is to top 2011. 
so far… a solid start.  
I really will get around to doing a post following last year with some photos…
to show you what a challenge this will be.

Happy New Year!!
So overall, I would have to say, 2011 was a pretty fantastic year for me. 
My resolution had been to not settle for less than exactly what i want and/or not limit myself.  I feel like I did a reasonably good job at sticking to it. In fact, a repeat of the resolution is currently in the running for 2012. Along with it are ideas such as: “be more decisive”, “quit chewing my nails(been trying this for decades)”, and “stop sugarcoating”…. perhaps a combination of all of the above….
So, is everybody ready for the end of the world?? 
Yeah, I don’t so much buy into the idea. I’m more inclined to believe it to be when the earth hits the begining of it’s orbit in the galaxy. Merely a beginning of a new galactic year.  I really don’t see much changing down on out little planet as far as cataclysmic events…. Business as usual. 
However, that isn’t to say I will refrain from my adventuring. 
Oh, nono no no! 
missed it when i hit 100k on my odometer… but it happened on the way to UT, i have proof!

Just because it’s not the end of the world doesn’t mean my time isnt short. In the Universal sense, I have merely seconds. And I want to see and doo as much as I possibly can before my time is up!

So I shall continue this blog as I start my new year in new places! 
I attended last night’s traditional festivities at the winter home of some wonderful river rat friends of mine, in Park City, UT.  
WOO! New Year, new State to play in!
It was Jess’s birthday so I made her a fancy birthday cake… which we failed to photograph before we demolished it… but here is a photo of the aftermath. 
the morning after…
it still tastes really good!

                                                I definitely let my inner fat kid out to help!

 It was 4 layers. 2 of confetti cake, 2 of dark chocolate, with orange marmalade inbetween layers to moisten and flavor. 
Then, I topped it with a rich chocolate ganche (homemade of course),hite/dark chocolate curls and candied orange peel. 
Flavor-wise, it was up there with my cousin’s wedding cake i made a few years ago… (that one was dark chocolate raspberry and rum).  I shall continue this hobby!
This party was a blast, just lots of fun people hanging out, chatting and laughing over a few drinks. Half the group, people I’ve known for a while, i work with them in WV. The rest, friends of friends or new aquaintences, adopted into the group via a roomate search. But just a fantastic group of upbeat fun people.

A toast! …in any clean glass we can find. 

 Just after midnight, a neighbor came over and crashed our party for a few minutes…some of us assumed, by his outfit that he was a late night mormon visitor…But actually he came in order to invite us to come to his party, right across the back yard! 
Unfortunately, i forgot to take my camera ofer there because they had a really fun theme, it was a 60’s party, everyone was dolled up retro, there were fabulous munchies, a couple guys in the kitchen shaking martinis for everyone.  A bunch of us went and ended up making more new friends and just having a great time, dancing and cavorting until people started to trickle out, headed back to their condos or to waiting cabs. Super nice neighbors, my friends have! 
Woke up this morning, amazingly, I wasn’t hurting too bady. Altho this was not the norm for the house. Some folks had to work, and stumbled into clean clothes and out the door… Jess, I believe, mentioned still feeling drunk when she left… ouch.  Those of us still in the house when I got up, did a little tidying up and made some breakfast together. waffles with eggs and sausage… not a bad start to the new year! Looks like the rest of the day will be pretty chill… most of the house is currently napping…. 
I’m thinking a post depicting a month by month of my year 2011 may be in order… I think I’ll spend the afternoon trying to narrow down the pictures I’ll show you…