Archive for May, 2007

Wedding Planning

Posted by Nate in Bruno, Wedding.
Tuesday, May 29th, 2007 at 8:03 pm

pict3312.JPGHad a blast this weekend up on the North Shore of Lake Superior — we would normally avoid it on a popular holiday weekend, but it ended up being basically the only weekend we could squeeze it in.  And we really needed to research / start to flesh out some of the wedding plans.

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pict3332.JPGIn the video you can see Mr. Man exploring the lake and the beach.  He was pretty shy about the water at first but really enjoyed — drinking only, no swimming for this guy yet! — the rivers and streams running into the lake.  pict3311.JPGNext is a clip of this cluster (herd?  pack?) of swallowtails all landing in the same area – it was right where a car normally would park, so I’m hoping it was some naturally occurring mineral deposit and not antifreeze they were after.  Pretty cool, anyway.  Finally, looks like there’s been a change of plans and Karen has to marry Bruno now.  Hee hee.

The first night we were scheduled to meet with Michael and Maureen, the innkeepers at the Cascade Lodge, so we put Bruno in his kennel in our cabin and headed down.  Just as we reached the lodge Karen remembered she’d forgot the walnut bread we meant to give to them as a gift, so I ran back up to the cabin to get it.  As I got near the cabin I could hear Boo Boo crying, and at first I thought he was just howling since he was alone — really crazy, since he’s never made a peep like that since we got him.

pict3310.JPGI got to the door and could see inside to the kennel and realized he was crying so hard because his face had gotten stuck in the door of the kennel!!  I almost broke the door down getting in and quickly saw that he’d somehow tried to push the door open and gotten his nose out, and now his lower canine tooth was hooked on the metal door which was smashing the rest of his face back into the hard plastic.  He couldn’t close his mouth so he was drooling and crying and panicking really bad and I couldn’t seem to get his tooth unhooked or get the door open.  Karen arrived and tried to calm him down while I worked on the door and eventually got it open.  The poor little guy!!!  It was really, really terrible seeing him like that, totally stuck and freaking out and in pain.

pict3317.JPGIt turned out that in transit the metal latch on the door had bent and wasn’t properly closing on the top half so he was able to pry it open a bit.  I fixed it, but we decided to let him stay in the room without the kennel for the rest of the trip, after his bad experience with it…  Whew.

The meeting with Michael and Maureen went extremely well, even better than we could have hoped.  They’re great people, loved the bread, and it turns out he’s a homebrewer!  Not much lately since they’ve been busy, but in the past, and he was raving about the water from their well being the best for brewing.  I think I heard them mention it had even crossed their mind at one point to open a brewpub in the restaurant and I told them to sign me up!!  Heh.  First things first, but man would that be awesome!

pict3305.JPGHopefully Karen will post with more details, I want to wrap this up before it becomes a novel.  In short, great weekend, great place, very relaxing and fun, and some fantastic progress on the wedding planning process!  Sneak peak on the right:  I snuck up a bottle of the sparkling cranberry mead and we sampled it.  Fan.  Tas.  Tic.  Awesome.

Give the earth a Hugg

Posted by Nate in Consumers, Ideas, Recycling.
Thursday, May 24th, 2007 at 12:01 pm

hugg iconDear dirty hippies and friends of all ages:

Want to save the world but don’t know where to start?  Look for a way to see what’s interesting and / or fun in the world of green news?  Go check out and get hugging.  It’s a pretty cool ripoff of Digg, where users can add stories to the list and other users can "hugg" them (rate them higher) so in theory you start seeing the best news from the green web.  If all that went over your head, just click the link and get ready to waste an hour reading about how to save the planet.  Do it.  Do it.

Spring stuff

Posted by Nate in Landscaping.
Sunday, May 20th, 2007 at 10:36 am

First of all, it went from 80+ degrees yesterday to a creepy 45 right now!  So…  it would have been smarter to be out working today instead of sweating yesterday, but ah well.  Our south-side bushes were totally overgrown and leggy, so I cut them waaay back and will let them recover as much as they can this year, but really next year they’ll be better.  They were borderline overgrown when we moved in and we never attacked them when they needed it…  Ah well.

hammock.jpgI finally found a joist in the ceiling and hung our awesome hammock chair in our under-used "foyer" area.  It’s now a nice place to sip a drink or read a book, it catches great light in the evening and can get a good breeze from all the windows.  I got a sweet sonic stud finder, but it really doesn’t work well on the ceiling, what with the rough texture and insulation — or something?  It works great on the walls, but it was quite a challenge to find a stud without drilling a million pilot holes…

rainbarrel.jpgThe city of Minneapolis gave a great deal on rain barrels to anyone who wanted one, so we of course jumped in on that.  Hooked up a sump-pump drain pipe for the overflow and cut off the gutter to the right height and we should be good to go!  No real rain yet to test it out, I need to see how the rain comes out before I secure the gutter over the barrel.  Now about half of our house runoff is either captured or helping the raingarden grow!

pict3252.JPGAlso emptied the compost into the garden and moved the bin out of the shady corner into its new home by the garden.  I’ve read the heat from the sun will rapidly accelerate the decomposition process, which should be good.  pict3251.JPGAnd another shot of the little plant zones on the South side of the lawn.  I do love me those ferns…

Finally a wonderful picture of Bruno and his mommy.  Aww…

Weekend of plenty

Posted by Nate in Friends, Landscaping.
Monday, May 14th, 2007 at 2:06 pm

… plenty of busy, that is!  Friday was actually pretty chill.  Karen and I had been detoxing last week and Friday was our first day off, so we went to Town Talk for a quick dinner – it ended up being more grease than our fragile and recently cleansed systems could handle and we both regretted the decision.  But hey, hard to resist going when you know you can get a seat at the bar with the coolest bartender in the area.  We crashed early that night because Karen had an event the next morning requiring her to get up at 5:15!!

Scotty Fun Day
Our good friend Scott is leaving in a few days for Colorado to take some sweet acting classes which will hopefully segue into a masters program next year.  Before his flight from the cities, Karen and he made an informal list of must-do activities to do locally.  Starting things off would be a river ride in a Padelford paddle boat, followed by Italian pig out at Cosetta’s in St. Paul…

paddleboat1.jpg… as it happened, Padelford doesn’t do public tours until June.  So we (plus Sierra) headed to Lake Calhoun and rented a sweet 4-person paddleboat and hit the chain of lakes!  Fun!  Only, instead of a nice relaxing saunter down the river in a powered boat, we quickly discovered that moving a paddleboat of this size took quite a bit of leg power.  paddleboat2.jpgIt was suspiciously like exercise.  Still, the weather was beautiful and the lakes were gorgeous, and despite a nearly calamitous rage blackout by yours truly about which direction we were drifting, the ride was quite enjoyable.

chino.jpgIt turned out we were more in the mood for drinks than Italian pig out after our ride, so we altered course to Chino Latino in Uptown and made short work of a few martinis and margaritas.  Karen and Sierra kept things moving with a big "bowl of drink" — I can’t remember what it was called, but that’s what it was.  Whoa.  A few shared dishes later and we were all moaning about being stuffed…

A short hour or two recoup at DuoTeam HQ and we were off again!  We had a quick drink at Nye’s, regaled by the sound of Ruth Adam’s polka band.  Quite the place, I can’t believe I’d never been.  Next to an art opening organized by one of Sierra’s roommates in a warehouse gallery in NorthEast.  Fun, but full of hipsters and artists — great as individuals, but a roomful of them together sort of seems to turn into a big out-hip contest.  Ah well.  Some of the pieces were pretty cool, especially one demonstrating sound waves moving through non-newtonian liquids.  To me that belongs more in a Maker Faire, but hey, it looked as much like art as some of the other pieces.  :)

Then one last drink at the Kitty Cat Klub by the U, and finally home to bed.  Whew.  Scotty can now leave the cities happy.

Sunday Plants
pict0008.JPGWhile walking Bruno, Karen had made friends with some neighbors with a bunch of native plants who subsequently offered to give some to us.  Today was the day, so after cleaning the house all morning we headed over to collect some plants – and by some, I mean "a ton".  The rest of the afternoon was spent adding to and creating little spaces on the periphery of the yard for the new plants.  pict0009.JPG We used logs from the tree we cut down last year to create visual dividers between the lawn and the new plants, I think it works pretty well – especially with the new mulch in the pic at right.  Ahh, something about a fern with dappled sunshine on it just makes me happy…  :)

pict0010.JPGWe somehow still had some energy so we invited Justin and Juliana and Scott and Cody over for an outdoor wok-on-the-grill stir fry!  I’d never done this before but I’m happy to report it went very well – the trick is to tie the wok base to the grill face to keep it from sliding.  For dessert I brought out a very special purchase – local organic ice cream made with Surly Furious!!  YUM.

What a weekend.  Good times, good times.  And tonight is opening night for the St. Paul Saints — Cody’s first official game as announcer!  I’ll be there cheering…

Oh, hell yeah.

Posted by Nate in Projects.
Sunday, May 6th, 2007 at 12:21 pm


Run, DAMNU, Run!!!!

Posted by Nate in Family.
Saturday, May 5th, 2007 at 10:05 am

damnu.jpgWell, they’re at it again: my rockstar sister and Freddie are choosing to blow a perfectly good Sunday morning by running down through the lovely Poudre Canyon and finishing in awesome downtown Ft. Collins.  Actually, that doesn’t sound half bad, and after watching the cool flythrough and photo video at the main site, I’m officially jealous that I won’t be there to cheer them on.  And a little emotional about the whole thing…  My mom says she cries at parades, well, I cry at marathons.  Something about those poor, stupid bastards running their little hearts out just gets me.  They’ve got the heart of a champion.

giddyup.jpgSo, here are these signs to cheer you on!  I don’t think they got quite enough play last time, and unfortunately these are the best pictures I have…  Jason made the green one and ran out of room for "you", hence "damnu."  Perfect.  The orange one (which I made) has a sweet little pony on the left and the world’s gayest cowboy on the right – he has a shiny Texas-shaped belt buckle and sparkly spurs, and he’s saying "Hot to Trot!"  For real.

Go get em, Lobo & FroYoHoCho! goes green!

Posted by Nate in Consumers, The Blog.
Friday, May 4th, 2007 at 1:07 pm

green5.png… or rather, the company hosting goes green!  DreamHost announced on Earth Day that they are now carbon neutral – which is fantastic, considering they were using the energy equivalent of 545 average homes!  Read more about their efforts here, including using AMD’s more efficient processors and more.

Two quick things

Posted by Nate in Bruno.
Wednesday, May 2nd, 2007 at 4:26 pm

bruno_chicken1.jpgbruno_chicken2.jpgBruno got a chicken.  It’s supposed to be indestructible.  It’s not.

garden1.jpggarden2.jpgThe raingarden is looking awesome as it starts it second year of growth.  I can’t wait for summer.

Garlic Mustard Omission

Posted by Karen in Work.
Tuesday, May 1st, 2007 at 2:33 pm

I realized that I completely neglected to mention that another Schroeder participated in the first garlic mustard event at Pine Bend.  The Pinolera was my super volunteer for that event, and participated all on her own free will, no coercion involved.  And sorry Nate, but I think THIS is what kicking ass really looks like!