Thursday, March 20, 2008

Where did that 3 weeks go?!

So its been awhile since my last post-March has just been a blurry rush of events, thoroughly overloading my calendar and my memory card. Lets catch up, shall we?

About a million years ago, it snowed. Finally! Lucy saw it begin the night before and could barely sleep from excitement. Dan was home since it was a Saturday, so we all got to play outside together.

Lucy is in swim lessons now...Infant Swim Resource to be exact. Its based on the philosphy that kids need to know how to save themselves from drowning before they need to know how to backstroke. Babies as early as 6 months have gone through this process-its amazing to watch some of the younger ones. We go every day for 10 minute 1 on 1 lessons for 6-8 weeks. We are currently on week 4 and Lucy is swimming under water and rolling over to her back when she needs to take a breath. Her confidence level has skyrocketed, and although I am not quite ready to throw her into the deep end and hope for the best, I am feeling better about her being in and around water.

That's Ms. Kennette, the instructor. She lost her own son to a drowning incident several years ago and has since dedicated her life to teaching kids how to save themselves.

Easter is fast approaching and since this is Lucy's favorite holiday, we have tried our best to make it last. She met one of her idols (THE Easter Bunny) at the preschool egg hunt. Lucy has for awhile now wanted to grow up and BE the Easter Bunny. Her plan at this point is to be a pink bunny, and Knox will be a blue bunny. She will carry the big eggs, and he will handle the little ones. This might sound a little whack, but considering that before that she wanted to be an Easter EGG, we feel like she is making steps in the right direction.

We have survived one double ear infection, a brief stomach virus (that was Dan's), a full week of barely any sleep (anyone who would like to have a come to Jesus talk with Knox is more than welcomed to), and we are now embracing spring and the events it has in store for us.
Happy Easter!

Monday, March 3, 2008

Beer Making is Fun.

Dan turned the big 3-0 this weekend and to celebrate, we left town! We headed to Chattanooga for a family weekend, but had an alterior making. We had heard of a place called Chattanooga-U-Brew. Basically the concept is a build a bear for adults. Dan's sister, Melanie, offered to keep our kids so we could give it a try.

Thats Lookout Mt. in the reflection.

This place was very hard to find! We circled around in a old neighborhood in the St. Elmo district for a few minutes before spotting the door on the back basement of a warehouse. I was pretty sure we were going to need to know a secret knock to get in. Once inside, we met Greg, the owner (a granola kind of guy who had apparently been drinking since the sun came up and never set his glass down while we were there) who talked us through the process and set us up with a copper kettle and a hand scribbled recipe. Greg started this enterprise after finding the equipment for sale in Atlanta. He worked several years for Dog Fish Breweries and now makes canoes for a living (which were piled up next to the beer supplies).

Yes, it might be a meth lab, too.

Dan chose a Hefeweizin to brew up.

We had hands on with everystep, including measuring out the wheat, weighing it, cracking it. Duncan was our "guide". He rents a corner of the basement where he is co-owner of Moccasin Bend Brewery, an upstart brewery that is not yet big enough to be considered a micro brewery, but is already having success selling in serveral resturants around Chattanooga. We later at lunch at one the pizza parlors and tasted his Pumpkin Seed Ale-an orignal recipe of his. He was incredibly knowledgeable about everything, and we learned a ton.

Watching out for boil overs.

Hops! The smell was overwhelming.

Last step before fermentation is pitching the yeast.

So in a few weeks, Dan will return to can, label, and box up his brew. The name is still up the air...think of a good one and win a 6 pack! We will end up with about 13 gallons of beer-around 20 6 packs, I think. That'll keep him busy for awhile and might make us some new friends.