Monday, December 13, 2010

Blizzard 2010

This past weekend was one of the five worst snowfalls in Minnesota history. It was an all out blizzard! We were very thankful that since we no longer own a car, we didn't have to worry about shoveling!

Outside our garage, the snow was knee-deep!

This car across the street from our building was completely snowed-in.

Early afternoon
Same car, later in the evening
Without the pressure of having to shovel, we decided to bundle up and take a walk. It was really beautiful!
Perfect height for Sallie!
This bike owner is going to be sorry
Street corner at Laurel & Cleveland
There's a park bench under all that snow
Normally, this would be a sidewalk up to JRC.
After our walk, we noticed a neighbor stuck in our alley, so we grabbed our shovels to give her a hand. We ended up shoveling and pushing her to get her back out onto the street and into a nearby parking lot.

It was a pretty neat experience because there were a quiet peacefulness lingering in the air, and there were so many people outside walking around with shovels looking to help out anyone who needed it.

Apparently, there's nothing like a blizzard to bring a community together!

Saturday, December 11, 2010

She's SO Cute!

Ok. I know this post is nearly identical to the previous post. But I just can't help myself!

She's. just. so. gosh. darn. cute!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Friday, November 26, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

We had a lovely Thanksgiving this year! We spent the morning lounging around the house. Jeff got to sleep in (My sleeping in was thwarted by Sallie. :(); I spent some time editing some photos.

My brother stopped by in his way to our parent's home to pick us up.
What a nice guy! :)

We spent the early afternoon putting the finishing touches on dinner. I made a scrumptious, Roasted Fall Vegetable Salad (a new recipe. got lots of compliments on it. yay!) and a fruit salad ambrosia. We also had all the regular Thanksgiving fare - turkey, mashed potatoes, cranberry sauce, sweet potatoes, stuffing, green bean casserole, dinner rolls, etc. My sister, of course, made her really yummy orange rolls, and PIE! There were 15 of us, and we had 9 pies total (2 sweet potato, pumpkin, lemon meringue, pecan, french silk, banana cream, apple, and blueberry). Yeah, we LOVE our Thanksgiving pies. :))

After dinner, a few of us took our Thanksgiving walk - a tradition we started a couple years ago. Here's a few pictures.
Silly Selena
Little girls walking the dogs
What's so funny, you two?
That's a might big snowball!
Such good little dog walkers

It was so bloody cold outside that our walk really only lasted about 15 minutes or so. We just walked to the park (a very short distance) and back.

Back in the warm house, there was some lounging around.

Tatiana playing with Abby
Sallie lounging on the back of the sofa
Most of the entire family gathered to play a game. It's usual to have so many of us join in. We were playing BuzzWord.
And having a blast. Enjoying the game and the general frivolity.

Hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving, too!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

1st Snow

We awoke this morning to a most beautiful blanket of freshly fallen white snow.

I absolutely LOVE the first snowfall of the season. I find it to be so peaceful and calm. It's like being enveloped in a warm snuggly blanket.

Here's a couple pictures of the snow from our apartment window.

Now, if the snow didn't have to come with the price of COLD,
we'd be so much happier. :)

Monday, November 08, 2010


The other day, Jeff gave Sallie this toy to play with. It wasn't a new toy, but one we hadn't given her in quite sometime.

She played so well with the toy! It was like it was her best friend.

Sometimes, she would take a little break and snuggle with it. So cute!!

We're considering getting her a real life playmate. Someone she can play with all day - without chewing its ear off.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Ramos-Ferber Wedding

Last weekend, Jeff and I went out to Oregon for the wedding of an old friend of Jeff's. It was so much fun...and oh, so beautiful! The wedding was held at a secluded ranch on the Umpqua River in southern Oregon.

Big K Ranch Lodge
In addition to the Lodge and Guest Cabins, it was a working ranch with cattle and everything.
Grazing Cattle
In addition to the cattle, they had a bird preserve. Hunters can come and hunt for pheasants and other game birds. We walked around the grounds a bit Friday evening and saw a few pheasants.
There is a glimpse of a pheasant in the center of this photo.
Sorry for the poor quality; our camera was not cooperating very well most of the weekend.
Jeff must have just missed the pheasant in this photo, but it's such a nice crisp photo that I had to include it.
 The lodge was located in a beautiful valley. Any direction you looked there were mountains directly in your view.
Gorgeous mountains surrounding the lodge!
Miles of the Umpqua River made the border of the ranch from the neighboring ranch. There was a very cool alluvial fan of rocks where the trail from the lodge met up with the river.
Me standing on the alluvial fan, looking out at the river
Saturday was the wedding. The bride was stunning!
The ceremony was lovely! The view was breathtaking!
Introducing Mr. & Mrs. Ferber
The best man was the bride's 11 year-old son. Awww!
Best man's toast
Apparently they practiced a lot for their first dance and wouldn't let anyone know what they were dancing to or see them dance before the reception. It was fun to hear all the anticipation that created; the mother of the bride was particularly excited to see what they'd been practicing.
First Dance
During the reception, Jeff and I popped outside for a bit.
We found this jacked up van to be pretty hilarious and thought of it as a marker of being at a wedding in the Pacific NW.
There were many other vehicles jacked up as well - mostly big, huge trucks.
Of course to even it out, there was one Porsche Spyder in the lot as well.

We were a little concerned about the weather when we were leaving MN. The forecast was for rain the entire weekend. Luckily, the rain didn't really start until everyone was comfortably in the lodge enjoying the wedding and reception.

The evening and nighttime showers gave us a beautiful treat the next morning. I love it when it rains in Oregon. Everything is so green!
The fog coming over the mountains was spectacular!

It was such a wonderful, beautiful, relaxing weekend! We're so grateful we had the opportunity to attend this wedding.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Fun Airline Stories

Jeff and I recently flew to Eugene, OR, and I thought I'd share a couple funny stories from the flights.

J: Do you hear that buzzing sound?
C: No, I don't hear anything.
J: It sounds like someone's alarm is going off. It sounds just like the alarm on my phone, but it can't possibly be mine because I turned off my phone before getting on the plane. (reaches down to his phone just to double check)
C: Oh yeah. Now I hear it. It IS your alarm.
J: What the...? I know I shut off my phone. (takes phone out to shut off alarm)

Oddly, his phone continually would turn itself back on throughout the trip.

Here's another one.

C: quizzical look on her face
J: (cuz we're always on the same wavelength) The fly? Yeah, I saw it come on when we were boarding.
C: Well, let's hope so!
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Friday, September 17, 2010


A few months ago, a friend of mine, Lisa, sent out an email asking if anyone was interested in going to see Wicked--suggesting we make it a girls' night out.

I was super excited!

Jeff was super excited, too. Yeah, he totally wanted to crash the girls' night! I also invited my sister, gave a ticket to my niece for her birthday, and invited an old friend.

Last night was THE night!!

I was so excited! This is the first Broadway play I'd ever seen. We've been to a couple other plays but nothing with this much acclaim.

I was also excited because the old friend I invited was my roommate in the summer of 1997...and that was the last time I'd seen her. Reconnecting with old friends is always such great fun!!

Jeff and I grabbed some dinner at Mackenzie's before the show. It was conveniently located right next door to the theater. My friend, Heather, joined us, and then my sister and niece joined us, too.

Wicked was showing at the Orpheum theater in Minneapolis. What a gorgeous theater! We'd never been inside this theater before. I had no idea how big and old it was. Today, I had to look up the history of the theater. Fascinating! It originally opened in 1921. Jeff figured it was so old by noticing that it the lighting had been converted from gas lamps to electrical fixtures. The Hennepin Theater Trust actually gives tours of their theaters (including the Orpheum). I'd definitely LOVE to take one of those tours.

The play was fantastic! We were in the center of the very back row, so definitely not the best seats in the house. I still enjoyed the play immensely. I especially loved the storyline. It was incredible! I loved the little twists and turns and the tie-ins to the Wizard of Oz. I loved the music and the acting! I loved the fun company of the people I went with.

There were 20 or so of us that went together as a group. I didn't get a chance to socialize with them all, but it was definitely worth the group rate!

Overall, it was a fabulous evening out! Thanks, Lisa, for organizing it all!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Back to Blogging: A Title I Am Particularly Proud Of - "Tuesday, November 04, 2008 - "Tragic Ending to our House Hunting Saga"

NOTE: As part of SITS Back to Blogging event, here's one of my best titles (certainly not a blogging strongpoint of mine). This was originally posted on November 4, 2008. We have since moved away from the apartment. :-)

After much back and forth with the City of St Paul, we decided to forego buying a house and continue renting.

Luckily, it only took less than a week of searching on Craigslist to find a fantastic place.

Our new address is:
2254 Benson Ave
Unit E
St Paul MN 55116

We have conveniently relocated to the W 7th area. We're about 10 min from school, 10 min from my parent's house, and 15 min from church. Perfectly located!

We rented a 2-bedroom, 2-bathroom condo from a nice young couple. It's an upstairs condo, and we're nearly completely moved in. Everything's here but not quite unpacked just yet.

Of course, Sallie moved with us. There was no way we were going to give her up. She's way too cute and adorable, so that was one of our criteria in our apartment search. She's adjusted very well to our new place. While we are nestled in between two very busy streets, our condo is located in a wooded area right next to the railroad tracks and lots of other housing complexes. It's very residential, and Sallie loves going for walks.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Back to Blogging: A Post I Wish More People Had Read - "Talking with Sallie"

NOTE: This was originally posted on December 24, 2008. As part of SITS Return to Blogging event, I'm posting this post. I wish more people had viewed it, because it's so funny to see Jeff and Sallie singing together. We often bring this video up whenever we want to show off how awesome our little girl is.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Back to Blogging: The First Post I Ever Wrote - "Welcome!"

As part of SITS Back to Blogging event, I am re-posting my very first blog entry for the Dodson Journal! This was originally posted on February 27, 2006.

Clarinda decided she should do some updates to our website this morning. She was shocked and appalled to discover that we hadn't made any updates since November! That is such a shame...

In light of this, we've decided that our website is too cumbersome and difficult to update frequently. We checked out a friend's blog and thought that might be the way for us to go, too. We hope to keep this updated much more frequently. We'll shoot for once a week, but hopefully at least a few times each month.

We haven't decided yet if we will try to update this retroactively or just going forward--probably a little of both.
While I have much enjoyed this blogging experience, I doubt that I've kept up with it nearly as well as my intentions were in Feb 2006! There have been several stints where this blog has been severely neglected. Perhaps Back to Blogging will inspire me to keep up with it.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Camping - Afton State Park

We went camping this past weekend with some friends of ours. It was so much fun. We've really discovered that we enjoy camping. This was our second trip with summer! :-)

This particular campsite was a hike-in. It was rough, as there was quite the hill to traverse before getting to our site. With all our gear (yes, we did try to pack light), it was quite strenuous, and we were pretty pooped by the end.

So, what do you do after hard work like that?
Reward ourselves with a fire!

Enjoying the fire
What's done there, Sallie?

The next morning, we all went for a walk around the park. Afton State Park certainly is beautiful. The clear, blue skies and perfect temps probably helped a lot, too.
Sallie leading the way!
We came across this little log shelter. Not sure what it's purpose is exactly, but we thought it would was a great photo opp.
Our friends

Next to that little shelter, there was this cool brick wall.
Another photo opp?
Yes, indeed!
The Dodsons...and Sallie (of course)
At the end of our little morning hike, there was a beautiful look-out.
Jeff's turn

Clarinda's turn

Here's what we saw. Gorgeous!
I love this pic of Sallie! She looks like she's about to chase after something.


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