Archive for » August, 2012 «

Summer can’t be over yet!

It was dark this morning when I woke up. For the first time since April. Blah. The days are getting shorter very, very fast up here near the arctic circle. which means summer is pretty much over :( Sad day. Does anyone else feel like the summer is never long enough?

So, before fall comes in full swing, I wanted to share with you a few EXTRA summery photos from our trip home to Utah when we went to Utah Lake with Chris-n-Michi, Michi’s fam, and Brian the bro.

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That’s a good lookin’ guy right there :)

Also, we’re pretty sure our friend Christopher is a closet Baywatch cast member. I mean really. Just take a look at these photos:

Exhibit A

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Exhibit B

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You’ve been found out Mr. Hoeger!

Familia de Hill 2012

The Hill Family Reunion of July 2012 was a very momentous one. For one thing…it was my very first Hill reunion and, since the world is ending in December, probably my very last. Also, it was Grandma and Grandpa Hill’s 80th birthdays and 60th anniversary. You can decide which of these was MOST worth gathering for :)

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Tian approves of this family reunion.

Balloons of the 4th

Has anyone else ever looked up at a hot air balloon and thought about how crazy the whole concept is? I mean…it’s a tiny basket hanging from a balloon full of nothing but hot air. And we use them to travel hundreds of feet up in the air at the complete mercy of the wind with no real reliable method of steering. When you really think about it, it’s pretty ridiculous.But they sure are pretty!

As I mentioned a few posts back, we got up at the crack of dawn to go to Provo’s Hot Air Balloon Festival the morning before the 4th of July. Chris took his fancy work camera and took some pretty stunning photos and though they were taken over a month ago, I just had to share! Enjoy!

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HDR

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The balloons blowing nephew Tian’s mind.

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Magical :) 

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And last, but certainly not least, our wedding photographer was also at the festival.

He’s a pro. Here is his photo:

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His was taken on the 2nd day of the festival on the actual 4th (hence why it’s so much more crowded)

I just had to share it with you guys because it is absolutely beautiful, and everyone should have more beauty in their lives :)

Check him out!

Scott Jarvie

Jarvie Digital Photography Facebook

Summer Berries

Norwegian strawberries are the best strawberries in the entire world. I dare you to challenge me on that one. No really, go ahead. But I’ll totally win. Think of the best strawberry you have ever eaten and then times that by 10. That’s a Norwegian strawberry. They only come out for a few weeks between the middle of June and the beginning of August and man are they good! There are little stands selling them all over downtown and I bought a bunch the other day when I passed by one and the mouthwatering smell of them rendered me completely helpless.

As I was walking home, I realized I didn’t think we’d be able to eat all of them before the started going icky (that happens surprisingly fast here for some reason) so I decided to put all my Pinterest browsing to good use. You guys have seen that pin going around for ages right? The one for preserving berries with vinegar? Oh…you aren’t on Pinterest yet? Ok…. Well here’s the gist:

You soak your berries in 8 parts water and 1 part vinegar (white or apple cider) for a few minutes, let them dry completely, and it allegedly kills off all the mold spores that make your berries wilt so fast and makes them last 3 times longer than if you didn’t use the vinegar. So I decided to try it!

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The results? The berries lasted precisely until Chris got home from work and then they were gobbled up in a matter of minutes between the two of us. So I’m not sure if the vinegar thing worked. I have another batch of vinegarized strawberries and raspberries sitting in the fridge as I type this though so hopefully those will last through the experiment.

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Oh, and a tip to mention: make sure you let the berries dry completely after their soak. Otherwise you’ll be able to taste the vinegar. I made that mistake. Ick. But the vinegar evaporates as they dry and you won’t be able to taste it at all after that.

Anyway, I’m off now to go raid the fridge for a strawberry…or five (perhaps with whipped cream…mmmm). If any of you try the berry-vinegar rinse yourselves, let me know how it turns out!

Mini-Road Trip Weekend

We had a really nice weekend! I hope you guys did as well!

Friday night Kolie and Josh came over for dinner and Killer Bunnies. Kolie killed everyone else’s bunnies….so she won. Again…

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I didn’t have any cake orders this weekend so I wanted to make the most of Saturday. We had originally wanted to rent some kayaks or possibly go for a sail, but we woke up in the morning to pouring rain. Ah Norway.  I absolutely did not want to stay at home, so we decided to go for a drive out to the candle factory. Miraculously, it stopped raining and the sun peeked out a bit while we were there! We were even able to eat some ice cream and lefse (Norwegian cinnamon pancake-sort-of-things) out on the porch! I know…whoah.

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Since the weather was better and we didn’t really want to go home,  we decided to keep on driving east to possibly make it to Lysebotn, the tiny town at the very end of the Lysefjord. Julie and I had tried to make the trip when she visited back in May, but the road was completely blocked by snow. Yep…you read that right. Blocked by snow in May. Thankfully we were snow-free in August. If we weren’t I would immediately move to the Caribbean.

The most exciting thing to see/do in Lysebotn is to drive the Lysebotn Road AKA one of the most amazing roads in all of Europe. Seriously. Google “Amazing Roads Europe” and it’ll show up on almost every list.  It’s a narrow road climbing straight up the side of the fjord with 27 hairpin turns (plus 3 inside a tunnel!) and is the only way to drive into the town from the southern side of the fjord (there’s one other road going up the other side to the North). In the winter, the only way in or out of the town is by sea. Here’s a postcard with a picture from a better angle than we could get:

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It was pretty awesome, although for the sake of our plucky little station wagon I was glad we were going down, not up :)

We got to Lysebotn right as the last ferry of the day was loading up, so we decided to take the ferry through the Lysefjord instead of taking the 2.5 hour drive back. It was a fantastic choice! We saw Kjeragbolten and Preikistolen from below, some seals (well, Chris did…I was buying some hot dogs (pølser) for dinner. We didn’t realize we were going on a road trip when we left and came horribly unprepared), and got to admire the beauty of the fjords as the sun was setting.

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Not bad for a Saturday afternoon :)