a guy and a bee

a collection of random thoughts and ideas from me, her, and sometimes us

Category Archives: holiday

birthday celebrations

last week was my birthday. the big 29 on the 29th. last year, we started a tradition of going to museum or somewhere different for my birthday. we saw the warhol exhibit at the BMA last year and this year we ventured down to the American Visionary Art Museum (AVAM). i bought the groupon for two a few months ago and it was a great deal so we figured we would put it together since the last couple we purchased we never got around to using in time and have expired.

although you can’t take photos inside, you can take photos outside which is were the attached are from. they have great and different art all around. we enjoyed many of them. i was pretty partial to the mario batali’s recipes on the paper plates and the toothpick city (can’t remember the name). everywhere you turned there was something different and intriguing to look at. the photo on the left is from the glass tree located in front of the museum. it was pretty crowded inside since it was a holiday week and we even saw a lot of families and younger visitors besides the hipsters that there there as well.

we tried to find something in the gift shop, but we couldn’t find anything that tickled our fancy. usually when visit somewhere new we usually purchase a pint glass. we started it over the summer and have grown a nice and random collection going. on the right is a iron little character in one of the outside exhibits. if you haven’t had a chance to check out the AVAM, we would certainly suggest it.

outside, there is also a very large egg made out of mirror pieces and i snapped this photo. one of my favorites in awhile and i tend to take alot of photos when visiting places. after the avam, we went to the abbey burger bistro. it was my second time visiting and we started out with the crab tots and then moved to a build your own burger. both were fantastic and we were stuffed when we walked out the doors. it was a nice little afternoon downtown.


fantastic (and easy to do at home)


went with the pretzel roll! so good!


my dinner. sorry it's so dark.

for dinner, i had suggested we try somewhere new and the family gathered at George Martin’s Grillfire in The Hotel at Arundel Preserve which is near Arundel Mills. we had a fantastic dinner and time. it’s probably described as a new american cuisine restaurant. i got the petite filet since i was still somewhat full even after a post lunch nap! others got the meatloaf (a popular choice), ribs, crab cakes, avocado cobb salad, and the salmon wrap. everyone seemed to enjoy their including the free cheese bread they brought out time and time again after we ate the loaves. the wait staff was good and attentive and even brought us out some free desserts for the table after bee told them it was my birthday.

all in all it was a great birthday and i got a partial season ticket plan to see the orioles this summer so that was exciting!


our week with lucy


for the last 10 days, we have been watching lucy, our friends dog. she is a cute beagle mix that is full of energy.

having never had a dog, bee was a little apprehensive and excited at the same time. i grew up with a sheltie so i’ve always been a fan of dogs and knew what to expect and how to handle it.

we got off to a little of a rough start because lucy hadn’t been away from her parents for an extended period of time and it took the better part of a day to get used to use and not being home. usually they had someone watch her at their house so it was a new environment for her. the first night, she was up and down most of the night and didn’t sleep much, but once she settled in, she was great. she followed us everywhere and wanted to play consistently like most little high energy dogs.

all in all, it was a great week and she can visit any time but i don’t see us getting a dog soon. maybe it was because it was a new place, but she liked to follow us around and get into everything, which didn’t bother us but after a certain point, it got a little old. haha. they were great napping partners while we were off all week. bee also didn’t seem to appreciate that dogs shed everywhere before we got her but she knows now! we are already doing loads of laundry because our blankets are covered in short hair.

all in all, we enjoyed taking care of her, but we were happy to have the house back to ourselves. it was new and different experience and we didn’t kill her so there is that! below are a few photos of her.

lucy and her floppy ear (one ear is always floppy)

playing on the couch

christmas presents

happy holidays!

merry christmas and happy holidays! i know this is a couple days late, but we hope everyone had a wonderful holiday and are ready for the new year. we had a very nice christmas and got to spend some nice time with my side of our family.

we’ve been dog sitting for some college friends of ours so it’s been a different way to spend the week running around playing with the dog. since we are both off all week it hasn’t been too bad to keep her entertained, but as you might expect, she follows us everywhere.

anyway, hope you all have had a great holiday season and preparing for a great 2012. maybe we’ll do a new years resolution blog sometime soon!



holiday traditions

what kind of holiday traditions do you have?

having been married almost 2 years now, bee and i are starting to develop our new own holiday traditions. one of our favorite traditions i detailed last week about going to cut down a christmas tree. one of bee’s other traditions is to be the first to mail out our christmas cards. it’s a point of pride for her when someone tells her that our christmas/holiday cards were the first to arrive in the mailbox. this year she wrote them out on the morning of thanksgiving. i think one holiday tradition alot of folks partake in is cookie baking. we’ve gone the fresh fudge route and probably next friday or saturday, bee will make 10 – 15 pounds of different types of fudge for our family members. i know my folks always look forward to it and it always gets rave reviews (and makes me put on a few pounds, haha). i think certainly as we get older and our family continues to grow, we will certainly have more traditions to enjoy, but those are a few of ours so far. i always enjoy watching “a christmas story” all day long on TBS but that isn’t exactly a “family” tradition, haha!

growing up our tradition was to always sit at the top of the steps and take a photo together before we went down to open our presents. this tradition probably continued until we went to college. we started to loathe these photos as we got older, but it’s something we can look back now as we are grown adults and appreciate.

one last wonderful holiday tradition we have in our household is to celebrate my birthday all week 😉 on the 29th, i will turn 29. interesting how time flies by these days.


oh, christmas tree, oh, christmas tree


every year, christmas is a big deal in our household, especially the last few now that we have gotten married. in our first year of living together, we went and picked a tree off the lot and since then we have cut one down. bee always had fake trees as a kid so now that she can a real one, we take full advantage of it. this year, broken rib and all, bee and i made the trek out yesterday to pine valley farms. it’s off of 70 and 97 in skyesville for those of you reading this that are in maryland.

our first time out, we used one of the saws that the farm will let you borrow for $20 (you get the money back when you return the saw). we quickly found out that although tradition is great, bringing the sawz all that i got the next christmas to cut down the tree was the best idea we stumbled upon. as you might now, bee is a go getter and one time when she cutting down the tree, a fellow tree cutter downer brought over his sawz all for us to use. made quick great work of the tree.


imagehere is bee on the hunt for the best douglas fir on the the tree farm. last year, our eyes were bigger than our living room so we knew we had to go for something that wasn’t as wide this year, much to her dismay. we looked for something in the 7-8 foot range.

once we found the right tree after walking several aisles, we got down to business. a great tip for those that might be new to christmas tree cutting down, bring an old blanket or sheet that you might use around the house for painting, etc. it makes a great location for you to lay on and get under the tree as you cut it down. keeps the mud, grass, and pine needles off of you. those of of you that are clean freaks like we are, it’s a great tip. don’t forget to wear old clothes too. it’s not a fashion show out there!

once bee made short work of cutting it down, it was over to shaking, bundling, and back to the car. unfortunately, the bundling got screwed up so we had to re-tie the string so it would stay bundled. we made the decision, after bee carried the tree back to the car, to put it inside instead of on roof because of my limited mobility to get the tree over my head and secured properly on top of the car.


cut down and pre-bundled

bundled and in the car

 (yes, i had to vacuum my car because of it. boo.)


you have to let it fall

once you get the tree inside and setup, you have to let the branches fall back to their natural place. we started decorating a few hours later. (and i was watching the LSU/Georgia game, haha.)


lights are on


decorated! looking good!


nice skirt!

that is our new tree skirt that we splurged on at the end of the season last year. one of our friends had the similar tree skirt and we really liked it so we ended up getting ours and bee is very excited about it. we were using a traditional skirt that looked like the regular red stockings with white trim, but we wanted to get a little fancier going forward! so now the tree is up, the house is decorated and the stockings were hung (with care) by the fireplace. feels like christmas, although it was around 60 degrees today!

we also started a neat new tradition once we get the tree home a few years ago. we cut off a small ring from the bottom of the tree and save it. right now it’s above the fireplace drying out and will go into a glass jar we have in our dining room as we collect more and more rings from years of celebrating our favorite holiday. (all these photos were taken on my phone, not too shabby!)


new year’s resolutions

do you make new year’s resolutions? i never really got into making a resolution, but i know a lot of people do. are you one of those people who wants to work out more often or eat healthier? this year, i don’t really have a resolution, but something i would like to do more of, so we will see how it goes.

the best resolutions are both attainable but also good goals for yourself, so don’t set something too high and too hard to accomplish. remember to make your goals into SMART goals: specific, measurable, attainable, realistic and timely! my wife informed me last week that she wants to run the baltimore marathon this coming year so that will be a nice goal for her personally and something i know she can do! it will take a lot dedication and time, but it is specific (running a marathon), measurable (running it or not), attainable (she has run long distances before and can do it again), realistic (it’s not out of her ability) and timely (the marathon is in october and she will be able to run and train all year).

here’s to a great year and a happy and healthy 2011 to all you! hope you accomplish all you set out to do!

what are you thankful for?

every year at this time, we look back and think and talk about what we are thankful for. it is something that we need to do more often, but is often looked past in the daily routine of work, friends, social activities, etc. thinking about this year and what i am thankful for, it’s hard to just think of one thing, but most of all, i am thankful to be putting this wild year behind us.

the prior year ended with a wild finish and the 2010 got started off the same way. 40 some inches of snow in february postponed her bridal shower and had many of us sweating bullets that it would melt away in time for our big day. well it did and almost 9 months ago, bee and i got married. it was everything we wanted it to be and more than we probably wanted to handle. we celebrated and quickly returned to reality with family issues that caused a large divide. lucky, she had me to lean on and we yelled, cried, screamed, ran away, and have started to move forward from those days.

summer came and went. some things changed and some things stayed the same. we spent some time at the beach, but not as much as usual and we even spent her birthday apart, although, she got to see fireworks in disney world on the 4th of july. it was her first time there and she loves fireworks and magic, so where else would one want to be. everyone i’ve talked to this year has talked about how fast it has gone by. well the same seemed to happen here. october came around and we drove to nebraska to see her dad. it was a great trip and brought up a lot of emotions. it was a very good, but trying trip and we got to see some more of this great country. (ps… i started choking on fritos while typing this, so i apologize if any spit is on this post 😉 )

so as we come to this thanksgiving and the holiday season and look back on this wild year, we can both be thankful for the experiences and thankful that the year is over. we are thankful that we are moving forward to new experiences and hopefully better ones. with that,  i ask you, what are you thankful for?

oh yeah, i took the picture of the flower to the left at the omaha zoo in nebraska.

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