Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Christmas Came Early

Thank you Sarah!!! Another successful swap for the books! Now to find patterns...

Saturday, September 12, 2009

See You Tomorrow!

This is the calm before the storm. Tomorrow night 2,100+ athletes will cross through the arch below to become an IronMan again or for the first time.
This guy is already Iron; he will be just polishing up his title tomorrow.
Thank you to Mollie for taking a picture of us together. Normally it's all just cheezy self portraits of myself and pictures of Aaron.

He's ready to go! Where's the start line?!

Well, maybe one cheezy self portrait. :)

The Over-Trained and the "Under-Trained"

Aaron met a man yesterday who has been swimming 3-4 miles and biking around 150 miles to train for the Ironman, even though the IM swim distance is only 2.4 miles and the bike only 112 (Ha! You can tell I'm an Ironman's wife when I say the swim is only 2.4 miles...). We met up with him and his wife after checking Aaron's gear in.

Get your game face on! The race a little more than 14 hours from starting!!!

Wisconsin Sheep & Wool Festival

This weekend happened to not olny be the Ironman in Wisconsin, but also the Wisconsin Sheep & Wool Festival in Jefferson, WI (only 30 minutes away from Madison)!

I've never been to a festival of this sorts before, and man was it fun! I got to meet owners of the following shops:

Happy Hands Yarn
Rach-Al-Paca Farm (<- she's practically my neighbor!)
Briar Rose Fibers

And these were just the ones I purchased something from! There were so many other great booths and it was tons of fun to chat with everyone. Please enjoy some of my pictures of the booths and sheep herding from the event!

And after all that excitement, I got to shop at my first ever Piggly Wiggly!

(Cheezy self portrait warning!)

We're Here!

Ironman Wisconsin is tomorrow and we have arrived. Check out Ironman Wisconsin to watch live race day coverage of Aaron! #562

Sunday, August 30, 2009

I Made Power!

The Great Minnesota Get Together is a Hagen family tradition. Aaron can remember only four years (the years he was in the service) that he did not make it to the State Fair. So today, in true Hagen form, we set off with cash in pocket to go feast on fair food and get a feast for our eyes people watching.

This year marked the third year that the WCCO both has had the "We Power" booth at the fair where fair goers can burn off some of the fair food and help make power for the "We Powered" broadcasts live from the Fair. Aaron has gotten a shirt or bag (the promotional prize for making 500 or more watts) the last two years, and this year I joined him for the first time to get a t-shirt of my own.

After Aaron schooled not only myself, but everyone else biking by finishing his 500 watts in less than five minutes, I was completely ready to throw in the towel. But I kept telling myself how close I was and stuck with it to get a really fun t-shirt of my own!
I feel pretty darn cool if I do say so myself!

Sunday, June 7, 2009


I've just finished my scarf! Only thing left to do is block and weave in my loose ends!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Scarf Update and Fun Stuff From The Boss!

I've been plugging away on the scarf, it's really turning out beautiful. I'm getting really anxious to have my very first finished object!

My wonderful boss, the one whom will be the recipient of the baby blanket below, used to knit when she studied abroad in South Africa. She kept telling me she had some things she should bring in to pass on as she didn't foresee herself picking up the hobby again any time soon, and if she did, she'd want to go check out the yarn stores herself.

Well, that made me the recipient of a bag full of goodies!!!

I must get to bed, but had to post this! What an awesome, fun treat for a Tuesday!!!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

I Hopped, I Shopped, I Actually Won A Door Prize!

Last weekend was the 2009 Yarn Shop Hop for Summer Knitting on the Go! With the Husband visiting his Grandma who was in the hospital in Oklahoma, (what a good guy), and me to tend to the dogs and represent at a grad party and wedding shower, driving 100+ miles around the metro area to check out fun yarn shops sounded like a great way to pass the time! Each shop was asking for donations to local food shelves, so after a quick pass of the pantry, I was ready.

Armed with my maps of each location, book on CD, and my tidy seven bags of goodies for each store's foodshelf, I was off. I had full intentions of photo documenting my trip, but I got too excited each time I found the places that I forgot. Here's my take on them in the order I visited:

Zandy's - Nice store, though sadly the store next to it had some undesirable clientele wasting time near their entrance. Definitely more of a needle work type of store than a knitting and crocheting store, but still a nice variety of yarns. They gave out a fun pattern for a Beach Bag to knit with yarn made out of corn! Very cool!

Coldwater Collaborative - I love the town of Excelsior. It really seems like a Main Street, USA type of town. The lake, surrounded by a beautiful park is bordered with a very unique downtown area and nestled into a storefront near it all was Coldwater Collaborative. Every nook and cranny was packed with samples, patterns, yarns, needles, do-dads and happy customers. It was the kind of store you really get excited about what you can make with two needles and a ball of yarn. The pattern at this store was for a Winged Triangle Scarf, which is really cool. A bit of a cross between a shawl and a scarf. Very cool! It's really too bad I'm not closer to this town. Oh well, that just means Road Trip!

Amazing Threads - Great store, crappy location. After passing through Maple Grove, past the gravel pits, down a street to a dead end cul de sac to where I could enter on the back side of the office building where this store was, I was in yarn heaven. I loved that this store had so much natural light, and so much yarn! Two levels of yarn even! They even had treats for the Hoppers, nice touch! Another fun Summer On-the-Go Bag pattern and some yarn for the stash, and I was off again. If I can remember how to get to this place again without a map and compass, I will definitely return.

3 Kittens Needle Arts - Nice store in a really nice location, (wine bar across the street, this could make road tripping much more fun!). Depending on who is working, I love this store, or I feel really uncomfortable in this store, (uncomfortable only because some who work there make me feel that since I don't know all the lingo I must be watched. Really, some times all I want to do is look and not be told what the correct name and use of everything is.) On my Hop, it was a great day. The lady working got me all excited about venturing off and trying different patterns and yarns and she seemed very surprised that I was so new to knitting and Hopping already. Once I told her I was my own woman for the weekend, she understood that this was a great way to spend a beautiful spring/summer day! The pattern here is a fun Skinny Summer Scarf which I found unique because it has you cast on 251 stitches and knit until you get the desired width. I guess that's what makes it skinny, but I found that quite interesting.

Needlework Unlimited - Huge store just north of ritzy Edina. Nice mix of notions, knitting, and needlework, definitely a store to check out again. The store was quite full and I was getting anxious to get to the remaining stores before they closed, so after a quick pass through and fun Mini Shopping Bag pattern, (the bag folds into a pocket you knit on the bottom! How clever!) I was off again.

Sheepy Yarn Shoppe - With this being my first official venture into White Bear Lake, I found this store to be a nice treat. Lots of fun yarns to check out, and they had many kits ready to go which I thought was a really nice touch. The ladies working were delightful to talk to, and after adding a fun Summer Purse pattern, complete with flowers that are knitted, not crocheted, I was on the home stretch.

The Yarnery - Grand Avenue in Saint Paul is another one of those places I just love to go to. The Yarnery is in a house that when you walk into, you wish it was your home because every shelf and corner is packed with fun yarns and projects. Local designer, Marie Mayhew, was even there checking things out. She has so many cute patterns! I can't wait until I get enough courage to try to make the Wooly Bunnies! I really felt a bit star struck when I got to meet her. This is also another one of those stores where you just get excited about what you're capable of making, and everyone who works here is so down to earth and just plain cool, that you can't help but love this store. With this being my final stop on the Hop, I added a Summer Tote pattern to my collection and received the coveted keychain to put all my yarn shop charms on. (picture to come when all charms are in, some stores ran out, but since I put in the miles, I'll still get my cute little charms!)

My happy weekend was followed up by a message Tuesday night from 3 Kittens, I had won one of their door prizes! After a happy end to my work day, I ventured over there tonight and picked up my prize, a port-a-pocket, complete with a ball of Regia Silk Color sock yarn, some Fibre Rinse, emry boards, packets of Gloves in a Bottle, a mirror, a do dad to go in a Croc that says "Made by Me", and a cute little sheep wind chime.

I'm hoping that since I won a door prize, I didn't jinx my chances to win one of the big prizes for hitting all seven shops, time will tell. I believe the results of those prizes are listed on June 7. I'll just have to stay tuned!

Friday, May 29, 2009

I'm a knitting fool!!!

Over Memorial Day weekend lots of knitting was done just as planned. It was a bit more enthusiastic because I had received my swap package from the swap I signed up for on Ravelry.

I totally felt like a kid at Christmas time opening my package!

I had no idea what was treasures lied beneath the layers of tissue paper and had to hold myself back from just tearing into everything. This was a true gift.

It even came complete with suggestions of what to make with all that fun yarn received!

And any gift that includes a hand made item, chocolate, a toy for Chubbers (in leopard print too!), and flair for my fridge is just about perfect.

What a perfect first swap! Thanks again Sarah!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Erik's Spring Cup - My Dog is a Pimp!

Ani giving Chubbers some love.
The ladies cannot resist his charm!

In our neighborhood we are recognized as the people with the pug, and race days are no different. Even perfect strangers can't resist his charm!

My Tri Dude and the HOP team represented the Citizens Class nicely at the Erik's Spring Cup this past Sunday in Inver Grove Heights, with him placing fourth out of his age group! Not bad for the first mountain bike race of the year!

I think the tongue hanging out helps break the wind.

Dirks did a very nice job in the Sport Class coming in first in his age group and third overall.

It was the first really nice day we've had in a while, so when we got home bike rides, yard work, and planting the garden filled the rest of our afternoon. By the evening, we had a rosy, sun-kissed glow as we watched the sun go down while drinking a few adult beverages after having some burgers on the grill.

I love summer.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

It's starting to look like a blanket!!!

Those knitting classes are starting to pay off...And the trip to Fargo last weekend for my Tri Dude's best marathon yet!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

This is Too Cute!

I found this by a posting on the Woot! blog today.

This totally makes me wish I could a) read Russian, and b) switch professions and just build physical, robotic replicas of lovable cartoons all day. The creation of Wall-E is documented heavily via 18 pages of photos here.

Take a few minutes and just smile and enjoy watching this come together.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

I think I'm going to make it.

Last Thursday I had surgery on my right sinus. After seeing this video on YouTube, I now fully understand why I've felt like I've been hit by a truck. Today was my first full day at work; yesterday was good until I started sneezing around noon and things started to really hurt. A little bonding time with my ice pack and the pug in the afernoon made things all better.

I really can't say enough good things about my Tri Dude this last week. He really has done a great job taking care of me. It probably helps that he can go for bike rides and run while I nap, but that needs to be done too. He even did a laundry marathon all day Sunday when it rained. I'm pretty lucky to have such an awesome husband.

The other man in my life, Chubbers, and I have definitely bonded over this whole experience too. He's even learned how to jump from the couch to the recliner super-pug style when it just seems too difficult to jump straight onto my lap from the floor.

Sadly, this last week has not produced as much knitting time as I had hoped it would. My third class is this Thursday, and I'm really enjoying everything I've learned thus far and hope I can drop my perfectionist ways enough to attempt to start a project without fear of screwing it up. I've found a few really cute patterns I'd like to try on the little ones in my life. This way I'll be all practiced up for my ultimate goal; the wool ear flap hat.

What a wild and crazy life I have.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Bachelorette Week

I went to my first opera on Wednesday night, The Barber of Seville. Anyone who grew up on Looney Tunes would recognize the overture to this as the Rabbit of Seville. I'm slightly surprised, but I really enjoyed going to the opera.

The tight ass in me really appreciated it also as they were offering subscriptions to the MN Opera for 50% of their already discounted price. So for next season, I have tickets to The Pearl Fisher, La boheme (the inspiration for RENT), and Salome, where along with prepaid parking all three tickets my total cost was about $180. So for essentially the same price as the one ticket I already wanted for La boheme, I got three tickets, and these are much better seats than the $20 ticket I purchased to see The Barber!

This weekend, I scrap, get my rear in gear, and celebrate my favorite nephew's second birthday. I can say he's my favorite because he's my only one.

My Tri Dude is running a half marathon tomorrow; had he told me the correct weekend, I'd be there taking pictures, but alas, I scrap.