Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Pinterest - My New Addiction

Well, it's not like I needed another distraction in my life, but I've finally jumped on the Pinterest bandwagon. I must say, I absolutely love it! It now has a very important place in my morning/throughout the day/evening routine.

For those of you who are like me and have put off joining Pinterest or if you haven't heard about it yet, let me tell you why I love it.

What is Pinterest?
The easiest way to describe Pinterest is to say it's a fancy way to bookmark things you find on the Internet. Instead of adding links to your "Favorites" that you will probably never look at again, you can "pin" them to a board in your profile. Therefore, your favorites are now easily displayed in user defined categories.

How does it work?
Well, I'm all about visuals, and so is Pinterest. So here's an example:

Say I'm browsing for wall art on the Home Decorator's website and see a piece that I love.

Using the "Pin It" button I installed on my favorites bar (find out how to do this here), I am able to quickly pin things I see on the web to my Pinterest boards.

First, I click the "Pin It" button.

Then a box pops up with all the images on the page. I click on the image that I want to Pin

Next a box pops up that asks you to chose which board you want to pin the image to and a box for you to write a description of what you're pinning.

Once you click "Pin It", the image is added to the board you selected. The wall art that I liked from Home Decorators is now pinned to my "Home Decor" board.

Pinterest is definitely more fun once you get a solid number of Pins added to your profile and followers/people to follow. It's so great being able to see what everyone else is looking at and what they find interesting. I also love that my Pins are broken out into descriptive categories. If I stumble on a recipe I want to try, I can add it to my "Recipes to Try" board. If I see a cool looking craft project, I can add it to my "Crafts" board. I think you get the picture!

I'm still learning all the "ins and outs", so I may have a future update if I figure out something cool and exciting!

If you are not already on Pinterest and would like an invite, just leave a comment or send me a message and I'll get you one. If you ARE already on Pinterest, here's a direct link to my profile so you can check out my boards. I also added a "Follow Me" button to my side board if you choose later on to join in the fun! I'm always looking for new people to follow as well!

Happy Pinning!

Friday, August 5, 2011

Wyoming Vacation - Day 6 and Day 7

Well, we've just about reached the end of the vacation. These last two days were mostly spent with Ryan's family in Casper - that is, once we finally got there. Unfortunately I didn't get many pictures due to all the chaos, but we had a really great time.

After navigating through the crazy snow storm in Jackson, we got back down to lower ground and continued on the now six hour journey to Casper. Since our original route had changed due to weather, we were kind of "winging it" on our new, longer route. Since we were adding about 70 miles to our trip, Ryan reviewed the map to see if he could find a quicker way to go. He ended up locating some small highway on the map that appeared to follow closely with the mountain range rather than going down South and back up. We decided to go with it, not knowing what the road was going to be like ahead. I mean, it was on a map, so we assumed it was a legit road. We drove along a nicely paved road for about 10 miles before it turned to dirt. Yes, DIRT. On top of that, there had clearly been snow in the recent past, leaving many of the dirt roads very muddy. Did I mention we were in a Mazda 3? Not exactly the best vehicle for such driving conditions.

Anyway, with every turn we took it seemed like we were "almost to the road". We (and by 'we' I mean Ryan - haha) just knew that around the next curve we'd be on the main highway again. After about an hour and a half, our short cut dropped us off approximately 5 miles North of where we would have been, had we stayed on the main highway. That tends to be how short cuts go though, right? At least the weather cooperated.
This is the route Google Maps suggested we take

This is the Short Cut that we ended up taking
They look awfully similar huh!

Once back on the main road we noticed we were running low on gas. Unfortunately for us, the closest town, Jeffrey City, was about 30 miles away. When we finally got to this tiny ghost town, we went to the only building that looked like it had people in it. We found out that this town had no gas station. It was either continue on our route for 30 more miles or turn around and go 60 the way we came from. We obviously opted for the 30 mile route. When we reached the gas station, we experienced price gouging at it's best. Since it was the only option for many miles, they were charging an outrageous $4.10/gallon for regular, unleaded gas. Mind you, the rest of Wyoming was selling gas for around $3.20 during this time. So we got the minimum amount needed to get us to the next town, where we could fuel up for a more reasonable price.

We finally rolled into Casper around 5:30, just in time for dinner. We met up with Ryan's Aunt and Uncle, then went to pick up his Grandmother, and headed to the restaurant. Dinner was really good, but I was EXHAUSTED! I could not wait to get back to their house and go to bed. It had been a really long day of driving, and had started out very stressful because of the weather. Once we got back, we hit the sheets and we were out!

The next day started out pretty peaceful. We didn't have much planned since Ryan's Aunt & Uncle both had to work this day, so we decided to drive around town a little. We ventured up to the cemetery to visit his Grandfather's grave. Later that afternoon we went and visited his Grandmother and took her out for ice cream and drove up Casper Mountain. We tried to take some pictures up there, but it was really windy and only one turned out alright. We did get some more deer pictures though!

Ryan and his Grandmother on top of Casper Mountain
After we dropped Ryan's grandmother back off, we headed back to his Aunt & Uncle's house. We were notified that many of Ryan's cousins would be coming over that evening to hang out, so we were pretty excited! Ryan hadn't seen many of them for a year or so, and I had never met them. Some of the family had already arrived by we time we got there. There were so many little kids running around all over the place!!

Most of that evening was a blur. It just went by so fast! I so happy to meet everyone and to announce our engagement! After things settled down and everyone went home, we hit the sack again. We had a long day of driving ahead of us. The next morning we woke up to a fabulous home cooked breakfast of biscuits and gravy! The hospitality was so great. It was just what we needed to begin our trip back home.

The rest of the story gets very, very boring. It primarily consists of driving across Nebraska. The trip from Casper to Kansas City was about 14-15 hours, so we didn't get home until around 2 or 3am. I don't really recall - I was that tired! The only thing I really remember from the monotonous drive back is the way the humidity increased with every mile. There is such a HUGE difference between the humidity in Kansas and Wyoming. I didn't notice it as much going there, but on the way back it was extremely hard to ignore.

Well, that about sums it up! I hope I didn't leave anything major out! I probably should have written these recaps oh, about 3 months ago! But what's new?! I'm a little slow to update, obviously! So I hope you all enjoyed reading about my latest vacation!