2017: Happy New Year!!!!!


Ah, yes. One of those year end wrap up posts on a blog that yada, yada, yada about what happened in 2016, and what one hopes for in 2017 yada, yada, yada. If and when I do it, it is more for an electronic journal for myself to look back on and bring up memories.

I'll sum up 2016 in two words: It was.

Enough said about that as all my blog posts pretty much covered what it was, another trip around the sun filled with fun, sadness due to loss, the full gamut of emotions when beloved family pets move on, wonderful news for our children, and life's eventful journey. I don't mean to be pessimistic about our year and not sum it up with a long blog post as it was a good year filled with wonderful trips, events, family, friendships, and transitions including saying goodbye to Tara's father. I just covered most of it in the previous posts, so no point in rehashing it all.

I'll sum up what I hope 2017 will be in three words: It will be.

Yes. It will be filled again with work, trips, reaching goals, transitions, and our attempt at enjoying it all as it comes.

Married for 27 Years

We did celebrate our 27th Wedding Anniversary yesterday with a quiet evening at home with our children. Tara had ordered a pastrami from Katz's Delicatessen in New York  City as my Christmas gift. We had a wonderful meal on Thursday night with it, and decided to take on making our own version of Speedy Romeo's pastrami pizza last night with some of the leftovers. It was so good, I believe we will make another for New Years Day. It was actually Alexa's recommendation, and the pastrami pie had been featured on Food Network. Here's a blog about the Jewish Mash-Up including links to plenty of "how to make its". There's a link to the Food Network video, and we ended up making our own version (including olives) for a romping, stomping amazing pizza!

Before going in the 425 oven...


And after 20 minutes of baking...


It's hard to portray how delicious this was, but the red kraut, olives, fontina cheese, thousand island dressing, bechamel sauce, Katz's pastrami, and the everything bagel spices just makes for a tremendous burst of flavor on everyone's favorite - pizza! It's a keeper for sure in this household.

Of course, Noel wanted to help with cleaning up and rinsing the dishes...

Noel helping with rinse

Thanks and Kudos to Rasmussen Bike Shop in Des Moines!

After spending 4 years of riding the Specialized Roubaix Big Red Fire Truck 64cm road bike on pavement, gravel, grass for some cross races, fire roads in Germany, paths and roads in California, Arizona, Colorado, South Dakota, Iowa, Utah in Winter, Fall, Summer, Spring, rain, snow, salt, sand, humidity, my sweat dripped all over it, a few RAGBRAIs - I figured it was time for a new chain, cassette, rings, BB, brake pads, cables, housing, new tires, clean up, etc... .

It wasn't shifting so well and I knew it was time, so Matt ordered the parts last week, and I took it up this week to get the overhaul. Sure, a new bike is always at the back of one's mind, but I love this bike as it gets most of my pedaling action of all my bikes and fits me well. All the new parts and labor to spruce it up was in the $500 - $600 range which is a lot less than a new bike at $2K plus. When I picked it up and paid, Sterling said "Wow, Bruce. You've got a new bike." which is actually how it feels out on the pavement. Shifting is once again flawless, and the CGR post gobbles up enough of the cracks and bumps to make me smile on this endurance bike.

While they did it, I wanted to go from the OE white bar tape and saddle, to black which is more practical in terms of not showing dirt. The white looked cool when new, but was an eye sore the past 4 years no matter how much I tried to keep it looking clean. So I moved over the black WTB Volt and Specialized CGR post from the Dos Niner (which now has the Thudbuster and another WTB saddle on it) to the road bike, and had Rassy's put on the Lizard Skin black 3.2mm bar tape.

It went from looking like this...


To looking like this...


I'll get 2 1/2 hours out in the cold today on the bike, take a nap, then go to dinner in Des Moines tonight with Tara and friends before we all head to the Symphony Concert at 8 pm. That's our New Years Eve celebration.

Have a Happy New Year everyone!

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