Favorite Twin Cities Breweries

My husband and I spent the first five years of our marriage living in Madison, Wisconsin before moving back to the Twin Cities. We loved it there. Wisconsin is known for many things: cheese, Packers football, and, my favorite, beer.

We were immersed in the craft beer world. Not only did we live near fabulous breweries, but each restaurant we frequented had beer lists that read more like chapter books, with double-digit amounts of local, craft beers on tap. I quickly moved on from the Bud Light of my college days and picked up on the difference between ales and lagers, appreciated the hoppiness of IPAs, and learned the correct way to pronounce "hefeweizen."

While the craft beer movement has exploded throughout the country, we're especially lucky in the Twin Cities. There are over 130 breweries in the state and most of them are located in Minneapolis, St. Paul, and the surrounding suburbs. Local taprooms have even become a favorite hang-out for my husband, though he prefers not to drink himself. We love to check out new ones on date nights, bounce around a few with a group of friends, and sometimes we even bring our three kids along. Here are some of our Twin Cities favorites.

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Find out my favorites over on the Twin Cities Moms Blog!

Post Weekend

These two kind of like each other.

(I think they were laughing at seeing the other wearing a hood...)

"Hey Caden, whatcha thinkin?"

"Twins stuffs."

We keep a couple of old comforters rolled up over some power cords in the living room, (ye olde out of sight out of mind trick), with the bonus feature of, hey, if you also drape them over the jumper...

...instant fort.

Brooklyn likes to crawl in and lounge back against the blankets, while looking around and grinning.  It looks like all she's missing is a cocktail cup of juice with an umbrella sticking out the top.

Good moms take pictures.  Great moms would have noticed their second child smiling in the background, and would have avoided chopping off their head so that they were included in the picture, too.


Weekend food adventures:

Cottage cheese isn't so bad, after all.

(I tried cottage cheese with them awhile ago, and they instantly spit it out.  Since now, if I were to let them, they would inhale an entire block of any other type of cheese in one sitting, I decided to try cottage cheese again.  Pros: they loved it, no cutting up cheese into small, baby-friendly pieces.  Cons: the cheese-y, liquid-y, curd-y mess...)

I also let them try a fresh-baked, chocolate chip cookie...

Luckily by this point, it was almost bath time.

And, a significant milestone in any child's life...

...first Chipotle!  Really, Chipotle is all of their favorite things.  Chicken, cheese, veggies (corn salsa, green peppers, and onions)...also rice, though we didn't let them have that since it creates enough of a mess in our OWN house, and I wasn't going to inflict that upon the poor employees.  Going to Chipotle also seemed like a miracle, since we went there after church.  And then after Chipotle we went to the store for another errand.  These are the days I dreamed of back when they were still nursing round the clock.  We're living the dream, here, people.


Babies first beer!  Wait, just kidding, that's mine.  Tyson and I got out for a few hours on Saturday and got to sit at a restaurant where we were able to, get this, take our own damn time.  The waitress had to come back twice to get our food order because we were in no rush deciding what to eat (though we were busy slurping down beer and noshing on some delicious cheese curds) (Yay Wisconsin!).  And there was no cleaning up afterwards.  We even waited (slightly) for a table and had to entertain no one but ourselves!  Ah, the miracle of babysitters.  (Thanks to our friends who put up with block tower after block tower, snack time, and, from the sounds of it, some epic baby stair olympics.)


(Sometimes the best pictures are blurry pictures.)

A (Couple) of my Favorite Things

I took a couple of evenings this week to do some of my favorite Christmas activities-sending out Christmas cards and wrapping presents.  This year I used a Living Social deal for my Christmas cards.  They came shipped so cute in an adorable little box, and a note saying that they enclosed two extra cards and envelopes, in case I was still adding to my Christmas card list, which I thought was a nice touch.  I also like that you can personalize the back of the card, as well as the front, and manipulate the colors, font, and text.  The address stickers I love, which were leftover from last year, and I used them to seal the back of the envelope.

Christmas presents consist of kraft paper tied with different types of red and green ribbon.  The kraft paper gives everything a uniform look, and the ribbon makes it festive.  I also bought gold washi tape, which glams it up a bit. It doesn't stick as nice to the kraft paper as I'd like (I actually had to secure the folds with clear gift-wrapping tape first), but I still enjoy the overall effect.  Most wrapping paper, especially at Christmas time, is too garish and busy for my taste, and I'm happy with the simplicity of this year's gifts.