Sunday, December 21, 2008

Busy, Busy Weekend

1. We have heat again. Pete replaced the broken part on Friday, and we tested the furnace all weekend. It seems to work~ it has kept the house at a comfortable 67 degrees.
2. Friday we were hit pretty hard with snow on Friday. I ended up staying home from work, but Pete braved the elements to go to work. And according to him, the roads were B.A.D. I think we ended up with 10"-12" of snow... When outdoors we were certainly trudging through the white stuff--looks to be a white Christmas!
3. Friday was the H**n*n*n Christmas party. Many people. Good food. Lots of fun! After this party, we went to Pete's hockey. They played until quarter to midnight. I went only because our driveway was going to be plowed somewhere between 11 and midnight, and I did not feel like walking in the deep, wet, white stuff.
4. Last night, was the L'*sp*r*nc* Christmas party. We exchanged gifts and had a wonderful dinner. It was a nice evening, spent enjoying the Christmas season with family.
5. We have also had company this weekend - not that we have seen much of them. Greg (Sally's BF), and Paul (Greg's friend) have been staying at our house.

All-in-all it has been a busy fun weekend! We look forward to continued busy-ness as Christmas and New Year's near! Happy Holidays!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Happy Birthday Laura!

If you happen to see my wonderful Mother-in-law today, wish her a happy birthday!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Brrr... It's cold outside

Brrr... It's cold outside.

I woke up this morning absolutely freezing... our house a balmy 52 degrees. I thought that perhaps we had forgot to turn the furnace on overnight (we generally use our wood stove in the evenings and turn the furnace fan on to heat the house to a comfortable 67 degrees). However, this was not the case...

The house continued to cool steadily throughout the day... When Pete and I returned from work, our house was a shiver inducing 40 degrees. The cause of the cold: the motor on the exhaust of our furnace wore out... so the furnace is out of order at this time. Pete has ordered the part, and we should have heat by the weekend.

As I sit, huddled in blankets and intermittently thawing by the fire, typing this... I am thankful for 2 things: 1) I am glad this part wore out now, instead of next week (as we plan to be gone for several days), and 2) I am thankful for our wood stove. Somehow the cold, winter outisde temperatures seem cooler, when our house is not cozy and warm.

Keep warm. Happy Winter!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

My tooth is (temporarily) fixed

I am no longer singing "All I want for Christmas is my 2 front teeth".
My lower tooth is (temporarily) fixed from last months soccer incident. Although the temporary tooth/cap is slightly/not noticeably darker than my real teeth, my permanent tooth should match very well.

I can no longer drink with a straw through the gap in my front teeth... a feat I that reminded me of being 6.
The silver lining in this whole incident: My real teeth/before the accident were very crowded, and the front tooth was in my mouth at a slight angle. My new smile will be straighter, with the lower teeth all in a line.

I've been tagged!

I think this title says it--I've been tagged by Mindi, Aleena, and Sarah! Here are 6 things about me that I have not blogged about before... read on!

1) I do not know my right. I sometimes call it my left. Often when I give directions I prefer to point or tap on the window or something else, to avoid having the car turn around to go the other 'right'. I am better with compass directions - North, South, East and West. These seem to somehow make more sense to me.

2) I am comfortable with mess (not dirt, but mess). I do not need to have the dishes done, or main level picked up when I go to sleep. I certainly don't need to make my bed (except on days when I put clean sheets on it), and actually think making my bed is kind of a waste of time.

3) I like to cook/entertain... for other people. When Pete and I are here by ourselves, we often eat the easiest meals. Lately, it has been food made over our wood stove with pie irons and hot dog roasters. It's warm, and possibly nutritious. Otherwise, my cooking/baking goes in spurts--I have an over achieving day where I make many types of things, and then I will not do it for a while... at all.

4) I would prefer people to stop by unannounced, or invite themselves over. I am not very good at making plans or calling. We are home most evenings, please call or drop by if you want to see us... We like company! :)

5) I used to be painfully shy. There was a time when people would pass by me in school, and simply by saying "Hello Heidi" would make me turn all shades of red. I started to be able to talk to people when I was in college, and now I have an outgoing personality.

6) I am an overachiever. Reading the above statements might not make this last one make much sense... Pete often says that I have two settings "On" or "Off"--perhaps this is the best way to describe it. On days that I am "On", I can accomplish many things in little time and get things done. It's on these days that I clean the house, put up the tree, get 3/4 of the Christmas shopping done, and make ~20 dozen Christmas cookies. On the "Off" days, I nap, lounge around, and waste time on the computer (among other things).

I tag the following people: Megan, Andrea, Karen, Katie, the other Heidi, and Jennifer. Now you have to come up with 6 things about yourself to put on your blog! Play along, it's fun! :)

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Christmas Decorating Done!

I am finished with my Christmas decorating -- nothing special, but thought I would share photos for my family who is far away! Anyway, in addition to the above decorating, I also put the fake candles in the front windows facing the road... except on the 3rd floor. I am definitely enjoying the smell of Christmas this season! Season's Greetings!

Sunday, November 30, 2008


We spent Thanksgiving day at my in-laws house, with lots of good food and nearly all of the extended family. The only person missing at this gathering was my brother-in-law, Aaron, who was unable to take the time off work. After the meal, the afternoon was spent enjoying the company of family... the boys had a football game outside, there were a few who took naps, and others who read the newspaper or knit.
Given the number of people in town for the holidays, we celebrated Pete's Grandma and Grandpa K's 50th wedding anniversary by going out to dinner on Friday and then returning to my in-laws for a cup of coffee.

In addition to the family time, I got a start on my Christmas shopping, and made some more cookies. I now have quite a bit of cookies frozen for use in the upcoming month!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Is it too early for Christmas?

Is it too early for Christmas, or is Thanksgiving just coming too late? This is the question I mulled this past weekend while trying to contain my seasonal excitement. It seems that Thanksgiving might be coming late this year, due to the timing of Thursday's in the month of November. With the cold weather, I was able to get a good start on the Holiday baking, winter decorating (only snowmen, and red berry stuff -- no Christmas greenery or Santa's yet), and put the final stamps on my Christmas cards. This is all being done in an effort to avoid a last minute scramble to celebrate the season, and allow enough time for a Christmas tree. This is something that did not happen last holiday season.

And my tooth... It is not fixed yet. I have to wait until 12/10 (unless an appointment opens up sooner) to have the first of 2 dental appointments to have a cap/fake tooth put in the place of the broken tooth. Pete is trying to talk me into to getting a grill?, or gold tooth (perhaps one with a diamond). Given the timing, the song "All I want for Christmas is my two front teeth", has new meaning! :) In the meantime, I have no pain (as the tooth has had a root canal), and am able to eat just fine. Additionally, I urge all who play soccer and other contact sports to wear a mouth guard... it's cheap dental insurance.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

I feel like a 6 year old again

My smile has been edited thanks to tonight's soccer game! In addition to my newly missing tooth, I also chipped a top tooth, broke my glasses and was a bit shaken up to say the least... I am thankful that Pete and I have a great dentist who was willing to see me at 11:15 PM to cap off the nerve (and allow me to drink water, apply pressure, and breathe without pain)... but will require a few more dentist appointments, and a change in glasses prescriptions before I am back to 'normal'. Let this serve as a visible reminder to wear a mouth guard! :)

Thanks for all the comments! Due to the nerve injury, I had a root canal this afternoon (11/18). The endodontist said that a mouth guard would not have prevented this type of injury.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Congratulations Ed & Michelle

Pete & I were treated with Early AM company on Saturday (9:30 AM)... Ed & Michelle stopped by our house with some exciting news... they are expecting twins! The due date is approximately mid-June... all are doing well, and all are excited! :)

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

My niece who came to stay the weekend...
The weekend my sisters came to come and visit! These pictures took a bit to post, as I temporarily misplaced my camera! :) Have a good day! (And do I ever miss short-sleeve weather!)

First Snowfall

The world was white, and peaceful... and there was Christmas music...

Yesterday, we experienced our first snowfall of the season. It makes me think that Christmas is, in fact, right around the corner. That and the "Oh Holy Night" accompanying my drive to work... Despite these calming cues obliging people to stay at home--white snow covered lawn and peaceful music--people ventured onto the roads, and ended up in ditches due to icy road conditions. I am thankful that it only increased my time on the road. I am excited for the snow, and all that it brings (ice skating, hot cocoa, reading near a roaring fire... the list goes on and on). I hope the next snowfall comes on a weekend, and I am better able to stay at home and enjoy the white fluffy stuff! :)

This leads me to believe that I again blinked and time went wooshing by me. It also makes me wonder... Does the Christmas season really start the moment that the Halloween masks are taken off, and the crazy hair colors have gone swirling down the bathroom drain? It seems early to start decorating and sending out cards, but the above cues tell me otherwise. Perhaps like sports... this is the pre-season, and it is the time to start practicing the holiday spirit. Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Who knows?!?

Where does time go? It feels like yesterday was mid-September and then *poof* in 3.5 days it will be Halloween. Although it feels like we are perpetually busy, aside from making progress on our heating/yard clean-up project, and sports... I can not tell you where our evenings have went. at all.

Last weekend, the Spartans won. Pete has been on an emotional high ever since; this is the first time since the early 1990's that Michigan State football has beat Michigan at the Big House. This is really the main game that he cares about all year... Go State! Maybe... We also were fortunate to spend time with Ed & Michelle (other family in town), and Brandon & Cindy (after arriving too late for a going away party).

Yesterday, I finished my series of Rabies shots from my previous bat exposure... I am very glad to be done with those shots... I guess I won't be growing fangs in time for Halloween. ;)

Next weekend, Aaron & Mindy and kids will be coming into town to celebrate Halloween! We are so fortunate to both come from large families, and (although they are staying elsewhere) have people travel to come see us semi-regularly. We are truly blessed! :)

Based on the current rate of time, by the time I register Halloween... Christmas will have come and gone. Seriously, where does the time go!?!?

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Wheels on the Bus, Detroit Marathon, Skates

This past weekend, we were fortunate to be visited by siblings from both sides--my sisters and niece from MN stayed at my house from the wee hours of Thursday until Saturday afternoon, meanwhile Pete's sister, Amy, and family stayed down the road at my in-laws from Friday to yesterday. I would post pictures, but I'm too lazy to search for the camera.

It was so fun to see my sister's again, and my neice is growing up so quickly! We were able to go out to eat, go shopping, do a little visiting, and coax a few rounds of "The Wheels On The Bus" out of my niece. It was fun to catch up, and I was sad to see them go on Saturday afternoon as they were here for such a short time. However, as my neice is at an age where she no longer travels easily, wanting instead to be busy and out of her carseat... they needed to leave at night, and as my sisters work/go to school on Monday... it had to be Saturday night or they wouldn't have been able to come at all.

But... the weekend promised not to be boring. Soon after my sisters left town, Pete and I went to his parent's house to celebrate Beth's 7th birthday! And on Sunday morning, I went with Amy & E. Peter, and Debbie to watch Adam and Jeff run the Detroit marathon--I had never been to a marathon and found the atmosphere to be quite enjoyable! :) Adam finished with a great time, and it was fun to people watch and spot runners we knew at the race. Congratulations Adam! Afterwards, we had a cookout at the Pete's parents... it was much fun to visit and see the nephews (and neice)... it's amazing how quickly kids grow up when you don't often see them! :)

And just when we thought the weekend had lost its steam, I had hockey (just an in-house league). And I got my first goal this season! :) We won the game 4-2; mine was the last goal. And no, it was not an empty net goal! I was so excited, and couldn't wait to come home and tell Pete! What an exciting a way to end the busy weekend! :)

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

180 years of heating innovation

Aside from the aforementioned furnace, wood stove, and fireplace; our house came equipped with 180 years of heating technology. In the basement, there is an old oil storage container (empty), water pipes from the relatively new hassa, a remnant of a basement fireplace, and its easy to envision where a coal chute might have been in the past.

The hassa is a relatively new structure, added ca. 1980. During this time, there was an energy crisis, and former occupants built a large shed looking thing in our back yard fairly close to the deck. This structure holds water pipes, and a large incinerator. The intent of this structure was to create inexpensive hot water heat. This occurs because the burning of items in the incinerator generates heat, this heats the hot water pipes, these pipes cross underground from the structure to all throughout the house. This would be an efficient way to heat the house, if it weren't for one of the pipes in the structure freezing and subsequently cracking in the early years of use. Eventually, Pete and I would like to turn this shed into a sauna... but, we have a few more house projects before we tackle this project!

Monday, October 13, 2008

Dead trees --> Wood for warmth

With a house as old as ours (180 years), is it any surprise that we have the option to have wood heat?!? Although we have "real" furnace, and a fireplace in the living room (and a few behind walls)... last November we added a wood stove in the family room, using an existing, newly clay-lined chimney. We did this for three reasons: 1) we like the warmth of wood heat, 2) a wood stove is more efficient than a fireplace, and 3) although the previous occupants claimed they used the fireplace often without incident, the extinguisher on the hearth at closing did not inspire confidence in its safe operation.

But, I digress... So, this weekend was absolutely gorgeous, and we started to cut up some of the dead trees around our yard! Pete did the more involved parts of the project: cutting, and splitting the logs. I mostly picked up sticks, transported the logs, and stacked the finished project. Although I do not think we have enough wood to last the winter at this time, it felt good to clean up the yard and get a start on our wood supply!
Our kittens are now playing with each other and eating together... The black kitten, Cinder, is much more laid back, and sneaks into the house at any opportunity. The little cat, Smarky, is quite humorous... whenever we come outside, she is always running for her life to the hassa or waiting expectantly at the food bowls... She certainly makes us chuckle on a regular basis! :)

Monday, October 6, 2008

Cider Mill

Yesterday consisted of spending a gorgeous fall day in a line at a concession stand, an hour and a half long, to buy doughnuts and apple cider. The great company (Brad & Larissa, and Bruce & Shannon), warm doughnuts, and recently pressed cider was fantastic and made the wait worth our while. However, who decided that cider and cinnamon-sugar doughnuts go together?! It seems like such a strange combination, and an odd tradition!

Growing up in Minnesota, my family always went to an apple orchard to pick apples in the fall. This seems a more logical tradition--reminds us that fall is harvest time, and helps to give a pattern to the year. At the orchard, we would usually go on a hayride and make an afternoon of the event... doing something all the while. However, in my new locale, it seems to be a more popular tradition to wait in a long line at one of the local Cider Mills (essentially a specialty concession stand) to get supurb doughnuts and cider. Maybe, we'll go again next weekend...

Friday, October 3, 2008

October thoughts

We had wonderful rain about Tuesday, and since then... there has been a cool, crispness to the air. In fact, so cool... my roses froze. It was about time for the growing season to be over anyway, but they look kinda sad and droopy. Meanwhile, the leaves in our yard are quickly changing color and littering our yard. I hate to regard the leaves as a nuisance, as they bring such a nice golden hue to the yard.

We are also into our fall schedule. Pete has hockey tonight with the church guys; I've got hockey on Sunday; Soccer with the church ladies on Monday. It's nice to have the designated time for sports, and socializing. Besides, it is fun to be busy.

Additionally, I am happy to say~ the kittens are outside full time, and getting along. It is cute to watch them try to eat out of the same bowl, or the little kitten bounding after the slower, larger black one... The only sad thing about having the kittens outside, is that they are less personable than when partially in the house... But, I will trade that for less cat hair and fewer scratches on my couch!

Finally, a while back I posted about having a bat in my room while sleeping. I had a few concerned people tell me I might need rabies shots, and it turns out... I am having rabies shots. It's not just one shot, but a whole series. I had 6 shots (5 of rabies IgG, 1 of rabies vaccine) on Monday, and 1 shot yesterday. I will additionally get 3 more shots (1 next Monday, 1 the following Monday, and 1 on the last Monday of the month) to complete the series. See this link for more information about bats and rabies:

I think that's about all that's new. I hope that you all have a great weekend!

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Misc. Floor Photos

Prior to having the floor installed, we removed a piece of cracked marble that had served as the mantle for the fireplace, underneath this piece of marble we found this fingerpainted 1980. Evidently, this was written when the house was lifted and new foundation added... Although this marble had cracked when the house was lifted, the prior residents chose to put the old marble back in place instead of putting in new marble/tile, etc. Our next project will be fixing the fireplace hearth.

The photo on the right is a close-up of the transition between our new floor, and existing lumber in the kitchen. We tried to match it, but not too closely. Our new floor is 5" red oak with golden pecan (slightly red tint) stain. It looks wonderful compared to what was there... !

New Floor Part 2

Our new floor is in! The left hand photos are the "before's", right hand photo's are the "after" pictures. The new floor took care of many problem areas, including unsupported floor areas surrounding the heat vents, and cracks in between most of the boards.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Happy 25th Anniversary!

Happy 25th Anniversary to my parents! Congratulations!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

New Floor Part 1

Since arriving at our house, we have had a big "to-do" list. One of the big projects on the list is getting a new floor for the living room and wood stove room at our house. So, yesterday we spent cleaning out these rooms (top right and bottom left), making Hondo's room and the upper level hallway look like used furniture warehouses. We also got our wood delivered~ 5" unfinished red oak (lower left photo), the ball next to the pile is a standard 8" plastic bouncy ball.

Today, in preparation for tomorrow's floor installation we removed the cracked marble fireplace. Obviously, it has been a while since this was cleaned out. We found treasures, most not belonging to us (upper right corner). As this mantle was cracked when the house was lifted ca. 1980, its amazing the marble pieces have not been removed before today! We look forward to the finished results... but tonight we're enjoying the smell of fresh wood.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Weekend Company

It was so nice to see my family this past weekend~ they were in town for Kate & Paul's wedding on Saturday. It was an action packed weekend with lots of visiting, and a wedding. We even had weekend company: my grandma, mom, and her sisters (except Cindy and Janel) stayed at our house. Thanks for coming; we certainly had fun!

New Kitten

I took home a new kitten this morning... It is such a little ball of fur and so cute! However, our existing kitten, Cinder, wants less than nothing to do with it... In fact, Cinder is downright hostile~ hissing and swiping at the new kitten whenever the little kitten is around. We got the second kitten for two reasons: 1) Cinder needs company, he is constantly mewing at the windows and doors seemingly wanting companionship, and 2) I wanted a female kitten, as they seem nicer and have a tendency to stay closer to the house.

So, we have separated the two kittens~ Cinder gets his back porch territory, and the new kitten has been relocated to the front stoop. We are also trying to reward Cinder with tuna when we bring the new kitten to the back porch, and I come prepared to spray Cinder with water when he becomes aggressive. I hope the two kittens can learn to get along, and live happily together outside.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

HappyBirthday Dad & Courtney!

Happy 50th to my dad, and 17th to Courtney! We wish that we could be there to help celebrate!

Monday, September 15, 2008

Monday ramblings

Once again , it's Monday. It seems that fall has arrived a week ahead of schedule.
1. The trees have started to turn colors, and shed their leaves.
2. Our chuck-berry tree (crab apple?), has yellow chuck-berries with a reddish-hue.
3. Ice Hockey season has started again...
4. It was a soggy weekend, by all accounts.

Aside from the downpour, this past weekend was truly wonderful. We were able to relax, and visit both family and friends. And, hockey started ~ it's nice to have this social & physical outlet again!

I am excited to have a short week, this week. My mom and her sisters are coming in-town, on Friday, for Kate & Paul's wedding this weekend! Pete and I have decided to have a long weekend, and have taken Thurs-Monday off! :)

Saturday, September 13, 2008

The Moving Wall

This morning despite the rain, Pete and I made the drive to see the moving wall ~ a half size replica of the Vietnam War Memorial. It was quite moving to see the names of the 58,159 men and women that either lost their lives or went missing during the unpopular Vietnam War. However, it was even more moving to see the number of people gathered at the wall on such a soggy morning, watching the reaction to finding the name of a fallen loved one, and seeing the items left at the moving wall: a bronze star, a hat, letters, flowers, etc.

One of the letters that was left there this morning, seemed especially timely... It was a letter written by an injured Vietnam War soldier to a fallen friend, and it brought tears to my eyes. It was only 3 paragraphs long, and spoke of the soldier's disappointment at acts of Congress preventing the U.S. from achieving a victory in the Vietnam War. It discussed why this injured soldier has kept his promise to never march in a parade.

After visiting this somber memorial, I realize why war tributes are so important, especially for those who fought or lost a loved one. It also made me see why victory is so important to the person's who fight in the war, as it makes it easier to make sense of loss.

Thanks for the comments

I certainly had a lot of comments to the last post... thanks! Additionally, I enjoyed seeing some of the names of people who read the post. I will have to try some of the suggestions next time I slice onions!

Monday, September 8, 2008

Fall Cooking

It must be fall...

I started cooking again this past weekend. Although I cook in the summer, in the fall I start cooking "real food" again, comfort food, food made from scratch requiring more than 12 min. to boil or marinate.

So, far this fall I have made: grilled chicken w/ green beans and garlic-cheddar biscuits, cinnamon rolls with cream cheese icing, and brownies. Tonight, I chopped vegetables for chicken matzo ball soup, and prepared meatloaf. I will cook these last two foods this week, coming home to the aroma of a warm meal!

Although I like to cook, I dislike chopping onions; my eyes seem to water endlessly. So, I wear chemistry goggles while chopping onions, it prevents irritated eyes... Aside from looking like a What-not-to-wear Kitchen Edition participant, are there more adult ways to prevent onion tears?

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Things that go bump in the night

Last night... true story. So, I am getting ready for bed; shutting lights off, putting Hondo in his cage, and sitting in bed upstairs, starting to read my book when... I suddenly hear thumps, like someone is walking up the stairs. So, I open the door, turn on the light, and yell down the stairs "Hello?! Anybody there?". There is no answer.

So, I turn off the light and lock the bedroom door. Again, I hear those thumps on the stairs. My mind starts racing, so I open the door with a tennis racket in one hand and again yell down the stairs. Again, no answer.

I go get Hondo (my fierce protector pug), because Pete is in Mexico. I keep the hall light on, lock the bedroom door, and put the tennis racket on the opposite side of my bed. And try to shut my eyes. I hear the knocking again. This time accompanied by "meows", too close to be outside. I unlock the door, and peer into the hallway. My cat is not there. I shut the door, and lock it.

About 10 minutes later, I hear the "meows" again. This time, I see my kitten outside my bedroom door. I had locked him in the bathroom under the stairs for the night(to prevent Cleo's fate), using Hondo's dog food bin as the latch. The dog food bin had moved a few inches into the middle of the hall, and the cat had escaped. At least my mind stopped racing when I found the cat, but I think I need a heavier doorstop! :)

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Gap toothed front yard

Our yard seems to loose 1 large tree a year. We lost a large, healthy maple in a thunderstorm last summer. We lost this tree more recently. The large looming leafless tree keeps threatening to fall. Perhaps this means we will have treeless shrubbery in short order; and a whole bunch of firewood to show for it...

Monday, September 1, 2008

Feliz Cumpleanos Pete!

If you happen to see my husband today, wish him an early 25th! His 'real' birthday is Wednesday, but he will be spending his birthday alone. in Mexico. He flies out tomorrow.

So, Happy Early Birthday Pete! We will have to celebrate when you get back from your upcoming boondoggle, and I love you dearly! :)

Sunday, August 31, 2008

New Computer

My "new" computer arrived this week, and Pete set it up today. I was quite dubious that it would work , because it's a refurbished model without a remote, or many ports/drives, and came pre-scuffed and dented. It's not shiny. Pete assures me that this computer will work, despite appearances, and that I don't need a fancy computer to check email, upload photos to print, use the internet, or play spider solitaire. We'll see... but, for right now... it feels nice not to have to borrow Pete's computer, and be able to use the internet once again in the middle of the day. Happy Labor Day weekend!

Friday, August 29, 2008

Green Colored Glasses?

You See the World Through Green Colored Glasses
You live your life with generosity. You feel like your life is abundant, and you are very giving toward those around you.
You judge all your interactions through the lens of harmony. You figure you have something to learn from everyone, and you listen well.

You face challenges with a persistent attitude. You can see the prize at the end of the road, and you have the strength to get there.
You see love as the utmost expression of self-esteem. You have to love yourself before you can truly love someone else.

At your worst, you are greedy and selfish. You love money more than you'd like to admit.
You are happiest when you are in nature. You appreciate the feeling of balance that being outdoors brings you.

Sunday, August 24, 2008


Once again, we had our "annual" bat in the house. This time it did not come through the 3rd floor windows, but through our bedroom floor. I noticed it at 2 am, when I was in a sleep-induced stupor, flying circles round our bedroom. We were able to find a piece of loose siding near our floor where the bat entered... The return of the bat seems to time well with Cleo's month-long absence, and the return of squirrels to the yard... so, yesterday's top priority was finding another kitten. We now have 'Cinder', a male long-haired black cat with a silvery glow. He is afraid of everything, especially Hondo. He hisses and spits at everything, and has been hiding in the fireplace and under furniture. We hope he becomes more friendly, and less afraid. In the meantime, we are still looking for a short-haired female kitten with a pleasant disposition, please let me know if you know of any in the downstate area.

San Diego Photos

Photos from lovely San Diego. Although I was there for work, I had a bit of time to relax and enjoy the scenery. I am having difficulty with the way Blogger is posting the photos, but 3 are of Seaport Village, a shopping area and park on the San Diego bay. The remaining photos are taken of Horton Plaza shopping mall/Gaslamp Quarter surrounding my hotel.


Despite how great a new haircut feels, it makes little difference on long hair. I recently got 3" taken off my hair. Anyway, I chickened out... I had planned to go short, maybe next time. On the left is my "before", on the right is my "after".

Friday, August 22, 2008

Is it wrong....?

Pete's co-worker is now passing kidney stones, so Pete's trip to Mexico has been post-poned. I get him home for a while, and we will not be hurridly re-packing suitcases this weekend. Is it wrong for me to be happy that... his coworker is out of commission (and Pete will be home with me)?

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Time... in Reverse

Today, I am puttering around. Trying to clean up, and restore my sanity. I have finally unpacked, and have put away the suitcases... Laundry is caught up (for a short time), we had a "real" dinner (pork chops, spaghetti, and steamed broccoli) and the dishes are all put away. I plan to make additional progress on my current painting project.

Yesterday, I visited the in-laws. It was nice to catch up with them, as we have both been busy! I also was productive in my painting endeavor--nearly done with the insiduous taping, and was able to finish the top hallway and part of the main level stairs.

Sunday, we had a few couples over after church! It was fun to see our friends again. Pete is thinking that his next project will be a 1/4 size replica of Comerica Park to play strike-out (whiffle ball) with friends. It's kinda funny to watch 20-somethings play a game associated with pre-teens... but, they have fun & that's what matters!

I arrived back home on Saturday to be wisked away to the Tigers game! And surprise... they won!

San Diego was beautiful, and though I was traveling for work, I still had a few moments to tour the city. I got to see the ocean, a few palm trees, and shopping malls! It was a quick trip, 3 days in length starting last Thursday. As soon as I get my computer (should be here shortly), I will post photos of the coast.

Wednesday, we got to meet our friends new baby girl! She is nearly a month old. Its amazing how quickly time flies, when life gets busy.

That's all for the recent updates. I hope that you have an enjoyable evening!

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Photos from Ed & Michelle's wedding

The newlyweds are back at home, and we were honored with a visit last night!
Here a a few photos from their wedding: The whole last-name-with-punctuation clan
My dapper husband and I

Have a wonderful day!

Updates on our house

We've been slacking at doing house projects for the last little bit, due to travels and work schedules. But, we seem to be getting back in the groove of it lately!

Our most recent projects:
*Repainting the downstairs & upstairs hallways
*Repainting the floor of Hondo's room
*Mowing down the area where the barn used to be (weeds got to be >3' high! )

Today, I worked on taping and prepping the hallway walls for paint. It feels good to be making progress on our house project list again, despite our recent surge of "busy-ness" (travels, and work projects). Have a great day!

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Squish Sally

I was uploading photos from the weekend of Ed & Michelle's wedding, and came across this one:
It was nice to get up North for their wedding, and see all of the out of town family! There was always activity at Adam & Amy's, and Michelle ensured that Ed's family knew about all of the wedding events. The wedding itself was beautiful, and Pete & I are excited that they will be living near us downstate. I will post photos from their wedding later, after review by the newlyweds!

I found the largest bug that I have seen (yet) in Michigan! I was playing outside with Hondo, and attempting to remove a brush pile... when across the black finish of the burn barrel crawls this huge green bug. It sat so nicely for photos in the yard, that I ran to get a mason jar to catch it! I felt like a kid again, poking air holes in the top of the container and finding a leaf to create a home for the oversized insect...

Note: After showing Pete, the bug was released in the lilac tree/raspberry patch behind the house. I hope it will live a long life, preferably eating pesky mosquitos or other annoying insects!

Monday, August 4, 2008

Concerning the frazzled

Right now, my mind feels fried.

Pete and I have been enjoying a wonderful, fun, and full summer complete with trips out of town, family weddings, and friend's. However, right now, I would settle for a 3 day stretch to do laundry, clean the house, and go for a walk or run. [I am low on clothes to the point that I am raiding my winter clothes stock for work.] Tonight, Pete's finishing a project, and I've been studying material for work. I realize that the craziness in our lives is self-imposed; most of it relates to fun outings or work or hobbies... but, I would settle for a 3 day stretch of time to get "caught up" from the last month's vacations, and settle back into the rhythm of our life!

BTW: Pete and I both are going out of town again this month (separately). It seems travel is becoming a more frequent commodity as it relates to his job duties. Thankfully, this time out of town seems limited to a 4 day stretch for him, and 3 day stretch for me.... and both of us are expected to be in town for the 3 celebrations in the upcoming month [3 year anniversary, Labor Day, Pete's birthday]. Pete gets to use his passport to explore the wonders of industrial Mexico; I will remain slightly north of the border in San Diego.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Shanghai, Beijing, Xi'an

Well, Pete and I were able to make his project extension into a vacation after all! I left on July 9th and we returned yesterday night at 2 AM, after a 36 hour day. China is 12 hours ahead of the Eastern time zone, and we are both experiencing jet lag. It was a wonderful vacation and we were able to make it to Shanghai, Beijing and Xi'an--people are super friendly, and never once did we feel unsafe. That being said, it is really nice to be home! Here are some photos (in random order as blogger was not loading images properly) of highlights of our vacation:
The army of 7,000 Terra Cotta Warriors in Xi'an. These served to protect the first emporer of China in his afterlife.

Pete eating a meal with Chopsticks - menus at non-American Fast Food restaurants are all in characters (the Chinese are accomodating to tourists and have a special picture/English menu that can be brought out for people like us)!
The Winter Palace in Xi'an located at the base of Black Horse Mountain.
The Forbidden City in Beijing... A guilded prison for the royal family.

Due to our hair color, we became a tourist attraction for the Chinese! We were stopped often by students wishing to practice their English, had many stare at us, and a few requests to have our picture taken (although we suspect a number of cell phone shots were taken without being approached...)!

The Olympic stadium...
The top of the Great Wall of China - one of many sections! It was rainy and we are both soaking wet! The top photo of the Great Wall shows what you can expect to see if you watch the Olympics. When we were there, seats were being built for the biking? competition being held in the mountainous area around this section of the wall. Notice: The wall is very steep. In some areas, 4 stairs would be the same height as me (Heidi).
An amazing acrobatic preformance in Shanghai-- This was one of the many acts, during this one the acrobats were being flipped on people's feet!