Saturday, December 26, 2009

Squirrel Hunting

Season's greetings!

We had a wonderful Christmas, spending the time at home and visiting with family. On Christmas eve, we saw both sides of Pete's family and then had his older cousins (and uncle) over for games -- so much fun and many laughs! On Christmas day, we had lunch at Pete's parents and went over to his aunt & uncle's for some more visiting. Always fun to catch up with everyone! :) I thought that I would share a few photos of our Christmas decor before I dismantle them tonight/this next week:
Cup cupboard
Decor on top of the living room cabinet filled with Christmas lights...
Stockings hung by the chimney with care...

We did not have a Christmas tree... so clean-up is really easy! :)
Today, 1 day after the Christmas festivities... it's snowing (we have had a rain mixture for the last day or two), and looks like winter outside! We have spent today more or less relaxing... sleeping in until late, going out for breakfast, putting the Christmas cards in the photo album, and then... declaring war on the squirrels. This past week, we heard the squirrels in the ceiling of the second floor. So, after breakfast, we bought a BB gun, a few live traps, and a squirrel feeder. The squirrel feeder has been mounted to a tree outside this window -- the plan is: see squirrel, open window, shoot squirrel (who then becomes cat food). After the squirrels are no longer in the house, we plan to re-side the house and repair the trim and thus prevent more squirrels from entering our domicile...

I hope that you had a very Merry Christmas! Best wishes for a lovely 2010!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

A week before Christmas and all through the house...

I am admittedly a Christmas slacker this year. I have procrastinated throughout the season to get the Christmas things done that are supposed to get done.

I got Christmas cards out last week, finally.
Made my first batch of Christmas "cookies" today (carmels & peanut butter truffles).
And have finally decided that its too close to Christmas to put up a tree (sounds like a lot of work for 1 week)....

Somehow, it still feels like Christmas to me. We've went to a few parties, and enjoyed the Christmas trees at other people's homes. This season has been quite relaxing... since I have slacked on the decorating and baking, I somehow have been able to enjoy the seasonal gatherings and others cookies a bit more. But... I am still wondering, is it wrong to enjoy the season without putting up a tree?

(Don't get me wrong -- I hope not to make an annual habit of being a Christmas slacker... but for this year, it sure feels nice.)

Merry Christmasl!

Monday, December 7, 2009

Winter is finally here!

Alright... so life has been busy here at home, so I missed writing something entirely in November! :)

We had the privilege of watching Beth during the end of October/beginning of November, while her parents were travelling. It was so much fun to have her around, with all of her busy activities! We carved pumpkins, and she had friends over here. She kept us entertained with the stories of her school days! :) I would post a photo or two... but these are on my "old" computer!

Which brings me to my next item... We had a major computer breakdown last month. Both Pete & I lost our computer monitors. So, Pete decided to improve our computer set-up. I was without a computer for a few weeks last month while the necessary parts were ordered, and assembled. Pete built a new computer for himself and set-up network storage. He was so excited to complete his new computer -- it's a solid state hard drive, for those techies reading! I now have his old computer... and it runs much quicker than the last relic I was using...

Shortly after the computer upgrades were completed, we journeyed to Minnesota. We celebrated Christmas as a family on Tuesday -- complete with a fantastic prime rib dinner, trade names, and Christmas decor. A good time was had by all!
On Thursday (Thanksgiving) my mom's side of the family got together to celebrate Thanksgiving -- most of the family was around, and it was fun to see most of my aunts, uncles, and cousins at this dinner.
Black Friday, my sisters, mom, and I went shopping. We were on the morning news (but can not seem to find the clip any where online). Later that day while we were still shopping, a lady came up to us and exclaimed, "I saw you on the news this morning -- you're famous! You all look like so much fun.". It would be fun to see this clip and what exactly was shown... only my mom looked put together; the rest of us were a conglomeration of messy ponytails, and sweatshirts. But shopping with my mom and sisters is always a good time!
I would post photos of our trip to Minnesota, however... I neglected to use my camera.

We arrived home from Minnesota on Sunday morning at 3 AM. As much fun as it is to be away, it always feels good to return home. We picked up our dog, and settled back into our routine. I was happy to find that we still have a cat.

Last Tuesday, however, I came down with the flu. As an adult, this bug certainly packs a punch! I was down for the count through the weekend... today, is my first day out of pajamas and vertical for any length of time.

Sometime during this last week, we had our first snow fall... winter is finally here!

So, tonight... I am updating this long neglected blog, and trying to teach myself to play a few guitar chords by the fireplace. My hope is that someday, maybe... I will be able to play a song in its entirety... but for tonight, I am happy to learn finger placement for the A, C, and G chords.

Happy December to all! I hope to update this more often.

Friday, October 23, 2009

What October means...

October certainly has been a busy month... It was the end of the regular baseball season, hailed with a the end of the baseball "powerlock" between Pete and his dad. Pete was ahead in the number of games won right up until the end of the season, when his dad made a come back and won. The above picture shows the exchange of the trophy (but does not show the red "carpet" upon which the trophy was presented). Fun for all involved! :)

October also meant a trip for me... I went to Boston for a few days for work. During this trip I discovered the Twilight series, and read all 4 books in a period of 5 days. Seriously good books!
I stayed across from Boston garden and Boston Common. I took advantage of my location -- touring the parks and going on a guided hike of the Freedom trail.

Did you know that Mother Goose was a real person? I saw her grave on the tour... Her headstone is below...

I also found out the Greek Revival style of home (the style of my house) is very popular around Harvard Square... I saw many homes with this styling... Interesting to see them in another color other than white! :)
I also had the privilege of having dinner with this lady when I was out East. She brought me to a fantastic place for dinner called Fire & Ice. It was fun to catch up and see a familiar face! :) Thank you again!

Since returning from Boston, we had a bit of excitement. Last weekend was the Detroit marathon. Unfortunately, all the pictures I took at the marathon are on a non-digital camera (and will not be included on this blog). Congratulations to all the runners & it was fun to see those who came into town for the race.
Sunday after the marathon, Hondo developed an ulcerated cornea. He gets to wear this e-collar for a little while (to prevent him from rubbing his eye and further irritating it). He looks so pathetic, its cute!
Finally, this weekend we get to spend with this little person! We are looking forward to a fun weekend with her! :) I got to pick her up today after school -- she had gone on a field trip to a one room school house and was all dressed up!

Under any circumstances... we have not been getting too much in the way of projects done around the house. Our current project is splitting and stacking wood (from dead trees on our property) -- a physically demanding job that heats us twice (once when we split and stack, and once when the wood gets burned).

Monday, September 14, 2009

Updates on Life

Since I last wrote... we have celebrated our 4th anniversary, Pete's 26th birthday, Pete's dad's 50th birthday... and I caught a fish! :) We had a great time fishing with Pete's family! :)

We continue to chop wood nearly every weekend. Our wood pile keeps growing; we should be able to heat at least this winter with the supply we have on hand now!

Monday, August 17, 2009

Evidence of a new coat of paint

Here are the photos -- I could show the shots of me with paint everywhere (including a few dots on my contacts), and a few bruises (from falling off the ladder & bumping into things) for added color... if I had taken the pictures. Or of the off-white flecks of paint that dotted Pete's already white-blond hair, and the camel-colored wood filler dotted on his blue jeans. Or I could just show you our latest projects. Let's go for the last one -- I think it's the most interesting.

The bathroom sink where we washed all of the paint brushes -- note all the lovely paint colors. The photo immediately below the sink, is the newly painted bathroom. Looks essentially the same as it did before -- but the paint job is a bit better.
This is the photo of the primed post. We are in the midst of finishing the trim (stripping and re-painting), in an effort to sure up the house. These little projects keep Pete & I nicely entertained.
The last 2 photos are of Hondo's room. The color is called French Gray -- both pictures lie. The color is neither that gray nor that blue, but a color in between.

Good Morning!

This is a 2 minute update... Since putting in the windows, Pete & I have been staying out of trouble by keeping busy with house projects. Over the weekend, we finished 3 projects... removal of paint, and priming of the first of four posts around the house; finished painting Hondo's room (ceiling, walls, floor & trim), and finished painting the main level bathroom (trim, walls and ceiling). Hondo's room is now a blue-gray color called French Gray. The main level bathroom remains the same light purple color. It's amazing how quickly a new coat of paint can brighten a room!

In addition to the recent paint jobs, we made a trip out to the coast this past weekend. Sure felt good to listen to the waves, and feel the sand & sun. I will post pictures of the recent house updates soon. Have a good day!

Friday, July 24, 2009

New Windows and Pets

This week we got new windows on the first and second levels of the house. I am totally enjoying them right now! It feels good to open & close the windows. It also has cut down on the amount of traffic noise that we hear... All good things!
This is our main level bathroom. This probably had the biggest improvement! Before, there was a mirror on the back wall. Putting a window in this room has made this bathroom feel more like a room & less like a closet!
I finally was able to take a picture of our kittens. The top picture is of Hondo (our 2.5 year old dog), and Halo. The bottom picture is of Nala. These kittens get along well with our dog, which is a nice surprise! Also, they are both friendly (and still alive). All good things!
Enjoy your day!

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Mid-Summer update

This past weekend, was spent relaxing (and catching up on day-to-day household projects). But, true to our form... the past few weekends this month were extremely b.u.s.y.... So, lets review.

Last weekend, we spent in MN for Kristen & Todd's wedding. It was a very fun (but short) weekend. The top picture is of the bridal party "honking" (I am having difficulty moving the picture down in blogger), the picture immediately below is of my family, and the 3rd below is of the newlyweds. Kristen & Todd certainly had a whirlwind of a weekend -- Friday they closed on their first home (congrats), Saturday they were married (congrats), and Sunday they went on their honeymoon! Congratulations Kristen & Todd!

Also this month, we celebrated Indepence day. I rarely take pictures when I am not on vacation, but I was glad that I remembered the camera when we went to watch fireworks. Mindy and Aaron were in town for the weekend, and it was fun to see them & their kids. The above picture is of their oldest catching a fish -- he caught his first fish that evening and was super proud of his catch!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Things to look forward to this month...

July promises to be especially busy this year... but fun busy, not overwhelming busy... you know? This month includes it all: confirmation, a wedding out-of-town, a baptism, and a few get-together's in this area including some family from out of town.
Happy Independence Day to all!

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Wall color

A while ago I was asked for the color of the brown used on our living room walls... the color is Revival Mahogany made by Behr (available at the Home Depot). I finally went to refill the water softener and had a chance to look at the paint can!

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Happy Father's Day!

Happy Father's Day to both of our dad's and the grandpa's! You all certainly hold a special place in our lives and have taught us oh-so-much! Thank you for all that you do! Hope that you have a wonderful day!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009


I am going to try be a bit more current with my posts... I have bolded the highlights.

Alright, so Pete is (once again)home -- it's nice to have him nearby! :) He returned suffiently exhausted from Mexico -- retiring to bed this evening around 5:30 PM.

Congratulations 2009 graduates!
This past weekend, I went to a graduation party for my brother-in-law, and others. It was certainly fun to catch up with the people at the party, and see a few people that I have not seen in a while.

Congratulations to Ed & Michelle!
The same day as the graduation party, Ed and Michelle had their twin boys. All are doing well! I was able to go see them on Sunday... they are certainly precious! Hopefully, Pete will be able to go and see them this week.

Aside from the above exciting news tidbits... life at our house has remained pretty stable.

The kittens seem to like Hondo, and are probably the friendliest kittens we have had at our house in a while. They like to be petted and purr... a lot. So far, our experiment to house them in the garage seems to be working... they have to date avoided being run over, and the garage seems to be giving them adequate shelter from the yard animals.

I have been studying some... and still socializing. I went out for coffee last night and was able to catch up with some friends. It's always nice to have a girls night!

I have a new phone -- my last phone lasted 3 months after I squished it beneath the wheels of the truck. It stopped charging while Pete was in Mexico. I now have a phone that supposedly will be more rugged... still TBD. The saleslady said I was her first female customer to by the "construction man's" phone. :) I was not able to import numbers -- so I have been manually re-entering phone numbers as I come across them...

We have a family of robin's living on our porch. It's kind of cute to watch the little bird head's peek out of the nest from time to time while the mama bird is out.

Hope all is well with you!

Monday, June 15, 2009

Congrats to Ed & Michelle

Ed & Michelle had their twins on Saturday morning... 2 little boys! Everyone is doing well ~ Congratulations!

Monday, June 8, 2009

5 minute update

Right now, I am enjoying the calm before the storm (quite literally). Here are the highlights of our life for the last month:
1. I made it safe and sound to Minnesota and back. It felt really good to be home, and see everyone on a (not-so-hectic) weekend. I was able to make it to Kristen's shower, see the house where Kristen and Todd will be living after their wedding in mid-July, and help celebrate Jaedon's 2nd birthday. Thank you to all who help make the weekend at home memorable!
2. Pete made it back from the fishing tourney in Ill. He did not come back empty handed either! :) We have about 21 dinners of salmon sitting in the freezer waiting to be eaten! Evidently their boat placed well in the fishing tourney, and he really enjoyed the visits with his extended family!
3. Memorial day weekend was spent working outside. I even got tan ~ which is rare for me as I am usually fairly religious about applying sunblock! We bought a log splitter and so far have about 1 winter of wood cut up and stacked in the garage. It's amazing how quickly a large log can be made into burnable pieces with the aid of a machine!
4. We spent last weekend in Luddington with our friends camping. Although, the weather did not cooperate (cold and rainy), it was still a good time. I forgot the digital camera, so no pictures.
5. I now have 2 kittens -- Nala and Halo. The kittens are getting used to their new surroundings, and are starting to warm up to Pete, Hondo, and myself. They are really cute. I have yet to take a photo of our new kittens, but... once I do, I will certainly post! They have lasted ~1 week in the garage, so hopefully this is a good sign of things to come! :)
6. Pete is travelling once again. We pulled out his passport yesterday, and... he has been a lot of places. He is now in Mexico, and should come home next Wednesday. We are both hoping that this project sticks to its original timelines.
7. Pete and I will not be moving to South Korea. He is now taking some class for a different project. This class will take about 1 year.
8. I am now working 4 -10 hour days for the summer. It is really nice to have a 3 day weekend... every weekend.
9. Detroit lost the Stanley Cup.
10. I have a really clean house right now... it feels awesome! :) I even hung up some pictures around the house... its amazing how much decorations can make a house feel more like a home.

Have a good weekend!

Friday, May 15, 2009

And... I'm off

To Minnesota, that is! :)

I will be in the cities from this evening to mid-day Tuesday!
Have a fantastic weekend.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

What we have accomplished so far...

Since we've been here for almost 2 years, I feel that it is time for a reflection post.

Yesterday afternoon, 2 older women arrived in our driveway, and stood on the porch for a while. Pete went out to greet the women, and inquire why they were at our house. These 2 ladies identified that this was the house that they grew up in... and were busy reminiscing about their childhood. So, Pete invited them in to look at the house... identifying that "This home will never really be ours. We just get to take care of it for a little while.". I think this story sums up our experience so far, this home has history and in 181 years... we've only owned it for a blip.

During this almost 2 year blip, here is what we have accomplished:
-Installed deadbolts and door locks on the 2 main doors leading into the house
-Painted the living room, family room, hallway, main level bath, our bedroom, kitchen, laundry area, and a number of closets
-Made many a Saturday trip to the dump to remove the past family's contents from the barn, garage, and basement
-Put in a cement floor and garage door openers installed in the garage
-Had the chicken coop torn down
-Cleaned out the barn, and subsequently decided to have it torn down
-Made the back horse pasture area into mowable yard
-Removed a number of gardens with a combination of a mower, "Weed-B-Gone Max" and grass-seed
-Took out a bathroom on the main level (consisted of shower and toilet)
-Put in a bathroom on the main level (contains a toilet and a sink)
-Hooked up a wood stove to the fireplace chimney
-Created durable shelving units for the pantry, garage, and our bedroom
-Put in a new wood floor on the main level
-Cut up a few (of many) fallen trees for firewood
-Re-finished the wood floors in the kitchen and 1 of the upstairs bedrooms
-Painted the hallway floor
-Installed a water softener
-Trained a dog and 4 kittens (of which, only the dog remains)

I am sure there are a number of smaller, less consequential projects that have been accomplished over the last 2 years. We certainly feel fortunate to have found this place to call home, and take care of... if only for a little while.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Projects from this past weekend

Despite that rainy weather, we were still able to make some headway on the projects around the house. The biggest project update from this weekend: Pete installed a shelf and bar in my closet, so I now have a place to hang up our clothes (besides the door frame). I think it looks great! :) See above -- please excuse any mess!

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Photos, as promised

This is the finished transom! My dad & Pete capped off the openings for the pocket doors. And we gave the whole thing a fresh coat of paint.

Anyone who has been over in the last few years has seen the hole behind the woodstove --used to find the opening for the chimney. Well, this has now been repaired & the metal piece used to surround the pipe has been put in place. It certainly feels good to no longer see the brick and inside of drywall behind the stove!
Now this is Hondo's room. The hole in the wall behind his cage has been fixed & primed. I just need to decide on a color to paint the room.

The pictures below are of the flora growing in my yard: purple flowers (violets?), the remaining tulips (not eaten by some yard creature--notice the 2 empty stems around the flowers), the crab apple tree (pink polka dots), a flowering tree that has purple flowers are the base of all branches (picture of both the tree and the flowers) , and the bottom middle picture is of the magnolia tree. Unfortunately, I do not think the magnolia has any flowers!

Friday, May 1, 2009

Promise to post pictures this weekend

sWell hello! It has been a little over a month since I last wrote anything on here. In fact, today is probably my first time in a few weeks actually plugging this computer in. So, I promise to post pictures of the projects that have been completed since my parents were in town--the divider between the main rooms looks fantastic & the completed wall behind the wood stove looks much more... finished. I am glad to not have holes in the wall in Hondo's room as well.

So, now it is spring! And my yard has a few signs of life. My tulips came up, but I have been sadly watching the flowers disappear each morning. It seems a bunny or similar creature has decided the tops are quite tasty! I am now down to 4 flowers from about 20. My crab apple tree has delightful little pink buds -- I think it looks the best it does all year, right now, just before the real flowers come in. And, I can start seeing the stems on my peonies. I am looking forward to their beautiful blooms!

My goal this weekend is to take a few pictures and share the project that is my house.

Happy May Day!

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Accomplished all that I set out to do in March

I have accomplished all that I set out to do this month -- I feel so productive! :) I just finished the remaining two things on my to-do list from the beginning of the month.
1) I have sorted through our clothes. This feels really good!
2) I just registered for the MCAT. I will take the test July 2. I am sure that date will approach quickly!

So, here's April's list:
1) Finish the MCAT review book that has been sitting around my house since mid-January, and do 1 online full length practice exam.
2) Prime/paint the house projects from last weekend.
3) Spring clean the house (including shampooing of rug & furniture). It always feels awesome to have this done!
4) Help Pete clean up the yard. We appear to have lost more sticks over the winter.

Happy spring! My tulips are starting to poke through the ground. I am looking forward to flowers in the next couple of weeks! :)

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Congratulations Kristen & Todd! We are looking forward to coming to your wedding this July! Happy Planning! :)

Monday, March 23, 2009

Mid-March update

March, as promised, has been a whirl-wind month! However, thanks to the mid-month arrival of my family we were able to get just a few extra projects started/done this month. Here are the highlights of projects attempted/accomplished this past weekend when my dad, mom, Alex & Emma were in town:
*Holes in the drywall have been patched. I will post photos once these holes have been painted. These holes are in the main family room & Hondo's room, and are from finding the chimney for the wood stove & access to the water pipes during a particularly cold spell during the winter.
*Chandeliers on the main level have been cleaned.
*A piece of wood has been added to the large transom/trim between the two main living areas. This blocks off the hole where the pocket doors previously resided. I will post photos once these are caulked & painted. Previously, the top had trim, left side had another type of trim, and the right side was a hole open to the inside of the walls. Although it would be neat to have the pocket doors in the house... the track inside the wall is busted & the doors would be cock-eyed secondary to the new floor in the living room.
*Removal of links in the light fixture in Hondo's room -- it now hangs correctly and slightly closer to the ceiling for those people taller than 6'.
*Installation of child locks in the kitchen. These are meant to keep Hondo out of the trash can located in the pantry, and limit access to the lower cupboards.

In addition to the above items, I have accomplished the following on my list from earlier this month:
*Purchase of shower gifts.
I still need to sign up for the MCAT.
I am post-poning my (artificial) deadline for end of March for the curtains. We have decided to get windows and/or siding before the end of next summer, so I plan to wait to make curtains until the new windows are installed.

Additionally, my hockey team came in 1st place. I did not play in the championship game last night because my family was in town and we had not really had a chance to visit with them due to the busyiness of the weekend... so, I stayed home. But, we won the championship! Go Top Shelf!

Last, we have signed up for our "spring" sports (due we sound athletic or what?!?!)! Pete will be playing baseball with the guys, and if there is another team that signs up for the spring women's hockey... I will continue to play hockey (albeit with another team)!

Enjoy the beautiful weather!

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Congrats to Bantam B!

We had a blast watching my brother-in-law's/cousin's hockey team play at the State Championship tourney this past weekend! Although they did not win the whole tourney, they played great hockey and made it to the last game before the championship. We were also able to see some family from out-of-state, and my cousins from out of the area, and enjoy their company at the arena. So, good job boys ~ you had a great season & the tournament was a lot of fun to watch!

Friday, March 6, 2009

Spring is here!

It's SPRING! This morning on my way out the driveway, I noticed that our magnolia tree is starting to get leaf buds... and so is the lilac, and likewise a few other flora in our yard. Also, it was 70 this afternoon! So, I drove with the convertible top down on my way home from work. I am ready for daylight savings, and I am optimistic that all of winter's white has left!

Happy spring ~ enjoy the fine weather!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

March (madness)

I am really liking the sunshine and the promise of spring these past few days... but, what I really want to talk about is March (madness)!

This month is promising to be busier than ever, which is great [especially during this last long month of winter]. Some highlights:
We had company last weekend, Megan and Eric R. came into town Saturday night. We were also were able to see some of our local friends, which is always fun...
Next weekend, a few more of our friends are coming down (Megan & Aaron)--they will not be staying with us, but it certainly would be fun to see them...
The following weekend, my sister comes into town...
And the weekend after that, my parents (and a few siblings?) are making the trek across state lines to come and stay with us for a few days...
Finally, the last weekend of the month, will be busy with local things...

So, aside from all of this I have the following lofty goals for this month:
1. Finish taxes.
2. Purchase a few shower gifts.
3. Go through our clothes. Figure out what things we need for spring, and purchase. And figure out what we need to donate, discard, etc.
4. Register to take the MCAT this spring or summer.
5. Make the curtains for our bedroom, the bathroom, and the living room. This is a "project" that I have been meaning to do for a while, but now that it is getting lighter out in the morning & I removed the temporary light shields from our room... I need to do this if I ever plan to sleep past 7:30 AM on the weekends.
I know that it is Megan and Aaron that are coming into town this weekend... ! :) We look forward to seeing them! :)

Monday, February 23, 2009

Happy Fat Tuesday!

Happy Fat Tuesday! Above are pictured Paczki (pronounced Poonch-key)'s-- the traditional Polish filled-doughnut served on Fat Tuesday. I picked these up, still hot, Monday night at the local doughnut shop ([town I live in] Donut's). Until I moved states, I had never experienced the deliciousness of a Paczki. This is a day that I can certainly get behind -- Who doesn't like an excuse to eat a doughnut!?! Enjoy your day!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Our "offices".
True to our techie intro... Pete and I each have our own cubicle-type computer set-up. Over the weekend, we added to our set-up's. Pete got a second (and larger) monitor. I got a more comfortable chair. These computers are separated by a transom; this transom used to house sliding doors used to separate the living rooms. The base of the trim on the transom can be seen in the picture of my office on the right.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Cold + Snow = Nap day

Although we've had a few tantalizing glimpses of spring recently, I am reminded today that February is still a winter month. It has been snowing all day. Pete ran an errand this morning, and reported that the road conditions were not good. So, we've had a very relaxing day at home.

The above picture shows our favorite napping spot -- in front of the fireplace, on the two ottomans/leather chairs. Pete is napping there now. Our dog has been dozing on the above chairs. I took a nap in that spot earlier, and woke up feeling supremely relaxed.

Stay warm.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Happy Valentine's Day (belated)

Happy Valentine's day! Here are some little snippets of the day at my house (L : gritty photo-- Fruit & Flowers tea stewing, M- Roses from Pete, R: Angel Food Cake -- served last night @ dinner with strawberries & whipped cream - yum!)

I hope your day was spent with the ones you love!

This weekend we were blest with company again! :) My sister, Jenna, and neice, Jaedon came in town to see my cousin's new daughter and family (her sister-in-law's, and me). It was so fun to see & spend time with these two (and see the others that they came in town to see)! :)

Monday, January 26, 2009

Life, in general

A two minute blurb... about life, in general.

It seems that last year ended with the expectation that this year would be similar... same jobs, same house, same dog, etc. as last year. Pete and I are at a fairly stable point in our life, and there was really nothing to indicate that, aside from new anniversaries, etc. life will be much different this year.

However, than the new year rolled around. I am now studying ~3+ days a week to take an admissions test for Grad school. Pete came home the other evening inquiring how I would feel about a *potential* temporary 3-12 month relocation to Korea for sometime later this year. [For the record: I would welcome the opportunity.] And... we no longer have any cats. It seems that life is subject to change at any moment; it certainly keeps us from being bored!

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Lazy Saturday

Given the cold temperatures and snow recently making travel more difficult, Saturday's around our home have have been "lazy" with a Sunday-like feel to the day. We have not accomplished anything large on Saturday's this month--the largest feat being the weekly grocery run & laundry. But, we have been able to catch up on sleep, and work on some of our less strenuous personal goals... For instance, this month, I have finished 3 books in front of the fire, and have started to review some of my old coursework from college. [I am toying with the idea of taking a graduate admissions test and going back to school for Fall 2010 or so...]

But, it feels wonderful to ease into 2009; I am enjoying a "pause" in our life induced by the insulating snow and cold of winter. I hope that, if winter cold & snow has found you, you are warm, dry, and relaxed... enjoying a cup of coffee (or your beverage of choice).

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Semi's on Winter Roads

I brought my sister, Courtney, to the airport this morning for her return flight home... It was so fun to have her in town, and get to see her (and her BF) a bit this past week.

While driving down 275 at 6:50 AM, I was left to say good-bye, and comiserate with my sister about winter. We had a few inches of snow overnight, and the roads had yet to be cleared for morning traffic. Certainly, there were the usual spin-off's, and Semi's. And while cars on the road were content to be going 45 MPH, the semi's were going just quick enough to slowly pass by... It was during these times, that all I could see out the windshield was a nice coating of light brown sludge from the roads...

Shouldn't semi's and large trucks be required to have courtesy for drivers of other vehicles during inclemet weather, as demonstrated by slower speeds or perhaps use of less traveled roads? I completely understand that the large trucks have better traction due to their weight, number of tires, etc. But, the backsplash by their tires makes for an additional hazard on winter roads ~ completely obstructing views of the road for the many small cars that share the highway.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Welcome 2009

We had a wonderful Christmas & New Year back home in Minnesota! As we were gone from Dec 23 until last Saturday, we were able to visit at a few places and enjoy spending time with family & friend's back home. While we were gone, my in-laws graciously agreed to watch our dog & feed the cat, and it was certainly nice not to have to think too much about the pets while we were away. In addition to not worrying about the pets, I forgot to take photos while we were out there (as photography is not my forte & we enjoyed our visits so much) and have a very limited selection of pictures of the trip... which I will not share as most are blurry, etc.

Anyway, some highlights...
*Watching the wonder and excitement in the faces of Mindy & Aaron's kids on Christmas morning
*Making a trip up North to visit my Grandma S. (and visiting a few other relatives while we were up there)
*Visiting with my family, friends, and other relatives
*Taking the scenic route back home, enjoying beautiful winter driving weather and views of the lake
*Making a trip to the Mega-mall for after Christmas sale shopping
*Enjoying the many parties around Christmas Eve, & Christmas day

Some lowlights...
*-29deg weather (not wind chill) noted while we were up North (although, it certainly helps to keep the *cold* winters in our area in perspective...)
*Ice storm & wonderful road conditions on the way to MN
*The puking/diarrhea virus making its way through Jen & Bill's house, my mom & dad's house, through me, and finally catching up with Pete 1/2 way home

All in all, it was a very good trip, but I am happy to be home with laundry caught up, Christmas decor packed away, dog recently bathed, and half way through my second book of the year (2009). Additionally, my sister, Courtney, arrived here on Saturday as well... and I have been enjoying her company and having her downstate (until the weekend).

May your 2009 be merry, healthy, and productive!