Monday, November 30, 2009

Camera Shy

I didn't take any pictures Thanksgiving. I didn't even take my camera with me to Grandma's, which is where we do the bulk of our holiday celebrating. Even though I have an awesome new camera that I love playing with and need to practice more with. I left it at home, because sometimes, taking pictures makes me feel socially awkward.

It's one thing to take pictures when you're traveling or at a big event. Duh. That's what you do on those occasions. But I feel very self-conscious taking pictures of the Thanksgiving spread. Or secretly snapping shots of my family members chatting. Or taking pictures of the area around my Grandma's yard, which is actually pretty photogenic (dinner bell, old barns, antique farm equipment, huge areas of farmland).

This seems totally irrational. I'm sure it's irrational. But do you ever feel this way? There's almost something pretentious in taking pictures at times. Taking photos makes me feel like I'm saying, "I'm an artist. I'm talented. I'm capturing things that will be awesome, artistic and beautiful." And while I would love for that to be true, I don't really feel like it is. Yet. Sometimes I feel that way about blogging too. And maybe that's why this blog is about the only thing I've written outside of work or school in several years.

On a humorous note, my sister snuck out her Veggie Tales nativity scene (Laura and I love Veggie Tales! Mom thinks we're nuts!) and put it on our entry table. Mom was not amused. I did take lots of pictures of this. It was awesome.

Veggie Tales nativity scene
Veggie Tales nativity scene

Friday, November 27, 2009

Week in Review: 11/27

I totally experienced a Black Friday Miracle today. Mom and I wait until later in the morning, like 9 a.m. to head out because there's nothing we want so bad we'll get up before daylight for. So we get to Target and I wanted one of their $7.50 puffy vests in brown or gray. Sensing this would be a popular item, I went there first, scanned the area, no puffy vests. Look again, because they have to be somewhere, and I see the empty rack with the $7.50 puffy vests sign. Oh well. Mom and I went on to pick up some electronic items. Seeing I had some money left I stopped back by the clothing section right as someone was putting back some gray puffy vests and I totally snagged the small just as another lady was heading over. Go me! Success!

So yeah, this week...

A book lover's tiny paradise, although I'm still holding out for Belle's library from Beauty and the Beast. Best library ever. In reality though, the Britsh Museum has a nice reading room.
British Museum Reading Room
If I had ridiculous amounts of money, I would soon own Audrey's dress from Love in the Afternoon. And if I was like 5'7" and 105 lbs., I'd wear it to the opera too.

Must incorporate turkey bowling into future Thanksgivings.

I really want to have more plants around and here are some good ways to keep them . If only my cat didn't try to eat them and if I didn't tend to forget about them and let them die (the sad fate of our herb garden). Here are some great potting ideas if I ever get my plant act together.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

This year I'm thankful for:
  • My job. I get to work with amazing people in a wonderful environment. And things are going well for us so I'm not too worried about getting fired! 
  • There are some friends that I have been much better about staying in touch with this year and I'm so happy about that. (And some that I need to work much better at, but we'll reflect more on that at New Year's.)
  • Glee.
  • Learning how to knit and sew. It's been a lot of fun spending the time with Aunt Billie so she can teach me these things and I love knowing how to do them. Next year I shall make a Jane Austen dress (fingers crossed!).
  • My hair grows out really quickly and I'm glad we're back to messy bun length.
  • My family. And Lee's family. They're all awesome. Kind, loving, funny, good at making tasty treats and sending care packages and the like.
  • Most of all, cheesy drum roll...I'm thankful for Lee. He really is like the coolest guy ever. And I get to hang out with him everyday and snuggle. He makes me laugh. He empties the dishwasher. He saves me from the certain doom that awaits if I take Zoey outside to potty at night. And he smells nice. Oh! And he does some great animal sounds (He's best at turkeys and monkeys.) and has a cool squeaky voice too. I'm determined to get him to let me YouTube these skills someday.

Friends' Thanksgiving episodes are the best.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

In the Holiday Spirit

epic fail pictures
see more Epic Fails

I love Christmas. Christmas is easily my favorite holiday. Out of respect to Thanksgiving and to maintain my sanity (I can only function at 100% Christmas Cheer for so many weeks.) I wait until the day after Thanksgiving (sometimes staying up until midnight) to begin my holiday crazies. But really, my Thanksgiving excitement revolves more around days off from work and getting to wish people "Merry Christmas" in 24 hours than Thanksgiving just for the sake of it.

But I just don't feel that excited yet. It's not that I'm not excited, just not nearly excited as normal. I have some theories on this.

  • Since I'm making a lot of my gifts this year, Christmas is now a huge deadline. It's always a deadline, but one that can be knocked out one diligent Saturday. Not this year though. My original goal had been to have everything made by Thanksgiving, or at least be at 75%, so I would not be exactly where I am at this moment: lots to do and less than a month to do it in. 

  • I don't want this statement to be taken in the wrong way and -- oh dear, am I getting misty typing this?! -- but this will be my first Christmas not at home. I love Lee's family very much. I have been blessed with truly wonderful in-laws whom I enjoy so much and I'm looking forward to spending this Christmas with them, but it breaks my heart a little that I won't be at home with my family. I will be celebrating Christmas with them the weekend before, but it's not the same. 

  • I'm really excited about 2010. Not so much the New Year holiday, but the whole year 2010. For the past three years I have been waiting for 2010 because that's when Lee's Army Reserve contract is up (September to be exact.). 2010 has been this illusive magic year when Lee's contract would end and we could start thinking more about babies and this wonderful year starts in like 35ish days! We're also going into serious house hunting mode in January, so as I put up our tree on Saturday, I'm really just thinking about our tree next year. In our front window. In our home. And Lee hanging lights outside. And holiday baking in my kitchen. And really starting our "home".
I'm still looking forward to Christmas. I will still get up on Friday morning and switch to my holiday ringtone and put on Zoey's holiday collar. Perhaps I'm just a little too excited about other impending excitements to really absorb this Christmas? But life is too precious for that.

Must. focus. on this. Christmas. Because I'm sure it will be plenty of wonderful.

Image inspired by Amy.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

My New Crazy Thought

I've had a new thought lately. I'm hesitant to tell you because I can't remember if I've told Lee. I know I've mentioned it but casual mentions don't always register with Lee so I don't know if that counts, but I will tell you all anyway.

Lee and I have always considered adoption. Now might be a good time to mention that we are not thinking about babies soon and nothing I'm about to say involves immediate actions. But yeah, Lee's sister was adopted from China when she was two so Lee has always been pro-adoption and I've always thought it sounded like a fine idea. We'll see how life goes but I've kind of figured that after two to three of our own we might adopt the rest. (We're thinking three to four total. Depending on how things are going financially, I might like more. But not so many that I have to get one of those Jon and Kate sized vans. So maybe no more than five. Are there eight-seater SUVs? I don't want a minivan. Anyways!)

But then a couple weeks ago I read White Oleander by Janet Fitch. The novel starts when Astrid, the narrator, is about 11 or 12, and is sent to foster care after her mother murders her ex-boyfriend. And it gets worse from there.

I don't want to hate on our foster care system because I'm know they're doing great work. One of my substitute teachers in elementary school had foster kids and I'm sure she was an amazing foster mom and I'm sure there are tons of incredible foster families out there. But (spoiler alert!) Astrid got stuck with some veritable nightmares. Really, there must have not been a lot of background checks or home visits going on (Granted, this is all fiction.). Or maybe they just didn't care. Or maybe there were just too many kids who needed A home that they got ANY home that would open its doors.

So now I want to be a foster parent. Because Astrid was smart, talented and kind and she deserved a better chance. And the whole time I was reading I kept thinking, "We could do a better job. We could give her a wonderful home."

image: fiskfisk

Monday, November 23, 2009

Super Crafty Weekend!

It feels like super crafty weekend but then I didn't get nearly as much done as I had hoped. I also suspect that those hopes were unrealistic. Anyways...

I finished the square of the baby blanket I was working on, and counseled with Aunt Billie on how to do the border. She's modified it some which will make it easier, but it still seems kinda daunting so I'm procrastinating on it now. Oops.

I used this tutorial to make a check book cover. Although a little tight, it works and I'm super excited since my old checkbook cover was ruined in the great cat-pee-tastrophe of 2009.

checkbook cover

014 - Copy (4)
And I completed one of the purses that I had planned on making for several people's Christmas gift.

It turned out a little smaller than I thought, and I had toyed with switching to fabric cubes with fun things in them instead, but everyone needs a small purse for some occasions so I'll be churning out more of these very soon!
006 - Copy (6)
Thanksgiving is this week which means my free time is now totally devoted to gift making. *sigh* If I had only started sooner...

UPDATED: Oops! Totally forgot to link to the purse pattern which is here. And all the lovely fabric is from Joann!

Friday, November 20, 2009

Week in Review 11/20

fall night

Love these classy bulletin boards from The Shabby Nest.

When Lee and I were registering for wedding gifts, we did not register for a wall clock. We attempted to, multiple times, but clocks are one of those funny things that Lee suddenly has an opinion on. Despite his general lack of interest in things not related to me, computers, and UofL sports, he will have surprising opinions, out of nowhere, about clocks. Lee prefers clocks with roman numerals, abstract markers, or nothing but the hands. I like clocks with twelve numbers because otherwise I can't read time. (Well, I can, but it's harder than necessary.) Long story to say, I found this clock (found via Apartment Therapy). Will Lee like it? It doesn't have numbers!

I think these hole-punch cards are awesome and could be a lot harder that it looks of fun to do yourself.

The big excitement for me this week has been the announcement of a Young House Love baby. For reals, I did a happy chair dance and interrupted a deep chat with Jenn about religion and politics with this:
me: YOU MUST GO TO YOUNG HOUSE LOVE RIGHT NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Jennifer: [Jenn did not immediately following my directions and continued the politics/religion conversation.]

Have a wonderful weekend! :)

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Cough Cough

sick supples
This is what my bathroom vanity looked like last evening. (I've tidied it up a bit since then.) So yeah, I haven't been feeling well. I am feeling better today though so yay! It's becoming increasingly unlikely that this is swine flu which I was mildly convinced of while I was tossing, turning, and shivering Tuesday night. But I worked a full day today and plan on cooking dinner tonight (spaghetti!) so better health and clear nasal passages are in my near future, I am sure.

To continue with ways my mom is awesome, I got this in the mail from her.
care package
It arrived on Friday but I forgot to pick up at the office until Tuesday night. I almost didn't pick it up Tuesday because at 2 p.m. snot had started pouring non-stop from my nose and it was raining and I had had to wear fancy pants to work, so I was trying to get inside in pj pants as soon as possible. But I went ahead and stopped by to get my package and was it worth it! My favorite chips that I'm normally too cheap to buy, my favorite freezer bags that I can't find anywhere anymore (This is a legit problem I'm having. These are superior freezer bags! Where are they going?! If your Walmart still carries them you might have to start hooking me up.), and beloved Little Debbie Christmas Trees. Mom had gotten me some of the trees for my last trip home but the family ate them before I arrived. Well family, you have been redeemed.

Why this kindness from my mom? I might have put it in her calendar last time I was home. ;)
a reminder

Monday, November 16, 2009

My New Toy!

Lately, I've been thinking about getting a DSLR. It's expensive and it would require some money that could perhaps better be used going toward a house or vacation (Lee and I haven't gone anywhere since our honeymoon and I'm determined that we shall take a legit vacation in 2010.), but I still kept thinking about it. I've analyzed some of my favorite bloggers' pictures and the cameras they used. I've tried to improve my point-and-shoot pictures in an attempt to convince myself that it's more a matter of skill than camera (This is probably true to an extent.). To help me decide, I asked my mom if I could borrow her DSLR for a couple weeks and see how I liked it.

After a few days of playing with it, I got an e-mail from my mom. There was another camera she wanted and she was going to get that for Christmas, so I could just keep her wonderful Nikon D60.

Much happy chair-bouncing ensued.

I replied to her with many thanks and said that I was relieved because I thought I might have to buy it from her, which I'm sure would've been a bargained but free is so much better. In this e-mail, which contained other topics, I had mentioned that I would be picking up some toys for a toy drive we were having at church. So mom suggested that in lieu of actual cash money to her, I go get a stuffed animal for the toy drive, since stuffed animals are her favorite. But not a cheap one, a quality Build-a-Bear. So I went and built a dog this weekend, in exchange for my fabulous new camera.

a Build-A-Dog
He also barks.

So without futher ado, meet my new bff!
me and my precious
Clearly he needs a name. Yes, I've decided he's a he. And no, I still haven't decided on a name for my sewing machine. Ideas for both are welcome in the comments. My sewing machine is a girl by the way.

I'm thinking about George for the camera. Mike? Niki the Nikon? That's more of a girl name. And a little lame. I really like George but would hate to need it some day for a child and have already spent it on my camera.

Also, feel free to direct me toward any useful DSLR-for-dummies resources on the Interwebs.

Expect to see lots more pictures coming! Like this one, in which Reagan does not support fitness.

Friday, November 13, 2009

11/13: Week in Review

 I subscribe to 212 blogs/news sources/miscellany in my Google Reader. Two hundred twelve. I feel like that's a lot. I don't what to compare it to. How many do you subscribe to? Is 212 normal? It's still a lot. So I've decided that Fridays should be "Week in Review" days where I share some blog, Twitter, YouTube goodness from the ridiculous amount of blog reading I do. And maybe some photos.

I got a new Twitter background at ava7 patterns and it is awesome.

Handmade holiday gifts don't get much easier than the hot drink mix.

A much-needed tutorial on bows from Elise Blaha.

I love What I Wore and am so excited that Jessica got engaged and is starting a wedding blog.

I love me some fake Jane Austen news!

These are some keyword search results for this blog. I'm glad I could be helpful with food expiration issues.
 keyword search

If you are a twenty-something blogger and like to do good things, you might like this.

I am a huge fan of Kentucky Sports Radio and I am so happy that they now have a lady blogger and she seems to think along the same lines as I do.

Tour Etsy headquarters. Because you didn't want to work there enough already.

I was thinking about trying to wing a journal/planner cover a couple months ago, but a tutorial is much nicer.

I also have a bit of an announcement. I have been a slightly closeted Taylor Swift fan for some time now. Lately, like I since I borrowed a couple CDs from my sister and saw her rock out the SNL, I can't keep it inside any longer. I really love me some Taylor Swift.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Just a Little Crafty

I went to one of my good friend's baby shower last weekend and made her a card (containing pictures of the still in progress baby blanket!).

Happy Baby Card!
I think it turned out a little ghetto but mom assured me that it was adorable. And that she knew right away that it was a banner.

Thanks mom! :)

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Mr. Darcy is a Very Important Character

I had the most wonderful experience last night: I read the first couple chapters of Pride and Prejudice with a first-timer.

Lee has a 12-year-old sister, Danielle, who loves to read. I often tell her that someday she will have to read Pride and Prejudice, as all young girls should, so I was delighted when she announced that P&P was next on her list. A few days later I ran to Barnes and Noble to pick out a copy for her. There was no way I would let her borrow mine because she needed one of her very own. You know, so she can draw hearts on the page(s) where Mr. Darcy proposes or dog-ear her favorite pages for easy reference.

So I'm over visiting a couple weeks ago and we get out her P&P and started reading together. Who wouldn't love to read P&P without a veritable NUT looking over her shoulder, clarifying conversations, explaining old spellings, properly pronouncing locations (Darby-sure), giving appropriate tone, and assuring her which characters are actually important (Mr. Bingley) and which aren't so much (Mrs. Long)?!

Then last week Danielle gives me a call. P&P is hard. (That's true. I started with Sense and Sensbility at her age and after a chapter decided I should wait another year.) Could we have some regular phone dates to read it together? HELL YES!

She might come to regret this soon since I like to pause and discuss the social structures of the time, what "Austen is really doing," and make sure she gets all the jokes, but she's going to be so ready when they actually get to this in school. Or maybe I'm just molding another English major. Both excellent possible results.

But the best part is that Danielle has no idea what happens. None. None at all. It has been about a decade since I first fell for Darcy's subtle charms but I think even then I had some idea that Darcy and Elizabeth were THE couple. Like when you read Wuthering Heights or watch Gone with the Wind (or read it), you've heard of Catherine and Heathcliff, Scarlett and Rhett. I think I had some ideas about this Elizabeth and Darcy, but Danielle has none and I love it!

Last night Danielle asked, "Why is Mr. Darcy an important character? He's mean."

Just trust me Danielle, Mr. Darcy is a very important character. We'll find out why in another 100 pages or so.

Is it sad that I know which moment in the five-hour film this is from? He's watching Elizabeth play the piano at Rosings. It's one of my favorite scenes.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

A Moment to Brag

Can I just take a moment to brag? Lee is freaking awesome.

I've been struggling with some laziness lately and to compensate I have made a ridiculous list of things I want to accomplish this week. I often ask Lee to help out, but for whatever reasons in how my crazy mind works I've spent a lot of time over thinking when I can get certain chores done this week and how Lee can help and maybe I should just do it all myself...

So this morning as we were getting ready for work I asked Lee if he could dust tonight and maybe something else, I hadn't decided, so much to do... And then -- this might not seem like much, but it meant a lot to my dorky OCD heart -- he told me, "Can you just tell me everything you want to me to do now because when additional tasks are hypothetically looming, I'm less likely to start on them." Then he incorporated an amusing analogy about needing to know how much the check needed to be made out for because once it was written he didn't appreciate requests for additional cash withdrawls. I could ask for any amount, but I needed to decide on an amount and ask. Which is totally fine with me.

Over the course of our relationship, one of the central frustrations has been me struggling to delegate yet getting grumpy that I do it all myself. And once I delegate, I micro-manage and don't understand why things aren't being done right now. (What do you mean Warhammer doesn't have a pause button?!) But lately we've really hit our chore groove and Lee has been sharing important insights, like how of all the kitchen tasks he least hates unloading the dishwasher (Oops, I forgot to add that to this evening's list. Hmm...) and he prefers a task list up front as opposed to me perpetually tagging on random things.

So tonight Lee will dust, vacuum and hopefully unload the dishwasher, leaving me plenty of time to go to the grocery, make dinner (tortellini, EVOO, garlic, parm -- both easy and delicious), laundry, and clean the bathroom. I feel so much better about my to-do list now!

Monday, November 9, 2009

I'm a Weeper

I cry. A lot.

More often than not, I cry over fictional things. Common examples include: Steel Magnolias, the Friends series final, Gilmore Girls series finale, Extreme Home Makeover, Grey's Anatomy (When Alex and Izzie got married I cried so hard I had to have Lee come sit with me. I could barely ask him to come sit with me because I was crying that much.), Nicholas Sparks (I hate his books but they make me cry and I hate him more.), The Lovely Bones, and the list goes on. It's kind of sad. Especially when you consider how many times I've seen Steel Magnolias and the Friends season finale. Oh, I can't even talk about the Gilmore Girls finale without choking up. When Luke stays up all night making the tent and then Rory and Lorelai pull up and it's raining and everyone...yeah, I can't do it.

And for some reason, Christmas has become one of those things that makes me cry. I mean, I love Christmas and it's happy tears, but the moment they start to sing "Oh Holy Night" on Christmas Eve, even if the soloist has a horrible voice, I cry. Really though, have you ever thought about the words? They are absolutely stunning: Long lay the world in sin, and ever pining, until He appeared and the soul felt its worth. That's pretty sweet.

(I also got misty on Palm Sunday this year, what can I say?!)

So Saturday I'm at Target with my mom perusing Christmas cards with my cell phone calculator for advanced price analysis and I see this card.
Christmas card front/back
I don't technically cry but I get all choked up and so does mom (I inherit my weepiness from her. You do not want to be there when we watch Stepmom.).

A debate ensues over if I really like this card or not. I mean, it's kind of cheesy but it did make me cry. Then the woman down the aisle reminds me that if it made me cry then clearly it's the one. That's how you pick out your wedding dress after all. (I cried when I decided on my wedding dress, but I still doubt I picked out the right one. Anyways...) So I got a box.

In other shopping news, I got a new purse (50% off at Kohl's!) to replace the one Reagan used as a litter box. Oh, and she appears to be perfectly healthy so that's strike one for the little punk! (Who am I kidding?! I can't get rid of her. I still love that crazy fluffy cat.)
new purse!

And since it is Music Monday, I just found this Single Ladies cover via @tugonthis and I think it's awesome.

Friday, November 6, 2009

A Change of Plans

I'm a little Type A. Okay, maybe more than a little. Sudden plan changes really bug me, even little ones. Even if I've planned nothing and now something technically cooler has come along, I don't like it. Today has been full of "special" sudden events and some small to medium sized plan changes. Overall, I think I'm okay with it. Does this mean I'm growing? Doubtful. I think it just means I need a nap.

I have been feeling a little lazy lately. I come home from work and my motivation meter is at -20. I fall asleep in the chair because I'm too lazy to drag myself to bed. And I've been getting up later and later, which has been screwing with both my and Lee's morning schedule. I had hoped that this morning would be better but it wasn't. I snoozed too long, even though I had plenty of sleep and was plenty awake. The bed was comfier than the bathroom and it won. After a series of pep-talks, I vowed to cheer up, persevere and next week we will do better. "We" being me and pep-talk-giver who lives in my head.

So I'm looking for my sunglasses in a hurry to take Zoey out to potty and finally head to work, but funny thing is my glasses case is wet. Huh. And so is my adorable Clinique makeup bag. And my cute little notebook is soaked in something smellier than water...must be animal urine!

For a number of reasons it was ultimately concluded that my dear, beloved, perfect Reagan peed in my purse this morning.
So now I'm running later AND trying to get the cat urine off my belongings. Thankfully, the Fossil wallet and camera were spared. The purse might be a lost cause, but at least it was a $15 Walmart purse. A fabulous purse, but a $15 purse none the less.

I yelled and cursed Reagan a lot as I cleaned up, got a new purse and headed out the door, but after talking to coworkers and Lee's mom who is above-average with pet knowledge, it appears that she may have a urinary infection.

So Reagan, I am sorry for yelling those horrible things at you this morning. (Note: Apology pending veterinary diagnosis.)

Instead of getting errands done at lunch, I came home and created a kitty haven in our bathroom (I really wish we had two of those right now.) where we can better control where she'll decide to pee and better see if there's any blood in the pee. Fun!

Oh, did I mention I was going to go home (like the where-my-parents-live, two-hours-away home) right after work? For my friend's baby shower tomorrow? And Lee's got drill this weekend so he will be gone from about at least 6 am to 6 pm all weekend?

Or I was going home. I'll be staying in Louisville for the night to monitor Reagan's situation and get her medical attention if needed.

Honestly, I'm kind of relived. Not so much about the situation where I need to buy a medicine dropper to collect cat urine off the bathroom floor, but like I said, I've been lazy and I'm hoping that tonight I will actually get some things done that need to be taken care of, mostly laundry. And it's an extra night to hang out with Lee. And if I was at my parents' house I'd just be worried about my precious little kitty. (Note: Precious status pending veterinary diagnosis.)

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Eat More Donuts

I eat breakfast once I get to work: cup of coffee and breakfast bar. By 10:30, I'm hungry again and hunting for a snack.

Today though, I had a donut. A medium-sized chocolate-covered cake donut. I was surprised to look at the clock and realize it was 11:19 and I hadn't even thought about a snack. This made me wonder, "Is breakfast bar plus snack potentially MORE calories than yummy donut?"

Donut packaging says that my donut has 290 calories. My organic chewey granola chocolate chip breakfast bar has 140 calories. Let's say I take the healthy mid-morning snack route and munch on some plain almonds and dried cranberries. That's probably at least another 100 calories. But sometimes I slip in some candy. If I had eaten one of the Reese's peanut butter cups, that would be another 87 calories. So my "healthy start" could total me 327 calories. That is 37 more calories than tasty donut!

Donuts for the win! 

Yes, I do understand that my organic breakfast bar and nuts and berries are better for me and filling me with antioxidants and fiber and other crap, blah blah blah. ;) 

image: D Sharon Pruitt

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

House Hunt Update

Awhile ago I mentioned that Lee and I had started looking at houses, and I feel it's a time for an update.

Things have been going well so far. We're narrowing down what we're willing to sacrifice (basement) and what we're not (two full baths), deciding where we really want to live and where we'd rather not.

And we've already fallen in love. Or at least serious like.

Let's call her House A. Honestly, she looks much nicer than what I thought we'd be able to afford. Two and half baths, two car attached garage, the only house we've looked at with an actual walk-in closet and a true "master suite." We're a little disappointed that it has only one living area, but it is a gigantic living area so we could definitely make it work. And Lee likes it. Lee doesn't often get excited about things, at least not to the crazed extent I do, and he loves this house. Oh, and by far the nicest neighborhood we've looked in. Excellent location.

But -- the roof is 15 years old, and the ac and heater are about the same age. The stove would need to be replaced immediately and the dishwasher soon after. It needs some exterior painting and replacement windows. That's a lot. Yes, we can get insurance. Sure, at the rate Louisville weather has been working we're due for another major wind/ice disaster to take out power and cause enough roof damage to blame it on the weather. Yet, that's a LOT of stuff due to be fixed in the next five years, especially when you consider that we're looking to need one or two new(er) cars, an MBA, and one to two kids in that time frame as well. There are aesthetic things I'd like to be able to do at some point, but with all our money going to windows and roofing, would I still be able to put down hard wood floors (probably laminate), new tile in the bathrooms and paint the front door and shutters? Oh yeah, a dining room table and master bedroom set would be nice too.

So after we looked at House A, we looked at House B. B is still in the price range, although $5,000 more and doesn't have a garage. However, House B has a basement, beautiful kitchen, about 700 more square feet, newer ac, heat and windows. It's not in my favorite neighborhood, but it's not a bad area and this house is in a nicer part of it. But, it just doesn't give us those warm-fuzzy feelings.

And once again, I remind myself that we're not buying a house today. It's a bit of money to get out of our lease, and I'd still like to have another month or so of saving's going into this, but it's getting closer! Once we get into January it will be cheaper to ride out the lease than to break it and at that point we should be more good-to-go if we find it. Maybe a newly roofed version of House A? *fingers crossed*

image: ulybuy

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Friends, Dog Attacks and Head Wounds

I try to avoid long posts because in all honesty, I never read all of a long post so I doubt anyone would read all of my long blog post, but there are three random bits that I must share with the world today. I refuse to break up these three very different, yet mildly (by a thread) related topics.

If I made a list of all the things I'd like to change about myself or improve on, it would be quite lengthy. We don't need to go into it all now (We can save that for January 1.), but one thing is a desire to keep in better touch with my friends. Yet after the past 48 hours, I think I've decided I can cross that off the list.

Relationships will change when you don't live in the same sorority house or have the same lunch block anymore. There's no avoiding it. The important thing is that you keep in touch enough, and do the most you can, so you're still a part of each others' lives.

Sunday night I went out for dinner and coffee in Lexington with three of my sorority sisters.
fried chicken
I LOVE Ramsey's friend chicken! 

In no time at all we were laughing, sharing too much information, and talking about people we don't like (There's something to add to the January 1 list!).

Last night, some friends from high school came over for dinner, and even though it feels like forever since the last time we saw them, that didn't really seem to matter, although it does help that we mutually stalk each other online. (Sarah might have walked in and gone, "Oh! It's your asymmetrical mantel arrangement!" I love the Internet!) 

I know it's gushy and overly-sentimental, but the past two nights I got to spend with people I love a whole lot and who I don't talk to nearly as often as I want to, or as I used to, and it makes me giddily happy. 

Dog Attacks
This video was taken last night before my friends arrived. It is awesome for two reasons:
1. It's hott to watch husband vacuum. He's so helpful!
2. It's a riot to watch Zoey attack the vacuum. So glad I finally got this on film. Now if only I can get some shots of her and Reagan wrestling.

Head Wounds
I am a huge wimp and mild hypochondriac. Yet once I survive my "major" injuries, I like to brag about them because I'm quirky and that's what I do.

Last night I had unprecedented success with a Rachael Ray recipe when I made some Cumin and Lime Roasted Pork Tenderloin with Spicy Creamed Corn. It was quite tasty.

I think it might be the oven's fault, but with the oven on 500 degrees for the 30 minutes it took to roast the tenderloin, the apartment got very smokey and we had to open a lot of windows. So once our friends left, I went into the laundry room to shut the window. It's a smaller window and sits up a little higher than the norm. Apparently, this window will also fold out, as I learned when I went to shut it and pulled it down ON MY HEAD. The window put a gash in my forehead and landed right at the top of my nose. (The bridge perhaps? It was right at the top between my eyes.) There was some bleeding and a lot of whining that ensued.  Sarah, being a nurse and having just left, almost got a phone call to immediately come back and fix me, but Lee promised I would be fine, even though he wouldn't shine lights in my eyes to check for a concussion. I had to do that myself. And my head still hurts today. :(
 head wound