Thursday, January 27, 2011

A project

I like a good project.  A household project that requires some tearing out, some mess and then an awesome result.  I'm just going to ignore the part that includes the fact that I never cut or nail anything.  That is Brooks' job.  He also does the plumbing and electrical if required.  He uses the tools.  I typically tear things out like trim and tile.  I am also in charge of painting.  I don't cut in because he is neater about it but I always try to be as helpful as possible.  Sometimes being helpful means bringing up a Mt. Dew for him to drink.  That and not getting in the way.

Every year we do a project of decent size.  Last year on New Year's eve we tore apart a bathroom.  Please note the gorgeous baby blue tile with cracked grout.

Then it turned into this.

We decided to replace the ceiling fan in our bedroom from the basic boring white one to this. We also replaced all the trim in that room with a new white trim and painted all the doors to match. 

The year before we (I am using that term very loosely since I was out of town for much of this project) installed a paver patio out our kitchen door.

This year we have two projects up for completion.  They are two big projects that come with big price tags.  The first is our living and dining space.  The original kitchen was on our second level and tiny.  The last owners of our house were nice enough to give us a huge kitchen where a formal living room once was.  The original kitchen was tucked away between the living and dining room. The kitchen was squeezed into the wall in the picture below where all the pictures are. 

Our plans for this room are to tear down the wall, since the former kitchen is all gone. Tearing down the wall will require us also to tear out the tile and carpet you see above in the picture.  The room is about 650 sq ft.  That is a lot of tile.  If you have ever tore out tile you know what I am talking about.  We're going to put in some sort of flooring, either hardwood or laminate, to make the room one open space only divided by furniture. 

The other project is the basement.  The basement is the same size as the area in the living room and dining room, 650 sq ft. The basement will require a lot of work.  Right now it is concrete block and two windows.  The space will be broken into three rooms, a laundry room/storage room, an office/guest bedroom and a living space. We will have to do everything to this space - waterproof, frame, drywall, flooring, lighting, electrical and replace the original windows. Oooof. Even though we have friends and family that can do all of the work, we still have to buy the supplies.  Double ooof. 

But I can't help myself from browsing Home Depot and Lowes on the weekends. The Habitat restore near us has awesome stuff that I would love to incorporate into our house. 
The basement project is my dream project, meaning that it likely won't happen any time soon.  The ideas are swirling though! 

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

It's only January

I like the winter.  I know, most people don't have good feelings about cold weather but I do - to an extent.  See - there is my smiling face last year in snow number 42. 

Winter means warm belly filling meals, making cookies, snuggling up near the fireplace, playing with the dog in the snow, warming my husband's side of the bed since I am nice like that and warm cozy clothes.  I know that it also means my car is barely warm when I get to my office, my leg hairs growing at a rapid pace when I get goosebumps, my nose is runny 3/4 of the time from November to March, my legs are ashy and lotion only helps for five minutes and my car is constantly salty looking.  I might get a bit of the SAD but only if there isn't snow on the ground.  Today, there is snow on the ground and by the looks of things the snow is going to stay for a while.

Living in Pennsylvania means that you get four full seasons, which I love but that also means that in the winter you better be finding yourself something to occupy your time indoors or you are going to be a sad puppy.  So what I need to know is what you all do in the winter that is either free or super cheap.  Here is what we do already.

- Go to Barnes and Noble, read their magazines or browse their books. It is free unless we actually buy something which is rare.
- Window shop at home improvement stores. We just did this on Sunday.  There was a need to get out of the house and these stores always have something to look at.  We are planning a big messy house project this year and it is fun to pretend like we are going to be able to afford the $8/sq ft flooring.  HA!
- Play cards.  Hooooboy.  We play a lot of cards; uno, rummy, poker and a variety of other card games. 
- House projects. This is neither cheap or free.  But it is fun to an extent. Every winter we seem to do some project that burns us out until Spring when we start digging in the flower beds. Last year it was the bathroom project we started on New Years Eve.  I know, we live wild on the drinking holidays. We tore out a bathroom and put it back together.  The bathroom was mine to decorate so I got to chose the vanity, beadboard, paint and decor.  I love it a year later, so I guess I pleased myself.
- Plan the spring flower/garden extravaganza. We seem to get all of these ideas together in the winter months and then try execute a decent number of them.  Nursery magazines just started coming in the mail, so this will start in full shortly. It is free until we start planting and aching from all the digging.
- Redbox and Blockbuster Express.  Cheap movies that we pick up on Friday and return on Saturday.  Awesome excuse to snuggle up and be bums on Friday nite.
- Walk the dog. Again, I know it is cold but the dog needs walking so every nite we bundle up as soon as we get home from work and take him out for a walk.  Some nites it is the short loop and other nites it is longer depending on our wussiness.
-Have friends over.  We have people over a lot, we play games, we watch big basketball games, we eat a lot.  Pretty much we just hang out with other people as our entertainment.

Maybe there is more that we do in the winter that I am forgetting like watching lots of college basketball and other mindless television. I imagine there is a lot more we could be doing.

Friday, January 7, 2011

I see you

I'm a big smiler. A big laugher.  Evidence here.

This is the picture that I want to represent me.  This is how I want other people to see me.  Well maybe not the jammies, morning breath and non bathed part but that happiness. 

How do you want people to see you? 

Recently a friend who has been going through a breakup and I were talking about what makes relationships work and how some people just aren't matched.  The guy I was talking to is a good friend of Brooks'.  He dated a girl for over four years and I could have told you three and a half years ago when I met them both that they weren't a great fit for each other. 

I was talking about Brooks and I's relationship to this guy and he told me that we always seemed so comfortable together and content.  It made my day.  It is how I feel in our relationship.  Thank goodness for him.  I went home after that conversation, grabbed Brooks and sniffled that we are lucky to have each other.  Lucky indeed.

Monday, January 3, 2011

It's going to be a good one.

It is officially 2011 and I am always one to jump on the for or against New Year's Resolutions about one week after everyone else forgets their resolutions.  Most times I think of something haphazardly about three days into the New Year and then forget about it two days later.  This year I actually have a goal in mind and have stuck to it for three whole days.  Pretty darn awesome for a non goal kind of girl. 

When I sit and think about all the things happening in 2011 it is easy to get overwhelmed and at the same time be really excited. This year is going to be stuffed full of big moments.  I will get a new job, I will turn 30 (so will my husband only a week later), we plan to start making babies towards the end of the year, Brooks will be very close to graduating if not completely graduated with a Dr. in front of his name by spring of 2012.  With just that happening alone, big changes will occur.  He will be job seeking for the first time ever at the age of 30 - isn't that unreal for those of us who have been working for close to ten years!? We will either move to another place entirely which entails buying and selling a home and me getting another job or we will establish ourselves a bit more long term in our current town.  That might mean selling our house or it might mean sticking to the one we have for a little while longer.  Babies, jobs, houses and turning 30 are some big events for one year.  I am excited / semi freaking out about all of it. 

Since I try to be honest, here is a scary one.  We are going to try to get pregnant this year with the hopes of having a baby in the spring to early summer of next year.  That would be six months after my husband's graduation and hopefully give us a little time to settle ourselves into life at that point. I think most people in our situation feel similar to us that we have put off having a baby for so long what we worry it won't happen when we want it to.  Here's hoping for none of those worries!