Sunday, December 28, 2008

Suzy Homemaker, in the Making

My blogging is sort-of, almost picking up. I blame the message boards on The Nest. I'm addicted to them! I never really got into The Knot boards. I think most of those brides were just a little too stressed for my liking. Anyway, since I've been on The Nest boards so much, I've come away inspired for decorating and cleaning. Cleaning has never really been my thing ("But Mooooom, if everything's on the floor, I know exactly where it is!" and "I'm just going to be sleeping in my bed in a few hours"). But, being halfway done with my break, I have done some deep down cleaning in the apartment and decided it's much more time-effective to sacrifice 15 minutes of my freetime after work to clean than for it to build up until I can't stand it and have to find 2 hours to clean. That sounds a little reminisent about my childhood I'm still deciding on a schedule, but I think I'll have a clean week and and off week (mostly since Adam already does grocery shopping and I do laundry every 2 weeks). I'll let y'all know how that works.
Another thing I've been inspired, partly by The Nest but mostly by the excitement is decorating. There's only so much I can do in our apartment both because of paint rules and our lack of an extension ladder for some of our walls! We plan to begin the pre-approval process in Feb. and get an agent about that time too and then begin hunting to buy by the summer. Then the decorating begins! Sherwin Williams, look out! I'm keeping some of my ideas for paint and furniture on a document in Pages (Mac's version of Word), but I'm limited by the color palatte. I look at pictures on The Nest and in the occasional magazine, but all of those rooms look like "magazine rooms." Who really lives there? They seem extremely minimal, yet overly cluttered. There's never any personalization. How does anyone live in a room without pictures of loved ones or the random knick-knacks you pick up on trips? Anyway, I'm excited about decorating. My goal is to make out home personal, yet classy and adult. We're both pack-rats, so some major "purging" will be required of us both. We're also very heavily furnished by band-me-downs so I (I think we) am looking forward to doing some furniture shopping and get some grown-up stuff. That's in my document as well!
One more and I'll be done. We did our shopping on Saturday, spending a few gift cards and Christmas money. We got some amazing deals! I'm not quite done, as I still need a pair of black casual shoes and I want to get us some ornaments for next Christmas. We got 50% off at Hobby Lobby for wrapping paper and a timer for our lights. We went on to Old Navy where I got 2 pairs of dress pants and Adam got some t-shirts and jeans all for $80. Adam got dress pants and 2 pairs of shoes at the mall while I got several tops and a top that will be my trendy outfit (the rest of my closet is basics). I loved second Black Friday!

Friday, December 26, 2008

Really Black Friday

I always thought Black Friday was THE shopping day of the year. Crazy low prices, mob crowds, general insanity. Since the economy is so bad, retailers are reportedly having a second Black Friday today with even lower prices just to get people in the stores and spending money. I won't be joining the crowds, mainly because my goal for today was to not get dressed. Sounds weird, I know, but I have 2 weeks off for Christmas Break and today is literally the first day I had a choice about getting dressed. We're planning on going shopping tomorrow anyway, so I'm staying in my pajamas today. This is all beside the point. I have, however, been searching high and low for a trench coat. I have pea coats, but wanted something longer for dressier occasions. I had thought something just rain proof, but found one at that was wool that had the exact style I wanted. It was $140 originally and when I found it Tuesday, it was marked down to $109. Adam and I have a ceiling of how much we spend without consulting each other and this just barely exceeded it anyway. I showed it to him and he liked it as well. Reports of sales were coming out, so we decided to wait until today. I was nervous, since I'm so small and my size is the first to run out (a separate rant for another time). I looked at it after Christmas festivities and it was down to $99.99! When I woke up today, the price held steady and my size was still available. Adam had already given the go ahead, so I put it in my shopping cart. I started to check out and on a whim, decided to Google Gap coupon codes. Sites will list all codes websites are accepting and can get some good deals. I found one for 25% off your order over $100, which, including tax and shipping, I was! My order total came to $86.90. That's just over half of the original price, plus it's a wool trench coat. Amazing! We're heading out tomorrow to spend some of our gift cards and money as we both need work clothes. I think we're going to stop and check out Christmas decoration sales. Stuff like sets of ornaments and lights, nothing major since I don't want to get a bunch of stuff that won't work when we buy a house.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

These are the days...

This weekend has been the one that the holiday season was made for. As has become our tradition, we got dressed up and went out to dinner at nicer restaurants we don't typically eat at. This year, we decided to try out the Nagasaki Inn. We ate at the hibachi grill, which is always exciting (fire!). If you're in the Lexington, KY or Evansville, IN areas, check it out! Afterwards, we went looking at Christmas lights before heading home.
Us before dinner

Today, Adam checked the weather as we laid in bed before church. At 9:00 AM, we had already reached the high for today at 20-some odd degrees. The temperature would start falling before hitting a low of 7. Yes, 7. As in 7-ones. As in a single digit, an odd number between 6 and 8, 7. BRRRRR! After church, Adam cooked a pot of chili and I built a fire. Whenever we buy a house, one of the requirements is quickly becoming "has a fireplace." Other than that, we've been fairly lazy, save for a few chores like ironing (which I should have done last week when I did laundry). I'm looking forward to the 2 weeks of sleeping in, watching movies, and playing Wii Fit. Adam is looking forward to everyone being back from their vacations!

Mom and "Death" during Franklin's "Dickens of a Christmas"

"Father Christmas" and "Charles Dickens" with my dad, me, and Adam

Charlie and Barbara in their Christmas outfits

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Christmas Questions

1. Wrapping paper or gift bags? Wrapping paper
2. Real tree or Artificial? Real. Nothing beats the smell. Plus, we got a good one this year that hasn't shed yet.
3. When do you put up the tree? varies. We usually get it the first weekend in December and put it up the following week.
4. When do you take the tree down? whenever there are more needles on the ground than on the tree!
5. Do you like eggnog? I don't know that I've ever had it.
6. Favorite gift received as a child? a dollhouse
7. Hardest person to buy for? Dad and Adam
8. Easiest person to buy for? Mom. If all else fails, add to her several collections
9. Do you have a nativity scene? I will after Tuesday's craft night!
10. Mail or email Christmas cards? Mail. Who e-mails Christmas Cards?
11. Worst Christmas gift you ever received? at the time, clothes
12. Favorite Christmas Movie? A CHRISTMAS STORY!!!!!!
13. When do you start shopping for Christmas? whenever I see something I really think the other person will like, be it in July, January, or December
14. Have you ever recycled a Christmas present? probably
15. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas? Puppy Chow
16. Lights on the tree? Yes.
17. Favorite Christmas song? I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas
18. Travel at Christmas or stay home? We typically travel to one of our homes
19. Can you name all of Santa's reindeers? Yes.
20. Angel on the tree top or a star? I grew up with an angel, but we have a star
21. Open presents on Christmas Eve or morning? Morning. The end.
22. Most annoying thing about this time of the year? Traffic/crowds of people
23. Favorite ornament theme or color? hand-crafted
24. Favorite for Christmas dinner? ham and...anything I don't have to cook
25. What do you want for Christmas this year? Peace on Earth...or a Wii Fit

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Defying Death and Disappointing D-2 Football

There's this stuff up here in Kentucky. When it gets real cold, it starts to fall from the sky. It's white. We don't really get that down in Alabama, especially not in December. Yeah, it snowed today.
I remember asking my admissions counselor at Transy how much it snowed, after seeing those fabulous "Emergency Snow Route" sign. She assured me that they may get a few more days, but it wouldn't be any different; the signs simply showed which roads were plowed first (THAT should have been a tip-off: plows?). My freshman year: the second time Transy EVER canceled classes because of a snow/ice storm. The other was for Indian attacks. Yeah, no different my big toe.
Anyway, no one really saw this HUGE mass of snow heading for us, so there was no pre-treating the road with a salt-water mix. No salt. Not even sand (what they sometimes use in AL). We did not know ANY of this today.
We woke up with big plans of depositing a check and getting gas, then finishing Christmas shopping by hitting up Lowes, the mall, and Target, before getting lunch and a Christmas tree. As we ate breakfast, it began to snow ("Hey, look. It's snowing!") By the time we were done, the sidewalk was covered (but we couldn't really tell), as was our parking lot. We ventured out anyway. The parking lot wasn't too bad, but there were definate slick spots. What surprised me was that Clearwater (our street) was just as covered, only it was packed down by cars instead of melted. As we made the turn onto Tates Creek, my car slid some, but nothing too bad. Now, let me interject, Tates Creek is one of the major "arteries" running through Lexington that feeds into downtown, thus is part of the snow route. It should have been one of the first cleared, but it was just as bad as the neighborhood road. We made it to the gas station and watched as wreck after wreck was narrowly avoided. We were finally able to cross to the bank and deposited my check. I then made the executive decision that the safest place for us was at home. There were 2 wrecks on our way to the bank and one on our way back. Everyone was creeping, yet still sliding. Southern or not, that's not safe! We stayed in and watched football (I'm glad Bama lost, but sad that Florida had to win) and napped. We did venture back out in the evening for dinner and to get our tree. The snow had mostly melted from the streets, so I felt much better. Plus Adam drove!
We have a fairly busy week this week, ending with a trip to Franklin for Christmas #1. We were sort of hoping for a reason to go to Florence that Saturday, but UNA had to go lose. It's probably for the better. I'm not sure either one of us REALLY wanted to sit in the car for another 4 hours, plus a football game on top of Christmas. We are sad they can't play for the title at their home stadium. Maybe next year.