Monday, December 28, 2009

To Tide You Over

Expect a little longer of a post later since I've got a small project going on (involving 4 walls and a whole lot of paint!). We've been busy decorating the house (with an almost firmed up list of what to buy with our $8K tax refund....which is in addition to our usual $1K+ refund (intrest-free government loan is a post in and of itself; I won't get into that now), so I'll have lots of projects to finally get up here. However, tax time is still painfully far away. Luckily something great has happened in the past week (other than talking Husband into painting the bedroom). In case you've been living in a hole with no contact with the outside world, a) why in the world are you reading this, b) Christmas came and went! So begins the requisite Christmas post:This year was my parents' turn to have us for Christmas. We rotate the actual day between our two families, finding a weekend sometime in December to celebrate with the other family. We were very fortunate this rotation came around this year, with Christmas falling on a Friday. This allowed Husband the maximum time off without actually taking time off...which he wouldn't have gotten anyway since his boss already had the week off. Anyway, my grandmother and sister each flew in as well, so my parents had a house full! The cats were super excited. Even Oliver (the latest kitty addition) came around and was sociable...until someone got up and came towards him. Then he took off like a flash. We ate way too much, watched a lot of Christmas movies, napped, and wandered around Opryland Hotel (we actually tried going to the mall, but the lines to get IN to the PARKING LOT were ridiculous, so we went with Plan B). We're home for a few days and then it's off to N'awlins for the Sugar Bowl (Go Bearcats!).

Our Christmas tree

Our Christmas card display

My parents' tree
Husband: "It's like Christmas came and threw up in the floor."

It's Charlie's bath time

Mom, Grandma, and Sister in the aftermath

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

What are They Thinking?

While browsing around the internets this morning, I came across this little beauty of a story. Short version: 50 million Roman and roll-up shades are being recalled because kids are getting tangled in the cords. Now, I'm all about child safety and all that junk, but at some point should one teach their kids NOT TO PUT THINGS AROUND THEIR NECKS? Isn't that, like, taught in "Being a 2 year old 101?" And we wonder why children today can't do anything for themselves.

I also found this while browsing around for Christmas stuff last night. I know when I think Christmas, the first Bible story that comes to mind is Noah and the ark. Complete with animals wearing Santa hats and a elephant with a clown nose (?). And we wonder why children today are screwed up in general. Fun tidbit on the ark Christmas inflatable: a house on our way to church has it. We were coming home one time and this yard has about a zillion of the inflatables anyway, but a new one caught my eye. Someone took a trip to Lowe's. And not to get paint, a grill cover, and mat for the back door.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Best Christmas EVERRRRRRR!!!

We had a great first Christmas weekend. Nice visit with Husband's family. Mawmaw cooked a great dinner (as always). No real gift exchange as money is tight all around. Totally OK with us; obviously that's not what Christmas is about anyway. We enjoyed eating and watching UK basketball trounce Indiana and what is left of the college football season (tear :( ).
Tonight is the real story though. Husband gave me a Christmas present early. The greatest gift ever. He gave me permission to paint our bedroom!!!! Since I definitely won't be working in another week for 2 weeks, I've got some time. I've certainly got the will. Help me sell him on this:

It's actually the same color, just two different finishes (one flat, one semi-gloss). I think it will look very sophisticated. He's not sold on it. If you see him or talk to him, tell him it's a great idea and will look sharp, especially against these beauties:

These are an early Christmas present from my parents. They're actually from Wal-Mart's Canopy furniture line and I love them! Everyone on The Nest raves about the line, so I figured we'd try something small. I had to assemble them, but they're SOLID wood. You'd never believe they came from Wal-Mart. We're planning on finishing out our bedroom with things from that same line (and some new bedding from Bed, Bath, and Beyond).

Monday, December 7, 2009

Time Out

Wow! I knew the holidays were a busy time for everyone, but sheesh! We had our annual realization about mid-October of what needed to be crammed in until the end of the year, but failed to consider just how packed that would be.
The blitz all started with a trip to Nashville mid-November for the UK/Vandy game. My parents didn't get season tickets this year and luckily Vandy wasn't any good, so buying was no problem. Oh and UK won, so that was good.

Thanksgiving was spent in Maysville. Pretty much same old-same old. Ate way too much, watched a lot of football, and slept. Luckily, Husband had the day after off so we got to enjoy the turkey and naps. Husband then had the whole next week off, too! Except that I got crazy sick. I had symptoms of about 3 different illnesses and finally went to the dr. mid week and got a Z-Pack. I'm much better!

This past weekend, Husband's parents came to town with their Jeep so we could get a big enough tree to not be dwarfed in our living room. We had a nice little visit with them, complete with UK beating UNC in basketball (which is apparently a big deal) and Cincinnati beating Pitt in football!

Our activities don't stop there! Hold on to your hats. This week we plan on decorating said tree (while watching Christmas specials and maybe even with a fire in the fireplace) and picking up one of our Christmas presents, which was delivered to our local Wal-Mart (and our furnishing of the house begins!).

Then, we're heading back to Maysville for Christmas with Husband's family (although no one's really exchanging gifts this year, but Mawmaw's cooking, so it's all the same thing).

Next weekend, my best friend since first grade (that's been almost 20 years y'all...Holy crap I just realized how old that makes me!) is getting married in Flo-town, so we're off to Alabama for the weekend! I've got a short to-do list there, such as eating Ricatoni's (who, luckily, is catering the rehearsal dinner! Score!), and hopefully church. I love that church so much at Christmastime. It's even more beautiful than normal.

The next weekend in Christmas and we'll be in Nashville again. My sister and grandma are both flying in, so we'll have a full house!

Are you worn out yet? Hope not, since the busiest part is coming! With Cincy's win (remember I mentioned that?), they won the Big East Conference and automatic bid to a BCS game. Whoop-dee-do, right? That's not SEC, so who cares? Well, my dad just happens to be a UC alum, so HE cares! This is probably Cincy's only chance at a BCS game, so we're pretty excited. Therefore, as soon as Husband is off work on New Year's Eve, we will once again be heading to Nashville and will get up bright and early New Year's Day to head to New Orleans for the Sugar Bowl!!!! Ball game Friday, return to Nashville, return home Sunday so husband can be back at work Monday. We pretty much plan on seeing UC get slaughtered (they play Florida), but it will still be fun times! If only Texas had shanked their field goal another foot or two to the left, my parents would be headed to Pasadena for the NATIONAL TITLE (but we probably wouldn't have gotten to go, so I'm OK with Sugar)! OOOOOOOOOH C-A-T-S (bear)CATS (bear)CATS (bear) CATS!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

The Week in Review...for the Last Time

Monday: Sub at CCCS Finish laundry

Tuesday: Sub Pick up my prescription at Wally-World
Pick up Husband's prescriptions at Rite Aid

Wednesday: Sub Pack for Maysville Leave for Maysville

Thursday: Eats lots of turkey, mashed potatoes, etc. and hopefully mac and cheese! Nap :)

Friday: Return home Talk Husband into helping catch up cleaning

Yeah, you read right. This whole scheduling thing just doesn't jive with me. I know I'm disappointing all...maybe 1 of you, but if you're that heart-broken, I can direct you to some blogs that are way better than me. But way to go out on a high note, right?!?!

We had a pretty great Turkey Day. We hung around the house the whole time, ate a lot, watched a lot of football (and cried over results...OK not me--no for real!, but Husband was totally heart-broken last night), and slept. We generally avoided any shopping center this weekend. Husband has this week off, so we're going to venture out during the day. You know, when other people go to those...what are they called...oh yeah, JOBS (suckers). We've got a Lowe's gift card from credit card rewards points that will go towards some random stuff and either blinds for the breakfast nook or shelving for the garage. I'm really hopeful Lowe's has the blinds I want (i.e. size I need) in stock.
They're a great deal for the size we need. We're also in need of a new grill cover (our old one's drawstring broke and it flew away in a storm), a few more strings of Christmas lights, and maybe an outside Christmas decoration or two, plus a few householdy things. Maybe I can hold out a few more weeks and we'll end up with some Lowe's gift cards and we can get those things on sale. But probably not. I'm not so good at the waiting thing.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

The Week in Review

It's that time again. I get to review what I haven't accomplished and any readers I actually have get bored to tears and then shake their heads at my ineptitude. :)

Monday: Finish laundry from the weekend

Tuesday: Dentist appointment
Call about a posted job (I sent a resume last week. This posting is 2 weeks old though) Left a message. We'll see.
Call to be put on Jessamine County's sub list

Wednesday: Windex

Thursday: Bathrooms

Friday: Laundry (I'm making this one orange because I did the towels, but haven't gotten to the sheets yet. See this week's goals)

Not terrible. Much less red...but then I had fewer goals this go around. I did manage to add picking up a bridesmaid's dress for a wedding I'm in in December. It was actually supposed to be done last week, but I COMPLETELY forgot. It's home though and fits like a glove with just enough wiggle room for turkey Thursday (and leftovers Friday!).

On to this week:
Monday: Sub at CCCS! This was planned during my interim during the flu-demic.
Finish laundry (why is this a recurring theme?)

Tuesday: Sub
Pick up my prescription at Wally-World
Pick up Husband's prescriptions at Rite Aid

Wednesday: Sub (half day and Church Ladies cooking lunch day!)
Pack for Maysville
Maybe leave for Maysville (this is still being debated, but we'll probably end up go ahead and going in)

Thursday: Eats lots of turkey, mashed potatoes, etc. and hopefully mac and cheese!
Nap :)

Friday: Return home
Talk Husband into helping catch up cleaning :) *Ordinarily, I wouldn't worry about it since I subscribe to the "If it ain't dirty, don't clean it" theory of house cleaning. However, well, you've seen my reds. I haven't been keeping the "schedule," like, at all.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

I Have Found Heaven

I was out and about today after a dentist appointment (this whole "no job" thing has its perks!) and found heaven. There's a newer shopping center not far from our house. I've been there a few times before, since they have a Hobby Lobby. That in and of itself constitutes heaven, but stay with me. It gets better! There is also a Kroger that puts our other one to SHAME...even the one we shopped at when we were in the apartment. It's amazing. Granted, I haven't tried shopping for our regular grocery list, only one thing. Still. A-mazing! But wait! It gets BETTER! I also stopped in the Furniture World Superstore. Nice stuff. The sales lady was friendly without being overly pushy (considering I was the only customer in the store). I saw a couple of possibilities as we begin shopping for the bedrooms and dining room. There is also an Oak Factory something or other across the way. For you Lexingtonians out there, that's the place with creepy kid commercials. You know. I didn't make it in, but it's THERE. BUT WAIT!! Not only is there an awesome Kroger, 2 furniture stores, AND Hobby Lobby, but there is also a Sherwin Williams. Why is that so great? Because we have COUPONS!!! Be still my heart. When I die, I hope I get to hang out there.
BTW, Hobby Lobby has 80% off Thanksgiving and 30-50% off Christmas stuff! What I REALLY had to show restraint on, though, was wall decor. Sigh.

Monday, November 16, 2009

The Week in Review

As promised, here's an update on how I did with my goals...which was much worse than I hoped :( Here's the code: Green = done on time (yay me!), red = not done at all (boo), yellow = done, but on a different day.

Weekly Goals:
Monday (my half day at school): Check on supplies for Tuesday's Art project
jog/walk for 30 minutes
Sweep and Swiffer Wet master bathroom
Wash bath rugs
Clean bathroom sink bowls
Wipe bathroom counters (side note: get granite cleaner. For today, damp rag and wipe dry)
Dust living room
Meeting at church

Sweep/Swiffer Wet kitchen, laundry room, breakfast nook, and entry (it sounds like a lot more than it is)
Vacuum living room and bedroom
Jog/walk if weather permits (currently only day this week of forecasted rain)

Windex mirrors and other shiny surfaces

Wipe down tub and shower in MBath
Begin packing for Nashville!
Begin laundry if time allows

Leave for Nashville!!!!

I told y'all it was pretty abysmal. I have a good reason. Really, I do. OK, it's not GOOD, but I have an excuse. We're having a budget crisis at school and I found out Monday after I dismissed the half-day kindergarten that they can't afford me. I was still able to go to a conference Thursday and Friday, since it was already paid for (which is always a great learning experience. I want to go every year, even if that was it for me at that school!). So basically, on Monday I came home and worked out all my frustration (note all the green) until I had to leave for my church meeting (Obviously, with the after school meeting, I had less time than anticipated). Then, Tuesday and Wednesday I came home and wallowed, having myself a pretty nice little pity party.
I've got a plan of action though and am feeling pretty good about it. Especially since when I told Husband and my parents, they were very supportive rather than worrying.

Here's the plan for this week:
Monday: Finish laundry from the weekend

Tuesday: Dentist appointment
Call about a posted job (I sent a resume last week. This posting is 2 weeks old though)
Call to be put on Jessamine County's sub list

Wednesday: Windex

Thursday: Bathrooms

Friday: Laundry

Disclaimer: I'm fighting a cold this week, so expect to see lots of yellow next week!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Accountability Beginnings

Not that I really think anyone actually keeps up with this thing, but I do and as my mother will tell you, I'm the only one that matters (love you, Mom)! I've been catching up on old posts at Molly's Happy House blog. I take inspiration from her as I try to do a better job cleaning our new, sparkling clean house than I did with our apartment. I made cleaning one of my New Year's goals (and generally failed miserably) and I'm hoping to salvage some of the year. This week is supposed to be very nice outside (so I'm going to try and exercise as well, goal #2!) as well as back to normal at work. Well, except for two days, but I don't have to teach; we're going to a conference here in town.
What the above rambling paragraph is getting at (I really wasn't kidding in the banner), one thing I really like that Molly does is list weekend goals. Every Friday, she lists the goals for the week and reports back on Monday as to how she did. I'm thinking of trying something like that, only maybe have fewer, general goals for the week. We'll see how it evolves. I didn't do so well with her cleaning challenge, though I may be able to pick up some tips. Again, these posts are more for me. If you happen to pick up useful info, yay!

Weekly Goals:
Monday (my half day at school): Check on supplies for Tuesday's Art project
jog/walk for 30 minutes
Sweep and Swiffer Wet master bathroom
Wash bath rugs
Clean bathroom sink bowls
Wipe bathroom counters (side note: get granite cleaner. For today, damp rag and wipe dry)
Dust living room
Meeting at church

Sweep/Swiffer Wet kitchen, laundry room, breakfast nook, and entry (it sounds like a lot more than it is)
Vacuum living room and bedroom
Jog/walk if weather permits (currently only day this week of forecasted rain)

Windex mirrors and other shiny surfaces

Wipe down tub and shower in MBath
Begin packing for Nashville!
Begin laundry if time allows

Leave for Nashville!!!! We're heading down for the UK/Vandy game. Should be a good weekend for football. Plus the game is in the morning, so we'll get home in time for Saturday afternoon naps!

There's my first set of goals. I think I'll steal Molly's idea and keep my general cleaning schedule on the sidebar. I came up with it in January and worked for me until snow days and life in general made me lazy. We'll try it again.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

What I've been doing today

Besides cursing Bama (and being happy that Auburn won big). I figured out how to add text to my Polyvore boards. Plus, I figured out why some of my images showed up all wonky. PLUS, I figured out how to add "backgrounds," so I found some new paint colors for a couple of rooms, and just stretched those for the ones I kept. Comments and suggestions welcome!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Dear Santa,

I realize it's not yet Thanksgiving, thus a Christmas Wish List now is a little over-kill. However, I'm hoping to beat the rush so you have adequate time and resources to make it happen. As you know, we recently purchased our first home! We love it, but I'm itching to start really decorating.
To start, I'd these totes for the office. I keep my crafty stuff there and these totes in green, navy, and stripe would be just the ticket to keeping me organized.

I would also like a media cabinet, similar to this, for our massive DVD collection. You have been very generous to us over the years and we have amassed quite the DVD and video game collection. Our current shelf is not only running out of room, but it's not very stable. I fear for future children.

Our living room is close to being finished, except for a paint job (Do you have any elves that would like to help with that?). I have been thinking that in addition to some kind of curtain for our windows, I'd like a console table for behind the sofa. Something to keep a lamp or two on and perhaps some flowers or a stack of books. I believe it's a feng shei principle to not have the back of your couch be the first thing one sees upon entering the living room anyway.

Finally, I would like to request a quilt stand. My mother generously offered us a quilt that belonged to my great-aunt. It is hand stitched and very old. I want to be able to display it, just not on the bed. This new bedding would help with that as well :).

I hope I am not asking too much of you. I realize there are many people in much more serious circumstances than us. They absolutely deserve your full attention. However, if you could help one or two of my wish list items, I would be greatly appreciative. I have tried very hard to be good this year; I almost always eat my veggies and go to bed when I'm told.
Thank you for all that you do and for considering my requests. As always, cash works, too.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Someone Forgot to Wake Me

Long time, no write. Sorry about that. We've been a little on the busy side. Nothing spectacularly special. Husband got a big promotion at work (yay him!) but ends up staying a little longer every day. The flu has hit school and I've been subbing the past 2 weeks in the kindergarten class. Luckily, our principal shut us down Thursday and Friday since 3 of our 4 teachers were either sick or at home with sick kids. The students have managed to stay relatively healthy. I've been suffering from allergies + exhaustion. We had a very difficult student start when my subbing started, so staying a step ahead of him completely drains you anyway. I slept at least 10 hours Thursday night, took a 2.5 hour nap Friday, and then slept another 12 Friday night. Whew!
We had a fun Halloween weekend. Thursday night, we went up to Georgetown for a haunted house. It wasn't what I was expecting. The website made it sound like they'd tell ghost stories of the house, but they actually did interpretations of famous Halloween tales and movies. Very poor interpretations at that. We hoped no one was a theater major at Georgetown College. We had fun making fun of it and some girls that were in our group. Chicken zombie will forever be my hero!
Friday, we went downtown for a party one of Husband's co-workers hosted and met up with other friends for a recreation of Michael Jackson's "Thriller" video. It's an annual Lexington tradition that grows every year. This year over 500 zombies participated. Anyone can be a zombie if you come to at least one rehearsal and staging practice. I ended up sick for the actual event, though. Bummer.
Saturday we stayed at home (except for a trip to Husband's work so he could finish a project and so I could get my car) and watched football and passed out candy to Trick or Treaters...all 3 of them. I didn't expect many, though. We're off the main road and our street is so new, there aren't street lights up yet. Hopefully next year we'll get some more.
Husband is on vacation this week (yay him!), but I *fingers crossed* should be back to normal this week. I'm not sure how it got to be November. September isn't even over!

Monday, October 19, 2009

Speaking of Laundry Room Decor

I found this one Pottery Barn's Clearance section via Stephanie's blog. I'm not sure what's more ridiculous: the fact that it's almost 85% off or the fact that the original price was $649!!!!!! Who has that much money sitting around to drop on THAT? Besides people who shop at Pottery Barn...I told you, I was in the Clearance section...and I still can't afford it!

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Decorating Again

I've decided I want to decorate my laundry room. Here's a board I've thrown together in about 15 minutes of a Google search. Still has a lot of work to do and absolutely nothing is finalized.
Laundry Room

What do y'all think? I'd only use one of the paint colors. The baskets would go along the shelf above the washer and dryer (which I'd L-O-V-E to lower so I could reach it more easily...not sure if that's possible though). The art is just for fun. There's a high stretch of empty wall space now. I thought either art or another, more usable shelf. BTW, the background behind "laundry" is a pale yellow. Polyvore doesn't always get a good save on images

Thursday, October 8, 2009

I Hate Rain

I don't really HATE rain. I see it's purpose in saving me the worry about watering the yard/plants. When I'm able to nap, it's great. This summer, Lexington saw more than it's fair share of rain. Highly unusual, but hey, I only worked part time. More naps for me!
What I hate is that even though we received SO much rain, Lexington residents still have NO IDEA how to drive in in. OK, Lexington residents don't have much of an idea of how to drive period (we're too close to Ohio and Indiana...they seep onto our streets). I tutor on Thursday afternoons. My schedule at school is such that I'm able to hop out 10 minutes earlier than usual to allow enough time to from Winchester and across Lexington. It's tight, but I usually make it with 10 minutes or so to spare. Except when it rains and people go crazy.
First, people decided to drive 35 down Man O'War. For those unfamiliar with Lexington, MOW is a major road around town. The speed limit is 45, but you WILL be run over if you drive less than 50. I realize drivers should slow down in inclement weather, but not only were they going 35, but if they hit 36 +, they suddenly broke to 30, then sped back up to 35. Way to kill your gas mileage and mine. Naturally, we hit EVERY light driving such speeds as well.
Then, I almost rear-ended someone because a pick-up decided to pull out in front of another car in the other lane. Said pick-up I assume hydroplaned so that he was perpendicular to traffic. How the car he cut off didn't hit him, I'll never know. Anyway, both lanes obviously suddenly stopped since no one had any idea what was going on. Doofus.
Needless to say, I got stopped by a light and called the tutor place that I'd be a few minutes late since everyone has lost their senses. No biggie. I just hate being late like that. However, I survived (as did other drivers, though I wasn't above getting out of my car and hitting people). More reasons I'm glad I'm a teacher and don't have to go to work when it snows. I'm not going NEAR that one.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

You Heard it Here First

If Auburn doesn't get ranked after their win over Tennessee, I quit football. I build up enough DVR during the week to entertain me for a Saturday. You can't let a team go 5-0 and not put them in the top 25. The only exception would be perhaps a D-1 school playing their first 5 games against a D-2 or 3. We didn't do that, though. So AP, let the numbers do the talking. Thank you.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Kid Quote of the Day

C: Mrs. B., is it true that doctors will cut a woman's stomach to get a baby out?
Mrs. B.: Sometimes they have to, yes.
K (thoroughly disgusted): Well, that's not this game!

Photo from Wikipedia

Saturday, September 26, 2009

There's Nothing Better Than...

...chili on rainy, cool Saturdays...folding a fitted sheet so that it actually looks rectangular (do NOT ask me how I did it. I have no idea and will never be able to do it again)...having an offense that scores points (War Eagle!)...snuggling with my husband and napping on the couch.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Week (not -end) Update

I have so totally fallen down on the whole "Cleaning Challenge" the icon on the right suggests. I just haven't fallen into my rhythm of getting home/picking up and cleaning/not laying down for a nap. I've undertaken a huge project at school, which keeps me relatively late and by the time I trek across the county, I'm pretty worn out and ready to veg. This weekend is grocery weekend though, so I'm hoping while Husband is taking care of that, I can get things cleaned (I may even get CRAZY and decorate for Fall...not quite Halloween yet though) and be on track to start up Monday.
We've otherwise had a pretty low-key week. We ate most of our meals at home to make up for all the eating out we did last week...our checking account thanks us this week. Husband's potential promotion finally posted, so he got all his info in for that. Cross your fingers. He's got a ton of people putting in good words for him with solid examples of how he can fulfill what they're looking for. All my students were pretty good this week. The kindergartners crack me up though. They came in for Library today and since everything has gotten rearranged (my big project), they were pretty excited. One little girl even said, "It's so pretty!" There's no end to their funny quotes ("Do you have a son?" "No." "Well, do you have a hunny?") so I'll stop there. Fall Break is in sight!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

No, the Football Score or Why I'll Never Forget the Levays' Anniversary

I'm terrible at remembering anniversaries. Just ask my parents! I usually (sometimes) remember the day of, which is too late to get a card in the mail. At our closing, our realtor asked us when our anniversary was, which I quickly responded, "June 21!" Then he asked what year. "Uhhh...2000....8?" Husband won't let me live that one down! But the Levays' will always be special. Mostly because of the adventure Husband and I had while we were there.
First of all, we were flying on Sept. 11. I'll admit I was nervous, but I also decided if there is any time of year security will be beefed up, that's it.
Then, our flight from Charlotte (yeah, we flew Lexington to Charlotte to Seattle. And airlines wonder why they're hemorrhaging money) was late, which meant we missed the last ferry to Whidbey Island. Since we had no idea what accommodations would be near the ferry dock, and since we planned on being ON the island that night anyway, we had to spend the night in our rental mini-van. While certainly roomier than a car would have been, it was not much more comfortable. It wasn't the WORST night of sleep I've ever had, but Husband begs to differ. Needless to say, we were easily in line for the first ferry of the morning.
We finally make it to our motel and crash. We told the Levays beforehand our tight schedule, so we weren't expected to do anything until the afternoon anyway. We somehow woke up relatively early (at least for Pacific time) and after showering off travel and long night crud, we went next door for breakfast and then to get a few snacks from the grocery across the street. We settle in for a little Game Day and Husband looks up some scores.
We finally rallied enough to head over the hall to see how we can be useful. Long story short, R's parents wanted to adopt me, partly for being useful, but mostly because we talked college football.
On Saturday, just like this year, Auburn played Mississippi State. I remember that because when Husband told me the score, I said, "No, the football score...not soccer." Yeah, it was the football score: 3-2. War eagle? At time of post, Auburn has scored touchdowns twice (the offense, not the defense). WAR EAGLE! Later that day R and M got hitched!
Sunday's trip home was relatively uneventful, save more delays in Charlotte (that city hates us), but nothing that involved another night not in a bed.
So, a day early, happy first anniversary Levays!

Friday, September 11, 2009

Why We're Waiting to Have Kids Moment of the Day

Tonight we went out for dinner at a Chinese buffet. There was a family leaving. Mom and Grandma had the cutest little blond-headed girl, maybe 2 or 3, by each hand. She kept stopping saying, "Come on Papa." They'd have to walk back to the table, reassure her that he's coming, but the same thing happened again. Finally they started dragging her, as she wouldn't walk at all! We got a kick out of it and the mom looked at us embarrassed, so I told her at least she wasn't kicking and screaming. Her mom then replied to give her time. Yeah. We'll be waiting awhile for that :)

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

When in Doubt, Call Dad

Happy 09/09/09! Not quite sure what the big deal about 9s is (unlike 06/06/06 for bad luck or 07/07/07 for good), except apparently in China and Japan. Either way, it's pretty fun. I wonder if people at the turn of the century did the same thing.
Anyway, 09/09/09 must be some form of luck because our builder made it out to the house to put a new dryer vent cover implies there was an OLD one. Our builder came out to put A dryer vent cover on as well as a "retaining wall" around the vent. "Huh?" you may be asking. Here's what happened. We did a few loads of laundry shortly after we moved. We noticed the dryer collected a lot of condensation around the knobs, but figured that was because we had to door to the utility room closed. I tried a few more loads a few weeks later and the dryer took FOR-EVER to dry. It heated up, but the water wouldn't go anywhere. That was weird. We begin researching potential problems and they all ended with "call a service tech." Since the dryer heated up, we really didn't think that was the problem. So we did what any responsible homeowner would do--we called Dad. Actually, my parents were planning to come up over Labor Day anyway, so Dad just said to hold off on more laundry (oh twist my arm!) and he'd check it out. We decided there was some kind of vent issue so Husband and I did a little more investigating. We never really decided where our dryer vent led. We had the pipe inside, but didn't see it on the outside. One night, Husband and his brother moved our dryer. They poured at least a coke bottle's worth of water out of the connecting tube. "Hmmm," we said. On Saturday, our curiosity got the better of us, so we took our coffee across the street to a model we had looked at that is still unoccupied. We walked around that house searching high and low for what was different about our house. Finally we found it on the last wall. Between the breakfast nook windows and the electric meter was a hole dug out, with a little retaining wall keeping the area around a dryer vent cover open. "We don't have that!" we said. We then crossed the street where they just laid the slab for our floor plan as well. Sure enough, there was a pipe that went from the utility room, under the slab, and ended right outside. They covered our vent over with dirt! Duh that our dryer became a steam washer; the water had nowhere to go! My dad and Husband dug out around the pipe so that I could do the desperately needing done laundry and our builder received a very calm, but very pointed phone call Tuesday to come fix it. It has been done so I don't need to pull a Dooce (which is good. I'd hate to lose all 3 of my readers! I love y'all). We are still very excited about our house; we just hate that through all of our walk-throughs and inspections, no one caught this. Hopefully that's all though!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Why We're Waiting to Have Kids Moment of the Day

Husband: Too bad we didn't buy the house next to that ravine. We could totally use that to scare our kids. You know, tell them to behave or the monster that lives there will come eat them. That's where you chime in in agreement.

Me: Oh. I thought that was where I was lying in wait with a monster mask on and come running out growling.

Parenting through fear. Thanks Cousin G!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

No Title. Not Creative Today

Just a quick update, since not a whole lot is going on with us. I haven't started substituting yet. The economy has hit FCPS hard, apparently, and NO ONE can find a job. That makes me feel better about my situation at least. Anyway, there are so many substitute applications, I haven't been entered into the system. Hopefully sometime this week though. In the meantime, tutoring will be a regular gig. I had 2 sessions last week and was asked if I'd be able to pick up an extra one on that day and possibly one or two more on another day. At $15 each, heck yeah! Specials at CCCS are fun, too. The kids crack me up since they will all call out my name and wave whenever they see me not in the classroom, like they haven't seen me for a year or something. So funny!
Husband is keep busy. He should be interviewing for a promotion position at work sometime in the next month. Otherwise he's putting off buying that lawn mower ;) Not that I blame him though. I mowed grass once in high school as part of a service project. I'm good.
In other news, non-feed readers (if there are any) may notice a new badge. I'm pretty excited I figured out how to add that thing period! Way easier than I thought, by the way. Not worth the Google search. Anyway, it comes from My Happy House, a blog I recently started reading. She's on Week 2 of a 10-week cleaning challenge. Since that was part of my New Years non-Resolution, I figured a mid-year boost was in order. Obviously I'm starting a little late, but I think I can catch up. I think she's basing most of her steps on FlyLady. I've checked that out as well, but she just didn't do it for me. Here's to keeping this house cleaner than our apartment was!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Summer is really ending now

I have a job...and another job...and by early next week a third job. Alright God...I get it. Thank you. You can take a break! I received a call from my principal that she had a brilliant idea while talking with a candidate for Specials. They had worked out a schedule of 2 specials a day, 2 days a week so she could also sub in Fayette County. My principal starts having misgivings about hiring her anyway and finally smacks herself and says, "I bet A would do that!" She calls and apologizes for not thinking of that earlier. So I'm the new Art, Computer, Music, and Library teacher on Wednesdays and Fridays! Not much money, but definitely guaranteed. Now to figure out how to place all that on a resume (particularly since it's rapidly coming onto a second page...only 3 years out of college, might be a little much).
Before all of that went down I had spoken to a woman who runs a tutoring service specializing in dyslexia. The creator of the program they use spoke at a conference I attended last October and another teacher is tutor for them as well. I had tried to get in this summer, but they had everything covered. As the school year was starting I caught wind that they were looking for someone to fill in some gaps for after school so I gave her a call. Yes, they are looking for people, come in and we'll talk about it. Today I got an official start date of next week, with 3 sessions that day. I am very excited about this one. I have another 2 years before I HAVE to start my Masters' to keep my certification. I keep going back and forth between specializing in early childhood and reading/writing specialist. I'm not quite sure which would serve me better in the long run. I hope that this tutoring would either be helpful in early childhood positions (as dyslexia can be identified in kindergarten) or as a critical component in reading/writing (as most specialists in the schools have little or no training in this area...since it's not typically tested for...I might end up changing the world on that one...or at least vent a lot :)).
All of this combined with subbing the other 3 days a week. God will provide!

Saturday, August 15, 2009


We have tons of pictures of our house to share. Come next summer, hopefully we'll have updated ones of the house actually furnished and decorated (thank YOU $8,000 tax credit). Come along on a virtual tour of our house, complete with decorating comments! Let us know if you'd prefer one in real life :)

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Roller coasters

This past week has been a roller coaster to say the least. Our families showed up bright and early Saturday morning and helped us move. We all get along well together, so we ended up having tons of fun. After all the hard work was done and small projects were wrapping up, Husband and I treated everyone to dinner as a thanks. We couldn't have done any of it without them. Not only was moving part of the deal, but our dads (and brother and grandfather) had to hang ceiling fans, put furniture together, etc. Moms and grandmother helped put things away and supervised the boys (and talked about them when they weren't around. Shhh!) Tough jobs all around. We are so grateful to have such great families. Especially ones that get along together.
Since then things have been...interesting. Husband has had the sniffles since before we moved, which has since turned into bronchitis. Super. My school ended up not having the numbers to split a class like they hoped, so it's back to subbing for me. Both things kind of fell upon us at once combined with the stress of moving and expenses that go along with it made for a very stressful past few days. I lost it at one point, not wanting to make Husband feel worse. I have since regrouped and feel much better about the situation. I now realize I've managed to forget the most important piece of news. *Disclaimer: I told you this blog was typed in my stream of consciousness. Please forgive the random insert!* CHARLIE HAS BEEN FOUND!!!! While we were in Canada, my parents had a message from Animal Control that they should come in and check out a cat that had been brought in. So used to false alarms, they weren't hopeful. Even after the vet there compared markings, they still weren't completely sure. After they got him home though, Mom got a glass of water with ice and at the sound of the ice dispenser, Maybe Charlie came running. It's Charlie! He's a little worse for the wear, having been found over a mile away, not in the neighborhood (part of why my parents didn't recognize him), but he's been eating steadily...when he's not curled up on Dad's lap! Barbara doesn't quite know what to do since she doesn't really recognize him either. Oliver is happy to have another playmate, although initially he took cues from Barbara and hissed. Those cats are a social experiment in and of themselves! So funny!
Anyway, back to what I was coming around to. With my prayer that God take care of Charlie and bring him home, that if God cares about the sparrows, He'd care about Charlie, I knew it would work out. God answered my prayer completely, which gives me even more faith that He will take care of me. I have several opportunities at hand with tutoring and substituting at both the public schools and a private independent school. I can't help but believe God used Charlie to show me that I will be taken care of, that He is working out a plan for me, even if it's not going the way I hoped or expected. Like I said, I've been rattled the past few days, but even through my tears, I held fast to that belief. Continue to keep me in your thoughts, prayers, whatever.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Signed, Sealed, Delivered

We are officially home-owners! We had a final walk-through yesterday afternoon to make sure all of the issues got taken care of, which they did save the grading/sod which will have to wait until we dry out a little. We could be waiting a LOOOOOONG time. Either way, it will get done. Closing went very smooth. It took maybe 45 minutes and I didn't get writers' cramp after. Moral of the story is don't listen to the horror stories on HGTV and TLC! We celebrated with Rincon (cute Mexican place). We debated taking our sleeping bags over and spending the night, but with no cable or internet (or basic necessities like toilet paper and breakfast) we opted for our soft bed instead.
We spent the better part of today at the house. We loaded up and went over to wait for our AV guy who installed our TV and component shelf, as well as the cable guy. I got sent to Lowe's, which is a story in and of itself, while Adam unpacked our first boxes/cleaned some stuff before heading back to the apartment to get a few more odds and ends to wrap up our technology day. We officially have cable and internet AND a flat screen mounted above our fireplace. We turned it to ESPN-U to test what we will see this fall...I didn't think I could be more excited about football season, but I am!

Sunday, July 26, 2009

International and Domestic

I just realized that by the end of the week, this blog design will be getting a new design. We're getting a new couch! Well, we're getting all new furniture before too long, but we're starting with the couch.
These past few weeks have been incredibly busy. I had the afternoon shift at my summer daycare job. I like the afternoons because they go by so fast with nap and kids going home pretty quickly, but I have to stay until 6, which puts me home right in time to EAT dinner (I'm usually the cook). We did plan for that though and Husband picked up some slack. Ain't he grand?
Saturday we left for Maysville to celebrate Mother-in-Law's birthday. We rode out to Tollesboro where Mawmaw cooked a big dinner (i.e. lunch) and napped and chatted for the afternoon before heading over to Augusta for dinner dinner. Three bustling metropolitan areas in one day; look out! I will say that those places are never boring, at least for a visit.
Sunday morning we took off for our annual trip to Canada. Lots of books were read and lots of laziness was enjoyed. I realize the IDEA of doing nothing for a week sounds like a great idea, but it truly is a perfected art form. Most people would get bored after the first day. I actually considered live blogging (ignoring the whole no internet thing...that's what Pages is for!) but decided you just have to be here to get it. 1:00 Finished book 1:05 Threw more peanuts towards the squirrel 1:06 Laughed at said squirrel for not being able to find said peanuts 1:10 Moved chair into shade 1:15 Actually started next book 1:17 Put down more sunflower seeds for the chipmunk. You get the idea.
Monday was completely lazy. I finished a book I had been working on for some time and also read an entire second (it was Nicholas Sparks, so pretty easy read). Tuesday I had a phone interview (for a job I ultimately didn't get. Bummer since I've fallen head over heels in love with the school), but managed to finish the first quarter of another book. Wednesday was supposed to be yucky, so we planned to go into town. We had a Tim Horton's breakfast, went to the public library to check e-mail and play online, and hit the mall. They were having some AMAZING sales (% off similar to going out of business without all of the "GOING OUT OF BUSINESS" signs). I, of course, came away empty handed. Thursday was sunny with a small rain shower. The rain hit in the middle of the afternoon; perfect timing for a nap! That experience was only enhanced by the fact that rain on the roof in the cabin is already heavenly and we have recently put on a metal roof. Pure bliss. We planned to hit the Carver anyway and luckily the rain cleared while we ate ice cream and walked around. I did end up with a $30 hoodie (and that price was in Canadian dollars, so really it was, like, $7 ;)). We went to The Voyager for dinner and enjoyed the evening on the deck. All in all a pretty great trip.

Husband achieving "nothingness"

We did this bit of excitement Thursday: A bald eagle landed in a tree off the deck. Ironic that the first time we see this American symbol is in Canada, but maybe this is an omen that Auburn's football season won't be as bad as I think it will. I can dream, right?

Friday is where the real fun starts, though. We woke up early early since we wanted to get home in time to get Moe's for dinner. We stopped at Tim Hortons (of course) and crossed the bridge. We stop at customs and the agent asks where we were from. I say, "Kentucky" and he gets on the phone and says, "We've got an out of area." He hands us back our passports and asks us to pull into the garage. I have been going to Canada for 25 years and we've NEVER been pulled over coming back in...especially after ONE question!!! We decided they were just really bored since no one was in line. Or maybe we were the "lucky" 500th crosser for the day. Either way I am none too thrilled with the border patrol now. With everyone hemming and hawing over illegal immigrants, how about we actually let legal citzens IN? Whatever. We're probably now flagged on our passports and will always get pulled over or stopped at the airport. The drive back was otherwise uneventful.
Since coming home, we've been busy getting "back to normal." Husband's car had to get towed by AAA (they actually found us this time!) because his car wouldn't start before we left Saturday. Turned out the fuel pump was broken and something else. It all = very expensive. We still managed to get groceries and do laundry before confirming everything before our home inspection, which was this morning. That went very well. He said it's one of the best he's seen in 20+ years of inspection, many of which were new constructions. Let that be a lesson: Just because it's new doesn't mean it's good. It is ALWAYS worth the price of a home inspection. Ok. That's a small shout-out to my dad, but it's true. We have a list of mostly cosmetic things to address with our walk-through scheduled Tuesday morning and the one big issue the inspector found (which we planned to address anyway) and we are still on schedule to close FRIDAY!!!! Get excited!

Saturday, July 25, 2009

In one week..

...we will be homeowners. AHH!!! Let packing madness begin!
I'll write more later on today. For now I've got to deal with AAA towing Husband's car. Fun.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Hard to Believe

Summer is over half over. I have a week of work, a week of Canada (yay!), roughly a week of work which is also our walk-through and closing date (double yay!), and a potential trip to Florida for curriculum training.
Week of work: Luckily, I'm scheduled for the afternoon shift, which means my first hour at least is nap time! The afternoon goes by so fast since kids start leaving. I'm just grateful to not have the 3 and 4 year old class all day like I thought. Even the director says they're the hardest class she's seen in her 20+ years of pre-school.
Canada: Annual trip. Preceded by a short trip to Maysville to celebrate Mother-In-Law's birthday.
Work/House: I'll potentially have the 5 year olds/school age (not totally official though). They're generally a good group. Almost all girls, so there's lots of drama, but nothing horribly bad. I'll have to take 2 days for the house stuff--inspection and a walk-through with our builder. The inspection is just to ahve an unbiases set of eyes on it to make sure everything is as it's supposed to be. The walk-through is so we can point out what we want fixed (potentially results of the inspection and other stuff we've found). All to be done by that Friday so we can have one more walk-through to ensure everything IS fixed and then CLOSE!!!! Husband will have to tie me down to keep me out of Lowes/Home Depot/Target/Pier 1/Homegoods/etc.
I intentionally left August open for school stuff, whether they be (at that stage God forbid) interviews or setting up my room, as well as getting settled in the new house. I will in all likelihood though be a second kindergarten teacher at school. One of the curriculums we use, most of the teachers are not fans of, but the incoming parents love. There's a training for the curriculum in Florida that week of August, so my principal would like the other teacher and me to attend. Maybe we'll learn hidden secrets. Or maybe we'll just learn it is as bad as we think and we'll just have to keep doing what we're doing. Technically, that trip isn't definite as they haven't officially split the classes, so be in prayer that I will need to go!

Sunday, June 21, 2009

A Year Ago Today...

Husband and I got hitched! We had a great weekend trip to Cave City and Franklin, which I will try to give details later. It's been an amazing, jam packed year and we're both looking forward to many more.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Coming Soon...

Our first anniversary! OMG (yeah, I'm 13, so what?) I can't believe it's here already. This whole being married thing has been pretty awesome. To celebrate, we're headed to CAVE CITY! Now, I realize not everyone...OK, no one, would share in our excitement. Most first anniversary trips seem to revolve around the beach or some other huge vacation. That's not in the cards between the whole me not getting a paycheck in the summer coupled with the whole buying a house thing. We've got priorities! But we decided we could do a weekend trip somewhere relatively local.
While I was still at Transy, every time I would go home and again coming back, I'd drive through Cave City. It was never one of my usual stopping points as I never needed gas by then, nor did I hit it at dinner time. But every time I passed through I WANTED to stop because of a huge dinosaur that sits next to the interstate. On the way down, a sign said "Dinosaur World: You just missed us!" and I always thought to myself, "It would have been helpful to KNOW it was coming up." So naturally I shared that with Husband and we agreed that one of these days when we weren't in a hurry to get to or come back from my parents, we'd stop and maybe hit up Mammoth Cave, since it had been so long since either of us had been (I was 5 and husband was in elementary school).
Well my friends, that day is now! Husband has the whole next week off and we're taking off Thursday either early and hitting Dino World then taking a cave tour (or head out late and just get there for the tour and do Dino World in the morning. We're going to stay the night in a Bed and Breakfast about halfway between Cave City and Bowling Green. Then, we'll either do Dino World, or just head on down to Franklin to visit with my parents the rest of the weekend.
They've already planned for us to go to the Bluebird Cafe. We're also going to hit Trader Joe's for a refill on the coffee we like, but usually only get when his friend sends it to us.
Whew! I'm worn out just thinking about it!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Decorating the house already

I've been on a decorating kick lately. With the help of, I'm basically painting all of the rooms, even though we had our pick of a standard color throughout the house. Oh well! Our first planned purchase will be the sofa in the living room. Everything else will be in spurts, the first one happening when we get our $8000 tax credit. Basically, we'll finish out the living room and then work on other rooms until the money's gone (or we think of a better way of using it). Here are links to my design boards:
Living Room
Living Room by aapplegate on I want to do one accent wall in the dark brown and everything else be the tan. The couch and maybe ceiling fan are the only definites though.

Dining RoomDining room
Kitchen by aapplegate on
The rug didn't come through very well, but it pulls in the green walls and our everyday dishes.
Master BedroomThe color scheme is really the only thing Husband wants. I just went with what we said "hmm, maybe" at the furniture store and bedding that fit the colors. Plus, it will flow well from the living room.
OfficeOffice. It's intentionally unfurnished, as most of that will come from what we already have. At least one of our desks and probably my childhood bookshelves, which is where the baskets will be (pending measurement approval) to hold my crafty stuff.
Guest Bath
Guest Bath by aapplegate on Hall Bathroom. I figured we'd use the basically new shower curtain and based everything else off that. The red towels won't actually be a new purchase.
guest room
guest room by aapplegate on
I'm probably most proud of what I've come up with for the guest room. We saw several gray rooms while house shopping and look so classy when done correctly. Hopefully the white linens and wood furniture will warm it up. Our bookshelf will also likely be in this room.

The Master Bathroom is really the only room I plan on keeping the same color, mostly because I don't have any better ideas. I have an idea board for that as well, but in working on this, I accidentally deleted it and don't feel like going back to get it. It's nothing special, just new accessories and a different color towel.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Dear ESPN P.S.

NASCAR is not a sport. Please remove it from your reporting. I realize that statement may permanently ban me from the state of Alabama, or at least North Carolina, but I never have nor never will understand the athletic ability required to drive a car around in a circle. I've driven further distances by myself, without a pit crew telling me when to stop. Does that make me an athlete?

P.P.S. While we're at it, poker and pool aren't sports either. Please remove those from your line-up as well.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Religious Ramblings

Why is it that people seek out God only when things are bad? I teach in a Christian school and admit I've recently been guilty of really only thoughtfully praying during bad times. Last weekend, my friend and I rode down to Nashville to celebrate the wedding of one of our sorority sisters. As we were preparing to leave Sunday morning, my mom told us their two cats escaped during the night and only one had returned. As of today, Charlie is still missing. Both of the cats have been indoor cats their whole lives, so Charlie lacks street sense. He's also not entirely a cat-cat as some of his instincts are lacking. He is so darn cute and lovable, though. Obviously, that event has led to a whole lot of prayer. I have even been quoting Scripture (Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. --Philippians 4:7 New Living Translation and Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? 26Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 27Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?28"And why do you worry about clothes? See how the lilies of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. 29Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 30If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? 31So do not worry, saying, 'What shall we eat?' or 'What shall we drink?' or 'What shall we wear?' 32For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own. --Matthew 6:25-34 NIV). If God cares for birds, surely He cares about and for Charlie. This has been a humbling experience in seeing that most of my prayer revolves around requests. What I want. This is what God wants to an extent, mixed in with some praise, too. I'll still keep sending up a request for a safe return, though. I hope you will pray to whatever ultimate your religion dictates as well.