Archive for August, 2009

The Furbaby’s New Bed

Last weekend, while waiting for Champ to finish up at the groomer, we decided to splurge on our little buddy and invest in a new bed. We hemmed and hawed over various beds and even took turns kneeling down on our top choices to make sure we were getting only the best for our furbaby.

When we brought it home, he sniffed at it and was, for the most part, generally afraid of this large, fluffy monstrosity that had replaced his old, much loved bed. But eventually, he warmed up to it:


Something doesn’t look quite right, does it?  Why yes, his butt IS hanging completely off the bed. So we made some adjustments.


Ahh…much better. Even if his head does look a little squished, I assure you, he is comfortable. So comfortable in fact, that he had absolutely NO desire to get out of bed and do his morning bathroom ritual.

And if you’re wondering why he’s surrounded by all these doors, it’s because we make him sleep in the hallway. I know. I KNOW. But the dog hair in the bedroom was a little too much for my sensitive allergies.

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One of the minuses of owning your own home is all the STUFF you have to buy to maintain it. Lawnmowers, hedge trimmers, weed eaters, rakes, hoes, shovels, etc. But the coolest maintenance tool we have purchased so far?

The Power Washer:


We’ve only had it for a couple of months and dude, these things aren’t cheap (or quiet) but it is just so cool to dorks like us.

Just look at the difference on our driveway:



Of course it took me about 2 hours just to do half of the driveway and I’m still not finished but my hands and arms were sore and we ran out of gas. So I’ll finish it off maybe next weekend if the weather is as nice as it was today.

Speaking of the weather… (wow, I just realized how exciting I sound right now. Anyway.) This weekend was simply gorgeous. Very rare are the days when I can just turn off the A/C, open all the windows, and just breathe in the great outdoors. To make it even better, my favorite seasonal brew just hit shelves and even though it’s a still a little soon for fall, one of these just makes my day 10 times better.


It’s all about the simple things in life, like a clean driveway and a tasty beer.

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The first TBN

A couple of weeks ago, my friend Jen had mentioned wanting to see True Blood. Neither of us have HBO (it is on HBO right?) and the show is such a  hit that there’s a long wait to rent the season on DVD from the rental places. Then I remembered that my friend Nora had Season 1 and loved it so much that I didn’t think she would mind watching it again with us newbies. So last night was the first official TBN (True Blood Night), hosted by yours truly.

Of course, in true Liz fashion, I was running late thanks to a work meeting that ran until 6pm, a last minute trip to the grocery store, and then I worked up a sweat trying to run the vaccum while simultaneously tossing dirty dishes in the dishwasher – all while still in my work clothes. I am superwoman. Watch me clean.

Once the girls arrived, we indulged on “girl food”* and proceeded to watch the raunchy yet addictive first two episodes. It’s nice to have friends that not only don’t judge you for your vampire obsessions, but actually ENCOURAGE them.

*”girl food” is when food that is typically just an appetizer is used in place of a meal. So when dinner is: pizza rolls, chex mix, chips and dip = girl food.

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…John Stamos.

46 and still hot. How could any woman resist that killer smile? ::husband nudges arm, points to ring on finger.::  Oh, right. Well, how could any SINGLE woman resist that killer smile? Exactly.

Don’t worry John. We’ll always have New Orleans.


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I don’t claim to have great taste in home decor and design, but I’ve always liked rooms that feature a special quote on the wall, whether framed or scripted directly on the wall. I feel like it adds more personality and character to a room, though I never knew where to find these special quotes or how easy they were to apply. Until now.

The answers: Kohl’s (two for $30) and very easy.IMG_0855

In case you can’t see this one, it says “May our home know joy, each room hold laughter, every window open to great possibilities.” And it’s perfectly centered between two windows in our formal living room. I still have another one that reads “Live, Laugh, Love” that I’m not quite sure where to put just yet. Maybe the kitchen? Maybe the bedroom? Maybe the guest bedroom? I dunno.

As for the application, a lot of rubbing was involved, but total time took me maybe 15 or 20 minutes. It also seems pretty easy to remove. Apparently you can just take a hairdryer to it and then peel the letters right off the wall. No mess!

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The weekend went exactly as expected. Despite the circumstances, it was nice to see some of my relatives, many of whom I hadn’t seen since I was in elementary school. Still, by about 5pm on Saturday, I was exhausted – both physically and emotionally, because while we were running around in the process of burying my one grandpa, my other grandpa, the one I’ve been so worried about, is now experiencing blood in his stool. So of course, everyone once again assumes the worst and the emotional roller coaster begins all over again.

Not to mention, work has been busier than it’s ever been so while that doesn’t help my stress level, I can’t really complain because it takes my mind off of family matters.

So Saturday evening I was just a barrel of fun, passing out on the couch at 9:30 while watching Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory (1971). I somehow managed to get up and go to bed, and didn’t wake up again until almost 11 a.m. on Sunday. That’s roughly 13 hours of sleep, folks. And it was glorious.

Sunday morning was simply delightful as we sat, sipping coffee, messing around on our laptops – him with work, and me paying bills online and finally ordering prints of our European vacation (all 438 pictures). Then we went to the driving range so hubby could practice his swing and so I could waste golf balls by hitting them an impressive 15 ft. At one point I considered just throwing one while hubs wasn’t looking so I could point and say “Look! Look how far I hit that one!” Afterwards, we went to the gym and though it’s been hard getting back into a workout routine, I feel 100 percent better for trying. I’m starting slow by following this couch-to-5K running plan. I’ve been recommending it to friends and co-workers for years but had never actually followed it myself, so now I’m giving it a shot. After the gym, we went to the grocery store, came home and showered, then ate dinner and watched a DVD. So while our Sunday wasn’t all that exciting, there’s just something about getting back into a normal routine that calms my nerves and makes me feel like everything is going to be alright.

And I should probably give a little shout-out to my husband. He’s been super stressed with work lately too and even though he was a bit cranky in the latter part of the week, he was wonderful to go with me (and do all the driving) on Saturday to take my grandma and father back home to IL. He didn’t even complain once.  And on Sunday he even swept and vacuumed the entire house AND brushed the dog. These are usually my chores and I can count on one hand the number of times he’s done either of these things, so it was nice of him to do it without me even asking. He’s a keeper.

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The next 48 hours

Here’s how I expect the next 48 hours to go…

  • Drive 2.5 hours to southern IL
  • Pick up grandma and father
  • Drive. 2.5 hours back to STL
  • Take grandma and father to funeral home
  • Visit with aunts and cousins for about 45 minutes. Hand grandma tissues.
  • Feel like an asshole for not crying or feeling sad that my grandpa passed away (No, not THAT grandpa, but my father’s father, whom I haven’t seen in probably 10 years.)
  • Drive to visit my other grandparents and my mom (she’s in town but the aforementioned activities sort of changed our original plans to hang out Friday evening.)
  • Drive 40 minutes home
  • sleep
  • Wake up at 8am. On a Saturday. Oh how I loathe getting up early on Saturday.
  • Put up with cranky husband who hates getting up early on a Saturday twice as much as I do.
  • Drive 40 minutes
  • Go to funeral
  • Go to burial
  • Drive 2.5 hours to take grandma and father back to Southern IL
  • Drive 2.5 hours back
  • Have a glass of wine (or six) and go to bed

If anyone would like to swap places with me until Sunday, I’m taking offers.

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Confession: I’m still trying to get used to this whole “being a wife” thing. I know it’s been more than 3 years now, but I still don’t always feel like I have it all under control. Some days, I’m in a good groove when I’ve got a nice routine going for me. I get dressed in the morning feeling put-together (the key is a cute pair of shoes) and when I get home, I know exactly what I’m making for dinner; I do a load of laundry and a load of dishes; I work out; shower; floss; read; etc. This was exactly my night last night. But then other days, I feel like a total wife fraud. And it’s always the little things that set me off.

Like bundt cake.

Let me explain…

I love to bake, but I don’t do it often because 1) lack of time 2) I’m trying to eat healthier. Yet, as I was looking through blog posts in my google reader, I noticed a picture of a bundtcake and it just looked so damn delicious. A work of edible art. I made a mental note to make a bundt cake in the near future. Lemon with poppy-seed preferably. But then I remembered: I don’t even own a bundt cake pan! So I wrote it down next to “toaster oven” and “kitchenaid mixer” as things I need to buy in the near future so I can feel more wifely. So now I must have a bundt cake pan! Because bundt cake pan = better wife.

I know it sounds silly, but I get frustrated when I can’t do it all and also, slightly embarrassed that I don’t even own all of the standard kitchen necessities! So I can’t even “fake it till I make it”. And don’t even get me started on things outside of the kitchen (like sewing buttons or fixing hems. If it can’t be glued, I can’t fix it.) It’s a good thing my mom is in town this week. I have about five pairs of pants and two shirts that need buttons. If only I would’ve thought to askher to bring her bundt cake pan.

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Summer is Back!

A little less than two weeks ago, I mentioned that I wanted to “take back summer.” Then I went and got distracted by work and home projects and trying not to drown in a sea of dirty laundry and equally dirty dishes. So we went to Chicago, and that was fun and somewhat impromptu, and then last weekend I rectified the situation that was me becoming a bad friend. For the last few weeks (okay, months maybe) I haven’t been as diligent about emailing and calling my good buddies. By the time I think “hey, wouldn’t it be nice to hang out with some friends tonight?” it’s already 6pm on a Saturday night and I just assume everyone else has already decided what they’re doing for the evening.

Well fortunately, my friends take it upon themselves to email me when I’ve been noticeably absent, and so the highlights of my weekend included:

Hanging out at Jen’s house with our husbands, reminiscing about Hawaii,  drinking wine, eating hummus and brownies (not together, ew!) and kicking around the idea of a New Years Eve celebration in Las Vegas! I don’t want to get my hopes up about it, just in case it doesn’t work out, but I’m pretty excited.

Another weekend highlight included hanging out with Nora and Irish at Irish’s pool, soaking up some rays, nearly finishing The Time Traveler’s Wife, and just catching up with each other.  For the first time in a long time, I finally feel like I have a really great group of friends. Even though we all get busy, it’s nice to know they’re there for me and support me. It also helps that we can all hang out together – guys and girls. Because as much as I love my girls nights, it’s nice to sometimes include the men in our lives. I haven’t always had good luck in the friends department, and sometimes I use to wonder if there was just something wrong with me, but now I realize that I just hadn’t met the right people.

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Well, I did call the cops last night, but it wasn’t due to previously mentioned teenage vandals. Instead, at around 2 am, I called the cops on our neighbors who once again, left their dog in the backyard all night where it proceeded to bark, non-stop, for two hours. At 2 am, I couldn’t take it anymore so I got dressed, grabbed a flashlight and pounded on their door. After five minutes of pounding and no answer, I decided the cops might have better luck. It’s been over a year since the last incident when I reported them to the authorities, and shortly after I noticed they had purchased a muzzle for the little bastard dog. They’re nice people, and I sort of feel guilty because they’re nice people, but if I left my dog outside all night (which we have done before) and it barked non-stop (which he does not do, thankfully), then I would fully expect someone to report me for a noise violation. I would deserve it.


Can I just say, I am SO GLAD it is Friday?

Oh, and about the vandals, we purchased a motion sensor spotlight last night and the hubs mounted it on the corner of our house. We spent at least an hour, testing it, resetting ranges and timers, but it works. We also bought one of those sensors that you can put outside and if it senses motion, it will alert you inside the house. Not sure if we’ll keep it yet or not because those things are super touchy and I don’t want every rabbit that hops by (dude, we have a lot of rabbits in my yard. I think one of them is running a bunny brothel.) to set it off and wake me up at all hours of the night. We already saw how well I handled a couple of hours of disrupted sleep and as far as I know, there is no bunny police to report them to. So we’ll wait and see. Damn teenagers.

But on a positive note, it is tax-free shopping weekend this weekend in Missouri and I fully intend to take advantage of it. I have a couple of leftover gift cards from my birthday a few months ago that I need to use and a bunch of stores are running sales for back-to-school. I don’t normally get into shopping, but tax-free weekend + back-to-school sales + fall fashion = shopping bug. And I haz it.

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