Wednesday, July 25, 2007

before we go

We're leaving for the beach tomorrow. So today's been one of those run-around-last-few-errands kind of days. You know how it goes, dry cleaners, pharmacy, target. Water the plants (plant new plants), iron a little bit, clean a little bit, too. Now I think we're all set.

I'll be back soon....and hopefully I'll have some fun blog pictures to share when I return. See you then!

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

hangin around

We've been here the last few days, but I've been uninspired to blog. Or, is it too tired to blog? hmmm. How can you be too tired to blog!

We had a garage sale on Saturday. Then, because we did well and the forecast looked good, we decided to continue it on Sunday. There was so much stuff in our basement that had been sitting for 4 was time to clean out. My old dining room table & chairs, our unused home gym (what a beast) and several small pesky items went out the door. Toys, books, odds and ends. Gone for good, and what a feeling! All in all we did well. We made enough to pay for our new dryer and maybe a few nights at Dairy Queen before summer's end.

Guess what? I made brownies last night. Just because I'd been thinking of them and rereading what I wrote in my previous post about how good they smell when they're baking in the oven. Wonderful. My oldest son and I just came in the door from doing errands this morning and there is still a lingering smell of chocolate in the kitchen. ahhh. Can't beat it.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

inspired by Tulipmom

(Tulipmom...and many others as well...)

1. WERE YOU NAMED AFTER ANYONE? not my first name, but my middle name is my mother's middle name and my maternal grandmother's first name

2. WHEN WAS THE LAST TIME YOU CRIED? I teared up at my oldest son's swimming lesson this week because he's doing so great! (he's come a long way)


4. WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE LUNCH MEAT? I love a good tuna sandwich

5. DO YOU HAVE KIDS? two beautiful boys who delight me every day


7. DO YOU USE SARCASM A LOT? no, I don't like it

8. DO YOU STILL HAVE YOUR TONSILS? no, I got them out in 8th grade

9. WOULD YOU BUNGEE JUMP? I don't think so

10. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE CEREAL? I eat Special K red berries every day, but if I could I'd eat Crunch Berries every day...much more fun....I like eating all the crunchies first and the berries second





15. RED OR PINK? pink

16. WHAT IS THE LEAST FAVOURITE THING ABOUT YOURSELF? I'd take another 2-3 inches of leg, please

17. WHO DO YOU MISS THE MOST? I'd love to have an afternoon of catching up with my grandparents, both sides. I'd love to have them come to my house and meet my kids. We could all sit around together and tell stories about what we've been up to the last few years. I miss their laughter.

18. DO YOU WANT EVERYONE TO SEND THIS BACK TO YOU? I think everyone has done this already

19. WHAT COLOUR PANTS AND SHOES ARE YOU WEARING? khaki shorts, bare feet

20. WHAT WAS THE LAST THING YOU ATE? tuna & cheddar sandwich, pretzels, and a crunchy baby dill pickle

21. WHAT ARE YOU LISTENING TO RIGHT NOW? my oldest son playing down in the basement


23. FAVOURITE SMELLS? brownies in the oven; my husband's cologne; chocolate wafting through the city from the candy factories; baby boys after a bath


25. DO YOU LIKE THE PERSON WHO SENT THIS TO YOU? I like all those blogs where I've already seen it

26. FAVOURITE SPORTS TO WATCH? college football with my husband

27. HAIR COLOUR? light brownish blonde with blonde highlights

28. EYE COLOUR? green


30. FAVOURITE FOOD? homemade chocolate chip cookies


32. LAST MOVIE YOU WATCHED? The Good Shepherd with Matt was awful

33. WHAT COLOUR SHIRT ARE YOU WEARING? a navy blue t-shirt

34. SUMMER OR WINTER? sum sum summertime - but you knew this already

35. HUGS OR KISSES? a little of both

37. MOST LIKELY TO RESPOND? (hey, where's #36?) whoever is looking for a little material for their blog today

38. LEAST LIKELY TO RESPOND? those who have done this already

39. WHAT BOOK ARE YOU READING NOW? Snowflower and the Secret Fan. I started it but had to stop during the foot binding chapter. Trying to get up the courage to start again

40. WHAT IS ON YOUR MOUSE PAD? don't have one


42. FAVOURITE SOUND? hearing my kids laugh at each other



45. DO YOU HAVE A SPECIAL TALENT? hmm...tough one. I think I'm the jack-of-all-trades-master-of-none type

46. WHERE WERE YOU BORN? Columbus, Ohio

47. WHAT SUPERPOWER WOULD YOU LIKE? flying...just like Superman

week 8

I am not sure but I don't think you can tell much of a difference between this week's picture and last week's. It's been raining and I dashed out quickly to snap this week I'll see if I can get a little closer. Hopefully there will be more to show!

Hope you have a wonderful day.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

anniversary flowers

new hang up

I'm hung up on my new wall art...which just happens to be my *not new* fish platter. I think it looks great up there, right above my dining table. So much better than being stored away in my china cabinet, which is where it had been residing. When my mom was here a couple of weeks ago we were looking at it, and she suggested hanging it up. We got it up just in time for the party on the 4th. So great to have a deadline like that, something that forces you to rearrange, straighten up, refresh your space.

Here's a close up so you can see the details of the work. I got this MacKenzie-Childs platter on ebay awhile back. It's a piece from an era when the company was still owned and operated by the original artists, Victoria and Richard MacKenzie-Childs. All of the pieces from this time are slightly 'off' a little...meaning, they look like they are made by hand (which they are.) When you stack the plates they are not uniform, they kind of tilt in different directions. Some plates are lighter or heavier than others. The painting on each piece varies. Sometimes the pattern is very light, sometimes it's dark. Sometimes the flowers are little, and sometimes they are BIG! It all depends on who was painting that day. Even this piece...see that vertical line in the middle? It's a little pop that can happen during the firing process. But, I like the flaw. It looks more authentically handmade.

I'll always be a MacKenzie fan and follow what's happening with the company (currently for sale!), and I'll (of course) continue to add to my collection with new pieces. But it's never been the same since Victoria and Richard left. They were the soul of the company. They were (and are) extremely talented yet humble artists who had a vision, and then the passion to bring their dream to life. Their whimsical designs and presentation truly made everything look and feel magical, as if you were stepping into a fairy tale when you entered their world. As if, as an adult, you had somehow reconnected to your childhood and found a way to infuse that kind of innocence and fun into a grown up world. There was no mass production...heck, there wasn't always consistency with the product line from season to season. But there was so much fun in it all. And there was no Made In China.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

8 years

July 17, 1999
Happy Anniversary, My Sweet!

Monday, July 16, 2007

clotheslines online

Look what my sweet husband just forwarded to me:

who knew you could make a business out of selling clotheslines? but then again, isn't this just the kind of business that thrives online?? :)

my new dryer

Is being delivered on Wednesday. Wouldn't you know would have cost almost as much to fix our old dryer as it would to simply buy a brand new one (with a new warranty.) By the way, the repair guy told me GE is the WORST. He said I didn't hear that from him. His highest recommendation goes to Kenmore, Maytag, and Whirlpool. We were only talking about dryers.

So the new dryer comes on Wednesday, but in the meantime, we have all fallen in love with our lined dried clothes. I washed my sofa slipcovers last week and hung them out here, and they smell so sweet. Crawling into bed with freshly lined dried sheets has become my new favorite summer delight! Now I understand why my mom always had a clothesline in our backyard when I was growing up. I just may have to look into getting something permanent for my backyard, too.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

look familiar?

Been to the farmer's market this weekend? Or just the plain ol' grocery store?

Then maybe your kitchen counter looks like this:

Or maybe your fruit bowl looks like this:

1, 2, 3,
all together now -

Friday, July 13, 2007

taking bloom

Leucanthemum 'Becky'; Daisy; Long bloomer if spent blooms are removed

That's how our landscaping plan describes this sweet little plant. We have planted about 30-40% of what is on the plan so far, with a goal of completing most of our planting by the fall. This daisy plant went into the ground about 2 weeks ago and we have already seen a few blooms emerge. It's such a nice change from seeing nothing pretty in this space for so long.

Daisies have always been my favorite flower. They are so friendly and sweet, unpretentious and welcoming. Unfussy! I have a small bunch in a vase on my coffee table right now, they have been there for about 3 weeks. They last forever, don't they? Unfortunately, I don't see them at the grocery store very often. So it's a treat now. Inside and out, they're surrounding me...

So here we are...Friday again, how fast these weeks fly by in the summertime. What's going on this weekend? We have our 'to do' list - which includes sorting through stuff in our basement and figuring out what's going into the pile of things to sell next weekend at our garage sale. We have a whoooole lotta baby things to sort through. Part of me dreads it, but another part is so eager to just get rid of all the excess. Amazing how it all accumulates, right before your eyes.

Have a happy and fun weekend!

Thursday, July 12, 2007

week 7

Here we are this week...things continue to zip along on the house across the street. The crew arrives each morning around the same time (6:45) and leaves in the early afternoon. They seem to be very conscientious. I saw them here this past Saturday, putting in a full day's work. Looks like they're trying to stay on schedule.

In other news, the search for the right super hair conditioner continues. The olive oil treatment from the other day may have to be repeated. It seemed to make things soft and manageable, but then I went and put a leave-in conditioner in my hair yesterday that made it feel dry again. Ironic, I know. By the way, am I boring you with all this hair chat? I'll keep quiet for awhile and only check back in on this subject when I find my magic concoction. Wish me luck.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007


My Company Kids catalog arrived today (yours too?) and look what I found on page 34. The perfect bedding ensemble for a little boy who is getting ready to depart from his crib and move into a big boy bed. Perfect for someone who worships Bob the Builder.

Oh, I'm excited now. hooray! hooray! ideas ideas!!

eat your heart out rachel ray

I am sitting here at my computer with my head covered in olive oil.


Thank you for all the interesting conditioning suggestions. I've decided to give them all a try, and I'm starting with the olive oil since I had it on hand.

Not to worry, this isn't a dire situation. My hair's just a little thirsty these days. Too much sun and chlorine from our frequent trips to the pool the last few weeks.

I'll let you know how it goes with Rachel's favorite cooking ingredient.

Thank you again!

Monday, July 09, 2007

who says there's nothing to blog about

This was me last night, experimenting with a deep hair conditioning treatment that I got at Target. I found it in the salon care section, and it says "mayonnaise" on the outside of the tub. You put it on freshly washed hair (the directions say mix it with an egg if you have very dry hair) and let it sit on your head under a shower cap (or, if you're like me and you don't have a shower cap, try saran wrap - it works!) for 1-2 hours.

I was excited about this, but I must say that I'm a little disappointed by the results. My hair feels fine, but no different from how it feels after using regular conditioner. I was hoping for something a little stronger. Something like a noticeably! softer and happier head of curls.

Would any of you fine friends happen to know a good conditioning treatment? I have heard something about using coconut oil on hair, but I'm not sure how that works and where to find it. My babysitter says she used to use something that involves mashed bananas, but she can't remember exactly what the concoction is. If you have a suggestion for me, I'd love to hear it.

By the way, our trip downtown on Saturday was terrific. Thank you for those nice birthday wishes for my husband. We walked and walked and walked and saw all the things we wanted to that day. Including our old neighborhood and all the places we used to hang out. We felt a little old, but very happy to have the memories that we do. We're hoping to do this again...sooner rather than later.

Friday, July 06, 2007

the wait is over

Tomorrow, as you know, is a lucky day. 7/07/07. It is a date expected to bring lots of luck to anxious brides and grooms, favorite sports teams, new babies who decide "today's the day!" I hope plenty of luck is delivered to all, as promised. As expected from such a great date!

Tomorrow is also my husband's birthday. And, truly, he's a lucky guy. He'd tell you that himself. His special birth date has worked for him from day one...07/07 (his mom will tell you that he was even lucky #7 on his hospital I.D. bracelet.) Lucky guy.

So tomorrow we are - just the two of us - taking the day and spending it with each other in the city. We have 2 different babysitters taking 2 different shifts throughout our long day away, the first reporting at 8:45 a.m. We haven't planned what we'll do yet, beyond take the train down and back. I'm sure we'll figure it out. Maybe a picnic lunch in Millennium Park. Maybe a trip to the Art Institute (where, sadly, we are members who have never used our membership.) Maybe a little shopping? A walk by our first apartment together? Definitely a special dinner at one of our favorite old haunts.

Anyway, here's what I'm wearing for the occasion. My new Lilly dress! I have had this in my closet with tags on for months now, waiting to wear it. First, waiting for the weather to be warm enough. Then, waiting for the right occasion. Last Saturday I considered it. We went out to dinner and it was a beautiful night...we sat outside under the stars. I considered my dress then, but knowing our plans for tomorrow decided to wait just a wee bit longer.

And now I'm happy that it's making its debut on such a grand date. The dress seems worthy of the great expectations surrounding this special Saturday in 2007. Or, perhaps it is the other way around? The date is worthy of the dress. hm mm. Not sure. Either way, I'm thrilled I'll be wearing it for just us tomorrow. On my husband's special day.

Thursday, July 05, 2007

week 6

After a day away, it's back to business for the construction crew working on the house across the street. Aren't they making such swift progress? I bet you're looking forward to seeing next week's picture already. I know I am!

Yesterday was our party and...of course!....I did not take any pictures. But my littlest guy and I tiptoed out this morning and snapped this picture so I could at least show you some of how things looked yesterday. You can also see that we are coming along on our garden in front. Little by little by's a slow but steady process (you remember those overgrown bushes that were ripped out last summer, don't you?)

Have a good one!

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

how lucky we are live in such a glorious country be free.

Hope your 4th is festive & fun...

and rain free! :)

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

party prep

My mom was here for a long weekend and flew home this morning. I miss her already. While she was here she did a lot to help me get ready for our 4th of July party tomorrow. We picked out food, decorations, and all the essential party items. What a help she was...with party planning, as well as just being here and helping the whole household hum along on our usual crazy days. If you are someone who adores her mom like I do mine, and you happen to live close to are so very lucky.

It wasn't all work this weekend. We saw a movie together on Friday and spent Saturday shopping. We also managed to squeeze in a few rounds of cards here and there. Spite & Malice is our game. Ever play it? It's about the only card game I play. But I love playing it, especially with her.