Thursday, December 31, 2009

December 31, 2009

We had a hard time deciding what time zone to celebrate New Year’s eve in – Eastern, Central of Hawaii Standard – Since we had been in all three time zones in the past 96 hours, we decided to celebrate all three. EST New Year’s was celebrated by checking into the Ka’anapali Beach Club where we were going to stay for the next 7 days, CST New Year’s was spent over a wonderful sunset dinner on the beach at the Leilani’s Grill, and HST New Year’s was spent sleeping in bed.

I have to include some pictures of the Ka’anapali Beach Club it is such an eye sore compared to the natural surroundings. Everything in the area is so understated and blends so well except for this resort – it towers over the trees and is a hideous shade of hot pink. When I first saw it I was really nervous that the rooms would be horrible and we would regret our decision to stay there. Thank goodness when we opened the door to our suite it was beautiful. We had a great view of the West Maui Mountains and the ocean; in fact we could even see whales from our balcony. The living room and kitchen were spacious and made it really convenient to make snacks and drinks whenever we wanted and the bathroom was amazing. Seriously, if we hadn’t been in Hawaii I would have spent most of the trip in the bathroom, the room was the size of our office and it had separate sinks, a rainfall shower and you could watch TV or look out the window without even having to leave the huge soaking tub. Ahhhhh….

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

December 30, 2009

The first night that we arrived on Maui we stayed in the town of Lahaina at the Lahaina Inn. The Inn was originally built in 1938 and had the charm of an old fashioned hotel. Our balcony overlooked the main downtown street and the ocean and thanks to our internal clocks remaining on Michigan time we were up bright and early to enjoy the sunrise from there. We spent most of the morning in Lahaina town, which is basically the only small town on the island that is not overrun with resorts, eating breakfast and walking on the docks. Matt enjoyed “Loco Moco," which consisted of white rice with a hamburger patty, two eggs, and brown gravy for breakfast and I enjoyed soaking in the sun.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Rockin Around The Christmas Tree...

I wasn’t exactly sure if we would be able to find time to decorate for Christmas this year – we did skip Labor Day, Halloween and traveled to Minnesota for Thanksgiving. Our track record was so bad I had little hope, but we found some time and had a really great day decorating. Matt and I went to a local nursery to pick our tree, we didn’t take time to hike out in the woods to get a tree, instead for this year we opted for the warmer option of picking a fresh cut one from their selection. At the nursery the tree looked perfect in height, shape and width – so we got it bundled and threw it in the back of the Volvo. It almost seemed too good to be true, I have spent hours at Geli’s Nursery looking for a perfect tree, and this took us less than 20 min from start to finish. We got the tree home gave it a fresh cut and put it in the tree stand – that is where the ease of the day ended. For some reason the tree weighed twice as much on the one side and no matter how we positioned it in the tree stand it listed to the heavy side. We would make it perfect walk into another room and minutes later we would check on it and it was leaning again. Finally, Matt was able to make it stand tall with some additional clipping of the low hanging branches and about 40 pounds of hand weights on the base. Of course the entire time we were working on the tree I kept picturing National Lampoons Christmas Vacation and wondering when I was going to have tree sap in my hair and look out the window to see Matt with his hockey helmet on, cutting down a tree with his chain saw. Luckily it did not come to that.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

I’ve Been Dazzled

Not Bedazzled, although that can be rather fun and based on their website “is back again and is the latest fashion craze” (I have yet to see that happen) – I have been Holidazzled! What does that mean you ask? Well it means that I got to go to my first official Holidazzle parade in downtown Minneapolis. Based on the information from Matt’s family and a few tidbits from the official website … The Holidazzle Parade is an annual tradition that has been dazzling crowds since 1992. The parade takes place on the Nicollet Mall, which is a pedestrian shopping area in downtown Minneapolis and it features lots of floats, bands, school groups and characters dressed up in lights and lots of sparkles. The parade is very reminiscent of the Main Street Electrical Parade at Walt Disney World – minus the balmy temperatures and over tired kids. The parade was lots of fun and surprisingly it was a really nice night to watch it – I didn’t have frostbite set in to any of my appendages!

Monday, November 30, 2009

Birthday Week Ends

To be honest, it officially ended on Saturday the 28th as that was Matt’s birthday, but with our trip to MN and then recovering from the whirlwind adventure I have not had a chance to post yet – so this is close enough. Anyway, here is a super cute picture of Matt at age 10, notice the styling hair-do! Looking at the picture of Matt and the one of Katie and I – near the same age, I have to laugh or maybe cry a little. What were we thinking!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Birthday Week Begins

I couldn’t let the day come to an end without giving a birthday shout-out to my bestest sister-friend Katie Tomasoski. We may not have styling bangs, luxurious velvet and lace dresses, working-girl red lipstick or rocking hair bows anymore (all circa 1988 “All-A-Merry-Can-Christmas Musical”) – but we have a great friendship. Happy 29th Birthday!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Cough, Cough, Sniff, Sniff

Have you ever had one of those weeks where you are sick enough that everything seems extra hard and very tiring, but you are not sick enough to justify staying in bed? That is exactly the type of week I just had. I am feeling so much better today and I am looking forward to some whirlwind excitement. This upcoming week is busy with a dress fitting, turning my leased Rogue in, picking out wedding bands and finishing organizing the house. We have a goal of having things back in place so that our marriage mentors from Church can come over Sunday for cookies and our final session. I made no progress last week, so I am very hopeful that things will get done Mary Poppins style. Here is the little progress that I have made so far. Mostly just getting stuff on shelves in the storage area. I am sure following their visit I will be in the closet and laundry room making a mess again as we get pack to go to Minnesota for Thanksgiving. I am getting really excited for a mini-vacation … in one long weekend we will get to celebrate Thanksgiving with Matt’s family, celebrate his 29th birthday and attend a bridal shower … so much fun!!!

Monday, November 2, 2009

More Candy For Me!

We have been so busy we decided to officially skip Halloween this year. I lieu of passing out candy we spent the evening dry-walling and painting Matt’s basement and instead of dressing up in fun costumes we were Handy Manny and some other character who does construction. In the picture you can see Matt and his resemblance or lack thereof to Handy Manny. I have to say I missed the festivities a little bit, but that was only a passing thought as I dug into the candy bowl that was now ours to eat. I never did like to share my candy.

Why so busy you ask? Well let me fill you in! Back at the beginning of October we accepted an offer on my house, which was followed up by inspections, appraisals, surveys, etc.. It is so time consuming to buy a house these days. In anticipation of having to move out of my house we have been working on Matt’s house painting, organizing, building a 4th bedroom and family room and all-around just tying up some loose ends. It has been keeping us really busy, but it makes me feel so much better that I can move my stuff in and it has a place to go. I get so ancy when things are in boxes and not organized. I really need to stop reading “Real Simple” magazine – it has me up nights printing labels for the storage boxes and marking the purchase dates on my spices. HAHA

After all our hard work and waiting on the banks we were finally able to close on the 30th of October – which was such a sense of relief - followed by a complex game plan of moving instructions. We are staying in my house until the 13th of November so over the next 2 weeks we will finish moving my things, move Erin’s things to her new apartment and move Matt to his temporary home at a friends house.

On the list for today – painting the living and dining room. Later this week – moving furniture.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Take Me Out To The Ballgame

Being the type A that I can be at times, I tend to get really focused on the things that need to be done and with selling the house, moving, planning a wedding and teaching – it seems like there are a million things to get done and no time to stop and enjoy the day. However, no matter how many things I should have been doing, Matt and I took the day on Wednesday to drive to Detroit to go to the Twins vs. Tigers game. I am so glad that we took the whole day to get-away. We were able to sleep in, meet up for breakfast and then take a quick detour to IKEA, where I almost had a fit because it is the smallest and stupidest IKEA and they never have things in stock, however I digress – and then make it to the night game with plenty of time to spare. Our seats for the game were awesome (more so awesome for Matt, since we were right behind the Twins dugout) and the weather was as good as it was going to get – I ended up wearing my winter parka, but at least it didn’t rain. The game was not overly exciting, but we did get to see a few good hits and some pretty amazing catches. Unfortunately or fortunately, whichever way you look at it – the Tigers beat the Twins. I hate to say it, but I am seemingly becoming a bad luck charm for Minnesota sports – every time Matt and I have gone to a Michigan Team vs. Minnesota Team game – Michigan has always come out the winner. Too bad we can’t be in the Dome for the game on Tuesday night!

Monday, September 28, 2009

On The Move...

We have had a busy few weeks – that is almost an understatement. Things have been moving along with the sale of my house. We have had a lot of showings; in fact one night we had 3 showings in a row. That, of course, has kept us on the edge of our seats and busy trying to keep everything up to Martha Stewart level clean. It has paid off though – we have accepted an offer and are waiting for the inspection to be completed this Thursday. The new buyers are using a FHA loan and that makes us a little nervous, the inspections for government-assisted loans tend to be more rigorous than conventional financing. The house passed inspections for me 2 years ago, so I am sure things will be fine, but at the same time I was able to use conventional financing, so the inspection was just for my knowledge and protection, not as rigorous. So, as we await the inspection process keep us in your prayers that everything will be up to code and in good working condition.

With the sale of the house in progress we have been trying to work out a plan on moving things over to Matt’s house. The first step is getting rooms painted and the basement finished. Erin was a big help over the weekend and finished painting the last bedroom; I can’t even explain what a big help that was. Now, we are able to start setting up the office and unpacking a ton of office supplies - which means that the guest bedroom can be converted back from a storage unit into a bedroom. Matt has made a ton of progress in the basement and soon we will be able to put up shelving and start to move my storage stuff over here. If things go well we should be able to close on the house in 6 weeks, giving us the opportunity to move at a good pace.

While Erin and Matt worked on the house – I made a quick escape back to my parents’ house in order to visit with Luke, Katie and Blake while they were in town for the night. It was nice to see them and extra fun to see how much Blake has grown since we saw him in July. It is hard to believe that he is walking and it is neat to see him watching things and contemplating what is going on. The Tomasoski’s were off to Royal Oak the next day for a walk in remembrance of Auntie Rosie and I was off to Novi to meet with my friends Jenny and Chris. It was nice to be able to get away from the house work in order to have some fun with friends.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Jon And Heather’s Wedding

This past Friday our friends Jon and Heather got married. Their wedding was out in Norton Shores on a golf course and it was the most beautiful day to be outside. The temperature and lighting were perfect for their ceremony and everything coordinated so well with the changing colors of the leaves. Matt was one of the groomsmen and looked dapper in his linen pants and orange tie; I suppose I am showing a little favoritism. The reception was in a tent that was also on the golf course and it was made extra special with the entire ceiling draped with light weight fabric, chandeliers and Chinese lanterns. The food was awesome – I totally wanted seconds of the smashed potatoes and green beans and instead of cake they had yummy homemade pie. I of course only took one picture the whole night, but I managed to borrow some off their Google photos site. Congratulations Jon and Heather!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

A Little Bit Busy, A Little Bit Relaxing – A Lot Of Fun

Matt and I had a fantastic Labor Day weekend full of unexpected surprises– I am not sure we could have actually planned a better weekend. The weekend started on Friday, as both Matt and I did not have to work. The original plan was to meet up for a lazy morning of breakfast and running errands. However, two things came up that changed that plan – first we got a call to have a showing of the house later that afternoon and second Matt had a found a car that he wanted to investigate. So, breakfast was scrapped in lieu of spot cleaning the house and running errands was replaced with talking to banks and test-driving cars.

Matt has been looking for a replacement car for my Rogue lease, which is up in December. We did some initial leg work together creating a short list of cars that would be a good replacement and then he has done a ton of follow up work in trying to find the perfect replacement at the right price point with the right options. And after months of looking he finally found one that would meet the criteria in Cleveland, Ohio. The catch to buying a car in Ohio is getting everything such as the financing and insurance all situated before you make the trip – that can be harder than it sounds on a Friday afternoon before the Labor Day Holiday. With most things in place, Matt and I drove to my parents’ house on Friday night to cut the drive in half – poor Mrs. Whiskers had to make the trip too since we didn’t know if the house was going to be shown on Saturday.

Saturday started at 4:15am when we got up and had breakfast and got ready for the drive – we were out the door at 5:00 and on our way to check out the car. The drive was great the associated process of getting the car was a mess. We were a little concerned that the bank would not have the check ready to go so we got there first, talked with them and the check was not ready because the computer systems were down….oh the luck of that. The only day the system is down and we are 6 hours away from home and waiting on IT to get things going again. Having worked in that type of situation I was ready to call it quits and do something else. In fact Matt and I both thought things might fall through so our back-up plan, to make the drive worthwhile was to attend an Indians game – they just happened to be playing the Twins. Anyway, so the adventure had begun and the rest of the day involved going from the bank to the dealership, where we test drove the XC90 and loved it, back to the bank to wait for the system to be up and then back to the dealership to pick up the car. Two freak things happened during that time, the first one included a guy who also was looking at the XC90 no more than 1 minute after we set the keys down – seriously I was ready to break down in tears in front of him in order to sway his decision, luckily he called himself a GM man… then after the bank had officially closed and we were sure that we were not going to get the check they called us, opened the bank back up and gave us our check. I have to say – National City did a really great job helping us out and totally kept in mind that we had driven from MI and was not able to come back until the following week etc.. In the end we got the XC90 that we had been stalking and everything is great with it – I am super excited to have such a perfect replacement for my Rogue – which I did love dearly. I might even like it a little better since it has heated seats and 3 rows of seats to cram people in.

The rest of the weekend was spent relaxing and enjoying our time off from work. It is hard to believe, but we didn’t work on one project around the house… bizarre. On Sunday we got to see our friends Jason and Sheri and their son Asher when they came to church with us and then over to Matt’s house to play the Wii. Asher even got in on the action playing a little drums and helping Matt play the guitar – I have to say at 11 months old, he is already better than I am. Monday brought another showing of the house and lots of lazy time cooking out, watching movies and enjoying the sun and warm weather. I would love to have more of those weekends – a little excitement with a little relaxation is just my style.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Although We've Come To The End Of The Road ...

It looks like soon “Elle” and I will part ways, “Elle” is the name of my house - fitting because it is located on Elwood and because I adore Elle Woods from Legally Blonde. After some serious prayer, discussion and number crunching it looks like we are going to put my house on the market. It seems like only yesterday I bought this place – and I guess it wasn’t that long ago about 2 years – and now she is all ready to make her d├ębut on the for sale website. I have to admit that although I am very excited to be moving forward with upcoming plans, I am going to be sad to leave the house. We put so much time and energy into making “Elle” special, she was a labor of love to say the least. I can’t even think back to a weekend when my parents, my sister, my friends or Matt wasn’t helping me on something. I couldn’t have had such a warm, cozy abode with out all their help. And if you look back through some before pictures you can understand what hard work went into making the house what it is today. We decided that now was the time to list the house since there is the first time home buyers tax credit and because we have heard of some homes sitting on the market for months. We are hoping that by December we have the ability to streamline down to one mortgage and consolidate our possessions to one house. I went and signed the paperwork on Wed. and it will be officially listed this afternoon – I was surprised that we already had a showing today…

I might be a "smidge" type A - so I thought I would help my realtor by creating a flyer to put on the front side of the MLS listing..

Here are “Elle’s” glamour shots, plus the shots from the previous post... And here is a fun link to see what she used to look like - a total makeover!


Basement "Family Room"

Erin's Room

My Bedroom

The Living Room

Monday, August 24, 2009

We Are Still Hammering In Our Sleep

Well we did it. We finished the garage roof in one weekend. After the rocky start with the “wild animal” and the pouring rain on Friday night, I didn’t know what to expect of the weekend. But to tell you the truth it went surprisingly smooth. Saturday morning we were up bright and early and started stripping the old shingles right away. Matt had seen on This Old House that a pitchfork was a good way to remove old shingles. I was a little skeptical – with flash back to the opossum event, I didn’t know what to expect. But to error on the side of caution, with a pitchfork on the roof at least we didn’t have to worry about a sneak attack. And it did work really well. We got into a pattern of Matt on the ladder stripping as many shingles as he could reach and I sat on the ridge of the roof and got loose nails and the rest of the shingles with a little crowbar. The removal went really fast. Then it was on to putting out the tarpaper – not my favorite part of the day, too tedious for me to enjoy. I also was not a big fan of having to mark chalk lines, what a mess. But once the lines were set – it was on to the shingles. Within a few hours we had half of one side completed. That really surprised me, I thought it would take a lot longer. We figured out a system where Matt laid the first shingle in each row and then I hammered the rest of the row in and he finished up the other end. I cannot even express how tired my arm is – today while in a meeting, my arm started twitching in a hammering motion. We could have opted for an air nail gun, but it would have been costly to rent one and the whole point of doing it our selves was to save money. So, we hand nailed four nails in every stinking shingle on the roof. Anyway, with half one side of the roof complete we called it a night and I am excited to say that we were able to stop working before dark – that NEVER happens on our projects. Sunday, we started up after church and flew through the rest of the one side in a matter of an hour. We moved to the far side of the garage and had an easy time of snapping the lines and getting the rows started. The one dramatic event of the weekend involved Matt hammering a little too close to a hidden wasp nest under the eve of the garage – there were about six wasps around him in a matter of seconds. With some quick thinking he was able to get off the ladder and get some bug killer and he only suffered one sting. I patiently waited, rather was stranded on the roof, while this was going on. But, luckily I didn’t get stung – I think I was too stinky from working too hard. Once the wasps were eradicated and I was able to move about the roof again we finished up the rest of the shingles in no time. I have to say if nothing more, I sure have learned a ton of new skills from owning this house. I seriously want to start a TV show with Candace Olsen, a combination Toolbelt Diva and Divine Design.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Working On Elwood

The last couple of weeks I have been focusing on finishing all the little details in my house that I never wanted to get to. The dreaded caulking, the polyurethane-ing, the patching, the dreaded tasks that take you hours to complete and you feel less than satisfied with the work. I do feel good now that it is complete, but in the process of doing it I was down right cranky. I took a few shots of the finished rooms ..


Dining Area


I need to complete a few more things in the living room, my bedroom and the family room and I will post pictures of those as well.

In the meantime Matt and I are about to embark on a slow boat to shingle hell. We NEED to get new shingles put on the garage and this weekend seems to be the time to do it. I can only imagine what this adventure is going to be like. Let me just share with you what we have already experienced in the prep work. I think it started with the fact that several months ago we cleaned out the garage to find a squirrel nest in an old stroller up in the rafters (I still don’t understand how that happened). Then we had to move trash and debris from the side of the garage (I believe it has been there for at least 5 years), in moving the debris Matt calmly tells me that he thinks he found a skunk living under some of the brush… well let me just say that it why it has taken me two years to clean the debris out, I knew it was a no good situation back there!! So anyway, Matt calmly tells me he thinks there is a skunk, in which I not so calmly start yelling about how it is a wild animal and they do wild things and there is no way that I am going to climb back into a confined area and verify his claim. Imagine what a howler monkey might sound like saying that – that is probably close to what I sounded like. So, being the trusting wife-to-be that I am – I get as close as possible to appease Matt and his animal recognition skills yet far enough away to safely make it to the house and close the door. Well, after a terrifying look at the beast I recognize it to be an opossum.. Vaguely remembering that they are mean, have sharp teeth and are very mean – the situation turns into every person for him or herself, I am not going to die of some freak opossum incident. I of course very calmly back away from the area, whilst Matt pokes at the thing with a metal garden rake. I am pretty sure the animal loved it, as it stayed in the same spot. I offer up the suggestion that we should spray it with the hose. So, I go over to the spigot to get the water flowing … it sounds like an easy task, but I have my hoses in a complex system to water my yard on a timer. Which means that you have to find the appropriate hose, with the appropriate shut-off valve and dial everything correctly or you get a trickle. So, I am working on the water pressure as Matt continues to poke the beast. We spray it with the water and it drives the opossum out of the pile of wood. At this time I think we have solved the problem so I shut down the water, about a minute long process, and just as I wipe my hands in success and I see Matt running after the thing with the metal garden rake and then I see it run up to the top of the lilac bush. Matt then politely prompts me to bring the hose – but really this sounded more like some hick farmer yelling at his wife to herd up the cows – so you can imagine what our neighborhood is thinking at this point. So, I scramble around to get some water again, a mensa puzzle at its finest. We spray the thing out of the bush, which pretty much meant that the bough of the bush was breaking under the weight of this thing. In the fastest speed a opossum can go, it runs towards our neighbors house only to have the get away foiled by the neighbor kid being outside playing on a tricycle. So, it doubles back and Matt chases after it again with the metal rake. My neighbors at this point bring all of their children indoors and lock the doors. The furry nuisance makes it way in to the neighbors bushes and we call it good. Matt and I are such a good team - just call us when you need to remove pesky animals. :) We got a lot of work done after that – strike that, Matt got a lot of work done after that. I stood with in fleeing distance of the area and practiced my best impersonation of working – hey I need to be free to flee if necessary. So, that was the prep work, now on to the actual roofing ... I will be sure to let everyone knows how that goes.

Here is a before and after of the debris removal:

Friday, August 7, 2009

Summer In The City

This post is a little delayed, things have just been so busy this summer, and I can’t believe how fast time has flow by. I guess it was two weekends ago when my “Grad School” girlfriends, Teri and Rachel, and I went to Chicago. It has become a tradition for the three of us to take a get-away weekend once a year, last year we went low key and did wine tasting in the Traverse Bay area, this year we went for big city thrills. When we got into town on Friday we went straight to shopping – or at least window shopping – can you believe that we were around some great stores and we didn’t find anything … it was quite disappointing. So, to improve our mood we went to the Blue Agave for dinner – yum. Jessica Carter first took me to the hole in the wall Mexican restaurant several years ago, now every time I am in town I have to eat there. The food is amazing especially the fajitas and carne asada and it is in the near north part of town so it is less touristy. Dinner definitely improved our moods so we headed off to the Hancock Tower to look over the city – it was perfect timing going right at dusk, as we could see the city come to life in lights. And since you have to walk through the Cheesecake Factory on your way out of the tower – we were forced to get some cheesecake for dessert. Saturday was full with more shopping, a trip to the planetarium, popcorn shopping, dinner at Ben Pao’s and watching the Venetian festival. The festival is touted to be an amazing show of boats decorated in lights passing by followed by fireworks. We did find a good place to watch the boat show, but it was disappointing that there were not many boats. We opted to watch the fireworks as we walked to the bus stop to hop on a bus for the Ghirardelli Ice Cream Shop. Of course thrown into all this activity there were several episodes of Deadliest Catch to watch, lots of catching up to do and plenty of laughs.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Top 10 Things I Love About Minnesota

10 & 9. There Are No Michigan Left Turns & TV Shows Come On An Hour Earlier (I have no pictures to represent them, so I felt the need to combine them)

8. Headquarters/Factory Store for Aveda

7. Free Admission To Gardens and Parks

6. A Climate Controlled Baseball Stadium (they should not move to a new stadium)

5. Fur Lined Minnetonka Moccasins

4. The Downtown Sky Walk (stays cool in the summer and warm in the winter)

3. Beautiful Lakes Everywhere (10,000 to be exact)

2. A Target On Every Corner

1. Bruegger's Bagels & Caribou Coffee (Asiago Bagels with Bacon & Scallion Spread)

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

The "Cat" Days Of Summer

It finally feels like summer – hot, humid and sunny. Personally I love the summer sun and the warmth that goes with it, but Mrs. Whiskers is not such a fan. I suppose I would feel the same way if I had to wear a long fur coat in the 80-degree heat. At first we thought we would beat the heat by giving her more frequent baths in cool water to help her stay cool. She is pretty used to baths and doesn’t mind them too much, but it didn’t seem to help her beat the heat for too long. Then we started putting her on her leash and taking her outside more often. That is lots of fun for her, but still didn’t help with the heat. In fact she usually got extra hot since she spends so much energy chasing the birds, while I get nervous she will run away and Matt runs after her. It is a circus to say the least. Anyway, to help her enjoy the summer we decided to give her a lion cut. A lion cut is such a funny look, long hair around her face, on her tail and on her feet – with her belly, back and sides shaved short. I shopped around to find a “spa/salon” that would give her a lion cut, but it was so costly. In disappointment, Erin and I had the idea to do it ourselves – I mean how hard can it be? Well, nine dollars and ninety nine cents and a new electric trimmer/razor later we were ready to start. At first it was a disaster, the razor didn’t seem to work, it removed an inch by inch patch in 20 minutes. We knew that something must be wrong, considering that the salon had said it was an hour process. After some trials and deliberations we decided to trim the fur with hair cutting scissors, which took her fur from about 4 inches long to about an inch long. That made a huge difference, the razor worked much better and we were able to take the inch fur down to centimeters. She got really used to the trimmer and laid on the bathroom floor or in the window sill and just let us do our work – she looked rather bored with the process. In the end the lion cut seems to be a success. It is not perfect, it could be a little shorter in some places and it would be nice to have the process done in an hour, but overall it is good enough and we save eighty dollars. And on the bright side now we have the opportunity to purr-fect our skills with the razor in future cuts. I mean – who doesn’t want that skill to add to their resume.

Monday, June 15, 2009

School Is Out For The Summer

It is finally here! Summer vacation! The past week has been a busy one – participating in a summer entrepreneurship academy for high school students, finishing up Spring semester classes, grading and posting final grades AND moving my office (again.) After that whirlwind of activity I am thoroughly ready for summer. And nothing says summer more than a baseball game. So to kick off my official break, Matt and I went to Chicago to see the Twins play the Cubs at Wrigley. I adore watching games there, the whole neighborhood is alive with excitement and partygoers and the old stadium is still charming. We could not have asked for better weather, it was mid-seventies and sunny the whole time - even better we were in the shade for the game, so we walked away with no bouts of heatstroke or sunburn. I am extremely happy about that, since usually I sit in the sun and end up miserable by the seventh inning stretch. Above and beyond the weather, the game was AWESOME! The Twins had won the first two games of the series, so the Cubs were ready to actually show up and play the game. The entire game the score was balanced one run to one run, then two to two. It wasn’t until an extremely exciting ninth inning that the cubs pulled ahead and won the game with one run. Final score – Twins 2, Cubs 3. Although, we were not excited with the win, since we had gone to the game to see the Twins play, it was still fun to be in the stadium when the Cubs won. I have been to Wrigley to see games about four times and they have never won before.

Another bright side to Game Day Sunday included Matt being able to see his high school friend Joe. Joe currently lives in Madison, Wis and made the drive down to Chicago to support the Twins. Amongst all the baseball talk and activity we didn’t get too much time to chat with Joe, but he plans to visit Michigan this summer so that should be fun!

To wrap up the exciting day, Matt and I went to Goose Island for dinner, caught the shuttle back to the parking lot passing many bulidings that we are sure we have seen on House Hunters and had a lot of fun sharing stories of past vacations and road trips on the drive home.

What a great way to officially start summer! To continue the fun of summer, this week with the help of my mom, I plan to plant some plants and create some flowerbeds in my yard. It should be a perfect week to get that started and a great time to see the colors of summer bloom for the rest of the season.