Saturday, March 28, 2009


Since it has been raining here for the whole week (and will continue through the weekend) I thought I would reminisce about last weekend when we did a few yard projects - and made plans to do more once the sun returns!

Isn't fresh mulch great?

We are making use of the rainy weekend to repaint our living room/hallway. I'm off to tape...

Friday, March 20, 2009

Welcome, Spring!

I'm so happy it's officially spring! And it seems that the warm weather is finally here to stay (in GA at least - sorry New England!)

I hope to give in to my urge to plant things and be all naturey this weekend!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

If You Are Stuffed, You Will Be Destroyed.

That is Roxy's motto. Sandy could care less, but when it comes to stuffing, Rox is a pro at finding the weakest thread and dominating the poor squirrel/dog/opossum/guest bedroom pillow (you name it, we've probably had it torn to shreds).

I'm sure if any of you have a dog like this, you can totally relate. I would say all dogs are like this, but Sandy is too cool to play with toys, and our friend Kaly takes the act of carrying around a stuffed toy without harming it like it's her job. So who knows.

But...if you have a Roxy, I would highly recommend Tuffy Toys. Our friend Greg (and Madison!) introduced us to these virtually indestructible toys that really do live up to their name! We got ours here, and ordered two - one for each dog (but honestly, one for Round 1, and one for backup). You can choose the toughness level - we got a 7- and although some sites have them priced pretty high, we got 2 for around $25. And I'm telling you, it was worth every penny!

They were Christmas presents, but one quickly made it's way to a closet shelf in hiding.

(you know you wanna buy a Samsung now, right?? scary tv)

Roxy started out with Sherman the Sheep.

4 months later, and she just now managed to get into him. The toys are made with multiple layers of really thick material and super-strong stitching. And legs, ears, etc are all sewn on as separate pieces, so if they rip off an extremity, all is not lost!

Sherman got a severe beatdown daily from Roxy. He's about the size of a small cat and she would whip him around like he was prey. Seriously, she was obsessed with him for 4 months and just now managed to destroy him.

Howie the Horse came off the shelf, and as I type she just came wandering into the room, Howie in mouth.

Best. Dog. Toys. Ever.

(peace and quiet for Claire:)

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Making Do With What You've Got

That's pretty much our motto around here!

Since this isn't our forever house, when it comes to fixing things up, there is always the question of Is it worth it?

So... our fireplace is straight out of a '70s basement - minus the wood paneling. It's floor to ceiling grayish stone, with a wooden mantle that is literally cemented into the structure of the stone. It isn't going anywhere without some major demo!

Given this situation, we've decided it's not worth the time or money to redo it entirely. One little tweak I decided to make was staining the mantle a darker color.

It started as this light, yellowish wooden color, which to me looks a little dated. And it was pretty battered looking.

After a little sanding (ok, a LOT of sanding), a few coats of darker stain - and voila!

Not a major change, but something little that seems to make a big difference. It's not only darker, but much fresher looking.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Paint Your Place

You must know by now that I have issues with paint colors. Simple as that. I get an idea of what I think I will want, and it looks good in my head (of course) but once it gets on my walls, I'm thinking --- why?

And I can't decide if I like bold color or not - I think I just don't "execute" bold color properly. (I'm thinking - I saw Kim Myles use bright purple in a room, and hers didn't look like Barney exploded on the wall..)
I've been dying to paint our kitchen. We have a million bright white cabinets, a white fridge (unfortunately), a yellowy white stove (gross), and whiteish tile floors. Currently, there is a chair rail, and the top half of the walls are the builder beige that I have been slowly eradicating out of the house. The bottom is some awful peachy color. Just because it's Georgia does NOT mean that it is ok to use peach (sorry to all of the peach fans out there - I'm not one. The fruit or the color - hah!).
Why they 1. chose that color, and 2. only painted half the room... I don't know.

*please ignore all of the stuff on the counters...and the dirty dishes...and the pig timer...

But I can't decide which direction to go with the color. I was happy to see that now offers their Paint Your Place software for free if you just give them your email. I'm sure there are other places online where you can do this - but, I'm lazy. It's not the best program ever, but it's fun to play around with the colors. And I'm not sure, but I think it actually paints the colors as shadows in areas where it looks like it would be. So that's fun.

My ideas thus far are: a buttery yellow, a deep grayblue to offset the white all around (but without looking Country Time - a slippery slope), a lighter more-gray-than-blue blue, or a neutral brownish. We are planning on repainting our living room a neutral brown, so I'm not sure that I want both rooms to look the same...

The yellow looks scary on there...

Dark ash - kinda like it...

Sled... I like this one a lot, but does it make it look like I need to hang up needlepoint ducks on the walls to match???

Spanish Galleon - nice and neutral... but is it boring??

The good thing about paint is, if you hate it, you can just redo it. The only problem with that is, I'm the only painter in this family (Tony manages to be gone when I decide to paint) and again, I'm lazy. So once would be nice, thanks.

Monday, March 9, 2009


Two notable birthdays are being celebrated today: Barbie and Peachtree City! Both are 50!

While the lovely town that I call home is not quite as sexy as Barbie, it is safe to say it is more naturally proportioned.

50 years ago today, our little city was born planned. Yes, it's a planned city - and as yuppie as that sounds, it actually has many perks - the cart path system (no, we don't have a golf cart...yet...), protected forest areas, advertising bans, tons of codes that seem annoying but keep the city looking pretty, and limitations on how built-out it can ultimately get.

I know I've rambled on before about the things that make the city great - plenty of trees, hundreds of miles of cart paths (there is a path entrance right across from our house on the other side of the street - easy access!), nice and safe area... etc. Of course there are the "cons" - lack of variety for shopping, eating, entertainment (we have to drive about 20 mins to even get to a movie theatre - but we have a Target, so I'm okay). But we are within a reasonable distance from Atlanta (ok, it's not reasonable during my morning and afternoon commutes to Buckhead). But you get the idea - I'm willing to trade a few things to know that if I want to leave my doors unlocked, I'll be fine.

Peachtree City is quiet and small, but so far it has suited us well.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Spring - Please Hurry!

I HATE WINTER. Officially.

This week it went from snowing, to 80 degree weather. Can't complain about that!

With the onset of spring, I feel the need to plant things. Plants and I have never really gotten along (ask my mother - I did not inherit her knack with them). I like them, don't get me wrong, but they have a tendency to die upon entry into my house or yard... but I'm working on changing that. We have gotten a few recently, and I really want to get more! Nothing like some greenery in your house to make you lose the winter blues!

I love these little bud vases we have on our kitchen table, with trimmings from our outside bushes.

Come on spring, I need your warmth and sunshine!!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Making Plans

Although it's only Wednesday, I am already making plans for the weekend - thinking about the projects I've been meaning to start (and the ones I have been meaning to finish...).

One thing I have been planning on doing, but haven't gotten around to yet, is to take "inventory" of everything in our house. I want to go through and take pictures of every room of our house, and of every "larger" item - electronics, appliances, furniture, etc. This will be helpful for two reasons:

1. I always start a project, meaning to take a before and after photo, but I am usually too excited to get started that I forget. These inventory pics will be very useful for the blog! Haha.

2. For insurance purposes. Hopefully, I will never need them for this, but if our house burned down, etc - it is super-helpful to have records of all of the stuff you had, so a fair assessment of value can later be made (or so Tony says! He's in insurance, so he knows, right? Maybe they don't care about what's in your house...hmmm....). Of course, I will need to put the pics on an online album or something, in the sad case that our computer also burned, or drowned, or got tornadoed.

Not to mention, having a solid record of my pathetic first attempt at decorating our house will be funny to laugh at in 20 years. Hopefully, by then I will have more skills at that kinda thing!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Wild Weekend

So... it was an eventful weekend, to say the least!!

Courtney and Byron came to visit, and it was nice to see her, and meet him, although I'm sure they were kinda bored!

It was raining the whole time, which didn't help. Georgia is funny that way - the weather is never predictable and is always changing. It poured straight through Friday and into Saturday, resulting in our yard looking like this:

Depressing, right?? Now you can see why we have so much trouble with the backyard! Although, I've never seen it soooo flooded. Saturday afternoon was beautiful and warm, pleasant all around.

Come Sunday, the rain changed to snow, and was really coming down fast. Weird. We were, of course, giddy like little kids - snow is a rarity, and this was the first (and hopefully last!) snowfall of the year. March 1, go figure. I kicked Courtney out, for fear she would get stuck with us (the horror!) and we went to frolic in the snow with Mikey and Kacy and all the dogs.

That's where the weekend went downhill. Roxy decided it would be fun to run away, full sprint, away from the house and down the cart path. That left about 10 directions she could have run, one of them being the woods that were currently flooded from all of the rain. It was still heavily snowing at this point, and we all split up to find her, thinking she would come running back.
Well, we all spent hours walking all over Peachtree City, with lots of friends and family out driving around too, on the lookout. After it got dark, not only were we all completely worn out and frantic, but it became clear that we would have to wait until morning, since it was so dark. The snow covered landscape didn't help either, as it kept playing tricks on us, thinking we saw something.

Our dogs are like our children. I spent the night thinking of a million things that could have happened....none of them positive. And although I know she's an animal (and a big one, at that), I still worried she was cold and wet and scared in the dark. We set out again Monday morning to look and put up a gazillion flyers.

I was so glad that I had just recently updated her microchip. Sure, if I hadn't, it would still list our address as hers, but part of the HomeAgain program that comes with it is that they send out an alert to all of the vets, shelters, and to anyone who also has their pet listed in that area. Our friend went to the vet at 8 am on Monday, and her lost flyer was already posted front and center. In the end, that's not what helped find her, but it saved us a lot of time and effort by not having to notify all of those places. I would highly recommend it! Definitely worth the $14.99 a year!

To make a long story short, just at 24 hours after she had been missing, one of the Public Works men (who we had talked to that morning and told them to look out for her) called and told us they spotted her near the soccer fields by the main highway that goes through the city. Mikey found her in the woods (on the other side of the street! Who knows how many times she crossed back and forth on that busy road...) and she was happy to see us. Nothing wrong - just wet, cold, and very sleepy! She must not have slept at all.

Something like that makes us realize how lucky we really are. We have so many wonderful friends and family around us that would do anything at all to help us - it's such a great feeling knowing that. We couldn't have found her without their help!

So Roxy is safe at home and under lock and key! We joked that she is never allowed outside ever again, and she would need to be litter box trained. It was such a total relief to find her.
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