Friday, December 31, 2010

white christmas

I don't know why people wish for a "White Christmas".  It seems to me that more people are travelling for Christmas and a "white" one means lots of travel delays, setbacks and cancellations.  For me, growing up in MD I've seen enough snow to last me a lifetime, and if I never saw it again I can honestly say I wouldn't be sad.  I don't like being cold.

That being said, the first Christmas at my parents new house, and it being our first Christmas together as a married couple, it was pretty magical.  That's not cliche is it?  The dogs LOVED it, and I couldn't resist trudging out in the sow to get pictures of them in it.  And I even participated in some sledding!

The Perkins Ranch
 Jack & me on the sled
 Win & Pat on the sled
Jack romping in the snow
 Win galloping through the snow

So even though I never dream of a white Christmas, it was enjoyable.  But I think I'm set for a few years...

mid week love

Patrick and I tend to spend our days going through the motions.  For him, it's up before the sun, drive to work, work all day in a building with no windows, and head home after the sun has gone to bed.  For me, it's a lot of housework and a little bit of nothing, oh and playing with the pups from time to time :)

Yesterday Patrick got home from work early (hooray!) and we were able to hit a matinĂ©e show at the local movie theater!  We are fans of the "Meet the Parents" series, and have been dying to see the newest one since we saw previews for it months ago.  Well "Little Fockers" lived up to our expectations and was fantastic!  But what made it even better is that it provided a mid week date night for us.  Something a little new and different.  So thanks for that, hubby!  Love you!
This photo was taken the day after the Christmas snowstorm in Winston-Salem.  More pictures to come!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

joy to the world

In keeping with tradition, I staged a Christmas card photo shoot with the pups.  The first year I did this was 2008 and Winston was still the size of Jack!  They were both wearing holiday sweaters, but I can't find a picture of it.  I'll work on it.

This year I knew it would be hard to follow up last year's card, but I gave it a shot.  Drum roll please...
"Hoping you are blessed with many 'gifts' this holiday."

Pretty good if I do say so myself.  My favorite parts are the Christmas themed dog toys (which are some of their faves), and the homemade garland on the tree.  My mom asked how I get them to stay so still for pictures.  Easy.  One word.  Cookies.  Whenever you say it they are standing at attention, waiting for their treat. 

Please enjoy our holiday card, and have a very merry everything and a happy new year!

Friday, December 17, 2010

duty is exactly how it sounds...

So, Patrick is on duty tonight.  Duty is super fun for me, probably just as much as it is for him.  Which is a bold statement considering he has to get up an hour earlier work all day, is on duty all night, and then has to go straight back to work a full day.  Count 'em, that's a solid 38ish hours he is at work.  So you can see why it is brazen for me to say I'm suffering just as much.  Here's why:

These two little gems, here shown in their attire from last year's Christmas card photo shoot, turn into different dogs when Patrick isn't around.

They somehow know when he won't be around for 38ish hours, and they go into psycho-dog  over-protective mode.  They bark at everything and nothing.  They make me SO incredibly paranoid.  Tonight for instance, Jack jumped off the bed, ran out of the room, down the stairs (Winston and I followed) and he went straight to the front door and proceeded to pace back and forth while doing his high pitched squeal.  WHAT?!?!  Then he jumped on the couch and continued pacing and squealing while Winston took over front door duty with his nose pressed firmly against the crack between the door and the floor sniffing away.  They bark all night and don't let me get any sleep.  

Issues with the dogs aside, even mother nature knows when Pat is gone on duty.  It is ONLY on the nights that I am home alone that there is a terrible storm.  Last time we got approx. 10 inches of rain in one day with 30 mph winds and our grill blew over and I had to bring everything inside as if there was a freakin' hurricane!  This time is similar, minus some of the rain, add a lot more cold, and so much howling wind the power as been flickering all day.  Oh and there's the thunder.  We're in for one good night.  Thank goodness for TV on Demand, right?

PS:  The dogs don't care when Patrick is left alone.  We discovered this when I was "nest sitting" for a turtle nest down the road.  I left for a few hours, came back around 9 pm, and Patrick was asleep.  I unlocked, opened, and shut the front door; silence.  Stomped my way up the stairs; silence.  Opened the bedroom door to a snoring husband and 2 puppy faces smiling up at me with wagging tails.  How does he get to be so lucky?!

PPS:  Minus all the barking antics, they are the best snugglers I could ask for.  Love them.

if you could smell words

Then these would smell phenomenal.  After my last unsuccessful attempt at baking I tried my hand at it again today.  This time with a loaf of banana bread; perhaps a little riskier than sugar cookies...
Here are my little kitchen helpers:
And here it is... !        

Hopefully it's cooled enough so I can taste it, and hopefully it's delicious!

*update: it's phenomenal!*

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

spoiler alert

My apologies in advance to my niece, Ms. Mackenzie, but you're still 1 so hopefully you're not surfing the web just yet... While the following video does showcase one of your Christmas presents, it also shows how you might have to fight Jack for it.

As I picked up the last present to wrap, it began to laugh and sing.  This intrigued Jack, and he cocked his head not ever so slightly, but as if he were an owl.  He wasn't quite sure what to make of this giggling box, but as we kept pressing buttons and getting a good laugh in ourselves, he got more and more comfortable with the toy.  Even sitting here now, he is just laying on the bed, staring at it.  I think it will break his heart (and mine) when I have to finish wrapping it.

Here is some video footage of Jack (and a little bit of Winston) admiring the "Fun Shapes Jewelry Box" brought to you by VTECH.  Enjoy.

video

My favorite part is when he hits a button with his nose just before pulling it over.  Oh, and the high pitch squeaks aren't from the toy, that would be Jack.  And the hen-esque clucking whines, well that's just our chicken Winston.

PS:  it took me 15 minutes to type this as Jack refused to stop licking my hands, thanking me for bringing this box of joy into his life.  He hit the caps lock key about 7 times.  Cue:  backspace.

Friday, December 10, 2010

puppy love

Yesterday was a great day for puppy love.  My boys were being so cute and silly they had me laughing into the wee hours of the night.  It all started when we brought them home 2 new toys the other day.  The new raccoon AND a hedgehog!  They adore them.  They squeak not only when squeezed, but also when released.  Jack, not surprisingly, hoards them and just licks them.  Winston however walks around with them in his mouth all day squeaking away!
 Notice: laying in the sliver of sunshine, as usual...

Since Jack was being a hoarder, Winnie carried around his go to fave - the Piggy with the OJ bottle inside.


Disregard the broken dresser (a new one is on the way!)  but focus on those cute faces, particularly the adorable freckle on Winston's nose.

And after all that play time all day long, they were tuckered out.  This is how I sleep at night, Winston on my pillow and me resting my head on his belly.  Until he starts snoring like he did when I took this picture.  What you can't see here is his hound dog flappy jaw hanging open for maximum snore sound.

And then there was Jack, who was laying soundly on his back until Patrick rolled on top of him.  A funny thing happens when Jack sleeps on his back, his lips roll and his gums get dry, so when he sits back upright he looks like he's snarling.  Love it.

This is me.  Every. Night.  Wouldn't trade it for the world :)

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

where'd you get that?

Now when I'm wearing one of my flowers out (advertising for myself), and someone asks me this... I can not only tell them about my shop but I can show them!

Check out my new business cards!

Thank you to VistaPrint, who sent me 250 of these beauties for only $9! Free shipping and I got to upload the photo myself and do all the designing. Sweet! Can't wait to start handing them out!

Friday, December 3, 2010

this is what i would call a valiant effort

So last year my mom gave me some fancy Williams-Sonoma cookie cutters. In an attempt to be domesticated and Christmasey all at once (I tried this yesterday with cleaning AND decorating, but he house ended up messier then when I started) I decided to make some cookies!Well the recipe called for a lot of waiting. Like make the dough, refrigerate it for 3 days, then let it stand for ten minutes then freeze it. Crazy. So me, being the impatient person that I am, decided that I would blow off the waiting and power on through.
Especially since my apron says "Grill Instructor" complete with the EGA and everything. Well I came to find out that the cooling part of the dough making process was to make the dough easier to work with. Hence, it took me 30 minutes to cut out 8 measly cookies.Then on top of that, I forgot to account for the non-stick pan I used and burnt the snowflakes. One was semi-edible and I ate that, but the one in the front is missing a nubbin and that's because I went against my better judgement and ate that piece. Ew. The ornament shaped ones came out much better after I turned down the oven temp.

The rest of the dough is resting peacefully in the fridge, until I feel like trying again tomorrow. Wish me luck! Merry times, right?!

brotherly love

As I sat down to blog about what will be in my next post, my two boys got snuggled in right next to me looking as cute as can be so I had to take an opportunity (because they are so rare... hah!) to snap some photos.

Jack brought Winston's favorite toy to play with
Jack giving me the face that says "I know you want me to sit still Mom, but I really want to play with this toy"
And Winston goes in for the kill, either to say "Hey you, get off my toy" or "Listen to Mom and hold still". Probably the former, unless the "hold still" was followed by a "so we can get this over with quicker"
Jack now uncaring, and unfazed, goes back to playing with the toy.
I know, I know, I'm a crazy dog person. But they are just so darn cute! PS don't you love our new bed spread? I know, the sheets don't match, but it's for our king size bed that is on its way. I just couldn't wait any more. Oh, and on that note, I officially hate duvet covers.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

apple puddin'

So for our first married holiday, Patrick and I are spending it apart. And no, it's not because we couldn't handle divvying (I spell checked it and that IS the correct spelling) up the holidays together between our two families. Although, I do have to say I am slightly relieved to be able to push that task back another month. But I digress... the truth is that Patrick spends every Thanksgiving with his Dad up north at their family hunting camp. No. Girls. Allowed. Not that I was begging to be invited.

And as many field hockey families already know, Thanksgiving is the holiday spent out West at the National Field Hockey Festival. I did it for three years, and now it's my sister's turn. So my dad and Kim are out in Phoenix for the holiday, playing (watching) game after game of field hockey. For 5 days straight. That leaves my mom and me alone on the farm. Alone, except for the dozen dogs. And the cat.

We are secretly very excited to have these few days to spend with each other. And are really looking forward to my older sister and her gaggle of children coming up for Thanksgiving dinner. To get ready we made a 'to do list' and we are getting through it, slowly but surely. But more fun things always seem to pop up. Like today's project.
Our very dear friend, Ms. Eileen, told us about this receipe for apple pudding. She says it's better than apple pie! So we decided to give it a test run today to see if it was worthy of Thanksgiving dinner, and I'm sure it will be. As soon as it's done I'm guessing we'll put the 'to do list' away and curl up with a bowl of it in front of the fire and put on a good movie.

Oh how good it is to be home for the holidays :)

P.S. - I miss you husband!

Friday, November 19, 2010

productivity

Yesterday was one of my most productive days in a while. I didn't go back to sleep after Patrick left for work and I was able to get so much done! I got in a 3 mile run (part of my half marathon training... more on that later) and took the dogs to the beach (also, more on the later).

Then I cleaned the WHOLE downstairs of the house. I'm talking 'under the couch cushions' clean. I made a serious dent in the ever growing pile of laundry we have. And just in the knick of time for a break Carly called me and asked if I wanted to bring the boys for another walk in the National Forest.

Side note - Carly found the nicest walking path in the woods and it's just a mile off the island! Gorgeous scenery, very peaceful and full of lots of lizards for the pups to chase!

So back to my training. I've been looking for a good long distance run to train for for a while now. To get me motivated and really back into running. I have chosen a half marathon in Wilmington
next March. This was my first week and I haven't been lazy about a workout yet, we'll see how the next 17 weeks play out!

And now for the best, perhaps distasteful, part. I took the dogs down to the beach to let them run and get some energy out. All was going well until Winston decided to chase birds again. He takes off into the ocean after them and doesn't realize he's not going to ever catch them until he can't feel the ground anymore. Well this time on his way out he decided to take a potty break.

That's right, folks. He pooped right in the ocean. If you recall from this post this isn't the first time he's done this. It looks like he's knocking out bodies of water to use as a toilet. But really, after the ocean, there's no where to go but down. Sorry Win, you're too much of an overachiever. And sorry readers if you're offended or grossed out by this post/photo. I just think it's hysterical.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

birthday chronicles

I have the best husband. He planned a whole week of birthday surprises for me :) First we started out last Tuesday Nov 9 at the 2d Rad Bn Birthday Ball with our new friends who I can't wait to hang out with again! And I'm pretty sure one of them got a picture of the 2 of us, as soon as I track one down I'll post it!

As we were leaving the hotel the morning of my birthday, I was handed this piece of paper...
and the real celebrating started! In case you can't see... Patrick made clues to figure out each word of my surprise! This one says: Dinner in DC with our best friends. Hooray! We ended up going to Carly & Mo's house for a surprise birthday cake celebration with all of Wolfe St. (we missed you Stef!) then on to Mr. Smith's for dinner! Mr. Smith's is in Georgetown, and it is the home of the $1,000 burger! Literally... it's one thousand dollars. It comes with some crazy bottle of wine. We stuck to chili, nachos and champagne. And it was wonderful!

After dinner, we went to experience some local nightlife, and on the way stopped to get my palm read! Crazy experience, it was in someone's living room. There were cats, and a tiny dog that may or may not have peed on the ridiculously red carpet while we were there. She told me that I have a good aura, and I care about people. I apparently need to move to California for financial benefits. Also, one of my friends is jealous and doesn't want to see me happy. And that there is something keeping me up at night and I'm having trouble sleeping. It was weird and I don't think I'll do it again, but it provided some entertainment for the night!

The next morning at breakfast at our favorite diner, Bob & Edith's (see surprise #1) I got my clue for surprise #2
and it was on to MD to celebrate with Pat's family! The surprise is dinner at lewnes with grandma Dee and grandpa Bob. For the record, we don't call Pat's parents that, the boys do. The boys being the dogs. And, I actually never figured out the name of the restaurant. I filled in the blank after we ate there. Pat insisted I had been there, but he was wrong. I hadn't. But it was so delicious! And they gave us a tasty birthday brownie ice cream sprinkled in goodness. Again, the next morning, I was presented with clues for surprise #3
and we were off to NC again! The surprise is the wkd (weekend) at the farm with Mimi and Bepa. Again, it's Jack and Win who call my parents Mimi and Bepa, ha! And boy did they have fun running and running and running down on the farm. My Dad arrived about an hour and a half after us, and he was toting a half bushel of real live MD crabs! He steamed them for us, and we had a nice crab feast birthday dinner! We rounded out the night playing 500 rummy or something like that.

All in all, FABULOUS birthday! Good job hubby! My only wish is that we could've spent more time with everyone. But when is there ever enough time? Well, happy birthday to me! Now it's back home with laundry, dishes, and flowers. Oh, and I get to pick out linens for our NEW bed that is being ordered! Yay!

Saturday, November 6, 2010

he takes after me

While Winston loves the beach for the sand and the surf, just like Patrick... My Jack takes after me, and loves his sunbathing. How freaking cute is he?!

Disregard the messiness of the room. And the ghettoness too. While we get to enjoy a deck overlooking the ocean, that's about as classy as it gets. We have a giant (and heavy) tv that is supported by the only piece of decent furniture in our house (an end table from my parents' old house). Oh, and that 5 gallon bucket just has some saltwater in it. It's there for when our tank in the bedroom needs a water change.

It seems that after keeping the rest of the house clean, I give up with it comes to our room. Oh well... focus on the cute dog napping contently in the sunshine :) He always manages to find these sunny spots too. And when I close the curtains, he gets this hurt look on his face and I can't stand it. It's like he's saying "Mom, what did I do to make you take the sun away?" and I open them again... I'm a sucker for a puppy face.

And just so you don't think I'm favoring one over the other... This is what Winston is currently up to:


And my heart melts :)

advertisements

I can't believe I forgot to mention this! A few days ago I finally decided on a photo to use for my ad on the blog. I opted for the big one of both dogs, as seen here. I think I picked that one because I would feel so guilty picking one with just one dog, and not the other. I'm a loser, I know. It doesn't even have a picture of anything I sell, I know. I'm hoping that curiousity wins people over and they decide to click anyways :)

And I can always try something else next month. But since I have posted the ad I have had 37 hits out of 61 coming from it! Check it out, live and in person here. Oh, and if you go to posts from November 2, or just click this, you'll see a feature of my shop!

first sale

I'm officially in business. Yes my shop has been open for a little over a month now, but it was yesterday that I made my first sale. Yay! Another kind etsy shop owner purchased this little gem ...I call it my Fall Fantasy Flower. Although I really can't take the credit on that one. My lovely mother actually treated me to a whole bunch of fabric, this jazzy orange one included. And she was so excited about that particular one, she said "You can call it your Fall Fantasy Flower!" and I did. Maybe I should hire her for consulting on the rest of my creations?

Oh, and if you're interested, here's my model, Jack, with the Fall Fantasy Flower.
I love him :)

Friday, October 29, 2010

i'm famous

Ok, well not really. But I did get a message telling me that I was being featured somewhere on Etsy! Check it out here! It's the second picture... in case you didn't recognize Winston. I'm not sure what exactly this means, but feel free to leave a comment there about how much you love my flowers :)

...update... I have since found out that this Etsy "Treasury" is a place where people on Etsy can make lists of some of their favorite things, and these are the lists that get featured on the home page! How cool that somebody picked one of my flowers?! And it would be even cooler if that list ended up on the front page!

The person that made the list that features me is part of a group from this blog (which is now in my sidebar) that is called Etsy Team Discover - Hidden Talent Uncovered. Cool! Check that out too!

i bet you thought it was over

So my obsession with my wedding isn't over yet! Even though we've been married for 89 days (uh oh our 10% discount on registry completetion items at Macy's expires tomorrow). Here are some of my favorites of Patrick and I from our photographer, MB Photography (who has an awesome new look on her site!), thanks again Melissa!

Well hello, handsomest husband in the world :)

Love this, it makes me feel so glamorous (I had to sing the Fergie song to make sure I spelled that right)

How fabulously chic does our wedding party look?!

Love :)

Heading back to the party...

Enjoy!

whiney butts

So today my dogs are being babies. Big, fat, huge babies. They are so whiney and so needy. And I love them. Although I could do without the 90 pound lab trying to climb into my lap every second and getting in my face and drooling on me, and my stinky breathed schipperke literally kissing me close to death... This is the story of my life:

Jack giving me kisses, he has me pinned down and his legs across my throat (and Winston is also sitting on my arm). Pardon the quality of this picture, I was busy whipping my head from side to side just trying to get a breath in. Oh, and I was laughing hysterically.
Look at this face. This is the face that's in my face all day.
And he's in my lap...
They've both got me pinned, there's no hope.

I gave in and fed them early (they used to eat at 4... now I can't take it and I feed them at noon) and they are napping quietly. Hallelujah. I heart snuggle time :)

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

high/low

So a few weeks back, while out at dinner Patrick and I started this new thing. Before I tell you what it is, you need the back story.

Patrick is a starer. He will sit and stare at people until it is uncomfortable, which is long past they've noticed. It gets really bad is when we're out to dinner. This next part is a scientific fact, it has been tested... We could sit through an entire dinner without speaking. Patrick will stare at people, and I will stare at him waiting for him to realize how he's neglecting his wife. I'm sure people out in public think we hate each other.

To avoid these awkward silences (awkward for the people Pat's staring at) we have instituted high/low. We tell each other the highs and lows of our day. Which luckily for us, leads to conversation.

Last night I couldn't decide what my high and lows were at dinner, and it made Pat mad. He kept telling me he could've thought of 15 highs and lows in the time it was taking me to think of one. Well in hind sight I see why it took me so long... My high/low didn't happen until after dinner, at the grocery store (is it weird that we go grocery shopping after dinner? I can't decide).

Ready for my high/low?

Since I like bad news first... I do my low first.
Low: In the checkout line I lost our little game of "how much do you think the total will be" by $1! I guessed $58, Pat (being the butt that he is) guessed $59. The total was $60. This didn't help me like grocery shopping any more. Confession: I hate grocery shopping with Pat because he has to go up and down EVERY aisle. In case we see something we didn't know we absolutely need. It takes hours.

Now for the high.
High: The banter we had going back and forth over our stupid "how much is the total?" game had us laughing so hard that even the cashiers were laughing with us and throwing in some trash talk of their own. I've never had so much fun grocery shopping, or losing! Huge nerd right?

Side note to all of my engaged friends out there... Enjoy it while it lasts. This is what you have to look forward to after the wedding. Ahhh, the joys of married life. Personally, I love it.

Friday, October 15, 2010

putting my degree to use

So remember that time I studied Marketing?

Think back... oh yeah, there it is!

Well I'm finally getting to use all that knowledge I have been hiding. I'm working on advertising my Etsy shop! First stop: Team Boo. One of my favorite blogs to read. Carolyn, the owner of the aforementioned blog, has started accepting ads for her page (hooray!) and I'm putting together some possible badges/buttons to send in.

What I need from you is your opinion on the following gems. Which one is most aesthetically pleasing? Which one is easiest to read? Which one screams "click me!" ?

I can't get numbers in the middle of all of these guys for some reason so use the following format for voting:

1 2
3 4

5 6
7 8

Any tips/suggestions are also welcome! Thanks!