Monday, July 27, 2015

Year of the House Update

We're more than half way through 2015.  Our 10 year house anniversary is coming up in 3 months, so I thought I'd see what we've finished so far.  In January, our list seemed pretty big, but little by little, we're getting there!

We've finished:
The gutters were cleaned and the house was power washed.
The three dead and dying trees were taken out.
We planted three new trees - Vanderwolf Blue Pine.  They started about 5 feet tall, and are already about 6 feet tall.
Landscape rock was added to two beds.
We put 7 cubic yards of mulch in the backyard.
Dead branches have been trimmed.
We bought a new sofa and chair for the living room, and a new rug for upstairs.
Our most recent improvement was having the shutters painted - still blue, but fresh and clean and not faded - and painting the front door.
 After the shutters were taken off
 Fresh clean shutters put back up
 Freshly painted front door - Eddie Bauer Mercer Blue

In 2015, we'd still like to:
Have the floors refinished.  We've had an estimate, and just need to figure out where to relocate ourselves and two animals for the 5 days that we'd have to be out of the house
Replace the counter, sink, and faucet in the half bath downstairs.

Next year, we'd like to:
Replace the floors, sinks, counters, and faucets in both upstairs baths.
Convert the claw foot tub to a shower

Sunday, July 26, 2015

College Roommate Reunion

This weekend I was able to get together with my college roommates.  Christina and I were roommates all four years, and Jen and Lorie joined us for the last two years, although we were friends with them before that.  
 It's been about 15 years since all four of us have been together, and we had the best time.  We brought photo albums from college and had so much fun looking at the pictures and laughing.
 I'm sure there were other people in the deli, but for three and a half hours, the world shrank down to our table.
 Here we are way back when...I think this would have been December 1996.  I had a fantastic college experience, thanks in large part to these lovely ladies.  I hope it's not another 15 years until we can get together again!

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Starvy Creek Bluegrass Festival

We had a fun 4th of July weekend, despite the weather's attempts to thwart it.  I've wanted to go to the Starvy Creek Bluegrass Festival for a couple of years - after seeing a bumper sticker and hearing it advertised on the radio.  I don't really know anything about bluegrass, but I like the sound.  We've had a lot of rain this July, but we braved the weather and headed out. 

 We saw six or seven different bluegrass bands, as they changed about every thirty minutes.  That was perfect for my short attention span! ;)
 Eventually the sun came out a bit, and it really was a nice day.  Not too hot, but plenty muddy.
 Many people camp, sometimes setting up a couple weeks in advance.  We loved this Shasta camper and it's matching tow vehicle.  It was a great afternoon at Starvy Creek!  I hope to go to the next festival in September.
 The 4th of July was a beautiful day.  Finally dry, but not yet hot.  The boys played with their toy cars - oh, excuse me, I meant, the grown men worked on their scale models - in Todd's backyard.
 I just moved from my own hammock in our backyard to Todd's hammock in his yard.  It was tough, but I managed. ;)
We celebrated the 4th with friends, food, and fireworks at Brad and Stacie's house.  The 4th is one of my favorite holidays, and I like to stretch out the celebration as long as possible, so we had friends over on Sunday for grilled burgers.  It started raining again Sunday evening, and didn't stop for what felt like a week.  Just glad we had some good weather between storms to get out and play!

Monday, June 15, 2015

Feels Like Summer

While it may not technically be summer, it sure feels like it!  It has been hot and so very humid.  I love summer weekends.  This one started with lunch on Friday with my friend Kelly and her sweetheart of a little girl.
 Saturday, David mowed and I went to the Y and planted the last of the flowers.  I'm pretty sure a nap was had (at least by me) before we went to the square to see what was going on at the River Jam.  We set up our chairs to watch the people and listen to a band called Deep Fried Squirrel.  Yes, that really was their name. :)  I knew I'd like them when I saw a banjo and a fiddle.  Had to go wrong from there, and they were very good.  We weren't really close enough to see much of them, but it wouldn't have mattered, as the crowd provided plenty of entertainment!
 David might disagree on Sunday being a nice day, as he worked most of the day with an uncooperative dump trailer.  I wouldn't be much help with that, so I spent some time in the back yard enjoying the view from the hammock before the rain started.
 When the rain took a breather, I pulled up most of the little evil seedlings from our mulch.
 This is not a great picture, but we had delicious grilled steak with baked potatoes and cucumber salad for dinner.  I added fresh dill to my salad - straight from our little herb garden. :)
Looking forward to more summer weekends!

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Long May She Wave

I love summer decorating - almost as much as I love fall and Christmas decorating.  I usually put up the flags and such around Memorial Day and leave them up through the summer.  Why limit that fun just to July?
I have lots of flags in the kitchen and living room, but that didn't stop me from buying a few more tea-stained looking flags when we were in St. Charles last weekend.  Another new addition is this sweet little pillow above from my favorite Etsy shop - Valley Primitives.
The new Olde Glory sign is also an Etsy find from Rusticpiks.  I think the 1776 looks neat in our bicentennial-inspired house, and it's the perfect fit for the space between the stove and the vent.

Monday, June 8, 2015

Meet Me in St. Louis

Rather than just go to the concert then go home, we decided we'd make a weekend of it.  The day after the concert, we headed to the St. Louis Zoo.
 There were a lot of people there, but it was still a great day at the zoo.
 Here are some of my favorite animals.  What?  I meant the elephants.  What did you think I meant? ;)
 The butterfly dome was especially cool.  The bright blue butterflies were so pretty, but rarely landed long enough for a picture.
 The zebras were pretending not to notice us, but the giraffe was a bit friendlier. :)

I didn't get a lot of other pictures, but we also enjoyed Tucker's Place for a delicious steak dinner.  We went to St. Charles to do a little shopping and to Pappy's Smokehouse for another dinner.  It was a great weekend!  It's good to be home, but by next weekend, I'll wish we could do it again!

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Wastin' Away Again

We went to see Jimmy Buffett in St. Louis!  We usually have to drive much farther, so it was a treat to see him this close to home! 
 We didn't know it then, but this would be the last picture taken with my selfie stick. :(  Apparently those are banned from the concert venue.  The lady checking bags seemed to feel genuinely bad about delivering the news.  So long, selfie stick!

 It's hard to get six seats together, but David managed so we were all sitting together.  I think it made the concert extra fun.
We all agreed that the concert was one of our favorites.  There were a few songs that we hadn't heard in concert before, and Jimmy just always puts on a great show.
For those counting at home, we are fairly sure this was my 9th and David's 13th Jimmy Buffett concert.  I don't think we'll ever get tired of his music!