Thursday, April 22, 2010

In the spirit of Earth Day

Go here: and vote for Fun Forest in Chesapeake, VA, courtesy of Sears' More Green Across America campaign.

The story submitted on behalf of the park:
On April 1, 2010, someone set fire to the Fun Forest playground at Chesapeake City Park leaving in its place only charred ruins. The following week was spring break for area children, with Fun Forest being a likely destination for the younger ones. What greeted them as they entered the park was crime scene tape surrounding a beloved playground. The park was conceived by the Chesapeake Division of the Hampton Roads Chamber of Commerce in 1994, and built by nearly 2,000 volunteers from all over the city and beyond. At the time, it was called the largest handicapped-accessible park on the East Coast. Already the Chesapeake Department of Parks and Recreation has received contributions and offers of help from many people outraged by the destruction of Fun Forest, but much more is needed. Please send the Sears Lawn & Garden Crew to Chesapeake and help us rebuild Fun Forest.

It's B(earth)day time!


Happy Birthday to my husband Austin!

You are the most fun, and I love you!


Happy Birthday to our blog!

Though sometimes I neglect my blog, it really is fun for me to write. Thanks little blog for providing me a forum for my thoughts.


Happy Earth Day!

You know, because we all love the earth.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Project: Porter Pendant

As you may or may not be aware, buying a home that is close to 100 years old typically comes with it's fair share of projects. {I may be rounding up the age on our little bungalow...forgive me. She is close enough.}

{Not that I will want anyone rounding my age up to 100 when i am really only 82}

In any case, our kitchen has been the subject of much contemplation and planning for Austin and I. We are hoping that in the next few years we can do a major kitchen overhaul - cabinets, counter tops, etc. There is so much unused space in our kitchen!

But in the mean time {while we wait for our lottery numbers to come up} we make small changes. One of the biggest things for me was to get rid of our over the sink light. To me it just screamed, "Grandma lives here."

 Sorry these are so dark, we had already turned the fuse box off before I thought to snap them

See? Grandma, right?

In any case, I knew at once that I wanted a pulley lamp to hang beautifully over our sink. I searched high and low. We found this one at Shades of Light in Richmond...

buuut, as $250 a pop, it wasn't quite what we were looking for.

Imagine my surprise when it turned out that the most affordable option I could find was at good ol' Pottery Barn... 

Enter the Porter Pendant

Now, the big one is a little pricier, but we knew that we wanted the small one in the metal finish. Combine that with a 10% off code and our $50 gift card from debit card rewards and it was an easy decision.

I kept waiting and waiting as it was on back order, but then one day I looked and lo and behold there it was!

Just in time for our party. Love that.

So last night, we installed a light.

Yes we installed a light. I promise I was up there too, but how was that photo gonna look?

And here is our lovely new pendant...

Yayy! and before you ask, yes, we do have faux butcher block laminate counter tops and matching backsplash. I long for the day that they will be replaced by beautiful white and green subway tile and real butcher block counter tops. 


Monday, April 19, 2010

Birthday Blog

On Thursday this little blog will be two! That is so crazy to me. Two years of you faithful few reading all my little thoughts and adventures.

{My husband will also have a birthday on the same day, but more on that later}

In commemoration of this blog's birthday, I took a nostalgic look back at some of my favorite posts, and have posted them here for you. Have fun perusing if you are really bored at work, or if you just love us.

In other news, I will be unveiling some new additions to the blog in the next couple of weeks! Get excited!

Friday, April 16, 2010

Austin got Pinned

No, not like Sandy in Grease...he got his SWSCO pin!

The SWSCO (pronounces Swiss Co) stands for Surface Warfare Supply Corps Officer.

A short definition (though I realize Wikipedia is not an academic source):

"The Surface Supply Corps Insignia is granted to those members of the Navy Supply Corps who qualify as Surface (Warfare) Supply Officers. Such officers are trained in damage control, flight operations, shipboard supply systems, and receive a limited amount of training as an Officer of the Deck.

For advancement in the Surface Supply Community, the Surface Warfare Supply Pin must be obtained by junior supply officers within 18 months from reporting onboard a naval vessel. Those failing to qualify as a Surface Supply Officer are transferred to permanent ground assignment as Shore Supply Officers. This provides ample motivation for Supply Officers to qualify for a Surface Warfare Supply Pin."

The have to do it within 18 months, Austin has been on board for 10, which is super early and I am so proud of him!

His boss actually gave him her first SWSCO pin to wear that had been handed down to her when she first earned it, so he gets to wear that until he helps some other little J.O. obtain theirs and then will hand it down to them. Kind of a cool tradition.

After his board exam for it getting bumped back again and again and again, he finally stood boards Wednesday morning and the wardroom had a little presentation for him this afternoon where he got his pin.

Yay Austin!

P.s. He also got HCO qualified today, which I have no idea what that means, but has something to do with helicopters.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Working for the Weekend

For your listening pleasure while you read...

Actually this post is about working during the weekend, which has nothing to do with Loverboy's song, buuuut it popped into my head, so there you go.

The last few weekends my loving husband has turned into, gulp, a responsible homeowner. He has been heading to his new favorite toy store, Home Depot, to rent and buy all sorts of tools.

Two weekends back he rented a tiller, in order to "till the land"{that was his Paul Bunyan-esque quote any time he talked about it}. The land was referring to our front yard, which is roughly the size of a postage stamp. But, there was all sorts of crab grass, clover, etc. out there and Austin's man ego was being impeded by the glory of our neighbor's beautiful grass.

So, he tilled the land. And now we have a yard full of dirt, rather than weeds.

He promises me we will have grass soon. We will see.

This past weekend he and his roommates from the ship rented a jackhammer. How much fun can boys have with a jackhammer? A lot apparently.

His one roommate and his wife just bought a new house, and needed to get rid of a small area of poured cement in their backyard. They went there first.

We had to get rid of a huge coal bin in our backyard.

A coal bin? Yup. A coal bin. It is was huge and ugly and the first thing that when we looked at the house I said, "This has got to go."

Well, it is gone, as is our old sidewalk to make room for a glorious patio, coming soon to a blog post near you. It took nearly all day, and the stuff that the boys found in there was unbelievable. It was concrete, rebar, wood, sheet metal, random steel I beams, newspaper all sorts of nonsense.

They had a blast. Seriously. And Austin got to buy a sledgehammer. Bonus!

How should we go about this?



The whole thing did come down, I just don't have a photo for you. I will post some later when we finish the patio project. More house photos to come!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

A life at peace...

This past weekend, my family found out that we had lost one of the sweetest people that any of us had the privilege to love. My great-grandmother, Mayme, passed away on Friday. To me, she was the embodiment of grace and humility, one of the most loving people that have ever entered my life.

Two years ago, while I was working in Wisconsin, her husband, my great-grandpa Lute passed away at 93 years old. Though it is always hard to say goodbye, I feel more at peace knowing that the two of them are together in heaven than I ever did at them being apart. They were a team when it came to everything in their life, and I hope that we can celebrate her life the same way that we did his.

These two individuals left such an amazing legacy behind, with the best example of love, faith and family for the rest of us to follow in their wake. I only hope that Austin and I can be as happy as the two of them have been for so long. I will forever be grateful that with some family's help she was able to make it to our wedding in June.

Here is a copy of the obituary written by those who loved her:
"Mayme A. Pettis of Osceola died Friday April 9, 2010 at Golden Age Manor in Amery at the age of 93 years. Mayme was born July 22, 1916 at Nye, WI to Martin and Amanda Johnson.  She attended Meadowview School.  On March 11, 1935 she married Luther Pettis in Minneapolis.  Before her marriage she worked at Strutwear in Minneapolis.  After the couple moved to Osceola she worked at Parent cleaners, Osceola Bakery, Juanita Clarke's Women's Store, and did hair.  She was a blood donor, 20+ year volunteer at the LOS Extended Care, and a faithful member of Trinity Ev. Lutheran Church.

Mayme was preceded in  death by her husband of 73 years Luther "Lute", daughter-in-law Elenore Pettis, sons-in-law Dale Haugen, Charles Beaver, sister Agnes Mork, brothers, Sam Johnson, Morris Johnson, Clarence Johnson, George Johnson, Howard Johnson.  She is survived by her children Sherman of Osceola, Marlys Haugen of Roberts, Gail Beaver of Ojibwa, Becky (Arvin) Larson of Star Prairie, Velma (Daryle) Larson of Saginaw, MI., Mark (Joey) of Hertel, David (Diane) of Osceola, sister Florence Christensen of Osceola, loving "brother" Clarence "Kelly" Carlson of Osceola, 23 Grandchildren,  56  Great-Grandchildren, 5 Great-Great-Grandchildren, other family and friends."

Friday, April 9, 2010

Quarter Life {Summer} Crisis

It recently came upon us {well me, more so than Austin since he has been playing at being a grown up for a while now} that this is the first summer since I started school that I will not be having a summer vacation!

Granted, two summers ago I did work all summer at the University of Wisconsin, this blog itself was a testament to the fact that working at Wisconsin was still one of the best summers ever, and it felt like a vacation most of the time.

So, when the weather started getting nicer, I began having those coutdown to flinging the books out my locker kind of days, like the beginning of all those great summer vacation movies from when we were kids. That was the best feeling ever!

Remember locker clean out day? The humidity hanging in the air, the thrill of getting to throw paper all over the hallway floors, and knowing it was all counting down to f-r-e-e-d-o-m? Good times, good times.

Well, when I realized that I would be working in my normal job this summer, all summer long, with three huge windows to gaze out onto the glorious beach weather with, I became one sad grown up.

Instead of remaining sad faced Austin and I have decided to have

"the best ever, most awesome summer-even-though-we-don't-have-summer-vacation-anymore."

Yay for us! Not only will we be traveling to Italy this summer with some of our best friends, but we have decided that while we are young and hip, we should take advantage of all the other things summer has to offer with our similarly young and hip friends.

On the agenda/idea list:

  • Honeymoon - finally.
  • Renting a sailboat for a day and sailing in the Atlantic
  • Concerts, concerts and more concerts
  • Grilling out
  • Trips to DC
  • Busch Gardens
  • Watching the entire West Wing series while other shows are on reruns
  • HP world, though this may wait until Fall so that Kat can join us
  • OSL Summer Weekend Extravaganza
  • Breakfast, lunch, dinner, and random glasses of wine on the front porch swing
  • Colonial Williamsburg
  • a new puppy (!)
  • Bikes!
  • Beach days
 We will be adding to the list I am sure as the time comes, but for now I am excited that we have resolved to have a fun summer even though we have to be grown ups.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

You're invited!

What with homecoming, getting new jobs and getting the house together - we haven't had time for a proper party.
Austin would like nothing better than to celebrate his birthday by having everyone over to see our new home, so come and see it!
While you're here you can hang out, have a burger, grab a drink, or just take a swing on the front porch.

Let me know if you want an invite and didn't get one!

Monday, April 5, 2010

April Showers...

bring Easter flowers!

We got to host Easter dinner this year for two couples from Austin's ship, his mom Leslie, her boyfriend Matt and my sister. I was (probably overly) excited about having a dinner party and getting to buy fun things. One of the things I was most excited about was buying fresh flowers.

For $10 at Kroger I managed to whip up two little arrangements. (excuse the phone  photos, I got super excited)

The best part is how long they will last after the guests have left. I loooove having fresh flowers in the house.

P.S. if you have Kroger in your area, you should always check there for awesome flowers on the cheap. They have been the official florist of the Kentucky Derby since 1987 and always construct the rose garland for the winning horse at a Kroger store for everyone to see!

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