Thursday, September 24, 2009


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Perhaps I'll update in a more timely manner...perhaps.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

What the eff? Pt. 2

On the other side of the Apricot tree from the Amaryllis (thanks, guys!) is more dirt. Mostly shaded, but occasionally it gets some sun. Imagine my surprise when there was a lone spot of purple amidst the dirt (and renegade ivy.)

Some kind of purple trumpet flower. It's pretty, but completely rogue.
Close up:

So odd.

We've also



Fallen Fruit:


Ok. So this is what it looked like after Husband had rinsed most of the rotten fruit off of it. We couldn't get it open, so I tried cracking it with a big ol' nail and out hammer. It's mocking me. We gave up.

If it helps, the nut smells burned, like smokey ash.

I would say that we'll just leave these for the raccoons for now, but they don't even seem to want them. Maybe it's not edible, after all?

Thursday, September 3, 2009

What the eff?

Back in the spring, while I was lying in bed wondering if my guts were going to remain inside my body, my wonderful husband decided to help out with my vision of a pumpkin patch. I had it all planned. The neighborhood kids would come and pick their own pumpkins...there would be pie and breads and decoration and would be delightful.

This was all the growth we got:

And honestly, we're not even 100% sure that is a pumpkin plant I took a picture of. All I know is that it sprouted in the mound that husband filled with seeds.

Could be we planted too late. Could be the neighborhood cats did a number on it with all of their digging around. Could be the fact that we haven't seen a drop of rain since March is keeping it a dried up dirty wasteland... OR - all of the stupid ivy that was there before sucked all of the nutrients out of the soil. It does look rather dust-bowlish back there.

Which is why today, when I went to drop melon rinds in our slow compost pile, I was shocked to notice something:

On the left is the compost pile - thoughtfully created with a concrete barrier. In the foreground - debris that needs to be chucked. And a random succulent. Mostly what we notice is the big dust-bowl-like dirt wasteland in the center there...where a thriving pumpkin patch *should* be.

But do you see what I see?



Yeah. I didn't plant that. Nor have I bothered to water that patch of dirt since July. I keep hoping we'll turn the compost and find some great soil and then when (if) it (ever) cools down here we'll till it in and re-plant the patch. I'm not giving up.

And flower:

I can't identify it. I know it was not there when the place was ivy-ridden. But there it is. A little pink-petaled stem of hope that maybe my thumb isn't entirely black after all. Maybe what my plants need is a little *more* neglect...?

PS - any tips on that pumpkin patch are welcome. Thanks!

PPS - My sister says they're lilies.
PPPS - other votes are for Amaryllis. I think that might be the win. Also - when Husband was digging the mounds for the pumpkin seeds he found a lot of old "onions" that were dead in the dirt. We now speculate that they were actually bulbs.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Dining Room --> Play Area

So this weekend I finished some projects. It took a long time to get to this weekend and finishing. The superfluous table was taken away some time in July and our actual table was moved to the kitchen dining area. As were the bar and sideboard. (Before pictures can be seen here.)


Which left a large empty space housing only a VERY dated (and completely not my style) light fixture:

I removed the glass pieces and Husband remarked that it looked better already:

I blame the drugs and the Lord of the Rings marathon for that opinion. (He had minor oral surgery Friday morning. Not to worry, all is well. He's healing nicely.)

Kipper helped:

A note about Crate and Barrel: they use a ridiculous amount of packaging. Which is handy for packing up things that you'd rather not have break.

So with that out of they way, and a plate in it's place, we suddenly had a nice open space through which a person can walk and not worry about loosing an eye/breaking a piece of glass with their forehead.

Into it went two Billy bookcases, the black chair from the guest room, the console table from the guest room, and a crash pad* - set up as adult floor seating and eventually to be used as a movement mat for Bunny.

Also - because I have serious aesthetic issues with molded plastic baby gear, we picked this bad boy up from IKEA:

The result - when books and a few animals are added to the bookcases - is a nice little area that will be able to grow with Bunny. I see a toddler craft area in its future with very little effort.

(The ottoman that matches the chair will find itself a more permanent home under the console table on the left, but right now it is still residing in the guest room to be used as a stand for the suitcase of upcoming visitors.)

Polly got in on the action, too. By sleeping:

* a note about this crash pad: it was purchased almost exactly a month before I found myself with child and unable to do anything that would result in actually using this particular new purchase (about which I was *very* excited.) I was having issues looking for a movement mat that I liked that I wouldn't feel like we would outgrow and have a hard time reusing or passing on to other new parents. Then I remembered this sitting sadly unused in the guest room and voila! Sometimes the perfect solutions are right under your nose.

Sunday, August 16, 2009


Well. Let's start at the beginning, really. A few months ago I got rather unexpected news. That's right folks - at the beginning of the adoption process and in the midst of infertility testing...I find myself knocked up.
3 months later I emerge from bed (morning sickness is SO mis-named) and start doing things to prepare the house for our child, whom we refer to as Bunny.

Meet Bunny...3 months ago :-)

So the dining area in the previous post has been rearranged, the superfluous table is gone, and bookshelves have been assembled. As soon as we recover from all of that I'll get it cleaned up and cutified and get some serious "after" shots up. Because we all love a good before and after.

But to tide you over...remember that weird little room that I turned into a walk-in for Husband because he's a clotheshorse? It had a bookcase (totally on it's last legs) on which to store his folded clothes. He unmentionables and jeans were kept in a 3-drawer dresser next to my side of the bed. This dresser used to be mine and will be Bunny's - after I make it over. At any rate - it needed to be freed up so I can fill it with baby loot.

So last weekend we headed to IKEA and picked up two more Billy bookcases (for the dining area) and a Malm Dresser:

Note: these things are a piece of cake to put together once you get the rhythm down. We had all three pieces up and running in a matter of hours. And I'm knocked up.

So bye-bye old not very attractive bookcase, hello nice sleek dresser! And to top it off, I moved in an extra chair from our office. He sat in there a lot yesterday afternoon just surveying his goods. I'm trying not to be bitter.

The ugly carpet is still there, but we're renting. We put a towel on the countertop and then stacked clothes there while they were awaiting transition and the minute the terry cloth went down the cats commandeered it. Then they watched with fascination as we changed the house.

Just to give you an idea of how spacious and inviting his closet is now. (The hanging side is unchanged.)

The perfect seat for a clotheshorse like Steve to sit in while he drinks scotch and tries to decide which of his millions of clothes he's going to wear today...

One day, not only will I have a fabulous closet, but I'll have enough clothes to justify it. Maybe.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Before/During: Kitchen/Dining Part 1

We have a dining table. Two of them actually.

This one we inherited from Husband's grandfather. I love it.

Look at these legs! Aren't they just divine. Eventually, I'm going to have a leaf made and the whole thing refinished and the chairs tightened and then it'll be superb.

This one is our landlord's:
Yeah, it's nice. But we don't need it. It's not ours. We don't want it. It's IN THE WAY. By July he's going to sell it. And when it's gone - and I get back from Dallas, our dining table will move into the kitchen area.

Before July, this is going to be emptied and moved out to the garage where it will be put to use storing things like Christmas ornaments and garden supplies. Or whatever.

These two items will get moved into the kitchen:

The dining room will become a play area for the baby. Before that, though, it will become a little loungey seating area. The light fixture will be replaced. It will be awesome.

So that's the plan. This weekend, I got fed up with the cabinets over the penisula in the kitchen. I've been meaning to open them up since we moved in, and fill this awkward spot with cookbooks, but I just hadn't gotten around to it. (Full disclosure, if we ever buy this place I will take untold amount of please in taking a sledgehammer to this particular set of uppers.)



See that bit over by the wall? It's weird to get to and you can only get to it from the window-side of things. That's Where the cookbooks will go.

I did not straighten before I took any of these pictures because I'm lazy. And I just did the dishes. I promise it's not nearly as visually noisey as it appears here. I blame the camera. And also my laziness.

So since I have until July to get all of this prepped...and even longer before we actually become parents, I'm taking my sweet time. It doesn't help that I get distracted. Or that I'm also trying to finish a novel. Wish me luck!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Random Linkage

I have a sticky that I c&p links to every now and again with the intent of referencing them in later blogs. Only now it's rainy and there are a LOT of them and I have no idea what my original intent was...much like most American and the Constitution. (Also I've been sucked into this whole New Justice thing and clearly it's eating my brain.)

So here we go:

I need one. I have googled "tiller" "seeder" "cultivator" and countless other random garden-related words. Everything I get is either big and scary or supremely dumb looking. Help? Please?

When I say "I want a house with a porch," I mean this:

If you're not visiting The Mogg Blogg, you're missing out on some fun design snark. They say what we're all thinking. And it's awesome.

Mary Ruffle posts three enchanting images a day. And on lucky days, she posts some over at her It's Pretty Good site, too. This one is just true.