Friday, January 30, 2009

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

January means redecorating because there sure isn't much else to do!

I've already lamented about January. The weather here can't decide between warm and frigid, wet and dry. The outdoors are far too volatile, so we spend most of our time inside. Frankie spends about three-quarters of his days at home riding around on his truck:

We're also mostly ignoring the outdoors for the inside of our house. Since Christmas just passed, we had a bit of cash, and boy, did we ever spend it! Behold our new couch:

The fireplace visible below still screams desperately, "refinish me!" But alas, it is not high on the list. We've also got to put some sort of leather guard on that couch or Bridget is going to rip it all up with her little puggy claws. She's not allowed on it right now, and she might never get those permissions.

Our 'retro metro' backsplash is finished! It looks fantastic with our cabinets and countertops (Silestone Stellar Snow, for those who wonder.) Now to put on the cabinet hardware and finish the trim (ahem, Juston.) :)

The guest bath still isn't complete, but we did buy a deeply-discounted wine cabinet that doubles as towel storage, pictured to the right of the tub.

My Christmas present, the one and only change to the outside of the house:

January's been gray, but certainly not dull. I've completed two freelance jobs and my classes are already a bit overwhelming - I have some very smart students that are going to put me through the ringer if I'm not careful! (This is probably a good thing.) We've closed on our house, been to the zoo a few times, played with Abe & Jay, and I've started working out with one of my neighbors and she's going to whip me into shape! Oh, and preschool registration is this Saturday at 9 AM. I'll be in line starting at 5 AM, and I'm sure I won't be alone. We're going with the hippies-in-training program at The Children's Garden, that is, if we can get him in. It's first come, first served. Keep your fingers crossed!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Save your $10.

For all of the haters out there, here's a little video about the complete lack of originality in this year's snooze-fest, failed epic The Curious Case of Benjamin Button.

Thirteen Oscar nominations? Seriously?

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Underwear and Outerwear

Today while I was getting ready to go to the gym, Frankie slipped out of my room (he usually likes to hang out within close visual range of myself.) When I left the room and went to find him, I was greeted by this:

Yes. He had stolen my bra and placed it on the dog. I don't normally post pictures of my underwear on the internet, but he was just so darn pleased with himself (and it's pretty standard underwear, anyway.) I even made myself late for my aerobics class because I had to snap some pictures.

And Grandma Chrys, we're finally getting good use out of your knitted hats because brrrrr it's cold outside!

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Hardcore Excitement!

This is all about a whole bunch of nothing.
Frankie loves cooking. He constantly asks to bake things. Here we are, in action, making the most delectable of all food delicacies....pigs in a blanket.

Bridget in foreground, child in background playing with the Play-doh.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

House Before & After

I created a photo album on Facebook of the house from before, during, and after the renovations. It's not complete, but if you're curious, you can head over and check out the way things are shaping up around here.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Atlanta preschools - let the madness begin.

Have any of you navigated the wild, wild world of preschools in intown Atlanta? Wow. I've done two tours and I'm scheduled for two more. Most people start their children in preschool at the age of one in order to guarantee them a spot when they get older. I've found two with openings, but one of them wants $600 up front to enroll Frankie, along with tuition. Oh, and it's a co-op, so it requires parent work days. Um, I get paid to do that now. I'm not against parental involvement in the schools, but for that price, you can hire a classroom assistant and I can go work at home on my other job. (Plus I only want him in school three half-days a week, so it's not like I won't be spending time with him anymore.) But if I don't enroll him now, I run the risk of not getting him in anywhere for the fall. One other preschool (with no openings right now, but probably about five new spaces in the fall for the three-year-old class) usually has a long line on registration morning and is first-come, first served. I only know people that have been wait listed there, but most of them also get their kids into the school after waiting awhile. Oh, and you register in January - nine months in advance. Does anyone else think all of this is a bit crazy? Has anyone else successfully registered their kid in an affordable, in-town preschool that isn't five days a week and pretentious as hell? And been happy with the result?

Monday, January 12, 2009

Big Time Splurge!

I bought one of these today. :) Am I officially an adult now?

P.S. I'm sure we'll update you when it arrives, in approximately two to three weeks.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Excited Face

This is self-explanatory. You had to be there.

Fri + Sat

For the sake of blogging, I'm going to narrow the weekend down to Friday starting at noon and ending Saturday evening. This weekend, we became homeowners twice over as we *finally* closed on our loan for the West End house! Thanks, Ken, for all of your help up to this point. And a note to anyone who wants to get a loan out there - make sure you have at least 20% down or no one will give you the time of day. It's a sad market reality and it took us awhile to finally accept that we'd have to part with almost two times the cash we initially wanted to put down. Now we're broke and it's time to start building up the savings, once again, so we can go out in a few years and get another house to renovate, or in Juston's mind, an industrial building to convert into a loft.

This week, I looked at my house and decided I was ready to be an adult and actually have some furniture in my living room. Thanks to some Christmas disbursements, we're in the market for a couch. I've had no luck with Craigslist thus far, but I did find a great pair of vintage chairs that I bought on Friday.

After the chair buying frenzy, we went to the zoo and met up with our friends for some animal gazin'. Frankie absolutely *loves* going to the zoo and asks me several times a day to go and see the animals. (On a sidenote, if we're related to you, he might call you up sometime to talk about the animals. And if you live here and want to go to the zoo, we have a pass so give me a call!) No trip to the zoo is complete without a ride on the train and carousel (which means we make many incomplete trips to the zoo.) This time, I splurged.

William, Anna, and Frankie.

Frankie picked out the peacock.

Since I haven't found any used couches that are both cheap and attractive, we're probably going to splurge on a new one. It will be a first for both of us and be yet one more piece of furniture tying us down. We went to Ikea to check out their options on Friday night, but Frankie was so done. We ended up testing out the beds, since our plan is to get Frankie a low-to-the-ground double bed this year so that we can kick him out of his room and give his bed to visitors (initially we wanted a sofa bed, but we think this is a more practical option.) He was ready to nap on the spot.

I think he's ready for the big boy bed - we haven't been very quick to get him out of his crib.

On Saturday, Juston went all "Weekend Warrior" and put up our tile backsplash. We got this fantastic glass tile from Susan Jablon Mosaics and once it's done, it's going to make the kitchen really classy. It's definitely a 'mod' look and I love it. Go, Juston, go!

We'll have more photos after grouting and sealing later this week. It was a busy weekend and we even passed up the chance to go to a movie last night because we were exhausted. On to more work during the week!

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

The Speedway

This is a video of Juston and Frankie cruising through the house and it probably lacks appeal for those not directly related to us. Chrys, Juston says to make sure that Ken sees it because he's supposed to shake his head in disdain at his grown son's behavior.

On a more positive note...

Yes! The pedestals are finally out of my living room and into my laundry room! And as an added bonus, the pedestals make the washer and dryer tall enough so that Frankie can't randomly push buttons and dry my clothes four times in a row.

Monday, January 05, 2009

How do you deal?

The past few days I've been struggling with what I call the 'January slump.' Christmas is over, there's no vacation in sight, it's all back to business and work, and the weather is gross, at least in Atlanta where it's been in the 60s and constantly rainy for several days. What do you do to get through this time of year? Last year it wasn't as much of an issue because we went to Hawaii in January, but this year? Bleccchhh. I'm trying to keep my eyes on the prize: a couple of good movies are coming out soon, the Monster Truck Jam is this weekend (yep, I said that), but I'm struggling. I need some motivation; I'm pretty sure I can't just wallow in Super Mario Galaxy and ignore the real world much longer. How do you deal?

P.S. The rest of the pictures are coming up soon. When I get to it.
P.S.S I'm not complaining about the warm weather (you snowed in people, you) - it's more like a warm, yucky, humid and foggy soup here, which is just kinda gross in general. If it's going to be unseasonably warm, at least we should be able to go out and play!

Friday, January 02, 2009

Juston in Happy Land

Juston's favorite place in the whole world - Hot Dog on a Stick. Yeah. I don't get the fascination either. He went there three times while we were in Utah.

And for fun, nice snowsuit!

Cute Toddlers + Heavy Machinery = Bliss

I know I'm doing the holidays all out of order and that I haven't even done Christmas day yet, but that's just the way things are this year. I've gotten way too spoiled not working or doing anything all that productive since getting home and I've spent too much time playing Super Mario Galaxy. I also apologize to those of you who've seen these photos on Facebook - Juston's ahead of me on uploading things to the internet.

Frankie absolutely loved Grandpa's heavy machinery. Ken owns a construction business and keeps all of his diggers and plows at the farm, so there were lots of things to attract Frankie's attention. Every morning he would wake up and first thing he would say, "I wanna ride the digger now, please!" Luckily it snowed every day, so there was plenty to plow and many opportunities to ride machines. Frankie still asks for diggers now that we're back in Atlanta - he sure misses Grandma and Grandpa's farm!
Getting ready to go outside...

Waiting impatiently...

Let the fun begin!