Archive for May 2009


Last Saturday, our downstairs thermostat looked like this:For the past week, it's looked like this:I guess this is what happens when your original thermostat was never installed correctly, and you figure this out after you try to install a fancy new programmable thermostat.... and somehow the air conditioning stops working in the process. We tried to re-install the old thermostat, but the air conditioning still won't work. The guy that installed the air conditioning last summer is coming on Monday to hopefully fix it.

Good news - we have duel zone air conditioning, so at least we still have air conditioning upstairs at night while we sleep.

Bad news - it's been extra hot and very humid for the past week.


and I thought our house was bad...

Mike's mom is a realtor in Columbus. She has set us up with an automatic email of houses in the Columbus area. We're not planning on moving anytime soon, but it's nice to see what kind of houses are in all the different areas of Columbus, esp. since we don't really know that much about some of the areas. I also think it will help us get a good idea of what our options are when/if we do move back to Cols. And I just like looking at these kinds of things :-) Anyway, this morning, two specific houses/images caught my eye while I was looking over the listings, I thought you all would enjoy them too...

House #1: you can have your very own copper clad dining room. At least I think it's copper. Could you even imagine trying to eat dinner in here? So much shine!

If the copper dining room doesn't do it for your, House #2 looked very similar in some ways to our house when we first saw it. Lots of pink and green and wallpaper. but those fake dogs! Really?!? At least I think they're fake... The one of the left is looking right at me. And how could you sleep in this room with all that floral wallpaper? Aren't bedrooms supposed to be calming? Yikes.

Jill - thanks for setting this up for us :-)


2 years ago today...

I was lucky enough to marry my best friend.

Happy 2 years Mike, thanks for being you :-)

Oh, and after seeing that last picture, I think we need to go back to St. Lucia again someday...


distracted by the weather

The weather has been beautiful here lately. So beautiful, that on Sunday morning when I woke up and saw that it was going to be in the mid-70s, sunny, with a nice breeze, I knew that I wouldn't be able to study all day as planned. I decided to treat myself to a quick trip to Garden Ridge to pick up some new pots for the deck, and then to Lowes to get some flowers.
I wanted pots of flowers on the deck because I love to sit on the deck. While sitting on the deck you can't see the flower beds that we worked on, and the deck needed some color too. Plus, I've really been enjoying this whole gardening thing more than I thought I would (and so far, all plants and flowers are still living!!).
I decided to go with these simple pots because everything else was way expensive. But now that I have them home and planted, I think I made a good choice. Now you focus on the flowers instead of some bright planter. Plus, I think they look nice with the deck. I got 6 total, 3 for each front corner.
See? The flowers are still alive and growing in our new beds.
The birds have been loving us lately because we keep putting down grass seed.

Did you see this guy in the picture above? He sat there for awhile. And look, a rose!
Question - this is growing along our fence - is it lavender? I love the way it smells, hopefully it will keep growing...


house painting

A college student from one of the college exterior house painting companies came to give us a quote on painting... I liked the guy, he seemed to know what he was talking about, he seemed to have a good painting crew in place, and I really like the internship/business management idea of the program.I didn't like the price. At all. Maybe next summer? Or maybe we'll need to figure out a way to do the painting ourselves.

Wow, seeing this old picture has made me very happy that we've spent a little time working on the front of the house! At least the new tree and some flowers have helped improve on all the blah brown... now we just need to find the time/money to work on the other landscaping.


finally friday

Yay Friday! It's been a looooong week. My job has been pretty slow since I started with my company a year ago, so I'm not really used to working as much as I have the past few weeks. Up until a few weeks ago we were even on a 10% pay and hour cut, meaning I only worked (and got paid for) 36 hours a week instead of 40. That lasted a month or two... and now we're back to normal, plus a lot of overtime. I think I would rather just work a consistent 40 hours :-)

Anyway, we met with the surgical vet this morning, she was really nice and I am confident that she will take good care of Reese. It turns out that the OCD is actually in both of his front legs, it's just a lot worse in the left leg. Because of his seizure, and because we're traveling some in the next month, we decided to wait until the end of June to schedule the surgery. That way, we can watch him over the next month to make sure that he doesn't have any more seizures or problems. The pain medicine he's on (only one kind now) has him back to 95% normal Reese, so hopefully he won't be in too much pain. She did say that it's very rare to discover this in a dog that is 5, it usually comes up with they are a puppy. She also said that it's one of the worst cases she's seen. Poor Reese! I can't believe he's just been living with the pain for so long. I can't wait until he's all better.

Moving on to house stuff... I know you miss reading about house projects! We have someone coming tonight to give us a quote on painting the exterior of our house. We were planning on having the house painted maybe next summer, but a guy with a college painting crew came to our door over the weekend and said he could give us a quote... who knows, if it's less than what I've been thinking (it never is) maybe we'll try to get the house painted this summer instead. That brown trim has got to go! At the very least, it will give us an idea of how much it will cost in the future. We'd paint it ourselves but to get to the soffit you have to put a ladder on the sloped roof of the porch and I just don't think that's something we should be doing...

I'll leave you with one last random story from the week - the other night I was just about to fall asleep when I heard this strange noise coming from the front of our house. It just kept going on, so after a minute I got up to look out the window to see what was going on. Looked down at our yard, nothing. Looked left, nothing. Looked right... nothing. Looked up at the street as I was shutting the curtains and WOW! There was a car ON FIRE across the street right in front of our house. Like action movie explosion fire. The noise was the horn going off I guess. My scream of surprise woke up Mike and we called 911. After another minute the fire trucks came and they were able to put the fire out. I have no idea how or why the car was on fire. There were a couple of guys standing around while the car was burning, really, the whole thing was just strange. Later the same night, I kept hearing more and more fire trucks and just assumed that they were still working on the car fire. I came to work the next morning, checked my email, and realized (had email from neighbor) that the house behind us had been struck by lighting later in the night and was also on fire. Two fires in one night! And on either side of us... Luckily, no one was hurt in either fire, but it was quite the dramatic night! I drove past the car the next morning and it was completely melted, the road has burn marks on it, the grass in that area was burned off... strange.


Reese update

Sorry for taking so long to give an update on Reese. Work has been keeping me very busy lately. We heard back from the vet last week and it was confirmed that Reese does have Osteochondrosis, or OCD as they call it. We were given the name of a surgical vet, and were told to just keep giving him the pain meds until we were able to schedule the surgery. On Sunday afternoon, Reese had what appeared to be a pretty bad seizure. It went on for a little while, Mike and I freaked out and were trying to get him into the car to take him back to the emergency vet. By the time we got into the car and started to go, he was moving around and responding to us. We ended up not taking him and just called our vet first thing Monday morning instead. She has no idea why he had a seizure, I thought that maybe it was related to all the pain meds, but she didn't think so. It was very scary and I hope it doesn't happen again. The seizure really worried us, but we've had some experience with them before, so at least we knew what we were dealing with. I don't know if I've mentioned this before on the blog, but Cooper, our other dog, has epilepsy. He's had several seizures (including one really bad one) in the past but is now on medicine and they aren't as bad or as often. But, just to add to all this, Cooper had a small seizure last night right after we went to bed... I sat with him for awhile and he seemed to snap out of it fairly quickly. But now I'm worried about both dogs, Cooper has been doing really well lately and hadn't had a seizure in awhile. If he has anymore, we might need to increase his medication, which I don't really like to do.

After Reese's seizure on Sunday (I'm still not convinced that it has nothing to do with the amount of pain meds he's on) we decided that we need to try to get the surgery done as soon as we can. We have an consultation scheduled with the surgical vet first thing Friday morning. Hopefully we are able to schedule the surgery sometime next week.

And just so you don't think our life is only stressful right now, we did have a great weekend. We went to a local wine and art fair on Friday night with some friends and bought 2 photographs, our first real art purchases. I'm excited to get them framed and up in our house! I'll make sure to post pictures when I do. I had to work on Saturday, but we were still able to watch a few movies and grill out on Sunday. I'm loving the weather lately!


The Reester

So I took Reese to the vet yesterday morning, he was very good while they poked at him and moved his leg around. The vet decided to do some x-rays to see if she could figure out what was wrong. They were going to sedate him so they could get all of the images they needed, but he was so good that they were able to do it all without sedation (I was having enough trouble moving around a 75# dog while he could still kind of help me, I was starting to freak out about taking an unconscious 75# dog home with me...) He's a tough dog! The vet is sending the x-rays out for a second opinion, but she thinks he has Osteochondrosis. This is a cartilage / bone problem that he's probably had since he was a puppy, but for whatever reason, has just been dealing with the pain for the past 5 years. Something must have happened on Friday that made it hurt even more, and now he won't put any weight on that leg. The issue is at his left leg / shoulder joint. If he indeed has Osteochondrosis, he'll need surgery. They don't do the actual surgery at our vet, so she couldn't tell me very much about it. We'd have to go to another surgical vet for a consultation. Meanwhile, we are giving him 2 different kinds of pain medicine, and aren't supposed to let him move around much at all. He's kind of on bed rest. Well, as much as a dog can be on bed rest :-)
Thanks for the nice comments and thoughts for Reese. I hope he gets better soon too. I think he misses playing with Cooper. We should know more in the next couple of days, so I'll keep you updated.

The picture above is old, but it was the only dog picture I have on my work computer. And posts without pictures just aren't as fun :-)



You'd think that after all the wallpaper removal we've done, the last thing I'd want to do is hang new wallpaper. I should stuck with that thought... instead, I decided it would be a good idea to wallpaper the inside of our built-in china cabinet. Sorry, the only before picture I can find right now is with the previous owner's stuff. But image the same thing, only full of boxes. That's pretty much what it's looked like since move-in day.
The back of the cabinet is part pieces of wood, part plaster, and was falling apart. I decided to just cover the back of the cabinet with a thin piece of plywood and wallpaper over it for a nice finished (and what I thought would be easy) solution. I figured that since our entire house was wallpapered, it wouldn't be that hard to do. I was wrong.
It was very tedious and took longer than expected. Mom and I started working on it while they were visiting and only got one shelf done. Mike and I finished it Saturday morning because we were having company over for dinner and had been using our dining table as storage for all those boxes that were in the cabinet. We quickly unpacked the boxes and placed things in the cabinet... I still want to go back and edit/rearrange.

I really like how it looks, the wallpaper isn't super noticeable, but it provides a nice backdrop for our china and various glass things. Sorry for the horrible pictures, the cabinet is in the hallway outside of the kitchen and it's difficult to take pictures of. The wallpaper also looks a lot shinier in these photos, the branches aren't that noticeable really. We still need to paint the back of the bottom shelf and fix up the bottom portion of the cabinet, but it looks so much better already. I'll try to take some better photos at some point.

That was the only house project we worked on this weekend. For some reason our dog, Reese, started limping on Friday night and we had to take him to the emergency vet. He's not putting any weight on his left front paw. But he doesn't wince or anything when you touch his paw or leg or try to move it around, which is weird. The vet didn't know what was wrong with him and gave us some pain medicine and said to see how he did the rest of the weekend. He's not any better and seems pretty miserable. I think we're going to take him to our vet in the morning, hopefully whatever it is isn't a big deal and he'll start to feel better soon. Poor Reese, I wish he could tell us what's wrong...
He's also been spoiled all weekend cause we feel bad for him, he isn't normally allowed to sleep on the couch :-)


to do: next summer?

I came across this picture on This Young House the other day. They had gone on a garden tour in Richmond and snapped this photo:I love it! It seems like such a great idea, and I can't wait to do something similar on the front of our garage. Hopefully it won't be too difficult to train the ivy to grow on the wires in that pattern. We want to paint our garage first, so this will probably have to wait until we paint the house (we want the garage to match the house)... but maybe next summer? Here's the only picture I could find of the garage, lovely concrete block...



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