Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Fresh Air

While Jim was on 'stay-cation' we decided to take advantage of the extra time together and went for a family hike. 

Before we bought our house we lived really close to to an amazing set of hiking trails within the Wissahickon park system.  We would go there pretty much every weekend year round and sometimes 3-4 times a week in the summer.  We spent hours and hours talking over our goals, our careers and our plans for the future; getting married, buying a house, starting a family.  I can remember saying a million times, "I know we just talked about this...." We both liked hearing our goals spoken and knowing that the other was still on board or had been listening to the latest update in our grand scheme.  All those hours walking together really helped us keep an open line of communication.  I think it's one of the reason we rarely argue.  Even know when there is tension between us or we don't agree a few laps around our neighborhood will usually clear the air. 

It's a little bit of a drive to get to the park from where we live now, so we don't get there as often as we'd like.  But on the few occasions we've been there since Riesling we make sure to reminisce like boring old parents and tell her of the good ole days.

Monday, April 29, 2013


I haven't done much of a home improvement update lately.  I guess because there really hasn't been much going on worth talking about.  Don't get me wrong, we've been plenty busy but it's all small stuff....and half finished.  For example, I've been working on a frame wall up the stairs since the end of last summer (I really need to get that one done!)  We did clean up the basement and get it painted and converted to a playroom but I've been waiting to share pictures until I get some details (curtains, pillows, wall art, etc) done. A lot of my effort has been focused on sorting through random stuff, getting organized and freeing our home of all the unnecessary junk.  I love purging!

A few weeks ago Jim took vacation days to make a long weekend and help us get some projects off our list.  A big one was cleaning out the garage.  Unfortunately I didn't get a 'before' picture but this is what it looked like after Jim hauled everything out into the driveway.

When we moved in 3 years ago we did nothing with the garage except throw a bunch of junk in it.  I don't even think we gave it a cobweb sweep.  Over the years and many many construction project the garage went from bad, to really bad, to 'oh man I can't close the door'.  We were stacking piles of demolition materials, drywall, tiles, glass shower doors, wood planks & boards of all sizes and who knows what else.  It basically became a dumpster with the exception of small area left for the lawn mower.  Several times we emptied out the materials (once into a junk removal trailer and several times with MANY trips to the curb). We were pretty much left with a lot of small broken up pieces of crap, nails, mice, random stuff we didn't know what do do with and lots of dirt.

Even though I don't really intend to let Riesling play in the garage, I knew she would end in that direction just out of curiosity. I didn't want to be worried every time the door was left open about her stepping on glass or picking up a rusty nail.  Plus we need a spot to store her array of hand me down outdoor toys (she even has a little tricycle!).

So we shipped Riesling off on a playdate for a few hours and set to work.  It so disgusting!  We had to wear mask and cover our faces because of all the dirt, mouse poop, and general grime. 

The previous owners built on the garage later.  It's attached but no entrance to the house. They basically never finished it.  Instead of hanging drywall there are random pieces of plywood nailed up haphazardly, random hooks, beams, shelves, and 'closets'.  It's a mess but we didn't have time to deal with that stuff.  I was pleasantly surprised by what a little cleaning and organization did for the place.

We still have a few items that we're trying to get rid of on Craigslist and a few that we just don't know what do with but all in it's a functional garage at this point.  Plus there is plenty of room for that Mustang convertible!

Monday, April 22, 2013


 Happy Earth Day....

"When one tugs at a single thing in nature, he finds it attached to the rest of the world.

~John Muir