Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Anniversary Trip 2011

Let me just say that we had a blast on our Trip to Orlando last weekend. After sleeping on the floor of a labor room at the hospital for a couple of days due to the snow/ice storm, I was more ready than ever to get the heck out of dodge and have some fun. What better way to celebrate than with a trip to Disney World?

My home away from home.
So here is a quick picture tour of the trip.

Day 1
Our first pit stop was Auburn where we took pleasure in  rolling Toomer's corner.

One happy husband.
One giddy wife.
One very excited couple.
Kind of pretty isn't it?
Once we arrived in Orlando and unpacked, we took off for Downtown Disney.

I found Nemo!
and a pirate that looks a lot like my husband.
Day 2
We were off to Disney Hollywood Studios.

The excitement was unbearable.

As we stood in line, I managed to volunteer Patrick for a little something...

Patrick preparing to sing for the American Idol Experience.
Singing happy birthday to Sharon (a lady we met while waiting).
He was a good sport about it.

Rock'n'Roller Coaster. Did I mention it was Auburn attire day?
Backlot Tour. We must have gotten at least 30 "War eagles!" that day.
Jedi training.
Second park for day 2.
The back of Patrick's head on main street.
We were having fun.
Four fastpass tickets.
I agreed to swap seats with two little kids so they could sit in the front of Thunder Mountain. We took row 3 instead. At the end of the ride, the dad turned around and gifted us with four fastpasses. It pays to be nice!


Blurry shot of us whirling through the many adventures of Winnie the Pooh
Getting ready for the Wishes fireworks.
The castle changed colors all night.
Electrical Parade. Yes, this is all day 2.

Day 3
We started off our day at Animal Kingdom.
I didn't take pictures of it, but Everest was awesome. We did it twice.

I was determined to take a picture of every park entrance sign.
Dinosaur. Love the face I am making.
Pooh and I like to dance.
Park 4, day 3.
haha...We look rough... This was at the end of the day in Italy.
I laugh as I look back on this day because we were so exhausted from our two late nights. I didn't take as many pictures. However, we did ride Soarin and it wasn't worth the 90min wait (there were no fastpasses by the time we got there). I fell asleep a couple of times while we waited. The line only moved every 30 minutes so I just sat down and fell asleep every time. Mission space and fast track were the only other rides we did at Epcot. This day was our "anniversary pin day" We wore the pins you can see Patrick wearing in the picture above. It felt like a little extra Disney magic because everywhere we went people congratulated us and wished us well.

Day 4
Universal Islands of Adventure

Wizarding World of Harry Potter.
Butterbeer
It poured down raining, but we pressed on.
The sorting hat gives directions about the ride.
Day 5
Needing a vacation from our vacation:)

Some highlights of the trip:
- Stopping in Auburn
- Seeing Patrick look like a five year old on so many rides
- Obtaining 4 fastpasses at Magic Kingdom for being nice
- Fireworks at Magic Kingdom
- Riding Everest twice
- Riding Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey 3 times
- Drinking Butterbear
- Riding the Hulk in the Rain and laughing so hard we were just about crying.
- Dinner at La Hacienda de San Angel in Epcot where we watched Illuminations

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Sunday Sneak Peek

Here's what else I've started working on. I've already completed a January project, but I figure that it never hurts to get a head start. Can you tell I'm trying to knock out that new year's checklist?

We never got around to painting the baseboards in the kitchen.
That problem is about to change.
For those of you wondering why I am posting while we are on vacation, this is a scheduled post. Please pray for our safe travels home on Tuesday!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Most used Christmas gift

There are a lot of gifts that get swapped during the holidays. While I loved everything I got for Christmas, I think it is funny how there are some things that I use way more than others. If I had to pick a most used gift for each member of our family, this is what I would choose.  Let me clarify, this isn't favorite gift, this is most used.

My most used gift: My camera that I got from Patrick. I use it all the time to take pictures for this blog. It's a Canon PowerShot. Perfect and portable. I'm no photographer so this is really all I need for now. I'll probably save up for a more expensive one later, but I think we will still use this one. It is great to have for trips and youth stuff. The more expensive cameras are just so bulky.



Patrick's most used gift: The keurig we got from my parents. I love it too, but I think Patrick has used it more. If you have a coffee lover in your house, then you might want to consider this.


Hurley's most used gift: His bed that is known to him as his "spot". He was confused by the concept at first, but now he loves it. It is his favorite spot to plop.



So it's been a few weeks since December 25th and I'm curious as to what everyone's most used Christmas gift has been. Is it clothing or some sort of gadget? This may even help people get ideas for good gifts later this year. I know that I always want to get something for people that they will use and think of me.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Third Anniversary

I love my husband more and more every day. I am so blessed to be married to Patrick and can't believe how fast time goes. Over the years we have developed some anniversary traditions. I thought I'd share some.

1. We take time to hang out together for the whole day. That's right. We take off work and do whatever the heck we want. We cook breakfast together, nap together, and go everywhere together. It really doesn't matter what we do as long as we are together. This year we went and got haircuts, ran errands, bought new shoes, and snuggled up by a fire.

2. We watch our wedding. This is one of my favorite traditions. I am so glad that my mom made sure we had a DVD of our wedding. I kept telling her that I didn't want it, but mom always knows best. Thanks, mom:)

3. We eat out somewhere. We both love to cook but who wants to do dishes on the night of their anniversary? It's nice to order whatever we want and not worry about the cleanup.

4. We take a vacation. It may not be the day of our anniversary, but it's always close to it. For our first anniversary we were lucky to have some friends that allowed us to stay at their beach house for free. Our second anniversary we scored big again when my parents decided to take the whole family on a cruise. We were able to steal away time for just the two of us while we were there. This year we've decided to visit Disney World and Islands of Adventure. No, it's not free, but I guess it's about time we dish out a little dough for our trip:)

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

January Project

You may remember how I spray painted our dining room light fixture a few months ago. Well, I liked it so much that I decided to try it on our foyer light fixture.

I will start at the beginning...

1) Switch the breaker off and remove the light fixture. For a high ceiling, his requires help, a ladder, and flat head screw driver.


2) Time for some cleaning. It was rather dusty. It's also a good idea to remove the bulbs and fake candle thingys (I don't know what else to call them).


3) Tape off the sockets where the bulbs go. You don't want paint in them.


4) Find a place to hang the light fixture and get ready to paint. I used the same paint as I did with the dining room fixture so that the two would match (rust-o-leum's oil rubbed bronze).


5) Allow the fixture to dry!!! It was a cold day when I was doing this and so I should have allowed more time than the stated 1 hour on the spray can. I removed the fixture from the tree when it was still tacky and ended up having to sand and re-spray the next day over a few places. Don't be impatient like me. It will only come back and bite you in the you-know-what.


6) Re-hang the fixture, turn the breaker on, stand back, and smile.


Once again, this project does not take very much time (as long as you don't have to go back and re-spray).

Thursday, January 6, 2011

New Year with New Projects

Let me take a moment to say happy new year! I've enjoyed a nice break during the holidays and now it's time for me to get my rear in gear. I've been looking around the house and noticing a lot of things that still need to be done (I don't think you're ever actually done anyway when you own a home). Most people make new year's resolutions this time of year that pertain to themselves. While I think it's great to try and lose a few extra holiday lbs, commit to reading more, or whatever else people come up with, I decided my new year's resolution would pertain to the house. Plus, so many people ask me "What's next?" and I usually have no clue. This helps give us all a heads up (myself included). Here are 12 little things I plan to accomplish this year.... and I will admit that it is kind of scary to put it in writing and make it so official.

1. Finish painting the trim in the entire house. If you know me at all then you're probably laughing at this. This project needs to be finished this year. It actually should have been finished two years ago when it started. We've come a long way from this picture, but I'm ready to finish it all completely. We are currently lacking paint on the kitchen trim, hall bathroom trim, front door, back door, and basement doors. Not too much, right?

2. Update the light fixture in the foyer. I've been wanting to do this ever since I successfully updated our dining room light fixture which you can read about here. I'm planning to finish it exactly the same way so the two match. It is just going to take me getting some help from my loving husband and obtaining a tall enough ladder to reach it.

3. Put up crown molding in the master bedroom. I have no experience with this type of project, but I'm willing to give it a try. All I know is that I like crown molding. Will I like what I'm able to do with it? Who knows...

4. Renovate the hall bathroom. Out of everything, this project scares me the most. Patrick and I have picked this particular bathroom to start with because we think it requires the least amount of work compared to the other two (one of which consists of concrete and pipes in the ground). Our hall bathroom really only needs new tile, a new vanity, and new lighting. The tub/shower combo and toilet can stay.

5. Install a new light fixture for the kitchen. There is no saving our current light fixture. It just needs to go away completely. This means, saving up some dough for a new one. I'm not really sure what direction to go in. I've contemplated looking for something a little different. Our kitchen feels so separate from the living room and dining room so I think I should make it into a fun/interesting place. I'm hoping to use my roman shades (pictured on the left) from World Market as a jumping off point.

6. Purchase a new table for the kitchen. Speaking of the kitchen, did I mention that we've broken a chair to our kitchen table? I'm not really sure when it occurred, but when I went to move one of the chairs by lifting from the back, it completely separated from it's base. We're thinking of purchasing a counter height table so that it allows for more prep space.

7. Paint the kitchen. Using those shades as my inspiration, I plan to choose a color that is bright and cheery. Not headache inducing though.

8. Paint the walls in the main living areas. Can't believe I almost forgot about this. You'd think I'd remember since we have a drywall patch staring us in the face every day thanks to our bear. Catch that story here and here. We will definitely be going in a neutral direction. I have a few colors picked out to sample.

9. Make curtains for the dining room. This is the first thing I plan on doing once the walls are painted. I put off doing it before now because we don't really have a privacy issue through those windows. It's all woods. We can make out a little corner of our neighbors house in the winter. I have no idea what I want so I guess I'll cross that bridge when I get to it.

10. Install a ceiling fan in the master bedroom. This is more for Patrick than for me. The man is a heater at night. He needs his fan. Hopefully, we can find one and get it installed before the summer heat hits.

11. Purchase bedroom furniture. Like our bathroom reno, this is another biggie we need to save up for. We have a matching problem in our current master bedroom. Our bed and bedside tables match but the dressers don't. We plan to purchase an new dresser and possibly an armoire.
 
12. Organize/finish the office. The office tends to be where I throw "stuff". Not sure if other people have a room that tends to collect stuff, but I definitely need to fix this. I need to somehow organize the closet that contains wrapping paper, boxes, bags, scrapbook material, paint, paintbrushes, and all other things crafty. I'd love to find a chair that is comfortable to sit and read in. I'm also thinking that we need a new bookcase. Our current one went to college with my dad and has seen better days. Once upon a time I had a vision for this room in our house and somewhere along the way I got sidetracked. It's half finished, but maybe it won't be by the end of the year.

So there it is... Looks like a lot doesn't it? I have 12 months though!