Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Buying yourself roses is totally worth it...

...if it inspires you to clean off your dining room table. Over the summer, ours had sometimes become a "catch-all" for mail and laptops and whatever else we brought in the front door. Some nights we'd clean it off, some nights we wouldn't. So, I splurged on these roses the other day and did not allow myself to do anything else until that table was clean (took all of 5 minutes) and I put them smack dab in the center as my reward.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Tale of the Missing Wallet and the Good Samaritans

To preface the story, I will say that the past few days have been pretty stressful around here, and not a lot of fun. Ethan was in the ER for a concussion on Wednesday (he's great now), Dora had an adverse reaction to anesthesia during a dental cleaning on Thursday and threw up all day long so we had to rush her back to the vet (she is also fine now), and I got some really crummy (non-health-related) news last night. Then, this......

Jon got a haircut this afternoon. (Don't worry, the story gets better...)

As he left Sport Clips and approached his car, he realized he had hair in his Birkenstocks. (Again, stay with me here....)

So, he put his wallet on the hood, kicked off the shoes, removed the hair, got back in the car, and drove across the street to Best Buy. When he entered Best Buy, he realized he had no wallet. Remembering that he had placed it on the car, he frantically retraced his steps and checked inside all the local businesses, but to no avail. Said wallet was gone. Elapsed time for this whole scene was less than five minutes. He even checked the dumpsters in the area. Nada.

He then very calmly called me, and after some minor freaking out, I quickly got on board with all the calls to credit card companies, the bank, yada yada. This was MADDENING; wouldn't it be nice to not have to go through a million menus before FINALLY reaching the one about reporting a lost or stolen card?!?

Hey credit card companies, could you throw me a bone, here? RIGHT NOW, while I sit begrudgingly pressing 2 for English and sifting through all your ridiculous recorded menu options, some freak is going hogwild at Kohl's on OUR dollar. Do you THINK you could possibly give the pretty important ol' "lost or stolen card" option a slightly higher billing than item #437?

This is the desperate google search he did next. It is so sad and funny (now) at the same time.


By now, the wallet had been MIA for about 25 minutes. After putting up quite a fight, Ethan and Andrew were finally napping upstairs. Suddenly, the doorbell rang. Dogs barked. Ethan started wailing again. Once we got done cursing the dogs and threatening them with the glue factory as we do daily, Jon answered the door, ready to blow off another annoying solicitor.

The first thing that caught our eyes was a giant fire engine. Right on our little street. Had the boys been officially awake, they would have eaten that up. And standing in our doorway was an ANGEL (there was a halo and I heard choirs singing, I am sure of it) of a fireman who, with wallet in hand, said, "Jonathan Burbank?" We both squealed with glee. Naps were obsolete at this point. I swear Jon almost hugged and kissed this big, burly fireman. Almost. I know he wanted to.

The fireman explained that they had just come from a wreck on I20 (it is 104 degrees, by the way... these guys are amazing and awesome) and a gentleman flagged down the engine and handed the wallet to him. The gentleman said that he had found it on the street. Jon anxiously rifled through the thing. All cards and some cash were all still there. It had been untouched. (Don't worry, we still cancelled everything just to be safe.) Jon is overjoyed that he will not have to endure another line at the DMV anytime soon.

Things have been crazy in the world lately and in our immediate area. Honestly, I have been pretty bitter and generally down with people. Then, these two good Samaritans go and help a total stranger. Total perspective about-face, there. Most people are wonderful, good and kind. I am so thankful for that. I love humans.

Moral of the story? If you are going to lose your wallet, do so on a Sunday afternoon. It's when the very best people are driving around.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Summer Project #4: Dining Room Paint and Chair Rail

The guy above is singing in the newly-painted dining room. We also added a chair rail. There are plans for crown moulding next summer to finish the look, but we ran out of money and time for that this year. Green is my very favorite color so I LOVE this room now!


BEFORE:


AFTER:

Friday, July 22, 2011

Summer Project #3: Painting the Master Bedroom

Is a room ever really FINISHED?!?

We painted and took these photos a month ago. I have been waiting to post because I wanted to use photos of the completed bedroom. However, we are still deciding on lampshades, a rug, and maybe a chair so the ultimately final photos will come along someday (hopefully soon). For now, here are some photos of a really handsome and good helper we enlisted that day.





Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Ethan's First Trip to the Ocean




Ethan saw the ocean for the first time yesterday as we traveled to Hilton Head Island. It was Andrew's first trip to the official Atlantic ocean, since his last beach experience was at the Gulf when he was less than a year old. We truly enjoyed visiting the beautiful HHI, and the time flew by. Here are a handful of my favorite photos and videos from the adventure. There are lots more photos here.


















Andrew loved the boogie board!

video


Here is the moment of toes touching the Atlantic for the very first time.

video

Here we are on the way to Ethan seeing the ocean for the first time!

video

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

West Virginia Visit

We just returned from a great visit with family and friends in WV. Here is Ethan checking out a deer in Aunt Phyl's yard. Andrew and Ethan saw Heidi's Sophie again and we all met Sophie's little brother Jack for the first time.

Due to a torrential downpour and its botched plans for a pool/playground playdate, we hit the Chick-fil-a playplace with Jennifer's kids: Danny, Ben, and Corinne. (The rain still didn't stop Kevin and Jon from golfing a few holes at Lakeview, though....)



The adults had a lot of fun at a new restaurant in town, as well as the unique, timeless tradition: Mario's Fishbowl!

We attended my 20-year high school reunion, too. Only about 10% of us showed up, but the ones that did proved that the good ol' class of 1991 was doing pretty well! On our way back to SC, we stopped by our family cemetery and visited Dad.


The visit was quick, but it still felt good to be home and see folks. As always, we missed laying eyes on a few people but will hopefully catch them on the next visit!

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Summer Project #2: Painting the Master Bath

We've been busy! Here are 10 before/after photos. We really like the change from the contractor's happy yellow to the new spa-like light green. As you can see, the bedroom was also painted (a medium brown) and those pics will be posted later.


Before: bedroom hallway looking into master bath

After
Before: You just entered the bathroom and are looking right.

Sinks after

Before: tub

Tub after

Before: looking left to the shower and window (toilet is out of the photo to the far left, in case you really want to know)

tub/shower after

Before: shower

After




Friday, July 1, 2011

Woody's Demise

Disney World was awesome. Here is one of the unexpected awesome parts, which I suppose is what makes a Disney vacation something other than your run-of-the-mill vacay.

Our resort featured African animals in the backyard. Amazing. Amazing UNTIL your 21-month-old finds sport in throwing anything he can find off the balcony.As you can see, the rules are clearly posted...



But, there he went, one hour into our visit: Woody. Four stories down. This was followed by a frantic call by me to the front desk, since I felt sure a giraffe or warthog or some other beast was about to run over there momentarily and choke on the toy.


The front desk receptionist was kind as could be. She said nightkeepers would rescue the toy and we could pick him up at the valet station the next morning. So, we did. He had a curious blue paper rubber-banded to him, which I was sure was some scathing announcement of the balcony rules, once again. But, no:

He had been seen by Dr. Donald Fauntleroy Duck, and treated for a broken arm!

We kept the cast on for the duration of our trip. When we met Woody and Buzz, they had a great time questioning Andrew about why the Woody toy was in disarray:





But, in the end, all was well and happy. I love Disney World. I love it for the in-your-face attractions, but I mostly love it for the extra details the staff members go through to make your family feel great all the time, even when you or your offspring have bended the rules by throwing things off balconies.