Thursday, May 27, 2010


It is Memorial Day weekend ahead and thus signaling the start of summer. The pool is open, the watermelon is cut, and my TO DO List is as long as my arm.

Finish installing all windows
Trim out and paint windows
Mulch front flower beds
Make a new flower bed around lamp post
Fix front concrete step
Remove green carpet and paint patio
Stain Deck
Have a yard sale
Sort out the girls' closets
Build shelves in credenza
Buy and install patio door
Redo office
Buy a new computer
Take down dog kennel
Paint ugly bathroom
So here's to chipping away at it one sunny day at a time.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Bring the Heat

For some unknown reason, whenever the temperature climbs above 90 degrees I am knee deep in a project outside. Today's high had to have been in the mid nineties with little to no breeze, and MJ brought home the mulch. Don't get me wrong, it was I, who asked him to get the mulch. I really want to finish off the front flower beds. Unfortunately, I also needed to mow the lawn and edge everything.
To top it all off, Peanut is not feeling well now and would like me to carry her around everywhere. Thank god I broke down and turned on the AC this morning.

So I managed to get one of the front beds done today.
What do you think?

Maybe when it cools off, I'll do the other bed.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

To My Sister

Happy Birthday to You
Happy Birthday to You
Happy Birthday Dear Sister
Happy Birthday to You!!!

In case you haven't guessed, its my sisters 30th birthday today.
She is the best sister anyone could ask for! See how protective she was even when we were little.
Can I just say "Holy Chunk". Man was I a tubby baby! Not my cutest baby picture, but Mom sent me some real winners! Talk about Holy 80s. I have never seen so many perms and mullets in one place. No worries, I will spare you all from that.
Cant wait to have her here on Friday to celebrate! Love ya Lyndz ♥

Sunday, May 23, 2010

I ♥ the Asian Market!

I didn't have anything planned for dinner today, so while we were out running errands, I needed to stop and grab something. We don't eat fast food, so that means running to the grocery store. On our way, I spotted the Asian Market and decided to look there. Madison wanted Sushi. Unfortunately, her daddy, who is her Sushi rolling partner, was busy installing windows. I talked her into a bag of Mussels instead. Our Asian Market may not be the prettiest store around, (Madison holds her nose for the first five minutes because it smells like fish) but the prices can't be beat. We found 2 Pineapples for $1.15 a piece. and a bag of Mussels for $2.50. I stopped and picked up a bottle of Chardonnay for the Mussels and threw together a quick and delicious dinner.

 Here is how I did it.

First, I soaked the mussels in cold water for at least 20 minutes. (I changed the water once just to rid the little buggers of all the dirt and sand) Threw out the dead ones and pulled the beards off any that had them. I took about 4 Tbsp olive oil and sauteed 6 cloves of garlic. Then I melted in 4 Tbsp of butter and then added about 3 cups of wine. I added a little salt and pepper to taste while this was cooking. I let this reduce for about 15 minutes while I chopped up 4-5 Roma tomatoes, 4scallions, and a large handful of parsley. Once the liquid was reduced to about half, I threw in the tomatoes and let it cook 4 minutes. Then I tossed in the mussels and covered it with a lid. I cooked this for 5 minutes and then added the scallions and the parsley for the last 5 minutes. I served it on linguine with really crusty bread.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Flower Beds

Still working on curb appeal here. This weekend I am working on the front flower beds.
For some unknown reason, I don't have a before picture of my front yard. Let me do a little digging. I know I have one somewhere. So you will have to use your imagination. Picture weeds, moss, and completely unkempt flower beds. It was bad.
I spent some much needed time on my knees in the dirt, pulling weeds and cleaning up crap. Then I took that black weed prevention fabric and staked that down around my overgrown rhododendrons. I planted some hostas around the border. It looks much better now. All I need is some mulch and we will be good (for now).

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Sunday, May 16, 2010

The "Little" Garden

A few years ago, I bought a sandbox for the girls. Grandpa helped us set it up and it really was cute! It had a cute little canopy for them to sit under. Unfortunately, this momma never went out and bought the sand. So when a really windy storm blew through, it took down our really cute sandbox and broke the canopy right off. Since then it has just sat in our back yard growing weeds and annoying me.
So I gave the girls a choice. We could fill it with sand, or we could move it and make it a little garden just for them. They chose the garden route and got to pick out what they wanted to grow. They had a long list of things they wanted to plant but since it is a tiny little thing, we narrowed it down to strawberries, blueberries, and two tomato plants.

And look! We already have a couple of strawberries!

Saturday, May 15, 2010

More Curb Appeal

We have lived in this house for about four and a half years. We have done a lot of work on the inside, but we haven't upgraded the outside. So this year I'm working on it, one tiny step at a time. I need to pick projects that I can do in a weekend, and finish by myself.

We have a chain link fence for our backyard. MJ fixed up the fence after we moved in to keep our dog from getting out, but it didn't really improve the look of the fence, just the function.

So here was our fence before:

Not a pretty fence

So I set out with some primer and black paint and turned it into this:

Much better!

On a side note, I think Peanut got a hold of my camera, hence the blurry mark in the middle of all my pictures. I need to clean my camera lens and post a better picture of my "new" fence.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Words for Wednesday

Plip Plops! It is finally getting warm enough to break out the summer sandals and Lexa Loo is very fond of her new Plip Plops. She talks about them constantly.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Happy Mother's Day!

To all the Moms out there, a big Happy Mother's Day to all of you.
On this Mother's Day I will be flying back home with all my girls. Wish me luck.

Tulip Time 2010

Tulip Time in picture form...
The girls got to ride on the new Tulip Time Float. Auntie Marge and Uncle Stein did most of the work on this float, and it turned out great!

and now on to the food....

"Chinese" Food Stand


Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Tiptoe through the tulips

The girls and I made it to Pella.
We are having lots of fun with Grandma and Grandpa.


Monday, May 3, 2010

Leaving on a jet plane

It is Tulip Time week. I'm taking the girls back to Iowa with me in the morning. We are flying this time so hopefully everyone will be good in the airport and on the plane. Wish me luck!

Sunday, May 2, 2010

My Garden

MJ picked up the topsoil yesterday. I underestimated the quantity of a yard of dirt. It's a lot of dirt! After 200 trips from the driveway to the garden with my little wheelbarrow, I finally got the garden ready and planted! I still have to plant that last corner but that will have to wait for another day.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

May Day

Happy May Day Everyone! It is going to be a hot one here in New Jersey today. High of 90! We have a lot to get done today. I have to finish all the laundry and start packing. I am headed home to good ole Iowa on Tuesday. More on that later. MJ is going to go pick up a yard of topsoil for the garden. I need to take all of that from his truck and haul it in the backyard. I want to finish spray painting the fence. I need to drop off the keys for the new tenant in the condo in Philly. Get my haircut and maybe my eyebrows threaded. Walk the dog. If there is time, I want to go to some yard sales. Whew! Wish me luck!