Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Is Life Moving at a Fast Forward Pace?

I realized last night I never posted a picture of our painted fire place! It was off white brick before with red mortar. Not very attractive to say the least. So Dave primed and primed and primed the thing (with colored primer). When I was in New York he painted a final coat and textured each brick slightly different so it had a more natural brick appearance (instead of looking just painted). We got this idea from Mike and Allison. They painted their brick fireplace white, and it turned out really nice. Since Dave's wanted an accent wall in the living room and I didn't, we decided a darker accent fireplace would be our compromise.

Over the next two weeks I'm working on finishing up the closet in the bedroom (installing a closet rail, building a top shelf above the rail, installing a few shelves inside the closet), finish painting the closet and bedroom doors, and finishing the bookshelf in the bedroom. I've made a list of all the supplies needed (I'll buy most of them tomorrow night, and the rest after we get paid on the 15th), and I've have several picture game plans set and ready to implement! After that all we have to do is build shelving in the living room storage closet, but I've decided that will have to wait until next summer. We're completely out of money with Dave's tuition coming due this month on top of construction bills.

Sunday night we picked up our year supply of wheat! Mike and Alison found a killer sale at Macey's grocery store (50 lbs for $8), so we asked them to purchase enough for us to make 2.5 loaves of wheat bread a week for a year. That's more than we currently eat in a week, so it should be enough for us and for a few kids. Now we just have to purchase a few crates to put it in! I buy the large tubs and the unscrew-able lids for storing all our grain. They're the best! The lids are $6 a piece, but well worth it. I'm thinking these tubs will end up being a Christmas gift to us... We're on a super tight budget right now, so we can wait until December!

I also started writing my life story about a month ago. I decided to put it in blog format, so if I get something wrong, people can tell me before I finalize it (for example, I can't remember when Heather was born what was wrong, I only remember she was sent to a special hospital). Eventually when I'm old and senile I'll probably have it printed and bound for my kids or something. We'll see when the time comes! I'm not great at keeping journals, so this will be the story of my life in replacement of the journal. Read it and let me know if you remember something differently than I do http://aplastowpast.blogspot.com/.

In other news... I had a company retreat Friday night to Saturday up at Snowbird. The company had a speaker come out in the morning, a service project in the afternoon (building bikes for the underprivileged in the Salt Lake area), our families came up for dinner, and the company paid for all of our hotels for the night and breakfasts in the morning.

The most exciting part of the trip? It's probably a tie between being stuck in an elevator for 20 minutes and having it drop 3 times (a total of 1 floor worth of drop-age), or heading down to the hot tub after dinner in our swimsuits and having the CEO and CFO and wives join us on the elevator. I've never been so embarrassed in a while. Maybe awkward is a better word for it. But Dave shoved me in the corner and stood in front of me so I wouldn't be easily visible (good job Dave). It wouldn't have been so bad if we weren't in our swim suits!

We're heading to Zion's with Dave's family for the Labor Day weekend. Since none of them have hiked in Zion, we're excited to get to share one of our favorite vacation spots with them! It should be a nice, relaxing weekend.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Don't you want to feed us tomorrow?

We received a weird phone call last night. Technically we didn't even receive it, Dave's brother Blaine did, but I'll explain the background first. Dave has wanted to invite a family from the ward over for some time now. He thinks the husband is a great guy, and wanted me to have the opportunity to get to know the wife as well. He mentioned this to the husband a few weeks ago, although due to our INSANE schedule recently we haven't had the time to extend an actual offer.

Last night Dave's brother Blaine knocks on the door saying this family was calling and wanted to know if they could come over for dinner the following day, or would Friday work better? What?!? Because they are a family of 6 I probably wouldn't have invited them to dinner in the first place. We don't have a kitchen table big enough to seat all these people. I probably would have invited them over for games and dessert. AND because they called Blaine rather than us they now have invited them too and I'm supposed to feed 8 people the following night... oh, did I mention that I've been out of town (on business followed by a camping trip) for the past week? We don't even have milk in the house, let alone enough of the same one dinner for 10 people!!! I can't just skip work so I can shop for food and create a culinary masterpiece.

So I told Blaine to tell them we couldn't do Friday (I have a work retreat we've already committed to) and they could come over for games the following night (tonight) if they wanted. They're coming over soon and bringing treats. Now I just have to clean up the tornado that is our house so we have somewhere to play said games. Not that I want to entertain when I should be grocery shopping, cleaning, etc... but I feel a little forced into this. I guess I'd rather just get it over with than have it looming over my head until I feel obligated to invite them over or until they feel like inviting themselves over again.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

The Basement is almost DONE!

We've been working like crazy to get everything done before Dave goes back to school on the 23rd. Since I'm currently sitting in the airport waiting for my flight to take off for New York City, and right after we get back we'll be heading out on a camping trip in Great Basin National Park, what that really means is we wanted to be done by today...

The length of the hallway you can see in the picture is the length of the bedroom closet and the living room storage closet. We want to put shelves in the storage closet in the living room, and hanger space and maybe some shelves in the bedroom. We'll see. We're going to take a little break before we decide what exactly we're going to do in there. I'm so exhausted right now that if I had to decided it would just end up being a clothes hanger pole and that would be it! So better to rest and decide later.

We're not entirely done, but we're pretty dang close! We painted, installed the trim, and put in the Living Room closet doors this week. The trim still needs to be patched (where we shot nail holes into the wall & at the corners), the edge of the trim needs to be caulked, we need to paint the existing door trim, paint the closet doors, install a piece of trim above the closet doors (to cover the device that moves them), and finish painting the fire place.

Dave decided the old off white brick with red mortar between them was not the best look for our new room. Now that I've seen the primed base, I agree that a medium brown does look better with the room. So he will be working on these things while I'm at Affiliate Summit in New York City Monday and Tuesday. Hopefully he can finish them up so we don't have to stress over them while Dave's in school.

I'm so proud of all the work we've done, and can't wait to show you pictures of the fireplace when it's done and the bedroom. The color in the bedroom was supposed to be a light tan color, but ended up looking like a light gray on the walls. Not what we expected, but it still looks good!

One more picture because it makes me happy!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Happy Annaversary!

Sunday was our second anniversary! I  made Dave breakfast in bed (lemon poppy seed  muffins), and he picked out a fabulous dinner for us to make together! We did Steak Gorgonzola with Alfredo sauce and linguine with asparagus and fresh bread dipped in oil and balsamic vinegar. And we have leftovers that are calling my name.

Our time together has been the best! A few of the highlights are:

1. We survived our first year together in an apartment that never really cooled down, even in the winter. That's what you get for staying in a place that is heated with a boiler and cooled with a swamp cooler.
2. We spent our first Christmas together in Hawaii! Nothing says Christmas like palm trees and snorkeling.
3. Our first house was purchased a year ago, we immediately added a kitchen to the basement and started renting it out to Dave's brother and sister-in-law (renting to family is the best!)
4. We got to visit Glacier National Park. We could happily move there some day, maybe when we retire.
5. We had a dog in the family for two weeks. It was enough of work that we realized we're not ready for that kind of commitment at this time
6. We planted our first garden (tomatoes, green peppers and raspberries). Although we didn't get as many fruits, veggies as we had hoped, it was fun and we'll try again next year.
7. We got a free barbecue! Dave's loved entertaining this summer with it
8. We're in the process of adding a bedroom and a large storage closet to the basement apartment! Not only will it up the value of the home, but if we rent it out to non family we can charge about $100 more a month for it (bonus)!
9. We've been to Zion's more times than I can count and enjoyed every minute of it!
10. We're better friends and more in love than we were when we got married

Here's to the next 2 years being just as great!

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

The Basement is Coming Along

Our lives are completely consumed by construction right now! Every night we get home from work, eat, and put in at least a few hours on the bedroom in the basement. Dave spends half a day every Friday by himself working on the basement, and we both put in at least 8 hours every Saturday in.

Two weekends ago we installed all the drywall between Friday (we both had off work), and Saturday. This week has been the week of mud. Next week might also with that title... Mudding takes a long time! It didn't help that we pulled off the wood paneling that covered one of the walls, that we found nothing behind it. We had to drywall the entire wall and mud it together. We've also completed the electric this week, which is so good to have done. We put in a light, moved the light switch to the other side of the new doorway, and replaced all the off white plugs with white ones.

Next we'll have to sand down all the mudding we've done, prime the walls, paint the walls and the ceiling, install the bedroom and closet doors, paint and install the trim... and build out the closet shelving (which might just wait until Christmas or even next summer). At this point I'm just so exhausted that I don't even want to think about the closets! I've already revised my idea of what we want to do for the bedroom closet so we don't have to do so much work. 

I just can't wait for everything to be done! I'm so tired of construction.