dining room is done..all that remains is to re-hang the curtains
when they are finished drying. the table has some laundry on it--but
that's only because i'm still washing and folding regular laundry as
points out that i didn't say what happened to all of my chick cookies.
bob ate half of them!!! and my family polished off the rest.
with great annoyance (not really, i love baking!) i made flower cookies yesterday:
it's time to start. it's 9 days from the 1st day of spring. it's time to start.
the last house i lived in, it was quite feasible to proceed in a manner
of doing the same thing in every room, then the next thing in every
room, and so and so on until it was done. that house was much
year i lucked out on some of the tasks because spring was when i took
down all of the wallpaper and painted. this year, not so
lucky--everything is painted! that means this will be first FULL SPRING
CLEANING this house will receive. it got fall cleaning in the fall,
but for some reason i've always found spring cleaning much more
satisfying. i think because in the fall it's in preparation to close
everything up. spring cleaning is to open everything up.
year, i will be focusing on one room at a time. i have 10 rooms total,
the basement and both the deck and front porch. the front porch i will
save until last, because after everything is scrubbed down, it will
need to be painted.
the house, the kitchen will be save for last as that is where most of
the cleaning supplies are. otherwise i will work from bottom to top of
the house, and each room, obviously from top to bottom. washing
curtains and/or blinds, dusting out corners and light fixtures,washing
windows, inside and out, washing walls, more dusting, washing
baseboards, sorting out any cupboards/closets/shelves and cleaning them
free of dust, and ending with vacumming and shampooing the carpet. i
don't anticipate anything to be overly dirty as i do try to get to all
of those things at least once a month (except for walls and outside of
windows) so it should be a fairly quick efficient job.
after making the trip to the grocery store, straightening, blahblahblah...i did a little recycling:
are chocolate cookies (despite not taking the time to make perfect
circles =( ) with orange creme hershey kisses. the orange creme kisses
have been sitting around the last week, relatively untouched because
they really are too orangeycreamy to eat alone. the chocolate cookie
really makes a difference. the kids have each had 2 so far (then mean
mummy stepped and said no more until after dinner!)
is a trifle like dessert made from easter sunday's leftover angel food
cake, vanilla pudding (luckily i remembered to pick up cornstarch at
the grocery store!) and blueberries.
both things were slated to be pitched into the trash...but i recycled them...right?
know some of you are tired of hearing me gripe about this, but i'm
feeling the urge to do it again, because i just spent 6 hours up to my
eyeballs in muck, mulch, seed and fertilizer yesterday afternoon.
a little background....
we moved into our house in may of 2005, the backyard was covered about
90% in a heavey thick carpet of ivy. i spent 2 days removing all of
that ivy by hand and by a cutco knife (more efficient than pruners). i
bagged it into those giant 30 gallon hefty trashbags. 72 of those
bags. that's how much ivy was back there. i chose to do it by hand to
preserve the topsoil.
fall after our wedding and trip, i spread down a little more topsoil
and fertilizer and threw some seed down. i got a very sparse
lawn...that's all i had time for before it grew too cold. it wasn't a
lot..but it was enough. i also put down winterizer on my front lawn.
it killed the weeds in preparation for spring. fast forward to march of
in the backyard, i spent a great deal of time carefully overseeding the bare spots.
may not have been the most amazing lawn ever but considering what it
had been when we moved in, i'd say it was pretty damn good. i moved
towards the front yard. i bought a dethatching rake and an aerator.
i dethatched, aerated and then overseeded. within a couple weeks i had
beautiful lawn there too. a few weeds, mostly the broad leaf variety
came through, but it was still greener and there was much more grass
than before. fast forward to julyish/augustish of 06.
house next door that had been in a state of decline had recently
(april) been bought by someone who was fixing it up to sell it. aside
from the chimney they 'accidentally' dropped on our electrical in-wires
that cut out our electricity on easter day and for 3 days afterwards
and other minor things, they FUCKED up my grass. first, they thought
it okay to drive their wheelbarrow full of blocks for the wall they
were constructing through my front lawn instead of coming around from
the other side of their house. i had a rut the entire length of my
front lawn and the thickness of probably 3 wheelbarrow wheels. luckily
a few weeks after the wall was finished it grew in of it's own accord.
the backyard, OH THE BACKYARD. the house next door had the same
backyard that i used to have. all ivy covered. they decided rather
than doing it the tedious way, to bring in a construction machine. i
don't know what it was called..but one of those ones with the claw that
can scoop stuff up and has the jaggedy 'teeth' on the one part of the
scoopy bucket. they used that to rip up the ivy and all of the
topsoil. there wasn't any of it left. they took it all the way down
to the clay and left it like that for all of july, august and a wee bit
into september. of course we ended up having a very rainy summer. the
rain would not soak into their clay, and instead ran off of it taking
clayed-up water into my yard (and also over the wall and into my
basement and off their roof and into my basement as they had yet to do
the drainpipes). slowly my yard began to be poisoned and die off. you
could see that's what was causing it because the grass adjoining their
clay died first, then the rate of destruction pooled out from there.
it was even starting to creep into the yard of my neighbor on the other
side. lucky-for them--by this time it was september and they came in
with more machinery, put down a large load of topsoil and planted
everything was done, my one neighbor's grass managed to repair itself,
the house that was under repair had a beautiful lawn and i had a mud
pit. =( trying having two dogs and mudpit. everytime they go out
and come in, you have to wash their feet with soapy water. i felt like
i was living in some biblical time. it sucked(s).
of 06 we got a fence installed around our mud pit. and then we
waited. i was so upset at the backyard, all the months between then
and now i didn't want to even talk about it. but the last week or so
rick and i have been plotting the mud pit's repair. this time (i think
because he felt bad because i was SO upset) he helped me. hell, he
didn't help me. we WORKED TOGETHER. we spread mulch around certain
portions of the yard--the place where we have the sandbox, around the
perimeter of the fence so i can plant hostas/impatiens and across the
back slope to cut down on the areas we need to concentrate on growing
grass. then we spread manure/hummus mixture, put down seed and a
stareter fertilizer and watered it.
here's how much stuff we moved from the front of house where our element was parked across the street to the backyard:
mulch---- 30 bags at 20lbs each=600 lbs!!
manure---60 bags at 40lbs each=2400 lbs!!!!!
WTF...do you realize we moved 3000lbs of weight by ourselves yesterday? UGH.
clumping around in the backyard yesterday and then taking the dogs for
a walk in the dogpark up the street (as they can't go in the backyard
for a few weeks now) i came back, sat on the front porch and consoled
myself (as done nothing but mourn my old lawn in the back for hours) by
looking at the first flowers that have come up in my front garden.
please keep your fingers crossed that this time when the grass comes up, no one does anything that compromises it.
bday cake will not be a cake.....it will the cream puffs i make,
because rick likes them better and besides i sent this into his office
for today and he's caked out:
not as crooked as it looks. it's not very easy when you are trying to
take the pic and use your legs to fend off overly greedy dogs who are
desperate to jump up and gobble it all up. it's entirely homemade-no
boxed mixes. yellow cake with butter cream icing. the hershey kisses
are the ones with the vanilla creme. =)
Friday after lunch we went to the UFC weigh ins. They were still
free, but what a difference 2 years and 2 years of the ufc reality show
on spike tv makes! This year we were all shown into a portion of the
Nationwide Arena and we watched the weighins from way up high. There
were about 5000 people there. You couldn't talk to any of the
fighters, let alone get any pictures with them. Two years ago there
were only about 100-150 of us at the weighins and there was plenty of
time to get pictures taken. We had our pictures taken with several of
the fighters (even including me with Andre Arlovski!). But because
this entry is going to have lots of pics and to show a contrast these
first two pictures are from the 2005 weighins we went to. The first
one is Rick with Randy Couture--a fighter who fought in 2005 and the
main headliner from this show as well. The second one is Rick with
Dana White, the president of the UFC.
had no good pictures of this year's weigh-ins because we were seated at
an angle not really conducive to pics. This was the best we could get:
before the UFC we headed over to the Columbus convention center to
check out the arnold fest stuff. for those not in the know, the arnold
fest is something that arnold schwartznegger(spelling?) either started
and/or endorsed from early on. it's an event that has a huge
convention like room full of vendors hawking their vitamins, mixes,
supplements, clothes, books,etc. everything pertaining to fitness.
then throughout the convention center there are displays/competitions
in everything from brazilian jiu-jitsu to cheerleading to ping pong to
karate to weightlifting (you get the idea)
was the line to get in the convention. Tickets were $10 a piece. We
waited in line about 15-20 minutes. It was cash only transactions
too! Imagine if it had been credit/debit transactions being allowed as
well! Inside, where the booths are you could hardly move the crowd was
so thick. It was ridiculous. Probably because many pro fighters were
there. We did see Anderson Silva signing autographs and taking pics.
he's a fighter as well:
After a little more than an hour fighting the crowds and actually only
seeing maybe 5-6 booths we finally gave up and went to watch some of
the competitions. But not before snapping a series of pictures of the
weird menwomen hybrids that were walking all over the place. This one
was my favorite, even though it's not a face shot (which is the
scariest part!) because of the gold lame outfit:
wrestlers are fun to take pics of. We went and watched them quite by
accident as they moved into the ring next to the brazilian jiu-jitsu.
This one was the best:
the convention, Rick and I met up with some people he knew and we
headed out for dinner at a restaurant called 'Brothers'. It was
AWFUL. First they told us one of our group couldn't come in because he
was wearing a Philadelphia Eagles jersey. I thought he was joking
because he didn't like the Eagles, but he wasn't. Apparently they have
a policy that no jerseys are allowed in bars and clubs in columbus. I
suppose this is to cut down on fights? This was the first I've ever
heard of this. This wasn't the sort of bar/restaurant that had a dress
code either; there were plenty of people in t-shirts and scruffy pants.
ended up lending his jacket so we could all go in and eat. There were
8 of us, and the biggest tables they had were round, high bar tables
and only seated four. Nonetheless we pushed two together the best we
could and took our seats only to find out that the normal menu wasn't
being used as it was too busy. (it was only half full) We could order
off a menu featuring four things: burger, chicken sandwich, chicken
tenders or a pork sandwich. rick was the only one that ordered the
pork sandwich. they came out 4 minutes later to tell us they were out
of pork! What little food they did have to offer tasted okay, but
overall the whole experience left something to be desired.
we separated from them and went to go get a coffee. We still had over
an hour to kill before we could pick up our tickets from will call and
an hour after that before we could get in. we went to starbucks next
to the nationwide arena only to find that we weren't the only ones with
that idea. The place was crammed with people and the line was 15
deep. (it felt like the one starbucks we went to in nyc once which was
obviously popular with the on-the-way-to-work crowd). First we stood
up to drink our coffee and talk and then space on the window ledge
opened up. Finally we moved to this long hallway that led to the
bathroom. People were sprawled out along the walls, some even
sleeping, waiting for the UFC. We sat down too. I wanted to get a
picture, but we were afraid it might be offensive. Rick joked it was
like being in a refugee camp.
will call, we found the UFC's oldest fan. Later, at the show we saw
her again, only 2 rows back from the octagon! we think now that she
was the grandma of one of the fighters:
starting to fill up.....
time to start!
show had 9 fights altogether. The four undercard fights were good but
not particularly spectucular (in my book) i was sitting next to the
two stupidest men in the arena--i knew more than they did! how often
can a woman say THAT at a sporting event??!!! It was amusing to hear
them talking to each other, utterly clueless. I didn't want to
embarrass them (or be rude) so didn't bother correcting them on their
many, Many mistakes.
the main fights started, i scoped out some celebrities. Here's the
best one. You can see two in the same pic but only one matters. Mmmmm
won his fight and so did Rich Franklin. I was REALLY rooting for
Franklin and was SO GLAD he won. Then the Randy Couture v. Tim Sylvia
fight started. For those who don't know this significance...Randy has
held several titles before. Some time ago, after losing again, he
retired. Tim Sylvia has held the heavyweight title for about a year or
so now. When Randy decided to come out of retirement people laughed
because he was 43 and kind of thought he wasn't so bright because Tim
is only 30. Also, Tim is 6'8ish and 263 lbs. Randy is 6'2 and only
222lbs. But look how good he looks!
the first minute, Randy knocked Tim on his ass and proceeded to
basically beat his ass for five five minute rounds. Randy Couture won
by unanimous (sp??) decision to become the new Heavyweight Champion!!!
We went to the weigh-ins yesterday for the UFC in columbus ohio.
i couldn't get a great pic because rick had the good camera and there
was these giant spotlights on the stage that really messed up my poor
little camera phone:
prior to going to the weighins, we stopped at a little place called
Press Grill to have a bit of lunch. I ordered a hot dog and
mac-n-cheese because i wasn't really in an adventerous mood. they have
weird food here. First, notice the weird bun. It appears to be a
folded slice of bread. It's not. It's an actual bun.
The ketchup is weird too. It's in a bottle about as big as my hand:
But weirdest of all was the mac-n-cheese! Check it out:
we went and saw pan's labyrinth last night. i didn't know what to
expect as i hadn't read a summary on it or viewed a trailer ahead of
pleasantly surprised. they did a good job (i thought) interweaving the
two stories. i enjoyed it a lot. it was nice too, to realize that i
understood at least 70% of the spanish without reading the subtitles.
not bad considering it's been about 8 years since i had reason to use
it. (when in the air force)
louie had a martini list quite comparable to red star tavern. however,
the chocolate covered cherry martini was just that. a chocolate
martini poured over a maraschino (sp?) cherry in the bottom of the
glass that had hershey's syrup on it. =( i don't think they used the
cherry vodka at all. it wasn't bad..but RST has a by far better one.