2.26.2011

The Gallery Project - Foolproof

Since we moved into our place (10 months ago now), I have disliked this massive blank wall.  It's right when you walk in the door to our apartment and it says "Welcome to our stark, uninviting home!  Don't worry though, we randomly put up this star just for you.  Nevermind the fact that it is floating in white-outer-space, all by itself!  Please, come in." 


 YUCK.  I've had this grand idea to make a "gallery" of some of our million frames on this wall for a while.  The Hubby loathes hanging frames.  Especially hanging frames for me, because I have inherited the curse ability from my father to tell if something is even an 1/8" off.  And unless it is fixed, I go nuts (This is coming from someone who has an Excel spreadsheet for her grocery list.  So I'm a slight perfectionist.  No big deal).  (This just made me think of my motto for piano lessons when I was younger: "Practice doesn't make perfect. Perfect practice makes perfect). 

So while the Hubby was completely absorbed in his books and I was feeling adventurous, I decided to tackle the gallery project on my own.  

Plan of Attack:
  • Trace the outline of each frame on paper and cut it out.
  • Measure exactly where the hanger doo-dad sits on the back.  
  • Measure where that exact spot where the nail would need be on the paper cut out, and mark that spot.  
  • Tape the cut outs onto the wall, checking for levelness and making sure everything is evenly spaced.
  • Once perfect, nail the paper onto the walls using the guides previously measured.
  • Remove paper from nails, hang frames on names and presto!  Perfect, foolproof gallery hanging.

I gathered some frames.  My personal standpoint is that you can do either one of two things. (A) You can have all black and white photos in a variety of different colored frames or (B) You can have all the same color frames with both black and white and color photos.  This isn't a rule for the world.  But it's a rule for me.  

Pile of frames?  Check.  Dusty and grimy from sitting in our garage for 10 months?  Check.
Next, I made my plan of attack.  

This was an "on the floor" type project.
Then I grabbed a stack of newspaper.  I positioned each frame in one of the corners and traced around it, being careful to stay consistent with how my marker was angled.  

  

For the first couple of frames, I was measuring and dividing to find the exact place for the center of the frame.  Then I realized - Dope!  It's paper!  Just fold it in half!  So that's what I started doing, just making a hard crease.  

(I'll try to explain this part as best as I can!). With the frame glass side down and the paper still folded, I carefully lined up the edges of my cut-out with the edge of the frame - the folded side should now be in the center of the frame.  Very carefully, I marked exactly where the nail would be placed in the hanger part of the frame.  

See the itty-bitty red mark (thanks orange arrow)?  That's where my nail hole will be.
I made the nail mark into a cross and put a square around it so I wouldn't lose them!  Also, be sure to label which pictures goes with each frame.  Even frames that match aren't necessarily exactly identical.  One tiny difference can throw off the entire gallery.



 Repeat for each frame...


Once all of the frames have a paper cut-out with nail hole placement marked, it's time to tape them to the wall!  Make sure that they are level with even spacing.  The more distance you put between each frame, the less likely you are to notice if they are a bit off center.

Doesn't the sprinkler make a nice decoration?
When you have the placement down, start nailing!


Then, remove all of your paper cut outs, say a quick prayer, and hang up your frames!

Ohhh...you almost got to see a photo of my dreamy Hubby.  Careful cropping wins again!
This was seriously my best frame-hanging experience to date.  I know, I know, it involves a couple of extra steps, but those extra steps meant that I actually LOVE the final result!  Our entryway/hallway is so much more welcoming!  Plus I finally get to use some of our plethora of frames.  


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2.24.2011

Five Minutes (and a comic strip for your giggling pleasure)

copyright 2011 King Features
This Blondie comic was in our Sunday newspaper a couple of weeks ago (yes, we get the Sunday paper.  We are at least 46 years old at heart).  My hubby always immediately grabs the comics (okay - so maybe I'm the one that's 46.  He's 11!).  

It's a funny comic, sure - but that's not why I'm sharing this.  Do any of you feel like this can be startling close to reality some days?  Husband comes homes, exhausted, late at night, after a long day at school/the hospital/wherever, eats, completes mind-numbing time in front of the TV and goes to bed?  

Personally, after not seeing my husband ALL DAY, I like to actually have some of that chit chat for which Dagwood doesn't care. 

That is why the Hubby and I have implemented what we simply call "Five Minutes."  (It's probably rather self-explanatory, but I'll beat the horse dead regardless).  Hubby gets home - instead of immediately going to his desk and diving into studying or shutting off his brain and watching TV or staring directly down at his dinner without talking, his mind completely elsewhere, we have our Five Minutes.  Just five minutes to tell each other about our days.  High points and low points.  How that exam went.  Funny stories.  Things that were frustrating.  

Is it actually five minutes, kitchen timer and all?  No.  Of course not - it's just what we call it.  Sometimes it's more like two minutes.  Sometimes it's fifteen.  Do we always do it RIGHT when Hubby walks in the door?  No.  Sometimes he tells me that he can't do Five Minutes - that his brain is still running hard on medicine and he wouldn't be able to focus yet.  And I respect that.  I don't go pout and stomp my feet and say "Pay attention to ME, your WIFE, not just MEDICINE, your JOB," even if that's what I want to do.  

Our Five Minutes works for us.  What works for you?

2.20.2011

Physical Exam, Part 1

Hubby's been learning the art of physical examination this semester, so we have been practicing what he's learned.  I always wonder at times like this, what does a medical student without a spouse do to learn things like this?  I guess if they have a roommate, they could practice on them.  But what if they live alone?  Call up a friend, invite them over,  then ask if they can examine them?  I mean, a physical exam is not super enjoyable.  I probably wouldn't volunteer to do it more than once, except, of course, for my hubby.  Man - I feel like med school would stink without a spouse!  (Of course, maybe it would rock. What do I know?).

Without further ado: The step-by-step process of a physical examination, when given by a learning medical student. 

Scenario: Wife is seating on the exam table /kitchen barstool, wearing her hospital gown/ bathrobe (yes, backwards), when Dr. Hubby enters the room/turns around and says "Okay, you ready?"

1. All physical exams begin with the relationship/flow part of the physical exam.  Hubby introduces himself to me, and I, naturally, give him the most random name I can think of.  (It would probably be even more humorous if I use the name of someone we know.  I'm going to try that tonight). After asking if I am comfortable (I always tell him I am much too cold), he begins the physical exam. 

2.  Vitals - blood pressure and pulse. No matter how quickly he does it, I always end up with very tingly fingers.  It might be because he likes to take it twice, to make sure he did the readings correctly.  Which, while he does read them correctly, they are never technically correct.  My blood pressure is always around 90 over 48 on his cuff.  (I'm no doctor, but I think that's knock-knock-knocking on heaven's door).  This is because I have what the hubby affectionately calls "chicken arms" and I actually need a pediatric cuff to correctly fit me.  Please, don't judge.  I realize I should probably do some push-ups right now. 

3. Eyes.  The hubby inspects the outside, then watches how my pupils dilate, does the "H" pattern thing, and then tries to make me go cross-eyed (which doctors apparently call convergence), something that I literally cannot do.  (We googled what it may mean if someone's eyes don't converge.  Theories are all related to head injuries, which I've never had.  Unless my mother dropped me as a baby and never told me...Mom??).    

3a.  This is my least favorite part.  Hubby uses his ophthalmoscope, darkens the room, and blinds me.  It is terrible.  My eyes literally begin to water just thinking about it.  (Please note that I have been to the eye doctor once in my life - many, many years ago).  But I think my tolerance for being blinded by the light has finally began to increase - the hubby finally saw my optic disk!  (This was a Very Big Deal to the hubby).  For the remainder of the exam, I sit in a slight daze, watching the florescent, mystical, magical shapes floating in front of my eyes...

4. Right - where were we? Ears.  Hubby just looks at the outside and inside of my ears.  He tells me I have very clean ears.  Just fyi.

5. Nose. Basically the same thing as the ears.  (It's a little gross that the hubby sees my boogies all lit up, but oh well.  Whatever it takes to help him learn). This is also when he checks my sinuses.

6. Mouth. Open wide and say "Ahhh!"  Also, he looks at my tongue, lips, gingiva (which is a very fun word), etc. 

7. Lymph nodes.  Lots of palpating (definition: to touch or feel) of random places on head and neck.  I had a swollen one a couple days ago, but no worries - my daily physical exams have shown that it has gone away.  

8. Thyroid.  I never have enough saliva to swallow every time.  Basically, the hubby palpates my neck - I mean, my thyroid - while I swallow.

7. Posterior Thorax and Back.  More palpating.  "Is this tender?  How about this?  Here?"  Followed be a few minutes of percussion (definition: to strike.  He does it nicely, don't worry).  I just pretend I'm getting a back massage. Hubby did inform me of a moderate curvature in my spine.  Interesting. 

That's only 3.5 of the 8 pages total that lay out the "Guide to the Core Physical Exam," so this is definitely to be continued! 

I don't know what the hubby has learned, but here is the summary of the things that I have learned from my daily/twice-daily physical exams:
  • I have child-sized arms (I may have known this, but not accepted it).
  • My eyes are ridiculously sensitive to bright lights being shone directly into them, and I will cry off all eye makeup before my right eye exam is complete. 
  • Sometime my lymph nodes randomly swell, but subside within a few days without me ever becoming sick.  
  • I think I have a shortage of saliva. 
  • At some point in time, I suffered a head injury (which I can't recall) that affects the ability of my eyes to converge.  
  • There is a more-than-slight curvature in my spine.  Hubby took a video of it with his phone, tracing the outline of my spine.  It's actually pretty sweet.  Except the whole fact that it's my spine, curving. 
That's only 3.5 of the 8 pages total that lay out the "Guide to the Core Physical Exam," so this is definitely to be continued! 

Spoiler alert: any posting that takes place tomorrow will likely be griping about the weather.  You've been warned.

2.17.2011

Damask Mouse Pad [aka the easiest project ever]

Did I ever tell you the story about how the hubby and I got each other one of the same gifts for Christmas?  Same gift, from the same store, while it was on the same sale?  I don't think I did.  But....we did.   A wireless mouse.  From Target.  On sale, for $12.99.  We are practical nerds awesome like that.  

Also, if you remember, I refinished my dinosaur desk and put a piece of tempered glass on the top.  Glass + optical mouse without a mouse pad = a mouse that won't squeak..er..work.  So finally, almost two months later, I set out to make a mouse pad so I could actually use my mouse.  Photoshop is a pain in the butt using a laptop's touchpad, y'all.  I toyed with the idea of making and ordering a photo mouse pad from somewhere online, but decided that there had to be a better (read: cheaper) way.  

Enter: Peltex 72F Double-Sided Fusible Ultra Firm Stabilizer.  Double-sided-what-a-what?  Basically, it's thick stuff that you sandwich between two layers of fabric, iron it, and viola!  Your fabric sticks together and is ultrafirm.  

This was probably the easiest project ever.  I got a quarter yard of the stabilizer (the stabilizer is only 20" long from the bolt, so the piece I had was roughly 9"x20"...enough for two mouse pads).  The instructions come wrapped around the bolt, so if you're thinking of attempting this, make sure you get the full directions!


I also got a 1/4 yard of pretty damask fabric.   



All I did was cut out a 9.25" square of the stabilizer, and two 9.5" squares of the damask fabric.  (The larger patterned fabric meant that I wouldn't have to line it all up exactly right). Following the directions from the stabilizer, I fused/ironed it all together.  After that, I used a 9" square of cardboard as a template to cut out the finished product.

Can you tell that my ironing board has to be set up in my kitchen?  There's not enough room to open it in our laundry room/pantry/bat cave.
Seriously, this was about a 20 minute project, including the time for the iron to heat up. 


The finished product!  The only thing to consider doing differently would be using pinking shears to cut out the final product...I'm hoping that it will be so fused together that the fabric won't fray, but more than likely I'll be taking this over to my parents' house to do a quick trim with my mom's shears!  


Another cute idea?  Using a different fabric for the top and bottom...a reversible mouse pad!  Or maybe a circle mouse pad??  Oohhh the possibilities :)

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2.16.2011

Beautiful Berries

While my hubby loved our Valentine's dinner (Coq au Vin - ala Life of a Doctor's Wife), he loved our dessert more.  

 
Gorgeous, no?  I got them from a little cafe called Vanilla's.  Best part?  I got a Groupon a couple of days before for 50% off the normal price: a dozen chocolate covered berries for $6!  I had already been planning on making these for Valentine's Day, but for that price it wasn't worth the dirty dishes!  Thank you Vanilla's & Groupon!

2.15.2011

Cinnamon Baked Oatmeal Recipe

Oatmeal is sooooooo good for us, right?  Right.  Too bad I absolutely, 100% hate the texture of oatmeal.  Oatmeal cookies - those I can handle.  Warm, mushy, gushy oatmeal?  Not at all. 

But I have a friend Anne, who is in my bible study, and she brought the most delicious oatmeal one morning.  I wasn't going to try it, because I normally loathe oatmeal *that* much, but it was dairy free, so I had to.   

Best. Decision. Ever. 

I got the recipe from her, and want to share it with you!  The hubby and I just call it "Anne's Oatmeal," so I had to give it a name...

Cinnamon Baked Oatmeal
Ingredients
½ cup cinnamon applesauce (this is the same size as a single-serving cup. Convenient!)
1/3 cup sweetener (honey, sugar or agave)
2 eggs (or 4 eggs if you want it to be more custard-like...aka mushy!)
1 cup milk (almond milk is perfect)
½ tsp. salt
1 Tbsp. baking powder
3 cups instant oats (or regular oats - either work!)
½ cup dried cranberries (or dry fruit of choice)
½ tsp. of cinnamon (or more according to taste)
1-2 Tbsp. brown sugar
Chopped walnuts (optional)
You probably have most of this in your pantry right now!

Directions
1. Mix applesauce and sweetner until blended. Add in eggs, milk, salt and baking powder; combine. Stir in oats and cranberries. [optional: stir in some extra cinnamon if desired]. Pour into a greased pie pan and sprinkle the cinnamon and brown sugar on top. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

Goodnight, cinnamon baked oatmeal!  See you in the morning! 

2. Next morning: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Sprinkle chopped nuts over top and bake for 25-35 minutes until set. Serve with brown sugar, honey and cinnamon as desired.

Post-baking.  It doesn't last long - thought it is enough to feed 4 people breakfast).
So there you have it!  It is delicious and nutritious and tastes just as good for dessert as it does for breakfast...much less mushy oatmeal - much more oatmeal cookie!

Oh, and just because I really do this:

What is that a picture of, you ask?  That's how I crush my walnuts to use in breads, pancakes, and now Cinnamon Baked Oatmeal!  Nuts in Ziplock, underneath washcloth, and smash with plastic cup!  Such a grown-up, I know. 
See this recipe featured on It's a Keeper! 
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2.13.2011

An odd combination of terrified and excited

Currently, I am an odd combination of terrified and excited.  In just a little while, we are heading to church to meet our new small group bible study.  

We go to a fairly large church (which I'll call ABC), but they seriously try to stay away from feeling like a large church.  Who wants to go to a church where they don't know anyone?  That's what a church is - a body of people.  The church we attended in college was just that - a mega-church with more celebrity status and less feeling of belonging.  Our current church, however, stresses the importance of being connected through volunteering, small groups and other means. We've been attending for about a year and a half, and pastor that performed our wedding ceremony is from ABC.  The hubby and I volunteered for quite a while in the children's ministry.  Once wedding season rolled around last summer though, that quickly became impossible.  Now, every time that small groups are brought up, the hubby and I shrug it off, saying we don't possibly have the time.  

But.  After realizing how few "couple friends" we have in the area who share our beliefs, morals and standards....and after some loving coaxing from our pastor :) ....we bit the bullet and signed up.  Tonight, ABC is having an event called "Community Connection," where we are going to be introduced to our small group.  We'll be doing a 6-8 week study, and when that study is over, we will have the option to stay with the group, or to opt out guilt-free (hopefully!).   

So why am I terrified?  I'm terrified that we'll be with people not our age - that they will be substantially older than us.  I'm worried they will all have kids (babies are great - but there is a huge difference between marriage pre-kids and post-kids.  We just don't want all of our discussions to end up going back to children and issues related to them).  I'm hoping that they won't all live really far away from us (we drive a half an hour to church, so this is quite feasible....if they live a half an hour in the other direction....).  I am worried they will judge us, either for hubby being a student, or placing us into the typical medical sterotypes.  I am concerned in general, because I tend to be introverted around new people and can be very shy and quiet, which some people can take for rude or standoffish.  

That all being said, I am also pretty excited to meet the group.  Some groups have smashing success and are all life-long friends, who go on trips together and hang out together and laugh together and cry together.  That's what I want.  But even if we just meet a couple or two who are in a similar place in life to us, that would be wonderful.  

So hopefully it goes well tonight and we are a good mesh with our group, because I don't think I can handle eight weeks of discussing potty training and baby weaning.  (Can you tell my major concern???).  If you read this in the next three hours, your prayers are appreciated!

2.12.2011

This is not what it appears to be


I know what these look like.  They look like flowers for Valentine's Day.  It looks like somebody broke the "no-flowers-on-Valentine's-Day" rule.  But you're sadly mistaken.   These indeed are not Valentine's flowers. 

Hubby gets home last night.  I'm in the kitchen, and as soon as he walks in, I hear that plastic-crinkly noise that only the wrapping on a bouquet makes.  Immediately, I'm ready to admonish the hubby for buying me something for Valentine's Day.  But before I can even get the words formed, he beats me to the punch.

"I know what you're thinking: These are NOT for Valentine's Day.  These are because you are an amazing wife, and it's been a really tough semester.  I'm so grateful for you."

What wife could even begin to pretend to be upset after that?



Beautiful.  Love my husband oh-so-much!  Hope you all enjoy your weekend!

2.10.2011

Cake Truffles

As soon as I saw these, I couldn't stop thinking about them.


Aren't they adorable and so scrumptious-looking?  Sarah over at Sweet and Savory by Sarah created these little beauties using boxed cake mix and a can of frosting!  Who would have thought??  And how cute would these be at a baby shower instead of the traditional cake? 

I seriously am anticipating a little kitchen adventure this weekend.  A baker of sweets, I am not, but I think these might be just the occasion to pretend to be!  It will take a lot of tweaking to make them dairy-free, but I have a feeling it will be 100% worth it! 

Valentine's Art - Just for you!

Here are some goodies for you to print: my Valentine's Day Subway Art, originally shown here.  It's in four colors to match (almost) any decor :)  Just click on the link below each picture to download the file, and you'll be linked to the image at my box.net site (note: this is my first time trying to do this - if it doesn't work for you please let me know!!).



 Pinks 
(this one is for you specifically for you, Amanda C!)


The words are sized to a 5x7" print, so I just printed it on cardstock, cut it out to 8x10" size and placed it in the frame, giving it a matted look. 


Hopefully you can find somewhere cute to put these! 

In other exciting news, there is a chance that we might break freezing next week.  It hasn't been above 33 degrees since New Years Day!  That would be great, considering it felt like -7 with the windchill this morning.  Here's to hoping! 

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2.08.2011

Fiddling

The hubby's got a little bit of a fiddling habit.  He fiddles.  He's a fiddler.  (We're not talking the instrument, here, folks).  He is constantly playing with his wedding band.  Twists it around his finger.  Takes it off, then puts it on.  Bounces it on a notebook.  Takes it off puts it on.  Rolls it across the table.  Spins it on the desk.  Takes it off puts it on.  Drops it on the floor.  Takesitoffputsitontakesitoffputsitontakesitoffputsiton.  You get the picture.  He claims that it's just because he's so not used to wearing "man jewelry," but going on nine months of ring-wearing, the validity of that excuse is waning.   

His sweet and intelligent wife is always telling him gently reminding him that he should probably not do that, since he might lose it someday.  It would really be much safer if the ring just stayed on the finger.  Now he doesn't have some high-value ring, but it is (of course) highly sentimental.  We specifically chose a manly material (aka will not scratch even if you take a pair of tin snips to it), and it happened to be a really cost-effective manly material.  But nevertheless, I don't want the hubby to lose his wedding ring.

Scenario:  Hubby is at school, in lecture.  The lecture halls are set up theater-style, and he's sitting midway up one of the rows.

Beginning of the story: Hubby is fiddling with his wedding band. 

Middle of the story: Hubby drops his wedding band, and down it goes!

Climax of the story:  Clink.....clink......clink.......clink....it bounces all the way down each of the steps of the lecture hall right up to the front row.  Hubby doesn't know what to do - stand up, walk down to the front, and search for his ring?  Try to get someone's attention in the front to find it for him? [How - passing a note ala 5th grade?  Wadding up a piece of paper and throwing it at someone, also ala 5th grade?].  Leave it there until the lecture is over, and hope no one kicks it somewhere he can't find it? 

End of the story: Luckily, the lecturer was being telecasted in from the other campus, so hubby just discreetly (I hope!) got the attention of the guy whose feet the symbol of our marriage was under, told him that no, he's not looking for a pen, actually, it's a wedding ring...and has med-school-friend pass it back up to him.  

Did he learn his lesson?  Should I take a picture of him, mid-study session at his desk, ring securely on his hand?  

I'd love to...but....:)

2.06.2011

Dear Superbowl:

Dear Superbowl:
You're lovely and all for a few measly hours of our viewing pleasure, but how many people in the world could we feed with the cost of just ONE of your 3 million dollar, 30-second long commercials? How many people could we feed if we combined the cost of all 100+ commercials that air during the game? Just wondering.
Love,
Disgusted-by-how-we-all-live-our-lives MJ

2.05.2011

The Lovey Dovey Wreath Tutorial

Over a week has passed since making it, and I am still completely enamored with my heart-shaped, felt-ruffled, lovey dovey wreath!  It is so simple to make that I would love it if you would make one too.  No house is ready for Valentine's Day without one!


To make it, you will need somewhere around $7 to buy your supplies (slightly more if you don't have any straight pins or a scrap of ribbon...which I'm assuming most people do!) and about two hours of time (aka pop in your favorite chick flick the perfect amount of time to watch a documentary).  

Supplies:  
  • 3/4 yard of felt - I know, it seems like a ton!  But really, you will pretty much use it all.  
  • 1 foam wreath form - My heart-shaped one measures 10" from top to bottom point.  If yours is larger, consider buying more felt!  This would also be super cute as an everyday wreath, using a regular circle wreath form.
  • Straight pins.  About 200.
  • Something that is round and 3" in diameter for you to trace circles around (I used a can of soup).
  • A piece of ribbon to hang your wreath
  • Sharp scissors.
  • A marker.
  • Optional: Form of entertainment (ie: chick flick) and glass of wine.
Isn't my glittery red wreath pretty?  It was the only one that Hob Lob had.
To get started...Lay your felt out and start tracing around your can of peas/drinking glass/whatever you are using that is 3" across.  Utilize your fabric by keeping your circles tight together.  Keep tracing. 

When you get sick of tracing, start cutting them out.  And then trace some more.  Then cut some more.  Way more than you think you could ever possibly need.

That's probably about half of what I used total, and I thought it would be enough for the whole thing before I started pinning!  I ended up using somewhere around 200 felt circles.  It kind of takes forever, but I mean, really, it's not difficult and takes zero mental energy.  Just zone out, trace and cut!

Ready to start assembling?  Okay, take your first circle, and fold it in half.
Note to self: Paint fingernails before taking photos to put on blog.
Then, fold it in half again:
 

Take one of your straight pins and poke it right through the tip of the corner, through all four layers of fabric:

And then put it onto your wreath!

Just move the felt "petals" around, spin them, fluff them up, open them up, whatever you need to do to make them look good! 


Keep doing this over and over and over until your wreath fills up.  Note that you don't need to put them on the back of the wreath, but be sure to get them far enough around on the sides that you can't see the form peeking through.

And then, viola! 
Your beautiful, lovely, lovey-dovey wreath is complete!  Hang it with a piece of ribbon, stand back and admire.

(Then clean up all of the little scraps of felt you left all around your cutting area!)

Let me know if you try it out!

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2.04.2011

$10 Dealpulp Credit for $1!

If you haven't signed up for Deal Pulp yet, this is the day to do it!  Everyone gets a $5 credit to use on a future deal when they sign up for the website.  Today's deal?  $10 worth of Deal Pulp Credit for $1!  So if you haven't signed up yet, you can have $15 dollars of credit (which you only pay $1 for!) to use on the next awesome deal!


This is the site I got a $10 Target.com gift card for $2 through....recently, they've had deals for designer sunglasses, gourmet desserts and magazine subscriptions.  

It's a great site - I totally recommend signing up for Deal Pulp today, and buying the $10 credit for $1!  It's available to purchase through tomorrow (Saturday!).

2.02.2011

Snowy snow day

So the meteorologists were (pretty much) right.  Granted, we were supposed to be in a blizzard warning until 7pm tonight, and we were already lowered to a winter weather advisory by this morning...It hasn't been snowing for a few hours now.  The official measurement was 16" of fresh powder at our airport, so I guess they were a little closer than my prediction of 5-7 inches.  It was so incredibly windy though, and we have drifts to prove it!

The hubby and I ventured outside after lunch, to snap a few photos (me) and to shovel out our cars (him).  Sorry about the terrible quality of what follows.  It was freezing, my hand was basically numb the second I took off my glove, and I just had my little point and shoot.  I think I was only outside for about two minutes total!

Here's our entryway into our building.  It's a covered walkway, but look at how much drifted underneath!

(Don't mind my rabbit skin hat ala Elmer Fudd.  The wind was so bitter!)  The complex had snow blown out a path along our garage doors, so I'm standing on the pavement behind the drift.  Up to my waist!  (I'm 5'7" for perspective...) 

Promise not to notice how disgusting my car is.  I have an irrational fear of car washes and I refuse to go in one alone.  There's the drift by my car - 21 inches of fluffy stuff for the hubby to shovel out :)

But the funny thing is, since it was so windy, there was absolutely no snow on top of my car!  Just a bit on the hood was all...
  
That's our garage...the hubby's car is nice and warm, tucked away inside.

And there's our garage door drift.  The hubby cleaned out ours and our neighbors.  Because he's so sweet!  What a workout...

So all in all....I don't think we quite needed the mad panic and all of the BLIZZARD 2011!!?!!!?!? hysteria, but we did get a pretty good amount.  Everything in the city was closed today.  And the best part?  That the hubby and I had a snow day together.  It actually just totally feels like a Saturday today - hubby studying, me cooking, cleaning and crafting.  I think I'm going to be mighty confused when the alarm goes off tomorrow morning!

Also: I researched.  This is only the third time in the history of the hubby's school that they've had a snow day - the last time was in 1978!