Friday, December 31, 2010

Oh Vacation You Are So Beautiful To Me

Okay I like my job, but let's just be honest a much needed vacation every once in awhile is so, so nice. Although I still have a hard time turning my organizing little brain off. Maybe I'll make that a new year's resolution: stop and smell the roses!!

So thanks to some abnormally warm weather in t-town, we've been busy. Okay Spencer's been busier than me, but I helped :). The roof is done on the shed!

Thanks to a coworker of mine who had an ancient compressor and nail gun the job was not quite so miserable, but still roofing by floodlights since the sun goes down at five is not fun, okay I'm postulating here since I never actually did any roofing haha. All I ever did was cook dinner or buy joe mammas for the troops :).

Here's where my part came in: the cleanup! So yesterday it was a balmy 65 degrees in Tulsa, so we went to work on all the shingles and decking and random pieces of wood that were all over the yard. (See I'm really not so good at chilling on my vacation days haha). We took a load over to the dump, which by the way those people have made a couple hundred bucks off us during this whole process! Who knew it was 30 bucks to dump shingles! Something about their weight makes it more expensive to haul off. haha probably TMI :)

So after a couple hours of clean up and listening to blitzy bark at the broom in the shed ;) here's the progress! Okay I know it looks like an abandoned building with an oddly new roof, but it's all winterized in case Tulsa decides to ever enter the winter season this year :). And the yard is almost entirely free of shingles! I have a little more work to do in the corner, but that's by the crazy neighbor dog and I was getting tired haha.

So we also bought this book for Christmas called The Backyard Homestead for my sister since she's about to learn how to run a small scale farm. We loved looking at the book so much we bought ourselves a copy and I think I've almost read the whole thing already, well apart from the chapter on raising your own livestock haha I do live in the city thank you very much. But anyway it tells you how to use your quarter of an acre (which we actually have thanks to our corner lot!) to grow thousands of lbs of veggies and plant fruit trees and nut trees and have chickens ha not so sure about that one yet, but who knows maybe I'll raise chickens someday. One of our neighbors has them! Anyway so I might be asking around for veggie recipes this summer when I get tired of sauteeing them ;).

Alright so I'm bound and determined to make a list of resolutions, mostly just because I like to make myself dream big about what could happen in the next year :). We'll see what crazy things I come up with for 2011. Last year's list had get a dog on it and what do you know? haha we have a dog! And she is losing teeth haha. Spencer stepped on one this morning!

Okay just some mini highlights from vacation:

- seeing the fam, playing speed scrabble, drinking two cups of double shot before eating on Christmas morning (talk about distracted!), catching up with highschool friends, meeting possible future spouses :)

- seeing the other side of the fam, eating thai cafe, seeing evelyn!!! haha and shane and sherry in aspen coffee shop (the smallness of stillwater never ceases to amaze me), getting a kitchenaid mixer!!! haha I feel like a real housewife now, too bad I still have to go to work every day instead of staying home and baking haha please read sarcasm into that ;)

- hanging out at home in t-town, cleaning the yard, playing with our puppy, drinking topeca coffee and not having to rush because I'm on an impromptu break from work, getting our 8000 dollar home owners tax credit finally!!! woo hoo!!!!

I love vacation!!!!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Breaking the China

Okay make that breaking the china in. I know I just ended a sentence with a preposition. So you know how you register for china when you get married? And then you wonder when am I going to use this?! I mean I'd love to use it at thanksgiving but I only have six sets of it and we had 12 people. And I'm sorry but mixing and matching fiesta ware and china is not my style :). So we decided why not just break it in on a random wednesday night with some friends?

So I got all set up for our fancy meal with our neighbors David and Kat and our other neighbors the lovely gelzergovatoses who also live less than half a mile away from us. And no we don't have a weird neighborhood click, sometimes we just like eating together :). Ha I just realized Blitzy is in the background of this picture.

So I slaved away for hours on end in the kitchen to make a lovely dinner to match the occasion of using our wedding china for the first time.

And yep did you guess it? We had take out pizza. And we broke out the cyrstal glasses and filled them full of yep you guessed it, okay maybe not, miller high life and dr. pepper. What can I say we are just that classy :).
And in case you've been worrying about our poor little dog out in the cold, suffering on these long windy lonely nights you can STOP your worrying. She loves her little dog house, and she loves her wood shavings. Now we call her our little gerbel dog because she smells like a gerbel all the time!!! Only problem is she does not love it when we hang out in the house without her. She is such a whiny baby sometimes! Always wanting to hang out with us ;). Dogs are definitely good for your self esteem.

There you go Alisha :). It was a little later than the weekend, but it was close!!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

'Tis the Season

'Tis the season for tearing down roofs and littering the yard with nails.

'Tis the season for building up dog pens so your 4 month dog doesn't jump a four foot fence.

'Tis the season for teaching your 4 month old dog how to "shake" guys it's about the cutest thing. Ever. You should come and see.

Oh yeah and 'Tis the season for Christmas!! And Sufjan Stevens' version of Come Thou Fount! And the smell of a freshly (I know I'm romantizing here haha considering we shop at Lowe's) cut Christmas trees and garlands. And a million Christmas parties. And spiked apple cider. And leaf candles. And pizza and china. More on that later :).

So yeah Spencer's been hard at work on the shed. All the demo work is done, and he's replaced most of the beams already. Then we had a crew from TU come and help us last weekend which was AWESOME. They had been doing habitat for humanity all semester long on Saturdays and were done with the habitat house for the semester so they came and helped us!! They got all the decking done on one side!! All while I laid in bed and was lazy okay actually I had the stomach flu, I would have much rather been roofing than well you can guess. They said they might be able to come this weekend too! So our job for the week is to clean up as much of the torn down roof and shingles and beams as possible so they can work on the other side of the decking.

Here you go: the lovely decking on one side. I'd take pictures during the day but it is always dark these days, I guess 'tis the season for gloominess. Ha no I do not hide my emotions well.

Okay I was trying to get a picture of Spencer's awesome beam cutting handiwork, but it's not the best shot. These are all wood pieces he cut to size with his myriad of tools :). Good thing he knows how to use them all!

Oh yes and Blitzy likes to help too. Ha actually she cries the whole time we work on it because she wants to be part of the action and we don't want her stepping on nails so we put her in the pen instead of letting her out. So then once the work is over and we let her out, where does she go? Yep you guessed it, sniffing around the nail ridden, dust infested shed. Oh well :).

The lovely temporary sky light on the side that isn't decked yet.

Okay this is our giant puppy. And we love her so we had to put a pic of her up. She's already 40 lbs!!! And did we mention she does shake now? :)

Okay so on to other news, we've been decorating for Christmas!! I still need something for the top shelf, but for now this'll have to do :). I'm just excited to be getting to put up all the decorations in our new house!! Okay we had it last Christmas but you might recall last Christmas all it was, was a bunch of studs, so that's not so fun to decorate :).

And of course the Christmas tree!!

Okay I'm getting tired, so the pizza and china story will have to wait for tomorrow :). Okay probably more like this weekend haha.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Mission Accomplished!

Okay so my mission, which I chose to accept, was to NOT ruin a turkey, and to feed 12 hungry Hellmans and Schaffners. Actually I guess 13 if we count Blitzkrieg. Wow could we be more German HA. Soooooooo it actually turned out: ta da my first ever turkey!

I'd like to thank my mom who helped me know what all to put in the bag for a more flavorful turkey, and my sisters for helping me determine what all the random guts were that were inside the turkey (I had no idea it came with the neck!) and my husband for putting it in the pan (it was HEAVY) and my dog for not eating it, although she did keep jumping up and putting her paws on the counter trying to get a good look at it :). Oh Rach for reminding me that having Spencer cut the turkey was so 1940's gender roles or something like that :). So pretty much all the cooking went according to plan, except for one thing! I waaaaay overestimated how much food people would be eating. Probably due to the fact that we all ate 40 million sausage balls prior to the actual meal :). So I probably have enough leftovers to feed a small army! So umm whoever lives in Tulsa and is hungry come get it!

So a few other random notes about the preparations: the shelves did get painted in time to grace the walls for Tday. I think they turned out pretty good for amateurs :). I didn't quite get them all decorated in time for thanksgiving though, apparently you have to buy thanksgiving decorations more than a week in advance, all the stores had already switched over to Christmas decorations!!! But everyone agreed, the trees look much better on the white shelves vs. just hanging in a row on the wall looking awkward :).

Also we made a little make shift give thanks board! This was a definite Schaffner tradition that I just thought was worth continuing (along with the making butter, umm see facebook for these pics apparently I didn't have time to take pics while cooking haha). So here you go our thanks board! Let's see I'm not even sure what all is on it, but it was pretty entertaining :). I think "The Road Less Traveled By" made it on there along with "post nuclear america" and "my exercise ball being deflated" and "metaphysical mulligans" gotta love those english major siblings, always making for a good time :).

So besides the actual Tday festivities, we also hit up the local coffee shop for breakfast one morning. Okay actually Spencer and I went there three mornings in a row and got called loyal customers aka we spend way to much money on 4 dollar lattes. Side note, I'm reading book on alleviating poverty/healthy ways to help the poor (When Helping Hurts). 40% of the world lives on less than $2 dollars a day. So basically my iphone bill alone is what 40% of the world lives off in a month. Something to chew on. So back to thanksgiving ;). My sister enjoying her lovely Topeca coffee while contemplating umm her lovely Topeca coffee :).

Also we hit up Elotes for luchadora fighting!! Again random pic of Rach :). It was pretty much the most ridiculous thing ever. They even have a real wrestling ref there just to make sure it doesn't get out of hand!! Umm you should just check it out I don't know how to really describe it, it's just ridiculous. Think Nacho Libre but with real live people who get paid ha probably not, probably just doing it for the love of the game :).

Alright welll pretty much I love my family, both halves of it, the blondes and the brunnettes haha. The okies and the TEXANS just had to throw that in there ;). And I loved having you all here. So pretty much you should move here and be my neighbors so I have someone to eat all my leftovers. Oh and Alisha you can be in my family too, for the record :).
Oh only sad note was our neighbors were missing from the party!! They made it on the thanks board too :).

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Long Awaited Day!!!

Okay I know you've all been waiting for this . . . . the spare bedroom is getting a door!!!! Okay you can stop holding your breath now :). We finally found a 31 and 3/4 inch door at the restore today. Acccctually I found it! It was unmarked and I thought what the heck I'll measure it just for kicks and it worked! All Spencer had to do was shave a little off the edges so it'd fit in our slightly crooked door frame, gotta love good old houses with no real straight edges. So all you who are visiting for Thanksgiving or just driving in from Arkansas or wherever you can now shut the door to your room :). Oh and the best part it was five dollars!!!

Spencer and his I'm oh so happy to finally find a door face :).

Check out the mess from shaving it down to size!

On another note we've been building some floating shelves for the dining room. And when I say we I really mean we this time! I learned to use the table saw to make all the cuts I needed for the framing. Then I did a bunch of screwing together of all the pieces with Spencer's help. It's hard to hold two pieces of wood and screw them together with only two hands!

Then we did a bunch of nailing and I filled all the holes and the cracks in the wood with wood filler which was also new to me. I know I'm learning so much!

And then I sanded my little heart out to get this nice smoth finish over the edges. Now all there is to do is wait till the wood filler dries and then paint them! Oh and then hang the frames on the wall, put the shelves on the frames, and then decide what to put on them :). The plan is something thanksgivingy haha.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Mass Mayhem and a Little Philly

So Spencer said he was going to work on the shed and then crazy little things started happening. Like these red boxes started appearing all over the back of the house. Translation: more expensive, necessary (up to interpretation haha) tool buying.

And the back room started looking like this (okay actually it was already looking pretty crazy and getting a giant dog crate didn't help but now it's even crazier!!).

And then I left for Philly and the came back to this!! Half the roof off the shed and our yard looking like it got hit by a tornado! I think we were just read to see some more mass destruction at the "Hell" House! It'd been clean and tidy (ha what an exaggeration) for too long! So here we go, round too of reno here we come. Except this one we are actually doing ourselves!

Okay so confession, so far it's been Spencer and David doing all the work, I've just been asking much all the beams and roofing materials are going to cost. I know I'm so helpful ;). But I promised I'd do the one the ground clean up. I am waaay to clumsy to get up on that roof! So looks like I've got a few days of shingle clean up coming up :).

So on another note: PHILLY!!

Hahah so this was our first stop thanks to the iPhone GPS which told us to get off the train . . . and then back on the same train . .. forty five minutes later! So first I fell on my butt after trying to sit on my suitcase and then we spent forty five minutes talking to a Conoco refinery worker who told us all the good places to go in Philly.

After getting back on the train, we headed to our sweet hotel which happened to be across the street from City Hall. Ta Da! Thanks to hotwire this was the view from our suite! Complete with a little kitchen and a maid to load the dishwasher for us if we were feeling lazy for the day. Man I love vacation :).
The next day it was off to hit up the historical sites (sorry no pictures I've already been here twice haha) and then off to south street to see the crazy shops.

Case in point. No explanation needed. And no I did not go inside haha, but it was intriquing haha. Then it was off to the italian market and the other market that was inside the convention center where we got all the fixings for Mexican!! Gluten free for Alisha ;). Looks like we cook the same things in Tulsa, the StL and Philly. Yumm!

On that note we also get really good coffee everywhere we go. Or at least try to. We had some really bad starbucks while trying to hunt down good coffee. But we did manage to find some yummy coffee across the street from the haunted house! Oops getting out of order haha.

First we went to church at 10th pres! And heard Sinclair Ferguson about Christ being the worship leader in a pretty sweet old church!

Then we hit up the metro which put us waaaay far away from the art museum so we took a little scenic walk and saw our next home. HA. In case you can't read it, it says "A Community of Presby's Inspired Life." Umm yes who knows what that means but I feel like I'm leaving a pretty inspired life haha.

After a lovely walk and a lovely time reading by the scoocool river (okay wrong spelling but that's what it sounds like haha) we hiked back to our hotel and then hopped in a cab to the Eastern State Penitentiary for a haunted house! Woo Hoo :). Yes I like being spooked!!

The next morning it was off to the top of City Hall where we decided to be five and leave grafitti in the dust coating the walls at the top. Hope the building security isn't reading this haha.

We also got some lovely orange "I'm a tourist" sticker which was our badge to get through security to the top. We promptly removed them after taking our cheesy "I'm a tourist" picture at the top :).
I love girl vacations!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

On hold . . .

Okay so I'm on hold with the IRS right now trying to figure out why we never got our first time home buyer credit. Probably because I sent them more construction documents than anyone would ever care to look at. Oh well! So in the mean time I thought I'd do a little blogging.

So let's see what have we been doing lately? Here's just some bullet points for fun :).

- Went to the TU homecoming game and wished we were still in college with everything within walking distance and no mortgage payment ;)

- We're trying to get blitzy to not freak out when we put her back in her pen. We literally have to pick her up and put her inside the fence, which is only going to work for so long considering she is already heavy! At only 10 weeks old! Looks like we are going to have a beast on our hands before long :).

- Had dinner with some TU kids and chatted all about life and getting married while in school and the trials and joys of campus ministry and realized that we really have shared alot of life with our good old neighbors D and K which just made us happy. Side note, it's a little weird to be the "old" married people feeding college kids. I don't feel that old!

- Went to the OSU vs. Nebraska game. Talk about small town culture shock. Reminder to self: I did not go to a big school, chants with 56000 of my closest friends weird we me out a little haha.

- Went to our neighborhood picnic and met some random cool people, including the people running for state rep in our district.

-Walked around the neighborhood and met alot of new people. Basically Blitzy is a people magnet :). Our plan to get to know more neighbors is working!!! Now all I need to do is try and remember their names. I think I need flash cards :).

I'm still on hold . . . good thing I have a pumpkin spice latte to distract me and house blogs to look at.

And I'm about to have a much needed mini vacation with Alisha!! Woo hoo!! Off to Philly for some chill time reading, sleeping, drinking coffee, walking around the city, and maybe eating philly cheesesteak :). I love vacation. I might even get a new vacation out fit tonight haha. I know that is very ridiculous.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010


So I had to laugh to myself yesterday when I heard this part of a phone conversation:

Person 1: What's up?
Person 2: Oh nothing much.

Okay it's ridiculous how many times I've answered the phone that way at work when really I have a list of a thousand things to do. Oh what do I have on my plate, nothing much just a whole life's worth of stuff to do in a day. Ha it just made me laugh. We are so good at being nonchalant :).

There's my random thought for the day.

Oh and we taught blitzy to sit. Only problem is she just thinks that when I get the bag of treats that means sit, not actually when I say sit. I'll get down to say sit and she is already sitting looking at me looking like, hello can I please have my treat now. So fun :).

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Introducing: Jaigerbomb Blitzkrieg Von Haus Berg!!

Okay so I've probably sent some of these pictures to you already, but I thought I'd just do a little show and tell about our new puppy!! First things first, the breeder required us to have a name starting with "J" on the paperwork for breeder purposes, so we are not ridiculous. Okay we may be a bit ridiculous, but it did have to start with J and Jenny or Jenna or Jasmine was just not hard core enough :).

So we went to Stillwater Saturday morning to pick out our puppy with David and Kat. We got first pick, so they were all a little crazy when we got there! They all wanted to play and lick you and climb on you, so cute! After playing with them all awhile we picked the purple collar one, or actually the collarless one because she'd managed to lose it already ha. Looks like we got an ornery one :). The breeder said these were some of the biggest 8 week old puppies she had ever seen, so it looks like we are going to have one giant dog! We met the dad and he was beautiful, huge, and a six year old puppy with tons of ball drive. Just google it :).

So without further a do here is Miss Jaigerbomb Blitzkrieg!!!!!

We brought her home to this amazingly (in my humble opinion of course) constructed little dog run and dog house, compliments of Spencer's master table saw skills.

Pretty much all she wanted to do was get out of it so she could be closer to us. She'd sit right outside the gate perfectly content but as soon as she was inside the gate alone she totally freaked out. Probably missing her six crazy siblings!

Lovely food and water bowl, which by the way good dog food is expensive!!! I had no idea. Looks like my shopping budget is getting really small :).

And compliments of Ange: the best pic so far. But really she's still cuter in real life, so come see her!!! We have to wait two weeks for her to be around other dogs, but humans are more than welcome :).
And yes after all the fight I put up about getting one, I love her already. She is super cute and mostly just wants to be as close to you as possible which when she's 20 lbs and fluffy is pretty adorable. We'll see how that goes over when she's 100 lbs!!

So there you have it, our new baby ;).

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Fall ~ The Most Wonderful Time of the Year?

Okay so in Bible study this week we were supposed to say our favorite things about fall. I'm not really found of cold weather but I can appreciate some things about fall haha. So here's my list, which I might add to later when I have more time to think about it :).

Pumpking Spice Lattes with soy milk

Not sweating under our down comforter

Sleeping with the windows opening

Wanting to work in the yard because it's nice out

Hot coffee becoming a good idea again (okay I drink it hot all summer, but I get weird looks haha)

Pumpkin ale :)

For the record I still don't really like soup, but some kinds are growing on me

Oh and my awful one, people burning lots of natrual gas in their homes, gotta feel the industry love haha

Okay so what about you? This is an interactive post ;)

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Wisdom Tooth Out + Required Day on the Couch = Time To Blog

Okay so my last week and a half have been crazy! Here's just a snapshot:

-Rach came and visited before heading to Perryville Arkansas for a new life on a farm :) okay she's working for Heifer for nine months to get away from the craziness of it all, learn about sustainability and figure out what to do with her life next. Hmm I'm starting to think I need nine months on a farm haha.
-We had lots of fun watching burn notice, going to the farmers market, making pizza, sitting in coffee shops, looking for old doors and a piano bench (we found neither), going to an old book store to look for an old hymanl and of course walking out with an extra book by Gabriel Garcias Marquez, ah old book stores. Kindle will never be a match for you. And neither will the internet. I don't think heaven will have computers, but that's just my wish I think.

-We went to go see our future puppy!!! We haven't picked one out yet because they are so cute and still so little!! Kat and David came along for the fun so they could make sure we pick out a good playmate for Daisy and Chico, and so we could avoid driving our little VW on ten miles of gravel :). They have giant heads!

- Then Tuesday I headed off to Denver for XEC's annual board meeting. It was a bit crazy fancy! We stayed at the Ritz Carlton downtown which for the record had a gigantic bathroom complete with jet tub and separate walk in shower. I think I could have fallen asleep in that shower after the long day of meetinngs. The meeting went well though, I got up gave my ten minute shpeel, made some joke about being Jenny Hellman and after that everyone who got up made some comment about not being Jenny Hellman and one of my old classmates got up and said well I'm not Jenny Hellman but rumor was she did cheat off me in school! Ha it was so funny b/c the CEO said well how come she got better grades than you? HA. Needless to say I didn't have to do much introducing at dinner, everyone already knew who I was :).

- And while I was gone, Spencer was diligently getting the yard ready for Blitzy!! So here you go, pics of our yard progress!
First he took the old under the sink cabinet from the kitchen that was in the house when we bought it:
And made it into a beautiful dog house!
Then when I got back from Denver I added some lovely paint that Rach and I picked out:

And now all it needs are a few shingles, a sign that says blitzy and we'll have the cutest dog house on the block :). Spencer also went to work on a fence for a little dog run so blitzy won't have a giant yard to get lost cough make trouble in :).

And yes yesterday I got a wisdom tooth pulled. So today's job is to sit on the couch, eat soft foods, and make sure my blood clot doesn't fall out :). The body really is an amazing thing. Sorry I don't have any really funny stories, just lots of texts I sent that I don't remember sending and a very vivid dream about eating lasagna :). Thanks for all the prayers and notes!