Monday, April 27, 2009

Springtime yard improvement

This past week we have spent a good amount of time trying to transform our yard. The work commenced last Thursday, when a small team of professionally outfitted men arrived at 9 am to take down our huge conical shrubs on either side of our house. The shrubs were as tall as our 2-story house, yet the guys were done and cleaned up by 11 am!

I felt guilty at first -- it's weird taking down plants that have been established somewhere for probably 40+ years -- and our house looks pretty bare now, but I think in the long run, it's the right decision. Those bushes were really overpowering, and the thought of hiring people to come trim them every year wasn't too appealing to us.

I'm also really excited about free wood for our fireplace. It's amazing how resourceful (a.k.a. cheap) I've become since owning a house. I think I finally know the value of a dollar!

We got hit with the landscaping bug though. (This seems to happen every spring.) My mom was down here so she helped us decide which plants needed to go, and what we could potentially replace them with. My mom has been gardening for years and years, and her expertise is much needed, and appreciated.

We took out this huge ugly juniper shrub that really had nothing going for it. Now we have to figure out what to put in its place.

We are excited to see that "Fabio" came back - and multiplied? Do tulips multiply?? I can't remember why his name is Fabio, but he was a gift from Brian's mom during tulip season last year. He's very handsome.

One more tree is scheduled for removal this week (thank you, stepdad). So, now it's time to be thrifty and figure out how to fill all of our yard's holes with new and beautiful foliage - I can't wait for this part!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

A homeade life

I highly recommend purchasing this book by Molly Wizenberg, a local writer of the blog Orangette. A Homeade Life was just released this month, and not is not only a charming, enjoyable read, but it also has excellent recipes. I have made three things so far, and two of them were absolutely fantastic: the buckwheat pancakes and this:

Banana bread with bittersweet chocolate and crystalized ginger. I made it this morning and we've been snacking on it all day. It's incredible.

I won't share the recipe because you should really buy the book!

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Estate sale finds

Today I went to an estate sale in my neighborhood of Ballard. I'm really loving my finds!!!

All of it for only $150!

Brian will likely scream "I'm not a French prince!" and worry that slowly but surely, he will find himself living in this room:

But, go to a friend's child's little league game on a Saturday morning, leaving your wife to her own wishes and desires...and this is what you might just have comin' to you.

Thursday, April 9, 2009


Our little Bean suffered from a pretty intense UTI when she was a little one, so our vet recommended waiting to spay her till after she became --- a woman.

Well everyone, today, it happened.

Little denim diapers and everything. (She is SO mad at us right now.)

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

An oceanic family history

Apparently, my great great grandfather, Samuel Chapin, was a seaman. This is his photo, and his seaman ID card. I'm pretty obsessed with him right now.