Happy Valentine’s Day


Heart-shaped pancakes with bacon arrows.  By far the best Valentine’s Day meal I’ve ever had.  Nick gave me my favorite food…and he got a pillow (embroidered with some Johnny Cash lyrics).  He got the short end of the stick with this holiday.


Budget: $45 for paint and supplies.


The “thus far” photos are below.  It’s definitely not an “after”, but it’ll be staying this way until I get the guts to start nailing holes into the plaster for the pictures…that one really high picture is just placed on a pre existing nail.  I haven’t bought anything new for this room, since I’m trying to spend as little as possible.


a new project

I’ve decided to try to start doing a little creative work on the weekends.  I’ll most likely try to sell a few things on etsy.  The attempt will be chronicled on a new blog:


There’s not much yet, but I appreciate any visitors.  🙂

I have an amazing commute.  Five minutes.  Two stop lights. No parking fees, no metro outages, no back ups.

Our house is located on what is called a minimal maintenance/ rural road.  As far as I can tell, this means it will be the last to get plowed, and even at that, the plowing does not result in visible pavement.  For instance, here is our road’s current state (and I just realized this is a horrible example, as one can see only about 2 feet of roadway.  Oh well.  You get the picture.  There’s a lot of snow):

Tonight was a first.  I had to pull over to let a two horse open sleigh pass.

Coolest drive home ever.  Though the horse poop does not do much for the pristine white road…

my $1.25 tree topper

I love Christmas trees.  I’m really not into holiday decorating — more so out of laziness than any scrooge-like tendencies.  I’ve always made sure to have some sort of tree.  Years ago, when I had a 400-square foot apartment right outside DC next to the Key Bridge, I had a very special Christmas bush; a cheap Ikea evergreen plant decorated with ornaments.

We picked ours up from the local Knights of Columbus on St. Nicholas Day, the one holiday that rivaled Christmas in my childhood days (growing up in Germany tends to do that!).  I’ve been searching for a proper tree topper for a few years, but I haven’t found anything that I’ve really liked.  Ideally I’d want something similar to what my parents used growing up — a Nuremburg angel.

Perhaps someday I’ll have $100 to spend on Christmas decorations!

Until then, I think I’ve found a stand in.  I bought a 25 cent poinsettia at Lowes last weekend.  I then went to a florist today and bought 20 cent water tubes for flower stems.  After a little snipping and some jamming (those water tubes are not designed for poinsettias thick stems…), I attempted my first flower topper.

Not to shabby!  Especially for that price point.  Last year I had bought a tin tub from Lowes (they get quite a bit of business from me…) to use as our tree stand.  This year I picked up a bunch of pinecones on clearance at Michaels.  So, my one Christmas decoration in its entirety…


Nick did an amazing job, not only hanging a curtain rod in the dining, but dealing patiently with me as I had him adjust the height.

And on another note, it’s still snowing.  The view from the living room a few minutes ago:

This doesn’t bode well for the spring flood outlook…


Our 100-lb lap dog braving the winds.

And the trickle of a watefall has turned into an impressive showing of ice: