Monday, September 21, 2009

ta daa!

Introducing the most beautiful house on the block!

Mike, along with a ton of help from Jon and Eric (thanks guys!), painted our house last Thursday and Friday! Here a few pics of the work in progress.

Friday night Mike and Jon worked late into the night...

While Martini a.k.a. 'Tini' (Jon and Lindsay's pup) and I made dinner for the boys and then did the dishes. She hated walking on our kitchen's linoleum floor. It was kind of funny.
I tried to get a funny picture of Tini actually helping me with the dishes... but she was not having it.

Anyways, now I have a beautiful GREEN colored house!
Next summer's project...Landscaping!

Friday, July 31, 2009

Paint - A love/hate relationship

We're painting the exterior of our house! We've actually already started...Well I've stared painting - and Mike is putting a new back door on as we speak! Last weekend my grandparents and my mom came over and we painted the exterior of our garage! My Mom and Grandpa helped paint and my Grandma made sure we were all fed and well hydrated. Mike was up north checking out his brothers brand new cabin with him. Check out the new color!
Painting the exterior is a love/hate relationship for me. It's going to be a lot of work - but I'm going to LOVE the chagne of color!! For those of you who don't know - This is what color our house is...
Yeah...peachy, pinky, salmon-y... you choose the right adverb.'s the view from the living room. I love looking out this window since the garage is already painted, I just pretend that the house is done too!

Here's what the house looks like from the back. You can see where Mike has been scraping off the painted cinder blocks by the back door.

And speaking of the back's a picture of what Mike's doing to put in a new door.

Ok, enough of the dirty stuff. Let's move on to the prettier things. Here's a close up shot of our front door and house numbers.
For Christmas last year, my parents gave us a super cool new house number sign! It was handmade especially for us by my mom's friend's sister (get it?). I love it and can't wait to take down those ugly numbers and put this up!

Saturday, June 20, 2009

The Survivor...and us

Here we are...with Les Stroud. He was pretty interesting to listen to. Mike and I were impressed with how much he talked! We waited in line for an hour before he came out, another hour of standing in line listening to him talk (and a little Q&A session), and then another 1/2 hour waiting for his autograph. My feet still hurt - I should have worn better shoes!

Friday, June 19, 2009

Survivor Man

This weekend we are heading over to the M.O.A. (for all you non-MN folk, M.O.A. = Mall of America) to see Mike's hero. The Suvivor Man, Les Stroud will be doing a meet and greet on Saturday. Les is Canadian so I'm looking forward to hearing his o's. You know, instead of saying the word 'about' - they say 'aboot'. Cracks me up everytime.

For all of you who don't know, Les Stroud (Suvivor Man) goes out into the wilderness and records himself. He basically is teaching you how to survive if you find yourself in the same predicament that he has willingly put himself in. He doesn't have anyone else with him (no camera crew). Each show is usually 2 nights and one full day of taping then he makes it to his specific pick-up area.
When I was seaching for an image of him I came across this picture to use and the site was talking about how good looking he is.
Never thought of you that way suvivor man, sorry. I'm more of a 'Man vs. Wild', Bear Grylls fan.

There's a big controversy over Man vs. Wild. Bear Grylls does the same basic show as Les Stroud with a few minor differences. Bear has a camera crew with him and sleeps in a hotel every night (they don't portray it that way - but he's been busted recently). All of his shows have the same 'story line' too. Wherever he is Bear always eats a snake -or an equally gross thing, takes off his shirt, and tells a story about how a hiker recently died right where he was. Even if Bear is a fake - I'd still rather watch him.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Finally, pictures from the Keys!

After many, many requests to post some pictures from Florida here they are!

This is where I spent 7 days straight, just sitting in the water. We tried the pool one morning - but it didn't even compare to the view I had from this chair.

We went with friends Ben and Kallie - it was great to have other people there because Mike would NEVER just sit in the water and relax. So Ben and Mike entertained each other while Kallie and I just kicked it in our lounge chairs!
This is what Ben and Mike did most days in our little bay - snorkeling!
and finding things like this - hermit crabs!
We drove down to Key West one day while we were there. It's 95 miles from Key Largo to Key West, but since there's only one road to get there, and you can only go either 45 or 55 took us a while to get there!
Here are a few pics from the drive...

Here's Mike and I at the end of Key West - Only 90 miles to Cuba!

This is Mike at Sloppy Joe's, we had lunch there and found out it's famous for being a place that Ernest Hemingway used to hang out at.

A few years after he died someone found a back room at Sloppy Joe's that had a ton of his writings in it. Hemingway would go on drinking binges there and stay for days just frantically writing at the bar and I guess who ever was working there would just pick up all his papers and put them in a storage room. Random, I know.
After walking around the tourist-y area of Key West (which Kallie and I compared to Mexico - the same stores on each block all selling the same crappy stuff, oh except there was a Coach outlet which we did go into and it was wonderful!) we asked our waitress at Sloppy Joe's where a good beach to go to was - her response? "Key West is known for the water - not the beaches." What? Key West is an island...are you serious? So She told us to go check out a state park that had the best beach in town. Here's the obligatory 'foot with scenery' pic...
The water was pretty choppy and the beach was really rocky (not sandy) so it was tough for the guys to snorkel and us girls to sit on the beach. One day while we we're back at our hotel beach doing our normal routine (boys snorkeling, girls lounging) Kallie and I noticed a mom and her two kids on the dock pointing into the water and looking at something. We had heard that there were manatees there sometimes, so Kallie and I ran up to the dock to see what they were looking at. There were 4 manatees, and a baby one!
We started yelling at the boys to get their attention cause they still had thier heads in the water. Eventually they heard us and came over to check out what we were yelling at them for!

The baby one!

Mike and I are both fans of the ocean and of all the cool things living in it - we wanted to jump in and swim with the manatees so bad. On this trip I got the nickname Hannatee, but that's another story.
On the drive to Key west we saw a cool beach just on the side of the highway. We decided later in the week we would go check it out. Here is a picture of Kallie and I being the supermodels that we are... I got sun burned on the top of my head the day before - that's why I have Mike's hat on.

And one of Mike and I...

I have more pictures but I really better get back to work...I promise to post more soon!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

The grass is always greener...two doors down.

So far this spring Mike has been working really hard to make our yard nice. The previous owner didn't do much yard work besides mowing. We have patches of no grass, patches of just weeds, and patches of sand/dirt that just won't grow grass. Last summer was kind of a trial and error for us - Mike tried a few different grass seeds and a few different weed killers. He even tried the 'weed and feed' which is supposed to kill the weeds but fertilize the grass. Not so much. It just burned up even more patches of grass for us to fill in again this year. So now we have figured out what works and we have tiny little blades of grass growing!!
The thing about yard work is that it is never an immediate gratification like my generation wants. We talked about this with our next door neighbors Travis and Erica, they are the same age as us, getting married soon, and are first time homeowners also! They do yard work just as much as we do and it's nice to be able to share tools like leaf blowers and hedge trimmers without having to go buy everything!
So here's the reason I titled my post the way I did... Two doors down from us (next to Travis and Erica) live Ed and Shirley (a very, very nice older couple). They have the most immaculate yard in the neighborhood. The grass is a perfect 'grass color' green, the hedges are alwyas trimmed perfectly, and the flowers seems to always be in bloom. Granted they have lived there somehwere between 20 and 30 years and they are retired so they have had the time to do it. This is where the whole instant gratification thing would be nice. Ed has had years to get his lawn and yard they way it is, and this is Mike's second summer. We can count last years trial by error year - even though it was practice.
(I'm sure you noticed how I referred to Mike doing the yard work...yeah, he does it all. I've potted some plants and flowers, and I help rake in the fall - but that's about it. )

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Swine flu strikes again!

Well not really, but we did have to cancel our vacation to Mexico beacuse of it. So frustraing. Mike and I were supposed to leave this coming Monday with our good friends Ben and Kallie. They were going to use his parents time share and invited us along to join in the fun. Since it was a time share the whole trip was super cheap - great hotel for $180 a week - split between 2 couples - come on, $90 for a hotel for the week? In Mexico? With fun times people? How could we say no to that? In comes swine flu, and whatever the hell stage 5 from the WHO means. Threw a little wrench in our plans to say the least.
Ben spent a good majority of the day Wednesday trying to switch our destination with the time share company (Thanks Benny!) but so was everyone else in the world who had planned on vacationing in Mexico that week. He tried and tried to get us on a beach anywhere in the world - literally, we were considering the Canary Islands for a minute -but the time share company had booked every place they had on a beach. So since we had flights (luckily with no cancellation fees due to the swine flu) we knew we had to go somewhere. We started looking for hotels in southern Florida that had a decent rate. Randomly Kallie and I found a resort on Key Largo that I had looked into for a destination wedding for Mike and I! AND it was only $99 a night - and it was beautiful and right on the beach! SWEET! Done and done. Kallie booked the hotel, switched thier flights, I booked a rental car, switched our flights and here we are.
New vacation, a little more expensive, but we're still going somewhere on the ocean! I have never been to the Keys before so I am looking forward to doing a bit of sightseeing in the area and addition to a bunch of nothing but lounging in the sun!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009


I know this entry is well over due...well, 5 days over due. Mike and I are engaged! He asked me on Friday night while we were on the rooftop of my parents building overlooking Minneapolis and St. Paul.

He had it all planned out with out me knowing a thing! He bought the ring on Wednesday, and made the call to both my parents to let them know of his intentions, ask for their blessing, and get them in on his plans. My mom called me on Wednesday afternoon while I was at work and asked me if Mike and I could come over on Friday after work to help them move furniture and then they'd take us out to eat. They got a new flat screen TV and were moving the living room furniture and a couple large bookcases...I knew they were doing this so it was no surprise to me that they were asking for our help. So I called Mike and told him that my mom called and asked for our help and he said 'ok sure'.
So Friday rolls around and I get out of bed, throw my hair in a pony tail (without showering) put on the jeans I wore the day before and a t-shirt and head to work (my office is super casual). I left work a little early and when I got home Mike and his dad, Bill were outside talking. They told me that they wanted to go look at the ring I picked out with Mike's mom the following Monday. That's when I said "No more ring talk! You know what I like, I think about it everyday...and it's getting a bit anti-climactic!" So they just laughed at me and said ok. Bill left and Mike went in to take a shower before going over to my parents place.
When he got out he looked at me and here was our conversation:
M: Don't you want to change clothes?

H: No, we're going to move furniture.

M: Yeah but they are taking us out for sushi afterwards, don't you want to look kind of nice?

H: Uh, ok.

So I changed clothes but still didn't shower.
We get over to my parents building and shopped around in the global market on the first floor before going up to their place. When we went up to the loft, there was a note left on the table that said "We're up on the roof with drinks! Come up!" This is no suprise to me, it's a very typical thing for my parents to do. So we head up there and have some pear martini's and chat for a while. Mike and Pat went inside to 'fill up' and I guess hatch the plan. They came out and a little while later my mom and Pat went inside and that's when it happened! Mike said "You know earlier today when you were talking about this being anti-climactic?" And he pulled out the ring! My parents were inside taking pictures of the whole thing.

My parents got out the champagne and I called my sister and grandparents while Mike called his 3 siblings. I'm not really that much taller than Mike...but when he forced me to dress up I had to have the appropriate shoes!

So here we are now, trying to plan a wedding sometime within the next year, and hopefully it will be in either Mexico or Florida!

Monday, April 6, 2009

Snow on April 5th.

After waking up to snow yesterday morning, I think this kid has a good idea.

Boy to his mother: Well, why don’t all Minnesotans get in a circle, link hands and sing “Here Comes the Sun!” THEN MAYBE IT’LL GET WARMER AND I’LL CHEER THE FUDGE UP.

This is from

Thursday, March 19, 2009

A month and a day...

Mike is on his way home right now as we speak! Crazy guy left at 3:30am this morning... Last night I told him not to wake up until at least 5am to leave so that he at least got some sleep. But I guess he's just in a hurry to get home!
Last weekend my dad helped me get the wallpaper border off of my kitchen walls! One thing I forgot to do was take a picture of it. Oh well, I'd rather not remember it! I'll take a picture before any paint goes up so all you peeps who haven't seen it can see the before and after!
There was one totally gross thing that my dad helped me with also. While I was sitting on top of my refridgerator (scraping wallpaper) I noticed there were a couple things that had fallen behind there from the previous owner (his name is Phil). I could see a hotpad and a bottle of food coloring. So my dad said that we should move the fridge, the stove, and the small counter that sits in between them and clean back there. Ho-ly nas-ty!! I take full responsibility for not cleaning back there after we moved in but I didn't think it could possibly be that bad. I don't think Phil cleaned back there once in the 7 years he lived there. I literally had to take a scraper and scrape food and grime off the floor under the stove. Something must have boiled over once upon a time and Phil (being the 50 year old bachelor he was) never cleaned it up. But now thanks to my dad for helping me move the appliances, it's squeaky clean! And now I won't have a nasty suprise when I move the appliances again to paint!

Thursday, March 12, 2009


I don't really have anything in mind to talk about for this entry... I have 15 minutes left of work and nothing to do. Well have have filing to do, but I'm just going to put that off until the morning.
Aly's coming home from school this weekend! I'm excited about that! I'm getting my hair cut by the one and only Farrah on Saturday. I could write a whole entry on Farrah...she is my hair miracle worker - and my mom's! I have reccomended Farrah to two ladies in my office and they both go to her now and one takes both of her teenage daughters to her too! I'm not planning on doing anything very drastic to my hair, I just want a little style to it. It's almost all one length again after cutting my bangs last spring!
I also want to work on my kitchen a bit this weekend. I want to paint it but before I do that I need to rip down the really pretty fruit wallpaper border that goes around it. I'll have to bring the ladder up cause it's way up near the ceiling. Fun times.
Mike is still in Colorado, working away. I had fun visiting him there last weekend! We went to "The Garden of the Gods" in Colorado Springs which was very picturesque. And we also went to the Denver Aquarium where Mike, and his niece Toni, fed sting rays by hand! . I'll have to post pictures when Mike gets back with the camera!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Water vs. Pepsi

Here is another quote from one of my favorite websites I've mentioned before

Mom to cashier: And we'll have a water.
Little girl: But I want Pepsi!
Mom: We're getting water Pepsi!
Little girl: Yaaaaay!
Mom, winking at amused cashier: When you have kids of your own, water Pepsi is the greatest invention ever.

Somehow I can see my mom getting away with this when my sister and I were younger...

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Snow x 10 inches = a lot of snow.

I know I mentioned in my last post that I would talk about my job situation in my next entry but this needs to be discussed.
We are getting up to ten inches of snow today! It's been snowing since noon... it's 3pm right now and I'm guessing there is almost 4 inches so far. There is a winter storm warning for over 60 counties in MN alone.
There is only one thing this means - ok two things. One - I get to leave work early. Yay! Two - I have to go home and shovel. Since Mike is out of town I have to do it...I'm thinking I'm just going to do my half of the driveway today, and maybe save the other half for tomorrow. It's not that I'm a 'weenie' (as Pat would say)...ok maybe I am, but I don't have to only shovel the driveway. I have to do the sidewalk that goes from our garage to the house, the one that goes from the side of the backyard to the house, and the one from the front door out to our mailbox on the street. Needless to say I'm not looking forward to leaving work early.
Oh, and of course Pat called me at work to make sure I drive home safely. He and my mom are still in AZ...and he told me I had to go home and shovel...thanks dad.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Home Alone.

The title of this entry sums it up. I will be home alone for at least the next 3 weeks, maybe even a month. Mike left early Tuesday morning to drive to Denver where his brother Steve and his family live. Mike will be helping Steve and a friend Chris 'flip' a house.
It's not so bad that Mike is away, yeah I miss him, and I wish I could be out in CO with him, but in addittion to Mike leaving the state, my parents also left to go to AZ for the next two weeks! And not that I hang out with Mike's parents by myself that often, but they are down in Branson for a week and a half. Before Mike left I asked him "Who should I call if I need something?" You know -help with something in the house, something with my car... He listed off a bunch of friends, who would be better with car issues vs. other things. My aunt and uncle live kind of close...but I wouldn't want to call them if it was something small...they'd have to drive almost an hour to my house!
Well yesterday I freaked out a little. During the afternoon I was at a different office than I normally work in (I'll talk about that in my next entry), I went to leave and my car wouldn't start!! I started going through the list of people who could help me in my granted I could just go back inside the office and my boss would help me, but I took it to extreme thinking I was stuck. I did go back in and a couple people came out and my car started after revving the engine a bit while starting it...I guess it was just cold. Now I'm too nervous to go anywhere besides work and home incase my car doesn't start! I talked myself out of working out this morning because I didn't want to be stuck at the gym all sweaty at 6:30am...with no way to get back home.

Well - this is your fair warning Auntie JJ - You might be getting a call from your oldest neice needing to be picked up!!

Friday, February 13, 2009

Valentine's Weekend

We're going to a friends' cabin for the weekend! 5 couples, 4 dogs, and one 4 month old baby. Should be interesting! I know we'll have some fun nights out by the fire and few days watching the boys play boot hockey on the frozen lake. What are your plans for Valentine's day??

Friday, February 6, 2009

To the dump!

That's what we're doing this weekend...going to the dump. Woo Hoo! We have a basement full of wood paneling, ripped up carpet/padding, insulation, not to mention to ceiling is all over the floor. Yes, the basement demo is finally 100% done! It's actually been done for a few weeks but it's been too freaking cold in MN to do anything outside! Since it's going to be nice this weekend (30's and 40's) we decided we needed to jump at the opportunity. We were going to rent a dumpster and just have it sitting in our driveway for a few days - but dang - those things are spendy! We decided a few trips to the dump at $35 a truck load was better then the $350 it was to rent a dumpster. So this morning Mike drove down to Farmington where my uncle owns a car lot and we borrowed a big truck from him. Hopefully Mike is loading up all the junk as we speak!

Update - Mike did it all! His dad come over to help him and in one big truck load they took it all to the dump! YAY! I don't have to do manual labor now!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Well well well...

So, is it so wrong that I have not told Mike about my blog? He's not much of a computer guy, he knows the basics but thats about it. I guess I just haven't thought that he'd be very interested, and I can see him laughing, just a little, at me. Well, since he doesn't know about this blog, I'm going to talk about him - just this once!
Mike has been having some digestion issues lately. I'll spare you the details... but he basically has a stomach ache all the time. He has been dealing with this off and on for about 3 months now. Since he works for the family biz, he doesn't have insurance through work. He does have private insurance though, it will cover all expenses up to $1,000 and then anything past $10,000. So that covers basic yearly doctor visits and then any catastrophe (car accident, etc.) that hopefully will never occur.
He finally caved this week and made an appointment with a doctor to figure this stomach thing out. Right now he's waiting to hear back on blood tests and to see if he needs to go see a specialist. He's worried that all these appointments and tests are going to go above and beyond his annual $1,000 coverage. He was thinking about changing his coverage but wasn't sure if he could just do that - so he was talking to his dad about it and his dad relpied "Why don't you and Hanna just get married and you can be covered under her insurance". Brilliant idea if I do say so myself! So just for kicks I told him I was going to ask our HR gal 'hypothetically' how long it would take for Mike to be covered if we got married. She looked it up and it said, as long as he signs up within 30 days of us getting married he's covered from that day on! I told him and he just laughed...and I know why - he wants new insurance, but just how bad?
So moral of the story, if I end up having a quickie wedding, I'm not pregnant - it's for insurance purposes.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

The best one!

I can't believe I forgot the most important blog! You have to check out this one if you look at any of the decorating blogs I listed today.


also check out their food website - thekitchn

My secret bliss.

Here is one thing you may not know about me...I love reading decorating blogs. Who knew? I have never had a strong drive to decorate, ever. My mom used to tell me when I was younger that when I got my own house, it would be black and white. She has always used really rich colors to decorate and (sorry mom) has a lot of 'stuff' around - like book shelves completely full, antiques, pictures hanging, get the idea.
Well, now that I have my own place, I love to read all these different blogs about decorating. I'll list out my favorites in case you feel the need to check out what I do every day (or multiple times a day).
Wow, now that I type them out - there are quite a few! So needless to say, my house has not turned out black and white...and I might be slowly turning into my mother.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Wednesday Laughs

There's a web site I love to go to when I have some down time at work...or when I'm bored (and usually that's at work too). It's called, they also have OverheardintheOffice and OverheardEverywhere. It's just random pieces of overheard conversation that typically don't make sense. Some of it can get pretty dirty but it's all hillarious. Here's my pick of the day - somehow I can see my sister saying this when she was little.

Dad to little girl: I'm going to feed you to a puppy.
Little girl: Dad! I don't want to eat a puppy.
Dad: I'm not going to feed you a puppy, I'm going to feed you to a puppy.
Little girl: Oh, that's okay, I like puppies.

So just as long as the puppy doesn't get hurt it's ok?

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

First blog...

After months of various friends and my sister telling me to start a blog, I finally listened. I'm still trying to decide which road this blog will take. I could talk about the trials of everyday life like my job, relationships, friends and family. I could also talk about the renovations that Mike (and I) have started on our house. Decisions decisions. I guess we'll just have to see what my mind needs to talk about when I sit down to write.