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Christmas Cravings

Posted by casey on December 26, 2009 in Home

There are two things I have “craved” since being pregnant that might be a little abnormal.  Everyone always asks about cravings and wants to know how weird they get, so I thought that at a bit over 7 months, I would share.  Any guesses? 

Pickles and ice cream is always the first guess – or pickles and something, like peanut butter. But nope, that isn’t it.   Next guess please.
French fries dipped in a Wendy’s frosty?  Oh come on, that has nothing to do with pregnancy, but it is delicious treat in general.  So no, you’re wrong again. You think you got it this time? 
A baked potato topped with bananas, a dash of Tabasco and a dollop of syrup.  Now that is just disgusting, I still have taste buds you know.

I suppose I should stop with the guesses before we all get so nauseated we can’t enjoy food again and just tell you.  The first thing I crave, more than cupcakes, chocolate , an honest to goodness caffeinated cappuccino or a glass of cupofjowMerlot is a run.  You know, that form of exercise where you pick up your feet and travel at a pace that is faster than walking?  Yes, a run.  A long, sweaty, jog until my iPod is dead run.  My heart needs it.  My exercise clothes want it.  Even my achy knees are missing being tortured.  I tell you what, as soon as I get the all clear, Baby Kaz is going in our new jogging stroller and is going to feel the wind in his lack of hair (so tradition goes) – whether he likes it or not.  So there you go, the first craving.

On to the second craving that you might find a little off.  It is well, irrational and definitely not practical. However, it is oh so beautiful – sometimes.  I’ll just come right out and say it.

Shoes

Not just any shoes though – stilen8305504_33764899_5959ttos.  Heels.  Sexy heels and yes I say a shoe can in fact be sexy.  I haven’t always felt this way, yet when deprived of the ability to teeter on these magnificent creations my daily routine of getting dressed has been thrown off.  You see my feetsies currently always slide into boots.  Flat boots.  I’m not tall enough to always wear flat boots and flip flops.  As if taking away your right to sleep on your back isn’t bad enough, your right to have aching feet from balancing on a tiny post that suspends your foot up in a precarious arch position is also stripped.  I mean I could do it, but it would be dangerous.  On most days I can’t even see my feet.  On a normal day I trip a lot, even pre -pregnant.  So if you put a woman who cannot see her feetsies in stilettos and ask her to strut around while carrying a basketball in her middle throwing your center of gravity off it is trouble.

So much trouble actually, that I made the ultimate fashion faux purchase.  Actually Colter made the purchase, but it was for me so I have to take just as much blame.  I said I would never do it.  NEVER.  Then my pregnant piggies begged me to do it.  They pleaded with me to support them. (Don’t your feet talk to you? No. Hmmm…maybe I should look into that.)Crocs.  Yup. Crocs, the hideous dsc_1193rubber clog-like, worst fashion statement shoe since Uggs first came out and then grew on everyone.  Crocs.  I’m still embarrassed – but my feet are in heaven.  Regardless, even the comfort of crocs doesn’t take away the desire so I have another story for you…

A couple of weeks ago I made Colter stop at DSW because I had a stinking fabulous coupon that made buying yet another pair of boots not painful at all but a nice addition to my boot repertoire.  Until I walked by THEM.  The shoes that showed me yes, you could fall in love with a shoe.  Embarrassing again, I know.  (This feeling may or may not have been brought on by the lack of shoe purchases and the hormones.)I walked by them and continued on to the flat, pregnant, soon my feet will swell section and carried on with my goal – grey boots.  Colter was aimlessly wandering the men’s area trying his best to act like I wasn’t torturing him when as we left I mentioned them.
Husband: “Well, did you try them on?”
Pregnant Wife “Now why would I go and do that to myself.”
Husband Again: “You should at least try them on, you could always get them to look at.”
Still Pregnant Wife: “Thanks, real encouraging, but fine, I’ll torture myself.”

So, as soon as I get one on he tells me that this is ridiculous and I was right when I didn’t try them on.  At this point I am like Cinderella and have seen the glass slipper on my foot.  I used my better judgement though and left them there, in their lonely box, at the big lonely store without an owner.  This story may not be a surprise to some of you though because I then proceeded to talk about my “Christmas Shoes” to my nearest and dearest.  I told you I was in love.

xmasshoeDid your heart skip a beat?  I think it did.
May I present….my Christmas shoes.  Don’t think I didn’t go around singing “Oh Christmas Shoes, Oh Christmas Shoes…” either.  I am in no way above doing that.  The hubs and I don’t do presents really.  We pick out a few things for us together before or after the holidays and claim those as our purchases but we leave the gift giving for our friends and family.  It’s just the way we are.  He was sneaky this year though.  He went back.  He went to DSW – alone.  He bought shoes for me in the right size.  He remembered the shoes.  He surprised me with shoes that I can look at in my closet now.christmasshoes

I cried.  Over shoes. A diamond ring probably wouldn’t have gotten the same reaction from me this year.  Sad I know.  I believe that I even recall the words “This is the nicest thing you have ever done.” coming out of my mouth.  Over shoes.

Leave me alone, I’m pulling the pregnant card.
One craving down, one to go….how to take care of that run????

“Oh Christmas Shoes, Oh Christmas Shoes…”

 
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Sugary Traditions

Posted by casey on December 25, 2009 in In The Kitchen, Sweet Treats

sugarcookietopIt just isn’t Christmas without sugar cookies, at least not in this household.  What I have grown to love about these is you can adapt them to your particular crowd.  Are you going to be making them with or feeding them to a bunch of kids? Then by all means, get out the various cookie cutters in the shapes of Santa, reindeer, snowman and shape away.  You don’t like sugar cookies because you don’t like frosting?  Don’t ice them, just sprinkle some colored decorator’s sugar on them prior to baking – or if you are the opposite, pipe that icing on them until it looks like one pile of sugary goodness.  Regardless, you can make them your own and adapt them to your needs.

Like I said…I just can’t make all these batches of other cookies for the holidays and leave out the sugar cookies because it was holidaycookieplatesomething we always use to do together.  However, this year I simplified it for myself.  No crazy cut-out cookie cutters, and no hours spent icing them even though I like to see what my hand will do each year.  Just one scalloped round cutter and some sugar sprinkles made them the festive addition I needed to my holiday cookie plates and perfectly appropriate for the adult guests that would be eating them.  Here is my new favorite sugar cookie recipe and it isn’t too late to make these with your family!

Sugar Cookies

INGREDIENTS:

  • 4 cups sifted  flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2  eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • wax paper
  • “time” (you need to chill the dough)
  • 1.  Sift the flour, baking powder and salt, also known as the dry ingredients, into a bowl and set aside.  Yes, the sifting actually makes a difference even though it is a pain in the behind and you want to go ahead and dump it in there. No can do, sift away.

    2. Cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy with an electric mixer.  sugarcookiestack

    3. Add in the eggs and vanilla and mix until combined.

    4. Reduce the speed of the mixer to low and gradually add in the flour mixture.  When everything is combined divide the dough in half.

    5. Flatten each half into a disk and wrap each disk between wax paper.  Refrigerate for at least one hour or overnight.

    – When you are ready to bake them, set the dough out on the counter to bring it to room temperature and preheat your oven to 325 degrees.
    – Roll out the dough between two sheets of wax paper until approximately 1/4 inch thick.
    – Cut out the dough into the desired shapes and place them on a baking sheet.  Place the baking sheet in the freezer for 15 minutes until the dough is very firm.  Yes, I said the freezer.  I am repeating it in case you think I made a silly typo and meant oven.  I do in fact mean freezer and it is another one of those steps you must actually do.
    – After the 15 minutes transfer the dough to a different cookie sheet lined with parchment paper.
    (If you want to put sugar sprinkles on your cookies, this is the time to do it!)
    – Bake 15 minutes and then cool completely on a cooling rack.

     
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    Pie in a Bar

    Posted by casey on December 24, 2009 in In The Kitchen, Sweet Treats

    pecanpietopIf you are craving a holiday pie and either don’t have the time or are doubting your crust making ability then I suggest you try these.  No, they aren’t located in an establishment that serves alcohol (but I think you would be a very popular patron if you brought them to one), it is Pecan Pie, in bar form.  Does it get easier?

    Pecan Pie Bars

    Preheat Oven to 350 Degrees

     

    INGREDIENTS:

    1 package yellow cake mix (reserve 2/3 cup for filling)

    ½ cup butter melted

    4 eggspecapiebars

    ½ cups packed brown sugar

    1 ½ cup dark corn syrup

    1 teaspoon vanilla

    1 cup chopped pecans

     

    DIRECTIONS:

    Combine remaining dry cake mix, butter and 1 egg. Mix well

    Press into a greased 9 x 13 dish

    Bake at 350 for 15 minutes until light golden brown.

     

    While baking crust, combine 2/3 cup reserved cake mix, brown sugar, corn syrup, vanilla and 3 remaining eggs.

    Beat at medium speed for 1-2 minutes,

    Pour filling over partially baked crust.

    Sprinkle with pecans.

    Return to oven and bake until filling is set (30 min).

     

    Bake at 350 Degrees for 15 minutes.

    Then bake again for 30 – 35 minutes.

     
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    Holiday Greetings

    Posted by casey on December 24, 2009 in Home

    Kazmann_WGV1B11proof1As a kid one tradition I always remember observing and then helping with as my handwriting progressed, was Christmas cards.  Once Thanksgiving was over I sat at the table with my mom addressing those envelopes time and time again.  Until my handwriting passed the test I was the official envelope licker, and let me just tell you that they have really improved envelope flavor these days.  Between faulty glue and the Seinfeld episode where George’s fiance dies from licking the envelopes I would say the greeting card industry put some thought into it.  I mean really, they sit around all year thinking of holidays to create so making better glue couldn’t have been that hard right?

    Man…my mush brain has caused me to deter yet again.  I would say it won’t happen again, but it will, probably several times.  I can say though that we never did the yearly letter inside each card which I don’t really feel obliged to do since I didn’t grow up with that and I think this here technological update you are reading keeps you pretty much “in the know” of what is going on around the Kazmann household on more than a yearly basis.  However, I vividly remember sending and receiving stacks of Christmas cards and it truly helped it to seem like the holidays.  Especially after moving I enjoyed seeing pictures of friend’s families or even my Dad’s clients whom I remembered having over for dinner and what not.

    As if we don’t hear it enough, I know there are economy issues and this was a very easy thing for many to cut back on this year.  I just couldn’t do it.  I think I needed to still have our Christmas card as much for myself as for everyone else!  I love comparing our cards each year and seeing how we’ve grown and recalling what event from the year we chose to represent it.  Not to mention that this will be the last holiday greeting sent out from us that doesn’t include a miniature version of Colter  on them!

    If our card did not make its way to your mailbox this year, I apologize.  I try to start updating my card list in November each year with current addresses so that I am ready to go and as many of the people on our list are still moving around quite a bit I think many got lost or left in mailboxes that the “addressee” to longer resides at.  So, to only make you feel semi left-out you can open this entry and stare at our card on the computer as opposed to the cardstock version in your hand.  I will do better next year.  I hope you enjoy the remaining days of the holidays, any time you may get off work and are able to relax with family and friends!

    Happy Holidays! ~ Colter, Casey, Bo and Thrasher

     
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    Long Distance Renovation – Santa’s Delivery

    Posted by casey on December 23, 2009 in Uncategorized

    First I should apologize for being hard on the help in my last post, also known as my father.  I in no way meant to risk my contractor losing his “sous-contractor” due to slandering and/or assumptions that may or may not be true.  I can vouch that this sous-contractor is in fact very handy and helpful in any sort of project and while he may not have been fully aware of the contractor’s full intentions at some points along the way I am sure he was working very hard and not just playing games on his iPhone. :)  He also has been fully responsible for reassembling the shelves in the current residence, Baby Kaz’s room and has more than proven his involvement in this project.  Please accept this heartfelt apology.

    Thanks~ Mgmt

    finalviewoutsideTheir brains took the idea, from paper to the real-deal but now all of our brains had arrived at the same dilemma.  How exactly, were these shelves going to get from Florida to Texas?  Of course there were many options….drive them there, ship them, Greyhound bus, carry them and hitchhike, but we were hoping to keep it at least semi-economical and practical.  I’m thinking the hitchhiking doesn’t fit in the practical category but at least I was throwing out ideas.  I mean, sure we could throw economics out the window completely but might as well research and compare the options.  The real problem was going to be figuring out how to get it from this wonderful “finished expect for paint form”, into boxes.

    (I should mention that I say “we” very loosely. In fact, “we” should really not be used at all, because I had absolutely NOTHING to do with any of this.  Always interesting when you aren’t actually capable of helping in any way yet the work at hand is still caused by you.  So again, we really just mshippingcrateseans that my brain was there in thought.  Glad we cleared that up.)

    Naturally, when you have something massive to move 1,250 miles take and have spent a few days constructing it, just take it all back apart, build your own shipping crates and pack it in.  Who doesn’t think of that? Duh.  ( I think they just wanted to build something else. Kidding…only kidding.) 

    dsc_1196_edited-1 They packed up three newly formed crates and off they went with a shipping notice sent to my Inbox. (Whooo-hooo I’m involved again! I told you I would come back, but the shipping e-mail is about it.)  A few days later I arrived home to this glorious scene – they arrived!  Dilemma #2 was the fact that I was home alone with no way to move these feather light (Do you sense sarcasm?) crates off of my porch.

    Fortunately, the sous-contractor arrived soon and just like his father he couldn’t relax for long and immediately continued on his project. 

    Step One – Take apart the crates and inspect the goods. 
    crateopen

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Step Two – Reassemble the shelves in various pieces. 
    colterbuild

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Step Three – Verify the measurements and ensure that they will fit. (The moment of truth people.)
    theyfit

     

     

     

     

     

    Step Four – Remove them into chunks again and paint them babies.
    dsc_1215_edited-1

     

     

     

     

     

    Step Five – Taaaaaaaa daaaaa check out Baby Kaz’s new room!!!
    dsc_1216_edited-1

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Tricked you! You are going to have to wait to see the shelves in their final spot because well, I like to keep you coming back.  Selfish I know.  I can say this though. They are in place, painted and they fit.  Did I mention that they look fantastic?  Dad and Mark really out-did themselves and the shelving unit is already showing how useful they will be.    Of course you can’t tell that because well, you haven’t seen it yet.  A few minor things to finish up but now that they are in, I suppose I have to start working on the rest of the room since this has been my excuse up until now.  Project Long-Distance Renovation…COMPLETE!!!

     
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    Christmas Candy

    Posted by casey on December 20, 2009 in In The Kitchen, Sweet Treats

    As the week of family, food and gift exchanging is upon us, I have one question for you. Are you tired of baking?  At this point you and your kitchen are probably covered in flour, dsc_1198_edited-1your mixer has been washed down fifteen times and you do not have enough cookie sheets to keep up with the amount of dough you are producing.  Cookie dough, not money – unfortunately.  I would like to offer you an alternative sweet treat – candy!

    It will be a wonderful break for your measuring cups and your oven and it makes a wonderful sweet snack for you and an inexpensive gift to put in a festive jar!  The three I am going to start you off with are seen in the jars above (adorable chalkboard canisters available at World Market) and they are Chocolate Covered Peanuts, Puppy Chow (also known as “Muddy Buddies”) and White Chocolate Pretzels.

    Chocolate Peanut ClusterschocpeanutsINGREDIENTS:
    2 lbs. white almond bark
    12 oz. REAL MILK chocolate chips
    12 oz. semi-sweet chips
    (Or you can use the chocolate almond bark if you can find it and skip combining the above three.  It will actually harden and keep better)
    2 lbs. roasted salted peanuts
    Wax Paper

    – You guessed it, first you have to melt the chocolate chips and the almond bark together.  You can do this in a double broiler or a regular pan on LOW heat. 
    – Make sure you continue to stir them as they melt.
    – Once melted, remove the chocolate mixture from the heat and dump in the peanuts. (I like to dump them in a little at a time to make them easier to incorporate)
    – Now that everything is mixed together drop clumps by the spoonful (you determine the size you want) onto wax paper.
    – Leave them sitting out on the wax paper until they fully harden. (usually at least an hour)


    Puppy Chow

    INGREDIENTS:
    9 cups Rice Chex (1 box)
    1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
    1/2 cup peanut butter
    1/4 cup butter
    1 teaspoon vanilla
    powdered sugar

    – I like to also purchase a large foil container to mix it all in because I think it is easier then the “shake it in a ziploc” method.
    – Melt the chocolate chips, butter and peanut butter in a saucepan over low heat.
    – Once the mixture can be stirred smooth, remove from heat and stir in the vanilla.
    – Pour the chocolate over the cereal (possibly helpful to have another set of hands who stirs while you pour)
    – Gently stir the Chex until coated evenly.
    – Continue to add powdered sugar and stir to coat until they are covered to your desire!

    White Chocolate Pretzels

    chocpretzelsINGREDIENTS:
    2 bags of Wilton White/Vanilla Candy Melts (available at craft stores like Hobby Lobby or Michaels)
    1 bag of pretzel twists
    candy melt bags in colors of your choice to drizzle
    Wax paper

    – Lay out wax paper on your counters in advance.
    – To find the candy melts you will need to go to the “baking/candy” area of your local craft stores.  These melt and taste better then typical chocolate bark in my opinion that is found at your grocery store.
    – Melt the candy according to the directions – place them in a large microwavable bowl and melt for 30 second increments until you can stir the mixture smooth.
    – Dip the pretzels into the white chocolate one side at a time and then flip to the other side.
    – Lay them on the wax paper to harden.
    – Melt the colored candy melts (if you choose) and drizzle over for extra decoration.  When they peel off of the wax paper they will have a swirl pattern on the white pretzels!

    Three things that don’t require an oven or a wisk yet will dress up your candy dishes just the same!
    Happy Holidays!

     
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    Sunday Puppy

    Posted by casey on December 20, 2009 in Puppy Palace, Snapshots

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    Long Distance Renovation – Santa’s Workshop

    Posted by casey on December 20, 2009 in Home

    markmakingcratesAt the mercy of a hormonal concept and working with measurements that could possibly be faulty, Santa’s workshop opened for business – in Orlando.  Didn’t you know that he actually likes to work where it is semi-warm prior to flying all over the world for deliveries?  I mean, the freezing temperatures makes your hands freeze which is just all sorts of risky, so Orlando is the perfect place for Santa’s Workshop.  North Pole my foot.

    This post is a little different since I wasn’t there and was no longer receiving phone calls with job requests on my end.  I can really only make some assumptions based on knowing how my Dad works and my Uncle’s project-oriented brain.
    – They surely drew an elaborate plan…with every perfect detail laidmarksand out.
    – Mark most definitely had everything worked out in his head – or at least enough to get started and keep the process going as he worked.
    – They spent WAY too much time in Home Depot getting supplies with all of the other manly items in there to distract them.
    – Dad only half knew what was going on since Mark was running this show.  Meaning, they each had separate plans in their heads and weren’t fully on the same page with each other.  Not yet…no way…no how.

    markmeasuringJust a couple of guesses I have.  The best part about Santa’s Workshop is that it has every tool of every kind.  You need something to make a koala bear out of a piece of trash wood you say?  I bet Santa has it and can do it.  That may have been a poor example, but I think you get the point.  The other thing about my contractors is that they get to it and move at a pace like any other.  I get that first picture from my Dad’s phone and then I swear a few hours later I get the whole kit and kaboodle.

    I do know this.  Supposedly, there were no mistakes made.  Supposedly, they didn’t even have to go to Home Depot in the middle on construction because they got the right supplies first time.  Supposedly my Dad was working…but I just have pictures of Mark working.  Kidding father, kidding.  The only other semi-odd occurrence is that Santa made an actual appearance. 

    marksantahat1

    Weird I know.  Santa, building MY shelves.  How lucky can a girl get?  Unfortunately, I also heard that he brought “cold” weather with him.  My poor, Floridian father’s feet were frozen off inside his boat shoes because of the high-fifty degree weather. He had to borrow socks to wear with his deck shoes. I know, such a sad occurrence.  Socks and boat shoes just shouldn’t be worn together – I mean, the cold feet are sad, yeah the cold feet, not the fashion statement.

    distancefromfar

    So, laid out in the driveway the project was.  The final, painted, put in place version will make a bit more sense, but there are the cubby shelves for wicker baskets to sit in and the bench seat in the middle that will fit right under the window.  Having trouble?  Just remember, this is all going on Baby Kaz’s wall.  What you can’t see in this is all of the molding detail on each and every edge.  Uncle Mark LOVES molding, and detail, which really just makes him my kind of contractor.

    This is what he had to say…

    “Last Saturday in Santa’s Workshop…..The sawdust was flying, the glue was drying, the sander was singing, the nail guns were pinging. The 3 crates are in transit, it’s up to UPS , I can’t stand it.

    I had the most wonderful Saturday and Today! I bunch of Cool STUFF happened in the garage again. Thank you for giving me opportunity to share in the joy and fun and sharing a part of preparing your Nursery. I wish I could be there to assemble it with your Dad. He and I had such a BALL!!! The car back in the garage. we are swept up, trash is out to the street. Ye Olde Workshop truly was SMOKEN.”

    Who knew they would be thanking me for putting them to work?  I can’t wait to see the finished version.  Oh wait…they were built in Florida.  I don’t live in Florida.   Santa?  Did Rudoloh eat his Wheaties this year?

     

     
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    Tips and Tricks #2 – Wrapping Presents

    Posted by casey on December 16, 2009 in In The Kitchen, Tips and Tricks, Uncategorized

    dsc_1164_edited-1So this may not actually apply to the kitchen, but it is the second round of Tips and Tricks for your household tasks.  That was a mouthful.

    You are either completely on top of it with all of  your holiday shopping complete, wrapped, tagged and delivered.  Or, you are planning on doing it all this weekend.  I personally prefer to avoid having to go to malls and shopping centers in the weeks leading up to the holidays at all costs.

    Regardless, wrapping presents in my family has become as much fun as finding and exchanging the actuadsc_1159_edited-1l gifts themselves.  Years ago, my aunt began “dressing up” her packages with fancy ribbon and attaching some type of ornament or trinket to the top.  It has become a sort of tradition to look for holiday ornaments or extras that fit the recipient or continue to pass a few silly ones around the family.

    Think of it as a twist on an ornament exchange that doesn’t add much cost, but does add a whole lot of flair.  Obviously the best time to look for these items is right after the holidays when they all go on sale and you can stock up, but if you peek in the stores you will be amazed.

    So, if you are looking for a change in how to wrap your presents this year,  or just some insider tips, these are for you!

    – Don’t use the same paper for every gift.  Yes, rolls of wrapping paper can add up, so look at places like Tuesday Morning for deals on quality paper. (Next year you should hit up the elementary kids in your neighborhood who are selling wrapping paper as a fundraiser.)

    – If you are giving multiple gidsc_1160_edited-1fts to one person, also use different paper or coordinating paper.

    – If the paper is tearing as you are trying to unroll it, chances are it is going to be a headache to wrap with and will tear with each fold and corner you make.  Find the thicker paper.

    – Go to a craft store and buy a couple rolls of  “real ribbon”.  This too you can find deals on. Don’t just buy the holiday themed ones but find rolls you could use year round.  You won’t believe how much this ribbon will add to your packages!

    – If you want to make big, fancy, fluffy bows…wire rimmed ribbon is your best bet.

    – Unfortunately, the Scotch Tape labeled “gift wrap tape” does actually look better and work much better then the normal tape.  You wil use less and it will stick, this I promise.

    – Make definite creases in your wrapping paper when you are folding the corners.  This will make it easier to place and tape and you won’t feel like you don’t have enough hands.

    – Find a topper…or trinket…or ornament.  Trust me.dsc_1162_edited-1

    dsc_1163_edited-1Now, I know what some of you are thinking…this sure is a lot of work for something they will just tear off and throw away/set aside.  That is the wonderful thing about it!  No, we aren’t the “carefully open your presents and save the paper” people, but we do save all of the ribbon and toppers.  Not only do you leave with thoughtful gifts and wonderful memories, but you will have great ribbon that is already cut to fit presents.

    Happy Wrapping!

     
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    Long Distance Renovation – Measure Schmeasure

    Posted by casey on December 15, 2009 in Home, Uncategorized

    photo_21So, as discussed a few days ago, the idea was rolling and the winning contractors turned out to be my Uncle who just so happened to have built his own house and my Dad…who well, loves any excuse for a project and the use of tools.  Remember, this wasn’t something I expected anyone to take seriously but they jumped right on it and were ready for a challenge.  Soooooooooo I used my best pregnant English, which yes, sounds different then non-prego American talk because well it rambles, and goes on tangents and forgets it’s point mid-sentence….kind of like right now.  Oh yeah – I was using my best knocked up vocabulary to inform my newly “hired” men of what I was thinking.  I was just worried they wanted me to draw it or I don’t know measure.  Usually when I measure it goes a little like this “Yeah, it looks like it is about 8 inches plus 3 of those little dashes.  Maybe 4 dashes.  Oops, I wasn’t holding it straight – definitely 8 and 7 dashes now.”

    Fortunately, my dad was able to be in town shortly after this idea sparked inspiration so that he could take note of all the measurements they would need. (That way…if they were wrong, which surely a man has never made a measurement mistake, but just in case they were, it would not be my fault ).  He plugged those numbers into his computer and busted out some diagrams so that we could get a rough idea of what this unit of shelves just might look like.  Phew! It appeared that this project might actually fit on the wall!

    ….and then his computer crashed….

    ….all measurements were lost…

    …some were recovered….

    That’s right, the bulk of them were recovered because I had the basics down, but then I got the phone call. The phone call asking me to go upstairs with that ruler that rolls up and makes a hell of a lot of noise.  Ah yes….a tape measurer.  Did I mention I was home alone and 6 months pregnant when I got this call?  There I am, pullling myself up the stairs with one arm, a tape measurer in my other hand and my phone between my cheek and shoulder.  I was supposed to measure like that. Ha!!!  I was “verifying” some measurements which let me tell you, trying to measure all the way across a wall without someone on the other end is quite challenging…especially when you don’t quite bend like you used tomail.  There was a lot of this..”It looks like it is about ______________.”  “I think it is around ________________.”  “No, it doesn’t appear to be the same.”  No, I am in no way confident in these numbers.

    Thank goodness my contractors are perfectionists….I am just hoping  it doesn’t come to these measurements I was verifying because I can guarantee that it won’t fit if it does!

    Shortly after the phone call I began getting pictures from “Santa’s Workshop” (via my Dad’s iPhone) of the construction process beginning with Mark’s elaborate sketches. Please, oh please, let this fit….I mean numbers are numbers right?  Two inches in Texas is still two inches in Florida right?  Unless it should have been two inches plus three dashes.  Man, those get me everytime!

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