01 December 2007

O Tannenbaum

Last weekend I got my first live tree (since not living with the 'rents). With Mom and Dad's help, we got it in the door and set up in the stand. I'm so happy with my tree! It smells wonderful, and it makes me smile when I come in the front door. I was experimenting with some of the settings on my camera to see what kind of shot I could get without using the flash. I know it's not perfectly in focus, but I liked this one.

Merry Christmas season!

31 October 2007

Happy Halloween!

30 October 2007

civic duties part II

I did report today, and spent all morning in the courtroom, but I didn't get selected or even questioned for the case, in which the charges were theft and aggravated assault. One of the defense attorneys I thought I recognized, and then when he was introduced, I realized that he has a daughter my age that danced with me at ballet for years! I remember now that her dad was a lawyer, but I hadn't realized at the time that he was a public defender.

I'm very thankful that I didn't have to go on Monday--the case that was scheduled for then was a murder case. It was postponed because one of the witnesses (who resides a few states away) was ignoring his subpoena, so they were having to send the police to round him up.

I found it interesting that the judge talked about all of the crime dramas and court t.v. shows that are on now, and how we would have to put aside all our notions of how things are supposed to go, because this was real life, not a t.v. show.

I have to go tomorrow as well, because the case from today would only take one day, so a new one will start tomorrow. When you get selected for jury duty, they actually have you for the whole week. So, we'll see how tomorrow goes!

28 October 2007

civic duties

Tomorrow morning, I have been summoned to court. To be a potential juror, that is. It should be an interesting time, I believe. I've never had jury duty before. Some people go their whole lives without ever being called. I got called 4 months after moving into town. Crazy!

What's even more crazy, is that my boss is summoned too. Isn't that wild? No doubt, we both won't be chosen (at least not for the same case). I don't think they'd put someone on the same jury as their employer :o)

I'm a little nervous just because I don't know what its going to be like. But its a pretty neat thing, our judicial system. I just pray I won't have to serve on a jury for some kind of violent crime. I'm not sure I'd be very good at handling that.

Who knows, they may not even want me...

21 October 2007

my stay-at-home-wife

I have been blessed with every working woman's dream...my very own stay-at-home-wife :o)

Who else will be at home to meet the repairman/serviceman between the hours of 8:00 and 5:00? Who else will run to the store, pick up milk, and deposit it in my fridge--the milk magically appearing between the time I leave for work and when I return home? Who has even vacuumed for me while I've been gone? Who else has volunteered to paint rooms of my house while I'm out earning a living?

I must say, I'm blessed indeed. Thanks, stay-at-home-wife!

She's also been known to go by the name of Garden Fairy at times...

07 October 2007

mixed emotions

Architecture is a disturbing art; it destroys places. Building sites always have the scent of sacrifice, barely masked by the hopeful and exciting smell of a new construction. It is our job to assuage the sacrifice and make building an act of understanding and adoration of the place. So in our work we concentrate on trying to achieve this difficult objective, in the hope that our buildings will seem part of the place, rather than just being sited on it, and will gain strength and meaning from the alliance.

W. G. Clark, Clark and Menefee Architects

I came home from church this afternoon to find the scent of sacrifice; two of the trees next to my house had been cut down. While I am glad that one in particular is gone (its roots were too close to my foundation & starting to crack it) I am struck by a certain sadness at the loss. Gone is the tree that used to shade my patio, the home of the birds that I listened to as they sang in the morning. The emotions I felt reminded me immediately of the author (and architect) quoted above, one I very much admire, for his theory and for his practice.

I don't know exactly what the plans are for that land, but I know it will involve some re-grading to fix some drainage problems my neighbor was having. I hope that what replaces it will somehow atone for the loss of the trees.

15 September 2007

Sean's visit

Last week, Sean came to visit for a couple of days as you all know. Sorry we missed you, Lisa! It was so nice to see him in person. I actually had forgotten how tall he is. That probably sounds crazy, I know. I'm used to being one of the tallest people in a group--so I always notice when someone is taller than me--especially if I have to look at eye level, or (gasp!) look up to look them in the eye. I was definitely noticing that I was looking up to look Sean in the eye. :o)

(see, I really do have to look up to look him in the eye)

Spending time with him reminded me of high school, the last time that we really spent a lot of time together. Fun times. I was definitely having some flashbacks while he was here.

Can I just say that I'm just about ready for those two to move a smidge closer!

Now, if I could just find some way to hang out with both my bros at the same time, that would be really awesome. Can't remember the last time that happened...

30 August 2007

work work work

some architecture humor:

It seems I've gotten a few questions lately about how work is going, so I thought I'd just blog an update about it here. All in all, work is truly good. I am enjoying the fact that I know more (I actually learned stuff in grad school) and I have more responsibility on projects. I've moved from the realm of the draftsperson--CAD monkey, as we affectionately called them while in school (see above)--to the realm of people who get to use their brains and design skills and get paid for it :)

Most recently, our CEO and I have been working on a project together, a dormitory house for a local university. It's going in a neighborhood close to campus, that has many old houses in it. The current house on the lot was built in the 30's (we guesstimate) but it terribly rundown and in disrepair now. This week, I've been working on designing the elevations (what the building will look like from the outside) and everything that I've done the boss-man has approved of, and we are feeding off each other to get the design complete. It's been a lot of fun to see decisions I make find their way onto paper, and will eventually find their way onto a real building. VERY cool.

What I am most looking forward to is seeing some of the projects that I've been working on all summer start construction. That, I would have to say, is the greatest part about my job.

Well, its off to the mountains tomorrow after work for Labor Day weekend--hopefully I'll remember to take some pictures while I'm there! Now, if I could just start packing...

26 August 2007

day pictures

okay, so call me lazy if you want, I don't mind. I've never been one to photograph my car...so instead of taking some myself, I just took the ones off the dealer's website! I figure they're more experienced at photographing cars anyway :)

19 August 2007

cars, cars, cars

I finally did it! I bought a new car yesterday! I'm so excited about my new car. I need to get a better picture of it when its not dark outside, but I don't have one yet. I traded in the old Acura in the deal, which wasn't worth much at all, but I decided it was worth getting a little less for it rather than trying to sell it myself. There's not a real huge market out there for 17 year old cars :)

My new car is a black '07 vw jetta 5-speed. I actually bought it "used" -- someone had purchased it in May, put just under 1,000 miles on it, then sold it. crazy! So, I get a "new" car but not for the new car price. Quite a steal. Mom says it matches my new young professional image. hehehe. I think I may be most excited about the bumper-to-bumper warranty! Woohoo!

I also had to say goodbye to the car I've been driving for 9 years. It was a little bit sad, but since it stranded me the last time, I began to emotionally detach from it. So, not as painful to let go. I did have to clean it out first--I kept the front license plate, for posterity. I think I may get a new one for the new car.

Acura sitting at the dealership in the wholesale department:goodbye little car, I'll miss you!

New car in Mom and Dad's driveway:hello new car!

09 August 2007

e the electrician

This past weekend, I exchanged a drab light fixture from the mid-80's for a fun new one from 2007. Following Dad's step-by-step instructions, I replaced the fixture in my upstairs bathroom. I consider the project a success, since I wasn't electrocuted, and we only had to make ONE mid-project trip to Lowe's :)



02 August 2007

car update

it has been repaired! my car is now back in its rightful home, the parking space in front of my house. so glad that it is back home. while I definitely enjoyed tooling around in dad's bug for a day, my car is so familiar and comfortable to me. I know where everything is.

However, I think I may begin shopping for a new car in the next few months-- I have been stranded one too many times. but there's no time crunch or pressure like there would have been if I decided not to repair my old car. I also have more time to save money!

01 August 2007

the car that had 9 lives

Well, it happened today friends. My car once again died, and left me stranded on a busy traffic corridor. If I remember correctly, this makes the fourth time its quit mid-route somewhere. (the previous three were on interstates!) This morning on the way to work, it decides to die (fortunately at a stop light) but in the center lane of a major traffic corridor between the burbs and downtown. NOT GOOD! Fortunately, after calling Mom and Dad to come rescue me, (and several honking motorists--seriously, like I was camping out there just for kicks!) two police officers appear out of nowhere and push me through the intersection and into the bp parking lot. Where I wait for the parentals and the tow truck, passing my time next to the transient worker (on foot) who has decided to take up residence two parking spaces over. That was a fun 20 minutes!

The car gets towed, and I get a call from the repairman a few hours later, telling me it is going to cost upwards of $800 to fix. EVEN MORE NOT GOOD!

Now, I must decide the fate of my little car. How many more lives does it have in it? How many more times must I be stranded on the side (or the middle of) the road?

I have known for the last couple of years that it won't last forever, I was just hoping to get a little more life out of it.

I just thank God that I was not hurt (someone could have easily rear-ended me, for sure), and I was able to get to work, and that I have parents who come to my rescue and lend me their cars!

Oh, decisions!

26 July 2007

The Blooming Banana Tree

Yes, you read correctly, banana trees bloom!

Well, not actually. Two months ago Mom & I planted what we thought were baby banana trees in my garden. Last weekend, I found out they may not be banana trees...One that Mom had planted in her own backyard turned out to be a canna lily, with a big yellow flower.

Well, this week, I discovered that I too had canna lilies. Because the big one is blooming :) Once it fully blooms, I'll try to post a picture.

Funny, I feel a little bit differently now that its not a banana tree--as though it pulled a fast one on me.


I think not!

09 July 2007

the evolution of a chair

see below for 4th of July post...

Yesterday's adventure was recovering the chair pads on the dining room chairs. As I pulled off the accumulated layers of fabric, I felt like I was taking a trip back in time. Can anyone identify the decade of each? I'm curious!

Independence Day, Big K Style

For my brother Sean and anyone else who has had the pleasure of experiencing the 4th of July Big K style...
I give you this year's extravaganza!

festivities began at Mom and Dad's pool with BBQ...

...and proceeded to the Big K parking lot. See if you can find Dad...he's the one in the festive hat!

A few of my attempts at using the rack on top of Susan's minivan as a makeshift tripod for my camera:
At least you get the idea! :o)

22 June 2007


I had a housewarming party last weekend, and while I failed to take any pictures during the blessed event, I did take pictures of the upstairs beforehand--the first time it was actually cleaned up enough to do so!

The guest bedroom/office:
with the drawings of Paris Gramma bought when she was there-I love them!

I love the sunlight in this room-it's very calming.

The chest of drawers survived the car ride! The door on the left it to the shared bath.

My bedroom:
with memaw's bedroom suit and nana's side tables as bedside tables :) (and the other bathroom door)

looking back toward the door.

The bathroom:

the vanity (with the HEAVY mirror I installed myself)

Looking to the left of the vanity (and on the wall behind you)

The tub is on the left, looking back toward the vanity and my bedroom (standing in front of the toilet)

and finally, at the landing looking into my bedroom and down the staircase. and that's it!

Susan, Lindsay, and Nancy throw a great party, I must say. It was a lot of fun to have my first official party at my house. It is now thoroughly warmed!

16 June 2007

the garden fairy

While I have long outgrown santa clause and the tooth fairy, I have recently become acquainted with the garden fairy. She comes to your house while you're at work, and plants flowers in your garden. I must say, I'm a big fan of this fairy!

She's come to my house twice now, and there are happy little flowers greeting me when I get home from work. I can take little credit for how my garden looks now. All I do is water it :o)

Thanks garden fairy!