Monday, December 20, 2010

A Good Deal

I am not sure if I've mentioned this before on the blog but we recently bought a home.  It was a foreclosed home so it needed some tlc when we moved in.  Other houses needed less tlc but we really loved the location of our home, the yard, and the potential it had. 
Besides deep down cleaning here are some things we've checked off the to do list so far...
1.  Every room in the house had to be painted.  We had walls that were black, flouresent green and blue, bright yellow and blue, and other walls that just needed a fresh coat.  Not only were the walls these wild colors but we had ceilings that were yellow, black and red(which I will say was not fun to cover).  So we've painted every room, ceiling, and trim/doors. 
2. All of the carpeting had to be replaced.  Not only did it smell in some rooms but in other areas it looked like it had been chewed or scratched down to the padding.  It was also missing a big piece in the family room. In the bedrooms we installed carpet. Master bath we installed new flooring too because it was carpeted.  In the family room we installed laminate flooring.  We have intentions to replace the kitchen/dining/foyer and the hall bath floor in time.
3. We replaced/updated little odds and ends such as towel racks, tp holders, faucets, etc.
4. Appliances- refrigerator, washer, dryer, and garbage disposal.
5. Almost all of the lighting was missing in the house.  The only lights that existed were in the kitchen, laundry room, bathrooms, and the hallways.  We have installed ceiling fan/lights in all of the bedrooms , a new chandelier in the dining area, and...our newest addition... the foyer light.  This is the light that was in the foyer.
and this is the good deal.  I found this light on the clearance rack at Lowe's for $15.00.  I love it and we couldn't pass up the price.  The foyer isn't huge but I think it dresses it up and defines the space as "an entrance".  It has the pineapple design which symbolizes "hospitality and a warm welcome" which I thought was perfect for a foyer.  The color of the glass and metal(antique bronze finish) both match the dining chandelier. 
Here is a picture of the foyer.  Now I just need to hang something on the walls.  I have a nice mirror I am thinking about hanging with maybe a console table underneath.  My husband wants to wait until after Christmas before we move anymore furniture;)
I have a question for you though...
Do you think the light looks to big for the space?   

Sunday, December 19, 2010

A Snowy Day

 We woke up to snow on Friday.  It continued to snow throughout the day.  When we went to bed there was about 6 inches on the ground.  It was my husband's first day off for Christmas vacation.  He was very happy not to have to drive in it.  The kids were excited that there was enough to build a snowman.  The snow was soft so we kind of sculpted a snow man out of a pile.
Then we had a fun snow ball fight. The kids against dad. I joined in after I put the camera away;) Fun!

 The kids taking shelter and getting ready behind dad's car.   

Gone are the days of making sand angels...but Little Man loved making snow angels. 
It was a fun time!
I was surprised when we woke up this morning it was all gone. Little Man was very upset to see his snowman had melted.  He carried around the carrot for a few hours.  He even took it to the store with him.  We told him he could put the carrot in the garden and maybe the bunnies would eat it.  That was the wrong thing to say.  Right away he said, "No!  A bunny can't eat my snowman's nose!" lol.  
We are enjoying the change of season and can't wait for some more snow. 

Saturday, December 18, 2010

The Mark Twain Museum

Tom Sawyer was on Sweet Girl's literature list this year.  She really enjoyed the story.  While we were shopping in Reno a few weeks ago, there was a statue of Mark Twain at the outlet center.  She started telling us what she had learned about the author.  We decided it was a good time to go back and visit the Mark Twain Museum in Virginia City.  
The writing desk used by Mark Twain when he was a reporter and the city editor of the Territorial Enterprise in 1862.  
 The printing press used by the newspaper. 
A proof press.  Newsprint paper was placed on the type after inking.  Then the huge roller was pushed over the type to make the impression.
 Nevada's first switchboard(1901).  
 A water wheel which was used to power the printing press.
Yes, I took a pictue of a toilet .  Sweet Girl thought it was funny they had a sign on it that read "Mark Twain Sat Here".  
It was interesting to learn about the tools and history of the trade.

Nature Hike

We headed back to Fort Churchill this time with my husband for a nature hike.  This place is becoming a family favorite.  It was beautiful to see the change the season has brought.  Last time we saw about four different kinds of lizards.  We didn't see a single lizard.  However, the desert was full of rabbits.  They were running and jumping everywhere we walked.  The dogs were going crazy with all of the scents.  Roxy our boxer would point and then a rabbit would jump.  We haven't trained her to do this so it was kind of funny. 
This plant has probably seen better days. I loved the way the sun reflected off of it.  It was breathtaking. Taking this picture made me realize something about myself, why I love to take pictures.  When looking through the camera lens I am able to slow down, observe, pay attention, and appreciate these little things I find so beautiful.  
 The kids spotted this hole in a rock which looked like a pretty comfy winter home. 
 As we were walking we saw... 
 a mule deer.  She surprised us when she just popped out of the brush. Pretty neat!

It was a great hike:)

Time to Catch Up


 It has been a challenge for me over the past few weeks to find time to blog.  We have been busy with school and getting ready for Christmas.  We also recieved our storage shippment so I was getting that all put away.  I had a goal to finish A History of US book 5 before Christmas break(didn't get done).  My husband's schedule has been weird too.  He has had off various days during the week then working weekend days.  It's always tough to stay on track when dad is home;) but we love having him home with us. 
We usually spend the Christmas season baking and crafting but this year I feel like I have fallen short.  We baked a batch of yummy White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookies last night.  I hope to bake some more over the next week since we will be taking off.  As far as crafting we haven't made one single Christmas decoration:(  A lot of that has to do with the lack of a craft store in our town.  Next year I will have to prepare better, make a list and go into the city to shop for supplies.  I have been scrapbooking a lot though.  The kids pulled out their books and pictures too.  We also made some embelishments together using the Cricut. 
Sweet Girl finished Tom Sawyer.  We went on a field trip to the Mark Twain Museum.  It was in the dark, damp, kind of creepy basement of the once Territorial Enterprise which is where his career as a writer began.  I will post more pictures later.
History we are studying the California Gold Rush and the emigration West.  I was excited to have found a state park just south of Carson City called Mormon Station State Historic Park.  I was reading they have a replica of a trading post built in 1851 and pioneer-era artifacts.   How great!  It would fit in so perfectly with our studies.  Then I was bummed to find out they are closed until May.  It's on our to do list for spring field trips.
The kids also wrote "Mini Reports" last week. Sweet Girl chose to write about Robert Fulton. Silly Guy wrote about  The Louisianna Purchase.   We recieved our household goods shippment from Virginia a couple of weeks ago.  It was full of stuff that has been in storage for four years.  Inside was our encyclopedia's.  So the kids used them for their mini reports.  I don't know what I was thinking putting them into storage in the first place but am so happy to have them back in our home.
 Silly Guy dissected an owl pellet finishing up the bird unit in Science. 
 After dissecting the owl pellet, using the identification key, he came to the conclusion this owl had eaten a pocket gopher.  Since then he has started learning about mammals.  We borrowed a bag full of books about mammals native to Nevada from the library. He has been busy reading. 
The kids have been keeping up with the rest of their subjects too.  Math is Math.  In writing they have had some interesting assignments.  Silly Guy wrote some poetry. He also used a story starter picture to write a short story.  It was about two girls who wandered into the woods to find a mysterious house.  Inside the house they found hidden treasure. He loves the creativity of assignments like these.  I had to help him with composure because he's at an akward writing stage right now where his thoughts can't seem to come together on paper.  I get frustrated at times. My husband reminded me I went through the same thing with Sweet Girl and that it will come with maturity.
One of Sweet Girl's writing assignments was to read the compostions in Tom Sawyer(if I remember correctly Ch. 21) and determine why they were bad.  Then create her own "horrible" composition.  It sounds easy but it wasn't. I heard these words all week..."I can't...but how...what...why"  I couldn't help but smile that she was having such a difficult time writing a horrible compostion.  I can remember not that long ago....but I won't go there.  In the end it was a fun assignment and I think she learned a lot from it.  She just started working on writing a literary analysis. I found this resource useful when I had to write a literary analysis  when taking a literature class. So I using it again while teaching Sweet Girl to write one. 
We also went on a nature hike this week.  It was a beautiful day! I will share more later:)
Hope you had a wonderful week! and Merry Christmas!!


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