Sunday, September 29, 2013

HY, DR !!!

Welp, the game didn't turn out the way Ole Miss fans would have liked but we still managed to have a good time Saturday night.  I was hoping the Rebs would put up at least a touch down.  Oh!  And did I mention that Coach Freeze tweeted some birthday wishes to me???  How cool is that??!!

The weather was gorgeous this weekend and we had all the windows open and my dining room looked great!  Cosmo and I had on some Rebel gear, KJ, however, was a little "confused" -- she had on an Ole Miss jersey but she wore an Alabama hairbow and an Alabama button.  One of our former Hoover neighbors came over and brought a delish cheesecake and The Godfather and his wife (they had never seen KJ!) brought some great cookies.  I made T's favorite chilli cheese dip and pulled pork sandwiches. 

I haven't talked to T but she texted a couple of times throughout the weekend.  They got to T-town Friday night and she was able to catch up with friends this weekend.  She texted an amazing panoramic pic from her seat in Bryant-Denny and she's already back in Oxford for Rush practice. 

And here's a couple pics of the kitchen area and the family room.  I forgot to take photos of the bedrooms yesterday and haven't made my bed yet today so that's just going to have to wait!  And the formal living room is now full of my Halloween and Thanksgiving boxes just waiting to be opened.  I'll probably do my fall decorating this week! 

Breakfast Nook

Family Room from Kitchen

Breakfast Nook

Friday, September 27, 2013

Friday! Friday! Friday!!!

Yay yay yay!  It's Friday!  Should be a great weekend!  KJ gets out of school today at noon (I have no idea why) and tomorrow we're having some friends and family over to watch the Ole Miss vs. Bama game and then KJ has vball on Sunday.  The weather looks great for the weekend and next week the forecast is calling for warmer temperatures.  We've been in the high 70's this week and next week should be in the low 80's.  The pool heater is still on and KJ has been swimming 3 days this week. 

The other day she came running into the house and said there was a frog stuck in the pool filter.  I had to go out there and poke at him with a pool noodle and scoop him up with the skimmer.  He was HUGE (bigger than my fist!) and we released him back into the wild (OK.  It wasn't exactly the wild.  It was more like I threw him into my neighbor's yard). 

I had a great birthday on Wednesday!   Coach and I had lunch together on Tuesday and I woke to flowers and cards and chocolate chip muffins on Wednesday.  I had a spa day at the Red Door (I used to go to the one on 5th Avenue when we lived in NY) and had a wonderfully relaxing day.  I changed my toe color from my usual OPI Cajun Shrimp to Essie's Merino Wool.  It's officially Fall y'all! 

We went to Buca di Beppo for dinner and had so much fun!  The portions are huge and I ate my left overs yesterday for lunch.  KJ gave me a gift card to DSW (swoon!) so I can get new boots (something casual that I can wear everyday with jeans)  and T sent me a new Ole Miss mug and a couple of Ole Miss pins for KJ and I to wear on game day.  She also tweeted at Coach Freeze and he tweeted some birthday wishes at me so that was kind of exciting!  She's travelling to T-Town for the game this weekend and will stay with some friends.  One of Coach's buddy's offered her his tickets so she's super excited.  They are great seats!  Tom has given us those seats a couple of times and they are lower level, just a few rows up from all the action.  Should be a GREAT game!!!

Photo from last year's match-up in Tuscaloosa.  KJ is an Ole Miss fan (except when they play Alabama). 

Tuesday, September 24, 2013


"Every leaf speaks bliss to me, fluttering from the autumn tree."  ~  Emily Bronte
A little nippy this morning as KJ headed off to school.  She wanted to wear the red and blue cardigan I bought for Ole Miss games but I told her that's not gonna happen.  The kid has a closet full of clothes and accessories yet raids my closet every chance she gets. 
No secret Fall is my favorite season.  Besides cooler temperatures, sweaters, boots, fall decorating and all that great stuff, I love all the great new Fall shoes and movies!  Last night I TiVo'd "Blacklist" with James Spader.  There's been a lot of hype about the show, I just hope it's as good as critics say.  "Modern Family" is back and the second season of " Nashville" premieres tomorrow night.  At the theaters, I'd like to see "Don John" with Joseph Gordon Levitt (he sure has grown up since his "3rd Rock from the Sun" days and who doesn't love a guy who sings "Good Vibrations" in the car???) and I'd also like to see "Runner Runner" with Justin Timberlake and Ben Affleck  In November, "The Wolf of Wall Street" comes out as well as "The Book Thief" and "Catching Fire." 

Speaking of Fall, I did get some of my Fall decorating done this past weekend.  I found most of my tailgating items and have decorated for the Ole Miss vs. Alabama game this weekend:  I've got my entry-way ready and my dining room table is almost complete.  Here's the link to last year's table:  We've got friends and family coming over Saturday night to watch the game so I really need to finish! 

Yesterday I did my mantel.  I kept it very, very simple.  I found a beautiful, sparkly , glittery leaf garland and accented with sequined pumpkins and mercury gourds and acorns.  My inspiration:

The end result:


Sunday, September 22, 2013

Cupcakes, Anyone?

Yesterday we decided to take a little break from unpacking and headed downtown for the H Street Festival. 

The last time we lived here we always lucked out on the weekends and always found a parking spot around the reflecting pool near the Capital Building.  During the week you probably needed a parking pass to park there but on the weekends no one checked.  This, of course, was pre 9/11 and you could park wherever you wanted.  From there we would work our way down the mall and always approached the White House from Constitution Ave.  This time, we parked at a garage at I Street and 16th Ave (not far from the Hay Adams) and walked to the White House from Pennsylvania Ave.  Very different approach and we were surprised to see the front door of the White House wide open!  

We turned on 15th from Pennsylvania Ave and walked over to the Washington Monument.  I hate that it's covered in scaffolding but hopefully that will be correct any structural issues. 
From the monument we walked over to the 13th Annual Library of Congress National Book Festival which was on the Mall between 9th and 14th Streets.  There were tons and tons of food trucks and it was really neat to see Giada and Hoda and Tito Puento signing their books and interacting with readers.  We then made our way over to the Sculpture Gardens (I had never been before and would like to go back and spend a little more time at the Gardens and have lunch in the Café). 
It started to drizzle a little so we decided to ditch the H Street Festival and we got in the car and headed over to Nick's Riverside Café in Georgetown.
We were hoping the rain would taper off by the time we got over there because I really wanted to dine outside by the water.  I absolutely, positively LOVE Georgetown and would give my right arm to live over there!  So quaint, so picturesque, so trendy and so walkable.  After dinner we thought we'd see how bad the line at Georgetown Cupcakes was and maybe grab some dessert. The line wasn't too bad, maybe 10-15 people in front of us (KJ said when she was there in July the line was up the street and around the corner and a lady passed out from heat stroke and they had to call an ambulance).  We got our cupcakes and headed home but made a quick stop at the new Wegman's that just opened up near us.  The store is absolutely insane.  It's two stories and has a escalator and a cart-o-lator, too! 

Wednesday, September 18, 2013


A couple of things I need to add to today's "Pro's and Con's" post:

-Our bedroom.  I think I am sleeping better than I ever have.  Our bedroom in Hoover was on the first floor and in the front of the house over the garage.  The street light was too bright and shined right in our room.  And I heard everything.  I could hear our neighbor's air condition unit turn off and on.  And they were kind of rude and kept the spot lights on 24/7 on the side of their house as well.  I could hear the guy delivering newspaper's at 5 AM (no lie!  His car made a very distinct sound and I could actually hear the rhythmic "thwack" every time he threw a newspaper on each neighbor's driveway).  Our neighbor had a pond in her yard and I could hear the waterfall and the frogs croaking (and despite what you would think, it was NOT relaxing!).  Our new bedroom is upstairs in the back of the house.  It's pitch black and I don't hear a thing.  We had French doors from our bedroom into our master bath in the house in Hoover and I'd wake up everything Cosmo got in the shower.  I don't hear a thing now.

-James Spann.  I watch the local news and have no idea who these weather people are.  I kinda feel like I'm on vacation and watching local TV in my hotel room.  When they talk about the weather or traffic in Baltimore or DC, I have no idea who, what or where they're talking about!  KJ was so excited to unpack her James Spann bobblehead and it actually has a place of honor on her dresser.  Too funny!!!

Pros & Cons

So far, I'm really enjoying being back in the Northeast.  There have been a few things that I'll have to get used to, but I'm really glad we made the move! 

-KJ luvs, luvs, luvs her school and teachers.  That was a huge concern for us but it's all worked out well. 
-The weather has been great.  Really beautiful.  I may be singing a different tune come winter time and I'm battling 10 feet of snow but I really doubt it.  I have never enjoyed the heat and love sweatshirt weather.  And I've always loved the snow.  I love mittens and gloves and playing in the snow and hot chocolate. 
-The water.  This is going to sound super strange but our water in Hoover never got really cold out of the faucet.  Our water here gets cold fast and gets hot fast.  I like it.
-Our garbage disposal.  Again, weird but hey!  It's the little things in life!  We had a garbage disposal in all of our houses except Hoover (we were on septic) and I'm enjoying having one again.  It freaks KJ out a bit, though. 
-Family.  It is so wonderful being able to drive to our families in under 4 hours vs. the 17 or 18 hours it took from B'ham. 
-Closets.  I luv, luv, luv my closets in this house.  Coach and I each have our very own walk-in closet and they are, quite honestly, spectacular  (mine is starting to look a lot like something Carrie Bradshaw would have).  And, I always wanted a separate storage area for all of my holiday décor.  I got it!  This house has a room in the basement with floor to ceiling shelving on each wall and it's mine all mine!  I have a space for my Summer stuff, my Fall décor, Christmas has an entire wall and I'm still putting away Spring items.  I'm in heaven and feel so organized!

-The only major con so far has been this girl right here.  I miss her terribly.

-Traffic.  I will have to get used to allowing a little extra time for traffic.  It hasn't been an issue for me yet but I also have been home for the last 3 weeks and really haven't had to drive anywhere in rush hour traffic.
-Recycling.  No lie, these people here are recycling fanatics.  I always thought I was fairly eco-conscientious but Montgomery County takes it to a whole 'nother level.  We have several different bins in our garage for cardboard, plastic, cans, glass, etc. and they charge you 5 cents for every plastic bag you use at the grocery store.  I always under-estimate how many re-usable bags I need to bring into the grocery store and end up getting charged for a couple and end up feeling guilty.  Plus I don't like putting my meat in recyclable bags and prefer a plastic bag. 
-Eastern Time.  So weird to be in a different time zone than one of my children but the thing I hate most about Eastern time is the TV schedule!  Most of my shows come on later than I'm used to so I end up DVR'ing everything and watching it a day later. 

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Settling In Nicely

Still have a ton of boxes to go thru but for the most part we're settled in nicely.  I do have to open every box and look thru the contents in case anything is broken and need to place a claim w/ in 60 days of delivery so that's taking a while.  I did come across a box of Thanksgiving table décor which had a couple of broken items (which upset me greatly because it's my favorite holiday!) and my chocolate fondue ceramic pot was also broken.  :-( 

The weather has been wonderful.  It's nice to have some cooler days on tap.  The A/C has been off and the windows have been open for several days now.  KJ, of course, is loving the pool and goes swimming every chance she can.  God only knows what my electric bill is going to be like heating the pool!  She likes her volleyball team very much, likes her school, likes her teachers so that aspect is going great.  I attended a meeting on Ed-line (similar to the STI program we had in Alabama but a little more user friendly and ALL of KJ's teachers use the program).  After the Ed-line meeting was a PTA meeting and from there we walked our child's schedule and met w/ each teacher.  All of KJ's teachers were great and each and everyone of them asked how we were handling the move, how was KJ adjusting at home, etc.  One of her math teachers (her algebra class is co-taught which I totally love!) gave me #RollTide as well as one of KJ's PE teachers!  Pretty funny! 

Had such a fun, relaxing weekend with my family.  We drove up to my bro's Saturday morning and met everyone at Mr. B's football game.  So exciting to watch him play.  It was only their second game of the season and unfortunately they lost but it was still fun.  After the game the "girls" went shopping (I promised Sassypants I'd buy her some new earrings for her b-day) and the "guys" went home to watch more football (Alabama vs. Texas A&M, Penn State and then the Ole Miss vs. Texas game). 

T had a good weekend, too!  She and a bunch of friends drove out to Austin to attend the Ole Miss game.  She said it was hot and flat but they had a good time.  They spent the first half of the game at one of the Texas fraternity tents and then one of the dad's handling the smoker in the tent gave her and her friend Josh his two tickets so they went into the game for the second half.  They made a slight detour on the way home and stopped at LSU and had dinner.  She said LSU was not a pretty campus at all but Mike the Tiger being right on campus was pretty cool! 

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Update !!!

Today I have officially been back in Maryland for a week!  So far so good! 

To date, the move has been awesome!  The packers who boxed up the house were great!  Very easy to work with and very professional.  The local Birmingham movers who loaded up the truck were okay, not great, not terrible.  Unfortunately, they were on the "older" side which surprised me since their representative had been out to our house, saw that it sat on a huge hill and also knew it was 3 levels (basement/garage, main level and upper).  The local guys did nothing but bitch and complain about the hill, the stairs and the heat.  All out of my control.  And the bitching got on my last nerve quite quick. 

After some room service, a hot shower, some wine and a restful night at Ross Bridge, the dog and I left Hoover Saturday morning and headed North.  I could have and should have driven straight through but decided to stop in Virginia and break up the trip a bit.  I had never driven that far by myself and didn't know how I'd do.  When I made my hotel reservations, I forgot that I was driving from Central to Eastern time and lost an hour.  I should have made my hotel a little farther than I did and end up stopping a little too early.  And I kind of had to smuggle the dog into the room in a Vera Bradley tote.  I was a nervous wreck that she'd start barking and give us away so I didn't sleep a wink.  At 4:30 AM I was still wide awake and by 5:15 AM I was on the road.  And I hit a lot of heavy, heavy dense fog the entire way up I-81.  Other than that, the drive was uneventful and Trixie was great. 

I was at our house by 12 noon Sunday and after lunch we spent the entire afternoon in the pool.  And on Monday, we barbequed and lounged in the pool the entire day.  It was so nice not having anything to do or anywhere to be.  Tuesday I drove KJ to school and picked her up but Wednesday she rode the bus both ways and has been riding the bus ever since.  The bus stop is two houses down and it's awesome.  She waits at our front door and doesn't start walking to the bus stop until the bus passes our house. 

From the middle school on Tuesday I went grocery shopping and ran a bunch of other errands trying to get familiar with everything.  Tuesday afternoon the previous owners came by to say hello and show me how to run the pool heater, filter, etc.  I gave her my contact info and she texted me later that afternoon to ask if she could bring her daughter by to meet KJ.  Lexi then texted a bunch of girls in the neighborhood and they came over to meet KJ which was super sweet.  This neighborhood is FULL of 8th graders!  So awesome!!!  Two of the girls, another Kendall and a girl named Lucy, made plans to walk KJ to the bus the next day. 

The local Baltimore crew who unloaded on Wednesday were absolutely awesome!  Wow.  I couldn't have asked for a better crew!  Pleasant, fun, helpful, personable.  I am up to my eyeballs in boxes but we're getting through it.  Our family room has curtains (yay!), most of the kitchen has been unpacked, haven't touched my dining room (low priority) and KJ's room is almost done.  I haven't done anything in T's room but Cosmo is all unpacked.  We have separate closets in the house so I'm taking my time with mine.  The closets are positively HUGE and I've got a dressing table in my closet and plan to make it look all fancy and chic. 

Wednesday was a little crazy with movers running around, the pool guy came by, KJ rode the bus for the first time, etc.  One top of all that Cosmo had contacted the volleyball coach and explained our situation to him and asked if he could recommend any clubs or camps.  He asked if KJ had played any travel ball and when Cosmo replied she had 3 years of travel ball under her belt, he told them to come out to that night's practice.  Fortunately I had separated her volleyball stuff and drove it up in my car and we didn't have to hunt through a million boxes to find it!

I'm kinda losing track of my days but one night (Thursday or Friday maybe?) we went to Jimmie Cone for ice cream.  For my North Rockland friends, it's like Hoyers and it's delicious!  I'm just a plain vanilla soft serve, cake cone w/ rainbow sprinkles kind of girl but it totally hit the spot! 

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