Monday, July 28, 2008


Keith and I spent part of this past weekend in Richmond, our old hometown. Even though neither one of us actually grew up there, we both spent 10 years of our adult life there and have many fond memories. As we drove through downtown & through Shockoe Bottom on Friday evening, lots of fond memories flooded my mind - working at the hospital downtown and getting lunch from the street vendors, lots of fun dancing nights at "Have a Nice Day Cafe", seeing Jordan Knight (of NKOTB) at the Canal Club, going to RichBrau to play pool, and "The Pub Crawl" for Dee's 30th birthday!! The same thing happened on Saturday when we drove down Broad Street in the West End - I had thoughts about lots of different people that came in and went out of my life while I lived there. I still stay in touch with many, although there are a few that I wonder where they are and what path their lives took them.

I can't speak for Keith, but for me, even though I really enjoy our life in C'ville, I often wish that we still lived in the Richmond area. Yes, we are only 45 minutes from Short Pump, but realistically we just don't get back as often as I wish we could. And then there are things like my parents, our St. Martin's church family, our favorite restaurants and fun things we used to do there together.....all things that I miss immensely!! It is hard moving to a new town. We have both made a few friends here during our last 16 months, but we both left numerous friends behind and that is the hardest part! Life just seems to continue on and the months fly by and the next thing I know, I haven't seen some people in over a year!

Thankfully we were able to see a few old friends from UR while we were "home" and we also spent time with my parents and my sister Karen and niece Sierra (who were visiting from VA Beach). We also made a lunch stop on Saturday at one of our favorite places - Famous Dave's. They really need to get one in C'ville!!

All in all, we had a great weekend and it was really nice to be back in Richmond. (We even purchased a new dining room suite, which I will post about in a week when we finally have it in our house).

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Home Ownership

So far, Keith and I are really enjoying home ownership. One of my favorite things about our house is the garage. I love coming home and pulling my car into the garage. I know it's something that a lot of people have, but for me, it's something new and exciting! I don't think it will ever get old!

Unfortunately, not everything has been that enjoyable. We have had a few small issues with our house so far:

1. Our water pressure is a bit on the low side. It's not so bad that we notice it when we shower, but I definitely notice it when using the kitchen faucet and the washing machine. Keith and I have both been down in the crawl space and we found the shut-off valve for the water. Our hope was that it was not turned on all the way and that is the reason for the poor pressure. Unfortunately that doesn't seem to be the case as it was on as far as it goes and thus it is probably not an easy fix. Anyone have suggestions??!! There are some guys that work in our facilities department at work that are certified plumbers - I am going to ask them if they have any ideas. The next step is probably for us to have a plumber come to the house.

2. A week after we moved in, our over-the-range microwave broke! Bummer! I used it on Sunday night to pop some popcorn and it worked fine. The next night, I stuck some leftover corn in it to heat up for dinner, and when the timer went off to say it was done heating, I opened the door to find cold corn and a funny smell like burning electrical wire. Hmmm....what could it be? Well, I did what most people would do and I went to Google. I typed in "burning smell and no heat in microwave". I found numerous other people who had similar problems. The solution? Buy a new microwave.

3. Last Wednesday morning as I was getting ready to leave for work, I did something that I do every morning before I leave the house - I open all of the blinds in the house. I think Keith would prefer that they stay closed because (in his own words)..."People can see in". But, I like that they are open - they allow light to come in and its nice to have them open when we get home from work, especially now when it is staying light so late. Anyways, this particular morning, Keith was gone out of town and I was turning the rod that opens our master bedroom window blinds when all of a sudden the string that holds the blinds up broke!! Needless to say, it was not a pretty sight with the blinds all falling down in front of me. Crap! I just left them and headed in to work. Last night Keith and I went to Lowe's and bought new blinds. Tonight we installed them. (We are becoming regulars at Lowe's!!)

So, in a nutshell......
  • New blinds from Lowe's....$40
  • Service call fee for a plumber to come look at our water pressure.....$75
  • New over-the-range microwave.....$200

HOME OWNERSHIP....Priceless!!!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Updated Pictures of the New House

Here are some pictures we took of the house now that we are almost completely unpacked (what you don't see in the pictures are the unpacked boxes in the closet! haha).

Our Bedroom (we have so much more room now, I LOVE it!)......

This is the living room, looking from the dining room.....

More of the living room....

The office....

The Guest Bedroom....

All Moved In....for the most part

We are all moved in to the new house, for the most part. We had a crazy move-in weekend but we got it all done. This post is about 10 days late, but better late than never, I guess....

At 8:45am on Thursday July 3rd, the moving van pulled up to the townhouse and two movers got out. They surveyed all of the stuff that we had to see how best to load it into the truck and then they began to start moving things out. It amazed both Keith and me as to how much weight these guys could carry. The two of them moved all of our HEAVY bedroom furniture - including our big dresser, with the drawers full of clothes! They were definitely sweating and working hard, but they also took time to chat and were very pleasant.

About 11:30am, they were not quite done, but I had to head to the new place to wait for the "cable guy". As I am sure everyone has experienced, the company said that their installation man will be to the house between noon and 5. Of course I knew if I wasn't there at noon, he would for sure be sitting in the driveway waiting for me. As it turned out (since I was there at noon), he didn't get there until about 2pm. This was just about the same time as the phone guy appeared too so we had a sea of people running around the house, between these two guys and the two movers! It was a little bit crazy and exhausting for Keith and me even though we weren't really moving anything heavy. I can't imagine if we actually had to move and carry all that stuff! It was a hot day!

Once everyone had finished (around 5:30pm), we headed over to my sister Katie's house. She had graciously offered to have us over for dinner that night since we certainly weren't going to have any kitchen stuff unpacked. It was also a nice break from the moving process and we got to relax a little bit. Upon our return to the house at about 8pm, we did the very least bit necessary to be able to spend the night (set up and make the bed & get our bathroom stuff out). Then we did a few other odds and ends and crashed!

Friday was a LONG day filled with lots of unpacking! After we got through all of our hanging clothes and the big suitcase filled with my shoes, Keith started unpacking all of his books and I started to tackle the kitchen! We stopped around 7pm so that we could get cleaned up and go watch fireworks with Katie, Shaun and Pierce. It was Pierce's first fireworks show but I think he was too tired to even care about them (he usually goes to bed around 8pm and the fireworks didn't start until 10pm)! He didn't fall asleep but he was definitely in a daze and probably sleeping with his eyes open!

Saturday was another LONG day of unpacking - more kitchen unpacking, getting the guest bedroom & office set up, along with both bathrooms. We also spent some time late Saturday night (we were up until 2AM) trying to get some pictures up on the wall and get things straightened up. We knew that we were having visitors to our house on Sunday (my parents, my grandparents and Mike & Blakely) and I was determined to have some stuff up on the walls before they came!

By Sunday, we were pretty much exhausted and spent most of the day visiting with my family at Katie & Shaun's house. We had a great time and it was a good break from unpacking!

Once Monday arrived, it was back to work for both of us. Between then and now, we have made two trips to Lowe's and one to Bed, Bath and Beyond to get supplies and necessities for the house. I think Keith would agree with me that it has been a really positive experience so far, albeit an expensive one!! He was able to mow and trim the grass last Friday night and I did some weeding outside. We have a long way to go with the grass and landscaping issues, but the big things are all done - thank goodness!!

It does seem like time is flying by! I can't believe we have been in the house two weeks today! Here are some pictures from our adventure:

Packing up in the old kitchen/breakfast nook
The old living room packed up....I definitely don't miss that green rug!!
The old guest room all packed up. This was our staging area for lots of things!
The old book room/office all packed up! I didn't think we had *that* much stuff, until we had to start packing it up!
This is the kitchen in the new house. This picture was taken right after the movers left. So many boxes!!!
Our bedroom in the new house, before anything is unpacked!
The office was the room that the movers put all off Keith's books. I think he said it was 30-something boxes!!!
The guest bedroom in the new house.
More of the guest bedroom, before anything is set up.

You Might Be Rich!!

On an episode of Dateline this week, they talked about $30+ billion of "unclaimed property" that the government has. They were giving checks (mostly around $500) to all kinds of people from all walks of life. The resounding message from the episode was - "You Might Be Rich" and not even know it! It was a really interesting episode and the day after I saw it, I went online to see if anyone I knew could be one of those people!!

Interestingly, I did find my boss and one of the coaches that I work with on the website. I notified them both and hopefully they will be able to get whatever they have coming to them (maybe they'll even share a little with me....yeah, right! haha)

I tried to search for all the names I could think of, but if you want to search for yourself or someone you know (it's a huge timewaster, but so fun to see who you can find!).....go to Once you are at the website, you can search by name for individual states or for all states. GOOD LUCK!!

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

R.I.P. Shadow

My dad called us tonight to give us some sad news...the family dog, Shadow, had to be put to sleep this evening. He was having some issues the past few days and the vet determined that he was in renal failure. My parents made the very tough but right decision to end his suffering and say goodbye.
I am sad that I didn't get to see him before he died, but we know that he is not in pain anymore and that is what is important.
Shadow was a wonderful companion and a faithful friend. He will be very much missed by my entire family!

Click HERE to see more pictures and hear my sister Karen's thoughts.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Where have we been?

I realize that I have taken a blogging hiatus here lately. Not because I don't have things to post about, but because I honestly just haven't had the time. Here is a run-down of what we have been doing since my last post:

Sunday, June 22: Our 4-day Football Camp started....I worked 10am-11pm. Keith had a presentation to do for work - he worked 2pm-10pm also!! Long day!

Monday, June 23: More Football Camp.....I worked 7am-11pm! Keith worked on packing after his day at work.

Tuesday, June 24: More Football Camp....I worked another 17 hour day! Keith did another presentation, the same as on Sunday, so he was busy, busy, busy too!

Wednesday, June 25: Football Camp ended....only worked 8 hours. (Keith took the day off to pack up the house - he did a TREMENDOUS job! I am so blessed to have such a wonderful husband!)

When I got home, we packed up a few things and then headed to the new house to finish our paint job in the master bedroom (sorry for the delay on the story)....Keith and I stupidly didn't get enough paint when we first purchased it at Wal-Mart a few weeks ago. So....when my dad realized while we were painting that we were going to run out of paint for all of the rooms, but especially for the master bedroom, he offered to go get more. Since Wal-Mart is about 45 minutes (one-way!!) away from our new house AND since Lowe's is only 15 minutes away AND they say they will match any color paint, he decided to go there instead. Well, take it from me......take the time to go back to the place you originally bought the paint!! Needless to say, after Keith had painted half of a wall and part of another with the Lowe's paint, we realized that it was just a little bit different (but enough to notice it). So.....we went back to Wal-Mart later that night on our way back to the townhouse, and we went back to finish the job on Wednesday after work. It was a loooong process, but we finally finished it about 10pm! (Thank goodness the other bedroom colors matched and we didn't have to re-do either of those!)

Thursday, June 26: Worked our regular 8 hours, ran errands after work and got more packing done (both house packing for the move and suitcase packing for our weekend trip)!

Friday, June 27: Keith and I worked until noon, grabbed some lunch, took his car to the shop (the passenger side window wouldn't go up all the way!! Ugghh!) and then we left town to head to Asheville, NC for a 40th birthday bash for a good friend of Keith's. It is a 6.5 hour drive, so with a few stops, we arrived at their house at 8:30pm.

Saturday, June 28: In Asheville. Toured the Biltmore House and enjoyed some time with old friends.

(Note: while Keith and I were on our whirlwind weekend trip, my parents and my sister Katie went to our new house and "prepped it" for us to move in....they cleaned the carpets & the hardwood floors, cleaned all the windows & sills, mowed & trimmed the lawn, and power-washed the front porch & deck. I HAVE SUCH A WONDERFUL FAMILY AND KEITH AND I ARE SO BLESSED TO HAVE THEM IN OUR LIVES. We cannot thank them enough for all of the help they have given us, over the past month, and really - for me - over the past 33 years!!)

Sunday, June 29: Drove back from Asheville....left at 1pm, made a few stops, and returned home exhausted at 10pm.

Monday, June 30 & Tuesday, July 1: Worked our regular 8am-5pm work hours and packed, packed, packed in the evening. We finished the downstairs area (living room, dining room, kitchen) and Keith got his bathroom and most of the two spare bedrooms done.

Today: I am at work right now (not REALLY working, as you can see...haha) and I am leaving at noon. Heading home to work on the rest of the packing - my bathroom, the spare bedroom & our bedroom closet, the laundry stuff, and everything associated with our bedroom. I am confident that we are going to be ready when the moving company pulls up with their big truck tomorrow morning at 8:30am. And I am excited to finally start living in our new house!!

I will post again after the move is complete (probably won't be until Saturday or Sunday). Until are some pictures from our painting day two weekends ago (sorry, it took so long to post them!):

Shaun & Pierce helped weed the front flower bed
(can you see the father, like son!)
Pierce helped Uncle Keith sweep out the garage
Dad painting "the yellow room"
Mom painting "the green room" (she painted this entire room by herself.....she is AWESOME!)
Keith painting our master bedroom
Katie and I painting the yellow room closet
The Yellow Room is complete - great job Dad and Katie!
The Green room is complete - thanks Mom!
The Master Bedroom is almost done....
Can you see the different paint color on the wall??
The color on the left is the stuff from Lowe's....just a little bit too much red in it.

To see more pictures from our painting day, CLICK HERE to see some from Katie's blog.