fun on the 4th

Ypsilanti 4th of July parade  #fourthofjuly #redwhiteandblue

We celebrated the 4th by attending the Ypsilanti 4th of July parade (celebrating its 90th year), getting caught in a rainstorm, spending lots of time outside and sweating…a lot, dipped our toes (and paws) in the water, and of course enjoying some grilled eats and some cold beers – yum! Maddy enjoyed a little bit of Frisbee time in the park and she didn’t even seem to mind the shallow Argo cascades when we walked through the area for a bit (she’s not a big fan of the water). She didn’t seem interested in carrying the little flag we purchased, but it made for a nice decoration in our patio planter instead. Hope your 4th was a blast!

Want to see more? Here are a few photos and videos from our day.

by Valerie | 07.08.19 | Around our home, Around town, For Funsies, Holidaze, Marvelous Maddy | No Comments »

bench, please!

diy bench project complete with @deptofmiscellany #diy #gardenbench #madeitmyself

We now have a pretty sweet setup in our backyard for the summer, after tackling a few DIY projects to help us with relaxing and enjoying the summer weather to the fullest! We spent the last couple weekends building a brand new bench (to replace our beloved, but aged and falling apart, wooden Adirondack chairs that we’ve had for years), sealing and resealing all our wooden patio furniture to weatherproof it, and giving our metal patio chairs and patio table legs a fresh coat of paint. Maddy seems to enjoy it too! And, to my delight, we finally have a fire pit to enjoy on our patio; I’ve been wanting one since we moved into our home 7 years ago and was pretty excited when Ryan surprised me with this sweet little Solo Stove bonfire! We even used it to make s’mores…yum!

diy bench project complete with @deptofmiscellany #diy #gardenbench #madeitmyself
#saycheese #familyportrait #bordercollie #BorderCollieMix
#summertimegladness #bordercollie #bordercolliemix @coolaroousa

Here’s the view from our new bench; our garden is growing in nicely and we’re already seeing some cherry tomatoes about ready to pick and some peppers growing. Our herbs, lettuce, and kale are really happy and (while peony season is over here…sad) our dahlias and ketchup and mustard roses are blooming.

by Valerie | 07.03.19 | Around our home, For Funsies, Garden, Marvelous Maddy | No Comments »

hello…we’re still here!

always eating with an audience 👀#bordercollie #bordercolliemix

Hello, it’s been a while since we posted, but we’re still here! Since our last post, we celebrated Hanukkah, Christmas, New Year’s Eve/Day, and our anniversary. We visited our home state of Texas, and saw lots of family and dear friends while we were there. We had a pretty amazing dance party with my favorite 2 year old! We’ve had a few winter storms and experienced a seriously frigid polar vortex here in Michigan, but our home is warm and cozy and our hearts were warmed by this year’s Puppy Bowl XV.

Christmas Eve family fun
family photo
#puppybowl #puppybowlxv #bordercollie #bordercolliemix

Maddy doesn’t seem to like playing in the water, but she does LOVE playing in the snow; and winter Frisbee time is just as much fun as summer Frisbee time, as far as she’s concerned!

#frisbeeislife #bordercollie #bordercolliemix

We’ve also been baking our way through Bread Baking for Beginners and our house smells pretty amazing; it’s been so nice to have freshly baked, homemade bread and now that we’ve gotten into the habit of doing this I don’t think I can go back to having only store bought bread in the house. And Galentine’s Day/Valentine’s Day is just around the corner! xoxo

We made our 2nd loaf of homemade bread yesterday (8-hour fermentation no-knead bread); working our way through Bread Baking for Beginners by Bonnie OHara. Maddy would very much like us to give her a piece. 🍞👀😋 #breadmaking #bread #breadbaki

by Valerie | 02.08.19 | Around our home, For Funsies, Holidaze, Marvelous Maddy, Travel | No Comments »

thanksgiving feast

Thanksgiving 2018

Ryan and I had a nice, quiet Thanksgiving this year. We certainly didn’t let the fact that it was just the two of us (and Maddy of course) stop us from cooking a proper Thanksgiving feast though! Our Thanksgiving meal included:

Thanksgiving 2018

Thanksgiving 2018

Thanksgiving 2018

Thanksgiving 2018

Thanksgiving 2018

Thanksgiving 2018

Thanksgiving 2018

by Valerie | 11.28.18 | Around our home, For Funsies, Holidaze | No Comments »

fall snowfall and Robert Frost

#fallsnowfall #snow #snowfall

We woke up to snowflakes tumbling from the sky this morning and everything dusted in white. Against the fall leaves still hanging onto some of the trees, it was a lovely sight. I felt this Robert Frost poem captured it quite nicely…

My November Guest
by Robert Frost

My Sorrow, when she’s here with me,
Thinks these dark days of autumn rain
Are beautiful as days can be;
She loves the bare, the withered tree;
She walked the sodden pasture lane.

Her pleasure will not let me stay.
She talks and I am fain to list:
She’s glad the birds are gone away,
She’s glad her simple worsted gray
Is silver now with clinging mist.

The desolate, deserted trees,
The faded earth, the heavy sky,
The beauties she so truly sees,
She thinks I have no eye for these,
And vexes me for reason why.

Not yesterday I learned to know
The love of bare November days
Before the coming of the snow,
But it were vain to tell her so,
And they are better for her praise.

by Valerie | 11.09.18 | Around our home, For Funsies | No Comments »

and suddenly it’s October

Beautiful fall day at the Ross School of Business

I can hardly believe it’s already October, but here we are on October 1st… The weather has turned cooler here and it’s a grey, rainy day in Ann Arbor; leaves are starting to change and of course we’re enjoying college football, Oktoberfest beer, beautiful mums, and snuggles with Maddy as often as we can. Here’s a beautiful excerpt from Robert Frost to capture the mood of this day –

October
by Robert Frost

O hushed October morning mild,
Thy leaves have ripened to the fall;
Tomorrow’s wind, if it be wild,
Should waste them all.
The crows above the forest call;
Tomorrow they may form and go.
O hushed October morning mild,
Begin the hours of this day slow…

fall y’all #fallleaves

octoberfest steam pilsner & night hawk stout @pileatedbrewing #cheers #beerme

#bordercollie #bordercolliemix #snugglebuddy #WreckEm #texastech

by Valerie | 10.01.18 | Around our home, Around town, For Funsies, Marvelous Maddy | No Comments »

goodbye to summer

garden bouquet for labor day - roses, lavender, mint, lemon balm, basil, sage #grewitmyself #gardenflowers

While it feels nothing like fall in SE Michigan today (high of 89 and 94% humidity), with Labor Day behind us and September officially here…the summer is sadly over. We filled our last few weeks of summer with attending the Ann Arbor Wayzgoose and Printing Festival, a trip to Cranbrook Art Museum where we saw the Too Fast to Live, Too Young to Die: Punk Graphics, 1976-1986 and Shepard Fairey: Salad Days, 1989-1999 exhibitions, visiting two new-to-us breweries (Atwater and Batch Brewing Co), and the start to college football season. Also, Maddy successfully completed the snoot challenge…have you seen all this cuteness?!? Pictured above is an arrangement I made with flowers and herbs from our garden – roses, lavender, mint, lemon balm, basil, and sage.

#snootchallenge

so many beautiful, wonderful things were seen at #annarborwayzgoose #a2wayzgoose #wayzgoose @aadlgram @virginwoodtype @starshapedpress @frenchpaperco @beaconandbatten

visiting my 41st Michigan brewery today #atwaterbrewery #craftbeer @atwaterbeer

Shepard Fairey: Salad Days, 1989-1999

by Valerie | 09.04.18 | Around our home, Around town, For Funsies, Garden, Marvelous Maddy | No Comments »

“Relax. Don’t worry. And have a homebrew.”

tasted our first homemade homebrew today, an amber ale that were calling “primero uno” #homebrewing #homebrew #adventuresinhomebrewing #beer

“Relax. Don’t worry. And have a homebrew.” – Charlie Papazian

We have successfully brewed our first homebrew beer; it’s an Amber that we’ve decided to call “Pimero Uno”! Is it the best Amber I’ve tasted? Of course not. But, it’s definitely drinkable and we learned a lot from brewing it ourselves so the next batch of beer, whatever style we decide to make, should be even better and I count that as a win. I must also acknowledge all the resources out there that helped us to get as far as we have; there are many great resources online (like the American Homebrewers Association), locally (like Adventures in Homebrewing, where we took an “Intro to Homebrewing Class” yesterday), and of course books you can purchase (like Brew Better Beer by Emma Christensen). Here are some photos/videos I took of our homebrew process along the way…

tasted our first homemade homebrew today, an amber ale that were calling “primero uno” #homebrewing #homebrew #adventuresinhomebrewing #beer

Cheers and more to come on our adventures in homebrewing soon!

by Valerie | 07.16.18 | Around our home, For Funsies | No Comments »

Memorial Day weekend

this #pearlbeer bottle opener belonged to my Mema & Granddaddy - my Granddaddy fought for our country in WWII, thank you to all who have served #memorialday

The Pearl Beer bottle opener pictured above belonged to my Mema and Granddaddy. In March of 1942, my Granddaddy enlisted in the U.S. Army; on June 6, 1944, he – along with the brave soldiers of the 4th and 90th Division – stormed Utah Beach in Normandy, France. He was the recipient of the Purple Heart, Bronze Arrowhead, Five Bronze Stars for five major battles, three Overseas Bars and the French Legion of Honor Medal in addition to several other commendations. He lived to be 94 years old and I am so honored to have known him and to call him family. Thank you to all who have served.

Long, holiday weekends are heavenly…yet somehow, they never seem to be quite long enough; we thoroughly enjoyed ours and squeezed in a movie, lots of r&r, grilling, some more planting in our garden and yard (Bartzella Itoh Peony, Cascade Azalea, a few more herbs, and a mosquito plant), and – even with temps in the 90s here in May (that’s hot for MI in May!) – we spent a good amount of time outside enjoying our backyard patio space.

Speaking of things we enjoy…Ryan and I enjoy beer, I’ve been curious to try our hand at homebrewing, and we also enjoy a good DIY project on occasion – so we took the first step towards this and bought this book about it. We plan on reading up on it first and then we’ll see where that takes us; I’m excited at the possibility of creating our own homebrew, with a healthy dose of reality that this won’t be easy to do and will take a good deal of patience and practice to hopefully, eventually be successful at (fingers crossed!). My Dad shared with me that my Granddaddy once tried homebrewing and that it didn’t turn out that well for him – lol! I’m hopeful there will be more to come on this for us, stay tuned…

You can view more photos from our Memorial Day weekend here.

#gottowearshades #memorialdayweekend #bordercolliemix #bordercollie

by Valerie | 05.29.18 | Around our home, For Funsies, Holidaze, Marvelous Maddy | No Comments »

how does our garden grow?

started our summer garden today #gardening #ourbackyard #mothersday

We purchased and planted most of our summer garden on Mother’s Day and are looking forward to some delicious garden goodies over the summer months! We are growing some of our annual favorites, but always pick out some new and different varieties to try as well. Here’s what’s growing in our summer garden this year: basil, oregano, thyme, mint, parsley, chives, shallots, strawberries, a variety of peppers (jalapeño, habanero, etc.) and tomatoes (Green Zebra, Mr. Stripey, Black Krim, and Chello), red leaf lettuce, kale, marigolds, nasturtium, dianthus, lavender, and ketchup and mustard roses. We’ll be adding coleus and maybe a few other things to pots in the coming weeks too. We also planted a few hanging baskets and pots with pretty, trailing plants like sweet potato vine, etc. Happy gardening!

started our summer garden today #gardening #ourbackyard #mothersday

started our summer garden today #gardening #ourbackyard #mothersday

started our summer garden today #gardening #ourbackyard #mothersday

started our summer garden today #gardening #ourbackyard #mothersday

by Valerie | 05.15.18 | Around our home, For Funsies, Garden | No Comments »

Louis Vuitton Store Locator Louis Vuitton Handbags Replica Where to Buy Louis Vuitton Handbags Cheap Louis Vuitton Handbags Replica Shoes for Women by Louis Vuitton Louis Vuitton Outlet Cheap Louis Vuitton Shoes Buy Louis Vuitton Bags Cheap Online Louis Vuitton Handbags Cheap from China Cheap Sale of Louis Vuitton Bags