It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas

winterWe haven’t made it to Thanksgiving yet, but it’s definitely beginning to look a lot like Christmas here in Ann Arbor; we had 9-10 inches of snow here yesterday and everything is covered in a blanket of sparkling white, fresh-fallen snow. We haven’t put up our Christmas tree yet, as we always wait until after Thanksgiving at our house to do that, but we did visit the Farmer’s Market yesterday and pick out a gorgeous, fresh fir and boxwood wreath and hang it on our front door – not only does it look nice, it smells wonderful too! I did put a few things around the house in preparation for Christmas, like this really cute, red yarn pom pom garland from a local store, Found, in Kerrytown. And my Christmas cactus is blooming! winter wreath 2015

winter wreath 2015pom pom garland

Christmas cactus

by Valerie | 11.22.15 | Around our home, Around town, For Funsies, Holidaze | No Comments »

“Winter is the time for comfort…”


“Winter is the time for comfort, for good food and warmth, for the touch of a friendly hand and for a talk beside the fire: it is the time for home.” ― Edith Sitwell

We are getting ready for some snow here this weekend and I’ve got a date with my fireplace and my most excellent snuggle partner, Melody.snug as a bug in a rug

by Valerie | 11.20.15 | Around our home, For Funsies, Princess Puppy Pants | No Comments »

garden goodies

garden onions

We pulled all the onions from our garden, cleaned them up, and put them in a basket to use in cooking; I really love the color of these onion skins too – aren’t they lovely? And we found this pretty, gold-rimmed glass at an estate sale last week and I thought it looked quite nice filled with these dark red alstroemeria.

Speaking of cooking, Ryan used up most all of our garden tomatoes making a green zebra gazpacho (he used a version of this recipe, with a combination of green zebra and granny smith tomatoes we grew) and our garden peppers making hot sauce – yum, I’m looking forward to enjoying all of this!

by Valerie | 09.13.15 | Around our home, For Funsies, Garden, Recipes | No Comments »

labor day weekend

early September sky

I don’t know about you, but I feel like I need more holiday time after my holiday weekend… We had a very productive Labor Day weekend: cleaned out our garage, moved a very heavy, solid wood, vintage typewriter desk up the basement stairs (the same one the former owner left for us because it was too heavy and too big to move up the stairs – now I know why…) and then back down the stairs again (because even after we removed the door from the frame it still wouldn’t fit through), then disassembled the desk, moved it back up the stairs once more and got it outside where we reassembled it and placed in on our curb with a “free” sign – luckily, less then 24 hours later, someone picked it up. We also managed to move all our basement items, which had a temporary home in our guestroom, back downstairs and reorganize our basement and that resulted in half our office filling up with piles of things to donate; it feels really good to clean up and clean out and start to prepare for fall. Now if we can just find time to tackle the growing list of projects we still have left… We enjoyed watching Texas Tech win on Saturday, several longs walks in the sun with Melody, Ryan managed to squeeze in a couple bike rides, fried green tomatoes with house-made hot sauce and dinner at Zingerman’s Roadhouse followed by a movie at the theater, really tasty pancakes on Sunday morning at home, and we found some fun stuff at a few estate sales as well. Melody took advantage of football Saturday by taking a nice long nap too. Go Red Raiders!

Zingermans fried green tomatoes with house made hot sauce makes me ridiculously happysleepy pup

by Valerie | 09.08.15 | Around our home, For Funsies, Holidaze, Princess Puppy Pants | No Comments »

beautiful botanicals

dazzling dahliasJust a few beautiful botanicals – dahlias, Japanese painted fern (from our yard), and spray roses – scattered around our home… painted fern

stunning spray roses

by Valerie | 08.17.15 | Around our home, For Funsies, Garden | No Comments »

y’all got a potty

y'all got a potty

Y’all got a potty? Why yes…yes we do – we even have one in our front yard until construction is complete in our basement.

by Valerie | 08.07.15 | Around our home, For Funsies | No Comments »

weekend haps

Picked more tomatoes & a pepper today - the bowl is full... Now, what should we make with all of these?For me, the weekend brought lots of tomatoes and 1 ripe cayenne pepper from our garden – now that we have a bowl full of various kinds of tomatoes, we’ll have to figure out what we want to do with them. Also, I was happy to see Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp; it was completely ridiculous and funny (which is just what I needed), I love the cast, and I think Paul Rudd is pretty great! Speaking of Paul Rudd, I thought this was funny. And there’s something really lovely about the summer evening lightGranny Smith Tomato + Cayenne Pepper

by Valerie | 08.03.15 | Around our home, For Funsies, Garden | No Comments »

c’mon get happy

Cheese!When I’m feeling a bit down or my day just isn’t going how I’d like it to, there are a few things that are sure to cheer me up – my dog, Melody, always makes me smile, a nice walk in the sunshine helps, and I bought myself this cute little succulent and planted it in a pot with gold polka dots. Are you humming this to yourself yet? What makes you happy? This sweet pup always makes me smile!

Sometimes, when my day is just not going like I want it to, a new succulent in a cute little pot with gold polkadots is all I need to cheer me up.

by Valerie | 07.31.15 | Around our home, For Funsies, Princess Puppy Pants | No Comments »

summer is here

summertimeWith temperatures in the 90s now, summer is undeniably here – and with it being the start of August this weekend, it will soon be over. I’ve managed to pick a whole bowl of ripe tomatoes from our garden with many more ripening on the vine, I’m excited to see our various peppers getting bigger and closer to being ready to pick every day, and our lettuce has reached the stage where it resembles a small tree; although we continually pick leaves off the lettuce plants throughout the summer, as we need them, we never seem to be able to keep up with how fast the plants grow and I always find myself feeling a bit overwhelmed by the amount of it we end up with in the end – but, it’s so nice to have fresh-from-the-garden lettuce. Neighborhood walks are always enjoyable and I love to see how all the trees, plants, and flowers change throughout the seasons; there are some really stunning flowers out now. Garden goodies

summertime summertimesummertime

by Valerie | 07.29.15 | Around our home, For Funsies, Garden | No Comments »

weekend haps

basement stairsI’m so excited to say that we’ve now completed our basement stair beautification project…at least that’s what I’m going to call it. The red oak wood stain on the treads and Benjamin Moore super white paint really made a big difference; I’d say they have come a long way from this to this and this. I was so happy about it, when we finished painting yesterday, that I kept saying we had “sexy stairs”. Now, hopefully in the next couple months, we can finish having work done to our basement, get all the walls painted white, and say goodbye to the mint chocolate chip green color that’s currently in the space. We managed to make it to the Art Fair last weekend, picked our first four ripe tomatoes from the garden, and I cut some hosta leaves and hydrangea from our yard as well to enjoy inside – enjoying the summer weather and our summer garden/yard! (bowl and vase by Abigail Murray) first 4 ripe garden tomatoes of the season (bowl by @abigailmurraystudio)!

hosta & hydrangea from our yard & vase by @abigailmurraystudio

garden goodies & vase/bowl by @abigailmurraystudio

by Valerie | 07.20.15 | Around our home, For Funsies, Garden | No Comments »

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