We picked up Mom from the airport last Friday and have really been enjoying her visit; we are so glad she will be staying with us for the Thanksgiving holiday this year! We visited a few of our favorite restaurants and did a little shopping over the weekend together, but (besides a trip to the grocery store for some Thanksgiving supplies) we stayed in by the fireplace on Saturday as it was very icy outside. I don’t know about you, but I for one can certainly appreciate a relaxing, cozy day in on a cold day. We made chili and watched movies and it was so nice to just spend some down time together. Watching Ryan chasing Melody…chasing a squirrel…on ice was entertaining too. And ice skating down the sidewalk with no skates on was an experience. #winterainteasy
On Sunday, before heading to brunch, we took advantage of the above freezing temperatures for the day and cleaned out our gutters. Ryan climbed up on the roof with a bucket attached to a rope and lowered it down when it was full so I could dump it in the compost bin – our system worked well. Now we’re bracing ourselves for another cold front to hit – I’m looking forward to more cozy days in!
An approaching thunderstorm just looks more impressive when it’s sitting over the UM Law School, don’t you think? We enjoyed attending Nashbash 2014 in Kerrytown last week (BBQ, beer, and live music), a game of Ticket To Ride Europe – complete with Alvin and Dexter added to the game board, and our friends’ most adorable two-year old was the star of brunch on Saturday; he was very interested in counting everything together and then counting it again, he had an amazing laugh, and when he said, “Are you ready for Ryan?” we all came to understand that meant he wanted Ryan to pick him up and put him on top of his shoulders – adorable! I suppose the world must look very different for a two-year old when you’re on top of the shoulders of someone who is 6’4″ tall. And if you ever wondered what Melody might look like as a monkey…
Last week we enjoyed a cookie cake for a friend’s birthday, a Man Men cocktail night with friends, and we found some nice things at an estate sale on Saturday (including a painting and this small, clear glass pitcher I’ve used as a vase for our garden herbs and hydrangeas in the photo above). And it’s been nice to get some rain too – which our garden and yard are always happy for. We even installed a new storm door and made a couple trips to IKEA for some extra workspace setup in our basement. Melody seems to approve of our new purchases – I think she’ll especially enjoy the storm door as now she’ll have a clear view of the backyard and she can keep a close eye on the chipmunks, squirrels, and birds that may drop by; although she is a bit skeptical of the painting which is currently sitting on the floor against the wall waiting to be hung…
We had one of those perfect weekends last weekend – the kind where your plan is to not have any plans – and after Ryan had been out of town for about a week and half it was nice to spend some downtime with just the two of us. We went where the day took us and it was such a beautiful day too. Neighborhood walks with Melody, I had fried French toast with blueberry spoon fruit and real maple syrup for brunch one day…yum…, a trip to Dexter and a stroll on the boardwalk there, etc. It felt like summer – warm, with a cool breeze at times, and did you see that super moon last night? Wow!
Over the weekend, I enjoyed dinner and a movie with friends, a delicious brunch out with Ryan and a little shopping (Why is the right pair of jeans such a magical, yet often elusive thing?), and a pedicure followed by a mouthwatering Cabernet Sauvignon with a friend.
Instead of watching the Oscars, we enjoyed catching up on some of the final episodes of Breaking Bad and eased the tension with some 30 Rock. Kenneth is my favorite! When I told Melody the Oscars would be on TV, this was her reaction… To be fair, I keep telling her to do the laundry and clean the house while we’re at work, but she hasn’t taken the hint.
This is me, trying not to squint but feeling the slap of the icy wind and snow in my face and wondering how I could have left Texas for this… This winter has been the worst I can remember in the almost 10 years we’ve lived in Michigan and it’s really starting to get to me; unfortunately, for me, it’s only January and we’ve still got a lot of winter to go – they’re predicting more snow and wind chills dropping to as low as 25 to 35 degrees below zero tonight. I’m truly beginning to feel jealous of animals who get to hibernate through this. I do appreciate the snow and the beauty of winter, but this January has been a rough one – I’m done with the cloudy, windy, single digit down to negative actual temps, and don’t even get me started on the wind chill…enough already!
On a happier note, take a look at all this white…with an adorable, sleeping puppy thrown in for good measure.
We are lucky to have such wonderful neighbors…wonderful neighbors who also have a wonderful dog…a wonderful dog who Melody happens to love as much as she loves our wonderful neighbors. Emily and Joel were kind enough to dog-sit for us while we were away for the holidays and Melody got to spend some quality time with her favorite furry man, Stanley. I’m pretty sure it’s true love. I have to admit, I’m pretty sure she’s not going to want to come home when Stanley and Emily and Joel have been so great to her. Emily sent us some rather humorous photos (including these here, thanks Emily!) of the two of them snuggled up together – apparently Stanley’s backside makes for an excellent pillow to rest one’s head.
We’ve had quite a bit of snow this weekend; it snowed all day Saturday and it has been snowing all morning today as well. Also, I couldn’t resist putting Melody in this red sweater and reindeer ears – we didn’t leave them on long as she looked so miserable in them, just long enough to get some ridiculous photos. Perhaps the fact that she’ll have some treats in her stocking by the fireplace will make up for this brief moment of humiliation? I like to think so. Melody wishes you a most delicious Christmas and a tasty New Year!
I like to have “adventures”, which – for me – can be anything from driving to Ikea to brave the insanity that Ikea can be, to trying a new restaurant, or even taking a hike in the wooded area near our house…and that’s just what we did today. We had an adventure in our own backyard, so to speak. Frozen ponds, evergreens, various plant life, and Melody is an excellent tree stump model – she was really working it!