Wednesday, January 28, 2009

At last...counters!



It's coming together...the inspector should be here tomorrow to check the rough electric and then the appliances and lighting can go in. We've been cooking in the crockpot and washing dishes in a tub supplied with water from the bathtub. And then, of course, there's the occasional "let's go out!"

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Urbandale Wresting Trounament

Blake and Hunter went to their second wrestling tournament today. Blake weighed in at 51 lbs and Hunter at 77 bls.

Hunter's Highlights:










Blake's highlights:



















Blake's first pin below.


video


For those that may not know - Dad was a big wrestler in his day.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

KITCHEN MAKEOVER: Day Nine






YAY!! The cabinetry's in and the countertop guy came to measure!! The excitement is building toward the finishing parts: countertops, electrical trim-out and someone to put the appliances in their spaces. The cabinet installer was kind enough to hang the microwave for us (not his job but he's a generous guy). It's a wonderful feeling to step into this room filled with furniture. It has gone from an alley to a room--a space that completely changes my feeling about the house. This is a super-storage kitchen filled with cooking luxuries we've never known before.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Our Habitat Project





While waiting for progress on our kitchen project, we're making progress on our Habitat project. Today is painting day at one of the two houses we're building.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Chicken in a Sleeping Bag







Hunter is cooking again.
This week's special was Chicken in a Sleeping Bag.....






Saturday, January 17, 2009

KITCHEN MAKEOVER: Day Five, Six, Seven, and Eight




It's a waiting game.
There's not much to look at but the electricians' artwork. Nice, huh? And, see that copper refrigerator icemaker's line stretched across the area where the soffit once was? It's too short for the new design: The eliminated soffit means the drywall is going straight up to gain space for the new cabinets. A plumber needs to come in and lengthen the copper line. We're waiting for the plumber...

Thursday, January 15, 2009

KITCHEN MAKEOVER: Day Four



Time for a color break...tear-downs and intricate electrical work hold no visual charm. Off we go to Pop's and the jetty for a little boatwatching after the electricians leave this morning. There's a gap in the schedule so we're free to relax a bit before the drywall guys come. They'll ready the walls and ceiling for painting and cabinet installation.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

KITCHEN MAKEOVER: Day Three



A couple electricians turned up this morning and they'll be here all day. We're missing a couple transformers so Becky's busy online trying to fill in the gaps. They'll have to come back another day to complete the work. Meanwhile, they're punching lots of holes in the walls and being creative about making it all work. (We have cinder block walls with scant studs holding up the drywall so they have to work SLIM.)

Saturday, January 10, 2009

No More Humidity Problems!



Hunter and Blake one week ago....





Today!

Monday, January 5, 2009

8th Annual Underwood Florida Trip



Well it is over and we are all home, dragging ourselves around to work and shool.

Here is Blake sad on the plane going home. He looked even worse when he headed into the school this morning with his winter coat on.

We had a perfect time this year. We took 445 pictures. Of those, a theme emerged. The boys perfected the art of Shark Tooth Hunting. This is their 2008-2009 take:









The frame is filled with their prize finds. Everything from the tiniest shark tooth "ever" to the scariest looking to the biggest to white teeth and some that may not even be sharks teeth. The fish is filled with the other teeth. We lost count around 500. We went on 5 expeditions over the 17 days we were in Florida.

We learned this year that there are many methods for shark took hunting. Here are a few of the boys favorites:
The Spot and Grab - barehand method


This method includes standing in the water ankle to knee deep and peering in to catch a glimpes of a tooth and reaching in to grab it before the waves wash it away. This is Dave's perferred method. He likes the challenge!






The No Wet Feet Browsing method


This is where you walk along the shore just above the spot where the waves come in and look like you are just strolling, but you are really looking for any shark teeth that have been left on the sand by others. You casually pick one up when you see it and stick it in your pocket. See Grandpa Al. That is the method he is using here.


Scoop and Sift - most commonly seen method
This is where you use an implement like a colander, sift or if you are real professional, a shark tooth scoop. This is a specially designed scoop that allows you to dig, scoop and sift out the sand so you can find your teeth among the other shells on the bottom of the sea. Blake has spotted one here.


Scoop, Dump and Scrounge - another commonly seen method
This is when you go out and scoop sand off the bottom of the ocean floor and dump it on the shore so you can sift through it thoroughly. This is what happens when you start to get greedy. This requires you to get dirty. This is a nice set up for a scrounger.

Cute Kid on the Beach method

We can't all use this one, but we had a special weapon on our team. This is when a cute kid with a little shark tooth scoop spots an older person (everyone is older) strolling alone on the shore. He looks cute and friendly and maybe not able to find shark teeth on his own. Never fails, a friendly person will walk by and say, "Hey would you like a shark's tooth". He smiles excitedly and says, "Oh Thank You!". Than runs up to his mommy screaming, "mommy I got a shark's tooth." Everyone is happy.
If you don't like any of the methods shown above there is always Sea Pleasures downtown Venice. You can get a shark's tooth for about a dollar, more if you want the really big ones.
PS This year both Blake and Nana found their first shark tooth! No more virgin hunters in our family.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

New Year's Chess Duel


Virg and Becky dropped by for brunch at 10 this morning; we had a great time around the table. Blake contracted with Virg for a game of chess and it's looking pretty serious. A while later, Blake graciously conceded to Virg.

Blake's Up for 2009!!!


Blake slept through the festivities around midnight last night but he's with us now!

Hello, 2009!!!





6 p.m. and counting down...






Every hour or so, Hunter served up a tasty tidbit interspersed with entertainmnent that would mark the hours until 2009. Mexican Plum-Tomato Cups were up first, followed by Pizza Pinwheels and an hour of balloon fun under the stars. Lettuce Bundles and Mini-Bacon Cheese Cups capped off another hour and we adjorned to the street for fireworks. Back inside, we enjoyed Red Bell Pepper and Goat Cheese Bites and welcomed the new year with Blueberry Champagne.