Friday, July 31, 2009

Bound to happen

When your driveway looks like this

Eventually your car will look like this

Poor Odie! And yes, I still hit my door on the wall every time I get out of the car. Argh.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Conquering Philly traffic

If you guys are sick and tired of my posts on Philly traffic, please don't tell me. I have a feeling I could devote an entire blog to it.

Today, I had the pleasure of meeting one of my blogging buddies. Such a fun experience. It is so much fun to know someone cyber-ly and then finally get to meet them IRL. Bea's hubby is a resident here too, so we had plenty to talk about. :o) My kids couldn't get enough of her brand new baby and Bea was a champ letting my kids hold and pretty much maul her new baby. Okay, that isn't entirely true, my kids did really good with the baby. I was impressed. Roo spent most of the time at the park chasing pigeons. He is convinced he can catch one. Sugar spent her time chasing Roo chasing pigeons. We really had so much fun. And then the boys found out Bea has a game system at her house, which in their minds equals heaven. Anyhoo, back to getting to the park...

Since I'm finally getting the hang of this Philly traffic thing, I decided to be brave and go to her place. If you had asked me a few months ago if I could handle Philly traffic, I would have laughed at you. I seriously thought Philly traffic would have me in tears by now. And while I truthfully don't love it, I'm not as scared of it as I thought I would be. I can't tell you how proud I am of myself. The very fact that I'm still willing to get on the road is a surprise to me.

In that vein, let me tell you of my Philly traffic experiences today. First thing, what is it with the streets not being divided?! I'm driving down a road that could probably fit two or three cars comfortably, and there are no dividing lines. None. Okay, the two directions are divided, but not the lanes. I need to take a picture. My problem arises from the fact that I don't know where to drive! Do I drive on the far right and leave room for a car to pass me on the left? Do I drive on the far left in case someone wants to pass me or turn? Do I drive down the middle? Most everyone I've seen does the straight down the middle thing except for near intersections, which is a problem in itself. You don't want to be behind someone turning left, but if you go to the right side and they go straight, you are in trouble if there is a car parked on the road. Anyway, I'm probably only making sense to people who live in Philly.

The place where Bea lives is narrow. Really narrow. 'Some places I was driving on the sidewalk to avoid hitting cars' narrow. And there is no parking lots, so the streets are crazy. Okay, there are parking lots somewhere, but not that I saw. Here are the pictures I took today (and this was a good street):

Most people put in the rear view mirrors so they don't get clipped.

Yeah, try going down the street with a truck there. It was there for over an hour. Nice.

Views from the park:

The park was beautiful. It was hard to believe we were so close to soooooo much traffic. This is what I drove through today. I'm so proud of myself. See all those little narrow one way streets? Yeah, not fun. And I had to do a couple loops (one on the big one and 2 around the small one) on the traffic circles near the river before I figured out how to get to the bridge. I wasn't even stressed at all. Well, maybe a little since Sugar kept yelling "boo boo" and I kept thinking she was saying "poo poo." :o)

Me being grateful I'm not on the parking lot, I mean I-76 at rush hour.

This drives me nuts. To go home I turn from Wynnefield right onto 54th. And RIGHT THERE is a street light. Can I tell you how close I came to blowing through that light? You turn the corner and immediately have to stop! I was totally not expecting it. Yikes.

Yeah for Philly Monsters!!!
These are my reward for not letting the ivy engulf the rose bushes. Pretty, huh. Well, one is, the other looks like a glorified petunia. Roses are supposed to have rows of petals! The neighbors have some kind of bush or something in their bed. But the ivy grew over it and not it just looks like an ivy bump. When I pulled the ivy off these bushes, it had already weaved its way through most of the stems. I didn't think the bushes were going to make it, but they are starting to bloom now!
Sugar's photography skills are improving! She take pictures of things other than her eye now. :o)

Saturday, July 25, 2009

My Saturday

This is how we spent our Saturday.

This was the side that had all the flowers die. So, I was able to fill it with dirt and then transplant the ones that didn't die from the other side.

This side had all the flowers that lived, so I transplanted them to the other side so I could fill it with dirt. This is what it looked like before:
Brad did awesome with the bricks and the siding, huh. Makes a huge difference! These flowers are now on the other side.
And this is the before of the ivy garden

I can't even tell you how many hours and how many bags and how much shoveling and pulling it took to rip out this much ivy. Ugh. And just so I don't forget the experience, I have itchy rashes all over. I've scratched so hard, I'm bruising. And that was from last week's pulling. We pulled it all last week. This week was prettying it up.
We made it a hosta garden. Why? They were free. We got them from the driveway. This is where they used to be.

It looks kinda silly there, huh.

I love it now. I think the rocks are so pretty. I didn't feel like investing in flowers, but the mulch was a must since I don't see myself enjoying weeding here as much as I did in MI. Oh, and the plant in the pot was brought from MI. Jamo got it in school and it has grown from an itty bitty little plant. It has beautiful purple buds. And this is what the neighbor's side looks like. Yes, I will be spending plenty of time keeping the ivy and weeds from coming back over. Joy.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

I knew it!

I knew I should keep a camera in my car at all times! Argh! I just went on a spectacular drive. It was so pretty. Perfectly manicured multi-million dollar homes. There was greenry everywhere. It was gorgeous! And I got to drive through a washed out road. I'm not one to drive through flowing water, but since I didn't have my kids with me, I figured I might as well. I wish I could have taken pictures!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

How 32 yr olds have temper tantrums

So, I'm just irritated enough with my 1300 sq ft of living space to have my own little temper tantrum. So, here are pictures of the house. No, I didn't clean. No, I'm not done unpacking. Yes, my camera sucks. Aren't you jealous of our 6 yr old camera that has to be manually opened? Thought so.

The living room. Yes, the area rug takes up the entire living space.
View from beside the couch.

The hall portion of the living room that also has the only phone jack and 3 prong outlet.
The radiator that is making my layout a pain in the bahookie.

Why they break up the wall like this and make layouts so hard I will never know.
The stairs that make full-size box springs weep.

The largest room in the house is the dining room. Do you love my faux-leather light covers?

Yes, you can see how well all these drawers and door shut.
The closet is just deep enough for bowls.

The piano, aka storage space and the door to the abyss, aka basement.
Why, oh why can't you attach smells to pictures?! Sorry, this is the best I could do as I refuse to go in there. You need a flashlight to go down there and all I had was the flash from my trusty dying camera. But, oh the smell upon opening the door! It's strong like gasoline, but I don't think it is gasoline. I'm thinking mold? I don't know, but it is nasty!

My laundry room. I forgot to take a picture of the floor. It is pretty priceless.

My new study. I went from a nice large room with walk-in closet to two shelves. Yeah, I don't know where it will all fit either.

The kitchen-storage half of my new study.

The only bathroom in the house.

Looks small but very tolerable. Until I show you these close-ups:

Doesn't it make you feel nice and clean? I should take pictures of the bugs that crawl out of that hole. You'd love it.

If that didn't entice you, how about painted over black mold?

Yes, I realize my room isn't clean.
And that I don't have any blankets... You wouldn't have blankets either if your house was 85 degrees at night.

Good-bye walk-in closet, hello shared IKEA space.

The narrow passage to the dresser.
The actual closet. So useful.
More stuff I don't know where to put.
Even more stuff I don't know where to put.

Boys' room. do you love how the bed covers half the window?
More useless wall space for a window and radiator.
Thankfully their closet is deep enough for child-sized hangers.

The wood floor that looks like it was constructed by 8th graders without a level. Wouldn't you love to put your bare footsies on it? Watch out for the nails that stick out too far. Make sure you have your tetanus shots too!
The toy room.
Another jutting out structure to make my life difficult. Why must they destroy all the wall space in this ridiculous house?! Can you see how nice and even the floor is? Look at the toy closet. It meets that sticking out part and the bottom. Look how far off it is by the top. No wonder we can't use a rolling chair in there. Well, we tried, but it kept rolling into the wall for some reason.

These shelves are my saving grace in this room.
More wasted wall space used by window, radiators, and room for closest doors that are useless. And cute model. :o)
Our computer desk/folding table. High class stuff.

Yes, there were lots more I could take close-ups of to make you gasp, but I have to save some material for later, right?