Sunday, October 31

new car smell

Brian got a 2010 Hyundai Elantra yesterday and I have to say, this was about the most unexciting car purchase that we've made so far. Given the amount of time he spends on the road and the aging truck he had to ride around in, we decided to buy a new car this year. We had three qualifications for the car. It had to be inexpensive, get good gas mileage, and be big enough for the three of us to get around in comfortably. After much research, I came up with the Elantra. So we waited until they had some good incentives (rebates and APR) going on and bought the car. I think it will work out well. Jake was the most excited about it because it will eventually become his car when he is old enough to drive, so he's going around telling everyone about his new car. As for us, we're not excited to have another car payment, but it is significantly less than my Highlander payment was, so at least that's a plus.

Oh, and we did keep Brian's truck since we always seem to be hauling stuff. But, we're hoping that if we only use it when necessary, we won't have to fix it as often as we did in the past.

Thursday, October 28

tomato teepee review

As mentioned earlier in the season, I bought a couple of tomato teepees. I never did make a final assessment of them, so here goes. I started the plants in the teepees in early May. By the end of the month, the plants were huge--way bigger than the non-teepee plants. However, by half way through the season, all of the plants in the garden were about the same size. There was also no difference as to when the tomatoes began to ripen--all were on about the same schedule.

I must add that I removed the tomato teepees after Memorial Day, so leaving them on for the season may have made a difference. I'll probably try that next year. Even though I didn't see a difference in yield or harvest time, they were almost worth having just so I could get some plants out of the house as space is tight around here.

That said, I'll definitely use them again next year. I'm just not sure if I'll be buying enough for all of the tomato plants at this point.

Tuesday, October 26


Continuing with our Halloween-themed movie month, we watched Saw over the weekend. I thought it was pretty good. The movie was riveting but it kind of reminded me of a Se7en rip-off with the weird murders and such. But, not as good, of course. Though I don't really consider Se7en to be a horror movie (it's more of a thriller in my mind). Saw was definitely a horror movie. That said, I don't think we will continue with the Saw series. I hear they just get more disturbing as time goes on and I don't think I need to see any of that.

Sunday, October 24

wrapping up

The nice weather is almost coming to an end, but I have hopes for a few more nice days so I can do more outside work before the snow arrives.

Today, I planted garlic. Brian turned over the garden for me last weekend, so the soil was all nice and loose for today's planting. I planted close to 200 cloves, so I should have plenty of garlic next year.

I have a lone Brussels sprouts plant in the middle of the garden--it has to go. I was hoping to get to it today, but we were busy doing stuff around the house all day.

Prior to this weekend, I've been on cleanup duty outside. Due to the early hour it now gets dark, I only get to work outside on the weekends, so it's been slow-going.

Saturday, October 23

fall tv

This year is a failure compared to last year. Last year got me, The Middle, Modern Family (my current favorite show) and Cougar Town. This year, nothing.

On Tuesdays, I watch Parenthood. I thought it was much better last season (for example, it actually had a plot), but I still keep watching for some reason (damn you, Peter Krause).

Wednesday has taken over Thursday for the best night of television. If only ABC could find another good show to go along with the rest of their Wednesday night lineup, it would be perfect. This year's new show is Better With You and if it makes the cut, I will be surprised. I've been watching it if only because it's on between The Middle and Modern Family. I'll probably continue to watch it, but it's really not that good.

NBC has scrambled the Thursday night schedule and I'm not a fan of the new order. They now have 30 Rock on at 8:30. That's just not an 8:30 kind of show. It's still as funny as always, though. I'm still watching and like The Office. I wonder how they are going to pull that show off once Steve Carell leaves? I don't know how they're going to do it. I've also been watching the new show, Outsourced. While it has an occasional laugh, it's another show that I can't see lasting--how long is that subject matter going to be interesting? I mean, just how many jokes can you make about Indian food? Really.

We added some new shows to our Blockbuster Queue. So far we've watched seasons 1 and 2 of It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia. I'm not a huge fan of the show yet, but occasionally I find it hilarious, so I'm going to give the 3rd season a shot. I've also heard great things about Breaking Bad, but haven't rented it yet. I'll be watching that soon for sure.

I added True Blood to my HBO/Showtime shows-to-watch list. I was completely mesmerized by the first season of True Blood. The second season was good, but not as good as the first. And, I've been keeping up with Californication, Weeds, and Dexter (though I haven't rented the latest season yet). With all of these shows to watch, it's a wonder I can get anything done.

Sunday, October 17

airplane ii: the sequel

We went out for supper last night with our friends Bob and Carol. As a bonus, their son Jeff was in so he joined us. We went to Clark Powell's Restaurant in Ebensburg. It was pretty nice. I wasn't sure if we were going to make it because I came down with a cold Friday night, but I didn't feel too bad yesterday, so we went. It was nice catching up. We really need to do this more often (it's been a year since we all went out).

After we got home, we did a Family Movie Night and watched Airplane 2. It was much the same as the first one. Suffice it to say, it wasn't as funny as I remembered, but Jake seemed to like it.

Due to my cold, I fell asleep about half way through the movie. I just could not stay awake (it wasn't like it was late or anything--10 or 10:30). After the movie was over, I got off the couch and went to bed and didn't get up till 8:30 this morning, so I got a good 10 hours of sleep. I needed that!

Anyway, I feel slightly better today. The sore throat is gone, but I keep sneezing. As far as colds go, I guess it could be worse. I'm just glad I wasn't sick for the concert last week.

Tuesday, October 12


What's that spell?

After dinner, our doorbell rang. It was the neighbor catty-corner to our house in the back. He stopped to inform us that he doesn't want Jacob walking through his yard anymore. You see, Jake's best neighborhood friends live in the house directly behind ours, but our yards are divided by a row of hedges, so the kids cut through the neighbor's yard rather than walking the whole way around the block in order to get to each other's houses. And when I say they "cut through his yard", they are walking on the very outer corner of the property.

Unfortunately, our neighbors in the back have been talking about cutting down the hedges, which are on their property, so I'm afraid this is just going to add more fuel to the fire. I am not in favor of cutting down the hedges. While I like these particular neighbors, I don't have a need to see what they are doing in their back yard every time I'm outside.

I'm still on board with moving in case you were wondering. We wouldn't have these problems on "the farm".

Monday, October 11

a great weekend

The great weather aside, this was a great weekend. Not only did we get a lot done, but we also had a lot of fun. Throughout the weekend, I was able to go outside and do some gardening stuff. Most of Saturday was spent at the office working on the bathroom (we're almost done--just the trim is left). Saturday night we had a Movie and a Margarita Night. On Sunday, Brian and I went for a motorcycle ride and then we topped off the weekend with the Alice Cooper/Rob Zombie show at the War Memorial. It doesn't get any better than that.


This movie was ok, but it didn't quite live up to my expectations. For one thing, they kept playing "scary" music and then nothing would happen. For another, the setup for the actual scary stuff was at least over half of the running time. Being the Halloween season, I was up for a slightly more thrilling thriller. I did like the ending, but it took a while to get there.

Thursday, October 7

another house

A couple of weeks ago, we went to look at another house. Well, we didn't have an appointment with a realtor, so I guess you could call it "trespassing". We just walked around the property and peeked in the windows. This place had a lot of acres, but they weren't as usable as the first place we looked at. Of course, this place cost half as much so I guess you can't say too much about that. The house was in pretty bad shape, though. It needs a lot of work. And, the house isn't much bigger than our current one, so that's another minus (I would like something at least slightly larger).

One thing I've noticed is that there are quite a lot of really nice houses for sale at great prices (thanks to the crappy real estate market). However, none meet all of our requirements and I'm beginning to wonder if any ever will.

Monday, October 4

alice update

I took Alice to see the vet this morning for her nose issue. The doctor wasn't sure what was wrong--it could be a number of things. My options were to treat her for the most likely issue (discoid lupus) or to have a biopsy done (for which she would need to be anesthetized). I opted for the treatment because it was the same diagnosis I came up with (yay, internet) and it was the simpler of the two options. So, she's on vitamin B and antibiotics. It will take a few months to determine if the pills are working. If they are, she will need to continue with them for the rest of her life. If they are not, she will need to undergo the biopsy.

It's official--all of our dogs are now on pills. Lizzy's currently on vitamins, glucosamine, and steroids (the steroids will be ending shortly, but the other two will remain) and Buster's on his crazy pills (and I don't think he's going to stop taking those any time soon). I think I'm going to have to get a second job to pay for all of this.

Sunday, October 3

from dusk till dawn

After spending the afternoon at a pig roast, we came home to a Movie and Margarita Night. We kicked off our Halloween-themed month of movies with the action-horror flick From Dusk Till Dawn. This movie was written by Quentin Tarantino and directed by Robert Rodriguez. If you need more information than that, it's probably not something you want to watch. The movie had a pretty good cast--George Clooney, Harvey Keitel, Juliette Lewis, Salma Hayek, etc. And, I have to say, it was the first movie I've seen Harvey Keitel in, where he didn't play a badass. That, in itself, was interesting. Anyway, we liked it--it was a good, non-thinking kind of movie.