Friday, April 27, 2012

Never have I ever a half marathon.

Also, never have I ever even considered it - until two weeks ago.

Now, I'm sitting here, enjoying a moderately healthy vodka, soda and lime with my very favorite running capris, tank and sweat-wicking socks all laid out and ready to go for a spur-of-the-moment half marathon tomorrow morning.

Hubs has got lawn chairs, snacks and a six-pack in a cooler ready for my throngs of adoring fans (that'd be himself and my sister, possibly our neighbor), who will be watching me wheeze and sneeze gracefully saunter through Mile 7 as it passes right through our hood.

Five weeks ago, I was proud that I ran a five mile St. Pat's race. On Easter, I was thrilled that I ran 10 miles with friends. The next week, I managed to run 10 again. Then, I decided, what the heck - let's do 13.1.

So, that's what I'm doing tomorrow.

Well, that and of course reliving my glory days as Drake alumni from near and far descend upon Peggy's to buy me jello shots and celebrate the Relays.


It's going to be a helluva weekend.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Paver paradise

Did I say we'd be done by Sunday, or did I say we'd be done by Sunday?

It was even relatively painless, despite the fact that we ordered about 144 too many bricks (hello, refund!) and had to return them to the brick store, about 20 miles way.

Nevertheless, it's landscaping time and the walkway is functional and lovely, as it should be.

We're not 100% sure on what the landscaping portion of this project will entail. We might rip out the two evergreen bushes, but that frankly, sounds like a lot of work for two people who hate landscaping and the idea of spending an extra few Benjamins on filling in all that empty space.

Not to mention, our dance card is filled for the summer with bajillions of weddings, parties, work events and races to run, so we're not above throwing some mulch on it and figuring out what to do next year. Because you can't be a crazy overachiever in every area of life. Landscaping is our lazy.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Best DIY project of all time, ever

Remember how horrifying our other "major" DIY renos were? How I thought the deck project would never end and how the basement project slowly drained my soul of all happiness? During those dark days, I dreamed of a project that would be cheaper, faster and easier than we thought (instead of projects that took twice as long and cost twice as much as anticipated).

Well, I found my dream DIY project and I'm happy to say that not only is it half-over, but it should be mostly finished by Sunday. All for about two-thirds of what we thought we'd spend.


Here's what's what:

We've torn out the old front walk.
 It was asphalt over poured concrete, which had settled into a bumpy mess.

It was also WAY too close to the plants, so only the outer-most half was usable.

 Plus, asphalt is neither glamorous nor amazing, so it had to go.

Here was Cheaper/Faster Surprise No. 1: There was NO rebar in the concrete. Granted, that's why it became a bumpy, settled, hot mess after 50 years, but it sure did make quick work of jack-hammering.

Here's the concrete layer, under the asphalt. We just shake our heads at the weird things previous owners have done to this poor house.

Cheaper/Faster Surprise No. 2? We didn't hit the gas line while jack-hammering! Oh, happy day!

Hubs was in charge of manning the jack-hammer and it was my job to pry out the boulders and move them (Bad Ass Fact of the Day: I had just come home from running 10 miles and still managed to lug what I assume to be a literal ton of concrete). Sadly, right after he busted the last bit, he had to scoot off to do some grad school work.

So, what you see here is a mostly Alexson-built pile of rubble.


Ahem. The next day, we plotted our course and took to diggin'.

It wasn't horrible and Cheaper/Faster Surprise No. 3 - again, we didn't hit the gas line while digging. Amen, hallelujah.

And now we have a moat in front of our house and a mailman whose patience is surely waning. Luckily for him, we'll be putting the whole thing back together tomorrow. The plan is to lay paver bricks, using the same pattern we did in the back yard.

I'd been thinking this would be a $1,000 project, but even with adding in mulch and some additional landscaping for the "garden" behind the new path, we'll be sitting right around $600.

What's been your best Cheaper/Faster Surprise?

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Crafting supplies are costly

And you cannot buy googly eyes by the single, only in mega packs. So, I fashioned a DIY eye patch from a headband and construction paper.

Happy Easter Week!

Published with Blogger-droid v2.0.4

Monday, April 2, 2012

Upcycle + a winner!

This weekend, I realized that we are in fact, a weird house. I mean, check out our latest improvement:

We are now the proud upcyclers of a bike rim trellis! We just used a rusty (but sturdy) stake that the previous owners had left in the shed and zip-tied old bike rims to it for a quick, cheap and easy climbing apparatus for the clematis.

Total cost: $3.75

Add to that the wall we striped last summer, the birdhouse made of old basement supplies and the wine bottle tiki torches Hubs made me for Christmas and I realized that this little corner of our yard pegs us as total hippies. I think we are just inches away from hosting a drum circle here every Tuesday.

Winner winner veggie dinner!
Congrats, Stacie! You won the Vegie Fresh Contest! Send me your shipping info and I'll get the bags off to you.

Blog Directory