Saturday, January 29, 2011

2010 in review- THE GOOD

Obviously I did not include "Stop procrastinating" in my resolutions or else this may have been posted a month ago. In reality I have even procrastinated making any resolutions!

So going with the December flow and taking the month off of working on the house, this unfortunately counted blogging. So here I am--failing my first year end blog... posting it sometime in early January.

In keeping notes on our first year in our first house a review of sorts is needed. Not a lot has been happening around Castle Debauchery recently due to a variety of excuses reasons.

It is winter.

It is wet.

We are tired.

Work is busy.

We have been slightly depressed  hibernating.

But!!!No more!!! Back to work!

I have tried to write this blog for a month now, editing it 32 times and I am still having a hard time ending it on a positive note.
So I will start with The Good!

#1 The Bills.

What you say? How are bills good? What is a GOOD kind of bill?

The PAID kind.
The Paid on time with no fussing kind.
The kind that is $0

I try not to talk about money here.. but as you know-dirt costs money.
Good weed free dirt anyway!
And so do home repairs, upgrades and just getting our house to a level of cleanliness we can live with.

We have successfully lived within our means even with all the disasters and unforeseen repairs that we didn't notice, and the 'I must do this NOW before I tear my hair out' projects. (Travis does not approve this sentence.)

And the best part:
We even got to entertain our friends many times. Many many times. Maybe a few too many. (I will totally blame my lack of progress recently on our awesome friends)

For this we have made some sacrifices. Some went easily, others are still taunting my dreams.
Some of the things we gave up: sushi together, pedicures, buying books, Christmas 2010, birthday gifts all year, treating friends to dinners out and any dates that don't include $5 hot dog deals at Home Depot.
But those hot dogs ARE fantastic and we are even saving time by multitasking at HD.

#2 The Garden

The one thing we could call finished. No matter how much or how little you plant and harvest- THAT is a garden. It produced quite well. It was as big as we could make in the time allotted and it did it quite successfully.

We harvested from it all summer and fall. It was just about our only true success of the year. I was so thankful to have SOMETHING to take our mind off our other projects. Every time we stepped outside, it gave us something new to think about and look at. Now that the gardener seed has been planted in our heads, we will double the garden in size this year and hope it is as successful as last year.

I had never really planted anything in the earth before we moved here and now I cannot get enough of the garden blogs. In fact I have started following too many to keep up with! I have learned so many things I have never even previously thought about during these last 9 months. I look at landscapes and other yards in the neighborhood in a completely new way. Look at that--I'm growing, like my garden!

Even though it now looks like this:

It once was a source of comfort and joy like this:

#3 The Patio

And let us not forget the garden viewing platform.

Even unfinished and wintery it gives us joy with ice crystal like rorschachs.

Do you see what I see?

A valentine

A partridge in a pear tree

You choose!

 It has truly undergone an amazing transformation all the while keeping Travis out of trouble. At 100lbs a stone, Travis got to continue working out and put his truck to work as well!

 Back when we moved in:

Cinder blocks past.

First snow in March/April 2010

First snow on new patio Dec 2010

It has made us value our money even more than before. Even though we made some money selling used cinder blocks(there is seriously a huge market for this--who would have thought?) we still forked out over the course of its creation at least $700. It made us count our money in stones!

While debating cooking dinner it becomes a battles of stones...

4 stones to eat out vs dinner in with food from garden only costs a 1/3 of a stone.

A tank of gas costs me 5 stones, and Travis 7 stones.

A trip to Starbucks? One. Whole. Stone.

You see where this is going? It is so true.

This patio was one of those surprise projects which stemmed from a terrible problem that cost even more money. But I will save that one for the next post.

Stay tuned for part 2 of 'The Good, the Bad & the Ugly'

Friday, January 14, 2011

2010 FAIL

So not only did I fail to get my year end post up by year end--- or even the first week of 2011...
I also accidentally published it last night with out knowing it til this morning... and it was a rough rough draft.
Coming soon (now I am committed) the actual posts with pictures and typos and spelling corrected!

My apologies come in way of silly picture of myself for all the internets to see.

I have a thing for trying on hats...

and onion goggles

Travis started the sleep picture war...

Princess April all the way

True story

 I really wish I had bought this one.

Do you see a trend?

I made this one myself

Travis approves this post (I think)
And I plan on removing it once I get my 2010 review done :)