Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Our First House

It's been almost a month since we closed on our first house! Yes, I know that this post is a little behind schedule, but let's just say we've had a lot of projects going on here in Ithaca. After working with Ron and Mom on painting, flooring, and some updating, we finally moved all of our "stuff" here two weeks ago. And as I write this, we're getting the carpet installed in the bedrooms. Slowly but surely, the house is starting to look more and more like our home. And I love it! Ever since we started the house search, we knew we wanted something that we could work on, improve, and make our own. Well... we got one! It's been a LOT of work, but it's totally been worth it.

Since the house started as a "Straight out of the 70's fixer-upper," I'll be doing more detailed room-by-room posts. There are some serious before and after shots here! Until I get to each and every room (the living room will be my first post - it's nearly there!), I'll hold all of you over with some quick pictures from our first few weeks of home ownership.
We love our huge backyard!

In the first 10 days of having the house, and with Ron and Mom's help, we managed to:
- Tear up the old carpet (which was in nearly every room)
- Washed the walls and ceilings to prep for the painting
- Prime and paint all the rooms (Turns out, I'm quite the painter!)
- Paint all the ceilings - Thank you, Ron!
- Install an automatic garage door opener
- Replace two outside doors
- Replace the toilet
- Replace the faucet in the kitchen
- Lay laminate flooring in the living room/dining room/kitchen
- Replaced the light fixtures in the bedrooms, living room, bathroom
- And finally, started to paint the trim (which we are still working on... There's so much trim!)

Emma didn't like the fact we were working 24/7.
This window in the living room overlooks the driveway.
Can you see Amit?
This is how you know Emma saw him...
It's one of her favorite places,
at least when someone is outside.
It's pretty cute to see her looking out the window.
Breakfast break!
Emma loves when Pappy eats... and shares his food. 
Emma's other favorite place has been by the front door,
where she watches her new friend, Mr. Chipmunk as he hangs out on our front steps.
She literally watches him (and waits for him) for hours.
Although, he hasn't been around as much since he ate all the birdseed.
Dinner break at Ithaca Beer,
such a great view!
And this is how we all felt after Ron and Mom left.

 Now that the carpet is being installed, we'll finally be getting the bedrooms unpacked and put together! It's going to be so nice to have the main floor of the house nearly finished. We definitely could not have made this much progress without Ron and Mom's help! Next up, our finished living room!

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Quick Visit to Cooperstown

After being home for Mike's graduation party and some family time, I headed back east with Tricia, Krissy, and Matt. Since Matt had a baseball tournament in Cooperstown, we figured we would take some time off work and go watch some baseball, since we had never been! Little did we know it would end up being one very rainy week, some of us would be fighting a stomach bug, and we would end up finding some other crazy things to do!

Enjoying the sun and watching Matt play. 
With our baseball boy!
Cooperstown had some great views!

Well, since Kristyn and I can only take so much baseball, we found some other fun things to do in town. We dragged Amit to the Farmers' Museum. He, of course, tried to act like he wasn't going to enjoy himself, but then we happened to walk into the baby animals portion of the museum he perked up. 
These two baby goats were our best friends!
They LOVED Amit!
(And he loved them, though he'll deny it.)
While we waited to be able to feed our new friends,
we found some horses. 
Krissy tried to coax one over, but he wouldn't budge.
A cowboy at heart?
They ended up making friends with a nicer horse.

After rushing back to the babies, we were able to feed our little friends!
They were hilarious!
Amit even got in on the action - he fed one of the dairy goats.
(See! He loves them!)
Before we left the farming museum,
we rode the vintage carousel.
I rode a giant hen.
It was awesome!
What else did we do?
We stopped for ice cream, of course!
Though by this time it was starting to get chilly...
Then it rained. And rained. And rained.
So without any baseball to watch, we decided to drive to Howe Caverns for a tour.

About to go on our ride down the underground river.
It was really cool -
the rushing water kept getting louder and louder...
Then we stopped at the dam.
Our heads were way too close to the walls.
The tour stopped at the Bridal Altar. 
We were the only ones brave enough to pose on it first. 
Krissy was NOT having it.
The Winding Way was our favorite part...
It was like we were on a different planet!

Phew! That was one long blog post, but we did do quite a few things over the few days we were there! It was fun to watch Matt play his baseball (before it rained) and spend some extra time with family. Thanks again to Bruce and Tricia for letting us tag along! Hopefully the next time they visit NY, we'll get some nice sunny weather!

Monday, July 15, 2013

Random Snapshots from Home

I love getting together with everyone when we come home, but my favorite pictures usually end up being the most random ones from our visit. And they usually are of Emma or Max. It's only been a month since we were home, but it seems like it's been forever. So without further ado, here are some of the smaller events from our visit -

Proof that Nate still loves Emma,
even if he loves Max more.
I love that Max doesn't seem 10 years old in this one!
Emma tired the poor guy out!

Kristyn and I got to do some fun cousin bonding while I was home. We went to go visit Coco, who I haven't seen in FOREVER and saw some other barn friends. And we tortured her pups. Literally...
Hi Coco!
Isn't this guy hilarious???
I've decided. I'm getting a pony.
How cute is that little guy??

While I love being on the farm, taking the dogs to the car wash was an even better idea. It's just too bad we hadn't brought Emma with! I seriously need to find one of these in NY. Washing your dog at the pet wash is way better than washing them at home.
Squishing two dogs into the tub and washing them at the same time...
Now that's hilarious!
Our pups were NOT happy with us. 
Krissy and I loved every second of it!

And before I go back to work, a few more of my favorites from our favorite canines. 
Note to self: a measly little fence won't keep Emma out of my plants, 
especially when she gets to feel like she's hunting in the jungle. 
And her signature look - "What Mom? I'm just smelling!"

It's hard to believe it's been so long since we were home! It makes me feel just a little homesick, especially for Max. Thankfully Ithaca has lots of things to keep us busy... and hopefully will make me blog more for all of you. 

Sunday, July 7, 2013

A Summery Cousin Craft Day

Ever since our Christmas ornament crafting extravaganza, we've been dying to schedule another craft day. Staying a little extra after Mike's party gave me the time to fit it in... And it was SO worth it!

After taking a while to narrow down our options, we basically wanted to do EVERYTHING we found on Pinterest, we found the perfect project. I saw this tutorial for wood canvases, which looked not too hard (since Ron cut all the wood for us) and fun (since everyone could do their own photos). Based on the amount of canvases we made, I think it was a hit!
We started by painting our canvases.
Then attached the photos with diluted Mod Podge and added more to seal the top.
They turned out great!
We actually remember to take a group shot with our works of art!
I love it!

We also attempted to copy a bracelet tutorial, but that didn't work out so well. Hopefully I can perfect it before the next craft day. Krissy and Kelsey got to use the soldering tool anyways, so I think they were happy. 

We actually did craft day part 2 later in the week, where we made some awesome tank tops! I didn't get any pictures of these, but I'll be wearing mine when we're working in the house, so I'll get pictures of it, eventually. Kristyn managed to use the scraps to embarrass the poor pups!

I had such a fun time on both of our craft days! It was great to be able to spend some quality time with the girls, since it doesn't usually happen (at least not very often). I can't wait to hang up my canvases in the new house!