Friday, May 27, 2011

When it rains it pours

Update: Our hot water heater started  making strange noises on Saturday night and by Sunday morning it was gushing water. Luckily Dave got it shut off before too long. Now we need a new hot water heater...I am not kidding. Universe, they say bad things happen in 3's this was our third bad thing to happen in as many days so please leave us alone for a while. Thanks!

We had to stop at Home Depot on our way home from work the other night to pick up another can of spray paint so Dave could finish painting an outdoor table he has been working on restoring. Dylan and I were waiting in the car for him when we started to smell something funny (and no it wasn't Dylan's pull up!). As Dave got in the car and we pulled away he smelled the bad smell too. I checked the temperature gauge on our fabulous 2003 Hyundai and saw that it was moving up from where it usually rests, just halfway between cold and hot. We turned the heat on full blast and rolled down the windows so we wouldn't sweat to death. The temperature fluctuated the rest of the way home from sort of hot to really hot. Luckily we made it home without the car dying or I don't know EXPLODING.

Dave opened the hood and we could see that coolant had splashed out from the top of the radiator and the reservoir was almost empty. We had been planning on taking the car in to get the oil changed and tires rotated before our upcoming road trip to Iowa, so I brought the car into Firestone the next day. Their diagnosis was that we need a new radiator, temperature gauge, radiator flush and pin/bolt for the drivers side tire, on top of the oil change and tire rotation. Luckily we know someone who can replace the radiator and do the other work for a little more than a quarter of the over $700 Firestone wanted to charge to do everything. So until the car part comes in we are thankful we can borrow a car from a friend so we don't have to survive on one car for the long weekend (and Dave is working all weekend).

After I got home from spending 5 hours at Firestone I fired up the computer only to find a Hard Disk error. Seriously, I didn't think the day couldn't have gotten much worse after spending forever at Firestone and having to deal with car issues, but then the computer too! I called our trusty computer repairman (Kyle) and he helped me run through the diagnostics on the computer to see if it could be fixed on its own or if we have to take it in to get the hard drive replaced. It turns out we need to have the hard drive replaced. Hopefully we will be able to get some of the photos off of the hard drive, we do have an external hard drive that we back stuff up to, but its been a while since we've done that. I also upload quite a few pictures to Kodak Gallery, Flickr and the blog, so we shouldn't loose too much if they can't recover anything.

The only highlight of the day was going to Dylan's daycare's spring program. I was so proud that he got up with his class and sang all the songs and did the actions. He cried through the entire Christmas program and wouldn't go up with his class to sing, so he is making progress! He is the youngest in his class now, so he was a little slow on some of the songs, but overall he did great!

Harry Potter "Through the Pensieve"

Harry Potter fans, you have got to see this! It's a compilation of all of the movies that have been released so far, pure AWESOMENESS! 50 days until the final movie comes out!

My favorite salad

When we lived in Florida my friend Kate and I would get salad from a little restaurant down the street from where we worked. They had an AMAZING greek salad, but my favorite was the strawberry salad. Luckily it's super easy to make at home too. And since strawberries are in season now, it's the perfect time to make it. Here's a basic recipe for the salad, this recipe is for a single salad, but you can certainly play around with the amounts for your liking.

Strawberry salad with feta and cashews
2 c. salad greens (I like romaine)
2 tbs. feta cheese
2 tbs. cashews
1 c. sliced strawberries
1 tbs. red onion
2 tbs. balsamic vinegarette or poppy seed dressing

Mix it all up! You could also add grilled chicken to make this a meal. Enjoy and have a great weekend!

Monday, May 23, 2011

Weekend photoblogging

We started the day at the Market Square Farmers Market!

Dylan wore his big boy underwear, but that didn't last very long. Apparently this is how you walk when your shorts are wet..

Dylan and Dave both love cheese cinnamon rolls from VG's Bakery.

I think Dylan ate more of the roll than Dave did!

Next we headed over to Worlds Fair Park to the Children's Festival of Reading. Dylan had a great time playing in the pools that were set up and other activities.

Dylan loves mascots. This is the Bee from local radio station B97.5!
We had a great Saturday and perfect weather to be outside! How was your weekend?

Friday, May 20, 2011

In the garden


I've got the Early Girl & Bush Goliath in planters on the patio. They are both supposed to grow well in planters. We have to maximize our tomato growing ability at our house!

In the garden I've got Better Boy, Pink Brandywine, Rutgers & a Red Beefsteak.

What tomatoes are in your garden this year?

Peas hurry up!

The peas in my garden are sooo close to being ready. I seriously CAN NOT WAIT!  Look at all those pea pods!


Thursday, May 19, 2011

A few of his favorite things

Playing outside

Riding his bike or plasma car

Playing at the park


Mac & cheese

Giving the cats kisses

Watching Toy Story 2

His bubble gun

Having me kiss his hands before bed

Having Dave and I chase him around the house

Piggy rides

I am sure this will change in the blink of an eye, I don't want to forget what he loved at 2.5 years old.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Two-Fer Tuesday

What a difference a haircut makes!


After...Notice the smile, that's what you get when you ask a 2.5 year old to smile for you!

I already miss his long hair :(

Sunday, May 15, 2011


We had an action packed Saturday. It started off with a visit to John Deere Landscapes to look at trees for our front yard (of which we did not really find anything). Then we hit up Mayo Garden Center to get tomato and the elusive zucchini plants. After Mayo we headed to Franklin Gallery to pick up the Master's prints Dave had framed and then went to Starbucks to refuel! And that was just the first hour and a half of our day!

Last Saturday was the first Market Square Farmer's Market and for some reason we missed it! I was not to be thwarted this Saturday though, even if we didn't make it until after 11am. Note to self, go at 9am like usual so you can get a cinnamon roll from VG's bakery before they are sold out! We did get some chicken salad from Mrs. Cockadoodles that we had for lunch later and it was excellent. We also got some Pecan Honey Jam that we are looking forward to smearing on toast :) There was also a fresh pasta vendor there, but since we were not heading home after the farmers market we decided to wait until next week to buy our basil pesto and spinach and cheese ravioli.

Dave has wanted to go to the flea market that is just off the Gatlinburg (exit 407 for your K-town people) for quite a while, so we decided to finally make the trip. I didn't bring my camera in, and boy I should have, it was a redneck feast for the eyes. Lots of camo, airbrushed tee-shirts, fake flowers and VHS tapes. The outside booths had more antique items and were much better to look through. They also had a few fruit and vegetable stands. I'm not going to say we won't ever go back, but it will certainly be awhile.

Since we were so close to the mountains already we decided to head up to Clingman's Dome. It is the highest point in the Smoky Mountains. We have only been there once and that was a very foggy day, so we decided to head up there again. It's still at least 45 minutes from Gatlinburg so we stopped along the way so Dylan could stretch his legs and through some rocks in the river. He could seriously throw rocks in the river all day long! I also had the chance to play with my camera settings and get a few good shots of Dylan and Dave and the water flowing over the rocks.


Check out Super Dave in the background!


See the water flowing?

Big splash! I would have liked to have more time to take this shot. We needed a few more takes and I should have been at a lower angle. Next time we head up to the mountains I need to make sure my battery is fully charged!

We figured the walk up to the top of the dome would be good for Dylan to stretch his legs too. We were wrong. Dave had to carry Dylan most of the way up the .5 mile vertical walk. I was barley able to make it up myself, there was no way I could have carried Dylan all the way up the mountain. Dave's marathon training has really come in handy :) Once we reached the summit we were treated to some pretty awesome views of TN and NC. It was still a little cloudy, but we could still see pretty far.

View from the tower at Clingman's Dome.

Apparently Dylan is not afraid of heights!

On our way back down the trail.

Almost to the bottom!

Even Dylan posed for a picture!
How was your Saturday?

Thursday, May 12, 2011

How many pairs of shoes to YOU own?

A few of my shoes...
Dave is an anti-hoarder. He throws everything away. Unless it is golf memorabilia, golf clubs, golf bags, records or pictures. Recently he has even started to sell some of his golf clubs and bags. When he gets in one his throwing stuff out moods he has to be watched carefully otherwise we could end up without things we use every day, like the MICROWAVE.

A few days ago Dave was ready to get rid of more stuff, and it all fairness to him, we do have a lot of stuff that just piles up that needs to be taken to Goodwill, etc. He was up in our bedroom and looking in our closet and started counting my shoes. "You have 30 pairs of shoes!" he said. "You don't need 30 pairs of shoes, you need to get rid of some of them, you have 3 pairs of brown flip flops!" Yes, I do have 3 pairs of brown flip flops, but I explained to him how they were 3 different pairs of flip flops to be worn with different outfits. I can't wear the brown flip flops with the beads and fabric sole to the pool, I have to wear the rubber Old Navy ones, COME ON DAVE! Then Dave says, "I bet your friends don't have this many pairs of shoes!" Really Dave? I bet most of my friends have more than 29 pairs of shoes (I counted them this morning). This is coming from my husband who has 21 golf shirts and 18 pairs of dress pants....

Am I in the wrong here? Is 29 pairs of shoes too many? Lets see how my shoe collection compares to yours. So my friends, how many pairs of shoes do you own? Or if you don't want to share an exact number for fear of repercussions from your spouse just tell me if you have more or less than 29 pairs of shoes in the comments below.

Here's how my 29 pairs of shoes break down; 8  flip flops, 9 heels, 5 wedges, 3  boots,  3  flats and a pair of tennis shoes. I know I could certainly use more shoes, couldn't everyone?

My favorite shoes:
JS shoes
My current favorites! I have these Jessica Simpson nude platform heels on now. While I couldn't run around in them all day, they are much more comfortable than they look.

These are a close second, I get compliments on them every time I wear them!
I would love red shiny shoes that were closed toe too :)

I just got these when I was in Nashville, I needed a pair of summery black wedges!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Two-Fer Tuesday

Dylan, 13 months, before he was walking. I can hardly remember what it was like not to have him running around the house! And he still gets this look on his face. In this picture he was looking at Brenda and I am sure he was thinking who is this other crazy lady taking my picture!

Apparently I looked a lot like this when I was a baby too...

Monday, May 9, 2011

Loveless Cafe

loveless sign

While we were in Nashville for the marathon we were lucky enough to have breakfast at the famous Loveless Cafe. Every time we go to Nashville I always want to go, but we never had the time, until our last visit! I really didn't know what to expect of the restaurant, it's located about 30 minutes from where we stayed in Brentwood, and inside of an old house. There are a few buildings around the restaurant, a gift shop selling country hams, the Loveless Cafes famous jams, t-shirts and more, and a few other touristy shops. It was raining while we were there so we didn't spend too much time checking out the shops. But, I guess it's good once people get that far out from Nashville to have something other to do than just eat or have something to do while you wait for a table. We were fortunate enough to not have to wait for a table (it's all about who you know!) and with 3 kids (mostly our impatient kid) that was awesome.


The Loveless Cafe is known for their homemade biscuits and jam. A few years ago when Dave, Dylan and I went to the Southern Food & Wine Festival in Nashville we sampled the jam and it was really excellent. We also saw the famous "biscuit lady" from the Loveless Cafe do some cooking. Sadly she passed away earlier this year so we didn't get to see her at the cafe. I thought the biscuits were outstanding, they were light and buttery, the homemade jam was the perfect accompaniment to the biscuits too.

The famous biscuits and jam!

Dylan was a big fan of the biscuits too!
They have a huge menu with the old favorites, eggs, omelette's, waffles, pancakes, you get the picture. They also had Dave's favorite, chicken fried steak, hashbrown casserole and eggs. He also got a chicken biscuit on the site, apparently that was one of the first things that was on the menu at the cafe.
Dave's breakfast
I was going to order Dylan a waffle, even though they didn't have one on the kids menu, but the waitress told me that the waffle were huge so I just ordered Dylan the kids pancakes. The pancakes were huge! Two pancakes the size of a dinner plate! I can't imagine the waffle would have been that much bigger.  I ordered the BBQ omelet and so did Andrew. I thought it was OK, not my favorite breakfast I've ever had, there wasn't much BBQ sauce on the meat and it was just kind of bland overall. Nina had biscuits and gravy and I think that was pretty good. Dave loved his meal too. I would certainly go back and eat there again. The biscuits and jam were excellent and I am sure other menu options are very good as well. The Loveless Cafe is certainly a destination worth the trip.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Happy Derby Day!

Flashback to the 2008 Kentucky Derby we attended! In hindsight I should have had a fancier hat (I don't even have a good picture with my hat on)...and I was 6 months pregnant, my double chin usually isn't that large.

Dave and I and Andy and Nikki

RIP Eight Belles
The finish of the big race!
Way to go Big Brown!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Two-Fer Tuesday

Taking a quick break in playing while waiting for Dave to finish the marathon.

We saw this fire truck on Sunday on our way home and had to stop so Dylan could get a closer look!

Monday, May 2, 2011

The Marathon

I'd like to start off this post by saying how proud I am of Dave for accomplishing his goal and completing his marathon. It was an emotional day for both of us, it was unbelieveable seeing him reach his goal. He worked so hard for the past few months getting ready for the race, dealing with knee and hip issues, for someone who is normally in excellent shape the injuries really took a toll on him. But he did it! And now he's talking about running another marathon. That I'm not so excited about, see, I like to see him occasionally and when he's training for a marathon I don't get to see him as much :) Selfish, I know.

We did have a great weekend in Nashville. We made it to Andrews parents (where we were staying) around 3pm and settled in. Dylan loved playing with Brandon and Andrew and the 6 dogs that were there! Dave and Andrew went to the Expo to pick up their race bibs and meet up with their Fleet Feet training group for dinner.

On Saturday we all got an early start to our day. The race started at 7am and the guys had to leave around 6am to get there on time. They started in corral 15 which had them paced at 10 minute miles. Since there were almost 30,000 people running the full & 1/2 marathon Dave and Andrew started at about 7:20am. We saw them first around 8:40am at mile 8. Andrew came over the hill first and Dave followed a few minutes later.

dave mm8

And then at mile 16



Looking over to the race finish area by LP Field


Andrew coming down to the finish line!

Dave making his way to the finish smiling the whole way!


finish 2

finish 3

Dave and Dylan after the race.
dave and dyl

Way to go Dave!!

To see more race photos check out Ham Towne's Flickr stream