Sunday, September 23, 2007

Split Willow Deer

Today my best friend from high school, Anna, and her new husband, Matt, dropped by our house for a visit while they were in town for Anna's dad's wedding reception. It was great to see them again, since the last time we saw them was during their wedding, and was a little busy. It was the first time Anna had been back to the house since before Marla passed away, and it was fun to watch her face as she saw all the changes to the house since then. I think it was a little bitter sweet for both of us, because we both spent so much time in that house with Marla during middle and high school.

Towards the end of their visit, I remarked on Anna's necklace, which was a metal likeness of a split willow deer figurine made by Native Americans. I told her that I had a real one made by a friend of my family back when I was really young and that I had just recently found it. So I ran downstairs to grab it out of my office and brought it back up to show them. Here's a picture of a split willow deer...I'll put a picture of mine in when I get time tomorrow...I like mine better.

For the first time in years, I started thinking about the man who had made my figure for me. I didn't really know much about him as a person, but during my childhood, he always seemed to magically find my family and I whenever we rafted down the Grande Ronde River. I remember that he always paddled a canoe, wore a loin cloth (and nothing else), had a very long beard and hair, and smelled of wood smoke and tobacco. To me, he always seemed like a very mysterious figure. I'm sure his arrival into our camp and his appearance was much more ordinary and human than that, but to a child, he was an elder to admire and almost fear.

I remember sitting at his feet as he made my figures, or knapped flint, or drew charcoal pictures, and listening to his stories. I don't remember any of his stories, it was too long ago, but the impression is still there.

As I was telling Anna and Matt about this man and my memories of him, they remarked, "Wouldn't it be funny if it were Jim Riggs? He's a very famous outdoorsman and teacher, and he lives in these parts." I told had told him that I thought his name was Tom, but the more I thought about it, maybe Jim was his name. So I did the only thing I could do...I called my parents...

Sure enough, it was Jim Riggs. He had been one of my dad's patients and a good friend. So unbeknownst to me, I sat at the feet of an apparent woodland legend as a child and still have one of the split willow figures that he made from the willows on the edge of the Grande Ronde to occupy his hands while he told stories...or at least that's the Jim I remember. And the picture I found of him isn't much different.

I think it would be interesting to contact him again, tell him about my memories of him, and find out who the real man is behind the child's imagination. Or maybe I will just leave him the way he is in my mind...a teacher whose lessons I don't really remember but which left a forever-kind of impression.

Friday, September 21, 2007

All About Us

So I guess a cool blog thing to do are these little surveys and then you "tag" people and they are also supposed to fill out the survey. So here goes...

1. Where did you meet?
Trombly Square in the middle of Pacific's campus. It was the beginning of my Junior year at Pacific, Nathan's Senior year, and the on-campus Christian group was having a bbq. I was talking to one of my friends when I noticed this guy talking to our pastor who I had never seen before (rare on a campus our size) and he looked straight at me. The next thing I knew, he was standing right next to me, asking if I would like to go on a rafting trip with the group that fall. I said yes, of course, because I LOVE rafting. He wrote down my name and number, handed me a flyer with the trip info, and then said "I put my cell number on there...just in case you have any questions." (When I asked him later, he said that was just an excuse to give me his number, cheeky guy.) My friends were so impressed that they insisted that I call the number and ask him to go to Coldstone Ice Cream with us that night.

2. What was the 1st thing you said to him?
Probably something along the lines of "Oh! Hi." cause he startled me by showing up right next to me when the last time I had seen him (30 second earlier), he had been clear across the square. Then, if I remember correctly, he did most of the talking.

3. What was your 1st Date?
Unofficially, it was a few days after we first met when we went out into the country to take some photos (we were both studying photography) then had dinner at the Rock Creek Tavern. But he made sure to tell me several times that "This isn't a date." Officially, our first date was to Hugg Point on Feb 28th, 2005, the day after his birthday...he called me, told me he hadn't really gotten to celebrate his birthday, and would I like to go to the coast with him to celebrate his belated birthday? Between the Unofficial 1st Date and the Official 1st Date, we completely lost touch for about 3 1/2 months...didn't call, didn't see each other on campus, anything. Then we ran into each other on campus in late January and ended up talking outside, in the freezing rain, for over an hour. We hung out a few times then went on our Official 1st Date.

4. Where was your 1st Kiss?
I think it was the night of our Official 1st Date in my apartment.

5. Did we have a long courtship/engagement?
Kind of...if you count all the "not a dates", our courtship lasted about 10 months, with that short stint of completely losing touch in there. Officially, we dated for 4 months, from Feb 28 to June 28 when we got engaged. We were then engaged for 11 months and 6 days.

6. Where did you get engaged?
Ha ha ha, this is a funny story. We had already picked out a ring, I had accidently found out that Nathan had bought it, I knew he had asked my parents' permission, but I had no idea when he was actually going to pop the question. There were a LOT of dates we had that were romantic enough to be an engagement date, but noooooo. So I decided to stop expecting it and getting disappointed. On our 4 month anniversary, Nathan asked if I'd like to go to Hugg Point since that's where our first date was and we hadn't been back there since then. He also said he wanted to bring his camera to take some pictures, which is nothing out of the ordinary. The drive there was interesting...during the first part of the drive, Nathan was talking a million miles an hour. On the second half of the drive, I couldn't get a word out of him. I was just happy to be going to the coast on a warm sunny day, so I didn't think twice about it. When we got there, Nathan said he needed to go use the restroom. I offered to hold his camera bag for him so he didn't have to take it in the outhouse...and he hesitated in giving it to me! I thought it was because he thought I was going to drop it or something, even though I'm a photographer too! So I took it from him and told him that his camera would be fine. When he got back, I expected a nice leisurely stroll down the beach....but oh no! He took me by the hand and PULLED me down the beach until we reached the far end, where he asked me if I'd like to climb up on a short, flat rock at the edge of the surf. After we were on top of it, we just stood there looking at the water until he said "I think I'm going to start taking photos" and twisted around to get into his camera bag. Meanwhile, I'm looking out at the ocean and finally realize that it's taking him a lot longer than usual to get out his camera...and why is he trying to get his camera out behind his back instead of bringing the bag around in front of him? When I finally looked, there was Nathan holding my ring (it had been in his camera bag all along). To be honest, I don't remember what he said, I just know he asked, I said yes, we hugged, we kissed, I cried. After which, Nathan asked, "Did you notice where we're standing?" "On a rock?" "We're standing on the rock we stood on together on our first date." "Awww, that's sweet....except it was that log back there." Yeah, I probably shouldn't have burst his bubble, but it was too funny and adorable, and SO Nathan. We then went into Cannon Beach to a small wine bar, each had a glass of wine, and celebrated with the really nice gal who was serving the wine there before heading back into town to tell our friends. It was so much fun!

7. How did your reception go?
It was a ton of fun, LOTS of laughs, lots of great people, lots of dancing. It was also very beautiful. It just didn't last long enough for my taste. I could have stayed for a couple more hours. But other than that, I couldn't have asked for a better wedding and reception.

8. How was your honeymoon?
It was absolutely wonderful. We went to a resort on Vancouver Island that had a very rustic feel for all that it was one of the top resorts on the Island. Our room overlooked the Princess Louisa inlet between Vancouver Island and mainland Canada, and had the most beautiful view EVER. It was a great week of recovering from graduating from college, moving across the state, and getting married (all within 2 weeks). We did a little exploring of the local afternoon we went to their equivalent of the Red Woods and another afternoon we went to a butterfly farm. Oh, and we played mini golf at a great course just down the road from our resort, where I won us a 2nd game on the last hole. But for the most part, we stayed in, relaxed, did some reading, and got comfortable with being newly weds before going back to the real world. Here's some pictures of the view from our balcony.

The view of the mountains on mainland Canada across the inlet, straight out our balcony door

Out the left side of our balcony at sunset

Thursday, September 20, 2007

I’m trapped in my kitchen! (and other fun stories)

I've finally had a day of motivation and decided to make the most of it. So I've mopped my floors for the first time since before our housewarming in March. Gross, I know, don't judge. At least I'm doing it at all! Because of how our house is set up, I mopped from the back of the house towards the front. It took a lot of trips to the kitchen sink to rinse out the mop, but I got the back landing, bathroom, hallway, dining room and laundry room/pantry done. And now I'm stuck in my kitchen, waiting for the rest of the floors to dry, so that I can mop the kitchen and move on to other chores.

Other chores include: washing ALL of our bedding (dang dog hair!), cleaning our bedroom, dusting, putting everything that I moved into the living room for mopping back to where it all belongs, wiping down the kitchen, washing the sofa cover from downstairs.

The only things NOT getting done: cleaning the guest room and the basement. I simply don't have the energy today.

As for the rest of my life...

Last night was the first read through of The Diary of Anne Frank. It was a lot of fun. The girl playing Anne seems absolutely perfect for the part, which is exciting. My part doesn't have many lines, but I am totally a-ok with that, since it's going to be a bit of a stretch to do a play and juggle a 12 hour shift at the same time. The ending of the play is just heart rending...I cried. It didn't help that Abby was absolutely bawling while she read it outloud, but it probably would have gotten to me anyway.

While I was out...

Let me start this section by saying that my husband rocks! I left for rehearsal last night at around 6:45. When I got home around 9, Nathan met me at the back door and told me to close my eyes. He then led me to the living room in the front of the house and told me open my see where he had ripped up half of the living room carpet to reveal dark finished hardwood floors!!!!! He had already cleaned and polished the first half of the room, and was just waiting for it to dry before having me help him move the furnature to the completed side in order to rip up the rest of the carpet.

While the hardwood isn't perfect (it has some scuffs and the finish stops about 2 inches from the wall) it looks INFINITELY better than the gold/brown/green/burnt orange NASTY shag that had been in the living room since before Marla bought the house. Nathan thinks the hardwood is the original wood floor from when the house was built in the '30s. Our livingroom looks so much more inviting and warm. I absolutely love it. This also allowed me to seize the opportunity to rearrange the livingroom a bit. Overall, I'm very happy with the result. One more room in the house that looks great!

Here's some pics of the new floor!

So there we go...I'm super excited, I feel like I've accomplished something today, and I'm not even done yet! Cheers!

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

M's Game!

Last weekend Nathan's dad, Ger, treated us and Kate and Eliot to a weekend in Seattle, complete with a Mariner's game, dinner at Buca di Beppo, and lunch/dinner at Pyramid Brewery. It was major good times. Surprisingly, it was an incredibly relaxed weekend, because we didn't try to fit a bunch of stuff in around the game and the great dinners.

We headed up there on Friday pretty much right after I got off of my 12 hour graveyard shift. Nathan drove the entire way while I slept. I didn't get much sleep, so as soon as we got to Seattle, ran some errands, and got to our hotel, I crashed for a couple of hours while Nathan ran a couple more errands and hung out with his family. That evening we went to dinner at Buca di Beppo (if you've never been, GO!) and had a feast, literally. Then it was back to Ger's hotel room, where we watched Kate's dvd of their Italy trip and drank more wine.

Saturday consisted of sleeping in, getting coffee (them) and tea (me) and breakfast at Starbucks, then spending some time in Border's books before heading into the city for a late lunch/early dinner at the Pyramid Brewery, which is just across the street from Safeco Field. Their Apricot Weizen is even better on tap and their burgers are big time yummy. Then it was off to the game, where we got trounced. The Rays scored 4 runs in the top of the first inning, and ended up beating us, 6-2. But it was still a fun game, and we had great seats (thanks Dad!). 11th row, field level, just a couple of sections back from 3rd could actually see the blade of grass!

All in all, it was a great weekend. Below is a slideshow I put together of pictures I took at the game. I figured that would be better than have 16 photos stretching down the page. Enjoy!

Monday, September 17, 2007

Margot Frank

I just found out yesterday that I have been cast in Eastern Oregon Rep. Theatre in their production of "The Diary Of Anne Frank" that performs during the first two weekends of November. I will be performing the part of Margot Frank, Anne Frank's older, quiet, studious sister.

Margot Frank
Feb 16, 1926 - late Feb or early March, 1945
I have to admit, I don't know much about Anne's older sister. It was always Anne that we studied in-depth in school. But when I read about Margot, I think she's going to be a stretch for me to portray. I'm use to being cast as the outgoing, funny character. So I'm looking forward to being stretched as an actress.
I'm just trying to imagine what it must have been like for the Frank family. To be forced to live within an attic for two years, to feel the gut-wrenching fear at being discovered, to experience the drudgery and pain of Auschwitz, to see all your dreams ripped away from you, and then to die apart from the ones you love.
Margot wanted to move to Palestine with a group of young Jews, to found a Jewish state and become a midwife. What an amazing dream. As soon as she got her order to go to a work camp, her family had to go into hiding and those dreams had to be pushed to the background. I'm sure they weren't forgotten for a while though. Maybe while they were hiding in the attic, there was hope that one day this would all end and life would go back to normal. But what about after they were betrayed and discovered? Did her dreams die that day, or did they stay strong in a hidden part of her heart until the very end?

I want to do this family justice in our portrayal of them. I know thousands of other families went through similar horrors during this time in history, but Anne gave us a unique glimpse into the strength, courage, and love of her family. I want to do that justice.

Friday, September 14, 2007

This is my reality.

I just spent the past two hours with our two on-duty officers and my partner, swapping the most entertaining suicide stories that we've heard or experienced. Because we just sent people out to look for a person who probably killed themselves today. Try not to think of the lives they may have shattered, Lindy. And I laughed at these stories...hard. Not because it doesn't touch me. Maybe because it touches me too much.

You've got to let youself laugh, even at the messed up shit, if you're going to survive this job.

Because this is what I do. Between the mundane barking complaints and requests for officers to come put the fear of God into an unruly 5 year old, there's the messed up shit. If you want to leave this room and still be able to think there are good people in the world, it's gotta come out someway. I guess laughing at the messed up shit is as good a way as any. Don't judge.

Thursday, September 13, 2007


Dawn: Every day when I get off work while on graveyard shift, I get to see the dawn. There's something so incredibly peaceful about that time of day...everything is so quiet, the town has yet to open its doors, and the Elkhorns are a beautiful pink. Maybe that's one of the reasons I enjoy graveyard shift so's hard to enjoy that beauty fully when you're still trying to wake up and you're on your way to work, instead of on your way home. Dawn is a pretty reminder that you've lived to see another day.

Dogs: I'm a dog person. No denying it. I like cats, but they're not nearly as easy to please as dogs are. Granted, cats don't dig up your yard...but I still like dogs better.

Dentists: Not saying I like going to the dentist office. But my daddy is a dentist. And they help you keep your teeth from hurting.

Days Off: I don't think this one needs an explination.

Digital Clocks: These make it much easier to read military time, which is a requirement if you're going to work in law enforcement or dispatch. "Copy 12-1 at 13:46."

Dispatch: My job, and the buffer between dumb people and our officers/medics/fire fighters. Oh, and we help save lives too. That feels good.

Dad: My hero and sounding board for every decision I have to make in life. Allows me to make my own mistakes and still loves me even when I make the big ones. Thanks for being so completely awesome Dad!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

If you're going to pay the money to live in the country...

why would you cut yourself off from the very nature the you're paying so much to live in?!

So yesterday I drove up to my parent's property on Pine Creek, which is right at the base of the Elkhorn Mountains. After picking up the things I needed from their attic, I headed back into town. As I was driving home, I noticed a new house on the right side Pine Creek, just before you reach Pocahontas Road. The first thing I noticed was their landscaping, which was pristine...park-like even. The next thing I looked like a prison.

Don't get me wrong, the house was very nice. It was the fencing around the property that made you instantly think of standing outside of a prison yard, looking in. Around the sides and back of the property was cyclone fencing approximately 7 ft tall. On top of that were about 3 rows of barbed wire, spaced approximately 6 inches apart, one above the other. At the front of the property, where the driveway enters, was a dark wooden fence, equally as tall as the cyclone fencing. Across the driveway was a metal gate. Not the metal gates we're use to seeing on farms in this area. Oh no, it looked like those double gates that you see on swanky gated communities. This gate was also over 7 ft tall.

Looking at this, all I could think of was a huge "Outsiders Not Welcome Here!" sign. Whether this means neighbor children, other peoples' pets, or local wildlife, there is only one way onto that property, and it probably comes with a code. Which makes me wonder...don't you move out into the country to get out of the city and enjoy the nature and people around you? Heaven forbid some deer get into your yard and prune your pansies back a little bit. Growing up, I loved being able to watch the deer that came into our yard or wandered the orchard next to our driveway, looking for fallen apples.

Nature aside, what about your neighbors? What kind of impression does that give them? As an only child, I often wandered over to our neighbors' houses, knocked on the door, and asked to play with their kids/horses/dogs/whatever or help in their garden. I grew up believing that you knew your neighbors and were able to go to them if you had a need. I still remember when I missed the bus, couldn't get ahold of my mom, and our neighbor across the street gave me a ride to school. If they had built a large fence around their property, there's no way I would have felt welcome and I would have missed out on a lot of rich experiences.

So to those who aspire to move out into the country and build a large fence around their property and themselves, I would say this: stay in town. Go back to California, or Bend, or whatever yuppy community you came from. Stop driving up our property values so that those of us who would love to live out in the country with all the pansy-eating deer can actually afford to move out there. And if you insist on crowding our wide open spaces, leave your prison fences and fancy schmancy gates back where you came from.

Monday, September 10, 2007


Chocolate: A girl's best friend. "Nuff said.

Cavallos: My adopted family. Their love has been a huge blessing and they gave us Marla, who is, by far, one of the most important people in my life still.

Cameras: I love being able to take photos of important things and events, and be able to share them with our family/friends who live far away. It's a great way to stay connected. Plus I really enjoy doing artistic photography. Oh, and my husband is a professional photographer.

Camping: Gotta love getting away from it all. Give me a lake or a river miles away from civilization, and I'm a happy happy girl.

Christmas: My 100% favorite holiday! Christmas is a big deal in my family. No, seriously. Ok, mostly it's just my mom and I who are pretty intense about it, and we take everyone else along for the ride. I have yet to have a single Christmas morning without my parents in my 23 Christmas.

Cribbage: New favorite game, even if I'm still not very good at it. I've already built one cribbage board out of blue pine, which was a ton of fun. Yay for Thursday night Crib nights at Barley's!

Saturday, September 8, 2007


Baseball: The great American past time. I married into a family of Mariner's fans and have since adopted them as my favorite baseball team...even if they have lost the last 12 of 13 games. Yay for going to an M's game in Seattle next weekend! Just don't ask me to watch it on tv...give me a live game any day!

Baker City: My home town. I grew up here, moved away for college, and couldn't stay away. I love the small town feel, the tight knit group of friends we've found here, the lack of traffic (unless you get behind a cattle drive). I'd love to raise our children here.

Bandit: Our springer spaniel. Adorable. A cuddle bug. Often a pain in the butt, but we still love him. Our only child at this point, and that's the way he likes it. Hopefully his bird dog instincts will come in this fall, since it will be his first season.

Beavs: Even though I didn't go to OSU, almost all of my family did. Both sets of my grandparents, my dad, my dad's sister, her husband and both of her sons. My dad, my dad's father, my uncle, and both counsins all were/are brothers of the SAE frat at OSU. Talk about legacy. So I'm kinda obligated to be a fan. Sorry Kate! Go Beavs!

Barley Brown's: The local brew pub. Good food, good beer. We usually go there about once a week. It's also now the headquarters for our weekly cribbage game gatherings every Thursday night. It's incredibly odd if you go in there and don't see at least 5 people you know. Which leads me to...

Beer: Mostly homebrew. Definitely partial to Nathan's homebrew. And Barley Brown's beer. Yum. I'll just put the Beer Club under this too...we meet the 2nd Tuesday of every month. We try each other's homebrew, have snacks, sit around and talk, and just generally have a good time. Yay for Brew club in just 3 days!

I'm sure there's more, but I think this is enough for now.

ABC Blessings

Arly has inspired me. On a (I think) daily basis, she takes a letter of the alphabet and lists several things that start with that letter, which she considers to be blessings. I think that's a great idea. So here I go, starting with A.


Apples: One of my favorite snacks, especially the little mini apples. And they make great pie. I should make an apple pie again, my first one rocked! Yum.

Adventure: Includes traveling, making big decisions, learning what it means to be married, meeting new people. I love adventure. Keeps life interesting.

Academics: I'm still not ready to go back to school, but without academics, we wouldn't be very far as a society. Someday I'd like to go back to school, maybe become a teacher. The fact that I have that choice is great.

Accapella: I miss choir. I loved how our accapella group sounded. There's something so pure about voices in harmony without any instruments to take away the focus.

Air conditioning: A HUGE blessing when you live in a place that regularly gets up above 100 degrees in the summer and you have a husband who is his own personal heater.

America: Yeah, as much as our country is sometimes kinda backwards, there are so many things we can do/be without fear. However, this isn't just for the USA, but all of the American continents. I really like Canada, and the parts of Central and South America that I've visited are beautiful, the people are so friendly. Yeah, the Americas pretty much rock.

Friday, September 7, 2007


I just had to share this because it's so incredibly true! It was left on our desk at work, no idea who brought/wrote it.
Move here at your own peril, city-folk!

Welcome to Baker County

If you're gonna live here, know this:

1. Ditch the dockers, this is Wrangler country.

2. Turn your cap right, your head ain't crooked.

3. It's called a gravel road. No matter how slow you drive you're gonna get dust on your rig. Drive it or get out of the way.

4. They're called cattle. That's why they smell to you. They smell like money to us. Don't like it? I-84 goes east and west...pick a direction.

5. So you have $70,000 Hummer. We're not impressed. We have $250,000 combines that are driven only 3 weeks a year.

6. Every person here waves. Two fingers if they aren't sure if they know you, the whole hand if they do. It's called being friendly. Try to understand the concept.

7. If your cell phone rings when a bunch of birds are coming in we will shoot it out of your hand and you'd better hope you don't have it up to your ear at the time.

8. Yeah, we eat trout, salmon, deer and elk. You really want sushi and caviar? It's available at the bait and tackle counter.

9. The "opener" refers to the first day of deer season. It's a religious holiday.

10. We open doors for women, all women, regardless of age.

11. There is no "vegetarian special" on the menu. Order steak. Or you can order a chef's salad and pick off the two pounds of ham and turkey.

12. If you bring "coke" into my house it better be brown, wet, and served over ice. If you bring "Mary Jane" into my house she'd better be cute, know how to shoot, drive a truck, and have long hair.

13. High school baseball, basketball, and football are as important as the Dodgers and Lakers and a lot more fun to watch.

14. Yeah, we have a golf course. But don't hit the water hazards - it spooks the fish.

15. Colleges? We have em close by...the kids come out with an education plus a love of God and country. And they still wave at everybody when they come home for the holidays.

16. We have lots of locals in the Army, Navy, Air Force and Marines. So don't mess with us. If you do, you'll be whipped by the best.

17. Turn down that blasted car stereo. That thumpity-thump crap ain't music anyway.

18. When we eat there are three main dishes - meats, vegetables, and bread. We use three spices: salt, pepper, and ketchup.

19. Want to piss off the locals? Tell em how you use to do it where you came from.

20. Want to piss em off even more. Tell em you're from California.

Monday, September 3, 2007

Lindy and Nathan: 126,593 Yard/Patio/Garage: 0

Question: So what did Nathan and Lindy do for Labor Day Weekend?

Answer: Worked our butts off!

I got off work at 7 am on Saturday morning, went to bed, slept until about 12:30. When I woke up and looked out our back window, I saw the garage door open, the back patio cleaned off, and the raspberry bush trimmed down. Go Nathan!

So I head outside, survey the work, take about an hour to wake up and have breakfast, then join Nathan outside to futher tackle the back yard. Our charming dog finds it entertaining to dig holes in the yard. Because of this, along with the major drought our valley is going through (worst in 80 years), our yard is looking a little sad. Ok, that's an understatement.

Thankfully, this burst of motivation included inproving the yard. I proceeded to rake up all of Bandit's happy deposits and pick up all the little pieces of white plastic that were scattered around the yard from when Bandit attacked and shredded the white plastic squirt bottle that he obviously felt was threatening his territory. Now our yard no longer resembles a dry, brown dumpster. Now it's just a dry brown yard.

We then jumped in the truck, drove to Ace Hardware, and bought a bunch of top soil and some grass seed that is native to this area. Then we were off to D&B where we purchased a big ticket item: a shock collar for Bandit so we can zap the little bugger when we catch him digging, barking, and such.

We've now reached approximately 4:30 pm on the same day. We get home and there's the garage, waiting. Keep in mind that this is a one car garage with a small workshop in the back and a small area to the side for...stuff. LOTS of stuff. I don't think I've ever actually seen the floor in that side portion of the garage in all the years that I've known Marla. When we moved in, we only added to the chaos that is garage. But on Saturday, we decided to go through everything in the side section and part of the workshop, move the stack of wood to the back patio, throw the trash into the truck for a trip to the dump, and figure out what can go to Salvation Army. A couple of hours later, about 3/4 of what was in the side section is gone and you can SEE THE FLOOR! After all this, we finally get to kick back, bust out the fondue pot and some wine, and watch a movie. Whew!

Today I slept in until about noon (trying to get back into graveyard mode) then Nathan and I headed to the dump to get rid of the 300 lbs worth of garbage that came out of the garage! Afterwards, Nathan proceeded to rake most of the yard, spread top soil, fill the holes, and spread seed. He then cut out a large square of chicken wire and staked it down over the place where Bandit dug his biggest hole. During all this...I tried to take a nap before work. Yeah, Nathan rocks.

So now our yard is on it's way to becoming green and hole-less (hopefully), our back patio no longer looks like it belongs in Better White Trash Homes & Gardens, and our garage is gradually becoming more like a garage and less like a storage unit. Now we just need to clean out & organize the storage shed, repaint the garage and eaves of the house, do some MAJOR rewiring both in the house and the garage, do some painting in the house, completely remodel the bathroom...the list goes on and on. Ahh, the freedom of home ownership. Honestly infinately better than renting. I can paint our living room neon orange if I want to...but don't worry, I won't.