4 days!

We close on the house in 4 days! It's hard not to start thinking about (and searching out) all the cool things we would like to [someday] buy for the new house. Including but not limited to:

An awesome sectional for the family room:
A new vanity for the main bathroom:
A dog-door insert for the sliding glass door:
An island-type piece for the kitchen:
A new ceiling fan:
Now if only I could buy it all. :) Oh, well, internet explorer window shopping is fun anyway!


Who Knew?

So, I have Google Analytics. Which means, yes, my blog website is currently calculating exactly how long it is taking you to read this post. Don't worry. It can't tell me who you are. It can tell me where you are, but if you wish to stay anonymous it might help you feel comfort to know that in an average 30 day span I get about 500 visits from 22 states. So, I don't really know who you are or where you happen to be. I just know a handful of options. :)

Anyway, why am I blathering on about this? Well, Google Analytics has this handy feature that explains to me where my visitors originate. It is no surprise that facebook and my mom's blog rank in the top traffic sources for my lil' blog. There is also a little section to tell you what Google searches have brought people to my site. Often people are searching for my blog, typing in gee and sis blog. More often, people search for the oddest things and end up with my blog as their result. In the last year, there have been 46 different phrases that have led readers to my blog. 11 of those searches were some iteration of the question: "how do you spell doggone?" (Stemming from this post earlier this year).

Those searching sometimes spelled it dog gone, dog-gone, dog gon, dog'gone...and so on; 11 different ways.

I feel it is my duty to set the record straight:


It can be used as a verb, adjective or adverb and means to damn (as a verb) or damned (as an adjective or adverb). He's a doggone poor sport or I thought that was the answer, doggone it.

Carry on.


Important tips on being "green"

I'm a California girl at heart. I was born and raised in the great state and, like it or not, I have inherited a number of traits due to growing up there.

When I moved to Utah, I was shocked to find that recycling bins were optional and pickup of recyclables cost extra. As a consequence, there was very little recycling done. Fargo is a pretty progressive place when it comes to wind power and keeping things "green."

Anyway, the topic came up at work today when one of my co-workers was drinking some soda from a plastic cup. Another co-worker turned and (jokingly) chastised him for using plastic and destroying the earth.

The plastic-cup-using offender tried to defend his cup by noting that it wasn't even his - he stole it out of the cabinet.

It was at this point that a third co-worker peeked over his cubicle and added, "Stealing is green."

I have an entirely new (and much more fun) outlook on recycling/reusing now.


Artsy Fartsy

Remember my tables that we re-painted? Well, here they are in all of their final glory!

Don't you just LOVE my dollar store pumpkins?

And how about that amazing Shih Tzu painting that I found while browsing the aisles with birthday money at Target. It looks just like my little guy - right down to the blue bone collar.

Anyway, it seems a little weirdo-dog-obsessed-lady to have just a big painting of the Rubester...so, with a gift certificate from Valued Opinions, I head on over to Amazon and picked up this gem. I will decoupage lil' Rom onto a wood frame similar to the Rubio painting and I'll have the perfect pair for the laundry room, or the 2nd bathroom, or a guest bedroom (maybe the dogs room?)...

Oh, the possibilities!



As you are likely aware, we have purchased a home. A home that we will officially own in just a couple short weeks. A home that will also house our dogs.
One of the most notable benefits of home/dog ownership is going to be the ability to send the dogs off to "do their business" without supervision. We have been poop supervisors for nearly three years now. And we are putting in our two weeks notice.

However, there is a little flaw in that plan. Our home is currently NOT fully fenced. It has the good fortune of already being fenced on two sides due to neighbors fences (thanks, guys!). The other side of our house, however, faces the street and is not fenced.

So, Geoff and I met with a fence company this morning to get the wheels in motion to complete our fence as close to move-in day as possible. Otherwise those dogs are just going to learn how to hold it - cuz we will be off "doody" (oh, yes, I did just type that).


I've got boxes and tape...what's next?

Top Ten Reasons I need to start packing:

1) We close on the house in 18 days.

2) Geoff has been collecting boxes from work and the more they pile up, the more daunting it looks.

3) We only need to use about 10% of our stuff over the next 18 days. The rest can be packed.

4) It will make the upcoming move seem more "real." (Right now it feels kind of surreal)

5) Neither of us are taking and time off work for the move, so we really only have evenings and weekends to get it done.

6) The temperature is rapidly dropping, so even though we have the apartment through the end of the year, we really do want to move all our stuff to the new house before it is really winter in Fargo.

7) Mom and Pop might be coming out for Thanksgiving!

8) It will help keep me from late night snacking.

9) I've been watching way too much Hulu since Fall TV premiered.

10) We're buying a house!


Me and Evo

I got my new phone in the mail today (one, might I mention, that I do not deserve since my last one met with an untimely demise due to my uncoordinated fingers).

It is handsome. It is SO fast. It is already playing my Halloween ringtone.

Welcome to the fam Evo.


Wake Up Call

There's something about buying a house that has brought out from inside me a woman who just wants to do all those "housewife" things. I want to cook and clean and fit into my skinny jeans and decorate and crochet and all those good things.

Yesterday, however, I had a bit of a harrowing experience. Right after work, I was leaving to go pick up Geoff and I saw a huge wall of black smoke billowing in the [not too] distance. I picked Geoff up, and naturally, we wanted to go investigate the apparent fire. On our way down we are discussing what could possibly be on fire, we came to the conclusion that it must be an apartment building.

We were right.

When we moved to Fargo we found a total of two complexes that would let us have more than one dog. We moved into the one that was slightly cheaper. The other one? Well, yesterday it caught on fire.

Truthfully, it was a better complex. It had a pool and a workout facility. It had a tanning bed for the residents. It had bigger rooms and more open floor plans in the apartments. But, we thought that $80 a month wasn't worth the extra amenities.

The only thing I could think as I watched the massive flames engulf a good part of the building was "what if I lived there." What if my little dogs were trapped inside a building that was filling with smoke. What if I couldn't get inside and save them? What if I lived there.

Sometimes life has a way of tapping you on shoulder and saying, "See, things could be a lot worse than a burnt pot roast or some extra pounds."


Giving Thanks

As the leaves start turning yellow and orange and red and strain to be the last hanging onto the tree, and as lights start to twinkle on homes as dusk comes earlier each night, and as the air feels crisp on your lungs and the breeze hints of the winter to come, I feel filled with memories. Memories of pumpkin carving and costume making; memories of family and friends and Thanksgiving dinners; memories of Christmas trees and cocoa and warm fuzzy socks.

As I prepare to move into a house of my own, I think there can be no better time then this time of year. Because that is what the holidays are all about - being surrounded by love and warmth and family and home. Our house is just a house right now, but it is soon to become a home; it will begin to be filled with memories and love. It makes me feel so grateful.

So here's just a few things I am grateful for:

1) A hub who makes me feel beautiful and hilarious and fun...and all things I probably am, but tend to forget about myself.
2) A wonderful family who loves me SOOO much.
3) The two best lil' munchkin dogs around.
4) A job I really enjoy.
5) Some of the greatest friends - my friend list in life may not be the biggest one, but it's the best.
6) Cell phones, Facebook, blogging, e-mail - all the awesome ways I get to keep in touch with all those awesome people who are thousands of miles away.
7) Diet Mt. Dew.
8) The North Dakota accent that sometimes sneaks its way into my speech - I'm trying to fight it, but sometimes it sneaks up on me.
9) Thrift Shops and Dollar Stores full of fun holiday finds.
10) Low interest rates to keep our mortgage payment nice and low!


Fresh Paint

Geoff and I went out to some thrift stores this weekend to see if we could snag any deals. I was mostly hunting for some nifty Halloween decorations (which I did happen to come across). While we were out hunting, though, we found some really cool, mod tables. There was a coffee table and a side table.

The downside: The color. They were this yucky light yellowish that looked just terrible. And old. And outdated.

The upside
: The price and the design!

We snagged them right up. And, a couple coats of spray paint later, we've got some awesome new furniture (that Rom keeps bopping his head on...cuz he can't see the glass above his little pea head)!


Parkers = Homeowners?!

It is with great excitement that Geoff and I announce the news that we have purchased a home! We still have to go through the inspection process and all the finalizing, but if everything goes as planned, we will be closing on our new home on November 12th!

A few details about the house:
  • It's on a corner lot of a little cul-de-sac and has a perfectly sized yard for our little dogs!
  • It is a 4-level floor plan. The main level has the (large) kitchen and dining room. The upper level has a living room, 2 bedrooms and a bathroom. The lower level has a family room, 2 bedrooms and a bathroom. The basement has the laundry room and large utility area.
  • It is 4 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms.
  • It is 1700 sq feet (not including the basement area).
  • There is a large deck off the dining room.
  • There are 6 mature (and lovely) trees on the lot. Two in the front yard and and 4 in the back.
  • The backyard has a large garden area, so Geoff and I can try our hand at gardening in the spring.
  • The location is close to great access road to get us everywhere we need to be quickly.
There are so many more things that we love about it. It is the perfect floor plan for our lifestyle and we are so grateful to be able to purchase a home!

I don't have any other pictures that do the interior (or the awesome floor plan) any justice, so hopefully we'll be able to get some pics when we have the inspection next week.