Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Hump Day Humor: Handsome Men's Club

I may have run this video a couple years ago, but it's still funny.



ANSWER - Tuesday Trivia: Inventors


Which Wright brother was in the biplane for the historic first flight at Kitty Hawk, NC in 1903?

Orville

Congratulations to Jeremy for being the first - and only - to get the correct answer!

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Tuesday Trivia: Inventors

Tuesday Trivia is a weekly post of interesting trivia questions. Leave a comment with your answer - or best guess - and come back tomorrow to see if you were right. Happy guessing!

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Which Wright brother was in the biplane for the historic first flight at Kitty Hawk, NC in 1903?

Friday, January 25, 2013

How To: Checkerboard Pattern

So I don't have pictures of each step in the process of painting the checker board pattern like a good DIY blogger. But then again, I've never claimed to be a DIY blogger. I am so proud of this wall that I wanted to share with you how we did it in case you wanted to use the idea in your home.




Materials we used:

Tape measure
Pencil
Paper
Yardstick/big ruler (not pictured)
Laser level (not pictured)
Frog tape
Gloss
Paint brush
(also not pictured - my helpers)


First thing we did was measure the dimensions of the wall and figured out how big the squares were going to be based on how many columns I thought I wanted. For no particular reason, I thought five columns of squares would be a good number. Since the wall is 132.5 inches wide, the squares needed to be 26.5 inches wide (and tall) and we were able to get exactly five squares across. Yay for round numbers! We didn't get full squares going top to bottom (we got about 3 and a third squares), but I didn't mind that as much since we put the partial squares at the floor where they wouldn't be as noticeable.

Replica of original sketch, which I threw away after we were done. Told ya I'd be a bad DIY blogger.

We drew a sketch of the wall and identified which squares would be painted with the gloss. 

Next, we got to work measuring and drawing the lines on the wall for the squares. (Why is it that in home improvement projects the longest phase is always the prep/demo? It's most definitely the least fun part of the project and usually why I procrastinate on so many projects.) We started with all the vertical lines using the yardstick to make starting marks 26.5 inches out from the wall (and then previous line). Then one of us (me) held the laser level along those marks while the other (my sister) used the yardstick and pencil to draw a straight line all the way down, repeating the process for the horizontal lines.

We decided to do the actual painting of the gloss in two groups so we wouldn't have to tape off each individual square, which would have made the process even longer. Using the frog tape, we taped along the lines we drew so we could paint the first and third rows.

The first coat looked good, but we thought a second coat would make sure the gloss was noticeable. So we let the first coat dry for 30-45 minutes before painting the second. Then we took a break to allow that first group to dry for an hour and half before peeling off the tape and starting again on the second group.

Since we already had the lines well established with the first group, we didn't tape the second all the way across the wall and instead just taped around the remaining four squares and repeated the painting process. And once it had dried for a bit, we pulled off the tape, and we were done!

About mid-way through the taping of the first group, I got cold feet about how big the squares were going to be. So we stopped and talked about doing six or seven columns instead as we didn't want to do too many (that really would have taken a long time) because it would have been too busy. But when I calculated how big the squares would have been if we did seven columns of square, I realized it was only a few inches in difference and decided to leave it at five. I am so glad I did as I like the big squares. It doesn't feel too busy, and I feel like I can still add art to that wall without taking attention away from the checkerboard pattern.

The whole project was not nearly as bad or as hard as I thought it was going to be. But then that's usually what happens.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Hump Day Humor: Gangnam Han Solo Style


ANSWER - Tuesday Trivia: Science


Who was the first person to orbit Earth: Yuri Gagarin, John Glenn or Alan Shepard?

Yuri Gagarin

Congratulations to Jeremy who was the first - and only - to get the correct answer!

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Tuesday Trivia: Space

Tuesday Trivia is a weekly post of interesting trivia questions. Leave a comment with your answer - or best guess - and come back tomorrow to see if you were right. Happy guessing!

<><><>

Who was the first person to orbit Earth: Yuri Gagarin, John Glenn or Alan Shepard?

Monday, January 21, 2013

Painting a Nursery

You guys have been so patient waiting for pictures of how we painted Nugget's room. With our claim from when the house was broken into finally settled, I got a new camera this weekend. 

(While everything was covered, because we hadn't paid any of our deductible for the year, we only got a check that covered a fraction of the repair cost for the door and replacement cost of what we lost. Frustrating? Yes. But we're moving on.)

I've never been a fan of pastels, especially pink. So even though we are having a girl, I didn't want to paint her room pink. 

Back when I was still in my first trimester and I was about to start knitting Nugget's baby blanket, I had to pick a yarn. Staying away from the pastels, I chose navy blue.

And it wasn't much later that I came up with the idea for painting the nursery.

Three walls are a shade of cream (same cream we used in the living room actually). The fourth wall is, you guessed it, navy blue. I, with the help of my sister, mom and sister-in-law, also painted a checkerboard pattern on the navy blue wall with a gloss. 

I am so pleased with how it turned out. I smile every time I walk into that room. Don't take my word for it. Check it out (note, the room is still a work in progress):






Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Tuesday Trivia: Science

Tuesday Trivia is a weekly post of interesting trivia questions. Leave a comment with your answer - or best guess - and come back tomorrow to see if you were right. Happy guessing!

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What is the scientific method that derives knowledge from observation and experience?

Monday, January 14, 2013

Beck-I-E!

When I was a sophomore in high school, I went through a bit of an identity crisis. I thought the spelling of Becky was too common. I wanted to be different than all those other Beckys at my school. (I was the only one though there was another Rebecca.) (Still, I was 15 and starting out on the long road to figure out who I am.)

I reasoned that since Becky was a nickname and not on my birth certificate I could spell it any way I chose without having to get the approval of the government.

So I started spelling it Beckie.

Gah, I can't help but be embarrassed by how pretentious I must have seemed to everyone as I tried to get family, friends, teachers to start spelling my name the new way. What was I thinking? I wish I knew.

My dad however found it so hilarious that he started calling me Beck-I-E!

About halfway through the school year, I got lazy and tired of reminding everyone to spell my name with an i-e instead of a y (okay, I was mostly lazy) and went back to spelling it Becky.

But I can't quite forget this embarrassing stage of my life as my dad still occasionally calls me Beck-I-E! to this day.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Rounding Third and Headed Home

Dear Nugget,

We're in the last stretch. The last few months before you make your grand entrance into this world and our family.

I had a dream about you this week. It was strange as dreams tend to be, but I have no doubt that the baby I held in my dream was you. And I woke up really excited and looking forward to a few months from now when I actually will be able to hold you.

It was the first time I dreamed about you since I knew I was pregnant. You see, before we knew you were on your way, back when we were starting the process of fertility treatment to get pregnant, I had a dream about a baby. A baby I had never seen before, but as I held her I knew she was my daughter. It was from that dream that I found peace with the process we were in. That I was able to accept what we were going through. I remember telling your daddy about that dream and saying to him that we were going to have a child. That I didn't know exactly how or when it would happen for us, but someday we would be expanding our family. (I was as certain about that as I was the day I realized I wanted to marry your daddy. No doubts whatsoever.) It wasn't long after that dream that I took a pregnancy test and got the surprise positive result. You brought me peace and happiness even before I knew about you and for that I am grateful.

(By the way this dream is why I was so convinced you were a girl way before we knew for sure.)

So to see you again in my dreams this week was very welcome. Parts of it I know won't come true. Like how I labored without any pain (as much as I may wish, that is just not the reality of giving birth). But there were parts that I do hope come true. Like how you had your daddy's smile. I love how he grins when he says something funny or is really pleased with himself. And seeing you with that same smile made me happy.

Baby Girl, there are so many things I am looking forward to in the years to come... watching you play with your cousins, showing you the magic that can be found in books (Harry Potter!), helping you to find your place in this world to name just a few. But what I am looking forward to the most right now is seeing your face in reality and not just in my dreams.

Love,
Momma
 

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Tuesday Trivia: Sports

Tuesday Trivia is a weekly post of interesting trivia questions. Leave a comment with your answer - or best guess - and come back tomorrow to see if you were right. Happy guessing!

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Which sport is Abner Doubleday credited with developing?

Monday, January 7, 2013

That Which We Call Rose

We decided on Nugget's name months ago actually picking it out before we knew we were having a girl. It was a relatively easy decision for us actually.

What I had been debating was whether or not to share the name. I liked the idea of keeping it a secret for a few reasons. 

First, it would be one opinion I could avoid while pregnant. Not that all the opinions I get bother me a whole lot. For the most part, they are well intentioned though there are quite a lot, which can be quite overwhelming. So if there was a way to reduce that number even a little bit, I was inclined to try it.

But mostly, there's something about keeping the name to ourselves for now and then announcing the name with her arrival that I find so sweet.

What I did not expect was how entertaining it could be when other people ask about names. The first question is always "Do you have a name picked out?" 

The follow up question is the one that varies depending on who's asking. I find women who have not had children or those whose children are grown will ask what the name is while those women who have had children recently will ask if we're sharing the name.

I like to make a game of it and guess which follow up question is going to be asked. And I'm usually right.

Naturally.

No we are not naming her Rose. I had to be a literary nerd and use some Shakespeare for the title of this post. You know... "What's in a name?"
 

Friday, January 4, 2013

Twenty Thirteen

Last year was all about small, monthly goals instead of a resolution for the year. I did like having the monthly goals. Something to strive for every month. Sometimes it wasn't anything big and sometimes it was. Sometimes I met all my goals and sometimes I didn't. But for the most part I did accomplish a lot.

(Speaking of, my only goal for December was to paint Nugget's room, which we we did finish. Technically, I finished Tuesday, but dammit it's done. As soon as I have a camera again, I'll share pictures of it because my phone is not doing it justice. But let me just say, it is AWESOME.)

I'm not going to continue that this year because let's face it. In a few months, Nugget is going to be here and that will just go all to hell. The years before that I picked a word or phrase to use as my inspiration for the year. (2010 was Serenity. 2011 was Live Passionately.) So I'm going to go back to that.

My word for 2013 is Appreciate.

In a few months time, my life is going to change on a scale I can barely imagine at this point in time. I want to enjoy these last moments of the quiet as well as this time of just me and John.

I want to enjoy these last months of feeling her move inside my belly. Even though shit is about to get real around here as she (and my belly) starts growing rapidly.

And after she's born, I want to enjoy the time I'll spend with her before I go back to work.

Plus all the other changes, both big and little, that our wee one will introduce into our lives, especially those that I don't realize yet.

So for me, that's what I want from 2013. Conscious appreciation and enjoyment of what I have and where my life currently is. Instead of worrying about the future, I want to enjoy the right now.

(Okay, okay, instead of worrying quite so much about the future. I can't quit a lifetime habit cold turkey people.)

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Book Review: The Sun Also Rises

The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway

Hemingway's first novel is about a group of expatriates in post-World War I Europe. The group goes from drinking in the cafes in Paris to drinking at a bullfight festival in Spain. And that's pretty much the extent of the plot.

The first part of this book is directionless and hard to get into. The dialogue is repetitive, which I could forgive if it were a means to an end. But I could never figure out what the purpose of the repetition was so it was mostly annoying.

When the story moves to Spain it gets a lot better, especially the part with the bullfights. It was in this part that I could admire Hemingway's style the most and understand why he is raised to such literary heights. The rest of the book I don't see it.

I read this book in high school and hated it. This time around I thought I might like it better. I can't say I liked it, though I could appreciate the story a little bit more thanks to reading The Paris Wife a few months ago.

I do think that Hemingway, like J.D. Salinger, is an author that men can appreciate more than women.

Next month - Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer

Disclosure: No one paid me in any way, form or fashion for this review.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Tuesday Trivia: Space

Tuesday Trivia is a weekly post of interesting trivia questions. Leave a comment with your answer - or best guess - and come back tomorrow to see if you were right. Happy guessing!

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Who was the first person to orbit Earth: Yuri Gagarin, John Glenn or Alan Shepard?