Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Meet My Sister Wife.

Yesterday I was in a particularly foul mood. 

Foul. {I love using that word.} It was Tuesday, what is usually Justin's "Sunday" {his second day off of the week, and thus my second day of the week not being alone with my children} but instead of being at home with us he had to work an event that kept him there for a full 12 hours. No one was happy about it.

Combined with a certain time of month that usually puts me in a enough of a foul mood as it is, I was not a happy camper.

But I kept my sights set on Wednesday, because I knew my new "sister wife" was coming to help me around the house. UPS tracking told me she would be delivered to my doorstep today, so off went Justin to work and I happily waited at home for that blessed Buster Brown to arrive.

And when he did, he delivered unto me this:
  Roomba 770
About a year ago now, I was invited into the Amazon Vine program. I have never in my life won anything nor have I been what you'd call lucky, but my luck came in with Vine. Because for years I wrote a lot of "helpful" reviews for Amazon, I was eventually extended the honor of writing reviews for free products they send me each month. It's pretty cool,  but I worked to get into this program and I still work for it, too. Writing thoughtful reviews for things like sippy cups, bitter cofee, and night lights can be tedious. And I don't always get such cool products--some months you find yourself reviewing sticky notes! Though I always remind myself, anything free is cool and I'm happy to have it, even if I have to come up with a description of just how painful epilating feels. {And hey, those sippy cups are our new favorites.} But this month, I was able to score a Roomba--which is something this housewife has lusted after for years, but I knew we'd probably never have the money to splurge on one. It's a luxury item, to be sure. So when I snagged one on Vine this month I was shocked and elated--I get to review a Roomba!
My Sister Wife
I can't tell you how over-the-moon excited I am for this thing! With an older home that's prone to collecting dirt, two little ones, and pets, I feel like ALL I DO is sweep & mop. No matter how clean your house is, too, if your floors aren't clean then NOTHING feels clean. You know?

Now that my sister wife is here {I think I'm naming her Rosie, after the robot from The Jetsons} my floors are now cleaned for me! I remember when I first saw a TV commercial for the Roomba, I thought it looked gimmicky. Now, years later, this company has established a reputation--and now I can speak on it's behalf.

Look at how much Rosie collected on her first home tour! She went under my couch and everything. It's quite a haul, and she wasn't even done yet. This was half way through her first cycle--folks, I needed this.
Roomba's First Haul!
Yuck, right!? And I swear--I clean my floors almost every day! Apparently Rosie is better suited for this. She's a welcome addition to the family. Like a maid, except I don't have to worry about her seducing my husband with her little feather duster.

And it's such a blessing and relief, too. Because, as I'm about to show you, I have my hands full with other messes right now--especially after our 1-day weekend and 12 hour sans-daddy-day.

Okay, before you get the wrong idea: this is CHOCOLATE.
I promise. Just chocolate. But yesterday, apparently Viv found some chocolate stashed in her crib. {Perhaps she stowed it there in advance for a naptime snack, like an alcoholic stashing their liquor?}Yep.  I went to get her up from her nap to discover ^THIS^ mess waiting for me. Look, I'm happy: it wasn't poo.

And only minutes later, my girls did this:
Girls beat me to the paint...
That be paint. I won't lie, I might have yelled at them.

Eisley also did her fair share of mess-making during her naptime. She got out every.single.toy box. in her closet. Well, that or her closet contracted the stomach flu and had a blow out.
Eisley's Toy Closet Get the Stomach Flu
{And doesn't she look pleased, by the way?}

Not to mention, she discovered that walls can be decorated with stickers. I can't wait to dig into all this sticky goodness with my finger nails.
SO, can you see why I feel like my new sister wife is heaven sent??? I'm hyperventilating right now. {At least there's Rosie. At least there's Rosie. At least there's Rosie...}

At least my floors are clean.
At least Roomba is there for me...

I love you, Rosie. Welcome to the family.

How much do you charge for babysitting???

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Meant to Bee?

This afternoon I looked out my bedroom window to find hundreds (or thousands?) of bees flying around our giant lilac bush right outside. I immediately called my sister, Bea, who is a new beekeeper herself. I asked her what was going on with this mass of bees in my yard.

What I thought was a natural new hive actually turned out to be a swarm. This happens a lot in May, apparently, that a colony gets too large and so the queen and a portion of her followers break off to form a new colony. Swarms are nice in that they are from solid, healthy colonies--they are a good catch for an experienced beekeeper.

Or maybe an inexperienced one?

It's pretty much been on my bucket list to keep bees. I've long thought of doing it. Then, this past year my sister did the real deal--she took classes and everything--before we knew it she was a serious apiarist. Her first colony arrived this spring and she is so knowledgeable and wonderful with it. I've loved learning from her about the amazing bees.
Hea's Bees
So when my sister told me how beekeepers can capture and hive swarms, I wondered if we could do it with our new swarm. I called Justin at work and told him how the bees had found me, and I wanted to keep them.

You can see the swarm here, at the top of our lilac bush:
And thanks to my telephoto lens, here's an up-close view:
So I called Justin and Bea, and Justin and Bea, and Justin and Bea, and finally decided that I'd return the camera lens that was to be my Mother's Day gift (it was horribly back-ordered anyway) and buy a hive instead. Knowing we didn't have much time (swarms are only temporary, after all, they're scouting out new permanent hive locations) Justin left work and ran to the local bee store for a darling powder blue Langstroth hive.
Our New Hive 
And he rushed home, and cut down that branch with no fear of them there bees...
Cutting down the swarm
And he tossed those bees into our new hive.
Swarmed bees, newly hived
And now we just have to hope they stay! They might. They might not. We haven't located the queen yet, so hopefully she was in there. And if she is in there, hopefully she'll decide to stay. If not then we will have ourselves a pretty, yet empty, powder blue hive.
Our New Hive 
And that's how we became {possible} beekeepers, within a couple hours.
Our First Hive

I suppose if the colony doesn't take then we can order some bees when the time is right. But I have to say, this all felt like it was meant to bee...

After all, these bees found me.

I'll keep you all updated on our new bees...

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Den femte maj

On Saturday my family came over for supper. We're trying to get our back patio area fixed up a little {there is still much to be done} because when the weather is nice, my family loves to spend time together like this. 
Justin is working on stringing lights and I plan on going all out with the flowers...but for now, it was just a simple get together. 
With good food {stolen recipes from my friends Jan & Kellee who are superheroes in the kitchen}. Justin made burgers & grilled corn. Cherry lime-aid margaritas. Nutella ice cream with pizzelle {oh my stars, was it delicious} and a simple salad. Noah couldn't make it, but God bless him, he sent beer anyway. 
Best of all is my family, though. I have a tiny family, but they're wonderful to be with. 
The girls ate quickly and commenced playing in the yard while my sister and husband bonded over their love for Zooey Deschanel and my mother stuffed our unused mustard back into it's original container to save us money. I love my family. Here's to much more summertime fun to come. 


Saturday, May 5, 2012

Today was the first Paris Street Market of the season. Although I don't do the show with my crafting business anymore, I still can't resist visiting during the summer months. Today I dragged my friend Jessica with me, it was busy and hot, but there was a nice breeze and it was a really good show!

I went in search of some Pyrex, of course. There was more today than I've ever seen at Paris Street before. I think it's becoming more popular all the time...
And tons of vintage goodies to look at. I wish I'd gotten more pictures with my cell phone, but I wasn't planning on blogging this.
I went crazy when I spotted this gorgeous baby blue Pyrex loaf pan! Only $6, I had to take it home with me. {Without all the numbers & letters inside, of course.}
I'd purchase an entire new wardrobe at Paris Street if I could. Ruffles abound. Love it.
Oh, and my new favorite color? This dark teal with lime green/yellow decorative accents! This must be the trendy new color scheme of the season because I spotted it all over the market today. It's to die for.
Here is my small, but lovely, haul. The baby blue Pyrex, of course. Then a Rainbow Stripe Pyrex I couldn't pass up {is it bad that when I got home I realized I already own this one? Oh well, the price was amazing on this rare pattern.} and a vintage tablecloth that's pink & gray. 
Next market date is June 2nd--who's with me?!


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