Since welcoming 2015 I feel like I've hit the ground running. I expected things to settle down after the holidays but it seems we always find a million other projects to start, places to go, and friends to have fun with.
We did get the flooring down in the new dining room- we tried to match it to our oak kitchen flooring but since we used engineered hardwood, the color isn't perfect. It drives me nuts, but in the right light they look very similar. My pitch to Pete when I wanted to do this was "hey, let's just rip up the carpet and put down flooring..should only take a few hours. We probably have time to put a fresh coat of paint on." Famous last words- I should know better with all of our other projects we do that are never as short, easy, or inexpensive as we expect.
We found the old paint the previous owners used in the room, but what we didn't realize was that the room was 2 different shades of beige. It was close enough that we couldn't tell until we started painting the wall. And then because I wanted the entire room to be the lighter color, we ran out of paint and had to go back to the store to try to color match for a second coat.
Once we pulled up the carpet, I also didn't realize we'd have to remove the trim. And by removing the trim, it was pretty much destroyed. So we had to re-measure, find the right style of trim that matched the rest of main level, cut and paint it.
And I actually spent a Friday night pulling staples from the floor while Ferdinand tried to eat them.
Once we started putting the floor down it went pretty smoothly. I clicked them all together while Pete ran up and down from the basement cutting pieces and swearing.
I'm probably 90% happy with how it turned out. When you do any project you find all the flaws and will notice them every time you look. But it makes the room feel and look a lot bigger. We're looking for a nice table still- we thought we could use our tax return to get one but The Man brought us down and we had to pay in again this year. I've started my search for plates for the wall but I need to find some local antique shops--if you know of any let me know!
I was invited to speak at the end of January for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's Midwest blood cancer conference to talk about cancer survivorship and rehabilitation. This has so far been my life's work as a nurse practitioner- I started our clinic's survivorship program and a rehabilitation program to help cancer patients navigate their appointments, recover from treatments/manage side effects, and prevent or minimize chronic disability from their cancer treatments. And because I always bite off a little more than I can chew, I'm researching starting a pulmonary rehab program for our lung cancer patients- after having parts of their lung removed they don't know how to breath and can't exercise. Anyways, I'm going off on a tangent...so for this conference I gave two 1-hour talks on the subject as it relates to blood cancers. I really did not want to do it. I HATE public speaking more than anything else in the world, but that's part of the reason I did it. I need to not be such a damn baby. At the end they gave me a tin filled with chocolate toffee (my faaave- I love to make it every Christmas!) and a target gift card!!
I would pretty much do anything for chocolate and target. Anything.
At the beginning of the month, a couple of my besties celebrated a joint 30th birthday party. Katy (blondie) and Stene (the Loser) both turn 30 this month and had a 90's throwback party bus. First of all, I'm too old (and can't handle) a party bus anymore. Second of all- it was a trip. I grew up with these girls- we've known eachother since we were like 13 so to see them almost exactly how they looked like 17 years ago was the weirdest, trippiest, time travel experience. Stene married her high school boyfriend, and we were all friends with him and all his friends at the time so it was a bunch of us that grew up together. Plus all our fave 90's music playing all night made us all very nostalgic. It was a blast. And I tried to dress way cooler than I actually did in the 90's (bibs and velvet V-necks?).
One night earlier in the month me, Jess, Kell, & Lo treated ourselves to a girls night since all our husbands were together up north ice fishing. We ate the most delicious dinner in downtown Minneapolis, and after a short debate about going out or going to sleep, we promptly returned to our hotel for snacks and sleep well before midnight. We ate, drank, giggled, and went to bed at a reasonable time- a perfect girls night for the late 20/early 30 somethings!
The best part of this month was our amazing trip over Valentine's weekend to Puerto Vallarta Mexico!
I'll do a full post of pics because the trip was that amazing with a second round of dolphins for me, a little sea sickness (I'm getting old..waah.), lots of sun, and meeting new friends on vacation that we all just fell in love with.
Sick on the boat..I awoke to "senorita! senorita! come quickly and take nothing with you!" And without asking any questions or speaking the language I got in a random boat with people I didn't know..full story to come!
I miss the sun! and the beautiful ocean!
And now today is the day. The day we bring home our new golden retriever puppy. Honestly, I have not been very excited. I struggle with change- even good change, and I've been worried about how the kitties will adjust. This is the only thing Pete has been talking about for the last year- his little hunting puppy. I'm more ready for real babies at this point but we'll take it one step at a time. More details to come!