Sunday, September 27, 2009

All talk, No action

Today I slept in, ignored my alarm clock, missed the Farmer's Market [] didn't make breakfast, or lunch, and didn't get out of my pajamas until after 3 p.m.
To put it simply, it was wonderful!

It was gray all day with a heavy threat of rain, a cold breeze has been blowing through the house, scenting everything with that fall smell of wet leaves and damp pavement. I got dressed, got out of the house and as we were on the stoop, our lovely neighbor told us that a real bad storm was coming, enter immediate scurrying on three levels to shut storm windows and lower the flaking double hung warped wood windows down inside of them. The rain started as we were driving through the city and the smell of fall leaves hung like a heavy perfume.

We were on a mission to buy a new refrigerator, the current one pisses freezer water all over the interior of the fridge compartment, we could get it repaired but who knows how much that will cost, and the ice cubes taste like used dental floss anyway. Luckily, we received a house-warming present in the form of a gift card and with Energy Star rebates, we are now in the market for a new fridge! I have been eyeing a 21 cubic ft Samsung model for some time now, it's quite pricey for our budget but I am adamant about having a bottom freezer/ top fridge. So my Saturday was spent dreamily wandering the aisles of our local home improvement mega-store, stuffing paint sample cards in my purse like a klepto and sizing up step ladders. We're scheduled for a refrigerator delivery and haul away on Sunday, WOOT!
So after my jubilant consumer experience I am sipping wine on my back porch, smoking my tasty deathly cigarettes and I hear a raucous party going on 3 row homes down. I think, "Hey I should go check it out!" in my flannel pajama pants and threadbare V neck tee, it would be fun right? Then all of sudden I hear a veritable Greek choros of young drunk absolutely white girls start belting out the words to the theme song of the 90's sitcom Fresh Prince of Bel Air, and as the strains of Yo Holmes Smell Ya Later reach my ears I'm reaching for another glass of wine and turning back to my book of poetry for underachieving community college students, and am steadfast in my appraisal that I am fine just right where I am.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Stoop scrubbing, general landscaping and common kitchen electrocution.

Lately we have been taking it slow, ignoring the glaring eyesores during the workweek and attacking projects with fervor on the weekends. Honestly there doesn't seem to be any other way to do it, there just isn't enough time in the day. I am still unpacking boxes and ummm... duffel bags,don't judge me, it's actually a really easy way to pack clothes!

This weekend, for some reason, we focused on the exterior of the house. Michael has been itching to cut down the weeds out front, which were about 3 1/2 feet tall, guarding our front stoop like the entrance to Jumanji. Also M tore out all the leaves, weeds and garbage surrounding our tiny tree at the curb, and laid down some brick.We plan on putting down some ground cover soon.

I scrubbed our front stoop with a brush and generous amounts of Bon Ami scouring powder, I couldn't believe how white they became, and they are actually marble not dirty concrete!

I also gave the kitchen a Darby level scour, and used our new Shop Vac on all the baseboards to get all the nasty bits up. When I was pulling the 3 prong out of the socket, it wouldn't come out. The plastic socket cover actually started to pull away from the wall so I grasped the plug a bit more firmly and instantly felt my skull vibrating, Yelping, I ripped my hand away from the plug, which was still firmly in the outlet, tripped over the Shop Vac and exited the kitchen. M eventually unplugged it for me : )

Next weekend we plan on mouse-proofing the house, I will post some pics of some really sketchy looking holes in the floor and baseboards, please comment with advice or tips!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Ratatouille- easier than I thought

It is a chilly gray Saturday morning and we have so much to do. I just wanted to post picutres from dinner last night. I made ratatouille from the contents of our CSA box.(One Straw Farm) We got the most beautiful little aubergines and I couldn't resist trying something new.

It turned out really well, I mean, Michael was raised in cow centric Wisconsin and he didn't even mind the absence of meat. I used a non-traditional cooking method. I just chopped all the veggies, splashed some olive oil and kosher salt on them and roasted them in the oven at 375F for 50 minutes. I then made a simple tomato sauce on the stove. I sauteed onions in olive oil, then just placed tomatoes in the pan and seared them until the juice and flesh separated from skin, then I added fresh basil and parsley, one bay leaf and a handful of dried rosemary, and salted to taste. After the vegetables were done roasting I placed them in a bowl, topped them with the simple tomato sauce and placed some cheddar slices on top. The recipe called for Padano or something else equally fancy, but we get this great cheese from the 32nd Street Farmer's Market
Broom's Bloom Dairy, Hot Pepper Creswell Cheddar, we put it on everything!
It was really hearty and warm, perfect for the cold rainy night!

Friday, September 11, 2009

Do not hurry, do not rest...

Hello all, this is my humble room of an office where I blog from, we have one window that overlooks the alley behind our house and mainly showcases our neighboring rowhome but we get a decent breeze and we will get everything up and running soon...i hope

Here is the main staircase, it wraps around way too many times for decent sized furniture, but we have a lovely skylight right above that provides great light.

This is the back stairway, it used to be the servants staircase, but we just call it the staircase of death since the steps are only 5 or 6 inches in depth and that handrail has already saved me a few times

This is our temporary bedroom at the back of the house. (Probably will be the guest room in the future.)It is definitely still a work in progress but I got the curtains up and my scratchy wool Army blanket on the bed and that makes me happy. Just to be honest, I was very judicious in my picture taking, we have a few rooms and areas that are still an absolute disaster but it is finally the weekend and I am sure we will get around to it.

One long week, an unexpected windfall, and rain on red bricks

I haven't written all week, and have made no real progress on the house, in fact we may have regressed. Last night we attended a charity benefit for Believe in Tomorrow, ( It was held at the Bay Cafe in Canton, (area of Bmore). I ended up being the 1st winner of the evening, $500! It was a really good time. Michael almost won the grand prize of $10,000 but was eliminated in the last round. I am planning on putting that money towards a new refrigerator, as our current one is dripping water all over our CSA veggies. Here are some pictures of the house, let me know what you think and if you have any advice or suggestions!

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Beautiful Light Fixture from Eos Mexico Studio

I think this may be the perfect first addition to our new home....

Making This House a Home

So I finally got this off the ground. We moved into our home last weekend and just got our mitts on internet. Needless to say it was a very long week... The house in gaining some semblance of order and I was able to make the bed and wash all of the curtains. The weather has been nice and cool lately which is a blessing since the only AC's we have are window units in varying states of disrepair. We're still living out of suitcases and boxes but I was able to actually cook dinner last night (Chicken Mole)! Pictures will follow as soon as the rooms are picked up a bit, but for now feast your eyes on kite flying at Ft. McHenry.