Tuesday, August 31, 2010


Otis is smarter than I thought. On these hot, muggy days we close the windows and turn the air conditioning on. I did not see Otis downstairs and went to look for him.

Otis was not in the office or bedroom, he was stretched out on the guest bath tile floor. Not only is the tile cool, but Oti's head was directly under the air conditioning vent. Oti opened one eye, looked at me and immediately went back to sleep. It was obvious that Oti was not going to be leaving this cool spot anytime soon.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Dining Room Trim

The dining room ceiling, window trim, crown molding and baseboard have all been painted.

The eyeball spots are also installed.

A lot of people ask, how can you still be painting ? All I can say is that I think we are moving at a good pace, if you consider we only have some nights and weekends to work on this large project.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Another Vet Appointment

Cooper had his annual vet appointment.  I was the only person in the waiting area and thought this will be nice and quick. I should have known that fate had other plans. 20 minutes later a vet tech came out and took a blood sample from Coop. I was told Dr Duffy would be with me shortly.

5 minutes later, a girl came running in saying her dog had been hit by a car . Over the intercom the emergency call went out. I knew I would be waiting a long time. It turns out that the puppy had stepped on the window control, opened the window and jumped out. The driver did not realize this happened and ran over the dog.

After 40 more minutes, Coop and I met with Dr Duffy. The vet and the staff apologized for the wait. I said emergencies happen and if it was my dog, I would want him treated immediately (visions of Otis opening car windows were running thru my head). The puppy is going to be fine.

Cooper is a perfect 60.8 lbs. Dr Duffy said that Cooper seemed very healthy for a senior. I mentioned that Coop hesitates when he walks on very dark nights. Dr Duffy said that diminishing eyesight is a sign of old age, but Coop's retina are healthy.  Coop's thyroid is not enlarged and there are no signs of cancer. Dr Duffy said he will see us in one year.

Saturday, August 28, 2010


While the Lexus was in for servicing, I had the car detailed. When I picked Lexi up, she was sparkling inside and out. The dirty floor mats had been shampooed and the leather gleamed.

Not bad for a 4 year old car, I thought. I keep getting letters from Lexus asking if I want to trade my car in. However, with only 22K miles, I think Lexi will be with  me for a long time.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Dining Room

After a week away from painting, we have started working on the dining room. I am hoping that this room will not be very difficult to paint. With any luck, we will be finished by Labor Day weekend.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Sun Shades

The new blinds for the office were finally delivered. The blinds are supposed to block the sun, but still allow you to see out.

I can't say if this really works, since we have not had a sunny day yet. I know Cooper will be disappointed to no longer see his shadow friends on days I work at home.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Zip Your Suitcase

We have written about how Otis loves to carry shoes and towels around the house. It seems that Oti does not limit his interest to our possessions.

When our guest was here, Oti went into her suitcase and decided that socks and pajamas were play toys. The next day, when the suitcase was closed, Oti  found her sneaker and proudly paraded it around the house.

If you are coming to visit, I suggest locking your suitcase.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

The View From Behind

I was walking Cooper and Otis and realized that these dogs walk in very different ways.

Cooper prances with his tail held high and curling at the tip, like a giant plume. Coop is always looking up and around, ready to race after a bird or falling leaves. Coop walks at a fast pace, his eyes sparkle and you can tell that Coop is happy to be outside.

Otis walks with his tail down and nose to the ground. Otis constantly sniffs and walks at a much slower pace. Otis loves people and yet when we walk, his attitude changes. Otis is in "security" mode and will softly growl or whine to alert me of approaching people. Otis happily greets anyone who comes to our front door, so I am surprised by this. Our trainer said Oti  is a  Signaler and I think Otis feels it is his job to alert the pack to potential danger.

Friday, August 20, 2010


Last year Jeff bought a Nikon digital camera to take on our Alaskan vacation. Jeff has been very happy with the camera, except for the fact that the battery stopped working and would not hold a charge.

Jeff finally contacted Nikon about the problem  and was instructed to mail the battery to their service department. One week later we received a new battery.

I was impressed by how easy Nikon's return process was.

Thursday, August 19, 2010


We have hit the wall on painting. Both Jeff and I are sick of the endless prepping, trim, door and wall painting. Just the thought of picking up the paint brush again makes me want to cry.

I am tired of having paint in my hair. I am weary of washing paint off Otis and Cooper. Otis has white ears most days.

Thankfully we will be taking a break this weekend when our guests arrive.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Changing Seasons

Fall is coming. I can tell this, not from the leaves on the trees, but from Cooper and Otis. Both dogs are shedding like crazy. Their soft summer coats are falling out and will soon be replaced by their thick winter fur.

It seems early to me for the dogs to be blowing their summer coats. Could this be a sign of a cold winter ahead ?

I keep vacuuming, but the dust bunnies seem to multiply. This is a warning to our weekend guests ;)

Tuesday, August 17, 2010


We have finally  finished painting the hallway! The dining room and staircase still need to be worked on.

I thought that painting the hallway would be pretty fast, but painting the 4 doors (both sides) and the door frames and trim took several days. Even the wall's surface area was greater than anticipated - 2 gallons of paint were needed.

We will not be installing the existing Waterford lights until the floors are refinished. I know that the sanding will send dust everywhere and I do not want the lights impacted. Also, the 2 new Waterford lights are on back order. I love Waterford, but it seems that there is always a month or more delay between ordering Waterford and actual delivery.

Monday, August 16, 2010


When I saw these roses at the store, I stopped and looked twice, because the color did not seem real. The photo does not do them justice, they are a hot pink.

After I brought the flowers home, I noticed the wonderful scent. Most store bought roses do not have a smell.

When I close my eyes and sniff , I am reminded of cutting roses in my Mother's garden - warm summer days and bushes full of blooms.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Country Curtains

Two years ago, I purchased bamboo shades at Country Curtains for the office. I liked these blinds because they let in some light and the room was never too dark.

The other day, when I went to adjust the shades, the cord that held them in place snapped. This occurred on both sets of shades. It seems that the sun had weakened the fabric strings and they tore trying to raise the shade.

If I had purchased the product at Target or Walmart, I would not have been surprised. However, I buy Country Curtains because even though they are expensive, they are high quality.

I called Customer Service and was told that I would be given a credit for the original cost of the blinds. We returned the broken blinds to the Westport store and ordered some new UV blocking sunshades. The new shades were not in stock and will arrive next week.

I was impressed that Country Curtains was willing to refund the cost and keep me a happy customer. Of course, this was a smart business move, since I purchased additional items while I was in their store.

Friday, August 13, 2010


Jeff planted some onions in the deck planters this spring. Cooper loved to dig these bulbs up and I thought they would never survive.

 Jeff harvested the first onion. As you can say it is pretty big. I don't like onions, but he said the taste was semi-sweet but very strong.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010


The infinity light which I ordered for the living room finally arrived. Now that it has been installed, the room is completely finished.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Owls and Growls

I heard Otis pacing and whining at 3:00 AM.  I reluctantly got up to take him outside.

We began to walk in the yard. From the trees above us I heard the Hoot-Hoot-Hoot of an owl. Otis began to growl - loud and fierce. Otis had no interest in doing anything but staring into the woods, growling.

I realized that the reason Otis had been whining was because he heard the owl. Otis did not need to go out, he was bothered by the owl's calls and pacing as a result.  We immediately headed back inside.

Monday, August 09, 2010

Family Room

The family room has been painted, new window treatments and carpet are installed and the furniture is back in place! This paint color is Antique Beige and a much lighter shade than the formal living room.

I was hesitant about buying such a colorful carpet. However, Jeff convinced me that it would be a good way to add color to the room, especially with brown furniture. The couch has tiny red flecks and I think the elements go well together.

You will notice that there is no television. We moved our old tv upstairs and are going to buy a new flat screen when things calm down. The cardboard is the size of a 46 inch tv. We are trying to decide if  a 42 or 46 would be better.

Cooper and Otis are enjoying the new carpet. I wonder how long it will stay  clean.

Sunday, August 08, 2010

Cooper's Favorite Spot

Cooper has taken to sitting on the stairs lately.  Seems as though you can get a pretty good view through the new door if you're sitting on the right stair.  If you look at the picture to the left, you'll see his reflection in the top of the door.

Saturday, August 07, 2010

Mission Control

When we renovated, we put a lot of thought into where we want the light switches.  Previously, we had to go to four different locations just to turn the outside lights on.  Going from the front door to the kitchen was always at least a three step process of flipping switches and walking back and forth.  Now everything is in one spot.  Of course, that one spot looks like Mission Control at Cape Canaveral.

Friday, August 06, 2010

5 minute fan

Now that the family room ceiling has been painted, Jeff installed the ceiling fan.  The Hunter fan box states that it is a "5 minute fan", meaning that it is very quick to install.

One hour later, the new light is now installed.

Thursday, August 05, 2010

Crisp Autum Leaves

When we renovated, I thought that it would be nice to paint the dining room blue. That is, until I learned that in the world of interior decorating blue dining rooms are a big NO-NO. I realize that I can choose any color I desire, but the last thing I want is to have an unappealing room.

With blue out, I began to look at other possible colors. It seems that red is a dining room favorite. We had a red dining room in a previous home and I did not want another one. I began to think about a dark orange/pumpkin.

When I saw Crisp Autumn Leaves, I thought bingo! This color  is a cross between red and orange. In our beige home, it will be a bold  splash of color.

I painted a sample to see if I really love this color. Crisp Autumn Leaves will not go away easily, so I want to be sure I can happily live with it.

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

Potato Chips

I was snacking on potato chips at the kitchen table. Otis was sitting nearby looking at me with pleading eyes and drooling. Cooper was nowhere in sight.

As I was finishing, I gave Oti a chip. Immediately, I heard a thump,thump, thump. Cooper was stretched out under the table. How he knew that Oti had a potato chip is beyond me. However, Coop wanted to make sure that he too would get a snack.


Tuesday, August 03, 2010

Open a wine bottle with your shoe

I don't know if this is another one of those "You can open a car door over your cell phone" things, but interesting anyway...


Monday, August 02, 2010


Finally, we have a place to sit ! The living room furniture has been moved from the garage to back upstairs. We still have some pieces stored in the guest room. Hopefully in the next few days the room will be completely  finished.

Sunday, August 01, 2010