Wednesday, May 19, 2010

I'm in love

I'm in love with Puddingstone Farm and Nursery in Parma, Mi.
And so is my Son.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Painted trim

I finally took my paint brush to the trim in our office and in the dining room. I absolutely love it. I also installed quarter round, which was really an easy job (in just one room, but a bit daunting when I think of the rest of the house.)
 Now I'd like to tackle the rest of the house, but  I'm waffling a little on painting the trim in the living room. It's time's like this I wish I were Samantha Stevens, so I could just wiggle my nose and Viola! Of course, she did get herself into a fair bit of trouble...

Wednesday, May 12, 2010


When the CSN Stores contacted me about doing a review for their company, I thought, "What? Little old me?" and then I thought, "Why not?"

The hardest part was picking something to review. You see, CSN offers a large variety of items from barstools to baby items and gardening to home decor.

We had a very tired doormat at our front door, so I thought it was time for a replacement. I selected this beautiful indoor/outdoor rug called Safavieh Courtyard. I had a friend visiting, when it arrived, and she couldn't believe I was going to put it outside, "That's too nice to put outside, would it work in your kitchen?"

It was tempting, but since I had picked it out to go at the front door, I decided to stick with that plan, but I may just have to order another one for my kitchen. (CSN has about a gazillion indoor/outdoor rugs to choose from ranging from $19.95 to $244.95) We'll have to see how it holds up, but so far, I think I'm in love.

The only drawback to the rug is that it looks so good that it reminds me that I have to repaint the threshold.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

We were loved...

Here in the State of Michigan, we suffer from low self-esteem. It’s been a long standing problem… one that goes back as far as I can remember.

Surrounded by natural wonders (they are called the Great Lakes for a reason), we mostly focus on our aging industries, fleeing population and blighted cities. Granted, they can be a little hard to see past.

We’re unlovable. I mean isn’t that why people are always leaving?

Today on Facebook, the Flint page posted an inspiring quote by Margaret Mead about the power of citizens banding together to make positive changes. In response, someone posted a long-winded response about lazy GM workers, working for inflated wages. Huh? Hope greeted with complete and utter cynicism.

We’re a little like the girl who is told she has beautiful eyes and responds, “Yeah right. You’re kidding right? How could you even see them with that pimple on my nose?”

That’s what makes losing Ernie Harwell so hard, because he was the guy that honestly hadn’t noticed the pimple. He loved us, genuinely loved us and it wasn’t just a line.

Things are rough here in this State, especially in Detroit, but we were loved in a big way, by an all-around great guy.

That means something.

Thank you, Ernie, for loving us. Now, hopefully we can get to work on loving ourselves.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Respite in Detroit

This year for our anniversary we decided to escape to the big city, but that didn't mean we had to forgo quaint. We stayed at the Inn At Ferry Street, which is really a series of Victorian Mansions, which have been restored for use as a bed and breakfast, but with 40 guests rooms it's really a hotel. It was a lovely place to stay.
This is the house we called home for the night. It's interior was filled with wonderful turn of the century details.

The Inn also has two carriage houses, including this one that is used for meetings. Ferry St. is right off of Woodward, not far from downtown and right next to the Detroit Art Institute and Wayne State University. Part of the reason I wanted to stay at the Inn At Ferry Street is because I think it demonstrated the kind of vision Michigan needs. Instead of letting these buildings crumble, someone saw possibility.
Otherwise, these beautiful homes, could have just been left to rot... like this one. A visit to Detroit does have it's heart breaking moments... blight and echos of a great past... but there is a resilience there for which it doesn't get enough credit... much like Flint and even, to some extent, my new home of Jackson. All three cities have been hit very hard by the struggles of the auto industry and there's plenty of judgement to go around, but I'm thankful to all the people who are willing to take a risk and believe and invest in their futures.

It was hard to be so close to the DIA and not go in, but this was a quick weekend, so we headed downtown for a baseball game.

We had a quick lunch at Detroit Beer Company, and the night before we had a lovely dinner at the new Angelina Italian Bistro. I'd recommend both places, both are on Broadway right across from the Detroit Opera House. (A favorite place, Small Plates, is right next to the DBC.)

It was an awesome game and the Tigers swept the Angels, in what was almost a shut-out for Justin Verlander. The skies threatened rain most the day, but we only had to contend with a few sprinkles in the ninth.
The last five years have been full of blessings and hardships and we've weathered them. I know they'll be more hard times ahead, it seems that's how life works, but I have the best teammate a girl could ask for and I'm looking forward to the next inning.