Operation: Fix This House!

Operation: Fix This House!
Our adventures in fixing up a fixer-upper

Confessions of an Antibride

Confessions of an Antibride
Snarky Commentary on Wedding Planning

Pink Dog Cooks

Pink Dog Cooks
Sort of.


And other Crafting Goodness

The Wedding: Act II - The Rehearsal Dinner

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

We'd worked very hard all week to make sure we were ready for Saturday.  So by Friday morning there were only a few things left to do: namely, the rehearsal dinner and the flowers.  We couldn't really do those earlier anyway because, unlike when we painted our house, we were going for Vintage Ghetto, not Gothic Dead.

My mom's side of the family (all from out of town) wasn't flying in until the morning of the wedding, so the rehearsal dinner was my dad's side of the family, most of MacGyver's family, and the few extra people in the wedding party that weren't MacGyver's family.  All in all it was a really fantastic time.  Since the reception was the part of the wedding I was most looking forward to anyway, this was a nice preview of what was to come the next night.

We did a quick run through of the wedding ceremony with the wedding party going over most of the important bits (emphasis on most) before everyone left for the evening.

Mr. and Mrs. B stayed after most of the guests left to help with flowers.  We had four bridesmaids bouquets to make, my bouquet, eight (?) boutonnieres to manufacture, and a handful of corsages.  It was about 8:00pm when we started.  Because that's how I roll.

We had all the flowers sitting in big five gallon buckets in my mom's laundry room  so we set up shop in there.  The bouquets actually went fairly quickly and they turned out spectacularly.  I didn't take any photos of us making them because, well, we were busy making them.  But I assure you that between my mom, myself, Mr. and Mrs. B, and my brother's girlfriend, we rocked those bouquets.

Here are some of my bouquet.  I don't think I have any that are just the girls' bouquets without the girls in them, so I'll wait until the next post for those.  The charms on my bouquet are of both of my grandfathers and one of my grandmothers who have passed away.  I found the hardware at Joann's and used sepia colored photos of them.  The pictures of my dad's parents are their wedding photos.  It was a nice way to honor them at the wedding.

The bouquets turned out pretty awesome.  The boutonnieres on the other hand...not so much.  After much fussing, my mom called for reinforcements.  One of her best friends, Mrs. H, is apparently knowledgeable about these things and offered to help us if we needed it.  She has been in my life as long as I can remember.  She's driven me to school when I missed the bus, and we stayed at her house a few times when my parents went on trips.  I love Mrs. H.  When Mom called her, she came straight over and set to work.  We used some leaves from the lilies in the large bouquet to lay the roses on and tied them all together with some floral tape.  Even MacGyver had to admit they looked pretty snappy!

My parents went to bed shortly after we finished the flower stuff.  I sat down to go through the wedding slideshow one more time and review the playlist for the reception.  It was about then that I realized MacGyver and my brother, Turbo, had been drinking since about noon.  It was now about 11:00pm.  I won't detail everything that happened in the next few hours, but it involved singing and dancing and other drunken debauchery.  I finally went to bed around midnight because the girls were showing up the house about 10am to get ready and I wanted to sleep.

I hadn't really been nervous about getting married in the months and weeks leading up to the wedding.  But I remember that the last thoughts I had before falling asleep that night were that tomorrow my name was going to be different, and that started to freak me out just a little bit.

Okay a lot.

Bippity Boppity Boo!

Thursday, February 23, 2012

I have been down for the count for the last three days with pneumonia.  The worst part?  I got it for no good reason!  I was sick for three weeks about a month ago, then I was golden for a little over a week.  Did you read that?  GOLDEN.  Then out of nowhere this crap goes all Emeril Lagasse on me and the next thing I know I have a fever of 103.6 and I'm calling myself a ninja as I stumble to the bathroom in the dark.

I'm trying to be more consistent with posting on here, but dumb stuff keeps getting in the way.  So until I can manage something better, I'll repost something I put up on Facebook a few nights ago.  These compilations are hilarious, by the way.  This one is probably my favorite:

[(www.weknowmemes.com) - also, NSFW]

I couldn't find one I liked for social workers or therapists so I made my own.


On a related note, I had a realization as I laid in a magic cough syrup induced stupor a few nights ago.  I shouldn't post things on Facebook that could later become blog posts.  It's like double dipping on my own material and that just seems...wrong.

That's all for now.  I have a tea party planned in Magic Cough Syrup Land tonight.

Getting friendly with the local wildlife

Saturday, February 18, 2012

(Update: This actually happened a few weeks ago but MacGyver didn't want me to broadcast that he was gone.  I am so flattered he thinks I have so many readers...  He's back now.  So all you crazy hooligans looking to take advantage of our mailbox will have to answer to him now.)

I had a non-work related run-in with Tillamook's finest last night at my house.  About which I made the following post on Facebook:

One of my coworkers mentioned that this sort of thing only happens to me, and that these things probably occur in my life so I can blog about them.  I will agree with her on both of these counts.  Plus, I'm having a bit of writer's block about the wedding and need a break from writing about it.  Let me explain.

MacGyver left for California a few weeks ago to work on some property a friend of my Dad's is buying.  That means the dogs and I are batchin' it up in Cowtown for awhile.  Translation: we've been eating sticks and twigs for dinner and the TV has only been turned on twice.  And one of those was for the State of the Union Address.  By the way, did anyone else see that snarky look Michelle Obama gave her husband after he made that awful joke about spilled milk?  That's love right there.  When your husband is the President of the United States of America and you're secure enough in yourself and your marriage that you roll your eyes at him while he's giving the State of the Union Address.  That's love.

Anyway, I have a very overactive imagination when I'm home alone.  So does Mojo, by the way.  He likes to come flying out of a dead sleep at 3:00am howling his holy head off like a SWAT team is busting into our bedroom, when there is nothing there.  I just wish the velociraptors that live in our basement would show themselves once when MacGyver was home so he wouldn't think I'm such a sissy.

When MacGyver is gone, I lock all the little extra, superfluous locks in the house that in reality wouldn't stop my dogs from coming or going if they had a mind to, and I set up little boogie man (read: velociraptor) traps all over the place so I'll know if someone is coming to eat me.  I put the garbage can on the back porch, and leave the dishwasher door down so that it blocks the back door from opening.  I also leave all the outside lights on.  MacGyver is going to have a fit when he reads this.  The way I see it, it's like that feeling of security we get from blankets at night.  I saw this the other day and it made me smile:

Last night about 8:00pm, the doorbell rang.  Now, we don't get many visitors.  We're not social people, you see.  The neighbor is usually the only one who ever comes over, and that's only to talk to MacGyver.  He knows MacGyver is gone, so WHO THE HELL IS RINGING MY DOORBELL AT 8:00 AT NIGHT!!!

I actually figured it had to be the neighbor since I'm not sure anyone else knows where we live.  Except the mail man.  And he comes in the morning.

But no, it was the cops!  The cops showing up on your doorstep at 8:00 at night is never good, no matter which way you look at it.  If they're looking for you, you're screwed.  I was so flustered by the doorbell ringing and seeing that a police officer was standing on my porch, that I didn't think to lock my dogs up, so they were going ballistic around my ankles.  Probably getting ready to eat them some velociraptors for dinner.  Yum.

I opened the door only to realize neither of us could hear anything because of my 14 pound vicious attack dogs, so I closed the door in his face and ran to lock them up.  Not one of my brighter moments, I realize now, but he only looked mildly startled.

He had a very thick looking summons in his hands, along with several other documents.  He asked me if my name happened to be a particular name of someone he was looking for.  When I explained that no, that wasn't me, and furthermore I'd never heard of her, he asked if she lived with me.  (I just told you I'd never heard of her, dude, duh.  Pay attention!).  I said no, and he showed me the documents with her name on them, and our address!  I explained that we'd been at this address since 2006.  He kind of chuckled and said, "well, someone is getting away with something pretty big here!"  Then he was on his way.

I was super creeped out by some crazy lady using our address, and when I told MacGyver about it he was all like, "lock all the doors and turn on all the outside lights."  And I was all like, "way ahead of you buddy...".  Who's the sissy now, hmm?

A few of my friends and I had a good chuckle about it on Facebook for a few hours and I wet to bed and forgot about it.  The velociraptors stayed in the basement too, God bless them.

But then when I got to work this morning another coworker who had seen my post asked me about what happened.  When I finished telling her that I thought it was weird that I don't remember seeing any mail for her come through, she aptly pointed out that this woman could be sifting through our mail during the day before we get to it at night and pulling her mail out!  BECAUSE I DIDN'T HAVE ENOUGH TO WORRY ABOUT WITH THE VELOCIRAPTORS.

Tonight, when I got home from work and got my mail (none of it for her), I resolved to do something about my little mail prowler.  I wrote this note and taped it to the inside of our mailbox:

I'll keep you posted.

Plain Diaper Cakes are for Sissies

Sunday, February 12, 2012

My good friend, Mrs. B, is having her first baby in March and Mr. B and I decided to throw her a surprise baby shower last weekend.  As soon as she told me she was pregnant I started looking for fun baby craft projects and stumbled on this little gem.  

I was just kidding about that plain diaper cakes are for sissies thing.  Seriously though, anyone can give a diaper cake.  But a diaper tricycle?!  Yes, please!  By the way, people are selling these for a small fortune on Etsy if you're not feeling crafty.  I might need to get in on that, as a matter of fact.

Mrs. B is actually going to use cloth diapers, but I knew there was simply no way I was going to get that many cloth diapers made in time.  When we were painting her nursery a few weeks ago, I casually asked her if she would like to have a stash of disposables for emergencies and to keep in the car, etc.  

Heh, heh.  I'm so sneaky.

(Please excuse the weird focus on the pictures.  MacGyver is a much better photographer than I am.)  You'll need about 55-60 diapers, two bibs, two receiving blankets, a pair of socks, an angel food cake pan, rubber bands, ribbon, some safety pins, and a bottle that for our purposes you're going to pretend is also in the picture.  

Eh hem.  

You're going to make one large wheel and two smaller wheels.  For the larger wheel I used about 30 diapers.  You can adjust it to your liking.  You'll want enough to make it nice and sturdy.  Start by staggering the diapers about 3/4" apart and wrapping them around the center of your poor battered angel food cake pan that your mom gave you when you got your first place in college.  Keep adding diapers in the same direction until they start meeting the first diaper.  Then start pinching the diapers toward the middle and twisting as you add more.  When you've added all the diapers you'll have a nice pinwheel in the pan and you can adjust them until they are evenly spaced and looking pretty.

Gently press the bottom of the pan up from the bottom to expose the outside of your wheel.  This takes a little dexterity, but while you have the wheel lifted up, wrap a rubber band around the outside to hold it all together.

Then pop that bad boy out of the pan!  You'll probably want to adjust the diapers again after this as they can shift a little when you're putting on the rubber band.  Rinse and repeat two more times for the smaller wheels.  I used about 20 diapers per small wheel, but you can make them however you like.

When you've got all three wheels ready (how cute are these?!), carefully widen the centers of the wheels so there are holes an inch or so in diameter.

Wrap the ribbon around the rubber bands to cover them up and secure with a safety pin.  I picked diaper pins since I new Mrs. B will be doing the cloth diaper thing most of the time.

Take one of the receiving blankets that you had to go back to the store and buy after you accidentally cut right through the middle of the ones you were making for Baby B and threw a fish flopping fit involving naughty words that are not suitable for baby ears.

Eh hem.  Don't be like me.

Roll up the blanket into a tight roll.  I didn't take a picture of this (I was still mad about the first blankets I ruined), but if you fold the blanket in half and then roll it up, it's a lot easier and stays rolled tighter.  Either way, you want a long, rolled blanket.

Rinse and repeat with the second blanket.  

Thread one blanket through the center of the larger wheel...

...and pull the ends around and snake them through each of the back wheels to join in the middle.

Secure it with a safety pin.  Don't worry about making this part pretty - just slide it inside one wheel and you'll never see it.

Make sure the treads are facing the same direction on the back wheels or it will look weird.  You don't want weird looking tires, now do you?  I didn't think so.

Take the other blanket and feed it through the center of front wheel until the ends are even.

Lay one of the bibs across the front wheel and secure it under the ribbon you used to cover the rubber band.

I saw this bib on etsy and didn't have time to order one.  I used t-shirt transfer paper that you print on and iron onto fabric.  I have no idea how well this will work as a bib, but it's cute.

Do the same thing with the other bib across the back tires, and secure the ends inside the front wheel center.  This will become the seat.

For the visual learners...

Remember that baby bottle we were pretending was in the first photo?  Lay it on top of the front wheel with the bottom facing the front of the tricycle.  Pull the ends of the second blanket up like bunny ears around the bottle and secure tightly with a rubber band.

Wrap ribbon around the rubber band to cover it up, and put the socks on over the ends of the blanket for handle bars.  This tricycle is for a boy, but pink tassels would be fun on a girl tricycle!  Not that there is anything wrong with boys liking pink, I just haven't had a chance to ask Baby B if he likes pink and I don't like to assume.

Though as an aside, I picked green and yellow for the colors because I like them, and blue seemed a little cliche.  Halfway through making this I realized Mr. B went to OSU - long time rival to my alma mater, U of O - whose colors are green and yellow.  This made me chuckle.

(Read the subliminal messages, Baby B!  Come to the dark side!  We have candy!)

And you're done!

This took about 2 hours to put together start to finish, but I imagine it could be done in less.  It was a big hit at the shower!

Happy crafting!

10 Little Penguins Waddling Around

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

I think I've mentioned on here before that at work we love us a good potluck.  As I've gotten older and slightly less antisocial I have come to enjoy these little gatherings.  I love finding unique and creative foods to bring to potlucks.  It's like crafting with food!  I saw these a few months ago on The Pioneer Woman's Tasty Kitchen and have been waiting for a potluck to make these bad boys.  They're actually really easy!

A few things about these photos before we begin.  First, please excuse the circa 1972 orange tinge to all of them.  MacGyver is a bit of a florescent bulb fanatic.   Which is great for our electric bill and energy saving and all that.  Not so much for taking pictures though.  

Second, please ignore the blue (I swear, it's blue) jar full of feathers sitting in the box on the dining room chair full of wedding decorations.  Yes, I said it.  I still have wedding decorations lying about.  Boxes of them, in fact.  Anyone know of a nice farm where they can go live out their lives running free in a field?  If I find such a place, I'll have wedding decor free photos.  That are still orange.  

I love these pie plates!!  I got one for Christmas one year from my Mom, and the other at my bridal shower from my Aunt.  LOVE THEM.  In the picture I have two jars of colossal olives and two jars of medium sized olives, but I ended up only needing one jar of the smaller olives.

Olives olives olives olives.

Also, I forgot to put toothpicks in the picture.  Just pretend they're there.  If you would kindly pretend as well that I didn't forget to take a picture of everything before I started opening packages and that the cream cheese is still sealed and pretty?  Thank you.

Cut slices off the fat end of the carrots.  Try to make them even and level because these are going to be your little penguin feet.  I peeled the carrots mostly for aesthetics.  Because let's be honest, who wants to eat a penguin that looks like it has athlete's foot?  Did I just ruin these for you?  Pretend I didn't just say that.

Now cut a small sliver out of each of the little carrot discs.  These will be the noses.

Cut the tip off one corner of a Ziploc and plop the cheese on in.  I let the cream cheese soften on the counter for about an hour before I started, but that really wasn't long enough.  I blew out two Ziplocs before it was finally soft enough to pipe out easily.  Trust me on this one - cream cheese blowouts are messy.

Cut a small slit down one side of a colossal olive and pipe some cheese into the cavity.  You'll want enough in there so it fills the hole and squeezes out the front a little.  Then smooth that with your finger or a damp paper towel.  You've just made the penguin body!

This is actually not a good photo, and not just because it's orange.  I did this for the first few and then realized it's better to stick the toothpick into the body from the top down, and then poke it into the carrot.  This way you don't get cream cheese all along the length of the toothpick.  Live and learn.

Remember those slivers we cut out of the carrots?  Poke one of those into the hole of a small olive, and then slide it onto the toothpick, lining it up with the body.

How adorable are these?!  Except maybe Cyclops there in the middle.  He looks a little shifty.

I saw another site where she tied strips of green onion on for scarves.  All together now...squeee!!!!!!

What do you call a gathering of penguins?  A gaggle?  A herd?  A flock?  A colony?  Oh!  I think that's it!  A COLONY of penguins.  With onion breath.


Sunday, January 29, 2012

MacGyvery made me take down the other post I wrote a few days ago.  I'll repost it soon, but in the mean time, I give you this:

These little minions from the movie Despicable Me are hilarious.  I saw a clip from an interview with Steve Carrell about this movie in which he said that the moral of the story is that everyone needs 10,000 minions in their lives.  I couldn't agree more.  

MacGyver bought a welder a few months back, and has been playing around with some scrap metal.  He made the cake topper for our wedding, in fact.  We had an dual tank old air compressor that died sitting around in the basement so he took it apart and was trying to figure out what to do with it.  I immediately thought of the minions.  

My little brother loves this movie and we thought it would be fun to make him a metal minion.

(uhh...please excuse the hoard in the background)

I just want to say for the record that I watched MacGyver bend a strip of steel around a piece of pvc pipe to make the goggle.  With his bare hands.

We put the minion in front of the fire to try to get the paint to dry a little faster.  Linus was unimpressed.

MacGyver did all the welding and painted him yellow.

I used Testors model paints to paint the rest.  He turned out pretty cute if I may say so myself!

Turbo liked him.  I have no idea what he's going to do with a giant metal minion, but that's not really my problem.  Also important to note: you can put a giant metal cylinder into your carry on luggage and fly across the country (to Washington D.C.) and the TSA will not question you.  

But leave the nail clippers at home.  

The Wedding: Act I, scene two: Final prep

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Throughout the course of my entire life, I have put everything off until the last possible minute.  Growing up, I was famous for begging my mom to take me to Walmart at 10pm the night a huge project was due to buy markers and posterboard because I hadn't started it yet.  My mom was always shaking her head at me and saying that one of these times I was not going to pull it off and I'd have to deal with the consequences.  In college, we once had something like 8 weeks to work on this enormous research paper that was worth the majority of our grade.  In typical me fashion, I waited until the night before it was due to start my research.  I got off work around 8-8:30, high-tailed it down to the library where I spent upwards of $40 making copies of various journals and other materials to write my paper before the library closed at midnight.  I stayed up all night long drinking copious amounts of Red Bull and coffee and finished that stupid paper at about 8:30am.  My class was from 10:00 to 11:20, and I remember debating whether to grab a few hours of sleep, or just push through until class started, turn my paper in and ditch class.  The next thing I remember, I woke up to realize I'd fallen asleep on my kitchen table and the clock on my VCR said it was exactly 11:20.  After yelping a few obscenities that would have made a sailor wince, I dashed out the door on my bicycle and sped to my professor's office, hoping that I'd catch him on the off chance he would stop by there after class.  I caught him going in the back door of his office with a stack of papers in his hand.  He took one look at me and said, "this better be worth it."  I got that paper back a few weeks later with the following message scribbled on the front, "You should have gone for a BS instead of a BA".  He thought he was being so clever.  I got an A on that paper.  In fact, I always manage to pull magnificence out of thin air at the last minute.  BECAUSE THAT'S WHAT I DO.  I sneeze glitter and fart rainbows.  And just like that you're stuck with another retina scarring mental image.  YOU'RE WELCOME.

Everyone told me to take more than 2 days off before the wedding.  I swear I heard that a gazillion times in the months leading up to it.  Unfortunately, I picked this moment to be a defiant 5 year old and only took 2 days off out of spite.  SO THERE.  I sure showed them.


But considering that over a week before the actual wedding, this happened:

I felt pretty confident that I had everything under control.  Also, it's a good thing I have my ego in check.

We drove over to my parents' house from Cowtown Wednesday night after I got off work, and my brother and his girlfriend arrived on Thursday.  I had a stroke of genius at some point in the weeks before this and had already sorted out all the centerpiece items into bags so each table had one bag full of items for a centerpiece.  The plan was for my dad, my brother, his girlfriend and MacGyver to go over and set those up while we got ready Saturday morning.

On Thursday we went to the florist and picked up the flowers.  And by florist, I mean Costco.  A few dozen roses and a few bouquets of wildflowers later, we were good to go!  God bless Costco.

Shortly after arriving back from Costco, I realized I'd forgotten the contacts I was going to wear for the ceremony back at our house.  So while my parents went to the airport to pick up Turbo and his girlfriend, MacGyver and I drove all the way back to Cowtown the house to pick up my contacts.  While we were there we remembered a few other things we'd forgotten so it ended up being a good use of our time.  It was dark by the time we headed back, and we also may or may not have pillaged through the Cowtown forest with flashlights looking for ferns to use in the bouquets.

By Thursday night, the only things left to do were the flower arrangements, and the rehearsal dinner.  Both of which had to happen on Friday.  What was that about needing more time off?

Uh huh.  I got this.

The Wedding: Act I, scene one - Prologue

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

In the weeks and days leading up to the wedding everything kicked up into warp drive.  I worked part of the week before the wedding, and in my infinite wisdom, I took on several extra on-call rotations as well.  This meant I was not only stuck in Cowtown much of the weeks and weekends before the wedding, but I was also working.

I'm smart like that.

I have to say, for this being a mostly DIY wedding, and me being a mostly Put-It-Off-Until-The-Last-Minute kind of girl, I had mostly everything done about a week before the actual wedding.


I wanted to do the majority of it myself, in part because I have control issues, and also because I like doing this sort of thing.  And if I'm going to have to be there anyway, it might as well have my fabulous craftiness spewing out of every orifice!

Now there's a mental image I bet you weren't expecting today!  You're welcome.

However, I'm also not delusional, and I knew that trying to do everything ourselves had the potential for this Anti-Bride to find herself in the fetal position in some dark corner rocking back and forth and mumbling to herself in tongues only understood by aboriginal tribes in the deepest parts of the Australian Bush, and a few Evangelists in Georgia.

We're enterprising individuals, MacGyver, my family and I, and we did what any smart business-minded people would do in our situation.  It's called outsourcing, my friends!  Oh yes, though I can assure you 8year old children in Chinese sweatshops were involved in this negotiation.  Not this part, anyway.  We had the dinner catered, the bar tended, and a cake baked.

My mom already knew the caterer and we worked in the bartender as part of that fee and can I please get a Hallelujah! for that woman?!  I never had an empty glass in my hand the whole night.

When it came time to decide on cakes, I had it narrowed down to two styles.  One was fairly simple, elegant, traditional, etc.  But I was torn, as I really felt the other cake spoke to me on a very deep, esoteric level.

I'm curious to see, given the choices, which you would have chosen?

Cake #1:

or Cake #2:

You see my dilemma.

I showed both cakes to MacGyver, and he just looked at me hard for a minute, then he walked away.  He didn't actually say anything, but I'm pretty sure he was filing that moment away in his mind to bring back up someday in the future.

"You remember that time you almost brought a Darth Vader riding My Little Pony cake to our wedding?  Because I remember."

Maybe I'll do that for our anniversary.  I wonder what Darth Vader would taste like in Red Velvet?

. . .

Umm...okay that was awkward.  Well, we'll all have fun unseeing both of those mental images this weekend.  I'll try to control myself better next week.


2009 ·Pink Dog Blog by TNB