Monday, June 29, 2009


Cole and I have finally moved to Birmingham. Woohoo!! Packing and moving went as well as could be expected. It was super hot the day we moved, but we made it. We have since hosted my mom and Mary Alice. Mom helped me put away a lot of our wedding presents and get some other things settled. Mary Alice and I spent the weekend shopping for house stuff. It was so much fun to have both of them up here.

We have not unpacked any of our kitchen stuff, because I was planning to paint the kitchen cabinets. I loathe the paint and antique finish on there now and wanted to spruce it up with some creamy white paint. So, I read tips and how-tos online. I went to the paint store to ask about sanding and types of paint. I talked to other people who have painted their cabinets. I knew this would be a big, big job. But I was ready. I wanted that nastiness out of my kitchen.

BUT, when I tried to take the doors of the hinges, they wouldn't budge. The last time the cabinets were painted, the hinges were completely painted over. Each hinge has three screws on the inside, one of the three screws was totally stripped on the first four cabinets we tried. Ugh.

Not wanting to give up yet, I went to Home Depot to ask what to do about stripped screws. A helpful man told me to get a screw-like little tool. I did and brought it home, thrilled that for less than $4 my stripped screws would come loose. Nope. They didn't budge. After that failed, we decided that it would be best to just leave them alone.

Unfortunately the story does not end there. Once I realized that I would not be painting cabinets, I knew they needed to be deep cleaned. I started with some 409 in an inconspicuous place. That took off the ugly antique finish. I was quite tempted to keep going in hopes of taking off all of the finish, but the fear of having half white, half antiqued cabinets kept me from trying that. I thought Dawn and some warm water might do the trick. Wrong. It takes off the finish in some places too.

So, now I'm left with cabinets that are nasty on the outside. What is a girl to do????

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Blasts from the past

Cole and I are busy packing up our townhouse and have found several interesting things. We found our lease for our first apartment, his Starbucks "Partner Handbook," Cole's schedule for his first week at Starbucks, my first paycheck from UA, Betsy and Mark's wedding invitation (from December 2005!), Miles's outline from a class his first year of law school (spring 2004), and many other funny/random things.

Even though I hate packing with a passion (and I'm not very good at), these findings make it almost worth it.

I'll post pictures of the packing in progress soon.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

It's a bird, it's a plane, it's...

Hot air balloons! Cole and I left one night to pick up a pizza for dinner and saw this as we were coming out of our neighborhood. Apparently everyone else in Tuscaloosa knew this was happening, but we had no idea.

Here's a link with more information if you'd like to read about it. Oh, and you should be able to click on the pictures to make them bigger.

Thursday, June 11, 2009


Today Cole and I got to pick the color of our floors since we're refinishing them. We both thought this task would be super-easy, and maybe even fun. Boy were we wrong. Ok, it was a little fun, but it was much harder than we thought it was going to be. We thought one color would just jump out at us, and none really did. It was also stressful to choose because these floors are throughout the ENTIRE house! Yikes!

In the end, though, we found a color that we're both really pleased with. I think it'll look great once it's all done. Here's our color - Jacobean:

Here are the samples that the floor guy did for us. He said the most he's done for someone is 15. I can't imagine having 15 different stains on my floors to choose from. Talk about overwhelming.

This is our living room without a finish on the floors. Cole is looking out of our new windows.
And this is the back room off of the kitchen. There used to be nasty - really, really nasty - carpet back here. We decided to pull it up (I don't think there was any hope of cleaning it) and put down hardwoods. I think they're going to look great.
That's the end. We're hoping to be able to move into the house the week of June 22! I'm so excited!!! Now I've just gotta start packing up the townhouse.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Brat Anna

Yikes! I am way behind in posting! Quick recap of the last week: We sold our townhouse!!! We were so excited and will close (pending a good inspection) July 20. Our new house is getting new windows, and they are almost finished. Cole has been going by the house everyday to check on the progress. He and his parents have done a lot of work since last week. Miles and Marcia spackled and cleaned for a while on Saturday. Then Cole and Miles painted Tuesday night. We aren't changing the colors, several places just needed to be touched up. I can't wait to see it!

In other news, I've been a brat lately. The home-buying-and-getting process has gone much differently than I anticipated. I naively thought that we would close (just as we did Monday, June 1), and then we would take possession of it easy-peasy, just as we were supposed to Thursday, June 4.

My poor mother-in-law had to go to the house Thursday morning only to find the previous owners just beginning to pack up their stuff. There was some back and forth about what they thought was happening and what was actually in the contract. In the end, we did not take possession of the house until Friday. I had planned to go sit in our empty house Thursday afternoon, but that did not happen. I turned into Brat Anna and unfortunately didn't even realize it until a few days later. I fussed, pouted, and even cried a little. And I most definitely took it all out on Cole. Poor guy.

Cole and his parents have done a ton of work on the house. They cut the grass, trimmed the shrubs (By the way, what's the difference between shrubs and bushes?), killed the weeds, spackled the holes in the wall, and touched up almost all the paint. I am incredibly grateful and thankful for all of their hard work.

Brat Anna, however, is sad that I missed out on all of it. I didn't know the yard work was happening until I had already gotten to Birmingham without my yard work attire. Ok, so maybe I don't really have "yard work attire," but you know what I mean. Also, Cole has met a lot of our neighbors, and his family has even met them, but I haven't. I'm worried they think he's just a pathetic guy making up a wife to make himself feel better! I just feel like I'm missing out on a lot since I'm in Tuscaloosa and Cole's basically living in Birmingham. I feel like we go weeks without really talking, so we have not been on the same page at all lately.

Brat Anna was in particularly fine form on Saturday when I pouted through furniture shopping and then almost asked Cole NOT to come home that night. Thankfully, he did come home. We went out to eat and hashed out all of my emotions about this process, and he, lovely husband that he is, understood my frustration and feelings of being left out.

This week has been much better so far. Brat Anna didn't come out at all yesterday! Today after work I'm going to Birmingham to see my house again, and hopefully Brat Anna will stay away.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Manic Monday

Today we finally closed on our new house in Birmingham! We had the walk-through and then got to sign a ton of papers (thrilling!). Unfortunately we couldn't go back to the house after closing because we don't take possession until Thursday. But, you can rest assured that I will spend most of Thursday afternoon at our new house.

Here are a couple of pictures of the house:

After lunch to refuel, we ran around town looking at furniture. We found a table we like, but we're going to wait a while on that. We want to get in the house and figure out what we want. Although, we did buy a couch last week that got delivered today. It was delivered to Cole's parents' house so we could save some on taxes (and since it can't go to our house yet). I really, really like it and think it will look great in our den.

In other exciting news for today, we have three showings of the townhouse scheduled for tomorrow! We are so anxious for it to sell. I know it will sell eventually, I just don't like being patient. Fingers and toes crossed that an offer will come tomorrow night!! I'll keep you posted.