Sunday, April 03, 2011



Yee Haw!

Last month I went with my MeetUp group to Georgia Frontiers for an afternoon of horseback riding.  Now, I am not a horse woman, but have gone riding here and there over the course of my life time.  It had been around four years since I'd been on a horse and I totally enjoyed myself.

I  was in the beginner rider group.  Some of these brave
souls had never been on a horse!
Eighteen of us went.  The first nine out were experienced riders who would take their horses on gallops and I believe take a more difficult trail.  I wasn't quite ready for that!  While they were gone we were entertained by Cowboy Roger, owner of Georgia Frontiers and we ate our picnic lunches that we had brought along.  It was a beautiful day and we enjoyed each other's company and Roger's stories.

I'm glad my horse, Shadow, had more get up and go then this guy!
I rode Shadow, a very nice horse with pep.  The trails were well maintained and the scenery was outstanding - this is in the mountains and the views very pretty.  We got the horses up to a trot, which was fun for me, but scary for other's.  I heard a little screaming from the back of the group when the horses got up to a trot!  I think they were hanging on for dear life.

No one fell off!
This MeetUp is a great way to get out and do things with nice people.  I am trying to schedule at least two events a month with this particular MeetUp group and am making friends.  Some of the activities I've been to are bingo nights, a potluck Greek dinner, dog training school, various lunches, hiking with the dogs, etc.  It's fun.  I've also joined two book clubs through MeetUp. 

This month I'm participating in a moonlight horseback riding event at Georgia Frontiers that includes a dinner and a bonfire.  I think it will be a blast, but I am sure going to try to get up there and ride a couple of times before I ride in the moonlight!

Saturday, April 02, 2011



My friend, Martha, came down for a week at the end of March.  "The week that rained every single day?" you ask.  Yup.  That week!

Unfortunately, every single thing I had planned for us to do was out of doors.  Both Martha and I like to hike and I had planned to check out many of the local trails with her.  Since hiking in the rain or in the mud wasn't an option, we had to go to Plan B, of which I didn't have a clue.

We did have a good time and I really enjoyed having Martha here.  We spent one morning walking around the town of Blue Ridge.  We visited the Georgia Aquarium in downtown Atlanta. We have an awesome aquarium here.  We went to the Funk Heritage Museum on the Reinhardt College campus, which is just a few miles from my house.  We played Bingo with my MeetUp group one evening, visited Marlon and Suzanne and just hung out a lot.  One day we were able to hike up Kennesaw Mountain and visit the Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park's museum.  We had lunch at Tea Leaves and Thyme, a cute tea shop in Woodstock and a great dinner at Goin' Coastal in downtown Canton. 

Me, Sam, Martha and Oliver at the top of Kennesaw Mountain
 Martha would like to move away from Milwaukee and is checking out areas, so we did look at houses one afternoon.  That was fun.  I hope she comes down this summer and we can check out Chattanooga together!

The first couple of days after she left was a little too quiet.  Sam and Oliver missed her, too.  I hope the weather won't scare her away for good!



Been doing some work around the house the last couple of months.

Looking into the kitchen and out onto the porch
Kitchen chandelier, art, plates and quilt (in hallway)
Looking into my pretty guest bathroom, which looks
more "blue" than the grayish blue it really is.

My kitchen is painted a cheery yellow and my guest bathroom is painted a grayish blue.  Both have pictures hung and are completed.  I am extremely pleased with how both turned out.  And, neither would look so well if it weren't for the help of my brother-in-law, Marlon.  In my kitchen I also hung a mini-chandelier which picks up the black in my appliances and the crystal prisms from the dining room chandelier.  I love the way it looks.

Here's how it looked carpeted
But the main thing I did this winter is tear out the carpet in every area but the bedrooms and replace it with hardwood flooring - well, engineered hardwood since the house is on a concrete slab. Since I had hardwood in my little foyer area and the kitchen, that all had to be removed so that all the flooring would match.  I purchased the flooring at Home Depot, finding the wood I liked and then waiting until it went on sale. I also hired and contractor to install the flooring. Tom and his son, Evan, did an excellent job!

Concrete slab, which I must have swept a dozen times
First, we (Marlon, Suzanne, Paul and myself) pulled out the carpeting and tack strips.  Susanne and Marlon will reuse the carpet and padding in the bonus room Marlon built above their garage.  Hardly any carpet was or will be wasted, which is a good feeling.  Once that was done I lived on the concrete slab for 5 days.  Talk about a mess.  We had picked up the flooring and it has to sit for at least 72 hours in the house before it could be installed.  During this time I also painted the new quarter rounds that would be installed after the flooring went in.

Top is the old flooring and bottom is the new flooring.  I am so
glad I picked out wide planks
New flooring goes down, starting at the front door foyer area
and moving into the living room

Beautiful end result

Oliver and Sam (who is ready to play) enjoy the new flooring, too

Another view of the floor, including the tip of Sam's tail!
 It took almost 3 days of work to install the floors.  Poor Evan really had a hard time removing the old wood floors from the kitchen.   My house was a mess (it took 5 days to clean afterwards), but the end result is beautiful.  I could not be happier!
Now, on to the master bedroom and bath.  That's another whole story!