Monday, August 23, 2010

adventures with the chunglunds

This weekend we went to Minneapolis to say farewell to friends and attend a baby shower thrown by my two best friends. Carl Rove made the trip with us because he was going to see his puppy friends at Downtown Dog for the weekend. We were also going to return the crib that Gus's parents had given us because it had gotten damaged during shipping. Unfortunately, the Rav4 is not really that big so Carl Rove spent Friday night in a car sitting on a crib box. Every time we went around a curve or had to brake, his little puppy claws made holes in the box. On top of which, I was feeling bad for the little one anyway because he hadn't had his dinner so I decided to share my sandwich with him. BAD IDEA. A short while later, I noticed an odd smell in the car and when I turned around found that Carl Rove and barfed all over the crib box. Poor pup. Luckily, Babies R Us takes back items that have holes in the boxes and barf all over them. I say, kudos to them.

Aside from puppy barf and the minimum 1/2 hour we lost after stopping for gas due to Gus getting on the freeway going north instead of south and driving at least 15 minutes in the wrong direction, we had a pretty awesome weekend. We got to say goodbye to friends, enjoy some delicious food and drink at Bradstreet Crafthouse, watch the Twins game at the new ballpark, and be showered with gifts at a baby shower on Sunday. Oh and sleep in the wonderful-ness that is the beds at Graves 601. Add to my wish list the pillows and sheets from the hotel. They were heavenly!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

wishin' and hopin'

If I wasn't as large as a bus and waiting to birth a baby, these would be on my fall fashion wish list

Over the knee boots - these Via Spiga ones in particular

This sweater from J Crew. It looks comfy and cozy, like something I would put on every day after work with my sweats.

Talbots seems to have stepped up their game in my opinion. They seem to be coming more in line with Ann Taylor and J Crew and trying to cater to a younger crowd, perhaps? I thought this bag looked like a fun way to add some color to my fall wardrobe.

That is my wish list so far ... I'm sure there are other things that I will be coveting, but I should probably make sure that I can diaper my baby before I blow half a paycheck on a pair of boots, huh?

Monday, August 16, 2010

the weekend

This past weekend was one of the two weekends this month that we were actually in town. I got my shower thank you notes written for my last shower and also got to see my long lost friend Dina (of Dina & Nina). We caught up at At Sara's Table Chester Creek Cafe. We actually haven't had much contact in close to 10 years so it was awesome to catch up and since we are both living in Duluth I hope that we will be able to stay in touch. She's even offered to house- and dog-sit for us when we are away.

Gus has made some progress on Baby Juliet's nursery. Friday afternoon after finally finishing the stripping of the windows, he learned that the previous owner(s) had painted over a wallpaper border near the top of the wall. He spent Saturday steaming the wallpaper off and Sunday he sanded the walls. I'm hoping that while I'm at work today he is at home taping and painting. Although given all the setbacks, I've learned not to expect too much.

Carl Rove even got some quality swimming time in. We went to Wisconsin Point, where there weren't that many people out and let him swim off leash. He was quite happy. He didn't even want to come back in when called. He looked at us for awhile then turned around and kept swimming.

Sunday we finally got to go to church again after a three week hiatus. We attended the second service and found that it was well attended by the younger crowd, which made Gus v. happy. I think that we'll become members there.

I'm currently at 32 weeks with 2 more months to go! My good friend Jenn gifted us a newborn photography session compliments of her husband Matt. What a lovely gift and I am super excited for the photos! Oh yes, and the weather has cooled off tremendously making me one happy expectant mommy!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

weekend in chicago ... sort of

Gus is from "Chicago" and by Chicago we mean a suburb of the city that is like an hour away from the city so when we say we are going to Chicago, we are essentially going to something along the lines of a larger version of Maple Grove, which in all honesty ranks second as my personal version of hell. My first version of hell being my un-air conditioned cube at City Hall, where I sit and swelter as I type this.

We headed to the Windy City (sort of) on Friday and rolled into town about 4:00 p.m. We had to get Gus's mom her birthday present, a laptop, and then we took her out to eat. We had Asian buffet where there was lots o' sushi and I even indulged in a couple pieces. I got so excited about sushi that I way overdid the wasabi, which cleared out my sinuses for sure.

Saturday we got up early and it was grocery shopping for the baby shower. Gus's brother, Paul, was in town. Paul is a chef at The Breakers hotel in Palm Beach, FL. Paul with Gus as sous chef did all the cooking for the party - Thai beef lettuce wraps with lemongrass and ginger oil, braised short ribs with sweet chili sauce, sweet and sour pork ... it was so delicious! It was great to see family and also my good friend from college, Kristen, who is also expecting a little girl, was able to make a guest appearance since she lives nearby. The present opening was a little chaotic because all of the cousin's small children were clamoring to help tear paper, but not necessarily open cards and remember who gave what. But we made it out alive with some good swag - car seat, changing table, crib, and mattress, among other things.

Sunday was my day for Chicago style food. Lunch at Portillo's for an Italian beef sandwich with hot peppers. Then dinner at Lou Manati's for real Chicago style pizza. The Italian beef you can get in Minnesota, but I'm skeptical whether you can get a pizza like this. The cheese is on the bottom and there are fresh tomatoes on top. We had 1.5 pieces leftover and I was super disappointed on my drive home yesterday when I realized that I had forgotten them in the refrigerator. In fact I must have said, I wish I had that piece of pizza about 10 times on the way home. Last night I even checked Old Chicago and Green Mill to see if they made something similar, but no luck. I guess I will just have to wait until next time.

It was a busy weekend and I'm still exhausted. 

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

farmer in the dell

We are slowly adjusting to our new small town life. Gus spoke with his best friend on the phone last night for the first time since probably February and his friend commented on how domestic Gus has become - moving to Duluth, having a baby, fixing up the house, coaching soccer, etc. Today I decided to check out the Duluth Farmer's Market before heading into work. I picked up some cute flowers for Jenn's birthday and 2 lbs of green beans. There are not a whole lot of vendors or selection at the market, but it is also kind of nice that it isn't as busy as the Minneapolis Farmer's Market. I do however miss those bratwursts in Minneapolis with the peppers and onions. I still haven't gotten one this summer. Those are so good!

Monday, August 2, 2010

moved ... AGAIN ... ugh

Carl Rove became part of this family at Christmas last year and since then he's lived in FOUR different houses. We are finally in what I like to call our 10-year house so hopefully he will start to feel settled and can get used to it. So far he loves the running up and down the stairs chasing his tennis ball, as well as sitting in the backyard chewing on all the sticks he can find.

We closed on the house last Thursday and spent the rest of the weekend moving, unpacking what we can, and preparing to get the kitchen renovated and the baby's room painted and ready for baby. Our third bedroom has officially become my walk-in closet, complete with nearly 16 linear feet of hanging space and room for all my shoes ... I hope! I'm not sure what this means for a second child though. I have no idea where we would put him or her. Of course I'm again putting cart before the horse, since we don't even have the first kid situated yet. So for now I'm just going to enjoy my gigantic walk-in closet.

It feels good to be moved in, but a little overwhelming to see the work that needs to be done before the baby gets here. We've picked out cabinets, floor, and counter tops for the kitchen and they need to be ordered by Thursday. Gus says that he is going to do the work himself, so I'm really hoping he knows what the hell he's doing. While we wait for all the kitchen materials to come in, Gus will be busy painting the baby's room. Finally found fabric for the baby bedding and then we were able to pick paint colors. I'm excited to see how it turns out!

We've got four days in the house this week and then it's off to Chicago for our first baby shower!