Sunday, July 20, 2014

Sunday Sweets: Happy Ice Cream Day!

I so agree! :) Did you know that we have a National Ice Cream Day?? How awesome is that?? and it's TODAY!!!! :) So, Happy Ice Cream Day everyone!

If you sign up for Cold Stone's email list/My Cold Stone Membership (it's free, don't worry), you can get a coupon this week to buy one get one free on ice cream--ice cream is my favorite dessert, and right now I have a small (okay, maybe not so small) obsession with Cold Stone's Oreo Filling Ice Cream--oh my goodness, it's the best! So you know where I'll be going this week. ;)

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Welcome to My Home

I love decorating and making things "homey," but sometimes that costs A LOT more money than we can afford as "starving college students." I have seen these monogram wreaths all over lately, and really wanted one to make our apartment more welcoming--but it was far outside of our budget. However, as with anything in life, being told no has never stopped me. ;) 

My parents happen to have just pruned their grape vines one week when I stopped by for a visit, so I grabbed an armful and went to work shaping them into a nice round wreath. Next, I used my Cricut to cut out various shapes, sizes, and colors of flowers:

I also used my Cricut to cut out a giant monogram "M" (also to celebrate that I finally "officially" changed my last name--two years later...). I traced my "M" on a piece of cardboard for a more dimensional effect, and cut it out with an exacto knife. I put it all together, and I must say that for something that was so ridiculously inexpensive (aka FREE!), I am extremely pleased with the result:

MUCH more homey and welcoming than just a generic dark apartment door. :)

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

What I Found While Watering the Flowers

While we live in a beautiful area up on the mountain and thus enjoy all the natural wonders around us--we also live on the third floor of an apartment complex, and so there isn't always a lot of natural flora and fauna to experience while in the apartment. My husband has been very helpful in building planter boxes for our porch, so I am able to entertain my own albeit little flower garden--that is as much of a garden as one can create on a third floor balcony. ;) I am quite proud of my little balcony garden actually, and quite enjoy spending time out with my little baby flowers.

Every morning I take a few minutes to check on my flowers--watering as needed, pruning, etc.--just as part of my daily routine. It is during this time I can hear the little hungry baby birdies crying for their breakfast (there is a hidden little black bird nest somewhere above our patio, deep in a crevice of the building, so you can't see it). I believe this is the second or third batch of birds this summer, and this past week they have sounded as if they are almost nearly old enough to leave the nest. 

However, a few days ago I took down a hanging flower basket outside from our patio in order to water it, and found something I definitely was NOT expecting...

This little guy just chillin' among my petunias--Well Good Morning indeed! I'm surprised, not just because it's not something I tend to find every day (I haven't really had many run-ins with snakes), but also because we are three stories off the ground in an apartment complex. Poor little guy must have been rather startled as well, because as soon as I saw him I dropped the basket and he crashed to the patio. 

Once my heart started beating again I suddenly began to realize that I couldn't hear the birds chirping as I generally do during my morning routine, and as my new little snake friend began to slink away I saw that he appeared to have recently eaten... which made me feel much less bad when I trapped him in a bucket to examine and determine his species (Gopher Snake by the way--for being named after a burrowing animal, it sure is good at scaling tall buildings) and show my husband.

Hopefully no more reptiles will be frequenting my flowers.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Rufus the Hawk

This time of year makes my hsuband VERY antsy--it's the time of year when several species of baby hawks are fleding, and time for us to begin our falconry season. I have always LOVED animals, but will admit that I never thought I could call myself a "falconer"--yet, thanks to an amazingly talented husband, last year we both received Falconry Licenses so now I can add falconry to my list of hobbies!

Knowing how much we love falconry, my dad showed me an interesting Wimbleton fact the other day that I bet you didn't know:  Rufus the Harris Hawk. The famous Wimbleton courts are carefully maintained within the millimeter with perennial ryegrass, a delicious treat that attracts numerous pigeon visitors--who understandably disrupt games and cause problems. What to do with so many pesky birds? That's where Rufus comes in.

Rufus is an absolutely gorgeous Harris Hawk who has been on pigeon control at Wimbleton since 2000. Read about him on KSL or just Google Rufus and Wimbleton--he is so awesome!

My favorite part about Rufus is this commercial--very entertaining in my opinion: