Sunday, October 19, 2008

Amen Mr. DeBoer for Practicing What You Preach!

Shawn participated in and finished his second 5K run! This one was the Race for a Safe Place in Stillwater, MN. He, along with his fellow coach and nine students, ran the rather chilly race yesterday morning. Having kicked most of whatever kind of cold he had, he was feeling better and felt fairly confident in beating his previous time of 24 minutes and some odd seconds. As evidence below, he came in way ahead of that. 22 minutes and 25 seconds and 9th place overall! That's just over a consistent 7 minute mile for over three miles. He's definitely owning up to all that hot air he spouts about eating right and exercising! However, upon completing the race, coughing, light-headedness and potential sickness ensued and he had to walk around the school for a while until he felt better. We'll see if I can get him to a doctor this week because his coughing has kicked it up a notch and it's time for him to be better!

There were about 80 participants and in keeping with the results of last week, the team from ABS did great! Senior Wilson won the race, and one boy and one girl each won their age group and received gift certificates to a spa! If I'd known what the prize was going to be, I...

How Could I Forget?

When posting about our recent trip to Wisconsin, I forgot to mention a couple other great finds!

First is a sign I found at The Cannery that reads: "Don't Make Me Get My Flying Monkeys." Now if you don't know what that means, tell no one. Instead, head to your local Target or Wal-Mart and purchase and watch The Wizard of Oz immediately. Report back to me what you thought so I can ridicule you for having waited this long to see such a classic film! I'm thinking the sign will hang in the kitchen or dining room, but I'm not sure. Mom did end up buying the exact same sign but to be fair, I saw and (technically) bought it first!

The other great find were some pumpkins! Not just any pumpkins, $1 pumpkins. That's right, one dollar, 100 pennies, four quarters, you get the idea. You can't find pumpkins around here for $1! Naturally, we bought three. One for each member of Team DeBoer's household. We have yet to carve them but have that slotted on the calendar for next weekend so stay tuned for the results of that adventure!

Teacher Grading of a Different Kind

While off from school for a few days, Shawn finished up his grading... grading around our house that is. He's been steadily adding dirt, which he bought off of craigslist, to all sides of our house at a sufficient slope. This will help water to drain away from the house and hopefully prevent any of it from reaching the basement. This was a recommendation by our inspector when we bought the house... a year and a half ago.

Wheel barrow by wheel barrow Shawn shoveled, distributing, unloaded, packed, shaped, watered, smoothed and packed some more, all the dirt he could until it was at a satisfactory angle against the house. On the east side and in the backyard, with help from neighbor Sara, he placed and secured a layer of black edging. He also inserted window wells around all the basement windows and placed a layer of river rock in them from neighbor Ole. Next, he laid a layer of newspapers over the dirt and finally, topped it all off with new mulch from Home Depot. 42 bags to be exact. The leftover dirt was distributed around the backyard into some of our nice holes and all the exposed dirt was sprinkled with grass seed and watered as generously as possible.

It was definitely a process and he was sure to vocalize his efforts to me as it was a lot of work for one person to do. As a thank you, I thought I'd display his marvelous work for everyone to see. It couldn't have turned out better and I'm forever grateful he took it upon himself to get it done while I was at work. I'm not so sure I would have been as ambitious with my time off of work.

Monday, October 13, 2008

We heart NYC

I will try and remember to post some New York photos on here from our trip in August, but if I forget, try the link(s) below to see if you can view our album on Facebook.

Seasonal Decor

Anyone who has been to our house knows I love, LOVE fall colors! One foot in our living room reveals that. So, it's no surprise I love, LOVE decorating for fall! Nothing extravagant, just simple additions that stay in the budget.

Below is the current centerpiece on our table. It's our usual wood bowl with coffee beans and tea lights on a colorful place mat, just spiced up a little. The tea lights are in little pumpkins and the whole arrangement is adorned with fallen leaves. Schnazzy ey?

Here's my favorite addition, the buffet, decorated with all things autumn; more candles surrounded by coffee beans, some leafy arrangements around a scarecrow in a vase from our wedding, a cute basket find at Target and some more leaves.

A close up reveals some pilgrimesque creatures that rest on our dusty shelves.

Below is our end table (notice Shawn's elbow). Yet another candle with coffee beans (and to think, we don't even drink coffee - that's Dr. Pepper in the mug), as well as a candle stand supporting another Target find, the candle; all topped off with a few more leaves.

This is the top of our entertainment center. It used to house a beautiful flower arrangement (see below) but that has since passed. It now houses a wooden pumpkin full of remotes, some glass vases from our wedding full of essential candy corn (Have you tried the new caramel candy corn?!) and it all rests on more leaves. You may notice there are some very small styrofoam pumpkins, squash and such. These used to be all over the buffet and end table as well until Norman figured out that they were not stuck to the surface and could be eaten. Terd.

Here are the amazing flowers I mentioned above. I also found them at Target and bought the lovely bouquet for myself. I had been working insane amounts of overtime and felt entitled to some colorful beauty. If only fresh flowers lasted longer!

DeBoer Men

Both Shawn and Norman have been keeping themselves entertained. Since Shawn is done with his second BA (woohoo!), he's taken up fishing again! A couple weeks ago he ventured out with our neighbor and his boat and caught quite a few sunfish. After a tutorial in filleting fish, Shawn was eager to try it on his own. On our obligatory trip to Wisconsin (see post below), he purchased a fillet knife from Cabelas and last Saturday, got to put it to use. Below is a picture of the bass he caught up the road at Lake Josephine and his knife (pre-filleting). The bass, along with a sunfish, fell victim to his trial run and I must say, he did a fine job. "We" battered, fried it up and ate it that night at the neighbors. Mighty tasty (for someone who doesn't really prefer fish).

Shawn and a fellow teacher recently started a running club at school. They've been running and training every Monday, Tuesday and Thursday for the last four weeks and last Saturday, they all ran their first 5K! Shawn, Senior Wilson and 10 students completed the course in North St. Paul, MN. It needs to be disclosed that Shawn had been suffering from a very rough cold the week prior to the run and most likely had a case of bronchitis, pneumonia, laryngitis, strep throat or SOMETHING serious enough to warrant rest. That being said, I politely but firmly instructed him to walk the race. As you can see below, he did no such walking. He completed his first 5K in about 24 minutes and was pretty excited he didn't start coughing until the end. Crazy stubbornness. The rest of his teammates did amazing as well. Senior Wilson came in first, one of his students came in 7th and finished first in his age group for boys and one of his other students finished first in her age group for girls. Pretty impressive since there were over 200 participants. Not a bad first showing for ABS!

Norman has been doing what he does best. Resting. When he's bored he plays with his food, barks, whines, claws at the door, plays with his toys and barks some more. What's so extraordinary about the picture below is the location in which he's laying. He's on his pillow, on the FLOOR. He's not on either sofa! The afternoon prior to this picture, we took him for a walk around Como Lake. At the end, we walked him out on the dock so he could take a drink. Being a wee bit top-heavy, he stretched too far over and fell in! Mind you Norman's never been fully submerged in any water, ever. Needless to say, he did not enjoy it. He went completely under, then his head slowly came up while his butt stayed down. He looked to do a little paddling with his front paws but not sure about the back paws since we couldn't see them. Shawn had to pull him to safety without using his leash or collar because we had his choke collar on. It was quite a spectacle! Immediately out he coughed, shook, sneezed and shook some more. I wish I had brought my camera for that because it was priceless. It's safe to assume he'll be sticking to dry land and comfy pillows, even if they're on the floor.

Trips, Obligatory and Otherwise

In keeping with tradition, last weekend Team DeBoer traveled the four hour trip to Gays Mills, WI with Mom, Mike, Grandpa and Grandma Santee. We got apple goods and cheese. The men got to inhabit Cabelas while the women explored The Cannery. Below is a picture of my Cannery find this year, a mug stand, which now lives on our kitchen counter top. Pretty exciting stuff ey? Below that is a picture of us in front of the infamous sign. Unfortunately we were a little early as far as fall colors go, but it was still a nice trip and good to see family.

This year we spent Labor Day weekend with Mom and Mike camping, fishing, eating and otherwise relaxing near Wabasha, MN. It was pretty serene. Since I'm not one for being on a boat, Mom, Mike and Shawn did all the fishing. I'm also not one for sleeping outside, on the ground, with insects and unidentifiable noises, but I got a few hours. My cynicism aside, it was nice and relaxing and I got some photos taken and some pages read. Below are a couple shots off the sandbar we camped on.


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