Monday, January 31, 2011

Houston we have a tank...and a problem *with updates!*

On Saturday I suggested to John that we go buy the 150 gallon fish tank, we had the money in the savings account for it but weren't planning on buying it that day since we were already up to our eye balls in tasks. I wasn’t interested in doing tasks and wanted to go look at fishes and buy our tank, which sounded a lot more fun!
It didn’t take a lot of convincing to get John to do it because I knew he wasn’t too keen on doing tasks either so off we went to The Aquarium.

I always have to meander the store in search of fish that we’re going to own so we did that for at least 45 minutes, this also involves staring at their HUGE salt water reef tank while I drool on the glass. While doing so we stumbled upon some cool, unusual pets that John said I could have some day. I’m not going to tell you what it is because I want it to be a surprise, but you’ll never guess!
After my window shopping, we finally went to the sales clerk to get the tank and pay for it, they loaded it into the truck and we were on our merry way home.

Once home and downstairs I was worried that the space we have provided for the tank was too small and told John that he should probably measure the tank before carrying it down.
That’s where the problems started. When we got the measurements for the tank 9 months ago the black banding on the top and bottom weren’t included so John didn’t figure them into the design and now we’re ¼ inch short on space. Somehow we’ll get it to work but it’ll probably involve cutting sheetrock to get it to fit. Oh well, our projects always start to worry me if they go too smoothly for too long.

Last night John and I edgebanded the black banding in cherry so that it would look more like it belonged in the cabinet and painted the back and one side of the tank black. I guess this is mostly a salt water thing, but I’m sure you could do it for fresh too. It’s just so that you don’t have to deal with the cheesy, crappy plastic backgrounds that you usually tape on and then they fall off in two weeks.

This is really similar to our tank minus all the stuff inside. The side overflow is really nice since it hides the plumbing to the sump and means we don't have to have anything hanging off the back. The black banding parts are what we edgebanded so they didn't stick out like sore thumbs.

Tonight John will build and install the upper cabinet and then his brother will help lift it into its final resting home (once we figure out how to make it fit). Too bad we still need about $1,500.00 more in parts and equipment before we can even start thinking about stocking it with fish, but hopefully we can get it all ready to go in a year (John says probably not, but I’m going to push). Hopefully I can post pictures of the tank in it's home soon.


Like I said before, the fish tank was 1/4 inch too big because of the black banding that they didn't include in the measurement. Since the counter top is already in place we had no choice but to cut away sheetrock. That really wasn't a big deal, it was the getting it up and in that was a big deal. John had his brother come over to help lift it and once it was on the cabinet John climbed underneath the tank the help push it into the wall. I pushed the front to get it past the lip of the sheetrock and Ben pushed the side to slide it into the hole. After a few pushes and a little worry that it wasn't going to work we got it in.

More pictures to come once the upper cabinet is installed. 

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Red Hair

I've been told my whole life that people would kill for my hair color. As a child people would stop me all the time to tell me or my mother how beautiful it was. The grass is always greener on the other side. If I wasn't a natural red head then I'd probably want to be one, but I've always wanted my sister's hair. Her natural color isn't all that special so she can dye it any color in the book and she looks fantastic.

Now I've grown to love and appreciate my red hair, but there's not much I can do that's really extreme with it. I would never dye it all completely because I'm sure I'd have a mob outside my house protesting and I'm sure I'd regret it after a few days, but I want something different. I have a hair appointment this Saturday with a girl I've never gone to before, but have seen a lot of her work and love it. I'm giving her free rein over the color choices and dye job (besides dying it completely, that's out of the question) just because I want something dramatic, but I don't know if she'll go for it so I need a back up plan.

I'm not cutting it since I want to grow it out, but I want something that says, "Nikki did something with her hair!" Any ideas?

Tuesday, January 18, 2011


I finally got with the times and got an ipod for Christmas (I am VERY against apple products) so all of my old CDs that haven't been listened to for years have been put on it.
Now I'm not the only one in my department who isn't listening to their music while we work, it's nice to be part of the group :)

All the old songs that I haven't heard in years are triggering memories and making me really nostalgic. Does this happen to anyone else? I always picture a person with a song and then they event in which I either came across the song/album or shared the song with someone.

Blink 182 has been my favorite band for a long time, but since they split (they're back together now) there hadn't been any of their songs on the radio...not that I'd hear one anyway since I only listen to country in my car.
 Now all my beloved Blink is with me on my tiny, neon green ipod and I think of my friend Adam Ross every time a song comes on. Adam was as big of a Blink fan as I was and we went to the concert together in high school. We also shared CDs all the time. I'd have the non-clean version of an album and he'd have their first CD so we'd swap, burn and return. I always wonder if Adam still listens to them when I hear the first few cords of one of their songs.

I love, love, love Dido, but had never heard of her until my high school bestie, Jessi, introduced White Flag to me. I burned the CD from Jessi and fell in love with every single one of her songs. I love the lyrics, her voice and the melody. Every Dido song makes me think of listening to White Flag over and over again in Jessi's room while we talked about boys and make-up.
p.s. if you like Dido you'll love Lily Allen, she's not that clean so be aware but her voice is fantastic. John introduced her to me last year and now I can't get enough!

Aqua...ahhh, Aqua. No one knows who Aqua is until I start singing Barbie Girl then they groan in protest. Truthfully I don't understand the groaning. I love all Aqua and have their whole album (I think they only have one) on my ipod. My sister loves it to and I told her its because it makes you feel peppy :) there is no other reason why it should be liked. The lyrics are stupid, the music is very little kiddish, but it's awesome!
Liking Aqua makes me want to put Backstreet Boys, N'sync ect. on my ipod, but I have no idea what I did with the CDs I owned. I wonder if I got embarrassed to own them in high school and threw them away. I'm really kicking myself now!

Songs from movies are really bad because I always picture where the song is played in the movie and what's going on/who's singing it. I'm usually distracted until the song is over because the movie is playing in my head. Movie soundtracks on my ipod are: Footloose, Moulin Rouge, Wedding Singer, Newsies, both Shreks and a scattering of movie songs where I only like that song and not the whole soundtrack. I really need to put Dirty Dancing on it, but I don't have the CD.

So there you have it, another glimpse into my mind. You're welcome! 

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

how funny!

While trying to pass some very slow time at work I was looking through one of my favorite photographer's blogs.
Along came her christmas cards and I was scrolling and scrolling and then I saw a familar face...mine!
She used pictures that John and I took in 2009 for examples! It was so funny!
She used the picture my parents picked, the one my in-laws and John and I picked and my all time favorite Enna picture. I'm not sure who Ryan, Oscar and Ella are but at least she got my name right :)

Another funny thing is that the pictures below mine are a kid I went to high school with. He's still a pretty cute kid, I'll be honest, I had a crush on him in high school.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

living room, I love you again!

John busted his butt last week to finish the living room ceiling. Since he didn't work he spent all day down there.
The room was completely empty so that meant all the other rooms downstairs were completely full, doing laundry was a joke!

Like most of our projects, we're not totally done yet, but done enough to actually really start living in the room again. Some trim still needs to be put up and painted and John's father is going to do that for us when he gets back in town so I'm calling it done!
Here are some befores and durings so you can really appreciate the after (but I don't think you can appreciate it as much as us since you didn't have to live in it during the work). I wish I had true befores but I never posted it and I lost the pictures when my lap top was stolen.

 Remember this fun day? John sure does. I didn't think I'd miss a sink as much as I do. Washing dishes in the bathroom really isn't that fun, but what else could we do?

 Here's the start of the dust. Carpet is rolled back, ceiling is starting to come down, wires are being ran and walls are being cut away.

 Now we've decided to replace the ceiling and wire for surround sound. After we did that I was really starting to question my sanity.

 The bones of the cabinet are installed and we have a gorgeous counter top now! it was nice getting things actually in place.

Drum roll please! Here's the "finished" product!

Pretty classy, if I do say so myself!
We'll be hopefully buying the fish tank at the end of this month and our surround sound with our tax return. After we house train the new puppy we'll focus on getting new carpet, but until then I'll just do a nice deep cleaning and pretend I don't hate it.

I said that we wouldn't be doing another big project for a while, but who really believed me? John's already planning on rearranging the downstairs bathroom so that he'll have more room in the storage room. It needs to be done and I'm glad, but knowing us, I'm sure we'll be upgrading a ton of other stuff while we're at it. We don't want to go too extreme in the bathroom because we do plan on extending the house out and we don't want to waste our money since that whole bathroom will change after that.