Monday, August 4, 2008

Busy Bees

I've done a lot over the past week or so!

Two Saturdays ago Stef and I went to the Gilroy Garlic Festival. We got there in the early afternoon and were famished after driving in the traffic, so we stopped at one of the first vendors for lunch. I had a Greek salad which was ordinary and Stef had a lamb gyro. It was very hot out so we decided on beer. You have to get in one line to have your ID checked if you're under 30, another line to buy a beer ticket, and then head into the beer tent where you get in yet another line for your beer. I'm not a huge beer drinker, but it sure did taste good by then! We walked around, looked at the arts & crafts booths, found the gourmet alley where I got garlic bread dripping in butter, watched some cooking demos, stood in the rain tent (with overhead misters to cool us off, along with about 30 of our now closest friends since it was crowded in there) and at the end watched a swing band. We also laughed until our cheeks hurt and talked until our voices were hoarse. All in all, a good time!

Stef in front of the flaming garlic

Me in front of the flaming garlic

Sampling the garlic wine... one sip is enough

On Wednesday I met up with a couple friends from grad school for dinner at Chow in Lafayette. It was great to catch up with them, find out what they're up to now that we're two years out of school, and have a nice dinner (the bruschetta was great!). I also learned how dog-friendly Lafayette is - there were a number of dogs with their owners on the patio where we ate, as well as quite a few walking by.

This past Friday I went with a couple of my neighbors to the Summer Concert Series at Blackhawk Plaza (a ritzy shopping area in Danville). And since well-behaved, leashed dogs are welcome I brought Mac along. We had dinner at a little burger shop - yeah for Gardenburgers! - and listened to the band play fun funk/rock music. Mac absolutely loved it. He got tons of attention and pets from the crowd. A lot of people told me about their bulldog at home, the bulldog they used to have, or their friends' bulldogs... welcome to the club (its the same when I take Ayla out). One person was saying hi to Mac and asked him to sit, which he did of course, so I told him to ask for a high five. Mac did his cute little high five and about 20 people around us "ahhh"ed at the same time. Another lady came by about 3 times to visit and the last time nonchalantly said, "Ok, I'm just going to take him home now!" He definitely draws attention, but just loves meeting people and is a complete joy to take places, and I think he's probably contributing to a rise in the population of bulldogs in our area just by being cute. By the end of the night when my neighbors and I were chatting in the parking lot Mac was so tired he was trying to drag me home. It was great! We're going again this Friday - I think its a Neil Diamond tribute band this time.

When did I get such an active social life?

This past weekend Chris and I decided we needed to do more home improvement. Well, Chris decided and I got roped into it. See, we hate our carpets. Carpet is intrinsically unsanitary, and having pets (going through two puppies no less) doesn't help matters. Chris was talking about replacing them with a Berber carpet and wondering if we could DIY such a job. I told him I didn't want carpet at all and if we were replacing them we should put wood down instead. Well, he got that familiar gleam in his eye and planned out the project within 2 minutes.

Friday afternoon we headed to The Home Depot and picked up 12 boxes of Dupont Laminate Flooring in Maple and three rolls of 3-in-1 underlayment. Saturday morning Chris got up bright and early at 8 and started moving furniture and ripping out carpeting in the living room. I sleepily followed (what a role reversal!) and helped out. Taking up the carpet wasn't nearly as bad as we had expected. We had to do about half the room at a time so we had space to shift the furniture around. Unfortuntely we (and mostly Chris) had to do all the plank cutting by hand with a hack saw. That hurt, and still does. By midnight that night we had about half the room newly floored and the other half prepped, as well as all the old carpet out in the dumpsters. The next morning we got started around 11 (Chris had to run back to the store for transitional flashing and I took the dogs to the park to play) and completed the rest of the flooring around 9. By 10 we had the new floors cleaned, the furniture rearranged, and were very much ready to sleep.

I really like the end result. I still have to finish tacking in and sealing/painting the baseboards, maybe next weekend. With rugs down Ayla seems to be doing okay on the slippery floor, not looking like Bambi-on-ice as she usually does on semi-slick surfaces. She was a major consideration in this, but we just had to feel clean and decided to figure out a way to deal with her needs. Chris bought an awesome crimson shag carpet rug that I love, and a larger area rug that she can play on. I think she'll get better and better with time and exposure too (fingers crossed).

The only down side... Chris is now eyeing the bedroom carpet.


Liz and Kurt said...

I miss hanging out with you and Stef, and Katie too for that matter. I can't wait for a little break so I can come visit. I'm impressed with your work on the floors, and with how fast you did it. Maybe you can come down and do ours?

Liz and Kurt said...

I see you're still good at the one handed picture taking too :)