Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Biking & Bar Hopping...

Summer in the city is winding down for us... so last weekend when the kids were at the farm with their cousin, we took in one last biking / bar hopping around downtown.  We have done it a number of times in the past 3-4 years, so this time we decided to have a "no repeater" night.

First stop was the rooftop patio at Joe's Garage near Loring Park... with a great view of the Basilica of St. Mary behind us!

Then we were off to The Ugly Mug in the warehouse district... it was a hot & muggy evening, so we cooled of in their nicely air-conditioned bar!

A quick ride over the Hennepin Ave. bridge took us to St. Anthony Main area...
... gotta love the old brick & cobblestone roads & of course, the great view from across the river of the heart of downtown Minneapolis...
We sat outside at Vic's at St. Anthony Main to take in the live band...
...& our friends Angie & Derek met up with us too!

From there, we headed back across the river via the Stone Arch Bridge...
... & took in Grumpy's

Then we headed back up Nicollet Mall to find our last spot for the night...

... MASA

  They have a cucumber margarita that we had to try before leaving the cities... it was different, but good!

It was a fun night!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

The difference of a few days...

It has been a summer of lots of rain, heat & humidity... great for pools & beaches, not so good for house building & construction (or having to work out in those conditions).  But a few days ago, there was a break in the weather & it has been glorious!  Temps in the high 70s, low humidity levels & sunny skies... our builder said we had more drying in / around the house in the first day of this new weather than had happened most of the summer.  With that, they were able to finally get the footings dug & poured for the covered porch, some of which go down 8-11 feet!  The plumbers were even able to start on the septic this week too!

Mike was quick to check the footings out since we happened to be around the day they were poured...

They continue to work on the plumbing & heating rough-ins, window installation and finishing up little details in preparation for insulation & drywall in just a couple weeks.
The kids liked checking out the windows in their rooms... this happens to be Melanie's room.  They also got to see their tub/shower...

... & to see the place where "Santa will come!"  Gotta love how the minds of 4 & 6 year old work!

There are 2 arches in the house, so those have been "shaped" as well and with the windows going in, it is starting to change the look of the house... can't wait to see how it changes with the addition of the covered porch on the front... stay tuned!
In the meantime, I'm busy looking for lights, finalizing paint colors & flooring & looking for kitchen cabinet hardware... & in just a couple weeks we'll be moving down to the farm for the start of school (staying with the folks) for the duration of construction.  

Monday, August 16, 2010

What a Weekend!

Last weekend (& all last week as well) was HHH... Hot, Humid & Hazy!  It didn't keep us from having a busy & fun weekend though!  We started out with a Friday evening happy hour at our new found favorite happy hour spot near our downtown place... Lyndale Tap House.  Great happy hour specials & great beer... can't beat that!  Then Saturday we hit the Loring Park Art Fair...
... it was hot, but we enjoyed walking around for a bit.

Then we were off to our old house for a housewarming party for the new owners.  The kids had a ball playing in their old yard & we enjoyed visiting with some old neighbors as well as the new residents & their family!
They had a pig roast, which was phenomenal!  

Jeff & Anna are a wonderful couple... it is fun to see what they are doing with our old place & how much they are enjoying it so far!
After the housewarming, we were off to Lake Calhoun for a "movie in the park"... Top Gun. Brandon was excited to see fighter planes!
They have a cool inflatable screen that is used & the sound system is amazing... we've taken in several movies in the park this summer... did we mention they are free?!
It was a hazy night looking across Lake Calhoun towards downtown, but thankfully it cooled off a little as the sun went down.
Our friend Bob & Bing joined us too... along with Bob's dad.

Sunday was hot from the start... but not hot enough from keeping us from walking around the Uptown Art Fair for a few hours.

After the Art Fair, we loaded up the canoe & headed to Minnehaha Creek... we were wanting to canoe that before heading out of the city for good!
It was a good day to be in the water...

... the creek was not too high in most parts, in fact, there were many parts we had to "walk" the canoe through because of low water & rocks. The kids just liked that they could walk along side the canoe for periods of time!

At the tail end of our adventure, we came across this obstruction...
... we had to lift the canoe up & over some of the debris & through a  small opening under the tree!
It was quite an adventure... not sure where they are hiding all the water from the rain we've had, but 1 -2 more inches in some spots would have been a little easier on the bottom of our canoe!

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Too Darn Hot...

It has been a hot & humid summer for us & wouldn't you know, our summer place doesn't has A/C!  At least when it cools off overnight, the house gets cooled down & retains that fairly well since we are on the first floor... but after days of  hot temps & humidity thrown it, there isn't much one can do & it just gets uncomfortable.

The kids have been taking it well & we just position a lot of fans around, especially at nap time!
Can you tell the fan is off to the side??  Talk about full-body ventilation!
No matter how hard I try, Melanie has to have her sheet wrapped around her...

We've had a couple day break from it all & it has been GLORIOUS... but now we are about to get hit with another week of hot & humid weather starting today!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Moving along...

We finally made it to the farm last weekend to see what has gone on with the house in the past couple weeks... always fun to see!!

They got the garage finished...
... roof on & the dormer put in!
And they also got the water line (from the existing well) to the house put in!
Next up was getting the house wrapped to help keep the elements out & let the drying/breathing of the house continue... but work on the covered front porch has to wait until the ground dries up more so they can get the footings in place.

After the garage was finished, focused move back inside...
... they got the stair cases put in...
...including Mike's favorite, the ones from the garage down to the basement! 
The plumbers / heating guys got working on the plumging rough in & starting the duct work.

The kids like being able to race up & down levels without having to traverse ladders!
Brandon's room

On Monday, we got to see them pour the garage floor...
... & it looked great!

We are very pleased with how it is all going & the fabulous work the various people working on it are doing! 
They got some grading done around the house which looks great & things seem to finally be drying up a little as well!
And we love seeing the "oreo cows" as the kids like to call them, wandering around the pasture nearby!