Friday, August 1, 2014

White Christmas

We got our Keurig coffee maker at Christmas one year, maybe it was 2009? 2008? I don't know, but I became enamored (obsessed) with getting one after having coffee at my friend Karen's house.

She had a lovely assortment of coffee mugs on the table and I chose the pottery one that had blue and brown tones to it. She brought out an adorable basket with assorted k-cups so I could pick the flavor coffee I wanted. I'm pretty sure I chose hazelnut. (Ok, so this might be a mix of coffee memories at Karen's house, but hazelnut, a basket and Karen were always involved.)

I told Shane about the experience. Told him how it was a hospitality dream to offer guests any flavor they'd like (from a basket!). And he countered with economics of k-cups verses bagged coffee. He is practical; I'm all heart (when it comes to coffee anyway).

We got the Keurig. I had a basket and filled it with k-cups. While I don't remember the first time I offered a guest their choice of coffee at my house, I do know that more often than not, I think of Karen when I do and how delightful it was spending time with her.

There are woeful tales of Keurig ownership on the internet. Read any review. In fact, at our former house, there were seasons where it would only brew half a cup at a time and we'd have to double brew. I tried descaling. It was a quirky machine. Sometimes we'd get a full cup. Sometimes it cut us off at half. I did not complain (often), because I chose it.

When we moved here (and as Shane reminds me: when I sold his trusty 12-cup coffee maker at a yard sale for $2--though his memory prices it lower and lower each time he tells his story. I think yesterday he said I sold it for 15 cents.), the Keurig surged with new life. We got full cups.

"See, we're meant to be here," I rejoiced to Shane. Yeah, we had a jungle to conquer and a 20-year-long to-do list, but we had full cups of coffee fueling us.

Anyway, long story--the coffee maker died two days ago at 4 a.m. It left me with half a cup. It sputtered and groaned. I might have too. No one wants half a cup at 4 a.m. At least, not this one.

I rummaged in an upper cabinet and pulled down a hotel-style version 4-cup (Ha! Read two cups.) back up. I had filters and ground coffee (why? I have no idea).

I googled how to make coffee because it had been years since I had to and I completely forgot. (Note to self: 1-1/2 tbs of coffee per cup is a good starting point.)

I googled single-serve coffee makers. I had accumulated enough Keurig points to get me, my neighbors, and second cousins discounted coffee makers for at least the next five years (and, according to some reviews, I would need them!). But then I wondered what else was out there. I found Bunn.


It wasn't a matter of want. I knew I needed this baby. Changeable parts that allowed brewing of k-cups, ground coffee, soft pods, loose tea leaves! The possibilities made my eyes wide like Erin's on Christmas morning.

The reviews on it were glowing. Keurig converts praised its performance. And really, what's not to love? Ok, one minor detail of having to add water for each cup of coffee (no reservoir tank). Wasn't I nearly doing that with this little 4-cup (read 2-cup) wannabe?

This morning I brewed myself a pot (Ha, if you call two cups a pot) of a blend called White Christmas.

Shane asked, "So what are we doing here?" And before I could answer, he said, "I don't want to add water every time I want a cup of coffee. This is something we'll be using for years."


"Fine ..." I paused, giving him the opportunity to change his mind. He didn't.

"I really, really want the Bunn. But we can get the Keurig (it's cheaper with the discount). AND WHEN THAT BREAKS, we're getting the Bunn. Deal?" I said.


Folks, this is my documentation of the agreement.

I've never had tea from loose leaves, and I've made it this far. What's a little longer?

On, on.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Exit plan

Still working on some of the last-minute touches on the office space. I considered making it Lanie's room at one point, but in an effort to keep things moving along, Shane and I agreed to make it an office.

I stood in the doorway of that room today. Lanie joined me.

"I'm rather liking this color," I remarked. Splendor--the eggshell makes a big difference.

She liked it too.

"I don't think my room would have made a good office," she said. (I agree; it's much better suited for a bedroom.) She continued, "Once I move out though, you can do whatever you want with it."

"OH MY GOSH." I stated. I picked up my eyes off the floor. Then I had to lift my jaw back into place. "I can't believe you're thinking that far away!"

Which, really, isn't that far. Not when she was born, like, yesterday. I blinked, and she's nearly twelve.

I walked away in an effort to think happy thoughts. Like Erin and the smiling puppy.

Or the love note Erin left on my bed this morning.

People: slow down.

Monday, July 28, 2014

One thousand gifts and still counting (5827-5865)

a lunch at a bestie's house

a sleepover for Lanie
an evening just Mommy and Erin (for Checkers and reading and nail painting and cuddling)
a good night's sleep

for hugs from Lanie
and Your amazing work in her heart
a fun week at VBS
those old roads
food in the fridge

safety in the storm
running into Reggie at the store
big sky
blackberry cheesecake bars in the fridge
a cleaned house

an impromptu swim with friends on Friday
dinner with Linda
an opportunity to pray for her
an invitation to a birthday brunch for David
southbound geese in V formation

66 Books
the beautiful things here
an office space for Shane
his words of encouragement in an empty room

the man You're transforming him to be
Beowulf on Playaway

thoughts from Pretty Woman
a basket for blankets
hearts in the margins

a rug for the laundry room
pictures on walls
Cindy's hearts in the comments
his mom's safety after falling
tomatoes growing on our plants

pruning shears found (after a year+!)
a fun day with friends for Lanie
puppy kisses from a cutie named Coconut

scoops on a Saturday night
those clouds in that sky

Sunday, July 27, 2014

In my heart

We finally got the desk out of the garage and into its own space. We converted an extra room into an office. Shane hung up the curtain rod in the room today. Then I had him hang a painting over our dresser in the bedroom. This prompted wanting a change in the location of the armoire. And suddenly I'm knee deep in file cabinet papers, old photos, children's artwork and cards.

I found our wedding announcement. I found lots of fun pictures of us when we were so much younger. I found the card our real estate agent had given us, wishing us happiness here. I found the original brochure for this place. I found a love letter Shane had written me when we were dating. 

"I was just upstairs reading that love letter you wrote me," I said to Shane.

"Where did you put it?" he asked. I don't imagine he'd really expect me to incriminate him with anything in it, but he seemed to consider taking it into his own hands.

"In my heart," I said. And I gave him a ginormous hug, and an even bigger smooch. I think he's more handsome than when we met.

Spending the next five weeks getting this house in order. I know, we've lived here three years and I still have boxes I never unpacked! I'm also seven years behind in scrapbooking.

Monday is the start of lesson planning, medieval literature and history. I'll be back to early rising to work on lesson planning so that I still have plenty of time for my kids. Good thing I stocked up on coffee.