September 17, 2012

Weekend Basics


Early Saturday morning while walking Basil through the fan, we saw a sign on Monument Avenue for a "huge alley sale." We decided to check it out and sure enough, about 10 or more different houses between West Grace Street and Monument Avenue had opened up their garages for a huge alley sale. It was amazing. We found and managed to bring home a couple pretty neat pieces we'll be excited to share more about here on the blog soon.

In other exciting news, this weekend mostly centered around touring Virginia State Universities with my son, Brandon. Mary and I set up visits to three schools: Old Dominion University, Christopher Newport University and Virginia Commonwealth University.

First up, we hit ODU. It was early morning and there was a nice breeze in the air throughout the tour from being close to the water. Mary actually went to ODU her first year of college before transferring to VCU, so it was interesting to see what had stayed the same and what had changed about the school over the years.

Next up we hit CNU, which neither Mary or myself had ever toured, so it was great getting to learn about and see another great VA University.

Between the two tours, we had lunch at Harpoon Larry's — an old classic stop I've made during work trips down to the Hampton and Norfolk areas:

Last up on the school tours this go round was VCU:

Mary and I now live within blocks of this University campus and Mary graduated from VCU's Art School, so again, it was fun to get a different look at the school and a new perspective on our own neighborhood from the student point of view.

We still plan to tour William and Mary and Brandon has already toured James Madison University, where his sister currently attends. It's been fun getting to look at all the different schools first hand.

We were all pretty worn out after touring 3 schools, but we did squeeze in some time to visit the spray paint section of the hardware store for a little project we've got up our sleeves:

We also continued with a couple more summer harvesting and fall planting projects:

I got up on the ladder, yet again, to make some more improvements to our back dining room that Mary should be sharing more about later this week:

Then Brandon got up on the ladder to help me re-hang the last of the string lights that the summer storm took out at the end of June:

I have to say as a Dad, it's pretty surreal when your son gets to the age where he's taller than you are. Also makes me pretty proud.

Sunday evening we tried out a new red wine variety made especially for Ellwood Thompson's, locally:

Learn more about Ellwood's new house wine, called "our wine," here.

Last but certainly not least, here's how we ended out our weekend:

Tell us we aren't the only ones with this problem. Basil probably had the time of his life destroying this toy, feeling quite proud of himself — we just wish we could find things like this that last longer than an hour. We always get suckered in to trying new "soft toys" that claim to be tough and indestructible. Basil goes crazy over a soft toy but we always end up only being able to give him rubber toys like Kong grade material that he isn't able to break through.

Any advice for dog toys that claim to be indestructible for "tough chewers" that actually are?


  1. Good luck helping out with the college hunt! All of those schools are great, I'm partial to VCU of course :)

  2. You are not alone with the dog toy issue. I feel like a really bad "dog parent" because Pippi never has any toys. Because she DESTROYS them. Mostly within minutes. Not exaggerating. I have spent a lot of money on super durable dog toys. This is my secret shopping that I try to hide from the hubby, because it really is a waste of money. The most durable I have found to be the Kongs.

  3. How fun to be visiting colleges. Out of the ones you listed I have only ever been to William and Mary. Actually, just the tennis courts at William and Mary, but the surroundings were beautiful.

    About 3 weeks ago Stuart and I found a dog toy labelled as "the indestructible rabbit" at Costco. $15 of stuffing littered our grass less than 24 hours after giving it to the dogs.

    1. Glad to hear W&M was beautiful, we are looking forward to setting up a tour there. OMG we laughed so hard at the Costco toy stuffing and can totally relate.

      We get suckered into buying those toys every time. I guess the dogs just love it, but it's still so frustrating!

  4. We gave our old foster dog corrigated cardboard because although it made a mess he could destroy it and it wasn't going to hurt him. He could eat kongs, the whole thing.

  5. I really like your blog. What camera are you using for the old-fashioned look? - Kaye

    1. Aw thanks Kaye! The old fashioned photos you see on the blog are usually taken with our iphone using the instagram application!

  6. My dog destroyed the exact same fire hose dog toy within minutes. We buy him Dentley's stuffed femur bones; they are the only toys he doesn't destroy.

    1. Alison — thanks for the tip on Dentley's! Gonna look those up now!

  7. We also get Dentley's Femur Bones for Buddy - without the stuffing though as it makes his tummy upset. Deer Antler's are also great for hardcore chewers - they last quite long. We always make sure to watch and take them away when they get too small because it can be a choking hazard. Those are the only two things that really give him a challenge as he is also the destroyer of stuffies :)

    1. Sounds like we definitely need to check these out — thanks for the tip on Dentley's!


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