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Thursday, April 28, 2016

Trent's Birthday Week

It's been a long week, and a busy one! Not a lot of time to blog! But how about a recap of Trent's birthday week?! The 22nd (last Friday) was Trent's 32nd birthday.

The night before, Trent had to work third shift, but I watched the Cubs game - Arietta's amazing no-hitter against the Reds! I had to take photos as I was watching it because I knew it was a historic game for the Cubbies, and I was sending Trent play-by-plays with every home run. :)


It was one of the best, but also one of the most one-sided games I've seen in a long time! The Cubs are going great this year and are one of the top teams  in the league right now. A pretty good start to our birthday weekend celebration!


Friday night on Trent's birthday, we went to downtown Moline and met up with friends at a new brew pub called Rebellion Brew Haus. It was a pretty cool place with a good atmosphere. They have a large selection of craft beers and a full menu. Trent tried some mini tacos, and we shared some cheese curds.


After Rebellion, we walked over to a pizza place down the street called Brix. We all ordered pizza and drinks, and the pizza was absolutely amazing! Probably one of the best veggie pizzas I've ever had. We will definitely be back!


There was even a guy dressed up in a pizza costume! I wish I would have gotten a picture of him, because it was kind of hilarious!


It was a lot of fun though, to all get together and hang out, and celebrate Trent's birthday. Of course, he got bought a couple of shots and maybe a drink or two! 



After we ate, we went to the Brix Annex, which is another part of the building, and there was a local band playing, The Candymakers. We hung out and listened to them for a bit before we headed home.


It was a good night, and lots of fun all around.

Saturday night my parents took us out to eat for Trent's birthday. We tried another place we had never been to in Le Claire, called Blue Iguana. It was just nice enough to sit out on the patio outside! A little chilly, but still a pretty nice night. 


We enjoyed some drinks and Mexican food, and the scenery of charming downtown Le Claire.


This is another restaurant I'd like to go back to again, maybe in the summer when it's a little warmer, and sit out on the back patio by the river.

Since the weekend, I've been busy working, and selling decor from our wedding! Having to schedule times to meet up with people who buy the items has been a tad stressful, especially when they cancel...but it's been profitable overall. A little extra cash, and I'm getting wedding decor cleared out of the house little by little, which is good!

I did finally get Trent his birthday present, though it was a bit late - a  new chainsaw that he wanted!


We went to a couple of different stores over the weekend, and didn't see the one that he wanted, so I ended up ordering it online. I got free shipping from the Sears website, and it came in just a couple of days. So it was a little late, but he was happy when he got it.


It's an 18 inch Craftsman chainsaw, and Trent can't wait to start cutting limbs, and sawing up the huge part of a tree that fell in our yard when we got a huge snowstorm this winter. The tree is still sitting back in our garden space!


Once he chops that up, not only will our garden area be clear and ready to be tilled up and planted in, but we'll also have a ton of firewood to use for fires this summer! So a chainsaw was definitely needed, and I know it will get some use.

I think Trent had a pretty good birthday weekend, and this week has been flying by. I can't believe tomorrow is already Friday again! It must have been all of the running around, selling my wedding items. :) 

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Weekend Fun in Galesburg

This weekend, a few notable things happened:

1. We had absolutely PERFECT weather! 70's and 80's and sunny.
2. We had two bonfires, and grilled out with family.
3. We saw a huge, bright meteor in the sky right in front of us - this one.
4. Trent and I walked with his family in the "Run for a Reason," a 5k walk/run in honor of his cousin who passed away three years ago.

It was a great weekend overall! It actually felt more like summer than spring, and given that I have been up since 5:00 this morning (we had the 5k earlier today), my day today has been long but relaxing. Though I am pretty exhausted, I've been getting some things done around the house while Trent is working this afternoon.

Yesterday we had some drinks and appetizers at Iron Spike Brewery in Galesburg. We went with Trent's cousin Amanda, her husband Steve and their son Eli, Trent's cousin Jessica, and her husband Dusty. Trent and I have been there a couple of times before - it's an old Firehouse that the owners turned into a brewpub.


It's a pretty cool atmosphere, and they have a large selection of craft brews, which Trent likes. Plus, we were able to watch the Cubs beat the Rockies on TV, which was also pretty awesome. We even tried moscow mules for the first time, which I wasn't too impressed with. They're kind of like ginger beer with a hint of lime. Wouldn't be my drink of choice, but I do love the copper mugs. :)

We were in Galesburg yesterday to pick up our packets for the race. This was Trent and I's first time doing the Run for a Reason for his cousin Tyson, who passed away in 2013.


Every time we are downtown Galesburg, I see so many cool old buildings that I've never really noticed before or paid much attention to. Like this big, old brick building with a giant fire escape/stairwell. I just thought it looked really cool.


Then there's the antique mall, which I wish we could have stopped at but didn't have much extra time. It's such a cool historic building and is a huge part of what makes this downtown so unique.


This morning was the 5k with Trent's family. We walked it, but we didn't do too bad time-wise. About 48 minutes. I think my legs might be sore tomorrow though, since I'm not used to that much walking. Today will be the first day since I got my Fitbit in December, that I will have logged over 10,000 steps. :)

Anyway, it's been a fun weekend, with perfect weather and sunshine all weekend long. Lots of fun, bonfires, food and grilled burgers, and Trent's uncle Mark made us breakfast this morning. (yum!).

Oh, and we picked up some new adirondack chairs for the back patio! Pretty excited to fix that area up a little this summer. More on that later!

Happy Sunday everyone!

Saturday, April 16, 2016

Spring Has Hit Our Front Yard

Spring has sprung in our town. Trees are finally blooming, and my peony bush is growing bigger and bigger! Today was an 80 degree day, with tomorrow looking to be just as nice. The weather has been just about perfect this weekend.


Look how green the grass is in the yard! Dandelions are making their appearance, the trees are getting leaves, and soon it will be time for planting the garden and flowers in my flower pots.

Trent's family is here from Ohio for the "Run for a Reason" 5k tomorrow. We signed up and picked up our packets today and plan to join them for the walk/run. 


I'll share more about the weekend's festivities soon. So far it's been spent having bonfires and barbecues, and enjoying the nice weather with family.

Monday, April 11, 2016

Opening Day Bandits Game

This past Saturday was opening day at our local River Bandits baseball field. It was a little on the chilly side, but Trent and I decided to brave it and watch the first game of the season. After all, we have been looking forward to the start of baseball season all winter!

The good thing is that it was a day game, and the sun was out all day, which helped warm us up.


I also got some hot chocolate and wore lots of layers, so it really was not too bad! Maybe about 50 degrees and sunny. Trent and I both got a little sunburnt on our faces after being out all day. It felt good to be outdoors though, like the start of summertime.


Our friend Leo was the only one who decided to brave the cold with us. :) In the end we were glad to be the only brave ones of our friends out here, because we had a good time!


There wasn't too big of a crowd for opening day, and we ended up losing, but it was fun to get out for a little while and watch some baseball!


On a related note, the Cubs are doing pretty good this year, despite losing Kyle Schwarber to an injury at the start of the season. You never know, this could be the year. :)

Friday, April 8, 2016

Loving the New Pinterest Mobile Design

So, I'm not sure how many of you all go onto the Pinterest app on your phones, but just the other day, I was browsing Pinterest on my lunch break, and discovered the really awesome new layout on the Pinterest app! 

I have an iPhone, and I recently installed a new update, so I don't know if the new update brought these changes on, or when they first appeared, but I'm loving the some of the new features. 

I went to my profile page to find my Boards, scrolled down a little, and this is what I saw:


Have you seen this before, or am I just late on this?! Not only can you change the way you are viewing your boards on this page, either by most recent or alphabetically, but now it gives you "tags" for each of your boards that you pin to.  

It made me laugh to see "Little Houses" as one of my tags - obviously this here blog, "This Little House of Mine" is in the category of Little Houses. :) I also apparently tend to save pins related to Jennifer Aniston (my idol), Kate Spade, Deviled eggs, Fall front porches, Weddings, and the list goes on. Pretty cool feature!


Scrolling down, I then saw what kinds of furniture I pin most to my Furniture board - and if you click on one of the tags - say "Ottomans" for example, it will show you all of the pins on that Board that relate to Ottomans. This is the greatest thing since sliced bread - and makes it super easy to sort for the exact kind of pins you are looking for within your own boards.


Needless to say, I found myself pretty occupied for a good 15 minutes just browsing through all of the categories that I pin the most. I can't say I'm surprised though, that my pin boards are filled with tags like "Ceramic animals," "Tassels," and "Throw pillows." You know, the important things in life.

What kinds of things do you pin often?

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Our Ancestry DNA Results

For Valentine's Day this year, I bought Ancestry DNA kits for my husband Trent and I. We had heard about them before, and it seems like they're becoming more popular these days. It's an at-home DNA kit that you can order online, they ship it to you, and you send a saliva sample back. In 4-6 weeks, you receive your results, which give you clues about your heritage.

Trent has always wondered where his ancestors came from, since his dad's side is a little foggy in places. So I thought this would be a cool gift to give him - maybe it would help lead to some answers about where his ancestors were from.

We waited what seemed like forever for our results, but we sent them in at the end of February, and got them back on Easter Sunday, so it only took a total of about 4 weeks to get the results.

I've been told for a long time that my heritage is pretty much all European, most being Irish and German. I'm not entirely sure how the DNA test results are found or how it works, but I was a little surprised when I got my results. They were not really what I had expected to see - and neither were Trent's.

Here is my pie chart that shows what my DNA matches with:
I was quite surprised, to say the least, at how much it matched with Great Britain! Does this mean when I thought I had mostly Irish and German heritage this entire time, I was actually mostly of British descent? What I thought would give me answers, just left me a little more confused. 

Looking at the map that tells me the countries I matched closest with, I saw that Germany was entirely covered, which makes sense, but Ireland is not even on the spectrum. 


I matched 99% with Europe as a whole, but Great Britain was the strongest range of all of the countries listed. 


"Europe West" was my second strongest match behind Great Britain. This covers countries like France, Germany, The Netherlands, and Switzerland. Below that it listed all of the "Trace Regions" I matched with. Ireland only took 3%!


Getting these answers made me want to research more into my family history and where my ancestors originated. I subscribed to Ancestry.com this month to start building my family tree and maybe fill in some more blanks!  So in my spare time, I've been delving into genealogy a little bit. It's actually pretty interesting, but not easy. There are way too many records out there to search through! It could take a lifetime just to find all of the answers.

Trent's DNA test was also surprising, as even though he knew his mom's side was Welsh / European, he had always thought he had some strong Native American heritage on his Dad's side.


Getting his test back, we realized he was a lot more European than he thought, especially when it comes to identifying 20% with Ireland. I thought maybe our tests got switched! Could Trent be more Irish than me? It was so strange! And he came up as 0% Native American, but small percentages (less than 1%) African and Asian! (??!)

So I guess you never know what you will find when you take these. What would be interesting to see is how our relatives match with us. That could help fill some blanks, too. 

Anyone else ever taken one of these tests? How did they match up with your expectations?
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