Wednesday, August 31, 2011

The Attic

Well I am sitting here in the attic so I thought I would post on it.  We've had the attic since we moved in...shocker I know.  Here are some things you should know about the attic (and I'm going with bullet point style because I am too lazy to put this into coherent paragraphs!):
  • The attic comes up from the closet in the guest room.  You open the closet door and there's the stair case. 
  • I don't even know if you would call it an attic.  It's not attic material like in "Christmas Vacation" or anything
  • Up until now the attic has consisted of two halfs...one half has gabled 12' celings and hardwood floors. The other part, well, I guess you could think of that as atticy.  Because it had attic written all over it.
  • When we toured our house before buying it there were foreign soccer players renting the attic out as an apartment.  Yep, it's true.
  • There are two dormer windows that are opposite from one another.  One of them is kind of hid away behind the banister of the stairs (does that make ANY bit of sense?).  That area is going to be a reading corner full of comfy pillows and blankets.  Kind of excited about that.
  • If you've ever visited our attic you may think we are crazy because it was too hot or cold...rest assured that there is heat and ac in the attic...we just had it closed off because we never used it.
Anwyay, here is what you should know about what the attic is going to be like:
  • Nick has reworked some walls so that the "atticy" part of the attic has been cut down in size.  Basically he bumped out the livable part so we have more room.
  • I am going to have a real live wall of wrapping paper and ribbon storage...super excited about that.
  • In my mind I have things mapped out into sections...there is the homeschooling area, then a craft/ebay area. 
  • Nick is running new electricty up to the attic.  The circuits/boxes (I have NO idea what I am talking about!!!) are full so he is running an entire new electrical system up here...a new circuit box and everything.  He's doing that because he is putting another air conditioner and heat unit in for just the attic.  It does get cool and warm but he wants to make sure we are really comfortable and since it is soooo far up it is hard for the air to travel that far.
As a side note I just have to tell you that even though it is behind schedule and even though I haven't seen the finished product I am just so very proud of Nicholas.  He has done everything with this project.  He has worked on it every day he's had off.  If he didn't know how to do something, he researched it and talked to people who knew about it, and figured it out.  I love him for that.  I love him also because he's really taken the time to make sure I am getting what I want.  He's putting an outlet on the floor below my craft table so I don't have to go all the way to the wall to plug in my hot glue gun.  He's sinking it into the floor and then covering it with a fake piece of floor...it's just the little things that mean a lot to me.  When I say, "I wonder if we could..." he takes the time to listen to me, doesnt' dismiss me and tries to get it to work.  He installed can lights over where the sewing machine will go so if I need a ton of light I can turn those on...there are other lights too but he is putting those in for my weak bad eyes...and the switch will be right there so I don't even have to get up! He's just really gone the extra mile and we all really appreciate it. 

Anyway, that is the story with the attic.  Again, can't wait to show you the finished room!
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A little of this, a little of that

Days here of doing nothing are coming to an end.  Tuesday we start homeschooling and a week from tomorrow Cal starts preschool.  I am just in awe of how big they are getting.  Size wise and maturity levels just blow me away.  I can now stop the car, Emma will unbuckle and come over to Cal's side...I'll unbuckle him, he gets out, she gets out...easy peasy Lemmon Squeezy! No car seats, no diaper bags, just boosters and army men in my days. Sad but always nice. I'm enjoying whatever stage we are in and this one is fun. 

Here are some random pictures from the everyday:

 I let Emma play a computer game once a day.  It helps her with her wicked computer skills and she likes it.  Look how big she is getting! So long and lanky! 
 And here's our baby who is not a baby any longer.  Everyone's been saying for a while what a big boy he has become but to me he still looked little. Not anymore.  Now he looks like a big boy to me too.  Sad but true.
Here we are.  Mommy and Cal. This was on our way to preschool orientation.  We had lots of fun together just he and I. 

So that's our day.  I helped Nick drywall the attic today and quite frankly I am pooped.  But it is looking great...I am just such an impatient person and cannot wait for it to be done.  I want paint colors and cute rugs, and well, organized!  But it is getting there and I cannot wait.  I've taken plenty of "before" picture and will be so excited when I can show you "before and after" photos!  Have I talked about the attic much to you? 
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Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Summerfest

Every year our neighborhood has a party called Summerfest.  It is a lot of fun.  The firetrucks come to let the kids tour them and then they hook their sprinklers up to the hydrant and let the children run through them. There are water balloon fights too, which the kids loved.  We even vote on which house should be on our neighborhood's Christmas ornament this year. 

As a sidenote, in case you didn't know we live in a historic district here in our little city.  We are on the state, city, and national historic registrys.  We are a proud neighborhood and we like to get together...we have Summerfest, a Halloween Party, a Christmas Caroling party, and an Easter Egg hunt. 

The neighborhood originally was owned by two men and then they eventually sold off their land (kind of like subdivisions are today I think).  Our house was built by the daughter and son-in-law, who was a prominent attorney in our area, of one of the original owners.  Anyway, I wouldn't have known all of this except our neighborhood has a book of the history of houses and that's what is says about ours...kind of neat, right?
 Here's Cal who apparently had never tasted water so good.  He was just DYING to get more from the cooler. 
 Kazoo caught in a case of seriousness.  How beautiful is she?
Here are the kiddos playing in the fire department's water...they had a great time except for, and I don't know if you can see it or not, but the street is brick and it got VERY slippery. 

All in all we had a great time and got to socialize with some really great neighbors. 
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Sunday, August 28, 2011

Sunrise

While on vacation we took the kids out of bed at about 5 in the morning and headed to the beach.  They didn't seem too thrilled.  One of our favorite things to do as a couple is to go watch the sunset...we whoop and holler.  We hold our breath in wonder of God's paintbrush at work in the sky.  It's just fantastic.  I have no idea when Nick and I started this but we have watched the sunrise in lots of places...this was the first time with the children though.  When we arrived at the beach, this is what we were greeted with...
 I simply adore this picture.  I can remember this morning with this picture.  I remember the sound of the waves and the seagulls crys, the feel of cold, damp sand in between my toes, the feel of salt water misting my face, the the transcendent glow of the sky ahead of us.  Wow, God, wow...it's all I can think to say.

Anyway...
 Cal and his sleepy smile in his jammies
 Emma always has a big smile waiting, even sleepy with bed head wearing a nightgown


 And the sky continues to pinken and grow more and more beautiful and suddenly...
Why hello Mr. Sun!
 Gorgeous
 I love it
And we're up and at 'em. 

I adore the sunrise.  It happens every single day and every day it is different.  God is amazing.  He loves us so much.  He wants us to be happy, to experience joy and warmth, and peace.  In our home we are teaching the children that creation is one of God's big ways that he shows us His love.  After all he created ALL of this for us to explore and enjoy.  Sunrises feel like a hug from God...warming, and a gentle reminder that God's in control of the day ahead...don't worry, I've got this one...

Thank you sweet Lord for sunrises and the children we can introduce them to...
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Friday, August 26, 2011

It's Friday!

Today is Friday.  Do a little happy dance!  Being a housewife every day is a weekend day or a week day for me, take your pic.  Same amount of work to do.  When we start homeschooling I have a feeling I will be begging for the weekend sometimes.  But I am excited for this weekend because Nick is off and, well, I just love the socks off that guy. 

Today Nick's mom is taking Cal for the day.  Emma and I are having a girls day.  Full of nail polish, scrapbooking and shopping.  If the girl were really cool we would go and get sushi together but alas my own daughter thinks sushi is gross.  Ugh.

The girl doesn't know it but I think I am also going to drag her to some garage sales too because, gosh darnit, I haven't been to one in FOREVER! And I know how much you miss those posts where I drag everything onto the piano for a good old picture. 

Tonight then we are doing more shopping with going to the presale of the resale that I am in.  Presale of the resale...say that three times fast.  Whew!  I will post what I get...I am hoping it will be incredible...people will cry because of the amazing deals I find. 

Okay, don't cry.  Here are some vacation photos for you to enjoy... I am thinking I will post them little by little because, one I hate posts with 8000 photos, and two, it makes me think I am still on vacation if I am looking at the photos!  
 Aren't they just adorable?  This was after we ate at this little cafe I had eaten at the first time I was here.  It was so fun to drive around and find it, and we were certainly glad that we did!  They had the best sweet tea and friend green tomatoes.  Can't beat that, right? 
 Then after lunch we headed down to the ocean.  As you can see we were not prepared with our suits as we had JUST gotten there.  But the kids wanted to see everything.  So we took them on a mini little tour.  Kids, Ocean.  Ocean, Kids.
 This is pretty much how we felt the entire time we were there... :)
And I tried to take a picture that said "Atlantic 2011" to mark this historic date upon when they saw the ocean.  But as you can see they are both less than enthused, the sun was glaring into their poor little baby eyes and you can't even see what I wrote.  Epic fail. 
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Thursday, August 25, 2011

Why Hello There

We are back, did you miss me?  We went to South Carolina and had such an amazing time.  We visited family, ate way too much, introduced the children to the ocean, visited some dear, dear friends, visited tons of plantations, and laughed more than we ever have before.  Ah, the memories a family vacation gives us. 

But now we are home and this week has proven that vacation is over.  Back to the daily grind, the mounds of laundry, the meetings, the agendas, on and on. 

We've been hitting things really hard. 

Tuesday Nick had off and we pulled apart every room.  Rugs up, furniture out.  We scrubbed walls, vacuumed, mopped everything.  It feels so nice having a clean slate here. 

Nick is working like mad to get the attic done in time for homeschooling.  I know it isn't going to be done in time...I am so surprised...NOT!  But I am doing a really good this time to just let it roll off my back.  It will get done, HOPEFULLY soon.  In the meantime he's been doing so many hard things that I can't help but cut him some slack.  He's built and framed new walls, ran new electric, installed a new electric box (or whatever...can you tell I have NO idea what I am talking about?), and on and on.  I am so impressed that we haven't had to hire anyone.  He initially decided to just hire the work out and then later decided he wanted to figure it out as he went. 

I've been ebaying like crazy.  One reason is because I have soooo much that needs to be sold.  It would be nice to decrease my inventory before I have to set up a new office once the attic is done. 

Children's resale.  Another thing I've been going at full throttle.  These children of mine have some type of magic closets or something because I have no idea where they get all of this clothing from...it must multiply or something!  Needless to say we have oodles and oodles of clothes that need to go to someone else's home.  So they are sitting nicely at the resale now and in two short days will be the resale where we hopefully will get rid of a lot. 
So that's it!  We're home, we're busy, and we are safe and sound.  God is so good to us.  In life I get so swamped and tired and just, well, in the thick of things that sometimes I don't see the big picture clearly.  But when I do see the big picture, holy moly is it just incredible.  God is so good to us and we are so vastly blessed. 
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Sunday, August 7, 2011

It is Finished

I wanted to make something personal for our niece's first birthday but let's face it, talented I am not. But I have been making Emma hair bows for a while now without anyone saying "ew, what's that in your hair?" so I thought I would give it a go. 

Ta-da!  Finished product!  In case you are wondering I make 3 different type of hair accessories.  First there's the rosette, or the flower clip you see right in the center.  Then I can make corker thingys with all of the bouncy corkscrew ribbons.  And finally I make bows. 

I added lace around the little pail and put some green felt over the foam inside.  Then I painted a bunch of popsicle sticks to be "stems".  The ribbon wrapped around the bottom of the pail is actually a bow holder for her wall. 

The "one" on the front I made by attaching rhinestones to paper and then that paper to a bigger sheet of cardstock.  And voila!  I would love to know your opinion on this.  Is this cute or dead ugly?  Maybe you'd like me to make one for you :) 

The only thing I know about is that bow bouquet is gosh, darn hard to say 3 times fast! :)

So this is what I've been working on.  It really wasn't that hard except I had so much on my plate this week that when figuring out what to make, my mind would just kind of melt like icecream into a pool of mush.  When I was working on it I was thinking of something else and vice versa. 

So there it is...she doesn't get it for a week so shhhh, don't tell her!  I hope she doesn't read this...she seems pretty smart so she might...quick, act natural...

Anyway, give me your thoughts...is this the ugliest thing ever?  Is it okay?  I have a hard time Price is Righing my stuff, you know holding my hand out and saying "and look at these fabulous bows!  Aren't they extravagent?"  (kidding!) But Nick thinks they are cool.  So let me know what you think too!!!!
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Saturday, August 6, 2011

Little Cookie Monsters :)

God sure knew what he was doing when he gave me my little guys because they sure love to make cookies!  When Nick and I had first gotten married we were young and in love, dreaming of one day having a family.  I told him I wanted to be the kind of mom that made sugar cookies with the kids all throughout the year.  We would decorate cookies and it would be oh-so much fun.  Hence the enormous collection of cookie cutters :) 

The kids had been BEGGING to decorate cookies.  This was totally a place where I needed God to speak to my heart and he sure did.  See, this has not been an easy week.  Mama's had to get ready for vacation and has had a birthday gift to prepare and clean and pack and clean and pack and clean some more.  Plus RIGHT when we get back from the vacation I am participating in a children's resale so all of my items need washed and ironed and taped and shined and buffed and tagged.  Ugh.

So as you can see it would have been so easy for me to just say "no" because I don't have time.  But God told me to just stop and take time out of my schedule for this.  And it worked so well.  Today is Nick's family reunion.  So I decided we would take the cookies.  I know not everyone eats decorated sugar cookies.  Usually I bring two things.  But this is the season of life that I am in.  I will relish it rather than run from it. 


 Don't you just look endless possiblities with frosting?
 Cookies!!!  Nick said they looked funny because I cut in some whole wheat flower...shhh...I don't think you can tell under the frosting
 Is there anyone in this world who can resist the power of sugar sprinkles???  They are magical.
 They both were so serious.  This is Kazoo's face you get when you say "don't crack a little smile..."
 I said the same thing to Cal and this is what I got... so different those two
 This is where Lucy is when the kids are at the table.  Ever faithful.  Hey! Who dropped sprinkles? 
So there you have it, cookie decorating in the middle of the summer.  It may seem weird to some but for us it is just life, and we love it.  Love, love, love it.  I also love it because we sit around and talk about Christmas cookie decorating which none of us can wait for.  We talked about my Aunt Jan and cousin Liz coming.  Hi Jan!  Hi Liz! Emma's hoping they come and bring Auroralynn with them...she's counting on that :)  I think she has big plans or something...
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Tuesday, August 2, 2011

And a Quick Vent...

I've been told recently that our marriage seems perfect. 

Oh boy I am so sorry if I have been portraying everything in that manner.

The truth is...

sometimes I just want to kill this husband of mine. 

I love him so much.  Please don't get me wrong.  In fact there are two things you should know:

1) I love him so much
2) I am so, so not perfect

My resons for fighting with Nick usually stem from two things:

1) Nick forgets things
2) Our differing parenting styles

Tonight I am going out with some girlfriends.  So, So excited.  I've had this set up for a couple of weeks.  I reminded him last night.  We were good to go. 

This afternoon I get a call from Nick saying that he has a meeting tonight.  The poor guy, I just wanted to kill him.  After a few minutes to compose myself and a few phone calls to girlfriends later and I had the situation solved.  So I called Nick and appologized for screaming at him. 

I don't share a lot of spats with you because, quite frankly, its not the purpose of my blog.  And my job as a wife is to be as uplifting as possible.   I am to submit to my husband and honor him.  Me bashing him all of the time doesn't really fulfill that purpose, now does it?

So there you go, we are definitely not perfect.  We fight all of the time.  Do you hear me???  All of the time!

But that's the way its been since the beginning. We fight, we make up, and we're done.  We are both passionate, we fight hard and make up even harder :)  We do try to shelter our kids from BIG fights, but our children know that Mommy and Daddy fight, we make up, and it will never change anything...we always love one another and our family.  Bottom line. 

So that's where we are, I assure you that we are so far from perfect.  This afternoon was just one of many examples.  I'm sure there will be lots more. 
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A Little Cabin in the Big Woods

Last week the kids and I set out to do some hiking at a local park.  I had only ever been once but seeing how the park is only 5 miles from our house, I thought we should start to take advantage of the free admission to it on weekdays (score!)

Before I get started here I just have to say that is always amazes me how much stuff there is around us to do that we never even knew about.  It's just mind boggling to me...okay moving on. 

The kids and I and Lucy, the adorable 65 pound black lab who is always hyper, bumbled along on paths and had a grand old time...
 We hunted for bugs... I love the way God gave my daughter the love of bugs and gross stuff where Cal gets queazy :)
 We peed in the woods...
 And we just discovered all kinds of stuff...this picture is one of Cal discovering a patch of light shining through the tree canopy.  He was just fascinated and while I watched him put his hand in the light and try to figure it out, it was as if time just stood still.  We all were in the woods for who knows how long, just watching him be absolutely fascinated. 
 Later we found this little stream with an adorable little footbridge to walk over.  So we did. 
Lastly we came across a cabin.  I was so intrigued by it that I looked up the park history when I got home.  Evidently it was built in the 1830's and you can rent it out and stay there.  How neat would that be?  It has a huge porch swing that the kids and I swang on for a long time.  It was a really fun time!

Nick has tomorrow off so we are going back to the park tomorrow to take him on the same hike.  Between you and me I am a little curious as to what he will say about the hike...I LOVE hiking and he, well, not so much.  Also I am curious to see which one he'll say...will it be a) "oh this isn't that bad?" or b) "how did you do this alone with the kids?"

We shall see my friends, we shall see...
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