Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Four years ago today...

Four years ago today, we closed on our very first home! One we never thought we'd be able to purchase or afford on our own. I was about 15 months pregnant with Paige at the time, lol. She arrived less than four weeks later.

Lately, I've gotten the idea that bigger and better is, well, better. So, I started house hunting. By myself. Neil has always been satisfied with our home. And the truth is, I am really happy with our house. The few things we would want in a new home, we can't change about our current home. We can't change that our street is the main thoroughfare, situated between two school zones. We can't change that our backyard is ridiculously small. We can't change the fact that the kids' bedrooms are shoe box sized.

But the one thing we've done with this house that previous owners hadn't is to make it our own. We've lived here longer than any previous owner. We still get mail for about five different last names, I think. The idea of moving to a new house (i.e. monstrous debt + unstable economy = not a smart idea right now) and having to start all over with getting a house where we want it is not appealing. So, I think I'm 'OK' with saying, this is our house. It is definitely a home. And the real beauty is knowing we struck gold with our first purchase, not realizing it at the time.

So, I'm going to show you a few pictures from the weekend we moved in (courtesy of my SIL, Alice) and then a few pictures {and by few, I exaggerate greatly!} of our house now.


{mls listing pics- I love how it looks like a one story from the outside. It's very deceptive!}

{the foyer-before}

{after-these walls are finally going to be painted to match the living room soon!}

{the display niches/insets/cutouts/whathaveyou}

{the dining room - before}

{after: this room is still a work in progress, though after a few years of trying to figure out what to do, I found a nice buffet from ZGallerie that will work and isn't too deep.
This dining set is from Neil's parents, who drove it down from Virginia!}

{the kitchen-before: the people before us thought the kitchen wasn't busy enough and so they added this "delightful" faux finish below the chair railing. As you can see we took care of that by painting it red and using the leftover paint from the dining room to minimize the tragedy that is kitchen wallpaper gone horribly wrong.}

{the after in a series of shots - I got tired of the ugly light brown cabinets, so on a whim I went out and got paint for the cabinets. I had *wanted* red, but Neil convinced me that black would look better. He was totally fashion forward since it's been almost three years since we did this and I'm starting to see it more in modern kitchens, though not with the uber stylish counters that we have ::snort::}

{the ultimate inspiration for the cabinets}

{the mustard yellow walls that are about to get the boot in favor of something less hotdoggish, lol}

{the office}


{the living room-before}

{this is what we look at when we walk in - I *love* the curtains since I made them myself!}

{our robos have a temporary landing spot until I find them a better place}

{our 'empty' corner that Neil filled with my favorite chair once the
Christmas tree came down...we are open to ideas and suggestions!}

{the playroom - and it's odd that they had almost the same sofa we did!}


{the girls}

{the boys}


{three of Neil's guitars...and if you've been counting, there's 1-2-3-4-5-6-7 guitars *AND* one bass}

{Drew's changing table - a necessary staple in our bedroom...hopefully, not for much longer}

{the horrible excuse for a playscape, though I must admit it looks pretty good here}

Monday, January 26, 2009

12 random things about Drew

Today on Facebook, many are taking part of an e-mail circular by sharing 25 random things. I was tagged by Alice last night and an hour of my take apart the closet and re-organize it was spent sharing my randoms. After today's debacle with the phone, I thought it might be a good idea to focus on all the positives about Drew. You know. To keep me in line and not wanting to sell him.

So here goes; 12 randoms that is. After all, I've got dinner to make and whatnot.

1.) He's very snuggly.
2.) He loves to give kisses.
3.) He loves to blow kisses.
4.) He thinks he's all grown up when he yells/squawks out 'MAAAA!' or 'MAAMUH!'
5.) I love the way he says 'Thank You' - 'teh tuh'. And he says it each and every time it's warranted. He knows. We've trained him well.
6.) He has a super cute cowboy walk (swagger) and he holds his hands up by his armpits. He's a hoot to watch.
7.) Whenever he has a boo boo or isn't feeling well, he almost always is comforted by scooping him up and giving him some love.
8.) He has the best little piggy squeal for a laugh.
9.) He has a certain order to his nap time or bedtime. First, his blue waffle blanket, then his white and blue blanket, followed by his monkey blanket and then his BlaBla monkey. And, of course, his pacifier.
10.) He's the first kiddo we've had that bears any resemblance to his momma. :)
11.) His hair. Oh holy canolis, the HAIR!!
12.) And of course, his legacy of being born in the car. What well-respected entry would fail to acknowledge his 'roots'? lol

One of those days, and imagine it happening on a Monday?

{we bid thee farewall, a loyal friend and true}

Mondays always get the bad rap for being *that* day. I mean, why not? Coming off a weekend it's the one day that's statistically guaranteed to disappoint*. Really and truly I can only think of a handful of Mondays that really fit the bill of a day gone awry.

Today was immeasurably one of those days.


We leave all our doors shut in our house for a reason. To keep little hands and feet away from and out of trouble. Our first floor guest bathroom is one of those areas and it's adjacent to our office. After spending a few minutes tidying up the kitchen, I realized Drew was a little too quiet and immediately started looking for him. One of my fears is that the bathroom door is left open and he'll decide to go snorkeling in the toilet. Yeah. Gross. So, after seeing he wasn't in our room or bathroom or hadn't locked himself in my closet, yet again, I went straight for the front/guest bathroom. I saw a bright glow coming from the bottom of the freshly flushed toilet.

Not much causes me to gasp, but I think I stopped breathing once it registered that my dear sweet diabolical little boy had found my iPhone and chucked it into the toilet. He left a trail too. He grabbed the toilet paper after he was done and walked off with it into the office where I found him trying to grab the wireless mouse and keyboard; he was probably plotting his next death by drowning.

So, I stuck my hand in the toilet. I did mention it was freshly flushed, did I not? I never want to do that again, by the way. I tried like bloody hell to take it out of its case to see what the damage was. I pressed the buttons to turn it off and back on. The Apple sign popped up and a 1/2 second of relief was immediately squashed by its inability to turn off and then the glow magnified what could only be the water damage claiming it's victim. It was like watching a piece of paper meeting water. It skimmed across before completely taking over. What a cruel death. Glug, glug, glug...

I've owned a cell phone for almost 12 years. I've never had anything remotely negligent happen to my phone before today.

And now, as I sit here watching the "restore in progress" on the new 3G that I went out and bought, I am wondering if my contact list and calendar and photos will be (could be) retrieved. That's the most important thing to me.

Are there far worse things to be upset about in this great world? Absolutely. But let me just have my few hours of mourning a phone I loved.

Oh, and be sure to look out for my e-mail from you soon asking you (yet again) for all your contact information.

{Mr. Phone is surrounded by rice, in an effort to revive it. I would say 'results at 10', but we won't know for sure if it works for a few days at the least}

*Disclaimer: not based on facts of any sort, just my own personal opinion

Friday, January 23, 2009

Saying goodbye is hard...

{Paige looks back, as if to say "this is *my* Grandma!"}

Paige has always been our little snuggle bug. Whenever she's in need of affection, she has no problem crawling into our laps and curling up. When Grandma and Paka were visiting, she immediately latched onto Grandma and made sure she knew she was 'Grandma's girl'. She even went so far as to let Paka know (while she was sitting on his lap), in no uncertain terms "I like Grandma best!". So, when it was time to go, it was no surprise that the waterworks appeared under the guise of 'please don't take away my blankie!'. She was missing *her* grandma.

{Grandma and Paige work on some much needed coloring}

{Then relax with some much needed reading about the meanest doll in the world}

{just before we left for the airport - see Paige's smile through the tears?}

{"I'm going to miss you, Grandma!"}

{See? These eyes don't lie!}

{I think I'll miss *you* most of all, Scarecrow.}

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

A first haircut, a new look

{January 6, 2009}

Two weeks ago, Drew finally had an old friend amputated. I'd love to say I'm kidding, but his personality changed when his hair was lopped off. He seems to be much more short-tempered. It could be his recent struggle with autonomy that just accidentally coincided with his hair cut, but I wonder if he's feeling the strain of losing part of his trademark look.

I've always been very sensitive to his gorgeous locks of hair. He has been the only kiddo who didn't rub off a line of hair as an infant or didn't lose the front half of his hair just in time for baldy baptism pictures.


Drew kept every single hair on his perfectly shaped head. I didn't realize how much of an identifier it was for other people until we were approached by a total stranger at church this past weekend who jokingly and lovingly lamented the loss of his hair. She just kept saying how much he looked like a little kid now. The funny thing is I've heard the opposite comment and completely agreed with that too. In ways, yes, he does look like a little kid. But an online budy (Emily) said: Oh he looks so different!!!!! Actually more like a baby if that makes sense! Thanks for posting these...he is SO cute!


I have to say, I was a little shocked at how well he went along with everything. Almost like we'll pay for his first visit with his subsequent visits, lol. I think he was too stunned by the whole thing to really understand much; just that this lady wouldn't get out of his face and kept looking him over making sure it was all even. We arrived at Snip Its just as they opened (this is the same place Paige got her first haircut) so we were the only ones there and the other gal blew some bubbles to keep Drew entertained. And it was truly a literal five minute haircut. The stylist took his first two snips and put them into a baggie. A few minutes later I found myself asking them to save all of it. I remember saying: "I know this is weird and I'm not sure what I'll do with all of his hair, but I just know I can't let go of it right now". I was ready to part with the look, but not the hair. Fortunately, I must not be the only person to ask for all of the salvageable snips.

{a new man is born}