-A mostly true journey of a girl, her man and their three kids; all trying to live harmoniously in a house somewhere in Utah. Names and exact locations may be changed in order to protect the grouchy.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Thanksgiving comes early..

Okay, so the big Turkey Day doesn't come until the end of November. I get that. I also get that today is actually Halloween. Here in Utah, it has become custom to celebrate major holidays on Saturdays when they fall on Sundays. I don't always agree, but since we are the ones who moved here, we follow the rules :)

The title of the post is what is important today. I'm thankful. For so many things. For so many people. Lately though, a few people have come through and reminded me exactly how blessed I am. I started this blog to show some of the things that we've improved in the house. Today, I want to thank a few people for improving my world. Not to embarrass them, I'll simply tell you a little about a few of them...

A genuine THANK YOU to-

1. My amazing next door neighbor, K.  Our youngest is being home-schooled. Realizing he wouldn't have a class party or school parade to attend, she invited him to a Halloween party she was throwing for her day-care children. This is the same woman who lets our baby have "recess" and after-school playtime at her house. An angel who absolutely didn't have to include him, but did. He had a blast.




2. A parent of two of my students. This mom, L., came to our house to "Boo!" us. For those of you not familiar, getting "booed" is a neighborhood game where essentially, you doorbell ditch someone and leave secret treats. I'm grateful that even though she doesn't live in my neighborhood (not even close), she knew how much it would mean to our boys....


3. More than a couple of girlfriends listened to me rant and rave over some family problems I experienced this last week. For that, and helping me feel like I was normal (whatever that is..), I sincerely thank you.

4. That man of mine. I can't put into words how that guy comes through for me. Over and over. It's ridiculous how patient, supportive and genuinely kind he is.


5. The man's Grandma. She passed away over two years ago, but let me tell you something. Every time I would complain about something going wrong in our renovations, every time I'd plop myself on the sofa and feel like things weren't going right....I'd stare at this pumpkin tin. She made it during one of her crafty classes in the retirement home. Just look at that thing. I love it. It's now one of my favorite possessions because it reminds me of her and how kind she always was to me, even when I didn't deserve it. This woman lived fully, simply and happily. She and the others remind me that being kind can make all the difference in the world to someone. Who could ask for anything more?



So it's just a short list. Not nearly complete. But there are so many times I feel like one of those puzzle pieces that just doesn't quite fit in anywhere. You know, the one you have to kind of sand or bend so it will fit? Well that takes work. These people took that time, and for that, I'm so very thankful.

Happy Halloween, friends. May you find many blessings today.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

How to test a marriage....

Me:  Honey,  I want to redo the stairs.

The man:  Why? What's wrong with the way they are now??  (this is a very common saying for the husband. He's used it MANY times...)

Me:  Because I've tripped both up and down them, they creak like crazy...they bow and they have carpet. They are also the first thing people see when they enter our house. I've been saving the money to do it, so what do you say?

The man : Oh. You've never mentioned them before.

WAIT A MINUTE. BACK UP.  To the First time WE entered this house.

Me: Oooh, the stairs.
The man: What about them?
Me: They're carpeted.

Present time- #102 on my crazy list. I do not love carpet. The only thing I dislike MORE than carpet is someone else's old carpet. I have asthma (so does the man) and I once heard that carpet is the biggest air filter in a house. I've helped change our furnace filters, so I can only imagine what lives in and under carpet. I warned you about my sanity. Every once in a while, I also have to remind the man.....

Me: So, can we redo them?
The man : You really don't like them?

And now it's on.

Let me preface this and every story about this house with the fact that we knew and loved the builders of this home. I am not faulting anyone for the problems we find and/ or create.. We bought the house knowing its history and for my part, would have purchased any home associated with those angels based on sentimentality alone. That story, my friends, is for another time.

What I didn't know (or wasn't willing to admit), was that this renovation was going to be a lot of work.  The house, as I have mentioned before, is nowhere near square. The steps squeaked for a reason. Not one of them was the same size as another. The stairs had 35+ years of holding up little AND big feet running, stomping, creeping and yes, tripping up and down them. Some steps were made with pressed wood, some were cracked and at least half of them were not completely attached to the frame. In the nail strips were various versions of every other family's carpet. (I can't even imagine the green shag...). Worst of all, when we pulled off the carpet and padding- upon each stair, was at least 1/8 inch of a mixture of sand/silt/dust.....UGH.

For those of you who know me well enough to even ask, the answer is yes. I left that silly garland up the whole time. It reminded me that the project needed to be done before Christmas.... :)

After much measuring, sanding, staining, painting, hammering, gluing....laughing, yelling and using a few words I wouldn't say in front of my Grandmother, we finished the stairs. We still have to redo the railing, but right now, I'm completely happy and grateful that the husband hasn't kicked me out with the old carpet.
Happy Thursday, Friends.







Wednesday, October 27, 2010

"Would you like the happy or sad VIRGIN?"

-My absolute favorite quote this week from a 7 year old reading student. He was trying to ask me which "version" of the story "Little Red Riding Hood" I'd like to hear.  I'd tell you my answer.... if only I could remember what I was thinking through the simultaneous laughing and crying...

Happy Wednesday, friends :)

Monday, October 25, 2010

It's a really good thing I'm not into lifting weights.....

Hello old friends! I can't imagine any of you are still following this blog. I closed my eyes and summer was gone. And then September. Suddenly, it's nearing the end of October..... Ahhh! How does this happen?

Well, let's see...We DID get that floor in the living room finished. It is pretty straight and we're all still living under one roof- I'm calling that a flipping miracle. Because the work never ends and the floor turned out so well, I asked the husband if we could replace our base boards. They were small, heavily scratched and cracked. We're assuming they must have been original to the house because when we tried to pull them away from the wall, we could only conclude that someone was scared they wouldn't stay. Those babies were attached with nails longer than my arms. It's a great thing I don't exaggerate.....

So. On to the post title. Why is it a good thing I'm not into lifting weights? Um, that would be because they are the "nails" holding up my new base boards. Oh sure, we started two of the walls. But then something came up, like, I don't know. Some one's dinner party? Water main break? No electricity? Probably not. More like...."What's for dinner?", " I need to check Facebook."  "Want to talk to the neighbors?" ...Oh, if there is a job to be done, be sure we will come up with any reason not to completely finish it. Don't feel bad for us. We'll get there. I just have to call a friend and have her "ask" my husband if we might have any weights she could borrow.....



Here is  one of the "cleanest" views of the berber floor. See the teeny tiny baseboards?

Here is a view of the new floor. I really love it. The floor still squeaks in places. We replaced a lot of the floorboards. I was amazed at how "Not Square" the room was. Look at how cute the new baseboards are! The ones you see are actually nailed in. Woo Hoo!

These, not so much :)







Happy, Happy Autumn, friends!!
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