Thursday, December 7, 2017

home updates: kitchen sink and coffee table edition

We finally got rid of our old constantly stained sink. No matter how hard I scrubbed, or how long the bleaching comet sat in there overnight, it remained stained.
ew
At the same time we did this we decided to put in a reverse osmosis system. I had one at my parents and I've always thought they were the "gold standard" of water purification. Then later we were talking to a neighbor who told us that our city has the best water in several local counties.... whoops... well, can't hurt! The system was $200 on amazon and it's installed now so it's staying.
new sink from Lowes
It took Doug a couple hours to install it. I think a couple frustrating hours actually. He had issues with the sink strainers leaking and the instructions on the part said only apply a bit of silicone and the guys at Lowes were like "oh no, you have to load it on". So he had a few trips back and forth, but eventually the leaks stopped.
Ta-da! The new sink is a little deeper and quite nice. We don't have an 'after' of the under the sink area. But the reverse osmosis system takes up almost the entire right hand side with just a little room for the container of trash bags. Surprisingly we still have enough room on the other side for everything else. There was a roaster pan that went out to the shed, but other than that, everything fits. And since I've used that pan once since getting it at my 2010 wedding, I figured it didn't matter too much being stored in the shed. I do miss that little ridge around the old sink for holding the sponge, but oh well.
The other new thing lately is a lovely new coffee table my dad built for us.
In the summer my dad said he had a piece of walnut wood that he was wondering if I wanted him to make anything. He had just finished making a table for my brother, and had a lull in his work, so I think he was getting crafty. I can't remember if it's from a tree he actually cut, I think so.
We had been using the coffee table I got for a previous wedding gift, and it was just laminated wood and getting chipped and peeling and the edges were sharp for a soon-to-be little walker. So I suggested a replacement coffee table. And Dad got right to work!
Pretty soon he had made it into boards, sanded it down, and put the pieces together to see how I liked the order.
I don't have more of his 'progress' pictures, but pretty soon he had it all built, then we chose a stain, and he stained it, varnished, and applied a wax topcoat. And then delivered it.
I love how he followed the natural pattern of the bark to make the rounded edges, it's so unique.
Our last table had this handy feature that the top lifted up, so I definitely wanted this one to do it too. And actually this one brings the top to a more appropriate level for working on the laptop or eating dinner, so that's awesome.
It's so beautiful. My dad is so talented!

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

food and concerts

Veggies to roast: potatoes, butternut squash, and rainbow carrots. August loves them.
We went to my parent's choir Christmas concert. It was really very beautiful. August was a good boy, I kept him busy by giving him one cheerio at a time out of my hand. It was like a 20:1 ratio of cheerios to songs, but oh well, they were multi-grain, and kept him quiet, am I right??
One song the attendees were invited to sing along with the choir. I had to post the words, they are so beautiful.
I heard the bells on Christmas day Their old familiar carols play And mild and sweet their songs repeat Of peace on earth good will to men
And in despair I bowed my head There is no peace on earth I said For hate is strong and mocks the song Of peace on earth, good will to men
Then rang the bells more loud and deep God is not dead, nor does he sleep (peace on earth, peace on earth) The wrong shall fail, the right prevail With peace on earth, good will to men
Here's a link so you can listen and sing along! :) (altho no organ on this track)
The organ was playing and everyone was singing. These are the times I miss being part of a more traditional church and the hymns and the organ. I really do like our church, but I miss that! And they had a couple songs with handbell accompaniment, and I miss that too, I miss playing handbells. I guess I'll let a little my preference worship style slide for solid biblical teaching, but I wish I could have both.
The next day mom watched August for a half day so I could go to a communication in healthcare class at work. It was actually pretty good. Then we met up afterwards at Unos for lunch. My friend Matt said August was behind because I haven't given him crayons yet. So here ya go August,
and this my friend is why I don't give him crayons!
I think he'll catch up come preschool!

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

everyday life

Feeling busy around here. I have 2 classes left to go in my nursing program and am just feeling busy with taking care of August, staying on top of homework, and the constant stream of laundry, house cleaning, and meals. I used to love to make dinner. Now I never know what to make. I think I wouldn't mind it still as much if I wasn't either 1) having to use my precious 'August is taking an afternoon nap and I have a bit of alone-time and I'd love to go read or watch tv' but instead I have to make dinner or 2) I wasn't constantly interrupted because he isn't napping, and won't play alone for 30 minutes without crying for me not being right there with him. But that is where we're at right now. We are eating more frozen pizzas than I'd like to admit.
Otherwise he remains a joy.
Yesterday was so sunny and gorgeous. We took a walk and he played in the leaves.
I have like 5 videos of him grabbing handful after handful of leaves and tossing them around. So cute!
Earlier this week we visited our friends Miralie and Micah.
Miralie just turned 2, I think Micah was in bed by the time I was taking pics.
Over the weekend we went over to visit Liz settled in at home with the new baby, and later she sent me this picture of Daniel modeling the fox hat I crocheted for him.
Crochet patterns are so hard to follow, that's a newborn size and it already is kinda small. Bummer!
We had a really nice Thanksgiving and were able to celebrate three times. My parents were going to be out of the state so we celebrated early with them, then on actual Thanksgiving we went and had dinner with my aunt and uncle who are vegetarians and fabulous cooks, and the day after we went and had another dinner with Doug's parents. Lucky us! I made this pumpkin cobbler two times, and it was very tasty.
Finally in a bit of gross news, I had been smelling a bad smell in the other living room where August has his toys and everything set up. I couldn't tell if it was spit up or what kind of smell. A couple days later I realized it was a "dead thing" smell. So when Doug came home we started looking around. First I looked behind the bookcase, nothing. Then Doug looked under the bookcase and said "there's a dead mouse under there." I thought he was teasing me but no...
Indeed there was a dead mouse under the bookcase. It remains unclear if the cat got him and then he crawled away to die? Regardless. SO GROSS. And absolutely disgusts me my son was playing FOR DAYS a mere foot away from a dead mouse. Yuck. I'm not sure where to go from here. We have a house from the 60s, and Doug has found mice in the crawl space and mice in the attic, so there is going to be one from time to time in the middle house layer too! Not sure if it's a good thing or a bad thing that we have a cat as we were still the ones to have to find it. So yeah, good times.
Other than that, we are all good and doing well, just busy :)

Monday, November 20, 2017

baby Daniel

Welcome to the world sweet baby Daniel!
My bf Liz had her second son last Friday and I had a front row seat! (back stage pass??)
She was due yesterday, my work weekend, and I was praying she'd have him Friday so I could be there. Thursday I texted her and she said nothing was going on, wake up Friday am to a text they were off to the hospital! Earlier in the pregnancy she said this time she wanted only her husband in the room, but closer too she made a best-friend exception, woohoo! I was also lucky enough to be present for her first son. It is such a miracle to witness new life coming into the world!
We had a couple things on our schedule that day that I ended up skipping, August's first chiropractic appt (I was interested to see what they would do for a baby?!) and there was a special Christmas thing at Meadowbrook Mansion (built by one of the Dodge brothers) we were supposed to go to with Doug's parents. But I was so glad I was able to be there with Liz, as I said, it's such a miracle.
It was also cool that the anesthesiologist let me watch her give the epidural, she was teaching these two medical students and I asked if I could watch too and she was explaining everything she was doing. Cool! It's like I could do it now too ;)
Anyway, after a long journey for Liz, little Daniel (or big 8# 1oz Daniel) was born healthy and with loud little lungs!
Doug was a huge help watching August alone an extra day, I know it's hard when I have my work weekends, of course we love August, but "single-parent" 13+ hour days are very long feeling. He brought August to the hospital at one point since I hadn't packed any pumping stuff and was feeling the pain. So that was appreciated too.
The new family is settled back at home and off to a good start. Thank you Lord for this new little blessing!
For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. Psalm 139:13-14

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

3 years!

Doug and I celebrated our 3 year anniversary last week. It feels good being in a marriage that feels very steady and solid. It was nice to be able to 'get away' for the evening.
I worked on our actual anniversary, but when I came home my mom had babysat and she made us an oatmeal cake (the same one she made for our wedding day!) and Doug had a nice variety of little treats for me in the Hawaiian theme to remind me of our honeymoon (he's even wearing his Hawaii hat).
The 'traditional' gift for 3 years is leather, sometimes we do the traditional gifts, sometimes not. This year I ordered a custom leather bookmark for Doug kinda last minute so it wasn't even here on time, but it said "We are only 3 chapters in, but I love where our story is going." Awwww. What I'm most excited for is this anniversary album that I just ordered, it fits in perfectly with my 5 year journal I keep for myself, and now a mama's 5 year journal I'm writing stuff in about August. I love that one day we will be able to sit down and look back at all our memories together. It just came today so we are going to start filling it out.
Friday night we had Liz and Mark (and Ben) over for dinner, that was fun. I hope our boys love playing together! Ben kept trying to hug August and Liz said the next day he kept asking about him and wanting to hug him more. Sweet.
Turns out he got his wish sooner than expected! Doug's parents were supposed to come watch August Saturday so we could go to a movie and dinner, but his mom got sick so we were babysitter-less. We ended up asking Liz and Mark to watch August (and yes, Liz a true bestie at 9 months pregnant) said yes so we could still go out and celebrate.
She sent me these pics of our boys having dinner while we were at dinner.
We went to this kinda fancy re-done restaurant The White Horse Inn.
We lived it up with appetizers of fried Brussel sprouts with parmesan, fried goat cheese with a raspberry sauce, Doug had the jerk chicken pasta, and I had salmon, and then we had two dessert, a plate of 'world famous' cookies (mine are still better tho), and oatmeal pie which was sadly not very good at all. But we talked about life, marriage, goals, and it was wonderful.
We are trying something new during the weeks of naming a day 'date night' and even if we don't go out, it will mean putting August to bed and sitting down with tea or something and making time together to reconnect and enjoy each other, it's getting too easy to get lost in the parenthood monotony and chores and everything going on. So I think this will be a nice idea to stay strong and connected.
I love you Doug, I can't wait for so many more years together!

Thursday, November 2, 2017

August's birthday party!

I cannot believe my baby boy is one already! It's so true what they say, the days are long but the years are short.
I had to work on his actual birthday, so the weekend before we had his party in the park. When we were making the guest list we kept adding and adding, so we had decided to rent a pavillion in the nearby park instead of squishing everyone into our house. It worked out perfectly and there was a playground nearby for the bigger kids. Thank the Lord it was a beautiful fall day in the 70s!
And more so, thank the Lord for our healthy boy and family and friends who celebrated with us. We had the typical pizza, but I made salad, and the desserts were a bit different with cider mill donuts, cider, and a caramel apple station. It was good.
I never did make it all the way around the room with the camera, but we had both our parents, and then lots of friends, and even some neighbor friends.
August's gift from momma and dada was a busy board that we made for him. He likes it. It sits now in his play area blocking him from getting the cat's hammock. It has one of those door stopper things on there so poor September will be sleeping and mere inches away August is repeatedly hitting the stopper boiiiiing, boiiiiiiing, boiiing haha.
His "cake" was kind of a let down. First I had the candle lit then thought, am I just going to sit here and watch him put his hand in fire?! So I blew it out. Then we all gathered round and sang, and then he just sat there forever. His cake was an oatmeal shape and frosted with sweet potatoes/molasses/cinnamon with coconut sprinkles. And he likes sweet potato. Anyway, it wasn't the smash cake photo op everyone was hoping for.
Oh well. Daddy brought out his slack line and so some people were doing that
The party was a success. We actually felt bad because that night August had diarrhea until 2am to the point where I was thinking of taking him to the hospital because he was just screaming and wouldn't be consoled. And looking back we think he had been kind of mellow during the party because he might have been sick. So we felt pretty lousy for not even having noticed :( thankfully whatever it was, he's ok again now. Just as I had told Doug if he had one more episode we were going, then he nursed, and fell asleep and slept through the rest of the night. Thank God.
On his real birthday he spent the day with Daddy and they came and visited mom at work and brought donuts and cider for her work buddies.
Then mean old mama made him sit for his 12 months pictures. He was tired and so squirmy, it didn't work out so great.
Happy birthday my August, I love you so much more than I knew I ever could. Thank you for making me a mom. I hope you have so many more happy birthdays!