Tuesday, November 30, 2010

the TRUE test for A.D.D.

Here's how to determine if you are A.D.D.  Combine the following:

  • packing all your belongings in boxes for a move
  • taking down all the boxes of decorations from the attic to put up Christmas
  • deciding what is being donated and put all that in boxes
  • and, oh yea - doing all your daily routines to keep the house and life in order.

I literally cannot get from one simple task to the next without getting completely off track!

Sadly, we've determined we just cannot get the new house completed and moved into before Christmas. I've come to terms with the new time table.  Believe me, it took me a while to be okay with it.  There are positives though:

  • We can decorate now for one last Christmas season of memory-making moments in our old house.  
  • I can breath easier and actually enjoy the month of December.  
  • I can pack at a much more manageable pace (hence the breathing easier)
  • Finally, since January is usually such a let down and the house seems so empty after taking down all the holiday cheer, at least now we'll have something wonderful to look forward to!

Monday, November 29, 2010

Well color me happy!!!

The walls are painted!  And yes, I cried. 

THUMPER - Living/Dining/Hall 


SAILOR BOY - Sunroom

GOTHIC AMETHYST - Master Bedroom

EVENING HUSH - Thomas' room

WHIPPIT - Office/Guest Room

All the ceilings, closets, pantry, and basement stairwell 
are now crisp, clean white...as well as all the window and door trim!  

And just for another something pretty -
here's the new light at the front door.
PS - we got this on sale for $15.87!! Isn't it purdy? 

Progress people!

Friday, November 26, 2010

New traditions

Thanksgiving has been tough for me the past several years.  I've been holding onto the memories and traditions of all the thanksgivings growing up - my childhood home; my mom's cooking; aunts, uncles, cousins and friends all gathered together.

But my childhood home has been sold.

My parents are in Florida.

My cousins and I have our own homes and families now.

Thanksgiving just hasn't been the same.

Nor will it ever be.

Life moves on.   

And you cannot make new traditions, or give old ones new life if you don't open yourself up to let them in.

So this year I decided to really make a concerted effort to focus on new traditions and new memories.

For MY family. 

Yesterday morning, we put on our sweats, hats and gloves and went to the neighborhood park to play soccer - just the 3 of us.  Typically I power walk with my ipod on Thanksgiving morning - I truly enjoy that hour alone.  But I really wanted us to have family exercise disguised as an activity - and it was just plain fun!  For an hour, in the cold, we ran around the field, chased the ball, took shots on goals, and laughed and laughed and laughed!  Thomas LOVES to play soccer, and of course Paulo does too.  (I'm so glad that was the one sport I played and really liked since it seems it will be a big part of my life)

After our soccer game, we walked over to my father-in-law's house to say good morning, have a quick cup of coffee and visit.  Then we headed back home, and warmed up with coffee and pumpkin bread while watching the parade.  The Macy's day parade is a MUST for me - and thanks to DVR the parade was on our schedule - gotta love DVR.  (Next to the iPod I think its the BEST invention - my shows, when I want, and the ability to skip commercials.  But I digress.)

Thanksgiving dinner was at Paulo's brother and sister-in-laws house.  It was delicious meal and a very relaxing  afternoon with the combined families.

We capped the day off with the town bonfire - SO AWESOME!  The fire is lit at 7pm and lots of people in town come to hang out.  Its a great time to catch up with neighbors and friends, and Thomas got to run around with kids - he loves that  We were home in our jammies by 8:15pm - our bellies full and our bodies tired.  We all slept like babies last night.

Paulo and I both feel like we have finally created our own thanksgiving day...

one that is worthy of making an annual tradition. 

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Why I blog

"Maybe the reason we all love stories is because 
we are - each one of us - 
in a story right now 
 John Eldridge

And that, in a nutshell, is why I blog. 

To tell MY story.  

OUR story

People who know me know I love to make scrapbooks.  I've been doing it since I was in high school.  My scrapbooks have evolved over the years - from cutting up photos with scissors and using a glue stick, to using fancy cutting tools and matching embellishments on my pages. 

I like think of my blog as another type of scrapbook.

A scrapbook of us...by us...for us.  

But I also love being part of something bigger.  Let's face it - we all want to be a part of something bigger.

And I love being part of this blogging community. 

I've connected with women from all over the world (yes, really).  When I say "connected" - I mean through their words, stories, and pictures.  I've cried with ANGIE, and I've laughed til I cried with COURTNEY.  I've had the priviledge of praying with ADRIENNE, and enjoyed treats and ideas from KENDRA.  I even have the joy of keeping up with treasured family and friends who I don't get see in person as often as I like, but do get to "see" online, like AMY and JILL.

I've learned from and more importantly, have been inspired by all these women and countless more, through their personal challenges and triumphs, and I am honored to be included in their journeys, if only in spirit.

Many sites advise to "define your bloggy purpose" - and there's a set of guidelines to help you do just that.  For now, I guess I'd have to say that my blog purpose is MY STORY - whatever chapter of life I happen to be on that day. Cooking, decorating, stressing, praying, learning, playing, glorifying God - that's what my scrapbooks are about, and that is what my blog is about. 

And I thank you readers, whoever you are, wherever you are.  Thank you for reading along in our life.  We are honored to have you share our story.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Are you ready for some football?

PHEW - that was a BIG game.  I need to rest now Mama. 

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

One step forward, two steps back

Aaaah, the house renovation.  I told you I wouldn't complain, but boy was I stupid!  I really had no idea how huge this would be.  Don't get me wrong - E.V.E.R.Y day there is so much progress, but every day there is also so much more to still get done in order to move in.  And my husband is working so tirelessly.  I'm so proud of him.  I will say that over and over and over again.

There's good news, bad news, good news.

GOOD NEWS - We're getting central air.

BAD NEWS - ...because we have to get a whole new heating system.  The boiler went ka-put. We knew it was old, but had really hoped we could get another year or two out of it.  Based on many factors, we've decided to put in a forced hot air system rather than replace the boiler. Thankfully, this all happened before all the major work was finished because the fitting and cutting for the new system will make quite a mess. 

GOOD NEWS - the plaster is just about all done!  We thought the development of the heating system issue would really set us back a week or so, but my brilliant husband figured out how we he could press on and so we did.  Finally - some good update pics to share.





And just for fun - some pics of Thomas enjoying the new yard.  We are also enjoying the new yard because it is FENCED IN!!  We feel so much safer with Thomas running around. (and before you email me - NO, he is never out in the yard alone, but you know how quickly a toddler can out-run you when he' making a break for it!)

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Oh no you didn't!

Oh yes we did!

We did it.

We have become






Can you even stand it???  Paulo says he's never felt sexier!!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Kitchen updates

A lot has been happening at the house.  Big, important stuff - plumbing, framing, electrical.  But not real post and picture worthy - well, unless you want to see all my new plugs and recessed lights. boring

I can tell you one exciting thing.  While trying to install a new plug in the kitchen, Paulo discovered that the wall he was working on was actually a false wall.  It's the wall behind the floor to ceiling cabinets on the right hand side of this picture here

Paulo tore down the false wall to find 1.5 more feet.  Soooo, after lots of measuring and discussing, we've decided it makes more sense to build a walk in pantry in this space instead of putting cabinets back in.  Yes you read that right -  WALK IN PANTRY!!!!  I cannot begin to tell you how excited I am - first tons of cabinets in the kitchen itself, and now a walk in pantry!!  You have to understand, our current home is SO lacking in storage.  Not just in the kitchen, but throughout the entire house.  When we looked at this house and discovered both a coat closet AND a linen closet, I was giddy.  To now be adding a full pantry, I'm over the moon!

We also decided to cut a "pass through" window from the dining room into the kitchen.  We did this to allow more light into the kitchen, but also to give a more open feel between the 2 rooms.  Now from the kitchen, through this window, I can see into the living and dining rooms and the den.  Here are the before and afters.

 BEFORE view from dining room
 BEFORE view from kitchen
 AFTER view from dining room - or actually "during"
AFTER view from kitchen (again - "during")

Plasterers are due in this weekend - I'll post more pics once they are done.  That should really show progress.

Monday, November 1, 2010


The month of October could be considered a dry run for the holiday season in terms of shopping and celebrations.  We have 4 October birthdays in this family, and Halloween.  My parents also head south in October, so that's one more family dinner in the month. This year I cooked Thanksgiving dinner for us all.  And yes - that is when I started listening to Christmas music.  Our tradition has always been holiday music can start Thanksgiving night - and since it was our Thanksgiving, the carols began! (like I needed a reason - ha!) 

Of course, this year we have added the big renovation project that is now in full swing over at the new house.  At the moment, it looks like things are getting worse rather than better.  For example, here is the before pic of the kitchen.

 And here is the kitchen now. 


All I can say is this house is going to exceed my wildest dreams when all is done.  We have decided to do a little more than originally planned.  I know - I'm the ONLY who didn't understand that ALWAYS happens when you do a reno - more, better, and custom!  But more on the house later.

For now, here is a smattering of random thoughts and pics from our whirlwind October:

Thomas birthday party was wonderful.  We had the family, which this year included our cousins Carrie and McKenzie - we were so excited to have them join us.  Thomas is in love with monster trucks, so we had a monster truck cake made for his special day.  In Thomas' very own words "it was ....AWESOME!"

Halloween was fun, despite a very sickly boy.  He has a raging cold, but did we keep him home?  Of course not.  There was candy out there for the getting!!  The carousel in town had a party, and then we went 'trick or treating' to just a few houses.  He got a kick out of everything.

I ask you - have you ever seen a cuter monkey?

In the midst of all this craziness, Paulo worked 67 hours last week - in just 5 days.  YES, I'm telling the honest truth here. And yes, that is actually legal - go figure.  He is the steward for his shop and it was contract negotiations last week.  UGH.  But - halleluiah - no strike, they got a contract, and they have jobs for the next 4 years.  Praise God!

AND...yes, the is more...AND, we have to buy a new car right now (don't ask - really).  So that has been going on for a few weeks and I think we finally have a deal. 

Phew - that was our whirlwind month, and we haven't even hit the holidays. 
Or finished the new house.
Or packed the old house.
Or moved. 

Gee - maybe I should be doing something else right now.  Bye!