Saturday, March 27, 2010


We moved in PODS a couple of years ago. It’s Portable On Demand Storage. They bring a storage container on the back of a truck and leave it in your driveway while you’re loading it. Then they come back and pick it up. At that point they can take it straight to your destination or they will store it for you.

We had a one month delay between the time we left Alabama and arrived in Kansas, so we stored our things with them for a time. This time, we’re packing up all that we can to make our house less cluttered and make the inevitable end of packing up the house that much easier. Hopefully we'll have our garage, save some tools, cleared out this weekend, along with a good bit of stuff from in the house. It’s an exciting and stressful time.

It’s pretty interesting to watch the machinery work, though I can’t stand to see them swinging it back and forth with our things inside, today it was empty, so I was able to take some pictures.

They drive up.

Back it in.

Move the frame of the truck away from the POD.

Raise the POD in the air.

Move the truck out from under the Pod, and set it down.

Friday, March 26, 2010

His First Meal

I've been waiting to feed Nate his first cereal. Generally four months is considered a good time to start, but we hadn't had his 4 month appointment yet. I haven't been getting much sleep with this little fellow, so I finally gave in last night and let him have his first taste of cereal! By the way--it didn't help--he was still up three times.

Hmm. This highchair tastes good.

What's that?

What are you thinking?!

Maybe that's not so bad.

Thursday, March 25, 2010





I've obviously been a tad busy lately. I've packed every single one of these little guys (plus several others) all by my lonesome, despite two little gals who are sure they should be allowed to wrap our breakables in the cool paper, right after they color on it and rip it to shreds of course!

I grabbed a baggie of spaghetti sauce out of the freezer to thaw today--we're having to eat our way through our freezer too. Two bags came together. I evidently froze them to each other. Boo. I had to separate them with running water. I will say that's better than the time I put spaghetti sauce on the wire rack in our freezer on the fridge and it oozed through the wire rack and froze that way, making it impossible to pull the baggie out until I thawed out the freezer!

Then as I picked up the little guy,

Yeah, this one,

He had the biggest spit up he's ever had. Over my shoulder, down my back, and splashing on the floor. Kate disapproved loudly!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Banking and Mortgage and Selling, Oh My

As everyone knows, the economy is not excellent at current, making selling a house more challenging (no one expects their house to depreciate by $10,000 in 2.5 years). We expect that we might be able to get right about what we owe (so much for our down payment and the extra money I've added to the principal every month, huh?). That sounds okay--breaking even, but then you have to add in the thousands in realty fees.

The agent I spoke with yesterday recommened a short sale. In this you take what you can get for the house, the bank accepts the lesser amount, writes off the difference, and you're done. Sort of. You do have to pay taxes on this as income and you get a bad mark on your credit report.

Rather than do the easy thing, Justin and I had decided to work out a payment schedule with the bank to pay off the difference with interest. I called the lender yesterday and the guy was somewhat sympathetic. He said he knew we were trying to do the right thing, but that they would still list it as a short sale, even after we paid it off--making it harder to get a good interest rate in the future, plus we'd be giving them the money we should be saving for a down payment. He said they will write off the difference--basically, just telling us to take the money and run.

I don't get it. One would think that they would want their money. We have perfect credit--always pay on time, always over pay. I would think we'd be as safe a risk as they come.

Now to decide what to list the house for and what to do about the bank.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010


Kate, about the train whistle she'd recently been complaining about: It's like music IN my ears.

* * * * *

Me: Gabby, take the potty ring off your head.
Gabby: I needs it.
Me: Gabby, it needs to go on the toilet.
Gabby: I needs to wear it.
Me: Why?
Gabby: I need to wear da wing so I can be mawied to you.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

BIG News

We're taking this show on the road.

Justin has accepted a new position in Tennessee. This will put us about an hour from my parents (instead of about 9), and we'll be about 7 hours from Justin's parents (instead of 14).

There will be some sad things about leaving here. We'll have to say good-bye to some dear friends, great colleagues that Justin has worked with, my MOPS group, Kate's gymnastics, and our church.

We are very excited about the opportunity to be so close to 'home' again--in a town I'd actually heard of before 3 years ago. Kate is excited she will start kindergarten this fall instead of having to wait another year because of the different cut off dates.

Now for a few pesky details, like selling the house, packing, and finding a new place to lay our heads down to rest. No biggie, right?

I'm sure there will be some great posts about boxes, packing tape, and the munchkins to come!

Happy Spring! On Thursday it seemed that spring had sprung a couple of day early. Justin's parents were here for a little visit.

We pressed his dad into slave labor working to help with a little sprucing up around the house.

The girls played outside.

Then, yesterday, the snow began to fall. We weren't even sure that his parents would be able to leave this morning, as the road they needed to head east was listed as snow cover 1/3 of the way across MO.

In the end they were able to go and the girls were able to do this.

Gabby even made sure Nate wasn't completely left out.

Well the calendar says it's spring anyway.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Sleep Deprived

Dear Nate,

I'm sorry I complained about getting up three or four times a night. I know that rolling is a neat new skill, but can you stop doing it at night and then getting so mad about it? Please forgive me and end this punishment. I don't like getting up ten times a night.

Yours exhaustedly,

Sunday, March 14, 2010

New 'Do

It's gone. My long hair is officially gone...again. Every couple of years I go and have it cut much shorter. I've been measuring it for awhile now. It finally got to where I had the 10" that I was willing to part with. (Yes, I ended that sentence with a preposition, but it sounds silly and presumtious the other way.)

I headed off to the hairdresser with my hair tie and a plastic bag in hand. 10", plastic bag? I had the gal hack the pony tail off. Then we bagged it up. She washed what was left of my hair and then neatened it up. I'll be sending the hair off to Locks of Love.

I like my hair long, Justin likes my hair short, so I've done this before. Last time it was over a foot--and I nearly cried. This time it wasn't so traumatic.

I didn't take a before picture, since it was a last minute decision--everyone was behaving and Justin thought he could handle the munchkins for awhile, so I took off lickity split before someone melted down or he came to his senses, so this is from last Sunday at the zoo with the girlies.

Here are some after's

FYI, if you decide to donate, Fantastic Sam's offers half off of your hair cut if you're donating it.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Nate's 4 Months Old!

Time has passed so quickly. Our little guy is already four months old some how.

He's been rolling both ways for a week or so now, but in the past couple of days he's turned it into a sport. Gone are the days of leaving him on a blanket and having him be there when I get back. He has found he doesn't like walls or chairs--they get in his way. As for books, he'll just roll right on over those!

He still loves "Old McDonald" and pulling my hair as much as ever. He's also found that he likes to play 'Trot a Little Horsey' and 'Peek-a-Boo.'

He'd been getting up four times a night. I just couldn't keep up, so I started mild sleep training--I won't feed him until it's been 3-4 hours since his last feeding. Now he's being fed twice at night and generally gets up one time between those, requiring me to get up and soothe him until he goes back to sleep. I don't think I've ever been so tired for this long in my entire life. Mama wants a nap. He's luck he's so cute!

I weighed him on the bathroom scale and got that he weighs 16 lbs. this morning. And 24" with my yard stick--highly precise instruments, they are not, but a good guess-timate, since he's not scheduled to see the doctor until the end of March for his official stats.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Just a Touch of 'Business'

I'm being spammed on my comments. I'm deleting what I catch, so hopefully no one will come across them. To that end, I've enabled moderation for comments on my older posts. I'm not trying to be difficult, but I don't want to be the source of a bunch of junk either. Hopefully I won't have to enable moderation for the newer posts, but we'll see how it goes. Comment away and I'll clear your comments as soon as I can.

On a side note, can I say how tasteless it is to spam someone's birth story? And their two year old's birthday? The comments don't even make sense for the most part--there are a bunch of boxes and then some random letters. Of course, there is one word that can be made out--this is the internet after all.

Now back to our regularly scheduled blog.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Nate's First Professional Pictures

I love pictures. I've been quite pleased with getting the kiddos pictures at Target the past few years. We used Sears for Kate's first photos, they take excellent pictures as well, but they changed their portrait package that was covered by the coupon, so we switched companies.

I took Nate for his first portraits yesterday. They turned out really well. Some of the images were lost as they were being transferred from the camera to the computer, so we were given the Smile Station (digital images that aren't of a quality to be printed) for free.

The photographer took her time and really worked with the little guy to get some cute smiles.

*I was not compensated in any way for this review.*

Saturday, March 6, 2010


As I was driving yesterday, I hear a panicked little voice from the back of the van, "I don't have me coat!" That's right Miss Gabby because--you don't need a coat! Well, at least we didn't yesterday afternoon.

We met a friend and her son at the park. For the first time in many moons we were able to enjoy the fresh air and sunshine. In fact, this was the first time that Nate had ever been outside other than to run in or out of a building, ever!


Gabby Girl

The little helpers pushing Baby J's stroller

Me with all the munchkins:
Baby J, Kate, Gabby, & Nate, all snug in the Moby wrap

Me and my little brood
(Thanks to Ann for some of the pictures and a great time!)

I even opened up the windows to let some fresh air in.

Friday, March 5, 2010

A Day in the Life

Here's our approximate schedule for the typical day. Is there such a thing as a typical day?!

?:00 AM Nate is fed--usually twice
5:45 AM Wake Up, Shower
6:30 AM Nurse Nate, drink coffee (thank you Justin), spend some time at the computer
7:00 AM Gabby gets up
7:45 AM Kate's alarm goes off. This is when the day really starts. I get breakfast together for the munchkins and work around the kitchen. After this we play, etc.
9:00 AM Sesame Street for the girls. Nate used to nap at this time, but not so much anymore--at three months he naps one hour a day in the afternoons (YIKES!). I try to get some house work done. Alternately we use this time between 9-11 for errands.
10:00 AM Free play
11:00 AM Lunch followed by naps for the kiddos. More time to try to do quiet chores if everyone cooperates, check in on the computer, and sometimes get a little exercise. More often than not at least one of the kids doesn't nap.
1:30 PM Snack #1 (crackers), then free play or preschool activities with the girls, depending on how things are going
3:15 PM Snack #2 (fruit), then free play
4:00 PM Dinner prep = the crazy hour. This now involves cooking and measuring/weighing all of Justin's food so he can take the right dose of insulin when he gets home.
5:00 or 5:30 PM (depending on Justin's schedule) dinner. Typically I clean up from dinner, but Justin does it some too. Then he plays with the kids for awhile.
6:30 PM The girls bedtime routine starts: Bath, PJs, combing hair, brushing teeth, a story, Bible reading, prayer, singing, bathroom, and a sip of water [in that order]!
7:30 PM the girls are in bed. Justin either works on things he brought home or we sit and visit and sometimes watch some TV as Nate cluster feeds.
10:00 PM bed, sweet bed!

Nate nurses throughout the day, but not on a set schedule.

To join this Carnival stop by Kelly's Korner.

Out of Sight, but Not Out of Mind

Recently Justin had to go out of town for a whole day. I'm not sure how people who have spouses who travel frequently do it, by the way. Justin and I lived separately around the time Kate turned one while I was selling our house and he'd moved ahead of me, but with three kids... I had to put the kids to bed alone two evenings; it's a bit of a challenge with a baby in the mix. I guess part of it is that it just disrupted our routine, as we are used to having him here every evening.

The girls and I worked on some art work to sneak into his suitcase so he would find it while he was away.

Kate drew a picture of our family. It turned out really well. She drew me first and started to get a little bored before she moved on to everyone else, so there is a lot more detail on me than anyone else...

The circles are everyone's eyes--everyone has brown, except me (true), but I'm not sure why she drew me as a blonde!

Gabriella drew a rainbow on one side of her paper and a tree on the other.



Sorry, I didn't draw any pretty pictures, just slipped in a photograph of the kiddos and a little note of encouragement with several Bible verses on it.

We're glad to have him home!

Do you do anything special if your spouse goes out of town?