Thursday, January 29, 2009

"You Say it's Your Birthday"...

It was 14 years ago today that I became a mom for the first time. What an incredible memory stirs inside of the birth of that first child, for both Mike and I. We had been at the hospital for more than 48 hours, and intensive labor for more than 14, when Jacob was finally born by c-section. It was Super Bowl Sunday that year. We remember everyone coming to visit us in the hospital. (Well at least Mike does, I was pretty drugged up by that time.)

Now that little baby boy is a: piano playing, guitar playing, song/music writing, instant messageing, wood splitting, phone texting, book reading, deer hunting young man. Whom I actually have to look up at (slightly) when I talk to him face to face.

I couldn't be prouder Jacob, of the young man you are becoming. Happy Birthday!


My talented husband has done it again. The washer is fixed!!! It turned out to be a simple fix, thanks to the man who read my blog and gave us a suggested fix. All it took was Mike cleaning out the water line screens!! Woo Hoo!

See what simple things make me happy!

Monday, January 26, 2009

Laundry Day!

My wonderful husband has spoiled me in more ways than I can express in just one blog post. This post, however, will be about how he can fix anything. If it is breaks around here no problem, "Daddy will fix it!" is the mantra. At least it is RARE when he can't.

I'm sad to admit that we have found such is the case with my Maytag Neptune Washing Machine. Since our move to the new house, my Maytag randomly stops in the middle of a wash cycle. So what used to take 40 minutes can now take all day. The machine starts right back up when I press the start button, but unless I realize that it has stopped it just sits there.

Mike has looked at it and thinks he knows what the problem is, but I guess it will take quite a bit of work to fix it. So, until my incredibly talented "fix-it-man" husband can take on the task, my laundry day will be just that, laundry DAY.

At least if I'm stuck (yeah, like that is a bad thing?) at home doing laundry, at least I have this wonderful view out my front window. While I knit (of course!), and listen for the washer to stop.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Back To Work!

We had a beautiful spring weather day today in Central Virginia. The temp hit a toasty 64 degrees! We went for a walk (operative word) to the mail box. Which, when I tell you a walk, it is actually an uphill hike coming home .3 miles long! Any how, near the beginning of our road is an awesome field. So, here is a picture of our dog Otto enjoying the field and the walk!

Mike just had a wonderful 4 days off from work. As I blogged on Tuesday, we had hoped to spend time in SC with sister Suzanne, that didn't get to happen. But, we did enjoy being home together for the past 4 days anyway.

Mike goes back to work tomorrow and the kids and I will begin our 3rd quarter in school. Hopefully the next 4 days will go just as fast!!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Tunnel Vision

The other day I started knitting a pair of socks with a very intricate design. The design is called, Twisted Tulip, for those knitters reading this blog. Anyway, I was handling the challenge, no problem, but last night I got to a point in the development of the first sock that I decided I just didn't like the look of the pattern. The photo of the finished pair in my magazine was nice, but it just didn't do anything for me in person.

I was looking at the sock and looked over at my dear husband and said, "I don't really like it."

He asked, "Then why are you making it?" .... Huh?

"Well because I started it." was all I could reply.

He asked, "Does that mean the yarn isn't any good and you can't pull it out?" ....Huh?

"But, if I don't make them then, I'll feel like I wasn't able to complete them."

"You don't like them. So, why complete them." ...Huh? Logic?
Well, I frogged the socks!! (Pulled them out. For those non-knitters reading this blog.) Not an easy thing for this knitter to do. Here is a photo of the sock before it was frogged. Tell me what you think. If you can see it well enough.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

They are ALL Mine!

There is a song by Jason Michael Carroll - Livin' Our Love Song, that is without a doubt mine and Mike's song. If you've never heard it, please give it a listen.

Wanted to mention it because I've always known this man I fell in love with so long ago, was and will always be a "back woods boy". When you call this guy a "redneck" he actually takes it as a compliment.

Living here in Virginia, surrounded by mountains and lots of empty acres of land, has really allowed Mike to live a bit of his dream. However, that now means my having to live a little less of my "fairy tale princess" dream. But, that is what love is, and I do love him and therefore our life together, where ever that is.

Today I came to the realization, as I often have before, my family is a little bit red neck or as I like to call them "hillbillies". Let me introduce you to my Jethro and Ellie Mae:

And just when you thought the littlest one was all princess she goes and does this:

Snow?! Are you serious?

"Over the river and through the woods..." was the song we had planned on singing this morning as we went to visit Aunt Suzanne in Charleston, SC. But, old mother nature changed our plans. We aren't getting any snow here in Central Virginia, but they are south of us and in North Carolina as well. With the way southerners drive in the rain we aren't risking our safety with snow!

Now we need to come up with some fun stuff to do right here at home to dull our pain and sadness, but all should turn out well. We'll try visiting her again in a few weeks.

Saturday, January 17, 2009


Finished knitting Faith's sweater yesterday, but didn't get the buttons on until today. She loves it! And was eager to model it for the camera. I made a size 6 so it is a little big, but it should last a couple of seasons.

Now what to cast on? Oh the dilemmas of a knitting addict!

A Blessed Home

Our home is now blessed! Father Kelly, our pastor, came and blessed our home and had dinner. After dinner we adjourned to Jacob's bedroom/recording studio where Jacob entertained us with his piano talents. Then Father Kelly showed us his hidden guitar talents. He played and sang a song, and seemed quite proud. We were thrilled he shared his secret.

It was a wonderful evening. I remembered my nieces advise, about Martha and Mary enjoying Jesus' visit, and that helped immensely! Thank you Joc!

I hadn't stressed too much while preparing for the visit. I asked Haley to vacuum in the morning and when you have that girl get the vacuum going she'll suck up anything that isn't tied down! She was on such a roll I didn't have to worry about any house keeping before company. It was great!

Father seemed to enjoy himself just as much as we did having him, and we plan to have him back. Probably when Mom and Dad visit in April for Easter! Maybe we'll plan to have a few friends over for an open house.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Cold Weather Humorous

Adding to the last post, Mike decided yesterday was the day to finish emptying the rental house. Although there wasn't too much left at the house, bringing what there was has only added to my "organized chaos". Now the rental is empty and cleaned!

We are getting some cold days in Central Virginia! A frigid 28. Being we are New Englanders at heart, this isn't too big a deal. We couldn't help but chuckle when watching the local news last night and the warning to the people of frost bite. Oh but the wind, it may be in the teens. Wow! They even canceled school in couple of counties because of the "frigid" weather. It is crazy!

To my New England brethren, thought you would enjoy the humor!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Personal Therapy

Can't believe I'm actually going to show you photos of how our downstairs currently looks, but here it goes.

Straight ahead (about where that white barrel is) Mike is putting a wall with a door that will make a storage/boiler room. I'm also imagining this wall will have bookshelves for ALL our books. Over to the right (you can't see) Mike has put in the 4th bedroom. (Read his blog and you will see photos of it.) We just need to paint and figure out what we want to do with the floor.

This photo shows some of our organized chaos. There are boxes to go to the spring church yard sale. Boxes that have lots of old photos, videos and books, for that much anticipated storage room. Over in the left corner is plumbing for the 3rd bathroom if we so decide. The rest of the area will be family room.

To the left (again you can't see it here) Mike has petitioned off a mud room, and again we have to figure out what to do with the floor. The rest of this area will be our family room.

The method for my madness in showing you our chaos it to provide some incentive to getting it all in order. If I post the before, it will inspire us to post the after. I do realize it may take us several more months (or a year) to get this where we want it to be. But, until now I avoided even going down there. That can't happen any more. I need to confront this and tackle it!

Please realize for my a-type personality this is a huge step for me. I'm allowing you to see my mess! A mess I wish I could snap my fingers at and have just the way I want it immediately. But, I can't and it will some day be the way we envision it, all in due time.

Realization: This blog has been like therapy for me.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Today's Progress

After talking to an attorney it looks like as long as they provide us with a new key to the house in a reasonable amount of time we aren't out of the lease so easily! Oh well! God has a plan and for now this is it. I however, handled myself very well on the phone with the landlord, I am very proud!

Here is the progress I've made on Faith's sweater. I'm really pleased with how well it is coming together and I can't say it enough, this yarn is WONDERFUL!

Sleepless in Virginia

I woke up when Mike was leaving for work, 5:00 am, and couldn't get back to sleep. Here I sit sipping coffee, and surfing the net. I can't sleep because I know I'm going to have a confrontation today with the leasing company of the house we were/are renting and I can't stop thinking about what I'll say.

You may know that we were living in a house that we were renting, but decided we couldn't live there any longer so, we bought our new house. However, we couldn't break the lease and were still paying for the other place also. Well, because we have 6 months left in the lease we were taking our time emptying the house out. The things from Connecticut we had never unpacked. Mike went to the house last night and couldn't get in. The key didn't work!! The neighbor also informed him the pesticide company was in the house on Saturday spraying for bugs. We were never notified!! Because it isn't critical for us to get in we left them a message on their answering machine and expect a call back today.

They are in violation of the lease! This is good news for us, because now we are no longer obligated to pay. Right? However, we still have things in the house we no longer have access to.

I'll keep you posted on how things go, but if you have any words of advise I'm open to listening. Prayers will also help. Prayers to give me the words and calmness to handle this conflict.

I think I'll knit while I wait for kids to wake. It always makes me happy!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Just Being the Mom

Cookies! My family loves to eat cookies. I don't mind baking cookies, because it is one thing I don't feel compelled to eat. I'm not a big sweet eater. Open a bag of potato chips however, and I have to see the bottom of the bag! Here they are 2 batches of cookies in the works, oatmeal chocolate chip and M&M cookies.

After the cookies I'll spend time working on Faith's sweater. (And of course helping kids with school work.) Here is a picture of it before I started last night. It will be a Neck down Bolero by Knitting Pure and Simple made from jil eaton MinnowMerino. This yarn is super soft and lovely to work with. Will keep you posted on the progress!

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Sweater Finished

Here it is, Haley's sweater. I'm pleased with it, she however isn't crazy about the sleeves, but she said she will still wear it.

Good Day!

Father Kelly never made it here for dinner last night. Guess there were things too important at the hospital and nursing home. Completely understandable for a pastor of 2 parishes. We'll reschedule.

It is too bad because I was remarkably calm all day about his visit. The kids were a big part of that. They jumped right in to making our house presentable, without being asked and I was able to focus on the food. NOW that I know how willing they are to make their new home presentable for visitors, I'm thinking of who else we can invite!

With the house all clean and the kids working on school, that leaves me to finish Haley's sweater. I have less than an hour worth of work and she should be able to wear it to church tonight. I'll post a picture later.

It looks like it should be an awesome day!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

What kind of phobia is it?

Our pastor Father Kelly is coming for dinner tomorrow night. He will come have dinner and bless our house. I'm actually quite calm. At least today. I'll probably start to lose it tomorrow as I look out at the front yard, or mud pit. Then the dirty floors that never stay clean no matter how hard I work.

Why do I always feel like hyperventilating at the prospect of someone coming to visit? It doesn't matter!!!! Are they coming to take pictures for Good Housekeeping? No!

Any words of advise on this strange phobia I've developed?

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Organized Chaos

It is 5 months to the day that we moved to Virginia. Mike and I finally began tackling the mountain of boxes that lay out before us. It is amazing the things that accumulate through the years. At our house in Connecticut everything neatly had a spot and a reason for being saved when we saved it. Now however, the reason for most of it escapes us.

Being that we home school it is outrageous the amount of books we have. The books that all had shelves in Connecticut have yet to find shelves here at the new house. An added task to Mike's honey-do-list.

Well, regardless of the organized chaos of boxes that overshadow us, we love our new home. Slowly I believe it too will become the haven of storage it needs to be.

Note to self: Don't move ever again!

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Fits Like a Glove

It has been a long 12 weeks, but our Borkholder island finally came today for the kitchen. If you recall we bought it before we even owned the house, so if feels real good to see it in the kitchen, and actually use it.
Our kitchen chairs came also, but there was a problem with the table. So, it has gone back to the workshop to be corrected and should be another 4 weeks.

Friday, January 2, 2009

Planted Trees

I may have mentioned before that we have a lot of work in front of us in the form of landscaping. We currently don't have anything. In an effort to feel like we are doing something to remedy that, as we wait for spring to come, we purchased 4 small live Christmas trees. Mike and the girls planted them a few days ago.

In order to keep track of their growth I had Mike take a picture of Faith standing near one. I imagine that in about 10 years it may be tall enough to cut and decorate. Jake will be 24, Haley 20, and Faith 14. It seems so far off, but I know better.

Don't you just love the skirt, pants and mud boots?

Thursday, January 1, 2009

A New Resolve

Another January 1. With the New Year comes time of self reflection. This year I was giving the usual thought to what I should resolve to change in my life and found that all the things I came up with were the same things I wanted to change from last year's January 1. What does that mean? That maybe we shouldn't get so bogged down in changing ourselves. After all God created us, and who are we to question God?

Therefore, this year I'm not going to attempt to "change" anything but rather improve that which God has already given me. Also to appreciate the graces God has blessed me with in my life that much more. Maybe next January 1 I can look back and see some difference from today.

Happy New Year and God Bless!