Sunday, March 29, 2009


The upstairs is "usable" now. The windows and screens are in, walls are painted, trim work has been painted, lighting is finished, extra heaters are installed, t.v. is on the wall, and "junk" has been moved back upstairs from the garage. The desk might even be ready to install tomorrow (or at least I'm crossing my fingers). The desk will be at the "back" of the room, behind the couch, under the angled ceiling (which was where the old ceiling was). We gained a ton of floor space. It's amazing!

The kids have now been let back upstairs to play. They were ecstatic to play with the things that have been stuck in the garage for 6+ weeks. Lauren even convinced Mason to play dress up with her (and she even dressed him)!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009


Murder? Some might say it was. Some would say it wasn't. Me...I think it was an honest mistake.
Today was pretty much like all the rest. Take Mason to school. Take Lauren to school (via a quick stop to Starbucks). Come home. Work on Lauren's school auction stuff. Clean a little. Pack a few things for the upcoming trip. Go to Mason's school and pick him up early to go to the doctor (just a cold right now). Stop at Bartell's. Go back home. Go pick up Lauren. Come home. Let the dogs outside.
When I went to let the dogs back in (so that I could then take Lauren to piano...then Mason to t-ball), there was something furry on the deck. And it was moving slowly. I ran to let the dogs inside. But, Zoe (all 3 pounds 15 ounces of her) had IT in her mouth and was shaking it. When I opened the door, Zoe put IT down and I quickly barked instructions. Lauren (and yes she was shrieking) locked Maggie in the crate in the garage, while I locked Zoe in her crate. I went to evaluate IT. IT was a tiny wild bunny. And it was still alive and slowly moving. When it moved, it's back legs looked broken, but it was still breathing. Wanting of course to rescue it, I called the vet who gave me the numbers for a few animal rescue facilities. I grabbed an empty shoebox, put a junk towel in the bottom of it, picked up the bunny with another towel, and placed it in the box.
Now the dilemma was WHEN to take the bunny to the wildlife rehab place. Lauren's piano was in 15 minutes. So, there was no time. Between Lauren's piano and Mason's t-ball is 40 minutes (which is barely enough time to get home, eat dinner, and leave again). After t-ball meant it'd be close to 7pm. So, I took Lauren to piano and Mason and I came back to check on the bunny. I opened the box and it was just as I had left it, but not breathing. It had died. There was no external bleeding, so my unofficial diagnosis was internal injuries and shock. So I had to dispose of it.
Knowing that I had some time consuming tasks, it was McDonalds drivethru for dinner after piano lessons. While the kids ate, I started the decontamination process. First, Maggie. I donned by big boots and a pair of gloves (to keep my hands kind of warm). I tied her up to the deck and gave her a good outdoor bath. Lauren was my go-to girl who kept bringing me warm water from inside. Second, a good toothbrushing. While outside, I also hosed down the deck. Third, Zoe. She's easy and can be washed in the bathtub (since she doesn't leave mounds of hair everywhere). Fourth, brusing Zoe's teeth. Last, but not least, a good mopping of the kitchen floor (lest any bunny germs have been tracked through).
Now, back to the first sentence. Was it murder? The problem is that I don't know HOW the bunny ended up on our deck. It's possible it hopped. It's possible one of the dogs carried it. What I do know, is that Zoe was shaking the bunny just like she plays with her stuffed cat or duck (which are both the exact same size the bunny was). I'm going to vote that it was bunny-slaughter.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

The house

A few months ago, Dad told Mark and I and Alli and Jay that we could each "have" some money from his mother's estate. The purpose was to use this money to do something to the house. In other words, it was not to pay bills or buy new clothes. But to use it towards something permanent.

The bummer is that there are SO many things we could do, so it was hard to decide. We finally decided on having our upstairs playroom ceiling raised. We literally had 4 feet in the center of "walkable" space. The sides came down abruptly. One side had sliding doors filled with storage (our only storage in the house). The other side we just lined up toys and TV against the ceiling. Here are two before picture (yes it was a mess). To make the space more interesting, I painted the entire room sky-blue and stenciled sunflowers and a picket fence (on the sliding doors) before Lauren turned 1. My sister helped do the clouds to finish off the room.

The bid for adding a dormer came in within the budget we were given on a Wednesday. The following Monday the construction started.

First, the ceiling was essentially removed. Next, new beams were added on the inside. The frame was built inside the house so when the side wall was removed, the frame could go up quickly. Unfortunately, during some of this process we had snow!
Next the outside siding was put on and then the window was added. Next came the drywall and "mud". Tomorrow starts the texturing of the wall and the priming.

The last things to finish are the lights; the paint; and the desk. Paint has been a pain in the rear. So far, the patchwork of colors I've tried upstairs. Color, to be determined!

That time of year

It's that time of year. Baseball season! First, let me start by saying, I am angry at Ken Griffey. Not just irked. Really, quite mad! Why? Well, to start with, I brought my computer all the way down to Palm Springs for the sole purpose of purchasing tickets to opening day (April 14th) for the Mariners. Tickets went on sale at 10am. At 10:02 (literally), Meghan was on-line seeking our tickets. We were trying not to be too picky, but wanted to avoid last year's opening day fiasco of sitting by the fireworks (too loud for the kids) and being hailed, rained, and snowed on. So, the search began. Meghan kept getting "bounced" out on the computer. So, I tried too. Then I called Ticketmaster. The first time once I had a live body to talk to, I was disconnected. Next time, I was told there were NO seats available for 2 people to sit together (let alone both families). There were literally ONLY single seats available. While we did joke about just buying the seats and keeping eyes on the kids (wherever they were sitting), we figured we probably couldn't get away with that. And, frankly, how could I in good conscience ask them to make sure Mason didn't run away or choke. So, quite discouraged, we accepted the fact that neither of us would be going to opening day. And, it's all Ken's fault!

Now, on to people I do like today. Mason. It was his first day of t-ball!

I expected the worst. I envisioned him running to and fro and quitting when he was bored. Well, apparantly he had his listening ears on. He did GREAT! His little group of 4 kids rotated through catching/throwing; fielding; and hitting (while the other little groups rotated through the other positions too). He loved it. He thanked me over and over again for letting him go to t-ball. He listened to each coach and followed their instruction. It was adorable. His team is called the Giants (how appropriate for these little preschool and kindergartners). He goes to practice again on Saturday and hopefully it won't rain and he'll still like it. Watch out Ken Griffey Jr!

A break from the life

1. Pick a weekend when to pawn the kids on the husbands or grandparents. CHECK!
2. Get time off from work. CHECK!
3. Pack a few clothes. CHECK!
4. Coordinate travel, transportation, and lodging. CHECK!

By last Wednesday, Erin Buehler, Meghan Anderson, and I had finished our check-lists and were on the way to the airport. Even though I do not "do" 4am wakings, I was more than ready to leave the house by 4:45. We were able to get on the 7am non-stop to Palm Springs on standby. As soon as the plane landed and we had our luggage, we took the taxi to my parent's condo. As soon as we were settled, it was to the store for necessities - beer, yogurt, and snacks. Next it was lunch and time for the pool and the sun. Our typical days consisted of a trip to Starbucks for morning coffee (we walked once - but drove the golf cart the remainder); Sun and pool time from around 10-3; Frozen yogurt in the evenings.

On Thursday, we "begged" our way into Splashtopia at the hotel. Miraculously, we got in for free. They had a moving river (with innertubes) and waterslides. Not to mention lunch and beverages by the pool. Ahhhhh. It was wonderful. On Saturday we walked around the street fair and found a few items we couldn't live without. We also drove to In-n-out for Erin to have her very first In-n-out burger (seriously)!

I must brag for a bit. It was pure Heaven to sit at a pool, read a book, listen to music, and talk with friends....all the while without being interrupted by our own children. I actually read (and finished) an entire book and about 7 smut magazines! Sadly, we had to go back to real life on Saturday night and woke to snow on Sunday morning.

So, to all the husbands we may badmouth from time to time - THANK YOU for our respite! And, we plan on doing it again next year!!!!