Saturday, June 30, 2012

Good-bye Old, Gross Carpet!

Knowing we were putting our house on the market earlier this month, we did a lot of work to our house to get it "For Sale" ready.  Paint, deep cleaning and scrubbing, cleaning out closets, organizing, and getting new carpet.  Ours was disgustingly stained from the five of us and it wasn't in the best condition when we moved in four years ago.  Grape juice, bleach, vomit, diaper cream, paint, dirt, ink, and the normal wear and tear of people running all over a house stained our carpet.  So, we spent a lot of money replacing all the carpet in our house and while we waited for the carpet install date, we had several showings.  What was the ONLY negative feedback?  "Didn't like the carpet."  Even though, we had signs informing when the new carpet was coming.  Not annoyed over here, not one bit.
So, the night before our new carpet was installed, I got out the markers, had a long talk with the kids about this being a one time thing and NEVER AGAIN WILL THIS HAPPEN, and they went to town to do this:





That's right, they help destroy the carpet some more by coloring with markers all over the carpet and they loved every single second of it!  They colored for the longest time and kept running all around finding new places to color on the carpet! All three had so much fun and no one (knock on wood) has gone near the carpet with a marker since!

I don't have a picture of our new carpet, but it's so pretty!  This is the second house in a row that we've installed new carpet and moved within a month.  Never again!  While looking at houses in Kansas, a lot of houses were turned down due to their carpet situation.  Luckily, our new house mostly has hard wood floors, and the carpet looks great!  Whew!  Now, we need to keep it that way!

Two last things:  I figured out how to send my comments through email, so hopefully when you comment, when I reply, you'll get it in your email!  And, I figured out how to post through my phone!  That's why the pictures are a tad blurry, the kids would not stay still for me to take a decent picture on my camera, guess that means they were having fun!


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Friday, June 29, 2012

TGIF!

What do you get when you have three showings in one day?  Three exhausted kids and mama!  Whew!  I'm so excited that we're having so many showings, but come on people, make an offer!  I can only yell at my kids so much to stay off the just vacuumed carpet before each showing! It's been a long week and I have zero inspiration on what to blog about (unless you want to hear all about vacuuming).  So, I made a list of our exciting (very questionable) life!

*Today, for our three showings, we went to the Y, so I could do Pilates!  I love Pilates and it was exactly what I needed to end this week!

*After Pilates, the kids and I spent almost 3 hours at the pool.  All three were exhausted and took awesome naps!

*I'm drinking coffee right now (it's 5:39 pm) to stay awake for 9:30 showing of Magic Mike.  I'm so excited to see a movie with lots of hot guys in it!  I need something that makes me not think for awhile!

*I went with Eric last night to a work dinner.  I got to dress up (if you count white jeans as dress up) and wear perfume!  I ate the shrimp scampi and two slices of garlic bread.  A little on the wild side, I know!  It was great to only worry about my meal, not take anyone to the bathroom, and eat yummy food I didn't prepare!

*Our baby-sitter and I talked about Twilight for the 20 minutes we waited for her mom.  I felt like a teen-ager all over again, sharing our love of Bella, Edward and Jacob...in the books.  I can't stand the movies (even though I've seen all of them in the theater and will see the last one in November...don't judge!) but she loves Kristen Stewart (ewww), so whatever.  I felt so cool until I told her how I love to read and how I stood in line for the Harry Potter books when they first came out.  She then made me feel ancient.  Next time, I won't brag about that to someone under the age of 25.  Sad.

*Jack is playing Mario Kart and we're all sitting here while I'm typing this mesmerized at his awesome skills.  One would think he is the coolest Mario Kart player ever.  But he keeps shaking the steering wheel and when I asked why, "That's how you play, Mom!"  Insert annoyed tone for him.

*We went to Blue Bell this week (maybe I could write about that...some other day?) and sampled the red velvet ice cream.  Super yummy but a tad disappointed it wasn't chocolate.  I guess Blue Bell isn't always perfect, just super close!

*I worked out this week for the first time in two weeks and have felt like an 80 year old the entire week.  Wowzers, it doesn't take much to get you out of shape.  Darn you cheesy corn bake from Jack Stack!  Or maybe I should just stick with blaming myself for not working out, just wearing my workout clothes...you know, that doesn't count as a workout if you only wear the clothes but don't workout.  Bummer!

*I had two no good, horrible, bad, bad days.  Like, a few too many people outside of my family heard my ugly, growling, mad voice that I usually reserve for my family, like after I vacuum before a showing.  Not good.

Have a great weekend!  We have zero plans but hope for lots of showings and an offer on our house!  We need a weekend of veggie out and relaxing!  Next week is my favorite holiday, can't wait!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Grateful for Grace

We have been fortunate to find a wonderful church home here in Texas.  Sunday, was the kids last day of Sunday School and so began more good-byes, some very sad good-byes.  Let me start from the beginning. *Side note:  This is a tad more personal then I expected but no worries, I'm not giving our address, body stats, or social security numbers!  Whew!  Keep on reading!

I was raised Catholic, went to Catholic Schools K-12, taught in Catholic Schools for Preschool, 1st Grade and while I subbed, and never went to another church except to Eric's occasionally.  Eric, growing up Christian, his family went to churches all over with other family members and were active in the church they attended.  I was not interested in attending his church or open to his religious views and there was no discussion other then that...ever.  Sad.  We were married in a Catholic Church (sigh...so pretty!) and baptized Jack and Molly in the same church (actually Baptized Jack on our 1 year anniversary)!  We went to church as a married couple occasionally but when we moved to Texas, I was determined to find us a church home...as in on a mission from God!

So, every Sunday, we headed out to a new church where I was very disappointed because a.  we were not kindly welcomed b.  the kids were horrible and we had to sit in the cry room while they threw every toy, food, and sippy cup I gave them c.  Eric was very annoyed at a, b, and me d.  nothing in the bulletin mentioned anything about mom's groups, bible studies, etc.  "Hello, I need friends!"  I wanted to shout.

After visiting every single Catholic Church in our area, and me feeling more sad and desperate for not finding a church or friends (not sure why I put so much into only finding friends at church, no worries, found them other places too!) our friends mentioned their church that the loved and invited us to attend that Sunday.  Eric was super excited but I was not.  It was Methodist, I was going to go to Hell for stepping foot in there, and my kids wouldn't even be with me.  No.  But, our friends were persistent, told me I would not to to Hell, and our kids would beg to go back the next week.  Plus, a new sermon series on marriage was beginning.  Hmmm....why not?

Long story all ready getting long...we went and LOVED it!  I cried the whole time, the music was great, and the sermon was amazing!  It was the first time ever that I felt God there with me, learned something from the message, and truly got it.  Not sure what it is or can really describe it, but it was an experience I get every time I go!  The kids were both loved on the whole time...it was amazing to get something out of church, be greeted warmly and welcomed, and find out a ton of info for kids and moms!  Friends!  God!  Love!

I was hesitant on joining but prayed, trusted God (a first, sadly), and let Him lead our family down an amazing journey!  Jack and Molly loved the preschool, all three kids loved Sunday School (all three had an amazing teacher Miss Lisa who started with Jack, taught Molly last year, and Will this year!), I joined a mom's group and LOVED it, we look forward to going to church each Sunday and all five of us get an amazing message about God and leave feeling good about ourselves and know God is with us!  When we picked up the kids on Sunday from their last class,  all of their teachers hugged our kids, Miss Lisa hugged all three, and some teachers have been with them since we started!  We have made some lifelong friends throughout our time at Grace and words cannot express our gratitude to our friends for inviting us that one Sunday!

If you don't have a church home, find one and find one you and your family love!  There are so many out there and let God lead the way!  I have to remind myself of that often, but as the wonderful Jim Leggett (our Pastor) says, "Give God the car keys and put yourself in the passenger seat."  If you need a church and live in Katy/West Houston, check out Grace Fellowship UMC, it's amazing!    I'm praying for another church our family will love!  Thanks for letting us share!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

That little things...

AUGH!!  That's me screaming!  Life has been a little up and down lately with Eric in working his new job, putting the house on the market, showings, trying to find our family a new house, and maintaining peace, calm, and a decent routine for our children.  A little rocky, but the kids are getting super spoiled by their grandparents (though a little tired and grouchy), I'm getting spoiled by all my free time, but we're having Realtor issues (as in, finding a new one NOW!) and haven't found a house we love.  But, we're not going to focus on those things, we're going to focus on the little joys we've experienced the past few weeks!

*Our new carpet...it's awesome!  I love it!

*Our beautiful, clean house for sale.  Really, can we keep our next house this awesome?

*All the pools in our neighborhood, going to miss those but we're loving on them as much as we can before we move!

*Body Attack

*Arriving in Kansas safely and minimal yelling or injuries!

*Jack Stack BBQ...so. wonderfully. delicious!

*Watching the Polar Bear at the Kansas City Zoo.  I love him.  He was the most active animal I've ever seen at any zoo.  He was so cool!

*Riding on the train at the zoo with my kids!  They were so happy and there were 2, yes TWO, tunnels!

*Seeing friends and family in Kansas City and being so excited to see them all the time, not once a year!

*My friend Jennifer's Ice Cream Sandwich Dessert.  Unbelievable.  A layer of ice cream sandwiches, a layer of Cool Whip, a layer of peanuts and hot fudge.  Repeat.  And then repeat inhaling several servings.  I love her for making this dessert!

*All three kids playing with all the old toys my in-laws have kept from their four children.

*Going to the library and the kids checking out 28 books!

*Our kids helping my in-laws watering plants, washing cars, and setting the table.  Such great helpers!

*Jack sleeping in until 8:45 several days in a row!  Now the other 2 need to stop waking up at 6:15.  They sit in front of my in-laws bedroom door, waiting for Papa to go downstairs for work.  I asked Molly what her and Will do, "We sit and look at the door."

*Sleeping in the basement bedroom, with the dark-out shades, stars on the ceiling, and sleeping like I did before kids!

*Looking at houses!  I know, I complained about our Realtor, but I just love house hunting!  It's so much fun to get decorating ideas, be nosey, and dreaming!

*Celebrating our 7th Anniversary at the Melting Pot on the Plaza with my wonderful husband!

*Coffee!

*Reading a good book...just ran out and bought the last book of the Fifty Shades of Gray series.  I feel like I'm reading Twilight again (staying up late reading a book, finishing the book and rushing out to buy the next one).

*Clean towels

*Watching our kids do the Slip-N-Slide

*Dinner at our friends Jill and Matt.  We love them.  We love their sons Luke and Cameron!

*Walking on all the bike trails here and all the trails are shaded!

*Seeing Madagascar 3 with my favorite six year old!  He is so excited for Despicable Me 2!  Only one more year Buddy!

*Will building a trash truck on Papa and Grandma's couch.  Apparently this is inherited trait because Eric did the same thing when he was young!  Everything from shoes, toys, pillows, magazines, remotes, sippy cups, you name it, end up on the couch.  Then, Will sits at the end of the couch to drive his trash truck and makes stops along his route by adding more trash. It's adorable!

So many little things to be thankful for!

Thursday, June 7, 2012

A Not So Sad Good-bye

We're all ready starting to say good-bye before we move, especially to our friends and teachers at our schools.  The kids are starting to ask about the next time they'll see their friends again and I sadly have to say "I don't know when."  Sad.

We have had a good-bye that has not been sad, but came with much happiness!

Let's begin with a back story.  When I was pregnant with Will, we knew we had to get a new kitchen table, one more chair, or a new table with five or more chairs.  Luckily, he was able to hang out in the high chair the first year but that high chair took up a lot of room and was always in the way.  But, we didn't have a chair for him or a booster and we could not for the life of us find a table we liked, so he stayed in the high chair for a little longer.  Then, our sweet friends the Tillson's offered us a chair they had laying around that was similar to our kitchen set.  They said we could borrow the chair for as long as we needed and just give it back when a kitchen table solution was found.

That was 2 and a half years ago.  Still have the chair, not a new kitchen table solution.

Well, we have to give back the chair because we can't ship it from Kansas and that chair is one of the biggest fights amongst the three children.  We will go kitchen table shopping when we get there, oh how I've missed Nebraska Furniture Mart!  Back to the chair, it saved us in so many ways but it was pure torture at most meals or any interaction in our kitchen.

We had to create a daily chair rotation so each child fairly had turn in the chair.  If it's their day, they sit in the chair, pick their vitamin first, start my coffee by pushing the on button (there was almost bloodshed if it wasn't your day) say prayers at dinner, get the Jayhawk plate and silverware, and speak about their day first at dinner.  If you are caught in the chair and it's not your day, there will be tears, screams, pulling and pushing, and proclaiming, "It's my day, not yours!!!"  The chair has been thrown out (maybe) in our backyard, to be put into timeout after a fight or five.  It was used daily as a stool to wash hands at the sink, help me make dinner, and the engine for the chair train made by the kids.  Such memories.  It was decorated for birthdays, because it was your day and your chair.  The chair was always chosen by our friends who were over to play and needed a snack, making the child who's day it was a tad jealous they had to give up their chair.  Even if we were coloring or doing an art project, it had to be your day to sit in the chair.  Eric and I hardly ever sat there, trying to avoid a fight, tears, or being pushed off.  I'm serious.

Last Saturday, the day before listing our house, the chair was said good-bye to from the Brew Crew.  All three kids had their last day with the chair and now they are confused about who gets the Jayhawk plate, or star my coffee, but the fights are gone and there is no longer, "It's my day!!"

Thank you Tillson's for the sweet chair and memories!

See how crowded we were with the high chair and see how cute he is?!  I miss these days!

Jack in the chair for his birthday, I think I tried to hide the chair since it didn't match because this is the best I could find!

A little different from the rest of the chairs (please put all of your attention to the cute girl on the right...the one on the left is scary looking first thing in the morning!)






Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Mother of the Year

Yes, I have awarded myself Mother of the Year.  I know, it's a hard award to earn but someone has to do it.  Let me tell you how I "proudly" earned the title!

1.  Getting the house ready to put on the market (7 showings since Saturday!) is not an easy task.  I have scrubbed, bleached, vacuumed, dusted, cleaned my grout, pulled weeds, washed windows, and cleaned our house more in the past week then the four years we have lived here.  So, what have my children done during this time?  Good question.  I know they have all eaten, slept, used the restroom (seriously, not cool pooping in a freshly cleaned toilet), and made a mess of everything I have cleaned. Pretty much they are alive but I think I ignored them a tad so I could get said house cleaned.  Not good.

2.  I yell.  A. Lot.

3.  I told my kids the other day to not touch any carpet or tile floors because the floors were clean.  They gave me confused looks since our whole house is carpet or tile.

4.  One child entered a room and I freaked out.  Because I just vacuumed.

5.  I gave my kids "stinky" cheese last night with dinner.  I had leftover spaghetti hidden in the freezer, so tada!  Dinner!  They asked for the stinky cheese* and I must have blacked out because who gives their kids stinky cheese when your house is on the market?  ME!!  WHY?!!  Took about 30 minutes to clean it all up, I kid you not!

*Parmesan, called stinky cheese by the kids.

6.  I have been cleaning our horrible (insert choice words not suitable for a family blog) tile the past few days.  I. HATE. GROUT!  Who invented tile and grout in the first place?  I have been on my hands and needs with a tooth brush scrubbing with baking soda and bleach.  Then, our realtor said grout paint is a miracle and takes less then an hour for the entire house of grout to be clean and done.  Um, no.  Looks like a poured whiteout on my tile.  Back to the toothbrush.

Story here, cleaned the grout one night (spending most of the evening cleaning only half the kitchen) and what happens the next morning?  Juice spilled all over the clean grout area.  I may have screamed.  I may have yelled.  I may have cried.  I may have said a few choice words.   I'm an awesome example to my children on how to handle the pressures of life.

7.  We had three showings yesterday (Yay!  Make an offer!) and of course, all three were during nap time.  I drove around for an hour for Will to sleep and then took my kids to the pool the rest of the afternoon.  I don't wear out my children, I exhaust them.

8.  I told my children to not touch a single thing in our house while I got my shoes on.  Will went in the office and touched our glass desk.  There were finger prints and foot prints.  Really?  Any guesses on how I reacted?

9.  In between showings yesterday, we had to make a potty break at home (those pool bathrooms are so gross) and change into our suits.  I asked Molly to put her and Jack's dirty clothes into our laundry basket in my closet.  "Did you put everything in the basket?"  "Yes!"  "Are you sure?"  "Yes!  I did!"  3 hours later, I find a pair of Jack's shorts in the middle of the room.  "What part of put everything into the basket don't you understand?!!!"  Someone may have yelled.

10.  My routined, likes to know what to expect children are way thrown off.  Daddy's flying back and forth, we have showings with a short notice (like 30 minutes) and have to leave quick, be gone for hours at a time, eat lunch at friends houses, drive around for naps, clean, clean, clean all day nutso mommy, they are spent.  "What are we doing tomorrow?"  Well, depends on our showings, what time they're at, and how many, if any!  What if we don't have any?!!!

See, with my help and guidance, you too can become Mother of the Year.  I know what you're thinking, what lucky kids and how does she do it all with such grace, patience, and joy?  Well, it didn't happen overnight folks!  Wish us luck with the showings and say a pray we get an offer soon, I don't think I can take months of this!