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Friday, May 18, 2012

Closing Time

Oh I thought this day would never come!  But yes, we finally have the keys to our new house.  I’m still sitting in my old house right now, but we do have possession of the new one, too. 

"Closing on a house"

So financial matters are better left not written about on the internet for the whole world to see (or the 12 people that still read my blog), but I will say that I’m glad that it’s all over!  That whole ordeal was a doozy fraught with one complication after another. 

We did have a contract on our house, but it fell through at the last minute (that was where all the complication was coming into play).  So our current house is still for sale if you’re looking.  Winking smile 

The day was a hectic one.  Michael was trying to get money wired quickly from our savings bank to the title company, and it didn’t happen on time, so we had to wait there until it finally did come through.  Meanwhile, this was the scene in the title company conference room…

"baby in a car seat", "closing on a house", "closing day""sick kid", "closing on a house"
Not pictured was Levi who was sitting next to me at the large, oval table smearing Dorito fingers all over the glass top of the table.  Both older boys are in bed with fevers now.  It sucked that they had to be sick and couldn’t be excited about the house; I was sad for them. 

I was gonna be mean and make you wait for pictures, but I’ll go ahead and give you a little sneak peak.  Now keep in mind that it is a blank slate, but it’s in the perfect location, has great bones, and has a lovely pool (a near-necessity in Texas).  After this house is Annie-fied, it will look completely different. 

"closing on a house", "closing day", "our new house"
The curb appeal got me on this house.  I was automatically in love.

"closing on a house", "closing day", "swimming pool", "flagstone pool"
To use a totally outdated movie reference, the pool had me at hello.  I can’t wait to spend our summers in that bad boy!
"staircase", "fireplace", "our new house", "closing on our house", "closing day"
And here’s a peak inside.  That’s all you’re getting, though, because the next pictures you see of this place will be before and afters.

Note the white carpet…um…yeah…it’s not my fave, but that’ll be there for a while until we’re ready to put in new floors.  I’ll definitely be enforcing a no-shoe rule.  It would have been nice to put in floors before we moved in, but yeah - that wasn’t happening. 

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Mother’s Day Is Still Mother’s Day…

…even when we’re all sick (and my house looks like a tornado came through it and dumped everything in boxes). "Mother's Day", "sick kids", "sick kids on mother's day"Saturday night, we weren’t feeling well, so we let Samuel fall asleep on the couch.  He woke up in the bathtub.  We took him there after he threw up all over the couch in his sleep.
IMG_3074I slept on said couch with the back pillows on the bottom while he slept with his mattress on the floor of the living room.  That way I could be there to hold the bowl while he dry-heaved all night.
WP_000120I’m headed to the doctor today with Isaac because I’m pretty sure he has an ear infection.  Levi had pink eye, but it appears to be gone now.
sThrough all of that, though, Michael was a trooper and totally picked up the slack (he was feeling just slightly better than I was, but not much).  So even though we were all feeling crappy, we did have a relaxed day; we were together; and we all loved on each other and cuddled a lot.  There could definitely be a worse way to spend Mother’s Day.  I just love my kiddos and their Daddy.  Smile

I hope you all had wonderful Mother’s Days full of cuddles, kisses, and love!

Monday, May 14, 2012

Living Out Of Boxes


Moving is pretty stressful.  I don't recommend it.  Just stay put; you'll be fine.  It's really too big of a hassle.
"living out of boxes", moving, packing, "moving with kids", "living simply"
I'm totally kidding, but having your 16 month old climb atop boxes marked "FRAGILE" can be a bit nerve-wracking.  I guess it's just his new indoor playscape.
"living out of boxes", moving, packing, "moving with kids", "living simply"
It’s really amazing how much stuff you can really live without while it's in boxes.  For instance, my gift bags and wrapping paper were packed up, and two or three times I simply used what I had on hand.
Once it was a brown paper bag that I used as wrapping paper, dressed up with random stuff around the house.  Another time it was packing paper that I let Samuel color onto.  And another time, I just totally gave up and used the shopping bag that I got when I bought the gift.  Haha. 
"living out of boxes", moving, packing, "moving with kids", "living simply"Anyway, I really do hope that I can keep up a “simple” life while I’m in a much bigger house.  I know that it’s inevitable that I’ll collect more stuff, but I hope it’s meaningful stuff and not junk. 
"living out of boxes", moving, packing, "moving with kids", "living simply"AND I can’t wait until this buying and selling process is OVER!!!!  I have not been this stressed out in a long time for such a long period of time.  The first house we bought was so easy since we were coming from an apartment, so I really didn’t know what I was getting myself into.  It’s been a doozy, but it sure will be nice when we’re finally in our new house.  Can’t wait!!
"living out of boxes", moving, packing, "moving with kids", "living simply"

Friday, May 11, 2012

Whole Wheat Breadmaker Bread


ETA: I've added two posts that are helpful to this:
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breadmaker whole wheat bread
There was a time after I bought my wheat grinder years ago that I would make fresh bread by hand, but after I had kids I succumbed to the idea that if I wanted fresh bread it would have to come from a breadmaker. 

There are still times when life gets too crazy to have the time to grind wheat, plan ahead for bread, and cut it up.  But every now and then I get in a good swing with it, and it all works out.  Now is one of those times. 
I was having the hardest time perfecting my recipe because even though it worked perfectly during the winter months, the spring and summer months bring a new challenge because of the heat and humidity. 
breadmaker whole wheat breadBut I have FINALLY perfected my recipe for the spring months.  (Who knows if I’ll have to change it for the summer?!)  Here it is if you’re interested!
    • 1 2/3 Cups of water (microwaved for 1 minute)
    • 2 TBSP of coconut oil (or any other)
    • 1/4 Cup of any sugar
    • 2 Tsp of salt
    • 4 Cups of whole wheat flour
    • 3 TSP of yeast (Rapid Rise for Breadmakers)
Then here’s the trick!  Put it on the setting for regular white bread, not the longer setting for whole wheat bread.  And put it on a light crust cycle.  This is a shorter amount of rise time, so it doesn’t overinflate and then sink, which is so incredibly frustrating. 
breadmaker whole wheat bread
I usually get about 26 slices out of a loaf, and that makes it about 80 calories per slice.  They’re way worth it, too. 

Don’t forget to store it in an airtight container, and don’t refrigerate it or it will dry out.  Eat it up and enjoy!!!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Multicultural Day (and the ensuing stress)

So back in March or whenever it was that we were considering moving, Michael asked me what would hold me back from putting our house on the market then instead of waiting until the summer.  I told him, without hesitation, Multicultural Day.  IMG_3026
IMG_3035Multicultural Day is a HUGE event at the elementary school that is put on by the parents and volunteers.  There are six different countries that they “travel to” with their entire grade throughout the day.  And the parents work all year on planning for that one day.  But you know how it goes – you’re busy with regular life stuff, so that is the project that’s always looming over you, adding a few grey hairs every couple of weeks when you realize that you don’t have a certain goal accomplished on it yet.
IMG_3029IMG_3032There were supposed to be a number of components (all highly advised suggestions) from your assigned country.  There should be a sample of food, a performance, a lesson, a craft, and the room should be decked out.  And that was the bare minimum.  So guess what I did…yep…the bare minimum.  If I was regular, type-A, perfectionist Annie, I would have gone all out.  But this time they got stressed out, I’m selling my house, why did I sign up for this Annie.  IMG_3033IMG_3037
I did learn the art of delegation, and in the end it saved my sanity (even though I still gained five pounds from stress-eating).  I have an amazing artist friend who did all the d├ęcor.  My real estate agent, knowing that if I was too stressed out I wouldn’t sell my house, found me an opera singer.  And the other team members picked up the slack with the handouts, food, and lesson.  I just had to organize and set up for everything. 
IMG_3039IMG_3038The kids and teachers loved it, but my stupid perfectionism won’t allow me to pat myself on the back for a job well-done.  I keep saying it was just fine.  Ugh, why am I such a jerk to myself?!   Let that be a lesson to you.  Don’t be mean to yourself.  Winking smile 
35916_3981416296894_1325287930_3524941_780463597_nAnd this kid was proud of his mama, and that is the highest praise I could receive!  Love.This.Boy.
549364_3981418976961_1325287930_3524946_247675052_n

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Hindsight is 20/20

Do you ever see someone that you used to date or have a crush on on Facebook and think, “DODGED.A.BULLET!!!”  Whew!  Seriously, I just think that God really had His hand on my life even when I really thought that my life would be SOOO good with some particular guy.  Hindsight is usually 20/20, as they say. 

I think about that with how we so wanted to move a year or more ago, and the choices we would have made were so different than the choices we have made today.  I think we dodged some more bullets in that arena. 

Now we’re on a church search, and it’s so hard and frustrating, but I’m sure when we finally end up somewhere, we’ll look back and see God’s hand leading us.  Waiting is the hardest part. 

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