Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Oh - and an update on the house, of course!

Right now, the electrical and plumbing rough in is done, they started the insulation yesterday, and the sheet rock is scheduled to arrive this week yet! Outside, the siding is done on two sides, and half done on two sides! We're still on schedule for a finish in late February or early March!!! We are definitely getting closer!

I don't have my gif animator on this computer, so I'll just post what it looks like now:

Oh - and I almost forgot - a customer of mine, Beth W, who bought from me way back near the beginning, moved out to British Columbia, just across the border from me, last summer! She called and came over today, bearing Christmas gifts (coffee and cookies from Canada - and I just ran all out of coffee yesterday, so it was such a blessing to me!), and she and I had a lovely time visiting and I even got to give her a tour of the new house!

She was especially impressed with how close the new house is to the old one - if you look close, you can see that they aren't able to finish the last part of the porch because it's too close to the mobile home!!! LOL!!

Hope you enjoy this house update!

Long Overdue Update, plus excuses, excuses, excuses!

OK, so I fell off the planet! That was because I was holding my breath, figuratively. Here's why:

Our Marine is Home for Christmas!!!!!!!!

We found out that Jeremy was planning to apply for leave back in September, but he wanted it to be a secret. So we didn't tell. Then in mid November he found out that he could take leave, and by Dec 1st he had his tickets!

We picked him up at SeaTac on Monday and I've been in momma-heaven to have all my children home again!!!

He's been sleeping and gone a lot so far, so not many pics yet, but here's one from this morning of him working on Wedgits (logic building blocks) with his little brothers:

Here are the rest of my excuses for not posting lately - I was working to get all caught up with work, housework, errands, Christmas shopping, so I could be free to spend time with Jeremy. I succeeded in most of those, just some of the housework didn't get done, but then it's never "done" around here!

So here's some photos of life around here over the past few weeks!

Thanksgiving weekend, we replaced the livingroom carpet with laminate flooring - this was the first time we'd ever done it, and overall it went well (that means that there were a few learning curves and minor injuries, but it got done and that's what counts!):

Here's the before (just after having it professionally cleaned, mind you ;):

Here's the after:

Sorry for the reality, but with so many kids, our entry way catches way too much stoff coming in and going out! BTW, that's ELE, in a poodle skirt that Jess made for her, playing with Jess's puppy!

Here's a sweet photo of our sleepy Thanksgiving girl:

The following week we did the same with our "shop" - here's a before picture:

And here's an after photo (I'll be posting more photos of the "new" shop look on our "about us" page later this week!

Those two photos are taken while standing at the door into the room (what used to be our master bedroom!

So that brings us to our snow day - which was between the two flooring weekends:

That's Beka with her mini snow buddy! We actually got 10 inches of snow between Saturday night and Sunday evening, and it was mostly gone by Monday morning, and all gone by Monday afternoon! It was sooo weird!

Making a hat/scarf for Beka, gave me the inspiration of what to do with a fabric I had purchased that just wouldn't work for diapers:

Red Ridinghood in person - with her sister too:

And of course, here's superman!

And here's Red in action - now that's a Riding Red!

And one last take - here's Luke and Leah:

So - now back to the new floor in the "shop" - that meant rearranging to better suit going to 3 computer desks instead of one broken table, and getting a new snapping table as we have now broken two tables!

The problem with rearranging our shop, is that it means moving our snap drawers! We had one mishap while moving (I dropped 3 drawers), one soon after the move due to a light cord, and then the Friday after the big move, 3 drawer sets crashed off the shelf due to the front door causing them to shift! What a mess - that's around 9,000 snaps in three colors, and three types of snaps (caps (think thumbtacks - *ouch*), sockets and studs) all mixed up, all over the table, floor, shipping boxes, etc! I felt like crying! Daryl had taken the day off, and I was so glad!!!! Here's some photos of the snap sorting crew - you can tell by their faces that this was not fun - but they did get some hot cocoa and a candy from the store for their hard work!

Last week ELE and I had a little photo shoot with Jess at the camera - it was fun and here's what came of it:

But we won - all the snaps from the floor got sorted that day - and it only took 7 of us 3 hours! Then throughout the next weeks, Jess and I worked through the ones that were on the table - I still have one more drawer of mixed-up snaps, but for some reason I haven't gotten around to it!

That brings us up to last weekend - and that was our Christmas Tree Hunt! We love to go out and select the perfect tree for our home from a tree far - trek around in the brisk winter air, through the fields and over the woods, etc!!! Here's some photos of our hunt this year:

A gentleman! This was so sweet - he held her hand almost the whole way to the back field!

Found the perfect tree! Dad got the honors this year!

Back to the car with our prize!

Almost ready to hit the road! (we actually had to take two cars, as our 12 passenger van had the engine go out in October, so we use the station wagon, but it only holds 8 people! So Jess drove D's car with 3 kids, and the rest of us piled in the station wagon.

Then we were home, and started trimming the tree - here's a couple pics of the tree in process and finished!

and then we sat down, munching on our candy canes, and read "The Candy Cane Story"!

Somehow I made it through Sunday without blowing our secret, and then Monday I managed to not let the kids know I was wound up tighter than a top. Left to pick up Daryl and off to SeaTac to pick up Jeremy!

When we got home, Jeremy made it all the way to the kitchen before anyone realized it was him! Then is was havoc as everyone tried to realize that he was really home!! What fun!!!

That pretty much brings you up to date! Sorry for such a long post, but it's been along time since my last post!!

Have fun getting ready for Christmas!~!!!


Wednesday, November 28, 2007

It just seems to get crazier by the day!

Sorry for the lack of posts - we have been putting new flooring in our mobile home to get it ready to sell - for some reason most of the flooring is trashed - wonder how that happened! LOL!

The house project is coming along nicely - all the inside walls are framed in now and they are nearly done doing the plumbing rough in and the showers/tubs are in now. Best of all they got the front porch almost done:

(if the last image doesn't have a porch on it, hit refresh!)

I'm having a little trouble with high blood pressure so I'm trying to reduce my stress load (yeah right!) - so I might not update a lot here this month. I'll be back to update when the siding is done (they've done some on the backside already).

Thanks for stopping by!


Friday, November 9, 2007

Wow - Life is BUUSSYYY!

It's been almost a month since I found time to blog - I guess I'm not very good at this! LOL!

One thing keeping my busy lately is making decisions about things in our new house - and most of these decisions involve going to different stores to select what counter tops/cupboards/doors/trim/paint/tubs/showers etc I want - so many decisions my mind goes crazy!

Here' what the house looks like now:

(if the last image doesn't show windows, hit refresh to get the latest images!)

And just for fun, here's shot that shows a comparison of the mobile home and our new house:

For some reason, I'm so busy I can't even get enough sleep! I've had to increase the time I'm doing homeschooling to help one of my kids that has been laggin behind - we did some testing and found that this child has a learning disability, so I'm having to learn how to teach in a completely different way and spend so much more time each day in order to help this one get up to speed!

Plus, two of my seamstresses are on vacation, and another has taken a leave of absence - so I've had to sew again - like 8 hours a day! So now I sew while I homeschool! I've got a cleared spot on the table next to my sewing machine and I teach one on one while I sew!~ Not easy, but it's do-able!

Here's our youngest that is homeschooling - Dan just turned 6 and is doing so well with reading and math it warms my heart!

Just in case you were wondering - I'm actively homeschooling 5 of my children currently, as 2 have graduated, and Jessica is finishing up highschool and uses a computer program, so I don't teach her unless she needs help (which isn't very often!).

Plus I was also "homeschooling" our nearly 4 YO - as in potty learning! And we finally won! He's completely dry day and night!~ Yeah!~

Plus there's always the teaching of life skills - here's "little bit" learning to do dishes with Beka -

As you can tell, she's a ham for the camera!

Here she is again all dolled up for church:

We also have a new addition to our family - Jess has a new puppy:

He is so cute and the kids love him! His name is Sebastian and he came all the way from Texas!

Here's another change around here - I gave Rae a new doo! Her hair is mostly curly, but the hair from the top of her head is less curly. We love long hair around here, but her hair grows sooo slow I don't think she'll ever have long hair! So I layered her hair so the curls can all show!

Well, that's certainly not everything, but that's a lot of what's going on around here!

Hope you enjoyed this update!

Friday, October 12, 2007

House Update

The house has really progressed in the last couple of weeks, I even missed getting a photo of the second story with just framing because it went from framed to having some siding in one afternoon - while I was away! Blink, and I missed it!

Here's up to date as of this afternoon (the second story wasn't there on Tuesday, and now it's there with trusses - WOW that was so fast!

Sorry I haven't posted much lately - just sooo busy - as usual!

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Finally an Update on the house

I finally feel like I'm getting close to being caught up! I actually started unloading our trailer yesterday (we unloaded food, most of the clothes, and most of the bedding the first night), and I'm done with fixing the inventory for Snap-EZ, I've gotten bids on the windows and cabinets and decided on the front posts and am close to deciding on the front door...we've done homeschooling every day this week - going 4 - 6 hours a day, and I've washed6 batches of fabrics for the inserts and simple wonder I'm tired!

So now you know why I haven't posted hardly anything since our spontaneous mini-vacation! And no, I'm not going to post about the vacation yet - don't have that much time!

But I am going to give an update on the house, and I made an animated gif of our container arriving today (we'll move non-essentials into this to make more room for essentials during our "live in pole building" phase (we have to have the mobile home off the property before they will grant us occupancy permits! Yes, that means that in the dead of winter, all 11 of us will be cozied up in a 24 X 36 foot shop - but it is heated, insulated, and has a bathroom, so it's not that bad - plus we are going to pull our travel trailer in there so we'll have a kitchen, master bedroom or sorts, and second bathroom.). Needless to say we can't fit all our furniture, the trailer, and beds and ourselves in there and still get from point A to point B, hense the rented cargo container! It was really exciting to have that big semi arrive this morning with it's huge boom arm and offload the container - we all watched:

Sorry it's so dark, but it was on the verge of raining and then it started to clear up while they were unloading it!

Here's how the house has progressed:

A lot more shows now! Four Walls and all the downstairs floors are done! What you don't see if what they did to my back yard - you should see what my backyard has done to my kitchen - I mopped today and the last few feet I was just "mudding" not mopping!

You might be wondering why we have mattressed in what's left of our backyard - well, we got a new bunk bed for the big boys, and a new mattress for Jess, so the old mattressed went out to go to the dump, only the kids were having such a good time with them, I haven't had the hearts to take them to the dump - it's our trampoline, summersault pad, front flip spring board, and more!

Well, I've got to go to bed - so far this week I haven't been able to stay in bed past 3 am yet - mostly due to Elle teething, but last night she slept through and I just had a plain old case of indigestion/insomnia/there's too much to do so my mind won't shut off. So I am WAY beyond tired!

'Night Ya'll!

Thursday, August 30, 2007

This is just too much fun!

Get together with a good friend with lots of kids, get out toxic instantly staining dye, lots of water, something close to acid to add to the water, stained shirts, blankies, sheets, etc, and a bunch of rubberbands and what do you get?

That most fantastical clothes on the planet:

Here's the red/yellow/greenish batch - fresh out of the dryer late Saturday night!

This was batch number two - purple/magenta/turquoise batch!

Here's one set of matching shirts - the girls had matching too but I couldn't get them together for a photo before they took the shirts off - although they wore them for over 2 days - I guess I just didn't have the camera out at the right time!

Elizabeth just had to be in the picture - and this is what you get if she catches you with a camera - instant fake (but adorable) squinty smiles!

Here is the only relatively decent photo Daryl got of us together - the timing was off and by the time we started getting the right angle, E threw a huge fit:

She even throws a cute fit!


Saturday, August 25, 2007

A Tale of Two Houses

It was the best of times, it was the worst of time.....boy is that ever true!

Tale of House number one - the one we live in.

Best of times - it's actually gotten really clean now two times in 10 days~! Miracle! But it was sooo much work!

Worst of times - the ad for the mobile home came out a week earlier that I thought and the weekend before our county fair - so I put in some LONG days between going to watch my girls show dogs and getting the house ready to show!

I knew that having our mobile home "on the market" would be tough. We've had quite a few calls and shown twice (should have been three times but one was a no-show today - good thing I had two lines up or I would have been bummed to work so hard for nothing!).
It's tough because I've never been a really good "house-keeper" - I tend to be more on the relaxed side of things. Organization underneath, but I'm happy if the house gets tidy once a day and the cleaning gets done on a some-what regular basis (like mopping twice a week, washing windows every month or two, you get the idea). Things went along pretty well until "the business" took over my life 3 years ago.
Once I had the business taking a majority of my day, most of the house-cleaning went by the way-side and we were in survival mode - tidy and clean only when it gets noticeable dirty.
Well, things have been improving over the last year or so, but there are many things that were getting very "noticeable dirty" but for some reason I wasn't noticing them - at least until I began to look at it from a "I've got to get this ready to show" state of mind. Man - I never knew cobwebs could get so big! And man, can kids make marks in the walls or what! Marks, holes, gouges, you name it, they are on my walls! Ack!
So now I'm doing triage - I know I can't get this place looking like new - not eve close! So I'm trying to do what I can, with some help from a friend and my kids and my DH. We gone through every room and tried to remove as much stuff as we can and still live here, and attack the cobwebs, dust, clean windows etc. It's so much work!
But the good side it this - it looks so clean and big and....well better than it's looked in the last 3 years that's for sure!
I even took pictures of the room when I got done - just to remember this house by!
Here's a few highlights:

Yep - that two bunkbeds in a 10 ft by 10 ft bedroom! Tight, that's for sure! Keeps our family close, right?!

Anyway - it's nice to have it so tidy and clean - we are going to try very hard to keep it this way, but with so many little ones, it's really tough!

Tale of House number 2 - Best of times - Here's the latest updated version of my building slide show:

So this week they poured the footings (on Monday) and then they put up the forms for the walls, and poured those on Friday! Next week they will be filling it with more sand and getting things ready for putting in all the pipes and things before they pour the slab floor (for in-floor heating).

Worst of Times - we are all finished up with the banking now - signed out lives away last Wednesday - boy that truth in lending statement - that one will knock you to your knees! And so many pages to sign and initial - WOW! But it's all done now! PTL! Yeah!Now are are building again!

Hope you have enjoyed this installment!