Friday, June 23, 2006

We signed the papers today! As of Monday, the sale of this house will close and the day after that, we close on the new house. Yikes. Its really happening.

I am so stressed.

It just hit me like 3 hours ago. All I wanted to do was lay down and go to sleep, and after I'm done blogging, I might just do that. There is so much to be done, so many small details. Overwhelming.

My state of mind has not been good lately. Its been fuzzy and generally out of sorts. It has me worried that perhaps this PPD has morphed into something worse... like, I don't want to say mental illness, but perhaps so. Not the type where I'm shipped off to an asylum, but just where I cannot deal with reality. It seems more and more I want to ignore or numb out what is bothering me, even simple things like the kids whining or whatever. The fuse is just so short... instead of blowing up though, its internalized for however long. Eventually there is some sort of issue that sets me off and then I over-react to the extreme.

Anyway, even that last paragraph just shows how out of it I am lately. Not sure it makes any sense. Perhaps what I think is my mind falling apart is simply a tired Mommy of two toddlers preparing to move in like 5 days.

I shall stop the pointless rambling now and go to bed :)

My mini-me's

First, the real me, at about 1 year or so.

The first mini-me (at about a year)

The second mini-me (at about a year)

We look so alike!

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Well it looks like our buyers will meet closing. Yipee! We are going tomorrow to sign papers and then we'll close on Monday. We got the ok to start changing addresses and such, so we're busy at work doing all that fun stuff.

Today Mom and Jenni came over and babysat while I got out of the house. I had no real plan, just drove around, looking at various things and considering for the new house. It was nice to get away and I came back feeling good :)

Ethan is suffering mightily with allergies for some reason. They came on very suddenly and he's absolutely miserable. Seems worse in the afternoon/evenings. Poor little guy... his eyes water, nose runs. After this move we're gonna have to get him some allergy tests :(

I made a really good fish dish for dinner. Generally we are not big fish fans, but this came out fabulous. Its called Boston Baked Cod and basically you put some cod fillets in a dish, season with salt and pepper, saute up some shallots, garlic and butter together, pour over the cod, then sprinkle a breadcrumb/parsley mixture over the top. Bake for 15 min. We had it with a simple rice pilaf (rice, shallots, thyme) and some green beans. The recipe isn't online, but ya'll are interested, let me know and I'll type it out for you. It was quite tasty.

My legs are sore from all the walking around so I'm going to head to bed!

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

A small step for Gwennie, a giant leap for Mommy and Daddy :)

Yes, Gwendolyn Ruby Horn has started walking.... BIG TIME! Finally! I was rather worried that she would be happy crawling the rest of her days. This evening she not only walked all over the place, but she did it just to show off. Yay!

The kids were quite cranky (not sleeping in either of their naps) and hence Jason and I became cranky. We ordered a pizza and they delivered the wrong one to us. It was edible though so we didn't raise a stink about it.

Jason is working from home tomorrow because he has a dental appt. I might actually start packing too. Its hard for me to get motivated to start, but I know that once I get going, I'll go quick.
A quick note to say that Ethan is doing the cutest thing.

With me playing the piano a lot more, the kids really want to play too.

The other day Ethan sat on the bench, held out his hand and asked for "Poppa pipe". I thought, "Huh?". Then it came to me... I'd worked with him previously on a little song my Grandpa taught all us kids

I can read
I can write
I can smoke my Grandpa's pipe

Of course, when I sing it to him, I say Poppa instead of grandpa. Hence, he wanted me to help him play "Poppa pipe" song. Too cute!

Monday, June 19, 2006

We had a nice Fathers Day celebration over at my parents house. Grandparents were there and we did our normal eat, drink and be merry thing :)

Our appraisal came back today and was good, so we're clear on that front. The financing looks ok for our buyers, but there is a chance now that it won't close on time. UGH. They are the ones that requested such a fast closing and if it doesn't happen on the timeframe THEY chose, I'm gonna be livid. So two stressful things down, but another thing pops up. I swear we'll be on pins and needles until the day this thing goes through, and then probably for a few more after that!

Today I did nothing but play with the kids. Funnily enough, I found that to be far more exhausting than any housework or whatever :)

I've been really into the piano again. It comes and goes and I'm digging it right now. My fav piece at the moment is "Musetta's Waltz" from La Boheme by Puccini. I've also been working on "Serenade" by Shubert, "The Scientist" by Coldplay and "Everybody's Changing" by Keane. Good times.

Saturday, June 17, 2006

The bad news:

Our dishwasher is broken, AGAIN. Same problem... Not draining. Yet, this morning, feeling lucky, I ran it through again and it did drain. What the #$!!^%? So, I loaded it up again with dishes and ran it through. I'm afraid to open it now though because I just know that since I loaded the dishwasher up it will not drain and now I'll have to take everything out and wash it by hand. Sears can't come back out to look at it until Thursday. Great. We can't replace the darn thing because it may impact our sale. Great. This little appliance is really making me irate.

The good news:

We went to kite flying night last night and got lots of cute pics of the kids. Here they are.

Posing on the beach

Ethan, endlessly facinated by water

Laughing at his cousin Aaron

I love this one...

Putting shells on Gwennies head (?)

Sittin' pretty

Wheee! (one of the few pics I have of him smiling. Yes!)

About to slide...

and away she goes!

Shelly and her "friend" Peter. He was extremely nice and very funny.

Aunt Jenni and Gwen

Aunt Becki and Gwen

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Ok, I'm depressed again. There, its out. I've been struggling for the past couple weeks, maybe even longer. Like always, there is no specific reason, it just *is*. I'm sure its related to the move and all that.

Today Grammy came over and babysat while I went to Costco and Fred Meyer. Aaron came over at 1 and did yardwork (much much needed). When I arrived home, Aunt Deanne and Ben were here and we had a short visit while Aaron finished. Ethan was in 7th heaven with Ben here! It was really cute. They ran around outside for a bit, and Gwen tagged along best she could.

After everyone left, I collapsed on the couch, utterly exhausted. I made a turkey dinner last night with stuffing, mashed potatoes and gravy and so I did it easy and had leftovers tonight.

Tomorrow the appraiser for our buyers will be coming out. I'm not really sure what to expect. How much looking around will he do? After that is done, its pretty much all downhill till the closing on the 26th.

Very sleepy now... Au revoir!

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Let me tell you about our recent string of bad luck.

Last Thursday we went out to our cars to head to the new house for inspection and stuff and found that both our cars had been gone through. Nothing was gone from Jasons, but my cell phone was taken :( I was really surprised because I had my Ipod and a huge case of CD's, but they only took my cell phone.

Then, our dishwasher stops draining so I have to wash piles of dishes every day by hand.

Yesterday, Jason opens his blinds and finds that the outer pane of his window has a hole and is cracked. I go out and find the rock that did the damage under the window. Given the size of the rock (pretty small) and the angle, it looks like someone must have tossed it over the fence. Or, it could have been kicked up by the lawn mower at some point. Jason had those blinds closed for weeks, so we have no way of knowing when it actually happened. We probably will not repair it as the hole is only in the outer pane and doesn't open into the house.

Dishwasher guy shows up today and does exactly what I did earlier but longer and voila, it works.

While he is here, we get a call from US Bank Fraud department. Looks like I dropped Jason's debit card on Sunday and someone picked it up and made some charges. Luckily, they caught it, cancelled the card and refunded the money. Still, major stress!

We can't believe how things have been going of late. Hopefully they end today and will go no farther since the dishwasher is now fixed and I have a phone again. May the chain be broken!

Ethan has been going through a very big jealousy stint. A few days ago he tried to nurse. Now, he stopped nursing at 10 months and has never ever tried since. He didn't know what to do and lost interest quickly. I let him try because I didn't want to make him feel bad and I knew that he wouldn't remember how it all worked. Well, every time I nursed today he wanted to nurse. When he's tired of waiting, he'll push Gwen away, lift up my shirt and say, "Gwen all done. I nurse, I nurse". I told him that he couldn't nurse, but that we could cuddle. So instead of nursing, he requires 15 min of cuddle, story and hugs after every nursing session. I don't know what triggered this, but it sure has been time consuming! I feel bad because he really seems hurt that Gwen gets to "cuddle" with me so often and he doesn't :(

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Yesterday we had a full and exciting day. We dropped the kids off at Mom's house after nap and took off to buy our flooring and pick out appliances.

We stopped off at End of the Roll to look over our top picks again and Jason was able to get them to cut down the price a bit on the flooring we ultimately chose.

Its a lovely Jatoba (or, Brazillian Cherry).

After getting that done, we felt so much better for having that decision done and over with. So much stress. We headed for Sears initally to window shop, but after talking to the sales people we realized that we could get some very good deals on appliances if we bought all Kenmore and bought them on the 30th (they are having a one day 20% sale on Kenmore stuff). Consumer Reports rated Kenmores as their "best buy" for the appliances we needed, so we picked out the washer/dryer and refrigerator we wanted and had her write it up. We'll have to come in on the morning of the 30th to actually purchase them to get the deal, then they will be delivered the next morning.

Because I'm a geek, I will attach pictures of my new appliances, which I love.

After all that we went back to Mom's, had dinner, then came home. The kids were worn out, and so were we!

I keep forgetting to mention, Ethan can count to 5 now and sing the alphabet. Gwen can say tons of words, but her current favorite is "uh oh" which she repeats over and over again at the slightest provocation.

Our dishwasher is broken and we haven't been able to fix it. It doesn't drain out all the water. Last night I thought I had fixed it by - and I realize this is not an approved method by anyone, ever for dishwasher repair - tossing bleach into the pool of water at the bottom and running it through a cycle. The thought being that the bleach may loosen up the clog, if there was a clog. Indeed, it seemed to work as all the water drained out. So this morning we happily loaded it up with all the backlogged dishes and ran a cycle and we are left with another pool of water that has not drained! We are way over our head when it comes to this particular appliance so we arranged for someone to come out on Tuesday to look at it. In the meantime we'll be buying some paper plates and cups and handwashing (*shudder*) whatever is not disposable.

Friday, June 09, 2006

Another busy day!

Jason came home early, Shelly came to babysit and J and I took off to End of the Roll to see about flooring. They'd been able to send out someone right away to take measurements of our new house and we had to pick out some floors.

Ugh, it was SO hard. There were many beautiful styles, and don't even get me started on colors! If only money was not an option! After getting pricing on a few different options, we went to Lowes, then Home Depot to comparison shop. End of the Roll ended up still being the cheapest, though the overall total was much higher than we expected. This is partly because we have 14 stairs that I want done. Stairs are really difficult and its $40 per stair! Yikes. But I won't give on them, I HATE vacuuming stairs and they will get so much traffic... its worth it!

Because of the high install cost, we had to go a bit cheaper on the flooring . I wanted the highest end we could afford, and we are doing that, but after seeing the super high end stuff, naturally, I wanted that :) We've decided on a nice two strip, reddish brown. Its nice.

While at Lowes and Home Depot, we checked out various appliances and I drooled heavily over a dual oven, 5 burner beauty. Oh heavens, I lust after that range. But its $1300 and even I can admit its too much. But oh, I'll probably dream about that stove.

I've found the type of fridge I want. Its called a "french door" design. It has the freezer on the bottom, with a pull out drawer and sliding shelves to organize things (helps with not losing stuff at the bottom). The top is the fridge and it has split doors. Its a really cool design.

While we were at the new house the other day, I took some measurements in the drawers for an in drawer spice rack. They have some super nifty things for cabinet and drawer inserts. Ideally I'd like to outfit my kitchen cupboards with pull outs, and even put in one of those appliance lifts. The appliance lift fits under your counter in a cabinet, holding something like your mixer. When you want to use it, you open the cabinet drawer, pull on the lift and the mixer is lifted and locked at counter level. Its extremely nifty.

Everything I want right now is so expensive. Floors, appliances, accessories.

The kids are doing well. Ethan is amazingly talkative and vocal now. He's developed a real love of books and will sit through many readings, even of books without touch and feel options. Gwen is also growing fast. Still not walking, but talking and expressing herself much better than Ethan did at this age. She's full of drama and attitude and sweetness all at the same time. As her independence develops, her and Ethan are starting to get into fights more. I let them try and work it out on their own without too much interference. I think its kinda interesting to watch :) Sometimes they seem to come to an understanding and other times Ethan will just reach out and push her over or she will leap onto him. Its pretty funny!

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Such a whirlwind the last couple of days.

We sold the house on Saturday... dropped 2,000 off the price, but we were happy with it. The one catch was that they wanted to move in by the end of the month. We accepted this because we were anxious to move too! They did not want an inspection done on the house, which was strange, but ok with us :)

So we went house searching all day Sunday with no luck. Monday we did Lake Stevens and found lots of good stuff. We took Mom out later in the day to get her opinion on our top two and she helped us pick "the one".

As we were writing up the offer, we heard that another offer had been put in for the house, but that it wasn't full price. Obviously, we bumped ours up to full price, but we had to keep the short closing date to fit with what our house was doing.

Tuesday we heard that a third offer had been put in on the house. We thought for sure that we lost the house... that certainly this third offer was more than full price. The kids and I were going home that day and I cried the entire way thinking that we'd have to redo our search and that this house was so perfect.... but then our agent called and told us they'd taken our offer!

Not only had they taken it, but they'd turned down $5,000 more because we were such strong buyers. Wow! God really answered our prayers!

Anyway, we're in a big flurry of trying to plan things out now. Today the inspector will be out there and we have a person coming out to do measurements on the floors. I want at least the downstairs and stairs to be done in wood and maybe the master bedroom too. Its all carpet right now and they have cat so its not great for Jason.

Oh, and you know who has paid me a third visit? Mr. Strep Throat. Yep. My antibiotic dose was up on Sunday and Tuesday morning I woke up with a tickle and it went downhill from there. Erg. I'm sitting here right now with a very swollen throat, fever and body aches. Got a stronger antibiotic from the doc and hopefully this will resolve soon. I can't recall ever, in my entire life, having something this persistent... something that 20 days of antibiotics did not kill.

Coming home after 3 weeks at my Mom's has been hard. Not only do the kids miss her and Jenni and the freedom they have there, but I miss the help :) We had a really good time there and we are so thankful that they opened their home to us for so long.

Its quite apparent to me why back in the day and in other cultures the families all live together. To get anything done and keep your sanity, you need to work as a group. I wonder if the rate of post-partum depression is higher in countries like the US and UK because of our independence from family. Instead of living an extended family house, we all have our little houses where we handle everything on our own. It puts a lot of stress on the Moms to do everything themselves.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Whew. Its been a very long time since I blogged. Its just very difficult for me to find the time and energy to do so!

We're still at my Mom's, as the house is still on the market. We are disappointed that its taken this long. Our agent is bewildered as to why its not sold as well. We have noticed that in general houses seem to be moving much slower... how lucky for us to have listed when the market slows *grrr*. The kids and I may be going back home on Tuesday since traffic has dropped down dramatically. We'll just see what happens.

Nothing much has been happening as of late. Being out here keeps me fairly housebound :) Over Memorial Day weekend, we went to see Les Miserables (we being myself, Jason, Mom, Becki, Michelle, Michelle's friend Alex and Grammy) then went out for dinner at P.F. Changs at Westlake Center. We had a really fun time and I enjoyed being downtown. Haven't been there in a very long time and I recalled how much I just loved working down there.

Today I took Jenni over to Grammy & Grandpa so she could join them on their trip to Aunt Daralyns house to get Aaron. She was estatic to go. Frankly, we will miss her here... both for her company and her way with the kids. 
With all the time we've spent here, she's learned their habits and moods and they respond well to her.

After that, I went to get my emissions done, then my new tabs (a month overdue!) and plates. I lost my front plate in that little fender-bender the day before Gwen was born and just now, over a year later, am I getting replacement plates :)

Then I stopped at Fred Meyer, got some groceries and assorted things and headed to the house. I installed these things... I can't really think of their name right now... that helps the cupboards stay shut. The cupboards are the weakest part of the entire house (they were worn when we bought the house) and hopefully this will help them look better. My hands and shoulders ache from all that twisting. The screws were so tiny that I had to do each of them by hand. I'm not used to it!

I've been feeling greatly bedraggled in spirit. I think its a combination of the house not selling as fast as we wished, hormones, the stress of having a home away from home and the weather. Even for my rain loving self, this constant drizzle is rather dreary. I've been hiding in books, finishing a 1,000 page epic on Henry the VIII in 3 days and diving into others right away. Sleeping in Shelly's old room isn't helping as she has many many many books in
there and I keep seeing ones I want to read