PHANEROO \fan-er-o-oo\Greek: to manifest in word or deed.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

One Up for Lily

Today, Lily had been asking (more like begging) me to play with her and Schaeffer outside and push them on their swings. I explained that I needed to do laundry because if Mommy didn't do laundry today then none of us would have any clean clothes to wear. Her reply, "but if you don't come outside then none of us will be able to swing." So true...

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Construction Zone (update)

We continue to be extremely busy working our plan to purchase our "get out of debt house," as we lovingly refer to it. We have met with three contractors and have collected their ideas. We will be gathering their project estimates next week. We pray they treat us gently considering the amount of work needed to update the house. Then we will have everything we need to get the construction loan to move forward with the project and be on target to close on Nov. 20.

We met with the owner of Wildwood Cabinets today to review our plans for the kitchen. I'm very impressed and very pleased with their work. He and his precious wife attend our church. They will be unveiling the proposed plan for the kitchen next week and I'm very excited to see it! We sat down with him and his wife to review our dreams for our kitchen. He showed us lots of samples and photos. I truly feel like he understands exactly what we are looking for and I can't wait to see what designs he presents next week. Until I have more concrete examples, here are some photos that have inspired our kitchen. I call it "cottage style meets sleek and modern."

Griffin is 6 Months

Griffin has made it to his half birthday - he is now 6 months old! He is still as happy, squirmy, lovable, and kissable as ever. My new favorite thing that he does is when he tries to give hugs and kisses. He gets all excited when I pick him up from his crib after a good long nap and he wraps his arms around my neck, squeezes me tight, and pulls me close to his face while he tries to give me a big sloppy open mouth kiss. None of my other children ever did that and it is totally melting my heart. And because he is so chunky and squishy I just wanna squeeze him all the time!

He is getting very close to crawling. I've seen him try lots of times to get up on his knees. He pushes up on his arms and tries so hard to rock back on his knees. It's only a matter of time.

Griffin's hair is still a shade of red. It seems to be darkening but it's still red. His eyes are still an interesting shade of not quite brown and not quite blue. I've never seen that shade of eye color before.

He had his first taste of solids about 2 weeks ago. It didn't go over real well. He gagged and shivered with each bite, but it's funny because he never did refuse a single bite. I'll try solids again with him in the next few days. For now he's only had about 5 bites of rice cereal. He is still exclusively breastfed - the little guy won't take a bottle. He's not my first to refuse a bottle so no biggey. I hope to continue breastfeeding until at least 12 months like I've done with my other two.

Griffin is such a blessing and a joy in my life. I love every soft and chunky part on his little body.

Happily Ever Before-and-After

Like I said in an earlier post, Better After got me majorly inspired. The desk I used when I was a little student got lots of use over the years, especially when my "Chinese sister" (Aileen) used the desk for 4 years while attending UT and living with my parents. The desk returned to me with a very scratched top and a missing nob. So I knew it needed to be spiffed up before finding it's new home in Lily's room. I found the solid wood chair at a junk furniture store for $10. And now for the big reveal...drum roll please...

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

I'm Addicted

I found a blog linked from Staci's blog (thanks, girlfriend) and now I'm addicted and deeply in love with this blog. It has gotten me majorly inspired and I will never look at ugly, worn-out furniture quite the same. Check out Better After, but beware, you'll get sucked in and you'll have to spend an entire afternoon looking at every single post.

I have my very own before-and-after project that I've been working on. As soon as I get it done I'll post some photos.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Foot Loose and Paci Free!

Well she did it! Lily went 4 weeks without using her pacifiers (exception: bedtime). She is such a big girl. She worked so hard to earn Spike the Ultra Dinosaur. And now that she's not using her paci during the day, Lily has grown up in so many ways the past 4 weeks. It's difficult to explain, but it's almost like when she moved past her paci addiction she has acted more free and she no longer hides behind them for comfort. She has come out of her paci shell in a sense. And she has even given up carrying "Kitty" around every where she goes. I guess paci and Kitty go hand-in-hand. Of course, paci and Kitty are both still in her bed and will probably be there until she moves away to college. Only kidding...I hope...

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Construction Zone Ahead

Looks like our family will soon be the proud owners of a cedar shake cottage in the woods! Yesterday we signed a contract with the sellers. Now we will begin a series of steps before we can complete the deal and move in:

1. Home inspection.

2. Collect detailed quotes from contractors for the renovation project.

3. Close the sale on Nov. 20.

4. Begin work on renovations.

5. Move in and list our current home on the market (not sure what order those 2 things will occur but we'd like a majority of the renovations to be complete before moving our family out of here).

It all began when BJ and I had prayed about purchasing a new home ~ something a bit smaller and less expensive that will get us closer to our dream of being 100% debt free in the next few years. It's exciting just being able to express that into written word! Initially we were going to wait until after the holiday season before searching for a property. But then one day as we were driving through one of our favorite neighborhoods we spotted this fixer-upper. The size of this house is perfect for our family - it's a 1-1/2 story, somewhere between 2200 and 2800 square feet, with the children's bedrooms upstairs, master suite downstairs, a large eat-in kitchen, living room, family room, office, mudroom/breezeway, 3 full bathrooms, hardwood floors, pretty fireplace, tons of storage, huge windows in the front, large wooded lot filled with hickory, shag barks, and dogwood trees, and its on one of the dogwood trails in celebration of Knoxville's annual Dogwood Arts Festival which means in the spring the street will come alive with blooming color. We are very excited about all the potential this holds for our family! And at the same time we are a little nervous about the huge renovation project we are about to undertake, and a bit nastalgic about our current home. BJ pointed out yesterday that our current home is the only one Schaeffer and Griffin have ever known and Lily was not even 1-year-old when we moved where are now. But there's no time to look back and be sad - full speed ahead!

(I'll share more photos as soon as I get them downloaded and edited.)

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Grandchildren Photo Session: Take 26

I don't know exactly how many times Grandmama attempted to capture a photo of all 6 grandchildren together, but this is one of the better attempts in that you can see all of their faces. Hilarious!

Friday, October 9, 2009

Paci-Free in 4 Weeks or Less - Week 3

What a huge change I've seen in Lily this week without her pacifiers. She hasn't even asked for them. She still has them in her bed for nighttime, but maybe we'll get past that in the very near future. She even seems to be exploring her world a little more - maybe because her hands are free and not holding onto her "paci bouquet" (when she holds 4-5 of them in one hand it reminds me of a wedding bouquet). I had even joked that one day we could make her a paci bouquet when she grows up and gets married. She's well on her way to earning Spike the Ultra Dinosaur!

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Ride of the Valkyr...uh...Valco

I keep hearing that classical song in my head, Ride of the Valkyries by Wagner (prounounced Vaaahg-ner). Go here if you need a refresher in classical German composers of the 1850s. We just added the third seat to the Valco Baby stroller. It is WAY cool, although, it's probably easier to push a loaded grocery cart down the crowded aisles of Walmart than jogging behind this monster of a machine when loaded down. I tallied it up and I'm probably pushing no less than 140 lbs. But I feel good about being able to get back into my running routine now that all 3 children can ride along. On the bright side, I'll be getting a more intense workout each time we head out the door for a jog. The Valco rides again...