Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Out With A Fizzle...

Confetti Cannon by naught_facility.
No, big plans-yet. Except to wake up tomorrow in the year 2009. Unless the Lord should return. Which I would be fine with. Really.
I'll have to let you know next year if our fizzle turned into a bang. Or not.
*** So, we ended up having a lot of fun. We had a bunco party- and an 11 year old walked away with the $30 grand prize. I'm not bitter. Really. The house was empty by 11:00- and the house guests cleaned too- so we were in bed by 11:45. That's what I call a good party!
I hope you all had a great time ringing in the new year.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Well, That Was, Um...Interesting.

No matter how you chose to celebrate your Christmas, I'll bet you ours was more, um...interesting.

Not having anything else to do on Christmas eve day, we took off to Leavenworth to go sledding. The drive is about 3 hours- without potty stops.

Once we got there, the girls and I decided to check out the few shops that were still open, and when we had seen what we wanted we joined the boys for sledding. The town hill is actually pretty fun-except I don't sled. I can't see throwing myseld down a hill at break neck speed anymore. Anyway, my family can't afford to have me laid up. I sure have become a fuddy-duddy in my not-so-old-age.

After sledding, my husband hijacked us- and we went to the yurt. Which I have mentioned is like sleeping in a glorified shopping bag. He said it was not premeditated, but I don't know- he was awfully prepared....

Any way, it was about 15 degrees when we got there- but we managed to warm it up to about 50 degrees for the night. Sebastian was nice enough to let me sleep with the heating blanket, and I think I would have slept OK except that I also slept with Jonah- who is all knees and elbows at night. Despite all of that, I think I got more sleep than Sebastian, who was up feeding the fire everytime I woke up.

We went out to Brunch at Shari's in Wenatchee and then back to Leavenworth for more sledding. I did get some great sled pictures.

I hope you had a fun time on your special day!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Fully Evolved

Just to recap:

We went from this

To thisAnd Finally, to this

We ripped the old kitchen down to the studs- if you need to refresh yourself, click on the Construction label- took out the wall between the kitchen and dining room, reconfigured the powder room, moved the door to the garage, changed the opening to the entry/ mudroom, took out the laundry room and moved it upstairs, took out a defunct chimney and incorporated those two areas into the new and better kitchen. Sebastian built the cabinets based on my specifications. I asked for, and received, a whole lot of drawers- even behind doors- on full extension glides. I asked for, and received, white cabinets with bin pulls on the drawers and glass panels on the upper cabinets. I didn't ask for a hardwood floor, but I got it anyway and I really like it. we still have to hang the picture moulding and put the stainless steel on the edges of the slate (How cool is that?) Counter tops, but other than that, we are done! And it only took 6 months! Which is short around here- because my fabulous husband doesn't get paid to remodel his own house.

And just because I am a stinker, you have to click here to see the pictures!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Evolution 2

If you recall, we started with this:

So, from phase 1 we went to phase 2. As part of a whole house remodel we got an attached 2 car garage, moved the powder room, we gained a large entry (originally we conceived this as a breakfast room, but we just didn't live that way, so the table became the dumping ground for all our junk as we came and went.), and a family room that can double as a MIL apartment with it's kitchenette and 3/4 bath. Also in this remodel I gained a master bath off of my monstrously huge bedroom.

The kitchen stayed almost the same. We took the large bank of cabinets from one side and turned the bottom unit around to the other side of the room. The cabinets stayed the same, but we did discover the original fir floors under the hideous peal and stick tiles. The fir only ran part of the way through the kitchen. That bump out in the last post was added some time later, and the addition was camouflaged by hideous tile. Badly, I might add.

With a little creativity and some fir we salvaged from the laundry room (that had to be leveled- and took 6 bags of leveling compound) we put together a wood/tile combo kitchen that didn't look too weird. And we lived with it. For a LONG time.

In 2003, Sebastian went to Argentina to climb Mt. Aconcagua. Sine I don't sleep well when he is gone, I had a month of late evenings on my hands. I went to visit all of my sisters, and then I refinished my kitchen cabinets and put new hardware on them.

This is a blue print for #2

And it got ugly in that remodel...that took about 3 years to finish...

Gone, baby gone. Goodbye you hideous waste of space!

Off came the roof of the bad bump out to make way for my master bathroom.

Here is the new garage entrance, the new powder room, and off to the left, the stairs to the new family room.

The new entry and deck, and Jesse looks like he's about 5 here.

This is how the addition ties into our old house. Right above the door is my master bath.

And then this was what we had.

Stay tuned for the big reveal tomorrow- assuming the 1 1/2 feet of snow here doesn't put the power out again.

And keep looking at the first post and trying to be sharp! I fully expect one of my family members to figure it out- but I may just tell you if someone doesn't get it soon!

And then I'll have to eat that Symphony bar myself.

Saturday, December 20, 2008


1.any process of formation or growth; development: the evolution of a language; the evolution of the airplane.
2.a product of such development; something evolved: The exploration of space is the evolution of decades of research.
3.Biology. change in the gene pool of a population from generation to generation by such processes as mutation, natural selection, and genetic drift.
4.a process of gradual, peaceful, progressive change or development, as in social or economic structure or institutions.
5.a motion incomplete in itself, but combining with coordinated motions to produce a single action, as in a machine.
6.a pattern formed by or as if by a series of movements: the evolutions of a figure skater. evolving or giving off of gas, heat, etc.
8.Mathematics. the extraction of a root from a quantity.
9.a movement or one of a series of movements of troops, ships, etc., as for disposition in order of battle or in line on parade.
10.any similar movement, esp. in close order drill.
All pictures circa 2000.

This is pretty much what the house looked like when we bought it.
We took out the cherry tree in the front yard, and we built the fence just after we moved in.
The back had a funny addition built onto it, a detached garage, and a carport large enough to park out motor home.

The blue print shows the layout of kitchen #1.
Don't miss all the living that has gone on in the pathetic kitchen.

Jesse, About 2 1/2 years old.
Notice the hideous peel and stick tiles on the floor. Remember those!

Jesse and Sebastian teaching baby Caleb to walk
Caleb about 11 months old.

Yes, son, I do see you on the counter.

Baby Caleb, about 10 months old.

Our VERY boring dining room.

There is a secret contest to go with this post. It is so secret that I can't even tell you the rules- but you may figure it out anyway- If you're really sharp.
The prize? Think chocolate.

Faith Building Exercises

I've been busy. I may have mentioned that. So busy that I haven't even been able to tell you that we have gotten a foot of snow in the last week. At our house. At 0' Elevation. Well, we have.
Yesterday, my brave husband ventured forth into the white world. He was gone almost 3 hours for a 1 hour trip.... When he got back he was SOOOO cold. He said the car never warmed up. Now, I don't know anything about cars. You get in, you turn your key, and you drive away. The end. When he mentioned that about the car, I casually mentioned that he should probably add some anti freeze. What do I know?
Last night the kids were going a little stir crazy, so we decided to take them rollerskating. We figured that the rink would be pretty empty and we were right. We left the rink at 10 pm and then Sebastian decided that a movie was in order- since we were out and all. We stopped by the mall to watch Bolt (Side note: I wasn't all that thrilled. My 6 year old had a hard time following the story because it switches between a TV set and "real" life. My 4 year old didn't really watch it at all- he nearly fell asleep in my lap.)
After the movie, at midnight, We headed home. I can't be sure, but I think the temperatures were in the teens last night. As we were driving along, freezing our butts off, the car started to over heat! Huh? It's less than 20 degrees out there!
We hobbled along on a side road until we got about 1/2 way home. We had to stop and let the engine cool for about 10 minutes. And it was cold. And it was almost 1 am. And the children were starting to whine.
In one of my prouder parenting moments, I told them all that whining wouldn't help but praying would, and that if they wanted to say something they should say a prayer. Immediately a little chorus of, "I already did!" rang out from the back seats. I reminded them that God knew where we were and exactly what we needed.
No sooner were the words out of my mouth, than a local man stopped by to help us. He and Sebastian checked the radiator and there was NOTHING in it. He went back to his house and picked up a bottle of antifreeze and a gallon of water while we continued to hobble down the road. When he returned, he filled us up and we were on our way.
The heater kicked on, the window defrosted, and we had our toasty children in their beds in 12 minutes.

John Anderson, Thank you for being an answer to our prayers last night.

Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for by this some have entertained angels without knowing it.Hebrews 13:1-3

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Men At Work

I was looking for the perfect song to play for you , but I couldn't find any jack hammers.

Sorry I've been away so long, but if you look left you will see that the list has gotten mighty short. I will show you pictures soon. If you promise not to hate.

Actually, I would show you now, but we have been evicted due to toxic fumes.
Our flooring guy said we could stay at his house for the night. What a nice brother!
We should be home tomorrow and then I will have to do some MAJOR cleaning while I charge my camera batteries.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

The Ice Caves At Big 4

Or, not.

We wanted to go to the ice caves last weekend, because it wasn't actually raining. I know. I was suprised, too. So we loaded up into the car and made the over 1 hour drive where we all got carsick from reading while Sebastian was driving. Just so you know, sometimes I get carsick when he drives and I am not reading. Crazy Romanian drivers... Oh, where was I?

OK, so we got to Big 4 and headed up the trail to the ice caves. We made it to the river, and then we saw this:

It's alright. We know how to entertain ourselves with sticks and rocks.

The trail is a really nice board walk that goes across a bog. The bog is quite deep in some places. But not all of them. Thankfully. Because Jonah was running and talking and not looking and ran right off the board walk into the bog. In a reletively shallow spot. That was really muddy. And cold. He was in the mud up to his hips! And he was mad that we were laughing at him- and that he had to ride home in his underwear.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Just Like Her Mom

Abigail is a little......prickly. Just like her mom.

She tends to get cranky when it is time to eat. Just like her mom.

She can be demanding. Just like her mom.

She's not nice to be around sometimes. Just like her mom.

She can be hard to love. JUST LIKE HER MOM.

And then, 2 weeks ago, she got glasses. Just like her mom.

And she was walking around one day in clean clothes, hair brushed, glasses and face clean, and yet somehow she still looked sort of wrong, you know. A little akimbo. Just like her mom when she was 6 years old.

And my heart melted.

When I'm Not Busy...

I have nothing to post about.
When I'm swamped, I have all the blog fodder I need- and no time to post it!
Such is life.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Advent Conspiracy Promo Video

Amen. This is my point exactly!

Is This Enough Suspense For You?

Here is my too small, not matching refrigerator and the entry to the pantry. Just beyond that is the entry from the back porch.

And, of course, my boys hamming it up for you.

These are the drawers that store all of my dishes. Right by the dish washer. Right where they belong.

I asked for a shelf for my pretties to make the transition from kitchen to dining room. Looks good, don'cha think?

Here's another view of that cabinet. And my tiny red wall. You had to know there would be one.

The sink cabinets, of course. The drawers to the right hold dish towels, sponges, pot holders, etc. The door to the left is the garbage and recycling, and to the left of that is a skinny cabinet with dividers to stand all my bakeware and cutting boards in. Just beyond the bakeware is the stove

This end of the island is by the garage door and the entry. The top drawer has a few batteries in it, the second drawer has fish tank cleaning supplies, and the third drawer has all of the lunch bags in it.
The other end of the island has identical drawers and they hold all of my wrap and baggies.

These are my favorite cabinets. The hold everything from the popcorn maker to the electric skillet, to the rice cooker, to table linens. These are on the sink side of the island.

The top cabinets have all of my "Too pretty to hide" dishes and all the coffee stuff. The bottoms have all my pans, cake pans, and casserole dishes. In roll out shelves. Of course.

Here is the desk area, with it's neatly contained phone books, first aid kits and other assorted junk above.

The new and improved dining-room-open-to-the-kitchen-with-matching-curtains.

And, finally, a view from the dining room into the kitchen.

Friday, November 28, 2008

What Could Possibly Be That Important?

You may or may not know that we do not buy Christmas gifts. It's a personal choice. Sebastian and I have decided that there is not a single thing that our children need, and spending oodles of money on things our kids won't appreciate does nothing to honor Christ. We have held this conviction since we became a WE.

Even more so this year as I look at the pictures of my mom's mission trip to Africa. I am struck by how very little we need to survive. I am struck by the joy on the faces of people when they have a chance to see a loved one. There is not a child in the pictures playing a game boy, listening to their I-pod, or leaving their junk all over the house. There are pictures of children cuddled into my mom's lap. There are pictures of the food that they fed to my mother- I'm sure it was meant to be their own dinner. There are pictures of filth, malnutrition, and JOY.

And today 4 people lost their lives in the mad dash to accumulate. In Long Island a Wal-Mart employee was trampled to death as crowds broke into the store. In the same melee an 8 month pregnant woman lost her baby from injuries received in the mad dash for STUFF. In California 2 people were shot to death after an argument broke out in a Toys-R-Us store. I sure hope that the toy can replace the daddy a child lost today.

Wake up at 3 am to stand in line for hours just to feed the beast of the CHRIST-less-MAS gluttony? No thank you. I would rather snuggle further under my comforter with the child who has climbed in with me. And isn't Christmas really about a child?

Tuesday, November 25, 2008


A child pukes on the floor, I thank the Lord for the small blessing of hardwood!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Happy Birthday, Monkey-Bug

Click to play Jonah
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Jonah is 4 now.
His dad says that when you are 4 you are big- and you don't sleep with your mom and dad anymore...We'll see....

There were 32 people in our house last night. Thank goodness for the new kitchen, because that is where everyone always wants to be.

The anatomy of a meltdown:

Thank goodness for grandmas!