Tuesday, October 30, 2007

The home improvement project that never ends

A couple of weeks ago, we pulled the carpet up in our living room and hall, to install bamboo flooring. Well, the flooring has been installed, but the home improvement project has evolved. We thought about putting in some crown molding, and decided that now was as good a time as any, then we decided that while we had the base boards off, we may as well paint.

Here's where we are now: Floors have been installed (thanks to Joe, Aaron, and the flooring master Jimbo), walls painted (thanks Jared and Wendy for babysitting), new coat of paint on the base boards (thanks Jared and Amilyn), and furniture put back into the livingroom (it was rearranged, a new peice of furniture added, then rearranged about 5 more times, thanks Jared for helping us move them and adjusting our backs afterwards) Joel's brother Jared came into town on Wednesday of last week and stayed with us until yesterday morning. We put him right to work; I'll bet he had no idea what he was getting into. He was such a good sport about it, too.

Here's what we have left: Put the baseboards back up; install paint, and caulk the crown molding; install the flooring doorway transition strips (the flooring store didn't have them in stock so we had to wait on those to come in the mail); and give the flooring a good cleaning (we have been scraping and removing glue for days, Joel decided that I was good at it, so I should take over that job, convenient. I guess I can't complain though, I've dodged a lot of other work with the pregnancy).
Some demo. pictures:

The livingroom furniture was all crammed into the kitchen and diningroom for days. That first picture is a shot from the kitchen, looking into the diningroom.

We all agreed that the carpet padding looked like the jello that Sis. Hebert from Plaquemine Branch always brought to the pot-lucks. We also all agreed that though she went a little crazy with the ingredients, we all secretly liked it.

Joel and I were not going out to rob a bank, (even though we could use a little extra cash after this project that kept growing and growing) we were just trying not to fill our lungs with the dust from the carpet and padding. I could not believe how much dust and dirt there was in and under the carpet. Even with my dish towel mask (we forgot to buy some at the store so we had to improv) I still had a sore throat for a couple of days.

Some install pictures:

The guys just getting started (left to right: the back sides of Joel, Joe, and Jimbo)

As soon as we get that last few things done, I'll post some pictures of the finished product. Hopefully that will all be done soon!

P.S. Keep scrolling down the page, I put up two posts at the same time, so there is another new one right below this one, and the next one has Kailey picture (I know that she is the real reason that some people look at my blog, it's ok mama, I love you anyway).

Trunk or Treat and last halloween

I'm a little late posting my trunk or treat pictures. I have enjoyed looking at everyone else's so I thought I should put a few of ours up.
Kailey was really excited about all of the candy, but wasn't sure what to think about all of the decorations and costumes. I think she had fun though.

Kailey and her friend Alina (these two are nursery buddies, every time that we leave nursery to go to the restroom or outside for a walk, they always hold hands and walk together). Alina and her family will be moving soon into a new home and a new ward; we will be sooo sad.

Uncle Jared was in town from Colorado for a few days and came to trunk or treat with us. I think Kailey was sad because we took away her bucket of candy for the picture, not because she is standing by her Uncle Jared. She loves her Uncle Jared.

Kailey and her cousin Madalyn. Wendy, Joel's sister, and her family recently moved back down her from South Carolina. Kailey loves to hang out with her cousins.

Kailey and another nursery buddy, Kaiden. Kailey liked his costume a lot, Ithink because she knew that he was monkey, she likes monkeys, and she can say the word monkey.

We are really excited for trick or treating in the neighborhood tomorrow. Last year we didn't go; Kailey and I just gave out candy on the front porch. She sat in her walker in her pony costume. She didn't even know what candy was, ahh the good old days. This year we invited Jamie and Allison and Courtney (good friend, college roommate and jazzercise buddy) and her little girl Sadie to come trick or treating with us. I told Kailey this morning that we were going trick or treating tomorrow and she didn't seem to know what I was talking about, so I explained that we were going to take her bucket and go to our neighbors houses and get treats (she knows the word treat), her eyes lit up, and she said "yeah!"

Here are a few pictures from last halloween. It's fun to see how much Kailey and Allison have changed. Allison was about a month and a half old, and had just started staying with me and Kailey while Jamie finished up the school year teaching.

Kailey was 10 1/2 months and was less than a week away from walking. Her costume by the way was size 3-6 months.

A view of the front porch with our not so scary jack-o-lantern, and Kailey in her walker.

I love this one because it shows how her main and tail stuck straight out.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Pumpkin Eli

I have been talking to Kailey about the new baby. I have been pointing to my belly telling her that soon she will have a baby brother that will come to live with us, and that we are going to name him Eli (at least that's the plan for now). So she started calling every baby that she sees in books, magazines, tv, etc. "baby Eli."
A week or so ago, we bought some pumpkins, which she was very excited about it (I put one of the big pumpkins in the baby seat section of the cart with her and she hugged it for a long time). I bought some small pumpkins too for a wreath that I was planning to make, and when we got home, I explained that we had big pumkins, and baby pumkins (not meaning to confuse her, i just meant baby, as in small). When I gave Kailey one of the small pumkins to play with, she called it baby Eli.

Then last week she started calling me mommy Eli. We went to the park last Friday with Jamie and Courtney, and she was yelling mommy Eli across the park to get my attention as she got ready to go down the slide.

On Saturday, she finally figured out how to say pumpkin (she has been carrying around her baby Eli pumpkin since I gave it to her). Pumpkin sounds more like punky, but she's getting better at it.

This probably sounds like a lot of random thoughts, but I am going somewhere with it. This morning when we got in the van to go to Jazzercise, she found baby Eli pumpkin, actually two baby Eli pumpkins, and she was really excited. She started saying "pumpkin Eli," and did not stop. When we got to Jazzercise, she would not leave the pumpkins in the van, I had to let her go in with her pumpkins. Later tonight, we had to go to the grocery store, and when we got in the van the pumpkins were there, and she started the "pumpkin Eli" thing again, I got a picture of her with my phone.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Can we put the house back together yet?

The aforementioned flooring was put down this week. I was so excited to get it done, and now I can't wait to get the house back to normal. I took a lot of before during and after pictures that I'm gonna post soon.

I also wanted to say thanks to Jimbo, Joe, and Aaron who came over to help. That floor would probably still only be half done if not for Jimbo. It was great to have someone help that had experience and could just get right to work, rather than spending a lot of time planning and trying to figure out how to get started.

For now, all of our livingroom furniture is crammed into the dining room and kitchen, and baseboards and door frames have to be put back up. It will be so nice once we are able to get things back in their places.

If you are an LA resident, don't forget to vote tomorrow!!!

Friday, October 12, 2007

Some promised pictures

A couple of days ago, I was talking to my friend Clare on the phone, and I was telling her about Kailey making faces at herself in the mirror. (Her new favorite thing is to go into the hall bathroom, stand at the sink and say "up" until I put her on the counter so that she can play in the mirror). I promised Clare that I would post a few of the pictures, so here they are.

That is a can of febreeze she has. The t-shirt that she has on, is one that her grandad brought her, it's a Citgo junior firefighter t-shirt. She begged to put it on and refused to take it off.

And one over the shoulder. (She does have shorts on, the shirt was just longer)

A beautiful day!

Today was a stark contrast of Wednesday. I started the day with some babysitting at jazzercise. The kiddos did great. Afterwards, Jamie, Courtney, and I went to a nearby park with the girls. I never have my camera with me, so I don't have any park pictures. It was such as beautiful day, we thought it was a perfect oportunity to go to the park.

We had a couple of firsts at the park. For the first time, Kailey played all by herself. She climbed and went down the slide by herself. I usually have to help her climb up and catch her at the bottom of the slide, but not today. I was able to sit back and watch. Next, she asked to get in the swing and swing by herself. Before, she wouldn't swing at all, not even with me. (A funny side note: the last time we were at that park, I went to a play date with Courtney, and Stacy Hutchinson was their with her two boys. Ayden, her oldest, was scared to swing, and on that play date, he asked to swing in that same swing).

When we got home, Kailey didn't nap long (who wants to nap when the weather is great?),we went out to play some more. The weather has been so hot here that we aren't able to stay out for very long periods of time, so I felt like we should take advantage of the nice weather.

For some reason Kailey likes to sit on the sewer manhole in our yard.

Later we went over to Jamie and Joe's for dinner. After dinner, Kailey found Allison's bowl.

One for me.

One for you.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

What next?

Yesterday was quite a day. I woke up with a sore throat. Then set out to run errands and do some house work. There was one part that wasn't so bad, I found fresh okra at the produce stand! Joel and I LOVE fried okra (this okra proved to be saving grace at dinner time).

I feel like I have been on the phone the since Wed. of last week. I don't want to make any more phone calls for a very long time; whishful thinking I know. I have been batteling it out with Team Honda, because we bought a "certified" minivan that wasn't really certified. I'm trying to get them to refund our money that we paid for it to be "certified," but they are of course putting up a huge fight. It might be finally coming to an end after some help from Troy. BTW, Troy and Lexi, if you are ever in need of custom software or technical support, I'm volunteering Joel :) The legal advice from Troy seemed to help a lot. The Honda guy was doing some stuttering and told me that he would have to call me back at the end of the conversation. I have been on the phone with them every day since Wed. of last week, UGGHHH!

I took that call from the honda guy in the car as I was driving to lumber liquidators. Joel and I finally came to a decision on flooring and bought it yesterday. Joel and I are both pretty picky about home decor, and other stuff, and we will both explore every possible option to ensure that we are paying the least amount of money for the product that we choose. (I went to several local flooring and home improvement stores for samples, and we ordered sample from some online stores, in other words, I will throw up if I see another flooring sample) I was so glad and relieved to have finally made a decision on the flooring. So, things seemed to being going a little better, despite my nerves being bad from the call with Team Honda, then I got home to a hot house, with flooring no less, that is supposed to acclimated at a temperature range of 65-75 degrees. When I realized that the air wasn't working, I shuttered at the thought of all of the phone calls that it would take to get the air fixed in a timely manner so that the flooring didn't warp in the heat. Fortunately our house has a two year warranty for air conditioner and other stuff, but getting the home builder to take care of warranty issues is like pulling teeth. With our last warranty issue, the warranty lady just forgot to submit the work request to the sub-contractor and forgot to call us.

The new bamboo flooring.

The "frozen" ac unit :(

I didn't have dinner done when Joel got home because it took longer than expected at the flooring store and traffic was bad. If I hadn't cooked fried okra, it would've been really bad! If you didn't already know this about Joel, he doesn't function very well when he is hungry or tired (not to mention, every one is more tempermental with 80 degree heat in the house). Once he found out that there was okra cooking, he was on much better behavior. Joel and I sweated through dinner with Kailey screaming. We have been struggling to get her to eat food and not just drink juice and milk all day. She is going through a phase where she doesn't really like food that much anymore, and would rather receive nutrition via the sippy cup. She goes around saying cuppa cup with the saddest voice she can muster. It was not a fun dinner, but we did have fried okra.

After dinner poor Joel had to unload the 14 heavy boxes of wood flooring into the hot house.

We survived the night, in the heat, and I'm happy to say that the air conditioner has been temporarily fixed (they have to order a part), so i'm no longer sweating.