Friday, November 30, 2012


The cat had been there for hours. The baby found her way in at about 6:55. I'll keep them both.

Thursday, November 29, 2012


FINALLY, they are putting things into my house, instead of tearing them out (or tearing into walls. Or falling through the ceiling.)

Here's the ground and sealed floor. The crack has been fixed!

WE HAVE KICK PLATES! That means cabinets, someday!

Marco spent most of the day tiling in the dining room. Double time, in fact, because he'd done a couple of rows, and both my construction supervisor (Dad) and I were like, "didn't they discuss doing an offset pattern on the tile?" I put in a call to the contractor and left a message (something garbled like "wasn't the tile supposed to be offset? Right now it's in all straight lines... whatever that's called... not staggered... you know..." and then a little while later Marco's phone rang, and he was suddenly pulling up tile. I'm glad because I think it's going to look better, but Marco was already moving at a fairly deliberate pace to begin with, so restarting set him back even more (though, in the long run, I'd rather have someone who takes their time and sets the tile correctly. Especially since my last kitchen floor was starting to pop up.)

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

The Things We Do For Love.

Normally, when someone tells me to kiss their butt, I tell them exactly where they can stick it.

However, when a sad little toddler with a bad case of diaper rash asks me to kiss her butt, I find myself with no alternative but to indulge her (while kissing her on the thigh, not actual butt.) Poor little thing. The good news is, she later old everyone that me kissing her butt helped make it feel better.

And we gave her a little ibuprofen before bed. Hopefully that will help even more.

Say No To Crack!

Today is floor grinding day. Making everything even and level, and fixing the giant crack in my kitchen floor. Observe:

Is now this:

So that's looking better, as is my Pretty Room ceiling
The "stripes" is just the paint drying

Also, please be jealous of how beautiful my dining room is

And my living room too

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

So That's Weird.

Much as I feel like Ellie was the bigger kicker, I realized tonight that I can already see the baby moving under my skin (and I don't remember feeling this way with Ellie until well into the third trimester.) Tonight, after much waiting around, I got it on video, as we laid around watching "Mankind, the Story of All of Us."

It's not much, but there's a few kicks along the left side of my belly, mostly around the 20-40 second mark. The regular movement is me breathing (as I tend to do.) It's the sudden small bumps that are the baby. As Ellie said the other day while staring into my belly button "looka him! He's so cute!"

I love being pregnant.

Drywall Complete!

Moving forward yet again! The drywallers finished up their work yesterday in a few quick hours. All the holes are patched, the ceilings are scraped and textured, and all of the patches have been textured to blend back into the walls after a coat or two of paint. It's starting to look half way decent around here, if you ignore all of the dust. If it was just me and Tim, I'd just shut off the Pretty Room and the kitchen and be done with it, and let the dust collect like a science experiment, but with three dumb animals in the house who will walk in the dust and then lick their hands, something has to be done. I am not quite up for the Sisyphean task of dusting, sweeping and mopping EVERY day, but I'm hoping to get things reasonably clean again on Thursday after the floor is ground down in the kitchen. BLECH.

I think the new soffit looks great!

The whole place looks even better with the coat of primer on it (but these pictures are pre-paint.)

The new laundry room sink area is going to look good too. Instead of the temporary/portable laundry sink, we're going with a built in fixture and cabinet. They also re-did the stand the water heater stands on, so that's no longer water stained and moldy looking. All the other various holes have been patched and textured, as have the ceilings.

Lulu is still less than pleased with it all.

The painter was here this morning to prime the entire kitchen, the Pretty Room ceilings, and all of the patches. Tomorrow he's going to spray the ceilings at some point, and the grinding of the floors will begin. Glen assured me that the grinder also has a vacuum on it so it shouldn't be a HUGE disgusting mess, but that all remains to be seen. I am not getting my hopes up. HOWEVER, if all goes according to plan, we'll be putting down cabinet kicks and floor tiles by the end of the week!

Here's a shot of Ellie in her sleep sack. As you can see, it is a multitude of fleecy fabric. She has her Grandma Pat's propensity for lounge wear and mumus.

Today there was no one else at our swim class, so Ellie had her first lesson where she was in the water without me. She's really getting good - floating without a hand under her! And lest you think I am cruel, I was instructed NOT to respond to her when she was crying (when she stopped crying, I made sure to tell her what a good job she was doing.) And even through her tears, you can see her doing exactly what Mr. Shane told her to do.

This is just a preview of what it will be like for her int he spring - I'm planning on enrolling her in private lessons in March, so that Lambeau and I can just come and watch, since I won't be cleared to even get in the pool with her for six weeks, let alone whether or not I will WANT to get in the pool.

Also, today Ellie discovered that she can touch the bottom of the pool in the shallow end of the play area. She spent a good 15 minutes bouncing around for me (I was in the water with her at that point.) But look - floating, touching the bottom... I can only assume that she's completely water safe, and be like one of the moms at swim class who puts their kid in the shallow end and then NEVER looks up from their phone or ebook until an hour later.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Let There Be Light.

Our friends invited us out tonight (or more aptly probably, they mentioned they were going and we invited ourselves) to the Christmas tree lighting ceremony at the St. Regis hotel in Dana Point. They've been taking Lexi since she was a tiny bean and promised a nice evening, and man, the St. Regis certainly delivered. And as always, the company was great too.

They have a fancy sand sculpture in the front lobby

They also had a chocolate sculpture, which smelled deeeelightful

Almost as good as the delicious hot chocolate I got to drink

And the cookie that Ellie scarfed as we were taking photos

The girls had a good time, and there was thankfully a lot of space for them to run around and play while waiting for the tree to be lit

Then there was plenty of oohing and aahing and even a little clapping from the girls

Santa and his elves were also there. I asked Ellie if she wanted to see him. SURPRISE, she did not

She did however, allow one more family photo (her and that dang hand. She still hasn't cut her two year molars. I also suspect she may have been hungry.)

We even got the girls and their mamas (and a hint of Smelly Cat over Ellie's shoulder)

It was nice that it was an early-ish event (the lighting happened at 5:30.) And since we opted NOT to wait in the astronomically long Santa line, we were free to go grab dinner and be home with time to spare for bath time and an early bed time. I can't believe Thanksgiving break is over and it's back to regular life tomorrow. COUNTDOWN TO CHRISTMAS BEGINS! Hopefully I'll have a working kitchen by then, blergh.

Also, I love these candy cane palm trees, from our walk back to the car (we also opted not to stand in the insanely long valet line.)

Camera One, Camera Two.

Ellie's first Christmas, our present to ourselves was a big fancy camera. But I still keep our little camera in my diaper bag, just to have for every day moments. I don't often take it out of the bag, and I even less frequently remember to upload the photos. But I did this morning, so here's a few weeks of cuteness that have been stored away.

A few cute pictures from when Gigi took Ellie to the beach during my recent bout of flu

Coffee date with mommy!

Another shot from the carousel the other day

Yesterday we had a lovely family morning in San Juan. Tim took Ellie to the petting zoo to see all the bund-dies and binny pigs, and I went and had a coffee and antique shopped and relaxed a little. Then we met up for lunch at El Maguey, and ended up running into Bob and Tillie, who were only too happy to join us for a second meal in less than a week. Such a nice time!

Ellie loved all of the wabbits at the petting zoo, but the best photos were of her and a stone statue.
He's a nice friend to have!

Friday, November 23, 2012

Thanksgiving the Third.

Tim told me that I wasn't allowed to go on the trampoline, being that I'm 5 months pregnant and all, but when have I ever let him be the boss of me? Or even a close adviser of me? Ellie LOVED the trampoline at Aunt Cathy's house. Between the trampoline, Dylan the dog, and hanging out with Mimi, it was all I could do to get her to sit still long enough to have a snack.

Then at Granny Janny's house she stuffed herself full of Tio Bob's pumpkin muffins. Part of me wanted to make her sit down quietly to eat a balanced meal, and the rest of me thought "the majority of America is eating like rabid hyenas, why should she be any different?" Three pumpkin muffins and a bath later, she had a very intense dance party.

Thanksgiving SUCCESS!

We have mainly quiet plans for the rest of the weekend. Wednesday night we were able to fob her off on Gigi and Grizz so Tim and I went and saw Lincoln, which I highly recommend. We've gone on a couple of family walks (which is nice for me because then I can make Tim push the stroller and I can just amble along like the fat lazy preggo I am) and we're planning on taking her to the petting zoo, to see bunnies and "binny pigs." I'm a little sad that we can't get our tree, but the pretty room is still totally blocked off until after the painting is done, and not only do we still have a patch in the living room to be finished (located right where I'd put the tree) I just don't want my entire tree and all of the ornaments to get covered in dust and junk next week when the new dining room tile goes in.

So, we relax, and continue to gorge ourselves. IT'S THE AMERICAN WAY!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Cat Kisser.

Ellie loves cats, it's true. Perhaps more than she loves puppies or bunnies. Probably because they are more readily available to her. Rocky and Petunia mostly endure her, because they are large, amiable dolts. Lulu tolerates her, with dagger eyes and the occasional bite, because while she likes to be out and about, she really only enjoys Tim and I. Lulie is my protective girl. And after a solid 18 months of being absolutely terrified, Thor has decided that he likes her okay, and will actually allow himself to be snuggled. 

The thing is, Ellie wants more than snuggles. She wants to hug the cats. She wants to hold them. She'd ideally like to carry them around the house and push them in her doll stroller. And none of them are up for that, nor do they really appreciate 30 pounds of big headed toddler trying to lay on them. 

So we keep telling her, kitties don't like hugs. Kitties don't like when you lay on them or squish them. Kitties like nice pets and loves and scritchles (aka scratches. And for "loves" she just sort of rubs her face against their fur.) But I did tell her, you're too little to hold the cats. Someday, when you're a grown up, you can hold a kitty.

Randomly throughout the day now, she will stop what she's doing, look at me and say "someday I be big, and den I hold four-rey." Yes. Someday you will be big and you can hold Thory. She usually follows up with "but now I little." Tonight she tried to tell me that someday she's going to hold Lulu too. I had to break it to her that NO ONE holds Lulu, and that she better just hope that Lu goes completely senile. 

Gets Worse Before it Gets Better!

THIS PLACE IS FILTHY. And yet, there is no point in cleaning, because it's only going to get worse before it gets better.

The good news is that we're getting to the point where things are starting to get put back together, rather than taken apart. The plumbing and the electrical is done, so this week is about dry walling. Yesterday they patched all the many, many holes in my walls, and today they skimmed the ceilings and mudded everything. Tomorrow is texturing, I guess (it was a quick morning for drywalling - they were gone by the time I got back from my walk.)

Main view of the kitchen - you can also see how we built out the soffit on the left hand wall. I think it's going to look really nice when finished - better than having weird cabinets of different heights

A wall free of "termite" holes

The Pretty Room, now with intact ceilings

And walls!

Grouchy as I am about the dust, in the long run, I've been really pleased about how everything's gone. Every member of every crew that's been here has been exceedingly nice and polite, and they keep the place as tidy as possible. Deferential to me and the baby and the cats and our schedule. And the reality is, while it's going to take longer than we thought, even if we hadn't repiped, we'd still be out an extra week waiting on upper cabinets because of the soffit. So there's not too much to complain about.

Remind me of that next week when this place becomes a dust bowl while the concrete is being ground down to prep for the new tile.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Morning Fun.

I must admit, the worst part of this renovation isn't the noise or the dust. It's the "being in the house all the dang time." It just makes me stir crazy - I miss walking in the mornings, and heading out to Gigi's house or some other errand after nap time. Don't get me wrong, we are still out and about during the day, but I like to be here when the workers arrive so I can check in and get the lay of the land, and I like to be here when they finish up for the day so I can see what time they're planning on arriving in the morning, and get the house slightly cleaned up before I release the cats from Kitty Prison. So we're spending a lot more time at home than normal. And we're both going a little bonkers.

Today has been good though - the dry wall guys were here early, there's no chance of having the water turned off this afternoon (so I can shower and use the bathroom whenever I dang well please!) and it seems like they're making quick work of the holes. They were fairly dismayed to see the hole in the ceiling of the Pretty Room. You and me both, boys.

I needed a bunch of toiletries from Target, but instead of going to the one closest to our house, I took Ellie to the one at the Spectrum, which is an outdoor mall about 15 minutes away. The Target portion of our trip was fairly boring to her, but the rest of the morning was about as thrilling as it gets if you're two. I let her pick out a new sweatshirt at Old Navy and help me select cozy socks, and then we checked out the carousel that they have there. Waiting the ten minutes for them to open up was painful for her, but there was a little light at the end of the tunnel, when the carousel started warming up. And when she discovered that amongst the horses was a BUNNY (or as she pronounces it now, BUNDY!)

She was equally delighted when it came time to ride on him, though as usual, she was totally stone faced during the ride

And then she wept pitifully when the ride was over.

But for five minutes, a simple errand made her happy, and that's about as good as it gets!

Sunday, November 18, 2012


Baby Aaron Rodgers loves Baby Lambeau Field.

Rivalry Week.

When Besties become Frenemies, for one day only.

We thought about making them fist fight, but ultimately decided against it.


Thursday, November 15, 2012

Sea of Holes.

The "business" side of the kitchen, where the stove and fridge are going to be located.

Sink area, now with all new piping, coming down from at the attic. Also, electrical for under cabinet lights

The "workspace" area of the kitchen, which will be all cabinets and counter space, plus more under cabinet lights. The plan is to build a soffit in this space as well so all of the cabinets will be the same space, rather than having some tall and some short like it used to be

The hole in the ceiling of my pretty room, from where the plumber tripped in the attic. Thankfully, he's okay. Less thankfully, now that ceiling will probably have to get patched, skimmed and painted

NOT ONLY THAT but he INTENTIONALLY cut a hole in my beautiful pretty room, to get to the manifold for the water. UGH.

The good news is that we're also getting a whole new laundry set up. Goodbye, janky and corroded plumbing!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Practically Perfect!

This morning, instead of being about the new ktichen, was about the new baby. Tim and I were there bright and early(ish) to see what Lambeau Field was up to. 

The answer is, a lot! He was all curled up with his hands and feet up by his face. He's currently head up, but he's so little right now that it doesn't even matter (and considering a c-section is inevitable with this pregnancy, it won't even matter as he gets bigger.) 

I'd sort of forgotten how much time they spend at the 20 week scan. The u/s at 8 and 16 weeks are just looking for a heart beat (and at 16 weeks, if they can see gendered parts) and at 12 weeks they're scanning for a few things, but it's still only a couple of minutes. Today we got to see his four ventricled heart pumping away, the curve of his spine (looking good!) and both sides of his brain. They could also see that his bladder was full, which means that he's starting to swallow fluid and digest it, and that his kidneys should be functioning normally. It's astounding to see all of this detail on a little baby who's no bigger than a banana, especially considering that 30 years ago, ultrasounds couldn't tell gender, and sometimes even missed if there was more than one baby present! And kudos to people who do it "the old fashioned way" but I love seeing every part of the baby, and knowing that he's a little boy. It also allows me to start shopping for non-ugly boys clothes (hard when you hate the color brown.)

All of my bloodwork came back normal, so we can fairly safely assume that this baby is your healthy, normal, average kid. Exactly what I was hoping for!

His head is on the left side, and that's his little nose sticking up in the air, along with part of his hand.

Same position, except now he's facing the camera and being a scary skull faced alien baby.

We continue to have no idea what we're going to name him, and I'm not just saying that because we're not planning on sharing the name even if we do decide on something. Boys names are hard, because they're not pretty (and because I might be a big hippie in some ways, but I'm not naming my kid River or Willow.) 

My blood pressure was amazingly low, so basically we are all perfect. In fact, I don't have to come back for another SIX WEEKS. By this point with Ellie, I was going every four weeks (and once I hit 24 weeks, they wanted to see me twice a week!) I've never gotten to go six weeks between appointments before! But next time I come we'll do the gestational diabetes test, and probably start talking delivery dates and decision. Hooray!

In the meanwhile, Ellie got to spend the morning with Mimi, which was about the thrill of her life. We had lunch together and then she got to have Mimi come to swim class, where she did some good back floating, some good crab walking along the walk, and then she spit a whole mouthful of water in Clare's face and cried like she'd been murdered when I reprimanded her (meanwhile, Clare was patting her on the back and saying it was okay.)

She's been a pretty good girl about the whole renovation (which looks like it's going to run about two weeks over, between the plumbing and the cabinets.) She says that our kitchen is messy and the guys are here to clean it up. Lulu is being the biggest problem, mostly because she's freaked out and frustrated. She went after my recliner with her claws (and please note, she's ignored it for the year we've had it) so that sort of makes me want to smother her. But such is life. She'll adjust, or I'll turn her into a piece of carpet. Or have her buried in the walls.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Home Stretch

Here we are, at the 20 week mark. Thus putting me officially halfway to being a mom of two, and the CEO/matriarch of a family of four. EXCITING! The pukiness and the exhaustion of the first trimester are a distant memory - my only problem is my complete lack of patience with all things (which is fairly par for the course for me, though at time exaggerated by crazy hormones.) I've been keeping up pretty well with working out, though probably one morning a week I think to myself that maybe it's time to start walking four miles instead of five.

It's funny to think of all the wives tales between girls and boys. One is that if you're pregnant with a girl, she will "steal your beauty." My skin's been equally bad with both pregnancies, but I will say that I've gained a lot less weight this time around. Partially because I have more time for exercise, but also, when I was pregnant with Ellie, I was starving ALL THE TIME. And not like, "oh, have a handful of almonds" hungry, but "if I don't get a full meal in the next twenty minutes, I will murder a friend or coworker with my bare hands" starving. Maybe that was Ellie's way of trying to ruin my naturally supermodel looks and figure. This time, not so much. I definitely eat more than before I was pregnant, but it's generally just a slightly bigger breakfast and a mid-afternoon snack. They also say that you carry higher with girls than with boys, and Ellie definitely lived up in my rib cage up until the moment I had her surgically removed. Thus far Lambeau Field is stuck right around my belly button. It'll be interesting to see if he migrates upwards as he gets bigger, or if he insists on hanging out in his current location.

He's also quieter than she was at this stage of development. Less kicking, and less vigorous in general (though the other night Tim had his hand on my stomach and Lambeau was banging around so hard that I asked Tim if he had flicked my stomach.) I am hoping that maybe this is because Lambeau is going to be more laid back and better behaved than his sister was as an infant. I have to hold out hope! Because if ANYONE suggests the word "colic" to me, I will probably punch them square in the throat.

Also, after discussing Ellie's apparent growth spurt, she woke up this morning having peed through her pajamas, which NEVER happens. Turns out, that brand new box of size 5 diapers is already too small. And she tried to fall asleep for a half hour today and couldn't, and had to have a bowl of cottage cheese before going back down for a nap (she'd just had a sandwich and some grapes before we tried to put her down the first time.) I hope I don't have to run out and get 3T clothing soon!

Saturday, November 10, 2012

What Ellie is Up To.

The biggest thing is apparently a growth spurt. On Friday she asked for cottage cheese for breakfast, and some oatmeal, which is normal (though usually we substitute yogurt for cottage cheese, but hey, more protein.) Then she had a yogurt around 10, and at 11 she was whining for more food, so we had a banana. I thought for sure she was just bored or stir crazy, and not really hungry. Well, then we went out to lunch with Lexi and Kristen and at lunch she snacked on a bunch of goldfish and some dried fruit before the meal, stuffing it in rapid fire style. We'd ordered the girls a grilled ham and turkey sandwich to split, and Ellie ate all of hers and then half of Lexi's. She is an absolute bottomless pit! I don't know how much taller she is intending to get. I'd like to her to wear her 2T stuff before growing out of it!

Speaking of. So, her first two winters we kept her either swaddled, or in a sleep sack (which is basically a blanket with arm holes that you zip your baby into.) Here is a picture:

Cuddly, right? The baby can't roll out from under the blanket, nor can they pull it over their face and smother. I highly recommend. Last winter I bought Ellie the XL sleep sack, which she could actually walk in, despite the lack of feet. I have video of it somewhere that I should find - she is like a little Lisa Simpson. This year, she moved into the 2T-3T sack, which actually has little foot holes at the bottom. But unlike a pair of footed pajamas, there is still a ton of material at the bottom - it's definitely not fitted to the crotch. She looks hilarious in it, but thankfully, can still walk (and climb up into bed with us in the morning no less!) I'm glad I remembered it last night and pulled it out of the closet - this morning it was 65 degrees in the house. Which is colder when you remember that she doesn't currently sleep with a blanket, nor does she have a nice spouse to keep the bed warm, or even a kitten to lay on her head!

She is obsessed with her birthday presents, especially her tea party. It came in a little carrying case, which is great, because she likes to take it to other people's houses with her. And she loves her Sesame Street doll house. She calls all of the character figurines her "friends." As in "let's go see my fwiends!" as soon as she gets up in the morning. She likes to lay them all face down on the coffee table before she takes a nap, and then when she wakes up, she will run out and wake them all up too.

She likes to carry around a bag and pretend to go shopping. Usually she is also pushing a baby (or bunny) in the stroller, so she will tell me "goodbye mama, I'm going to buy some apples!" and then will come back, hand me a pretend apple and tell me "you taste it? It tastes good." She also is in to smelling things lately (will bring me a lotion to open up and let her smell, especially) but if you ask her if something smells good, she will ALWAYS say that it smells like "a peanut butter sandwich." My orange scented lotion? Peanut butter sandwich. The cats? Oh, they smell like sandwiches too.

And when she gets excited about something, especially something alive (such as a cat, or a rabbit) she starts exclaiming "oh, looka him! Looka him! He so cute!" which makes me laugh every time. Her delight is infectious.

She still calls yogurt ohgirduh, which I love, and my other favorite Ellie-ism is when we're walking some place and she doesn't want to hold my hand, she will say "I walk to myself mama." She knows she has to hold my hand in parking lots, but on a side walk she will pull away "I walk to myself!" I use the phrase "to myself" now too because it just cracks me up. She does however, call hop hops rabbits (whabbits) or bunnies now, and she has starting calling agua water more than half the time. Finally, speaking some English around here.

We've discussed the whole baby brother situation with her often. She thinks he lives in my belly button, though the other day she thought he was gone (but from HER belly button. I assured her that he was still safe and sound in mine.) She knows that he will be nursing when he comes out, and depending on the day, she says we will either kick him, or hold him and rock him. I think she's going to do a pretty bang up job of big sistering. Maybe she will even share her Sophie - she dug it out of the toy box the other day and seemed mystified by the squeaky old gal, and I told her "oh, you used to love Sophie, you used to chew on her feet," and she stuck Sophie in her mouth again and announced that she tasted "bleah!"

Friday, November 9, 2012

Demolition Derby.

Well, I no longer have anything resembling a kitchen. I have an empty room that smells like an old basement!

We've hit our first little snafus of home renovation - the cabinets for the window side of the kitchen are measured to go to the ceiling, because he'd hoped we could take the soffit out. It's a load bearing beam, so no go on that (the good news is we can have the boxes for those cabinets made before the appliances go in, and then can wait on the doors. So at least I'll be able to unpack my dishes in a timely manner.)

This morning was plumbing time, and we are pulling all of the plumbing out of the slab and into the ceilings. That's going to be quite a bit of work, but it's worth the additional time and cost to avoid having a slab leak in five or ten years (or ever, really.) No point in redoing the kitchen so that we can someday rip up the floors to get to a leak.

But the new gas line is in!

And actually, the place is not as dusty as I thought it would be. The sliding glass door made a perfect entrance and exit for demo day, because they could just take all of the junk straight to the truck or the garage, without having to come through the house. Plus the main demo guy was "no dust George."

Ellie has been a trooper about it all so far. I put her down for a nap yesterday and five minutes later they started jack hammering the floor. She is the world's most "persnickety" sleeper, but she slept through it all! And then woke up 90 minutes later because of the garbage truck - what a fart! She is concerned about how it's messy and dirty, but understands that we are getting a new kitchen "just like Mimi!"

Wednesday, November 7, 2012


Tomorrow is the big day! KITCHEN DEMO DAY! I am of course, a little panicky. Not about the kitchen itself - I know it's going to be great, I trust our contractor (while also knowing that something will not go according to plan, so no dinner parties scheduled for the estimated completion date) and I know that this place is going to be a filthy mess for a few weeks. I mean, heck, I've done renovations while pregnant before. It's what I do!

I am mostly nervous about Ellie and the cats. I hope E and I will be able to get our daily walks in (which is selfishly more about me, probably) and I hope that she can get her naps in okay (knowing though, that if worse comes to worse, I can go and put her down at Gigi's house.) The cats are both lunatics already - Lulu has scratched her chin raw with anxiety over the boxes in the office, and Thor has been on a weird food strike for a few weeks following a brief food switch, so he's wandering around and yeowling. He will be REALLY pleased when there's strangers in the house and lots of banging noises (the cats don't get to escape to Gigi's though. They will get to live in our bedroom.)

So let's get into the Before pictures of our kitchen. Please note that this is true to life - unmopped floors, and cat food everywhere. I want to remember this little white dump the way it really looks.

Standing in the pretty room. Lots of appliances, lots of cheap white cabinets, total lack of counter space.

Crappy ovens and useless phone nook. A pantry with deep shelves that allow me to constantly lose things and rebuy four bags of sugar (but no extra flour for baking, of course.) Plus baby beginning to get into trouble.

Here are my favorite parts of the kitchen:

So well insulated! So wonderful and spacious! Perfect for using tiny cookies sheets and burning the heck out of your hands!

Plus we have great, high end counter tops.
Here's the first time I accidentally set down a hot pot and burned the counter top. I didn't know any better! We had cheap crap in our apartment, but it didn't burn.

Here's the second burn mark, from probably a month ago, because I am an idiot. I was making popcorn for dinner after a long night with the baby.

I will be so sad to see it all go. GO STRAIGHT INTO THE TRASH.

In other fix it news, I spent $25 in parts to fix our laundry sink, because first off, I was too stupid and thought the problem was the trap, when it was really the pipe above - you know, the part of the pipe that was fixed with TAPE. Then I bought the wrong pipe. Last night, I finally fixed it. Basically, I showed myself why there is no way that I could take on a renovation project on my own. Kudos to those who can, but I am happy to just write some checks and supervise the work. And the cats. And Elizabeth.