Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Updates on EVERYTHING!

Things are calming down a little bit around here, and also still crazy. The repairs are moving right along, and thankfully things are cleaner and quieter. We're back to taking naps at our house, and there's less painting and nail gunning in the hallway, though Adam does still love greeting the workers in the morning and running outside with them whenever he gets a chance.

Our bathroom is almost done, minus the installation of the mirror. Marco has been tiling like a mad man, and the kids bathroom is coming together really quickly.

The whole wall on the toilet side is the glass mosaic tile, which I love. The medicine cabinet is going to be set directly into the wall.

This is the granite for the kids bathroom, which I love.

Also in the hallway, in the new linen cabinet, which I ALSO love! It's really happening!

So that's about it for the house. Onto my sweet children.

I realized this morning than in exactly one month, Adam turns two. It seems like it's gone by so fast, and it hit me today, I no longer am in the "baby" stage of my child rearing years. Adam walks, talks, runs, and is turning more and more into a little boy every day. All of the baby toys have left our house (except for Sophie, I'll never get rid of her! I intend to save her and show adult Ellie how she licked off all of the spots) and all of the baby gear is long gone. Adam has even started climbing up into his own car seat, and as he does it, he calls himself a big boy.

His language has really exploded lately. He can count to ten, and loves yelling at the end of his count down (like he's playing hide and seek.) He's starting to identify colors. He'll tell you exactly what he wants to eat, though he continues to call milk "noot." Also helpfully, once he learned that he could climb out of the fun cage at Gigi's, he figured he was big enough to climb out of his crib at home.

I shut that right down, as you can see. Took out the drawer from underneath his crib and turned it into a straight up cage. While the renovations are going on, I need a place where I can put him to shower and get dressed because otherwise, he will escape the house the second he gets the chance and if Ellie's home, she just lets him. Fixing it up has definitely saved my bacon, though it was sort of cute the morning that both he and Ellie came into bed to snuggle with us in the morning. In a few months, we can revisit that idea.

And then my Ellie Bellie Beanser girl. I cannot believe how big she is getting too, my beautiful grown up girl. She's getting really brave and fast on her roller skates, the little nut. She loves telling jokes and being silly, and when you ask her will say "oh, I'm just kidding!" I like to tell her that Tim is teasing me, and she'll go over and tell him to stop it RIGHT NOW. Or if she catches Grizz teasing Gigi. We're definitely going to be challenged with her, skirting the line between being funny and being sassy (I personally wouldn't know anything about what it feels like to be a child who doesn't know when to quit, obviously.) She's still only doing preschool twice a week, but loves going to MOPS every other Friday. And next year she's eligible for junior kindergarten through the public schools - I can't believe it! Adam is going to be so sad - he's always bummed when we drop her off.

She had a wonderful time sleeping over at Mimi and Pa's house this past Monday night - she packed her bag the second she got out of bed. And of course, told me that it would be okay and she'd see me tomorrow. They went and saw a movie, they had some pancakes and a tea party, and Adam got some good snuggling from Mimi when she picked Ellie up and dropped her off.

Both kids have really enjoyed having all of our family in town (photos to follow soon.) And I'd like to think their great grandparents (and great Lisa/Gigi Lisa) have enjoyed them too!

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Latest and Greatest!

They could do this alllll day. And sometimes they do, until we tell them to pipe down.

This features Adam's regular voice, plus his "monster voice." DUMP IT!

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Drawers and Doors.

We are making real progress! Check out all of this beautiful work! Now I can finally put my toiletries away and out of sight, and our closets have doors again. The cats can happily hide in there, and I no longer have to make sure that I don't leave dirty underwear on the top of the pile when the guys are scheduled to work in my room.

Things are really coming together. All of the new doors are in throughout the house, with new casings around them and new baseboards throughout. It's really improved the look of our house ten fold. Our bathroom still needs towel rods and the mirror, but it's fully usable and wonderful. The kids bathroom has the tub set and the walls ready for tile, but there was a miscommunication about the tile order, so Marco won't start until later this week.

It's sweet how much the kids love the guys, and visa versa. Adam is especially attached to Marco and Arnie and follows them around. Ellie loves Jesse because he's the one who painted her new beautiful coronation day Elsa bedroom.

We had a nice Valentines Day with Sara and Grandma Rosie while Gigi and Grizz were at a wedding in Minneapolis. We had tacos for dinner and then the kids watched Frozen with Grandma Rosie, who hadn't seen it yet, and enjoyed helpful commentary like Ellie telling her off the bat that Hans was a bad guy and only pretending to love Elsa. Meanwhile, I made myself a large cocktail and took a large bath in my mom's extra large bath tub, so everyone had the evening that they wanted!

The kids had a great time with Grandma Rosie during the three weeks that she was here - I only wish I'd taken more pictures. Ellie loved pretending that Grandma was her little girl, and she forced Grandma to work in her play doh sweatshop, making countless cookies to be squished up minutes later. Adam loved chatting with her and bringing her tons of books to read, and it was so nice to just spend time enjoying some great time with our great grandma.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Hold Me Closer, Tony Danza!

Last week Ellie started ballet again, this time through her school, run by one of the teachers from the elementary school area. It came at the perfect time - she's a little bigger, more mature, and has continued to express interest in taking dance class. It's much more casual too, because it's at school and with her friends. Week one was last week, and it went smashingly. I think mostly because she loves the outfit.

And she's got some good moves!

The only real home improvement that happened today was Ellie's room was painted. With the new closet, they were going to have to paint a large part of the room already, so I figured, might as well let Ellie pick a color and turn it into the little girl room she wants. Voila!

The color is "lavender sky," but Ellie picked it because it reminds her of "Princess Elsa at coronation day." Obviously.

Sunday we went to the Aquarium with my friend and former coworker Emily and her son Liam. The kids had a great time! Ellie was brave enough to touch all of the animals, and this time I made Adam wear his backpack harness because at the aquarium he seems to hate either being worn or made to ride in the stroller. This kept him from completely bolting out of my sight. And Ellie is wearing fairy wings, because why not?

(that's Liam and Emily across the way from us.)

And then Ellie got eaten by a shark. So sad! She was a nice little girl while she lasted.

And in closing, we will make Adam wear his elf jacket until he's so big that it no longer zips. Or until we can find another one in his size.

Saturday, February 7, 2015

Bathroom One, Almost Done.

Things have definitely picked up this week, though it's still slow going and stressful. I feel like I'm at my wits end. In the morning the guys get here, and we get out for a bit, usually to run, sometimes to see friends. But just making sure that Adam doesn't bolt out the front door while I've got my back turned is enough to make me want to cry. Jesse has brought him back into the house at least twice (this morning when I left for the gym, Adam was suddenly waving at me from the driveway with Jesse, and Tim came out a second later.) There's no place for the kids to nap this week, so we've been doing what we can at Gigi's house. Poor Adam hates his fun cage, so he's usually short close to an hour of rest. Thursday he actually managed to get himself out of the fun cage! Thankfully, when I caught him I put him back in, told him sternly to lay down and go to sleep, and he wailed one more time and then finally did so. It's just stressful, even though I know the results will be great. It's already great, and nothing is even 100% done.

I continue to enjoy seeing what's lurking around the house. Like finding out that it was once painted beige:

(former linen closet.)

We also discovered that Adam's room once had laminate flooring, patterned to look like parquet. So at one point, both kids room had terrible fake tile!

I really need to ask my neighbor Peggy what the house used to look like. Hers is the same model as mine, and she was close friends with the former owners. Plus she has a dog that my kids LOVE, and she's always up to stop and gossip when she and Murphy are out walking.

Daniel has been doing a lot of work on doors and casings.
Kids rooms! Now they have nice, solid core doors. I joked with Daniel to make sure those babies are nailed in tight, because the kids will be teenagers soon and I know things are going to get slammed around here (and by that I mean nothing is more satisfying to me than slamming a door when I'm having a snit fit.)

Also, the shower is done! So many shower heads! And the bathroom is painted - this is the best picture I could get of the color. It's called Barrier Reef.

The electrical is also done! There are two of these lamps, one over each vanity. Yes, what is the most obnoxious weird glittery snow globe thing you sell at this lamp store? I will take two, please.

So now our bathroom just needs baseboard, the mirror, drawer and doors, and a little more paint, and it's good to go! Which is good, because Monday they start tearing out the hall bathroom. Heaven help me.

Tuesday, February 3, 2015


That's right! I live in a house with two toilets now, AKA A PALACE!

The big business today was taking down Ellie's closet (which they had mistakenly left at its current size, about six feet) and making it closer to eight feet. It looks so enormous, but Jesse measured and it's the same size as the one in Adam's room. The rooms will be a mirror image now, more or less.

They had to pull up a patch of carpet, and discovered some linoleum. I am trying to figure out why you'd have linoleum in a bedroom, because while Ellie's room was an office when we bought the house, it had previously been a bedroom, since the owners had two children who grew up in the house. The 70s, it was a crazy time.

And when they took down the filing cabinets, we found the last piece of popcorn ceiling.

The plan is to finish our bathroom this week, along with the closets, doors and new molding through the house. Then just one more bathroom to go. Uff.

Monday, February 2, 2015

Monday Monday.

No real construction updates around here, as things have tragically ground to a halt. Glen owns a building in Los Angeles, and the lease states that the tenants (a store) can renovate inside. So they started doing some construction and knocked out a load bearing wall, so Glen and his crew spent several days nonstop, trying to get things so that they were safe, if not usable. There's insurance companies and attorneys involved. And all of the guys were exhausted. Which is awful and I get, but I have been feeling slightly crazy because I have been given the impression that so and so will be by some time during the day, so I get the kids packed up and the cats packed in... and then nothing happens. Plus we're so close to being done - it's maddening to be waiting! And by done, I mean, one bathroom. We still have the entire second bathroom left.

But eyes on the prize - it's all going to be worth it when it's done and new and beautiful.

In the meanwhile, Ellie is LOVING not having a bedroom door, because she has a cat cuddle party at bed time:

She's actually been such a good girl about taking naps and going to bed without a door on her room. I've been relieved by it, because there's not much I can do. Thankfully also, we always have Gigi's house available during nap time when things get too crazy.