Friday, July 31, 2009

Obviously, It's Hawaiian Shirt Friday

John is working hard on dinner for Saturday. It takes a lot of work to make good ribs. He prepped and rubbed them last night, and flipped them this morning. They will go on the smoker early in the morning. It's a good thing today was the final weigh in day at work. When we first started the contest, I said I would be the biggest loser. One of my dear coworkers said, "Some would say you already are." I know he thinks I'm awesome, so I'll let it slide. Anyway, the three month contest ended today and I was not the biggest loser. Darn, I would have enjoyed blowing the $260 in the pot.

I didn't even flinch

Jacob: "Mom, wanna see what I caught?"

I never know what surprise may follow such a question. Luckily, it was just a baby lizard. John told them they could have a snake if they could catch one. I am hoping all our snakes stay hidden from little boys. For the record, I made him let the poor lizard go free. Our cat would love to find a lizard in the house, and I really don't want to see the carnage.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Do I have to take this

On the way home today, I told my munchkins that we were having Chicken and Dumplings for dinner. They were both very excited because it is one of their favorite foods. Since they were forced to eat brussel sprouts this week, they should get something they like. Anyway, after the excitement faded, my sweet Jacob said, "Can you make the chicken a little softer this time? Do you know how to do that?" I told him I really didn't know if I was capable of such a feat, but I would do my best. He was content with that answer. I guess that means I should go and make sure I'm not over boiling the chicken. I would hate to disappoint.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

According to John

Alright, it's been a full day since our last post, so I figured I had better update the world that is hanging in suspense waiting for our next update. OK, maybe that's a stretch but Kristina is out running so I have some time to kill. I could feel bad that she's out running and I'm sitting here, but I have seen the classics like According to Jim, Still Standing, and King of Queens and based on those the wife is always the one in shape while the guy sits around.

We have completed our jobs that were in progress in the house: baseboards are in all of the bedrooms, and new doors and hardware are hung on the boy's closets and for the laundry room. We obviously still have lots to do such as taking the final paneling out of the dining nook and painting the wall there, but we are taking a break now from inside.

We have a large muddy area that is making up the backyard following our demolition. We planted grass seed on half of it and watered it a couple of days but stopped once the monsoon came and washed it to the next county. We will work on leveling the other half before we replant. We mainly just want to hold the dirt through the winter and spring in hopes of sodding it next year with St Augustine to match the rest of the yard.

Our fence is at the point it will be until this fall when we are able to complete it. The first third of it is finished, as are both gates. When we build the rest of the sections we will add the post lights and caps.

Right now we are going to focus on enjoying the slower pace of not rushing to finish the next project and transitioning as the boys go back to school the week after next. We are planning on cooking out this weekend. I have several racks of good ribs that I will be smoking. I'm not sure if anyone is coming to help eat them, but I hope so because I don't need to eat them all myself or I will have to be out there running, and what would you do for entertainment without being able to read this?

That's about all I know. Hope everyone is doing good.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Time to get back to the real world

Once I get home from work on Monday the rest of the week is a piece of cake. There is just something about getting through Monday. Today was a good day. I got to meet the guy who will be replacing one of my colleagues in September. He is here all week getting familiar with how we do things. Even though he is transferring from within the company there are still lots of things to bring him up to speed on. My desk wasn't too cluttered this morning. I spent the majority of my day trying to make sense of it all. I think I should be caught up by tomorrow afternoon. Wednesday at the latest. My friend that I work closest with told me I am not allowed to take off for a full week ever again. It's good to be missed.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

All good things must come to an end

My week away from work has been good. The boys enjoyed getting to sleep in everyday. I enjoyed not staring at spreadsheets and graphs. Tomorrow I wake up in the real world. I have missed work a little and it will be good to get back into my routine. Since it is the last week of the month, things will probably be a little hectic, but that keeps it from being boring.
It is hard to believe the boys will be back in school in two weeks. This summer has flown by. I guess I am ready for school to start again. It has been nice not having homework to do every night, but I miss the routine that comes with school. Can you tell I like organization?

Thursday, July 23, 2009


Look at that face. He knows he's in trouble. I went into Jacob's room to wake him up and found incriminating Oscar prints on the carpet. Did I mention we had the carpet put in three weeks ago? I should have know that ecru carpet wouldn't stay that way for long. We should have gone with mud colored carpet.
I guess I will be cleaning carpets with some of my free time today. This morning the kids and I are going shopping for school supplies. I am hoping that if we go early we can beat the crazies.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009


Once the clouds gave way to sun we headed outside for some fun in the sun. Our backyard is a muddy mess, but that didn't keep us from enjoying the pool. The boys rescued some frogs from the skimmer basket. They really get a kick out of seeing whats in the skimmer basket each day. It is usually frogs, lizards, and various bugs. Occasionally there will be a mouse. Country life is fun.
When we got home from church tonight, John battled the yellow jackets. A couple of nights ago he poured boiling soapy water on the first nest. Since we have not seen any activity around that nest, we believe it took care of the problem. Tonight he poured it on the ones that attacked him while he was mowing. Victory is sweet.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

One project down

I have many plans for this week. The primary purpose of this "vacation" is to spend a week at home with the boys. I want them to have a break from day care before school begins. They love day care, so I don't think they really cared if they got a week at home, but here we are. Since I am here, I intend to complete some of the little projects that have fallen by the wayside. I now present the kitchen wall. Please ignore the wall to the left. John just took the paneling off the bottom half of it about two weeks ago. It will probably look like that for a while. Back to the finished wall. John took the paneling off a little over a month ago. He got it textured and primed and then it just sat there waiting to be completed. John started painting the door Sunday. Yesterday I found the motivation to finish the door and paint the trim. Today I painted the wall. I have included a picture from Jacob's birthday to show what the wall looked like. I am very happy with the end result even if it did take a while to complete. Now I just need to tidy the fridge and all will be right.

No middle ground

Due to the thunder we heard rumbling in the distance, the kids and I vacated the pool and headed inside. Jacob spent some time working on his various projects. May I present "Mario World". The kids decided to take a break from projects and we sat down to play a game of Uno. As soon as we began our game the rain began to fall. This is not a gentle rain. I think it would fall into the gully washer category. We need the rain, but I wish it would fall a little more gently. It is going to wash away all the grass seed we put out on Sunday. I am thinking we might need more gutters on the back of the house. At least with all the rain we can see where we need to put the drainage for the new landscaping. There is a silver lining.


John and I caved to peer pressure and signed up for Facebook. So far, I really don't get it. Maybe I am just missing something. At least I will have something to show for my vacation. What did you do on vacation? I spent way to many hours trying to understand the Facebook mania. That and painting. I'm cool like that.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

The never ending baseboards

We have been wanting to get the baseboards in the bedrooms for just over two weeks now, but the motivation to get it done has been lacking. It might actually happen this week. John spent some time painting today. Once we get the ones he painted installed we can paint some more. Someday all the rooms in our house will once again have baseboards. I am hopeful that day is near. In addition to the baseboards we are installing new doors on the kids closets and in the laundry room. It will be a relief to have these little projects done. We need to be focusing more on our outdoor projects for now. Speaking of which, John had a run in with our not so friendly backyard pests today. He got two yellow jacket stings on his leg. He was mowing near the house and disturbed a nest. Now we have two nests that need to be treated. John is currently devising a plan. It involves four inch drain pipe, boiling water, and laundry soap. I'll keep you posted.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Yellow Jackets aren't cool

After a relaxing swim, John and I decided to spend the afternoon working around the back yard. John was working on some electrical wiring for the light in the pool, and I was working on leveling the ground where we ripped out the deck. As you can see from the picture above, I was making progress loosening the dirt so it would be easier to level with the rake. All was going well until I disturbed a yellow jacket nest. They were not happy with me. I managed to escape with only three stings, but we killed 5 that made it into the house with me.The picture above is of the colony entrance. After I came inside to treat my wounds and rest, John put hot coals on it. There are lots of bees swarming around it trying to find a way in. I am not sure how we go about treating the nest now since everything I have read says you have to get the poison into the nest opening. I have also read that if they aren't posing a threat you should leave them alone and they will die out in the fall. I am not sure we can wait that long since they are pretty close to the house and swarming rather aggressively. We may be making a trip to Home Depot tonight. John needs more PVC glue anyway since he is redoing some of the pool plumbing. The things we do for fun.

74 is pretty awesome

It was a whopping 74 degrees this morning. It felt great. You could actually be outside without feeling like you were melting. The fire today was quite large, but it burned down quickly. Joshua and I went to the end of the drive to get the paper and you could see the fire over the house. This should be our last fire for a while. We have ripped out all the back deck, so demolition is complete. This weekend, we hope to get some small inside projects done. Specifically, we need to get all the new doors and baseboards painted and installed. We are trying to finish up all our petty projects before school starts in three weeks. The summer has gone by so fast. I will be on vacation next week so the kids and I can prepare for school. We need to clean out closets and shop for school clothes. We also need to embark on the school supply scavenger hunt. Last year I waited until the week before school started and many supplies were sold out. I hope to avoid that headache this year. Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Another week gone by

I looked at the blog and saw that it has been a week since our last update, but I am not sure where the time has gone. Sitting back we see some progress but in the midst of it we seem to get overwhelmed. We are going to have to start making specific goals and working on them so we can check them off. This weekend we removed the last of the old decking in the back yard, so all demolition is now complete. We now have to borrow a tiller to break up some of the hard ground and level it the best we can. Once it is fairly level we are going to put out grass seed to help hold the soil and to make it less of a muddy mess when it rains. We hope to bring in several loads of topsoil and possibly sod next year, but we will see about that. We also now have a second gate at the end of our fence, so all we have to do is the 24 remaining sections of fence, but that also will wait for now as we work on more pressing issues.

On the inside we hung a new door for Jacob's closet. We still need to replace Joshua's and the one that leads to the laundry room. We have the doors but need to paint them and install the new hardware so they match the rest of the house. I am pretty sure that will be on the top of the list. Now that we have the carpet installed we need to get baseboards down. We have 200' of them in the garage that we bought last week, we just need to paint and install them. The other project outstanding is the kitchen walls where we took out the siding last week. The walls have been patched and sanded and are just needing textured and painted. We are trying to decide if we are going to paint them a new color now or just match the hall.

It really isn't that many projects right now, just several fairly large ones that will take some time. Hopefully we can knock out a good chunk this weekend.

On an unrelated note, we got to see a surprise in our grill the past couple of weeks. We saw a bird keep flying in and out of the bottom of it. After a few days it would fly in with something in its mouth and we would hear a loud "cheeping" noise. This weekend we saw the baby birds venture out of the nest and hop around the patio a bit. I am not sure if they are gone yet, but we haven't been out to watch them in a couple of days. It is fun to sit back and watch this little bit of nature happening right in front of you.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Jacob's first black eye

I got a phone call from the day care director late this afternoon. She wanted to let me know that Jacob got hit in the face with a rock. She assured me that he was OK and they were keeping ice on it. Apparently, another child was throwing rocks and one hit him. He has a pretty big knot and it is already turning purple. I am just thankful it didn't hit his eye. He's pretty cute even with a black eye.

One down

John has finished the fence project for now. We can move on to something else. The current plan is to wait until the weekend to start another adventure. Tomorrow will be church and Thursday we need to go buy baseboards. Hopefully we can have new baseboards in all the bedrooms before the weekend is over. I am excited about getting that done since it will make the rooms look finished. The big challenge now is making ourselves rest until Saturday.


I had to work yesterday, but John spent the day at home working on our fence. It is looking good. Just three more sections and we can focus on moving dirt and putting in drainage. The fun never ends.

Boys and their Toys

The boys enjoyed some time playing with their bottle launcher this weekend. It didn't take long to get one stuck in a tree. John did a little decorating on the alternate bottle. My camera doesn't do action shots well, but you get the idea. It's good that we are easily entertained.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Every Weekend Should be this Relaxing

Once the furniture was back in place on Friday, we turned our attention to enjoying the long weekend. Mikki and Maci arrived Friday afternoon and we spent the day playing in the pool and visiting. On Saturday we slept late. It was awesome. I can't remember the last time I slept in. After breakfast Mikki and I went shopping and John and the kids played at home. We had a late lunch and then Mikki and I sat on the patio and watched the kids play in the pool while John snuck in a nap. We attended a Mississippi Braves baseball game last night. Since they won the game it was even more fun. After the game and fireworks show we headed home. This morning we slept in once again. After breakfast we went out for a Sunday drive to show Mikki and Maci the place we now call home. Upon returning home John grilled some burgers and then we spent some time playing in the pool. I tried to nap on my floatie, but the kids were not cooperating. Now John and the kids are playing Rock band and I am taking a break from my laziness to post. I am not looking forward to returning to work tomorrow. I could get used to this taking it easy stuff.

Friday, July 3, 2009

Those crazy kids

Joshua just informed me that he really likes the new carpet. I don't know if he will be as impressed once they actually put the carpet down. All he has seen so far is the carpet pad. It is a lovely green color. The carpet is more of an off white. I hope he still likes it when he finds out.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Three Day weekend, here we come

Actually, John gets a four day weekend, but who's counting. I was supposed to have a six day weekend, but plans changed. I somehow got chosen to do inventory at work next week. Yeah for me! It shouldn't be too bad. I'll just save my vacation days for another time.
Tomorrow morning we are having carpet installed in the bedrooms. We have spent every night this week preparing. The wood floor in Jacob's room came up pretty easily. Joshua's room has a lovely linoleum that we are just carpeting over. Our room was not pretty. The wood floor did not want to come up and the concrete underneath is pretty rough looking. It will be good to get the carpet in.

In addition, to the fun demolition work, John spent some time on the outdoor project. We now have a gate. We are hoping to get some of the fence done this weekend. I think the outside project will be ongoing for some time. There is still lots of dirt that needs rearranged. Once that is done we are hoping we can get some grass to grow without too much trouble. That may be wishful thinking.