Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Sometimes you just have to!

Today we had a lesson.

After unplugging the toilet for the one-millionth time, I decided this morning that I had had ENOUGH.

So, we had a lesson.

Now, the boys thought it was hysterical, but I was dead serious as I stood in front of them scribbling on the board, arms flailing and chalk dust flying, trying to deliver my message in the only way I could think of!

And when I was done, I let them know, in no uncertain terms, that tomorrow.......

there will be a test ;D

Sunday, March 25, 2012

They have church on Sunday morning????

This morning....

the Gang discovered that there's more to Sunday mornings.....

than just sleeping in ;D

Ever since we started going to Fellowship Church in Dallas about 8 years ago, we have been addicted to evening worship services!  And up until our recent move to Georgia, we've been lucky enough to find churches in each place we've lived that has offered either a Saturday or a Sunday evening service (and sometimes both).

With so many people in the family to get ready to go, it's always been an easy way for us to make it to church with much less stress!

When we learned we were moving to the Atlanta area, we were ecstatic to hear that Andy Stanley was a pastor in our immediate area, and we would have access to one of his satellite campuses!  My mom has been following his father, Charles Stanley, for many years, and she was convinced we would love Andy.

Unfortunately, none of the campuses offer the evening services that we've become accustomed to.  In fact, it doesn't seem to be something that any of the churches in our area offer.  So today, for the first time in years, we got our gang ready and headed to church......

on Sunday MORNING ;D

And man was it WORTH it!  We LOVED the church and the music (non-traditional rock band style with amazing vocalists!), but we REALLY loved Andy!  What a great service!  Entertaining, enlightening, and biblically sound.......what an amazing teacher he is!  His message went on for over 45 minutes, and I was thoroughly impressed with all of the scripture that he was able to draw from and include in his teaching.  Definitely not your typical sermon!

And there is absolutely no doubt that, come next Sunday, we will drag our weary gang out of bed, into the van, and 20 miles down the road to do it all over again!

And as I posted on Facebook earlier I know why God put us in Georgia :D

Thursday, March 22, 2012


We've never had a pool before, but because we now live in Atlanta and have no neighborhood pool, we decided to take the plunge and put one in!

And what a process it's been!  Actually, it's been very interesting to watch the different stages.  We decided to go with a pool liner for the inside of the pool.  It will give us a nice smooth surface that won't tear up our feet.  The first step was to clear the area of trees, and then the hole was dug.

We are going with a pool that has a deep end for diving (I think it's about 10 ft).  They got the hole completed in just one day, and the next step was to frame up the area.  This was started on Monday and completed on Tuesday.  You can see how they even placed the stairs....

I'm not sure how our poor yard is going to bounce back after all the trauma, but people tell me it won't be that bad when it's all done.  We'll see!

The next step is to cover the wood siding with some sort of foam pad.  They got that done on Wednesday.

And then they began to pour the concrete on Wednesday as well.  The entire bottom was covered with a layer of concrete.

Finally today they placed the liner and started filling it with water!  It's hard to believe it was just a big hole only 3 days ago!!

We got to pick our liner, and that was honestly the hardest part for us ;D  It's suppose to take all night to fill about 3/4 full, and then they come back tomorrow to do something to water before they finish filling it the rest of the way.

If the weather cooperates, the next step will be to backfill the yard and smooth it all out.  I think they then pour concrete around the outside of the pool to support the wood frame and create our pool deck and walkways!  The boys have thoroughly enjoyed the experience and spend hours watching out the window of our playroom upstairs :D

If you follow me on Twitter, then you know that I have spent WAAAAAAAAAY too much time (not to mention money) at Lowe's since we've been here!  So today, on my daily trip over there (this time it was to pick up bath fixtures for the basement and screw anchors) I spotted some ferns hanging out front. I love having a front porch to hang plants from, but I decided that I don't want to mess with flowering plants because they just never seem to do very well.  My mom told me that ferns are super easy to care for and they were only $7 each at Lowe's today, so I'm going to give them a try!

I really love the way they look.....very southern :D

Monday, March 19, 2012

Micro-soccer star!

Jacob has been waiting to play a team sport for the last year.

And it really doesn't matter to him which sport he plays.....

He just wants to play!

So we were really excited to see that the rec league in our area has a micro-soccer program starting at age 4.

With lots of other wannabe soccer stars the same age as Jacob :D

So we bought some cleats, socks and shin guards and Jacob got busy....

And boy does he LOVE it!  Always a big grin on his face....

And always wherever the ball is....

He'd much rather be in the action than playing goalie, but he did take his turn and was even able to block the ball several times!

He's played 2 Saturdays so far.  They practice for 30 minutes and then they have two 15-minute games.

We were thrilled to see he had some skills and was able to score several goals each game!  You just never know how much God-given talent and ability each child will have, no matter how much they want to play ;D

But Jacob's been showing interest in sports since he could walk, so I'm happy to say that I think we've got an athlete on our hands!

And we're looking forward to lots more sports for Jacob in our future :D

Friday, March 16, 2012



we have progress on our pool!

They came and dug it all out today, and the boys were so engrossed in the process that we had a hard time focusing on school!

I must admit, even I enjoyed watching the big machine work and shape the ground into the space that will become our pool ;D

So while it's been OVER the 6 weeks that our builder promised it would take to get the basement complete, at least we have something tangible to look at out the window!  The tough part is going to be keeping the boys out of the dirt :D

We ran into some snags with the basement (i.e. not enough carpet ordered, wood floor not ordered in time, etc), so the basement has been dragging on and on and on......

And since we haven't been able to start moving all the extras down into the basement, I've been trying to concentrate on doing things like hanging pictures....

Yep, they're baaaaaaack!  Some of you reminded me that although I had to remove them in Kansas, I would eventually get to put them back up.....

and you were right ;D

I never doubted you!  I decided to make our 3rd floor hallway our picture wall, and I am so happy to have them all back!

We were able to move Allie and Emily into their rooms in the basement (although there is still no functioning bathroom down there) which freed up space to finally get Jacob & Caleb's room finished....

All that's left to do in their room is paint the walls.  I did hang everything so it will be easy to find the nails after Zack paints, and I don't have to wait on him.

The other room that's mostly done is Noah & Matthew's.....

They wanted a Dr. Seuss themed room, so we went with some cute bedding from Pottery Barn and I ordered stencils for the walls....

I even found a cute clock at Target to fit our theme :D

It was a fun room to decorate!

Another space that is finally finished is my bathroom.  I got curtains up on the window....

And even a decorative curtain up over the glass shower doors....

The next plan is to antique the cabinets in there so they are an antique white....I'm excited to start on that project!!

Unfortunately, we still have been unable to tackle our closet.....

And it's going to stay like this until the basement is done and we have our storage areas!  Our builder tells us the end of this weekend....we shall see.....

I'll be sure to post pictures of the basement in a couple of days when there's a little more done.  We're pretty much just waiting on the plumber and the rest of the cabinetry down there....getting closer.....

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Allie & Noah's birthday tribute to Matthew!

I love to see the videos that Allie creates!  She is so talented!!  This particular one took her all afternoon and over 200 shots with her camera!  I have so many more that she has made for each of us as gifts that I would love to of these days ;D


Tuesday, March 13, 2012

The Money Pit

Remember that movie?!  We've always preferred to buy new houses over our many years of moving.  While older houses have lots of charm, they also come with lots of issues that you just can't see when you're in the process of buying.

This time, however, we decided not to buy brand new.  We looked at some new houses, but they just didn't fit us for various reasons and none of them had the backyards we were looking for.  So, we settled on a house that isn't brand new, but it's also not very old (about 5 years).  Seeing as how it's about as old as the house we sold in Kansas, we assumed we would be fine.....especially knowing the condition we left our house in when we moved out!

Let me just say....some people don't take very good care of their property.

This house looked pretty good upon initial inspection, but it has quickly become more than what we bargained for, and it has continued to be one thing after another leading us to start calling it our Money Pit!

Take, for instance, our mailbox.....

We hadn't even been in our house 1 week when the door to our already leaky mailbox fell off!

Yep, just rusted away and fell right off when we opened it to get the mail one day!  It clearly had not been cared for!  And really, all of the other mailboxes in the neighborhood are in great shape and have been kept up and painted....just not ours.  And it's not like we have nothing better to do!  But please, let us drop everything so that we can fix our mailbox!

We contacted the homeowners' association and discovered it would cost over $400 to replace the mailbox....ugh!  So we decided to rig something up to re-attatch the door as there was no hinge we could buy at Lowe's or Home Depot to replace the original custom-made hinge.

It's a good thing hubby is handy!

So after a few new parts, a few new holes drilled and a fresh coat of paint, we now have a respectable mailbox....

Sadly, the rest of the fixes haven't been quite so simple.  Since we've been here, we've had the plumber come 3x, only to end up having to replace our entire kitchen faucet in the end!  We've also had to replace our dishwasher- the little cup that holds the detergent wasn't releasing and the machine itself just wasn't getting the dishes clean.

In addition, we've had to replace the garage door openers.  When we first got here, we only had one operating door!  We had to have someone come and fix both doors, put a keypad on the outside and give us new remotes.....about $600.

And although the sellers tried to make the house look new when they moved out by repainting (inside and out) and putting up all new blinds, the paint is all flat paint and it's being destroyed by the kids!  So, after repainting our entire house in Kansas, we get to do it all over again here.  As far as the blinds go, I am mortified by what was left here!  For whatever reason, the previous owners took out all their blinds and replaced them with new blinds.  Unfortunately, the blinds they put in are the kind you buy at a home improvement warehouse that are NOT custom-fitted, don't have the decorative tops and don't even match the trim color!!!  And they're AWFUL!  We have been ripping them down and trying to cover them up as much as possible until we can eventually afford to replace them.

And that might be easier to afford if we hadn't had to buy all new fixtures for every bathroom in the house!  We're still baffled by the fact that they took all the towel racks, toilet paper rollers, etc. from the house when they left.  So we've spent hundreds of dollars replacing those as well.

Of course, all of this is on top of us trying to finish the basement!

One thing I've learned for sure, if we ever DO move again, I'm not buying used!!!!!!!  This money pit has been more than enough for me!


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