Sunday, July 27, 2008

At wit's end

I'm not sure precisely where 'wit's end' is, but I believe it hovers somewhere between 'won't sleep past 6am', 'won't nap longer than 1.25 hours', and 'won't fall asleep before 9pm'. Kate is killing me. She is exhausted, but not to the point of actually sleeping. She is becoming increasingly bossy, and perhaps slightly more aggressive towards her sister. I have put dark curtains over her bedroom windows, but she is still up at the break of day, loudly whispering, "shhhhhhhhhhhh" in a way that wakes me and Claire up, if Claire has not already been awakened by Kate throwing things at her in her crib. There's nothing like a captive audience.

I am becoming evermore desperate, and even gave Kate benadryl before yesterday's nap in an effort to get her to sleep longer. Instead of sleeping for 1 hour and 10 minutes, she slept for 1 hour and 20 minutes.

We can't get our gate to work, but I may be willing to purchase a brand new one soon just to keep her in her room. Other ideas?

Saturday, July 26, 2008

A girl and her powertools, posing a question

In an effort to avoid further unpacking any more boxes last night, I began adding decorative hardware to our kitchen cabinets. After drilling and drilling, and cursing a bit, I finished most of the cabinets. However, I have a question: do you add pulls to non-usable cabinetry? There are two "drawers" beneath both the cooktop and the kitchen sink, and I don't know whether to leave them free of pulls or add the hardware. Before I began the project, I thought for sure that I would add them to every surface that would accept them. After working for freakin forever what seemed like ages, I thought, "those drawers aren't really drawers, and therefore they don't need pulls". Also, it's going to be a right pain in the patooty to get pulls on those faux drawers, since you have to drill from the back and you (I) cannot open the "drawers".

So, do I need them? Does it look silly to have pulls on all drawers but the fake ones? Say it!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Purchased: one red bed

I called and ordered the red bed, even though Kate is now insisting that she absolutely must have the white one. So sorry, baby girl.

You all offered some very constructive comments about which one I should buy, and most importantly, you had no huge reasons why I should not buy the red one, which I secretly love. I am somewhat concerned about teaching Kate to make her own bed, but feel that she is a smart girl and we'll figure it out. Besides, she won't really be making her own bed for like 8 more years, right? AND, the red bed is SO SO SO Cute. Love.

Monday, July 21, 2008

One of THOSE afternoons

I decided to do a quick vacuum of Kate's room before getting my swimsuit on and taking the kids out to the pool. I wondered why the vacuum wasn't picking up much stuff, and surmised that the bag must be full. I opened up the canister to find that there was no bag in the vacuum. Apparently the movers will pack up your garbage, but will not transport semi-full vacuum bags. Greaaaat.

After using the little vacuum cleaner to clean up the big vacuum cleaner mess (all the while thinking how Monica-like this action was: 'She is obsessive to the point that she even cleans her cleaning supplies, using a dustbuster to remove dirt from a vacuum cleaner and wishing there were an even smaller vacuum to clean the dustbuster.'), I put my swimsuit on. It was too quiet in the house, however, and I knew that this silence would come back to haunt me.

Sure enough, Kate had opened a tube of lotion ("sunscreen"), and most of a toddler piano, various parts of the loft, 2 chairs, and 2 toddlers were partially covered in baby lotion. And it was not my favorite-scented one, either.

We are now on our way out to the pool, if for no other reason than to wash the dust and lotion off.

Bedroom sets: help!

It's time to transition Kate to a big bed. I have been looking forward to the time when we would buy her a new bed and bedroom set. Who doesn't love redecorating a kid's room? With new! furniture! (Here's where I thank all the family members who have given money for Kate's past birthdays.)

I think I have narrowed the choices down to two beds, but now I am stuck. I just asked Kate which one she likes better and first she said the white one and then the red one. No help whatsoever. She's two; what can I expect?

I like both, for different reasons. I love the red bed because I think it's stylish and classy, but not over-the-top. I like the white one because it has clean lines and has a canopy. I dislike the red one because it is red (which is also a reason why I like it. Confused much?) and I'm afraid she or I will tire of it. I'm also not sure what to get for other furniture in the room. I don't think I want (nor do they sell) an entire red bedroom set. Do you go with white or black or brown? Adding to my woes, the bed also comes in blue! But I like the red better, I think, so I won't even ask your opinion on that.

I dislike the white one because it is white (wow, do I have color issues or what?), and I grew up with white furniture. I loved it when I was 7, and hated hated HATED it when I was 13. But, did I hate the furniture, or hate the lack of change? I mean, I was 13. Realistically, I probably hated the pink frilly bedding and flowery wallpaper most of all, along with the fact that I was stuck in the same bedroom I had had since I was 4. Kate will not have this problem. See also: military move every 3-4 years. Putting the bedroom set in a different bedroom will do wonders, I'm sure.

I think the beds are about the same price, so that is not helping me make a decision.

With all that said, here are the beds. Please voice your opinion! I need help.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Running out of steam


Sharing cotton candy at the 4th of July picnic. We found blue stickiness on them for days.

Wheee! Claire is confused as to why she is unable to steer any direction but forward.

Coloring Daddy's birthday paper. "Are you sure Daddy will appreciate my hard work?"

On the menu: yogurt, hot dogs, oranges, and birthday cake. Better when all mixed together and shoveled into the mouth without utensils.

Unpacking whilst watching over toddlers is tiring. You unpack something and put it in a specific location so that you will know exactly where to look for it later, and then one child comes along and 'puts it away' for you. Days later, you find it, stuffed into a random box or under a bed. Also, there is just So Much To Do that I am at a bit of a loss sometimes. It sure is nice having a blank slate to start from, though, and twice the house to work with!

Friday, July 11, 2008

Can you tell what she is singing?

Finally, bandwidth enough to upload my new favorite clip:

I love this video. My favorite part is her pronunciation of the letter 'w'. Here, it is 'nuh-nuh-nuh-nu', but it has since gotten much longer and is now more like 'nuh-nuh-nuh-nuh-nuh-nuh-nuh-nuh-nu', followed by a grinning 'exxxsh'. LOVE IT.

A housewarming gift from Mary and Doug

They stripped the kitchen of all appliances. But they left us this parting gift. I didn't touch any of the bottles: they were splayed out like this when I opened the drawer.

Pretty sure

I'm fairly certain that this is not what you meant when you enthusiastically said that you wanted to see pictures of our stuff in our house:

All-righty then! Back to it!

Also, Tim should be home ANY MINUTE to allow me a child-free trip to Costco! I have a brand-new french-door refrigerator to fill up. I can hardly wait!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Glassware: good. Solid wood: not so good.

Every time we move and begin unpacking, I open each box with some trepidation. Will this be the box with my broken crystal stemware from my great-grandmother? We are nowhere near unpacked yet, but so far the glassware seems to be all in one piece. Oddly enough, it is the HARD WOODEN furniture that is not in the best shape.

The top of my desk is warped. So is the top of the armoire that houses the TV. It's like they put the truck through a steam bath. These are thick, solid pieces of wood. My saddest discovery so far: the step chest we got in Hanoi may be a total loss. I haven't even looked at it close-up yet -- I'm too sad that it is likely ruined.

I picked Starbuck up this morning -- he is confused and skeptical of his new surroundings. He does love the stairs, like the girls do, and has been racing up and down them.

We went swimming last night in our huge lap pool, thanks to all of Tim's hard work on it over the past week. The girls thought it was great to be back in the water. So did we, after a long day of moving in in 112* heat!

We have our cable set up now, and have half of our appliances. The refrigerator, dishwasher and microwave come this afternoon. Party!

Time to go unpack more boxes!

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Moving day tomorrow

9500+ pounds of household goods, packed in a gazillion boxes, all delivered to our new house tomorrow morning. Also, a set of stainless steel wall ovens and a cooktop (we couldn't find stainless-look appliances that matched well enough. And there was a huge sale.) to arrive in the afternoon. Two toddlers who are sure to be underfoot at every moment. And two adults who will be working on approximately 4 hours of sleep.

No more TLF! No more cramped spaces! No more children going to sleep at 10pm because they are in the same room! Woot.

Saturday, July 05, 2008

Current obsessions

Me: this website is addictive. You will be shocked and disgusted, and may never recover your desire for another bloomin' onion. I've never had one, and now I never will.

Tim: anything house-related. Especially if it involves Home Depot, chlorine, power tools, or looking up stuff on the internet.

Kate: Barbie. Agh. And Dora, of course.

Claire: Goldfish crackers. "Feesheeeees! Feesheeees! Mas! Pees, mas!" Also, stairs.

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

A visitor

We've only been here for 2 weeks, and already we've had one family member visit us (note to the rest of you: stop slacking and make plans to stop by soon!). Tim's uncle Bob is a truck driver, and he occasionally gets deliveries to our hometown, wherever that may be. He was able to spend a few hours with us last week, so we went to the dinosaur park and then out to lunch. He made fast friends with the girls by presenting them with small, but highly treasured, gifts, and playing peek-a-boo with them.

Upon leaving the park, the modest hole next to the rear pocket on my shorts grew in size by several inches (read: almost waist to hem), and we had to head home so I could change. Then, properly clothed, we enjoyed a leisurely lunch at Blueberry Hill (Kate's current favorite restaurant, because Blueberry Hill is where Swiper the fox lives) before uncle Bob had to continue his drive to Utah. Thanks for spending time with us!

Shaking my fist in the air at HGTV

Two of my favorite channels are the Food Network and HGTV. I love watching Giada DeLaurentis or Tyler Florence whip up good eats in the kitchen (2 of my all-time favorite recipes have come from them). And watching HGTV, well, that has always been a source of inspiration and excitement as I tuck mental notes away for my future dream home.

After purchasing our new house here, I was abuzz with anticipation at being able to bring some of these dreams to life. There are no appliances in our kitchen, just open spaces waiting for me to fill them with gorgeous stainless steel dream machines.

But my enthusiasm has begun to wane, and reality has started to sink in. Buying all new appliances is a major pain in the rear. On HGTV, they send you away for a commercial break and you arrive back home to see your incredible new space, sparkling and adorned with non-childproof accessories. In real life, there are 82 makes and models of each appliance, some of which will fit into your allotted space. There are ratings and reviews, and sales and payment plans. There are cabinet-depth refrigerators and standard ones that will stick out 8-12 inches from the counters. I have come to dread opening the refrigerator page on Best Buy's website. Damn you, HGTV, for making it all look so easy.

I think we I have decided on a dishwasher, and we have narrowed down the refrigerator category to a manageable 3-4 models. Our biggest problem revolves around the double oven/microwave/hood issue. The previous owners did not have a double oven; they had a single oven/microwave combo (sort of odd, if you ask me). I am not a big fan of this, and would like some double ovens. I know I will use them (at the same time) approximately 3 times a year, but! I still want them. This leaves us with the hood/microwave question. I love the look of a nice stainless steel hood over a pretty cooktop, but then where do you put the microwave? It would be odd to put it on the counter in such an otherwise nice-looking kitchen. I think this means we need to get a microwave/hood standard combo. Unless you can help me come up with another idea?