Saturday, January 19, 2013

A 'Lil A' Fix


Dedicated to Tammy
I do read my emails and post to my blog
...eventually 

My friend Tammy emailed me and wanted the link to our blog again because her own little one deleted all her links and she was needing a Lil A fix. Well, I hadn't posted in a long while and was way over due to write a  post about Aurora anyways, so thanks to Tammy here it is for all of you. :)


Lil A's hair is so long and thick. I don't think I have ever gone out with her anywhere and not have someone, usually a stranger, comment on her hair. Although, she, herself could care less about it and would prefer to be completely bald. Then she wouldn't have her Momma torture her every morning with a brush.

The girl dislikes shoes and prefers to be barefoot whenever absolutely possible. She asked for some slippers this Christmas and received 4 sets of slippers all very cool and exactly to her liking (1 set was fuzzy & pink- her favorite color, another was dinosaur feet and another was a Stompeez where the heads of the animal pop up when you walk) except she just remembered that oh yeah, she doesn't like slippers either...too much like shoes.

Translating Aurora: 
Lil A has always been verbally inclined and usually she speaks pretty clearly & understandably but there's still some translation involved sometimes.
Such as:
"I just want to go home" she says this even when she is home.
Translation: "I'm bored."

"I'm scared"
Usual Translation: "I'm lonely & bored."
Other Translation: "I am actually scared of something more specific & particular this time."
which is rare because this girl isn't scared of hardly anything.

"I'm one year's old"
Translation: "I'm too little and young to have to do this or at least to have to do it more than once."

"I'm big, brave & strong."
Translation: "I'm a little unsure or scared but I'm going to try and handle it myself anyways."
Other translation: "Look at what I can accomplish and do all by myself."

"You are big, brave & strong."
Translation: "I need your help."
Other translation: "I want you to do this for me because I can't be bothered to do it for myself right now."

"You go away."
Translation: "I'm about to do something that I don't want you to see because it will get me in trouble and/or you'll make me clean it up."

"I want to eat a tomato" (tow-MAH-tow)
Translation: "I want to eat a tomato" (toe-MAY-toe)
(She says tomato with a British accent like some of her favorite cartoon & book characters' Charlie & Lola).
This year she decided she wanted to be a pumpkin for Halloween just like Lola from the before mentioned Charlie & Lola. Another year passes and she still hasn't succomb to peer pressure to be a princess yet, at least not for her official Halloween costume. She dresses up like a princess all the time when we play pretend.

 She often won't look at the camera or smile for it.
So we say things like:
"Where's Daddy?"
Her response appears to be:
"Right there. Duh."

Lil A has started saying "See what I mean?" at the end of her sentences. Jared and I are not sure where she got this as we both believe neither one of us say that and don't recall it from any of the shows she likes to watch or books we read.

She likes having collections. She will pick up anything and everything and called it "her collection." She even has a "kiss collection" where she collects kisses that people blow her. She might ask you for a kiss for her collection, too.
Right now though her absolute favorite collections, ones that we must play with every day are: her dinosaur collection (sounds like 'dinosaur kitchen' when she says it) and her seashell collection. Her dinosaur collection often eats meals with her, goes on outings with her, watches movies with her, takes baths with her and even sleeps with her at night.





When she wants you to look at something, she will point to her eye and then look at the object and say "Look" or "See?" and expect you to know what it is she's looking at. I've gotten pretty good at following her eye's line of sight and making correct guesses.



Lil A likes to play games online at PBS Kids. One of their games/video clips is called Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood which is a cartoon spinoff of Mr. Roger's Neighborhood.  Apparently, Daniel has a repetitive strategy song that goes like this: "If something seems bad, turn it around and find something good."

Well, Aurora made a rather big mess recently involving no less than 6 blankets and 1 sheet and some bodily fluids. I actually didn't get upset or even say much of anything (since bodily fluids are just apart of my life with a 3 year old) but it must of been obvious that I was less than thrilled to clean it up and launder all those blankets because Aurora sang to me "If something seems bad, turn it around and find something good!"
I burst out laughing, hugged my daughter but in my head cursed those goody-two-shoes children's shows for being used against me. (Have you ever wondered where the phrase "goody two-shoes" comes from? I did so here's the link with the answer. You're welcome.)




Since we are talking about creative exploratory discoveries (aka messes) Aurora is an expert. Not only are bodily fluids apart of my everyday life anything that can be turned into a hard to clean-up or gross mess she will make it. If you received our Christmas letter (sorry if you didn't we started out really good about getting them out and then our momentum came to a sudden and apparently permanent stand still) we said ask us about the Great Egg Fiasco sometime. 
Well, here it is:
Mind you this wasn't the first or even third mess I cleaned up that day just one of the messiest.
Brand new carton of 18 eggs thrown, cracked & stomped on all over the family room.

Later when asked what she was doing, she said "I was making a cake."
 The girl loves to get into the kitchen cabinets and refridgerator to "cook" and "bake" things.
Our kitchen is starting to look more and more like Fort Knox all the time.

Although we do have her help us cook and bake things to give her aspirations as a chef some outlet.


She could swing all day long either on a swing set or having Momma & Daddy pick her up & swing her if Momma's and/or Daddy's arms didn't fall off way before that point in either scenario. But she doesn't like slides much anymore. She's developed a little bit of a fear of heights recently. Don't believe there was any kind of dramatic event that brought it on, just seemed to develop overnight.
video
Her tire swing on her new playset.

 Her "Momma-and-Daddy-swing" on her not so new parents.

If you were to ask her what she wants to do or play, her most likely response would be to play "the running game." She loves, loves, loves to just run around. Our new house has a nice big circuitous route in it that she does laps on. A couple of nights ago she did 50+ laps without stopping or even slowing.

Lil A just adores babies. Lately, any and every baby within her vicinty is not safe from her attention and kisses. She really wants to have a baby brother or sister and she really likes to pretend to be a baby, too. Here she is lovin on her newest cousin baby Julie at Thanksgiving.

video

She still loves books and is starting to point to words or spell things out to us and ask what it says.
There are a blue million other things that I could say about our little firecracker, Lil A
 but this was probably way more of a "fix" than anyone ever wanted.

We love you Lil A!

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Is this fabulous or blasphemous?


I truly don't know what I think about painting hardwood floors.
Is it fabulous or blasphemous?!
 
Will you help me decide?
This is a time sensitive decision and project because each option takes time to do and would be easier to do before we move the furniture in, which is in a week:
Option 1: refinish
Option 2: paint
Option 3: carpet
 
Here is the situation.
Aurora's room:
At the moment it has really old light pink carpet in the room
which I've already cut into pieces to be hauled out of there
 
Underneath the carpet is original hardwood floor that doesn't look horrible
but we're pretty sure will need to be refinished.
 
 
It's not my favorite hardwood floor as it's a little more orange than I like
as my favorite wood is the dark wood.
 
These two pictures are of the already refinished master bedroom hardwood floor.
Lil A's room could and would most likely look like this with refinishing.
 

 
Pros:
Hardwood floors especially old original hardwood floors
have so much soul, character and wisdom.
These are pretty with nice warmth even if it's not my absolute favorite type and color of hardwood floors.
 
Cons:
Keeping hardwood floors looking clean drives me a bit more insane than I usually am.
There are always dust bunnies and some dirt on the floor No Matter What I DO!
I don't usually just plop right down and play on a hardwood floor...so the room will need a good sized rug.
 
BUT WAIT...
 
Look at these possibilities of painted hardwood floors



 
Oh My Goodness!
They are fabulous to look at
if you just don't think about the blasphemous act of what you did to get this result.
Arrrggghhh!
 
Pros:
So fun!
Possibilities are endless.
If you get tired of it just paint over it again or hide it under carpet.
These floors were hiding under carpet already which makes me feel a little less guilty about painting them if that's what I decide.
 
Cons:
Painted floors are still hardwood floors so the cons of cleaning and playing on them still apply.
You can never get your hardwood floors back again! I think that's what scares me the most is the permanency of this decision.
 
One more thing to consider:
Carpet
 
Pros:
Carpet can be comfy, soft and inviting.
It says come lay and play on me.
I like that I can vacuum and I won't see dust bunnies or dirt right afterwards...it takes a day or two.
 
Cons:
Most carpets (not all) are bit boring
and I couldn't find hardly any inspiring children's rooms that had carpet in it to pin to my inspiration board or to show you on this blog:
(If anyone has pics of beautiful children's bedrooms with carpet...send them my way).
 This one has carpet but it isn't quite the soft, fuzzy carpet that I find inviting.
I would still prefer to play on this carpet with it's padding versus a hardwood floor though.
 
Also carpets wear out and get stained although there is some carpets out there that are supposedly stain-proof or come out with just a little water.
 
I haven't ruled out the option of carpet but I think I'll carpet the big playroom and go with either refinishing the hardwood floors or painting them.
 
What do you think?
Fabulous? or Blasphemous?

Friday, June 8, 2012

And the winner is...

The gorgeous Tudor home!
(For those of you who have been following our house hunting adventures on this blog or Jared's facebook page this is the house with the smaller yard.)

We were able to get a signed contract worked out for the house right before my birthday.
It's the best birthday present ever because this house is soooo me! :)
It looks like a house right out of a storybook and who else would be a better choice to live in a storybook home than Princess Aurora (per Sleeping Beauty) and Queen Esther (per the Bible) and ummm... Jared... (per the brother of Jared from the Book of Mormon but then that would be saying that Sean, Jared's brother, really was the one living here and that just wouldn't do. No offense, Sean! We might need to change his name to Arthur so he can be King Arthur (per the round table of Camelot) and then I can call him Artie).

Anyways...
the point is we are excited for our new home to the point that I will now issue a warning.

Warning: The post that now follows contains more pics & details of our potentially new house (hopefully if everything continues to go right) than anyone not going to be living there wants to ever see or know. 

So we are going to make this "A Choose Your Own Adventure" post.
At this point you may choose to continue reading the image & detail heavy post or choose to just read the summary below & zip through the pics or just have this point be your ending right now. 

If you choose continue reading, just know that at any point you don't like that path, you can always cheat and flip back to make a different choice just like in the books!

Summary 
This house is 2,445 sq ft. on a .17 lot with 3 bedrooms, 1 1/2 bath, with a formal dining room and study on the first floor along with the living room and gorgeous kitchen. It has an almost finished basement, a mostly unfinished attic and enclosed patio/porch. It's on a pretty street and within walking distance to the elementary school.  

Here we go....


Front of house, left (windows of dining room, with walkway and glimpse of driveway)

Front of house, right (windows of the living room and lovely landscaping)

Front of house even more right (enclosed patio)

This house has the requisite red front door.
Jared accuses me of going to showings of houses purely on the fact they have a red door, which is untrue but a red door does go a long way with me.

When you first enter there is a small but pretty entryway w/ closet.
Then you go through a french door to a sort of landing where you have many choices before you of where you can go--the living room, the dining room, the kitchen or up the stairs.
In this Choose Your Own Adventure we will be going right
which leads us to the living room.

(All the furnishings are the seller's stuff. I don't usually take & post many pics of the home with our stuff in it because it never feels "done" to me. I'm always tweaking it: adding pillows, artwork, end tables etc... At least until we are moving again and are selling the house which is when you see pics of our home w/ our stuff.)

I already love the warm buttercup yellow (It seems that this may be another requisite of mine because I believe all the houses we have lived in have had at least one room in a similar shade to this) 

The fireplace is great and the big picture windows too.
There are 3 doors to the outside living areas in this one room alone.


If we choose to exit the living room by way of the doors on either side of the fireplace
we enter the very pretty screened-in patio.

If you exit the double doors in the living room or the back patio door
you will come to a rather large opened patio area. 


We'll  choose to enter back into the house by way of door #4 in this patio area, and we find ourselves in the study (I guess that is the best name for it at least how the sellers use it.)
With having a doorway to the living room on one wall, another door to the outside on a different wall, another wall mostly containing that big beautiful window and then a door to a little hallway on the other wall-- doesn't leave a whole lot of space to work with for furniture etc...
I'm considering making this the dining room, possibly???

Requisite: A room in a warm, calming sage green.
Check.


We now step into a small hallway where there is once again many choices to choose from: the "true" back door, the half bath, the stairs to the basement or the kitchen.
(There are 6 doors that exit this house on the 1st floor. I always hear Genie from Aladdin in my head when thinking about it: "In case of emergency, the exits are here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here anywhere!)

We choose to enter the half bath... 
and come to a sudden and surprised ending entitled "Death by Plaid."
I actually don't hate it but it is a lot of plaid for such a small space.
The wallpaper might stay but probably not.

Since we don't like this ending, we'll cheat and flip back a few pages and make a different choice... 
by entering the kitchen. 

Wow! What a better choice this was!
I think this has to be one of the best kitchens I've seen
in any of the houses in our price range.

This is the other side of the bar/island area.

This is by the door we just entered. As we will most likely be entering the house most often from the back door this will be a great "command center" if  we can keep it organized or a great "dumping of junk" center if we can't keep it organized.


Requisite: Window over sink area.
Check.
If I'm washing the dishes there better be a window that way nobody and no dish gets hurt.


It's not really a requisite but I just adore built-in window seats!
I just always want to curl up on one and read a book.
This one is so pretty even if being located in the kitchen might not be
the most ideal spot.

There is also built-in desk in the kitchen which you would think would be the more logical place for a "command center" or "dumping ground"
but it is a few more feet away from the back door. And I know human nature, at least this part of it...
 the other place is just more conveniently located and so the result would be both places would become a dumping ground if I tried to use the desk as the command center.
FYI- if you have dreams of having a built-in desk area in your kitchen, move to Ohio, the majority of the kitchens we saw had one.  
Note: Do you see the little wood square in the wall next to the desk?
That's a laundry chute. Very nice.
I truly adore this kitchen.

Now we enter the dining room.
Not a big fan of the orange and the teal at all.
The valances are in a pattern of orange & teal peacock feathers too.
So we will be painting this room.
I'm not sure what color yet since the requisite ones of yellow and green have already been taken care of.
Any suggestions?

But I do love the original hardwood floor and again all the light from the windows.
With my struggle with S.A.D and also major depression that is a MAJOR requisite:
lots & lots of natural light.
Check.
If I make the study into the dining room this room may become a family room.

We have now come full circle as we are now on the landing by the front door again.
We will take the last option in this area by now proceeding upstairs in an orderly fashion.

Where we will step out the 7th & final outside door that leads to 
a balcony.
I have dreams of a potted flower paradise up here
although Jared says that all the brick, tile etc...
will most likely bake the flowers as if they were in an oven.
(I've told you before about his almost-always-correct-and-oh-so-practical facts bursting many of my beautiful-ethereal-and-yet-often-unrealistic bubbles, haven't I?) 
After stepping back inside from the bubble bursting we find ourselves in the nice wide upstairs hallway.
Once again not a big fan of the wallpaper. 
(I think wallpaper in general might be against my religion or maybe I'm allergic.
It just so easily & quickly becomes outdated or is just so hard to find the right colors, patterns, space for it to appeal to the taste of more than just one person.)
It will most likely be taken down and possibly replaced with a warm light brown/tan color of paint?
Whadda ya think?

As all hallways are portals of choices- we will enter each of the 3 bedrooms, then the bathroom & then up the stairs to the attic.
Bedroom #1:
This will most likely be Princess Aurora's room.
The dark purple walls of this room although a pretty color are just a little too dark for me.
We will most likely paint this room a different color and replace the old pink carpet.

Bedroom #2:
This will most likely become the "playroom" until it is needed as a bedroom.
The purple paint of this room is quite a bit lighter and will most likely stay but we will probably replace the carpet in this room too.

The Master bedroom:
It has a total of 6 windows in this room- one looks out onto the balcony and it has its original hardwood floor and 3 closets.

The Full Bath
I like the green tile a lot but with the bright yellow walls it makes me think of the Green Bay Packers and not being a Cheese Head will most likely paint the walls a different color. There's quite a bit of built-in storage in this smallish bathroom and a linen closet right outside in the hall.

Behind the last door in the hallway are the stairs to the unfinished attic.
Note once again the laundry chute.

There's some nice space up there that we might finish at some point but it will be good for storage and playing "Bloody Murder" (aka Ghost in the Graveyard or whatever you call your scary version of hide & seek) until that point.


Now in this adventure we are going to take the secret passage to the almost finished basement, like in the game Clue.
(Reality check: There isn't actually a secret passage from the attic to the basement...we just have to retrace our steps back downstairs...but that is nowhere near as fun to write or imagine.) 
There are several rooms in the basement that really just need some details added and/or fixed and some carpet and  it will be a finished basement.
Here is the biggest room: Possibly a rec room or a family room 

Here is the office or maybe a craft room.
Look at those full size windows in the basement!
Hallelujah!

The laundry room is very nice and big.

More of the laundry room that could possibly double as a craft room/area.

There's a section of the basement that isn't finished at all and it contains stuff like the furnace, boiler etc...
But also a tool/work space. 
Now we don't have to turn the garage into a work space for Jared.
It can actually be used as a garage meaning a place to put cars.

If we go back upstairs and out the back door and turn around and take a picture
this is what you would see.



If you turn to your left then you'll see pretty much our whole yard.
It wouldn't be so small if it wasn't kind of cut up into two yards by the retaining wall.
Although I do like the stone retaining wall and it probably was added to make the yard more leveled and useful  


Here are a couple of spots we are considering for a small garden:


In the corner of the "upper" backyard, off the patio, will probably be where we place a playset.
Like I said previously, it isn't a lot to mow which will be nice but
all the landscaping will probably take quite a bit of work to maintain.


Looking at the 2 car garage from the "upper" yard area.
Sadly, we don't think Jared's big, fat truck will fit in the garage. We'll see.
Do you see they have another patio outside the garage there.
That's 4 sets of patio furniture. They like their patios almost as much as they like their doors.


We will be taking down the flimsy fencing around the "upper" yard.
They have it just to keep their little doggies contained.

Here is a picture of the oh-so-pretty-but-it-better-last-another-20-years-because-the-exorbitant-price-to-repair-or-replace original tile roof.



And we have finally come to the end of our adventure for today where
the Edwards's Family lives...

Happily Ever After.

Thanks for looking!