Tuesday, October 23, 2007

What has been going on with us! Photo catch-up

I forgot to post a week of blogging. It's in the post below.

It’s been a whirlwind of activity here! As you know we listed our house this week. No one has called yet but it’s only been on the market for 3 days so I can’t get all excited yet. The house looks really good. It’s really clean, it’s organized and everything is just so. I cleaned for 9 hours straight on Sunday so we’ve kept it super clean since then.

Just yesterday Joe caulked the sides of the stairs and that looks great. I can’t believe we didn’t do that earlier!

Other than that nothing much has gone on. Monday afternoon we spent the day with our friends Jen and Thomas.

The rest of the week has been involved with a lot of one on one time with the kids. Since the house is so clean it only takes about ½ hour a night between Joe and I to keep it up. Joe made a comment he would really like to keep it like this, even after we move. It’s so calming to come into a completely clean home. The laundry is always done, the dishes are always done, the floors are clean and everything is in it’s place. You know the photos on the website for our home photos, it’s still that clean. I LOVE it!

We are having a problem with Kali though – she’s clawing the furniture. I put nail caps on her and I didn’t do the side toes because the caps sometimes fall off those all the time and I guess those were the toes causing my furniture to get ripped up! So this morning before I went to work I capped her one side toe that was sharp so hopefully she’s done clawing the furniture. Joe I thought would be really angry but he said she’s too old to declaw (she’s seven now) so I’m just going to have to check her daily to make sure she has all her caps on. This will be especially important when we move to Texas and buy our new furniture. She only started clawing the furniture after we got rid of the last cat tree. It had a really tall post that she liked to stretch on and once we got rid of it, that’s when she started to use the furniture. My dad is making me a new cat tree and this time I have a long post on it. The one we currently have doesn’t have a long post for her to stretch on. I also bought sisal rope to wrap around it so she can claw on that too. I hope that solves our problem!

The weird thing for me is that it’s already past the middle of October. Where has time gone? It seems these past few weeks have been flying by. As Joe says, “The weeks are just a blur anymore”. I couldn’t agree more. It seemed the summer kinda went by slow but since September it seems like it’s flying by. Before you know it we’ll be flying down for our house hunting trip!

Lately Justin is just walking everywhere. He’s also totally into books. His favorite thing lately is to get one of his board books and drag it over to me, sit in my lap and look through it with me. He can do this forever. Most the time I get through a few pages of the book and he’s pulling out another one for me to read. Sometimes if I read a book to Joey (which are longer) he will sit on my lap and listen to the whole thing and point at things.

He has a glowworm and I call it ‘my baby’ and when I give it to him, he says, ‘bebe’. It’ sooo cute.

When we go outside he says, ‘out side’. He then runs to the door, shoves his shoes at me and screeches because he wants to go outside. He also likes to hang out by the door and put on our shoes. It’s adorable when he does this.

He knows how to go up and down our stairs. We’ve already taken down the gates. What a relief that is. Those were a pain to step through.

Joey is doing well too. He finally figured out how to put his shoes on the correct feet. He is the messiest, dirtiest little boy ever. His shoes are always full of mud. He’s a total boy, that’s for sure. We have to have two pairs of shoes for him at all times. Ones that he can get muddy, wet and a backup!

Justin will be 14 months on the 29th. I can’t remember if I wrote up what Justin says/signs so I’ll recap again if I already did:
  • Says momma
  • Says dada
  • Says and signs All Done
  • Says and signs Train
  • Signs more for eat
  • Says Cat
  • Says ball
  • Says Cow
  • Say Go
  • Says Dog
  • Says Hi and Bye (and waves)
  • When you leave, he’ll blow kisses goodbye
  • Says Fishy
  • Says Outside and will put on shoes and book it to the door to go out.
  • He says Cluck Cluck Cluck at Grandma’s chicken.
  • He has a glowworm and calls it a ‘bebe’.
This weekend was unbelievable. Saturday was in the high 60’s and Sunday hit the 80’s. This is WEIRD weather for Oct 21st in MICHIGAN! I definitely love this warmer weather in the fall! I think this will be the end of it through. They are talking it will get a lot colder come later this week. What a bummer!

We got photos with the changing leaves this past weekend.

I like this one best!

Grandma Char and her boys!

Joey on a fallen tree

In addition this weekend Norm, grandpa's good friend, came over to visit and brought his grandson Tyler. Joey and Tyler get along great. I saw this photo of them sitting talking on the log and had to take it.

Boys talking.

I wonder what they are thinking about.

This weekend we met Joe’s dad and step-mom Karen for breakfast at Big Boy’s. The boys and Joe and I all got the breakfast bar. That was nice for the kids because they could have a huge variety of things to eat. The kids were very well behaved.

On Friday (sorry I keep jumping around) Joey was found chasing Justin around the chair. Justin and Joey were having a BLAST! Joey was also found pushing Justin on his John deere ride on tractor. I’m so proud at how good they play together.

Photos: From 10/13. My best friend Jenny R. is having a baby on Halloween! She had a 'sprinkle' because this one is a girl. Photos from our get together.

Her adorable son Wyatt.

Almost the same photo but the sunset on his face.

Sunset on Joey's face.

Wyatt goofing around in the tire swing.

Joey goofing around on the tire swing.

Jenny hates photos but I took this one and I'm happy at how it came out. She's 36 weeks here.

Late blog post...

This was originally written 10/07. Yeah, I know. What a slacker I am to post it on the 23rd!

This week has gone by in a BLUR!

This week I had J2EE training in websphere at work. I thought for SURE I would be lost but I kept right up with the rest of them. Thank GOODNESS for my html knowledge. That really put me ahead of the game. I LOVED the class. It was a ton of web logic and I just loved learning it. So that put me in a good mood this week.

This weekend we took a trip to stay with Grandma Norma up in the thumb (of Michigan of course!).

We had a wonderful time. Saturday we took a trip with Grandma Char to the Amish bulk food store and got lost and then found it in the middle of no where! It was really small store but they have the best stuff!! Their spices are dirt cheap, their bulk foods are great prices. I got wheat berries (it’s a type of grain), bulgar (another grain) and some noodles and sprinkles for Joey. They had a amish girl there who was about 8. I tried to think of how her life compared to mine and I just couldn’t. She was dressed in an amish dress and was smiling at Justin.

The rest of this weekend we just played with the kids and spent a TON of time with them. I just can’t believe anymore how big they are getting. Justin is 13 months old now and he’s doing so much it floors me. He practically runs everywhere. He’s very steady on his feet. No more bowed leg walking like the new walkers do. He did that about 3 days and then got walking down QUICK.

Joey and Justin on this huge tree that Uncle Fred cut down. It's HUGE. The kids love to play on it.

We got out this tricycle thinking I could ride it because it's HUGE. You can see the seat it pushed all the way up and Joey barely touches the wheels (and he's very tall!!). It's an all terrain tricycle. How redneck is that? hehe! I guess you need that when you ride it out in the sticks!

Justin playing in the sandbox. He loves the sand.

Justin wants to do everything Joey does, that includes riding a bike. He goes over the bike, we help him on and ride him around on it. He's as happy as a lark!

I kid you not, these were growing on Grandma Char's manure pile. She had a TON of gourds and pumpkins! Don't worry, the manure already composted to dirt.

Justin like the pumpkin!

Here's on of the gourds. They were even growing up the trees! How wild is that?

He’s signing quite a bit. He signs all done, more, and train now! We haven’t really shown him much else yet. He says all done, Joe (for Joey), train, hi, bye, mom, dad, cat and outside. I couldn’t believe he said outside this weekend. You ask him if he wants to go outside and he literally runs to the door. It cracks me up. Joey and Joe made some pretty elaborate geotrack track layouts this weekend and we showed Justin the sign for train and he kept signing train and saying train over and over and over excitedly. He was so proud of himself. When he wanted food he’d sign more or he’d sign more if he wanted more of some food. He’s doing so good. He’s such a happy baby. I don’t think he’s hardly ever upset unless he’s tired and wants to go to sleep.

Joey is doing great too. This weekend he built a pretty elaborate geotrack layout himself and was quite proud of himself. We took photos of it. He’s doing really well with potty training and we have fewer and fewer accidents (those accidents we do have are only with going #2). He’s grown out of size 4 clothes so we have him in size 5 pants and 5/6 shirts. He’s learning the alphabet at school. He’s riding his bike all the time now – no stopping him. He got brave this weekend and got on his large tricycle (built for older kids) and went down the hill and went right into a tree. He could have gone down this hill much further so we are glad he stopped near the top. Our heart was in our throats. We are glad he wasn’t hurt. He’s very descriptive with his words and feelings now. He can say if he’s angry or upset. It’s so nice when they get this stage because they get less frustrated and act out less.

Joe's Geotrack layout he built. He said this was the best one he's built yet.

Joey built this one himself! It even wraps around the chairs!

Joey went to the apple orchard with school last week and had a great time. I think we are going to go to the orchard this coming Sunday. We love going too! The last thing - Joey is going to be a transformer for Halloween – Optimus Prime. He’s excited and tried on his costume about three times so far. I’m not sure how the mask is going to fit. It seems a bit big so any suggestion on fitting on him would be great!

What’s going on with me? I’m not really doing weight watchers right now. I was going faithfully but I wasn’t doing the plan faithfully. I haven’t lost any weight since March. Those same 5 lbs have been up and down and I got overly frustrated. I’m trying to do the plan on my own right now. I am just so on the fence right now, frustrated and all. These last 10 lbs are just not coming off from the baby and frustrating. I’m done nursing too. I finished about a week after Justin turned a year old. I’m glad I don’t have to think about or worry about that anymore. I can’t believe I made it a year!

Taken on 10/7
I think Joe and Joey cut down this tree (or somehow someone did) and Joey kept trying to stand it up. It's kinda hard to see but funny!!

Here he's trying to stand this tree up.

Justin walking down the driveway.

Love this photo of Joey and Grandma hugging!

Other than that we are listing the house on the 15th so this week will be getting the house the way we need it to list it.

I guess that’s all!

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Can you believe it?

Can you believe it? Yeah, well I still can't! Our house is officially for sale! It's so weird every time we drive into the driveway and see the Coldwell Banker For Sale sign in the front yard. Susan, our Realtor, dropped by today to add some of those brochures on the front of the sign. She lives only a few miles away so she says when they run out, to call her and she'll drop some more off. I'm sure most of them will be taken by neighbors who are checking out our house in comparison to theirs. I know I used to grab neighbor's brochures too! If you click on the for sale link above you can see our house on realtor.com (I took all the photos myself!).

I have a bunch of other photos to post but frankly I'm tired and I want to take a shower and go to bed early tonight.

I'll leave you with a final photo of Justin. This is how he likes to sleep. On his stomach with his butt in the air - no I'm not kidding. This is how he's slept since he could roll over as a baby.

Monday, October 15, 2007


Just a short post. I wanted to share some cute things that has come from Joey's mouth lately that I wrote down.
  • Joey, one day after being probably harassed by his younger brother says, 'Jesus!, That's ENOUGH!!!!
  • We were talking about a water park that has water that shoots up into the air and he kept saying, "The water shits up into the air', even after repeatedly correcting him.
  • Joe tells Joey one day, "Joey, let's go". Joey replied, "Jesus Christ - I'm Coming." Can you tell someone says that a lot around him (and it isn't me!!)
  • Joey one day told Joe: "Daddy, I'm getting tired". Joe responds, "Why is that?". Joey replies, "Because I just yawned".
  • We drove by a Arab man who had a long white beard, and Joey says to me, "Mommy, I just saw Santa Claus over there!".
  • Justin screeches in the back seat. Joey tells him, Justin, inside voice. This happens two more times. Finally the third time Joey looks at Justin and says, Justin, I TOLD you THREE TIMES, Inside voice. *upset loud sigh*.
Oh, those boys will keep me laughing, that's for sure!

Monday, October 8, 2007

Menu Planning Monday

Here's this week's menu for Menu Plan Monday.
Click the image below to see other menus!

(Some of these recipes you need a light and tasty online membership to access).

M - Sauteed Spiced Salmon and Garlic Herb Orzo Pilaf
T - Blackberry Sauced Pork Chops
W - Dad's favorite sloppy Joe's.
T - Leftovers (or this may be Wednesday depending on which day I visit my parents)
F - Sweet and Sour Beef
S - Leftovers. I'll be at a baby shower. Joe will be at my parents.
S - Pork Fried Rice

If I get really full of energy, things I would like to make:
Next week tentative:
M - Pizza night (soccer night).
T - Honey herb pork tenderloin
W - Chicken Parmesan
T - Leftovers
F - Dad's Steak Rub
S and S - Grandma's cooking!

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Finally photos, zoo, ouchy's, rainbows....

This is pretty much a catch up post (written Saturday 9/30). I’ve been posting here and there but I sure haven’t had time to upload my photos like I would like to.

Justin is walking now. There is no stopping him. We’ve seen our fair share of bumps and bruises lately too. He thought he could walk down over the back porch step, and he didn’t realize the step was a bit bigger than he could handle walking over and he went down. His hands didn’t catch him and he went THUD on the concrete. Joe and I both witnessed it. Now he knows how to go down over that step. He usually gets down by himself so this was not expected of him. He took this deep huge huge breath and just screamed. This was a good thing since I knew he didn’t knock himself unconscious (if they are unconscious they don’t cry right away). He was bloody under his nose, on the side of his nose, he didn’t knock his teeth out (whew) but he had a HUGE knot on his head. Poor kid.

Today when I was home (Friday) Justin dropped something hard on his big toe and he screamed harder than he did when he hit the concrete yesterday. I thought maybe his toe was broke since it seemed to be swollen but it was fine. He was walking on it about 10 minutes later.

He knows how to get off our couch and he knows how to get on it. For some reason, he just rolled off the couch. THUD on the floor. This was all in a 24 hour period. Seriously child, I can’t take anymore!

This week I hosted recipe club for the mom’s club at my house. The theme was roast and Jen K and Jen M both came over with a roast. We had a great dinner and exchanged recipes.

Last Friday I also hosted crafters night for the mom’s club at my house. Jen K and Clarissa both came over and we scrapped until about 11 or so. I got a few pages done – AND scanned in! I’ll share them with you!!


Another of Justin

Texas Y'all (I'm standing next to a bull)

Northwood (our alma matter!)

Joe went to the eye doctor this week. He hates going but he ran out of contacts and our normal doctor said they wouldn’t give him a refill because he hadn’t been there in over 2 years and they couldn’t get him in until October! So we made an appt with Pearl Vision in the mall and he really liked the doctor. He’s also getting a new pair of glasses. I guess the glasses he wears now is ½ the strength it needs to be! Good thing the doctor gave him a new pair of contacts.

Can you tell this is a random thread of things I can remember??

Joe and I are still looking for a house in Texas. Nothing has really jumped out at us yet. If we find something we really like we are willing to go down as early as now, but we’d prefer to wait because we’d really not like to have a house vacant for four months just in case something happened (ie a pipe burst, etc).

That said Saturday I was playing around on the real estate website and found a nice looking house that had no photos. So I found out who was listing the website and I went to their own website thinking maybe they would have additional photos there. The site didn’t have the additional photos, so I thought to check out this person’s other listing. I scrolled down and found a house in Frisco that has 6 bedroom and 4300 sq feet – for 212,000. I was like WTH?!! So I googled the house, found a few more in the same neighborhood, also in foreclosure, the same type of house. These houses are only about 3 years old and in a nice neighborhood (we’ve actually been there) so it will be interesting to see what our real estate agent has to say about these houses. Can you imagine a 4300 sq foot house. WOW!

So curiosity killed the cat, I started to check out what other houses were out there – 5 bedroom houses in Frisco and Plano and Rockwall under 250,000 and there were tons. My original search was only looking 250 – 300 so I was very interested to see over 100 listings under 250,000 that all had 5 bedrooms. Many of them are all over 3000 sq feet so now we are wondering WHY we’ve been looking at these same houses in the 250-300 range when all these houses are in the 200-250 range? What’s the difference? Some are in foreclosure, some aren’t but it’s so weird! So now this makes Joe and I want to go down even sooner. We really just want to buy our next house so we will know what our next house payment will be and what we will be able to afford, or not afford based on what we get. I’d like to start researching daycares, figure out what type of house we have so we can get an idea of what we are going to do to furnish it. I just hate having this black cloud over our head of uncertainty!

Other things – This weekend was nice and relaxing. Saturday we went over Joe’s grandparent’s house on his dad’s side in the evening and spent time with that side of the family.

Photos above: The one of the family is from 9/12. We participate in a study at UofM called Family transitions and they are studying how children transition with the arrival of a new sibling. They took that photo of us (they take a photo for us at every session).

The other photo is a cute one of Justin in my kitchen utensil drawer from 9/16.

The photos below are of the trip to the zoo I wrote about in the post below. From 9/22. We went with our friends Sheryl, her daughter Nicole and her son Mason. Mason is a HUGE baby! He's 9 months old and 27 lbs! Whew!

A beautiful butterfly!

Nicole and Mason.


Joey and Joe looking at the aquarium.

Joey and Joe looking for polar bears!

There's a seal! Joey liked him. The story behind him is he's blind and he liked to stay in this one spot in the current (my friend Jen K told me this as she's talked to the zoo keeper!).

Nicole and Mason.

The fam in front of the bear statue at the Detroit Zoo.

Our friend Thomas (Jen K's son) had a 3 year old birthday party and we were invited. It was a play-doh party and it was a lot of fun. Here are some photos! Joey had a great time.

Joey playing with some of the toys already there.

My friend Jen!

Joey wanting to eat these mini-cupcakes!

Thomas the birthday boy with some of his loot!

On 9/27 it hardly rained at all, but for some reason there was a rainbow in the sky and it was by far the brightest rainbow we've ever seen. You can see there is actually a double rainbow. It was marvelous!
Double rainbow view 1.

The full arch of the rainbow.

These photo was terribly underexposed because the flash didn't fire but it's kinda cool looking.

Remember me telling you about Justin's bump when he feel onto the concrete driveway? Here's the damage. A huge scrape on his nose and on his forehead. :(

By the way, I wrote this on Saturday 9/30 but posted this Thursday 10/4. We've since talked to Tannah, our real estate agent and she explained the different in prices. She said those houses we are looking at are big, but they aren't as classy inside as the more expensive ones. She said they are kinda boxy and don't have the high ceilings. They are made for the most square foot you can get. I think Joe and I want the soaring ceilings and the classy instead of all the sq. feet.

In addition, we are going to visit Texas beginning of December to scout out neighborhoods and going beginning of January to find a house. We list our house Oct 15th! Things are starting to move for us!