29 June 2011

Playing Catch-Up

We're finally done with the professional people in our basement. Adding up the number of people by the number of hours they cleaned for us, it took about 70 hours to clean the majority of our soot mess. Now we're just working on doing all the laundry and cleaning out the insides of our closets and dressers. It's a yucky job, but we're trudging along. Our water and electric bill will be amazing this month.

We went to the beach Sunday and Monday, and I was thinking that if I left the crazy situation that is our house, the crazy situation would just go away. Unfortunately the mess was still here when we got home. Bummer.

The hardest part of this whole deal is that I have SO many things to get done before the baby comes, but now instead of doing those things I'm washing hangers from our closets. I need to be replacing Velcro on our cloth diapers...maybe this baby will just have to use safety pins for a bit. But the basement is cleaner than I could ever get it so I can't really complain.

The cleaners were amazing. Every time I go into our laundry room I wonder why it's so bright in there, and then I realize that when you wash a window, more light is let in and the room becomes brighter. I'll definitely have to give that a try more often. I'm thinking that I'm very supportive of having a cleaning crew come clean our upstairs, too. I mean, imagine how long it would take me, a stay-at-home mom who can only really work after Daphne goes to bed at night, to get 70 hours worth of cleaning done? Once I finished, the first half of what I did would be a mess again. A total waste of my time, for sure.

But moving on from our cleaning issues and onto our beach weekend...we drove to Newport and spent Sunday at the Aquarium. I wasn't sure what Daphne would think, but apparently she is at the perfect age for getting excited about fish. (By the way, I have not yet found the camera cord, but instead discovered that the video camera cord works just fine. The camera cord is just going to have to appear miraculously on it's own because I have no idea where it could be.)

It was very sad when David told her to look for Patrick (from Sponge-Bob) in the starfish pool. Poor girl was confused on why she didn't actually get to see the real Patrick.

I love the photos of her with her face pressed to the glass floor of the shark tunnel so she could what was swimming beneath her.

I don't know what is going on in this final picture, but it makes me laugh. We like the Aquarium!

23 June 2011

You Know Your House is a Disaster When...

*On day 1 of cleaning there are 2 sweet ladies working for several hours and only finish cleaning the bathroom.

*On day 2 of cleaning the cleaning number multiplies to 4 sweet ladies and 1 man.

*You come home from a play date to 2 cleaning vans and 2 furnace repair trucks parked in front of your house and in your driveway so you have to park a couple of houses away.

*Your driveway has 4 neighbors waving nets and bamboo sticks around as they try to get their runaway rabbit out of your hedge.

*I still can't find the camera cord and Daphne won't tell me where it is.

Take it from me: our house is officially disaster central. You might want to stay away.

21 June 2011

Photoless But Action Packed

I know you are dying to live a day with us. Reading an hourly play-by-play is exactly what you've always wanted to do.

OK, OK, so you won't find this interesting, but in 20 years I will like to remember all these funny little details that made up our day to day life. I had no idea when I started documenting today of all days that it would turn into one of the wackiest days we've had in awhile, so if you want the good part, just skip down to where the furnace guy's vacuum bag exploded all over our basement. It's a riveting story.

June 21, 2011

*12AM- Daphne is wandering around her room, first time to get up in the night since we've moved her to her big-girl bed. Hopefully this isn't a new nighttime habit. But maybe she'll sleep in in the morning!

*5 something- My eyes are blurry but Daphne is awake and yelling for me. I'm OK with the blurry eyes; I really don't need to know what time it is. Just knowing it's 5 something let's me know that we are not sleeping in.

It's the first day of summer and the weather people said it was supposed to be sunny and warm. I peak out the window but only see a lot of gray clouds.

*6:15- David is off today and takes pity on me by getting up, too! Happy. This doesn't happen very often.

*6:30- Daphne is sitting on the sofa crying and yelling. You never know what the deal is. I think I'll go make breakfast.

*7- I make waffles and cut up fruit and get a batch of yogurt started. David BBQs sausage. He sets a record for himself as this being the earliest he's ever used the BBQer. How exciting for him. Daphne is still crying on the sofa.

David asks, "what do you think is wrong with her?"

Me, "I'm not really sure; I've been asking myself that for 2 1/2 years now. Don't you love getting up early with us?"

David goes outside to BBQ in peace.

*7:30- Breakfast is ready, David and Daph are both at the table with their food. I sit down and pick up my fork...and Daphne goes to the bathroom in her chair.

"Uh oh," she says, "Don't go to the bathroom in the chair! Go in the toilet."

Thanks for informing me, Daph, but I actually already knew that.

*7:45- Breakfast, take 2. Successful this time.

*8:05- Daph wants to walk with her belly and legs, and grabs two of her favorite friends, Ducky Duck and Kitty, so they can go on an imaginary trip to Target. Perfect time to get the kitchen cleaned up from the breakfast mess.

*8:07- That didn't last long. She needs me. She's fussing again, but this time David takes the easy way out and turns on the TV. Suddenly she's happy! David should get up with us more often. I don't feel guilty if he's the one turning on the TV.

*8:30- We have someone coming at 8:30, we need to take the car to the shop at 9, we have someone coming at 9:30, and the furnace-fixer guy coming sometime in the midst of all that. It's a little touch and go for awhile there, especially since the 8:30 person didn't come until 9:15 and Daphne threw a huge fit when we got home from dropping off the car because our trip was so short and boring.

But hey! I think I see some sun peeking through the clouds.

*12:30PM- Our 9:30 person just left. Daphne was a pretty good girl while having another soul in our house. She wanted to play outside but we needed to stay in the living room with our guest and that caused a few minor fits. No big deal.

I feel tired and the day is only half over.

*1:00- We put D down for a nap, and please alert the authorities, because she went to sleep! Sleeping during nap time is a rare occurrence around here.

*1:30- Our doula, Carissa, came for our first visit this pregnancy. She was our doula with Daphne, and I can't imagine going through birth without her. Doulas are amazing.

Since Daph never naps anymore, I was excited for her to get up and see Carissa and get a couple of cute pictures of the two of them together. But Carissa left at 3:30 and Daphne was still sleeping soundly.

*3:30- Our furnace guy is still here replacing the burner and the fan. Somehow his vacuum bag explodes, coating our entire basement in a thick layer of black dust and oil-based soot. Our bedroom, the nursery, laundry room and family room are unusable until we get a professional cleaning team to come in and clean it all up. Do you laugh or cry in this type of situation? I had just cleaned our down comforter and mattress as part of my spring cleaning...how sad that I have to do it all over again.

Our carpets, all the furniture, our clothes, every book and random knickknack on the bookshelves all need to be cleaned. Everything. I was feeling a tiny bit overwhelmed by all I needed to get done before the baby came; cleaning every single item in our basement was not exactly on my list.

3:35- Daph wakes up minutes after Carissa leaves and she's soaked because she doesn't know how to not go to the bathroom in her sleep. She notices that David set up the little pool in the front yard (because it really did pass 80 today!!) and suddenly she's talking on and on about water and swimming and swimming with Daddy. The pool hasn't been out since last August; can she really remember that far back?

4:15- Because I am a nice mama I carry bucket after bucket of warm water from the bathtub out to the pool so Daphne doesn't have to sit in ice cold hose water. Daph is finally changed into her suit and happily swimming in her pool when the car people call saying the car is done and we need to get it. Poor Daph. We haul her out and wrap her in a towel to go get the car. She's so sad.

5:15- Home again! Two minutes in the pool and she's officially done and wants to head back to play with the doggies.

5:30- There is no energy left to cook supper. Thinking about our coal mine basement in which the dust has also come up the stairs and settled in the kitchen takes all the motivation away. Thank you, David, for making an Arby's run.

5:45- David locked Brynner up so he wouldn't mooch our food while we ate outside...but little miss chicken became a moocher instead. She stole part of my sandwich right out from under me. Daph thought it was the greatest.

6-8PM- We have to stay outside because the house is so yucky. Daphne, despite her nap, is a mess. I work to keep her entertained while David mows the lawn. Of course she has a yucky accident (that's like 4 today! What's up with that?).

8:00- Daphne is in bed. I want to upload photos from the day but the last person I saw with the camera cord was Daphne and she has a knack for stashing items into places only she knows about. No photos for today.

David and I head downstairs to inspect the damage...and find it's worse than we imagined. Absolutely everything, from floor to ceiling, in every room and every closet is covered in smokey, greasy soot. Things like luggage in the hall closet we're not sure can be cleaned. What about David's big TV and fancy sound equipment and the desktop computer? All of David's and my personal belongings are in the basement and so we need to get all of our clothes out of the closets and dressers to be washed. Fortunately we have a guest bedroom upstairs we can sleep in, and I am so thankful Daphne is out of her downstairs room and upstairs as well. We work for a few hours until my feet are so swollen I can barely move, plus I know Daphne's 5Am wake-up call will come awfully quick.

11:38PM- Lights out for the adults. I'm so looking forward to tomorrow.

June 22rd update: The furnace lady told me they'll get a cleaning team in today and it will probably take 3 hours to clean for us. The cleaning people came and said it's a terrible mess and will take at least 2 days. Someone is cleaning all our basement floors, walls, carpets, furniture, shelves and all items on the shelves...and I don't have to pay a dime. I guess that's OK with me. Our upstairs has a little soot residue, so Daphne is at Grandma's house for the afternoon and I get to scrub the kitchen and clean our upstairs carpets. Pretty soon we'll have the cleanest house on the block.

19 June 2011

Outline for a Good Father's Day

1. Apple fritter for breakfast

2. Reading the new Treasure Ship book

3. After church naps (Dad and Daphne, Mom was busy slaving away over dinner)

4. Fried chicken for dinner

5. Yo Cream for dessert

6. Maybe a fit or two

7. And a photo that I don't understand but makes me laugh

17 June 2011

Before Baby Project #...I Don't Know, I've Lost Count

One week Daph visited both Grandma's houses and left her new big girl room looking like this:

So I did a bunch of work like this:

And David did some stuff like this:

Until we finally got an end result of this:

Whew! I'm so glad it's done.

I wanted a light and springy look, something not too girly so that if a boy is ever in this room we can easily make it work. I had a great time scouring second hand stores and Craig's List for a lot of things that I could paint and change to suit her room. (By the way, there's a new, huge Salvation Army Family Store on 82nd that is one of the best places EVER.) Spray paint became my new best friend during this renovation. Why didn't anyone tell me how great spray paint is? I warn you though, beware when the spray paint nozzle gets stuck in the 'on' position. It's a slight disaster.

A $3 frame from the thrift store with spray paint and chicken wire added gives you a perfect photo board. I also made a mini one for her big hair clips.

I got the photo block idea right here and I love how cute they turned out. I followed this online tutorial to make the fabric basket, and made a couple more tiny ones to hold hair bands on her dresser.

I was so excited to get the reading tent put up. I had bought the mosquito net in Thailand years ago and have been storing it away for the perfect opportunity to come up (although I read you can make your own using a hula hoop). Then I just bought a sheet for the cover (so much easier than buying massive amounts of fabric and hemming it all! Cheaper, too, I would imagine) and made the little fabric pennant out of scraps. So simple.

Her bed is mine from when I was young. It fits in perfectly, but since it is rather big for a little one to fall out of, I just got a fold-up rail at Fred's to make it more toddler-friendly. She has adjusted to sleeping in her new room just fine.

I saw the idea for the shelves above the windows in a magazine years ago and am so happy David built them for this room. I don't like having too much clutter around, but I like this space for a few of her breakable items to be displayed.

I don't know if Daphne likes it. I was hoping she would realize how much fun it would be to have all her toys in one organized location so she could play and play and play. But one of her favorite phrases is "I'm right next to Mama!" and she would rather be wherever I am than be playing in her room by her lonesome. Maybe someday.

15 June 2011

Oh, Daphne

Today Daphne threw a fit that I can understand...

We walked right by DSW Shoes and when she saw that we were just passing and not stopping she tried to throw herself out of the stroller as she was yelling "No! that store! that store!" It was great.

This photo shows her trying on Daddy's shoes, which she wanted to do so badly, and then starting to get mad because she couldn't walk in them.

Right at this exact moment she's weeping and wailing her in bed because rest time is so dull, but if she would just move her body a little bit she would see the pile of books I left for her to look at during this time.

Oh, Daphne.

12 June 2011


Times have been tough around here.

Daphne is dropping sleep, always a rough transition. Is it like that for everyone else, too?

A friend once told me, "don't be too excited when things are going well, because they'll change soon, and don't be too discouraged when things are going poorly, because they'll change soon."

Well, my friends, change has come.

Daphne is now getting up at 5AM. 5. I do not like 5. Only crazy people like the 5 o'clock hour. (My apologies if you are one of those crazies and I'm offending you right now by calling you crazy.)

Essentially, she's dropping from almost 14 hours of sleep to 11. I'm working to move her bedtime a little later because it seems that she'll sleep 11 hours no matter when I put her to bed. But you know how hard the evenings are with a tired, grouchy child, especially when you're by yourself. I just want to put her to bed because I know she'll fall right to sleep, but the earlier she's in bed the earlier she's up...and that makes me tired and grouchy.

One of Daph's new favorite hobbies is throwing things out of anger. Like her full plate of food if she decides what I serve her is not what she wants. When she throws her food, she is immediately done eating and we clean up the mess, put it in the fridge and we wait an hour or so until another meal time comes around to try again.

Yesterday this went on for 6 hours straight, and she cried and screamed for almost the entire 6 hours. Daphne's always been a fit thrower, but this was pretty amazing to see. I wished more people would have been around to watch the spectacle with me.

I know no one believes me when I say she can be quite the little stinker, because when we're out with friends or family she is a smiling, cheerful gem. Seriously, a delight. I don't know why she turns the switch when she's home with us. This past week David told me he was actually glad he got to leave and go to work instead of having to be home with Daphne.

But I am at home, trying not to become too discouraged. I'm sure it doesn't help that pregnancy sickness seems to be back, although I'm sure you don't want to hear about my gross vomit issues and the fact that I think I may need an esophagus transplant (do they do those?) thanks to the acid wear-down in my throat. Oh, too much information? Sorry.

So I'm just here, waiting for change to come. Because as I hear it, it always comes eventually.

Hey look, a not-mad Daphne! But only because we're at someone else's house and she's being pushed around by a child half her age but double her size.

10 June 2011

Sugar and Spice

Yesterday our midwife asked David what he'll do if we have another girl and he's even more outnumbered in our family.

Considering the fact that I bought Daphne a My Little Pony that she hardly touches, but she carries around the rocket ship David bought like tragedy will fall upon us if it gets out of her sight, I don't think he needs to worry.

This morning we delighted her with a trip downtown to see all the ships in for Fleet Week. PLUS she got to ride home with me on MAX (the transit system train).

A good morning for our train/boat/airplane/police car/tractor/helicopter/rocket ship lovin' girl.

08 June 2011

When A Fit Doesn't Get You What You Want

So, everyone who's constantly blogging and Facebook-ing with photos of their happy children...please tell me I'm not the only one who gets more photos of this face than any other:

I'm feeling a little alone here.

I really do love age 2 the best so far, if nothing because temper tantrums with a 2 1/2 year old are a little easier than the tantrums of a year ago. At least I can communicate with her a little more.

Today was exciting as Daphne wanted me to carry her up the stairs but I couldn't because my hands were full. I told her if she wanted to come up, she could come on her own. So, logically, she sat at the bottom of the stairs for 10 minutes and screamed. (Do you love that I photographed the moment?)

She would have sat longer except she went to the bathroom on the floor.

"Hey, Mom and Dad won't get me while I'm screaming, so I'll just pee. That'll bring 'em running."

Oh Daphne, such a delightful child. I'm just sure that having another little one will bring even more joy into our lives.

07 June 2011

Picture Day

I know...two posts in one day. But I just had to share this link from our family photo shoot this morning.

It was fun that while on our way there our car died making us late, but I just stood by the open hood all pregnant and pathetic-like while David went and bought jumper cables and someone else came and helped us. The story turned out well because our photographer friend Amy wasn't even mad at us and still took some excellent photos.

I mean, that is one super cute girl.

A Little Mess

Yesterday David came home from court with ice cream.

Daphne rubbed it all over her face like it was a face mask.

David got to clean her up.