Thursday, June 29, 2006

The Friendship Factor

As soon as my eyes opened this morning, I broke into a panic.

My mind was racing with the facts that we have to move on Saturday and I have agreed to prepare our home for at least moderate livableness all by myself. I still have at least a good day's worth of work left on our current house and so that left me one day to find a refrigerator somewhere (I am on a tight budget) and then to paint the kitchen and make the hallway and our bedroom safe for people to walk on.

Note: Pulling up carpet and preparing hardwood floors properly...NOT EASY.

I was about the lose it and then Anne called.

Something I hadn't factored into the situation...

My friends.

She and my other friend Lori heard out my exasperation and although I reassured them that I would get my act together without any help (otherwise stated as "I'm fine"), they worked up a plan that involved 7 children and alternating childcare so that each of them could take a couple of hours a piece and work me through my crisis.

I was resistant at I am known to be, but exhaustion has gotten the better of me and I submitted to the help. I'm so glad, too, because if you have to pull nail boards, staples and carpet along with paint a giant room, it's much better with another girl. Each of them took their turn with adult conversation (something highly coveted by mothers) and Anne and I planned all the fun things we are going to do together when life returns to normal.

Sadly, I am aware that that may be FAR OFF. *sigh*

Here are the final pics of the kitchen. Of course, I HATE the color now that I've had to look at it for three days and FOUR COATS LATER!!!

I have decided that we will all live in one bedroom for a week while I prepare the other rooms. I have to admit defeat. I cannot do it all.

Thanks, girls, for not jumping ship when things got rocky!

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Renovation- Day Two

Well, the kitchen side is pretty much done. I am planning on getting an island for the center so that eventually we can take out the last cabinet on the right for a dishwasher.

Dining area is primed and ready for the mustard paint. We are watching for a black slate ceramic tile to go on sale and then that will be our floor. I'm playing off of the black iron stove for my theme. I'm going to hang my cast iron skillets from a overhead pot rack and I've found a great light for over my dining room table. Bye-Bye ceiling fan! Blah!

I'm going for a "Rustic Italy" feel. I think it will be very nice when it's all done.

I must be into food right now because my kitchen is "hidden honey"..I'm studying books for the most subtle shade of eggplant and I'm going to do my bedroom in olive. I'm attempting to make all the colors flow through the house so it won't be the circus it has been in my rentals! I've found I really love warm colors. Definitely NOT a beige girl...not a big shock to those that know me well!

Tuesday, June 27, 2006


Well...I'm a homeowner.

I have to say, there is something really satisfying when you have property that you know is yours. I realize that's more commonly known as the "man" dream but I'm finding it to be very rewarding also.

Matt took off on a long trip right after the closing so Anne threw a "Welcome to the American Dream" party at her house and we all celebrated our shared plight as citizens with BIG DEBT!

Shockingly enough, I was only a homeowner for two minutes before I became a total snob! I would rather do without then to put something of lesser quality into the house. If left up to me, I'd leave my old furniture in our rental and eat off the floor until I could purchase my dream couch picked out two weeks ago with Di.

Fortunately for me, I have good friends that are talking back into reality and I have compiled a "needs" and "want" list. (One of which turned out to be surprisingly short...*sigh*) It's just so weird because for 10 years I have lived in rental doing whatever was cheap to get by and I suppose I'm a little anxious to finally have a home that looks like me?! Does that make sense? I don't know...I'm detoxing, though! My frugal side is slowing returning! I found it at Home Depot when they told me what "quality" paint costs!


I do feel a little like a SIMS character. Sims is a computer game where you build a house and basically a life for a character and then get them through their day. If you are lucky enough to know the game cheats then you can award yourself unlimited money and buy them really great stuff.

I wish I had some cheats because sadly, I am not only still fairly poor...I am actually VERY poor with my latest accrued debt!

Thus, I must save and hold out hope that contentment will somehow transform into a painless choice.

One thing on my needs list is painting our kitchen. Technically not an actual "need" as compared to heating and water but if you could see the lime green paint up close, you might agree that I needed to paint.

One problem...

I hate painting.

I hate it more then it would be possible for me to sincerely express to you and with my new snobbish perfectionist obsessions, I find myself really struggling. The green paint might have been ugly but it was truly professionally painted. I have NEVER seen such a great paint job that wasn't in a brand new house! Not one smudges..not even a drip! How can this be?

So, I'm insistent upon keeping the lines so neat and clean and it's killing me! Four hours of painting and I've barely finished the kitchen side. I should not be left with this responsibility on my own. This is a bad idea.

I can't be trusted with the brush.

I also pulled up the old carpet and found, to my complete joy and utter relief...beautiful hardwood floors underneath! What fortune...

Keep me in your thoughts this week as I plug along alone in my new house with the paint and the endless amount of staples that must be brought up from the floor! For those that need a little extra money, I will hire!

(A before picture of the fireplace in my dining area)

Sunday, June 25, 2006

1 Brighton Lane's official.

We're staying in the South.

Some have been sitting on the edge of their seats waiting for the official word but tomorrow (unless a last minute disaster occurs), we will be signing the papers for the first home we have ever bought.

Everyone keeps asking me if I'm excited and trust me, in many ways I am. I have really done my time in rentals and the frugal side of me KNOWS that it is not the best way to invest your money. I'm buying my first hanging light and I'm more thrilled about that then I care to admit. Most importantly, I finally get two bathrooms! YEE-HAW! With all these boys, things were starting to get pretty stinky!'s all coming on the coattail of a great job offer to move back home and a couple of fabulous visits from friends and family. It's also coming after a death in the family that I couldn't go north for. My parents are now caregivers to my grandmother with Alzheimer's and I know I could help them. My best friends are facing all kinds of life changes that I want to be apart of...I want to encourage and love on them. A baby is about to born...and so on.

I know with time I will accept my long distant fate and be like so many others down here that are like "family" to each other with the understanding that we are all in it together. I feel so grateful to already have a couple of those friends in my life so soon and am assured that they want to ease the absence of parents and relatives.

Many people who know us and where we are from say, "Why would you want to go back there? There's nothing there anymore!"

I totally disagree.

So many that are worth so much to me are there.

Regardless, tomorrow I agree to pay back THOUSANDS of dollars to a bank and I laugh out loud at the arrangement!! Have they looked into our account? The house is adorable and it's #1 on the street so that has to be a good sign, right? I'm trying to decided on the color of the ceramic tile flooring and other than marriage and's the biggest most expensive decision of my life thus far! (How pathetic is that?)

Matt leaves on another long trip this week so I will be investing each free moment of time and every spare penny to getting the house ready for us to move next weekend!


I'm a natural! I'm already sounding like a homeowner!

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

"My Date With Drew"

Just watched this and it is fabulous!

How flattering for a girl?!

My Question

I have this sleeping thing.

I've been told it's more than a "thing". Maybe a disorder-Maybe needing something more useful than the occasional Tylenol PM that leaves me hung-over for the rest of the next day! I know, I know...(Anne) I should see the Doc but what do I tell him? There seems to be no pattern to the sleeplessness. It comes and goes from one month to the other lasting the endurance of the month. Do I say, "Well, Mr. Doctor, sir...June and October are bad for me but March and August seem sleep-worthy?"

That would be ridiculous. He's WAY to busy for that.

So...IT hit me this week and I'm wandering around the house all hours of the night. It's so frustrating as many of you with insomnia know, because eventually somewhere along about midnight you begin to panic about how you can't survive on five hours of sleep. Thus, you lay in bed torturing yourself to sleep envious that it seems to be such a relaxing event for others!

My husband travels for his job so that makes it even more pressure. I'm awake at wee moments of the morning, knowing I'll be solely needed by the children in just a few hours. I'm also nervously hearing every creek and crack all over the house. (I have no idea how you live alone, Di. Please come and move in with us or I'll lay awake worried about you next!)

Last night I got sucked into a romantic drama that started at 11:30 pm and I decided to prepare my body that at the VERY end of the movie, I would make a run for bed and force myself to at least see dawn from under the covers.

As planned at 2am, I made my way for the bedroom. I checked and re-checked the doors and decided if I was murdered in my room, at least I could rest!

On my way into the bedroom, I heard something very strange.

A bird.

A bird singing outside.


I stopped and stayed very still until I heard it again and realized that outside my window at two in the morning, a bird was perched and was singing.

My question was, "Is this normal?". "Am I a country girl idiot that didn't ever realize that birds sing twenty-four hours a day?" Do they?

I don't think so...

I concluded as I tossed and turned in bed that this bird was sent to antagonize me further with the reminder that daylight was just around the corner. I became convinced that the little bugger was sitting outside mocking me with song! Maybe the bird had insomnia also and as most would have it..Misery loved company?

I don't know. Does anyone?

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

"So we didn't go over the edge..."

Today in our town...was hot...VERY HOT!

It's 7:30 pm and it's still 92 degrees out!

Sam, Jo and I decided to play outside in the pool. Bad idea. Too hot for little pools. Too hot for laying out. Too hot for outside-period!

So, like any good mother would do when she is single-parenting for a week, I loaded up the kids and went to a movie.

Movies are good...theatres are cool and dark. They have popcorn and fountain drinks. They have fun things to watch. is BETTER than small pool to lay out and sweat beside!

The boys and I went against the grain and chose "Over the Hedge" versus "Cars" which we have heard is very good but is still too popular for the mom! I hate cartoons to start with and the crowded, child-filled theatre that smells like dirty diapers is just not my cup of tea.

Fortunately, We were one of two other families that tried The Hedge this afternoon and it was great! Very entertaining and that's a lot from a woman that is hard pressed to enjoy anything animated. I even laughed out loud a couple of times.

I had to put JoJo on my lap because he's still too light to keep the seat down and by the end of the flick I was covered in popcorn by two small boys that were devouring it the whole movie! Regardless, we stayed cool and enjoyed a softer side of Bruce Willis for a change.

I highly recommend it!

Saturday, June 17, 2006

It doesn't matter...

If you're 18 or 30 something...It doesn't matter.

Fun will be had.

Sandy and I had a great time at the beach this week and it would take hours and hours to blog about it all. Some of these pics will seem "strange" and I'll be happy to explain if necessary. (Don't worry, Mom...nothing is permanent!)

(Sandy's Henna was a traditional low back style but mine was an insisted upon Chinese symbol for pretty..or lovely...or maybe something too embarrassing to admit!)

We had a great time together and it was as if I had never moved away! The only thing missing was our Steph and Amanda but we're looking forward to next year when we can really do some damage!

Here are some of my favorite moments..

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Sandy joins Supper Club

Well, it's official...

My worlds have collided!

I've been waiting for this for like two years and where I thought it possibly could be weird or obvious that I have two different worlds that should stay separate...


Now I want BOTH worlds to live in the same place!

We head off to the beach in a few hours and while the weather looks bleak...I know we'll have fun together!