Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Wordless Wednesday - Baby Love!

Monday, June 22, 2009

Two for Two!

Isn't he the CUTEST?!

Yes, he did get BOTH cupcakes and he gobbled them both up and asked for more!! No, he did NOT get more! :)

Two years ago, at precisely 1:11pm I gave birth to this unexpected miracle. He is the personification of God's healing balm in our lives, the means by which God gave us back the years that infertility stole from us.

Todd and I struggled to have four children. For fourteen years we fought a disease known as polycystic ovarian symdrome (PCOS), a hormone imbalance that prevents ovulation. My PCOS got worse over the years and after our fourth child was born we knew that we were done. There would be no more fertility treatments. No more children. And then one day I started feeling pregnant. We simply could not believe that it could happen. Todd even told me that he thought I must just be imagining it. But a home pregnancy test proved him wrong!

Through all the years of infertility I had hoped and dreamed that one day, somehow, we would get pregnant without assistance, you know, the old fashioned way. But the reality was that chances were slim. And that's when God stepped in. I can't even begin to explain how deeply infertility hurt me, nor how wonderfully God used this baby to soothe those wounds, and to heal the part of me that felt horribly, helplessly broken.

What a joy and a pleasure it has been to be Izaak's mommie.

Happy Birthday Baby Boy!

"Not Me!!" Monday.

Welcome to Not Me! Monday! This blog carnival was created by MckMama. You can head over to her blog to read what she and everyone else have not been doing this week.

I am absolutely certain that this perfectly sweet boy...

did NOT give this boy...

this black eye...

in the cart at the grocery store. And I did NOT completely ignore the crying associated with this injury! Nope, not me!!!

What didn't you do this week?

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Happy Father's Day!

Allow me to introduce to you my Honey, whom I love. He has been a father for nearly 13 years. He loves his children and is very involved in their lives. I love him all the more for it!

Happy Father's Day, Love!

Monday, June 15, 2009

Tackle it Tuesday - The Great Garage Make-Over!

Well, my friends. Last week my husband, his father and I worked our little toushies off to accomplish this tackle that I have been trying to get done for four years.

The Garage.

Somehow having kids, kids and more kids mulitplies the "stuff" in the garage exponentially. Eleven years ago when we moved into this house we had one kid with no stuff to store in the garage. We, ourselves, didn't even have enough furninture to fill the house, much less the garage. Things have gone down hill since then.

While there is room to park the new land yacht, there's no room to do much of anything else.
We made overhead storage to store mattresses and such that we really don't want on the floor, but even that has become over-run with stuff that really doesn't belong up there but has nowhere else to go.
Todd had a workbench back in the corner that was extremely difficult to reach with all the kids' stuff piled on, under and infront of it. And a peg board hung over the drywall making it impossible to put hooks through to hang things on. Not real efficient for accomplishing anything.
And more stuff.

So, what did we do?

We pulled everything out.

Rearranged the layout.

Built a new workbench.

Hung an organizing system.

Sorted through the stuff.

Threw some away.

Put the rest back in the garage in its new spot.

The Result...
A place for everything and everything in its place!
The new workbench along the side so stuff can't get piled in front of it! Camping equipment stored under it and a shelf to have the power tools within reach. We also added lights above and outlets for said power tools. And just in case you are wondering, that tool box to the left DID get cleaned out and organized as well!
All the useful hardware, sorted, organized and LABELLED! No more coffee cans, folks! Hopefully this will help keep us from buying redundant hardware.
A peg board organizer that actually works for pegs and organizes stuff! (also labelled under each tool so that if something is missing you know what goes there)
Garden tools hung so they won't fall on you as you walk by!
Bicycles all hung on the wall out of the way, but easy enough to access that the kids can do it.
Sports equipment and balls now have a place! And a spot up high for storing wood.
Poisons up high out of reach. And bins to store larger things for projects like painting, tiling, electrical work or plumbing; labelled and easy to access, again in hopes of cutting down on purchasing duplicates of things we already have while working on a project.
And, yes! Both vehicles DO fit into the space now!!! WOOT!!

And then there's the HUGE piles of stuff that left our home for good.

"Not Me!" Monday.

Welcome to Not Me! Monday! This blog carnival was created by MckMama. You can head over to her blog to read what she and everyone else have not been doing this week.

It has so NOT been a whole week since I last blogged. The reason for a hiatus in blogging would NOT have anything to do with the fact that my husband's parents were here. I did NOT feel guilty everytime I thought about the computer, much less came near it. Nope, not me!

It did NOT take 3 adults and 3 big children 3 days to clean out our less-than-organized garage. I have NOT been nagging my husband for FOUR YEARS to do this job, and I did NOT remind him of such. Nope, I'm eternally patient. That was not me!

I did NOT leave to go away for the weekend of scrapbooking while my in-laws were still visiting from Iowa. It is NOT true that I didn't feel even one shred of guilt over it. While in the mountains I did NOT tease my very jealous best friend by offering to let her join us when I knew good and well that I couldn't invite her. And I'm such a photo hound that there is NO WAY that I missed getting pictures of 7 golden eagles flying over the deck because I didn't have my camera ready. I'm always prepared with the proper lens and camera ready to go. Nope, not me!
This is SO NOT ME! I'm NOT singing "Little Bunny in the Woods" in the most obnoxious way possible much to the chargrin of my very reserved mother-in-law. There is no proof that this is me and I will emphatically deny any involvement!

I hope you've had a good week. Pop over to MckMama's and tell us what you didn't do.

Monday, June 8, 2009

"Not Me!" Monday.

Welcome to Not Me! Monday! This blog carnival was created by MckMama. You can head over to her blog to read what she and everyone else have not been doing this week.

It's been a crazy week. Here are some of the highlights that didn't happen around here.

I did not ground my boys for the last 3 weeks of school in a last ditch effort to get their grades up. I did not call them in the second to last day of school and fake them out by telling them that I was going to assign them some work when I really planned to unground them. Nope that would be mean, and I'm not mean. Not me!

I did not spend Saturday night playing "Bejewled Blitz" on Facebook until the wee sma's of Sunday morning because I couldn't beat my high score. I did not blame it on having had a cup of coffeee on Saturday morning. Wouldn't that be silly? Nope that was not me!

I did not interupt a conversation with my husband for the sole purpose of telling him how disappointed I was that the bathroom did not get cleaned this weekend (his job and MUCH needed). If I did that it wasn't because I was so stinking tired for having stayed up all night playing "Bejewled Blitz" that I couldn't hold a coherent conversation. Nope, not me!

And, I do not have house envy. No, sir. We went to a friend's house out in the country and I did not invtie myself to tour her beautiful home. My Daughter and I did not parade ourselves into their toddler's room in full-voice conversation only to notice a minute later that her toddler was actually IN the bed sleeping! Not me! I'm more observant than that. I did not continue through her house deciding just how nicely my family would fit into those rooms. Nope, envy is a sin, that was NOT ME!

So what havent you done this week, be honest!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Missing: The Cat's Meow.

Allow me to introduce you to Lucifur (aka: Louie). He's our fluff ball, world's most friendly, likes to eat with the family, purr-fect cat. We acquired Louie from my best friend 7 years ago when she was unable to have him and his brother, Michael, move into their rental house. Eventually Michael rejoined them, but Louie stayed with us. He became part of our family.

Lucifur got his name by peeing all over my house when he first arrived. I wanted to name such an evil cat Satan, but my daughter wouldn't let me. She was 5 at the time and so into princesses, so I convinced her to name him after Cinderella's cat, Lucifur. It was a short time later that we discovered that Louie had crystals in his urine that caused him great discomfort which led to his peeing outside the box. Once we got that taken care of he stopped peeing everywhere. But alas, the name stuck.

Louie is anything but evil. He's actually the sweetest cat I think I've ever known, including my childhood kitty, Krisco, who was my guardian angel for years. Louie is social, like no other cat ever. He usually takes his meals with the family, not at the table, but at the same time. He loves to snuggle up to anyone and everyone who will give him any attention at all. He especially likes to sleep on my clean laundry, a practice I abhor but cannot seem to break him of. He comes when called and is quite pampered, getting brushed every single day. It's important to note that Louie came to us clawless.

Wednesday, somehow, the back door got left open between the time that Todd and the boys left the house for the day and the time when I came upstairs for breakfast. We haven't seen Louie since. He has gotten out before, but usually comes to my window to caterwaul at 3 am. until he gets let in. I was surprised this morning when I woke that my sleep hadn't been interupted. So, we are beginning to worry. It's not like him to be gone, he's an indoor cat. My sweet Letha is nearly frantic.

So my dear bloggy readers, if I could ask for your prayers for Lucifur and our family, it would mean a lot. I know he's just a pet, but pets are important in their own way.

Louie, if youre reading this, come home safe and come home soon! We love you!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Cheater, Cheater, Bloggy Reader!

I really did not expect this contest to end so soon. But blog contests and giveaways do have a way of getting people excited!

I received the following e-mail from Heather:

Subject: Here's my own version of NOT ME...

I did NOT just open and close Karina’s blog window 55 times so I could win the prize … … nope, that was NOT me!!


So, Heather, technically you won, Miss Sneaky! Let me know what kind of gift card you'd like and I will get it out to you asap!

As for me, next time I'll have to use a little sneak of my own when I post a contest!

The Contest/Giveaway is ON!

Ok, no one got a picture/screen shot of "11011" on the hit counter on the bottom right sidebar in April. So, I've decided that before we're out of the 11 thousands, I am opening the contest up once more.

Here's the deal... when you check my blog, check the counter on the bottom right sidebar. If you see the number "11911" take a picture or screen shot of it and e-mail it to me. The winner will receive a $25 gift card to the store of their choice. (limited to store availability in my area/online)!

Happy reading.

Wordless Wednesday - Games Days.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

It Only Took Five and a Half Years!

In January of 2004 Todd and I went on a two week missions trip to Nicaragua. During our absence his parents stayed with our children and we asked his dad to gut our defunct, outdated, upstairs bathroom. He gladly obliged and we came home to a room stripped of everything but a toilet. Our thought was that we would work on it a little bit at a time as we could afford it. But, that never happened.

Two years ago, Todd's parents came for another visit. Feeling bed that he had gutted our bathroom and that it was still in such a sad state, Todd's dad came to our rescue and paid for the major pieces (tub and vanity). While here he helped Todd install the tub.

Another year passed in which we had planned to tile the bathroom our selves. The tile was purchased. We installed the backerboard. And there it sat. We were too busy with a new baby and four other growing children to spend the time required to learn how to and perfect tiling. So, we decided that we would hire someone to do the tile and we would finish the rest ourselves.

This is where we started a year ago...

This is the inset of the tile line in the tub surround.

Close up of the floor tile.

Then, the Tile Guy left. Over the next several weeks we installed the faucet and shower curtain rod, put up Wainscotting and trim, installed the sink and countertop. My favorite part was shopping for the ducky decor and towels. In December a friend came and put up the baseboard (as a "thank you" for the wedding cake I made him!).

Still is sat for the last several months waiting for the finishing touches, you know, nail holes filled and painted, a MIRROR, stuff like that. Well, Todd's parents are heading out this weekend for a visit and I couldn't have them again with the bathroom unfinished. So, a few weeks ago I began construction on the mirror. I built the frame, then last week I tiled and inset the mirror and HUNG it! During that time I persuaded Todd to fill in the holes in the Wainscotting and trim and touch them up with paint. You can see the Wainscotting in the reflection of my mirror. I love how this mirror turned out, and I'm proud of it!

So, now it is finally COMPLETE! And, it only took five and a half years!