Friday, December 16, 2016

Visit With Santa

Somewhere, 6 years from now, when I'm not expecting it I'll stumble on the absurdly expensive pictures that we paid for during this session. Instead, for now, we have this awkward angled and slightly out of focus version. 
Charlotte insisted on wearing her Santa Clause hat for the occasion and Grace was just skeptical all around but eventually made her way to the edge of the chair. 

Charlotte asked for a locket. Grace asked to "get down". 

Merry Christmas to all!

Saturday, December 10, 2016

Night in the City

We packed one bag and stuffed a night's worth of clothes for all of us and headed into the city to spend the night with our good friends.
The girls were thrilled to have a sleepover.  The adults we're excited to have a night in the city. Win-win.

Love visiting these two and watching the way that they dote on the girls. A wonderful night and I'm sure some quiet time after our departure was enjoyed by our good friends.

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Tearing Up the Old Floors

We found out about 6 months after we moved into our new house that the floors would need to be repaired. In part due to the lack of support from the original beam (replaced with an Metal I-beam in June) causing warping of the boards but also due to gaps between the boards which we suspect was caused from an old boiler that used to heat the house.

After a lot of convincing (not an easy task for Troy) I gave in and agreed that getting new floors was the best way to go. Work started this week.

This is a huge project, and one that we didn't have the time to take on ourselves so we've hired help. They started by removing all of the flooring. Using a saw they pulled it up in sections. Next they removed the sub-flooring where needed and began the leveling process.

Worth noting that the biggest surprise by far was a large hole under a corner section of the kitchen. It's walled off, not accessible from the basement leaving  one's imagination to wander....we're perplexed to say the least. In the hole was an old bicycle tire, a game piece from an old Sorry board game, and bits and pieces of trash. We'll likely be scratching our heads for a while on this one.

I'm standing in the "hole" in the picture further down. When the subfloor was taken up we discovered that the support loads under this area 1.) were in bad shape and 2.) were higher than the other support loads throughout the main level which would cause a leveling nightmare. The mister and I pulled nearly an all-nighter correcting the issue so the flooring guys wouldn't lose any time. Right about 2am, standing in the non-insulated "hole" next to the door  I was really cursing us for choosing to do this project in December.

But, things are coming along and I'm excited to get this box checked off.

Saturday, November 26, 2016

Getting Ready

Setting up the first Christmas tree of the year.
While in Iowa for Thanksgiving we make sure to get a in the Christmas spirit by getting first Grandma's decorations out: snow globes, nativity set, angels, and of course the tree. Then we do the same at Oma's house. The girls like looking at all of Oma's old ornaments: baby pictures of me, old art projects, and salt dough shaped like hearts that 30 years later somehow smell just as strongly of cinnamon as the day I made them in Kindergarten.

We're getting ready for Christmas in Iowa...

Thursday, November 24, 2016


Back in Iowa giving thanks surrounded by those we're thankful for.
We spent the day with Oma, Grandma and Julie relaxing and catching up. The girls just love it here. I completely understand why.
We had a great trip with good food, a bit of pumpkin decorating and lots of giggles.

Saturday, November 19, 2016


Midwest fall at its finest. Our first fall in the new house and the leaves did not disappoint.

We scooped them into 2 big piles which the girls promptly destroyed. A few neighbors also came over to join in. At one point I think a tunnel had been constructed. 

Orange, red, yellow, purple, brown and green filled the air and clung to the girls' hair as they rolled around in the piles.  The scent of fall, and earth, and childhood all colliding into a single happy memory. Feeling grateful for the beautiful fall season, a yard that caters to our outdoor adventures and our new leaf blower which has earned it's keep this year.