Wednesday, April 29, 2009


Has anyone seen the move Much Ado About Nothing? Possibly my favorite movie of all time. (Mental note: watch movie again soon.) There's a great scene in it when one character says to another something like this, "Against my better judgement, I bid you come in to dinner." I promise it's funny. Really. It is.

And so, against my better judgement, I stay up to write another blog post. I get pretty rummy after about 10:00 PM, so bear with me.

Four weeks, thirty showings, two open houses, and five offers later... our house sold.

To say that I'm happy would be an understatement. It's a huge relief. Since it sold last week I have been able to resume sleeping through the night rather than laying awake with worry. Seriously, selling a house is stressful. I expected it to be difficult - I'd read about that ("reading about it" is how people like me prepare themselves for situations they've never faced before), but was not prepared for how stressful if would be. Will people like my house? Why didn't they like my house? Is something wrong with my house? They think my house is worth WHAT? You want to show my house WHEN? In 15 minutes?!!!

Other issues I struggled with during the time our house was for sale:
  • Is is bad to strap my kids in their car seats before doing the last quick sweep of the house before leaving for a showing?
  • If Emma wets her bed and barfs all over the bathroom at 2:00 AM (she was sooo sick) and we have a 10:00 AM showing will the prospective Buyers be able to notice the smell?
  • (Then, later that night/morning) What if Emma, who's now sleeping with me in my bed while Ryan's sleeping in her wet bed (house selling with sick kids isn't pretty folks) barfs all over my beloved duvet cover?
  • Is it bad that I'm more concerned about the duvet cover than prospective Buyers smelling vomit in the house?

Can you see now why I was kept awake at night? These are big issues.

Thankfully, the house sold and we've now let our perfectly clean staged home revert to it's former state: un-swept and littered with half-dressed Barbies. Actually, it's gotten a bit worse than that. The other night Ryan and I looked around and decided that we'd let our house get kind of icky. Ryan said it's kind of like when some one's been fasting and then they finish and binge. We're binging on messiness.

The girls are relieved the house sold. Beyond the obvious annoyances of having to make their beds as if they're in the military, they're tired of having to evacuate for showings. Now, it's not too bad to leave your house and Barbies if you get to go to the park during the showing. That's a good deal. Here's a bad deal: you have a dinnertime showing and it's pouring down rain outside so you're stuck inside your minivan parked across the street from your house having to feed your cranky baby sister pieces of chicken nuggets just to keep her crying to a minimum. Bad deal indeed. It's character building, right?

We've purchased another house and are excited to move in around the end of May. We're moving only a few miles down the road - closer to Hannah's school. She'll actually be able to ride the bus! I'm so excited about the bus that I've considered making one of those paper chains where you take one link off for everyday until the big day. You know what I'm talking about, right? Everyday when I pack all three kids (one of whom is usually crying) into the car to drive Hannah to school I think, "one day closer to the bus." Then, as I'm driving to school, I think of all the inappropriate stuff that went on during my school bus-riding days. Then, I think about the conversations I'm going to have with Hannah about sitting as close to the front of the bus as possible and avoiding all inappropriate behavior. So, I talk big about being all excited, but my innocent baby riding the bus does worry me a little. Not surprising, I guess, considering the fact that I still tear up almost every day when I watch her walk away from the car and toward her classroom.

Miriam's One!

Miriam turned one this month **sniff** so I thought I'd tell you a little about what she's up to nowadays.

She likes to eat, but not baby food anymore. She likes flavor: chili, taco soup, etc. And some of whatever her sisters are eating better find it's way to her plate or she'll make her displeasure known. She eats well. And by well I mean often. Every 2 hours-ish she wants to sit in her high chair, have some milk, eat a few bites of whatever the last meal was, and then get down. As I write this I'm realizing I'm letting her do things that Hannah and Emma never would have gotten away with. Hmmmm.... First thing tomorrow I'm letting her know that I'm on to her third-child-I'm-wearing-Mom-down-and-making-her lower-her-standards-without-her-realizing-it ways.

This picture is for Julie. (That's "Auntie Julie in New York" for those of you who read my last post.) Anyhoo, Julie, note Miriam's cavernous room! Lessons this photo teaches me:
  1. Stuffing a 10' by 12.5' by 10' storage unit to the gills with your stuff makes for much more usable space in a room.
  2. Moving furniture around can make a room appear a lot bigger. (WHY didn't I move that crib 7 years ago?!)

Miriam loves books. When he's home, Ryan loves to read to her before she goes to bed. In this picture he hasn't even opened up the book yet and she's already quivering with excitement.

Her favorite book is Doggies by Sandra Boynton. She will even "woof" when we ask her what a dog says.

Miriam likes to cruise. Not in a car. Heavens no. She does not like cars. Rather, she likes to cruise along furniture. Unfortunately, she also likes to hang on to the barstools. She's pulled this one over on herself more than once.
Cruisin' for Cheerios under the kitchen table. She had not yet learned that Cheerios cannot be found under the tables of staged homes.

I love her in red because it makes her blue eyes pop.
We had Miriam's birthday party at a local park because we had 3 showings at our house that day. Luckily, it was sunny though quite cold. Hot chocolate would have been a better beverage than the pop in ice we were serving.

Her future's so bright....

She liked opening her presents and was very excited to see what was inside. She got a few more books to add to the bedtime collection. Hannah and Emma were excited for Miriam and stayed close to check out the new loot.

Have I mentioned that she likes books? She wanted to stop opening gifts to read each one.

She poked, she tasted, she ate, she smeared, and she was done. Oh, and a big thank you to Albertsons which provided, at no charge, Miriam's cake. Did you know they'll give you a small first birthday cake for free? I'd known that for some time, but this is the first time I'd taken them up on the offer. Birthday party combined with multiple house showings each day make that deal too good to pass up.

Next post: Sold!

Quick Recap

I'm baa-ack! My family, specifically my far-away sister Julie, has been asking to see some recent kid pictures since all I've posted in the last forever has been a picture of the house. BORING! So, here ya go Ju-gee:

Crazy hair day at Hannah's school. If Hannah's doing it, you know Emma's got to be doing it too. So, crazy zig-zag parts, pig tails, and glitter hair gel for all. Even Miriam got piggies though she wanted nothing to do with lap-sitting and posing for pictures. She wanted the camera. Bad.
Better picture of the 'tails. Does Hannah's excitement come through in this picture? Holy cow that girl was excited.

Hannah and I celebrated birthdays in March. Ryan's sister Julie is a cake decorator for a local grocery store chain and she made this awesome cake for us. Look at that cursive lettering! I can't write that well with a pencil, let alone with icing! Thanks Julie!
And, if you're paying attention, you'll note that I've mentioned two Julies in this post. Ryan and I both have sisters named Julie. Yes, it does get confusing at times. Especially because they both have daughters named Natalie. And Ryan's sister Julie's middle name is Ann and I have a sister named Ann. Oh, and Ryan's Mom's name is Laura too. With all of these common names, we are forced to use longer names for just about everyone in our family. For example, when we're talking with the girls about Ryan's sister Julie, we usually refer to her as "Auntie Julie Aeneas' mommy" because, of course, "Auntie Julie Natalie's mommy" could still be either Julie. But now I've strayed waaaay off topic....
Hannah found a "princess cake" in a cookbook and requested it for her birthday party. Unfortunately, I accidentally packed that cookbook and put it in storage while staging our house for sale. So, this was what I came up with after picking Hannah's brain a bit. Princess crown: easiest cake topper ever.

I'm only going to post this party picture (not wanting to post pics of other people's kiddos without permission, you know). Use your imagination: lots of 6-7 year old girls, one 4 year old girl trying to be part of the big girl stuff, one 11 month old girl very confused by all the commotion, pizza, cake, ice cream, Kool-Aid, princess dress up clothes, "High School Musical 3," and just to shake things up, two boys showing up for the last few minutes of the party. Whew!
Next up: Miriam's Birthday!

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Happy April

As promised, I have returned to blog in April. In case anyone's been wondering, the aforementioned "project" that was taking up all my time....

...was cleaning this: we can sell it. Emma says "our house is on sale." Bargain basement prices! Get it while you can!

I have been scrubbing, scouring, packing, and primping for two and a half months in order to get this baby on the market. We've put an almost embarrassing amount of stuff in storage in an attempt to "stage" our home and make the rooms look bigger.

The girls have learned not to ask where their toys are anymore. "Mom, where's the Littlest Pet Shop ... oh, yeah. Storage." Some things have been stuffed under beds and in closets, but these hiding places can only hold so many Barbies and baby dolls. It will be like Christmas and birthday times five when we finally get into the next house and open all the toy boxes again. (Side note: is it bad that I'm seriously considering NOT opening some of the toy boxes and just letting them find their way to Goodwill?)

And so, worst home-buying market in decades be darned! Our house is on the market come what may. We moved into this house seven years and three kids ago. It's time to move on.