Thursday, July 17, 2014

My Newest Mess

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Er...project.  When we moved into this house a few years ago, there was a paver patio in the back.  It was sunken in the middle when we moved in.  But over the past few years, especially after the deep cold of this past winter, it has really started to sink.  The steps are sinking with it.  Thankfully, nobody has ever tripped, but it's starting to become somewhat of a safety concern.  

I asked my neighbors if they remember it being built, and one told me she couldn't believe how badly it had held up.  Looking at it, I had assumed it was put in place shortly after the house was built and had settled with the land.  My neighbor said it was built less than a year before we moved in!  If anything, the steps have to go and be built in a way that is level and safe.  I pulled up the patio pavers right up to the steps just to see what we were dealing with.  Those paver steps are parked right on top of....DIRT!  ha!  No attempt was even made at any kind of foundation.  It figures.  

Not to worry, we have called in the help of an expert, so tomorrow our construction foreman, my dad, Tom, will arrive to help consider the options and attempt to make repairs.  If you are bored this weekend, and are thinking that it would be super fun to lift up, move, fix, and replace multiple tons of pavers, gravel, sand, and concrete, come on over! 

Friday, July 4, 2014

A Big Accomplishment

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Next time you see Eli, please ask him about his bike.  I took him out on Tuesday with his training wheels still firmly in place.  I couldn't figure out how to transition him away from them, and he was pretty scared.  He seems to be on the late end of learning to ride his bike from what I have observed with his friends and other kids in the neighborhood.  So Tuesday I took them off, and we went over and over and over and over trying to get him balanced.

The change in the past 48 hours has been really amazing.  He has figured out how to get himself started, and can ride for over a mile without falling off, or getting scared and putting his feet down.  I am so very proud of him.  More importantly, he is proud of himself, and that makes my heart very happy.  :)

Wednesday, July 2, 2014


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I haven't been to a PYO (pick your own) farm in a loooong time.  I can't even remember last time I went.  This morning, a friend posted that a local PYO had ripe black raspberries ready to pick.  I got this crazy look in my eyes, and I said, "Get your shoes on kids, we are leaving NOW."  I love black raspberries.  LOVE them.  I almost never see them in the store, which is sad.

Now, let me tell you how motivated I was to get these berries.  I didn't look at the weather.  Rain or shine, we were getting black raspberries.  I didn't pack lunches.  I grabbed water and sunscreen and ran right out the door.  The trip there was fine.  As we pulled into the parking lot, Daniel,who has apparently started to suffer from motion sickness in the past few weeks, vomited everywhere.  I thought about just stripping him down and wiping out his car seat, but it was too much of a mess.  So home we went, got him re-clothed, and wiped down the car seat as best as possible.  And then we turn around and drove right back out there.  As we are getting out of the van, Sophie developed the most ridiculous nose bleed I've ever seen, and we waited it out.  It finally stopped, but not without a pretty fantastic mess all over her clothing.  If you are going to bleed all over yourself, doing it right before you are going to be covered in bright red berry juice is a good idea - nobody will ever know.

So we finally made it out to the fields, and were able to pick 9 pints of of black raspberries.  They are wonderful.  The lady told us to eat as many as we liked while picking, which Daniel, on a now empty stomach, considered a personal challenge.  He probably ate a pint on his own!  Eli ate 1 berry and said they didn't taste good.  I can't even understand it.

These boys are great berry pickers!


Sophie loved picking as well, though she was far less
tolerant of the fact that berry bushes have thorns.
 Also, she forgot a hair band, and all I had was a clothes pin.  

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Happy Twosday!

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Today is this sweet, lovable boy's second birthday!  I cannot believe two years have passed since Daniel joined our family.  There is no way to overestimate the joy he brought when he joined our family and continues to bring.