Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Kitchen Progress

Well, two more days to go (hopefully), but they still have a lot of work to do. But, here is our new living room...

Our new fridge (thanks to Uncle David for the family discount that provided us with all new GE appliances)...

Our granite counter tops. They will hopefully be installing the new windows and tile backsplash tomorrow.

A better view of our granite.

And a dishwasher! 9 years and 3 kids later and we finally have a dishwasher. Although I think everyone else is more excited about this than we actually are as it is always the first thing people ask about (if they knew we did not have one previously). We are quite used to washing dishes and have never found it to be too inconvenient, so we'll see how this goes.

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Monday, June 27, 2011

Science Experiment

Lately Ben has been very into conducting science experiments. Usually they involve water and some sort of mess, but it makes him happy and water is easy to clean-up (especially when he is the one who has to clean it up). Today though, I thought his experiment was pretty good so I decided to share. He filled the sink with warm water (not sure why it had to be warm, but whatever) and then put a water bottle in the water. He told me the experiment was to put the bottle in the water and see if it would sink or float as the bottle filled up with water. I asked him what he thought would happen and he thought it would sink. So, we watched the bottle fill up with water and slowly submerge. He was pretty excited and I was proud of him. Seems silly, but he thought of this experiment all on his own, developed his own hypothesis, and got to see the final result. This kid is smart (not surprising given his parents, of course)...haha!

Friday, June 24, 2011

Conversation with Ben

So today I was reading a story to the kids and I pointed out the bunk beds in the book to the girls
(because someday soon they will likely have bunk beds). Ben then told me that he wanted to have bunk beds in his room and he wanted to share his room with his new baby brother. I, of course, pointed out to him that I am not pregnant and we are not having another baby right now. He then asked me, "Mom, can you please pray really really hard to God to give us a baby brother...and we shall call him Jesus." That kid cracks me up :)

Kitchen Progress

Well the guys have been hard at work today. They painted and got the oven hooked up. Here is our living room - they still need to put another coat of paint on it, but looking good so far.

Here is our kitchen with the fridge (though not yet hooked up), the microwave and oven/range. You can also see the color on the wall to the left. I think they are finished painting the kitchen. Any white areas left are going to be covered with tile back splash or cabinets.

I hope they are still on target to finish by next Friday, but it seems to me that there is still a lot left to do. They certainly are working hard though - they show up every morning before 8 and stay until at least 5 (today they were here until 6 trying to get the first coat of paint on the living room walls). They rarely take breaks either - maybe a 45 minute lunch break. So far we are very happy with them, so hopefully we will stay that way through the end of the project, although the end is usually the hardest part.
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Thursday, June 23, 2011

Kitchen Update

Well, not quite as much got accomplished today as they were hoping. They had to repair some of our other walls before painting and that was taking a long time to dry so they couldn't paint over that today. They did paint the ceilings though. We also got our appliances, but they didn't get them hooked up yet. So not too much to show, but I thought I would show you how we are living during this process.

This is our living room. We were using this area previously as a make-shift kitchen, but when they refinished the floors they moved all the furniture out of here and we haven't been able to move it back yet as they are using this space for their tools and cabinets yet to be installed (and now some appliances too).

One shot of our new kitchen with our fridge in it. The stove is also in place, but you can't really see it in this picture.

All of the furniture from the living room was put in the family room when they refinished the floors. So here is our family room. We obviously cannot use this room at all at the moment (which is unfortunate as this is where our TV is). You can also see in this picture the thick layer of dust that is covering everything - yuck!

Our current fridge is now located conveniently right by the door should you want to grab a drink on the way out.

So it has been extremely difficult because we really have nowhere to play. We can play in the basement, but they sometimes are working in that area as it is directly below the kitchen and they need to get in there to move piping, etc. We can play upstairs in the kids' bedrooms, but we moved a bunch of stuff in their rooms too. Ben's room currently has 3 of our dining room chairs in it, so no real room to play there either. And we have no place to set up a make-shift kitchen. So we have cheerios every morning and PB&J sandwiches every day for lunch and with no real way to cook, we have had to go out to dinner every night. We are very tired of this and hoping we can get some working appliances by this weekend. Hopefully just one more week to go though!
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Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Kitchen Progress

Well, they put most of the cabinets in and it is looking great so far! The granite guy comes tomorrow to measure and then they will cut and install that too. Our window is being replaced, but it isn't in yet so they went ahead and cut around it so they could keep working and put a piece of wood there for now. Oh, and they were sanding the walls today (planning to paint tomorrow) so they put plastic over the cabinets to protect them. But here is a view of our new kitchen.

Our new eat-in area (still waiting for those custom cabinets that will go on either side of the window).

View from the eat-in area to the kitchen.

Closer view of our cabinets.

Tomorrow they plan to paint and install our new appliances, which should get delivered in the afternoon, so hopefully we will have some great pictures to share tomorrow night too!
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Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Happy Birthday!

Cheers to my wonderful wife!
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Monday, June 20, 2011

Last Day

On our last day in Jacksonville, we headed out for a day at the beach. Paul and Patch both worked all week (except for Friday when we went to Disney) so they finally got a chance to go to the beach and play with the kids. Unfortunately, we got to the beach and discovered that the memory card in our camera was back at home in the computer downloading Disney pictures, so these were taken from my phone. They turned out pretty good though - I guess whoever worked on the camera for Droids must have been pretty awesome ;)

Juju loved the ocean and kept walking deeper and deeper. Someone had to be with her or else she might have walked out a bit too far!

Daddy got to play with the girls in the sand.

Ben loved the boogie board, but I think he has been in the mid-west too long as he referred to it as a "magical sled"! He later told me that he "sledded on the surfer". He needs to get some more southern into him...quickly!

He loved it though - whatever it is called!

Then we had a nice picnic lunch.

The next day we headed home. Unfortunately, US Airways had a computer glitch that delayed our flight in Charlotte for almost 2 hours, but we eventually made it home. Too bad we were traveling on Father's Day, but we celebrated on Saturday. But here is Super Dad on the flight home! We love you honey - happy father's day!

We were anxious to get home and see what all was done on our house while we were gone. The floors look great! Unfortunately, I didn't take a picture last night and this morning they arrived at 7:30 am with all the new cabinets. So they quickly put drop cloth on the floor and unloaded all the cabinets, which will be installed on Wednesday. So no point in taking a picture at the moment as the floors aren't even visible. I promise to take some pictures and post them once there is something to take a picture of! It's getting closer to being done, which is good because I don't know how much longer I can take living without a kitchen and the house being completely destroyed! In the end it will all be worth it least it better be!
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Disney World

While in Jacksonville, we decided to take the kids to Disney for a day. It is about 2.5 hours from Jacksonville, so we got up super early one morning and made a very long day of it. The kids were so excited when we told them the big surprise and although it was an exhausting day, it was definitely worth it! Here we are at the start of the day!

The first thing we did was go meet Ariel. When we went to Disney last year, she was terrified of all the characters, but since she loves all things Ariel, we thought she might be ok meeting her. Madgie talked to her about it before we went and her first response (rather immediately too) was that she did not want to meet Ariel or get her picture taken with her. Madgie slowly talked her into it and she finally agreed she would go as long as an adult was with her. It also helped to see a picture of her cousin Caroline with Ariel just a few days before we went. So here we are talking to Ariel and Prince Eric.

Prince Eric was super sweet to her and Ariel told her that since she was in yellow, she reminded her of her good friend Flounder (which made Abbey smile). She recluctantly nodded to Prince Eric's questions and even allowed Ariel to give her a hug. Here is our picture - look how close Abbey is to them! Even though she was still pretty timid, she did great! We didn't stand in line for any other characters that day, so not sure how she would have done this year if it had not been Ariel we were meeting!

Juliette enjoyed "It's a Small World" which is still one of my favorites!

Mickey's 3D Philharmagic Show is pretty good if you know your Disney movies (which we of course do)!

The merry-go-round was also fun. Abbey made huge strides in this as well and she actually went on a horse all by herself! The first time on it she made sure Patch held her tightly, but the second time she got braver and went it alone. Good job Abbey!

Juju enjoyed going with Madgie.

The Buzz Lightyear ride - a favorite of Ben's.

Abbey was big enough to drive the car this year too!

Mommy and Ben in the car. Ben kept telling me to go faster, but the car just wasn't very fast as I had the pedal to the metal already!

Afternoon ice cream break!

End of the day shot in front of the castle.

It was a lot of fun - long day but the kids really enjoyed it. And they seemed to get a lot more out of it this year even over last year, so it was great!
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Thursday, June 16, 2011


Due to some morning storms, we decided to head down to the Museum of Science and History (a common field trip location from growing up here). It was actually a nice break from all the water activities (although we were planning to go to the beach today, which I would have enjoyed as well). Here are the kids and Madgie enjoying the dinosaur exhibit...

They had a neat area where you could gently brush away the sand and find dinosaur bones! The kids loved this activity...

So did Madgie apparently...look how focused everyone is!

I don't have very many matching outfits for the girls (mostly because Juliette has so many of Abbey's old clothes that she doesn't get much new stuff), but when I do happen to find something for them both, they get a big kick out of dressing alike.

We went to a great Sesame Street show at the planetarium. The kids all enjoyed it and Ben said it was much better than the space show we saw there over Christmas, which scared him a little can see he looks a bit nervous here before the show started. He kept asking me how I knew it was going to be a different show than what we saw last time. I told him the lady told me it would be Sesame Street. He finally said, "well ok, but if the lady is wrong than I'm outta here." Luckily, she was right!

They have a Florida creature exhibit. I think the kids are looking at some turtles here.

Then we ended the trip in the kids 5 and under play area (whew, Ben just made the cut-off), which had a fun water exhibit that the kids really liked (if you haven't noticed, they like all things water) and a big play area to climb on or seesaw on!

So handsome!

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