April 28, 2012

Christmas in April

Nathan spent most of this morning assembling the Deluxe Farm Train Set Garrett received as a Christmas present from his Grammy and Grandpa Mark last year.

(Actually, Nathan might not appreciate me telling you it took most of the morning.  It really only took about an hour.)

What does Garrett think?  You tell me...

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April 17, 2012

Sayonara, Carpet!

Our (well, Nathan's) latest DIY project was a biggie.  With his dad's help, Nathan replaced the carpet in our living and dining rooms with bamboo flooring we purchased at Lumber Liquidators in Champaign.  Here are a few pictures from before the carpet was removed...


...and here are a few (from the same perspectives) from after the bamboo flooring was installed and the furniture was put back in its place...


I wish I knew how many thousands of dollars we've saved over the last eight years by not hiring someone to paint, install flooring, landscape, or do many other things that Nathan has become so good at doing himself.  He gets an idea, gets my approval (Ha!), spends lots of time researching options, finds good deals, and gets the job done.  For that I am grateful!

This project probably took half the time it would have if Garrett and I had been home.  Instead, we spent the Easter weekend with Mom and Mark at their home in Lima, OH.  Garrett was an excellent traveler!  The drive to Mom's takes about 5 hours, and we only stopped once on the way there and once on the way back!  However, I don't think I'll press my luck and plan a 10-hour trip any time soon.  Garrett learned the word "kitty" while we were there and got lots of lovin' from some grandparents who were tickled to have us with them for a few days.  You can read about Mom's perspective on being a grandparent and see some great pictures she took by clicking here.  (See "How to refocus your life....".)

What's your latest DIY project?  I'd love to hear about it!

April 5, 2012

Garrett's Weekend With Nonnie & Papa

Last Wednesday, one of my wonderful mothers by marriage, Sandy, a.k.a. Nonnie, called me, buttered me up a little bit, and asked if she and Howard, a.k.a. Papa, could keep Garrett for the weekend.  They know I was reluctant at first - only because this would be the first time Garrett and I had been apart for that long - but after talking it over with Nathan, I agreed to let him go.

Sandy and Howard came to Monticello to pick Garrett up Saturday morning.  As they loaded Garrett's things into their trunk and installed his car seat, Sandy said, "It's a good thing you don't have twins!"

Nathan and I did our own things for most of the day.  He went to Champaign to pick up the bamboo flooring that he's going to lay in our living and dining rooms this weekend, mowed the yard, and did some other things around the house.  I went to a prayer vigil, took my time making a grocery list and going to the grocery store, and enjoyed eating when I wanted to.  That evening, we cooked dinner together, ate in front of the TV, took a post-dusk walk, hand in hand, to Dairy Queen, and took our time enjoying our treats - Nathan's hot fudge shake and my Peanut Butter Bash.  (That's my new favorite, by the way.  Move over, Peanut Buster Parfait.)

We had lunch in Champaign Sunday before heading to Danville to fetch Garrett, and when I called Sandy to let her know we were on our way, she said Garrett missed us.  (Cue the breaking of this mommy's heart.)  At nap time, he stood at the edge of his Pack & Play saying, "Mommy...Daddy...".  Howard rocked him to sleep, and he slept for an hour in his Papa's arms.  Over all, I know a good time was had by all.  Garrett and the girls next door got to hunt for Easter eggs, Garrett got to spend some quality time with his grandparents, including Great Grandma Shirley and Grandpa Rick, and Nathan and I were reminded of the importance of time spent with each other.  We topped off the weekend with a trip to Bismarck to visit with Grandpa Rick and Leona some more.  There, Garrett enjoyed playing in the dirt and giving us 'gifts' of rocks and sticks.

We are blessed indeed!  Thanks, Nonnie and Papa!

Enjoying a snack in Daddy's office last month