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Sunday, April 27, 2014

Tulip Festival and first basement inspection

Jessa ~

So, let's see.  When I left you last, my parents were still in town, and Damian had gone home for the Easter weekend. Monday we took my parents, Trav, and his friend, Brenda to the Tulip Festival. It had just opened, and where we now have passes, we could get them all in half price. So we did. The girls loved it. Every new flowerbed Abby saw, she'd run to it as excited as can be, yelling, "Flowers!" And then she'd bend down and smell them. We were there for probably 2 hours. I can't figure out how she remained so excited the whole time, but she did. As we were making our way back to the main building, but still had at least a half hour to go, Kessa started being sad, because she didn't want to go home yet. She was having so much fun! So it's probably a really good thing we have these passes. Now I just need to find time and energy to take them more often.

And more pictures from Travis:

Abby smelling tulips that matched the flower in her hair!

My parents stayed till Tuesday, when they took Damian's old carpet cleaning truck back to Idaho. (Did I mention Damian bought a new truck and that's why my parents came down—to drive the old one home for him?) My mom helped a lot with the kids, despite her recent knee surgery. My dad helped a lot with the basement, and also my garden. We got onions planted, which was exciting. And then he went with me to buy more early-spring plants, but then left before I got them planted. So they're still sitting on my counter, awaiting me.  Oops. In my defense, it rained all weekend.  I hope to report the rest of them planted in my next email.

One day while they were still here Abby walked into the family room, pulled off her "skirt dress" and pants and declared "Potty!" We've had the little potty chair in the downstairs bathroom for months to help her get used to it being there, but I really had no intention of potty training. So my mom took her into the bathroom, took off her diaper, and sat with her for probably 10-15 minutes. Nothing came out, but she left the bathroom refusing to put a diaper back on. So I went and found the 2T panties and bravely put them on her. I realized we only had 4 panties, and those we went through quickly (in part because of accidents and part because she thinks she has to change them every 30 mins or so). So we went shopping and let her pick out a bunch of new panties. Yipes. All week we've been dealing with this. She wants panties, not diapers. She likes to change them often. I've started making her sit on the potty before she puts new ones on, just to get her on there. But to no avail. She still has yet to have a single success.

I haven't put my whole heart into it, though. I just don't have the energy for it. I should try to find said energy, though. It'd really be nice to not have two kids in diapers. But I put her back into diapers for naps and night and whenever we leave the house.  This whole weekend has been back to diapers and she doesn't seem to have minded much. (Though she did once try to put a pair of Kessa's dirty panties on over her diaper... Yuck.) My favorite, though, is when she does have an accident and comes running to me, "Panties dry! Uh oh! Panties dry!" I... do not think that word means what you think it means, Abby. I try to tell her, "No, those panties are wet. Not dry." And then when we put dry panties back on I try to tell her that they're dry. But then she just gets mad and says, "No dry! All clean!" She's very insistent upon her vocabulary. I think it's probably less of a fight to just adapt to her vocab. lol. The real question now is... do I just put my heart into it and do it? Or do I go through with my earlier threat of making her wait till 2nd grade and she's begging? Or some middle ground?  [sigh] Pray for me.  :D

Damian came down late Monday night and worked as hard as he could until Thursday. Wednesday afternoon he had our first inspection. It covers framing, plumbing, electrical, air ducts, etc. Everything went well except he wasn't aware of something called a firestop that was made a problem due to the way Richmond built our basement. It's something that would have been easy to put in while framing, but would be a pain to put in now that it was done. But he was determined to get this inspection passed before he had to leave. So scheduled a follow up the next day, enlisted BJ's help, borrowed a different kind of saw, and the two of them worked in the basement until midnight. I asked BJ the next day if his arms hurt from reaching up high all evening. He told me it wasn't bad and he got to climb all over the walls, so it was actually kind of fun. Lol. My big monkey husband. :D

The next morning he had to go oversee some things happening with his new truck, but got back early enough that it would still be a few hours before the inspection was to happen again. So he called to see if he could get it moved up. The guy was like, "Sure. I'll come right now." Which was funny because Damian wasn't actually ready. Really close, but not quite there. So he and BJ frantically finished up, putting in the last block when the inspector showed up. He passed the re-inspection and the inspector told him, "You should be a professional framer; you do better work than most of our contractors." Damian had a grin like a kid on Christmas morning for the rest of the morning. It was hilarious.

So next up we've got sheetrock, another inspection, mudding, taping, painting, carpet, cabinets/shelving, etc. And then we're done! But we're taking a break. This week Damian is in Oregon at Jalin's doing his semi-annual cleaning trip there, then next week they're moving to Idaho Falls. So it'll be a couple of weeks before he makes it back down this way. In the meantime I've made it my goal to clean all the debris out of the garage and make room for all the storage, then I'll have BJ move it all down to the garage, so that my house can look somewhat clean and uncluttered again. And since we now have a door from our garage to the storage room, when it's all finished, we can just pass it through the door and not have to bother with stairs at all. Hooray! Sounds like a great way to break in the door. :D I'll also clean up the basement debris to make it nicer for Damian to work in. Assuming energy and time, of course.

My primary secretary was stolen to be in her ward's YW presidency. Not cool. She said, "But I was just getting comfortable in this calling!" So I now blame her for getting moved, because as we all know, we're only in callings until we feel comfortable. Then they move us. ;) But she'll do fantastic in YW. Today I got a new secretary! Hooray! There were several awkward weeks in there of my former secretary trying to do both callings as we tried to get a new secretary, and then they didn't sustain her last week because it was Easter and people were out of town or something. But today she's officially mine.  Bwahahaha. ;)  And I think she'll be fantastic. So that's exciting.

Yesterday BJ and I went to Hale and saw "Arsenic and Old Lace". Have you ever seen it? It's a comedy based on two old women who kill old men and bury them in their basement. Yes. I promise. That kind of story can be made funny. Don't judge me for laughing. Nick and Chelsea babysat while we were gone. The girls sure love them. Which is always nice.

Today was 4th Sunday dinner. Your mom kindly decided to carry through with it since we didn't get to go up for Easter dinner last week. It was, as always, delicious. Nick and Chelsea mostly watched the girls while Resa, BJ and I played Settlers. Kessa complained the entire time we got ready to leave, all the way home, and half the time getting ready for bed, "But I just want to stay at Grandma's!" "I know, honey. We all do." The power of Grandma's house has a really strong pull, y'know?

  • Abby: Mommy, sit down!
    Me: No, I need to keep cleaning to relieve some stress.
    Abby: Abby want stress!
  • Kessa: Ab, what does amazing mean? Going potty is amazing!

Random pictures:

BJ took the girls out to fly a kite.

Kessa making a wish while blowing dandelion seeds.

Kessa painting Grandma Lovell's toenails

Kessa attached a wipe to the end of a pool noodle with a rubber band, then insisted on mopping the entire deck and stairs.

I have a bunch of family name temple cards and wanted a way to organize them by what ordinances were needed. This was the result. (Ok, the first try was on bright pink plastic canvas and has one less pocket and the temple isn't nearly so cool. But my mom wanted one, too, so I made her this one, improved upon the original, and will at some point make me another one that looks more like this.)

<3 Tianna and Co

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