Saturday, May 30, 2015

There will be hot water

I left off at a cliff hanger the other day.  Andy had done all he could to the hot water heater and then had to leave for a weekend of work in Ohio.  Hours into his trip he got a phone call from his hysterical wife.  No hot water yet.  She may have yelled. She may have cried.  She may have hung up the phone on him.  Enter the plumber.  Andy called the plumber to come in.  Good news:  hot water heater was fine.  Every part appeared to be working.  Bad news: probable pipe leak under the house.  Under. The. Slab.  =$$$$.  We're talking locator crew to find the leak and a jackhammer to tear up the floor to replace the pipe.  The plumber theorized that the pipe always had a hole in it.  This pipe was up against a metal steak, for whatever reason, and some corrosion occurred that plugged the hole.  When we turned off the water main, the corrosion broke free and the hole was reopened.  And, during the course of the pipe repair time, the hole got bigger.  *Sigh  But, he did show me how to turn the hot water heater on and off so we would have hot water for showers and to do dishes.  

That worked for the weekend.  Then, Andy came home and did some investigating to find out that the pipe with the leak only fed the kitchen sink and dishwasher.  At first there wasn't a rush to do anything to the pipe.  We were turning on and off the heater for hot water and that was okay.  Then, I noticed that we had no hot water while the dishwasher was running.  That told us that way more water was draining out than we thought.  Immediate action was needed.  Andy went ahead and put a valve in to shut off hot water to the kitchen and dishwasher.  Our future plan is to put an under sink water heater under the kitchen sink just for the sink and dishwasher.  Right now, I am washing dishes by hand, heating water on the stove first.  Gotta do what you gotta do.  Now, though, we have hot water whenever we need it for showers and baths.  

Definitely made me appreciate our luxuries more.  To me, this whole hot water deal was a big deal.  But, it got me thinking that we already have so much.  As I was freaking out about no hot water, I was in air conditioning, cooking a meal with plenty of food, washing clothes, my children were playing with no worries.  So many blessings.  How can I complain.  And, God took care of us.  He provided a way for us to continue to have hot water without a huge $$$ repair.  He also blessed us with our Andy, who was able to use his resources and knowledge to do the repair himself.  

Thankful, just thankful.


Friday, May 29, 2015

Let's hear from Kella!

Kella is 4 years old today!  In the interest to keep a tradition going, I asked Kella the same questions I asked her last year.  I found these printables on Pinterest, and just printed them off for this year.  We will have to catch up with Liam's later.  For now, ....

What is......
your favorite color?  "pink, blue and purple"

your favorite toy?  "giraffe and Elsa and bears"

your favorite stuffed animal?  "giraffe and bears"

your favorite thing to sleep with?  "giraffe and bears"  (I would also like to add blankie to that list-the girl is working on loving it to pieces and doesn't want to sleep without it)

your favorite fruit? "grapes"

your favorite cereal? "oatmeal"

your favorite thing to eat for breakfast? "circles" (which means cheerios)

your favorite thing to eat for lunch? "chicken wings"

your favorite dessert? "brownies"

you favorite drink? "water"

What do you want to eat for your birthday dinner?  "Elsa cake and chicken wings"

What is.....
your favorite animal? "giraffe"

your favorite book? "My Little Ponies"

your favorite song?  "Let It Go"

your favorite game? "my matching game from preschool" (a pirate memory game)

your favorite t.v. show? "Mickey Mouse"

your favorite movie? "Frozen"

your favorite thing to do outside? "swing and play"

your best friend? "Emma"

What do you want to be when you grow up? "Elsa"

Monday, May 25, 2015

Pin of the week-household hack

I love Pinterest.  Love it so much that I want to share some of my favorite pins.  This one made perfect sense when I saw it-using a fitted sheet over the box springs instead of a bed skirt.  I don't like bed skirts anyway-I always had a hard time smoothing out the skirt so it hung evenly on all sides of the bed (and, I'm not a fan of the ruffled look), but I did not like how the bed looked with the box springs exposed.  Solution: fitted sheet.  Easy to put on and makes the bed look complete.  This picture, from Pinterest, shows a coordinating color with the bed linens.  I just went with a classic black. Matches everything.  I did this 2 years ago and the sheet has held up great.  Total cost:  less than $10 since I bought the sheet at Walmart.

buy an extra fitted sheet instead of a bedskirt, other tips at this site, the fitted sheet looks great! No more bed skirts for us!

Friday, May 22, 2015

another dose of random-ness

I actually have a few minutes to spare to blog, even though I should be cleaning the house in anticipation for the cousins that are coming over this weekend.  Oh well.  Let's see what's been happening here....
First, a dose of sweetness from the sisters.  They sit together, they play together, the suck their thumbs and love their blankies together.

Project complete!  This is a word art project I found on Pinterest.  Clearly, I did one for each of the kids and had the perfect place to hang them up in the upstairs hallway.  Once I figured out Word Art, I was able to plug in for each of the kids and move along quickly.

Wednesday was the art fair for the elementary.  We had to go see Cale's picture done with oil pastels and a photo of himself reinacting the Scream.  Well done!

Oh, and my favorite.  In our long journey to new floors downstairs we have decided to tile the kitchen area instead of laminate.  Okay.  So, Andy trimmed the laminate back in order to put a temporary threshold down.  In the process, he removed a nail from the wall.  Well, apparently this nail had been nailed into one of our water pipes.  =water mess.  1 day and 3 fixes later, Andy was able to fix the problem.  The new problem-the hot water heater does not work.  Lovely.  Needless to say, this is causing me a lot of anxiety currently.  Andy is on his way to the store as I write this to purchase a part he thinks might solve the problem.  To be continued......

Just a look at the laminate flooring.  Pretty color, isn't it?  It hasn't held up as well as we thought it would.  When I picked it out, I really picked it out for it's color-not durability or ease of installation.  There are already chipped corners on some of the planks and that is just with normal wear.  Tarkington brand at Menards.  Not recommended.  Also, Menards is no longer carrying this style.  Long term for us, that means we will be replacing this flooring with something else.  Just not anytime soon.

And today, Marcus leaves for a weekend campout with the Scouts, Andy leaves for a weekend of work in Ohio and I begin a 4 day stretch at work.  So much to do.  We have Uncle and Aunt and Cousins coming over to watch the remaining kids while I work, for which I am very thankful.  

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Marcus's spring pops concert

If there is one thing I can blog about today, here is Marcus's spring pops concert.  You can hear a big improvement in how the band sounds from the beginning of the year.  For visual interest, I tried to keep the camera on the band, although you won't see Marcus-lower brass sit in the back.

Thursday, May 7, 2015

just a Wednesday

Wednesday.  Art fair.  Young authors. Soccer game.  The trick was to get all the kids fed, ready and in the car with enough time to go see their work and make it to the game with time to warm-up.  Lucky for us, all this took place at the primary school so we only had to park the van once.  

Liam and his elephant painting (on the bottom)

Ewan and his bicycle painting (middle, orange background)

Ewan and his Young Author book.  He wrote about George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln and George W. Bush.

As we circled through the building, we passed Liam's classroom and saw his flower with the big pink butterfly.

Then, it was time for Liam's soccer game.  He is doing so much better than last fall.  He stays with the group more and last night dribbled the ball down the field and would have made a goal if the other team hadn't stolen the ball.  Liam tries hard and we give him thumbs up every time he does a good job. 

Then it was home for some popsicles, trampoline time and school project work.

Friday, May 1, 2015

Liam's birthday

I have become a minimalist with birthday pictures.  Or I'm just too busy trying to be in the moment to take a ton of photos.  So, what I have is what I have for Liam's birthday day.  Let's say it was loud and crazy and busy.  Take our 6 kids and add 5 more neighbor kids and you have a houseful of fun.  Everyone helped hide Liam's presents and then helped him find them.  We had cake and the bigger kids settled in to watch Liam's new movie: Big Hero Six. He had a great time and I know he was excited to celebrate with lots of kids.

This guy asked for a rootbeer cake for his birthday.  Did not even know you could make a rootbeer cake.  Betty Crocker came through with the recipe, though.  Right before we lit the candles, Liam asked for an "autobot" to be put on his cake.  Enter internet search and print out of an autobot face.  Moment saved.  Happy boy.

The one picture with all his presents.  I didn't want to stop and have him hold up gifts after he opened each of them.  Plus, I couldn't have gotten through the scrum of children around to gifts to even see.  Liam was pretty happy with his gifts that included a new scooter and an ant farm.

Had to go outside and try out the new scooter.  It really is faster than the one he was riding and it's cool to Liam speed around on it.

There you go.  Liam is pretty pumped to be 6 years old.