sydney's sidewalk drawing...elijah, sydney, daddy, mommy, kezia

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

excruciating

Wayne was raking some leaves out from under our back porch. He went to step over the leaves and stepped on a large rusty nail in a two by four.
Well, of course I took a picture of the shoe! We will spare you all the bottom of Wayne's foot. It actually looks worse than it was or could have been.
The garage had burned down a year or so before we bought the house. We're assuming it was left over from the demolition of the garage. The back yard still has glass and other garage debris that we will have to rake very carefully before we let Sydney run around.
update: due to increasing emails from concerned citizens from around the world...yes, wayne is ok, it was more of a scrape than an actual puncture...and yes, he had a tetnus shot just last year, so he's all good. :)

Elijah 7 Months

Would you look at this adorable little man!?!



look at that cute grin...he loves smiling like this




I LOVE TRUCKS!!!




I don't want any more pictures.

mastodon bones

Wayne and I have been cleaning up the yard...raking up bags and bags and bags of leaves and pine needles (we have two 40+ foot pine trees in the yard; needles galore!). Anyway, as we were cleaning up, I noticed again two funny little items in the front little flower bed. I always thought what odd little garden things. I thought what odd, retro mushrooms.



Actually, I called them mastedon bones!



I had thought of getting rid of them, but then one of the daughters of the family we bought the house from stopped by. She is in her fifties and lives next door to us! She was pointing out the various flowers that bloom around the house and we walked by the mastodon bones. She said that her brother had been on some board at the high school down the road. It is a huge, gothic style building originally built in 1923. Some of the points had been falling off years ago, and he took a few home! And there they stand, in our garden, presumed mastodon bones that have actual history right here in Manitowoc.
Here is a small pic of the high school. I'll have to try and get a better one soon.




Tuesday, March 23, 2010

cute kids


just elijah and sydney

no longer the toothless wonder

A few days before turning 6 months, Elijah got his first tooth! His second tooth came in just a week later. hurray!
He is no longer the Toothless Wonder!
(a little hard to see, but they are in there, believe me, he bites.)


call in the professionals

So, there was no way we could do this one ourselves. We called in the professionals (Portside Plumbing and Mechanical out of Sheboygan, in case anyone in the area is looking for a good plumber).
We were blessed with a nice tax return which we had counted on to make a bathroom remodel possible. It ended up being 'nice' enough to include a little bit of rearranging in the laundry room.
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Here we go...first off, Wayne pulled off some green floral wallpaper, and paneling that had gold stars on it. Below you can see what the bathroom walls looked like underneath...not too pretty. We had planned on just leaving the old walls, but when we saw this mess (and the huge holes that showed no insulation) we decided to have all the walls demo'd out and start fresh.
This is the closet area in the bathroom...it is going goodbye to make way for a new shower.


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There is the old mirror/medicine cabinet, and so forth...you can also see the cool 'gold stars' on the old paneling.


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Looking into the bathroom from the laundry room. This was just the first day and the guys already had the closet and walls demo'd out, the insulation in and the shower installed! Simply amazing!


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This is where the toilet and vanity used to be....so long old mess! (what an interesting disaster we discovered behind the walls. Layers and layers of old wall.)


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There is the new shower and ceiling with cutouts for the new lights.



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Up, up, up with the drywall! (outside, looking in)


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We also had new flooring put in...which meant that our appliances spent some time hanging out in the living room. Kinda nice having the milk and pop so convenient...but only eating microwave food is a drag.
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We chose a nice ceramic-tile-looking vinyl. Unfortunately for the flooring guys, the best way to install vinyl when you have radiators is to completely remove the radiators. So the radiators got to camp out in the living room too.
I felt so bad for the guys. I was upstairs with the kids, trying to stay out of the way, when they moved the large, long kitchen radiator. I heard one guy mention the weight amidst the rythmic, and slightly colorful, language (it was pretty funny actually..."one, two, three ferfenhiemer *grunt*...one, two, three snuzzeldorf*grunt*" [well, of course i can't write what they were saying! my mom reads this! just kidding. they were great guys and probably didn't realize i could here them; like i said, it was acutally kind of funny being on the listening end.])
What was I talking about...oh, yeah, one of the guys meantioned that he thought it weighed around 600 pounds!!! sacred heifer! [holy cow]


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The old asbestos tiles...buh-bye! Even just having the subfloor down was a great improvement!



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And there it is! The new floor!





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And the laundry room...the washer and dryer used to be on opposite walls. They like being friends and sitting next to each other. So happy together!


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ooh, aah! The bathroom now has a lightswitch IN the bathroom; it used to be outside in the laundry room. This great new switch features sterling white stitches and a glorious timer...not an old turn timer, but a new, high tech timer with buttons and lights...ooh, aah.







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The new toilet, mirror and sink! I know, I know, I gotta put the drawers and door back on still. We painted the old vanity an nice, rich black and it looks amazingly new! The old vanity was a little tired and worn out, but still solid. So for 10 bucks in paint, compared to 125, we have a new (looking) vanity.





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The walls are a light gray color so that I can change my mind and redecorate all the time! We plan on getting black and gray towels and hand towels and adding pops of color with the washcloths to match the shower curtain.
The shower surround is a Sterling 4 foot shower. This is a great shower if you don't have enough room for a full tub. A standard stall is 32 inches wide, this baby is 48! So much more room...




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And here is our cool shower curtain from World Market. I really wanted to find a black and white shower curtain, graphic, maybe floral, but i like this one too.





she did it again

ok, so the very next day...she does it again! after the nice conversation about stamps not being stickers and the time in 'the chair' and the crying and hugging and forgiving and the "let's not do that again" talk.....she did it again.




would you look at that guilty face!?! :) gotta love the girl

Thursday, March 11, 2010

seriously?



another one of those i turn my back for two seconds situations
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the laptop
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the chair
enough said

why do we keep doing this to ourselves? - kitchen remodel

Ok, so kitchen "remodel" is too grand a word for what we are actually planning to do. "Refinish", "Redecorate", or "Face-lift" is probably a better term.



Basically we are going to be taking down the old fake wood paneling and wallpaper, painting the walls a dark blue, and painting the cabinets white...eventually.






For now, we are simply trying to get the old fake wood paneling and wallpaper down, especially behind the radiator which is currently out while we are waiting for new vinyl flooring to be installed on Monday.
We started pulling down some wallpaper, then realised there was another layer, and potentially lots of cracks and defects in the wall. (it seems each project just snowballs like crazy...it should be soooo simple...pull off wallpaper, prime and paint; but it never is. why do we keep doing this to ourselves?)







Taking down the old wallpaper is proving to be very challenging.


The problem is that there seems to be two layers of wallpaper. And, in most places it is not simply one on top of another (which, while annoying, would actually be easier to take down), it is one top layer of wallpaper placed over the sticky paper backing of a previous wallpaper. So, we've got to pull off the picture part, soak through the first layer of sticky paper back, peel that off, soak through the second layer of sticky paper back, peel that off, then soak and literally scrape with a spatula the gunky residue left behind the final layer! As Sydney would say, "oh by gosh!"
I think it is going to take forever to get it all off!
You never know what the previous (or previous, previous) owner did to a house until you try and un/redo it.
I'm not bad-mouthing the previous owners...I know whoever buys this place from us someday will wonder, "what the he-eck were they doing?"
We all do things that others would wonder, "what were they thinking?" But, whatever we do, we are doing (hopefully) for the betterment of our family and home.
goodbye old wallpaper (i actually kind of like the blue paper...unfortunately [or maybe fortunately for Wayne who does not care for wallpaper] there was only a little bit left on the wall)

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

manitowoc in photos

we went for a walk the other day and took some photos around town


i can push the button



across the water from the Maritime Museum



Watching geese while eating animal crackers
sydney liked the big "bouncy ball" at the water treatment plant
house with neat architecture near our house

























huge beer signs on the Manitowoc Malt Plant, owned by Anheuser-Busch



these huge beers are just a couple of blocks down from our house...but i just found out there is actually no beer made at the plant...tons of barley gets processed into malt and then transported to other plants. just a bit of useless information











i turn my back for two seconds

this girl is bound and determined to live in "the chair" (a little wooden chair we use for time-out).



i go take care of elijah for two seconds, and she decides to decorate the fridge. she has a little write-on, wipe-off board on the fridge...apparently it was not big enough.



well, she's gotta learn to clean up after herself sometime.

she is looking at the marker stuffs on the papertowel and saying, "ewww...messy!"



she also put stickers all over her little table... right next to her special notebook just for stickers...go figure.

Feb. 25 - elijah 6 months

Elijah is now 6 months old.




Here he is with a cute alligator he got for christmas from the pastor's wife.










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guess who posed this picture....yup, grandpa fletcher




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here is sydney at 6 months...any guesses which picture grandpa sydney for?







i know, i know, she had three outfits and a headband....poor elijah only had one outfit. :P actually, we took the pictures while at grandma and grandpa's place, so we were limited in outfit choices.



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Elijah and grandpa playing around:



video