Friday, December 29, 2006

Some more "work" pictures. You can really see how I am almost doubling the size of my house.

I told the construction crew that I would be more than happy to give them copies of some of these pictures so they could prove to their families that they are actually working :) .

They were hoping to get the roof trusses up but one of their suppliers brought the wrong size boards for something or other. It will be interesting to see how far they get by the time I get home. They work fast!

little backhoe
my back yard - the horses are really impressed
My soon to be beauteous house
From the back
Look at what happens in just one day and a half. I took these pictures just past noon on Friday Dec. 29th.

Off to the side - this will be my new entry door
backfilling to the foundation
very efficient little machine
very busy in the inside
looking out at what will be a bedroom

Thursday, December 28, 2006

So what did everyone else wake up to the day after Christmas? Forms were done on Friday and the concrete was pumped in on Tuesday morning. I now have a new additional foundation. Oh and that black mass hanging on to the back end of my house is the water heater.

I get tired just looking at it. It was cold and miserably wet day on Tuesday too. I feel for my contractor and his guys, but, boy, am I glad they are out there doing it!

Snowball Fight - Saturday December 23rd 6pm!

Nathan's first Christmas! He knew what to do with those tools and his new "car" pillow as well.

New toy excitement done. Time to settle in for a nap! Spike helps out by being a pillow/heating pad.

Christmas was a blast. We did it right this year and went to mom's Christmas Eve (after taking care of all the animals) for dinner and presents. I kept all the kids' presents at home so I did not have to pack them in the car twice. We beat the odds and had a white christmas. Managed that by beating the snow by about 25 minutes Saturday night. We got 3-4 inches in the next couple of hours. It warmed up Sunday and Monday but the snow stayed and we got a little bit more Sunday night as I was driving home at 11pm.

Kids had a blast in the snow. Nathan's first real snow fall - ever! He learned right quick how to make them snowballs and throw!

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Pictures taken the morning of wednesday Dec. 20th on my way out the door to work. Bulldozer moved in last night. The dogs are taking credit for the large hole.

I think they needed to get the bulldozer because they cannot move my "back porch" which is a huge concrete slab over two feet thick.

The kids want to keep the hole so they can have a big ol' foxhole in the winter and a swimming pool in the summer. Just not going to happen.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

The wonders of remodeling big time. I got home last night to no water - zip, zilch, nada. Thought the pipes had frozen due to our very cold temps and the fact that they had opened up the back end of the house. So I put a heater in the well house and covered up the openings to under the house. Being the good farm girl that I am I took a horse bucket, broke the ice on Chance's stock tank and brought some water in to water the dogs and flush the toilet. Thought I would give it the night to see if the lights thawed out the hoses in the well house.

Woke up this morning to no such luck. Okay -fed, watered, brushed my teeth using the tiny bit of bottled water left (yep stayed on a boat too so that experience came in handy when it comes to conserving water) and got everyone ready for work and school. Left a note for my very nice contractor about the no water issue.

Got a call about 1 pm. Contractor had found the problem. A breaker had flipped but ever such a tiny bit and yes, I had checked in the pitch dark the night before. He said he had a problem seeing it in the light of day so not to feel bad. Got home tonight to water. Also got home to missing a gate latch. I discovered that and the huge chasm right outside my back gate when I let the dogs out. A little too quiet I thought so I went looking for them. Sure enough they were running around doing the poodle equivalent of born free through the paddock and the barn. Thank god the chickens were already up for the night or there might have been some carnage.

But now I have mounds of dirt, half a huge hole and a big ol' bulldozer hanging out in my driveway. Now how nice is your contractor when he calls you and asks if you want him to spread your very very nice topsoil on your yard instead of trying to dump it?!

I will try for some more "in process" pictures tomorrow.

Nice thing is that kids and dogs just don't notice any inconveniences which makes it easier for mama to ignore them as well.

Monday, December 18, 2006

Oh and I am adding two bedrooms, a bathroom, and a regular utlity room to my house. They are tearing down the add ons that were put in place sometime in the last 70 years that were not quite up to par and adding what I need.

Right now my house is 2 bedrooms and 1 bathroom. Just not enough bathrooms when one little guy likes to "go poop" for about 30 minutes. We all know that means playing with his toys and stripping naked while sitting on the toilet. But a boy going poop just needs his space and everyone else needs another bathroom.
I got home from work Friday night to some demolition in progress. I am so glad they have finally begun. We (the contractors and I both) all want this part done so the real building can begin. They figure once the framing starts it will be quick. Unfortunately the exterior paint will not be done until the spring. It has to be over 50 degrees for over 5 hours for it to dry properly.

So how scary is it to have your house torn down in the middle of winter? Not too bad I must say. I think I was more nervous waiting for them to begin.

This final picture is me standing in what used to be my totally enclosed mud room. I can tell you I have some definitely pissed off cats that are wondering where their sleeping room has gone.
So it begins ... I have been trying to figure out what to do with my too small house (Which I love) in relation to a growing family. My house was built in 1937. The prior homeowners seemed to have done quite a bit themselves - not always to the benefit of the house. After talking to several contractors who said it would be too hard and expensive to add on to my house I had decided to buy a manufactured and put it out on my property in back. I did not like that idea because there are no trees back there for shade and I would basically be starting from scratch in the landscape/yard department.

But in one last impulse phone call I found the contractors that not only felt the job was doable but that they could get going asap and by asap I mean within two months of talking to them. They came up with the new floorplan even. So far after getting all the subcontractors out there and getting all the details worked out (permit was a little more difficult since my septic system was not on file with the county etc) they are only starting a couple weeks late. And I must say that they were put behind a week due to rain here.

Little old farmhouse - it just doesn't know what is about to happen to it. Notice the bush taking over the back end of the house.

Friday, December 15, 2006

You can see the "gang" problem we have going on here in Idaho. I caught a picture of the ruffians as they were making plans. Not sure what the plans were but I am sure they some how involved being cool.

Stupid Girls!!

Isn't it wonderful when your nephew is around to help teach your young son new words and phrases. Last weekend Dakota enjoyed teaching Nathan a new phrase - see above. Nathan is now able to use and intone that phrase with exactly the right amount of disdain that a little 3 yo can muster. What is really nice is when you are out at your daughter's ballet recital and your sweet dear little boy is having an immensely good time playing on the seats that go up and down. Then you notice that he is busy putting up the seat and then down while intoning "stupid thing". Isn't it fascinating how a young'un can learn certain words and use them in appropriate or is that (inappropriate) manner so quickly.

On the plus side he surprised me this week by all of a sudden saying "you're welcome" as needed and politely. He must have learned that at daycare :). So when they say you need to watch what you say around little kids they are right, but you must also watch your daughter, niece, and nephew like a hawk as well. I do believe I caught Sarita attempting to teach Nathan that the dining room table was actually a tree.

Oh and the new phrase that I have heard come from Nathan several times this week:
"What the hec?!"

Now where the hec would he pick that up from?

Saturday, December 09, 2006

The big day was Friday for Nathaniel's ear tubes. Sarita spent the night at a friend's house since we were leaving at 5:30 am in order to be at the doctor's by 6:45am. I got up at 4am to make sure the horses and dogs were set. I did not really wake Nathan up. I cheated and semi-dressed him while he was sleeping. I was so hoping he would sleep all the way in but that was not to be. He was awake and ready to go at 5:30 am.

Thank god that the doctor's office was very well prepared to deal with kids. Plenty of toys to keep him busy and, of course, lots of chairs to climb up and on and over. There was one other little girl there that looked to be about 18months to 2 years that was getting ear tubes. They take them in by age so she was first and then Nathan's turn. They took us into what was the equivalent of a emergency room setup. Central nurses station with lots of little rooms that were curtained off from each other. Nathan was up and down the halls keeping mom plenty busy looking for him while we waited our turn. His greatest excitement was at discovering he could close the curtain to our "room" and it was like being in a tent. He kept closing it then climbing underneath to stand on the other side. He would then yell "mama", laugh uproariously, and swing open the curtain. Thankfully the nursing staff was more amused than ticked off.

They then scooped him up (they had forewarned me of their method) and hurried him into the surgical room. 7-10 minutes later he was back snoring away. Dr. Rustad is very good at inserting these tubes in. He is also good with the kids (and the parents). They want the kids to wake up as naturally as possibly but 12 minutes later the nurse was telling me to go ahead and start waking him up. He was up early after all and needed his sleep. He woke up without any crying, had a big drink from his sippy cup and was apparently ready to go. Now this was my favorite part. Being all of 3 and the boss of everyone he wanted to hold on to his sippy cup, his Nemo backpack (on wheels) and his anasthesia mask (they let the kids keep them). He started walking down the hallway to the exit - very drunken soldier like - but as he swayed back and forth he would NOT let mama take his stuff. There were about 4 nurses and the doctors checking out his progress trying real hard not to laugh. When he turned the corner and decided he needed to climb a stepstool on his way out , Mama had to step in, scoop the drunken soldier up and carry him on out. He was ok with that as long as he still got to hold on to all his stuff.

Unlike many stories - once awake he stayed awake. Actually once he got breakfast in him he was wide awake and raring to go. And go he did - ALL DAY. He did not take a nap and would not go to bed until 9pm that night. Then he absolutely passed out and slept over 12 hours. Mom got her 7 hours in so I was a bit better off today. Sarita had her clogging performance today so it was another day off up and out.

So far I have not noticed any differences. He does not like the ear drops but he only has to have them for 3 days total so that is good. The doctor said he had a LOT of fluid built up behind his ears and especially the right one. He thought he would mainly feel weird for a couple of days due to the pressure differences but not that I have seen. We go back in 3 weeks to see if his hearing is any better and check on the tubes.