Thursday, July 28, 2011

A Season of Change

That sums up our life lately. A lot of big changes going on. I've had several things to blog about but haven't made time (sorry....I was reading a great book so any free time was being devoted to that. Check out the book list.) So here's a summary of what's been happening lately:

  • Firstly, our brother-in-law made it safely home from Afghanistan last week! We all got to go to the welcome home ceremony and I was so honored to be there. It was such an emotional day, you could physically feel it in your body. It hit me hard as we were on our way and the streets of the small town the ceremony was being held in were lined with people waving flags to greet the motorcade of soldiers as they passed. It felt like every American flag I saw that day was hanging in their honor. Such relief I felt for my sister. Even driving to their house for lunch with friends and family afterwards felt surreal. For the first time in a year I wasn't going over there to pick up her girls or keep her company.

  • And a change in scenery- Jon finished the landscaping in the back and it looks gorgeous. I had something like this in mind but honestly didn't think it would be affordable or would turn out this nice. Its perfect.

  • A biggie, which most of you probably know by now is my parents are moving this Memphis. My dad got a job offer at Grace Evangelical Church that suited his gifts and talents to a T. Its an associate pastor position so he'll be teaching an adult Sunday School class, assisting/mentoring a younger pastor on staff in men's ministries and doing pastoral care (funerals, weddings, hospital visits, etc.). They sold their house her in Johnston in a week so that was a huge stress reliever. Everyone keeps asking me if I'm sad and the answer is...not yet. I know I will be (and shed the first tears about it last night during a slide show at a going-away party at their old church.) But I'm an optimist. Its my natural reaction to only focus on the positives. I love having an excuse to travel a lot and thankfully we'll have a warmer place to visit during the loooong winter months in Iowa. And I think in the long run it will bring us closer--a lot less "quantity time" but a lot more quality time.

  • And subsequent to the previous change, I'll be quitting my 2 day a week job at America's Family Coaches to stay home full time (since my mom provided one of those days of childcare). I'm thankful for this transition as I only went back to fill in the gap a bit financially, but Jon's job is going well and prayerfully will continue to get better with each passing month. I have to admit, I finally understand why moms look forward to the start of school every year as the days with two very active boys are long. So I'm excited for the routine of 4 day preschool to help a bit.

  • And perhaps the biggest change of all will be arriving around February 23, 2012. Hopefully of the female variety this time ;)

Sunday, July 17, 2011

You can never have too much Candy...

At least this kind. My best friend (for 10 years now!) came for a quick visit from Cali last weekend. She left her 2 kiddos at home so I made sure to have plenty of childcare lined up and we had all kinds of fun.

Day 1: Lunch downtown (my new favorite place--Proof. We didn't stop thinking about that lunch all weekend) and shopping in the East Village (also found my new favorite store--Porch Light. Tons of adorable vintage stuff). An afternoon coffee and dessert at Smokey Row, then we went out to dinner and to the Funny Bone comedy club that night with Jon.

Day 2: relaxing day at the pool. The Colyers had some family in town so they planned a day at the pool (seen here). Jon was so sweet and kept the boys that morning so we could go over by ourselves and have a couple of glorious quiet hours to read in the sun. The rest of the family joined after lunch.

Some neighbors had some puppies for sale. I'm a huge sucker for baby animals (but not at all a sucker for full grown animals so I'm totally fine with just cuddling them and letting somebody else take them home)

Day 3: Gateway Market for lunch (free kids meals all weekend! Have you had the french fries there?? Ummm, yeah. Pretty sure I dreamt about them that night) then Jon tagged along with the ladies to Jordan Creek mall for some more shopping.

There were a couple of movies in our theatre room and a pint of Ben and Jerry's Coffee Heath Bar Crunch in there somewhere. The next day we headed to Omaha for an early dinner at Twisted Fork in the Old Market (delicious- i definitely recommend it. And I loved the cowboy chic decor.) and then we said farewell at the airport, most likely until next year. It was a perfect weekend (and thanks to my moms for keeping the boys!). I'm so blessed to have a friend like her but always wish it didn't require a plane to see her. Maybe we'll be next door neighbors in heaven.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Phase 1 Complete

After several delays due to the weeks of torrential downpours we had, Jon finally got the cement poured for the patio! It was a big job but he and a couple other guys got it finished in just a couple of hours. I was impressed (although I'm always impressed by my hubby!).

A couple of new chairs from Target and we're set! (Although someday I would love something like these, these cheapos will do just fine for now):

The view from the new chairs:

And the view from our living room...when it's just too hot to sit out there anymore, I can sit next to the window to supervise:

On to Phase 2: Landscaping...