Wednesday, July 31, 2013

vaca recap: friday

After getting into VA on Thursday evening, we hung out with Sally's parents (Dottie & Glenn) while we waited for Sally and her brother (Mark) to arrive. Elden stayed up until about 8:30 and then we bathed him and laid him down in his pack n play around 9. At this point he was exhausted so he passed out easily. We. were. amped. given the fact that just 4 months ago he wanted nothing to do with it while we were in Chicago. Around 9:30 Sally arrived and Mark arrived about two hours later. We spent the night catching up and eating incredible chicken tortilla soup until we went to bed around midnight.

On Friday morning Jon got up with Elden and let me sleep in a bit (hero).
playing with Dottie
playing in the porch
jon being a model
After some playing and a nap we headed out to Georgetown so Jon could check out the campus because he's interested in applying there for his PhD. It was his only request of the trip so we had to honor it :) He absolutely loved it and I gotta say, the campus and its surrounding neighborhood were gorgeous. After about an hour we headed to The Italian Store in Arlington for subs that Sally raved about (she was right on the money). Following lunch and another nap, we headed to a concert in the park picnic. By this time, we had two other lovely people join us and we set up shop on a pretty secluded area of grass to chow down with the sound of an 80s cover band as our background music. 
not so sure about Uncle Mark
sally & sharm
playing with Kirsten
Elden loved being able to crawl all over and eat tons of different food (shocker) and we were able to stay there until about 8:00. From there we had to take a picture of Elden Street (but seriously, what are the odds?) and get frozen custard before heading back to the homestead to put Stinker to bed. 
After he was asleep we continued talking late into the evening before retiring a mere 45 minutes before someone decided he didn't want to sleep any longer. We were up until about 3 am with Elden until he went back to bed for the remainder of the night. Bless Sally and Dottie for watching our guy Saturday morning so Jon and I could recover a bit...

Tuesday, July 30, 2013


Our big, bouncing boy. Where to begin? Elden is a week shy of the big '1' and his toddlerisms are in full swing. He is stubborn like his papa and a schemer like his mama. He was gifted with a little walker/riding car that he has been scooting around on both upright and sitting. His favorites this week include being pushed around in the laundry basket (still) and turning the ceiling light on and off. Elden has begun pointing at things he wants and has signed 'dad' a few times (to Jon's delight). He consistently will crawl towards me and, if I'm standing, will pull himself up on my legs and reach up for me. We cannot believe that he is almost a year old!

tips for driving long distances with a one-year-old

We knew we were in for a challenge as soon as we realized the drive from here to Virginia was about 6.5 hours each way and that Elden would be a week shy of 1 for the trip. After some immediate brainstorming, we came up with some ideas to help make the trip as smooth as possible. That being said, we did not anticipate it going well, yet Elden absolutely amazed us. Here's a bit how each trip looked:

-Elden keeps busy for approximately 1.5 hours playing with toys, eating snacks, & having his bottle
-quick stop at first rest area in PA to change his diaper and mull around for a teeny bit
-1 additional hour until we got to IKEA in Pittsburgh
-2 hours spent in IKEA, including lunch and running around
-next 1.5 hours spent napping in the car
-wakes up, has bottle, we stop approximately an hour after he woke up at a Sheetz for lunch/30 minutes of roaming
-Elden keeps busy for approximately 1.5 hours playing with toys until we stopped at the Hagerstown outlets for approximately 20 minutes of roaming
-Elden is kind of feisty but overall content while we finish out the 1.25 hour drive to our destination

-Elden naps the first 1.5 hours in the car
-Elden keeps busy for approximately 1.5 hours playing with toys, eating snacks, & having his bottle until we got to another Sheetz for a 45-minute roaming break
-Elden keeps busy for another 1.5 hours in the car until we stop at a different Sheetz in WV for a quick break and to fill up
-Elden naps the next 1.5 hours
-30-minute stop at the first rest area in OH to crawl in the grass
-powered through the last 1.25 hours

Elden never had a single meltdown in the car. There were moments of fussing, sure, but that's about all it amounted to. We are THRILLED. So how did we accomplish this?

1. A travel bottle warmer - we were able to heat up Elden's bottles throughout the entire trip in the car. It was a total lifesaver and I am SO glad we bought it instead of worrying about stopping each time we needed to warm up a bottle.

2. Bags (literally) of toys. I brought 2 bags of Elden's smaller toys (books, blocks, etc.) and kept them in the front seat with me. Every time he got fussy (or threw one of his toys) I'd pass a new one back to him. He could usually go about an hour and a half at a time keeping himself entertained with his toys.

3. SNACKS. Now, I don't know if this would be the magical trick for all kiddos, but our kid LOVES to eat. Once the toys lost their charm and to buy us an extra 15-30 minutes in the car, we would let him snack. He would eat fruit and oyster crackers and be absolutely content.
4. Lots of stops. We gave ourselves no time limit to reach our destinations to help take the pressure off. We had tentatively planned on stopping at IKEA and Hagerstown on the way to VA, but we also planned on stopping whenever Elden became particularly fussy. Going at his pace made the trip a lot less stressful for all three of us. Along the same lines...

...5. Bring a blanket if your kiddo can't yet walk but is mobile. We stopped at 2 different Sheetz (3 total times), IKEA, Hagerstown, and 2-3 other rest areas during the trip. I had brought a medium-sized blanket that we were able to lay down each stop to eat and let Elden crawl around on without worrying about how many dogs had done their business where we sat. This really helped Elden get out some of his restlessness.
second Sheetz stop
6. Time it right. We briefly contemplated trying to drive through the night, but we knew if Elden was too uncomfortable to sleep in his carseat that would make the entire trip entirely miserable. He's normally happiest in the morning so we opted to leave right after breakfast. The timing is what saved us. We left each location by 9 am and got into VA around 6:30 pm which permitted travel during Elden's happiest times, as well as encouraged long periods of napping.
7. Be flexible. Follow your kiddo's cues. There were periods of time where Jon was in the back with him and I drove and vice versa. See also: #4.

I hope this is helpful for someone else out there. I honestly couldn't believe Elden handled that trip so well. You could tell he was over the car by midway through each trip because after each stop when we'd approach the car to strap him back in he would kick and pout a little. Nothing some distraction couldn't cure!

Monday, July 29, 2013

vacation stats

Since we just got back from a long weekend vacation just outside of D.C. to visit one of my best friends and her family, we're having a mad dash of catching up and prepping for Elden's first birthday bash. I intend on writing what will likely be multiple posts, including some tips on driving long distances with a toddler, Elden's 51-week recap (woof), etc. in the coming days. In the meantime, a picture and some stats:
2 - nights Elden slept in his pack n play without much (if any) drama
11 - blueberries consumed by Elden while berry picking in Maryland
3 - hours from home when we realized our GPS was set to avoid toll roads and added at least...
...2 - total hours to our trip each way
276 - cost of repairs to my car while we were gone
5 - size of Elden's first ever pair of Chuck Taylors (thanks Aunt Sally!)
1 - glasses of wine I knocked over
2.1 - hours spent at IKEA in Pittsburgh
363 - approximate miles traveled each way
3 - number of Sheetz stops
6 - doughnuts consumed by Jon and me in a 30-hour period
15 - approximate hours in the car round-trip
? - countless number of hugs and love our boy (and us!) received from Team Terrell
3 - number of Yahtzees I got
1035 (approximate) - number of times I complained about the game Yahtzee
1 - baby girls that called out in babble for our boy as we walked away from the fence at the orchard where they fell very briefly in love
5 - number of times Jon told me how much fun he had walking around Georgetown
1 - well-earned bath for the littlest visitor after devouring his ice cream cake

Wednesday, July 24, 2013


The floor is all finished in our half bath!
It didn't turn out as dark as we had hoped but we're loving that shine! A total improvement over the stained, peeling vinyl tiles that used to cover up this beaut.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013


Please forgive me for that awful band reference in the title of this post; I couldn't resist. Last night, my superhero finished his last two passes at sanding and also stained our half bath floor!
 Look at how beautiful that freshly sanded floor is!

I feel like none of these pictures do the color of the floor justice. Hopefully as we continue the project we will be able to do their deep brown hues justice in more natural light.
Today Jon is laying down the first urethane coat and hopefully final urethane coat. The next item on our list is remove the baseboard heater and begin the wainscoting. Slowly but surely this room is coming together! And quick update:
-create and put up faux wainscoting similar to this
-remove baseboard heater
-fix Frankencoldwaterpipe
-paint wainscoting
-remove any lingering nails/holes in wall; spackle
-paint walls/ceiling
-replace the disgusting cream-colored outlet and light switches
-refinish floors
-re-install and frame out bathroom mirror
-install new sink/trap/faucet we bought
-install new TP holder and towel ring
-replace ceiling light fixture
-remove disgusting old wax ring/random toilet remnants and replace/install new toilet

Monday, July 22, 2013


While 2/3 of Team Flip remains under the weather, the healthyish 1/3 trudges forward on the stinky half bath remodel.

Today alone, the aforementioned Sickly Two each had a respective primary care appointments and then 1/3 headed to daycare and 1/3 headed to work. Meanwhile, Jon began sanding the original hardwoods in the bathroom.
That picture was taken after the second pass with 2 remaining. Don't ask me why he's taking 4 total passes at it because I like to operate under the don't ask/don't tell protocol when it comes to hard work that I don't feel like being roped into in some way. Even just one pass is a far cry different from the other day. After the remaining sanding passes we'll move on to staining. Jon picked out a dark stain (specifically in the color kona) that I am incredibly excited for. Truth be told I hate the stain color of the floors in our house because I tend towards a darker/espresso-y finish and all of ours are a lighter red/honey hued. If I like how this turns out perhaps we will gradually refinish all the floors in the house to a darker stain... but probably not because time/money/life.

Sunday, July 21, 2013


Pardon the extra late weekly update--this family has been knocked down and kicked over and over again when it comes to life and health the last few weeks. Elden actually currently has a cough and just got over an ear infection and a double dose of pinkeye. He recently discovered bubbles and he loves them. He also loves being pushed all around the house in the empty laundry basket. This week's firsts include first time standing for more than a second unassisted (about 5!), first time at Steak and Shake (he was an angel!), and first ear infection since getting his tubes. On that subject, the nurse practitioner we saw for his cough couldn't locate the tube in the infected ear so it either already fell out or it was just hidden by gunk. All four of Elden's first molars have officially cut through bringing his tooth count up to twelve. By our estimates, his canines would be next which I'm sure will be a blast but then we'll only have his second molars left! At the rate he's going (average age the first molars come in range between 13-19 months) he'll have all of his teeth before he's a year and a half. We're definitely ready to be on the other side of teething. Elden has been extra cuddly lately, probably on account of all his sickies, but I don't care as long as I get my cuddles in!

Thursday, July 18, 2013

demo complete-ish

Last night we finished the final-ish steps of the bathroom demo. We removed the baseboards and several layers of crappy flooring until we hit the original hardwoods.
I say 'ish' because we have a plumber coming today to replace the disgustingly corroded galvanized bathroom sink wall pipes so I'm going to assume he has to break into the wall. We also discovered there was water damage to the hardwood beneath the toilet so we aren't sure what our next move is just yet. 
We're going to ask the plumber to check out that area and also prep the toilet drain for us (if necessary) so we can ultimately install the toilet ourselves when we're done with everything else. I also managed to hardcore clean the house last night (I may have gone heavy on the disinfectant spray) in an attempt to eradicate any pinkeye germs from Casa de Flip. I hope my efforts weren't in vain...

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

discouraged (+other thoughts)

With the arrival of warm (uncomfortably humid warm) weather & Elden's tubes I thought we would be on the other side of this neverending-sickness biznass.
Trying to escape the germs?
*insert the universe's cackle here*

On Friday, we discovered Elden had pinkeye in his left eye. We kept him home from school, treated it, and returned to daycare Monday.

Monday afternoon, we noticed some gnarly drainage from his left ear. We very quickly confirmed it was an infection and filled our ear drop prescription from the ENT.

Tuesday afternoon, we realized he had pinkeye in his right eye. He's home again today. He also has developed a bad cough that keeps him up throughout the night.

And guess what else. Chicken pox are going around daycare. So. That's likely going to happen (because of course).

I knew he would get sick a lot because of daycare. I also know this means that in all likelihood he will rarely get sick when he's of school age because he will have already caught every thing. Space intended. The child has caught every. dag. thing. that has gone around. But really? This is kind of ridiculous. To top it all off, we're supposed to go on a ridiculously anticipated (as in, I've been counting down for months) trip to Virginia next week to visit with my BFF's family that we haven't seen in 3 years and have therefore never met E. I'm pretty sure God is preparing my heart for some pox to rear their ugly heads on Wednesday night and we'll have to call the whole thing off. I already tend to be a glass-half-empty type and this will wreck me, but it comes with the baby territory.

Meanwhile, work has had me hella stressed out. Our car needs to go into the shop to be repaired with money we don't have. Jon (thankfully, praise Jesus) finished his ridiculous summer class yesterday, but up until that was incredibly stressed out with all the work he had to do for it. We're worn, we're frazzled, we're sleep-deprived. We try to dream of healthier and happier days where we won't have to freak out over finances every time a car repair pops up, but I suspect those days are years away. It's hard to have faith, to have hope. Life's given us a black eye, but at the very least our marriage is stronger for it. We had an incredible heart to heart last night that we suspect got to the core of some of our major communication problems lately, which I hope to detail in a separate post. Still, discouraged is probably our family theme word of the last couple of weeks.

+other thoughts
-I reallllllly want to go to Influence in Indianapolis in September. I'm guessing I could harass some Indiana-residing friends into housing me (and if that fails, I am not above sleeping in my car), so all I'd need to do is find the money for the conference itself. That being said, tickets are still around $230 so I don't think I'll be able to swing it. I might try to pursue a few sponsorship opportunities but I won't hold my breath. So, if you're interested in sponsoring me, send me an email and let's chat!
-I'm all about this Hellogoodbye album lately.
-Jon and I watched this movie last night. Jon agreed this was easily one of Ryan Gosling's best roles. Highly recommend.
-The plumber is coming Thursday to replace the pipes but then we hope to continue on with our renovation and have it wrapped up within the week.

Sunday, July 14, 2013


At 49 weeks, Elden has experienced his first case of pinkeye. We've been treating it with drops and he lets us put them in like a champ; in fact, he often giggles when we do it. He is right around 23 pounds and wearing primarily 12M clothes. He is getting better at pulling himself to standing and has even been able to periodically stand for a few seconds without holding on to anything. Elden's been giving us a good fight when it comes to eating lately so that's our current biggest battle. He LOVES playing patty cake, this little piggy, and giving high fives when prompted. We're able to tell he's tired when he rubs his eyes and rests his head on various objects (including, but not limited to: Marsala, me, his video baby monitor box in his room, stuffed animals, the floor). His ears look great since he got the tubes (we had 2 peds appointments and 1 ENT visit this week) and at the next ENT appointment they will re-check his hearing. He recently discovered eskimo kisses and thinks they're hysterical.

*You might have noticed a gradual progression of lack of effort for these weekly pictures. That's because a certain little person is quite unwilling to sit still and cooperate. We work with what we're given.

Saturday, July 13, 2013

dabbling in electrical work

Well, today there will be no half bath renovation. We agreed it was best to have a plumber come in to remove the completely corroded galvanized pipes in the walls from the basement to the bathroom, and no one can come until Thursday or Friday. Also, because the universe has a supreme sense of humor, Elden came down with a nasty (both QUITE literally and figuratively) case of pinkeye yesterday so depending on how his left eye looks when he wakes up this morning we may have to cancel. This is mostly on account of Nikki is planning on taking family photos for us before working on the reno and that would be awk if Elden looked like a pirate. We'll know by 7 for sure. Even if we do go through with everything, we will likely shift our focus to the sun porch instead.

Even though nothing new has happened with the bathroom, two exciting home-related things did happen yesterday. Our dryer bit the dust about 2.5 weeks ago and we finally got our new one (we also got its matching washer) delivered today. The only problem? The 220V outlet from our old dryer wasn't a match to the new plug. Feeling confident in my newly-discovered plumbing skillz, I decided I would install the correct outlet myself.
The washer!
Once Elden went to bed, Jon ran to Home Depot with his dad in his dad's truck to pick up some bathroom wainscoting supplies, bathroom floor stain, and the replacement dryer outlet.
The old outlet - our reminder pic, just in case
Together, Jon and I conquered the outlet change in about 30 minutes. Truthfully, the 2 hardest parts were figuring out how to remove the metal knockout piece (yes, we ultimately had to Google it) and getting the itty bitty screw to stay in place to screw on the guide(?). When it was all capped out we plugged in the dryer, turned the breakers back on, and crossed our fingers:
Success! All lit up!
I have a load of laundry in the dryer and one in the washer and I am so excited. I would have continued washing and line drying while we were dryerless, but we had a record 16 days of rain (which naturally lined up with our dryer disaster) so that wasn't an option. Reminded me how much I take for granted here!

Friday, July 12, 2013

half bath progress

I should warn you not to continue reading this if you have a weak stomach, are currently eating or just ate. When I thought the bathroom was disgusting as it was before, the universe decided to prove me wrong. Seriously. If you're in one of the 3 scenarios outlined above, you just need to go away. Please. For your sake.

Last night after work, our friend Bob made it over. Within about 15-20 minutes he had the toilet removed from the floor and out of our house.
Are you puking yet? No? Challenge accepted.

Sweet, sweet victory! Big thanks to Bob because without his help I'm confident that beast would still be in there. After Bob left and Elden was in bed, I headed to Home Depot to buy our new porcelain throne and also to get some advice about what I would need to install sink shut-off valves and how to do so. Enter the Home Depot Trifecta of employees. The 10-years-past-middle-age lady who helped me lift the toilet into my cart let out a big ole toot when we squatted to lift with our legs. Truthfully, I didn't realize that's what happened until she embarrassingly excused herself. I felt so bad for her--I think farts are great but can appreciate the discomfort of one squeaking by in a public arena. Just ask Jon or just about anyone else in my life how much I enjoy a good fart. No need for embarrassment here. If I would have been able to at that moment in time, I would have let one rip just to make her feel better. Either way, she understandably hurried away towards the back of the store and I wandered around for about ten minutes searching for plumbing accessories and a HD employee. When I came up empty-handed on both accounts, I approached a woman at the service desk with the hope of her paging someone and pointing me in the right direction.

Instead I was met with extreme condescension, sass, and general rudeness. She proceeded to basically tell me I was an idiot and if I tried to install shut-off valves it would end terribly and puppies all over the world would die.

I might have almost cried. Instead I got pissed and was determined to prove her wrong. I headed towards the back of the store where I stumbled into the plumbing section like a new 21-year-old at a bar. In the plumbing section was the sweetest and most redeeming old man who clearly knew what he was talking about. Not only did he tell me exactly how to install the valves and provide me with the necessary supplies, but he also helped me pick up a few things/told me how to install them for the toilet (needed a new metal plate or something). Unfortunately, he gave me the wrong size valve (1/2" inlet--turns out we needed 3/8" inlet and 3/8" outlet) but I'll let it slide since he was going strictly off a picture I took of the sink connections and I had no valuable contributions myself.
The picture he went off to guide me
Of course, I didn't know I had the wrong size until Jon and I (after about 30-45 minutes of fighting it) managed to get the sink apart and off the wall so I rushed back to HD with the fear that they would be closed before I got there. This would be a huge disaster because a) things would be leaking even with the water off thanks to what was in the pipes and b) we couldn't use our only other bathroom because the water would have to be kept off. Luckily, I got there in time and got home with the correct shut-off valve size. We ran into another issue with the cold water line--the previous owners had totally jerry-rigged it and welded pieces parts together to make a Frankenpipe:
When we removed this awful piece, there was barely any room left to attach the shut-off valve. We made do with what we had for the sake of calling it a night (it was now almost 9:30 which, for us, is like 4 am for most people). There's still a piece in there that needs to be replaced because it is incredibly corroded and clogged. Jon's mission is to do that tomorrow to see if that improves cold water flow since there was no cold water flow to that sink before (now we know why). If getting rid of that little section doesn't resolve it we will have to bring in a plumber. Either way, we're really darn proud of ourselves for getting this far:
Next up on the list, we're removing the baseboards and 3 layers of old flooring to expose the hardwoods underneath. We'll likely wait to refinish them until everything else is done because they wouldn't be dry for us to stand on this weekend if we try to squeeze them in. Other notable to do items include:
-create and put up faux wainscoting similar to this
-remove baseboard heater
-fix Frankencoldwaterpipe
-paint wainscoting
-remove any lingering nails/holes in wall; spackle
-paint walls/ceiling
-replace the disgusting cream-colored outlet and light switches
-refinish floors
-re-install and frame out bathroom mirror
-install new sink/trap/faucet we bought
-install new TP holder and towel ring
-replace ceiling light fixture
-remove disgusting old wax ring/random toilet remnants and replace/install new toilet

I might be missing a few things and we are definitely going to wait on a few of these items until we hit up IKEA in a few weeks, but I'm actually a teeny bit excited (and not just weary) of this project now.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

ominous sign

Our friend was unable to make it over last night to help with the bathroom due to ridiculous flooding (that almost prevented me from getting home/almost killed my car thrice).

He's going to try to make it over tonight instead. I'm also going to try to install some sink shut-off valves myself tonight.

I hope the flooding yesterday isn't a sign of what's to come when I try my hand at plumbing...

Wish me luck!

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

on bathroom remodels

So naturally, since we still haven't finished our upstairs full bathroom remodel, I figured we'd start on a new project, also in a bathroom!

I've mentioned before that our downstairs half bathroom terrifies me. It's off the kitchen at the top of the basement stairs and is literally something of a horror film. The size of a closet, outdated, and just disgusting. Don't believe me? Brace yourselves for the before pictures:
Now, I have good reason (ish) for starting this now. Our friends, Nikki and Jim, are coming over this weekend to help us with the remodel--a date that we've had on the books since January. We are having Elden's first birthday at our house the first weekend in August and we wanted people to be able to use that bathroom instead of going upstairs for ours, so it was time. I also felt bad because my grandma has a hard time with stairs and would have to use that bathroom whenever she is over. 

In preparation for our weekend renovation, Nikki said it would be best if I could remove the tile, sink and toilet (and floor... there are original hardwoods under that disgusting linoleum that we want to stain espresso). I shut off the water to the toilet first and scooped out as much water as I could. At this point I wasn't sure if the whole bathroom water supply needed to be shut off (plumber I am not) so I waited to start unscrewing the toilet. I also didn't know how to shut off the sink (because, like everything else that is ridiculous with our house, there is apparently no shut-off valve directly at our sink, just in the basement) so while Jon was running errands I shifted my focus to that awful tile. I used a painter's tool and a hammer and chipped away. The tile came off surprisingly easy (I never knew, I thought it would be nearly impossible to get off) but the further into it I got and the sheet rock (probably not what it's called) started coming off as well, so I got all panicky:
It was at this point that I started to look like this:
"Why did I think this would be a good ideaaaaa!?"
I eventually got all of the tile off and shifted my focus to removing the sink. Jon shut off the water and, per my dad's advice, we ran around to the other critical water-using areas of the house to make sure they were still on. Kitchen? Check. Our bathroom? FAIL. So, the sink is still intact today. I need to go to the store and buy some local shut-off valves (is it a valve? a trinket? a thingamajig?) for the sink so we can turn off the water, install the valve/remove the sink, and turn the water back on without installing the new sink just yet. Since I couldn't do that, I shifted my focus to the toilet. I got one floor bolt off no problem. The other one is rusted together with its bolt and just kept spinning, spinning, spinning. So, I angrily started on the wing nut where the tank and bowl meet. Same issue on both of those as the rusted floor bolt. After about 2 hours of fighting with the bathroom I decided to call it quits for the night. We have a good friend, Bob, coming over after work today to try to help me with the toilet (and little does he know, the sink...) so that I can start pulling up the flooring in there ASAP to try to stain it before the weekend.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013


It's no secret that Elden is mad about his baths. He LOVES the water and everything about the tub. One of his favorite things to do is to knock the shampoo bottle off the shelf and into the water. Because of his affinity for water, my parents got him a baby pool for their house and he adores it:
I also decided I wanted to get him a splash mat for his 'big' first birthday present. Since it's been particularly hot and muggy lately, we decided to break it out yesterday since Elden has no concept of what/when a birthday really is anyway. We found this one at Big Lots for $40--a bit pricier than I would have preferred but since it's actually really his only gift from us (besides a $10 toy we bought late last year that we'll give him on his actual birthday) I figured it was excusable.
He LOVED it. Granted, he only loved it for about 15 minutes, but it was almost time for his 4:30 bottle so I'll chalk it up to hunger. It was also big enough that Jon and I could both sit in it with him so I'd be lying if I said it wasn't really refreshing for us, too.

I totally wish we had this last summer when it was hotter than the sun and I was the size of an asteroid. I have a feeling we'll get a lot of use out of it the rest of the summer and we also hope to set it up for Elden's first birthday party. We were really happy with the purchase!

Saturday, July 6, 2013


Elden has definitely entered an interactive phase at 48 weeks. He is very much into mimicry and will now fake yawn if you yawn, say 'ooooo' with the cutest little round lips, try and blink fast if you blink fast, and sticks out his tongue. He also gives kisses on the mouth which is adorable (and very slobbery). He is still a crawling fiend and can physically support himself to walk, he just doesn't have the balance to do it solo. He can consistently pull himself to standing. He spent his first night away from us this week and can also whistle (not purposefully, I don't believe). Three of four molars have popped through and based on the past few days I suspect #4 is working on its debut. Elden can be shy at times but it's not debilitating for him - he will still smile, make eye contact, etc., while burying his head against my chest. He usually warms up after a few minutes, though. Party planning is in full swing and we have now figured out his birthday menu which was easily the biggest obstacle for us. Getting Elden's weekly picture has gotten more challenging now that he is mobile because he always wants to go! go! go! so trying to get him to sit still is quite the spectacle. We can't believe we nearly have a one-year-old on our hands but we are also very excited to see what the next year in his life will bring!

Friday, July 5, 2013

getaway part 2

We crashed pretty hard once we got back to the inn.
We watched an episode of some HGTV show (we're wild like that) and Jon did a bunch of homework for his stupid summer class. He woke up on his own around 6:45 and I somehow managed to stay asleep until 8:30! I'm chalking that up to a win. Breakfast included ham bowls with egg and asparagus, so you know I was a happy camper.
We ate at a table with the two other couples that had stayed there the previous night and actually had a really great conversation. We even hung around after and harassed one of the couples to continue conversing. They were from California, in visiting her sister, and I was super angry that they lived across the country because they were my type of people. I could totally see us being besties with them (not sure if the feeling was reciprocated, ha!) so it was cool chatting.
After breakfast we packed up and wandered town for a little bit before heading towards a place that was supposedly voted the "#1 place to take out-of-town friends to visit!" 
I think you know where this is going. Was it a literal house? Yes. Was there cheese? Also yes. There also happened to be a smorgasbord of other items.

We stayed a hot second before peacing out towards an Amish restaurant for lunch. Lunch was similarly disappointing but the pie was almost redemptive. Around 1:00 we headed back towards home where we excitedly squeezed our little man tight before putting him down for a nap. It was a big step for all three of us and we are so grateful to have been able to reconnect and nurture our marriage for a blissful 24 hours.
I highly, highly, highly recommend the inn and the Spoon Market. The burger joint was okay and you know how I feel about the cheese house. Jon and I hope to head back to the B&B again eventually! Also, we found our janky shutter building twin!: