Saturday, January 11, 2014

Quick-Takes from 2013

1. Getting settled in our new house took longer than we thought.  We got off to a rough start with the entire family falling prey to the flu within the first two weeks of January.  Gaining momentum after that was.....difficult. I still have stacks of photos that haven't been hung and empty walls begging for some sort of decoration.  We did get the school room painted - which I love - but the rest of the house is still beige.

2.  We have faced various difficulties with our home.  Including but not limited to:
  • A brown recluse infestation.  No kidding.  We identified the first one in May and proceeded to catch at least 80+ on sticky traps through out the summer.  Oh. My. Gracious.  Can you even imagine the spider paranoia I have now?  We've also found a few black widows outside the house....but somehow those just aren't as scary to me.  Up-sides - our kids are pros at identifying the two most dangerous spiders in our country, and we haven't seen any new ones in months.  Here's hoping that never happens again. 
  • Termites.  Thankfully the damage was minor.  And the house was under contract with an exterminator.  
  • Water damage to the foundation.  Found near where the termites were. Should have been discovered by the home inspector before purchase.  It wasn't. Thankfully, the termite company repaired all the damage because of the termites.
  • AC issues.  Twice. 
  • Water leaks in the house - one due to poorly routed pipes in the attic, others due to poorly done roof. (which was just replaced two years ago due to minor hail damage).  
  • Sinking portion of driveway and retaining wall.  Hasn't been fixed yet. 
  • Upstairs Heater went out.  Twice. On the coldest week of the year, with wind-chills around -10°.
3. We got hens!  Six cute fluffy Rhode Island Red chicks, who rapidly grew into the sweetest hens ever.  And they're awesome layers.....they started laying at just 17 weeks old and we get an egg a day from each of them. That's right, I haven't bought eggs since June.

Grant loves the chicks....and they love him.  Even now. 

Our cute little hen house and run - while still under construction -  under our deck. 

4. I started drinking coffee.  It began as an occasional mocha when I was really tired.  Now it's becoming part of the morning routine.  We use an Aeropress and love it. Actually, that's probably why I started the habit in the first place.  It's just so easy to make 1 cup of coffee at at time, whenever you want. 

5. I ran my first 5K in May, with my sister Anna. Then I stopped running for awhile, injured both knees when I tried to start back up, and haven't run any more.  I'd love to run another 5K this spring, though.  I'm just having a hard time motivating myself to go running in the cold.  We've had wicked cold temps the past few weeks.  

It was snowing.  In May.  My lips have never been so cold. 

6. I gained 10 lbs. this year. I'm crediting that to stopping nursing, stopping running, and eating a lot.  Particularly sweets when I'm depressed. Or tired.  Or bored.  Or lonely. And I've been at least one of those pretty much constantly. 
I'm determined to get back into regular exercise and control my eating more.  

7. My mom battled and conquered breast cancer. I'm so proud of her.  And thankful that God has carried her through this trial victoriously. I'm also so thankful that we are here near her and Dad and could be some help and support for them.  

8. Grant and I spent 3 days building this.  In July. Wow, was that hot.  But totally worth it....the kids love it.

9. We got a used boat and spent a lot of time at the lake.  The kids learned to tube....and Grant learned to water-ski.  I *started* learning how to drive a boat.  Oh, and my first time tubing, with my younger sister Anna and a boat load of her friends, I almost lost my swim skirt.  I seriously had to let go of the tube while going 30 mph to grab it as the water pressure rapidly pulled it to my knees. That was.....funny.  

I wear one-pieces for tubing now. 

Annika and Corban

10. Grant and I got to take our first weekend trip without kids....EVER!  Much thanks to my parents for babysitting!  We stayed at a lovely bed and breakfast in Branson and enjoyed peaceful dinners out, shopping, Silver Dollar City, the Branson Belle Showboat, and ziplining.  

On the Showboat

11. I've made tons of new recipes, many of which haven't made it to the blog. Time just slips away from me and there usually seems to be more important things to do than sit down and write out a recipe and edit photos.  Assuming I even took photos.  But I still love blogging and I plan to continue posting the recipes we love as much as I can.

Here are a few of the recipes I've made in the past month.  Hopefully I'll get them posted sometime! :) 

Thanks for reading and coming to visit - I truly appreciate all of my readers and friends and love hearing from you!  Hoping for a wonderful New Year for each and every one!  


  1. Still reading... Thought I would let you know. Every time I make lentil casserole... I say a little prayer for your family!! Will say a bigger prayer now that I know about the spiders!! Ick!

    Have a blessed year!

    1. Thank you so much, Carrie! I truly appreciate all the prayers! I'm telling you what, those spiders gave me a ton of anxiety. It's been soooo nice to not see any this fall and winter. None of our neighbors had the problems we we're hoping it was just the result of the house being vacant for a long time before we moved in.


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