Tuesday, January 15, 2013

...and we're back!

QUICK NOTE: I've decided to start using my children's real names.  I made the decision to come up with screen names for them years ago, and the reasons I had then no longer seem important today.  So.  From now on: Andrew, Elijah, Lavella and Jonah.  There it is.

Well.  When I've been out of the blogging habit this long, it's kind of hard to know where to begin.  I'm not going to give you a full recap, because that would just be POKEMYEYESOUTBORING and I do my best not to bore my friends.  Although actually, some of my friends probably wish I'd be a little more boring.  Oh well, no matter, MOVING ON!

Here's the highlights:

The first two weeks of December, I worked harder than I may have ever worked in my life, packing up our family to move, scrubbing down the old house, preparing our new house (spackle, paint, pulling down wallpaper, etc.), and trying to keep the children and myself alive and well through it all.  Thankfully I have friends who love me, who stopped in here and there during that OH SO HECTIC holiday month to help out an hour or two here or there, wherever they could.

Learning to skip-trowel my bathroom
Learning to skip-trowel the bathroom walls

Preparing to paint my bathroom a clean, warm white
Getting ready to paint with the PERFECT WARM WHITE (thanks Becca...)  ;-)

Cutting out the old caulking in the upstairs shower
Cutting old caulking out of the shower

Jonah, working on cleaning the sanding dust from our new kitchen table
Wiping the sanding dust off the new kitchen table (built by our friend Josh, finished by Jonah, Elijah and me)

Sanding off the stain on the edges: giving a worn look to my brand new kitchen table
Giving a worn look to the new table by sanding stain off the edges

Learning to use a sander

Jonah, helping me put a poly-coat on the new kitchen table
There's nothing like applying a poly-coat with a Crayola watercolor brush...

Kitchen table -- handmade by a friend, finished by me
Table in progress (I promise a finished pic soon -- we've been using it in our new kitchen since we moved in!)

Some brain-candy for the new house

Housewarming gift
A rather fabulous housewarming gift (thank you Becca!)

Greg graduated from the nearly year-long course he'd been taking and drove home to live with us again (yay!!) on December 14th.  We sent our children to spend the weekend with friends, then spent those two days cleaning and packing all of the last minute things.  On Monday and Tuesday (17th and 18th), a bunch of our friends came and helped us load all of our boxes into a U-Haul truck, get it officially weighed at a truck-stop (so the Army would pay us per pound for household goods), and move everything into our new place.

Once we'd gotten everything in, Greg and I began the huge task of unpacking and setting up our new home...this time, in a place we plan to live in for the rest of our lives.  (For those of you who are wondering -- yes, Greg will still be stationed other places at different points in the remaining 8-10 years of his career, but we felt this was the best choice for our children and me to stay here, and for him to live with us as often as he possibly can.)

We took Christmas Day off as a time to just enjoy our children and each other, but then got back to work the next day, and managed to get the house almost entirely set up by our goal date: New Year's Eve.

Christmas 2013
Opening gifts from family on the East Coast using Skype

Christmas 2013

Christmas 2013

Christmas 2013

Christmas 2013

Christmas 2013

We had a great big "first party" on New Year's Eve with friends and neighbors to christen the new house, and it was an incredible feeling -- for the first time ever, we were really, truly HOME.

Angela, me, Greg, Josh: New Year's Eve
Greg and I with our BFF's, Angela and Josh

Tom on New Year's Eve in his Weird Science costume showing off his giant High Life
It was a costume party, so our friends Tom and Susanne dressed up as the kids from Weird Science.  Unfortunately I don't have a picture of them with their bra-head get-ups together, but it's hard to shoot anything while hosting a party of this size!

Jenny and I on New Year's Eve

Greg took leave from the day of his graduation until the end of last week, so we made sure to get in some daytime dates.

Early morning run with my favorite guy
Early morning run with my favorite guy

Lunch date with my guy
Lunch Date

Antique store shopping date
Antique store browsing - one of our favorite relaxing, low-key dates

Antique store shopping date
...might this be the beginning of a teacup collection for my studio....?

On Friday morning, he began the process of signing back in at Ft Hood, and yesterday was his first full day back to work.

Today, I'm sitting here at my computer typing this, thinking how crazy it is that...just like that...after all of the effort, sweat, tears, projects, emotions, struggles...here we are, living our normal life again.  Family.  Together.  Jonah's taking a nap.  The three older children are just about to walk in the door from school.  I will start dinner.  In 3 hours my children will jump on Greg as he walks in the door with his Army uniform on, ready to eat dinner with us.  Just like that.  It's good to be together.

Well.  I hope I didn't bore you to the point of tears, and everyone still has their eyes.  I've got some ideas for blogging in the coming year, and mostly...I'm just glad to be HOME HOME HOME!!!


SandL said...

Welcome back to blogland, Faith. I missed reading your blog and watching your children grow. I live in Maryland and do not usual respond to blogs. My three kids are teenagers and keep me busy. If you ever travel back to Md Sheep & Wool, please send me an email.

Dani G. said...

So Texas is home now? Huh.

Carie said...

Welcome back - I missed your posts but guessed you were just a tad busy with four small people! And CONGRATULATIONS on your new home, what a wonderful feeling to be settled after so many moves.

Alke said...

I'm so glad you're back, en I'm thrilled to see you are home. I've enjoyed you travelling around the globe, but I'm truly thankful that you've found a place you love to stay.
Thank you for sharing! 

Amy M Filak said...

Welcome back!  I just want to say that you are Superwoman. I so admire all that you do and the way you wrangle four kiddos with style grace. I only have one, and some days I feel overwhelmed. At the risk of sounding like a total cheese ball, I find your blog very inspiring.  :)

Connie said...

Always fun to get your updates, welcome back!  Can you share your perfect warm white...I'm in need :)

Amy aka Knitnmom said...

So glad you are blogging again! I love seeing your creativity in action with your family!

Faith D. said...

Aww, thanks, and now I'm totally blushing. Thanks for your encouragement, and I don't think you sound cheese-ball-ish at all. ;-)

Faith D. said...

Thanks!! It feels good to be back! Busy working in the studio this morning -- I'm feeling BLUE!! :-)

Rainie Flores said...

Really inspirational blog for mothers like me. Things can get overwhelming, but reading your blog reminds me that I can be a mother and still have grace and style.   

Gem said...

Nice to see you back. I've been following your blog for years and years...all the way back since you were in Germany (I think it was there, memory fails me), and you were pregnant with Daisy (she will always be Daisy in my mind!). I've recently become a Mum myself. She is 6 months old now and all my time is taken up with 1 child! I have absolutely no idea how you manage to do it with 4, be so crafty around the house AND look so fabulous. I understand your reasoning for changing the kids names and now that I know their real names it's strange! I look forward to seeing you posting again x


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