Lessons Learned From Moving

  1. We have way too much stuff. De-cluttering is my friend.
  2. Maintenance cleaning is my friend. It will save a lot of time when it comes to cleaning when moving out of a rental.
  3. It is possible to find a house and get moved in in less than a month.
  4. When you find out you have to move, start packing right away.  De-clutter as you go along.  Be willing to part with as much as you can.
  5. You find out how helpful family and friends are. We could not have completed this move without good friends, our parents, and my sister and brother-in-law.
  6. Take time to rest. I have been way to tired with this move especially since I still worked my full-time house while moving.
  7. Local moves can be worse than long distance moves.  With long distance you have to be ready to move and have everything packed up, unlike a  local move where you can pack a box and move it.  Drags the process out way too much.
  8. God is faithful. He lead us to a great house that we were able to move into right away.  We are loving our new place even if it is the same size or smaller.  The way the house is laid out is great for us.  I love having larger bedrooms and a nice size living room.
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Our busy lives

I know I haven’t posted in a while, between going out of town, working, and really working on cleaning my house and decluttering (a lot more of that to go) I haven’t spent much time on the computer.

Last weekend we went up to my dad’s condo at Boyne Mountain for a very short trip – I worked Friday night shift and Monday night shift, but we made the most of the time.  I wasn’t sure where I had put the camera so I didn’t get any pictures of the boys playing with their aunts. Kelly (16), who usually doesn’t get much time because she is not as fun as Aunt Brittany, was the only one of my sisters there when we arrived Saturday morning.  Tyler and William both had fun playing with her and her friend, Kacey, who also has younger nephews that she is used to playing with.

Brittany (13), (yes my sisters are that much younger than me!) arrived later in the afternoon with Grandpa Sandy (really Grandma Sandy, Tyler started calling her Grandpa Sandy since we refer to her and my dad as Grandpa and Grandma Sandy).  After that pair arrived Kelly was no longer interesting and she could go back to what “she” wanted to do — chase boys or look for boys.  Brittany got almost tortured.  Brittany and Tyler ended up making a “leash” so they could play doggie.  Brit even ended up crawling down the stairs facing forward at one point.  They spent a good part of the time playing doggie, but they also read books and did a fair amount of TV watching.

We did go to Avalanche Bay at Boyne.  I doubt we as a family will go again until after the baby is born.  I was so thankful that my dad paid for our tickets to get in, because in my eyes it was expensive.  The boys did well, they both loved going on the one water side that the whole family could go on.  I couldn’t do the “big” slides because of the pregnancy and Russ wasn’t feeling well so he didn’t feel up to taking Tyler down the slides.  We went down the one slide we could several times.  William and Tyler both loved it.  Tyler even learned to go running when the “Avalanche” comes to go get dumped on by the water.

Monday before we left we went to Deer Lake and let the boys play in the sand.  Tyler even walked out to one of the buoys with Brittany.  When we go up in the summer we will definitely hit the lake since it is one of the few “free” activities we have found at Boyne along with ridding the ski lift up and down the mountain which both boys loved.

The house has been driving me nuts, it is so messy and dirty.  Since we got back from Boyne we have really been working on cleaning the house.  I was working at it before we left, but have really been working at it since we got home.  I got off tract with being gone and not having enough sleep over the weekend.  I have gotten some areas started well, but there is a lot more work to do.  Alot of decluttering to do.

Cuddling with my Boys

That is what I am doing right now, typing with one hand. They are both sitting on my lap, watching Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, drinking chocolate milk from their sippies. I enjoy these cuddle times.

I originally wasn’t going to say much about trying to Fly again, but I enjoying the process. Check out the link if you don’t understand the terms I am about to use. I can tell I am getting “flywashed.” I’m not keeping the sink shiny, still haven’t figured out how to do that on the days I work since when I get home I usually want to fall into bed. I definitely don’t have any routines yet, though I think without thinking about it I am creating/changing routines. I am slowly working on the decluttering. What a job.

Since the weather was so warm last week, I finally got the boys drawers switched over from winter to summer clothes. Which anyone who has little kids knows that not only are you changing wardrobes, but that quite often is when I change sizes since it is an easy time to change. So I was into my tubs of clothes that I have kept from Tyler for William, I was sorting through and seeing which clothes I wanted to put out and what ones I wanted to get rid of. I am not sure if this is perfectly Flylady, but these are the questions I was asking myself while I was going through the clothes – Do I love them? Will I dress the boys in these outfits? I got rid of several things. We even made a trip to Goodwill last week to get rid of clothes. I know that I have been slow in changing the clothes. I need to go through the closet still and the adult dresser to sort out the winter clothes to put away or give away and figure out what summer clothes I want to get rid of. I have so many things I have had for years that I have fallen out of love for. I have another box of clothes already started with stuff to donate. If anyone wants any 18 month boys clothes let me know, I have several almost new outfits in my give away box that I don’t love. I need to go though the 24 month/2T tub still, but I am sure I will have several things out of those as well.

Yesterday as I was picking up the house I kept repeating to myself, “Cleaning done imperfectly still blesses.” I wasn’t striving for perfection just cleaner and picked up. I have a full garbage can and recyling bin out to the road for garbage day. Definitely progress in the decluttering and getting the house cleaner. Reading the flylady’s emails have helped me change my thinking in regards to housework and I would say also my attitude.

I was very happy this the dinner I made last night. Last week to help with our finances I made a main dish menu and a shopping list. It has been nice this last week to look at the list and make the decision if we want to have the main dish that night and figuring out what we want to have with it. We haven’t perfectly followed the menu I wrote out, I sure has helped. I plan on doing the same thing again before we go shopping on Thursday or Friday. Since we have to go the Saginaw for doctors appointment on Friday, maybe we will go to Alddi’s and see if there is anything on my list that will be cheaper there.

I still don’t have a new job, but it seems to be getting closer. The manager wanted to talk to some others from Ingham (where I used to work) before she offers me the job. It was nice to talk to some old co-workers yesterday to verify their phone numbers and get their permission to pass on their phone numbers. I really need to talk to them more often.

Well, both the boys are on to other things, so I should probably get some stuff done before I go to work today (fold a load of clothes and empty the dishwasher) and fix some breakfast for my hungry boys.

8 days off and crazy time ahead

Well I just am finishing and 8 day stretch off work.  It wasn’t supposed to be 8 days.  It should have been 3 days off, work the weekend (2 days), 3 days off, but William got pneumonia and I got bronchitis.  We are both done with out antibiotics, thankfully, just 5 days for both of us and are both feeling much better.  Tyler is still not feeling the best, he had a fever over the weekend, but not other symptoms that I was going to run him to the doctor for.

The next 2 – 3 weeks are going to be very busy.  I work the next 2 days.  Saturday has nothing scheduled, but we need to go grocery shopping badly and the kids will want mommy time.  Sunday my grandma as an MRI that she has requested that my dad, sister and I take her to.  Then I work again for 3 days.  Then 3 appointments — well checks for my boys and a consultation with my grandmas doctor for my dad, sister and me.  Then I get to go to my first ladies retreat with my mom and sister overnight!!  First time I will be away from William overnight.  Then Sunday off except the normal Sunday church.  Then back for 2 more days of work.  I think I will be very glad when May 1 rolls around.

I did get some things accomplished even though I was sick – laundry, kept the kitchen up for the most part.  I even did a knitting project from start to finish (just needs a button).  One day we had a sewing bee at my moms and I got 3 pairs of sleep pants completed with my mom’s help and have 1 more that just needs the waistband and hems done and 2 more that need the inner leg, crotch, hems and waistband done.  Hopefully after May 1 I will have time to get them finished.

Happy New Year

We did get everything done with returning the rental car, except it took us almost twice as long as it should have to drive down to Lansing to return the rental car.  It was snowing pretty good when we left and it took us almost 2.5 hours to drive down (normally 1.5 hour trip).  The boys both did pretty good.  We split them up when we were in 2 cars, I did have to deal with a screaming boy for part of the trip especially since he didn’t have his brother to entertain him.

As I look back over the last few months I can see how God has been providing for us.  The van is already almost paid off and should be once I get the check for the remainder of the payoff from the insurance company from the credit union that held our loan, thanks to an unexpected gift.  Thank you.

2008 is definately looking up for us.  I am starting to very clearly see some areas of my life that need some work and already have plans to work on them.  So of them I have already started doing.

I do have a list of things I want to work on this year.  I wouldn’t call them “resulutions,” but rather goals.

  • Daily or near daily Bible reading and prayer.  I would say I do pray daily, but my Bible study has really been lacking over the last few years and I know that is something that needs to change.  I really stuggle to know what to read and need to have a “plan” to follow.  I am just going to concentrate on reading through the New Testament this year.
  • De-clutter my house.  Russ is saying how the clutter is driving him nuts.  We both really need to work on it.  Moving last summer really opened our eyes to how much “stuff” we have and how most of it we don’t even use and haven’t used in years.  I am planning on making good use of the van to haul stuff away from here.  May make my first of many stops for the new year to Goodwill today.  We really need to get the garage cleaned out so that we can park the van in there, especially since my uncle came and picked up the lawnmower so we could get the van in there.
  • Get myself in better physical shape.  Enough said.
  • Budget and save money.  We wouldn’t have had half the struggles we have had over the last few years if we had been following those steps.  For our  wedding anniversary my mom gave us Your Money Map, by Howard Dayton.  Stop number one — live on a budget and have $1,000 emergency savings.  That is my goal (and I dare say Russ’ as well) and should be possible long before the end of the year.
  • Relationship building.  I see some relationships that need a lot of work right now.

I am liking my house

Ok, that may seem like a weird title for a blog, but it is true. I am liking my house right now because it is close to being clean! For those who have been over to my house you know I am not the best housekeeper. There are usually several piles laying around and clutter on the floor. It is not anything like the homes you see on BBC’s How Clean is Your House?, but it can be pretty embarrassing.

This weekend my mother in law is coming up to visit us and bringing the cousins, Abby and Miriam (5&3).  Tyler is so excited that his cousins are coming to visit him.   He keeps thinking they are coming today.  I think we are all looking forward to them coming.

Since they are coming I have been in cleaning mode and wanting to take care of some messes, I have been trying to get to for a while.  Today the office got mostly done.  I have to finish a couple more areas, before my mother in law can sleep in here and so I can get into the closet, but I have to wait for my mom to bring me some parts to the filing cabinet she gave us to be able to move things so I can get into the closet.  I did get a good start on switching out the adult winter/summer clothes.  I had done the boys a while ago.

We also went and got a bags for our vacuum cleaner today.  I don’t think we had changed that bag since we moved.  It needed to be done as the vacuum had lost suction and the bag was almost overflowing. It was nice to vacuum with a properly working vacuum today.

I am working the next 2 days, so not much more will get done.  Friday I want to vacuum upstairs and the living-room and finish picking up what I can.  The house will be mostly clean for them.  I really need to keep working at flying, like the Flylady.  If I can just get those habits going, my house really would be in good shape.  Lets see if I can keep doing a good job picking up after myself this weekend and beyond.

I am having a really hard time staying off Ravelry, a really awesome knitting and crochet website.  My mother in law also has an invite coming, looks like she will have it before the weekend is over.  If you are on Ravelry, my name is mipennsn, my basic Internet handle.

Feeling better and God’s provision

I think I am finally on the mend from this bug I have had for over that last week.  I woke up Tuesday morning feeling much better.  It helped that William and Tyler slept in their own beds.  I love having my boys sleep near me, but sometimes I just need the space.  William slept for 10 hours in the crib.  Even though he is 17 months old, that almost never happens.  I woke up before him.  He did end up sleeping part of the night with us last night.

God is providing for us.  I wasn’t quite sure how he would provide for us over the next few weeks, but he is already showing himself faithful, first with the food from our neighbors and now a friend is going to help me out with milk, juice, cheese and possibly some other perishables.  I am not quite sure how we are going to pay for gas over the next week.  I have enough gas in the tank to get to work for the rest of this week, just not sure about next week.

My mom came over yesterday and helped me cut both of the little boys hair.  Their cowlicks look worse than ever, but Tyler’s usually calms down after a few days so I imagine William’s will do the same.  She also brought over my serger that had been stored at her house since we moved.  It was nice to sew on it again.  I had forgotten how relaxing it is to me to sew. We rearranged the living room so we had a good spot to put my desk, so I could use it as my sewing table.  With the rearrangement, it also enabled us to hard-wire the home computer network to the TiVo in the living room.  Taking some stress off connecting the TiVo and actually giving us more function that we have had with the TiVo’s.  We just have to deal with glare from the window where the TV is now.  It did eat up some space in the living room, but I think I am going to like it better as it is now.  It is cozier.

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