Thursday, October 27, 2011

Home Projects

We are very lucky to be related to or have friends who are painters, masons, plumbers, electricians, welders, or just general handymen.   Because of this we have crossed a lot of our "House To-Do" list.  So much it's worth a post!  As we plan for projects and prepare financially for each one, the new job was a good reason to kick off several.  Additionally, bartering has been proven helpful.  You know, where the cobbler exchanged services with the tailor or the baker swapped goods with the blacksmith.  I exchanged Red Sox Tickets with a mason and got this!

I also exchanged a pedicure with my electrical/lighting savy friend and had our chandelier fixed.  Now all five light bulbs work and the candle sticks are back to normal!  We also borrowed my Dad's trailer to make several dump runs of yard brush and dead flowers.  It's hard to cut down the peonies, hostas, and hydrangeas but knowing spring is right around the corner is helpful.  My brother the painter also snuck by one day and painted a portion of the front side, which was a result of this.    We definitely were the "cool" house on the block.  Other small projects (really can't believe this hasn't been done sooner) was drilling nice hooks on the back of the bathroom door and adding door stoppers to all the doors.  

Next big project?  Replacing four old wooden windows on the bottom floor.  Last year, two layers of plastic barely kept the draft in.  We've moved the roof replacement to the spring and hope it holds out.  Although, our chimney sweeper mentioned there were a few soft spots while he was on the roof.  Cross your fingers peeps!  Stop by and you might see our mason (brother's-girlfriend-BIL), painter (brother), roofer (other brother) ripping shingles off our roof in the spring. :-)

The chimney is swept for nice fires; a cord of wood cut, split, loaded, unloaded and stacked; boiler cleaned for fall/winter warmth; chandelier ready for daylight savings time, walkway installed for easy shoveling; and gardens almost laid to rest for their winter sleep.

Although never complete, the To-Do list is a bit shorter these days....

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Chocolate Covered Strawberries

Dear future boyfried,

I love chocolate covered strawberries.  If you know what's good for you, shower me with these regularly!


Monday, October 24, 2011

Studio Pictures

I love, love, love having Abby's pictures taken by someone with a nice camera.  She happens to photograph pretty well if you ask me :-)  Her birthday pictures last year were taken by Tess J. Photography and you could sit mesmerized by her pictures on her site.  Unfortunately, there's a price that comes along with it. So, when Living Social, a daily deal discount website, offered a $12.00 Picture People deal, I couldn't resist.

Here are some shots from Abby's session on Saturday night.

Note:  They mentioned there is another deal coming very soon for $10 for three sheets.  Just in time for the holidays! AND, if you three of your friends buy a deal from your referral code, your Deal is FREE!  (hint, hint)

So, while Picture People might not be a super, duper professional studio with a $3 million dollar camera (okay, not that much) they did a nice job.  I'll keep using those daily deals so I can save my pennies to have Tess take pictures again!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Forget one week, in one month....

ABBY WILL BE TWO!   Waaa waaaa

When did our little newborn turn into a walking, talking, inquisitive, independent, crazy, fun, lovable two year old??? When did she move from hanging out in her bouncer to dancing circles in the kitchen?  When did she once giggle at colors on a block to coloring flowers at her art table?  When did she move from enjoying the sounds of her rattle to "reading" books, completing puzzles, and loving an episode of Curious George, Clifford, Cat in the Hat or Thomas the Train??

At this very moment she is grooving to the closing tune of Thomas, giggling, pointing to the TV and just mesmerized.  Full disclosure, I'm blogging and enjoying a cup of coffee.  I've heard this second (and third) year can be doozies  so I'm enjoying the quiet while I can. 

Yes, that TV part was something we said we wouldn't do...oh, how parenting changes on a dime.  It's hard to imagine not having Abigail Jean in our lives and we celebrate her every day.  I can't believe we're going to celebrate the end of her second year in less than a month.  (Hey, Tim!  We made it!!! We kept her alive and well!!)

Friday, October 21, 2011

One Week Down

I'm happy to report I'm still alive after week one.  Starting a new job combined with Tim's business trip made for a very busy week.  I'm also getting ready for a craft fair on the 29th so every spare moment has been devoted to the sewing machine.  Crazy busy. 

As for the job, just fabulous. It's amazing how life puts you on a path you didn't know where it was going.  And, then, you end up right where you're suppose to be.  It's that good.  Who knew??

 These two rock my world and make it all worth it.

One week down and lots more fun ones to follow.  Boy, am I one lucky gal. 

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Forts Rock!

We've been jumping and playing on cushions and finally got around to making a fort with blankets and chairs.  Certainly not as elaborate as when I was a kid, but we have plenty of time for the real deal.  

Cushions, blankets, chairs and tables...

....make a cozy place for a tea party. Elmo and Teddy drank lots of water. 

All this building and entertaining makes for a well deserved cup of tea, which by the way was water.  She's been asking for a "big girl" cup and doing fairly well with the two handed, open, 1/4 filled cup. 

Sunday, October 16, 2011

one of my faves....

Looking through some pics from this year...taken in June.  I may have already posted it.  Worth another post, if you ask me :-)

Saturday, October 15, 2011

She's going to kill me later in life.....

 for posting these....

I stepped out of the bathroom to give her privacy and I came back a minute later and found her like this.  Daddy's girl.....

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Under the Bus

Notice I didn't say, the wheels on the bus??  Abby's conversational style is direct and to the point.  Direct.

While cooking dinner and getting out a glass baking dish, one of the drawers broke off the track.  The track broke and I certainly didn't have the tools to fix it at that precise moment. So I took everything off the drawer and shoved it in the rest of the cabinet.  Abby was "helping" with dinner and asked what I was doing. I proceded to explain what happened and that it was broken.

What does she tell Daddy AND uncle Chris AND Jen?  In three separate conversations, Abby says, "broken, Mom broke it".  Clearly telling them that I broke the drawer.

That's okay Abby, I have 45 years to blame stuff on you.  Throw me under the bus, but guess who's driving??

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

The Biiiiig News

I realized lots of family and friends read our blog by the number of texts and messages I've had regarding my "stay tuned for biiiig news" comment.  No, we're not expecting :-)  The biiig news was in relation to the new job. Sorry to disappoint, folks! 

Direct to Business

Some of you might be wondering what the heck "Direct to Business" is...Did Abby get right down to business on the potty?  Nope, but we're working on it.  Did Tim do his business and clean the kitchen in the right way?  Nope - we're working on that, too :-)

Direct to Business is a department within L.L. Bean's Customer Satisfaction area, where I currently am.  Starting October 17th I will be the new Front Line Supervisor.  What's the big deal?  Well, it's much more challenging than the role I play now, a lot more work, and it's a YEAR ROUND POSITION!  That's right folks, my career is back on track. It's only took 16 months..... Benefits, vacation time, bonuses, etc. 

I wasn't going to apply, but he turnover rate is so low these positions don't come around very often.  Also, I was pretty excited about where I was.  I realized, after being inspired by the company's Bean's Best celebration, which is the highest form of recognition, you don't get any where by not taking risks.  Challenging yourself keeps your drive to succeed fresh.  So I applied.  I went through the interview process and was successful.  The feedback I received was about to make my head explode.  "We love your enthusiasm, energy, drive to succeed, great personality, we'd work well together..." My new supervisor reminds me a lot of one of my favorite boss' - Katie at VTB.  She was the epitome of a fantastic leader and I owe much of my current style of leadership to her. Thanks, Katie!

Now we can get those windows we've been talking about, a new roof, and maybe squeeze in a new camera.  Getting right down to business, I tell you!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Apple Picking!

We managed to squeeze in a trip to Benoit's Apple Orchard before we met with friends at a rainy day BBQ.  I was excited to get apple cider, apple cider donuts, and of course apples! 

Excuse me, where are the apples?
This is what I'm talking about it!

mmm, this is tasty!

Daddy, you try it!

A fun weekend to be had!  Stay tuned for some biiiig news in my world.  

Monday, October 3, 2011

The Fair

Ironically, I didn't get any pictures of Abby with any animals even though it was the most exciting part of the day.  She a little shy around the huge cows and got a bit closer to the mini horses and sheep.  She loved the goats and by the time we hit the petting barn and the bunnies, she was in seventh heaven.  She was even one of the lucky Cumberland Fair attendees who got to pet the bunnies.  Heaven, I tell you.... 

We had an enjoyable family day on Friday and spent the morning at the fair.  Abby had a minor meltdown around 10:30 when we realized it was snack time.  What better time to get french fries with 'chup! 

 She won her first fair toy by tossing the basketball in a hoop at one of the fair games.  Oh boy did we see the best of Maine at the fair.  Always a great time! 

The final stop on our agenda was the horse pulls which captivated this little girl.  The second pull got a rousing applause and as she share with Uncle Chris the happenings of the day, she would say "horsey" and then start clapping...because he can speak Abby oh so well.

While spending just a couple of hours out an about, we had a wonderful time being together as a family and enjoying the fresh smell of cows, I mean fall. 

Saturday, October 1, 2011

In 25 years this will be just a memory....

I'm sure Abby won't remember this, but Daddy always will...

 I'm not sure who enjoyed it more, the dancing Diva or the dancing Daddy :-)