Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Settling In

So we've now been in the house for ten days. We are all getting used to the new sights, sounds and smells here. Amelia loves having the space to run around and the ability to play in the backyard. Teddy loves having a yard with plenty of space to chase squirrels and sliding glass doors to stare them down when she is inside. Matt and I are enjoying having all the storage space. We have a big bathroom, lots of kitchen space and a closet that's big enough for all of his suits and all of my shoes. I'll give you a quick tour. Please pardon the quality of the photos as they were all taken with my phone because I have no idea where the regular camera is. We'll start at the top and go down, because there's a monster at the end of this post.

The Attic, aka Alicia's Office
Since I'm working from home now it was really important that I have a room for my office and that the room had a door I could shut. This works out even better because I have to climb stairs to get into my office and there's nothing else up here except storage. At first Teddy would not come up here (she still hasn't gone into the basement), but I had lunch up here today and there was pizza crusts (Teddy's favorite treat) so she finally came up. She is now sitting at my feet like she did in the apartment.
I do still need to get a proper desk, and while bubblegum pink is a lovely color, I will be repainting soon. You can see the different paint swatches taped to the ceiling to help me make a choice.
Going down a level to the second floor, we have the bedrooms. First, Amelia's room. Again, the racetrack is nice, but her room is also on the To Be Painted list. Since we've been in the house she's been sleeping on the air mattress my mother sent her. It's bigger than her mattress, and has bumpers so it's harder for her to get out. We bought her a little pillow and she uses the blanket Matt's grandmother made and goes to sleep with minimal fuss. She will get up and can get out of the bed, and cry at the door (which she can't open) but if we don't respond she'll put herself back to sleep. She's asked me to join her in bed a couple of times, but I've politely declined as I think that would end badly. She's also decided that some of the time she wants to be in bed for her story instead of in the chair. She seems so grown up when we do that.
This is our bathroom. Amelia will learn to swim in that bathtub. You can't fully appreciate the size of it in the picture, but the whole family, including Teddy, could get in with room to spare.
Matt and I had really wanted a separate master bathroom. He wanted the space and I wanted to hide how many skin and hair products I now use to make it look like I'm not exhausted.

The bedroom itself (there's a small sitting room with French doors into the room) is pretty bare at the moment. We definitely need to get some more furniture and some rugs to make it look like someone actually lives there. One of my favorite features of the house is a balcony off the bedroom. I think it's going to become my "Mommy has PMS and needs a glass of wine and quiet" spot.

The front bedroom (the master is the back of the house) is the guest room. Teddy seems to love this room because it gets the most sun. It's already hosted Grandma and Grandpa who came down to help because I had to go out of town less than a week after moving in. There's a full bathroom for Amelia/guests and Matt's mom has been given her own shelf to store things because we know she's going to be here so much. We really appreciate her coming down to help with Amelia as often as she does.
And now we come to the first floor. This is the view from the front door. If you look closely you can see into the backyard from here, which is pretty cool. Also, Teddy would be paying more attention to you than she is in this photo.
And if you turn to your left you will see the living room, which has a lovely fireplace and built in bookshelves. The tower of purple bins on the right is all books (and it goes farther back) so we're going to need a little more bookcase room somewhere.

As you walk straight down the hall you would come to what I am referring to as the butler's pantry, because the pantry is off this room, and I've always wanted a butler's pantry. In real life it's not nearly this yellow.

Door #1 off the butler's pantry is our actual pantry (not shown due to embarrassing lack of food in the house). Door #2 leads to the powder room. We will be living with this wallpaper forever. I do not want to get into trying to take it off or paint over it. Foxhunting toile now has a permanent place in our lives.
Opposite the powder room is the dining room. It's got a cute built in and it's not too big.
It does however, have this as the lighting fixture. If anyone knows of a good place to find light fixtures, let me know because this thing is leaving our house sometime soon.
Now comes the parts that really sold us on the house. The kitchen is huge, and I know people won't believe this, but we have empty drawers and shelves and we've unpacked all the kitchen stuff. It's bananas. The fridge even has an ice maker, which Amelia loves.
View from the other side. First thing set up in the new kitchen? Coffee maker.
Past the kitchen is the family room. There's an opening above the sink, so I can be in the kitchen and keep track of Amelia and Teddy. Matt can usually take care of himself.
From the other side you can see the sliding doors to the back yard. Teddy guards us from squirrels, even when she's inside, so there's a lot of unexpected barking. One day she will give me a heart attack.
The other thing that sold us on the house was the basement. This will be Amelia's playroom, and as long as we can get to the laundry room, she can do whatever she wants down here. There's a full bathroom down here, and the door under the stairs leads to a storage place that will eventually become a secret hideout.
The basement also contains a monster. Actually two of them. These are our washer and dryer. There are cars that are less complex than these things. It took me ten minutes the first time to get a load of laundry going. Laundry should not be this complicated. They also randomly beep and make noises. I will have nightmares about them at some point.

Well, that's the tour. We hope you can come visit sometime soon! I promise the boxes will all be put away or unpacked by Christmas.

Friday, September 16, 2011


The movers come in 24 hours. I'm am excited beyond words that after this weekend I will no longer be living out of a suitcase full-time. It will only be part time with my job related travels.

Matt is also very excited to be in and to have our stuff. It's the little things, like the pots and pans here aren't nearly as good as we're used to. Not that we have the greatest ever, but we don't have dorm-ready pots and pans.

I think the happiest family member to have the move complete will be Teddy. She hates the elevators, and refuses to walk to the recycling room on our way out. Now she'll have a whole new yard and house to sniff. I think a fireplace screen should be at the top of our to-buy list because I can see her sniffing in there and then sneezing soot all over the house.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

A Weekend at Home, sort of

This past weekend was the first where we had nothing we had to do in quite awhile. A friend had a BBQ that we went to and enjoyed ourselves at. I think Amelia managed to eat 5 cookies, but that's balanced by all the tomatoes and carrots she ate. She also had a great time playing with the "big kids" and other adults. After being shy for about 20 minutes, she was running around like she owned the place. She got to play in the dirt, with sidewalk chalk, and the cookies had icing so she was quite a mess when we left. She passed out immediately in the car, but woke up when we got home and took a quick shower. She's starting to enjoy those more than baths, but we don't have any non-slip stuff on the shower floor here, so it's a slippery exercise.

We also got ourselves fully set up in the temporary housing. Amelia and Teddy are adapting pretty well. Amelia keeps trying to find the ice machine like the one that was in the hotel we stayed in the first night back. Teddy is doing fine in the apartment, but definitely not a fan of the elevator. She is enjoying living closer to a fire station, so there's plenty of sirens to howl with. As I write this Teddy is literally sitting on my feet because she's more scared of the thunder here than at our old house. Either that or we're about to have another earthquake.

We have finally settled on the new house and signed all the paperwork. The movers come a week from Saturday, and we can't wait to get in. I think we all just want to feel "home" as opposed to the temporary places we've been, even if one was Hawaii. When you see us I think we even look more relaxed because almost everything is done. Now all we have to do is unpack and paint. My goal is to be fully unpacked by Christmas. No need to rush things. :)