Sunday, August 19, 2007


There have been a lot of things going on around here besides vacations... we bought a house, J had strep throat, B and I are sharing a sinus infection. I'll get back to the former mentions later, but for now I want to tell you how amazed I have been lately by J.

He has become a verbal tornado. He attempts to repeat everything we say. Case and point when we were at the park the other day and a pitbull started charging right at us. I yelled, "Sh*t!" as I ran us away, and he repeated "Sh*t, Sh*t, Sh*t!" with complete pride. Oops on that one. Anytime he wants help with something (which is always now) he says, "hep, hep" and rubs his chest for the please sign. When he wants us to take him outside he says, "shoes!" and proceeds to run and find our shoes and demands that we put them on. The most helpful utterance has been "poop" which he tells us right before he does it. He's not quite ready for potty training and believe me, I'm in no rush to get him there.

Last week when he was sick with strep throat, which shocked us all because he has never been sick except for a small cough/cold at about 6 months, we ended up waiting in the doctor's office for close to 2 hours. Insurance sucks, that's all I have to say. Anyway, the poor kid was so well behaved, but his patience was wearing thin, so every so often he would run to the door and say, "home" (pronouced "hum"). He also did this as we were walking through our new house the other day. Unfortunately he didn't mean that was home; he wanted to go to our current abode. I think he is going to be pretty disappointed when we leave there. Hopefully it won't be a big deal once all of our stuff is there, too.

I have to lock J in the bathroom with me while I take a shower. He always manages to get into something he's not supposed to if I don't. Normally he doesn't mind and he reads or plays with some toys. He's become quite the helper. When I finish my shower, he exclaims, "Taa!" and hands me both of my towels. Then he slams the shower door shut so I can squeegee the door and towel it off. One day I couldn't find my cloth, so I said, "Oh, I guess I need to get a new one." J pointed to the tub, where the cloth had fallen, and said, "dat!" He knew exactly what I was looking for. I was dumbfounded at his intuition and just said, "My goodness, you're so smart!"

I know that my child is just plodding along on the developemental road at a normal pace, but it all seems so fast and wonderful. His interactions with B have been so much fun to watch, and I have been doing a lot of watching this weekend because I've been feeling under the weather. Even when he isn't speaking English to us, his Nell "chick chickabee" sounds are so intriguing and full of expression. He is having full conversations with me and I have no idea what he is saying. Yet, everything I say back to him is perfect and often makes him smile. I don't think that will last long!

Okay, that's enough bragging about how gifted my son is. One cannot help but be proud! This month has definitely been one of the best yet. Except for the tantrums, but that's another post.

Saturday, August 04, 2007

To New York and Back, and a House In Between

It's been a busy couple of weeks! We put an offer on a house only to be outbid in the last 24 hours. This was after no one had put an offer on the house in over 100 days. It wasn't meant to be. Then we found an even better house and decided this one was so great that we would offer full asking price. We waited until Monday to call the realtor because B thought they didn't take offers on Sunday. Well you know what the early bird says and we found out someone put in an offer on Sunday for just over asking price. The yard on this house was gorgeous. The space was perfect, but alas, it wasn't meant to be.

My friend B is a realtor and took on this mission from here on out to help us find a house. We snapped the little ones in the car (she has a little girl one month younger than J) and proceeded to look at 10 other houses. Houses that smelled like curry. Houses that were way overpriced. Houses that looked like they were just out of a Pottery Barn catalog, but whose yards were too small. Oh well.

After a couple days of searching the husband and I said to each other, "Let's just take a break from this and regroup and begin looking again after our trip to NY." That was the plan until realtor B called me on Wednesday night at 10:30. She said, "I think I found you a gem." This house is right down the street, appears to have a brand new kitchen and floors and is on a double lot. So if you know me, you know that I am not very patient when it comes to finding out information, so there I was, in my car, in my pajamas, driving past this house to see what I could see. Of course this wasn't much, but it was enough to know that I wanted to see more. So when the sun was up and we were awake at 6:10 the next morning, I strapped J in the car and we went back again (in our pjs once more) to take a look. It looked promising. We did an official look at 8:00 and had an offer in by 10:30. Our offer was accepted by noon. We had us a house!

Holy crap! We had us a house! On a third of an acre with four bedrooms and an office, hardwood floors, and a detached garage. Okay the detached garage is taking me a little to get used to because it feels like it's in our backyard. Well, I guess because it is technically, in our backyard, but it breaks up the yard into two very nice sections. There is the shaded section with over 40 foot trees providing tons of shade and breeze. Then there is the sunny section where a large garden plot lays. I can't wait to start planting next year.

The people who sold us the house remodeled their kitchen 6 months before and put in hardwood floors downstairs. Then they decided they wanted to move back east to be closer to family. I totally get that need, but am so glad they redid their kitchen first! More photos to follow in the future.

We took a trip to NY for my cousin's wedding in Buffalo. It was a gorgeous weekend. We got to visit with lots of family and also took a drive out to visit a former fourth grade student of mine. She still writes to me and her family visited me on a family trip to Philadelphia. I can't believe she's in 10th grade! There's nothing like one of your first classes getting close to graduation to make you feel old.

B headed back to Austin to work and J and I spent a week with my parents. We had a great time visiting the library, the duckpond, swimming in the pool, going to the park. Grandpa even babysat one night so that my mom and I could go into the city for dinner and a show. We at an Italian restaurant called DaRosina. I had the best seafood platter with homemade pasta. After dinner we saw "Curtains", starring David Hyde Pierce. It was a perfect combination of wit, mystery and music. We laughed quite a bit. I love the city. I also got to go in for an evening visit to see my dear friend K from high school. It's always great to catch up with her and no matter how much time has gone by, it always feels like we talked yesterday. Friends like that are priceless. We shared some good wine (I even got a free bottle just for taking a picture of a promo display with my cell phone and sending it to the promotions person), conversation, and bagels the next morning. My ride home on the train was sublime with my New York Times, Dunkin Donuts coffee, and salt bagel light on the cream cheese. I can still taste it. Yum.

J was pretty good on the plane ride back. Now that we're back home, it's time to start doing things like get homeowner's insurance, set up people to fix little jobs, and pick out paint colors. Yay!