Monday, September 26, 2011

Not done yet

The shelf above the washer and dryer fell and now the today the water heater went out.

But all is okay because we have a precious bundle of joy in our arms:D

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

All At Once

Why does everything happen at one time?

Currently, I trying to wrap up work before going out on maternity leave starting Friday. Oh yes, and he is still breech. We are having trouble with the heaters in the apartment. A gas leak was just discovered yesterday in the yard. And now our kitchen sink is clogged.

I hope this means that we have a big break coming our way. The first few weeks of parenting are easy, right?

Wednesday, July 27, 2011


I have been home for several days now and have been avoiding sitting down to write this post. It is a daunting task to try to put into words what I experienced while keeping it to a decent length. Here goes nothing.

Moldova was amazing! I had doubts about going 6 1/2 months pregnant, but I listened to my heart and am so blessed to have a husband that supported me in listening to my heart. I am so glad that I went.

First off, I was a part of an amazing team. One of the best mission teams I have ever been a part of. Everyone who went was an wonderful person who taught and challenged me throughout the week. In addition, the team was the perfect size for everyone to be together. We all fit at the table and in the van. We could all play games together. Etc, etc.

The children were of course another HUGE piece to the puzzle. There were just under 30 children at camp this year which meant that I got to know them. Not just their names, but their personalities. In years past, there were a handful of children that I connected with, but this year I got to make a connection with almost all of the children. They are such amazing people. They are so strong and beautiful. We taught them about Ruth, sang with them, painted their nails, played games, did crafts, etc. I hope that they felt as much love from me as I felt from them.

And the best part of the entire trip was getting to the child I sponsor. I know her as Alina, but she now goes by Ana. I was taken to her foster home by a translator. I got to see her siblings which I knew from previous trips. I got to catch up with them which I do not usually get to do through my letter writing. I also got to meet Ana's foster parents. They are such an answer to prayers. I had thanked God many times for providing parents that would take 4 orphans into their home, but meeting them makes me even more thankful. I really believe that these children are a part of family that loves them and wants the best for them. Amazing!!!

Overall, an amazing trip! Sure, my ankles swelled some. I had to go to the bathroom frequently in a hole in the ground. Sleep was not great. But, 100% worth it!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Pregnant and Stranded

The past couple of months have been so hectic. I have been spending all my free time trying to prepare for this little one coming. I am either reading books or doing something in the nursery. I have so much that I could tell you about, but right now I want to tell you a story that has to be written down.

On June 29th, I headed up to Peoria, IL to stay with the in laws and meet up with the band. I brought Mia along. Mia spent at least 6 hours in my lap on the drive, but we made it safe and sound. I got to hear the boys play twice. Zach's family through me a baby shower on Saturday while the boys headed to Michigan. My visit was great!

Zach and I decided that on Sunday July 3rd, I would drive home via Indianapolis in order to meet up with the band and Zach would be able to drive me the rest of the way home. This sounded great. We coordinated what time we needed to leave in order to time things well. I hit the road and everything was looking good.

About 2 hours outside of Peoria, my radio turned off. Hmmm...that is odd. I tried to turn it back on, but it flashed low battery. I thought that did not sound good, so I called Zach to see if he could look up a good exit for me to stop at. While on the phone with him, all the dashboard went out. This meant I had no idea how fast I was going or how much gas I had left. The car was still driving fine and so I kept going, hoping to make it to the next exit. Not a minute later, the car stopped accelerating and I had to pull over on the side of the road.

I called AAA which after telling them all the information, told me they were having difficulty finding a tow truck and that there were no shops open (Sunday and 4th of July weekend). On top of that, the closet closed shop was 16 miles away. We just a couple of weeks before went down in our membership since we had never used the 100 miles of towing allotted which meant that only 5 miles would be paid for. At this point, Mia hid under the car seat as she was freaked out by all the cars zooming past us. I opened the passenger car door and sat on the side of the highway waiting to hear back from AAA. About 30 minutes later, AAA let me know they had found a tow truck but that it would be at least another 30 minutes before he got to me.

There I was pregnant on the side of the interstate in the middle of nowhere in the hot July sun with a cat that I had forgotten to bring a carrier for. Thankfully I have an amazing husband who is part of an amazing family and band. The band was willing to reroute to meet me at an auto parts store while Zach's family drove 2 hours from Peoria to meet us. After 1 hour, the tow truck showed up. I spent 30 minutes with the tow truck guy who I could write a whole blog post about getting the car towed to an auto parts store as Jake, Zach's brother, was pretty sure he could fix the car.

Once at the auto parts store, I was signing paperwork and paying the tow truck when Mia escaped from the car. I don't blame her as the car was extremely hot, but not good news for me. I thought she went under the car, but once the tow truck man left, I could not find her. A side note that I forgot to mention was that I was in need of a restroom break before I even broke down. At this point I was about to bust. I had to leave Mia lost for quick bathroom break before heading out to search for Mia.

Thankfully after about 20 minutes of searching, I found Mia. She was totally freaking out. I tried to hold her and she wouldn't have it. I tried putting her down in a little patch of grass, but she would run. So, there I was with a cat that was loosing her mind and no carrier waiting for help to arrive. I put Mia in reusable grocery bag and began pacing. If I stopped walking, she would try to get out of the bag. By this point, Mia has begun to pant. I have never seen a cat pant and it was really scary. I knew she was loosing her mind and that she was super hot in the bag, but she refused to drink any water. I kept putting water in my hand and trying to force it in her mouth. She would lick her nose, but that was it. I was really worried about her.

When Zach showed up an hour and a half after me getting to the shop, I was so relieved. At least I had someone else to hold the bag and worry about Mia. We waited about 3o more minutes outside for Zach's family to show up. Thankfully they had a cat carrier which at least meant I could go inside to get water or use the restroom and sit down. It did not seem to calm Mia any as she continued to pant and refuse water.

Zach's dad, Jake and Zach got to work on the car. The battery was taken out and was recharged inside while Jake started taking about my engine. It was quite scary to watch. I headed over to the shade with Mia and Lyn (my mother in law) so that I couldn't see all the parts being taken off. The boys (mostly Jake) worked on trying to get the alternator out for 5 1/2 hours. Bob and Zach were ready to give up, but Jake kept at it. After 5 1/2 hours of pure determination and undoing an engine mount in order to lift the engine, the alternator finally came out. The alternator was checked and was bad (thank goodness!). A new one was bought and the work of putting the car back together began. At about 9pm (13 hours after I had left Peoria), the car was put back together (mostly, I still have a several screws and some heat shields in the garage that didn't make it back in the engine). At 9:30pm, Zach and I headed out to Nashville.

What an incredibly long day! I am so blessed to have such amazing in laws and husband that were willing to help me!

For anyone who is curious, I am pretty sure that Mia lost a couple of years off her life, but she is doing fine and I will be sure to bring a carrier just in case in the future.

Monday, May 16, 2011


We just sold our Blazer. I didn't realize the attachment I had to it until the guy handed us money for it. It was a great car that served me well through the years. There have been many memories made in the Blazer, specifically many road trips made. I will miss you Blazer!

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Our Yard/Jungle

I have been wanting to post this for a while, but keep forgetting or just don't have time.

We have had a lot of rain here in Nashville and a good amount of sunshine as well which means the grass has been growing FAST! It was getting pretty long when Zach started up the lawnmower for the first cut of the year. Not a week later, it was already getting long again. Only this time, the mower would not start. So began the drama of trying to get the mower fixed. One thing would get fixed and then something else would go wrong. As the mower was being fixed over and over again, our grass was getting embarrassingly long. The mower was finally fixed last Friday morning which happens to be the same day that Zach left to go out of town for some gigs. I came home that afternoon and our yard looked amazing! One of our neighbors came and cut our grass for us. He does yard work for a living and did an amazing job. Just another example of what an amazing neighborhood we live in.

Hopefully we will not require those services again anytime soon.

What a Day and What a Neighborhood

I am exhausted from this day. So much happened today. Zach was in town and we spent most of the day working on the house. We cleaned out the workroom in the garage. Zach power washed the siding on the house. We hung tools on the wall in the workroom. Zach took a load to the Goodwill while I started cleaning out the guest bedroom to turn it into a nursery. Zach then loaded up a load to take to the dump while I continued to work through everything in the guest bedroom. He came home and we worked on the guest bedroom until it was time for a neighborhood meeting followed by a flood party.

Our neighbors are so incredible. It has now been a little over a year since most of our street was flooded. Our neighbors wanted to throw a party for everyone who came to help a year ago and to celebrate how far they have come in repairing their homes. While we were there, I was given a stroller that had inflatable tubes, a snorkel, goggles, and flippers attached to it as a gift for the help I provided last year. Very stupidly, I came home and undid everything before taking a picture. I think I was just in work mode from going all day. It was so hilarious and so sweet of them to do.

Once home, Zach and I started working more on the nursery. It was tough emptying the room as it had all my stuff in it. My family pictures, my photo albums, my knickknacks, my desk, etc. It was difficult to sort through these things and try to find other places to put things that I still want to keep out around the house. We have moved my desk into our bedroom to see if that will work. It was pretty stressful for me, but I am now excited about starting to transform the room into a nursery. It has been a difficult and great day all at the same time.

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Someone Finally Noticed

I have told many people now that I am pregnant. In response, I often get some kind of response indicating that I don't look pregnant. Really people!? I really don't like to hear that. I understand that I am not huge and I think they feel like it is a compliment, but it is not. I used to have a small waistline. I no longer have a small waistline. I completely understand how a stranger might not be able to tell that I am pregnant, but people I see on a regular basis I really feel should be able to tell a difference. Of course, those closest to me are the ones I told first so they have seen me grow.

Anyways, that soap box was all to say that someone finally noticed that I was pregnant!!! It was an aide in a classroom and she looked at me when I was walking out of the classroom with one of my kids and said "Is that a baby bump?" I was so excited. I said, "Yes it is! Thank you for noticing." Then she proceeded to tell me that she knew it had to be since I normally have such a small waist. Thank you! She sure knows how to make a pregnant woman feel good:D

For anyone interested, I attempted to take a picture of myself today since I was wearing clothes that I felt showed my belly. I apologize for the quality. Here you go...

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Know the Weather

In April, I have traveled to OH and WV. Zach and I headed to OH to see Guster for his birthday present. Then 2 weekend later, I hopped in the van with The Farewell Drifters to head to WV for the first time. I could go into all kinds of details about each of these trips, but instead I want to share how horrible I am at dressing correctly for weather. For OH, I looked up the weather and packed accordingly...or so I thought. We made it to OH and I was freezing!

You would think I would learn my lesson and I packed a little warmer than I thought I needed to for WV, but once again, I was freezing. I definitely did not predict that it would be snowing the next morning when we woke up to leave. I don't think that my flip flops were anywhere close to appropriate for the weather.

I must admit that my lack of ability to know what to wear also happens here in Nashville though not as big of a deal. I do a little better here because at least I have the day before to go by. So, if yesterday was 65 and cloudy and today is 70 and sunny then I attempt to adjust accordingly.

I need to make myself a chart that tells me what to wear when it is 50 and partly cloudy vs 65 and cloudy vs 45 and sunny. Anyone want to help me with that?

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Losing My Mind

I have a history of locking my keys in my car. As a teenager, I locked my keys in my car with the car running too many times to admit. I think I have only done this one time since graduating from high school. But, I still have locked my keys in my car many other times without the car running. In fact, in the last 10 days, I have locked my keys in my car twice. I hope it is out of my system as Zach will soon be on the road and unable to save me.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Purse Snatching

Last week on my way home from work, I went by the grocery store to check out the on sale Valentine's Day candy. When I was getting out of the car, I heard screaming that sounded like something bad was happening to someone. I got out of the car and rounded the corner to see a small collection of people around an older lady. When I walked up to the situation, there was one man on the phone with the police, another ran down the hill, a lady was jumping in her car taking off down the road, and another talking with the older lady. Lots of things were happening at once and quickly, but now I am able to piece it all together. As the older lady (81 years old) was walking out of the grocery store, a man ran by and snatched her purse. One man had run down the hill after him, another called the police, the lady got in her car to see if she could catch him crossing the next street, and the last man was comforting the lady. Once I had a grasp of things, I ran over to a high spot so that I could see if I could see anyone running. I could see the man who ran down after the purse snatcher and I could see the lady in the car, but no purse snatcher. I watched for a few minutes until the police showed up and then I headed into the store. I was thankful that people had jumped in to help this lady, but so mad at the purse snatcher. I was praying for justice. The next morning I was very excited to receive an email (I receive emails of local happenings from the police department) letting me know that the man was caught and the lady's purse was returned to her. Whew!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Sick Day

Today I called in sick to work. This will be my first time to ever have to miss a day of work for being sick. I actually woke up feeling much better than I had gone to sleep feeling, but that is only saying so much. I am so thankful that my high temps only lasted a day! And I am so glad that I don't get sick very often. I think I am a real wimp when it comes to sickness now. All I was able to do was sleep in my bed or sit on the couch, neither of which was comfortable. I am so glad yesterday is over! Now I need to decide whether to go get the flu shot or not since that is what I think I just had.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

More Snow

I cannot believe it...another snow day. That is right folks, Nashville has snow once again. I have lost count as to how many snow days we have had this year, but too many. I really love the snow, but I don't like the idea of going to school in June. I must say that I do love working for the school system though because it means that I don't have to get out on the roads. I was reading friends updates last night about it taking 2-3 hours to get home from work. Yikes, I am glad I wasn't out in that.

Being from AL means that I still marvel at the snow and love to get out in it. Unfortunately, Zach does not share my wonder for snow. So, I was alone in my sledding adventures last night. He was worried about the 9* wind chill factor while I was not worried at all. After all, I had all his snow gear to wear. Aren't there parts of the world where 9* would be a warm winter day. And sure enough, I was on the verge of sweating as I conquered our neighborhood hills. I absolutely love sledding at night as it is so incredibly peaceful out.

Now to continue to enjoy my snow day...

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Opposites Weekend

My Saturday and Sunday this week were polar opposites. Saturday I woke up and headed out to a photography class (Thanks Mom!). I learned a lot and feel excited about playing around in manual mode on my camera. I went to church following the class and then it was off to a friends house. I hung out for a couple of hours before going home to pick up Zach to head to a house concert. I got home around 1am. What a day!

And then there was Sunday. I woke up around 10, made some breakfast, checked my email and then took a nap. Yep, that's right, took a nap around 1pm. Woke up a couple of hours later to do a few things around the house. Then time for dinner and TV. What an opposite day from Saturday.

Overall, a good weekend.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Water Heater Week

Water heater week began on Monday when we found out that our rental apartment's water heater was leaking. Thankfully our tenant is out of town right now, but a friend noticed when she was picking up her mail. Anyways, we were up pretty late attempting to stop the leaking and to drain the water heater. We were not successful with either since I could not get the hose to connect tightly enough to drain it and the cut off valve was not working. So, Zach continued to replace the towels until a plumber was able to come on Wednesday to replace it.

Since the plumber was already here, Zach asked him to come look at our water heater. Zach and I have been taking about 7 minute showers for months now because we would run out of hot water. We had gotten pretty accustomed to this, but knew that at some point it would have to be addressed. The plumber was very kind to come take a look at ours and let us know that it appeared that one of the elements was out even though it was reading fine. He had to get to another job, but told Zach that he could replace it himself. He also suggested going ahead and replacing both elements and thermostats while he was at it.

Well, I came home to lots of water on the floor, no electricity* (no heat on a cold day with the door open to drain the water heater and working by lanterns), and still not working water heater. Zach got the elements and thermostats changed and we started filling back up the tank. And then the leaking began. It did not take us long to find the leaking was coming from the new elements. We shut everything back down and Zach tightened the elements. At this point we were already late to a get together with some friends, so we headed out the door. When we got home, we turned on the electricity and filled the tank.

*you might wonder why we turned out the electricity to the whole house...our breaker box is not labeled, so we have no idea which breaker goes to on the to do list*

Thursday morning, all I had was cold water:( Mr. Plumber came back out to tell us that we had burnt out the element we had just put in by turning on the electricity before fully filling the tank. So, finally we had hot water!

But then water began pouring out of the pressure release valve. We turned back off the water heater and called the plumber. He told us we sure did have bad luck and that we would need to replace the pressure valve. Once again, we were late for a commitment, so out the door we went. We did pick up some needed items from Home Depot on the way.

When we returned home, we turned back on the water and the pressure valve did not leak. And so far things have been good which includes me taking a longer than 7 minute shower this morning!

Even though this week has been full of mishaps and frustration over 2 water heaters, I believe that Zach knows more than most about water heaters and how to fix them. Hopefully next time around we will have better luck with our new knowledge.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Fiddling Around

For Christmas, my grandfather Buckie bought me a violin at my request. Some of you may be shocked. I was too as I began this adventure. Sarah, one of my good friends, convinced me that she could teach me how to play. I was very wary, but I thought "why not?" My first lesson was less than 2 weeks ago. I have now had 2 lessons and less than 2 weeks of practice. I apologize ahead of time, but this is where I am currently....

Thursday, January 13, 2011

A New Constant: Snow

I am not really sure where I am living anymore. I am now experiencing my 6th snow day of the school year. I have seen more days of snow this winter than I think I ever have in the past. The interesting thing is that I really like it. Most people here in Nashville are cursing it, but I think it is beautiful. I especially like it when the roads are mostly safe and I can get out and do things. That does cut down on the sledding though since we pretty much only sled on the roads here.

In addition, Zach and I also saw snow in Birmingham on Christmas Day and then lots more on our drive from Birmingham to Peoria. It has been a wonderful winter wonderland everywhere we have been this winter. Here are some pictures of the fun we have had.

Zach sledding in the neighborhood in our new sled "The Beast". Thank you Barkley and Matt.
Christmas Day in Birmingham. Standing in the snow on a White Christmas!
Sledding with the Peoria gang. Thank you mom for the 2 new bottom sleds!
The snowman that Jake, Bradley, Zach and I built.

Monday, January 10, 2011

The Bathroom

I can't believe that I have not updated about the bathroom. Between the bathroom and holidays, I just didn't have time. I had intended on keeping you updated throughout the process, but that just did not happen. I would come home and attempt to clean up the mess from the day and then distract myself from the mess that I could not do anything about.

Here is the before:

Here is Zach's handiwork in taking apart the entire bathroom besides for the tub. We ended up having to do a lot more plumbing work than we thought.

One day while showing the progress to friends, sewage backed up into the newly laid sub floors. That caused a stop to progress for a couple of days, but finally this is our finished product:D

Friday, January 7, 2011

About Time

A blog post has been long over due. Lately I have been wanting to write blogs but feel overwhelmed by the backlog of blogs that I need to catch up on. I don't know if I will ever write another blog if I try to catch up, so I am just going to write a current blog...

Our precious little kitty is currently wearing the "cone of shame" as coined by my friend Erin. This seems way more appropriate a term than Elizabethan collar as the vet calls it. That is like pretending there is some dignity in wearing the thing.

Mia went in to get spayed on Wednesday morning. It was so sad having to take her that morning. I woke up and she was asking for food just as usual besides for I couldn't give her any food. Not only could I not give her food, but she was going under and didn't even know it.

When I came home that afternoon, there was Mia half drugged staggering around the house with the "cone of shame". At that point, I felt half bad for her while also getting a kick out of her running into walls, etc. Since then, the funny parts are when she is attempting to clean her self, but really just licking the cone. Or when she is "scratching" her ears through the cone.

For your enjoyment, here are some pictures of Mia in her Elizabethan collar.

Attempting to clean herself:D