Saturday, January 10, 2015

The trip we shouldn't have taken

We got home from visiting Levi's dad in Pagosa Springs yesterday. In a way, the 5-day trip felt like a blip on the radar of life and in another it felt like an eternity. This juxtaposition of feelings was made possible by our relaxing and having fun mixed with lots going wrong at home while we were away, making it "the trip we shouldn't have taken."

The week leading up to our trip didn't go well. My car battery died, the internet went out in our house and the downstairs heater stopped working. Levi replaced the car battery, the internet magically fixed itself and we did all we could to fix the heater. After 7 days, 3 technicians, 4 service calls and $275, we gave up and left town. I guess we should have taken a hint from the foreshadowing, but we were ready to get away.

We got to the airport on Monday only to find out our flight was delayed two hours (effectively screwing up our nap-on-the-plane plan for Nora), but we eventually made it to Pagosa and enjoyed a nice dinner before heading to bed. We were exhausted from the long travel day and were looking forward to sleeping in. Unfortunately, we were awoken early Tuesday morning with a call from Levi's mom, who was kind enough to keep Molly for us while we were gone. She had discovered a large wound in Molly's "armpit" area and needed to take her to the vet. It's still a mystery as to how she got hurt, but her wound required stitches and surgery to put in a drain tube, as well as antibiotics, pain killers and a cone (or, as Levi's mom calls it, her "party hat").

Fast forward to Wednesday when Levi got a call from his work asking if he was home. Apparently the mailman found our front door open when he dropped off a package that day and he then asked the neighbor if he knew us to let us know. Our neighbor didn't have our phone numbers but he had noticed we had been gone for a few days, so he went out of his way to call the fire department to try to track down Levi. I guess we failed to lock the front door when we left (very unlike us!) and the strong Oklahoma wind blew the door open! Thankfully, my sister was able to go by to lock up and check out the house and nothing had been taken.

Remember that broken heater we left at home? Well, since the door blew open on the coldest day we've had this winter, our house was now 36 degrees. We wouldn't normally care since we weren't home to be cold, but this was at 3 p.m. and we were worried it might get colder and freeze the pipes overnight. Now, the heater would kick on about every hour for a few minutes, so we had a little hope. Our friend Andrew was kind enough to stop by after to work to check the temperature and we were elated to hear it had gone up to 40 degrees (heat wave!). He checked on it again in the morning and my dad stopped by to drip the faucets, so we were relieved. Another crisis averted.

We enjoyed the rest of our trip and headed to the airport Friday morning. After a smooth trip home, we gathered our bags from baggage claim and trucked everything to the car. There was just one problem: Levi didn't have the keys. He swore he put them in his pocket that morning and he had no explanation as to how they could have disappeared. We tore apart our bags looking and couldn't find them. It became clear we would have to find another way home.

Miraculously, Levi's mom happened to be parking at the airport to leave for work (she's a captain for Southwest) at the same time we were trying to find our keys. She was so gracious to let us take her car! So after we loaded everything up, we headed home from the airport discussing how we would troubleshoot our missing key situation.

After dropping Nora off with my dad, who was waiting for us near the airport, so she could spend the night at my parents' house to stay warm (did you forget in the mess of everything else that our heater still doesn't work?) we called the car dealership to see if they could make us a new key (it was 5 p.m. on a Friday and the service department closes at 6 for the weekend - of course!). They told us the car would have to be present, which would mean we would have to have it towed from the airport parking garage to the dealership. No thanks! We would tear apart our house looking for the spare keys (that were also lost, amazingly) before we would do that. We also called United to see if the key possibly fell out of Levi's pocket on the plane.

And that's when it hit me. I suddenly remembered that the tray Levi put his pockets' contents in when he went through security at the Durango airport had tipped over when it hit the roller section at the end of the conveyor belt. I thought I put everything back in, but the keys must have slipped through the rollers unbeknownst to me. I quickly called the airport and was relieved when they called back to tell me the great news that they had found our keys. There was only one problem, the administration office closed for the weekend and they wouldn't be able to mail them to me until Monday. So, we're paying for a few more days of airport parking, but at least we don't have to pay for towing and a new key!

Whew. I'm exhausted from just writing about what a mess this week's been. We're home now and trying to get our life back to normal. We've worked all day today (with the help of another HVAC person who is very knowledgeable) to get our heater working and we may have just successfully done so. We don't want to trust it yet, though! Tomorrow I'll pick up Nora and Molly and then Tuesday I'll have my car back. Soon enough all will be well.

Though we had a rough week, we realize these "problems" have really just been inconveniences and that we are still so blessed. We're thankful for and humbled by all the friends and family who love us enough to help during times like these. We counted 12 people that worked to keep our home life together this week. That's amazing! While it seems as though we shouldn't have taken this trip, we're sure glad we did.

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Nora at 19 (almost 20) months

Here's my big girl at 19 months. She seems so grown-up these days. She's becoming independent, opinionated (especially about which shoes she wears) and so much fun. She's a very sweet girl who absolutely loves helping. She gets a big kick out of us letting her try to do "big people" things. She regularly helps unload the dishwasher and bring the trash in from the curb. She also recently started "helping" make chocolate milk by getting a sippy cup out of her cabinet, the chocolate syrup out of the refrigerator and a spoon from the drawer. This girl could live on chocolate milk!

helping Daddy bring in the trash can

helping Uncle Dan make chocolate milk

Besides helping, she is still very much into imitating us. For example, an old iPhone she plays with in her back pocket like Mommy:

The above picture also shows her new mode of transportation up and down the stairs: her feet! She loves to hold our hand or the stair rails and walk up and down like a big kid. 

More imitating: "working" on the computer with Daddy (above) and "cupping coffee" (below)

The mid-November snow storm brought out the fur coat Aunt Becca & Uncle Jake got her before she was born.

Some days the only "lunch" this picky eater will eat is a bowl of dry cheerios on the kitchen floor. Look at those long legs! Also, you'll note Nora is rarely away from one of her baby dolls. She can't get enough!

At Nora's 18-month appointment, she was 21 lbs and 32 inches long - 20th percentile in weight, 50th percentile in length. I guess she'll be long and skinny (I don't know where she gets that....).

I'll leave you with these two cute shots:


my happy girl

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Pumpkin Patch & Halloween

Better late than never, right? A few weeks ago, we made the trip just outside town to our local pumpkin patch. Last year, Nora was too little to go down the slides, pet the animals, etc. But this year, we were excited to show her everything the farm had to offer. We went at 4 p.m. on a weekday (thanks to our awesomely flexible work schedules) and had the whole place to ourselves!

Nora was especially interested in the goats, though she didn't want to pet any of the animals. She did later pet a goat when we visited the zoo, so maybe she's getting more brave. She also loved the corn maze (thankfully one of the workers clued us in to the short route so we didn't get stuck in there with a toddler who was over it!). But her favorite part was the slides. This girl could slide all day long.

A little happier than last year

Nora also enjoyed Halloween this year. I made her little witch costume and my mom bought her the tank that says "casting a spell of cuteness." I love how it turned out!

We made good use of her costume since we went to the downtown Norman Fall Fest with friends, dress-up day and baby parade through the city offices during the weekly library music time and then trick-or-treating with Grayson!

Nora's BFF "Franken-Fitz"

looking in the mail slot - this was completely unposed!

Nora loved trick-or-treating! She giggled and ran from house to house putting candy in her basket.

Monday, October 27, 2014

It's fixed!

I fixed the box-covered hole above the door in our living room. Excuse the poor photo quality...I only think to take pictures of this project at night and we have no overhead light in the living room so it's impossible to get a good shot. But, it's done!

Friday, October 10, 2014

Goodbye, Red

We recently finished painting over the awful red in our entryway that extended up the stairs and onto the landing area above (sorry if you like red, haha). It took a couple of months from start to finish since the cutting in was extremely time-consuming (not to mention the fact that we had to prime first!). We also had to fix a few issues, like the gaping hole in the wall from removing the old central heat (no a/c) thermostat, along with another previously used electrical outlet hole. We did uncover the original (?) wallpaper, which was a fun find. Sorry, I forgot to snap a picture of that (no worries, it will resurface again, I promise).

We also discovered that what we were told (by our realtor) was a coat closet behind the bookshelf in the entryway where the random hall shower currently lives is actually a pass-through. More on that later when we tackle that project! Enjoy the before and after pics. We love how the paint color turned out and how much calmer it feels! Next up: painting the trim since the people who painted the red were incredibly messy.

Move-in day, don't mind the mess

We had quite a time picking the color. The swatch I chose of a brown/gray turned out to look pink! So, back to the drawing board we went. We ended up picking "wood smoke," the color right below the thermostat. The blue/gray background is the tinted primer we used to cover the intense red. Already an improvement!