The countdown...

We load the truck Monday. Today is Wednesday. Oh my.

This is the view that greets you when you walk in our front door. Real life Jenga puzzle. Or Tetris. Take your pick.

Moving takes A LOT of cardboard. And tape. One week ago I would say that I hated packing tape. Yes, hate. It's a strong word and it was how I felt. Then I came across "Duck, EZ Start" tape at the store. I scoffed at it, mocking me with it's slogan "First time, every time. Frustration Free! No splitting or tearing. Never lose the tape end. Always unrolls "Smooth and Easy"." Yeah right. I bought it because it was less expensive than the name brand I knew but more than the off brand that I never wanted to see again. Middle ground is usually good and it's slogan sort of read my mind on my current frustrations with packing tape. Let's just say it lives up to it's name and I no longer look at packing tape with great disdain. It might not hold our boxes closed for life but I only need it to last about 1 month until we get these unpacked.

It's the little things in the moving process. Like finding that you did remember to keep out the camera cord to upload pictures. Unlike the Children's Tylenol that you packed up knowing that your in-laws had their own bottle (where we are staying next) but not thinking that your child might come down with a fever this week. Yep, she did. Yep, she's fine now. I bought more Tylenol the same day I bought the glorious packing tape.

Today, it is hot. Middle-of-summer-hot. With the frames off the walls, the rugs rolled up, and just about every toy packed away in boxes that are now surrounding us, I asked Justin to dig out the sprinkler from an already-packed box. Grayson was thrilled. Finley was not. First spray of cold water and she chose to sit beside me and watch. All of us were glad to take a break from the cardboard and tape.

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A funny...

I meant to include this in yesterday's post...

Over the past few months, we frequently loaded the kids up in the car after dinner and drove around to look at neighborhoods. We have lived in this town for six years, but still weren't exactly sure where we wanted to live next. Our outings often involved ice cream from Chick-fil-a or McDonald's to make the car ride a little more appealing. One night we were driving around, and Grayson said "I see a house for sale!" We said, "Really, where?" (she had learned to look for sale signs in yards by this point). She replies "I saw it on amazon". Yes, our three year old was referring to amazon.com. We order books and diapers on amazon, so I guess she had overheard us many times saying we needed to buy something from the site. Hilarious that she thought we could buy a house there too. If only it was as easy as a mouse-click.

And because posts are not as fun without pictures...here is a shot of the back of the house from the back deck. Yes, that is a balcony. What happened to the supports? Not sure. There is sliding glass door in the master bedroom that will be replaced with a permanent wall and windows. The balcony will be removed. Did I mention there were a few things to renovate?!
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A Housing Update

I should be packing boxes right now. Instead, I thought I would take a brief moment to provide an update on our life. Enter into the crazy...

In two weeks we move out of our current house and into MayMay and Peeps house for a spell while we renovate the new space. So we are packing (an interesting experience with small children) and wrapping up fixes for our buyers.

At the beginning of June, if all goes according to contracts and paperwork and nothing blows up (there is always potential for this but we are praying against it!), this will be our new place of residence:

Can't see it very well behind the masses of trees? Yes, curb appeal is one of the things we will work on. Don't let the trees hide it though; we will be the new owners of a late 1970's split level Tudor home. To keep a very long story short, after viewing over 30 houses, we landed on this one as a buy "as-is" deal. The family who currently owns it has been so great with us, and although it took us a while to make the decision, we are excited about how we can make it our next home.

I'm sure many more pictures will begin to appear on the blog as we update the house, but for a sneak peek...

The main level is the formal living room, dining room, and kitchen. The lower split is a huge den, laundry, half bath and garage. This is a shot looking down the steps from the kitchen/breakfast area into the den.

Then the upstairs split is four bedrooms, a master bath, a hall bath and a bonus room (aka my new craft room which I am super excited about..I might let the kids use some of it for a playroom....might.)

This picture cracks me up. Welcome to our 1970's master bathroom. It could use a little TLC. I love my Carhart-clad husband's look in the mirror that I captured..."hmmm...how will this look when we tear down the gold wallpaper and reconfigure the two vanities?" The second vanity is hiding behind another door with the potty and the shower. Yes, I call it a potty. Yes I have a three-year-old.

We, along with contractors we plan to hire, will have our hands full from now through the summer. Stay tuned for updates...although they may be few and far between!

Although my brain feels like it might explode from all of the busyness of this season, overall, we are really thankful for how this house selling and buying process has gone. We do feel like all of these "good and perfect" gifts are from the Lord, even if they need several new coats of paint and new flooring. I have Phillipians 4:4-7 on repeat in my head these days, trying to cut through the crazy: Rejoice in the Lord always, I will say it again: rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
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Family Camp 2011

I could write five blog posts about all the fun we had at Windy Gap for Family Camp this year. But I'll keep the text short and include lots of pictures. Click on the collage below to enlarge it to see more of the fun. Justin, Charlie and Jeff were the funny guys who got to play dress up and make us all laugh. We got to spend some sweet time with the families of dear friends. Maymay and Peeps came to help out with Finley so I could be with Grayson while Justin was off being funny. Grayson was, quite literally, about to jump out of her skin all weekend long she was so excited to be there. There is just nothing like it. Windy Gap is a fun place even for three year olds. She has been there before, but this was the first time where she really began to understand all of the fun involved. It was such a sweet time as a family!
The pictures below were taken on Sunday as I was walking with Maddie and Grayson back to the cabin to get ready to pack and leave. They were holding hands and chit-chatting, which was cute enough, but then I heard this out of the blue:

Grayson: "Maddie, I love you".
Maddie: "I love you too Grayson."

I just about melted into a puddle on the concrete. I looked back at them and said "I could just eat you both up you are so cute". Grayson then turned to Maddie and made our "eating" sound that we do when we say that in our house. Hilarious. It sounds sort of cookie-monster-ish when he eats up his treats. Maddie giggled. Such sweet girls. Such sweet Windy Gap memories that I hope are just a few of the many yet to come for them.

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Fuzzy but funny

This picture is fuzzy but Justin let Grayson venture into the crawlspace under the house when he was loading concrete under there for Uncle Bubba to work on some footings. She was so excited. One of her new funny things goes like this:

Grayson: Mama, I got to go under the house!
Me: What?! Nooo, really? Wow!
Grayson: (looks at Justin and says in a half whisper:) She didn't believe it!! ("she" was me here, as in I was so suprised at what she told me that I didn't believe it). Funny girl.

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