Friday, December 16, 2011
Since our house is solar powered, our water is gravity fed from a cistern in the roof. We run the pump to fill the water during the day while we have sunlight. To fill the electricity gaps, we use a generator. Well... I take a shower with the kids to try to conserve water and keep from using it all up during the night. I had the generator going since it had been cloudy all day. Just as I shampooed my hair, I noticed the water was slower than usual. I jumper out and turned on the pump and then frantically tried to rise the shampoo out. The hot water went completely out, and using cold winter water was out of the question. Luckily I had gotten most of the shampoo out.
I waited for the water to fill back up and proceeded to finish cooking dinner for Paul and myself. As I was cooking, I noticed the lights were getting weak and the generator sounded funny. Long story short, our generator crapper out, and we didn't have enough battery power to refill the water. Needless to say, we moved into the new house the next day... in a snow storm.
Now we have lights, water pressure and I can use a microwave to cook dinner if I am feeling lazy. We have been in the house just shy of two weeks, and I have already made fudge, cookies, chocolate covered pretzels and banana bread. My refrigerator and freezer are big enough to hold more than 5 things, and I feel like I am living the high life.
Living off the grid really helped me put things in perspective. I thought I needed a big house with big rooms and lots of stuff. It turned out I just really need water, electricity, neighbors and my family to be a happy lady! The dogs love the nice big yard and neighbors coming by to pet them. The kids like the extra space to explore. Paul is fine with the commute, because happy kids and a happy wife make for a happy Paul. He is such a trouper. Oh and we got to keep the chickens, too. That just makes me extra happy.
Wednesday, November 30, 2011
Asher had his first Halloween. We took them to Flagstaff, and both kids had a blast. Asher was a lion...
And Emma was Jessie The Cowgirl. I cried a little at how grown up Emma seemed. Asher charmed candy at each stop, while Emma insisted on asking "please" instead of saying "trick-or-treat... which I was completely fine with!
I have a new brother in law. This time it's on my side. Sam and Larry got married! I am so happy for them. It's awesome to be able to call Larry my sister's husband. It's fun to be able to say she is married now. It will be fun to see her sign something with her new last name.
Asher loved his first Thanksgiving. He chowed down...
while Emma ate crackers and drew pictures in the pumpkin pie.
I love how completely opposite Asher and Emma are. He laughs so freely, and we really have to work to get laughs from Emma. Emma is so chatty and friendly to everyone, while Asher just prefers to watch quietly from the safety of my arms. Emma has always loved her Grammy and Auntie, and Asher lights up whenever he sees his Papa or Uncle Larry. Asher sleeps like a dream at night, and Emma always insisted on a cup of milk around 2AM. Emma flew through milestones. She was talking at 8 months, walking at 10 months and was always so independent. Asher is pretty sure having his sister speak for him and having grown-ups carry him from place to place is the way to go.
Paul is possibly leaving to go to DC for three months next week, and we just found out about this yesterday. I really hope this works out for Paul, because I know it's a Detail he was really hoping to get. However, I really hope it works out that the kids and I get to go as well. I originally said I wanted no part in DC this time of year, but that was before it became a real possibility. If we can find a place to rent that will keep us within his per diem budget that will allow us to have Gambel, everything else is taken care if. My fingers are soooo crossed!
Last but not least, the events to come!
Asher is turning 1!
Paul's birthday, Christmas and our anniversary are all just around the corner. This won't technically be Asher's first Christmas, but it will be the first one he is actually awake for! Emma is finally old enough to understand that Santa is a pretty cool guy, Christmas cookies are the best and presents are fantastic. We can't wait!
Monday, October 31, 2011
Since saying "Emma", Asher has also figured out who "mama" is. This isn't said as sweetly as "Emma" is. When Asher wants something (generally a bottle), he will follow me around the house yelling "mama! Mamamamamama! MAMA!". Asher also says "dada", but he hasn't started calling Paul "dada" yet. He just like to babble it. I am sure in the next week or so, Asher will make the connection.
Walking is progressing slowly but surely. Asher will stand on his own for short periods of time. He will take steps if we hold his hands, but he has no desire to take steps on his own yet. Soon enough. We are in no rush.
Emma is Emma. Smart and silly. Pretty and dirty. We are working on spelling words with her. She can spell her name and Asher's. She is very close to spelling "mommy" and "daddy". Emma can count to 50 and is learning to count how many of something there is. She can sing most of the words to her favorite songs on her own, and the poor kid still can't carry a tune in a bucket. I have never loved a singing voice more than Emma's.
Friday, October 7, 2011
Emma: My tummy's talking.
Me: Really? What's it saying?
Emma: It's singing Twinkle Little Star. My butt sings, too. With a measuring cup.
We were in the shower during this conversation. Emma proceeds to sing Twinkle Little Star while rinsing her bottom with a measuring cup. It gets "stuck" on her butt cheek.
Emma: Oh! Oh! It's stuck in my butt!
Me: It's not stuck. Just move it.
Emma: It's sooooo stuck! ::moves measuring cup away from rear end:: Whew! I did it! It's off! That was sooooo close!
Now THAT is the stuff baby book should be make out of.
Thursday, August 25, 2011
Height and Weight: About 26 inches and 18.5 pounds
Teeth: Bottom two front teeth are through and several top teeth seem to be on their way
Milestones reached: Asher...
- sleeps through the night when his teeth are not hurting.
- decided he was done nursing, so we had to switch to formula.
- also decided he is a big boy and purees are for babies, so he is eating various finger foods and most of what we eat for meals.
- can crawl on his hands and knees, pull up to stand and climb up his toys.
- attempted to take a step today and failed big time. He only cried for a second (out of shock probably), so it's okay to laugh.
Security Object: His tiny blankey. While traveling, he snuggles with an elephant Grammy bought for him.
Ticklish spots: Collar bone and toes. He laughs so hard he makes complete strangers giggle.
- When he is being held, Asher loves for the person holding him to jump.
- Any game Emma is playing. He just watches her and smiles all day.
- Dancing and listening to us sing is always a favorite.
- Visiting the dogs or chickens is always good for a giggle.
- Playing in the shower with Mommy and Emma is how he prefers to get clean now.
- Swimming! Just like the rest of his family.
Tuesday, August 2, 2011
By this time I noticed I had stepped in poo at some point. Needless to say, the whole house got mopped and my bed got stripped. Emma was scrubbed from head to toe. The odd thing is that I never found any evidence of WHERE Emma had pooed. Her pull up was in the trash... wet and soggy but not pooed in. I asked Emma over and over if she had gone poopy. Every time, she said, "Yeah, Mommy! I poopy rocks right here." All while pointing to the toilet. I guess she woke up and tried to go potty by herself. I was proud but definitely horrified at the same time.
Friday, July 29, 2011
Asher is learning that rolling around with your mouth open will result in losing the pacifier. Rolling all around in general will also get Asher wedged in strange positions in his crib. All of this rolling is leading to VERY long nights for Mommy. Asher is learning that arms are required to hold your face out of the carpet while he is on his belly. Leaning forward to reach a toy may result in a faceplant. Flailing wildly while "stuck" on his belly will not magically flip Asher back onto his bottom. The one thing Asher is not learning is that crawling would solve just about all of these problems. A part of me thinks it is bound to happen some time soon. Another part of me if scared to death that he will just prefer to scream and flail until he's 20.
Paul is learning that continuous fire assignments may bring good money to pay off bills, but they also lead to a very stressed out, pissy wife. Paul is also learning that his little princess has become a banshee and her fits are no longer cute or easily controlled. I hope he is learning that cuddling and coddling an out of control 2 year old does not end well for anyone in the long run. At the very least, I know he's learning that cuddling and coddling an out of control 2 year old will result in a furious wife. I cannot say for sure what else Paul is learning the hard way, because I really only get to see him about once a week for about an hour... if that.
I am learning that being a stay at home mom out in the middle of nowhere without friends or family is very, VERY hard. I am learning that TV is not the devil. It is sometimes a means to an end when it's too hot to go outside or Asher is too restless to be content with being held while outside. I am learning that grass is not a waste of space or water. If we had grass, Asher would be able to play outside and then Emma would be, too. I am learning that free range chickens prefer committing suicide to living peacefully in a big yard. They are now penned up and not very happy. But at least they will be alive. I am learning that an 85 degree house makes for cranky kids and a grumpy mommy. I am learning that we are all making sacrifices to live the way we are in order to pay off bills. I knew that all along. I just didn't realize how hard some of these sacrifices would be.
Not everything here is all bad. The kids and I really do have more good times than bad. It's just been really hard not having Paul around. I miss my husband. I constantly wonder at what point family needs to become the priority over money. But money is what allows me to stay at home with the kids now. Extra money is what will pay off the bills and allow me to continue staying at home when we move. So there's a constant debate in my head. Do I beg Paul to please stop all this fire stuff? Do I suck it up another week? Month? Until October? November? If I beg him to stop and we move, will I have to start working again and regret my decision forever? Do I suck it up, become overly stressed and force my kids to live with a crazy person for two years. At least we have Bearizona to keep us out of trouble. Emma also reconnected with a friend in Williams, and we will start visiting her every Wednesday before going to Bearizona. That should make Emma a very happy girl and give her something to look forward to every week!