Sunday, January 18, 2015

Framing and Holidays

We finally have framing! Since it's winter here in Iowa (a fact lost on none of us here), things like home construction have a tendency to... stop. Because tools and people don't work well when the temperature is in the single digits. But it warmed back up and now we have progress again! In these pictures, the basement is up but I'm told we have more than that now. I just haven't been out to get more pictures. These were taken Friday.
And here we're looking at H's room,
and here's a pic taken from a spot where I'm trying to take pictures from somewhat consistently.
Before this, we had plumbing rough-in and concrete floor poured, as well as some fairly deluxe waterproofing. I don't know if we need waterproofing this deluxe, but I do know that I'd rather do it now than later!!
We also went out and put in some water lines one day, here is a pic taken from my "consistent spot" while Ryan helps hook the water line to the one in the basement before the concrete was poured.
And here are some pics of he and I digging trenches.
I spent lots of time working the mini excavator we rented.
 This is actually before we rented the mini ex when Ryan was putting some water lines in the FIRST time. Yes, I say that because we used plastic fittings the first time. Word to the wise: brass is worth the money. 
 Here's what my view looked like most of the day we put in water lines.
 Nice, straight, smooth trench. We had a funny moment when Ryan was trying to get the pipe to make the turn he's standing in below and couldn't seem to move enough dirt to get a good radius. So he looks at me and says, "I wish there was a lot less dirt right HERE" and I swear not 10 seconds later the trench collapsed in that exact spot. He didn't hit it or anything, it just decided to cut us a break. It was awesome.
 Yes, I realize it looks like I laid down in the dirt and took a picture. I'm standing on the bottom of the trench, you can see root sticking out of the trench walls beside me. So the trench was taller than I am.

I'm excited progress is being made on our house, framing is fun because it looks like so much progress so fast. 

On the crafting front, I haven't gotten much fully "done" recently. I did finish the quilt top I've been working on and reporting on, I'm just trying to figure out how I'm going to quilt it.
I didn't make much for Christmas presents this year, but I did make my brother and sister-in-law some super-awesome hipster Hama (Perler) bead cassette tape coasters.
I love how they turned out, I just went off a picture I found on Pinterest and made them slightly larger so they have a chance of fitting a glass. I backed them in felt. My brother isn't really a hipster, but he lives in northern California and is just enough of a hipster that I like to tease him about it. :-)

In family life, since my last blog post we finished moving. Man, that was a huge stress on all of us. We moved not just a house with two young children, but also a farm. And Ryan wanted to save EVERYTHING. I swear, if it was "possibly useful someday", he had to save it. At least the farm stuff is at the new farm and I don't have to move it again. Hopefully not ever. All we have at the house we're living in is a bunch of freezers. 

Here some very wonderful people helped us move the chicken pens. 
And this was the picture I took to say "goodbye" to the old house. The new owner did decide to tear it down, he found the main support beam was cracked. I have mixed feelings about that. I am glad to have it sold and be moving forward, but it was our home for almost 7 years and I did have two babies in it. I'm sure it's a better house in my memory than in reality....

Speaking of my two babies, they continue to grow (as kids do). Here Z passed out, utterly exhausted on our Picket Fence Creamery turkey delivery day. It's actually quite rare that he sleeps in our arms; on plane flights to and from California after Christmas, he never once fell asleep in our arms despite a total lack of a nap. 
He also turned 2 shortly after my last post, I found this idea for a cake on Pinterest (of course) and it was perfect. Chocolate malt balls and chocolate frosting, and I didn't need any cake decorating skills at all. Although cake decorating classes are on my bucket list.
Since we also got some snow, I took the somewhat obligatory "younger child watches older child play in the snow" picture.
Since we are in Ames over the winter, we decided to get a membership to the Reiman Gardens, which has an indoor butterfly garden along with a conservatory. Z is so far delighted by the butterflies.

H is also doing well, she is getting closer and closer to really reading. She builds words at school, and recently at home with zero supervision made this picture of a prince from a kit from her uncle from Christmas. My favorite part of this, other than the awesome word building skills, is that I think it looks like Weird Al Yankovic.
H also got to take over her Daddy's haircut time (he decided he didn't need one, so she asked for one) and completely loved salon time. The stylist even put glitter in her hair, and I think she had as much fun getting her hair done as she did opening Christmas presents.
I also attempted to foster more of a spirit of giving rather than just receiving with her over Christmas this year, so we went to a building workshop at Lowe's where H built Z a train. He adores it, and she enjoyed making it. She's not quite strong or coordinated enough yet to really do a lot of it, but she and I worked together and I think it was helpful that she made him a Christmas present. I know it's no soup kitchen volunteering, but it's a step in the right direction, I hope.
With that, I'll leave you today with a (rare) full family picture. I hope you all have a great 2015!

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