Sunday, July 25, 2010


Here is a little peek into the new pad. It is spacious and lovely but NOT quite ready for a photo shoot (i.e. double oven sitting in a big box on my kitchen floor, unpainted walls and naked windows).

Still, there are a few cozy corners that are starting to feel like home.
Our new living room is very open and casual. Quite a change from the formal "parlor" in our old house. We got some big comfy club chairs and love our new plantation shutters. Kids are already using it as Lego Central, which is always a sign of decorating success.

The kitchen, as I mentioned, is mid-makeover right now. However, I love my great big island. We chose Silestone quartz countertops with a touch of blue. I'm using lots of blue in the kitchen. (Yay! My blue & white plate collection can come out of the cupboard!) Actually, lots of blue throughout the house. It's a nice contrast to all the desert brown.

I don't miss the basement as much as I thought I would. The kids have this playroom upstairs. Their bedrooms and baths all adjoin the space, so it feels like a big dormitory.

Believe it or not, we do have quite a few trees in the front yard. No cacti. Yesterday we found a huge hive of bees feeling right at home too. Yikes.

Much of the backyard looks like this. I just want the Pool Fairy to come in the middle of the night. Anyone know her number?

In the meantime...thank heavens for kids who would be happy in a mud puddle.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

A Few Recommendations

Number One:
If you, like me, are moving old furniture into a new space, run and get this book at the library...
It's an oldie, but a goodie. Lauri Ward teaches design principles that work with any furniture, in any room. Because the people at Pottery Barn don't want us to know this, but we really don't need ALL new stuff to make our homes comfortable and attractive. I have been rereading this week and learning a lot.

Number Two:
If you, like me, will be sending children back-to-school shortly, don't forget to celebrate Children's Day first! (If you aren't familiar with Children's Day, I detail it in this old post. By the way, who are those adorable little tykes? What happened to them and their high-energy young mother?)

Number Three:
If you, like me, love to be inspired by real-life moms, go check out my real-life friend, Rochelle, here. Watch the clip. Anyone with a special needs child or just a burning desire to see a darling redhead will be more than satisfied. Go Ro!

Thursday, July 15, 2010


OK, so. We've been here for a week and a half now. Seeing the light at the end of the cardboard tunnel. And, I have to say, we're starting to feel at home.

There are a few questions we've heard a lot. Here they are; along with my honest replies.

How do you like the heat?

It is hot. But summer's hot everywhere and, let's face it, I'm not outside digging ditches or anything. We venture from one air conditioned place to another. Parking lots are brutal, I will admit.

Actually, the aridness (is that a word?) takes more getting used to than the heat. We are all parched all the time. My skin cries for lotion all day long. Little fingers are constantly exploring little noses because dry air creates interesting stalactites up there.

Have you seen any scorpions?


Brad, Jake and Em caught this one in our backyard with a blacklight. (Scorpions glow in the dark, did you know that? I didn't.) I'm trying not to think about its brothers and sisters scuttling around somewhere.

Are you settled yet?

Well, the unpacking is 97% complete. The rooms are arranged and the closets are all organized. But the work has just begun. Next up: painting, picture hanging, furniture shopping and other activities guaranteed to drive my husband crazy.

How are the kids adjusting?

Pretty well, I think. They love the new house and adore their new rooms. The twins are sleeping solo and they dig it. Em has a "princess suite"--faraway from the boys, with her very own bathroom. Several mornings I have found her curled up in Luke's bed, but I'm sure she'll outgrow it.

The kids have been good sports. Very patient as I have dedicated mornings to organizing and unpacking. We do a few errands after lunch. (Is there anything worse than shopping for table lamps with your mom at Home Goods? Yes! Returning table lamps with your mom at Home Goods the very next day.)

Afternoons we forget about the new house and pretend we are tourists in our new hometown.

Believe it or not, school starts NEXT WEEK here. I don't know who is dreading it more, the kids or me. Our summer has been anything but long and relaxing. Not sure I'm ready for homework, permission slips and packing lunches yet. But it'll be fun for them to meet friends and get into a routine. Gulp.

What do you like best about your new house?

Two words. Laundry room.

It is big and beautiful. Lots of storage. I'm going to paint it robin's egg blue and I might start sleeping in there.

What do you miss most?

Aside from all my dear friends, I really miss our big, green backyard most. Give me ticks over scorpions any day. Plus, my kids miss their trampoline. We have lots of landscaping to do.

What are your first impressions of your new town?

Friendly and wholesome. Family oriented. It feels like the country with lots of farms and open space. But there's a brand-new Nordstrom 10 minutes away. What more could a girl ask for?
We're gonna like it here.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

I Feel Special

Today I turned 40. I don't feel old or used-up or ugly or miserable. I feel lucky and loved. Phone calls, a sweet post from my sweet mom, presents, birthday cards, treats, emails, flowers, wishes from all corners have made me feel blessed.

Life is good and I'm just getting better at it.

Thanks, everybody.

Friday, July 9, 2010

We're Here, It's Hot and I've Been Yelling at my Kids All Day

Moving to Arizona in the middle of July is not for wimps.

And I guess I didn't realize how wimpy I truly am. But it's too late. Now, the only way out is through.

We got to the new place Wednesday morning and have spent the past two days sorting, unpacking, organizing and looking for the cricket chirping loudly in our kitchen. Somewhere.

The house is awesome. Now that the dust has settled on our remodeling projects and a few of our old favorites are out of their boxes, I can see what a great place this will be for our family. It might not have as much charm as our old place, but what it lacks in historic character it makes up in roominess, closet space and new carpet smell. So fun to have everything brand new!

I vowed not to go shopping until I had boxes unpacked, but today I just had to pick up a few basic essentials, like milk and Mentholatum (helps nostrils acclimate to dry heat), so I headed to the Fry's right around the corner.

Sixty minutes and $200 later, I emerged from Fry's with a serious case of ADHD. That store sells everything. Produce, dairy, patio furniture, pots and pans. Of course I totally forgot to pick up milk, but Sam and I did enjoy some quality time with Cliff from the garden center who educated us in the basics of desert gardening. And helped me pick out my first cacti! On sale!

The kids have really been pretty good. I just get annoyed when they start begging for lunch while I am trying to make important decisions like where to put the drinking glasses. (Above the dishwasher for easy unloading? Or next to the fridge for quick beverage access?) Leave me alone, hungry munchkins, drinking glasses save lives.

We've met two neighbors and the RS President brought dinner. Other than that, I love being anonymous. Knowing you won't run into anyone at the grocery store (except maybe Cliff from the garden center) is true freedom.

Pictures coming soon! Promise!

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