Thursday, June 30, 2011

OK, time to talk positives, because there really are a lot

After my vent session, it's time to talk about the positives going on in our lives.

The very first Monday we were here, S and I attended a GTG at the Children's Museum in downtown Boston. It was a blast. It wasn't that hard to get into the city, we found a primo parking garage (that validates parking at the museum), and the weather was perfect.

The museum has areas for kids of all ages. There's a toddler room that was perfect for S. She spent a good half hour playing with the giant train set, then wandered over to the giant car, which she climbed into herself! She loved turning the steering wheel and pressing the button that played car songs. When she got tired of that, she went to the play kitchen and sat at the table, checking out the other kids. I also discovered there's a real kitchen to have lunchtime with the kids. So cool. We are definitely considering an annual membership so she can go back and play to her heart's content. Daddy really wants to go!

And on the housing front, things are looking great. We got a solid offer on our house after a week on the market and 3 showings. We are so, so lucky. The inspection should happen in a week or so, and hopefully things will just keep chugging along. We also had an offer accepted on a house in MA, and the inspection, etc. should track nicely with the sale of our house. The move-in date won't be for a while yet, but we can extend our apartment stay if needed.

Speaking of our apartment, we're starting to enjoy the amenities available. J takes S out and about each evening while I make dinner, and has gotten to see quite a bit. They played with the neighbor kids behind our apartment the first night, and they checked out the tennis courts last night. After dinner we all headed out and walked the neighborhood.

S and I are also checking out local shops and markets. We went to our first farmer's market yesterday, and visited a new yarn store. We may be doing another farmer's market today and seeing what else the area has to offer.

And....drumroll please...we got our new bed! Yep, last night we slept in our brand new king-sized pillowtop bed, and it was awesome. I even got new bedding for it. I feel very fancy.

I have yet to locate a cord to upload any pictures I've taken, so you'll just have a wait a bit for that ;)

Monday, June 27, 2011

Gonna vent a little

It's been a rough week.

We got into MA last Saturday ready to start our new life here. And it was a bit rocky. Our living room was a mass of boxes and various bits and bobs all over the place. The kitchen/DR table wasn't assembled. S's crib needed to be put together. We had no bed, just the pull-out sofa.

We spent Sunday looking at more houses. I feel like we've seen every house on the market in a 25 mile radius of J's work. We started to dig through the mess that was our apartment.

Monday J started work. We were a one-car family for the week, so this meant getting S up around 7:15 so we could get J over to the job site. We threw in the extra fun of meeting some Internet friends of mine and their kids at the Boston Children's Museum. We had a fabulous time, but it was a busy day.

The rest of the week was spent shuttling J to and from work, trying to dig ourselves out of the boxes, getting things set up, and getting ready to head back to PA.

Yeah, we did the drive again this weekend. In part it was to pick up all those little things we left at the house, and in part it was to visit J's family and celebrate his Maw's 85th birthday. So Friday at 4:30 we packed up and headed south. I think we got in around 11.

Saturday was a fun-filed day with J's family (S didn't stop running for about 3 hours), finding and buying a new bed, and keeping a sleepy toddler somewhat content during dinner. Sunday we were supposed to drive back, me with S and one car, and J with another car and some of the things we wanted to bring to MA.

90 minutes into our trip, J called me and said the car died. All the electrical had just shut off, and he was on an offramp in a random town in western NY state. Lovely. We got the car towed to an even more random town, crammed J and some stuff into my car, and headed back to our house in PA so we could regroup.

This morning J went into his old job site to get some work done (oh yeah, his power cord for his work computer is missing), and S and I made our way back to MA. I-84 was NOT fun today. J then left his work site at 3, swung by the house to make sure it looked show-able, swung by the mechanic to get more stuff out of his car, and brought Car #3 up north. He's still on the road as of this posting.

Did I mention I have a cold?

Anyhoo, on a brighter note, we're going to make an offer on a house tomorrow. And someone made a very good offer on our house in PA. So all is not lost.

Let's just hope this week goes a bit more smoothly.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Settling in

Howdy folks, I'm writing to you from the comfy environs of our apartment in Massachusetts. It's been a whirlwind week. In the last 7 days we've packed up (most of) the last of our stuff to bring up here, listed the house for sale, started unpacking the stuff in the apartment, gotten S's room almost all set up, taken her to the Children's Museum, made a huge Walmart run, and figured out the best route to get J to work.

The living room no longer looks like an episode of Hoarders, but we still have a lot of unpacking and organizing to do. I'm attempting my first home-cooked meal tonight, which will probably be fabulous, given that S and I are going to Whole Foods this afternoon.

Pictures once I take some and find the cord to upload them to the computer.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

You must make these

Head over to my sister-in-law's blog and check out this entry.

Then make some. If you're not a vegan and don't have flax around, just substitute an egg for the flax and water. It works great, I promise.

And come back and tell me how fabulous they are. I ate 5 in one sitting this week. I just found another bag of chopped pecans in the pantry today, so I'm making another batch tomorrow. They'll be gone before our next trip to the new apartment.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Loving these pictures!

My new favorite. S got this little flower headband with a diaper cover that came a few weeks ago. It rarely stays on for long.

Striking a familiar pose on the front walk

A fun part of a recent visit to the back yard. S found our gravel pit, and picked up one stone at a time... give to Mommy
Someone is very proud of the fact that she got up on the chair all by herself

Too cute!

Friday, June 10, 2011

Crafty (and daughter-y) update

With the weather getting warmer, I wanted S to have some skirted wool soakers. I mean, the panda pants are great and all, but they're cashmere, and it was 98 here yesterday.

I found a pattern and started making a skirtie. And decided I didn't like the yarn. And that I didn't have the right needle. So I got some beautiful Taos yarn in shades of deep pink, and a proper needle. And got to work.

Now I wonder why I waited so long to make this. It was super easy, and super quick. I finished it in a week, even in the middle of The Big Move.

It fits S great. Not baggy at all, but with a little room to grow.

Just the other day I found a yarn maker who makes a yarn colorway named after S. I immediately ordered 2 skeins of beautiful merino wool so I can do another skirtie. This one in blues and greens. I can't wait.

Friday, June 3, 2011

An open letter to Lowes

Our oven died last week. Great, less than a month before we moved. We didn't want to leave the new owner in the lurch, and I wanted to cook/bake some of the stuff in the kitchen so we didn't have to move it. A visit to Lowes on the day before Memorial Day resulted in finding about 25 electric ranges and about 3 gas ranges (we have gas). We gave up, went online, and found what we wanted. At a store over an hour away, in another state. No problem, Lowes. You deliver and install for free. I heard it from a customer service rep.

Early this week an employee from your NJ store called to confirm a Friday delivery. This morning your delivery guys called and said you'd be here between 2 and 4pm. Fabulous.

At 5pm, your guys showed up. Wheeled the range into the house, looked at our existing range, and said, "We can't touch gas. You need someone to come disconnect your old range. Then you have to have them install the new one, and you can call us to drive back here and pick up the old one." After your guys stored the new range in our garage, they mentioned that it might also need a propane conversion kit. Absolutely none of this was mentioned during the buying and delivery scheduling process.

I called your NJ store. The operator was delightful (and apologetic), but no one answered the phone when I tried to talk to Appliances or a store manager. A call to your 800 number got someone who was apparently trained to be as neutral as possible as I ranted about what a cluster---- this whole process was.

A call back to your NJ store got me a snippy woman in Appliances who said they informed people who came in the store that they would need an outside person to do the install. But apparently that doesn't apply to people who order online, or whom they actually call to set up delivery. And she admitted that she was the one to call me to set up the appointment!

A call to my local store to find a conversion kit resulted in 4 tries to get anyone to answer the phone in Appliances. They finally had to have a store manager answer the phone so he could walk to Appliances in person and get my question answered.

Well, Lowes, it's your problem now. J did some detective work tonight and figured out that we need a $70 sensor replaced in our current range. We plan on picking up the part soon (tomorrow if we're lucky) and having you come take your brand spanking new range back to NJ. I hope the poor schmuck who buys it knows what he/she is getting into.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Woollie mail, in pictures

Every so often, I talk about cloth diapers, and now is a great reason to do so!

Long ago, when I first talked about cloth diapers, I mentioned wool diaper covers. And the last time I got a cute shipment of them, I mentioned them as well. But yesterday was special.

Several weeks ago, I contact a seller on Etsy and asked if I could get a custom diaper cover from an old cashmere twinset I didn't fit into any more. No problem. She sent me a detailed questionnaire to make sure we got everything right, asked if I wanted any embellishments (of course I asked for a panda), and got to work. She sent me a preview a few days ago and I've been waiting patiently by the mailbox ever since.

After my knit night at my awesome LYS (more on that in another post), I dropped by the mailbox and saw this:

I knew it! My panda pants for S were finally here!

This morning I had to get them on the butt to see how they looked. S helped.

Hey Mom, what are these!

Check out my new paaaaaaaaaants!

Action shot. I am in love!