Sunday, January 23, 2011

Skye's First Week

It's hard to believe that Skye is already a week old!  She is changing and her pictures look more like Nick's baby pictures.  She lost 10 oz in the hospital, but is already up 6 oz. this week.  To see darling pictures of Skye's first week, and Renee's cute posts, here is the link to their blog:
Doesn't Renee look great?! I love the picture of her holding Skye in her bath towel. 

We got to Skype with them again tonight.  It was a fun visit because Rebecca and Paige were there also!  I am still unsure when I get to fly to Idaho to visit.  I am hoping we finally get some good news tomorrow or Tuesday or Wednesday. . .

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Friday, January 14, 2011

The Big Move Week - Day 5 - The Big Day

day-old Skye
 After the craziness of yesterday, we had to make up for lost time by staying up very late and getting up very early to get everything done in time for the movers arrival at 8 a.m. Plus, the Direct TV guy was coming to set us up at the new house between "8-12". That's a whole story for another day.

The movers came 1/2 hour early and got right to work. The day flew by. We fit almost everything on the truck, but needed a second trip with half a load of the big furniture items. Everything is chaos but we are getting there. We have phone, internet and TV. Now all we need is a bed and a good night's rest and sleeping in tomorrow and we might survive this.  There is so much to do.

My phone rang so much today I've been hearing phantom ring tones that aren't there! I definitely will be changing my ring tone!

The Big Move Week - Day 4

As Craig and I were driving a full truckload out to the new house, bright and early to meet the verizon guy between "8-12", I got a text at 7:15 a.m. from Nick saying::

It was such a big surprise it took my breath away and then I just started bawling and couldn't stop for about 15 minutes.  Renee wasn't due until Jan 31 so she was almost 3 weeks early! I was so weepy and sidetracked all day long.  And Craig was so dear, and so patient - even more than usual! 

This is the first time I' haven't been nearby to meet a new grandchild and share that special time with my own child.  It just tugged at my heart all day.  Once Rebecca called and told me she was going down to the hospital my heart was lightened and I felt so happy.  She was able to spend the day with them and kept us updated with phone calls and texts. At 12:49 she sent the text "WE HAVE A BABY!"

Skye Huntington Rogers
5 lb. 10 oz.
18 1/2" long
Tons of dark hair
Mom, Dad and Baby Skye are all doing very well!

The Big Move Week- Day 3

Craig ended up taking off today, so he is off the rest of the week .  It has been great having him home and we have been able to tag team and accomplish so much more. However, we have very different styles and philosophies when it comes to packing and sorting.  We've been able to put a dent in things.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

The Big Move Week - Day 2

Yesterday I accomplished a TON, but it still looks like there is a TON yet to do.  How does that work?  And with this nice, cool weather, I am so in the mood to bake and I don't dare get involved in anything but packing.

I started upstairs gathering up and packing and it was so easy to get side tracked and see something in another room to deal with.  I felt like Phil Dunfee from Modern Family.  I had to really force myself to focus on the upstairs, because I want to move all the boxes and moving supplies downstairs one last time and be done.  

I finally got all the little odds and ends packed in the upstairs bedrooms - pictures, lamps, books, etc.  It all adds up so fast and I am honestly sorting and donating a lot.  Packing away pictures and taking down curtains and quilts and things off the wall has been difficult.  Way more than I ever imagined. 

On the news this morning,  they showed highlights from half time at last nights bowl game with Auburn and Oregon.  [Sorry about your Ducks, Joshie!]  But the cool thing was they honored families of deployed military and then I wasn't paying attention and all of a sudden the dad's and husband's were THERE! It was a sweet surprise that gave me chills and then I just sat down and bawled for my Ben.   I can't wait until he is home again with Jamie and the kids. Almost 3 months down, 9 or so to go.  I hate it that they are apart more than I am worried about his safety.

Back to Day 2 of this crazy move week.  Today I took a full load to the new house all by myself, and it is starting to feel familiar. I am really looking forward to being DONE.

Happy news today:  my friend Ruth Melvin had her 11th grandchild - he was born at 11:54 on 1-11-11.  How cool is that for a birthday? Welcome to the world Finley James Melvin - 6 lbs, 12 oz, 19".  Lots of  love to parents Josh & Charlie and big sisters McKenna and Gracie! I can't wait to see more pictures.

Monday, January 10, 2011

The Big Move Week - Day 1

DISCLAIMER: I am using this blog to journal and record the highlights of our move, so it could get a little more wordy and detailed than usual.
Craig, the knot-tying-champion and master packer.  This is just a partial picture of load #1. 
Over the weekend, Craig borrowed a trailer and suburban from a friend at work.  Our first stop was the storage unit, where we loaded up the shelving for the new garage and emptied almost 2/3 of the storage unit.  [We got the storage unit when the Bryant's lived with us for 8 months, so I've stored all my holiday decorations, preschool stuff and catering supplies there, since the garage was used as the preschool room]. 
We were able to take 3 loads over to the new house filling both the trailer and inside the suburban.  We felt like the Beverly Hillbillies with our belongings piled up on the trailer.  On Saturday, Craig and his trusty assistant, Greg, spent most of the day dismantling  the shed and loaded it up.  I was able to get the kitchen unpacked and set up the pantry on shelving in the under-the-stairs closet.  Melissa and Greg have been such big help, helping us unload and lug things upstairs.  We will owe them free babysitting forever!
This is the new kitchen, minus the plants on the top of the cupboards.  I love the colors and my red kitchen stuff looks really cute with the yellow.  I am going to put things on top of the cupboards that I put on my shelves in the past.  (This way we won't have to leave big holes in the wall from installing the shelves, since we are renting). It is so nice having so much cupboard and drawer space.
We are at the point now that most of the things we go to use are either packed or at the new house.  I guess that's a good sign.  Today I am spending the day packing up the odds and ends, and putting colored dots on all the boxes as requested by the movers. I will try to remember to take more pictures this week.

I am really dreading taking down my pictures and quilts off the wall.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Under Construction

Is it just me, or am I being too picky about a blog background?  Every time I find one I think I like, only half of it shows on the blog. So then it looks weird and not so cute.  Annoying.  So, since Christmas and New Years are officially over, I took down my blog Christmas tree and it looks as empty as the house after the decorations are put away.  So please bear with me while I figure this out.

It may take awhile because the movers are coming on Friday, January 14 for the big, heavy items. We are at the stage now where we go to grab something and it's either packed or at the new house.  We should be officially moved out of Moreno Valley and moved into Lake Elsinore this weekend.  I-AM-SO-TIRED-OF-PACKING!!!  The good news is that I have the new kitchen almost done, so that feels like I've finally made a dent in something. Finally! One room down, 6 to go.  Baby steps, I know.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Peppermint Candy Cane Brownies

I bought all the ingredients to make these for our Christmas dinner at Melissa's, butI ran out of time.  Yesterday when I ran across the ingredients I thought I would humor myself and make them, since I got jipped (gypped?) out of any holiday baking.  I am happy to report they turned out just like this and they taste even better than they look!  On the glorious there is a great, step-by-step, photo tutorial.  I followed all their directions.  It takes a little time, mainly to refrigerate between layers, but otherwise it's easy and so worth it.  Your'e Welcome!!!
4 squares unsweetened chocolate (4oz)
1 C butter (2 sticks)
4 eggs
2 cups sugar
1t vanilla
1 1/4 C flour
1/2 t baking powder

2 C powdered sugar
4 T butter, softened
1 1/2 t peppermint extract (I only used 1/2 tsp)
1 T milk
pink food coloring

Chocolate Glaze:
6 oz (about a cup) semi-sweet chocolate chips
6 T real butter

1/2-1 C crushed candy canes (Use Bob's NOT Spanglers!) 
 6 candy canes = ½ cup (6 oz. box of 12)

First, the Brownies:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.The chocolate you want is baking chocolate, which is sold in bars by the chocolate chips. Make sure it is unsweetened. Give those squares a rough chop so they'll be easier to melt.
Then place them in a microwave-safe bowl along with the 2 sticks of butter (also chopped).  Melt in 30-45 second intervals, stirring in between, until melted and smooth. Set aside. Don't accidentally stick your finger in the melted butter and chocolate combo because it will laugh at you for forgetting that it is unsweetened.

In a stand mixer or with electric beaters, beat eggs for about 3 minutes until thick and frothy.  Add sugar and vanilla and beat to combine. Then add in the melted chocolate and butter that you set aside. Combine flour and baking powder and whisk into brownie batter by hand until just combined. Pour into a lightly greased 9x13 pan. If you want to make the job much easier, line your pan with foil first.

Bake for 20-25 minutes. Test with a toothpick for doneness and don't over bake! When brownies are done, cool on a cooling rack. When completely cool, pop in the fridge to chill. (makes the frosting spreading easier)

Next layer is the frosting:
Combine all frosting ingredients and beat until light and fluffy. Add extra milk by teaspoonful if you need a little more. Spread evenly over cooled/chilled brownies and place back in the fridge to chill again while you do the final step.

Chocolate Glaze:
Place chocolate chips and butter in a microwave-safe bowl and cook in 30 second intervals until smooth.Set aside for a few minutes, stirring occasionally, so it can cool off just a bit. Remember in the first step when I told you to not accidentally let your finger fall in the chocolate butter mixture? Totally doesn't apply to this chocolate butter mixture. Quickly spread on top of brownies. I say quickly because the frosting is cool and the chocolate is hot. If you take your sweet time and overdo it, you'll make a big gooey mess. Just spread it on quick.

Sprinkle the crushed candy canes on top and return to the fridge until chocolate is set on top.

Remove from fridge a few minutes before serving. Cut into squares, eat, ooh and ahh, and then eat another one. Or two.  ( I would wait another 30 minutes or so to serve them when they are at room temp).

Sunday, January 2, 2011

A New Year & A New Address

It won't be official until January 14th, but the move has begun!  It has been such a daunting task, but such a good decision.  We picked up the keys to our new home  a  few days ago.  While we were in  Louisiana for Christmas, we got the good news that our escrow was delayed 2 weeks, which means we are back to our original move dates.  At first we were frustrated, but then we realized by having  a month of thinking we had to be done moving by December 30th it helped motivate us to hustle our packing and planning.  That is an understatement. We basically did zero for Christmas.  No decorating.  No tree.  No nativities.  No baking.  No parties. No Christmas cards.  No fun, until the night before we left for Louisiana.  But that's a story for another post. 

I am finding that moving is almost more mental work than physical and we are exhausted all the way around.  Trying to decide how and where to put things in a place that will be convenient is taking more time than I imagined.  I have taken for granted so many little things, like knowing how all my appliances work and where things are in the kitchen, or anywhere else for that matter.  I am trying to plan carefully so I can unpack as I go.  We will have a much larger kitchen and pantry so that helps.  But then I get emotional and overwhelmed with the enormity of the task ahead, and after a small meltdown I just start all over again and make a new list. 

The other thing I have taken for granted is the ease of having  "current information" on all my ID, checks, etc.  Now when I am asked," Is this your current address?", I will have to remember my new address and phone number.  The address is super easy - 41111 -  but the phone number and zip code will be tricky since it's been the same for 30 years!