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Monday, February 27, 2012

Real Life Account of How I SURVIVED Last Weekend

Playing Worship with Calalia

Snowboarding a few weeks back!
Elasta Woman
The Kids Having a Serious Poker Game
Archer and Friends
Art Dog and My Honey Visited The Space Needle During Their Trip

Well its been an interesting couple of weeks! We had an exquisite lady visit our home. She is a friend of The Archers. She had dinner with us, played worship music with the kids, shot guns with the guys and hung out with us in the hot tub. A girl who can shoot and talk about overseas missions with me is rare indeed ;-) It was a lot of fun and I hope she comes back. We also had a great day snowboarding last Monday!! I am super thankful to Goat girl for watching the kids :-)
This past weekend was a dark one indeed, or rather I thought it would be. My husbands boss asked him to come to an aviation conference with him in Seattle. I started out the week with terrible horrible dread. Of course I wanted him to go and knew it would be a great opportunity for him. I just hated to see him gone. I can get horrible separation anxiety. After about a day of foreboding, I spent the next few evenings teary. Soon terror and horror had set in. I was really really wondering how I would survive the weekend sane. Finally I got a genius of an idea. His bosses wife is going to be home by herself too - right? Right. So I decided that we should have a girls night of movies, pizza, chocolate and fun. Then I invited myself over and held my breath. Well she liked the idea so the plan was on!!
Saphara decided she would be making pizzas rather than buy unhealthy ones and she also planned out a decadent torte. It just so happens that they have a home schooled girl just her age and they get along perfectly. Super Catman was excited because they have a boy that is just a bit older who is lots of fun to play with! Art Dog planned to go to the conference with his dad. The Archer was planning a much needed weekend at home. Miss Moonbeam would of course come along on our girls night. There was much anticipation and planning as we spent the entire day on Friday packing and cooking. There was no time to worry about separation anxiety and soon Friday came and went without me freaking out. SELAH.
Saturday there was horrible snowstorm and the power was out, but we weren't changing our plans and so we braved the foot of snow on the roads. We had a whole itinerary of things planned out before we went there. Miss Moonbeam was entered into the towns "Happy Tot" contest. The kids got to go see the house we are buying. That was pretty special too. They were very excited and I was relieved that they all were happy and loved the place. None of them wanted to leave it as they said it "felt like home" and they "felt God there". I was relieved...... With all the running around, I didn't think TOO MUCH about my husband and Art Dog's absence....
We arrived their beautiful home. The thing about their house is that you can't be there without feeling inspired. The whole place just speaks of creativity. Out almost every room, you can see this amazing panoramic view of mountains forever overlooking a beautiful river. Its just amazing. There is a movie theater in the basement and it was hilarious fun to watch chick flicks down there. Super Catman had a heavenly PlayStation experience too ;-)
They are so much fun to visit with. We are completely opposite of them in personality, but just kind of click. Saphara is kind of bold and outgoing. She doesn't mind chaos, while her friend, Emerald, is sweet, quiet and an intellectual sponge. Its kind of the same with us moms too. In honor of my friend "Elasta Woman" being my cartoon super heroine friend, I have decided to name this friend after a super heroine too. As long as she doesn't care she's going to be "Kim Possible" because she's one of my favorite cartoon heroines and I can see her getting a lot done just like good ol' KP on the show :-) So as I was saying, we all had a really super fun time and it never occurred to me for long that my husband was way off in Seattle.......
Being that our chick flick night went on to about 1 or 2 am, when I stumbled out of bed for church the next morning, the only thing I could think of was "coffee". I wandered upstairs and peeshawed the idea of being polite where coffee was concerned. Coffee just has to happen - right? I neglected to put on my glasses and so my eyes hallucinated that the bleach bottle under the sink was the trash can where I dumped the old coffee filter and grounds - lol!! Saphara was mildly embarrassed and Emerald was a bit shocked, but recovered fast and directed me to the beans seeing that the nature of my mission was of the "no turning back" sort. Saphara suggested I find my glasses before proceeding, but there was no time for such drivel. Coffee must happen. At any rate, being so focused on coffee, I forgot all about not having my wonderful husband to make breakfast for....
Church was amazing! It was the best service I'd been in in a very l-o-n-g time. It was the kind of place you'd feel forced to assume some growth. I decided right there that I would have to visit here again. After that we all went out for lunch. By the time we got home, I was rather exhausted and took a nap, forgetting all about fretting over my husband not being there and besides, he'd be home tonight!!
Now I had put on face book back that Friday that I was surviving with my husband gone and that it had been a full 3 hours. Somebody got on there and told me they had to go a year and a half while her husband was overseas in the military. Then I started looking over my friends list and discovered that many of my face book friends had to suffer much longer than I with their husbands gone for various reasons. I began to feel very small and silly indeed. The idea of posting how many hours till my husband returned home every 6 to 12 hours of the weekend seemed rather, uh, ridiculous. I really and truly would survive just fine. In fact, I should be thankful that I didn't have to endure what so many other women do. With that I decided to be thankful and get busy. Soon I was cleaning and organizing and packing. Before I knew it, HE CALLED and he was only a few hours from home!! I had made it through the weekend without bawling once, moping around depressed, or even throwing a big hissy fit.
Around 11pm, my dear, wonderful son Art Dog walked through the door glad to see the life he was used to seeing followed my dear husband!! I flew into his arms and told him how traumatic it was not having him there ;-)

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

The CRAZY Day!

ElastaWoman and Kind Sock Fashion Expert watched the kids so Eyes could help us with the house inspection.

Was my purse here?

Dinner out after the inspection

Archer photographed these elk on the way home one day.....

Last week in town was C-R-A-Z-Y! In a crazy effort to utilize our Healthy MT Kids insurance before we move, coupled by saving on gas, I had 6 appts scheduled - 3 dentist, 1 Dr, 1 music and 1 vet. Super Catman's hand hadn't been right since his sledding mishap on the wall of ice, so that was all part of the grand scheme of things. Along with all the hoopla, a nice girl wanted my baby crib which I had to arrange for and I decided to finally get rid of the broken easy chair which was propped against the wall because the back no longer stayed up. All of this "over scheduling" was bound for trouble, but I didn't see it coming.
That morning, I began coordinating things via facebook, feeling a bit too proud about my level of organization. Then the dentist called in sick, so I rescheduled Dr. appt time. Then I had to change the crib intercept time. Soon, I realized that The Archer had my cell phone. This would make things even a bit more complicated. Just when we were about to leave, I saw a fresh dog doodoo in the yard. HOORAY! I was supposed to bring in a fresh sample to be tested for worms. Eagerly, I went outside to scoop the evidence into a yogurt container. I had worried that I was going to have to stop on the side of the road and pick up yesterdays from when we went running together.
Somehow children and dog and broken chair and God knows what else were loaded into a pickup truck and began the slow descent over the pass into town. "Moona is kicking the dog!" "I am not!" bickering went on, but I was deep in contemplation of pulling off my flawless trip.
All of this planning would change when, at the first appt, the Dr. decided to send us over to the hospital to get an Xray of Super Catman's superior hybrid claw-paw-hand. Didn't they know he is part cat after all? Apparently not. Thankfully Our Sock Fashion Expert had met with the crib lady in the parking lot of the clinic and done the deal already. Miss Libby was whining. After the xray, we were dropping off another item at the consignment store. Thankfully the consignment store lady let me make some calls. Did I mention The Earnest Money came back and I had to clear that up? After a series of calls at the consignment store, I was again, organized, though my pride in the day a bit tainted.
Next we decided to go to the grocery store. There were no parking spots. People were acting crazy. There weren't even any carts! It was the 18 hour cereal sale. With my "superior planning", I sat the kids down at a corner in the deli with a broaster chicken and began braving the mob to get my share of cereal and sale items. Again, flawlessly, I pulled in to the "15 items or less" line with 15 items. Boy was I good ;-)
My big mistake was made when I returned to the kids and saw there was still some chicken left. I sat down, relaxed and ate for a few moments. Then it was back to the grindstone and we were navigating our way out the door amongst deranged looking shoppers. One large man was angry that he could not find any Captain Crunch and was snidely accusing the checker of buying it all before he could get there. I breathed a sigh of relief. I was glad to get out of this crazy place. If we headed straight to the dump, we could make it just in time for Sock Fashion Experts music lesson.
The Sock Fashion Expert gawked at and photographed all the ravens in the dump. The smell and mud mixed with trash made us almost want to drive away with the chair. Finally, I told her I would push it out without her help and I did. It wasn't until we were at the music lesson that I started looking around for the number the clinic had given me to call to check on Super Catman's hand. It was no where. NEITHER WAS MY PURSE!! Panic began to rise inside of me and I began losing my ability to rationalize. It was either in the mud at the dump or WITH THE CRAZY GROCERY STORE MOB!! How could this have happened to my perfectly planned day?!? The teacher wasn't there yet, but I left my beautiful daughter on the porch with her guitar and headed in the direction of the grocery store. I was trying not to drive like a maniac, but the impulse was alive and well.
There is this "new rule" with all house loans today. You have to some how "legally" have all the down payment in your bank account. Even if you have saved your money at home as cash, it is considered "dirty". No money is accepted unless proven beyond a shadow of a doubt. It is the most insane rule I have ever heard of. We can't sell anything to a family member, and if we do sell anything, we have to prove when we bought it. Even if you get your pay check, take cash out and put it back in the next day, the money is "dirty". Amongst my day, my head never stopped contemplating how we could "prove" our down payment and how we could come up with it all. Every dollar is scrutinized. My husband had given me strict rules to "stop thinking about it" but it was hard not to. The rules were so crazy it was near impossible. It is actually set up so that you almost have to find some way to launder legally gained money even though its an "anti laundering" rule. UGH! Anyhow, fear overtook me. What if all the money we finally proved was "legal" was taken with one swipe of a card? What if my stupidity caused us to lose the house? Oh the agony! I prayed and tried to picture all the good people who would do what I would do and turn the purse in. I couldn't even call the store because I didn't have my cell phone.
After a most difficult and incredibly hard to drive the speed limit trip across town, I parked the kids in handicap parking and locked the door mid run. I fit right in with the crazy mob running into the store with a wild eyed look. There was the chair which I hung my purse on. It was gone. Was it at the dump in the mud? Did I chose the wrong place to go? I rushed up to the counter with a constipated expression. The lady pointed me to customer service assuring me she'd brought my purse there. Thank God for good people! At customer service, the man was reluctant to come see me. He might have thought I was going to demand more Captain Crunch, but after I explained my crazy wild eyed look, he gave me my purse....... all the money and credit cards intact. Selah.
I was very relieved as I left the store and hoped no handicapped person had been slighted. When I got to the music lesson, I intruded to use the phone. The nurse told me my son's hand was indeed, broken and it needed to be put in a cast. The only time was during the vet time, so then I had to call them. In the end, they agreed I could hang the poop on the door if I couldn't make it in time (not the clinic, the vet). You know people are good when they let you hand poop on their door. After the cast, we made it to the vet. My first poop sample contained a large rubber band which I had mistaken for a worm. The second sample contained no worms. The vet eyed me skeptically. "Really, I saw them crawling right out of her poop" I groaned. Reluctantly, he gave me more wormer "just in case". "Next time bring me the worms" he said smiling. Over all, by the time all was said and done, I was feeling very very humble and thankful. No more was I a master organizer of time, but a girl fallen on the mercy of God just to make it through the day.
I won't go on any more for fear that your head will explode with all of this information, as I felt mine would by the end of the day. Sufficient to say, the day ended and my sister was kind enough to listen to my debriefing over the phone with a cup of tea.
I never did tell my dear husband all of the story. I just couldn't bear to confess it and burden him with it. Today is valentines day and there is again tulips and roses gracing my table. I couldn't stop crying when he gave them to me. Life is crazy, but some things God just ordains. Some things are constant. We all may fail sometimes, but we can trust that God in us never does.

Friday, February 10, 2012


On Friday, the big day of finality, I rode solemnly into town with Kevin. I just needed to get back to that house one more time so I could really "know". I bought some oil, and felt a little like history was repeating itself. I wondered if I was "wasting" yet another day praying over another house that wasn't mine. When I drove in, that strange familiarity came back to me again. It was the same one that came before, which I had shrugged off. I walked through the house quietly with Miss Moonbeam. Every reason I'd told myself before of why it wouldn't work seemed to dismiss itself. There were places for every kid, even though it wasn't like our house. A sizable apartment attached to the garage would work great for the 2 oldest boys. The Archer was in need of a "bachelor pad" anyway. There might not be a basement, but the big 3 car garage would be plenty room enough for all that stuff. Everywhere I looked, everything was nice, new and expensive looking - Hydronically heated laminated cement floors, stainless steel dishwasher and high tech looking oven, custom made wood working, every detail looked impressive, new, well built. The entire upstairs was devoted to a master bedroom that humbled me - Plush carpet, glass doors to a balcony that over looked the river far away, huge lighted closets, double sinks and dressing table in the bathroom - it was almost overwhelming. As I knelt down to pray, images flashed in front of my mind. I could see expectation and happy days. Peace rushed in amongst the visions. There was no doubt that this would be the best place for us. Still, it was out of my hands.
Before doing my thing with the oil, I wandered down to the neighbors to see if I could get some information about the place. I knocked on the door and a man with a suspiciously 80's type rocker look answered, dating him to about my era. He smiled big and invited me inside. A nice older couple sat in the living room quietly. He did most of talking, which really confused me, but it turned out he was another neighbor who was visiting. Between all of them I got all the information I needed about the old owners and permission for our kids to go to the nearby creek any time they wanted. It was such a goldmine of a visit. After pointing out some boundaries to me, rocker man tore off in his Toyota and I climbed back up to the house.
By the time hours had elapsed and it was time to go, I wondered still, how God was going to make it all work out. The price was still far above our range. I had taken to bidding on it based on a trend I saw of price drops from Fannie Mae coupled with a "gut feeling". There was nothing solid to tell me that it would go. I drove back to town, dreading that call from my realtor. Back and forth we'd gone and this was probably it. Long story short, after a lot of calls in town, Fannie Mae, the realtor and the banker worked out a plan and after a weekend of prayer and deliberating..... WE LOCKED IN ON IT!!

So now my question is what should I rename my blog now that I won't be in the Yaak?

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Houses I Have Known.....

House #3

House #2

House #1

Here are some houses we made offers on. We're currently batting it back and forth with the bank on this third one. Its enough to drive me batty. The first one we lost, I fell head over heels in love with. It had such an pull on me. I loved the open field around it and how it over looked the river from up high on the other side. I fell in love with its vast openness and its sense of nostalgia. It just plain called to me, though it had an unending amount of work that needed to be done. I grieved hard over it when my husband said "no" and somebody else bid higher. The next one came along after months of waiting. I never fell in love with it, but I knew "I could do it". It was big enough for us, though smack dab in the middle of the city. It was just a cheap, temporary fix that we could maybe make money on later. This last one is by far the nicest of them all, though the smallest. Too small for us all, so we'd eventually have to add on an extra bedroom or two. Its got a nice piece of land with it, a big 3 car garage and an extra apartment. With the apartment, it would be perfect for our son in transition, but before it became a bachelor pad it would most likely have to be a "boys cabin" till more room could be added on. I'm not love with it, but it is a really really nice house and there is a lake and forest service land not too far away. It would most resemble our way of living now, which I think would be better for the kids than living in the city. Its also the most expensive of the three.
Its unsettling not knowing whats going to happen. We made an offer, the bank offered back. We made a counter, they countered back. Now, tomorrow, we have to make a final decision how high we're going to go. The realtor said they're probably not going to go back and forth much longer. I'm not sure how much higher we should even try to go. It would be hard going to a house thats only about 1/3 of the size we're living in now, but I think its necessary. For my husbands future in aviation, for our sons future in his field and even the rest of the kids, I think moving is probably the best for all of them. This real estate twilight zone seems just to go on an on and on. I'm beginning to think that with all the research I've done, I could become an investor ;-)
Tomorrow is the big day of decision, so I think I'm going to go pray over it again. I do weird things like that. Its just me. Normal people would have found something by now. Normal people are not addicted to water. I'm obsessive. I HAVE TO GET TO THE WATER every day in the summer time. I HAVE TO. If I'm upset, I pray best finding my way to the water. If I'm stressed out, the water calms my nerves. I just have to get there somehow. Normal peoples kids don't have to get to the forest. Mine are obsessive about being out in the forest. Normal people don't feel phobic around houses and people. Normal people are nothing like me. They are normal and I am not. Not even my kids and husband are remotely normal. None of us are. One of these days I'm going to be blogging about adjusting to becoming a more "normal" person - lol.
Well, what more can I say? Tomorrow might be the big day an agreement is reached or it might be yet another house that went by the wayside....... My sister reminded me today that I should picture God as being on His throne, capable, glorious, all encompassing. In Him "we live and move and have our being". Our very breath originated from His nostrils and we solely exist only because He chooses to allow it. How silly for me to agonize over counter offers ;-) I can't count the times God has given us amazing financial miracles that are unexplainable to "normal" people. He is certainly capable of doing it again this time. If He doesn't, he must have a better plan in mind :-)