Saturday, October 25, 2008

Our New Home

Dana and I left the kids with my parents and flew to Alabama, er, I mean 'Bama last weekend to look for a house to rent. We flew out on Thursday and went from upper 70's and clear, beautiful weather to overcast and drizzling. For the 3rd time in a row, Dana wasn't able to see the Mississippi River and she was bummed about it. We met our realtor on Friday and by noon had settled on a house to rent, not that there were very many to choose from. The house we chose is a 2000 sq. ft, 3 bedroom, 2 bath, 2 car garage place in a golf course community. So much for firing up the Camaro without mufflers when I get the new engine installed. Of course, I think golfers should have to concentrate while dealing with noises just like all the other sports - no offense, Larry! Anyway, the house is nice and isn't much more than a year old but the garage is so small! :( The more houses we looked at the more I realized how much I really love this house. So by noon, we had signed the paperwork for the house and the skies had cleared. Dana and I had Friday afternoon and all day Saturday to ourselves with nothing to do. We ate out, watched a movie, went window shopping at a very girl-oriented strip mall (NO guy stores) and just enjoyed the time we had together knowing we won't have another opportunity to do that for who knows how long. Then, at oh-dark thirty Sunday morning, we were at the airport for our trip home and to see our boys. And we had perfect weather the whole day so Dana was finally able to see that elusive river.

There are very few fences in that neighborhood - and most of the area - and that house is no different. Unfortunately, Cade won't be able to play in the backyard by himself anymore because he could easily end up in the front yard or the neighbor's yard or who knows where. The back yard is pretty small and sloped so that will cause problems for a swingset or a trampoline. The dirt levels off at the edge of the property though so I might try to stick the trampoline out there. A short distance behind the house is a wooded area that I'm hoping the kids can go play in. I think they would like that.

We didn't take the camera with us so you'll have to wait until I move next month to post anything. Of course, that's assuming I can find a cheap laptop and get internet access while I'm there.

So far, everything seems to be coming together fairly smoothly. I'm sure we'll run into several snags as we get closer or get in the middle of the move but I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

As for a boy update, I haven't taken any pictures lately so nothing new to post. About all we've been doing is going to soccer practice and games. Kevin's team is now 3-2-1 after dropping a tough game today. But it was close and exciting to watch. Kevin has improved tremendously over the last few weeks. I can see a big difference in his ball handling and power when he gets caught up in traffic. He rocks! He's also very honest, almost to a fault. In today's game, he kicked the ball out of bounds and ref called it against the other team. Just as his teammate was about to throw it in, Kevin (standing right beside the ref) hollers that it's the other team's ball because he kicked it out. Suddenly, the ref acted like he knew that and was trying to get the other team to throw it in all along. Silly boy.

Like his big brother, Cameron is getting better all the time and he makes some good plays every game. Lately, he tends to hang back and play on the defense side of things. Cameron's team is 3-3 and only needs one more win to finish with at least a 50% win ratio and to beat last year's number of wins. Trust me when I say that would be a huge accomplishment. Can they do it? Stay tuned to find out.

As for little Cade, he's just happy not to get lost in the shuffle. He thoroughly enjoys being outside every chance he gets so he doesn't mind the games and practices at all. Tell that boy to come inside and his world falls apart.

Halloween is in 6 days so I'll wish everyone a Happy Halloween now. I recently bought a night vision camera that I plan to use on Halloween. Hopefully I can get some good video to share in a few weeks.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Busy Weekend

Alright, alright, I know everyone wants to know about the job in Huntsville. Well, I received the new offer package and... You'll have to wait until the end of the blog to find out what I did with it. I know. I've sunk to a new low in order to direct traffic to our blog.

First, we need to talk about Cade's birthday! My boy turned 3 on Sunday but we celebrated on Saturday. That really messed him up too. Every time I tried to tell him "happy birthday" on his actual birthday he kept telling me it wasn't his birthday anymore. Several of our friends from Life Group came to his party as well as Papa and Pa and Tootie. We rented a bouncing balloon with a slide for the kids to play in - and let me tell you, that thing was a blast! Um, I mean, that's what the kids told me anyway.
These kids are responsible for what had to be the worst rendition of "happy birthday" ever in the history of ever. But they had fun singing it at the top of their lungs and Cade had fun getting the attention.

Putting a hurting on ol' Pablo.
Presents!


Bubbles ALWAYS make good presents.



Not a birthday picture, but it's cute enough to include. Cade had the great idea of taking a balloon into the bath with him.

Here are some of the pictures from his party and of us playing on the bouncing balloon.

The Man of the Hour.
It looks bad, but Cade is actually giggling here. Funny picture!
Can't just go down the slide like normal people, can we?
Dana got in on the action too.
After tiring of sliding down, we had the idea to try to take one bounce and jump to the top. Superman!

Superwoman.
Iron Man! Or, maybe Iron Cam.
I never knew Iron Man had long hair.


This is my favorite shot. Kevin looks like he's hovering.
This weekend I also taught Cameron a magic trick. Watch the video and tell us what you think.
video

Continuing with the reverse chronological order of things, Cameron's class had a field trip to the local corn maze on Thursday. Dana, Cade and I all went with him. Here are some pictures of that.

Another free pumpkin. We now have 7.



Say Cheese!


"Driving" the tractor.


Gotta see how tall they are.

And, finally, I talked to the HR lady in Huntsville on Thursday and accepted their offer. My heart is doing flip flops even as I write that. My new boss called later that day to discuss a start date. He wanted me there ASAP and I was hoping to push it back as far as possible because the holidays are rapidly approaching. As it turned out, we settled on November 24 (or 25th, whatever that Monday is). Yep, that's 3 days before Thanksgiving. I'll be all alone on Thanksgiving. Empty house, just me. I also can't cook so I guess I'll buy a Turkey Hungry Man dinner for myself. Bleh. But, at least I'll be home for Christmas!

It's starting to sink in - slowly. But things are already moving fast. We have a realtor lined up already. I spent all day today doing the things to the house that I've been putting off for the last 2-1/2 years so we can get it ready to sell. It looks nice too. I wish I'd done that when we moved in. I guess I only have 6 more weeks to enjoy it (as well as my nice, big house and huge garage). I guess the bright side is that I'll have lots more fodder for the blog for quite some time.

Thank you all for your kind words and prayers during this exciting time.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

What have I done?

Ok, so I heard back from the people in Huntsville today and they agreed to my counteroffer and have sent another offer package to me. It will be here tomorrow and I have until Friday to respond. Uh oh! Now what do I do? Did I ever mention what a big decision this is?

I'm just trying to ignore all that for now so hopefully I can sleep tonight and not dream about it like I have been.
Moving on... You may or may not be aware that Space Shuttle Atlantis was supposed to launch in the next few days to service the Hubble telescope. Endeavor was standing by on the second launch pad in case a rescue mission was needed. Well, Hubble broke more parts so that launch is off until next year. Did I ever mention that I was on both of those orbiters? I don't recall. Anyway, for every launch, NASA makes a t-shirt that we can buy. I've been patiently waiting for these 2 shirts to come out so I can buy about 30 of each. The designs are shown below along with my proposed modification. I'm still waiting to hear back from the t-shirt printing place as to whether they'll accept that change or not. I don't see any reason why they won't do it.




I also finally figured out how to add music to our blog. Now all I need to do is figure out how to get it to play in random order. I think we did a nice job of balancing the music selection, don't you? Dana kept insisting on adding ACDC and the like while I wanted Steven Curtis Chapman. The boys also made some suggestions to round it out.
Stay tuned for an update on the inevitable, potentially life changing decision.