Tuesday, September 30, 2008


I'm so grateful for my life, for the love by which I'm surrounded and the endless ways in which I seem to be blessed. But I still feel like I'm playing at this whole adulthood thing, still feel amazed at the thought of having three kids, a mortgage, student loans, a husband with a "real" church calling, and being thirty in a couple of months. I frequently find myself wondering when all of these real, adult things happened -- in a good way, I think because the journey has largely been so smooth and relatively painless.
The past couple of weeks, however, have felt all too adult as Tad and I have taken on some pretty major home repair/renovation projects. In an attempt to make Emerson's bedroom larger/add a closet and shelf space in order to make it a share-able space for him and Stella, we tore apart the wall separating his room from our family room. It's always seemed way too thick and we found out why -- the concrete footing that separated the old basement from what used to be a crawl space and is now our family room is still in place. That's right, four feet high and eight inches thick, and completely un-removable because not only is it load-bearing, but it also is in the only precise location where a load-bearing wall can exist. But two good things came out of it -- Emerson and Stella shared her room for several nights (most of them by choice rather than necessity) and it was adorable. Also, we're now adding a bunch of built-in shelving in our family room in addition to the closet in Emerson's room.
The second and much more ridiculous project all began with a funky under-the-kitchen-sink smell that we had noticed since our last "professional" plumber visit. The curse of our home ownership story has been our waste water pipe, a fat lead sucker that has had several holes in it over the past year. So Tad decided to replace the apparently offending section of our waste water pipe, the T under the kitchen sink. It was a little ambitious because it's embedded in concrete, but it's amazing the confidence a sawzall and a do-it-yourself plumbing store can bestow. As the Saturday progressed, however, it became apparent that the entire pipe, from below the basement ceiling all the way through the roof, was crumbling and needed to be replaced. Still undeterred (and unwilling to hire yet another incompetent plumber), Tad sought some advice, climbed up on our roof, and spent several hours literally cutting, chipping, and finally pulling the nine-foot section of pipe out. Incredibly, the all-new pipe works much better than our old one ever did -- not a single leak and our disposal and sink actually drain better than they ever have. And the best part is that Tad's superman work probably saved us about $1000.
On the non-adult front, both Emerson and Stella rock the house. Lately Emerson loves to set up his "office" in his room, getting a lamp, an ornament for his desk (usually a dinosaur), pens and paper, and working on his "reports". On Sunday during sacrament meeting, the pew at church was his desk and he wrote three "reports", each a letter to a member of the family. With a little help from mom, he wrote "Dear Dadde I miss you when Im at work," "Stella always bothers me when Im at work," and "Crosby I know its your first time coming to work with me." It took almost all of sacrament meeting at it was awesome!
Stella continues to literally prance through life, walking on her tip toes and saying, "It's wonderful. . .wonderful." She'll sit still for as many books as I'll read to her, she loves to wear her sunglasses, and she deliberately provokes her brother (ah, a true little sister) by calling him names and growling, then turning away with a sly grin as he erupts. He has yet to understand that the reaction is what it's all about for her. But she adores Emerson and still asks for him every time he goes to preschool.
Baby May #3 (we'll know the gender next week, hopefully) continues to progress well. I can't imagine this one is anything but a boy because the natural order of both Tad's family and mine (as well as Tim and Kirse's) predicts this. At this point, however, I think it must be a large hamster that loves to wiggle and push out right on top of my bladder. Not exactly the lovey-dovey mommy-baby image you might expect, but this is my third and reality beats idealism this time around. I'm expecting great things from this one because he/she demands that I spend at least one hour each day reading with my feet up (at least I'm telling myself it's the fetus and not my laziness).