Monday, April 8, 2013

It's Monday again. I like Mondays: fresh start, order, routine, work to do. Margaret and Samuel are off to the bus stop, and William, Hazel, and John are getting started with their day. We're planning to go help some friends pack for their move this week, but first there's school work to do. We're getting close to being done for the year, which is hard to believe. It's been such a weird year. We started out with such promise. We were doing so many fun things, tackling some challenging subjects, and having such long, full days. That lasted abut two months before the bottom fell out and I couldn't go on. It was just way more than I could handle. The full education I wanted for my kids was beyond me to provide. Then there was a month or two of no school and me going through depression. Then the answer to prayer: Margaret and Samuel being admitted into O. Henry at the time when we needed it most. The second half of the school year hasn't been a walk in the park, but it has been so much better for our family. Margaret and Samuel have thrived at O. Henry this semester and William and John have enjoyed having more attention from me. I'm not certain what we'll do for all the kids next year. Margaret will start high school and Samuel will be a seventh grader at the neighborhood middle school. William really, really wants to start 6th grade at the middle school, even though we've talked about holding him back. He thrives off of competition and challenge so he might do alright. We had talked about keeping John at home, but with his apparent dyslexia and Brian and I feeling at a loss as to how to work with him. I'm thinking it might be best for him to go to the neighborhood school. They have a dyslexia specialist and a very comprehensive program to work with children with the disability. As much as I would love to keep John at home for a couple of more years, I think it might be in his best interest to send him off to school.

Brian's mom came Thursday and stayed the night. She went to Margaret's track meet with us and we shivered together at the Murchison track while waiting for Margaret's events to come up. She finished middle of the pack in the 800, and got second place in the 1600.

I took a run Friday morning, and the spring weather was so delicious I could've eaten it! We went out to the new house later that morning for the inspection. Linda (Brian's mom) loved the house. William, John, and Hazel ran up and down stairs and round the yard making themselves at home at the new place. The inspection went well. There were only minor problems, nothing like the inspection on the Ridgemont house.

The kids ran the Dillo Mile Saturday morning. Margaret won first place in her division with a time of 6:30. Samuel also won first place in his division with a time of 5:49. William dropped out half way through the mile with breathing issues. Poor guy! He so wants to prove that he's as good as Samuel, but he's just such a different person. For one, he has horrible allergies, he's smaller, and he's just made different and has different gifts and abilities that Samuel doesn't have. John ran a 7:37 mile, finishing 7th or 8th in his age group.

The plumbers have been here for the last several days tearing up our house and yard. They tunneled under the slab from the front of the house to the back, and jack hammered the den floor all the way across. Crazy!

Yesterday after church we went out to Commons Ford Ranch and met Thomas and his kids. We took the canoe and the kids paddled up and down some of the fingers off of Lake Austin. We had an appointment to meet our realtor out at the new house to discuss the inspection report, so Margaret and Brian paddled the canoe from Commons Ford up to Steiner Ranch. The kids and I drove out and met them to load the canoe. Oh my goodness, I think we're going to love living out by both lakes and being able to pop the canoe in whenever we want! While we were out at the house we met some of the neighbors. They were super nice! Margaret, John, and I checked out the trail behind our new house. There's a canyon and a little stream at the bottom. We're all very excited about it all! At 3100 square feet, the house is a modest house for Steiner ranch, but to us it feels like a mansion.

Well, that's all the news for today. Off to help my friend Lisal pack up her house. Below are some of the latest pics.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

We had such a nice Holy Week. Redeemer had midday services all week. I had intended to go to all of them, but only made it to two since the didn't offer nursery care and Hazel has become such a handful anytime we're somewhere where she's expected to be quiet. There was the usual Maundy Thursday feast as well. The church really goes all out for that one. The deacons a d elders waited the tables, so Brian didn't get to sit with us, a d Margaret was away at a track meet across town. The boys, Hazel, and I sat with some sweet ladies and had a wonderful time.

Roger brought Claire, Thomas, and Patrick over early Friday morning, and my friend Karen and her crew followed us out to my grandmother's place in Blanco. I hadn't been out there is ages. She has a new baby horse, "Prebble", named after her grandmother Prebble Annette. We took lunch and all ten kids, three grown ups, and three dogs crowded onto her porch to dine on sandwiches, Doritos, and generic Oreos.

The Winn kids ended up staying the night with us. We grilled burgers, burned lots of wood in the chiminea, and just enjoyed quality good cousin time. The cousins are more like siblings. When they get together they have such vivid imaginations and create the most amazing games!

William and Samuel helped their Sunday school class host an Easter egg hunt for the neighborhood kids on Saturday morning. After they were done, we took all the kiddos out to Burnet for an Easter celebration with my mom and stepdad and others. Thomas brought his people and the cousin crew was complete. We had lunch, sang, read some scripture, and did an egg hunt. It was rather rushed, but even so, good memories were made.

We got everyone up and out early on Easter morning and went over to mueller for our own little sunrise service. We sang a few songs, read a passage of scripture, and prayed. It's the beginning of a beautiful tradition, I hope.

We went to the the later church service and then met Brian's parents for lunch. After lunch we drove out to my uncle Gene's place at Mustang Ridge for the Evans' Easter. Of our people it was just us, Daddy, and Thomas. I don't know where Leah was, but her kids were with Roger, and Meredith had Thomas' kids. After we got home, Margaret, Samuel, Brian, and I went for a long run. It was a good way to end a busy holiday weekend.

Our buyers option period ended at midnight Saturday, so all weekend Brian and I were on edge waiting to hear of we'd come to agreement on the contract. It ended up going down to the wire, but with three hours left, they signed the contract! We will fix the under slab plumbing leak and contribute half for reroofing the carport. Even so, we'll still make 10k more than our asking price, so we feel pretty good about it all. Closing is in two weeks. In the meantime, we will be waiting to jump on any new listing to pop up in Steiner Ranch. We are going out to look at a place this morning that we both love (from the pics). Yes, it's a new house and doesn't have a lot of charm, but it's big and backs up to the greenbelt, which would be our dream. It's also within walking distance to the elementary and middle school, as well as the park and pool.

Here's the listing.

We're hoping and praying that it works out.

I guess that's all the news to report.