News from the housing market

Well, we officially got the house on the market! And here’s a big surprise- apparently the housing market sucks right now! Did you know that? I had no idea! (Note: must be read with much sarcasm!!!) Currently there are 10 other condos in our complex that are up for sale and all of them around the same price point! That doesn’t feel like great news to me. But at the same time we really feel like this is the right move for us right now so I’m confident it will happen, I just think it’s going to take longer than we want it to!
The other thing that stinks is now my house must be spotless all of the time! We never know when they will call saying that someone wants to walk through so no more big messes. This is kind of a blessing and a curse. It’s a blessing because it is forcing me to get out of my clutter habits and hopefully by the time we get into the new house I’ll be cured of my clutter bug. But it’s also a curse because, well, we have a one year old and a three year old. Enough said. So just pray for us…that we’ll be able to sell and I won’t lose my mind before all is said and done!!!!
And as I promised when I posted those hideous pictures of all of the closets in the house (which by the way my husband almost killed me about!!!!!) that I would post the after results! Well, here they are, at least the pics of the master closet. Let’s just hope we can keep it like this! Because I think I’m in love with this being organized thing!!!! (Did I say that out loud!?!?!)

If Tomorrow Never Comes

Yesterday morning Steven and I were shocked to get the news that our friend Barb Terry had died. We had both worked with Barb at different times at USBank and we both considered her a friend. Her death was very sudden and very disturbing to both of us. She was 39 years old, a single mother of two (the youngest being only 8 months old) and she died from a blood clot that had developed in her knee, went undetected and ended up in her heart. They’re thinking that the blood clot was a development of her pregnancy with Joseph, and 8 months later it ended up killing her.

When Steven called me yesterday morning to tell me the news I just started shaking. It didn’t seem possible, it seemed like I had just seen her the other day. I immediately started thinking about her kids. Kaitlyn is 12 and is a total momma’s girl and Joseph is so little and still so dependent on her. My mind keep racing over what would happen to them now that their mother was gone! Then I started to think what if it was me? What if it was my kids that were left behind- yes they have their dad, but what if he was gone too? All of these thoughts are very depressing but something like this really makes you confront your own mortality, and it’s not a pretty picture.

We realized we don’t have a will, we don’t have nearly enough life insurance, we are not prepared for the inevitable end that has to come to all of us at some point but is still very elusive. So we will begin now to get our affairs in order starting with a will and a living will, funeral plans and getting more insurance. That way we know that our kids will be taken care of, and it will be done according to our wishes, and not decided by the courts after we are gone.

The other thing Barb’s death did was to put things in perspective. I, like others, can get very wrapped up in petty and unimportant things. I don’t want to do that. If tomorrow never comes I want my kids to remember me playing with them, not yelling at them, hugging them, not spanking them. I want my husband to remember the gentle side of me, not the nagging side that tends to come out when I’m frustrated with him. I want my friends and family to know that I love them and to not have to wonder when I’m gone. Yes all of this takes more work and we can’t always be perfect, but I want my family’s and friends memories to be good and happy.

Thanks Barb for waking us up! Thank you for your friendship. You were a great friend. You loved everybody and made people feel good about themselves. I just have to say- Barb, you rock!!!! We love you!

View from the top of a hill

This weekend Steven and I attended the annual ski trip with a group of our friends. They started this about 12 or 15 years ago because several of them have birthdays in the month of February. So every President’s Day weekend we go up to Perfect North Slopes in Lawrenceberg, IN for the Saturday midnight ski. We ski from 9:00pm until 1:00am and just have a blast! Who would’ve thought that when I started dating my husband nine years ago that he would turn me into a skier, but he has and now it’s my favorite thing about winter. Granted we are talking about skiing down the side of hills in Indiana (albeit pretty big hills!) but you’ve got to start somewhere right?!?!? I hope to one day ski on a real mountain, maybe in Utah or Colorado or anywhere that’s not Indiana. But for right now I am perfectly content with navigating Far Side (our favorite trail), Backstage, Showtime, and Clyde’s Superslide. But even after 8 years I’ve yet to try out Center Stage, which is this hill right in the middle of all of the trails and is a straight drop. Well, it has some slope to it obviously but not quite enough for my taste. Maybe one day I’ll be brave enough to try it….then again, maybe not!

This year we took Steven’s little sister Michelle and her friend Sarah with us. They had never been skiing before. It was fun to teach them how to ski back and forth to keep from getting too fast and to point their skis in if they want to slow down, etc. The best though was teaching them how to get off of the ski lift and then falling myself at the top of our favorite slope trying to get off the ski lift! But in my defense I hadn’t fallen all night long and I got hung up in Sarah’s skis. I don’t have an excuse for wiping out on the same slope half way down (I said it was because I was going too fast! In truth, I just lost my balance!!!)

But it was really fun and I’m looking forward to doing it next February, if I don’t get to a real hill instead!

My Funny Valentines’

I have two of the funniest kids in the world! They make me laugh every day and every day I am so thankful that they are mine! Like I said, we’ve been starting to put things in boxes and packed away so that we can put the condo on the market (or have I mentioned yet that we’re moving?!?!?!). I was working in their room on Tuesday and just when I had everything clean and looking great here come the tornados! They can’t let anything stay clean for long, especially not their room. They got into the stuffed animal cabinet and dumped out all of the animals, and then spent a good 30 minutes playing in the cabinet. Bri shut Jonah inside and then Jonah shut Bri inside, and then they crawled in together. I’m kind of glad they had the idea though! Not only did it make for great pictures (that will eventually be totally cute scrapbook pages) but it prompted us to box up all of the animals and get them out of the way too! Thanks kids, for the laughs and all of your inspiration (whether it was intentional or not!!!!) I love you both so much!

Come Here Jonah, Snuggle With Me

That’s Brianna’s favorite phrase right now, “Come here, snuggle with me!”. She is quite the snuggle bug, especially when she’s tired. She’ll look at you and say “Let’s go snuggle” and you know in about 5 minutes she’s gonna be out.

Last night it was really cold out. It was snowing and we were expecting ice early in the morning. I went go check on the kids before I turned in. I went to Brianna’s bed and realized she wasn’t there. I looked in Jonah’s crib and this is what I saw:

She’s done this on several occassions but it usually doesn’t work out too well! They are both very active sleepers, tossing, turning, flipping, kicking. He usually wakes up crying and then we have to try to get them both back to sleep. But they looked so peaceful in there together and it was so cold out, I thought, what can it hurt? They’ll keep each other warm. But of course before I could turn in I had to get some pictures! Here’s a few more:

Well, we did get the snow we were expecting, not quite 3-5 inches here but we definitely got the ice. Even NKU was delayed this morning so the roads must have been pretty nasty. Luckily I didn’t have to find out because my practicum school was closed so we slept in til 9:30! YEAH! I love snow days! (one more reason to be a teacher!!! Who else gets snow days?)

Oh and an update on our closets. We got our bedroom looking awesome and my job today is the kids room you know, since I’ve got a snow day. And then the hall closet and we’ll be ready to list! I’ll post pics when we’re done but so far I’m really proud of all the work we’ve done. Have a great day everyone! Stay safe wherever you are!

You Want Me to Do What?!?!?

Our realtor stopped by yesterday afternoon to do a walk through of the condo and tell us what needs to be done to get it on the market. We knew we needed to do a few things (like shampoo the carpets) but we were thinking there’d be a lot more to do. He thought the carpets were the only thing we really needed to worry about. Well, that and cutting down on the clutter. He said that basically if we don’t use it every day it needs to be boxed up and moved out!!!!! WHAT?!?!?! Boy, do I have my work cut out for me! I am the queen of clutter so I am NOT looking forward to this! (But Big Lots already loves me since I spent almost $70 there yesterday buying rubbermaid totes for clothes and blankets!!!)

Just to give you an idea of how much stuff we are talking about here- I’m posting pictures of our closets! (I can’t believe I’m doing this- I’m going to die of mortification! Is that a word?!!?!) But I’m doing this in the hopes that this weekend I can post after pictures of all my progress and that will make me feel better!!!!!

So here they are:

Master closest

Yes, that is my wedding veil. (Don’t ask!!!)

Kid’s room

Coat closet

(Believe it or not my bathroom linen closet is actually pretty tidy! Bet you’d never guess that by looking at these other closets would you!?!??!)
So that’s what we’ll be doing this weekend? What’s on your agenda? Whatever it is I hope it’s fun and relaxing! Take time to stop and tell me all about it! Cause you’ll hear about mine on Monday!!! 🙂

Tag I’m it!

My friend Brtini has tagged me for a meme, which as the name suggests is all about me! (and this blog!) I’ve never done one of these before since I’m new to blogging but I’m kind of excited!

Here are the rules:
1) Post about the meme and link back to the person that tagged you.
2) Go back to your archives and link to your five favorite posts.
Link 1: Must be about your family.
Link 2: Must be about your friends.
Link 3: Must be about yourself.
Link 4: Must be about something you love.
Link 5: Must be whatever you want.
3) Tag five other people (at least two must be new acquaintances so that you can get to know them better).
4) Let the person know that you tagged them by leaving a comment saying something like: I’ve tagged you. Check out my blog for details.
5) Readers, don’t forget to read the posts and leave comments – lots of comments.

So here we go!
Post 1) Something about my family. Well right now I think it would be the post Good News…No Great News because this is what’s going on in our life right now!
Post 2) Something about frieds. Well this post is about our family trip to see our good friends the Newtons in Kansas City.
Post 3) Something about yourself. This post was from Thanksgiving where I listed what I’m thankful for.
Post 4) About something I love: Um.. that one’s easy! I love the broadway show “Wicked” and got to see it last month! Check out this post, One “Wicked” Night.
Post 5) I couldn’t pick just one for this so I picked two! Here they are: Fischer Look-alike-meter Jonah and Fischer Look-alike-meter Brianna. Gotta love my kids!

So there they are. My favorite posts so far! Some of these might be a stretch to fit the categories but like I said, I don’t have that many to choose from!

Now it’s my turn! I tag
1) Megan
2) Jeannie
3) Bethany
4) Sarah at Sarah’s Musings
5) Shultzybabe

So you all have been tagged! I can’t wait to see what your posts are!

Super Fat Tuesday

Super Tuesday is under way in 24 states around the country right now and I don’t know about you but I am super excited to see how it will all pan out! It’s also fat Tuesday. For those of you who aren’t familiar with fat Tuesday it is the day before Ash Wednesday which ushers in the Lenten season leading up to Easter. In the old days people used the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday to eat and drink as much as they could to prepare for the fasting and abstaining that was required by the church during Lent. The guidelines for fasting and abstaining aren’t as strict as they used to be but many people still enjoy the tradition of fat Tuesday.
I had quite a few people ask me to share the recipe for the Maryland crab cakes and the cheesy pepper quesadillas from this weeks’ menu plan, so here they are. They are both from Cooking for 2 magazine from spring 2005. I haven’t made the crab cakes before but the recipe sounded wonderful, not too bready (???). If anyone else tries them tell what your families think!

Maryland Crab Cakes
2 Tbsp finely chopped onion
1 Tbsp minced celery
1 Tbsp minced green pepper
1 tsp butter
2 Tbsp egg substitute
2 Tbsp mayo
2 Tbsp seasoned bread crumbs
1/2 tsp seafood seasoning (like Old Bay)
1/2 tsp ground mustard
1/2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
6 oz fresh or canned crabmeat, drained, flaked and cartilage removed
1 Tbsp canola oil
Tarter sauce, optional

In a small skillet, saute the onion, celery and green pepper in butter until tender. In a bowl, comine the egg substitute and mayo. Add the veggies, bread crumbs, seafood seasoning, mustard and Worchestershire sauce; mix well. Fold in crab. Shape into four cakes.
In a skillet, cook cakes in oil over medium heat for 3-5 minutes on each side or until golden brown. Serve with tarter sauce if desired. Serving size: 2 cakes each
**This recipe only serves two people so you may have to up ingredients to feed the amount of people in your family that will be eating them.**

Cheesy Pepper Quesadillas

1 Tbsp butter, melted
2 flour tortialls (8 in)
1/2 C shredded Monterey jack cheese
1/4 C shredded cheddar cheese
1/4 C julienned sweet yellow pepper
1/4 C julienned sweet red pepper
1/4 C julienned red onion
Garlic salt; optional
Salsa and sour cream; optional

Brush butter over both sides of tortillas. Place on an ungreased baking sheet. Over half of each tortilla, sprinkle 1 Tbsp Monterey jack cheese and 1 Tbsp cheddar cheese; layer with peppers, onion, garlic salt if desired and remaining cheeses. Fold tortillas over filing.
Bake at 450 degrees for 10-12 minutes or until golden brown and cheese is melted. Cut into wedges. Serve with salsa and sour cream if desired. Serves 2.
**Again you may have to double or even triple this depending on how many you have in your family.**

So I hope you all enjoy these. I know I’m looking forward to them! Have a great day!

Menu Plan Monday

Monday is upon us again and so is another Menu Plan Monday hosted by OrgJunkie. I didn’t post a menu last week cause things were soo nutty, and I’m late with this one since it is now almost 3:30 in the afternoon but better late than never!

Lent begins this week so you’ll notice seafood or vegetarian dishes on Wednesday and Friday of this week and every Friday from here until Easter! Some weeks I might get lucky and we’ll hit up a local fish fry since there are a million in this area but we’ll see! So here’s what we’re eating this week!

Monday 2/04: Dinner at Mom’s after school

Tuesday 2/05: Pinto beans and ham, corn bread

Wednesday 2/06 (ash Wednesday): cheesy pepper quesadillas, spanish rice

Thursday 2/07: spinach turkey burgers, french fries

Friday 2/08: Maryland crab cakes, salad

Saturday 2/09: date night!

Sunday 2/10: savory herb chicken, brown rice, green beans (this has been on the menu for like 2 two weeks now, but I’m determined it will get made this week!!!!)

So happy eating everyone! And check out Orgjunkie for over 200 menu plans from around the world! (Literally!!!)