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Friday, October 3, 2014

moving

We did it!  We bought a house!  We moved! We are homeowners again!
Yahoo!!!
The big move happened on August 30 and 31st and it was quite an event.  First - the prep.  If you take a look at the following photos, you will know why we were concerned whether or not we would even make it out of the house.  These were taken from our driveway the Wednesday before we moved.


And this was taken the Thursday before - after a whole lot of rain.
Thankfully Eric had already talked to the men doing the construction on our street and they said they would make sure we got out.  And they did.  This was the drop off from the yard to the "road":
Well, they came in and built up a nice little ramp for our driveway so that we could somewhat smoothly get in and out.  It was a little sketchy with the rain and such, but it worked.  We got out!
Lots of packing, of course:
Or not:

We were extremely thankful to have the use of Jared's (my brother-in-law) trailers.  He has an 18' and 24' trailer that we could load ahead of time.  It made it so much easier to move quickly - which is what we needed to do.  Eric packed those puppies up nice and tight.

Then on Saturday we had a small group bbq party at three.  Once we ate and hung out for a bit, we headed out to the new house for our possession at five.  Since we were in the same neighbourhood, Eric and the kids just rode their bikes over (which also meant we didn't have to cart the bikes there a different way!).
Soon after, everyone from our small group followed us and came over to help clean and move in.  It was amazingly helpful!  What a great crew of people.  Everyone was in there working like crazy.  It was so great.  And we are so thankful!


Cade found his new favourite (and extremely dirty) spot.


Noah helped him down, even though he kept finding his way up there by himself.  Sheesh - what a nut ball.  Over the next few days he was almost constantly up there.  He also managed to monkey his way up and down once he figured he could us the door/hallway entrance frame.


On Sunday it rained.  
And got pretty messy.  But Eric and a few of Maddy's friends (Maddie, Riley, Kyle and Ezra) all chipped in to help.  They worked their booties off.  Poor guys.  They unloaded a whole lot of stuff.  You see - it was Labor day weekend…. and most everyone we knew was busy.  Especially our family.  They were all busy - very busy.  And even very busy after the weekend.  But thankfully Maddy had some willing, hard working friends - otherwise we aren't sure what we would have done!  They were easily paid off with pizza and soda - stuff like that.  They are a great bunch of kids.
After the weekend, we still had to move the garden (pots) and the trampoline.  Eric borrowed my uncle's truck and we took care of business.
We loaded up all the pots onto the back of the truck and only one fell over.  They all did pretty well.   Looking back now, a month later, I'm not sure it was worth the effort.  With all the cold weather we've been having (had to cover the plants in early/mid September due to frost warnings!!  sheesh), the plants haven't done that well.  Oh well.  There's always next year!
Had some pretty amazing rainbow sightings over the days of the move as well.  A nice reflection of the crazy weather we had.

Eric also disassembled the trampoline and had the ever-helpful Lucy to put it back together again in our new yard.


At first I wasn't sure it would be worth all his effort considering that he will have to take it down again soon.  But looking back - it has definitely been worth it.  The kids, along with neighbour kids, have been on it a lot.  They've had a great time with it and has been a draw to get kids here (even though there are a lot of trampolines in the area).  I'm thankful he put in the work for it.
So far, the best thing about our new place is this:
We have a dishwasher!!!!
It is amazing how absolutely wonderful it is to have a dishwasher after being without one for five years.  It wasn't the worst thing ever, but man life is sure easier and tidier with one.  It is fantastic.
I must say I had many doubts about this place, but now that we are here I am very thankful.  God has blessed us richly - again - and we are grateful.

last random bits

Man.  Life has been insane.  And I am insane with it.  Finally today I feel like I have a moment to breathe - first time in weeks and weeks.  But, truth be told, I just don't do busyness like I used to.  I used to thrive on it.  Now it kind of drives me crazy and I feel like I don't do anything well.  On the other hand, I think if I don't have much going on at all I don't do anything well either - I let everything slide.  Maybe I'm just not doing anything well……
I blame Eric. 
(of course I have nothing to back this blame but I certainly can't be responsible, can I?)
Okay, well, anyway.  I am really behind.  Again.  So much has happened in the last month and a bit and often I just feel like I can't do this anymore.  Since we are no longer overseas, it seems kind of pointless too.  
I keep going back and forth about trying to blog for real - like a cooking/creative/crafting/sewing/decorating/life with Jesus and all that good stuff blog.  But there are about a billion out there already.  So I flounder.
The good news is that I am going to a Christian blogging conference with my darling sister-in-law Val in a few weeks - we are meeting up in South Carolina.  Maybe this will give me direction.  That would be great.  It would be a fabulous bonus because in reality, I'm going mostly to see Val.  Just keeping it real….
Boy, I've been blabbing a lot and haven't really gotten to the point of what this post is supposed to be about.  Shocking.  So unlike me.

Yes, okay, moving on.  This is all about last bits of life before we moved.  Yes, WE MOVED!!  We have our very own home!  Very exciting - and we'll get to that a little later, in another post.  Now we'll deal with these photos that I uploaded about a month and a half ago.  Lets just see if I even remember what they are about, shall we?
Photo #1
I believe this was the day that I decided it would be a good idea to make a double batch of banana bread, a double batch of whole wheat bread, a triple batch of muffins, a cake and homemade ice cream all basically at the same time-ish.
Photo #2
This was the "before" of this chair I refinished.  I think the idea was that I was then supposed to take a photo of the "after" as well - and post that too.  I guess I should do that.
Photo #3
My sister-in-law Glenda's parents got some Saskatoon berries that we could buy.  And I couldn't possibly say no to fresh berries!!  Yum!  And of course they called for a pie.  Been making quite a few pies lately - because we all know of my love.
Photo #4
Fresh, homegrown tomatoes and basil from our "garden".  Caprese was calling.  Soooo good.
Photos #5, 6, 7, 8 
(sounds like I am counting out to start dancing… "and 5, 6, 7, 8…")



One of the last paper-delivery days before the kids headed back to school - they all decided to pitch in and help.  Would have liked to have seen this every Thursday, but we'll take the occasional one here and there.
Photo #9
Just wanted to get a picture of my temporary "art" display before we moved.  Print-outs from the internet and my "laugh" water-colour, all put up with washi tape.  Not fancy, but it did the job.
Photo #10
Our summer bucket list.  We did okay on it but not great.  I always have lots of good ideas but my  follow through is rather lame.
Photos #11 and 12

My little library!!  I started back at work on August 20th or something like that.  Hard to go back, let me tell you.  Very hard.  But there have been some good changes on the job front now, so it has been good.  One big change is that I oversee the K-12 library.  And this lovely little room in the K-6 library section that I got to design/decorate.  So fun.  It looks even better now.  It is a fun space and I love having the kids come in and cozy up on the chairs to read.  It makes me happy.
Much more catching up to come….

Sunday, September 14, 2014

sbc and penner pumpkins

I'm back at work  - started back on August 20th.  Sigh, the summer is over.
On the 28th we had an all college (all staff and faculty) BBQ at this local place called Penner Pumpkins.  It is one of these farms that does the whole fall pumpkin, corn maze, hay bale structure type stuff.  I love places like that and all those fun tallish activities, but this place charges quite a bit, so I haven't been that keen on going.  But now we got to go for freeeeee (say that like they do in Bedtime Stories).
It was kind of a tough one because my darling cousins Dale and Kristi were here visiting from Ottawa and San Antonio, respectively, and that was the day for all the cousins/uncles and aunts to get together with them.  I felt it was important to make some connections with work people, so I kind of made everyone go to this instead.
Four certain children were not happy about it.  Not one little bit.  And so the whole thing started off a little shaky for the Ackermanns.  But eventually everyone warmed up, got talking to my coworkers and their families, and we had a great time.  Even Maddy, after her little date with her iPhone, had some fun.


They have this tennis ball compressor gun that the kids started shooting.  We ended up drawing a crowd (it was pretty loud, so people came to investigate) and a bunch of people lined up to give it a whirl. 
Everyone, for some reason, was trying to hit the frying pan on the bottom left.  Eric was the first to succeed and he got a grand roar for his efforts.  I attributed it to his CHP sharp-shooter training.  A block and a tennis ball compressor gun are closely related, as everyone knows.




We were about to leave when people were loading up for a "train" ride….. a few little carts pulled behind a tractor.  It was super fun in a adults-being-ridiculous-and-corny-way.

Lucy now refers to my coworker (I was going to put her picture on here but I didn't know if she would appreciate it!) as the "crazy lady" because she was screaming and raising her hands as if she was on a roller coaster.



At the end of the ride they announced that they were going to have pig races, so of course we had to watch the pigs race!
They had a fenced-in track where they basically had the pigs corralled at the start.  Then they put some slop at the end of the "track" and pulled the gate.  The pigs raced around the track to get to the food.  Pretty simple and dumbish, but not if you are already in a weird and giddy mood.  Then it is great!  
And great it was!