Monday, August 31, 2009

New Cell Number

I have a new cell number: 208-313-1664.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Missing Our Papa!

This time when we left Idaho, we brought Papa Murdock home with us! Anyone who comes to vacation with us should know that we immediately put all house guests to work! Dad's week-long visit was a marathon session of much-needed home improvements.

My Dad has amazing stamina when it comes to this stuff. He was also incredibly patient with Tessie, who has a way of slowing progress of all kinds. She loved having Papa around and being his little "helper." We weathered many a Lowe's meltdown (and a couple Home Depot ones too).

Most of the projects we worked on were basic maintenance items, but we got so much done! While he was here, Dad:
  • fixed our bifold coat closet door (which has never worked since we moved in!)
  • fixed our bifold laundry closet doors
  • patched drywall holes from our water leak
  • fixed the laundry & bathroom baseboards (also casualties from our leak)
  • replaced our exterior shed door (which had to be installed backwards; an impressive feat of ingenuity
  • installed a new, much deeper kitchen sink
  • installed new kitchen faucet (no more constant dripping!) & replumbed the fixture
  • replace our entryway light fixture
  • fixed "nail pops" in the ceiling
  • touched up drywall all over the house
  • reattached molding around our sliding back door
  • installed new porch light fixture
  • fixed the broken stair railing
  • repaired stairs molding
  • trimmed the front yard tree (no more spooky Scooby-Doo windy nights)
  • pruned the bushes
  • fixed the pull-down attic ladder (no need to tread lightly anymore!)
It's amazing we got so much done, considering that even the simple projects weren't straightforward.

Let's take the kitchen faucet, for instance. I'm not an entirely incompetent handywoman. I've tried to fix the faucet, but it was so corroded, I couldn't even begin to take it apart. So it was time to replace the faucet.

Time for a new faucet!

Only problem, the faucet was so corroded onto the sink, we couldn't possibly undo the bolts to remove it from the sink. So, our only option was to replace the sink, which wasn't easy, either. I was starting to feel like the Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly.

Time for a new sink! Gross!

All better!

But it was worth all the frustration. We got a lot done and I learned a lot--including when to call the plumber!

We did get in some fun time with Papa too, and Tess got more than her fair share of snuggles and tickles.

It was HOT while Dad was out here, so he'll appreciate these pics of Tessie cooling off in the sprinkler.

We miss you, Dad, and we REALLY appreciate all your help!
M-m -m-uh! (That was a kiss from Tess!)

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

DIY Photo Shoot

There's nothing my family loves more than a DIY project!

Here are the pictorial results from our visit to Tech Time Rentals, which lets you rent out a photo studio, including lights and camera equipment, by the hour. We had fun finding matching outfits for the kids and the photo shoot itself was quite the raucous event. We were laughing, singing, using squeaky puppets with funny voices--anything we could think of to get the munchkins to smile. Tess was the least cooperative out of the bunch--my sisters got some really cute shots of their families.

We had a great afternoon together and ended up with some cute (and some very amusing) shots!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Idaho: Days 3, 4 & 5

The First Annual Cousins Camp

Wildflower Identification

Decorating their Wildflower Nature Books

A shy little (?) kitty named Blueberry (aka "Papa") has taken up residence under the bridge. If you repeat the magic words, he'll put a pail in your bucket for gathering blueberries. Fortunately, Reen vetoed the original idea of a scary troll living under the bridge.

The hunt is on: gathering wild blueberries.

Tess LOVED picking the berries and putting them in her bucket, but she refused to eat one. Instead, she fed them all to me.

Tess went crazy running through the little creek.
It was so cold--that didn't bother her a bit!

Wagon rides before dinner.

Tinfoil dinners around the campfire.

Xander is a precious puff.
Reen is pretty cute too.

Tess showing off her flexibility. The others kids tried it too.

Tess & Lauren: 2 Peas in a Pod

Pudding Painting (can you tell this was Meredith's idea?)

The Girls

Kind of sad when your mom looks younger than you.