We bought a house!

I have been very MIA lately, in large part due to this little purchase we made this week...

This is just the picture from the MLS listing. I will take some pictures of the inside once we get moved in :).

So, we closed on Tuesday, had a few appliances delivered this week, and a guy is going to start work on Monday to remove the popcorn ceilings (and make them smooth). Then we plan to move in over New Year's weekend!

The house is about half a mile from where we work, so we're very excited to have a 2-minute commute AND hopefully use the house to bless others as much as we can. Wade plans to have the guys from his basketball team over for video games or team parties, and I'm planning to volunteer us for the teachers' back-to-school party in the fall. I'm hoping to host a friend's bridal shower this spring and our community group from church sometimes. And then of course other friends and family are more than welcome anytime!

FYI TO ANYONE WHO POSSIBLY KNOWS ANYONE WHO MIGHT WANT TO BUY A CONDO: our condo is still for sale, so we are just praying for a miracle that it would sell quickly! It would be very, very nice to not have 2 mortgage payments to pay for very long.


A Madelyn update

I got to hang out a little bit with Hillary and Madelyn the other night. It had been so long that I don't think she really knew who I was for the first few minutes - sad! But she warms up quick :).

Clapping, of course

Standing, holding onto mommy...

Reading some books before bed

Silly girl high-fiving herself in the mirror :)

Climbing the stairs

An after-dinner sippy cup


Can't believe she's 9 months already!


Weekend in Montreat

A few weeks ago I spent the weekend in Montreat, NC with the lovely ladies of Hope Community Church. It was a great time - just nice and relaxing and fun to build some better friendships with girls I've just started to really get to know.

I don't have any pictures of actual people, but just trust me that they were there :).




We had a low-key Halloween, but we did go to my good friend Marcy's party for a while Saturday night. We're such costume cop-outs... I borrowed Marcy's scrubs and went as a doctor/nurse/medical professional and Wade took Jim's costume from The Office and went as Facebook (he has BOOK written across his face). We thought about taking it a step farther and printing out a bunch of status updates and putting them all down the front of his shirt, but that's as far as we got :).
Just as an update, still no showings or anything on the house, 3.5 weeks on the market. It doesn't sound that long, but it would be nice to just have some tiny little nibble or interest. Oh well.


House for sale!

Today is Day 6 of our house being listed... no calls for showings yet :(.

I have tried and am trying to prepare myself for a potentially long process, but it's so hard! For one thing, I feel like I've already been cleaning it constantly for a month, and it is just neverending...

Even after the initial sweep of taking all personal photos down, streamlining all decorations, clearing clutter, wiping down doors, trim & baseboards, and thinning out my closet - to keep the dishes always done, the bed always made, the floors always vaccuumed, swiffered & mopped, all clothes, shoes & dog toys always put away, all papers & mail always filed away, toilets, tubs & sinks always scrubbed, furniture always dusted, etc. on top of normal life just makes the process seem to drag that much more.

I'm praying so much for patience and the Lord's timing because I know how much ahead of Him I always want to get. I think I know the best way. I think I know how it should go. And the way it should go is easily, quickly, smoothly. But why would I need God in that? If I know the way and it's not difficult in any way, what's going to convince me to depend on Him?

We've been to see several houses in the neighborhoods we're considering moving to. Each has its plusses and minuses - newer or more updated, but small; bigger but in need of repairs or updating; really great but too far away; inexpensive but backs up to a major highway, etc. We'll definitely have to make compromises somewhere along the way.

We've gotten into the groove of Wade's schedule working at Yes I Can basketball camps on Monday/Tuesday nights and Saturdays. Things are about to change again though, because that will end in a couple weeks, and we'll have to learn the new winter schedule of his JV basketball team's season. When that's over, it will probably be Yes I Can time again, and applying for grad school (and hopefully moving somewhere in there!).


Funny story that just happened

So yesterday Wade came home and was washing his hands and he started singing "Happy Birthday." I joined in with him (because we're kindof silly like that) and then asked him why he was singing that. He said you're supposed to sing Happy Birthday twice to gauge how long to wash your hands. Yesterday I think we sang Happy Birthday to me.

Well today, he came home and started washing his hands again and singing Happy Birthday again. I joined in and we both randomly happened to say "Happy birthday dear Pais-leyyy"... and then right when I said it, I was like, wait a minute - it IS her birthday! I had been thinking about it coming up a few weeks ago, but had totally forgotten. But sure enough, it's October 8th, Paisley's birthday. It was so funny and random.

So happy birthday sweet Paisley-dog. Your 3 years have been so much fun for me!

From this little face

To this one

To this

You love those tennis balls.

Here's to a decade more!


Highlights of life lately

Life has not provided me with much blogging material lately - certainly not any pictures :(. But it's been busy nonetheless. Let's see if I can come up with a few highlights...

(1) Wade's new 2nd job of directing a site for Yes I Can basketball camps is going pretty well. He works Monday and Tuesday nights and all day Saturday (for a 7-week stretch, basically til the end of October). I don't see him much on those Mondays & Tuesdays, and then we eat dinner at 9:30 or 10:00 but I've been able to fill the time with plenty of chores & errands, so it's been good. He'll finish this and go straight into basketball season for his JV team at school, and then will have another Yes I Can season in the spring.

(2) Madelyn is 7 months old now and starting to crawl. The last time I saw her she could scoot forward on her belly at least, so I'm sure it will be a full-blown crawl before long. She is still the most adorable baby ever. I'm a little nervous that my own kids won't be as cute as her, but we'll cross that bridge when we come to it :).

(3) One of my best friends since 9th grade and former roommate got engaged a couple weeks ago. I'm so excited for her and am looking forward to helping with wedding plans from the post-bride perspective.

(4) We decided to put our house on the market! I'm trying to clean and declutter like crazy this week to get it ready. I took down so many pictures of us and our friends & family that were up everywhere - it's a little crazy to see how many pictures of ourselves we had displayed - ha.

(5) Next weekend I'm going to the beach with a few girls for a kindof 2nd annual fall trip. Can't wait for that!

And yeah, that's about it. Hopefully I'll have pictures of something interesting soon :).


That week when we had 2 dogs

So, a few weeks ago I went into the storage/pantry closet to get something while I was cooking dinner and stepped in a big puddle of cold water. We discovered that the air conditioner had been leaking a flood of water every time it ran and shut off for probably several weeks. All of it had gone UNDER the linoleum and hardwood floors so we hadn't noticed, until it started seeping back out from under the wood that night.

Wade had to rip up 7 or 8 rows of boards that were all totally wet underneath. We were freaking out that we were going to have to replace the a/c unit and the floor of the entire room and all this stuff and it was going to cost like $7,000.

That was a Monday night. On Tuesday, with our floors a mess, our air conditioner turned off to prevent more leaking, and half the stuff from the closet out in the middle of the living room, we went up to our photographers' house to pick out our wedding proofs.

When we got there, this cute Basset hound puppy greeted us, and they explained that they were keeping this dog for some friends of theirs who couldn't keep her anymore and needed to find a home for her. She was so cute and over the course of time we were there, we decided to take her home to see if Wade's parents would keep her, because they'd been looking for a second dog.

So we load the Basset hound, her crate, a container of food and a couple of toys into our car and bring her home to our messy house for the evening, planning to surprise Wade's parents by bringing her over the next evening.

She's supposedly housebroken, but is only a year old and we are taking her to her 3rd home in about a week, so the next morning did not go so well. She can't be let outside without a leash, but she won't go to the bathroom on a leash. If I leave her outside on a long chain, she barks and I'm afraid she's waking up the neighbors. So I took her outside with no success, then brought her back inside and kept her in our bedroom while I took a shower. Get out of the shower and have 8 or so poop droppings all over the floor of our room (and both dogs pacing around).

I clean it all up, clogging the toilet in the process, and leave the dogs gated in the kitchen & entry way while I go to work. Paisley is so scared of the baby gate - and her water bowl is near enough to it - that she doesn't drink anything all day and starts gulping water down when we get home and take the gate down.

Meanwhile, Hillary's maintenance guy came and fixed our air conditioner that day (and didn't charge us - what a blessing!) and said he could fix the floors that weekend. We take the dogs over to the Tapps' that night, and Joli (Wade's mom) falls in love with the dog but thinks she's a better playmate for Paisley than their dog Duke and tries to convince us to keep her! Wade tried valiantly to sell them on Ellie, but it did not work.

So she stayed with us several more days while we tried to coordinate either finding her a new home or getting her back to our photographers. Meanwhile, she's so cute but also stressing me out completely because having 2 dogs in a condo is way harder than having 1, and I forgot how much attention and effort puppies take. I'm used to Paisley and she's used to me and I'm now so much more grateful for how easy she is!

We debated whether to keep her, but pretty much the only reason to keep her was she was cute. Every other reason led to the logical conclusion of DO NOT KEEP HER. Do not take on a 2nd dog that you will still have when you're 40 and have kids and she starts getting sick and needing all kinds of vet expenses. Do not take on a 2nd dog that you have to buy food, heartworm, shots, flea medicine, toys, leashes, spaying surgery, etc. for when you are trying to figure out how you're going to live on one salary when you have kids. Do not take on a 2nd dog that will make it a lot harder to find someone to keep both when you go out of town.

So, luckily we were saved by an old friend who saw my Facebook status and said he was interested in getting a Basset hound. He came over that Saturday and took Ellie for a test run, and from what I hear she's doing great in her new home and he loves having her.

The guy did not really come through for me on the floors, but we called our old neighbors and they just finished fixing them all up today! Hallelujah, I can put my living room back together now.


The other night

Me trying to understand the video game Wade has been playing lately where he's trying to save the universe from mass takeover or something:

(All the characters on the game are wearing space battle type suits and the set looks like a very techie spaceship type of place. There are also weird looking characters that are various types of aliens apparently. Wade's character dates an alien girl, and she is trying to decide whether to get routine gene therapy to prevent a heart defect in the baby she's carrying from her dead husband.)

Me: So what year is this supposed to be taking place?
Wade: About 100 or 200 years from now - not that long.
Me: So are you on Earth?
Wade: No, I'm on another planet in a different galaxy.
Me: Are you from Earth though?
Wade: (with a slight twinge of frustration) YES, Kim, all humans are from Earth!




I had a fun time this morning messing with some person who was trying to scam me through Facebook. They must have hacked into my friend's account, so the following is the IM dialogue between me and supposedly a girl I went to middle school with but haven't seen or talked to since 8th grade...

"Laura": Hello Kim
Me: hi
"Laura": how are u doing?
Me: good, how are you?
"Laura": not fine! I'm in a mess right now and i really need your help
Me: oh no, what's wrong?
"Laura": I'm stranded in london, got mugged at gun point last night
Me: really
"Laura": yeah...all cash on me has been stolen including my credit cards and my phone
Me: who are you with?
"Laura": I'm just alone
Me: why are you in london?
"Laura": believe i'm really scared and freaked out here
well i had to visit a resort in london and i was robbed at the park close to the hotel where i lodged
Plaese can u help me?
Me: why don't you go back to the resort and have them call the police?
"Laura": I've done that...but what i need is to get back home,thats why i really need your help
Are u there?
Me: sorry, i think you need to get in touch with your parents or something
"Laura": Please i don't want my Mom to get freaked out,not for her present condition okay
please i'll appreciate anything from you
Me: wow, what's wrong with your mom?
"Laura": she's having HBP...but its not serious,so i don't want it to get serious now
really scared about her
so please anything u can help me with,i promise to refund the money back
Me: what about your dad or other family?
"Laura": Actually i didn't tell them i was coming here,it was suppose to be a short visit
my return flight leaves soon

Me: so why would you need money if you already have a flight?
"Laura": just to settle thr hotel bills i owe
its not fair if i leave like that
the manager has been of good help to me

Me: where have you been living that your English phrasing is kinda weird?
"Laura": look,i'm typing fast...u know how i feel right now
are u there?
Me: you know, considering i've heard of this scam before and i don't think a girl i haven't seen in 14 years would ask me to send money to london, i'm gonna have to get back to work now
"Laura": can u remember who i dated in high school?
Me: i didn't know you in high school
"Laura": forget
Laura is offline.


Madelyn's 6 months old!

A few days ago Madelyn turned 6 months old! She gets cuter and cuter every day, and I think we're entering the zone when the milestones pick up the pace and she's doing new things all the time. She's sitting, pushing up on her arms like she wants to crawl, eating pureed foods, standing and "dancing" if you hold her hands, getting teeth... I can see similarities to Hillary's baby pictures more & more, especially in her expressions & her eyes/brow area.

Hill sent these pictures, so I'm being her unsolicited blogger to get them out to the world (or the small piece of it that reads my blog)!

Hi little miss priss!

The grin, showing the teeth :).

Trying to feed herself some sweet potatoes.

Johnny Jump Up

Naked baby!

Num num num.
3 days til we get to babysit!


End-of-summer fun

The last couple weeks have been a fun time in transition between our unexpectedly busy summer schedule and our upcoming busy fall schedule. Even though I still had to work normal hours, Wade had in-service teacher meetings and was prepping lesson plans & things, we've spent more time doing things together lately and it's been so fun.

Two weeks ago, we started P90X together... in case you don't know, it's a pretty intense workout program on DVD that you do at home with minimal equipment. It is intense because each individual workout kicks your butt, and you also do it 6 days a week, so the soreness just magnifies & multiplies and makes you feel like you will never again be able to do such things as wash your hair, walk up a step, bend over, etc. The thought behind P90X is muscle confusion - you don't give your muscles a chance to get used to the same motion or routine, so you avoid the plateau effect. Wade is doing this to get ripped - I am doing this to actually consistently work out again and to have a common goal to reach with Wade.

We've also slept in until almost noon the past THREE Saturdays! I always feel slightly guilty & grumpy when I wake up that late, because I feel like I must have things to do and now I've wasted half the day, but in retrospect, I'm sure we should enjoy as many of these lazy Saturday mornings as possible before we have kids!

This weekend, we also went all-out crazy college-esque and stayed up til almost FIVE a.m. Saturday night (Sunday morning) watching a movie, then slept in til 1:00 (skipping church, yes, I know bad, but we did listen to a Tim Keller sermon when we got up). I love the movie North & South - it was actually a TV miniseries made in like 1985 - with Patrick Swayze, Kirstie Alley, David Carradine and a bunch of other people - about 2 families leading up to and during the Civil War. The whole thing is about 24 hours long, but we watched 6 or 7 hours Saturday night and some more yesterday. It's so addictive and I finally got Wade hooked too :).

Other things we've done together lately:
(1) Domino's Pizza run one night because we had a coupon
(2) Super Walmart for groceries
(3) Homeowners' association meeting (and somehow we got signed up for the grounds committee during that)
(4) CDS teachers' potluck dinner
(5) Got new phones at T-Mobile and I joined the Tapps' family plan
(6) Emergency ice cream run around 11 p.m.
(7) Watched various comedians on YouTube on Wade's laptop in our bed before going to sleep
(8) Looked at houses online and debated the pros & cons, whens & hows of selling our condo and buying a house

School starts tomorrow for Wade, and this coming weekend we're babysitting for Madelyn for Hillary & Allen's 5th anniversary. Fun!


Getting an early start...

LOVE these pictures that Hillary just sent me. Here is Madelyn, getting acquainted with a Carolina tradition.

So cute!!!


Madelyn's first trip to the pool

I joined Hillary for a quick trip to the pool today, to get Madelyn in the water, since she didn't get too much of an opportunity at the beach. Of course, Aunt Kim made herself the designated photographer, and bravely kept the camera dry, while capturing every moment on (digital) film... it's a tough job, but somebody's gotta do it folks.

She didn't like it too much at first...

But started to warm up to the idea of a gigantic bath tub...

I hope I am this gorgeous when I take my first baby to the pool.

She mostly sucked on her fingers the whole time... probably feels good with those 2 new teeth she has :).

And dipping even a little farther into the water. She's no Michael Phelps, but she's a heck of a lot cuter :).


I'm back... with a guest room

So sorry for the long delay in posting. Life has been really busy lately, although not with a ton of interesting stuff. For me it's mostly been work, making dinner, cleaning up dinner, going to the grocery store, exchanging and buying stuff for the house, and walking Paisley. For Wade it's been helping me with some house things, working out, playing basketball, coaching basketball, refereeing basketball, working with kids one on one in basketball, etc.

Here is a photo update of the progress of the house, this time the guest bedroom / Wade's office. I'm really pretty satisfied with everything at this point (except some clutter I'd like to figure out how to get rid of). I bought pretty much all this stuff at Target with our wedding gift cards :).

The bed... I love this comforter (so much that I had to get it even though they only had a king size and not a queen). I also got a couple pillows to go with it but contrast a little. I put that mirror over the bed even though it's a little small for the space, because we already had a hanger there from the picture that was there before, and the gold frame kinda goes with the goldy/yellowy/green of the bedspread.

I got a nice plain khaki cover for the futon and some cool big pillows, so I feel like it looks a little more stylish and a little less college-y. I guess we still need to hang that picture up, but for now it's just propped :).

And the view from the door, so you can see Wade's desk, the bookshelf, and the picture above it, which was a wedding present created by his uncle's girlfriend who does these watercolor pieces apparently, and did this one of our engagement day & pictures. Hard to explain, but pretty cool :). Please pardon the clothes hanging over the closet door and the Duke paraphernalia that is confined to Wade's desk area only :).

And a bonus photo - Wade carrying like 20 bottles of Gatorade that his parents sent him home with. He's trying to look mad because he was about to drop them and I made him wait so I could run upstairs and get the camera :).

That's about all for now. I'll try to be a little less delinquent about posting :).


4th of July at Litchfield

We had a great family weekend at the beach for the 4th of July. Wade and I, dad, and Hillary, Allen and Madelyn occupied our family's timeshare condo that we've been going to since I was probably 2 years old. It's so crazy to think back over the years and the various stages of life that we've been through in that condo. From the days when my dad's parents were the heads of the family, when Hillary and I were the little grandkids, and my aunt Lisa was a newlywed barely starting her family... to now, when Hillary and I are the "adult kids" bringing our new families, our dad is "grandpa," and Lisa's kids are leaving for college one by one.

Anyway, it was Madelyn's first beach trip, so of course she was really the main attraction of the weekend. We did remember mom, each of us in our own way for the most part, just thinking back to what we were doing this time last year. Hillary, Allen, dad, Laurie and I released some balloons at around 9:45 on July 4th, the time mom died... it was a brief, anticlimatic commemoration of such a weighty anniversary, but I don't think anything more was needed.

On to the pictures...

Here is Madelyn getting suited up... the swim diapers were a little on the large side you could say. The smallest size Hillary could find was for 16-26 lbs and Madelyn is 14 lbs.

Allen was vigilant about the sunscreen, so he got the task of greasing the baby up with SPF 60.

Yes, I look like my daddy.

Starrett family lookin' good.
Checking out the ocean with daddy.

Going in for a dip...
Oh, no, not a good idea. Madelyn was not a big fan of the water or sand, but it probably was pretty cold, and not helped by her lack of sleep.

Madelyn has had enough - trying to get some sleep if these people would leave me alone.

Some people around here build sandcastles... Here we have my cousin Carson (front left), his sister Dorothy, Wade, my dad in a goofy hat, and my cousin Mark in the background.
And, saying goodbye...
Wade and I stayed to watch the end of Wimbledon on Sunday - WOW, 16-14 in the 5th set! Mom would have loved it. "Breakfast at Wimbledon" was one of our favorite things, and we would slightly guiltily skip church to watch it, and then call each other partway into the match and laugh that we were both doing the same thing and not feel so bad anymore.
A year ago tomorrow (by date) was her funeral... I still get jealous when I see pictures of other girls' weddings and babies and their mom is there, and I think "you have no idea how lucky you are to have your mom there for these events in your life." The main thing I feel without mom is just a lack of an anchor, and a lack of a caretaker. That one person I knew I could count on to steer me right and love me completely is not ever going to be here again. I know that, in fact, God is really that person. But I guess this just puts the rubber of that faith to the road, and so far it's not getting a lot of traction. But He's not going anywhere. So I guess I'll learn it yet.