Monday, July 27, 2009

Home on the Range

After a long weekend on the road house-hunting and horse-hauling, we are back home in Yelm with 2 of our 3 horses in the pasture. It is so wonderful to have them home again, even though I'm not going to be able to ride them for awhile. Still, there's lots of brushing and loving to do between now and then! Pictures coming soon.
We also had a successful trip in terms of our land hunt, and we found the spot that we want to call home. Now it's a matter of crossing fingers while we go through the whole negotiation, financing, inspections, etc. Whew!
We also had an incident that turned out better than we ever could have hoped... as we were starting up Snoqualmie pass, a car frantically pulled us over to inform us that "your tire just flew off and almost hit us!". Envisioning a blown-out tire on the horse trailer (which we didn't hear or feel thanks to the tandem axle), we turned on the flashers and drove slowly up to the next exit to put on the spare (the road shoulder wasn't wide enough for changing tires on the traffic side of a horse trailer). To our horror, when we got off the road we discovered NOTHING where the tire should have been. No wheel, no lug bolts, nothing but a flat hub. That meant nothing to attach a spare tire to either. Now what to do on a Sunday evening with two horses??? We took a back-road back into Cle-Elum (the nearest town of any size, luckily only about 4 miles back), and as we were limping through town looking for a place where we could park while trying to find a boarding place to lodge the horses until the trailer was fixed, AdventureDad just happened to notice that the local gas station had a service center. We pulled in, and to our sheer delight, not only were they still open, but they said they could repair it right then, on the spot, with the horses still in the trailer!!!! So, what had happened??? Apparently at some point the lug nuts had been seriously over-tightened, to the point where they weakend the bolts, which then sheered off level with the hub. Luckily the shop was able to drill out the stubs, put new bolts on (they just happened to have the right size), and they also had a wheel and tire in the right size... talk about lucky! The rest of the lug nuts on the other 3 tires were also over-tightened, so we'll have to replace all of the bolts, and I'm having rotten luck finding anyone local who can do it, illustrating just how lucky we were. It's almost worth a trip back to Cle Elum! We were also super lucky that our giant tire bouncing down I-90 didn't hit another car and injure someone or cause a big wreck. We went back and looked for it, but it was nowhere to be seen... probably bounced off into the woods somewhere. The lesson; NEVER over-tighten your lug nuts!!!
So, after a more-Adventuresome-than-usual weekend, we're happy to be home even though it's in the 90's.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

On a Roll!

Wow, 2 posts in one week. I'm on a roll now. This is a shortie though... just reporting that we have now gone 5 days Binky-Free in the Adventure household. M doesn't even mention them anymore, so that is one more hurdle that we have overcome. We are staggering to a start in the potty-training department, but M has discovered that she can manipulate me very easily by telling me she has to go potty (thus creating a great diversion when it is nap time or any other time we are doing something she doesn't approve of), so I'm currently trying to figure out how to deal with that and still respond appropriately when she REALLY has to go potty. I guess no-one said this was going to be easy!

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

July Already???

I was horrified to see that my last post was literally two months ago. Boy has time sped by! As a quick summary we returned to our home here in Washington safely after a long road trip home from Texas via Montana. It gave us a chance to see relatives that we haven't seen for a long time though, as well as to spend some time with M's grandparents, so in the end the trip was tiring but satisfying. Upon our arrival here we were met with piles of boxes that had yet to be unpacked, not to mention literally waist-high weeds in all of the expansive gardens. I managed to get the vegetable garden weeded and planted before M and I left for Augie's graduation in mechanical engineering from Cal Poly. The picture above is M and her cousin Jayden enjoying the ocean in Morro Bay. M was truly in heaven with unlimited sand AND water all in one place, not to mention the added bonus of SHEASHELLS MOMMY! to find in the sand. I have to laugh when I think of the beautiful photos Gutsy Mom has of her daughter at the beach, then I think of these ones (and I managed to get this one BEFORE M decided to "wash" her hair with sand, not to mention ingesting enough to make her diaper gritty the next day. Not that Jills is prissy, but M has a certain talent when it comes to dirt. Nana made a sand castle with her (ie pile of sand) on which they placed a tiny crab shell that M found, and ever since our return here to WA she insists on piling dirt up and making a "crab house".
Unfortunately AdventureDad couldn't join us on this trip, as his EMPA program was just starting when we had to leave. The program is going well so far (actually this eve is his first "real" stint in the ER, although it is mostly gauged towards learning the ropes at this point), and the intensity is slowly heating up. It sounds as though our expectations of long days AND long nights are sadly going to be met, but he is certainly excited to be practicing medicine again, so hopefully that will provide enough inspiration and motivation for the next 18 months.
The pregnancy is progressing well. I'm slowly building up the courage to post a pic or two of the "belly" for those who have been asking. We found out a couple of weeks ago that she's a girl, so the name game has officially started, atlhough we already have some pretty good ideas. I'm feeling good if a bit ungainly, and definitely am enjoying feeling the kicks and hiccups that come along with this stage. Some days October seems an awful long ways away, but others it seems like time is just going way too fast.
Jimmy has spent the majority of his free time during the last several weeks putting up a shed for the horses to shelter in... they should be coming home in a week or two from their "foster home" where they have been since we left for Germany. I am soooooo excited to have the horses back in our lives, not to mention to see M's reaction when she realizes they're her very own (she is constantly commenting on the horses across the road and wanting to wander over to see them).
As for myself, I am currently in a bit of a holding pattern, trying to find the daily patterns that will allow me to keep up with the house and yard and a 2-year-old. I think things are slowly coming around (for instance I finally caught up on the last of the weeding this week), but there is not much time left in the day for the extras I want to do (blogging, organizing our stuff, crafting, scrapping, reading, you know!), so I still have a bit of figuring out to do. I love where we are living, although after the close supportive community we had in Germany this area feels very isolated (we have one set of close neighbors with kids, but they have ignored all of my attempts at introduction. sad.). I'm looking forward to some visits from my Auerbachian friends over the course of the summer, not to mention catching up with all of my friends from "way back".
I'm sure there is much more that I haven't commented on, but this is a pretty good start. Now that I'm back on the wagon, I should be posting a bit more.
PS: The strawberries on top were one harvest from a fairly small strawberry patch... I'm not even close to keeping up with the harvest, and now the raspberries are ripening too. Yay and AAAaaah!!!!