Three Weeks and Counting

Well, friends, we are less than three weeks out from the closing date on our house.

I’m excited, terrified, nervous, excited….did I say terrified?

It’s tough trying to buy a house around the holidays. If my bank account bleeds any more money, I’m afraid it might collapse. Fingers crossed, we can just get in the house and figure out the rest once we get there. (Note: I am not a Dave Ramsey fanatic. I have tried following his plan, and I apparently lack moral fortitude. That’s ok because we’re figuring out our finances in a way that makes sense to us.)

But the house…..ahhhhhhh!

I spend much of the few minutes (or hours, depending on how anxious I am) before sleep dreaming about what life will look like in each room of the future home.

V's Future Room

V’s Future Room

Our daughter’s room will be her little getaway, a quiet reading nook, a place for sweet imaginary play with dolls and stuffed animals.

Our Future Bedroom

Our Future Bedroom (and yes, we will remove the gnarly carpet)

Our bedroom will be a place to relax and unwind, calming. I hope to have a small sewing corner at one end of the bedroom, but we’ll see if that’s where I decide to put it.

Image

Imagine the living room with bright white paint, cheery yellow and red accents, and a family-focused design.

The living room will be the entry into our home, the heart of it. The place we go to play games, have good conversation, listen to music, and perhaps even play some. V will have a few constructive, Montessori style activities in this area and perhaps a little nature corner.

Image

Just imagine: white metal dining table, sideways, up against a built in cabinet that will function as a seating bench.

The dining area will have a cozy nook area that will function as a place to share good meals and also a work space for me. The brains of our operation, if you will. I’m imagining it with a bright red cushion on the bench and maybe a chalkboard wall nearby for jotting down inspiration, meal plans, and a place to doodle.

Image

The kitchen: a future gathering place for our family

The kitchen will be the place where we cook family meals together. V will have her learning chair (that I found on Craigslist for $75, yay!), and she’ll be able to participate in meal-making (and perhaps, mess-making as well.) We’ll set up her little table and chair here, so that she can have a snack or complete an activity while I cook, clean, or do laundry (don’t be jealous of my insanely exciting life. I know.)

Image

The sun room. Need I say more?

And the sun room. We are so excited for this room! It will be the jack of all trades. A place to read and relax in the sun. A hideaway for overnight guests. A play corner for V with a play kitchen, another table and chairs, and an art easel. A little round dining table for tea or breakfast in the sunshine. Cannot wait!

Image

The backyard!

 

 

 

Backyard: this will be my hubby’s domain. Three gigantic raised garden beds already grace this space. Soon they’ll be adorned with organic veggies, herbs, and fruit. It’ll be a place for V to run around and play with the dogs.

 

 

 

 

And lastly, the front porch will be our place to socialize, unwind, and get to know our neighbors. Perhaps even watch a storm or two roll in from the north.

Well, there is the house tour. An exercise in dreaming and imagination, with a dose of “gonna be ours” in 3 weeks reality!

TV vs. Imaginery Play

A few weeks ago, we had a rough couple of days where our little one got waaaayyyyy too much TV watching in. As in, face glued to the screen, cracked out on cartoons (and whatever the hell else was on) watching. It was not by my choice, but we were traveling, and dammit Frontier, do you have to put TV screens on EVERY.SINGLE. SEATBACK?

Big mama sigh.

Once we returned home to our non-TV watching household (ok, well rarely watching on our shoebox sized TV) I basically had to detox her off of the need for technology speed. I tell ya, my little girl had gotten addicted.

So for one week, I mandated no television. We listened to a variety of music on Pandora to fill the occasional silence. Currently, we’re really liking Grimes, a little Beethoven, and Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros. And hey, you can’t say she isn’t getting a well-rounded music education.

Anyway.

The first few days, she was so distracted. Even to toddler standards. Running around like a crazed person, manically grabbing random things, throwing them around, running to something else. It was kind of hilarious to watch, but also disheartening.

Is it too much to ask of a toddler to just play with one thing for a solid two minutes?

And then we had a breakthrough.

A couple of days ago, I noticed that her ability to play independently had returned. It’s something that I’ve encouraged ever since she was itty-bitty. And she loves that she can roam the living/dining circuit and her bedroom at will. And so, I observed that her attention span to various activities was lengthening.

And then yesterday, I was washing dishes and looked over to see her play “kitchen.” She has a basket of kitchen items, most of them child-sized, but made out of real materials. The basket sits atop a butcher block cart with two shelves. She very carefully cleared the bottom shelf and was using the surface like a cook top. Sauteing mushrooms, stirring an imaginary stew, my little girl was finally back to her old self.

And she played that way for at least 45 minutes. Hallelujah!

I hope to continue to encourage her imaginary play and practical life experiments. And eventually, I want to get her a Learning Tower for the kitchen (so she can be involved in family life) and a play kitchen (so she can run her own cooking “experiments.”)

But all in good time…

 

Until next time,

Boomerang Mama

 

In Limbo Land

Image

We are less than one month from closing on our first home. My feelings range from ELATED to scared and everything in between. Last week, the house was appraised, and I guess there was some question as to how the sunroom should be counted in the overall square footage. The whole issue is complicated, but the real problem will be if it doesn’t appraise for the mortgage amount we need.

Buying a house is far more complicated and nerve-wracking than I could have ever imagined.

So with less than 4 weeks left, I just want to know….will the house be ours or will it not? Will we have to start our house search over again or will we celebrate Christmas in our new digs?

I’ve definitely been praying a lot and trying to trust that whatever the outcome, it’ll be the right one for us. Anyone been in this situation before?

I’ll keep ya updated.

In other news, life in our little apartment is just beautiful. Not to sound like a weepy eyed mama, but man, I just love my sweet little girl so much. Her personality is blooming, and she learns and grows so much every day. Recently, she has completely fallen in love with babies….and not just dolls.

(and please, don’t get any ideas!)

She diapers her stuffed animals. She waves and shrieks whenever she sees a baby out in public. “Baby, baby!” It’s so sweet to see. And she has also just been so loving lately, giving us lots of hugs and kisses.

It sure does make the first year (of no sleeping hell) worth it. There is nothing in this world that can’t be fixed by an honest toddler looking you smack in the eyes and planting a wet one on ya. There just isn’t.

And speaking of which, the little angel (har, har) is asleep, so time for me to squeeze in a shower before we run errands and visit friends this afternoon.

I’m so grateful for my life, family, and friends.

 

Yours,

Boomerang Mama

“November Rain”…..er……..Sunshine?

Maybe it was because I had big brothers. Or maybe I just had wickedly good taste.

Either way, my six year old self was a huge Guns’n’Roses fan. And no song resonated more with my little unworldly being than the power ballad “November Rain.”

(I had the single on cassette, and the other side had “Sweet Child O Mine.” Seriously, people.)

And as I sit here grading papers, a light, sunshine-laden breeze skirts across my desk from the open window. Friends, there is no rain this November. It hasn’t even really been cold. It’s odd, really.

And maybe that’s why I can’t wrap my head around the fact that Christmas is a mere 5 weeks away. Or that Thanksgiving is in less than two weeks, and we don’t even have plans.

(Poor planning or general apathy this year? You decide.)

Or that we may or may not be closing on our first home in 4 weeks? The only thing crazier than a 6 year old jamming to metal is the thought that after stumbling our way through our 20s, someone might actually give the hubs and I a mortgage.

(Exaggeration: most of our 20s were semi-planned, just poorly executed. But I digress.)

I’m keeping my fingers crossed that the sunshine and the good luck with the house continues, and we don’t experience any “cold November rain…”

I’ll keep you posted. Until then, you’ll find me grading and humming a little GNR to myself.

Yours,

Boomerang Mama

And I’m Back….

Back in June, I decided to shutter my old blog “Boomerang Mama” over at Typepad.

We had lived in OKC less than six weeks, I was writing regularly for “The Other Baby Book,” and life only seemed to get busier and busier. I didn’t regret the decision one bit.

In August, I cut the plug on TOBB as well. Started teaching humanities at a local university.

My time was even more precious than ever. Hell, I even said sayonara to Facebook.

This fall has been incredibly busy: papers to grade, lectures to create, a home to maintain, and a family to love. Women tend to be the glue that holds a family together, and my role is no exception. Although being a mommy/wife/professor is a pretty sweet gig, I felt like something was missing.

I cannot tell you the number of times I’ve sat at my desk, staring at the keys, a blog post writing itself in my head.

And I reassured myself that I purposely left that ship. But time and my heart is saying otherwise.

I cannot find the time (mentally and emotionally) to finish a real publication for an academic journal (and believe me, my husband is on me about the “great opportunity.”)

But today, I found myself looking forward to my baby girl’s naptime so that I could write a blog post.

I tell ya, blogging can be a real sickness.

But I don’t do it for the money (umm…obviously.) I’m not in it for the publicity or fame (really and truly, no thank you.) I have, however, kept a journal in one form or another, since the second grade. I’m not as apt to pick up the old pen and paper these days, but blogging about life just seems right.

And so round two begins….

Yours,

Boomerang Mama