Monday, November 13, 2017

One Wild Year


November 13, 2016 was a life changing day here. Which totally knocked my socks off. One day I'm still recovering from. Don't know if I ever will. So first I get a call that my husband fell out of a truck. Not only fell out of a truck, but he had a tape measure hooked to his back, which he landed on. Took him to the ER for x-rays. Nothing broken, but bruised bone. So after a lot of ER stuff and work stuff and this and that, brought him home and on the way home I side swiped a deer. Kid ya not. I saw the ditch and I'm like sorry deer, but I wasn't going into the ditch. I hit my brakes and he hit his, our sides hit and he ran off, no damage on the van.

Get home finally and get Russell all settled and kids to bed and the phone rings. My mil was rushed to the hospital. I was the only one able to race up and be with her. We now knew she was never to leave. We believe it was a serious of strokes. She fought hard to get moved to rehab and she won. I got the joy of moving her over there. It was a three week battle, but she left us to be with her husband of over 50 years who died a few months before her.

So my husband lost both his parents last year. It was a tough year. A lot to do, a lot to take care of, a lot of things got set aside. We paused school for about two plus months. The garden suffered.

Then this past summer we thought we were moving. We had nothing stopping us. No more 3am calls and putting our lives on hold to take care of in laws. Hubby's job may be moving south a wee bit. So let's move south. I tell ya we looked and looked and looked. We gave ourselves until September. And then onto plan B or plan C. We gave up looking and are onto plan B. Which is expanding the house. Plan B seems to be going well. We just ok'd house plans to add two bedrooms onto the house. Maybe later we expand out the kitchen and add a food room, but take it in sections. If all goes well we start after Christmas.

Plan C. Was to build an outbuilding for Ethan's bedroom, an outbuilding for my craft room. Not a fan of Plan C because it's going outside in the rain and the yuck of WA state. But it would be something we could do ourselves and not have to wait or hire anyone.

This past August was a life changing event. We never ever, ever never thought we would ever have to deal with a forest fire. But we did. So hubby and I headed up north, our dishwasher was just done and I wanted to hit the outlet appliance place. But they were in Tacoma, so we were going to be gone most of the day. We hit that, and nothing we hit a few more spots. We stopped for lunch. We headed back to town and Lacey and got a dishwasher ordered. Few more errands. Hit Home Depot and my phone started to go off??? My sister asking about the fire? what fire? I get on the neighborhood site and there is a massive fire. It started out as a controlled fire that got totally out of control. It was really windy that day and he blew around and jumped.

It jumped across a six lane freeway and took out a business. So we load up the wood and race home. But got stopped our back roads were closed. had to go back north and take the freeway home. The freeway was Black, and smoky and dark. Something out of a nightmare. We got to our main road and people were stopping us from going home. We finally get home and gather the kids and pets and leave. Although I forgot one animal. So hubby had the kids and the bulk of the pets, he went onto my sisters house and I turned around. As I arrived home the police were there telling my neighbors they had to leave NOW. I got the cat and left.

We sat at my sisters house for hours. Watching a plane drop fire retardant. For hours he dropped fire retardant, we now know he was dropping it on a 500 acre wooded area. The road that we were stopped on and had to turn around, once it opened and we could use it, was just red. The amount of fire retardant was just WOW. Still today it's red on that road.

We came so close to loosing our house that day. The fire fighters stopped the fire inches from our neighbors old wooden fence. If that fence would have gone our whole block would have been gone, because they were on one side of the fence, they were not on our side of the fence. The neighbors in front of us they stopped it before it hit their garage, if that would have continued it would have jumped our road and took out our house. So we almost got hit a few different ways. As we were playing clean up, we found ashes everywhere. We got lucky, because ashes jumped 6 lanes of freeway and took out homes and a business, but landed in our back yard and our yard didn't go up.

The irony of that day. We have been spending the summer building sheds. We got the garden shed all done, we got our storage shed all done, and we were in the process of putting up shed three. This is our emergency shed. So if we get ten feet of snow and loose power for days we will be ok. If we have an earthquake, we will be ok. So now next spring I will be buying a couple of hoses to put out there in the shed. One of the big things I didn't know, because of our location, the fire fighters were going around to houses and taking hoses and using our water. Well not ours, they took our hose. Well until they cut the power and we had no water. But if this ever happens again, toss the hoses in to the front yard before leaving.

We spent days without power, days without internet. As they were replacing power poles we would have to live without power for 1-2 days a week. We still have spotty internet. Heard the powers above are debating if we get a new main road. So internet has not dug up wires to replace. So we are hooked into this box thing. We were hooked to a truck for the longest time. Although one kick of this box and we all loose internet.

A very eye opening day. Wouldn't it be something to loose the house, but have a dishwasher delivered two weeks later?

We started school. A bit late. But we are hitting it now. It's going well. We lost our outside cat this summer. He just came in and basically told us it was time and within a few days left us. We haven't had an new animals in over two years. So put it out there we were ready for a new cat. Well we were answered and received two. One needs special love and attention. As she has kidney disease. We give her fluids every other day. Which involves needles and a bag and someone holding her and someone poking her and someone holding the bag. But we've done it twice now and it's going well.

The garden really sucked this year. But hoping for better next year. We are building a green house. Not just any green house, it's a massive 10 x 20 green house. It will have room for ten billion starts. I plan on hanging cherry tomatoes in there. We added two very large tomato beds this year. We also added a massive garlic bed. So I will be diving back into gardening and doing a lot of it. We went light in case we moved, well plus we had a ton going on.

We've had birthday's, I have a 14 years old with massive amounts of hair. And we won't talk about the smell. Which I hope won't get any worse. We did a playroom make over. It was awesome. Tons of floor space now. I did a built in couch because it's a size you would never ever find. tables along the wall are actually closet doors. Totally re-organized the Lego pieces.

As we are getting ready to add on some bedrooms I will be re-doing Cole's room. It will be a massive remodel as the closet is coming out. Lots of table space and shelves. Just hard to do at the moment because we have crap everywhere. So can't wait for more space. My crafting stuff is in the living room, well some of it. I put away the crafting stuff for a long while, but had the itching so bad to craft so I took over the living room. Tuckers stuff is boxed up in his room, Ethan's stuff is half here and half there. We are just out of space.

So it's been a year. A lot has gone on. A lot more coming up. I will try to get back to the blog. I have Tucker in the kitchen for school. So some interesting stuff is coming out of the kitchen. Need to get the recipes up. Because frankly I loose them and have to look here for them. HA!
  



Cole at Brickcon



Apple trees were not that great this year.


This is a massive minecraft quilt for when I re-do Cole's bedroom.


The baby. Buddy, just the love of our lives.

Saturday, December 31, 2016

Where did 2016 Go?

So apparently there is a "New Year" right around the corner?

What?

So it left me thinking where did 2016 go? Well it went to hospital trips, and rehab trips, and lots of running around, and lots of rushing around here to get things done. Had a very rotten garden season, a lot of it was because of weather. As it was the talk of the town, everyone got tomatoes late. Well those who waited, my neighbor didn't. Cracked me up when I was sinking in Tomatoes and she was well, hum Not.

Well I make goals. Things I want to get done for the year. I don't use the R word.

I honestly would love things to settle down. Way too many balls in the air for us. I would finally like to make a decision on if we are moving or not. And move or well not. Until this decision is made I don't know if I will have a garden or not.

And I am so itching for a garden right now. Getting the seed catalogs in right now, sure are not helping.

If we are staying and expanding, I want to totally redo my garden area.

But if we are moving I need to design and put in a new garden area.

We could stay here on our tiny 1/2 acre and expand. We are now bursting at the seams of this house. So we need to do something. And this is the year to decide something. Every time in the past we sat down to look at houses and then planned an outing, we could get a call one of the in laws were in the hospital. So postpone things for awhile and get back to it months later, and then it happened again and again and again.

I've been researching the family history. We have our line traced clear back so that isn't the issue. The part I'm more researching, are the aunts and uncles and extended family members. And their photos and stories. I have ten tons of stuff printed, and as I print I try to keep it all organized and labeled. Who are we connected to, we are actually connected to a famous actor which is kinda cool. Do you think we can get him to come to the next family reunion?????

Oh I need to start planning the next family reunion.

I need to get the photos from the last reunion printed and that book done.

Need to get back on bone broth. That stuff really helps with my pain. I have horrible side pain. It helps so I can now go days without the pain. So I have a new pot brewing I started today. Had to stop months ago because there was no time to go and buy bones, there is a special shop down south I hit.

I worry about the future with the upcoming job loss. I hope we can figure out something.

I just want things to settle down. I want peace. Calm. I want my husband to stop falling out of trucks.

I think once we get the big decision made everything else will fall into place. Just hope we can figure it all out. I hate being in the in-known.


Merry Christmas...Your Fired

Ok so it didn't come out like that, but it's what the company means. My husband was told within the next ten years his job will be gone. As the place he is working for will now become 90% food and a very small home department. Over the next ten years the stores as they are remodeled will go into the new store model. And in the next ten years they will all be changed over. New stores going up will be with the new model.

So to me this makes no sense. As I like going there and getting food and home items. So I as one think this is one big mistake. But who I'm I right? Oh right a shopper. I'm going to miss their garden department.

So this year alone with this company we have taken a big pay cut. We no longer receive holiday pay. And now we need to make plans on what to do when that times comes?

What I wouldn't give for him to find a job that he actually likes, that pays ok and doesn't jerk you around as a person.

So here is to an in-certain future!.

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Christmas



The before 


So many Lego's so little time.


This actually showed up like this, Amazon apparently forgot the box???? Boy did they get a phone call! Luckily our mail lady knew I was buying Christmas and she snuck it to me without Tucker seeing.


Oops, didn't see the naked child before the happy boy? He does have bottoms on.

To the after.

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Christmas Lights


Didn't do a lot this year, although did a bit more then last year. New this year are the trees. I actually like the trees. The 6 smaller trees are tomato cages turned upside down and covered in lights. The big tree, is actually our very old inside Christmas tree. We got this tree the year Ethan was born, we went to take it out of the box this year and it came out in pieces. We were about to get out the super glue to attempt to patch it when we were gifted our in laws old tree. So we stuck our tree outside and covered it with lights. We patched up the candy canes and put those up. These are made from pvc 4 inch pipe. Standing a tall 8? feet tall.

Next year I would love to learn how to make presents to have them sitting out there among the trees. We shall see?

Barbie Christmas Clothes





So I have this niece who likes Barbie, I know as a young girl I would have LOVED hand made Barbie clothes. So of course I'm going to do this for her. But with my month utterly nuts, I got such a late start and an early finish. As my sister texted, well be over in an hour. CRAP. I have more dresses planned and such, but oh well. The two dresses up above are my own design. It started out as a skirt I was thinking of but, couldn't get the waist right, so I hiked it up and added trim and it worked.

Toying with doing more of these and selling them. Yeah, toying. The issue is time, But I'm hoping as life starts to calm down a bit, I can just sit and play? But my focus now is to find calm in my life and somehow muster through Christmas. Christmas spirit is something I do not have.

Friday, December 9, 2016

Catching Our Breath

So feel like it will take months to catch our breath. These last few months of one thing after another. So many things were put on the back burner. Well I'm starting to move a few of those things slowly to the front burner. Today I got all my bags I'm giving for gifts all sewed and wrapped. I had so many bags in different processes of getting done.

Soon the Barbie sewing will happen.

I have a house that is an utter mess. I need to wrap my head around Christmas. I can forget cards again this year. Sigh. I have a garden to think about and plan or not plan. Just so many things and so little time.

So one thing that was or will be soon moved to the front burner is our savings. Or well lack of it. When hubby got hurt I quickly pulled money out of savings and into checking and just went light on life, but mortgage and bills have to be paid. But we were told that L&I would kick in and we would be ok. HUH. We were paid 200 dollars for 13 days of work missed. Like really? Now we make squat, but that is more then squat. Or well less then squat, depends on how you look at something I guess.

So put that 200 into savings and I'm trying to attempt to get back on track. Except we got hit with a very high SS tax payment this week? Hubby is asking work about it because we have never paid that much in SS taxes? So our food money was really tight this week and not a spare cent to hit savings. It's always something.

So I need to rebuild savings and not just rebuild it. But really build it up. We got lucky this time around that hubby was only out two weeks. Next time could be worse?

But got me thinking it's hard for us to save. Like really hard. But got thinking what if I thought of it like a debt? We would hammer it down until it was nothing. What if I take a number like 5k and just throw every cent at it until it was down to nothing. Although in turn not down to nothing, but up to 5k?

So I think I will get a notebook and pick a number and record every penny until we are down to zero. At the same time I am going to attempt to take about 5-10 out of food budget every week and pay down the house. It won't be a lot I know. but every penny will help us get ahead.

We have got to get back on track. So after Christmas watch out because I'm bringing out the hammer.

*If anyone has any Christmas dust to spare I could use some, really, really not in the Christmas spirit around here that is for sure. Like I want to pack it all up and take down lights and yeah. I just need a really good and calm 2017. Do you think Santa will bring me one?*

Thursday, December 8, 2016

Snow Day

It's dumping snow right now. We are sitting at about 3 inches and counting.










Monday, December 5, 2016

ARGGGGGGG

So November 13th happened. My husband fell out of a truck and I knew he couldn't work for a few days. (It ended up being two weeks) I assumed he would get sick pay or something. But I went ahead and moved the money we were saving for the second car, over to savings. Just in case. Well then we got word we are not getting sick pay, but L&I pay for the missing days.

Hum, well ok I can use that money as we need and then put that check back into savings and all should be well.

NOT.

Got the check today. We are getting paid 200 dollars for two weeks of work missed. Hum really? 200 dollars for two weeks? Something doesn't add up there.

So math wise I'm out of savings over 400 plus dollars. Which I guess I will have to let go and start saving all over again.



The problem is our lives are up in the air. So even the thought of trying to save is a hard thought right now. I still have Christmas to finish up. My budget is off, we have gas for the second car to buy, that I need to fold into the budget. Our new second car needs an oil change. Just stuff. nothing like being hit with stuff.  I just need to sit down and work hard on the numbers.

I am grateful my husband is back at work and this next payday should be a full one. It just happens to fall on our hard week. We have one really hard week a month. Sometimes two.

But I really need to sit down and work hard on numbers because having that savings, even though it was ear marked for something else did really help. It allowed me not to have a panic attack well I was up helping my mil during her recovery and such. So my next year that will be the main focus I think. Not only rebuilding what I lost, but have a fully funded emergency fund.

Need to sit down and figure out what number a fully funded emergency fund is and then how to get there.

Here's to hoping that next year I can say emergency funds ROCK?????

Sigh

Like really 200 dollars for two weeks? Stunned.

I don't know how to start this post

So we all have that day in our heads. It's the day the bottom fell out of our world and things were never again the same. So now you have to adjust and find a new normal. And that is hard because I hate change period. My day come in November.

So with my mil's stroke (?) we assumed weeks if not months of rehab. I assumed 1-3 trips a week up to rehab. I expected laundry duty. I expected us as a family to come together in a month or so and talk, will there be more rehab? is she ok to go home with 24 hour care? does she want to think about different living arrangements?

What I didn't expect was the call I got last Friday, saying she joined her husband up in heaven that morning. She was a fighter and I fully expected months and months of work ahead of her/us. I expected a few more years with her.

So in such a short amount of time these boys lost two Grand parents. This one was hard on the boys. We were able to prep them with Pops, but because we didn't see it coming with Grandma so we didn't prep them. We didn't take them up to say good bye. We did go up for a visit on Thanksgiving.

So now my world is in chaos, I'm sure in time things will settle down. I just hate having so much up in the air. We have a house to clear and a house to sell and an estate to settle. It doesn't fall on me, but I'm doing what I can to help. I cleared my husband's schedule so he can go all over town with his sister coming up. And I will be there to help pack the house. I went in all ready and cleaned out the fridge because the garbage can is so tiny it will take some time to fully clear the house of food. I did all the laundry I could find so we can do nothing but sort coming up. I know the little things will help.




Just weird being in their house. You fully expect my mil to come walking down the hall. You expect her to walk her outside to your car because she has to check the mail. I have plans to make tater tots tomorrow, she ALWAYS calls when I'm up to my elbows in potatoes. And it takes a minute to not only answer but put her on speaker because my hands are covered in potatoes, but kid you not she always calls during that time.

So this year has just sucked for us in so many ways. I feel like this year I have climbed a mountain I'm hoping I'm over the top and on my way down, because If I have to keep climbing I may not make it. It's been a tough year. But it's time for a break. I just hope next year is calmer. I hope it's shorter. I hope it's quiet and boring. I hope to find time to just sit in the garden. Although I was planning a small garden because I assumed I was to spend time away from home helping my mil. So I need to think now.

Peace. Just need some Peace and smooth days ahead right now.