Thursday, April 10, 2014


When I was a kid living in Michigan, my family would make the {ridiculously} long drive out to Utah every few years to visit my Mom's family.  The majority of her family lived in Brigham City, and my siblings and I loved to make fun of the small town.  It was funny to us to go to get Slurpees with my aunt and have the employees of 7-11 know her name (although now that I think about it-- there's a good chance the people in her Colorado 7-11 know her name also. It may have nothing to do with where she lived and everything to do with her love of Coke Slurpees!).  We loved to read and laugh at the small-town newspaper.  Brigham City in general was kind of a joke to us.

Fast-forward 15 years, and I'm moving there.

Remember how it was never part of my plan to be in Northern Utah?  Heaven knows it's one of the last places I would have chosen to live.  Heaven also knows it's where I need to be.  When DJ and I decided to rent a house for a year in Ogden, I just assumed we'd end up buying a house somewhere on Ogden's East Bench this summer.  However, a year in Ogden was enough for us!  While DJ loves his job and will continue to work at Ben Lomond High School, we do not love living in the "big city" of Ogden, and were ready to get back to smaller-town life.

We decided to start looking for houses in Brigham City, but weren't super worried cause we're not pressed for time.  We went to see a house I was interested in about a month ago, but we didn't love it.  Last week we decided to start looking in earnest, and on Wednesday we went to see 4 houses.  The first one I had a love/hate relationship with.  It was built in 1888 and has AMAZING character.  Seriously, if those walls could talk... wow.  It was so charming.  But then, who really wants to own a house from 1888?  It seems like maybe too big of a liability.  We went to 2 more houses which were so not awesome, and then pulled up to the last house.  We both fell in love with it from the outside, and were hoping the inside was great as well.  It totally was!  It's an older house-- built in 1998-- but not nearly as old as the other houses we had seen, and in significantly better shape!  The layout is nice, and the yard is big.  The basement is partially unfinished, which is SO perfect for us-- storage for now, with room to grow later!  We decided to put an offer on the house that night.

A week went by with no word-- the house is a foreclosure, so we expected it to take a little while, since we were dealing with a bank.  Yesterday my Auntie (who is my also my Realtor) called me and let me know there were some other offers on the house as well, but ours was the only one the bank was currently reviewing.  I got really nervous, hoping they'd accept our offer and not review the others!  I knew that if it didn't work out we'd find something that did, but that didn't stop me from really wanting it to work out!

This morning my Aunt called me and gave me the good news-- our offer was accepted!!!  In the past week there have been SIX MORE offers on the house.  SIX!!!  But luckily for us they only reviewed ours and accepted it.  Phew!  We are so incredibly excited!  The house needs some love-- new paint and light fixtures are the first things on my list, and other small things like new door knobs will follow-- but the space is great!  We love the yard also-- again, it needs help.  Like, tear up the weeds and lay sod kind of help.  But for the price we got it, those things seem very minor.

The house is adjacent to Pioneer Park, which has baseball fields, a basketball court, pickleball courts, playgrounds and even a big pond!  The girls are going to be SO happy to spend a lot of time there this summer!  Apparently the Fourth of July fireworks are also set off from the park, so our backyard is going to have the perfect view of them.  We are just so excited!  Barring something catastrophic happening with our inspection next week, we'll be closing the beginning of May and hope to move in by the end of May or beginning of June-- whenever we can get the paint all done!

I wanted to post some "Before" pictures, partly so other people can see, but mostly for myself so I can remember the state I bought the house in!

Front of house:

Back of house and backyard:

Upstairs family room/entry:

The kitchen... which needs an overhaul. I'll paint the cupboards and change the lighting for now, but eventually I'll get new counter tops and appliances too.

Eat-in kitchen/dining room-- yikes on the light, right?  Don't worry, it's getting swapped out ASAP.

Master bedroom.  The closet is actually one huge closet, with two sets of doors.  Not quite as awesome as my walk-in closet in Spanish Fork, but infinitely better than my "closet room" here in Ogden.

The girls' bedroom:

I love the big bay window in their room!  

Basement bedroom, which is going to be the guest bedroom/craft room for now.

Bathroom (again, I'll fix the cupboards!):

Downstairs family room.

That little alcove is super weird and lame... and this is what it looks like from behind: 
Stupid, right?  We're planning on taking that box out and making the whole area under the stairs a playhouse/toy room for the girls, with the entry from the family room.

Part of the unfinished basement, complete with an exterior door!  This will probably end up being my salon!  How AWESOME is that???  And the big windows let in so much natural light!

The other half of the unfinished side of the basement, which will be a fourth bedroom (with 2 closets already framed in-- pretty sweet!):

 Our future fire pit in the back yard:

The view from our front living room window.  I love it. 

View of the big, sad front yard from the porch:

There are flower beds in the front and back, 
which are just begging me to plant something pretty in!

So, there ya go!  The upstairs walls will all be painted grey, probably with a blue accent wall in the living room.  I do love that there are ceiling fans in all the bedrooms and both the family rooms.  We've got some work ahead of us, but we're ready for it!  We're just so excited to make this house our home!

Monday, April 7, 2014

6 Months

Even though I just posted last week about Mia being 5 months old, she turned 6 months old today and I figure there's no reason to procrastinate just because I did last month!

First of all... WHOA!  How has half of a year passed already?  It seems so unreal to me!  I have this weird thing that I do... since Lex was born in February, I keep thinking that Mia is only as old as Lex was at this time of year.  It doesn't register to me that she's 6 months old, it seems like she should only be 3 months old.  Gah.  She's too big!

- Mia is SO ready to eat baby food.  If you're holding her on your lap while you eat, she follows the spoon to your mouth with every bite you take!  I need to make her some sweet potatoes like I did with Lex and see how she does.

- She has tried a few table foods, like the inside of french fries and small pieces of bread.  This weekend she also got to suck on an animal cracker (thanks, Nikki!) and some licorice (thanks, Mammie!), and one time my mom let her suck on a Cheeto.  She loves all the new foods we've let her try!

- She is not sitting alone yet.  I realized last week that she was almost 6 months old so that was something I should be helping her work on, and I have been.  She can balance herself if you let her hold on to one of your fingers with one hand.  She'll get there; I'm not worried.

- She still doesn't love to be on her tummy, and moves around rooms very well by turning side to side and arching her back to scoot around.

- She is suddenly sleeping much better!  She usually wakes up every 4-6 hours at night instead of every 2.  I'm very grateful!

- I realized one day that Mia falls asleep well in the car if music was playing.  That reminded me that I used to play Lexsi music when I put her down in her crib, so I decided to give it a whirl with Mia.  It's a miracle worker!!!  I lay her down when she's drowsy and turn on a CD of Mozart music (from Baby Einstein-- love that stuff!) and she goes right to sleep on her own!  Of course sometimes she's still fussy, but she does much better with the music on.

- Mia is tiny-- she still wears 0-3 month clothes!  The only 3-6 month things she wears are dresses, and that's just so they're long enough.

- She is so so sweet.  If you've met her, you know what I mean!  She will smile at anyone, coo and talk to anyone, and usually let anyone hold her!  The only exception is when she's hungry or tired-- then she only wants me, which is totally normal and understandable!

I love this girl.  She has such an amazing Spirit.  It's obvious that she is very special!  I don't know what I ever did to get the amazing little girls I have, but I'm so very grateful for them!

My babies on Opening Day!

Mia and Hailey (they are about 3 weeks apart):

Mia eyeing Daddy's burger at Red Robin:

I love her wild hair!

This face... really.  She's the cutest!

These girls love each other so much!

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Mouse in the House

This is a story that simply must be documented.

A couple of weeks ago, I got up with the girls in the morning, got Lex some breakfast, and started doing laundry.  I was transferring a load from the washer to the dryer, and had to hang dry a few things, so I walked away from the dryer to hang them on the rack.  As I turned back to the dryer, I noticed something out of the corner of my eye... a very small little furball.  I stopped dead in my tracks, and held completely still while I stared at it.  It was so small and holding so still, I was wondering if it was even real.  I knew Lex didn't have any toy mice, but I was just HOPING that somehow it was fake.  It finally twitched a little bit, and I freaked out!  Luckily I didn't scream, I just kept repeating, "Oh my gosh.  Oh my gosh." over and over.  I hurried to the living room to put Mia down-- she had been on my hip, as usual-- and quickly went back to the laundry to make sure the mouse was still there.  I then grabbed a glass bowl from my kitchen, and crept up on the mouse.  I was shaking, freaking out inside, but didn't want to draw attention to it, cause I didn't want Lex to come over (she was watching a show while she ate breakfast, thank heavens!).  I lowered the bowl slowly over the mouse, then dropped it down at the last second.  Initially I caught the mouse's tail under the edge of the bowl, which I felt bad about (weird, I know), so I hurried and scooted the bowl a little so it wasn't on its tail.  After the mouse was contained, I really freaked out!  I texted DJ but I knew he was teaching and wouldn't be able to respond or help, so I called my mom and cried to her.  She was incredibly sympathetic, as she lived places early in her marriage where she dealt with mice.  She calmed me down, which I was SO grateful for.  She told me to clean out my food cupboards and look for mouse droppings and/or food that had holes chewed in the packaging.  I went to Wal Mart and bought a whole bunch of containers to store food in, mouse traps, and D-Con.  I spent my afternoon cleaning out my pantry and food cupboards, and found no other evidence of mice.  When DJ got home I made him get the mouse out of my house, and also had him set some mouse traps (inside and outside).  Weeks later we still haven't seen any further evidence of mice, and I'm convinced that little guy was the only one.  I'm quite positive he snuck in the Saturday before, cause we had been cleaning out the cars and washing the dog and left our door open for several hours as we were going in and out.  I think he was young, and couldn't find anything to eat, so that's why he was slow and just sitting there and I was able to trap him in a bowl-- he was already starting to starve.  The thing is, my house is not dirty.  It gets cluttered, but it's not actually dirty.  I sweep and mop my floor WITH BLEACH nearly every day.  It gets done at least six times a week.  So I'm not too worried about a repeat of this,  especially since I'm vigilant about keeping my door shut now!

Trapped mouse:

The best part of the whole situation is how organized my food cupboard is now.  I love it!

In the end, it was really yucky, but no big deal.  Mice happen, I guess.  Lots of people have dealt with mice.  Now I have too.  Welcome to real life, I suppose!