Snapshots of Life

Thursday, November 05, 2009

Home Sweet Home

We finally moved into our new home a little over two weeks ago!  We enjoyed our little bungalow rental house but we are glad to be in our own home.  The only bad thing about moving in is all the work we want to do with it before the baby comes.  We have to put in a mailbox, fix some of our tiling, paint, buy furniture for the nursery and the living room, and install some hand towel rods.  I suppose it is only the beginning of many more things to come. Thank you to everyone who helped us in the move.  These pictures are taken a few days before we moved in and before the final clean up.

The annual family Halloween party was held at Lisel's house.  Here are all of our nephews and niece on my side of the family, from youngest to oldest.

The newest arrival, Ammon, as a crocodile with grandma

Logan, the pirate, with grandpa

Little Lily is Tinkerbell

Caleb is Peter Pan

Landon is Captain Hook

Zach is the Indian chief (I forgot if he has a name)

Saturday, October 03, 2009

Coming Along

The house is coming along nicely.  We've had a busy few weeks...

First, our contractor told us that he would give us two weeks notice to do our flooring (we installed the tile in the bathrooms and mudroom, as well as the wood in the entry and kitchen). Instead, he gave us a little over one week.  I took a day off work, which does not come easily, and we were all ready to go.  The afternoon before we were to begin the contractor called us and told us that he would have to move the days from Thursday through Saturday to Saturday through Tuesday!  Uh, sorry dude, that just isn't going to work for us.  I had already cleared all my clients on Thursday so it would have been pointless to work and there was no way I could take Tuesday off.  Strange thing is, he acted very annoyed, like we were being unreasonable.  Anyway, we finally got it worked out but didn't get started until the painters left on Thursday at 6:00 p.m.  We had a whirlwind weekend with several very late nights, and there may have been some Sabbath breaking in there too.  To top it off, Tania got the flu and was incapacitated for a couple of those days!  Thank goodness we had lots of help. 

Me, mixing some cement.

Ty, cutting a piece of tile.

Matt and the bottom-half of Shayne working on the wood in the entry.

Making progress with the tile.

Our neighbor's brother was an answer to prayer and helped us with the wood in the kitchen.

The finished entry (though dirty) with our sweet banister in the background.

We greatly appreciate all of the help we got.  Thanks again to Tania's mom and step-dad, my parents, Matt and Lisel, Tyler (and Shannon who let him come even though it's one of the few days they have together), and Shayne.  Mike and Trish would have been there too but Mike had to work.  We also couldn't have done it without our neighbors who let us use tools, saws, hose and water, provided expertise, and even brought over food!  We are moving into a great neighborhood!

While we were doing the floors we noticed something seriously wrong with the family room.  They framed one of the windows in the wrong place, causing the room to be quite asymmetrical.  It had already been painted and everything.  This dilemma required cutting a new whole in the correct location and covering up the old.

The window in the correct place now.

The inside took off quickly once the floors were done.  We got cabinets, counter tops, plumbing fixtures, and electrical.  After a weekend in Salt Lake we came back and checked on the house.  We found that they had laid the carpet padding and cut out all the carpet itself, though they hadn't tacked it down yet.  Immediately we recognized something wasn't right.  The carpet was way too dark.  I called the carpet place but they insisted that the name and number on our sample was the name and number that was in our house.  We still knew something was off.  Tania took the sample to the store and convinced the associate to check it out.  Sure enough, the name and number on the back of our sample was the wrong name and number for that piece of sample.  So the carpet they were installing was correct according to name and number but not the carpet we wanted and had chosen.  That was quickly corrected and we soon had carpet too.

The exterior has been slow.  They have been siding now forever and they told us they were going to pour steps and sidewalks on Monday but still haven't gotten to that.  Nevertheless, if all goes according to plan they should be done next Monday and we should definitely be in the house by the end of the month!

Wednesday, September 09, 2009


A lot of progress has been made on the house and we are getting excited to move in.  We expect to make the move somewhere in the next 4-6 weeks!  This weekend we are going to try and tackle installing tile floors in all the bathrooms and the mud-room and hardwood floors in the kitchen and entry.  Wish us luck!

Facing North - the front of the house.

Facing South - the back of the house.

Looking into the area where the kitchen will be.

Looking into the area where the family room will be.

The mud-room with our hook-strip and bench.

Our awesome french doors that will lead into the living room.

Sunday, August 02, 2009

I'm a Lucky Man

The other night I attended my 10-year high school reunion.  Long live Granite High!  I guess it will have to live on in our memories since the stupid school board closed it down this year.  I'm still bitter about that.  It was doomed to fail when they turned it into an alternative school.  Anyway, we had a great turn out and it was a lot of fun to see people from the past and walk the hallways of Granite again.  The experience also caused me some reflection.  I thought about the events of the past ten years and the choices I've made.  In such situations as these one inevitably observes the trajectories of other lives.  As I left I felt very grateful for the course my life has taken, and for my lifestyle.  I judge no one and I appreciate that people can find joy and fulfillment in many ways, but for me, I was filled with thankfulness for what I have and what I don't have.  It is more than I ever would have hoped for!  Here are just a few reasons why I am such a lucky man, with pictures from our summer.

First, I live in such an incredible world, full of amazing beauty.  Occasionally, I even get to enjoy some free time in it, like vacations to Lake Powell.  

Second, I am part of the greatest family ever.  I am so thankful for the friendship and fun that we share together.

Third, I live in the greatest little town with my little family in the very place where my forbears lived and worked.  I even get to take care of a garden (which is thriving, by the way) in soil that was likely tilled and worked with their own hands!

Fourth, we have the good fortune to be able to build a home that we have picked out, in a neighborhood full of good families, in an awesome ward, in a great town, in a beautiful valley. Progress is being seen daily.

Fifth, I am married to an incredible woman, who does SO much for me.  What's even more, she is pregnant with our little girl and so far mom and baby are healthy.  These two blessings are especially amazing to me.  They may seem quite ordinary to many, but to me there is no question that they are miracles!

Above all, I am grateful for the gospel of Jesus Christ.  I am not naive enough to believe that you must have the gospel to have a happy, productive, and wonderful life.  I am not naive enough to believe that with the gospel you are guaranteed a happy, productive, and wonderful life.  Nevertheless, I feel blessed beyond measure to be a witness of its wonder and a recipient of its promises.  It is the foundation of my life.  It is my strength and my joy.  Life can be complicated and life can be hard.  God requires the sacrifice of that which will stretch us the most.  Sometimes the stretching seems almost too much to bear, but I join the psalmist who said, "In the multitude of my thoughts within me, thy comforts delight my soul!"    

Thursday, June 18, 2009

The Big Dig

Last Friday they finally started digging on our lot!  They have made good progress despite the horrible, rainy weather.  We now have a foundation and a basement.  Hopefully the rain will stop and the framing will go quickly.