Basement montage

Montage. MONTAGE!

It started like this: bare basement with stacks of wood.  And three more where the framing started.

Framing picked up in earnest.

The kids really liked playing in the framed basement where they could duck through walls and in between studs.

The main HVAC trunk hung very low in the basement, so they replaced it with one that was wider and shallower to give us more ceiling room.  Otherwise we were looking at a 6′ 10″ ceiling.

Framing mostly done.

Shower pan, a low ceiling we didn’t want, and some lazy plumbing.  Lots of spillage on our subfloor.

Bar and fireplace are framed out.

Electrical.  Having fun yet?  Have you ever looked at so much wood?  Don’t answer that.  Wait… maybe you should?  INTERVENTION

More electrical, finished lights, and giant TV mount plywood.

It’s like sausage.  You don’t want to see the details.  To pass inspection the shower tray had to be filled with water.  So they dragged a running hose through the house on our subfloor and soaked it.  I know Colorado is dry, but it seems like maybe they didn’t have to do that.

Ermahgerd!  Drywall!

New windows, mudded and sanded drywall.

Tile was fun.  First, they did the tile in the bar area far past where we had asked them to, and claimed  it was for aesthetic purposes.  Maybe that’s true – but we didn’t care, because it looked bad to us.  I think it was definitely more mathematically pleasing, in that they had to cut less tile.  So we asked them to not do that and work was suspended on the bar.  The picture of the bathroom floor you see?  They put tile down on the floor without putting the heated mat down first – so all that tile had to be ripped out the next day.  Good times.

Tile after they redid basically everything they had done.

Trim.  We really, really like the job they did on the fireplace.

Paint starts today!  Cabinets on Friday!  Then after that it really starts being almost done!

Birthday Photos For Both Kids

Life has been busy lately. Looks to be stabilizing a bit – though it may not have any affect on the quality or frequency of my updates of this page.

Lily had TWO birthday parties – a small family gathering on her actual birthday, and a bigger gala on the following weekend.

Owen had three birthday parties – one at a park, one family plus gathering, and then another happening this past Saturday that was kind of an unbirthday party in that neither Anna or I could stand to look at cake again. Owen seemed to be over the whole birthday thing as well. So instead it was a neighborhood barbecue. I didn’t take pictures, because I was preparing some ribs.

There are pictures, and at the bottom right of those pictures there’s a link to the album full of pictures – when I have made the album visible. In some cases, you can also click the pictures to bring up an album. If you can’t get to an album or a picture isn’t click-able, it’s probably because most of the other pictures in that particular album are crap, even by our standards. Or, there’s only one picture.

This album is technically pre-first-birthday-with-family party:


We ate spaghetti with meatballs for dinner, which is a fun messy favorite. Followed up by a vanilla buttercream and yellow butter cake dessert. This is her actual first-birthday-with-family party:

Then we had the bigger soiree with friends. Less smiling and a lot more information processing as there were tons of adults and children alike running around:

From 2012-03-17 (by Eye-Fi)

Here are some random smaller albums between Lily and Owen’s birthdays.

First up – Lily got these refrigerator magnets, and the kids have, so far, been average about sharing them. Recall that Lily doesn’t really understand ‘sharing’ yet.

2012-03-18 (by Eye-Fi)

Owen is a master chef:

From 2012-03-19 (by Eye-Fi)

It’s spring and everybody wants to be outside:

From 2012-03-24 (by Eye-Fi)

Now, Owen’s birthday! He didn’t nap on that day after having a long morning playing in the park and with Anna and I. So by the time his birthday party rolled around, he was a tiny zombie. But, not so tired to be left unable to open presents or eat cake. You have to have priorities:

From 2012-03-26 (by Eye-Fi)

One of Owen’s presents – lots of “I DID IT!” these days:

From 2012-03-27 (by Eye-Fi)

We hadn’t really exposed Owen to puzzles yet – but I think he’s starting to like them:

President’s Day

Owen learned a song for President’s day. I don’t know the song as it is written, I only know how it is sung:

who’s the faces on the penny
on the penny
on the penny
who’s the faces on the penny
curious george washing dish


who’s the faces on the counter
on the counter
on the counter
who’s the faces on the counter
neighbor lincoln

EDIT: Daddy got it backwards – neighbor lincoln is on the penny, and curious george washing dish is on the counter.

Eleven Months and some other backlog

I’ve been out of town. It’s getting better.

Almost a year! And three years!

2012-02-10 (by Eye-Fi)

There was a span of about one week where we could put this little bow in Lily’s hair and she wouldn’t pull it out. Now there’s limited success there – unless you distract her with something like, say, paper.

Owen helped me change some batteries in various toys. Lily is also very interested in what Owen is doing these days.

2012-02-11 (by Eye-Fi)

Santa, baby

On Friday evening, we took the kids to go see Santa.

We had also tried to go see the big man the previous Friday, getting in line early but seeing the gross inefficiency of the line made us retreat. I waited in line with Lily for a good forty five minutes, to only see the line advance about twice.

We went to The Shops at Southglenn to go see Santa there. They have a big courtyard that is usually lit up with lots of Christmas lights year-round, and in years past, Santa has been outside near a big outdoor fireplace and under those lights. Except, last year, apparently Santa got pneumonia from sitting outside in the cold. So they moved to a different spot indoors.

The other ‘bonus’ about this is that it was free, and you are to bring your own camera to take pictures. Taking large volumes of pictures is something I am very, very good at.

So at about five o’clock on Friday evening, with cameras, kids, and gadgets in tow, we headed over to see Santa.

There was a small line. In front of us was a couple with a thirteen-month-old daughter. She and Lily were getting along just fine. Lily was in a great mood, smiling at everybody, clapping, and she was totally enamored with the lights and trees and decorations.

Owen went first, and he did really well given the last two years. I think he’s starting to get the association now. I also think he’ll be really sad when Christmas is over.

By ‘really sad’ I mean that he’ll probably be upset for about five minutes before moving on to something else, like with trick-or-treating at Halloween. The night after Halloween, after dinner he went and put on his hat and jacket and announced he was ready to go trick-or-treating again. We explained it was a once a year thing, and he just said “Oh, okay!” This reminds me that I need to get an audio recording of him saying this, because he says it in a very funny way.

Then we tried both kids together. I mentioned earlier that Lily was in a great mood, which you most likely (and correctly) understood was a precursor to this photo:

The bonus here is that you also get to see the peril of being your own photographer. It was a little dark in there, even with the teeny pop-up flash on the camera. Eventually the little Santa Sock Monkey won out, and she calmed down a bit.

Owen was excited to get outside and see more Christmas lights, so we kind of hung around a bit before going to dinner at Diego Zhang’s. We had never been, but in totally awesome family night style, we had a coupon and decided to give it a try.

It was a slider restaurant – tiny burgers. Lots of variety. Lots of small dishes. Then we rushed home to put the tired babies (and mama) to bed.

These things are the new best part of Christmas. I wouldn’t trade it for anything. And I don’t want to forget.