We signed up for a new phone number for dealing with rental stuff, and bought the numbers to go on the sign today.  Three hours later, we got our first call.  Crazy.  I haven't gotten around to getting it on Craig's List yet or anything. (More)

Posted by Jon Daley on September 30, 2008, 5:57 pm | Read 9886 times | Comments (25)
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Our family had been emailing around about the wind and rain from a recent storm, the power outages, and water in our basement, and a couple questions came up, and I thought I would post them here, that perhaps other people are interested in the goings on at our new house. (More)

Posted by Jon Daley on September 17, 2008, 9:03 am | Read 6203 times | Comments (0)
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I have to say that the real baby is much more squashed in me than that little graphic baby is on the sidebar.  (S)he pokes up knees and heels all the time and increasingly presses on my bladder.  I am ready to go, but still have plenty of things I can do while waiting.  When Mom and Janet first arrived, I was feeling anxious to get the baby out the next day, but I am content to wait until the right time.

Here are some things I have written down on scraps of paper that haven't made it out to the blog until now:

We got ants in our car, presumably from having food everywhere on our vacation trip, and one time when we were buckling in, Jonathan exclaimed that he had an ant crawling in his ear.  I couldn't see it, but he said it was far down and wiggling.  I told him it was probably just a phantom feeling after one had crawled in and out.  However, a day or two later, Jonathan came up to me and said, "Mommy, I removed a dead ant from my ear!"

When we were at the Maggie P, the boys were playing on the top bunk with Aunt Janet's supervision.  She then needed to leave and formally announced her abdicating of responsibility.  Not 5 seconds later, we hear a big clunk.  Noah tried climbing down (but only actually fell the last foot or so because Jonathan was holding onto his arm.)  Jonathan's explanation for how it happened was, "He wanted to do it by his own accord."

8/12 - Jonathan counted backwards from 19, his own idea, and with no help.

I am starting to get used to the idea that this new house is my own, and not just someone else's with my furniture in it.  We are starting a compost pile, and there are a lot of local corn husks and cobs in it already.  Jon keeps clunking his head on low ceiling pieces, especially in the basement and coming in on the porch.  I'm not sure if there's anything we can do about it.

We have running hot and cold and drinkable water!  Jon hooked up my brand new front-loading washer two days ago and installed the dryer yesterday.  Hooray!  The washer really does dry things better and the dryer has a shorter running time.  Jon looked in two stores for an umbrella type clothes line without success, but we'll get some kind of line out sometime.  For the moment, I'm using regular detergent in the washer, but being careful to use a small amount.  I drew a line on the cup for what seems good.  It has not sudsed up too much.  Otherwise, he detergents cost twice as much (and effectively four times as much since you only use half the regular amount.)

Breakfast time!  Even when you live 5 minutes from church you can still be late, and I want to avoid that.

Posted by Heather Daley on August 24, 2008, 8:49 am | Read 44167 times | Comments (16)
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Having prenatal appointments every week is not giving me much leeway for blogging.  I just had another appointment today and realized that I have not blogged about last week's.

First, Noah had his 2 year appointment last Wednesday.  35.5 lb, 37"  He didn't like the poking and prodding, nor especially the ear flashlight.  But he got three pretzels at the end because the nurse didn't realize that the doctor had already given them out.

Then I had my 37 week appointment.  This one was with one of our favorite midwives in the practice, and we went over the birth plan with her.  One of the important points is that Jonathan gets to be the one to announce the sex of the baby.  Talking about our family being there, the midwife got excited, and said, "I hope I get to be there for your birth, it sounds like it will be so much fun!"  My friend said, "Then you should hope she's there, too."   They all got to hear the heartbeat again, and the baby was very active under all the prodding by midwife and brothers.

We have finished doing the patch painting in the two bedrooms and hallway.  I enjoyed having the low-VOC paint because I do like painting, though it is more work to have the boys help.  It's medium for Jonathan, but he still had a hard time keeping track of drips.   Noah had to be completely supervised, that is, holding onto the brush or roller with Mommy.  Even then, he'd get distracted and not even watch what we were doing. The color matching in the green room (our bedroom) was perfect, the purple hallway was nearly perfect, but the blue was just light enough that you can tell.  But I'm not going to do anything about it now.

Most stuff is set up, though I just brought a bunch of kitchen stuff from Carroll St which needs to be put away.  We need to get another bookcase, and when the plumbing is done Jon will make a shelf for the home entertainment stuff.  That will then be nearly all the boxes unpacked.

Today was the 38 week appointment, uneventful and quick.  Baby is estimated to be 8 lbs already.  I did lose one pound since last week, but the midwife said she wasn't surprised in the least given all I've been doing and said don't even think about worrying about that.  So I won't. (:  My blood pressure was still great, even though I drove today.  Oh yeah, this was the first time driving directly from the new house to the birth center.  It took 42 minutes.  But I won't take the 31st street bridge again because the light there at 28 was 4 minutes long.  It might be the same time taking 40th street bridge, but at least you're going somewhere and not sitting at a light.  We'll try that next week, I guess.

Ok, time to gather dinner for my crew.

Posted by Heather Daley on August 20, 2008, 6:17 pm | Read 2627 times | Comments (1)
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Yes, we have a new house!  The closing was a little hectic because the seller left a van in the driveway and we had to work out an escrow agreement for them to get rid of it (which still had not been done by last night.)

Right after closing, we headed up to do work.  We have had several helpers, which is MUCH APPRECIATED!!!  The very first job I had on my list to do turned out impossible when 8 months pregnant (pulling old carpet staples out of the bedroom floor.)  So I cleaned out the very nasty freezer and not quite so bad fridge.  (They had left it plugged in but warm, which let stuff grow in the freezer.)  I only did the interior and exterior surfaces - I left the drawers and shelves for my wonderful next-day helpers.

So my job has turned out to be delegator/director, errand-runner, and children supervisor.  That is about the limit this Mommy can handle and so I am very thankful for my cleaning helpers who have made much progress on the road to making my new kitchen and bathroom useable.  (And one of the men who had finished what Jon asked him to do came and took out those staples!)

The new water pipes are in, the chlorine has been poured down and flushed out.  Now we wait and pray for no bacteria to grow.

Our bedroom needs more work than we thought originally - sanding and finishing the hardwood floor (should look nice in the end) and stripping wallpaper and repainting.  We thought we could just touch up the paint, but the wallpaper underneath is having trouble and would just peel off more after we did it.

There are also window frames/sills to repaint, and maybe some doors.  All the paint in the cans in the basement is old and unuseable, but at least some of the color labels are still there, so we can match it and not have to pick out anything new.

Jon also has exterior work to do.

The boys are sometimes restless, being there for hours on end and not much for them to help (their cleaning is not very thorough yet and they got tired of plumbing after the first day and started playing with the tools instead so Jon sent them upstairs.)  They did do some dust mopping of the walls last night, which was fun for them and a start for tomorrow's helpers.

And there's still plenty of packing to do in the old house!  I'm so thankful that we can still be living in our old house and not, for example, have to camp in the yard for weeks...

In related news, Jonathan got stung by a wasp on Friday just before we were going to head home.  Thankfully, he had no allergic reaction (this was his first time, so we didn't know for sure) but he sure did scream about it.  When he's upset, he's very irrational ("this will sting forever, it will NEVER feel better!") but he did calm down and said a cloth with water on the spot helped, and in a couple of hours it did not hurt any more.

Well, that's longer than what I meant to type, time to get going with the day.

Posted by Heather Daley on August 3, 2008, 6:24 am | Read 12868 times | Comments (3)
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Vacation was fun, see the pictures: Connecticut, New Hampshire.

7/26 - A little boy, older than Noah and younger than Jonathan, asked Noah his name.  When Noah did not say anything, the boy kept repeating, "What's your name?"  Eventually, Noah walked over to the table and got his water cup, brought it over to the boy, and pointed to his name printed on the cup.

That same evening (we were at the church picnic) all the kids got glow bracelets.  Just as we were leaving, Jonathan bit his and splashed the contents into his eye.  Someone scooped him up and rushed him to the sink, and Jon helped him rinse it for about 20 minutes.  Thankfully, the package said only to rinse and nothing about going to the ER.  His eye is fine.

35 weeks:  Today we had a midwife appointment.  Even Noah got to hear the heartbeat this time.  Everything is well.

Packing is coming along thanks to several helpers.  We're very busy and it's pretty hot, but we're getting there by the grace of God.  Closing is tomorrow.  More helpers lined up for the rest of the week.  If you want to be one of them, let us know!

Posted by Heather Daley on July 30, 2008, 8:30 pm | Read 2987 times | Comments (0)
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I guess it can't much be counted as "again", since we have only moved once since we have been married, but the song popped into my head as I started to write the title of this post.

Since some of you probably don't read every comment on our blog, you might have missed the announcement that we actually have a new house!

We have boxes stacking up around our house, and we are planning on moving on Saturday, August 9th and would appreciate any help anyone wishes to give us in carrying boxes and furniture on and/or off the truck. Of course, we'll have food, etc. available.

Additionally, if anyone is interested in learning about electricity or plumbing (supply side) I
am willing to oversee a couple projects before moving day. The current plan is to re-route the main internal supply line on this Thursday, July 31st, and on Friday, ground some outlets, and run new electrical lines where needed and some minor painting in the following days. There is also some wood work - replacing some rotting wood, and fixing up some braces on the deck. Let me know if you are interested in any of that, whether or not you have any expertise.

Posted by Jon Daley on July 28, 2008, 12:17 pm | Read 2916 times | Comments (1)
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After breakfast on Noah's birthday, we went to the dollar store to buy him some balloons.  Jonathan thought Noah shouldn't come, because it would spoil the surprise, but I said that since Noah likes to go on walks, he'd have a happier birthday if he came with us.  And what's another 10 minutes to wait for a surprise?  While we were there, both boys were intrigued by the gumball machine, so I consented, for the birthday's sake.  Noah didn't understand that it was gum and was ready to throw his ball across the room.  Then, when we told him it was for chewing, he sucked all the candy part off and then slowly nibbled off a bit at a time and swallowed it.  Right.  Too young for gum.  Oh, well! (More)

Posted by Heather Daley on July 1, 2008, 2:05 pm | Read 2193 times | Comments (0)
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Saturday, May 17 was a big day for both sides of the extended family.  (More)

Posted by Heather Daley on May 28, 2008, 8:37 am | Read 2164 times | Comments (10)
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Noah was sick Tuesday, then I got it Thursday morning. We were going to go to a homeschool conference, just for fun this year.  We decided not to go, mostly not to infect our hosts, but we wouldn't have enjoyed the conference at all.  Jonathan got it yesterday, and Jon is feeling unwell in bed today.  At least we weren't sick at the same time, so we could take care of each other.  But another benefit is that nothing was planned for this weekend, so we had time to just hang around sick in bed.
Posted by Heather Daley on May 10, 2008, 9:33 am | Read 1795 times | Comments (2)
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I try to be an informed voter, but I find it very hard to find information that will help me become informed.  I finally found this link at SmartVoter where you can type in your address and get information on what your ballot will say.  Unfortunately, it does not have the most local information, but it does tell me what district I am in for state things (how confusing to be in different districts for different things...)

Every single election I have voted in previously, there has been some surprise on the ballot that I was not prepared for.  It's even worse with the new computerized voting machines because they complain if you leave a blank spot.  (They let you leave it blank eventually, but I think it even beeps at you.) But I won't vote for something or someone I don't know anything about.

Now to find the info for my local information... 

Posted by Heather Daley on April 4, 2008, 11:18 am | Read 1965 times | Comments (0)
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We had Easter dinner at the Venables with four families (total.)  It was a fun time and we got home after it was fully dark.  As I was getting Noah out of the car I noticed that the sky was perfectly clear and the stars were shining as much as you can expect in a city.  I saw Orion and the Big Dipper and the North Star.   I told Jon and Jonathan they should go look for a few minutes, so they sat on the hood of the car for quite a while.  It was fun to watch them out there and it will be fun to hear the report of their conversation.  (More)

Posted by Heather Daley on March 23, 2008, 9:00 pm | Read 1956 times | Comments (4)
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I should have given the phone to Jonathan.  That's who she asked for. But I hesitated because after the first greeting I had doubts about whether she was my sister or not.  So I double checked, "Which Jonathan would you like to speak to?"  "Um... Jonathan Daley."  "May I tell him who's calling?" "[name which I've already forgotten]" "From where? [if you're a client, I'd like to know which company]"  "Hillary Clinton Campaign."  Oh.  Good bye.  I should have given the phone to Jonathan.
Posted by Heather Daley on March 21, 2008, 9:43 am | Read 1972 times | Comments (0)
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As some of you know, we have been looking for a house for the last couple of months, and we think we have found one!  I asked a couple guys from church to come look at it today, and give their thoughts, and they generally approved.  Someday, I'll probably make the kitchen nicer (ie. an addition out the back) but for now, Heather says it is okay, and we'll make what the realtor called the "master" bedroom an office, and we'll sleep upstairs, which solves a space crunch issue for our bedroom.

Posted by Jon Daley on March 8, 2008, 8:23 pm | Read 3982 times | Comments (11)
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Whew... For some reason, taxes took longer than they have in other years.  Part of the time was spent trying to get out of a federal tax penalty for not calculating the estimated taxes correctly.  We spent 14.63 hours (courtesy of worklog), mostly together working on them.  I am finally mailing them in today.

We convinced them (Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Federal) to only take 15% of our income...  I have wondered about MIT's/Huckabee's tax pseudo-flat sales tax and what that would look like for us.  We do get a bunch of credits and deductions, and under the prebate/sales tax model, I don't think any deductions would apply.  But on the other hand, we also probably spend less than a lot of people, so maybe whatever rate that would be picked wouldn't be that bad.  And of course, the cost of saving 27 hours for having a simpler tax code would be nice.

Posted by Jon Daley on February 7, 2008, 12:47 pm | Read 4873 times | Comments (9)
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