stress, bathroom renos, and a visitor - 4.25

You know the saying "it doesn't rain, but it pours"?
It's true.
 After dealing with Elliana's death and birth (still dealing with it, always dealing with it in some ways) my Grammie is sick and in hospital. There's talk of moving her to a manor. I am sad that she is so sick, not able to do everything she wants to. I am sad she had to leave her home, something she hoped would never happen. I am sad that we are not closer, that we can't visit and I can't be there to help out.
I should be honest with myself. She isn't sick. She is dying. There isn't any getting better from this. I just wish I was there to see her. I wish she could see Levi - she was able to see the older 3 a few years ago when we were there, but hasn't ever seen Levi in person.

Adding to the fun of stress, yesterday Josh had an appointment and Zech had karate, while Ruth and Isaac had gymnastics. Josh picked up Zech from school and went to town, we got ready and went the opposite direction. I checked my phone when we got settled at the gym - 3 missed calls and a text from Josh saying "i need you to call me". So I did, of course.
We haven't heard the estimate yet, and don't know all the damage, but we do know that the rear wheel bearings are shot. Waiting on the estimate to see if it's worth fixing or not - the car is really on its last legs anyway, so we can't spend too much to fix it.
So, after gymnastics, instead of coming home for supper, we had to drive past our house to town to pick up Josh and Zech. Made for a long day and a late night. And much more stress on top of everything else.

You know, 2012 really sucks. I mean, so far anyway. I'm not sure there's anything that can happen to make up for how horrible it's been. I do hope it doesn't get worse. And I hope 2013 is a better, brighter year.

We are finally done the bathroom... almost. I've always heard that once you start a renovation you'll find these extra things that need to be done. So very true. But we're getting there. I can't believe the money it's taken for the smallest room in our house though! It will be funny to repaint the living room - the biggest room and it will cost less than the smallest!
But we're nearly there now. We've only got one edge of the tub (we're framing the surround) to get done. We would all ready be done it except the 3 tiles that we'd planned on working with and leaving decided to fall apart and off the wall while we were hammering nails on that wall. So, now the piece we'd measured and bought is, obviously, too short for that spot! And we'll have a bit of painting to do from that bit of mudding and sanding.
Then it's just a few touch-up spots, and the baseboards/trim still need to be painted (Josh is planning to get some paint and do an area at a time - I can't handle taping off and painting everything again right away!). And we need to find something for window covering in there. We've found tons of roman blinds in tan and beige and dark wood colors... but no luck finding a white one yet... which we want because the others are white. No huge rush on that though, the window isn't easily peeped into; you'd have to be really trying, to see anything.
We still haven't tackled the sink and vanity, or the doors and the floor. But we'll save that for another tax return time. For now, it looks a lot better in there. No more pink walls! And a new light fixture changes the look tremendously!

Just for the record, I'd much rather have what we were supposed to have right now - a big, bordering on huge, belly and awaiting the birth of a baby - instead of a freshly painted and nice looking bathroom... but, it is what it is.
There are many more good days than bad now. The kids mention Elliana, there's no doubt that they remember her and everything that's happened. But we talk about her and then continue on with our day.
I still haven't gotten a shelf put up for her things. I feel bad about that, like I'm not doing everything I can or should as her mommy.
You know, I think it's harder being mommy to a dead baby than for the living ones. There's not nearly so many chances to do things for her, in her memory. And what if we mess them up? We can't exactly get a redo or do better the next time.

In much happier news, Josh's brother, Mat, arrived last night. He's staying with us for a bit before going to Regina to rehearse for a production. We'll be dog-sitting for him while he rehearses. Everyone is excited to visit with Uncle Mat and Blue!

Speaking of plays, Josh is done with the town play - this is a very good thing! It's lovely not to have him gone to rehearsals all the time, missing bedtimes with the kids. I wasn't able to go see it, but I've heard that it went well and people enjoyed it.
Ruth is just about done with her school play as well. This afternoon they have a final dress rehearsal, with kids from a nearby school coming to watch, and tomorrow evening is the real deal. She's so happy that Uncle Mat is able to be here for it.


with days like these... - 04/14

We had to go to town today for some errands. Things seemed off to an okay start - everyone up at a decent time, fed and ready to go. We packed up and got in the van... only to find we had no keys. 2 sets between us and both sets in the house... doors locked. There is a spare key, but it hasn't made it outside - not much help. After walking around the house trying windows and doors, we ended up ripping out the screen in the bathroom window - it was torn and needed to be replaced anyway, now we definitely have to replace it! Josh lowered Zech through the window into the house, he unlocked the door right away. No harm done. Not including the window screen.
We pile back into the van and set off for town. Running errands here and there, including getting some new screen and a few supplies to replace some in the windows (including the bathroom!), and grabbing some paint samples to think on (finally getting the bathroom fixed up a bit).
We stopped at the medical clinic a bit before their closing time for Josh to get a new prescription for his nasal spray - something to help his snoring, thank goodness. The kids and I sat in the van and waited, Levi napping. When Josh came out, he got in and turned the key. Nothing. Nothing. And more nothing. The van wouldn't start, battery dead. A older man in a truck pulled in beside us - he checked, but didn't have his cables in the truck. We sat for a few minutes but noone else was around. We called a tow truck company and waited for one to arrive. Another older man came out of the clinic and got into one of the last vehicles in the parking lot. Josh jumped out of the van and asked the man about a boost. The man said he wasn't sure he had cables in his truck, but checked anyway. After a few minutes looking he did find them! A quick call to the tow company to let them know not to come after all (they seemed surprised about this - is that not normal to do?), a little rearranging of vehicles to reach batteries, and the van was running. We thanked the gentleman many times, the kids all yelled thank you. He said "That's what we're here for, to help each other, right?" It's nice to meet people like that.
So a day of errand-running turned into a very very long day. But we made it through and home, safe and sound.

While we were checking out somewhere the cashier commented that we had "a handful". Josh replied "Almost, but we're missing one."
Yes, we sure are. Always, every day.

But this kid always makes us smile and laugh, every day. There's no holding back around him. He's adorable and so sweet.
But he needs a little work with markers!

For the record, those markers are not washable. I mean, the box says they are. But they aren't. The kid was marked up a for a good few days after this! And I know the box says crayons - we were smart enough to take the markers away before taking pictures... just not smart enough to keep them out of reach in the first place!


two months - 03/07

Two months ago today our Elliana Lucy was born. We said goodbye to our tiny baby girl after far too little time together.
There are pink tulips in our house this weekend. I know ours isn't the only house with them to remember.
Tonight we lit her candle. I will let it burn until we say goodnight; to remember those hours with our little light.