Sunday, October 12, 2014


 9/27 - after Jason's golf tournament, we went out for lunch to a local burger place.  It was really close to one of several bridges Springfield has that go over roads.  The kids love going to the top of the bridges and watching the cars go under.

 9/28 - about a month before this, I decided to paint our propane tank.  It was really rough looking.  So I took a wire brush and scrubbed it down, washed it, and then painted it.  But, as  you can see by the left of this photo, the fresh paint made everything around it look dirty.  So I borrowed a power washer and paint sprayer, and on Sunday Jason tackled the power washing of our shed for me.  Here's a before picture:

 During (awww):
 And after!!  Quite an amazing transformation, and this is before paint.  Then we got a contract on our house so we decided to delay the painting to see what happened.  More about this later.
 10/4 - City Utilities (where Jason works) does a company-wide picnic every year at Rutledge-Wilson Farm/Park.  They have hay rides, a pumpkin patch, corn maze, bounce houses, and they serve lunch.  It's a fun day and the kids love it.
 I think they spent the most time playing on the hay bales.

 We attempted the corn maze, but by that point we were all tired so we gave up and walked back out the entrance.  :)
 The organizers took family photos and sent them to the employees.
10/6 - I drove the big truck (and I didn't even hit anything!) to take the walnuts we've been collecting from our yard and sell them.  The going rate is $14 per 100 lbs of hulled walnuts.  So you take them to a hulling station where they have a noisy machine that takes the hulls off, and then they weigh the nuts and pay you for them.  We ended up with 182 lbs of hulled walnuts which is about $25.  Money does grow on trees!

10/9 - Josiah came home from school with this note from his friend Juliana.  Seriously, so cute.  Except that she got his name wrong!!!  :)  I'm hoping this Joe thing doesn't catch on.

So back to the house selling.  We've had the house listed since May and had only had 2 showings (both not interested) before September.  Sept 24th (the day before my brother visited), we showed the house.  The people were really interested but made us an offer that was $30K lower than the list price.  We went back and forth a few times with counter offers, but in the end were still $20K different.  So at that point we thought they were done.  Then the next week they called and asked if we would sell them the house + 20 acres, leaving 10 acres to sell separately.  Our realtor called a neighbor who is interested in our acreage, and he said he'd buy the 10 acres, so we all agreed upon prices (us and the 2 buyers), had everything in writing, and it looked as if our house was sold.  Then the neighbor requested that the buyers of the house grant him an easement to get to the 10 acres he was buying at the back of the land.  He may never use it but it seemed like a reasonable request to want to have a way to get back to the land he's buying.  The other buyers said no and walked away.  It was a crazy roller coaster of emotions - when we thought it was sold we were excited but also apprehensive, second guessing our decision to sell (yes, we're crazy!), and stressing a little over the 3.5 week away close date!  Then when it fell through it was a weird mix of disappointment and relief.

After all of that mess, we were ready to just take it off the market.  But then someone else set up a showing on 10/3.  They were coming in from out of state.  So I cleaned the house like a maniac, only to have them reschedule 4 times and in the end not come at all.  Annoying, but least my house has stayed really clean!  Then yet another person set up a showing on 10/10.  They said they are interested in our house, but are also looking at another house and will make a decision in the next few days and let us know.  Technically our original listing expired the first week of October, but the listings with the house & acreage separated are still active until the first of November.

Our original intent with selling the house was to move closer to Mt. Vernon - closer to church, grandparents, grocery stores, schools, etc - and to possibly downsize acreage.  But there are a lot of things that we love about our current location.  It's closer to Springfield where Jason works, we have a nice quiet paved dead-end street with great neighbors, beautiful views, etc.  We've just been praying for the past 6 months that if God wants us to move, He would allow our house to sell.  But we're okay with staying put if this is where He wants us.  We'll see what the people from 10/10 have to say - after that we may just take the listings down and be done!

Thankful for where we are, this patience-inspiring journey that we're on, and that God is in control of it all!

Cousin time

9/25-9/27 - My brother Dave and his kids came to visit!  It was beautiful weather and we had a great time!
Everyone climbed up in the barn loft - one of Josiah's new favorite spots.

Then we went for a walk in the field.  Ava and Ella were wearing some of our boots so they wouldn't mess up their shoes, and unfortunately got some nasty blisters from all that walking!  They were troopers though!
That afternoon we went to Mt. Vernon where there was a store doing a promotional day - complete with bounce houses and elephant rides!  The line was way too long, so we just opted for a picture with the elephant in the background.
Then we went to Keen Bean - a local (and super cool) coffee shop.  We ordered some smoothies (in the coffee cups) and baked snacks, and sat down to eat.  The owners came by a short time later with these fruity slushes for the kids.  They said they made one for a picture and didn't want to waste it.  It was a fun treat and of course the kids were happy to have more sugar!  Dave and I thought it was funny because the glasses they brought the slushes in were a mix between shot glass and whiskey glass.  
Then Ella started doing party tricks.  This was the next best thing to a lampshade.  We had some good laughs from their antics!

Back to the farm for some relaxing time.

That night we played the board game Settlers (which Josiah loved).

The next day, Jason was in a golf tournament honoring a co-worker who passed away from cancer recently.  So we decided to stop by and see him on Dave's way out of town.  We walked about 4 holes (mostly carrying Ella and Levi) trying to find Jason (whose phone battery died) before deciding to give up.  Just when we were leaving, Jason found us!  It was a crazy adventure.
Then the kids all piled into my car for snacks and drinks after all that walking.  I think we underestimated how big golf courses are!  Next time we're renting a cart.
It was a great weekend!

Oktoberfest 2014

 9/19-9/21 was our 8th annual Oktoberfest celebration with the Hardins and the Buhrles!  Always a great time.  Credit for this first pic goes to Nate.  He also made the cool design on our shirts, screen printed them, had pint glasses engraved, and made coasters.  We look so professional!

Friday night we all went to the Balloon Glow which was amazing to see.

Saturday the adults took turns at Go Ape, which is a ropes/obstacle course.  It was a blast!  Unfortunately we didn't get any pics of the guys on the course...we were wrangling the kids!

We cooked at the Hardin's house - everything was delicious!  German potato salad, pork schnitzel (thanks Buhrles!), cucmber salad, German butter cookies, and of course homemade pretzels.  Here's the pretzel making action:
And the finished product:
Levi got very attached to Miss Jen and didn't want to leave her.  He called her his other mommy.
Josiah was tired of smiling so he looks a little like an attack dog.  But cute picture anyway :)
Kid pyramid...
...and the inevitable collapse.
The kids had fun riding the skateboard down the driveway.

The day we were leaving for St. Louis, I noticed something in Levi's hair which I thought was food (not uncommon).  So I was gently trying to get it out when the whole lump of hairs came out in my hand - about 20 of them.  We called the doctor and they said to bring him in Monday.  We were worried that it might be ringworm, which is a somewhat contagious fungus and involves a 6-12 week treatment with the possibility of permanent hair loss.  Monday we went to the pediatrician and he said he thought it was ringworm, but sent us to a dermatologist to make sure.  After waiting another week, much to our relief, the dermatologist said it was just cradle cap.  I didn't know older kids could get cradle cap, but it does cause temporary hair loss.  Some special shampoo and a week later it was pretty much gone.  He still has this little bald patch, which is not really noticeable unless you are moving his hair around.
Here's another clump of hairs that fell out - this one only has 5-6 hairs in it.
I very thankful that he didn't have ringworm!

Also very thankful for our friends and our fun annual tradition/excuse to get together!

Friday, October 10, 2014

Goofing off

8/23 - Josiah read 30 books this summer, so to celebrate we took him to Incredible Pizza.  He also had a sleepover that night and his friend Jack came with us.  They had a blast on the race track, the bumper cars, and playing laser tag.  Not to mention the pizza and video games!

 8/25 - Jason and the boys participated in the ALS ice bucket challenge after they were challenged by the Hardins.  I was also challenged but I didn't know it at the time, so I skipped out!  I gave some money for ALS research to restore balance to the universe.
 8/26 - I took Levi to Pittsburg, KS because it was Jason's mom's birthday.  We surprised her at work which was really fun.  Levi loved getting to see MiMi and being the center of attention at her office :)
 8/29-8/30 - we took a weekend trip to visit my parents.  On Saturday they took us out on my dad's new (to him) boat.  It was really fast which the boys didn't love, but they really enjoyed riding behind on the tube (at much slower speeds).

 September 5th was my 37th birthday.  Some girlfriends took my out to dinner that night which was really fun.  We actually skipped real food and just ordered dessert.  :)  Then on Saturday the 6th Jason took me out for a delicious meal (of real food).  We even had fried spinach which was amazing.  Unfortunately, no pics from my b-day weekend!

9/7 - we went to Jason's grandparent's house for dinner and to celebrate their birthdays.  Levi was being camera shy.
 9/11 - wrestling with / climbing on daddy :)
 9/13 - we went to Grandma Regehr's house for lunch and got to see Uncle James loading some feed corn into his new grain cart.  All three boys were enamored.

 9/14 - you have no idea how fun 2 empty hampers can be.  This was good for at least 30 minutes of giggles.  Daddy would shoot them with Nerf guns when they popped up.  It was similar to whack-a-mole.  Fun had by all.

More updates soon!