Monday, April 1, 2013

The First Half of December

December started out like this. I think he thought that my mascara was war paint...
...aaanndd a week later, Jason discovered that permanent marker also makes excellent war paint. Aaahhh!! But he was SO proud of himself!
Since we were moving in the middle of December, we didn't put up a Christmas tree in our old house.  We opted for a paper one instead!
So, the first Sunday of November, we went under contract on our current house, set to close in the middle of December. That put the pressure on to find our next place. By the next Wednesday (yes, as in 3 days later), we were under contract on our future home. 
It was perfect! A rambler with 6 bedrooms and 3 bathrooms. Right in Orem, super close to Dan's work.  We felt so good about it! We had it inspected and the results came back great.  The appraisal, not so much. It came back $20,000 lower than the price they were asking. The sellers also weren't willing to lower their price.  Ummm, okay. Where were we going to come up with an extra $20k? And who wants to buy a home to be immediately upside down in it?!! My heart was so sad, but we knew we had to walk away from it, this house that had seemed so perfect to us. Not only that, but we now only had 2 weeks to find a new house and close on it. How could that even be possible?!!
Insert miracle here... somehow, we did it.  We decided to look a little further south, in Springville. There were a few different options, but this is the one we went with.
Welcome to our REAL new home. 
It really is amazing how everything fell into place. We were only under contract on this place for a week and a half before closing on it and moving in. We actually attended an activity in our new ward before closing, just to check it out and be sure.  It's really hard to move as a stay at home mom, because you kind of have to uproot everything you know and start over.  I felt so nervous, wondering if I would like my new ward and if I would be able to make new friends. I can remember praying as we drove down to this Christmas activity, "Please, let me feel comfortable and know that it is going to be okay." I was literally begging my Heavenly Father to help me know that we were in the right place and that I could do this.  Well, we walked in to the church and a cute lady and her kids walked in behind us, and she said, "Are you the Smiths?!" She was our next door neighbor and we had already met her husband during the home inspection. It was so nice to have someone friendly know our names.  Then later on in the activity, someone pointed out a man that was from Reno, just like us.  Wouldn't you know it, it was the father of a couple of girls I had grown up with in my home stake.  I wanted to cry, it made me feel so good! We were going where we were supposed to be.  And the few months that we've been here has really confirmed that.
Anywho, December 14th, moving day! It was busy and crazy, but we made it through.
A picture of our little family in front of our first home together.  

Goodbye house! 

Saturday, March 30, 2013

October and November 2012

Still playing catch up! October and November were full of tons of fun and they were very busy!
We sold our Chevy Malibu- the first car Dan and I purchased together. Sniff, sniff. A little sentimental, but hey, that puppy wouldn't be able to hold our soon to be family of six!
We enjoyed the final fruits of our little garden.
Got to enjoy the beautiful fall leaves...

...and celebrated Halloween as princesses...

...and fierce dragons (or just a really adorable one).
The very beginning of November, this was put in our yard. Again, sniff, sniff. The first house we bought! The house was listed on Saturday morning and by Sunday evening we were under contract! We were set to close the middle of December, so we were under the gun to find a new place- more on that in the next post.
The first week in November...
The second week in November! It was quite the abrupt weather change!

We got to suprise our families in Reno at the end of the month with a surprise visit for Thanksgiving!
We always enjoy seeing our cousins!

We also celebrated Jenna's birthday with all of her cousins!
All the 5 year olds
Some, but not all of Jenna's cousins.

Stay tuned!

Saturday, February 16, 2013

August and September 2012

August and September were fun months, full of changes.
Cute Jenna started preschool.  I can't believe that this year (2013), she will be starting kindergarten!
Sweet little Lu started Joyschool with some friends. 

All three kids had something exciting to share...
...we were going to have a baby (this is me 5 months pregnant)...
...and it was a boy!!

 Dan's boss also offered him a position in one of his other companies doing marketing. It operates out of Orem.  So we were left with the decision of whether Daniel would make the long commute or if we would move down to Utah County.  As most of you know, we decided to move...
Preparing to sell the house, we had "professional" help painting... 

More updates coming, friends!

Friday, January 11, 2013

Once Upon a Time...

...we had a family blog. And it was updated. I'm going to give it a go... So much has gone on since I last posted (duh, it's been like 6 or 7 months) and these pictures have been waiting patiently to be posted since about August! We took a HUGE, long trip in July. Seriously. It was A LOT of driving, but also TONS of fun.  It started out with me and the kids heading down from Salt Lake to Las Vegas (about 6 hours of driving) to meet up with our cousins (my sister's kids) and my Uncle Brian and Aunty Debbie.

In their hotel room.

After a couple of days in Vegas, we (my parents, the cousins and me and my kiddos) headed up to the Bay Area (8-9 hours of MORE driving) to reunite my sister and her kids.  They had taken a vacation with Grandma and Grandpa so my sister could have this little beauty- We all got to love on her!

Dan flew in and we all got to go to the beach...

...and explore little caves...
...and dig Lucy-size holes...

Dan and I then drove down to Long Beach (ANOTHER 6 hours) so we could go on our first cruise! My parents were kind enough to take the kids for the week so that we were able to go alone.
We had an evening to relax before our cruise, so we went and enjoyed a fancy meal and the beautiful beach.  

And the next morning we were off on our next adventure- the cruise!  It was a 4 day cruise down to Catalina Island and then to Mexico.  So much fun! We definitely see cruising in our future!

 They always fold the towels in fun shapes!
Our first stop was Catalina Island. Cute place to visit!
On the little boat to take us to the island.

 We rented a tandem bike to ride around the island- It. Was. AWESOME. I highly recommend it! It was also a great conversation starter with other cruisers!
Us, with the cruise ship in the background after getting all sweaty...

One of our formal dinner nights

We visited this little swap meet.
It also had an attraction called "La Bufadora" or "The Blowhole" I think they said it was one of 3 or 4 naturally occurring ones in the world.  The next two pictures are of the exact same spot- one when it's "blowing". Very neat.

 We made sure to participate in lots of activities on the boat. Dan won this trophy for his "amazing" hula hoop skills!

Midnight party with lots of food and crazy cool sculptures made from watermelon.

Whacked out buffet dining room.

You better believe we put in some major time doing karaoke. These were our karaoke buddies! So much fun making new friends!

 A great cruise, but by the end, I was missing my babies!  So we hopped back in the car and headed up to meet my parents and our kids in Reno (that's another 8 hours).  We got to love on our kids and head up to our FAVORITE beach at Lake Tahoe.  That is the thing I miss most about Reno- living so close to Tahoe... and family of course!

Love these kids!

That Sunday our kids had to wear their new outfits from Mexico!

Seriously cute!

And then it was back to Salt Lake from Reno. If you are keeping track, that's about 37 hours of driving that I went through in about two weeks! Whew! I was so glad to be home! Oh, and Jason got to ride front-facing on the way home for the first time. Yay, big boy! The kids were great for the driving. They are such good travelers! I think we'll attempt a big trip again sometime!

Stay tuned, I'll be updating... REALLY!