Friday, March 22, 2013

New blog look

Spring is approaching and I figured it was time for the fall leaves to go.  So, playing with this over the weekend and finding something that will represent the changes going on in our lives currently.  We will make a new blog but it won't be for a few months yet.  Meantime, time to say bye to fall and hello to spring flowers.  Bare with me b/c I'm definitely not savvy at this.  Hope you all have a wonderful weekend.

Birthday box and beauty box

As some may or may not realize, Max's birthday is coming up next week. Very hard to believe he'll be 18yo.  I will have a post on that next week.  For now though, sharing a present he received this past week and hasn't taken off. 

I love that they all gather when one of them opens presents.  Doesn't matter who it is. 

I think Alex approves of the new shoes.  Max has been wanting a new pair of steel toed boots for a long time.

And Mom, why are you taking my picture again?

He really was impressed by these boots and sort of stunned he got them.

Max really does keep things for a long time.  He's a simple kid and doesn't ever ask for much.  Love to see him get what he wants every now and then.  These were from a dear friend of ours.  Thank you Heather!  

Summer, showing off some lip balm.  We are big Burts Bees fans here.  You know they're made in Durham which isn't far from here.  don't you just love the mess on the floor.  SOON that will be in the girls' new room and not in my kitchen!

Summer, trying out the new hats that were in the beauty box.

And Summer was more than proud and confident she could put on lipstick all by herself.  

Reni and Irina figuring out which ones they want.  It's great b/c all the girls sit in the floor and go through this box of beauty supplies.  I have plenty more pictures but as you are aware, I'm limited on what I can post lately.  However, when I can, there is a great shot of Reni.  We all enjoyed the box and getting to see all the wonderful surprises that will be put to good use.  

Well, tomorrow is soccer and a little festival type thing there as well.  Sunday we have some company coming by and Reni may go out w/ a neighbor for her birthday celebration.  She takes ALL of my kids out for their birthdays.  Very sweet of her and they just love Tonya.  And so do we!  Max will be working on the floors this weekend. 

Time for Tea

The other day, Nik wanted to have a little tea party with some friends.

The first guests to arrive were Mr. Elephant and Mr. Bear.  Even made sure that booster seats were available.

Drinks were served and Mr. Elephant dug right in.  Notice the position of the trunk right on the sippy cup.

This is a very big, soft bear.  They have loved playing with him.

Nik, very proud that he has buddies for a tea party.  

And, if you're going to have a party, why not invite your sister and a few friends.  Let's just say the table was full and the party guests were happy.  Mostly, Summer and Nik were happy.  Glad they had some fun. 

Max's drawings

One day, I'll have to get him to make a vase of flowers for me. 

A view of the garbage truck and some other things essential to garbage collecting such as trash bins.

I think he was proud how it turned out.  He loves anything mechanical.  Prefers pencil or fine tip sharpies.  All done w/ just a straight edge and his eye.

A closer view of it.  Not sure why he chose a garbage truck for his assignment at school but whatever floats your boat. 

May or may not be more posts later.  I am sick as sick can be.  Haven't been this sick in years.  Whatever the kids had, it mutated much worse before it came to me.  No sleep.  I've had a cracker, a little water, and some fried rice (leftovers).  I've managed to keep it down but have lost my appetite for sure.  Needless to say, no homeschool academy today.  Waiting for normal to return.  I'd love a nap but in this home, impossible. 

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Sickness and storage

I thought we'd make it the entire winter season w/ no illness.  Not so.  Logan, Alex and Little One have been 'hit' w/ the bug this week. 

This is how you know Alex is sick.  He stops.  No longer in motion.  And, when he's sick like this, I can not give him any of his regular meds.  Also plays a part in temperature regulating I feel.  Our goal when he gets sick is to keep him as hydrated as humanly possible.  It's vital for when he gets well.

When you're sick, you don't care who's comforter you have.  My kids, especially my Russian kids, get very high temps when sick.  It is not uncommon for them to be 104/ 105 during an illness.  The first time it happened to Max, scared me to death.  Now I know it's just their body's way of reacting to illness.  You learn with each child. Bojan's face gets white as a ghost when sick and his eyes bloodshot.  Must say, it's creepy looking.  

Great news is today Alex is back to his normal self.  Little One was up at 1:30 am.  But, she is napping and hopefully turning a corner too.  No fever since yesterday for her and no fever for Alex today.  Just glad they're feeling better.

Okay, pics got out of order and camera hog made me take one.  Nik standing in front of the new wardrobe.

Paint color is more of a robin's egg blue.  Beachy feel.  We all love it.  That wall in the back is all closet.  This just shows a small section of it. 

You can vaguely see the wall color in the background and that was the first coat.  Anyhow, this is the wardrobe Irina and I found at a yardsale the other day.  Just $40.  I know we'll eventually paint it but for now, it will stay this way till we have a little more time and can drag it outside in the spring.  It was handmade for the family and well built.  We could not even buy lumber for this price any more.

This is a full view of the inside of it.  As you can see, tons of storage.  Love how far part the shelves are for sure.  Room for everyone. 

Slowly but surely this room will come together.  Our biggest obstacle is the insulation crew.  That is the ONLY hold up.  Max and Bojan are vacuuming the floors tonight and putting a coat of lacquer on.  It dries instantly.  Tired of waiting for the crew to come and go.  After this is put on, we can lay the tile down.  I truly wanted to wait as to not mess up the floor but these people are so dog gone slow, I can't take it any more.  IF they do not show tomorrow, we are renting the equipment and doing it ourselves.  Only reason we didn't do that prior is this is the one area where we have zilch experience in and would rather a professional do it.  We'll see.  Just wanted you to see a glimpse of what we've been up to as far as getting storage settled in and the girls' room ready.  And not to mention dealing w/ a little bit of sickness.  Trust me, Alex is totally making up for it today.  More to come later. 

Time for some color

Last weekend we decided to paint the girls' downstairs bathroom.  We wanted something other than a light pastel as it just gets too dirty with this many kids and little ones running around.  Girls and I found a shower curtain at Target and decided that's what we want.  Something to pop.  It's a very, very small bathroom but doesn't mean you can't add a little style, right?

Being that there isn't much room to take pictures, had to chop it up a bit.  Warren and Max put in a new faucet as the other one was so worn out.  All the white trim will be painted this week.  Wanted to make sure the green was totally dry before taping it.  This is the girls' bathroom.

Changed out the picture too.  Found one laying around the house that seemed to work well w/ the color scheme in here.  Warren thinks it looked like Kermit threw up but I beg to differ.  

A view of it all.  And yes, those rounded hotel shower curtain rods are great and do give tiny shower spaces much more room.  In this picture, we didn't have the towels hung up yet.  

This is a shot from the door.  We have to get  a new bath rug yet but hasn't made our to do list.  Just next time we're at Target.  I made the mistake years ago trying white.  You can tell how well that one worked.  We may try orange for a punch of color.  Not sure yet.  We're all pretty happy w/ the way it turned out.  We'll finish up the trim and be done.  And credit here goes to Yana who decided she wanted to be sole painter on the project.  

This is one of the many, many things we've been up to.  Kids are taking a break right now.  They did reading, writing, spelling and math this morning.  We'll be talking about the Civil War and then Ocean Life in a few minutes.  Kiddos are down for a nap.  Sickness is leaving but that's for another post.  Nice to be getting back on track w/ multiple things.  And very nice to see my kids are starting to get fractions. 

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Silly faces

Have to finish quite a pile of paperwork to be notarized tomorrow and get to where it needs to be so this will be a relatively short post.  Plus, we had 3 hours worth of soccer practice this evening. 

Summer doing I have no idea what.  Definitely trying to be silly.

Yana and her friend goofing around after they had just made cookies.

I caught Alex right wen he was asking me a question on his school work.  

Not so much silly as disgusting.  Berry flavored Kix in his mouth.

Summer sitting down w/ Little One to watch some tv.  What you don't see is how they set up the entire mantel as a party area decked out in Dora.  Happy Birthday streamers and all.  Oh, and the fashionista dressed herself again.

And this is the true Summer.  LOL.  She is so sassy and full of spunk.  I think Little One may be hanging around her a bit too much.  She's catching on.  

Just some silly faces for the evening. I know I haven't been posting as many pictures and there is a good reason for that.   Certain things can not be posted quite yet and since my pictures tend to include everyone or whoever is there at the moment, it has become limiting in a sense.  And that's perfectly fine.  I do believe you'll have a barrage of pictures in the future to play catch up on.  LOL.  Tomorrow is Wednesday and lots to be done.  A family reunion is going to be held at our house during July.  Yikes!  Need to get planning and cleaning.  Will be fun though I'm sure.  Much, much more to do.  enjoy your evening everyone.  I'm slowly getting back to a post a day.  Wahoo!  Progress. 

Monday, March 18, 2013

Manic Monday

Wow, way behind on things as usual it seems.  Again, in a few weeks I will be able to explain a bit more in detail why things have seemed upheaved for a bit.  For now, here's a small bit that will keep us busy this week.

  • Bojan's amputation surgery is tentatively for July 30th
  • making reservations for camping trips for this coming year
  • redoing a few reservations b/c must change # coming
  • Irina is searching for a job still but has been babysitting quite a bit
  • Yana is helping to coach Summer's soccer team
  • 5 of the kids are in soccer now
  • This is the last week of homeschool academy that the kids attend
  • Need to get my final science experiment ready
  • Girls' new room is getting completed
  • Insulation folks finally showed and will be back some time this week
  • Girls need a few things for their new room
  • Irina and I hit a few yardsales this past weekend and scored big!
  • Going through all the kids shoes to see what fits and what doesn't
  • Furious with Logan for practicing knots...with shoelaces!!!  He cut them....ALL
  • Need to go grocery shopping
  • Digby is feeling better, you can tell
  • Dogs need a bath
  • I'm about ready to strip the boys' room and sell everything.  At this point, I don't even see how they know there's a floor under there.  Ridiculous.
  • I am swimming in paper work
  • Working on the Civil War w/ the homeschoolers
  • Been blessed quite a bit over the last few weeks w/ various happenings and deliveries that came our way
  • House guests doing great
  • Spring break fast approaching
  • Owe many people emails
  • May go to a small get together in April w/ some friends
  • Still loving Big Bird.  Van is great.
  • Waiting for tax refund
  • Waiting for PPR refund
  • Waiting for insurance refund
  • If I ever get these refunds, I may go shopping.  LOL
  • Insulation cost way more than first told or expected
  • Went to an rv show and forgot the stroller.  Live and learn.
  • Kids are whining about the cupboards being empty.  I told them we're slowly switching over to just fresh fruit and veggies and snacks occassionally.  Umm, yes, hitting much resistance.  BTW, fridge is filled w/ veggies to cut up.  They just don't want to. 
  • Need to send out Camp Cheerio registration
  • Got a great Sam's Club membership offer on Living Social as ours just had run out.
  • Nik needs new implant batteries (waiting for the refund)
  • Still working on getting an Etsy shop for Max to sell prints
  • Ready for spring
  • Thinking of our garden that we'll be doing this year
  • Spring cleaned the house this past weekend.  Nothing to show for it.  
  • Busy week ahead but finally feel at peace w/ all the crazy thrown in there.
Much more happening at Chaos Manor.  One day, I'll have time to write about it all.  Hope you all enjoy your week as well.  

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Making room

Sometimes when you adopt, you must make a little more room in your home.  Just a fact.  No one really moves into a home thinking well, I have 2 kids now, I may have 10, 12 or how ever many later.  No one thinks this way.  Fortunately, when we moved into this home years ago, our realtor saw what was happening and may have even been psychic.  LOL.  The house was totally unfinished upstairs.  1000 sq. ft. of unfinished space and places around the home to add on to as well.  That 1000 sq. ft. got finished when we added Bojan.  The dining hall add on/ kitchen remodel got done w/ Alyona and Nik coming to our family.   And the new room that was once the garage has been thought about for quite some time.  Only recently with a few house guests have we decided it must be done.

This is when they were starting.  Framing up the floor.

bye-bye garage.

And this is what happens when you remodel, clean out a garage.  To the dump it went and then some.  

Someone VERY excited this will be her new room.  And no, we did not choose the purple.  Love the color we chose and can't wait to show you all.  In the back there is the framing up of the garage door.  This was a very tall garage and we now have a lot of storage underneath as well which is huge.

While doing a major room remodel, why not tackle the bathroom.  It has now been painted the green, new shower curtain and new sink faucet as well.  I will take an after picture at some point.  This is the downstairs girls' bathroom.

Max replacing the lightbulbs till we can get a ceiling fan put in.  Summer and the neighbor were checking out the new space.

Those are the closets in the back.  Since closet doors would be roughly $500 now, we are leaving them open and using curtains to cover.  I'm sure I can find something cool on Pinterest to do anyhow.

A view of the windows.  That is the front of our house.

This is the flooring that will go down.  It is peel and stick hardwood tile.  Pretty cool looking.  Everyone comments on how our tile looks in the kitchen and how expensive that must have been.  Umm, nope.  Peel and stick and anyone can do it.  And, if it gets ruined, replace it for... 98 cents!  For us, a no brainer.  We priced carpet and just couldn't bring ourselves to do it knowing they'd spill nail polish or juice on it hte first week in.  

Today, Yana painted most of the room.  Wait till you see it!  This I think will be perfect for them.  Really will.  I'll have more pics as the week goes on.  This is the start.  Tomorrow, we will be done painting.  Flooring is going down this week.  Girls will have to delay moving in till Friday.  Was hoping it would have happened but sometimes, things happen.  You don't want to rush this and have it not turn out.  More to come. 


Vet came by last week for Digby's annual checkup.  Love that she comes to the house for the dogs.  Makes life so much easier for us.  Digby is monitored for heartworm as when he was a rescue, he was dx'd with heartworm and was treated for it.  Over the past few weeks, we've noticed him slow down quite a bit.

Thankfully, he does not have heartworms.  He does however, have something called arlickia.  Some type of tick disease that I clearly don't know how to spell.   It can be treated and he is being treated for it.  Antibiotics for 3 weeks.  She said we will start seeing a difference soon.  And sure enough, we have.  This disease makes your joints ache and such.  Harder to move.  He's up and about more and going to start walking him again tomorrow.  Alaska checked out a-okay for everything.  Diggs is doing fine and will make a full recovery.  Just thought it was because he was getting older that he slowed down.  Glad I mentioned it to the vet.  And even happier she knew what to look for.  We also bought Joint supplement jerky treats for him.  $21 a bag!  30 day supply.  But, if it will help him, worth every penny.  Digby is a great dog to be sure.  Just thought I'd share.  More posts forthcoming.  Working on a few.