Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Well, talk about time getting away from you!  I can't believe the month is already over!  Needless to say, I've kept myself pretty busy.  I'm honestly wishing I had a huge cup of coffee right now, and the day isn't even close to being over!  Luckily, I purchased a planner at the beginning of the month, so even though it's been crazy and I'm kind of wiped out, I don't have to remember what we did to be able to tell you :).

This month, I started a new direct sales business called Homemade Gourmet.  It's basically a company that sells dinner mixes, drink mixes, desserts, etc. to make cooking super quick and super easy.  I am far from a chef and I don't really like cooking, so this was right up my alley.  I am so excited to be able to make awesome food for Adam to come home to instead of having to rely on him to make dinner from what we have lying around and do it before our stomachs eat themselves in hunger :-p.  Things have been going pretty well, so far.  I had a "cook-off" party to get my business somewhat off the ground running.  It's been kind of a slow start, but it's definitely a relationship business, so I've been doing my best to build my contacts and referrals and get the ball rolling that way.  My friend Elizabeth has been gracious enough to double book a party she was already having and include my business in it, as well...so my first official party will be August 7th at her place.  Hopefully I'll get some bookings off of that start moving forward some more.

We've also been working hard on building relationships with our friends and neighbors.  Up until this week (which is too busy to even attempt) we've been having friends over for dinner pretty regularly (which Homemade Gourmet also is awesome for....especially since, for one of the meals, all I had to do was throw it in the crock pot and have it ready when they got here).  We've also, sadly, had to say goodbye to several of our good friends that have moved, this month.  Camille and Will, Bethany and Paul (and Stevie), and Leanna and Nathan (and Makaela) have all hit the road.  We'll miss all of them, but are sincerely hoping that our paths will cross very soon.

Adam and I have also joined a softball league with our church.  We had our first game a couple weeks ago and our second one this Friday.  While the 9 p.m. start time isn't really ideal for me, it is far too hot (100-120 degrees) to do it any earlier than that.  Our first game was really successful, and it was really fun to see how well everyone did!  I'm looking forward to our game on Friday...if the league would ever tell us what time it's going to be at.  

Last week was quite the busy and random week for me...but very rewarding because of that.  Monday, I got to have coffee with Sarah Tyndall, a girl from our church.  We actually graduated with the exact same degree, so it was fun getting to sit down and talk to someone we both could relate to (there's too many engineers around here that don't get it ;)).  
Tuesday, I ended up spending the whole day over at my friend Elizabeth's playing with her daughters to give her a break and some adult conversation :-p.  
I spent the next morning with her, as well.  We took her daughter to preschool, her other daughter and son to the doctor, and then spent the rest of the morning hanging out with my friend Jen and her two kids.  When I got home, I set to getting the house ready for dinner with the Fodges before we had to say goodbye, and then they rushed off to rehearsal at church, and we rushed off to The Well for some heart to heart with Pastor Todd. 
Thursday, I stayed home to let Ryan and Sandy's (who also moved...but only about 3 blocks away, so we permitted it.  That and they're renter is the new vet, so we approved of that choice, as well :)) cleaning crew into their old place.  While they worked, I had visits from Laura Gulley, Leanna to bring Makaela over while she ran errands, and Daniela our new neighbor from down the street.  When Daniela left, I got a call from Kim asking for help getting a splinter out of her elbow.  Then Adam and I scarfed some food down and headed to church for worship practice (Adam just dropped me off, not actually rehearsed. :)).
Friday, I spent the day doing stuff around the house and baking pecan pie muffins for Saturday.  Kim and Jason had us over to play Rockband and have dinner that night, which was SUPER fun.  We're looking forward to doing it again!
Saturday, I sat at Ryan and Sandy's garage sale with Ryan all morning.  They were gracious enough to let me set up a Homemade Gourmet table (hence the pecan pie muffins for samples) and I think it was good exposure.  I'm not sure if anything will come of it, but it never hurts to get your name out there...and i definitely handed out a bunch of cards.
That night, we headed down to North LA to have dinner with Adam's cousin Dan and his new wife Amanda.  We went to the Eclectic Wine Bar and Grille thanks to the gift certificate we got for signing up as NPR subscribers last year.  It was really expensive, but nice to splurge and great to spend time with family.

So that, in a nutshell, brings us up to this week.  Yesterday was a pretty easy going day for me.  I spent most of the morning being lazy and then caught a burst of motivation around 2 and worked on straightening up the house and cleaning some boxes out of the garage.  And today, I practice for worship rehearsal with Heidi, spent a little time across the street at the Tiegens', worked on prepping my new Homemade Gourmet catalogs, ate some lunch, did some work for Create, and now this.  In less than 30 minutes, I'll also be off to church again for the first day of Create (our art camp I mentioned several entries ago).  It's going to be 3 nights of teaching kids about Jesus, God, and printmaking.  I'm pretty excited about it, and while there won't be tons of kids, I think it'll be a lot of fun with the ones we have....and good practice for if we ever do it again with a larger group.

So, with Create the next three days, worship practice Wednesday, and our softball game Friday, I'm bracing myself to be pooped by the weekend.  However, I'm very excited to say that we'll be spending the evening with none other than Candace Hatchett in Pasadena on Saturday...and that we'll also be heading to Redondo Beach to hit up Adam's friend Bob Wilson's homebrew party.  I'm playing piano at church Sunday, so with all this excitement and not much sleep...this could be interesting :).

Well, we hope everyone has been having a great summer, and that you do your best to make the most of the rest of it.  I have to say, I'm super excited about some of the things we'll be doing in August....but I'll leave you on the edge of your seat, for now :).  Thanks for all your love and prayers.  Things keep getting better in CA, and I'm super excited to see what happens in the months ahead!  Happy rest of July!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

It's update time, again.  Unlike the last couple weeks, this one has gone by pretty fast.  Perhaps that's because I spent the last 3 days making curtains.  Regardless, I can't believe tomorrow is Friday...and that Adam doesn't have to work for the next 4 days.  Both are crazy notions to me, at the moment.

So, to pick up where we left off: Last week was a rough week for me as far as being emotional goes.  It's safe to say that adjusting to a new place is definitely not something that happens over night (or is even complete after over a year).  I was really disappointed that we didn't get to see the Woods' while they were in California, and that more or less snowballed into me feeling a lot of loneliness and homesickness for my friends and family back in the midwest.  Saturday was no different.  I was really antsy and, while we had planned to spend the day relaxing and doing nothing, we ended up filling it up the morning and afternoon with grocery shopping and softball shopping.  Then we headed to Adam's friend Keith's new house to check out his new digs.  We ended up staying up really late (mostly because I was being emotional :-p) and then hitting the hay.

Sunday was Camille's last day at The Well and Arianna Niebling's baptism.  Both left most of the church in tears (I say most because I know at least one person (Adam) was not crying.)  To add to the fun, we also went out to a surprise lunch for my friend Christy Starr's 30th birthday.  We ended up going to the restaurant we swore we'd never eat at again after we had gone with Adam's aunt and uncle Julie and Jack, but it was for a good cause.  We learned yet another important lesson, though...do not eat out (especially at this place) right before softball practice.  It definitely didn't sit well.  And to add to the discomfort, the 106 degree temperature taught me what it's like to be seconds away from passing out.  Good times.  Needless to say, the rest of the evening was spent drinking a lot of water and trying to recover.  

So the last few days, like I said, I've spent the better part of making curtains to try and save on our cooling bill.  Strangely, some of the fabric I used seems to have an unbearable odor to them now that I'm done.  I've washed them 3 times, today, so we'll see if that did the trick.  Otherwise, I'll be making at least three more pairs of curtains before I call it quits.  I took a break from sewing, today (the sewing room gets quite hot during the day, so it was a welcome change) to paint.  I'd say I finished the gray, but some touch ups still need to happen, so I'm reserving the celebration until I feel completely done.

In other news, we met a couple of new neighbors, last night, and got to know the next door neighbors a bit better, too.  It was quite interesting.  The couple that just moved in across and down the street seem pretty cool.  He (Lee) works on base and his wife (Daniella) is from Germany and is going to go back to school in a month full-time to get a nursing degree.  They just moved from a rental in California City.  I somewhat volun-told Adam that he was going to help them get stuff inside, and though they didn't really need much help (Lee's dad came in to help) it was good to go say hello.  On the way back, we stopped next door to say hello to Tim and Sirell who were sitting out on their patio.  We figured it would be nice to talk to the neighbors we've "known" longer, too :-p.  We learned that Sirell is pregnant with her 11th child  and has served as a surrogate for the last 7 pregnancies.  She has 3 children of their own, and then 6 surrogates with another on the way.  I've never met a surrogate in real life, so it was really interesting to learn that we live next door to one.  She said this is her last pregnancy, but she keeps in touch with all the families she's carried for.  Crazy.  

So, I guess I'll take care of what is somewhat of an elephant in the room for me, on this day.  For people that don't know, four years ago today, my dad passed away very unexpectedly of a brain aneurism.  While I think about my dad everyday, there's certain days and moments that are harder than others.  Our family does their best to be strong...that's just the type of people we all are...and we try not to dwell on the day in a negative light, but there's so much of my dad still around during this time of year that's it's hard not to tear up and relive the moments of that day.  So much has happened in the past four years, and yet, it's still really hard to believe it's been that long since we had to say goodbye.  Thankfully, we have very understanding, loving, and supportive friends and family that surround us, hold us up, and give us strength.  Thanks for all your love and prayers.  You will never know how much it means to us that we are not alone.  Thank you.  That's all folks.