Wednesday, June 23, 2010

This past weekend, Father's Day weekend no less, my Mom, Dad and little sister made the 10+ hr drive to Fargo to spend some time with Ben and I.

In the hustle and bustle of work, moving and this home renovation I was a little hesistant about the timing - but what I didn't realize is how much I would enjoy the break from our daily stresses to just enjoy the time together and do some things around Fargo that we hadn't made time for yet.

After taking them out to the house (photos to come later) we took Kait to our version of Chucky Cheese. Sorry, no photos. The resturaunt is called SPACE ALIENS. Its great for kids because it has an arcade and the building is in the shape of a UFO with Alien garb all over the place. We did our best to make sure she walked out with a couple of goodies - but I think it would have been cheaper to just purchase things from the souvenior shop rather than on the games to get tickets for the "give-away" items.

On Saturday we did alittle shopping around. The boys went to some garage sales and the girls went to the thrift stores. We all ended up with some neat finds - I love garage saling and treasure hunting.

During the afternoon we heade over to the Red River. I really wanted them to see the mighty Red - since its was once a major port of transportation, shipping and the major livelihood of many early settlers up here in the North. Also, I wanted them to get a feel for the amount of water we have to deal with during the spring. The river was slightly elevated - due to recent rainfall - but during the summer its still about ~30 ft deep in some parts. Its substantially more water than we are used to dealing with in Kansas.

This pontoon takes tours up and down the river and we hoped onto it about 3:00 p.m. Including the five of us, there were two other passengers and two captains so we got the intimate tour. It was actually nice because the captain let Kait drive the pontoon for the majority of the trip. Granted, it was only about 1 hour long - but for her it was a pretty big deal.

He also snapped a quick photo for us with the life saver before we left. It was really neat, plus I got to share my limited knowledge of area agriculture with the other passengers - they were corn farmers from Iowa on vacation. Midwest seed dealers, too!
We dinked around some more on Saturday, I think we went to a furniture store or two? I can't quite remember.

Sunday, after another quick visit out to the house (this time with the camera in tow) we hauled a load of goodies out and did some more brainstorming about work for our contractor who was to start on Monday. Once back in town, we headed to Younker Farm's Children Museum for awhile.

It was Father's Day weekend - so after frauntly representing Kaitlynn as Ben and I's daughter - we got the boys in for free. Kaitlynn really enjoyed the interactive exhibits, including the painting station. I did get my fair share of painting done also.....who says Kait gets to have all the fun?

We even had to visit the photo cutouts for some pictures, but I will admit it had started to get warm during our visit - so we didn't spend too much time out in the direct sunlight.
We wanted to show them campus, the Fargodome and other things associated with NDSU. But we didn't anticipate the Fargodome being locked........however, Ben snuck in through an open locker room door and got us in! Evidently there was a high school football camp going on and they didn't really seem to care that we were lurching around snooping while they were running drills!

So we got them down on the field for a couple of quick pictures. It is pretty neat because its rare for a college team to have an indoor stadium to play in - but up in the tundra its a necessity. Dad and Ben also snuck into the football team's locker room - but the girls weren't that brave. Especially not with Kait being there - we didn't want to expose her to any potential nudity!

We ended the weekend with another helping of home cooking and Kait getting stir crazy. None of the three were used to just hanging out all weekend without work to do or free range to play when and where you want anytime so that got to be challenging. I think they enjoyed themselves up here, I know I enjoyed having them here. Kait was so bored with no toys or people to play with come Sunday night - so I think it was good they headed home Monday morning.

I just want to end this post by saying "Thank you for coming! It was the best way to spend our anniversary weekend, Father's Day and my birthday with Mom and Dad and Kait! We hope the rest of the family gets to come soon - the house should be done by that time! We love you all very much!"

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Godsey family photos

Over our whirl-wind trip to Kansas over memorial weekend - we had family pictures taken from an up-and-coming photographer near my our home. It was part of my siblings gift to my parents for the 25th wedding anniversary back in January. We were able to squeeze it in between the Friday, Saturday and Sunday livestock shows that the kids compete in - and boy was it bright outside that day!

We got the official word the that the photos were uploaded and ready for our viewing pleasure. This if just some of my many favorites. You can view the rest of the photos at this link. Josey does a great job (and is VERY reasonably priced)........and we would definitely recommend her to anyone needing senior, wedding, family or engagement photos done. I'm very pleased with how the photos turned out, especially since its been almost 7 full years since we've had family pictures done. Our family has grown considerably since then with the additions of my hubby, Grady's gal and the two little girls.

We'll be making an order in the next couple of weeks - so if you are interested in ordering pictures, please let me know. In the meantime, don't hesitate to admire and then give Josey a call for your next photo needs!

Friday, June 11, 2010

I made it to 25....can you believe it?

It's official. I finally made it to the quarter-century mark. The big 2-5.

It's been a busy couple of weeks with work, the house, a new pet and life. So we didn't actually do too much celebrating on my actual birthday. Except for receiving this beauty.

I've been known to play around with the sewing machine. I have NO formal training, but Grandma Delpha has helped me sew blankets on occasion. But this spring when I atttempted to put my algebra skills to the test - I found a new hobby that I could see myself enjoying quite a bit! Sew..............(haha) I had hinted to Ben that I would like my own machine to do work on and WAL-LAH! there, sitting on my kitchen table on Monday morning was my very own "beginners" sewing machine. To be honest, I have only had time to take it out and admire it......but I do plan on tackling some curtains, pillows and table runners in the new house as soon as we

pick carpet, paint, furniture, light fixtures, and the list goes on....................................

I also got treated to dinner last night at Johnny Carino's Italian Grill (our first free night home at the same time). Ben always jokes that I could have been born Italian (which suits me perfectly because of my desperate plea for a Mafia family to adopt me) because of my love for pasta and bread. I would suggest visiting Carino's..........its delicioso! Plus, the bread with olive oil and herb makes my mouth water even though I had two loaves and technically consumed 3 days worth of calories during my evening meal there. Trust me.........................go here, just DOOOOOOOOOOO it.

We also purused around Home Depot for goodies for the new house. Ben claims I'm the worst window shopper of all time because I see something and I immediately "need it." But much to his dismay I was really hesitant about making any decisions about the house until we decide the paint color and carpet color. I never really thought about how much thought it takes to redecorate, renovate or build a house. Its tough stuff. We walked out with two non-descript ceiling fans for the upstairs bedrooms.....rooms that will probably not be used on a regular basis. That was a decision we felt wouldn't necessarily have to reflect the theme for the rest of the house. I know, we're wusses. I'll deal with it.

Finally, possibly the best gift of all..........I got a contractor. Ben got me a contractor. We have a plan set, an estimate agreed upon and are just waiting for him to start. It's starting to come together - we may actually have a house soon.

Today, Friday, the office threw me a picnic to celebrate the end of my birthday week. I asked for steaks, but got hotdogs (beef at least)......but I won't complain, I gobbled mine up like a starving kid. It was kindof a dreary day for a BBQ, but we were able to snag a shelter and enjoy being out of the office for a few hours. There were many best parts of the meal: the beans that I strategically dipped with my wavy potato chips, the cherry coke with real cherries poured in and the smores with Reese's PB cups. Plus, I was surprised with a bouquet of flowers from my wonderful husband who joined us.

All-in-all I think it was a wonderful birthday. I am thankful for the wonderful people we're surrounded by and the extended family we're developing up here in North Dakota. While there is no substitute for our real families - it is nice to have someone to go to for advice, celebrate small milestones with or just discuss life's happenings with. I know both Mom and Dad and Craig and Regina would be pleased with the support people have show us up here and the care their giving us.

I couldn't have asked for better in a birthday - except for the upcoming visits from both real families that I'm anxiously awaiting. I just have to clean, plan the menu, plan activities and get a new outfit (yes, I'm serious - don't act surprised). And then impatiently await their arrival.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

You may have heard (I "think" I've mentioned it) that we got our acreage bought. It's ours, they can't take it back. Well the bank can, but that's an entirely different story.

You may have also noticed that we've been M.I.A. from the blogging scene............can you guess why?

It could have something to do with the mid-scale demolition derby we've been conducting inside the 4-walls of the house or possibly because it's a mid-summer's nightmare at work right now. Depending on the day - it could be either, both or neither (I need time to catch a few zzzzz's too).

Anyway, back to the house.

We've torn out carpet, ripped down paneling, removed layers of vinyl flooring and removed nails, staples and splinters from every possible orphus of the house. We've also scratched, bruised and poked ourselves with every possible sharp, electric or heavy object in the house.

Its nearly complete - the demo, that is. We have a contractor coming tonight to give us an estimate on the work we "want" to have done. We'll see how it goes.

I'll give an update, hopefully tomorrow. But the next charge is to deep clean the kitchen and upstairs bedrooms and get my garden planted before I "black thumb" myself out of another $30.00 worth of veggies at the nursery. Maybe Ben will get the new weed-whacker assembled and go to town on the million acres of trees we seem to have!

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Bernice, Bernice, Bernice.

Who knew we'd have this much fun with a cat?

Our first go-round with pets didn't turn out in our favor. Remember Gage? He's much happier being a cattle dog in a small feedyard than being couped up in our little apartment. Strike out for us.

Since we decided to take the plunge into home ownership - we thought we'd give this thing called "pets" another try. It just so happened that my Aunt Angie wanted to re-home this 'ole-gal.

She has a previous name, but I wanted to reserve the right to name an un-born child a version of that name - so we (mostly I) picked a new one.

Meet Bernice. You're not misreading it. I said Bernice. It's purrrrfect!

In this first photo, Ben is NOT choking her......I promise. She likes to barrel-roll her way around the living room in search of a hand, foot, leg or furniture piece to rub up against. This picture was actually "mid-scratch".

This photo actually is a better depiction of her favorite dance move. It didn't take too long for her to become my buddy. Ten hours in the car and one good round with the fur-minator and we were life-long companions. Ben was another story.

She has spent the better part of this first week home in the confines of our bedroom. Under the bed. While I'm more familiar with kitties - Ben is not. So while I ignore her when she's hissing at me when I try to DRAG her out from underneath the bed - Ben quickly gives up. It's not his fault. Normally hissing animals should be left alone. But this girl, who has no claws, begs for her supper and has lived inside her entire 3-year life? - there's little threat of major physical damage or contracting some weird feral cat disease from this furball.

After I convinced Ben that she was more-or-less a harmless piece of fur, we convinced her that he wasn't such a bad guy by bribing her with tons of treats. Which of course, she loves. I think it's because she hasn't found her food bowl yet. It took all of five minutes for her to realize "These two giants aren't as scary as I thought. Ugly, but definitely not scary."

Now, she's this......all over the place. And there's hair.....ALL over the place.

I didn't realize that cats shedded this much. Mom's cat didn't shed this much. Or so I thought.

So now, as I blog - Bernice is alternating between:

a) barrel-rolling,

b) wandering around claiming her domain and

c) laying in her new favorite spot in the living room - beside the couch, hidden under the blanket that drapes over the arm of the couch.

She's already provided us with alot of entertainment. It's fun to watch Ben, a self proclaimed "cat hater" get down on the floor and play with her and talk quietly saying, "I'm not such a bad guy, am I?"

That's about it for the Bernice introduction. I need to get out of the living room because she has taken to sleeping on the couch once we go to bed.

I'll leave you with one more photo.