Archive for April, 2009

We are Homeless

It’s official.  As of 3 pm today, we are homeless.  We got all our paperwork signed for our house here in Virginia so it technically isn’t ours any longer!  We will be here until Wednesday though.  We pick up the U-Haul tomorrow and load it up then we pull out of here around 8 am Wednesday morning.  We are **SUPPOSE** to close on our new house on Thursday at 10 a.m. but there is still some paperwork issues that our mortgage banker is working through.  Keep us in your prayers.  It’s even more stressful now since we don’t really have a place to live until closing down there! 

We’re getting really excited!  Annagrace’s last day at public school was today.  Once we move and get settled in we will finish out her school year at home.  She was a little sad today but I think she got through okay!  Madalyn is definitely the most excited about moving!  She’s been telling us that she doesn’t want to live here any longer and she wants to go to our new house!  She did get a little upset tonight when some people came and took our couch and chair away (we didn’t want to move it so we found someone on Freecycle to take it).  I tried to explain to her that we were getting a new couch and she wanted to know if those people were going to bring it back.

So we have a very busy day tomorrow packing the truck.  Then on Wednesday we have a long day of driving.  Our wonderful friends, Heather and Reber are driving down too so that we can get both vehicles there.  They are making the drive down and back in one day (it’s about 4.5 hours one way).  Did I mention that they are wonderful?!?!?!?  We’re gonna miss them–and all our friends here–terribly!  But we know we will see them again so it isn’t too terribly sad!

Here is a picture of our new home.  I pulled it from the realtor’s site.  I can’t wait to get there and get working on some projects (mostly painting the interior and landscaping on the outside!).  We love this house.  I have always wanted a saltbox home! I saw one in Better Homes and Gardens years ago and pulled the page out and kept it because I loved it so much.  I never thought we’d find one in NC–they are popular up north but not so common in the south. 

Anyway…here it is!


And I’m off to bed!

Bead For Life

Anyone heard of Bead for Life?  I was reading about it on another blog and I am very intrigued.  These Ugandan women make beautiful beads out of recycled magazines.  All the beads are hand rolled and they, of course, are all one of a kind.  Women in America can sign up to host parties to sell the jewelry.  The only people that make money off of this are the Ugandan women.  The hostess gets nothing from hosting other than the joy of raising money for these women living in poverty.  Here is a video about it:

It sounds really neat–you sign up and they sent you a kit with 275 peices of jewelry to sell.  They also send you a DVD, a CD of Ugandan music, and African recipes so you can really be a great hostess for your party!  It’s all free of charge to you as the hostess and they even send you a return label to send your unsold jewelry back.  The jewelry is beautiful and the prices are very reasonable.  (And ya gotta love that it’s all recycled!)

I am thinking this would be a great thing to do once we move!  I can even incorporate homeschooling into it by having Annagrace study about Uganda.  I’m looking forward to it.  I think it sounds like a great organization and I love the fact that all the proceeds go to these women. 

So be on the lookout all my Greenville peeps for your invitations!  I’m thinking of maybe doing this in August but we shall see!

30 Minute, 3 Ingredient Meal: Tortellini Alla Pana

I don’t like to cook.  I think if I had more time (i.e. didn’t work full time) I’d like it more but who wants to slave away in the kitchen after working all day long?  When I find a good easy recipe it quickly becomes a staple in our home. 

Here are my criteria for a recipe to be a ‘staple’ in our home:

  1)  It takes me less than 30 minutes to make it
  2)  It has less than 5 ingredients
  3)  My picky hubby will eat it

Now I do make things from time to time that have more ingredients than that.  One of my favorite things to bake is a Hershey Bar Cake (yum!) and I love to make Cowboy Beans to take to a picnic.  And I love this recipe I have for baked oatmeal (will have to share that one soon…it’s really good!).   But those are not things that I make on a regular basis around here.  All of the ‘staples’ in our family fit the above criteria.

So I am going to start a new feature on my blog of our favorite EASY recipes!  The first is Tortellini Alla Pana.  This recipe meets all the criteria so we eat it often!  I got the idea from a lovely little Italian restaurant nearby.  I almost always order this when we eat there and I decided that it really couldn’t be all that hard to make so I tried it at home and was surprised at how good it was!

1)  Start with some pre-made tortellini.  Fresh tortellini (you can find it usually in the dairy/refrigerated section of the grocery store) is best but I used frozen this time because it was on sale.   But really the fresh is much, much better!  Boil until tender and drain.


2)  While the tortellini is boiling, fry up a few peices of bacon.  I love the flavor of the bacon in it so I usually use at least 4 large peices.  I have also used the precooked bacon and it’s good too–but not as good as the real deal.   


 3)  Add one jar of alfredo sauce to the tortellini along with the bacon which you have crumbled into small peices.  I usually get the more expensive jars of alfredo sauce–it’s so much better than the cheap stuff!  One day I want to make this with my own homemade Alfredo Sauce–as long as it doesn’t involve more than 5 ingredients of course!


 4)  Cook over low heat until the sauce is warm and has thickened up a bit and there ya have it!   Very easy and delicious!  Add some bread and something green as a side (lime jello apparently doesn’t count–see my post below!) and you have a nice cheap meal!  Depending on which tortellini I buy I can make a meal for 4 for about $6.  Trust me though, the fresh tortellini is sooooooo much better and is worth the few extra bucks if you have it to spare!   


Next up:  3 ingredient peanut butter cookies!

Jello, anyone?

I threw these boxes of jello in the trash but got them back out because I just had to share them with you all. 

What’s so special about 3 boxes of lime jello, you ask? 

Look closely at the expiration date.  


Yup.  You read that correctly.  They expired in 2003.  SIX YEARS AGO!  The really sad thing about it is that we didn’t even live in this house six years ago which means that I likely moved them to the new house from our old house when we moved in 2004!  I’m almost scared now to finish cleaning out the cabinets.

Homeschooling Update

I haven’t thought to mention lately about our homeschooling decision.  After a lot of thought, conversation, asking for advice and PRAYER we have decided to homeschool our kids.  I sent of my letter of intent to the state of NC and have received the required paper back from them that will allow me to withdrawal Annagrace from public school so that we can start homeschooling in May when we move!  We are really excited about it!  Aaron included.  He’s already making plans for different things he wants to do with/teach Annagrace!

So in May I have decided to keep things simple.  Here is my plan for finishing out Annagrace’s 2nd grade year at home.

1)  I will get Annagrace’s last 4 weeks worth of spelling words from her teacher and she will continue to do those as she has been in public school. 

2)  For math, we do a review of what she has learned this year–addition, subtraction and some beginning multiplication.  We will also study money concepts.  She has a good grasp on this but I want to start a chore chart for her and this would be a good time to include the money stuff in with it. 

3)  Field trip to the public library in our new town so she can get her own card and get acquainted with it.  (We plan to take trips there every 2 weeks!)

4)  Will do some brief North Carolina history and hit the highlights.  I want to take her to see “The Lost Colony” play at the Outer Banks this year so we may start with talking about Indians.  I think she will really be interested in that.  Where I am from in NC is an area that is very rich with history so there will always be something to see and somewhere to visit!

5)  Will do some short science projects that she has chosen from a book my mom bought her this week.  She is really excited about all the experiments in it so I figure we will do one or two of those a week.

And that should be enough to keep us busy for those last 3 weeks!  Then we start summer break and I am planning to enroll both the girls in gymnastics.  I want to get them involved in some activities right away so they can meet some new people.  Annagrace will eventually start piano lessons and will probably do this instead of gymnastics–but at least this will give her a fun activity for the summer!  Madalyn is our little dancer so we may switch her to ballet in the Fall!  She loves ballet!

Anyone have any other homeschool ideas for me?  Any recommendations, tips, or advice is much appreciated!

Here is a cartoon I found that I just love!  I’m going to have to print this once we move and hang it on our fridge!  It’s very cute!


I Have a Job!

I finally heard back from my interviews last week!  I was offered both the positions that I interviewed for and I chose to accept the part time position on Surgical Oncology.  I will be working alternating shifts (though my manager knows that I prefer nights) and every other weekend (although she told me that it may not even be that many if I end up with straight nights because she has a set crew of straight night nurses on most weekends).  

I am excited to get back to bedside nursing.  It will be an adjustment to me as I have gotten used to having just one patient at a time.  But I am looking forward to the change.  It will be nice when 7pm or 7am comes to just LEAVE and be done.  I don’t have that luxury now.  There are always patients to call, schedules to plan, computer work that needs to be done, voice mails to check.  Even on the weekends and days that I am off now I still have to check my voice mail.  So I really never feel like I am really “off”.  So I am looking forward to that. 

I am a little nervous about doing post-surgery care.  That will be new for me.  We do not do chemo or radiation on this floor (which is what we did at my last inpatient job) although the majority of the patients are oncology patients who are having cancer related surgeries.  And this summer we will start having monitored beds which means I’ll have to learn to read cardiac monitors all over again!  Lot’s of learning to be done!  But I’m a quick learner and a hard worker so I’m looking forward to all of it! 

Still crossing our fingers and praying that our buyers loan issue will be resolved.  The bad thing is that we won’t know for 2 weeks!  Apparently there was a mess up with one digit of a social security number and it gave an incorrect credit score.  The corrected number showed that the wife’s credit score is about 3 points lower than it HAS to be for them to get this loan.  So they paid off some debt and we are now in a waiting game to see if this is going to bring their score up high enough to qualify.  It is nerve wracking!  If this doesn’t bring up their credit score then they will not be able to get the loan they were expecting to get and likely our contract will fall through.  Then . . . we would be STUNNED.  We’d still have to move because of our jobs but we’d have to live with my parents until our house here sells!  And it would make our contract on our new home in NC fall through as well. 

But that isn’t going to happen because God is going to work it out.  I’m trusting Him.  Like my mom said, there is nothing I can do about it at this point (except pray) so I might as well not worry about it!

Just for Fun

So we are having loan issues with selling the house.  Not our loan–our buyers loan.  Not sure at this point WHAT is going to happen but we are remaining hopeful and trusting that God will work it out.  Anyway…I’ve been surfing the web trying to get my mind on more fun things!  Here’s a few things I’ve found while surfing:

I can totally see our kid rocking this:


Or this:


And Madalyn would LOVE this:

And if we have a boy, I like this.  Although I’m not understanding why the baby is a different race…maybe he was adopted?!


And I like this one for me:


And one for Aaron–couldn’t leave him out:


And one last thing.  File this under “It’s so wrong, but it’s so funny.”  Thank goodness I am only having one baby–that we know of!


I’m a slacker.  I just haven’t felt up to blogging lately and have also been really busy!  Hopefully when we get moved and settled in I will have time to get back to blogging about more interesting stuff!  For now, here’s a quick update:

1)  I had 2 job interviews yesterday.  The first went really well and was the one I was most interested in.  The manager told me she was going to offer me the position so I’m just waiting to hear from the employment office.  It’s a new unit to the hospital–Surgical Oncology.  They don’t give chemo or have radiation patients.  It’s totally post op care for patients who have had cancer related surgery.  I will be the only nurse on the floor with actualy Oncology experience–all the nurses there now have surgery experience but it isn’t specific to Oncology.  So that will be interesting!  I will have some refreshing to do about post-op care but I think I will like the unit.  The manager is very nice and the nurses that I met seemed very friendly. 

2)  We close on our current house on April 13!  It will be weird living in a house that is not ours anymore for 2 weeks!   We will pay the new owners rent for those 2 weeks until we move (which is tentatively scheduled for April 29).  We are planning to load up the U-Haul on April 29 and drive down to my parents house then we will close and move into our new house on April 30!

3)  My last day of work at my current job is Saturday, April 25.  It will be very very bittersweet.  I am so excited about moving and starting a new chapter in our lives but it will be very difficult to leave the hospital I have worked at for 9 years and the co-workers I have known and loved for the last 5 years. 

4)  Aaron is going to be out of town all next week for his new job orientation.  He will be in Fayetteville Sunday-Tuesday and then Greenville on Wednesday and Thursday.  

5)  My mom is spending all next week with us!  It is Spring Break for the girls and I am off work on Monday-Wednesday and have plans to get some major packing done on those days.  Mom will be able to help keep the girls out of the way so I can get some things done!  We’re planning to do something fun one of those days–still unsure what just yet!

6)  I’m tired of throwing up.  I am really hoping that this nausea will subside before I have to start my new job.  I should be starting May 11 and I will be through my first trimester then so hopefully little nugget won’t be making me so sick by then!  

7)  It’s starting to dawn on me just how different things are going to be once we move.  It will be a big adjustment for the girls to have me home everyday and to have Aaron gone everyday.  Madalyn has never known any different.  He has worked from home since she was born and I’ve worked full time during the day since then.  I think it will be a big adjustment for her to have him gone everyday.  It will be a big adjustment for me as well to go back to working night shift (I am hoping the majority of my shifts will be night shift).  

I am hoping to get back on track with posting about couponing, CVSing and all that jazz very soon!  I’ve done really well about not spending any frivolous money lately but we have been eating out like crazy–mostly because we have been traveling to NC so much.  We are very happy that we are moving to an area with much lower living expenses.  Selling our house is going to allow us to pay off about 80% of our debt which is very exciting.  I don’t know how we ever would get ahead if we were not selling our house and moving!  

Adios for now…..

April 2009