Monday, August 2, 2010

First three years of forever!

I have grand plans to go back and make some posts about the last few months, but for now, I'll give another update. Like Niels said last month (!), we've had a fairly low key summer so far as I've been recovering from my surgery in June.

July has been focused on our plans for the future. The big news is that we're prepping our house for sale. We are planning to build a new home that fits our international, spread out family a little better (read: room for out-of-town guests!) in a nice, quiet neighborhood. We found a lot about 2 miles from our current home, and have selected our builder, Charis Homes.

We have been following Charis for nearly three years, when we first viewed one of their models when Niels' parents were here visiting over our first Christmas. They specialize in Insulated Concrete Form (ICF) construction, which is extremely durable and energy efficient. They are also excited about some of the universal design elements we have in mind. We've been having a lot of fun touring homes, pouring over floor plans and taking Daniel to all the home stores in the area! We meet with our architect on Thursday so we're really getting this ball rolling! If you're a Facebook friend, you can see some pictures of our ideas.

We've been interviewing realtors as we've been getting a few pre-renovation market analyses. Our builder has also been very helpful with getting quotes for the repairs we're doing. In addition to the usual decluttering and depersonalizing, we'll be
  • renovating the master bath (removing the triangle jacuzzi and replacing it with a regular size jetted soaker tub, adding a second vanity, replacing the shower door and light fixtures, and painting.
  • refinishing the hardwood floors
  • finishing the deck (soffiting and restaining)
  • painting the bathrooms
As if that doesn't make us busy enough, we'll also be heading to Minnesota for my 20 year high school reunion!

And in other big news, after three years of waiting, I'm finally up for my Social Security Disability hearing on August 11. It's been such a long process and I'm quite nervous about it. If you are the praying kind, we'd certainly appreciate your prayers for a fully favorable verdict from our judge. It usually takes 4-6 weeks to get the verdict, so you can imagine that I'll be waiting with bated breath.

On a related note, my health has been a challenge for the last several months. I had a uterine cancer scare in the spring that thankfully ended well. Then I had my surgery, and a few complications that have made a 4-6 week recovery more like an 8 week recovery. Fortunately, my mom was able to come for 3 weeks to help out with Daniel, and Niels was able to work from home for 2 weeks after that. My stitches are almost all closed and I'm looking forward to getting back to my previous fitness routine. I've lost 35 pounds so far this year, and am 20 away from my goal. The last few weeks I've been feeling the effects of our busier schedule so my headache has been worse and I've had more bad days than good. I'm also fighting some nausea, double vision and cognitive fatigue. I always do, but it's been more challenging lately.

On that note, I'm going to take a nap with Daniel now!

Daniel, 19 months, LOVES bubbles!

Celebrating our third anniversary on July 29, 2010.

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