I apologize for my lack of posting lately, but let me explain why. We have been busy! Now, I realize that everyone is busy, all the time. But here is what we have been up to.
Upon returning from our fabulous vacation to Disney World and Washington DC (read about it here), it was an immediate jump into Back to School. We had school supply drop off the same day we got back, then we hit the ground running trying to get into our new school routine (including activities for the kiddos). Less than a week into school, we found out that all of the girls in our family had head lice!!! It seems as though there is this predisposed notion that only poor or dirty people get lice, and there is a stigma that goes along with having it, but let me assure you that ANYONE can get it. And dealing with one person having lice is bad enough, but for four of us to have it.....an absolute nightmare! We had to wash and vacuum anything and everything you can think of, multiple times. We sanitized all things that come into contact with our heads. We did the necessary shampoos (multiple times to make sure we got rid of the lice for good) and the time-consuming combing. Talk about going through things with a fine tooth comb.....this is where that saying come from, I'm sure.
The day we realized we had lice, I ran to the local drug store to buy Lice Ice (as recommended by our school nurse). This is a gel-type application that sits on the hair overnight and is rinsed out in the morning. Then the hair is combed with a special fine-tooth comb to remove all the dead lice. Again, we didn't have to do this for just one girl, but for all the girls! And it's not just for one day. The combing needs to be done twice a day for TWO weeks! Do you have any idea how much time this takes?!? The first day of combing I spent NINE hours combing hair! That's in addition to going to work and feeding my family! UGH! I'm just glad it's over, and I hope we never have to go through this again! (We also applied a homemade lice shampoo several times just to be sure the lice were killed. Mix together 1 cup of apple cider vinegar and 1/4 cup shampoo. It has to be regular shampoo without conditioner. Massage 2 oz into the scalp for 5 minutes. Then add another 2 oz and continue to massage for an additional 5 minutes. Let it sit on the hair for 15 minutes and rinse.)
One evening while we were sitting in my bathroom combing, the hubs and I decided we would like to move! We currently live about 10 minutes outside of town, and each year we request a district transfer for the kids to go to school in town (rather than the country school that is farther away from our house). We love our country home and the setting it offers, but the commuting is wearing on us. There are many reasons to move into town, but one of the big ones that seals the deal is Bubs' food allergies. It may seem silly, but here's why...
Bubs is very involved in soccer and basketball, and he has practice four evenings a week and games on the weekends (and sometimes Friday nights). I already pack his lunch for school every day, and now I'm also packing a dinner for him too. We don't have time to drive home and have a hot meal, and we certainly can't go through a drive thru for some fast food. So I pack his dinner and he eats at the hubs' office or in the vehicle on the way to practice. I know family dinners have gone by the wayside for many American families with their busy lifestyles, and I don't expect that we will all sit around the table each and every night (although I will try), but I would like to offer something other than a sandwich for all of Bubs' meals during the week.
Other factors that played into our decision included wanting to be closer to other young families. There is currently one young family on our road, but they are about a mile down the gravel. I am looking forward to having a sidewalk that my kids can ride bikes on, letting them walk to school, and just being closer to other people. Being able to run home over the lunch hour if I forget Bubs' cleats or GirlyGirl's dance bag (or even to switch the laundry) seems like a luxury.
Now, I realize that many people commute to work each day. They commute much farther than we do. And it's not so much the driving that bothers me. It's the food allergies that's the kicker. That, and wanting to be in a neighborhood have made our decision to move. Also, once in town, we won't have to apply each year for each child to transfer into the school district (a big stressor for me).
We all know selling a house the past several years has been a bit of a challenge. And trying to sell a house in the country on 20 acres may still be a bit challenging. But we have spent the past month fixing up the place as best we can to get it in tip top selling condition. New carpet, new paint, packing, decluttering, staging. Now we are ready. The photos have been taken, and we are ready to list. Hopefully in a few days we will have completed all the necessary paperwork, and we will be on the market. Anyone who has tried to sell a house knows how stressful it is to always keep is clean. Imagine how stressful it will be trying to keep it in showing condition with four young children. We can do it, though. I'll keep the toys in a small box that I can throw in the closet each morning, keep the beds made, and the countertops clear.
We have mixed feelings about selling this house. We have only lived here for 7 years, but we designed this home, and we intended to stay here forever. The hubs even built portions of this home by hand (which may mean more to me than him), including our fireplace, back deck, and fabulous swingset. We have a perfect setting with lots of trees and space. But we just want to be closer to the action. We will design our next house and have it built in town. We can take the things we love and hate about this house and tweak it in the new house. But for now, we wait to see if and when this house sells.
So, as you can see, my time has been consumed by combing hair and prepping our home. My creativity in the kitchen and blogging have taken a hit. But now things should be getting somewhat back to normal. I can start baking and posting again. I look forward to sharing more with you!