Tuesday, December 21, 2010

11 Months Old

The little santa gnome scared Eli more than once while visiting Rob's Parents in South GA

The countdown to having a one year old begins.. I can't believe this time last year I was nesting, waddling and thinking it would be another 2 months before my little guy arrived.

It feels like I have a little boy now. He plays games, like yesterday when he picked 2 toys out of his basket and banged them together, smiled and then handed them to me to do the same. We passed them back and forth for quite some time. He LOVES to put things inside of other things and then take them out and then put them back. This amuses him for hours. Seriously, I think he does it all day. I found a box of dental floss, a tennis ball, and cheerio in my under the oven drawer last week.
lots of snow days here in East TN

He is way vocal and sings like a little chicken. He loves to "sing" along at church - so much so people stare :) He will finally repeat sounds that we make and babble along with me so that I no longer look like an idiot doing it by myself in the grocery. Peek-a-boo still rocks his world and is, in fact, the greatest thing ever. Although it should have a less-girlish name like, I'm-about-to-scare-your-face-off, as it involves hiding around corners and peeping out from behind doors. He's adventurous though cautious in his explorations. He loves to crawl through our legs and behind our backs when we're leaning up against the couch. He gives great hugs, snuggling in close and patting our backs.

He is pulling up and even walking along side the couch or his crib railing (while supposed to be napping). He'll take a step or two holding on to his walking toys, but I still feel like we're a couple months away from unassisted walking, which is fine with me! I am in no hurry for bi-ped baby. It's funny to see him try to sit from a standing position. He's learning to go down on knee then knee, but most of the time he just plops down on his bum from full standing. I fear he's going to give himself whiplash. Often times in the kitchen he'll pull up using my legs and then stand behind me holding onto my knees. This continues until someone falls; usually Eli.

Elijah has 4 teeth, weighs a little over 21 lbs and is very comfortable in 12-18 month clothes size. And the poor kid is ticklish everywhere; his giggles are so irresistible that I'm sure I tickle him way too much just to hear them. He just got another round of vaccines: DTAP and polio. We didn't have to do the 3rd round of HIB because it wasn't needed. I think we're all caught up with our vaccines as we won't start the MMR series until after his 1st birthday.

What's that? Cutest kid in the world you say? Yes, I agree.

House Hunt Ending

Yes, hopefully.

Early December we placed an offer on a little house in North Hills. We had a home inspection last Saturday and it looks like a lovely 4 bedroom/2 bath basement rancher could be ours in mid January. The process is quite yucky with Saturday searches, mortgages, inspections, counter offers, etc., but we have the best team known to man (great realtors, mortgage broker and inspector). We know all these people quite well because we have been trying to find our home since....summer. It's true... we've gotten our hearts broken a few times along the way, but I really feel like God stayed with us through this whole process and we're getting a great house, one we can really make our home.

We've gotten to know our realtors quite well (a retired oral surgeon and his wife) and they are by far some of Elijah's favorite people. If you're in the Knoxville area and need a house, seriously give Keith Allison a call. They have been wonderful sounding boards, given lots of advice and information, and on more than one occasion met us with little notice to look at houses on Saturday evenings. They will be some of our first house guests once we get settled in.

We absolutely LOVE the North Hills neighborhood. It's an established neighborhood with a hidden little park, walkable streets and friendly neighbors. I even already have a friend there, a mom who goes to the same baby bookworms at the library actually gave me a heads up that this house was available.

I have to admit that it was not love at first sight. This house is new construction (New construction in North Hills? Yes, a tree fell on the previous home and it had to be torn down to the floor joists!) and lacks the 'charm' of the older homes we were looking at. However, with the lack of charm comes the low maintenance of a new home and the benefit of a solid foundation of a 60s construction. And, I will be encouraged (forced) to cultivate my inner Martha to make this house warm and homey for us. I'm already dreaming about a Pergola on the large deck, front porch curtains, a mural in Eli's room and a leyland cyprus lined fence behind my veggie garden. I have so many little projects planned that I just can't wait to get started on. Craigslist is going to be my best friend. And I may have to start a regular blog post title--hundred dollar home makeovers.

Some things I love about our (hopeful) new house:
1. It has a large basement rec/family room I can use for my Bradley classes or on rainy days as a play area

2. We have a great place for our big IKEA dining room table

3. I can garden to my heart's content in the back yard, and once it's fenced in - let Eli run around while I lounge on the lower patio eating bon bons.

4. There is a utility sink in the laundry room
5. We have 3 bedrooms upstairs - ours, Eli's, and an office/sewing room.
6. The Kitchen, Living, and Dining areas are like one big open L-shaped space, so I can be with the family as I'm making breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks, drinks, snacks....

7. We can live energy/utility bill efficient and cozy in our small 1100 sqft upstairs while still being able to comfortably host using the downstairs 700 sqft master type suite and bonus room. So Welcome Guests!

The house is just a couple miles away from both prospective new church sites. It will be so nice to be so much closer to where are basically living - no longer having to drive 20 minutes to get...anywhere.

Right now we are still in the 10 - day inspection window and trying to decide between a 15 and 30 year mortgage. Our anticipated close date is the 21st of January, though it could be sooner if all our paper work goes through quickly during this holiday season.