Saturday, December 19, 2009

Christmas came early

We wanted to let the boys experience Christmas morning in their own house (and we had a number of gifts that will be too big to bring to Virginia), so we had our own mini-Christmas morning today. You will notice that only the top half of the Christmas tree has ornaments. The tree started out fully decorated...that lasted about an hour...
The boys waiting on the stairs

Opening their stockings before breakfast

Charlie kept holding the wrapped gifts and saying "PRESENTS!!", but didn't want to open them. He quickly got the hang of it.

Win in the foreground, Wesley in the back, checking to see if there was anything more in his stocking.

Their big gift was a new kitchen. We got to experience the joys of parenthood on Christmas Eve - we were up past midnight assembling the kitchen and searching for batteries!

The morning ended with haircuts at our local barbershop (you can see from the photos how much the boys needed it) and a very special treat of McDonalds Happy Meals for lunch.

Finished Basement!

The basement is done! Well, sort of. We failed the final inspection, not to the fault of the contractor, but a grumpy building inspector, so we have a few outstanding issues (if make-up air is needed and the need to extend the hearth). But we have started to move the boys into their "new playroom" (as they call it) - and they LOVE it! It is a huge space for them to run, jump, flop, tackle, crash, etc.

From this:

To this:

The best part of the new playroom is the opening under the stairs. Rob kept the boys laughing by chasing them around the stairs for a good 20 minutes!

New storage in the laundry room

Mud room area (boiler room to the left, laundry room to the right). We opted to not finish the floor here because this will be how the boys go to and from the backyard to play. We're also hoping to use this space for messy arts and crafts.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Our first (real) snowfall

Winter is officially here! We had our first substantial snowfall last weekend, so we bundled up the boys and played in the snow. We realized that this was their first time really playing in the snow, so we built a snowman and threw snowballs. And they discovered that they enjoy the taste of snow!

A night out!

Last week, the company Rob works for had their holiday party at the Boston Seaport Hotel. Grammy & Poppy offered to take care of the boys overnight, so we were able to stay in Boston for the night! It was such fun to get dressed up and have a date. I don't know the last time I wore a dress!

Saturday, December 5, 2009

The Basement: A work in progress

We hired contractors to finish our basement into a playroom for the boys. Previously, it was basically unorganized storage. After we moved everything out, the contractor started working at the end of October. The space was divided in half, though the old wall was just some flimsy plywood. The walls were just the cement foundation, painted this lovely shade of dark gray (always a good choice for a basement).

The fake wall was torn down and a new one was built, and all walls were framed and insulated. The windows and windows were replaced.

This was the backside of the room. We have divided this space into a laundry room (on the left side of the photo), a large mudroom (in the middle), and a boiler room (the right side of the photo).

This photo is the mudroom. So the boiler room is to the left and new laundry storage room is to the right.

The blueboard, plaster and paint are now complete (though I don't have any new photos). The recessed lights are in (the boys would destroy any lamps), a new heating zone is nearly complete, the shelves will be built on Monday and the carpet will be the last step. So it should be complete next week - after 6 weeks! We can't wait to show the boys their new space!

A great Thanksgiving

We spent two days at my parent's house. It was so much fun for the boys and truly felt like a vacation for us! (Grammy & Poppy let us sleep in on Friday and even served us breakfast in bed! What a treat!) Thanksgiving morning was spent playing outside...


Charlie and the coupe cars - all lined up and ready to go!

The boys helped Poppy load the kindling

All lined up in their holiday sweaters. (The only way I could take a photo of all of them in one place was to put on Dora...)

Wesley showing off his truck

Charlie playing with his trucks. (This photo speaks volumes about Charlie! Notice how every car is perfectly lined up the exact same way.)

Win and Poppy. Somehow Grammy escaped all photos. It's probably because she doesn't sit still, just like the boys! :)

The happy couple