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Basement Renovation

Since my last update in March we have had a lot happen with our basement reno. It's nice to look back and say "a lot has been done" because it's been a long, sloooow process.  We've done a lot of 'hurry up and wait'.  Luckily now all that waiting is *mostly* done. 
In April our energy company came and moved our gas meter and re-routed our electrical service, both of which needed moved because they went right through where the to-be window wells were going.

Andy broke out some of the concrete in the bathroom floor and the plumber came and roughed in our shower drain.  Then he poured the new cement in the hole, smoothed that and it's all ready for us to install the shower.

Andy started framing up the walls for the bedrooms and the bathroom.  He did as much as he could until the window holes were cut.  He left an area of Bren's wall and the bathroom wall open so we could get the shower in. That had to be brought in through the window opening because it was too wide for the basement stairs.  We also brought the drywall down through the opening instead of lugging it down all the steps.  That was a fun day (said sarcastically). 

The window well holes were dug and we now have a nice, messy yard and big pile of dirt waiting to be put back down in the holes to fill in around the window wells. 

The company came that we hired to cut the 3 window holes.  I was surprised by how not noisy that process was.  Tate slept through part of it even!  It took about 30-45 minutes per window.  They held their big, heavy saw without a jig to saw through the 8" of cement wall.  My arms would have been burning by the end of that!

After the window holes were cut Andy framed in the windows and the two of us installed them.  We weather-proofed the heck out of those windows!  The day after we finished it rained about an inch, so glad we got them done in time!  What a relief.

After the windows went in Andy started working on framing again.  And that is where we are at now. 

It sounds like a lot got done but it still feels like we have so far to go.  The good thing is, except for the electrician and plumber, we don't have anyone to wait on anymore so we can just go and get things done.  Unfortunately, we are busy busy!  Fingers crossed it doesn't take much longer than the month of June to get our part finished.  XXX

And now, some pictures.

One more, because it's cute!

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School's Out For the Summer!

Hey everyone!  Can you believe today at 11:00 my kids start their summer vacation?!?  Kindergarten and 3rd grade, done in a flash!  This year was another fast one.  It doesn’t *feel* like summer, doesn’t *feel* like the end of the school year.  My heart tells me there are still months and months left in this school year but my head says “look at the calendar, dummy!” 

Let’s take a look back at the ‘First Day of School’ picture from this year.

Here is the ‘Last Day of School’ picture I took this morning.

I can see a difference in Brennan, he lost more of his baby look. Sniff! And I notice that Aiden is wearing the same shorts in both pics, :) .

The boys had wonderful teachers this year.  Aiden’s teacher, Miss Hermann, was a first time teacher, freshly graduated last year.  He took to her right away.  I really liked her, too.  She was great to communicate with, one of the most important things in my book for the parent/teacher relationship.  Brennan’s teacher, Mrs. McClenahan, was just as awesome with Brennan as she was with Aiden.  He adored her and is very sad to say goodbye to her.  I adore her and am very say to say goodbye to her.

Our school is having major budget issues (who’s isn’t?) so they have cut teaching positions which means we’ll be having much larger class sizes next year.  It also means we aren’t sure who the boys’ teachers will be – they have made it clear that just because a teacher taught a certain grade this year they aren’t guaranteed that same grade next year.  So, come August we will see. 

Speaking of August, the boys’ first day of 4th and 1st grade will be August 26th.  Wow, that’s less than 3 months away already.  Summer, slow down!!!  What are our plans this summer?  #1, have fun!  #2, we’re taking it one day at a time.  I haven’t signed the boys up for as many day camps this summer, partly because I was being lazy.  They each have a 4 day basketball camp which is next week.  They will both be participating in the county fair in July.  Aiden and Andy are doing a Father/Son basketball camp that the Iowa Men’s basketball team puts on every summer. That’s a Friday/Saturday deal middle of June (we are beyond excited about this one!).  Swim lessons. Fun swimming and lazy afternoons at the pool.  A trip to a zoo *somewhere* this summer (the somewhere is still up in the air).  Bren wants to go golfing and stay the night at Papa and Grandma Jean’s all by himself sometime.  Aiden just wants to get together with his friends whenever he can.  Tate and I are just planning on holding on for dear life and hoping we make it to the end of the summer in one piece. I do know that Tate will love having his big brothers around so much for the next 3 months.

Cheers to a great summer!

Missed you all,
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