Friday, May 17, 2019

Otter Fun Run 2019

Every year, the girls' Elementary School puts on a fun run... it's a 3k, and has been going on for YEARS. Charlotte has participated since 3rd grade, but this year, she wanted to sit it out (her and I did a 5k the day after). Marley on the other hand, was beyond PUMPED for it. She's been training during her recess runners program for the last few weeks... and when start time came, it was evident that her hard work paid off. She took off with Daddy, and never stopped. She got 1st place for girls in her age group and declared it "the best day ever!"

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Monday, May 13, 2019

Guest House { weeks 38-44 }

So much goodness has happened in these last few weeks... finally, it feels like we're getting somewhere... and as much as that feels like a relief for me, I imagine it's 100x that for my husband whose worked so hard to get it to where it is.

We passed inspections... electrical, plumbing and mechanical... and that alone, is huge... HUGE.

The hubby rented a skid steer, to celebrate passing those inspections, to cover up all the trenches, holes, lines dug into our ground. Man oh man, is our yard destroyed... I still remember hearing, "Mama... hellllllllp!" from the backyard... only to not find my little Mable, because she was stuck down in one of those huge holes, with a diaper full of dirt. Thankful to have the earth, semi back to normal... I'll be really thankful when we have grass again (which won't be for awhile). We moved some of the big rock that was delivered to the back, to start building a retaining wall beside the guest house. 2 drop offs of 7 ton rock, to be exact.

We ordered our tiles for the floor in the bathroom... hexagon (slate color)... and they arrived, after waiting quite a few weeks for them. They're even prettier in person, all together.

When you build a house to code, one of the final tests you must pass is a blower door test. That measures how “tight” the building is - and by “tight” they mean leaky. Tight buildings are much more energy efficient, require significantly less heating or cooling, and repel water much better. If your build quality is poor, the less tight it will be…but if you seal the seams, insulate with foam, and tape the exposures - generally your building will be tight enough to pass the blower door test. During that test - they hook a blower to a rubber dam that spans a door and they pressurize the house. By using pressure gauges inside the house they can tell how much air is leaking out per hour. That measurement is called Air Changes per Hour (ACH)…and generally, a tight house is less than 5 ACH. A leaky house would be anything above that. The blower door test usually comes at the end of the building phase, right before the final inspection…and if you don’t pass - you have to pay an insulator to go find all the leaks and seal them up with caulk. This can take a long time - and it’s usually pretty expensive.

Nowadays, there’s another option. Some one figured out how to atomize the caulk so it can be sprayed in the house while it’s pressurized, called AeroBarrier. As the air is being forced out of the house through those leaky holes - it rides the air through the gaps…and the caulk begins to build up at the seams of the hole. Over time (about an hour or two), it slowly builds up to the point where it seals the house. It's envelope sealing technology... so cool, and definitely worth a YOUTUBE video watch, if you haven't heard of it before. With the help of a local company, Cascade Aero Barrier, we were able to get our house well within a passing grade - specifically all the way down to 1.6 ACH... when we started at a 12 ACH... I know, appalling.…It's a good thing, because we definitely would have failed the final inspection without it.

Now that we're all sealed up, insulation has begun...

We also spied our first guests staying at the guest house... a mama and papa finch created a nest, right under the little roofing for the hot water heater. 4 little eggs. Happy to report, that the hatchlings are here, and growing bigger each day.

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Sunday, May 12, 2019

Motherhood 2019

I serve these 5 littles day in and day out... and love them beyond measure... what a joy it is to be their Mama...

Dear Charlotte...
You made me Mama, and for that, I am FOREVER changed... Life looks so different now, with lots of little siblings, but I still remember when it was just YOU and ME... and it was the most precious time. You keep getting bigger and bigger on me. You're pretty close to being just a head away from being eye to eye with me... don't grow up too quickly, lets savor this time a little longer.

Dear Marley,
Mars, life is just colorful with you in it, and bright... very, very bright. You make yourself known, and never back down... you are bold. You question everything these days, as you seek answers, and righteousness. I love how you adore life around you... and that everything that crosses paths with you, knows how wonderful they are, because you tell them...

Dear Finn,
We are at a difficult stage with you right now, as you try and push boundaries and limits, to test us. You never did this, when you were younger (like most do)... so I guess, this is your time. You still have the BIGGEST heart... caring for everyone around you. You've become sensitive and tender in a matter of months... you love so deeply.

Dear Josephine,
It is certain, that we have a feeler on our hands, with you... you feel EVERYTHING and boy do you let us know. You are extreme... extremely happy or extremely sad... extremely patient or extremely careful, etc. When you love... it's extreme... and done with your whole being... and that is beautiful.

Dear Mable,
The amount of sweetness that pours out of you... is overwhelming, in the good way... it just flows and flows. Your "I love you's" are said with such sincerity and heart, they melt us... You naturally follow, and let others take the lead... the one and only in our family to do so.

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