Friday, December 28, 2007


Yet another christmas has come and gone. We had a great time this year (despite having colds) and really appreciated everyone coming to Seattle to join us in our new home. Moira had a great time seeing everyone, and after a little coaching was a real pro at opening presents. We feasted on both christmas eve and christmas and managed to squeeze in all the relatives. Moira couldn't hide her delight when it came to the party hats in the christmas crackers.

To top it off it even snowed on christmas. Luckily it was pretty warm so it didn't impede driving to terribly, but it was beautiful. It's always hard to get everyone together with such a large family and so many different things going on, but it's well worth the effort. I feel very fortunate to have met Nick and to be so warmly accepted into the family. Regardless of all of the differences it's a family full of love.

Kess manages to take a break from staring incessantly at the frisbee

Ross and Paul enjoy an afternoon cigar

Our big gift to Moira was a play kitchen, some assembly required was a bit of an understatement, but luckily we had lots of help.

Hmmm . . . maybe we should look at the directions

Monday, December 24, 2007

Our big day downtown

Well since Santa was a bust we decided to head downtown for some other christmas fun. First stop was the christmas carousel. This was a big hit with Moira who requested another ride after the first, and wanted to stay on longer but mom and I were both starting to feel sick from all the spinning. Moira got really excited every time she caught a glimpse of the carousel for the remainder of the day.

Next stop was the teddy bear room. This is in a fancy pants hotel in downtown, and it's pretty much what it sounds like. A room decorated up with lots of teddy bears. We were the only ones there at the time so we had a full on photo shoot. It was also a nice break from the pouring rain and cold outside. Everyone had lots of fun and I look forward to going again next year.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Pretty Funny . . .

My mom e-mailed me this link. It takes a little bit to load up, but it's worth the wait.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Pretty cool . . .

The first thing that's pretty cool is that I managed to catch chaos. He had traveled to our old house again. After a week in the cold he seems to be a little more content to stay inside. Unfortunately he has a really bad ear infection, so it's off to the vet today. I'm not sure how long he's had the infection, but I would guess at least a week, as it's very swollen. Having suffered from ear infections my whole life I know just how painful these can be, and perhaps this is the cause of all of his wanderings.

The second thing that's pretty cool is the Bellevue Botanical garden in the winter. We had lots of fun there at various times in the summer, and were delighted by our trip last night. They put up Christmas lights to mimic the flowers, they're all LED and they are only on for 5hrs a night, so it's even fairly environmentally friendly. It's also free to go, which is always a plus! Moira was pretty excited by the whole thing and ran around at top speed squealing with delight at each new set of lights.

The third thing that's pretty cool is that Nick's Cousin Abbi has moved to Tacoma from Atlanta, and she came with last night. She got to meet Moira for the first time and escape the motel six she's been calling home for the evening. Luckily she gets her apartment today so she can start moving in.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Maybe next year santa . . .

Well mom convinced me to give pictures with santa a try. After one look at that jolly fat man, Moira declared no, no ,no and headed outta there. Despite trying to entice her with candies, she wasn't going anywhere near Santa. We all had a good laugh, and even though we don't have pictures with santa here's the rest of the christmas pictures to supplement what went out with the christmas cards.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Back online

Well as of yesterday we were once again able to get online. We've finished several projects around the house . . .
-Nick installed a dog door to the garage so we could keep the pets food and cat box out there. The only problem is that Moira also fits nicely through the door so we have to keep it closed all of the time. It gives us some incentive to finish unpacking the garage so it wont matter if she makes it in there.

-Nick, with a little help from Moira, finally managed to fix all of the leaks in the bathroom. This project had become much larger than it's initial appearance. The most frustrating part was knowing that we plan on remodeling the bathroom next year and all that work would just be removed, but we really needed a downstairs toilet and sink!

-We also got the front door painted and the new locks installed. This had become more pressing since Moira liked to play with the old key (it had an led light in it). She had wandered off with it a few times and it was always an adventure finding out where she'd left it. We got to use a gizmo at the store which used a green paint chip from the outside of the house to tell us what the best colors to use would be. It really only confirmed my choice which was purple, and convinced Nick I wasn't insane.

Our little wandering kitty has left us again. After spending five days in the house he dashed out the door sat. morning and failed to return. Hopefully he's headed back to the old house again. We plan to try one more time to convince him that this house isn't evil. If we find him Nick's going to set him up with a deluxe hidey hole in the garage and one in our bedroom. If this doesn't work we'll need to find him a new home, so if you have space for a kitty let us know.

Tons of other stuff has happened, but I'll just leave you with a little preview of some Christmas card cuteness . . .

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Unpacking and other woes

Well we finally have some rooms in the house looking pretty good. We've even managed to conquer a few projects on our ever growing list of things to do. It seems like every project we start leads quickly to another. The 2hr job to replace a leaky stop valve under the sink is now going on day 3. Nick pulled out the cabinet to get better access to valve only to find mold, which extended under the linoleum. So we pulled that up and got everything sufficiently bleached and dried and back in place to find that now that one leak was fixed another had occurred within the facet so now we have to replace the gaskets inside the faucet. We have gotten a lot done :

-repaired leaky shower control and faucet

-installed proper venting for the dryer and got washer/dryer hooked up

-cleaned up the yard some more

-unpacked tons of stuff

-finally figured out where all of our utilities come from

On a sadder note our kitty chaos has disapeared. He got out some time mon night. Neither of us actually saw him leave, but he is nowhere in the house, and we've seen no trace of him since. Hopefully he'll find his way home since I doubt that he'd let anyone catch him.

Moira serves up some fun

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Moira's Big Girl Room

So I've been giving an obscene amount of thought to what theme I want to use for Moira's room. I was thinking butterflys and fairies, but Nick said no way. So them we decided on dragons/fantasy we already have a few things that fit this idea and it seemed to suit both our requirements. Well the only dragon bed sets I could find cost big bucks so the next plan was to make my own bed spread, but I couldn't find anything sufficiently girly until last night. The new plan is to buy a comfortor cover and add this to the top, and then go from there for curtains etc. I e-mailed the e-store to double check and they say it's 45" fabric so I guess you get two stripes in 45".

The other thing we've aquired for Moira is a nice chest of drawers and matching end table. I scored these for free off craigslist. They need a paint job (and we just happen to have lots of purple paint) and a piece of trim replaced, but they're solid pine and very sturdy.

Friday, November 09, 2007

STILL waiting

Well the house failed to close today, and because it's a holiday weekend it will not close until tues or wed next week. A couple of things came up at the end . . . first the guy who owns the place didn't show up to sign the paper work, then we discovered a lien on the house for $750 for a delinquent water bill. Last but not least the short sale company, which is owned by the listing agents husband made some sort of clerical error shorting the bank $900. The bank will have none of that since the home owner already shorted them 50k so they had to do a bunch of paper shuffling today. On the upside they haven't asked us for any more money and we should get about $400 back from the escrow company since we paid as if we were taking possession today. Our realtor has assured us that this is quite normal in short sales and that our is actually proceeding more easily then others he's worked on. After a little searching on the Internet our experience has been pretty painless compared to other stories online. It looks like it should be no problem to get everything squared away early next week, so the big move is still on for next weekend!

Surprise Adventure

My friend Aaron went to sheep herding with us last week and afterward we met a friend of his and took his plane for a quick trip. It felt and sounded a little like launching a volkswagon bug into the air, but it was pretty cool and I even got to fly for a bit. I've never been up in a small plane before and it was quite a different experience from large passenger planes.

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Sunday, November 04, 2007

The House!

Some of you may know that we've been involved in a very long and drawn out house closing process. Well we will finally be closing on the 9th! The house was just shy of foreclosure which makes all negotiations take twice as long since the sellers bank also had to be involved in everything, and apparently they make decisions by committee. If you're wondering if we need anything to help fill up our new home you'll find "the list" after all the pictures. If you're thinking gee I sure wish I had a home improvement project for the 10-11th you can come help with some of ours. If you're thinking man I'd do just about anything for some free pizza, you're in luck again because that's what you'll get if you help us move on the 17th.

The front

The back
you can just see the edge of the basket ball court (hopefully to be destroyed and replaced by a veggie garden at some point in the future) Moira is modeling the deck and gazebo. The house has two sliders situated about 4ft apart. I guess one just wasn't enough?

front door

living room. The fire place appears to have never had a fire in it. Unfortunatly the place has electric forced air heat so we hope to replace that with gas once we have more $$ and to supplement that with either a stove insert in the fireplace or adding an addtional wood stove in the large family room which you'll see in a bit.
The family room. While it doesn't look that big in the picture this room is quite large and will house all of Moira's toys.
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The garage has been conveted into two rooms. Their mostly finished, but there's no heat in this part of the house.
The kitchen is in between the dining room and the family room. We've decided to put the dining room table in the dining area rather than the dining room because we don't think we'll ever use it if it's relegated to its own room. Of course that leaves us with a silly empty room right off the living room, but we'll figure something out.

Moira inspects the cabinets


If you see a good deal on craigslist or know anyone looking to get rid of any of the following let us know!

Need to have

help updating the breaker box (if you're interested I'll send you the inspetion report)


washer/dryer done, yeah for craigslist

lawn mower and weed eater

a few light fixtures

curtains for downstairs (I'm making these so Jo-annes coupons and gift cards or sewing help would rock)

mini blinds for upstairs

extension ladder

regular ladder

Nice to have . . .

100 yellow daffodils, and any other flower bulbs

book shelves x3

oak stereo cabinet with door (to keep little fingers away from the buttons)

wheel barrow

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Trick or Treat!

Awww. . . the cutest little pirate

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This year Moira was initiated in to the time honored tradition of mooching candy off of complete strangers. We started out the evening with a trip to Microsoft for the company halloween party. They had lots of stuff for the kids and the theme this year was pirates, so Moira fit right in. We followed that up with a couple of trips to the neighbors and called it a night.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Aren't I Cute

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Moira has discovered she gets lots of attention if she prances around in her fancy hat. Hopefully this will carry over into actually wearing it outside. Other than that I'm off for a weekend of flyball. Of course I'll enjoy the freedom of being away from home for the weekend, but because of baby #2 I wont be able to take full advantage of a weekend to myself. I'll be continuing my judges training, and will still need to find one more tournament with the correct level of supervising judge to complete the first phase. This unfortunately is not as easy as it sounds and I might have to travel out of state. Luckily they have said I can have a 6month maternity leave since newborns and flyball don't mix particularly well.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Toddler School

I thought I'd post some pictures from Moira's school so everyone could see exactly what all she gets to do. There's basically two groups of kids in the class, a bunch that just turned 2 and some the same age as Moira. Moira's very busy and independent, she doesn't really bother with me much and just does her own thing while we're there.
The master at her craft

Moira's absolute favorite thing to do at school is paint. She makes a bee-line for that area and stays there for at least 30min. I have bought her some paints for at home, but I haven't been brave enough to get them out.

Other fun things include the slide . . .

. . . and the teeter-totter.

If you ever need to be the pied piper of toddlers I strongly recomend bubbles, lots and lots of bubbles. The kids drop whatever they are doing and come running when the teacher puts on the bubble song!

In addition to all this there's some snackin' and singing. The best part is that Moira always takes a HUGE nap after school!

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

potatoes and pumpkins

We headed out to a pumpkin patch as part of a "family activity" for Moira's toddler group. Moira wasn't terribly impressed with the pumkins, but she had fun clowning around with dad and petting the goat.

Moira's favorite toy right now is a potato. She has three of them, but one potato in particular is her favorite. She carts it around all day in a measuring cup or bucket. She decided to have a nice snuggle with it this morning.

Friday, September 28, 2007

Moira's a pot head and other cute pics

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People these days . . .

So Moira and I had a pretty exciting morning. Some of you may remember that I had fainting spells when I was pregnant with Moira. I had thought I'd avoided them this time since I'd been feeling fine, but that was not the case. After cruising around Fred Meyer for 30min I got really dizzy in the checkout line. As soon as I was done paying I took Moira out of the cart and sat on the floor just past the checkout. As soon as I felt a little better I decided to move to a bench so I didn't look quite so odd. Well next thing I knew I woke up laying on the bench and Moira was gone. Luckily she had only gone about 10 feet away to mess with the toy vending machines, but it was pretty scary.

Now granted I should have told someone I wasn't feeling well, but I was within 3 ft of 2 different employees and countless other people. I figured if I actually passed out someone would come to my aid. Well not one person even asked if I was ok. There was one woman who gave me a bit of a double take as I was getting up, but didn't offer any help. Now I could see someone thinking I was a bit odd and just taking a bit of a catnap but the toddler roaming around w/o supervision should have clued them in a little. Anyway that's my rant for the day! I'm feeling fine now and Nick's going to come home early so I can rest. Hopefully this will pass soon as it did with Moira.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Toddler School

Well Moira has started school. She goes for a couple of hours once a week. She had her third class today, and seems to really enjoy it. It's basically two hours of total chaos with some singing and art projects. Oddly enough I get college credit for it:) Not that I'll ever have any use for it, but I find it amusing that I can earn college credit by watching Moira paint. One of the many nice things about it is that she gets to do art projects that we would never do at home . . . here's her latest masterpiece.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Fickle Landlords

Well last monday our landlord called to say they were selling the place and we had to be out by the end of october. We immediately went into crisis mode. . . for those of you who don't know our family is going to get a little bigger in April. This only added to feeling that we really had to get things together in a short amount of time unless we wanted to rent for another year. So we now have appts with loan officers throughout the week and a realtor and we spent all labor day packing. Well today my landlord informed me that they are not selling and we don't have to move. While relieved I was pretty pissed. You'd think you would be sure of your decision before you told your tenants they were out on the street. Since we've already started packing and we'll need another bedroom anyway we've decided to forge ahead in the home buying direction. Now fortunately we can take our time and don't have the same sense of urgency. We'd like to see what prices are going to do in the next couple of months. We've already seen several of the houses we were interested in sitting on the market for months and then lowering the price 20k or more. People are starting to realize they just can't get inflated prices anymore. I'll keep everyone updated on baby #2 and house prospects!

Thursday, August 30, 2007


Here's a little game that Amy passed on . . .
RULES - Post rules before giving the facts - Players start with eight random facts/habits about themselves - People who are tagged need to write their own blog about their eight things and post these rules - At the end of your post you need to tag six people and list their names - Leave them a comment on their blog, telling them they have been tagged and not to forget to read yours.

1. When I was a freshman in highschool I loved the cure. In fact the first cd I ever bought was standing on the beach staring at the sea. Of course by my senior year I'd sold them all off to the used cd shop, but to this day I can still easily sing along with any cure song on the radio.

2. I was in Air Force Jr ROTC in highschool. I was pretty in to it for a couple of years. I attended 2 summer leadership schools. In one I ranked 10th out of 500 in another I was 2nd out of about 300. In addition to this I was the Honor Guard Commander aka. sabre team I was smallest and only female member of the team. A glorious military career thrown aside . . . I'm the one on the right.

3. I often daydream about the fall of human civilization. Regardless of the cause I know exactly what stores I would loot and what supplies I would collect first. So whether we are faced with a cataclysmic natural disaster or zombies take over the city I'll be prepared. This also carries over to my friends . . . I realized some time ago that I categorize people into two groups. Those that could survive the apocalypse and those that would perish.

4. I really love my dog. I mean REALLY. I think she's beautiful and I could watch her run all day. I take pride in the fact that someone else threw her out and I have trained her to be a champion. Pretty much everyone else hates Kess. She's very hyper and needy, so I guess she's lucky she found me!

5. I have horrible eyesight . . . I'm a devout contact wearer so very few people have ever seen me in my glasses. I actually got a hip pair in Capitol Hill after we moved to Seattle so I don't mind them as much, but generally I only wear them when I'm sick. I'm too blind to get the eye surgery so until science advances enough I'm stuck with my contacts.

6. I take a ridiculous amount of pictures. Most of them are of Moira or Kess. It's very hard to delete pictures of you're baby. As if to say that she wasn't cute enough at some particular moment and therefore it warrants the trash bin.

7. I'm a tv addict. While we don't have cable we do have rabbit ears and in Seattle that gets you all the major channels and PBS. I've also discovered most of the shows I like are online now. I could watch tv for hours on end. Luckily this summer I've been able to read instead of watching quite so much tv. I go through 1-2 books a week. Thank goodness for libraries.

8. I wanted to come up with something really spectacular for the last one, but I can't. So here's several quick random facts. I was born in Vredenburg, South Africa. I grew up in Texas. I played the violin for 5 years, but stopped when we moved and my new school didn't have an orchestra. I like putting videos on youtube . . . I check them often for comments and to see how many views they've gotten It took me 10 years to get a degree in Biology with an emphasis in Zoology, and I don't think it will ever get me a job. I guess that's all. I don't really have anyone to tag but my sister Nicola Liebsch.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Kess and I kick some tail

Kess and I competed in the Northwest Regional Disc Dog Championship. The top dogs from 7 states converged in Mountlake Terrace, WA to compete for invitations to worlds. We took first place in both Novice Distance and Accuracy and Team Distance and Accuracy. It was super fun and I achieved my highest score ever with Kess making 9 out of 10 catches. In addition to this I have arranged for another competitor to "borrow" Kess. Since I'm super busy I just can't keep up with everything Kess is good at Kess will train and compete with my friend Aaron for the next year. He has been a world finalist with his dog Leo. Unfortunately his dog is getting older and is ready to retire from constant competition. So it's pretty much a match made in heaven. I get more time and he gets a dog he can compete with. While I may come back to frisbee some time in the future having a dog activity every weekend during the summer was getting to be a bit much.
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