Sunday, September 16, 2012

Life update, and Four-Legged Babysitters RULE!!

Hullo, folks... I imagine some of you have been wondering what happened to us!   Well, in the grand tradition of life, we got busy, we got stressed, and little things like updating the world on Casa Nolan just sorta fell by the wayside.  Woopsie!

And then last week the "something's gotta give" finally gave.  God came through.  We found someone willing to buy, and sold our gas-guzzling SUV.  We were able to get financing on an '08 Chevy Impala with 20,000 fewer miles on the engine and WAAAY better gas mileage, for a payment we can actually afford.  We put a deposit on the plumbing repair that we've been stalled on for a month, so in a week or so we'll have the ability to take showers instead of bird baths in the sink.  We got caught up on all our bills, paid off the funeral home, and scheduled a move-out at our storage locker for the end of the month.  Our "thanks for choosing AT&T" prepaid Visa finally showed up, two hundred bucks on that sucker.  (Btw, if you sign up w/ AT&T and are looking for your incentive card, be aware that you have to actually go to their rewards center, either online or by phone, and "redeem" the card, which I'm betting most people forget to actually do, which is why they can afford to be so generous.  Sneaky, sneaky.)  

We booked John a hotel room for next Tuesday night so he can go test for a new job that would provide retirement, benefits, medical, long term job security, and a pay rate that would actually allow us to start saving again, and move us into a beautiful area with plenty of hunting and fishing and still have a couple of decent size cities within easy reach.  Oh, and now we have a vehicle that actually makes it cheaper for him to drive there rather than fly.   We set aside money for the bills that hit at the end of the month, and to pay for our old house to have a proper clean-out so it can be ready for the renters our old realtor has available.  We set aside money for a return trip out to the new job site so that when they call and offer John a position (That's right, I said WHEN), we can all drive out and have a good look at where we would actually be living before we commit to the move.  I finally managed to freecycle an old china cabinet that was taking up space & gathering dust in the garage, leading me to hope that I stand a prayer of eliminating the ridiculous amount of extra STUFF this family has acquired over the past decade.  Last week I picked up a music student, so hurrah for putting that music degree to work!  And it looks like I may even be able to pick up a new computer to save me from my elderly and increasingly uncooperative laptop.

So there's the update on our lives in general. 


Yes, yes, I hear you, no need to shout.  *wink*

JJ is doing awesome. :)  

He's over twenty pounds now, and it's still all length, the boy is TALL, almost twenty-eight inches at his 9 month appointment.  He's been teething with a vengeance lately, and OH the drool, the crankies, the baby drama!!  We're mostly down to one nap these days, and typically 2-3 hours, though occasionally we have a very early morning and the two-nap day resurfaces for a week or so.  He's dropped his morning Zantac entirely, and we're beginning to wean him off the evening dose, though that's proving a bit more difficult, and the one night I actually forgot it was an unpleasant flashback to reflux hell.

Just an aside... the height is something that I intellectually knew, but it didn't really sink in until we were at a family get-together a couple of weeks back and I actually saw him next to another baby!  One of the extended cousins has a daughter twice JJ's age, and when I stood him up next to this actively toddling little girl (JJ can't stand independently yet) I was stunned to realize he was taller than the 18 month old!

And still with the puppy-dog feet!

Speaking of puppy-dogs...

Lady is being absolutely wonderful with JJ.  

I was trying for a different shot entirely... she had laid her head and front paws down across JJ's lap.  When she heard the 3-2-1 beeping from the laptop, she picked up her head, so I didn't quite get the shot I wanted, but it turned out super-cute anyway!  I mean, with the EARS!!!

Last pediatric appointment, I showed his doctor what happened the first time I let him play with a pencil.  I don't have a pic of that one (cuz it's filed away in the bedroom and JJ is asleep!), but suffice it to say she looked at me doing that stunned blinking thing and asked me if I had birthed a mini-Picasso.  LOL.  SO, yesterday I gave JJ crayons for the first time, and this is what he did:

Lighting's not so great, but you get the idea.  
No, seriously, he did that.  
I drew a couple of swirls with the green 
to get him started, but the rest is all JJ!!

He's starting to experiment with standing up on his own too. :)
Reeeeeaaaaaaally wants to move, my little man does.

Now, to finish up today's monster update, I bring you word on my feline babysitter...

Remember this?

And this?

Now we have this.

Just in the last couple of weeks, Minnows has begun to actively help with entertaining and alerting me to JJ's activities.  He's started sitting at the bedroom door meowing, not to be let in (because I'm not in there!), but to let me know that JJ is awake from his nap.  As JJ has gotten more mobile and communicative, Minnows has started purposely entertaining him, by which I mean running into the bedroom when I have to leave JJ in his pack'nplay for a moment, jumping into the pack'nplay to be petted (read: smacked on), or (just saw this one today) deliberately sitting on the bed with his tail JUST BARELY within reach and twitching it to keep JJ's attention while I deal with whatever it was outside the bedroom.  Highly hilarious, extremely cute, and it earns said kitteh much with the luvvins.

Well, that's everything, folks... may our lives continue to go well in the future so that it's not so long between posts again!

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