Monday, March 30, 2009

Lots of Life Going On

Gosh, so much has gone on since last I posted. I apologize for my tardiness. Let's see...where to start!

I guess that would have to be the kitchen. My, oh my. So much has been done and Ric has only to finish the tile backsplash. He's promised to have it done by this weekend. I promise to post pictures just as soon as it is finished. Here's what we've done: arched the window over the sink and the doorway between the family room and the back play room to mimick the arches in the cabinetry. Redid all the ceiling lighting, new fixtures, new and additional outlets. Stripped one ceiling of that god awful popcorn. Repainted: 3 rooms, (kitchen, family room, and back room) including ceilings, walls, baseboards, window trim, all other trim, door jams, and touched up paint in the living room. Stripped and restained door. Tile work on the floor due to different foot print of cabinets. Hung new microwave above stove. New sink, fixtures and plumbing. All new cabinets AND countertops, including a new wine bar! We started this project in January so our process has lasted just under 3 months and believe it or not, Ric and I still love each other and are still amazed at how well it has gone.

I want to publicly thank Matthew B., Ric's faith sharing group, Cindy and Lila, Sheila, and Lance. All of you played an important role. Daniel: son, you're the best. You've had to live through this. You have been wonderful.

Next on the list: I DROVE (18 hours one way) to McPherson, Kansas with two girlfriends (met up with 10 other women) and spent 5 days in a beautifully restored victorian home and scrapbooked. It was wonderful. Oh, yes, I did stop long enough to get a great massage. All I can say, is that I kicked butt and finished 116 pages. It really was quite relaxing. Thanks go out to all you wonderful women but most especially to Tish for orgainizing the week (you rock) and to my traveling buddies and roomies - Erika and Debbee - what a privilege it was to spend that kind of time with you. Just a note: I did plan the timing of this trip so that I would be GONE when the kitchen was without any cabinets, countertops, or sink!!! Again, Ric and Daniel - you two are awesome. I know how difficult it was to live here for a week without any of that!

Next: My sister, Jenny (the baby of the family) was diagnosed with breast cancer and underwent a bilateral mastectomy last Friday. Thankfully, she is doing great and the good news is that the tumor was smaller than anticipated, they got very clear margins, AND no lymph nodes are involved. Consequently, and again very thankfully, no radiation or chemo. Jenny is the second sister to have been diagnosed with breast cancer so we were all pretty concerned.

Next: Our darling daughter, Rachel, celebrated another birthday (23rd). It was great having all the kids over for dinner. Ric worked his usual magic in the kitchen and we had a yummy dinner. The next day she flew to New York to visit some friends. I'm sure you see it coming. Yup, I was in Kansas, she was in New York and called me to "talk" about moving to New York. So, as of now, her goal is to be there by the first of September. She already had a job before she left and is being held until she gets there in September. What a go getter. I believe in my heart that this is what she was born to do and be. I've so enjoyed finally having her back in the same town as us so I am going to miss her deeply. I have only Ric and me to blame. We spend our time and energy, and all our love on forming our children to become functional, happy, healthy, confident adults and then when that really happens and they do EXACTLY what they are meant to do....we hate it!!! (tehehe)

Of course, plans for Easter are well under way. Our traditional after Easter Vigil party is set. We're using that as our inauguration of the new kitchen. Then on Easter Sunday, sister Bobbi will again (as tradition has it) host the Easter potluck brunch. We're looking forward to that. We're hoping that Jenny will feel up to making an appearance.

Not to stop there, the following Sunday, April 19th is Gabrielle's 1st birthday. My, how time has just flown by. I've been working on an incredibly cute project and will finish it this weekend. I will post pictures after she her birthday. I want it to be a surprise. Just be it known that there will be approximately 60-75 man hours into it......but sooooooooo worth it! I must say, "IT'S STINKING CUTE!!!"

During this first quarter of the year we also received news that my brother will receive his membership into the grandparents club in September AND that his second daughter will be getting married on August 15th. I'm so excited about both but particularly happy because Anny will be getting married not only on my birthday, but on the Feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary into Heaven. Congrats Charles & Margaret; Elizabeth & Kevin; and Anny & Brian!

My brother Phil's son, Brian, also announced his engagment to Amy Tao. A beautiful young lady from China. Not sure when the wedding will be. That will depend on when she can get her visa and travel to the US. We're all thrilled with our kids. They really shine!!!

I think that's probably ENOUGH!!! (at least for now). Life is never a dull moment at the Duran house so................stay tuned!!!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Lindsay had to go to Tucson for a couple of days for school (work) and Thomas had to work late so we were blessed to have Gabrielle spend a couple of days with us. Uncle Daniel and Aunt Rachel also got to spend quality time with her. What fun we had. She is just so entertaining and such a joy to have around.

She's now 10+ months old and has hit so many milestones. She's now not only crawling but pullin up. Of course, she's quite pleased with herself with her accomplishments. She's completely on table food and off the bottle and loving it! It's hard to imagine that she'll be a year old in a short 6-7 weeks. We're all, once again, marveled at the speed of time!