Saturday, October 31, 2015

One Last Spring in Pennsylvania

I knew I hadn't posted in a while, but wow.  I didn't realize I'd gone multiple months without any action.  There were a few technical difficulties with uploading new pictures but's just been a pretty crazy Summer and Fall, y'all.  Like, moving a family of 6 halfway across the country, getting settled into a new house that's while spacious and in good repair is a long way from our ideal home so there's always something we're working on, and preparing for a 5th baby in 6 years in a brand new location with no built-up support system is just no joke.  It doesn't help that the elementary school bell rings at 7:35am, which is more than a full hour earlier than it did at the old school, and I most often blog in the evenings.  Evenings are really, really short when you have to get up before 6am.

Which are all, of course, very much First World Problems.  But blogging and other non-essential tasks have been very much put aside.  Actually...plenty of essential tasks have not gotten necessary attention as well..but, I'd rather be up to my eyeballs with busy in this blessed life I lead with my wonderful husband, our amazing children that we just can't stop multiplying, and all in our sturdy, safe home that we're all building together than on my own with heaps of time to do whatever I pleased.

But.  On with the show.

I had been hoping to complete the record of our visits with people in Kansas, Missouri, and Oklahoma before backtracking, but those stories will have to wait.

Of course, before we had those visits, and after our long, hard winter, we had one last Spring in Pennsylvania.  It was a pretty fun time.  A SUPER cool thing about having a lot of kids really quickly is how fast your family turns into a big group of PEOPLE who hang out and interact and do stuff together.  Awesome!

It's always fun to see them be friends.  Kendra has been reading books to her siblings for almost a year now, and it's really, really cool to watch.

Such beautiful matching girls!!

The Farnsworths' very first Pinewood Derby!

Epic bed head.

Bridget is just the most delightful person!  Though she's also very wary of strangers so we'll often tell people how friendly and happy she is only to present her and she gives the newbie the stinkiest resting stink face you've ever seen.

She is also 100% DADDY's girl.  Like, sometimes it hurts my feelings a little bit to see how much she prefers him and reflect on how she always has.  But then again, one of the sweetest images in my memory is always going to be one of my husband loving on our children.  It just makes my heart swell up so much it seems like I can feel.

Three of the brother's in Grant's family have such a striking physical resemblance that it has many times been said that they're all the same, just in Small, Medium, and Large.  Here are Medium and Large as a matched set on Easter.

Their sister is in there, and they're not very patient.  I taught her to lock the door for privacy.  I know about needing privacy when using the toilet.  I've been on the other side of this door many times myself.

Elliot finally upgraded out of the same model of cable-temple glasses that he'd been wearing since he was less than a year old into big boy glasses!

We were able to make one last trip out Dayton to visit Grant's brother and his family, which was SUPER nice to do--we loved living driving distance from them and while now we're a good driving distance from other people, we definitely miss the access to these awesome Farnsworths.  Bridget is quite a bit younger and smaller than the cousin closest in age to her, and it was really cute watching him assert himself as NOT the baby in the group.

Baby Selfies!  They never get old.

We were able to hit Chuck E Cheese with some friends just after school finished, it was pretty fun.

One story that is not photo documented was our saga in house-buying.  In mid-April, I took a trip out to Texas and scouted out a bunch of houses in a number of different areas.  We went under contract with one that felt like a pretty great fit for us--it was in a decent location to be a not-horrible commute, it was a large upgrade, but not among the largest we'd seen, it was nice but not so nice that we'd get mad at our kids for being kids and wrecking things from time to time, it was in a culdesaq that was on no-outlet street so VERY little traffic, and also right on a trail that lead to a big running path, and the price was significantly lower than comparable larger houses.

Long story short, the seller had legal issues that prevented him from selling the house so our closing date came and went with no house becoming ours.

We tried not to panic, but it was CRAZY stressful.

So, we sent Grant down this time to go out with our realtor and get a different house the first weekend of June.  Unfortunately, almost all of the houses that I'd seen were gone.  And several great options were bank owned, which were out because we wouldn't be able to wait (bank owned properties are optimal for people who already live in the area, not people on a timeline and a short one at that).  And in a whirlwind of a trip, he found us another house that was significantly bigger and nicer than the first one--and as fate would have it, we met a previous tenant of the first house who gave us some insider information about it that made us grateful to have dodged a couple of bullets.

We did our closing remotely, and to GREAT relief had no problems with the transaction.  We even got to keep our moving date.

And here we have some VERY celebrated signed papers for our very first house!  Seven years of marriage, a fifth baby well on the way, and pretty weird to be adult enough to be home owners.

The very next day, I loaded the kids up while Grant stayed behind and handled the move.
And thus ends the pictures of our time in Pennsylvania.  Our family grew and changed so much in our time in that town and apartment...while we look forward to new growth and adventures down here in Texas, that place will always be significant to us.