Friday, December 26, 2008

Okay Val, here's some pictures of our progress...

here's mark loading our dumpster in the driveway full of destructo materials - cabinets, old flooring, plaster, and carpet. i'm not really sure if they'll charge us for all the snow in there too?

old floor, new floor
laying down the lauan on the old wood floor to prepare for the new vinyl kitchen floor. nikao has loved helping papa on our kitchen project. each morning he lets us know that he is dressing for work.
leannora getting a turn at a new kind of kitchen work

even able got to "help" a bit. it's fun to watch him imitate the work that's going on. we've had to corral him in the pack -n- play some to keep him out of too much trouble.

part of kim's under construction cooking methods - stirring food on a step stool for the microwave on the fridge in the dining room

our "sink" is a couple of totes in the bathtub. this is Christmas day. grandma sara offered to do the dishes, but kim wanted proof of her 7 month pregnant belly and the daily adventures of remodeling.

we'll have to give a view of our other kitchen/dining areas spread over 4 rooms in the future.

unfortunately we missed some really great photo opportunities of trying to lay out, cut, and glue our new vinyl flooring. mark amazingly wrestled a 30x12 roll of vinyl out across the 18x10 kitchen, through the doorway, and into the 10x5 mudroom without creating any holes!
bill and sara helped us glue the stuff down and roll it out with our rolling pin on Christmas eve. but the pictures below show our progress and the new floors all installed!

grandpa strub came to help us and got to take part in the major transformation. today we accomplished installing can lights, paneling, and a few of the new cabinets as well as patching the mud room walls and kitchen ceiling.


(check this post out again as we might add a few photos here instead of creating a new post.)

Christmas time

Here's the children decorating this year's Christmas tree. In case you're trying to figure it out, we tore off the plaster to start a project, then hung plastic and lights and ornaments. Yup, it's an odd year.

Christmas celebrating with Grandpa Bill, Grandma Sara, and Daisy - December 24 -26

Grandpa Bill reads the children one of their presents.

Able enjoys his new ball.

Lots of giving.

Nikao's a tired boy after only half a day of celebrating.

A Christmas visit at Great Grandpa and Grandma Hartzell's house
December 27
Grandpa and Grandma had prepared some grab bag gifts to share along with yummie snacks and goodies for our quick little Christmastime visit.

Hogan is holding Great Grandpa Hartzell's childhood teddy bear.
It was repaired as a gift for Grandpa this year. Pretty neat!

Strub, Bentz, and Milligan family Christmas at Grandpa and Grandma Strub's
December 29 - 31

December 29, 2008
Happy 4th Birthday Daniel Lee Bentz!

8 Strub grandchildren!

2 cute grand daughters!

thank you for the Christmas presents!

Hogan's helping with the gift wrap galore cleanup.

Coming Soon:

Christmas Celebration 2009

We will be traveling to Hudson, WI January 8 & 9 to visit Uncle Matt, Aunt Monica, cousin Ava and to meet our new nephew Luke Elijah Milligan!

So here's handsome Luke at one month.

Bedtime stories with Uncle Matt.
Even Ava tries to call her daddy Uncle Matt in all the excitement of cousin fun.

We made time to play with Matt too. Matt and Monica introduced us to a new game - Settlers of Catan. Mark was having fun playing with our new camera. He took the picture of the game, so maybe it's worth adding to the blog?

Mark played with different camera settings for quite a while. This was my favorite shot.

Ava is sure a cutie!
This is her surprize look.

Well, we ended up getting to stay an extra day. That made time for more playing, yummy snacking, and Settlers fun late into the night. We had a rematch round. Mark won. I suppose we're all a little tired of Matt wining all the time. We also got to see the house that Matt and Monica currently have an offer in on in Hudson. That was fun too.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Our Kitchen

This WAS our kitchen.

The big boys took out some cabinets all by themselves.

Here's Kim trying to fit in one last load of dishes before I remove the machine.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

cloud room part two

here are a variety of perspectives of the pretty cloud room
the momma wanted the room to have the look of a night sky,
so of course we added glow-in-the-dark stars to the ceiling!

one day we hope that this will be our girl's bedroom
for now, Leannora shares the room with Able

Leannora loves to look out the window from her bed

she really loves to see the moon!

we had fun taking pictures of the cloud room
Leannora, Nikao, and Able were my helpers

July 29, 2008 cloud room done
August 6 - Leannora gets to sleep in her new room!

so the silly story goes . . . the momma spent 6 months trying to complete what started as a simple idea. imagine that!?! she didn't actually work for those 6 months. (you may want to review the cloud room - part one post in august 2008.) we began this adventure at the end of february. the first attempt of painting was not the picture hoped for, so the papa gave the momma permission to pick out the night sky blue color she had dreamed up. the momma chalked out the cloud positions and excitedly painted the sky and then had no idea how to continue. we invited some artistic friends over for a meal and to ask for their advice and help. they kindly taught the momma how to blend the clouds just right. the technique turned out to be beautiful, but not so simple and very time consuming - lots of twisting and blending the white and blue. the momma got pretty tired of twisting.
then we were expecting company - a big family. the momma thought it would be good to clean up the painting room so our friends could use the open space. well, we got a vacation from the project. for a few months or so the room just waited for us to prep it for more painting. (the momma procrastinated for a while.) we finally returned to the twisting. even the papa pitched in in. and then, with dilligence, it only took a few weeks to finish off! yahoo!

the best part of all was giving the gift of a fun bedroom to our little lady
sweet dreams!

and the story continues . . .

cousin Daniel celebrated his 4th birthday with a big boy bed
Leannora gladly shared her bed
she was so excited to see what his new bed looked like
upon seeing her old bed in his room she said,
"it doesn't look like a girl bed anymore"

so once again Leannora is waiting to return to her room
we will be moving a set of bunk beds to the cloud room
in the waiting time Leannora gets to sleep on the top bunk
in the boy's room
Able is alone in the cloud room
and this has worked out well because he has been a grumpy teether

then once the new baby arrives
things might get switched around again
wow! we could have cloud room parts 3, 4, 5 . . .

crazy face milligans

here's a hogan picture taken by himself. hogan actually took most of these pictures with the camera we gave him last Christmas (it was our old digital camera that still works well and is pretty kid friendly.) anyways, we love his perspectives as they are a pretty true picture of our family.

owen has some great expressions that's for sure!
an able funny face
legoland living room
leannora must be dreaming up some dollhouse family adventure here or maybe she's about to roll her eyes over the idea of sharing her favorite pink car with nikao?
sorry - i haven't figured out how to turn these pictures the right way. but this one's too fun to pass up. cowboy hogan is taped up to his bedroom wall.
able's a bit silly with his disheveled hairdo
leannora looks
nikao is under his favorite purple blanket in the background of the above picture. and below you can see owen's tongue sticking out of the corner of the photo.

hair cut night in the milligan house. owen's done and looks like he's about to knock out his dad here.
daisy milligan - grandpa bill and grandma sara's dog
able's 2 teeth smile
grape flavored chipmunk cheeks. oh, or maybe those are olives?

okay, so not all of these are crazy face photos. some are quite handsome!
a bunch of cute kiddos waiting for some pictures to print out.