Look here, please, but with caution.

I'm going to slap a bunch of pictures up right now and ask you to please try to breathe as you browse them. They're awful. I hope they inspire within you an understanding as to why, for so long, I've been embarrassed to tell people that this is the house I live in, even though I love it for its interior. And also why I use the phrase, "We're the sixth house on the left, the white-trashy blue one with paint missing," when telling people how to find my house.

Okay, deep breath, folks. Here goes. You should know, though, that this is pretty much how the house looked when we moved in, made only slightly worse when Nate did some pressure washing and scraping to prep the house for painting. He caulked all over, which actually made an improvement to the appearance (believe it or not) - slight as that improvement might have been, I'm clinging to it.

This is the back deck (we will be staining the deck).

This is one of the attic windows (Nate's desk sits behind it).

This is Hazel's room, at least the two West-facing windows. My desk sits in the attic window above her room, and you can see one of the basement windows just below hers. That's the breezeway on the right, through which you can actually spot some green from the front yard.

And this is the South-facing window looking into her room; it looks onto the breezeway which runs between the house and that garage. This picture is of the siding just above her window.

These pictures are of the kitchen windows. This first one is of the bit of window that faces South. The next is of the stretch of windows that faces East. The third picture is of the siding above the South-facing window. Isn't my house lovely?

Here is our front porch. The door will be painted black, and the porch, stairs, and foundation will all be painted a nice, dark accent color. It's going to look simply stunning.

And here is the North-facing side of the house. The window to the left is our front living room, and the window to the right is our family room.

This house could be considered totally chaotic. Some of the slap-togetherness of the exterior drives me crazy, and I'm hoping that fresh paint will disguise some of its strangeness.

Okay, next post will be an update of the painting process, so hold your horses.


An Update.

Nate's been painting, and I'll get to that in a moment (or at least when I find the pictures on his computer...), but to start here's a [terrible] picture of my 33 week belly. This is the best I can do when it has to be a self-portrait. Nate was working just outside the bathroom window while I was taking pictures of my belly and finally he tapped on the glass.

"What's the flashing?" was his muffled question through the two layers of plastic and tape and the glass.

"Nothing," I lied. I didn't want him to know what I was doing. It was a little embarrassing at the time. I'm not so shy about it right in this moment, which is why you're seeing one of the poor results of my personal photo shoot.

This day in particular had been quite eventful! Let me break it down for you.

This is how Hazel spent a chunk of her day. She was in glorious heaven, splashing away! When she woke up from her nap, I stripped her down and slathered sunscreen all over her super white skin and then had her step into her Little Swimmers diaper. And then I had her step out of it, turned it around, and had her step back in. And then I had her step out of it, turned it around, and then had her step back in again. I'm pretty sure it was on backwards at that point, but after one look at her annoyed little face I wasn't going to switch it around again.

I dressed her in her swimsuit, which I had to explain several times since she'd never worn it before. I talked about eating lunch and then playing in the pool. She had no idea what "the pool" was (except that it could almost sound like "poop," which is one of her favorite words), but she understood the concept of going outside to play. She ate faster than I've ever seen her eat a meal before; after every bite she checked to make sure we were still going outside by asking, "Ou'si'? Poo'?" As she neared finishing her banana, I watched her use both hands to shovel the last few pieces into her mouth; she picked up her plate and handed it to me, saying with a mouth fit to burst, "All done!" And then outside we went.

She was so excited by the water and all the trees, birds, cars, bicycles, grass, bushes, clouds, carpenter ants...Everything brought a thrill with it. I think the most exciting thing, though, was the fact that I let her hold her bubbles and bubble wand. Those are usually restricted, and so when it came time to get out of the pool, she wouldn't let go.

A bath followed pool-time. Her sunscreen is pretty thick and mineral-ly, so I couldn't even think of not bathing her after putting on a good, thick layer all over her little body. She clung to her bubble bottle and bubble wand all through the undressing. She hollered when I made her pull her fist and bubbles through her bathing suit strap - I'm sure she thought I'd be taking it away at any second.

She made it through her bath (I swiped the bubbles and wand when she was distracted by her rubber ducky and shampoo) in fair spirits. She was becoming quite tired of the water by the time we finished with her bath. I got her out of the tub (which is her baby tub; it sits inside our big bathtub - there's a drainage issue with the bathtub right now, so it is full of grime and residue from the pipe system...so gross, and an obvious reason why she still uses her baby tub), dried her off, and dressed her for bed, complete with socks and shoes so she could run around the house until bedtime without getting her feet dirty again.

I went into the kitchen to make her bottle, with her tottering along behind me. She's free to wander through most of the rooms in the house for the most part; I call out her name every 30 seconds or so just to check on where she's at and find out what she's up to. If she doesn't answer back, I go looking for her.

Well, she didn't answer back at one point so I went running to find her. My house is small, so two steps through the kitchen I was in the hallway looking directly into the bathroom. What did I see? Her little feet sticking out from the bathtub, parallel to the floor. As I watched, they shot upward, meaning that she was falling into the bathtub. It all happened so fast: the realization that for the first time in her little life I hadn't emptied the baby tub of its water, the knowledge that the big tub was still full because it drains at a snail's pace, the fact that she was probably face-first in the water of her bathtub...

Her little feet kicked and twisted so that before I was even in the bathroom she was sitting upright in her tub. Her face and the front bit of her hair were wet again, so I assumed she'd gone under for a moment, but she was okay. I saw that in a split second. After my panic took its leave, I started laughing like crazy. She looked a little put-out by my laughter, but I grabbed the camera and took a few pictures. She wouldn't look at me, so this is the best I could get.

What was left to do but grab another towel and get her ready for bed again? And so that's what happened. Here's a picture just after getting dressed for bed for the second time.
I'm pretty lucky that nothing seriously bad happened. It could have been a lot worse than it turned out to be, and I know that that's by the grace of God!

She's a funny little munchkin! She's adding a crazy number of words to her vocabulary right now, most recently pizza, pancakes, and broccoli. I think she's teething again; her refusal to eat much of anything for several days in a row seemed to indicate as much, but last night she ate two whole pieces of pizza and then this morning she ate three kiddo sized pancakes.

Now I'm off to search Nate's computer for painting pictures. The man has been hard at work! Our house looks so much better!