Wednesday, July 07, 2010

Quick Update From a Thoroughly Haggered Woman

You're going to have to forgive my blogging habits this summer.

You see, I totally underestimated what it would take to take care of a household on my own. The laundry, the floors, the cooking; so many things I haven't had to worry my pretty little head about for eons, like:

1) my kids spilling stuff on the floor, I used to be like, "no biggie, I run a cloth over it and then the maid will mop later"

2) my kids putting practically clean clothes into the hampers-now I'm pulling stuff out like crazy to cut down on the constant stream of laundry.

3) my trash-now I've got different bins-compost, recycles, trashy trash and a designated trash day with the compost and recyclables being picked up every other week. And if I have extra trash I have to either leave it until the following week or pay extra! Never thought about these things before-I used to just stick whatever I wanted into the hall and it would disappear like magic.

4) finger prints and dirty floors as far as the eye can see.

The really bad thing about ending my overseas life with a good maid is that I want my house clean, I'm used to my house clean-I don't want to live in a sty. I even had to iron this week (gasp!). I got so used to having my shorts and jeans pressed that I had to do it. Previously my "iron" was better known as my dryer. I could probably count the number of times I have ironed in my life on one hand.

I know I'll adjust. (right?) It's got to be harder during summer as well (right?). I've got the kids home all day wanting to be entertained, there's the lawn that needs tended to, and Guapo's back in Brazil for 2 1/2 weeks. So, it can only get easier when school starts, fall comes, and Guapo's here. (right? please, please, please tell me I'm right)

Anyway. Review time.

Much Appreciated Help

Last week we had our first visitors. Guapo's brother and his two oldest boys came out to visit us for a few days just to help around the house and the yard. How awesome is that? And help they did. The biggest job they tackled was the garage which had become a veritable dump. It got to the point where I just opened the garage door from the inside of the house and would huck my garbage onto the quickly growing pile of trash and cardboard. No room for cars, bikes or anything-just trash.

Here's a before with the brothers working on taking down some of the cupboards:

The Home Depot truck they rented to take the trash to the dump (we didn't have any rope to hold stuff on, so they used some wrapping ribbon)

And my car that they used to haul the cardboard:

Here are the "afters", notice both cars parked in the garage and we have room for bikes and such:

Much, much better!

For fun they boys and the kids fished for crawfish in the lake.

Juan Carlos (7 yrs old), who is all about hunting, fishing and catching his own "meat" to feed on these days, begged to eat the crawfish that they caught. In order to realize his dream (and those of the other kids, whom he had gotten excited about his plan), Guapo made them each commit to eat a certain number of crawfish and then he prepared them for them. (I know, disgusting)

We had several left over (imagine that) that Guapo's brother cleverly lined up in the fridge and freezer with their little faces looking right at me to freak me out when I opened the doors. Thank you, Estefano.

Sixteen Days

On our Gaupo family blog, someone posted a survey asking how long it would be until the wimpy "Brazilians" posted about how cold it was here.

The correct answer was "sixteen days". The 4th of July was FREEZING here-in the 50's and it rained the entire night. The kids were sure they saw snow flurries about every five minutes. That didn't stop the die hards of my parents' neighborhood-they had the grill going under a tent and they were lighting stuff off until we just couldn't take it any longer.

I only took one photo because I didn't want to have my camera out in the rain:

More House Photos

Here's our loft area that we turned into an office space. I love it-so peaceful:

And, we now have patio furniture to enjoy the beautiful evenings here (except for the rare nights like the 4th):

All in All

Despite all of the work and the utter lack of free time to play piano and read to my hearts content, I am loving being here. This is the first time in our almost 14 years of marriage that we have moved somewhere "permanently"-we always knew in the seven other places that it would be for a relatively short period of time- and this feels like it's just too good to be true. I love the house, the neighborhood, being near family, the close proximity to schools, shopping, church, and recreational activities, the running trails and the mountains.

But again, I apologize for being a bad blog friend. I will get my act together at some point and be visiting you all shortly. ;) And I know I need a new header-but at this point I don't know what to put there. I don't want it to be a picture of a vacuum cleaner or a heap of dirty laundry, but that would be fairly representative of my new life. I've got to come up with something better.

Just as soon as I sweep the floors (again!) and fold a load of laundry...


Janice said...

Hang in there. Really just hang in there. I can't imagine all that you are going through. What a transition.

Abby said...

You can do it! I know you can. Your house is so beautiful that nobody will care if it's a little messy from time to time anyway;)

Great talking to you the other day! And, I laughed when I read "Estefano."

Head Nurse or Patient- you be the judge said...

You could always hire a maid :)

Well- I would suggest it at least until you are 100 % unpacked and your house is organized- get a YW from the ward- even just a babysitter for a couple of hours a day- that way you can "wean" yourself off the Maid way of life.

I so hear you on the laundry and clean clothes in it- the bain of my existance and the cheif form of torture my children regularly use. I also love the dirty clothes that get put back in drawers.

nikko said...

Is it okay that I am laughing at that first part of your post? ;o)

Good luck on all the unpacking and all the transition-y stuff. So much work and stress. Your home looks beautiful!

(Where in CO are you? I'm nosy and would love to know. You can email me. :o))

Ballerina Girl said...

Ah Gabriela...I understand but my house is so much smaller! I am missing Genec right now...even though she didn't do such a hot job, hahaha!
Sounds like Julio is enjoying this World Cup...and it's funny, I always say that about my girl too...she will always be a little bit Venezuelan!

I miss you so much, love

Super Happy Girl said...

FYI: You're an excellent blog friend! With the international move, unpacking setting your new place and having no maid I didn't even expect you to post/comment for weeks.

I LOVE the home office space. I'm going to have to copy some of those things. Firstborn is joining the army (I know) and his room will become my office...can't wait.

#2 and #4 drive me insane, Thank goodness mine are old and they wash their own clothes and towels...otherwise I'd be tempted to kill them :)

Now go have some fun!

Super Happy Girl said...

BTW, that "Caution Italians" pic on my blog: The Italian soccer team is famous for getting "fouled" all the in they just throw themselves on the ground:

Same could be said for the Argentinians ;)

Maine Mom said...

There will always be something to clean or do around the house. It's so annoying! When you figure out how to keep your home clean AND take care of your kids AND be an active church member...let me know. :-) Hang in there. We're hanging with ya!

Your office does look like a peaceful place. So nice!

Kari said...

Hi, Gabriela!

My heartbreaking adjustment was "I have to cook every day now?" Because I had Mari cooking every weekday, and SOMEtimes making even Saturday's on Friday.

The process of moving really stinks! With a capital S!!! You are doing great. The office space looks fabulous. And I agree with Head Nurse on getting a babysitter to entertain the youngest kids a few hours a week. Teresa is doing that for a mom in the ward who just barely had baby #4.