New Blog

I just want to let you know that I am done having so many Japanese comments posted on our blog and have switched to a new one.  I'm hoping that this will do it - the change is better explained on the new one.  So change the first part of the address to stanleypie and you will find us there.  If those instructions are too vague, contact me and I will let you know what it is.


Maiby's Stuff

I don't like the formatting of the pics - it's changed from what it once was, and now it's a lot more difficult for me to place them where I want them, and there's always too much blank space.  Darn it.  but on to the posting...

Here is Maiby 'making a monster' with her pj's.  She likes to make monsters several times a week, either before changing into pj's or when she has picked her clothes out before we come in to get her in the mornings.

The other night, she wanted to put on a 'show'.  She lined the kid chairs up and put some dolls on them, and then made sure she had her mommy & daddy's attention and then started drumming on a few different toys.  I didn't take a video, but the picture can give you the basic idea.  It wasn't very long each time - she is a lot more embarrassed about things when Daddy's around and would only drum one or two times.

And here she is as an elephant.


Small Game of Catch-Up & Big Changes

Well, things are still going great here in Michigan.  We love our new apartment, and James is enjoying his job.  And the more I get to know them, the more I like them, too.

Here is a surprise that James received from his work a few days before he started:

And on his first day, he brought home a baby blanket personalized with Scout's name and date of birth. 

We have found a great beach at Tunnel Park, and Maiby LOVES the water, even though it's been around 60 degrees each time we've gone in.

Here's a picture of our happy baby, learning to laugh.  It's super cute.
As for the change I mentioned, this is the before:
Here's the in-between:
And the end result!

Oh, and this is why they say not to keep bottled hair dye around for too long.  We are just glad that we weren't at church when the bottle of BLUE dye exploded in the bathroom, so we were able to clean it up right away.  This is the ceiling.


Terms of Endearment

In the past few months, Maiby has started calling a lot of people 'honey.'  At first, I tried to get her to stop, because it was mainly me and it was a little bothersome.  But then she started using it for a lot of people, especially when she wanted to know what was going on.  "Whatcha doing, honey?" or "Whatcha need, honey?"  Then it started getting pretty cute.

It's on longer honey, now, and I'm not sure how I feel about my 2-year-old calling me "babe".



So we have had internet at our place for about a week now, and it's great.  But it has one major flaw - we get kicked off ALL THE TIME!!  We are using a router, so we thought that maybe the concrete walls were interfering, even though there aren't doors between where the everything is set up, but even when we directly connect the computer to the modem it still kicks us off. 

The point of me writing this is to let you know that I am reading my friends' blogs and trying to comment, but more than half the time they won't load (or load without the pics and background), and then they won't load correctly so I can't leave comments when I try.  So congratulations to my friends who announced their upcoming third child, hooray to those who are moving closer to home, the Cirque du Soleil date sounded like a blast - I love those guys (we saw Mystere in Vegas), and I am enjoying a lot of other things that I've been reading.

I will keep trying and if we continue to have problems, we will be contacting our server or switching to another company...


We Love it Here!

We have really been enjoying getting settled here in Michigan...but the humidity takes a lot of getting used to; it's like going to a sauna fully dressed when you go outside.  Some days are better than others, but we are hoping to adjust before too long.

So the trip here was pretty good.  Thank you to all those who helped James pack up the truck - he said it was quick and easy.  We spent the first night out in Billings, Montana at the Country Inn & Suites.  It was the BEST hotel of the trip, and also the cheapest.  I would definitely stay at that location again - there were free cookies, it was really nice everywhere, the beds were SO comfy, the staff was great, and the free breakfast had a lot of variety. 

Then we drove and drove again. 

NOTE: If you ever drive through North Dakota, stop at a rest area even if you don't need it.  They are the nicest I have ever seen!!  They were all clean, smelled good, automatic, and most were inside a very nice air conditioned building.  And my mom talked to a lady who was cleaning one of the ones that were pretty average, and she cleans them 3 times a day!  That is not a job I would enjoy - it's hard enough to clean my own bathroom.

We stayed in Jamestown, North Dakota and then Tomah, Wisconsin the next two nights.  Nothing too superb or spectacular, although we did find a mexican restaurant that we will not be going back to...it was not good. 

We stopped in Chicago and visited with my aunt and cousin for a short time, and then got back on the road so we could pull into our apartment complex with just enough time to sign the lease before she closed the office for the night. 

Our apartment is pretty nice.  We have 3 bedrooms, an attached garage, and laundry just off the kitchen.  I really like it.  There are a few things that are not my favorite, though: carpet in the kitchen (at least it's industrial-type and not plush), the bathroom sinks are too low and I have to bend down to wash my hands, and they are constructed of concrete & some of the rooms don't have much padding under the carpet, so you can't stand there for too long.  Also, the tub is a little smaller than our last place.  But it's bright and clean and we get a lot of natural light all day.  And we overlook a pond and can listen to frogs croak all night.  James made a good choice of a place to live.

And we are ALMOST done unpacking...I opened all of our book boxes today and started sorting through which ones to keep packed (like my yearbooks) and what to put out on the shelves.  Hopefully that will be completed tomorrow.  And I found the iron, so I can start sewing again.  Woohoo!!  We still have 3 or 4 boxes in our bedroom and then need to finish working in Scout's room and then we are pretty much done.  It's pretty nice to not be looking at a tower of boxes in the living room, especially after having them in our last place for a couple months before we moved.

And we have enjoyed our ward - they are very welcoming and excited to have us here.  And Maiby had fun in nursery her first week, which is a big plus.  She played with the kids and wasn't too scared to just be dropped off right away.  Hooray!

So that's the catching up from us for our first week and a half here.  James started work yesterday and has enjoyed it so far, but it's mainly paperwork and safety stuff. 


We Made It

So we pulled into our new apartment complex in Michigan with just enough time to sign the lease before the office closed.  And we had great help unloading the truck on Saturday.

But there is NO WAY we would have survived the trip (make that me, since James spent the whole trip in the truck) without the two angels known as 'Mom/Grandma' that came with us to help with the girls.  Thank you!