Friday, January 22, 2010

New Shoes

Yesterday was a fun day! It is so nice to be able to say that for a change. Micah had a bit of a rough night on Wednesday - it seems his top two teeth (that have been sitting just under the surface and visible for almost two months now) finally poked through! He woke up around 4:00 am crying, but quickly put himself back to sleep. At 5:30, he woke up crying again, so DH went in and gave him some Tylenol. Thankfully, he fell back to sleep again...and slept until 9:45!!

He woke up nice and cheery and cuddly. I gave him a bottle and made him French toast for breakfast. He really seems to love that. I put a touch of cinnamon and vanilla in the batter, and we used applesauce and organic strawberry jam to add a touch of flavor. Needless to say, naptime did not happen as planned at 10:30.

The architect arrived at 10:30. We sat down and discussed options, and I think we finally made a decision to go ahead with the renovations. I must admit - I'm not exactly thrilled about the decision. I would much prefer to just get rid of this house and move somewhere new. I think I'm about to go off on a tangent here and get away from the "fun" part of the day :).

If we renovate DH's house, there are still a few basic problems. 1) The house is on an extremely small lot, and we will not have much of a backyard for our children (no swing set or jungle gym for them). 2) We cannot get all of the rooms we want. I could live with giving up some of those things if it was unreasonable, but for the money we have to spend, there is no reason we shouldn't be able to get exactly what we want. 3) Even with the renovations, the rooms will be relatively small and our storage and closet space will be somewhat limited. 4) We will definitely not have a garage at this location (while not necessary, it really is something I prefer to have). 5) I think the current house is kind of ugly - and the renovations will not fix the "ugly" part for me. I also do not like that we are situated near a very busy street (dangerous for children and animals) without sidewalks. The street is narrow, so street parking for visitors is also a challenge. Our "view" also includes two very large apartment buildings and a fire house, which I feel are detractors from the "ambience." Because of these shortcomings, I just am reluctant to renovate the house. Add to that, we'll have to move 2 more times - and live in my condo (which is also too small) for another 6-9 months. We will have to be living in the condo with a new infant, and we'll be moving with a baby that is a few months old. That is just a challenge in terms of space and exhaustion level. Did I mention that there are 40 steps to my front door at the condo? Imagine carrying an infant seat up and down that! And I'm worried about Micah falling down all those stairs, too.

As you may not know, if we decide to move, DH and I cannot agree on a location to live. Ironically, there is only a 3-4 mile difference between where he wants to live and where I want to live - and "compromise" does not seem feasible here (at least not for DH). DH insists on living within a few blocks of public transportation and wants the ability to bike downtown. That leaves us with a very small radius of "acceptable" and the homes are all quite small, on tiny lots, and very expensive. Any of the houses I want to live in that are in our price range are outside of DH's desired living radius. I just can't seem to convince DH to give in on any of his priorities and meet me halfway. He seems to think if he gives up any one of his priorities, then the living arrangement is unacceptable. It frustrates me, because he expects me to compromise on living environment, and he does not seem to think that is a significant compromise.

We went house hunting this past weekend - we saw one "perfect" house that I would love and he could manage the location (although not ideal for him), but it was absolutely outside our price range. We *might* be able to swing it with some fancy financial moves, but to me, it does not make sense to risk being that "house-poor" - what if we lose a job or have a family emergency? I just don't want to worry that tragedy could cost us our house, too.

My proposal was to figure out how much it would cost us to stay, and figure out what house we could buy for the same amount of money. I suggested we add the cost of our current mortgage to the cost of the proposed renovations, and then add in the profit we would make by selling our house now. I suggested that total should be the maximum amount we should spend on any house (basically, we would be paying no more than the cost of renovating our existing house). Luckily, that gives us a pretty decent housing allowance - but not quite enough to get the house I think we need in the area DH wants to live. We are in a no-win situation! I just feel like I'm left without options - we have to do something to make room for Twoey, and if we wait any longer, we have a real problem. I think if I insist that we move, DH will be miserable and make me miserable. I'm hoping that if I give in here, perhaps he'll be willing to move in 5 years and he'll give me what I want (or be willing to compromise then). I just hope I'm making the right decision - because this process does not make me happy.

Okay - forgive my divergence! I'm now back to the "yesterday was fun" part of the post. After our meeting with the architect (and our long discussion that followed), we took Micah to his class. Micah loves this class! It is an hour long, and they have educational toys and "free play" time, followed by music/singing, then physical learning activities, then tactile/art time (they played with butcher paper). He loves to dance and play with the instruments. The hour passed quickly, and it was evident that Micah was exhausted without getting his morning nap. Unfortunately, we had one more errand to run - we needed to buy Micah shoes! Micah fell asleep on the way to the shoe store, but we woke him up and dragged him inside. We picked out a pair of these adorable brown suede walking shoes - they come up to his ankles. My little man has fairly small - but very WIDE feet! He wore a size 4 double wide!! I love his adorable fat little feet :). By the way - many thanks to my parents, who paid for MIcah's first pair of shoes. I am fairly certain he'll need one more pair, so we'll go looking again over the next week. Baby shoes are more expensive than I expected, but it really is important to make sure they fit correctly. I've been shoving Micah's fit into regular width shoes all this time, and that is not good for his feet or his walking development. Now that I have his shoe size and one properly fitting pair, I'll go in search of a "bargain."

We got home from shoe shopping and Micah took a nap. He only slept for about 1 hour, though - I had expected a much longer nap from him! DH went out to help the Red Cross while Micah was sleeping, but did not get home until Micah's bed time. He went back out again around 10:00 pm and spent the night out working.

My grandmother seems to be holding her own. Yesterday was a good day, and I am hoping to get over there today and see her. I did not make it this morning yet - I fell down a flight of stairs last night and injured my ankle. Quite a good run of luck I'm having, huh?

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