Sunday, November 30, 2008

decking the halls

After an emotional morning, I promised Tia we would decorate the Christmas tree as long as she took a really good nap. She has been really excited about all the Christmas lights and decorations going up around our neighborhood, so I knew this was a good angle to go with.
Once both girls were asleep, and I got in a few minutes of rest myself, I hauled up the Christmas tree from the basement. I was sad thinking about all the ornaments we wouldn't be able to put on this year because of Giuliana. I decided to pass on all the glass balls, remembering our first year here when Tia tried to eat one. I soon realized that we had more than enough non-breakable ornaments, and most of them had special meaning. I enjoyed telling Tia "Aunt Kimmie made this one for you when you were a baby" and "Nonna gave this one to you for your first Christmas". I showed her all the little hand made ornaments from my Mom which she thought were so cool. I showed her which ones were made by my friend Sheila's Mom and even one from my friend Michele's Grandmother. I got excited just explaining where each of them came from and who made them. Both girls loved the ornaments that hold pictures of my niece and nephews.

I guess Tia wanted to get in on the story telling because before long she was saying "I made this one for Jennifer when Daddy was a little boy". I had to laugh out loud at that one!
This year we don't have a fancy tree with lots of glass ornaments. But, we do have a meaningful tree with lots of stories.

We also hung our stockings, which were hand made by my Mom, up high on the entertainment center. This way there will be no peeking. Tia seemed proud that we each have our own special stockings.
Now she just wants to know when Santa is going to put the presents in them!

I had to come back and edit this post to add these pictures. After the girls baths, they disappeared. I found them playing with the tree, and showing each other the ornaments.

When I added the tree skirt, they both decided to pretend to take a nap on it. I guess it looks like a blanket.
You can see some of the hand made ornaments in this picture, like the little slipper in front that my Mom made. She used to fill them with candy for each of the kids in our family.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving

Today I am thankful for many things. Of course I am most thankful that I have my family and we are all healthy and happy. Look at these two little angels. Who wouldn't be thankful to be their Mom?

Today I give thanks because...

*I have an amazing family. I have a loving husband and two sweet babies who are all healthy. I couldn't ask for more than that.
*My Mom is still with us. Eight months ago she was given six months to live. I can't be happier the doctors were wrong. Every day is a blessing.
*My in-laws are able to be here with us to celebrate Thanksgiving. The girls love having their grandparents here, and so do I. I know what it's like to grow up without loving grandparents, and they don't have to.
*I am able to spend these precious years at home with my girls. I know that's not possible for all mothers. I count my blessings.
*Every day my family has a roof over our heads, a warm bed to sleep in, and enough food to eat. I am well aware that not all families have it so good. I am thankful for all that we have.

Today I give thanks for my many blessings.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

A small miracle

A miracle happened at our house last night. Yes, it must have been some sort of divine intervention. Tia ate meat! Our little vegetarian actually ate 2 chicken nuggets. I'm still in shock.

For those of you who don't know Tia, she has never eaten meat products, even as an infant. I remember making tofu for her when she began table food, because we couldn't get her to eat chicken or turkey. Even though D.R. and I don't eat red meat, we have always been willing to let the girls have it. I've tried to give Tia a variety of meats over the past 2 years to no avail.

Last night I made chicken nuggets (for Gia) and potatoes, fully expecting Tia to ignore the nuggets and just eat potatoes. I also gave her some yogurt figuring that would be her protein. She looked at the nuggets and said "what's this called Mom? Is this a hamburger?". I played it smart and said "No, it's just a nugget". I know full well if I said the word chicken, it would be all over. She ate two of them! I told her I was proud of her for trying something new. I told D.R. to NEVER call them chicken nuggets, and that in our house they are just called nuggets.

I am smart enough to know that this is probably a very temporary victory in our household. That's OK, one small miracle at a time is all I ask for. Tomorrow is another day.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

The simple things

As the holidays grow nearer, I have been thinking about the things that make me happy. People get so caught up in the material things of life, and somehow think that more things will make them happy. I laugh when I see that commercial of the guy riding his big expensive lawn mower with a big fake grin on his face. He says something like "See my big house, my pool, expensive cars...and I'm in debt up to my eyeballs". That sort of puts things in perspective, doesn't it?
I'm not talking about what I am thankful for, because I'm sure I will write about that on Thursday. I'm referring to the things that make me truly happy. My friend Amy Jo calls these "the little moments". I agree, the little moments are so important. I call them the simple things, and they don't cost anything.
Here is a partial list of the simple things in my life that bring me true happiness.

*When D.R. turns the alarm off and rolls over to give me one more snuggle before beginning his day. Having a husband who still likes to cuddle makes me happy.
*When Tia wakes up and asks me with her huge blue eyes "How did you sleep Mommy?".
*When Gia gets up from her nap, throws her arms around my neck, squeezing me as hard as she can, and lets out a little grunt. That's true love.
*Watching a perfect sunrise out my kitchen window makes me happy.
*Getting through a tough workout, knowing I CAN do it, makes me happy.
*When I see Tia willingly sharing anything she has with her sister, that makes me happy.
*When Gia grabs my face and plants a big slimy kiss on me, I am truly happy. Giddy even.
*Sitting at the dinner table with my family each night makes me happy.
*Teaching my daughter about the true meaning of Christmas makes me happy.

These are just a few things that happen almost every day, simple things, that make me truly happy. I'm sure I could sit here and go on and on but I can make my point without doing that. The advertisements for all those "must have" Christmas gift items have begun. Those diamond earrings and expensive electronics don't really make us happy. So, this holiday season, let's focus more on the simple things in life. Those things that are free, and we already have plenty of. I think we'll all be a lot happier in the long run.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Say it aint so Joe!

This is the cover of a movie D.R. picked up at work recently. He thought it might be interesting to watch the story of Joe Louis. I agree.
However, since this movie entered our house, Gia has been carrying it around saying "Ma Ma". Does she really think I look like this guy? Should I be offended by my 19 month old?
Then I thought maybe she is just saying that because she thinks it's my movie, so in her way she is saying "Ma Ma's movie". So, I had D.R. point to the picture and ask her "Gia, who is this person?". Yup, she said "Ma Ma".
I know I am not the most beautiful woman in the world, but come on! Joe Louis!? This isn't even fair.
I guess I will go on with my head held high and remind myself she is just a baby and really doesn't know what she is talking about.
We will all laugh about this one day soon.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

I firmly believe that everything happens for a reason. I was thinking the other day how perfect it worked out that Tia was born first. She was meant to be the big sister. She was always a good baby, hardly ever cried, and slept well. She has always been very loving and caring, and adores babies. It's no mistake that she was born first. God had a plan, I am sure of it. Ever since she was able to talk in sentences she has said things like "No no Ju Ju, don't touch that" and "Oh, that doesn't belong to you, let's put it back".
Here are some other examples of why I am thankful Tia came first.

On a recent afternoon Gia was sitting in her high chair and Tia was in the family room watching a movie. Gia for some reason started to cry like crazy when I asked her "are you all done". I don't know what was going on in her little head but she seemed startled. Tia left her movie, went over to the toy box, picked out a baby toy, and brought it to Gia. She said "Here Ju Ju, here's your lady bug toy, don't be sad". I just about started crying too when I heard her kind words. Of course Gia pushed the toy away and continued to cry. Tia turned to me and said "Mom, she doesn't want this toy, I can't help her". I thanked Tia for trying to help and for being a good big sister.

For a few weeks now Gia has been going to a baby music class on Monday mornings. During that hour Tia goes into the baby sitting room. Tonight I mentioned that Gia doesn't have music class tomorrow, and Tia's response was "So, Gia can go into playschool with me tomorrow?". She was genuinely excited that she would be back with her sister for that hour. She melts my heart.

During one of Gia's recent melt downs/temper tantrums where she was just inconsolable I was at my wits end. Tia came to me and said "Mom, I think Ju Ju doesn't feel good, that's why she's cranky". She has a way of putting it all in perspective for me.

I realize that Gia needs a big sister like Tia. She understands her, has patience with her, and wants to help her whenever possible. Tia knows that her baby sister is different than herself, has a different personality and certainly different moods. But she loves her sister, kisses and hugs her every day and can't imagine a day without her.
There's a natural order to things. This surely happened for a reason.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Holy Ick!

Here's a darling little picture of the girls sitting in their car seats in the living room. However, the story begins the day before when I decided to pull the seats out of the car. Tia had been complaining that her straps were too tight. I figured they both could use a little adjusting since both girls have certainly grown since I first installed them.
So, yesterday evening I took both seats out of the car for adjustments and cleaning. Here is an example of what I found in the base of just one of the seats.

Eeeewwwww. I can't even describe what was jammed in the seat back. Needless to say I washed both seat covers, vacuumed out my car, and pretty much disinfected everything before putting them back in.
I honestly could have fed a decent size village in Uganda with everything that I sucked up in my Handy Vac!
I will definitely go through this procedure more than once a year from now on.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Christmas wish list

Tia's latest thing is asking everyone what they want for Christmas. She is also telling anyone who will listen that she wants a yo-yo and a jump rope. She doesn't know how to use either of these items, nor did we buy them for her. They were not on her list when I did my shopping. I was hoping she would forget and move on to something else. So far, no luck. I will probably get her the jump rope but the yo-yo has tears of frustration written all over it.
Last week I had Tia help me wrap D.R.'s gift. It's a new razor. He already knows about it because I needed his help picking out the right one. However, I was trying to teach Tia about keeping things secret, and surprises. I told her not to tell Daddy what he was getting for Christmas. Well, that lasted about 5 minutes and the cat was out of the bag. He happened to be in the bathroom shaving and she said "You got a new one Daddy, it's a surprise". Not anymore sweet girl, not anymore.
Tia has also been asking me almost daily what I want for Christmas. I give her the standard "well, I could use a new pair of slippers...". Apparently that wasn't good enough for her because she said "NO MOMMY, you need a new red dress, and some red underwear too!". I laughed and then quickly told her to go tell Daddy that I need new red underwear for Christmas. We are still laughing about that one. Now I can't wait to see what will be in my stocking!
I think this week she has finally moved away from what Mommy and Daddy want because she asks me several times a day what her cousin Jennifer wants. I tell her I don't know and that we will have to ask. We have even tried to call a couple times to no avail. Jennifer spent a few days with us last summer and Tia hasn't stopped talking about her since. We have already gotten a few nice gifts for Jennifer and I am sure she will be pleased with whatever she gets. Still, little inquiring minds want to know!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

science is yummy

Tia has been into a new show called "Sid the Science Kid". It's actually kind of cute. Every day Sid has a question, and his teacher does some sort of experiment or activity to help him find the answer. Last time we watched they learned all about freezing and melting. The teacher showed the kids how to make "ice pops" by putting a slice of banana in the bottom of a dixie cup, sticking a popsicle stick in the banana to help hold it up, then filling the cup with juice.

Tia had been talking about this 'experiment' ever since, so we did it at home. We made them in the morning and I assured Tia they would be ready by the time she woke up from her nap. Sure enough, they were a big hit, even with Gia who really doesn't like popsicles. She liked these so much she even let me take her picture!

As you can probably see our sticks were more the size of tongue depressors but it's all I could find at Target. They worked out just fine.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Basement shopping

I had to go digging in the basement yesterday to look for some 24 month clothes for Gia. She can still fit into her 18 month things but they are just a bit too short on her.
While down there I picked through the 4T box of clothes from my God Daughter Alia. We got all her clothes because her parents had 2 more boys, no girls. They are all in such great shape, it's like Christmas every time Tia changes a size and we get out all new things.
I found these warm, fuzzy pajamas in the box. Tia asked if she could wear them to bed last night. I needed to do a load of laundry anyway so by the time she was ready for bed, they were clean and dry.

When she put them on I asked her what she thought about them. I was expecting her to answer one of our standard sayings like "Cozy" or "Toasty". Her response was "They are as good as new!". She's right, they are. I feel lucky to have all these wonderful hand-me-downs.

Here's another shot of her today wearing one of Alia's old sweaters. Tia wears dresses so often that I forget about the jeans and shirts we have in the dresser. I thought she looked adorable!

It's so important to her that she do certain things all by herself, like putting on her shoes. She got them on the right feet this time.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Making Memories

Today we finally made oatmeal cookies. I wanted to make them last week but didn't have a couple of necessary ingredients. Not having baking soda in the house made me think back to my own childhood. We always had that stuff in the house. My Mom baked a lot when we were young, and we never ran out of the staples of the kitchen. In fact my Mom made everything from scratch. Not only because she knew how, but because we were poor. There was no extra money for store bought goodies in our house.
Times are different now. I don't bake a lot. I really don't want cookies sitting around the house calling out my name. Generally I buy pre-packaged cookies for the girls in individual serving size bags. It works for us.
Today I baked cookies for a couple reasons. First, Tia loves to help in the kitchen and I want her to have the whole experience of making something from scratch, like I did with my Mom. The other reason is that I just want my kids to have that old-fashioned home made goodness. The feel of the oven warming up the house. The smell of something good wafting through the house. That's more than making cookies, that's making memories.
I know this because I remember watching in amazement as my Mom made cream puffs from scratch. My brother fondly remembers Mom's home made donuts. When they were little, my nephews loved making peanut butter cookies with their Dad. My oldest nephew looks forward to Grandma's pumpkin pie every Thanksgiving. Those are memories that last a lifetime. I want my kids to some day proclaim "I remember Mom always made the best_________, nobody can do it like her".
I told Tia that when the cookies were all done we would have them with a glass of milk. She said "And after we can read a nice story". I guess that means she enjoyed the whole experience too.
I'll try to do these things more often, especially when they get older so they will know the feeling of making something good in the kitchen with their Mom.

Here is a picture of Giuliana waiting for the cookies to come out of the oven. I couldn't help it, I had to take her picture. Seeing her stand there with tights on those chubby little legs just cracked me up.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Painting Party

Our local recreation center had a painting party for the kids. There were different station set up around the room for the kids to explore various painting techniques. Tia had a great time and we are even considering framing a couple of her pieces.
Here are some pictures of the artist at work.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Country Living

I am a city kid through and through so living in our rural area has taken some getting used to. I still giggle every time we come down Huntley Road and Gia yells "moooo" because she sees the dairy farm. I have learned to live with the fact that I will never win the battle against the rabbits who want to eat my flowers. I understand that the kids won't be able to play in the back yard alone because of the family of coyote who live in the field. I have even become accustomed to having corn fields as far as the eye can see out my back window.
But I get taken aback a bit when I hear my daughter say things like she said today. As calmly as possible, Tia said "Mom, there's a duck in our yard". I looked out the back window and saw what she saw. I said "Tia, that's a goose, not a duck". Her response to me was "It's called a Canada Goose Mom".

OK, she's absolutely right. It is a Canada goose. They love to eat the seed from the corn field now that all the corn has been cut down so we have tons of them. My question is how the heck does she know it's a Canada goose?! I asked D.R. if he taught her and he said "I don't even know the difference between a regular goose and a Canada goose". I have no idea where she learned it but she is definitely NOT a city kid like her Mom.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

The Same Size

We've been noticing lately that Gia's pajamas are a bit too short for her. She's in the 90th percentile for height. The poor kid looks squeezed in like a sausage in many of her footie pajamas. I decided to pull out another pair of those $1.98 pajamas I wrote about before. Keep in mind that they are all size 4 (that's all the store had). Tia is 3 and Gia is 19 months.

They can both wear the same size! This is unbelievable, but lucky me because they can share and there are 4 pair!

Luca the Fish

Our beloved Luca the Fish passed on the other day. Tia doesn't know. How do you tell a 3 year old that her pet died? She has had the fish longer than she has had her sister!
Here is a picture of her almost 2 years ago when we mounted the fish on the wall. She was so proud.

I went to Wal Mart with the intention of getting a new fish as well as a tank. I got the tank but they no longer sell fish. Shoot! I set up the tank the following morning. It's really cool with bright colors, and a filter. Much better than just a bowl. Tia loved it and wanted to know why Luca wasn't in his new house. I told her the water wasn't warm enough for him yet and we had to wait one more day. Thanks God she still believes everything I tell her!

Yesterday we went to the grocery store that sells fish. I put the kids in one of those carts that looks like a car that they can drive while Mom shops. That way when I picked out the new fish they couldn't see what I was doing. They were content in there until I got through the check out so I was able to bag up the fish without them seeing. When we got home and Tia was watching TV, I snuck Luca II into the new tank and voila! Happy happy. When Tia looked at "Luca" for the first time, her comment was "Mom, that's not Luca", but I brushed it off and she hasn't said another word about it. I swear this kid is too smart!

Here they are with the new tank and fish. Now they want to have all meals at the breakfast bar so they can watch the fish.

Fingers crossed that this one lives 2 years too!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Two Years

Today marks 2 years since we moved to Illinois, and into our new home. Part of me feels like we have been here forever, yet I also feel like time has just flown by.
I remember Tia had just turned one. I was pregnant and still didn't know if the baby was a boy or girl. D.R. moved first to start his new job and I stayed back in Rochester with Tia so I could finish out my term at RIT. Our house in Rochester hadn't sold yet so it made sense to keep things as normal as possible for Tia.
On November 10 D.R. flew one way to Rochester to do the last minute packing and pick up his girls (Me and Tia). The next morning we said goodbye to friends and family and hit the road. It was such an exciting time.
Two weeks later we hosted our first Thanksgiving in our new home. I must have been crazy.

Here we are on Thanksgiving 2 years ago.

I can't believe how little Tia was back then! She has grown so much.

Look at her here at Christmas that year, her hair wasn't even curly yet!

In the past 2 years, a lot has happened. Most importantly we welcomed Giuliana Grace into our family and our hearts. She is growing up fast, already speaking more words than I can count and making us laugh all the time because of her strong personality.

Here she was the day before her birthday.
We flew to Mexico on her actual birthday, what a way to celebrate.

And enjoying jelly beans on her first Easter.

I think we have all adjusted very well to the move and living in our new community.
D.R. loves his job and has been promoted twice already. Liking your job as well as being good at it is a great combination, and it shows. He has met a couple of guys through work and has developed a nice circle of friends. He has even started golfing again.

After having Gia I started picking up a one or two days of interpreting work each month to get back in the swing of things. I also joined a few mommy groups, met some great ladies who I am proud to call friends, and joined a gym. I'm on a great fitness routine and am slowly but surely getting off the last of that baby weight.

Tia is involved in 2 different play groups, loves visiting our local library, has tons of friends, and takes dance class.
Gia is also involved in play groups. enjoys the library, and is now taking baby music classes.

It's hard to believe that we have done so much and settled in so nicely in just 2 years. I have to say it's got a lot to do with this community. We definitely chose well when we were searching for places to live. Our area is filled with young families who have small children. It's a great fit.

And yes, for those of you reading this who are wondering, of course we miss "home". No matter how well we do here it can't take the place of all our family and lifelong friends back in Rochester. I will always remember that home is where the heart is.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Sharing and Caring

I have always been intent on raising caring, unselfish, compassionate kids. I knew last year that I was headed in that direction with Tia. She showed me many examples.

When we started hosting play dates at our house, I noticed she never had a problem with other children coming into our home and playing with her toys. Her peers had some difficulty with this in their homes.
Then there was the birthday celebration at my sisters house when Tia apparently thought she had gotten too many presents and started passing them out to the guests.
But this past weekend she showed me her true spirit and nearly brought me to tears. I got tickets for D.R. and Tia to go to the circus together. I explained to Tia that her sister was still too young to go, and would have to stay home with me. I overheard Tia in the living room saying "I'm going to the circus Ju Ju. OK? You stay with Mommy. OK?". I thought that was very sweet of her but then, she came to me, put her hand on my shoulder and said "Mommy, you need to take Ju Ju shopping today and buy her a prize".
Now what 3 year old wants to see her sister get a prize and not get one herself?! She is truly amazing. Caring and compassionate at even this very young age. D.R. says "She's like you, all heart". Not such a bad thing.

Today Gia had her weekly "Tot Rock" music class. The instructor tossed out a bag full of balls all over the floor for the toddlers to play with. Sure enough, Gia had a blast picking up the balls and giving them out to the other children and parents. I sat back and smiled thinking 'It's working!'.

They make their Mom proud.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Happy Birthday Thomas

28 years ago today my nephew Thomas was born. Actually he likes to be called Tom now because he is so cool, but I can't break the habit.
I can't believe I am old enough to have a nephew who is 28. I REALLY can't believe my sister is actually old enough to have a son that age!
Holy cow where does the time go? I remember his first day of school like it happened last week.
Thomas is a great (grown up) kid who I love dearly.
So I wanted to save today's blog entry just for birthday wishes for him.

Happy Birthday Big Guy!

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Random stuff

Here are a few pictures of the kids from yesterday. I usually have the camera within arms reach and I thought these were cute.

Just like her Mom, Gia loves M&M's.
Tia gets a treat when she wakes up dry from a nap. Gia won't be left out!

A mouthful and two fists full.

After their baths I put in a movie for them to watch.
We thought it was cute how they wanted to lay on the floor together.

Tia thought it was cool to lay on the couch cushion, very comfy.
Good thing her sister was in bed or she would be trying this too!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Growing up

I realized the other day that Tia is really growing up intellectually. A couple of things happened that caught my attention.

First, the house phone rang and instinctively I looked at the Caller ID to see who it was. I said out loud "Oh, it's Anthony". Tia said "Oh, I want to talk to him!". She answered the phone and proceeded to have an entire conversation. She has never done this before and usually runs from the phone.

Then the other night at dinner, instead of me asking her questions or saying "Tell Daddy where we went today...", she just spoke up out of the blue. During a lull in our dinner time conversation she said "Dad, I saw the tractor cuttin' down the corn today". I was floored! Usually if she talks during dinner it's only because we ask her questions. This time she started the conversation all by herself.

Yesterday while we were getting ready to go out Tia looked at me and said "Mom, I really like your glasses. They match your hair". Where the heck did she learn about flattery?

Tonight Giuliana was reaching for something behind the toy box and just couldn't get it. She started to fuss. Tia got off the couch, went over to her, and said in the sweetest voice "It's OK Ju Ju, you need some help?". She got the toy out for her and said "Here you go".

I know kids grow fast but I am just in awe of the things she is learning and how her mind is developing. She is always sweet and polite and considerate of the feelings of others.

Watching her grow in such a gift.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

History has been made

I am not generally a very political person. I do not enjoy debating politics or even having politically focused conversations at home with my husband. I do however believe it is so important to exercise our right to vote. I have voted in all the Presidential elections since I was old enough to do so.

Our grandparents grew up in an age where women were not considered smart enough to vote. They didn't earn that right until 1920, only after much public humiliation, abuse, and bloodshed. Because of the struggle of the women before us, I feel it's my duty to stand up and vote. I proudly do so.

Our parents grew up in an age where people of color were not allowed to vote. Even decades after laws were passed stating that all citizens could vote, people of color were kept from the polls with brute force. It is absolutely amazing to me that some of those same people who were kept from the polls, and believed to be too ignorant to vote, are now seeing a black man elected President of the United States. What a glorious day for us all!

Equality is an issue near and dear to my heart. I truly believe ALL men and women were created equal and therefore should all have the same opportunities in life. I have a racially diverse family and therefore know first hand that racism still exists, as does discrimination. However, today I have been given hope that my daughters will grow up in a world where a woman or person of color in a position of power is commonplace. I want them to read about today in their history books and think to themselves "what was the big deal? Why was color so important?".

Whether you are Republican or Democrat, today is a day that will go down in history. I am so proud to be American.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008


Tia wanted to make Jello. She had never had it until a Halloween party last month. I promised her we could make it at home. She had fun placing mandarin oranges in the bowls.
However, the funniest thing was watching Gia while she explored the texture and tried to get the oranges out of the gelatin. She ate very little of it but had fun trying.
I wish I had it on video, but here's a couple snapshots instead.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

The nightmare project

Have you ever had one of those projects that just kept getting more and more complicated and made you wonder why you ever started it in the first place? Well, that' what happened with our closet project. In fact, the people who lived in this house before us moved out because they were getting a divorce. I only half jokingly say that their problems probably began with the closet.

You may remember from an earlier post that not only were the closet organizer units all the wrong size which left a lot of unused space, but one whole wall was just shelves. Any woman in America knows that shelves are not really what you want in a closet. We need racks to hang clothes on!

D.R didn't seem to mind the closet the way it was. Of course not, he's a man. He was perfectly happy throwing his pants on the shelves and having it look like a mess all the time. The other thing is that he had all the hanging space, I had the shelves. Sensing the inequity here?

Here's how it went.
Stage one:
I disassembled the mammoth nine foot shelving unit that was on my side of the closet. I had to take the entire thing apart because it was so huge it wouldn't fit out the door otherwise. I then had to take the nine foot pieces down to the basement. I did most of it during the kids nap time, all the while praying that one of those big slabs of wood wouldn't fall on my head and knock me out cold in the process. Not a pretty thought.

Stage 2:
Taking apart D.R.'s existing rack units and moving them to the right hand wall, allowing me more space to work with. D.R. had to do this part because of the height and weight of these units, and of course because I sweet talked him into it. Here's a picture of those units. We kept them as is, just moved them.
Attempting to move said units brings us to stage 3.

Stage 3:
Light fixture had to be moved because it was in the way and couldn't stay where it was once the racks were moved. Agghhhh! We both just got a few more gray hairs.
This was my task as D.R. doesn't do electricity. I don't either but felt I had no choice since I was the one who got us into this mess.

Stage 4:
Disassembling one cubicle/cubbie unit (there were 2) and removing it from the closet. It's still laying on its' side in our hallway because, you guessed it, it's 9 feet tall! We kept the second one because D.R. likes them. He keeps his sweaters and shoes in there.

Stage 5:
Attempting to assemble the "All in one, Easy to assemble" Rubbermaid closet kit. Nope, didn't fit. Had to take it back to the store. Bought all the parts separately.

Stage 6:
Dear husband said he would install my new racks as long as I kept the kids occupied for an hour. He says he hopes I am happy. I am. I FINALLY have a place to hang my clothes! Gia will be happy she doesn't have to share her closet with Mommy forever.

Tomorrow I will move my clothes over.