Tuesday, December 23, 2008

hi guys. I hope everybody's enjoying their christmas season. i, like everyone else, feel like i have to use my blog as a platform for exhortation, so i just have one little story.
hannah and i were looking for something very special today, and things were a little crazy, of course. it was a group of shops around a little courtyard. we were walking around hurriedly, and heard christmas music. then i noticed there were real live carolers, all dressed up in period costumes. they were just beautiful. hannah and I stopped and listened for a while, and i noticed we were the only ones. everyone else was running around crazy distracted with spending entirely too much money on things like $20 barbecue sauce. (We'd come from Williams Sonoma.) Then Hannah got a candy cane out of the deal :-). The moral of the story: stop and listen to the carolers.

Sorry we've been out of touch. I've had all kinds of pictures i've even edited, but our internet has been down. And I didn't bring the adapter for my memory stick, so i can't do it now. we had all kinds of pictures from our texas christmas activities. but i guess you'll have to wait!

we are in Virginia now. The drive from Texas to NC went really well, after a rocky start with an ice storm in dallas. i only had a twinge of apprehension about doing our roadtrip by myself, but it was fine. then of course, the 5 hrs from NC to VA was a breeze. Patrick gets here tomorrow, he's trying to go standby. on christmas eve. wish him luck. (he does have a ticket, but he doesn't get in until 10.30 pm)

We had a great time in NC, Hannah learned alot of new words. especially "NO, MINE!" she had to use that alot with her cousins :-). she did well with baby emerson. who is also doing well, btw. i only heard her cry once the whole week. anyways, sorry about the pictures. i'll make up for it. Merry Christmas, guys.

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

so before i launch into my captions, i have to tell you a story. i found a babysitter at the church we visited sunday, and she was available last night, so we had our first date night it what seems like an awfully long time! last night was important because it was a very important (as far as football goes :-) game for our team, the panthers. they were tied with the bucs for first in the division. (they are no longer, btw. go panthers!) so there were 3 businessmen there from the lake norman area that we talked to a bit. when it was over, we were having terrible storms, tornado sirens and everything. they asked for a lift back to their hotel, so they piled in the backseat. Patrick was telling them how nice it was for us to be out finally, and how he appreciated me using up our rare date night on a football game. there was complete, somewhat awkward silence in the back, then one man said somewhat sarcastically, "what are you guys, honeymooners?" we didn't know what to say. but it served as a sad reminder that for so many people, marriage is not the incredible gift of a best friend God meant it to be, and to cherish each other and our relationship so when we have been married as long as those 'gentlemen' have, we still want to spend time together. by God's grace, we will. so, the pictures. you can't really see on the left, but she had more yogurt on her clothes than in her mouth, i'm sure. i could just give her cheetos, like patrick saw one mother doing. that wouldn't make such a mess. . .

even if we can't do much else at christmas, i always do a shoebox for OCC (operation christmas child). patrick was so funny picking out the toys for his little boy - he took forever deciding! next year, hannah can do one too, i hope.

she was having a great time looking at herself in the mirror, before patrick put it up on the dresser. i hope that isn't too indecent :-). if there are any idealistic, somewhat self-righteous, childess women out there who are criticizing me for letting her run around naked, i'm terribly sorry. she pitches a fit every time i try to change her. and if you go back to the yogurt picture, you'll see we have to change her alot. sometimes it just isn't worth it. reading back on this after i published it, i realized i am being the idealistic self-righteous one for critizing the mother feeding her child cheetos. sorry. but at least running around naked isn't actually going to hurt her, right?

i know my family laughs at me, but here's my baby getting ready to enjoy the texas winter. yes, texas has a winter. of sorts. it was at least 50. on the right, you can see patrick's going to open a salon if the whole aircraft sales doesn't work out.

these are from our churches's all saints day festival. i got this outfit for $5. do you think if we have a boy next he can wear it too? i love it. my little strawberry!

Friday, December 05, 2008

I am proud to announce the arrival of a new life into the world. My Precious niece,
Emerson Rose Fulk
was born a few days ago. She weighed over 9 lbs, and everyone is doing good. (No sleep, of course, but que sera.) We are so excited to have another beautiful little girl, and Hannah won't be the baby anymore. We can't wait to meet her, we leave for NC in 10 days. I don't have pictures yet, but you can go to www.photographybychadwick.com, then client sideshows on the bottom, then click on baby fulk. or they may have put her name there now.
Welcome, precious baby. We love you.

Monday, December 01, 2008

We got home last night from a wonderful time in Kansas. Everything really was perfect except Hannah has had a nasty cold and couldn't sleep well. Thankfully we had lots of help around. Patrick and I were extremely frustrated. We tried lots of things, including sitting up late in the bathroom for a steam bath and patrick driving Hannah around for hours so she, and the rest of us, could sleep. this was at 4 am, btw. Last night at home was the first time we didn't have screaming fits in the middle of the night. yeah! we also really missed brett and jes, who were with her family this year. we'll see them at christmas.

Just like the rest of us, Hannah enjoyed eating. She would have eaten the whole basket of Grandma Loretta's rolls, if I'd let her. And she no longer lets anyone feed her, so eating is a messy business. we took to using a towel tied around her neck, like the hairdresser. and vinyl tablecloth on the floor.

We drove around the lights in the park one night, and Hannah really enjoyed it. We found a cowboy who was pulling his own christmas tree, but you can't see the tree. and also a moose. so we've got our canadian and texas heritage together :-).

stylin ladies.

We always miss Grandpa Vic and wish he could have met Hannah, but I am still so grateful she can spend time with 3 of her (very fun and active) great grandparents.

all we're missing is the hat

Hannah and Pop-Pop, holding up the convenience store.
my favourite thing was getting to see so much of patrick!

Patrick and I barely saw Hannah, it seems. I'm surprised she remembered me when we got home! Des had alot more pictures of family, that I'm going to steal at Christmas.
Speaking of Christmas, I decided to drive, for a few reasons. Hannah and I will be in Charlotte for a week, then meet Patrick for a week in Virginia. I'm really excited. My mom will be in Charlotte too. Then after Christmas Patrick and are going away for a night, to colonial williamsburg to celebrate our anniversary. very excited! i decided i'm kind of lonely in this (relatively) big house, just me and Hannah. after everyone together and all, I don't want to be here by myself. (guest room, remember, folks? :-)
Her vocabulary is growing every day, it's amazing. I'm not sure what all she knows how to say, but she communicates alot. we're working on 'love you'. i'll keep you posted.
ps. no baby yet, but any day now. and that would be meghan, not me.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

I would like to interrupt your regularly sheduled programming to make an announcement:
There is one new aircraft owner in america today, thanks to my husband! Patrick just sold his first plane!!! We are so excited. As you know, he's only been here a few weeks, and this is a difficult time with the holidays and all, so this is a momentous occasion. He has been working very hard for this. I didn't realize how much effort it takes to make just one sale, sometimes. We have a lot to be thankful for. we're leaving as soon as i get my junk together, so got to run. have a good thanksgiving.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

so i know you're expecting pictures of our house, and our new town, and patrick's office, and i'm sorry! the camera is dead, i have to find the charger. (big surprise there, right?) but just so you can see how she's grown check out the shoes. these are actually from my wedding (both. not both shoes, both weddings :-). yes, she can actually shuffle around in them.

we stopped at cracker barrel on our road trip, and since it was a sunday morning in texas, we had a wait. not a big deal, we needed to stretch. hannah can now climb up into most chairs by herself. she loved the little cooking set at my dad's house. the one that matches our teaset is on her christmas list. i'm training her young :-)

so we got mr. potato head at the consignment sale, since she's learning body parts. but i didn't know this one is new and fancy and talks to you. there's a button that makes him jump up and all his parts fly out. every time, she gets really scared and runs away. if i weren't her mommy, it'd be pretty funny. no, we don't do it anymore, i'm not that cruel. patrick would, though.

you know how i like to cook seasonally, especially using what i can find around me. i really like pumpkin, but i know most people buy pumpkins for decorations, then make a pie out of the canned filling, and that's about the end of the pumpkin harvest. here is my own little pumpkin story. first, hannah picks out some good ones. (they do have little pricklies on them though)

then you cut them in half. i needed some help here!

then you scoop out the seeds, wash them, and spread them on a tray to dry. (not pictured). you can put some olive oil and salt and roast them, or you can leave them plain and put on salads or ground up in things. then cover the pumpkins with foil and bake for awhile.
then scoop out the flesh and puree it. i like to freeze mine in muffin tins because they're a good size. when they're frozen, put them in a ziploc bag, then you can then just pull out a few as needed.
my favourite part is the little fingers in the corner. priceless. these pumpkins were very special, as they were destined to become pumpkin scones. this is the starbucks recipe from online, and oh. my. so good. i added maple syrup to the glaze, and they were amazing. i dont' normally say that about my own cooking, i guess it seems kind of prideful. but these really were some thing else. anyways, you can also add pumpkin to all kinds of things throughout the year. soups and chili, you wouldn't even notice, but it adds vitamins. also pancake batter or bread, for vitamins. all kinds of things.
alas, pumpkin season is nearly over, i guess. cranberries are here, though!
my top 3 things so far about frisco are definitely
  1. the food. we've had pakistani and thai and hope to try many more. in a shopping center near our house, there is thai, afghani, brazilian, mexican, chinese, indian, and of course italian and american, all in one place. so exciting.
  2. the gym. it's only 6 min from our house, and you don't have to sign a contract, you can go on a month to month basis. it's heavily subsidized by the community, so it's cheap. i'm hoping to train there in the new year, or as soon as they have extra clients.
  3. our guest room. at least i hope to enjoy our guest room. which can only be done if people use it. we actually have two, one which will also function as patrick's office. and we can't wait for people to come visit. you don't even have to be coming to visit us, you can just use it as a free place to stay if you're coming to the area. like a hotel. really.

we've finally gotten our cars titled (that took 3 trips to the place), and i'm going to work on licenses. our landlord shut off our power and water the day we moved in. it took extra money and over 24 hrs to get that fixed.

we definitely have more room to breathe up here in frisco. hannah and i have been jogging in the neighbourhood (another plus), and its been just cold enough for the leaves to change, so it's beautiful. we still miss patrick, he's working so hard. keeping his spirits up, when everybody else in the world is so depressing. i'm not going to listen to the radio anymore, i can't stand it. yes, i know, nobody has any money, everyone's losing their jobs, it's scary. but that's all they ever talk about. anybody else tired of that? but hey, at least we aren't getting election coverage, right? thank God. back to patrick, he's doing a great job, giving it all he's got. thankfully he can get to his territory in a day (flying, of course), so he hasn't been gone overnight much.

we're going to kansas for thanksgiving, so that'll be a very much needed break for him. all of us, i guess. no traffic (and i really mean no traffic :-), just family and food and football. and for me, miles of open space in which to enjoy my running shoes and Hannah free time. compliments of grandparents/great grandparents.

Meghan is only 10 days away from her due date, so we're hoping for any time. i'm very excited. i'll keep you posted. i'll get the camera charged and have pictures of the house. love you all. thank you for your prayers.

Friday, November 14, 2008

settling in

so, i still can't get our internet working. i'm doing this from the airport, while i wait for someone.
we are all unpacked, just haven't put up pictures and such. patrick's gone from 7 - 7, so we are really looking forward to the weekend! i know hannah misses him, and i do to. we went from being relatively in the middle of nowhere in AL, to people on top of people here! and we aren't even in the city. it's actually 27 miles to dallas city limits. i mistakenly thought that, upon heading IN to the city tonight, i would be going against traffic so it wouldn't take long. apparently, that's not true. my ride's here. i'll put pictures as soon as i can. thanks guys!

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

homeless, but not for long

good news: i found my camera! it was in hannah's bag the whole time. whoops. the real good news, though, is that we have a house and we'll move in on Friday!

i got to tell you, this has been the most difficult move yet. Hannah's activity level adds an interesting ingredient to the mix. Also trying to show the house while packing, which thankfully we didnt' do much (showing, not packing). Preparing to spend a week or so in a hotel, as well. The drive wasn't that bad, we drove alot during the night. Also, we had bags of discounted halloween candy i periodically through back at her. kept her quiet for a little. (actually, she had individual portions of various vegetables, edamame, black eyed peas, plain yogurt, homemade bread, ezekiel 49 pasta, and different fruits. i'm the one who kept eating aforementioned halloween candy. it's sad when you start counting how much you ate not by the serving size on the back, but by how much of the bag is on. not the individual bag, but the one you keep at the door for trickor treating.) it got really boring without patrick. but it had its advantages: no fighting about which music and how loud, where to put the airconditioner, tailing or driving to slow, where to stop for food, etc. Come to think of it, it was quite peaceful :-). We met up periodically to switch out food bags and books on tape.

We made good time on the trip, stopping in Ruston, LA for the night. we got there at 11, got hannah finally settled down by 12, and woke up to the fire alarm and traipsed out in the parking lot with everyone for a while. then she woke us up at 5.30, so we hit the road again. (which was 4.30, because of the time change.) we got here by noon, and started house hunting that afternoon. Long story short, we ended moving significantly farther away from the city than we thought. But, Patrick will soon be doing alot of work from home, so he won't have to commute as much. We'll be living in Frisco, which has about 98,000. without traffic, it's probably 25 min to dallas. with, who knows! yes, i've been to central market. they had 33 different varieties of apples on the day i went. and over 600 different cheeses. and all kinds of samples. we had pakistani food our first night here, which was a first for me. so i am enjoying aspects of a big city, but others will take getting used to. basically, the driving. when we first went up into frisco, we passed cows and pastures on the way to the houses. we took that as a good sign.

patrick's had a good few days at work, i think. he's jumped in with both feet. they have a show tomorrow, and another on saturday. i'm really proud of him, starting this new position and all the stress of house hunting and taking care of your family in a hotel and everything. we finally visited the office today and met the other premier "team members", as the say :-). we'll have pictures of the house soon. and i'll get a good hannah update soon, she's growing and learning new words and being a regular little stinker. she's charmed the hotel, though. it's an extended stay, so we see the same people at breakfast and supper every day. check back in soon!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

last post from alabama

so, i think i left my camera in nc, which is unfortunate, because we have some furniture to list on craigs list. also, no pictures for you.
as i mentioned, this was very unexpected. we had always planned on patrick becoming a salesman, just not right away. this is unprecedented, and i am so proud of him. he has obviously done an amazing job where he's been the past 10 months, that they feel confident he is ready for this next step. he is such a natural pilot, a good people person, and a good salesman. i, along with premier, can't wait to see what he's going to do in texas!

his territory will be much smaller than the one he has now, but alot of people, and alot of potential. he will be working alot of hours, but on the road less. i hope he'll be home in time to kiss hannah goodnight. the commutes are so much longer in these big cities, i know i'm going to miss the small town life! his office will be right at the airport, which is great, and he'll have an administrative support person, a customer service helper person, and be working alongside another saleswoman. as for us, we're just hoping we can find a house not too far away so we can bring him lunch or a pumpkin scone. (because really, what do stay at home moms do all day except make pumpkin scones and do lunch with friends, right? :-) hannah and i are really excited about the exciting things in the big city!

we have most of the logistics figured out. we are leaving a week tomorrow, actually. patrick driving the uhaul and me with the munchkin in our car. (anyone with extra earplugs, send them to me. hannah is going to go so crazy). we think that the time hannah will need to stop and run around every so often will be enough time for patrick to catch up with us. when we get there, we'll find a house to rent for a while. our house is on the market, so we'll see how that goes.
i'm going to miss our relative proximity to NC, our cute little house, and our church. but for quite awhile i've been meaning to write a top 10 of what we miss in texas. so here goes, a top 10 of what we're excited about in texas!
  1. food. specific restaurants, like joe t. garcias (at the stockyards in ft. worth. they only have 2 items on the menu, but it's always packed out. they also don't take cards. wierd.) and fogo de chao (brazilian, and conveniently located right in addison. but expensive!), authentic mexican food, and pretty much every ethnic food on earth is available in dallas. and then of course, the grocery stores. oh, the grocery stores. central market, it's 2,000 cheeses. and the farmers markets too.
  2. broken bow, oklahoma. i know, not texas. but only a few hours to paradise. of sorts. you probably don't believe me that OK is paradise. you can rent cabins or camp, and fish (lakes and streams), swim, hike, canoe, all kinds of things. it's really big, and really secluded. we went there on our babymoon. we got stranded at the top of our little mountain because the road washed out. i was 1 wk from my due date. fun stuff :-).
  3. which brings me to my next one, midwives. no, i don't need one. but when i do, yeah!!! i won't have to go underground to look for a covert midwife. they're everywhere, and certified, and well regulated. so great!
  4. fredericksburg, and the hill country. absolutely beautiful. we went there last march, and missed so much. there are outdoor things like climbing enchanted rock and white water rafting on the river, beautiful little bed and breakfasts, great restaurants, cute little towns with lots of shopping, wineries, all kinds of stuff.
  5. canton trade days. the first weekend of the month, canton texas has the worlds biggest flea market/arts and crafts/antiques/everything you can imagine sale. it takes a couple days to see it all. i almost have dreams about canton trade days, i like it so much.
  6. friends. we will be a few hours from longview, but we'll still go back and visit. patrick's friend ben lives in dallas, and my friend kristy (who just had another baby!!) lives in houston, so hopefully we'll get there too. my best friend from highschool lives in san antonio. and i have a friend from middle school in dallas somewhere. (i never talk to these people, but thanks to facebook, i know what they're up to :-). see, texas is the place to be.

ok, so that's only six. i'll come up with four more. proximity to an airport, so all y'all can come visit easily! and lots of things we never did in dallas, like the arboretum. ok, i have to go find us a house to rent. wish me luck!

Monday, October 13, 2008

first clue: Central Market and legalized midwifery

we had a wonderful visit with des. she got to spend lots of time with hannah because i totally took advantage (in a good way, i hope) of her being here. we went to the pumpkin patch, and hannah really enjoyed her birthday present from nana and pop pop, pictured here.

roll in the hay, anyone? :-)

who knew a feeding trough full of corn could be so enthralling to a toddler?

david couldn't come, but he sent hannah some beautiful dorothy shoes, which she loves. patrick helped des put together hannah's wagon.

after a completely dry month, we got nearly flooded last week. when it finally cleared up, we went outside for hannah to play in the puddles.
i know this post has an uncharacteristic brevity to it, but we're really busy these days. very unexpectedly, patrick was offered a promotion. wait, that came out wrong! i'm not surprised at all that they think he's ready for a sales position. the unexpected part is the soonness of it, and the moving to dallas part. yep, we're on the move again. the office is in addison, in north dallas. i will talk more about if later, but by the first week of november, we'll be back in cowboy hats :-).
very quickly, yes, we're happy, but a little overwhelmed. we've only known for a week or so. we will be renting in dallas for a while, obviously selling our house will be a challenge. more details later.