Busy Aftermath.

So yesterday (Friday), I got home from work at about 1:30pm and started painting Jadon's room. Fiona did most of the prepping on his room the day before). She painted the edges and I did the rest of it. I finished in about an hour and 30 minutes. The paint color was a light grayish blue. It turned out a lot darker than we anticipated and bluer than expected. All we need to do now is let it try and then repaint the baseboards. So after the painting session, I ended up taking a shower and then I sanded part of Jadon's bed (the mold grew between his bed and the wall). So I spent about 30-45 minutes on that. Then I ended up taking another shower. So hopefully in a few days we'll have his bedroom back in place.


Moldy Issues And Cracks.

My blogging is obviously diminished. I just can't get into the groove of daily or even weekly blogs. I'll try to at least do a monthly one. The big issues that has us occupied are mold and cracks. Lets start off with the biggest one.

It started last Friday. Fiona mentioned how it smells in Jadon's room. She washed his sheets and comforter and it still smelled. All the while I got into my clean phase where I was hunting down toys (especially the Leapster cartridges that the kids keep misplacing). It lead me to look in the cracks between Jadon's bed and the wall. I was not to please what I had discovered. There was mold on the bottom of his bed board, carpet, baseboard, and a little bit on the wall. The length was about 1.5 feet. We mentioned it to our neighbor (who is also the President of our HOA). He said he would call his people on Monday (as they were closed Friday evening). We didn't hear from him until yesterday (Wednesday).

We did proceed with out him by getting a couple of inspections. The first person to come out was recommended by our HOA and they said that it does look like mold and that they can clean, replace the baseboard. The cost was about $350 (without carpet cleaning). The second person came out and said that the mold was dry and that all that was required was a deep cleaning. The third person, Fiona talked to over the phone, and said that if the mold was dry that just a cleaning would suffice.

So we had a carpet cleaner come out on Wednesday morning. We spent Tuesday night moving furniture out of his room. We shelled out 160 bucks to have them clean both Jadon's room, the girls' room, part of out hallway and staircase. Shortly after that was done, our neighbor talked to Fiona and noticed that there was dirt patch on the outside wall which happened to coincide with where the mold was in Jadon's room. He called his HOA company to have them look (which was the same company that the first guy came from but this time it was another person). The dirt patch on the outside was just dirt (and not mold like he suspected). As for Jadon's room, the guy said that it does look like just dried mold but he cannot confirm that 100% unless he opened up the wall. He said if it was a bursted pipe then the damage would be a lot worse. That we should probably see it on our garage wall (Jadon's room is right about it). We asked him what he recommended and he said we should open up the wall just to verify that there is or isn't wet mold. He said the dry mold is nothing to worry about because it just means the mold is pretty much dead. The cost would have been $1200 to do not including build back (which would have cost at least another $1500 my guess). We opted not to. We recounted that some years back, Jadon had puked in that area and that the mold could have grown from that even though we thought we had cleaned it well). Hopefully it just an isolated incident. The guy ended up wire scrubbing, HEPA vacuuming, and spraying area at no cost. That was nice of him. So now we are just planning on repainting Jadon's room as well as the baseboards.

The second big issues happened last Thursday. I noticed a thin crack running up the corner wall in our living room. I followed that corner by going upstairs into our bedroom. Low and behold, it was there too. There are also cracks on the wall in our front yard as well. Great! So right now, we are in the process of getting our home builder to come out and look at it. My guess is I'll have to do some patch work and perhaps another paint project. Sigh.

That's pretty much about it for now.


Swimming Lessons Intensified.

Last Monday we started all three kids on swimming lessons. This time around we decided to go with one-on-one training. It's every day, 5-days a week, for three weeks at 15 minutes apiece (although the 15 minutes sounds so little, it actually works out well). The swim teacher came highly recommended. Although it cost significantly more than if we enrolled them in class, we figured when it comes to safety and the kids getting intense training, that there would be no compromise. The kids were getting all geared up last weekend (before lessons). They were discussing who was going to go first. On the first day of lessons, both girls cried their little heads off. Jadon did well. That night the girls told us that they didn't want to go to swim class anymore. We sympathized with them but in our heads we were thinking "too bad, you're still going to go." The next day both girls still cried but it got less and less. By the end of the week, they were begging for more. The swim teacher is that good. The kids' progression is going quite well. They are able to swim with their head in the water for a good five feet unassisted.


Quite A While.

Wow, it's been over a month since I last blogged. Where do I begin?

Last weekend we set out on a two night road vacation up to Monterey Bay. It's about a six hour drive. We headed out on Sunday and got back on Tuesday. The ride up wasn't so bad. The kids were good. It was the following days that weren't so pleasant. Fiona booked us at the Embassy Suites which was nice. She was really into their free full breakfast and late afternoon complimentary snacks. Plus the room itself had a separate living room space (separate from the bedroom).


So we arrived around 3:30 pm at the hotel, checked in, cleaned up, and headed to the Denise The Menace Park. That park was pretty sweet. No admission but it was like a little themed park. There was life sized train where kids can climb, a huge bridge with slides, a neat little maze, more slides. Probably one of the cooler parks out there. After that we headed back to Fiona's much-hyped afternoon snacks back at the hotel. It ended up being animal crackers, goldfish and some mix. Woohoo! Then after that we headed to the Fisherman's Wharf. It's a mini-version of the one up in San Fran.


The kids woke up really early and so we headed out to the Monterey Bay Aquarium. It was good. Just that there weren't any big fishes. We were there for a total of 3 hours. Jadon and Vanessa kept asking to go back to the hotel because they were tired and wanted to take a nap. Natalie was getting tired as well. So because of that, we ended our Aquarium excursion short. So we take the kids back and settle them for their naps and they ended up just yapping their little heads off. That was aggravating. It took me an hour of going in to tell them to be quiet and go to sleep. Then they woke up 30 minutes later. I just lectured them on and on about how momma and me wanted to stay at the aquarium longer and that we brought them back because they were so tired.... So after that we went out on the 17 mile drive which takes us through all the famous golf courses, coastline, and landmarks. It cost $9.25 and it would have been worth it if it wasn't for the overcast weather and the whiny kids. There were 21 stops/points of interest and we only got out for about 5-6 of them (most of them were of the popular golf course like Pebble Beach). There were also some gorgeous looking houses too. So we hurried and grab some dinner and went back to the hotel.


Our ride home was about 6 hours (plus an extra hour for breaks). It was pretty much a tiring one with the kids a little whiny. Although we ended up playing a game. Vanessa has this ambition of becoming a FedEx driver when she grows up. So we played "Who can spot the FedEx trucks." We must have spotted over 30 of them.

All in all the trip was OK. Most of our road trips have been good but this one was below our norm. I would like to go back to Monterey Bay perhaps without the kids and hit up some of the golf courses.


A Little TLC Moment.

Last week I was watching Game 3 of the Lakers-Denver game (Lakers won on the road). Jadon decided that he wanted to watch the Laker game with me. Fiona took the girls out to Target. In the past Jadon would sit with me a few minutes and lose interest. This time around I decided to teach him some basics about basketball. First I drew out the lines on the court on a piece of paper and explained what each one represented (i.e. free throw line, three pointer) and how many points you get depending on where you shoot. Then I paralleled it to the court on TV. Then I quizzed him to make sure he knew what I had explained. I think from that he seem to enjoy the game more. He even told me shortly after "Dadda, I love you." Not only did that melt my heart but now he's a Laker fan. =)


Same School.

Next year all three kids are going to the same school (Jadon's current one). We decided to not have the girls' continue at their current one. Fiona felt that the girls' weren't learning a whole lot compared to what they'd learn at Jadon's. Jadon will be going all five days and the girls' are currently enrolled for two days a week (Tues. & Thurs). Although they are on top of the waiting list for three days a week (Mon., Wed., & Fri.). All three of them are quite excited (as are we).

Natalie: OCD?

I think Natalie has OCD or something. After every time she goes to the bathroom in the middle of the night, she tries to close the door quietly when she returns to her room. That's very courteous and all but she opens the door back up and closes it, opens it again and closes it. She does this probably half a dozen times or so. Last night she did this and Fiona went over and calmly told her to stop opening and closing the door and go to sleep. She ended up crying. She's cried on me before too.



This past weekend was filled with a couple of kiddy birthday parties. On Saturday the Fiona took the girls' to their friend's birthday party. I took Jadon out on a Father-Son outing. I ended up taking him to Dave N' Busters for a little play and then afterwards we ate at Ruby's for dinner. Then we had rendezvous with Fiona and the girls' and went to the 6:30p.m. Church service.

On Sunday, I took Jadon to his friend's birthday park at a local Pirate-themed park. They even had a Johnny Depp look-a-like playing Captain Jack Sparrow. He played the party really well. There were some teenage girls hovering around taking pictures.

After this past weekend, I don't think I want to go to another birthday party for a while.