Landscape SOS

Our front yard is in need of a little DIY TLC (OMGWTFBBQ?). It was mostly finished when we moved in last year but then we neglected it and now it is just sad. We knew when we moved in that we wanted to put up a small retaining wall and level the front lawn but for some strange reason, just talking about it hasn't actually resulted in anything being done. 

So! This year we are going to pretty up our sad front yard. We want to put up a small stone retaining wall at the property line (about a foot above the end of the hill) and then get the city to raise the utility access points so we can add some fill to level the front lawn. We just need someone to tell us what to do with the rest. What would you do with our yard?


Iron Man is going to be pissed to lose his power station but he'll get over it.


Sad neglected yard :( 

Is This Thing On?

You guys, life is all over the place. I have about a hundred things I want to write about and zero time to do it. I miss my poor neglected space on the internet. The more time passes the more difficult it becomes to write here because there is just so much I've missed. So I reckon a quick update is in order. A factory reset so I can get back to posting recipes and silly stories about my hilarious kid without feeling like a fraud for leaving out all the big stuff.

So! Bullet points? Bullet points!

- I started a new three-days-per-week job back in February. I kept one of my freelancing jobs so I'm busy but I love it. I enjoy both of my jobs and I get to work with really cool people at both. I love my days in the office because I get to speak to adults and drink hot coffee. I love my days at home because Grady and I get to go on cool adventures and hang out a lot. It's kind of the perfect balance for our family and I'm loving it. 

- We spent months agonizing over whether or not we should sell our condo and buy a house with Shawn's dad. We put our condo on the market and accepted an offer within two weeks. We found, purchased, and moved into a new house within five weeks of first putting our condo on the market. It was insane. We've been in the new house for six weeks and I still feel a bit twitchy when I think about it.

- Our new house came with a whole whack of issues we weren't expecting. Most notably, we didn't get mail for a month because Canada Post is ridiculous. I have an angry post brewing so I won't expand too much on this one.

- Shawn's dad lives in a self-contained suite on the ground floor of the house and we live on the second floor of the house and I freaking love it. I highly recommend moving in with awesome in-laws if you have the chance. 

- Grady turns three in a few weeks. I don't know how that happened. He keeps asking us for a brother and it breaks my heart a little bit every time.

- My little brother and I signed up for the Ride to Conquer Cancer taking place in August 2015. It's a two-day ride from Vancouver to Seattle. We are idiots. 

- And the big news. The best news. The thanks-for-reading-this-far news: On June 25th, one year, one month, and fifteen days after being diagnosed, I was declared to be in remission. I started my 5-year clock. If I don't have a recurrence between now and June 2019, I will be officially cured. It's a huge relief. Last year, half of my cancer team recommended I go forward with the radioactive iodine treatment and half recommended that I not (thanks, DUDES! For the clarity!) I decided to listen to the doctors who were suggesting I wait to see what my tumour markers did and I am so glad I did. My tumour markers "exceeded expectations" (ten gold cancer stars for me!) so it was decided that the treatment was not necessary unless I experience a recurrence. Which means I am totally blasting Destiny's Child's "Survivor" during my kitchen dance parties and I don't even feel a little bit silly doing so.

Right! That's it! My 2014 so far in bullet points. What have I missed in your life lately?  

Crunch Time

We agonized for months over whether or not to sell our condo. We made pros and cons lists. We played out various scenarios in our minds. We thought of every "what if?" possibility.

We put our condo on the market just after Easter. Last week we received an offer for full asking price - as long as we can be out by May 29th. Cue panic.

Our condo was competitively priced but we didn't expect to receive full asking price in this market. We had fallen in love with two houses - a heritage home in the same city and a brand new house in a different city (but still close - about a 10-minute drive from our current home.) The heritage house sold before we could make an offer so the decision was made for us - we would jump in with both feet and agree to our buyer's crazy move-in date and just go for it.

I am not a "just go for it" kind of person. I'm a thinker. I analyze. I overanalyze. It's kind of my thing. But there's a weird kind of freedom in just saying "let's do this thing!"

Of course, this could all go horribly sideways. We could potentially end up homeless in two weeks if our buyers go through with the purchase and our purchase falls through. We don't have a safety net.

But it could be awesome. We could be in our brand new home by the end of the month.

It's all happening so quickly. I'm stressed. I'm tense. Both deals could still fall through (deposits aren't due until later this week.) Negotiations could still make or break either deal.

But I'm happy. So much has gone wrong over the past year. I'm ready for something to go right.


Midnight tonight is the deadline we were given (at midnight last night) to finalize an offer (for full asking price!) on our condo. As in, if we want any sort of security net, we need to have an accepted offer on a house by midnight tonight.

Oh and the buyers need us out by May 29th. Three weeks from now. I am doing a lot of deep breathing today.