Dinosaurs, House Contracts, and Aviation Hysteria

Ana FINALLY got out of school last Thursday. She started super early in August in Oklahoma (where school was done weeks ago), then finished up super late in June in Texas (where school didn’t start until almost September). All of this made for the longest school year ever. Ana didn’t seem to know that she got it badly going both ways, though, so we’re all good.

Knowing that soon we’d be thrown into the busiest part of summer, we made the most of last Friday and Saturday. Since Emma had gone with us to look at houses here in Pasadena earlier in the week, we wanted to be fair and give Ana the chance to do the same. We walked into one particular house while we were looking, and I knew within ten seconds of crossing the threshold that THIS WAS THE HOUSE! A few months back, we had dinner with some church members who live in the same neighborhood, and I told Wes that night that I would love to live in a house like theirs, in a neighborhood like theirs. The house we saw on Friday fit all of our criteria and then some, right in the middle of the same neighborhood. We spent some time discussing it, then called our realtor later on that night and told her that we wanted to make an offer.

Saturday was the hottest day of the summer yet. (Monday would blow it out of the water, though. As I’m sure today will blow Monday out of the water. You have to love Texas!) We knew this but went ahead with our plans to visit the zoo. Ana had been talking about a new dinosaur exhibit that was opening up, and sure enough, when we got there, we saw that you could buy tickets for it. Wes balked at the $12 to get all four of us through it (we have zoo passes and bring picnic lunches, so we’re not used to paying anything there), but Ana was determined to see those dinosaurs, so we had no choice. As soon as we walked up to the exhibit and she heard the first audio-animatronic dinosaur, she put her hands over her ears and shouted, “I DON’T WANT TO SEE THE DINOSAURS!” Oy. Emma was quite excited, however, so we convinced Ana to come along as all four of us visited the dinosaurs, all of whom were spread out along a shaded trail. Ana told us afterwards that it was “awesome!,” even though she spent the whole time shrieking with her hands over her ears. $12 of terror, which was later remembered as raptor-us joy. (See what I did there? Dinosaur, raptor? I know. Sometimes I’m just that clever, y’all.) Anyway, the rest of the zoo was far more entertaining, even though the animals were so hot that they laid there nearly comatose. I thought the tigers were dead at first because it didn’t even look like they were breathing as they laid on their backs with their legs straight up in the air, like dead bugs. I guess Bangladesh doesn’t get as hot as Houston.

After the zoo, we met our realtor back at THE house and signed all the documents for our offer. A few hours later, we got a counter-offer, which we accepted. We signed some more documents, and like that? We are officially under contract. Yippee! We had already been pre-approved for the loan, which you would think makes the loan application process a little easier, but it still involved a whole day of me scanning and emailing every official document/form/scrap of paper that we’ve ever laid our hands on. Okay, so maybe it wasn’t that bad, but it took quite a while to get everything in order. I think it’s done now… but I’m likely wrong about that. I didn’t submit a urine and blood sample or get fingerprinted, so I’m sure that’s coming! We’d do all that and more for the opportunity to owe them money (ha!) so that we can live in this house, though. Here’s hoping it all works out!

We’ve been cleaning out our closets and the garage with the approaching move in mind, and it’s been therapeutic to finally clear out some of the junk. Should have done this before we made the last move! For the first time, we’ll be living somewhere where the girls won’t have a separate playroom, so we’ve spent a lot of time concentrating on clearing out toys and stuffed animals. I’ve greatly dreaded this process, knowing that it would have to happen some day, but the girls have been great. In fact, I’ve been more sad than they’ve been about saying goodbye to those mountains and mountains of toys. I’ve been surprised to hear them tell me just how many things they haven’t played with in years and to see how eliminating so much of the clutter has given them easier access to the toys they DO still enjoy. Again, I should have done this before we made the last move! They’ve inspired me to do the same with my assorted junk and stuff, and I’ve so bravely gone from owning six winter coats to TWO winter coats. And I’m not even sure I’ll need any at all here in Houston. Baby steps, y’all. Baby steps.

This week is VBS at the church, and the girls were so excited the first day that they were both “up and at ’em” at 5am. This morning? Well, I’m about to head upstairs to drag their carcasses out of bed. I guess the early morning was harder on them than they were letting on yesterday at this time, when they were jumping up and down and shrieking at the church. Our theme is Aviation Wonders, and a couple of church members who own planes flew by the church during the opening. Ana and Emma had no idea this was happening, so you can imagine how this only amped up their hysteria. No wonder they’re still sleeping!

Hope your week is off to a great start!

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