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a year in recap

Talk about abandonment! It’s been just over one year since I’ve sat down, cozied up and shared on this little space. There are many reasons for not writing, but none of them are valid enough to break my intention of writing a blog. When I first started, I used this as a place to update family and friends on major (& not so major) life events but really, when the tough events started popping up, I backed away and closed up shop. As mentioned in one of my last posts, there is always so much to say, its just been a struggle to understand the “whys” and the “hows” of current happenings in an articulate manner. This space just didn’t feel like the right venue to hash out said events for my family.

2013-12-08 16.09.16While we are still hashing, there are many good (& some not so good) updates to share. So, in a nutshell — Evelyn turned last December – her birthday present was us announcing her sister (she’ll understand and thank us for that present later, right?)! In February we had caving ceilings so we moved in with my mother in law, repaired ceilings, renovated our bathroom (still in progress:: yes, 8 months later..pictures to come!), and celebrated the lives of two very important people in our lives: Sam’s grandmother MomMom and my grandfather, Jerry. Both celebrations of life were tough and beautiful.

Pregnant in Costa Rica

In April, Sam and I took a honeymoon to Costa Rica. It was beautiful! Being five months pregnant put a damper on some of our planned adventure activities and the all inclusive benefits (just for me) but the time away to reconnect was wonderful.

And to the biggest & BEST event of the past year: we welcomed our beautiful, healthy baby girl, Eleanor ‘Nora’ Dianne Weinstock to the world on July 30th.

Nora Dianne

Evelyn adjusted so well immediately to being a big sister. When she wakes up in the morning, she says, “Daddy? Wyatt? Baby?” meaning these are the first cuties I want to lay eyes on each beautiful morning. She gives Nora kisses, asks to hold her and bossily tells me where to place her when either she wants to push Nora in the swing or wants Mom to grab a snack from the kitchen. Luckily, Nora is such an easy baby, I have not felt as though Evelyn has been neglected due to feedings or the baby’s needs at all. It’s been a really healthy mix of attention to both girls, and if anything, I’ve felt guilty for not getting to sit and stare at Nora for endless hours as I did with Evy. My 100 pictures of Nora each day would counter my guilt. SO thankful for my beautiful smiling baby who sleeps 8-10 hours each night and my helpful, curious and brilliant toddler who keeps life exciting 🙂 I’m one lucky mama.

As for Papa Weinstock, he’s still doing well. He’s adjusted to life in Maryland. He loves where he lives and he even has time to partake in his passion of photography through teaching a small class. He’s recently been shown an incredible amount of support from previous co-workers and friends which has been such a blessing to our family. We are so very grateful for the support.

To wrap up a year in updates, there is one more final significant life event in the works: I’m re-entering the recreation field aka my passion. This change, while seemingly “just a career change”, is much more than that. Working a job in which you make a difference in people’s lives (even through the simplest thing of bringing a concert to their neighborhood) is something I’ve been missing for almost two years. It was a major void in my life and I didn’t realize how unhappy & settled I’d become. Since accepting this new job, I have my enthusiasm back and I am excited to start in just over a week. There will be updates on all of the above mentioned over the next months!

With that, it’s good to be back 🙂

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Fingers crossed!

Anyone who is in the process of buying a home or saving to buy a home will tell you how to save, the importance of being patient, buying off brands, living with family, etc – if you’re reading this blog in hopes of any of such mentioned advice, you’re in the wrong place.  While it would have been ideal for us to have planned out a home purchase in advance, planning is clearly not a strong suite for the weinstocks.  Here would be the only advice we could give you: 1) get married 2) get a new job 3) use all the money from the wedding + your upgraded salary and 4) purchase the first home that you could “see” yourself in.  Terrible advice, right?  Well that’s what we’ve got here.

Does this mean that’s exactly what we did?  Not quite, but almost – we’re putting an offer in today on a townhome in Rodgers Forge mentioned on Monday’s post.  With that, let’s go over some love/ not-so-loves about this property.

We LOVE: the community that the townhome is in –  read about it!  There’s an adorable tot-lot literally right around the corner from this property.  Rodgers Forge has its own schools as well which are some of the top ranbookshelfked in Maryland.  It’s a safe neighborhood just outside of the city.  There are adorable little shops, cafes, markets and a HUGE mall – all nearby.  It’s also an easy jump onto 695 for me to venture off to work via.  It’s walking distance to Sam’s mom.  It has a built in bookshelf giving it some added character. The entire house (minus the basement+kitchen+bathroom) is hardwood floors in pretty good condition.  The bedrooms are big enough for what we’d use them for with the smallest being the perfect size for miss Evelyn’s nursery.  The photos on the website really are not that great so when/if we get this property, I’ll post more then – most likely in the form of before/after’s.  It also has gas and AC which are two things that are hit or miss in this community.

What we Less than Love:  Well, there are a few projects that this house would bring us.  The kitchen is tiny which is even a gross understatement.  Good thing I don’t cook because Sam and I wouldn’t fit in there together.  The layout of it doesn’t make any sense to me as it currently is as well so the kitchen will most likely be the first project when we secure some funds for it. See what I mean?  Our plan is to knock out the wall to the right and extend the kitchen into the formal dining room with a cute little island and picnic style table – make it an open, yet cozy/inviting eating & socializing space.kitchen

See that door?  It leads to the basement which if you ask me, isn’t the most convenient place for the door but once the kitchen is more open, it should help with the flow.  The other main project would be the bathroom.  It definitely has charm as it is, but the cracked tiles will eventually drive me crazy so here’s what it looks like now – see? Charm! Add a little color and we could make this an adorable little bathroom.  It is also the only bathroom so a longer term project would be to add in a half bath downstairs.

  bathroom

Those are the “biggest” concerns but otherwise, everything else is fun projects!  We get to:

  • landscape and garden in the backyard
  • paint EVERYTHING
  • finish the basement eventually
  • get all new light fixtures/fans
  • make it OURS!

….. that is, if our offer is accepted.  So- FINGERS CROSSED.  This would be a great starter home for the Weinstock’s.  If not, this was a fun day dream and the search will continue. We’re going to play a long waiting game over the weekend until we hear back!

Have a lovely weekend!