Wednesday, June 28, 2006


Meatloaf, like the food, not the singer. Just wanted to be clear on that. I haven't had time (or energy) to post too many pictures on my blog recently. We've been working non-stop from about 8am to about 10 or 11 at night at the new house. I have taken LOTS of pictures & can't wait to post them, we just haven't been at home for me to do it! Today is the big moving day so we won't have our computers for a few days...

But, I did want to share how awesome God has been at providing the right people at the right time for us. We are so blessed. So, thanks to all the following people (most of them don't even read the blog) :) What a blessing people can be! You don't have to read about all of them, I just want to be sure to remember everything that's happened!

Betsy & Aaron--friends who came over & actually helped us scrape popcorn when they have a whole new house of their own to do!

Garrett & Jordan-friends who took us out of town camping to give us a break from working--it was awesome!

Our new neighbors, Scott & Julie came over for a tour of our new house last night & brought us refreshing drinks!

Nick-thanks for letting us borrow your truck to buy a new lawn mower!

Mom Jacobson-for cleaning, painting, cooking & doing pretty much whatever we need at just the right time. (Including bringing us meatloaf & mashed potatoes over last night. We REALLY needed a home cooked meal!

Mom & Dad Hagen & Gary & Aimee--thanks for being excited about our new place from so far away & thanks in advance for helping us with projects when you visit!

TK & the boys-for helping us build our deck & do some projects around the house

Jim-our new next door neighbor let us borrow some of his tools incluing a leaf blower so we could clean off our driveway. We also asked us to do our first "neighborly action"--pick up his mail while he's gone! That's a new one for us!

Suzanne--thanks for helping us with paint colors & other project ideas!

Jeff-thanks for helping us save some money & borrow your tools!

Our small group & others who are helping us move tonight--Thank you!!

The people at TC Performance who fixed Joel's car when it was stolen--it looks awesome & was done for about 1/2 the estimate!!

All the salespeople we've dealt with have been VERY helpful & friendly (a few were a bit chatty), but none were pushy! Yeah! That's a miracle right there!

Thanks, God, for providing sales on a lot of the items we've needed to buy!

I hope we can be a blessing back to you & to others!

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Bye, Bye Popcorn!

We're in our first official week of updating our house. Our first project was to try working on the popcorn ceilings. Meaning: get rid of them! We've been told it's a lot of work, it's a mess, etc... It's all true!! But, we've had fun working on it and love the outcome so far! We've taken them out of 2 bedrooms and 1 hallway. We still have 1 more large bedroom & the living, dining, and family room!

On the left is a picture of the room before we started. The blue & yellow wall will be painted a soft yellow at some point. This is Ted's old bedroom. Don't tell him that it will soon be pink & yellow! On the right is me getting started on the popcorn ceilings! What fun! Down below on the right is me continuing the work. Joel was working hard on the flooring in another bathroom (those pictures on another blog, another night). On the left is me--dirty, dirty! Isn't the face mask attractive?? I don't know if you can tell from the picture, but my legs look bruised from the dirt. The ladder was very dirty!

And now you can see the finished product! Well sort of, part one is done at least. Step two we'll work on tomorrow--putting a little bit of texture back on. Step three will be priming it. And, finally, step four-painting!

Doesn't it look great??

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Inside Project #1

After helping Rhonda sort, clean & pack up her house, we helped her move out on Friday. On Saturday, we had the biggest garage sale this side of the Mississippi! We made lots of money to help with our own move. Now, we're turning our focus to the inside of the house & getting ready to move in. Our first project was to take care of our guest bathroom. It had a leaky shower a few years ago that was fixed with beautiful marble. However, the floor & toilet didn't fare so well. We are having a new toilet installed (in the pictures you'll just see a hole where the HARVEST GOLD toilet used to be) on Monday, so we needed to get the floor bleached, cleaned & shellacked before then. You'll also see the bright green carpet that used to go into the bathroom. Rule #1 I've learned: bathrooms should not have carpet! So, today we'll be laying vinyl flooring. We're also shopping for lots of new items for our house! Check back soon because I'll be posting lots of pictures as we transform the house into our own! Also- for you out-of-towners, start planning your Colorado vacation now. Our guest room will probably be one of the first rooms done-complete with a queen size bed! (No more air mattresses!)

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Life & Death

Maybe I'm getting older (27) and seeing the finer side of life. Or, maybe I'm just starting to wake up and smell the roses. Whatever it is, I have a much greater sense of how precious life is. And, I don't just mean being alive. I mean really living. We can go through the motions of doing our daily routine, rising early, going to work, eating, sleeping, even going to church. But that gets old (even at 27). I've never struggled with "What is the meaning of life?" because I've always known what it is--to love God & to serve others. But, I don't think I've ever really DONE it. Well, I think God has helped me turn over a new leaf this year. I'm not saying I'm perfect, but I know that God has done a good work in my heart to help me do both better.

Something else I've always known, but never really experienced, is the saying that goes something like, "the end of one thing is the beginning of another". This is true, but it doesn't mean we shouldn't grieve the loss or the end of the thing that's over. Joel & I have been married for two years. We've loved living in our apartment--no shoveling of sidewalks, no raking leaves, no water heaters to fix, no windows to wash. It's been really nice. But, it is the end of that period in our lives. It is also the beginning of something new--a mortgage. No, it's more than that. It is the start of a great project. A beginning to a new chapter in our lives. And yet, it comes at a great price (& I don't just mean the cost of our loan).

For the past two weeks we've been working 12-14 hour work days helping my mother in law move out of the house we're buying (it's hers). It has been a lot of work because we've had to go through years of a life she's lived there. The great price is the not the hard work, the dusty closets or the heat of having no A/C. It is truly the end of a period in her life. She's had to go through countless boxes of memories of a life gone by. The death of Joel's dad almost six years ago makes this move bittersweet. His death (I'm told--I wasn't around to experience it for myself) was a bit unexpected, even though they knew it was coming; they hoped for more time. There was more time, so they thought. And yet, it was the end without them even knowing it.

Life is about more than just living--it's about really experiencing it, not missing an opportunity to love God & to serve others. Don't miss a chance, because it might be your last. And, if I may give a bit of advice, don't let you life get stored up in boxes. Clean out your basement, your attic, your garage. You don't need those things packed away--get rid of them. It's too much work to leave them behind when you're gone. And, as I recently heard in a sermon, "hearses don't pull U-hauls".