The Move - Part II

Initial Updates

When we decided we were going to move back to Crystal Lake, back in October, I started working with a realtor to get an idea of the houses that were on the market. 

I will also say, I move fast. Joel wasn't even in Illinois when I did the first sweep of houses, and when I finally found the one I was pretty positive we could work with, he came for a walk through, and that was it. We put an offer on it that day. 

Joel and I are always like that, for good and for bad. We just don't really hesitate, and it worked out in our favor. 

The seller was willing to take a 90 day close so we could wrap up life in California and get through the holidays. And as luck would have it, Joel wrapped up his old job in California and was able to have a 3 week gap before going to his new job, so he has been around 100% to help us survive.

The house is big, bright, and relatively new, but it was built in 2004 and hadn't been touched since. 

I loved the bones of the house, the property, the layout, and the curb appeal..but the interior left something to be desired. 

Before we moved in we had the floors done (wood stained, carpets cleaned), the banister and door painted (the outside will be painted black come the spring), and every room painted as well.

The day we closed on the house, the floors were the first thing done. Here is a before, during, and after shot of the floors and new kitchen lighting. 


 The floors were a very bright oak, and we had them buffed, sanded, and then stained in a walnut finish.

Having the banister done was one of my favorite jobs - it warmed the entire house up.


I was a little scared to go bold with the front door, but it was worth the risk.

Image result for 1170 Lakeview Crystal Lake 60014 
The outside of the door will be painted black come the spring as well.

We painted almost every room Sherwin-Williams Repose Gray, but with the dining room, we went with Steely Gray on top and stark white on the bottom.

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The other project our contractor did while he was working here was mount the TV above the fireplace. He was able to drill two holes on the side of the brick to keep the wires from showing.

While they had the 2 floor scaffold we had them update the recessed lighting, put in new bulbs in the chandelier, and clean the fan and windows that probably won't be touched again for years!

I really didn't want to spend the money to get our carpets cleaned because we are thinking about putting hardwood everywhere down the line, but we were persuaded by a "vacancy discount" and decided to just go for it and I'm so glad we did.

It made a huge difference - and I didn't even think the carpets were bad! Eek! 

We had people filing in and out of the house constantly for a week between, locksmiths, HVAC cleaners, security systems, and painters....it was a sight to be seen! But we made it in time and all of the initial updates were wrapped up on Friday (prior to our stuff arriving that Sunday), so my mom and I had two full days to deep clean. 

As eager as we were for our stuff to arrive, it was an enormous blessing to have the house unfurnished (along with having my parents as a place for us to stay), so that we could get so much work done before having to even think about unpacking!


Back Tracking The Move (part 1)

It's been a pretty solid whirlwind around here these last few weeks,  and I don't really even know where to begin, but I know I want this journey written down, so I'm going to back track to the day we left Los Angeles, 3 weeks ago on Tuesday, January 10th 2017.

All of our stuff was picked up by movers on Monday, and luckily, one of my best friends lived in our building, so we were able to set up camp in her house. We were totally comfortable, Leo and Roscoe were out of the way of the movers, and her and I only cried about every other hour.

She insisted on driving us to the airport on Tuesday morning which was amazing, since I'm pretty sure every uber would have cancelled when they pulled up to see 1 toddler, 1 nutty dog, 2 parents barely hanging on, and 3 enormous bags.

As soon as we got to our gate, due to weather in Chicago, we found out we were delayed three hours.

Not a good start, but we all managed (even past Leo's nap time), and were thankful to get on the plane towards home.

The first hour of the flight was great. Air was smooth, Leo fell asleep in the ergo once I could get to the back of the plane and bounce a bit, and Roscoe was pretty calm.

After the first hour, the flight got really turbulent, Roscoe and Leo both started to unravel, and my fear of turbulence and overall dwindling patience made for a really long next two hours.  

We landed, got our bags into my mom's car, and right as we pulled up to my parents house, Leo projectile vomited all over himself, Joel, and my mom's brand new car. 

We were home! 

Thankfully we were able to stay with my parents as our stuff made its way from California to Illinois. It ended up taking 13 days, so we were incredibly lucky to have such comfortable accommodations while we anxiously waited.

On Thursday, January 12th, we closed on our first house.

The closing went really smoothly, started at 8am, and was wrapped up by 9:30am.


Leo - Month 16

::: 15 month recap :::
Weight: 22lbs-ish maybe?

Nicknames: Leeman, Lee-Lee, Forest Boy, Weeward, Wee-whoa
Clothes: You are pretty steadily in 12-18 months clothes. Pants are pretty big at the waist, but overall we are getting lots of wear out of this lot of clothing size. Still a size 4 diaper and rocking a 4.5 shoe.
Sleep:  You've been a great sleeper this month. We have had LOTS of upheaval in our world, and you have slept well through it all. You are sleeping 7am-7pm with a 2.5hr nap from 1-3:30pm.


7:00am - Up and Bottle
8:00am Breakfast- you looove waffles!
9-12am play
11:30am/12pmish- lunch
1:00 pm nap
3:15pm snack & playtime
6:00pm dinner
6:30 pm bath
7:00 pm 8oz bottle and bed

Health: You have been a very healthy boy despite having your hands in your mouth ALL MONTH LONG! I think you are cutting your molars but nothing has popped up yet! 
Crying: I would say your specialty is more whining.
Feeding:  You have been a really big eater this month! You have been cleaning your plate and getting a variety of foods lately! The other day, I was talking at the dinner table to Dad and said, "wow, Leo is eating like a horse" and you smiled sweetly and replied "neigggghhhh".

Likes: You love to climb, you love to test our limits, you love to be held, you love to explore, run around, push carts/brooms/swiffers around, play with Roscoe, and kick a ball around.

Dislikes: When you aren't getting attention
Milestones: Lots of new words popped out this month; pasta, uh-oh, friends names (GiGi, JJ, Man-da, Tucker, etc.), sock, shoe, baby, "tootles", light, bye-bye....a new one pops up almost every day it seems.

We are constantly impressed by you...You have this big ISpy book, and you can point to lots of different pictures (crib, cup, monkey...whatever it may be). We have lots of fun with that! You also are trying really hard to jump which is pretty darn cute! 
Places You’ve Gone: Well, sweet Leo, you moved cross country this month. We packed up our apartment in Los Angeles and moved into a house here in the Chicago suburbs. You have had so much fun taking in your new surroundings; checking out snow, deer, and seeing your grandparents almost every single day.
Visitors: You are a loved little boy. You had lots of visitors in LA coming to love on you and kiss you goodbye, and have had lots of visitors in Chicago coming to love on you and kiss you hello.

Roscoe: You and Roscoe took your first flight together this month, and I'm very glad to say we all survived that experience. He's having a lot of fun with you exploring our new space and Dad and I feel very proud and excited to be entering this new chapter of life with both of you.
We know, Leo, that we have given you a pretty solid bump in your coolness factor over future brothers or sisters because you will be our only child who can say that "I'm from California".


Last Weekend in CA

 In the midst of moving with a toddler (a whole post on that later).....Joel and my best friends put together the most touching and fun going away party (ever).

I was told to take an uber with my girlfriend to an undisclosed location, even though I guessed it pretty quickly. When I walked in at 5:10pm, everyone was already there, glass of champagne in hand, ready to toast our bittersweet depature.

Not a detail was missed, there were flowers, cheese boards, champagne, our favorite somm, and all of my favorite people.



Then, the icing on the cake, my best girls came out with a beautiful painting for me to always remember LA by. My friend Laura's mom painted the piece, and it literally brought me to tears. 


The entire party was amazing and tough, and made Joel and I feel incredibly grateful for the friends we've made these last five years.

On Sunday, after a full day of packing....I was able to go downstairs to my best girlfriends apartment to watch the globes with some girls. We just cuddled around in our pajamas, stayed up way too late, and tried to just soak up the fun night without bursting into tears.

On our last night in LA, we stayed with Shelby who made our move INSANELY better - ordered our favorite LA pizza (Fresh Brothers), and got to spend time with our dear friends who were out of town on Saturday. 


Somehow, Tuesday morning arrived, and it was time to take our final picture in front of the condo that made us husband and wife and mom and dad.


A Big Update

Our family is on the move! 

After five years in California, I'm watching a moving truck load up our lives this morning to take them to our new home in the northwest suburbs of Chicago.
Five blocks from my parents, three miles from Joel's, with a big backyard, and our own laundry room - we feel like all of our dreams are coming true. 

But, with that said, we have some really heavy hearts as we say goodbye to our friends that turned into family here. There is something very, very special about this crew in California. 

They have been my front line as I celebrated being engaged, married, pregnant, and a new mom. We have taken each other in like I didn't know friends could.

And because of them, part of my heart will always be here in Los Angeles. 

"How lucky I am to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard" Winnie the Pooh/ A.A. Milne:

On to the next adventure!


Five on Friday


::: 1 ::: 
The Big Boo Cast, Episode 46

A few friends recommended listening to The Big Boo Cast podcast, and to those that did, thank you! They have been just what I needed this week. If you haven't listened, I will say, this podcast probably isn't for everyone because its basically two girlfriends catching up on the most random of things, but I love it. I find it cheerful, adorable, light-hearted and fun.

::: 2 :::

The perfect Summer reads for your Memorial Day weekend! #BeachReads #summervibes:
Since now I have them to love on, I really want to find a book to dive into. I haven't read a good book in months and I'm missing them!! Nothing has really caught my fancy and I have started and not finished the last few books I read (Truly, Madly, Guilty (!!!) , Nest, and The Weekenders). Anyone read anything easy and fun lately? 

::: 3 ::: 
After the initial "new"-ness that came with the New Year, which ended for me like on Wednesday, I actually found it quite depressing. For the last 3 weeks, my house has been filled to the brim with people, places to be, people to see, and these last few days felt like a balloon getting the air sucked out. Plus, we knocked out lots of dentists and doctors appointments to just get them over with, so that is never super fun either!

::: 4 :::
Juliette Upholstered Bench
I'm pretty obsessed with this new beauty that will be living with us! I needed a bench for the end of our bed and after I spotted this one, here from Joss and Main, nothing else would compare! 

::: 5 :::
May the next few months be a period of magnificent transformation. #quote #quoteoftheday #inspiration:

Happy first weekend of 2017