Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Big Houses

I live in a society where big houses are the norm. Almost all of my friends have bigger houses than myself with less children to fill the house. Sometimes I think people feel sorry for me. For years people have been asking me when I will move into a bigger house. A bigger house never felt like something I needed or even wanted. Spending a few weeks in Africa made me want it even less and helped me fully understand that it is by no means a necessity. It also helped me realize that bigger houses have nothing to do with how happy a person can be. I just can't believe that people with big houses are happier than people with small houses. It doesn't make any sense. So here I am with five children living in a 1400 SF home in a community where big houses are common. I know that a bigger house won't make me happier and that it is not a necessity. But I also know that it would be fun, and comfortable and would make day to day living a little easier. No more filling the closets full and then closing them quick before everything falls out again. And no more bruises on my legs from bumping into my bed because there is very little room to get around it. I could finally remodel the kitchen and bathroom and maybe, though this would be tough, I could get rid of the swans. The kids would have more space to play inside during months and months and months and months of rain-I'm so sick of the rain! Maybe that's what's pushed me over the edge. Whatever it is, I'm finally ready to give in.

Rick and I are about to commit to a complete remodel/addition to our existing home. We have weighed the pros and cons of moving vs. an addition and have decided we want to stay where we are and add on to the house. We love our neighborhood, our cul-de-sac and our beautiful yard. We love the location and realize that the we could not possibly find better friends. The kids, though I feel they could adapt just fine if we moved, desperately want to stay where we are. They have great friends and love their school.

I NEED YOUR HELP!!! The problem is I am nervous about all the decisions that come with a remodel/addition. I want as much advice as I can possibly get. I plan on using my blog to get your opinions and advice about every little detail. Please help!

Advice for today: Do we move or add on? We are a few days away from putting money into an addition. Before that happens I want to make sure I have explored every other possibility. Is there a reason I shouldn't add on? Does someone out there want to buy my house and if so, is the perfect house out there for me to buy?
Should I just stay in what I have and spend all the extra money traveling the world?

My head has been full with these questions for weeks now and I'm finally ready for answers. Any thoughts you have would be appreciated. Whatever happens, I can feel the Bruno family needs to prepare themselves for a crazy adventure!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Baby #5

Life for a fifth child is rarely dull. It takes a special baby to survive it. And Grant it just the kid for the job. He thrives on the chaos that usually surrounds him and is hardest when he doesn't have someone or something to entertain him. Lucky for him, there is usually someone willing to take care of him. Or torture him. However you want to look at it.
Grant is the only one of my children who has really struggled with nursing. After a six month fight, we finally gave in to bottles with nursing only in the morning and at night. It has made for a much happier baby and mom.

Meet Grantina. Yes, Rick was upset with the whole dress up party. And yes, that is my gorgeous sister Heather in the background. More on her perfect visit from Africa later.

Even baby #5 gets pictures and video of his first solids. And no, he didn't like it at all. He's getting better.
And now that cousin Hazel has come along he has someone he can torture, just like everyone does to him. He LOVES when we let him get close to her. If only we didn't stop him every time he tried to eat her. I'm sure he could spend hours sucking on those cute cheeks if we let him.
As you can see, Grant is doing just fine as baby #5. I can't imagine my life without that cute smile.


Don't be misled by how sweet and innocent this picture looks. It took one of these children an hour to fall asleep after hearing these stories and another one was up for an hour during the night because of nightmares. Was it worth the hour of silence in the house while they were mesmerized by Uncle Jake? Absolutely!!

A Walk in the Park