Thursday, August 30, 2012

The other student of the family

This is Mary. She is our exchange student from Armenia ( of course!) that will be living with us until June. After much paperwork and trips to the local huge high school she is finally registered and allowed to start today. She is very excited.


Today is her third day. She loves it. And I love the uniform. Really I do. The wardrobe drama is restricted to what socks she should wear and if she should wear her jumper or her skirt. She has pants and shorts she can wear too but so far she has refused to wear them saying they are "ugly". She looks so cute!

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Pics from the Beach in RI 2012

You are either a beach person or not a beach person. I am very much a beach person although I will confess to being happy if I never see a grain a sand for at least another 3 months! We had a another great week along the RI coast. Despite some sick kids and a cranky and teething toddler and some cloudy weather there was beach fun to be had because there is always fun to be had at the beach
 I would like to point out that my 5 year old picks out clothes for not just herself but also for Israel and Nairi hence why my children almost never match and always have contrasting patterns on their shorts and shirts.

You will not see a picture of me in a bathing suit because early pregnancy means I just look like I ate too many cookies.

RI Light House

 One cloudy am we went to check out a lighthouse that was just min from our beach house.
 Its tall!! Looking way up
 There were all these cool light house imitations people had built out of rocks. Uncle Peter shows Israel to how to build one.
 Gorgeous rocky beach

 The ocean makes you in a contemplative mood.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Paint goes a LONG way.

The shed before paint job

                                           And after. We painted it gray b/c in the spring we actually plan on painting the house the same color. Gray with black shutters. The front door of the house however will be an bright red.

Tuesday, August 07, 2012

Shed Issue Resolved

Last time we left you we were entangled in a conflict with our HomeOwners’ Association. More specifically…a particular member of the Board of Directors who shall remain nameless.

Well…the story goes like this.

Before we purchased our house last year, we read the protective covenants that stated no sheds. We were fine with that. But over the last year while living here, we have noticed quite a few sheds (probably close to a dozen). With all of the kids stuff, outdoor tools and other things, we really need a shed. Otherwise we can’t park in the garage.

We saw a great deal on a display model shed and purchased it. A nice shed with flower boxes, windows, etc.. It is red, but we plan on painting it to match our house. As you know, the shed wasn’t even off the truck before we had our neighbor coming up to Tanya telling her that sheds aren’t allowed. She politely informs him that he should walk around the neighborhood and notice the many other sheds in the neighborhood. He made a statement of surprise. They placed the shed in the recently landscaped spot we paid $700 to have leveled and graveled.

Fast forward 2 weeks…and we receive a letter in the mail from our property management company. In the letter it stated that although there are other sheds in the neighborhood, ours was the most visible and therefore our shed would show that the development no longer cares about appearances. At the end of the letter were very firm words “Either move the shed so it isn’t visible or remove it within 30 days”.

Well…I called the manager and started a dialogue. I asked her a bunch of questions including why a shed on a cross street that was as visible as mine wasn’t asked to move. She said that it was in the backyard. Ok…what if I put a fence in front that matches the rest of the privacy fence in my yard. She asks the board of directors and they said. Privacy fence in front, on the sides and in back. There are privacy bushes on the left and behind the shed. Whatever I am going to do is not going to be good enough for the board of directors. So I no longer had plans to fence it in or move it. Time to fight the discrimination.

I sent an e-mail to the management company. In it I stated that the board had tacitly approved other sheds in the neighborhood without restrictions. I also took pictures of 2 specific sheds in the neighborhood. 1 was the one that I had mentioned that was in the backyard but as visible as ours. The other one was at the end of a driveway (further from the road because the house had more road frontage than ours). I stated that my shed met both of these previously sheds passively approved by the board. My shed is in the backyard when you look at Manchester Zoning Ordinances. And mine is at the end of the driveway. So either way you look at it, sheds in identical locations had been approved.

The property manager calls me and says that I am blowing this way out of proportion. I remind her of the strong closing statement in the letter that stated I HAD to move/remove the shed. She said that was a recommendation. She also said the board consulted a lawyer to see what they could do and he said that they couldn’t force me to move it and they couldn’t forcefully remove it unless they removed all other sheds in the neighborhood. She asked me if I would at least paint it before the spring and I said I would. We are just waiting for the painter’s schedule to open up.

THIS WAS A HUGE STRESS RELIEF. I no longer had to remove the shed…no longer had to move it…no longer had to worry about spending upwards of $1200 fencing it in.

The board of directors had bit off their nose to spite their face. They could have approved my compromise to put a fence in front and I would have done that. But nope, they had to go to the extreme and try to make it cost prohibitive to keep the shed under their terms.

I did ask the property manager if her company received the complaints or the “board of directors” aka the neighbor that dislikes us. She said it was the board of directors.


Yes ugh. That sums up pregnancy for me.  I won't bore you with the details but that we are surviving. Thanks to a husband who took over dinner making and dish washing and food shopping and taking out the garbage duties and about a million other things and to a great high school student we found that comes and helps with the kids a few times a week to give me a breather. I have about as much energy as a cat sitting in the sun that's pretty much what I want to do all day. Why does the mere fact of being pregnant and taking care of a bunch of little kids feel like an Olympic feat? Throw in some all day nausea and am puking and you have what feels like an impossible task.  I am sick but not nearly as sick as I was when I was pregnant with Keira but I feel like I drag myself though each day.
In other news Israel will be attending preschool in the fall two mornings a week ( same place that Keira went too) and Keira is all ready for school to start. He seems excited and Keira talks to him about it  ( telling him all the fun things about preschool) but he is way more shy than Keira so we will see how it goes.  We have done our uniform shopping and back pack shopping and lunch box shopping and all that is left is school supply shopping at Wal Mart and we should be good to go.
We have a few more summer BBQ's and our week at the beach and summer should be wrapped up.
Thanks to our awesome neighbors and their generosity in sharing their beautiful in ground pool and the hot and humid weather we have done A TON of swimming this summer and all 3 kids adore the pool so I feel like they have had a great summer. Keira enjoyed dance camp last week and vacation bible school this week.
So that is how things are with us. Don't expect alot of blogging or at least not until schools starts.