Thursday, June 28, 2007

Little Bunnies

We went to the Lake over the weekend and Ryan mowed the lawn...which is how we discovered this bunny nest full of tiny babies. Their names were Hopper, Skipper, Jumper, and Squeaker.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007


Let the Church Search Begin! Ryan and I will be moved to Grand Rapids this weekend and we can't wait to find ourselves a church in the GR area to call home for the next 3-53 years. I've been asking around and have checked out some places online...which means that the church search has officially begun.

TAKE NOTE: My church search did not begin by walking in the door of your church. Your website is your front door, and your website, more than likely, will determine if I visit your church or not. I know that sounds harsh, but that is reality friends, that is the culture we live in. is one church that I am really excited about checking out! Hopefully Ryan and I will be moved in time to make it this Sunday!
A few initial thoughts:
  • They have a .tv URL, which is really cool.
  • I've heard nothing but great things about Wes Dupin
  • They have lots of small groups on lots of nights, which is good news since Ryan will have a very erratic call schedule as a resident.
  • The website is snappy, and they creatively named the programs/groups/events
  • The volunteer link on their site spells out the "WIN" for each opportunity - I like that!

Congratulations Mom!

YOU'RE RETIRED!! I am so proud of you Mom! You have loved so many people and cared for so many patients throughout your life as a nurse. For over 30 years you have been an INCREDIBLE nurse and have made the world a better place!

You inspired me to want to be a nurse, which is why I chose Hope College, but then I realized that I didn't want to be a nurse, but I really respected you for being one...and I met Ryan at Hope, so I guess it all worked out well.

Either way, I am so happy that you're done working, that you get to do whatever you want and go wherever you want and hang out with dad a lot and come visit me in Grand Rapids.
I love you!

Aaron Pace = IRONMAN

Ryan's roommate from his first year of Med School just completed an IRONMAN this weekend! Way to go Aaron! You are a MANIAC!!
WAY TO GO ASHLEE!! You are an incredibly supportive wife!

Monday, June 25, 2007

Brooke and Tim are going to have a baby!!

CONGRATS guys! We are so excited for you!!

Thursday, June 21, 2007

One Thing I Learned Yesterday

Do not put liquid detergent into the dishwasher!

Cliff and Huddy are the absolute nicest people on the planet. So nice that they have allowed Ryan and I to live in their basement for the last week while they were away on a trip. Because they are so kind, I wanted to be kind to them in return, by cleaning the kitchen and all of the dishes and making the house look nice before they return this weekend. Which is why I feel bad for being a moron and breaking their house yesterday.

Well, not quite breaking, but just doing something stupid enough that it took about 4 hours of clean-up and a phone call to the neighbors before everything was pretty much back to normal.

I saw a bottle of detergent under the sink that had a picture of a sparkly little glass on it, which is exactly what I I added the detergent, closed the door and started the dishwasher.

I then proceeded to go downstairs to take a shower. About 20 minutes later Ryan came home from his run and I heard him say, "Something's leaking over here!" I looked up at the ceiling tiles in the basement and indeed, he was correct. So I ran upstairs and swung open the door to the kitchen, which I found to be completely covered in huge foamy suds. Seriously folks, it was like a movie.


Ryan ran back downstairs to see if it was still leaking and to dry the places the water had dripped. I guess those ceiling tiles are pretty much like a sponge, because this one was so water logged that it cracked in half when we tried to remove it.

"I can replace the ceiling," I thought to myself, what should I fix first??
# 1 Huddy's New Floor
# 2 The Dishwasher
# 3 The Ceiling Tiles

Then I ran back upstairs to finish drying the kitchen floor. The floor was dry, then I mopped it to make sure there was no leftover soap residue and dried it again. The floor looked great, so I moved on to the next priority - the Dishwasher

I took a cup and scooped the excess foam and water out of the bottom of the dishwasher and into the sink. Then I closed the door and ran the rinse cycle again. I layed down on the nice clean floor by the dishwasher so that I could see the first single drip if it leaked. Within about one minute the suds were forming around the dishwasher door again, so I stopped the cycle and again scooped the water and suds out of the dishwasher and into the sink. I was lost for ideas, and was quite embarassed by my stupidity.

So then, of course, I turned to the Internet to figure out if anyone had a solution to this problem. WWBVD? (What would Bob Vila do?) Apparently, there are a number of solutions. Crisco Oil. Oil, Table Salt, and Ice Cubes. A bar of soap, liquid fabric softener, malt vinegar, milk, or a half-cup of vegetable oil. White vinegar. Baking soda.

According to wikipedia : Hand-washing dish detergent (washing up liquid) should not be used in a dishwasher, as it will create a large foam of bubbles which will leak from the dishwasher. If hand-washing detergent is accidentally used, the foam may be removed by spraying with salt, and the dishwasher should be forced into a drain cycle to remove the soap and water.

So that's what I tried, and it worked. The only problem left was the ceiling tiles.

I woke up this morning with a plan. I carefully took down one of the ceiling tiles and put it in the trunk of my car. Ace Hardware couldn't help me, so I went to Home Depot and walked in the front door with my ceiling under my arm. I found the tiles that were exactly right, but they were much brighter white than the one I had in my hand. "That's going to look funny," I thought to myself. I asked for assistance and discovered that you can't buy just one ceiling tile, you have to buy a whole case of 16 tiles. "How many cases would I need to replace Cliff and Huddy's entire ceiling?" I had to drive back to their house to make a count. I would need at least 3 cases, and would have to buy one of those special saws that cuts ceiling tiles to the right size.

Luckily, I called Cliff and found out that he has some extra tiles and that I shouldn't buy more.

Needless to say, lesson learned. I hope that this post will save someone from the hassle which I have been hasseling for the last two days.

And again I say, NO MATTER WHAT, never confuse liquid dish soap with dishwasher detergent!

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Race of Their Lives

My friend Jess has been doing some really incredible things lately. She has her own personal training business, and recently took time out of her busy schedule to give one little girl the race of her life! Jess did a triathalon with Kamrie right there beside her the whole time.

Tim & Brooke posted a TOUCHING VIDEO of Jessica and wrote more about this on their blog. Check it out!

Human Tetris

This is the best thing I've seen all month! Why can't we have reality TV programming like this in America? I am laughing so hard that it's more like crying. I think Ryan would be good a playing human tetris.

Monday, June 18, 2007

Camp Adventure

Today is the first day of the first week of Camp Adventure for the summer. Granger has so many Middle Schoolers that they had to expand to two weeks of Camp. When my dad was in 7th grade he accepted Jesus as a camper at Camp Adventure. Then he was a counselor at camp, leading a group of Jr. High boys, then he was the Director and for 20 years our family was there for a week every summer! My mom was the camp nurse. She is awesome.

So, all of that is to say that Dad has never missed a single summer. He has been doing Camp Adventure every single summer for 35 years and I think that's pretty cool.This week Dad is there with Angela and John and an awesome team of counselors. I love Camp Adventure. When they get back I'll post some videos that Corey makes each year.


Some people are so nice. I can't believe how generous Heidi's grandparents Cliff & Huddy are for letting us live in their basement for two weeks. Last night when we got here they gave us the grand tour, showed us how to turn off the smoke alarm, and even fed us pizza. INCREDIBLE! I love looking at all of the pictures of Jr. High Heidi on the walls. (I miss you friend!)

We sat out on the porch with Heidi's sister Hillary and her fiance Kevin last night. They went to Hope too, so we have bumped into eachother before. I actually met Hillary for the first time at a Cutco Convention about 5 or 6 years ago. Such great people. Kevin is letting me use his high-speed internet!

Ryan left this morning for his first day of orientation which consists of a full physical exam. When he gets back we're going to ride our bikes. Yippee!!

That's pretty much the news from here for today.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Bryan and Michelle surprised us on Wednesday night by treating us to dinner at one of our favorite Chicago resturaunts! How do we love them? Let us count the ways:

  • best friends
  • neighbors
  • family grill night each week
  • we carpool - everywhere
  • the boys with their running and biking
  • the girls with our tae-bo and cookie-eating
  • Cross Country Skiing
  • Spectator Sports
  • Mathiessen State Park
  • Euchre
Have you been to Chicago Pizza & Oven Grinder Company? Have you tasted the glorious flatbread? Have you indulged in the upsidedown pizza bowls?

If not, then you must


Can I just tell you that I have a blog that I've been following for about 6 months now that may be the most hilarious life blog I have ever heard of. I have rarely read a single post that didn't make me laugh out loud. I think you might laugh too...especially if you are a mom, or someday might be a mom, or if you're someone who is married to a mom, or someone who has a mom.

On the way home from preschool today
Friday, 15 June 2007

“How was your day, Leta? Did you do anything fun?”

“I got dirt on my shoes and then I fell down and got a boo-boo on my knee, so I think I need a present.”

Some Thoughts on Stuff

"Are you moving your feet? I think I can feel your feet twitching a little bit, the sheets are twitching."

That's what Ryan said a few hours after we went to bed last night. I think I'm must be a little bit anxious or something...because my feet were definitely restless. It was like that "restless legs syndrome" commercial. I was trying to sleep, but kept myself awake because I couldn't get my feet to just lay there with the rest of my body.

Today is our last day officially here in Chicago. Our apartment is basically all packed in boxes and tomorrow after church we load up the Jeep and drive to Grand Rapids. Ryan starts Residency on Monday, but we can't move into our new apartment until July 1...which leaves us a 2 week window of ridiculousness. Luckily we have friends who have grandparents who are nice enough to let us sleep in their basement for a couple of weeks. (Thank you Heidi!!)

Our stuff, however, will stay here in Chi-town until the last weekend in June when we actually make the move.

Which makes me think about stuff. We have made more trips to Goodwill in the last week than in the rest of my life combined. We don't need all the stuff we have. Moving and packing has been a really great motivator for me to get rid of some clutter, and re-evaluate what stuff we really want to have in our lives and what stuff we can give to other people, throw away, or put through Michelle's paper shredder that she keeps letting me borrow. (Thanks Michelle!)

Another big motivator was my friend Amber who is a professional organizer. I downloaded her archived newsletters and found a wealth of helpful organization material. Check out her website, If you need some help, she is the gal for you!

Moving, changing, transitioning, growing - these are hard things to do sometimes. Its horrible and causes gut-wrenching pain to think about leaving our friends here in Chicago, but at the same time exciting and wonderful to enter into this next phase of our life!

Basically, I am feeling very bi-polar and have developed restless legs syndrome and still sleep on my back with my arms above my head which is causing serious damage to my shoulder joints.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Cherry Trees

Yesterday we discovered that we have a cherry tree in our yard. We've lived here for three years and never even noticed it until three days before we move back to Michigan! We think that for the last few years the birds probably ate the cherries before we could find them, but not this year! With so many cicadas flying around the birds are less than hungry for cherries.

Ryan and Bryan went to town trying to get all of the cherries within reach. I couldn't believe how sweet and glorious they tasted right off the branches!

I might have to plant myself a cherry tree.

Monday, June 4, 2007


Way To Go! Ryan Cox M.D.!!