Tuesday, October 27, 2009

McKenzie's 16th Birthday present

So Mike finally broke down and bought a new car!

His 1999 Chrysler Concorde has served us well. We bought it in June 2003 when we moved to Austin. We had survived with only one car for 8 years but without the public transportation options we had in Seattle, we had to go to two cars. We bought the Concorde with 60,000 miles and as of Saturday the car had over 160,000 miles. I wish I could say that Mike was going to miss his car, but I don't think so! He has a 35 mile commute to work so he spends a lot of time in his car.

The new car, a 2010 Toyota Camry, is kind of similar to his old car. Dark red, four doors, tan leather interior, and moonroof. Wait! It is exactly like his old car! Honestly it doesn't look that different than the old car except for it's about 5 feet shorter, it hasn't faded to pink on the top and the passenger door actually opens. Oh, and the new one has a lot less miles on it!

Rebecca has been Mike's car buying assistant for the past month or so. On their first car buying expedition, Becca interviewed Mike about what he wanted in a car and wrote of list of what he wanted so that she could show it to the salesmen. She would also take pictures of the cars that they would look at and write down notes as they did some test drives. What a great helper. Kenzie went along once but apparently didn't understand the car buying rules. She felt it necessary to tell the salespeople what bad shape Mike's old car was in and how bad he needed a new one. Mike felt it necessary to tell Kenzie to shut up!!

I must admit I didn't go on these trips. The car really is Mike's. I can count on one hand the number of times I have driven his car in the last year. The car he ended up buying he brought to the house and I got a chance to drive it around the neighborhood and give final approval before Mike made the final decision. I still think it's funny how much this car is like his old one!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Getting Ready for Halloween!

It's been a busy day around here for us! It has finally cooled off enough to spend a day outside. this is the first day we have been able to turn the a/c off since April! October has been terribly warm this year with highs in the 90s every day. Finally a little relief from the heat.

I baked some cookies this morning and threw in a load of laundry and then started working on Becca's costume. She has a dress that I made for her that she wants to wear. It's way too short now, so I made a petticoat to go under the dress that reaches the floor. I spruced up the ribbons, added some fancier sleeves and "Voila!" a princess dress!

For McKenzie I got out an old scarecrow costume out of the attic, one that I wore before I had kids. Kenzie is just about the same size I was way back in the day so with a few modifications it will fit the bill. The original had pants, a tunic and a really darling hat and neck thing with patches on it. Her version has a skirt instead and a vest, both of which I whipped up this afternoon.

Mike spent the morning sprucing up the yard, pulling weeds, putting out mulch etc. Now he is working on cutting out some wooden pumpkins for the girls to paint. We still plan on carving pumpkins but around here the carved pumpkins only last a few hours before they start to melt in the heat. So we saw some painted pumpkins at a craft show a couple weeks ago and though how fun it would be to paint our own version and put them out in the yard. That way we could show a little Halloween spirit for longer than one day.

Other than that, we have been crazy busy with work and school. Both the girls have a lot more homework this year and I have a lot more responsibilities as a team leader and member of the Building Level Planning Team and union representative for our school. Mike's job keeps him as busy as ever, so it doesn't leave a lot of time of weeknights for much of anything other than dinner!