24 May 2011

Phase 1: Dirt, Dirt, & More Dirt

The view of the house location before groundbreaking.  Those saplings to the left are actually quite large.

 I would title this posting "getting a slow start", but that would only be half true.  While, yes, we have had quite a few setbacks and are technically a week or two behind in scheduling:  We have also had a significantly busy and successful first 2 days of house building.  While the week started on Monday with the land looking as sad and overgrown as ever, by the end of the day on Tuesday it is barely recognizable.

The house location all leveled with great dirt and a big hole.  Do you see my beautiful granite by my handsome beech?

If it wasn't for the saplings and stumps in the background I would not know which direction I was looking in a picture and may not even recognize it as my own land.  I should know by now that site work on a house is like the USPS.  For three days you eagerly await the changes the life brings, and nothing happens.  But on the fourth or fifth or sixth day, you open your mailbox to more activity, change and plain old mail than you ever thought possible to fit into that little box. In our first 2 days of groundbreaking, we have a foundation hole, and footers all poured.  

Looking back at the driveway and beech from the other direction.  The foundation hole is on the right.

This USPS mentality will continue on for us though as tomorrow will be a day of rest for our land, but then Thursday a flurry of activity will commence.  The boys have loved every moment of this process and are very excited to learn more about building a house as each new contractor makes his appearance.

Our House as of Tuesday at 3:45 PM, just before the footers were filled in.  Imagine those footers filled with concrete and you can see how we ended our 2nd day of groundbreaking.  Do you see the boys picking Brandon's brain about concrete?

15 May 2011

What's in a Name?

As our journey continues in searching for yet another perfect boy name, Tyler and I find ourselves looking back at all of our boy's names, origins, and connections.  

For some odd reason patterns in the names in our family are important to me.  I find comfort in this: Each of the Smith children has a name that is connected to a family member; and none of the first names start with the same letter.  I tell you this so that when you give your suggestions for Smith boy #5 you can take our past patterns into consideration.  

Elijah Benjamin was, probably, our biggest joint effort in name selection.  Elijah, meaning "the Lord is my God",  had been a name on both of our lists from before the time we were married, and so it made sense to name our first son after the great prophet Elijah.  Benjamin as a middle name was a natural choice as it brought a family connection through Tyler's brother Ben, a wonderful friend with whom we laugh often.

Josiah James has the most obscure family connection in the lot.  After naming Eli after Tyler's brother; I wanted to name a son after my brother.  Josiah is not my brother's name.  My brother's name is Joshua which all of you Hebrew scholars can attest to, has the same root as Josiah, "the Lord saves".  Couple that with Josh's nickname being Jo, and suddenly you have a family connection.  James is the name of my favorite book of the bible, and happened to be the book that Tyler and I were reading at the time that Siah was born.  

Andrew Tyler was the hardest naming experience that I have had.  The reason being that Tyler changed his name after we had "already" named him.  For 12 hours I called him Titus Andrew only to have Tyler change it on me.  The confusion was hard, but eventually overcome.  Andrew is a family name on my mother's side and Titus was to be his own.  But alas, Tyler decided to make Andrew, "mighty", the first name which opened up the chance for me to change the Titus to Tyler.  A change I thought appropriate considering the incredible job Tyler did in Andrew's delivery.  Alas, Andrew has 2 family connections, but we didn't really know the connection on my mother's side, so let's call Tyler his family connection shall we?

Caleb Thomas was named by Tyler, mostly.  This was the second time that Tyler requested the name and seeing as he didn't want to budge on my options for first name; I decided to drop my requests and key in on the middle name.  So, Tyler chose Caleb, "devotion", after the courageous man in the bible, and I chose Thomas after Tyler's grandmother, whose middle name is also Thomas.  What a feat!  We have managed to name one of our children after a much beloved grandmother!  

As you might have noticed I like the twists found in our naming choices for the boys.  I like using a root form of Joshua to name my son Josiah and naming a son after a grandmother.  I find it intriguing and full of great history.  This new son's name has a lot to live up to.  For a middle name I am leaning on the family connection to my father's family.  My father's birthday is in August and I thought the close proximity to our due date would be a nice treat.  At this moment my middle name of choice is "Sevryt" pronounced sev'rE.  First names are numerous and all hold wonderful meanings.  Here is our list and please feel free to comment and put in your suggestions.

Gabriel -  "Hero of God"
Zebedee - "Given by God"
Samuel - "God Heard"
Micah - "Who resembles God"
Gideon - "Powerful Warrior"
Reuben -  "Behold, A Son" (like that's a surprise!!)

If you need more information on what kind of names that we tend towards, not that you wouldn't notice the biblical connections.  Here are some names we have considered in the past:
Noah, Daniel, Jedidiah, Zechariah, Azariah (ok, I was wishing, but Tyler hated it), Matthias, Timothy, Jacob. 

07 May 2011

No!! Baby Brother!

The boys have taken to discussing possible names for the new baby.  Almost each and every day you can hear them give in their suggestions for a name for our new addition.  Josiah, of course, wants to name the new baby "Corduroy", Elijah likes "Gabriel Sevryt", Andrew wants various names depending on his character for the day, or what's in front of him.  But each and every time they start discussing names Caleb loudly proclaims "NO!!"  "Baby Brother".  So no matter what we decide to name our new little boy;  to Caleb his name will be "baby brother".

03 May 2011

Can you Canoe?

Spring is quickly revealing herself these days and with Spring come all of those fun things like fishing, canoeing, and eating on the deck.  Fortunately,  this year we are "stuck" not prepping our garden, and although I am enjoying the abundance of time to simply enjoy I know I will miss the harvest this Fall.  On Easter this year after taking pictures and trying to get over an odd mood Tyler and the boys decided to take the canoe out on the lake for the maiden voyage of 2011.  The weather was sort of cool, and time was short, but when you don't have to load, drive, unload, and launch the canoe a short canoe trip really is possible.  As it turns out Tyler and the big boys were out for a significant canoe trip across the whole lake where they took in the sights, smells, and sounds of the lake waking up.

Upon their return the little men and I jumped into the canoe for a quick jaunt before dinner.  The weather was great, the lake was calm, and all of the guys were comfortable in the canoe.  This was obviously not their maiden voyage.

Remember to enjoy this Spring that has finally arrived.  Go fishing, take the canoe out or you know,  go for a hike.