Happy Holiday season to all the Swan Life readers out there! This is Lucy here, happy to take over this blog once again. We had a great November, but it’s hard to believe December is already upon us! I’m sure there are others out there just as excited as I am for the holiday season. Curious to hear what The Swans did during the month of November? Read on!
Swimming Little Fish
Colder weather brought the need for more indoor activities this month. Each year we alternate between swim lessons in the winter and swimming at our neighborhood pool in the summer. November meant the start of swim lessons for both boys. I should actually back up and say that we planned ahead and put both boys on the wait list to get into a Saturday class. With our work schedules there is no way we can make the lessons work during the week so Saturday is the only option. It took a good 2 months probably to get the call that we were in, but it worked out great. Not only did our oldest return to lessons, but we also started our youngest for the first time too. He was about 7 months when he started and quickly warmed up to the water (literally, the water for the infants is like a huge bath).
I think we have two fish on our hands, they both look forward to Saturday and going to the pool. We looked around at a few locations, but decided the same place we’ve taken our oldest before worked best. The weekly lesson is definitely something we consider a splurge, but also something we feel important to do for our kids. It teaches water safety, gets them active (plus wears them out which means a good long nap) and it could serve as something they choose to continue as an activity into adulthood.
Allow me to use this blog platform to brag about my husband for a minute. He was so helpful in prepping our house to host Thanksgiving. Yes, all of these improvements needed to be done, but sometimes all we need is a strict deadline and things get done! Here’s a list of things he took upon himself to complete:
Took down all lights and glass coverings from the entry way and dining room chandeliers. No small task when you consider a ladder, screw driver and washing of glassware was involved. And what a difference it made! I had no idea how dirty they truly were… until they were clean
JW took inventory of all our ceiling lights in the house and purchased four new replacements. Good bye brass lights, hello oil rubbed bronze fixtures!
We bought some pretty cheap solar lights to line our front walk way about 3 years ago. Well then our oldest grew up, started walking, riding his bike and overall becoming a destructive monsters – I mean boy, very single one of them was broken. We gave up, until recently when JW purchase new, brighter (and sturdier) lights for the front yard. None have bit the dust… yet.
All this great work allowed us to feel confident in hosting JW’s family (4 of them in all) and a total of 6 adults and 2 kids for Thanksgiving. Our spread was amazing…
Back on a (Clean) Schedule
One of the biggest things we did to prep for company was actually hire a cleaning service. If you remember we had a professional company come and clean the house right around the time we were welcoming our second baby. That was a perfect time to ask for a little help, no shame in that! We figured we’d assess the job and determine if it was something we’d want to continue. Well that was back in April and we kept putting it off and questioning if this was something we truly wanted to pay for.
Recently I heard from a couple neighbors that they hired a pair of local ladies to clean and not only did they do a great job (very important), but they also didn’t charge too much (huge bonus)! I decided it was time to reach out and bite the bullet. Our thought was to time the first cleaning (which is a deep clean and takes them a bit longer than normal… and costs a bit more too) right before hosting our family. The deep clean was $125 (less than our original cleaners back in April which cost $205) and if we decided to get on a routine schedule it would be only $85 per visit (compared to $125 with prior cleaning service). But wait, you might be wondering why we’d want to spend money on this when we recently bought an iRobot Roomba! Don’t worry, I talked them down to charging us only $75 if we run the vacuum the day prior to them cleaning. Not a bad deal! At least I think so… anyone else have a service to compare?
Anyways we’ve had them visit and clean once and the plan is to continue once a month moving forward. Ahhh, picture me enjoying more time with the family on the weekend (don’t worry, laundry still calls my name weekly). And don’t think that I was the only one pitching in and cleaning around the house… both JW and myself are truly enjoying this new service.
Aunt, Uncle and Cousins
On November 10th JW became an uncle for the 2nd time, I became an aunt for the 2nd time and our two boys welcomed another cousin. I should say we virtually welcomed our little niece, we haven’t met her in person… yet. JW’s older brother and his wife had their first child and we are so excited for them! To help them document her young days we purchased a gift. We were gifted a similar one after having our second and loved it so much decided to pass along the favor. Their prints turned out great and they already have the picture inserted and the frame hanging on the wall. Welcome to the world little sweet girl!!
I hope you all enjoyed your November as much as we did. For those domestic, Happy Thanksgiving! And for those tuning in internationally, I hope you joined the American culture and ate a big meal while enjoying time with family and friends. Do any of you have little fish that seem to enjoy the water more than land? Suggestions for Christmas presents for 2 special little nieces or 2 boys? This mom is struggling…