We Are Not Dead

Realizing we have been out of the blogging world for some time now, we thought we would just do a little recap of our summer. Fortunately and unfortunately it feels like we did not do a whole lot, though in trying to sum up an entire two months it was hard to pick and choose where to start, continue and end...perhaps our summer was not such a bust after all then? Well, let us see:
Matt started out our season by taking on summer school again. He was able to teach juniors going into their senior year in the subjects of economics and American government. This being his second year in the program he went about being Mr. M with no sweat!
Melissa continued her own school endeavors by trying to finish her online course. Motivation was somewhat lacking, thus the class is still a "work in progress," but since it is all due October 1st, her procrastination can continue little longer. Do not worry...she has everything under control!

While hard at our scholastic labors, our garden was also working away. Finally the vegetables so carefully planted and pampered began to emerge. To the right is a fine, pretty-in-purple bell pepper we harvested from our "Rainbow bell pepper" seed mix. Matt has done a wonderful job making fresh pizza sauces and spaghetti from our myriads of tomatoes we have growing. Next year we may not plant as much as we did this time, but at least now we know what will grow and which we'll actually eat!

There is no way our summer would have been complete without our good friends, the Horspools. Taylor and Aubrey are always up for hanging out, swimming, playing games and whatnot. As if that were not good enough, Sister Horspool feeds us all the time, and we also have Mike, Amber, Brooke, Tami and their kids to hang out with. Plus this summer we had the extra bonus of extra Horspool fun when they let us crash their family reunion! The best part was when the Tangs surprised everyone by flying in from Hawaii...we have missed our old island friends!

In the midst of all the festivities our marriage turned three years old on August 11th. Wow! Three! Pretty hard to believe. We just took a relaxing day to hang out, exchange gifts, and reminisce on our memories so far. In the near future we plan to have a blow-out celebration by going to Vegas, but we figured that would be more fun driving there when it is not 100+ degrees outside. Therefore, our anniversary bash will wait until a more trip-friendly autumn.

Aside from our romantic day together, our anniversary brought another GREAT surprise! Matt had received a call the night before from a frantic HR secretary at the Yucaipa/Calimesa school district. First thing in the morning Matt returned her call and she told him to come in for an interview for a job opening. With only an hour to get ready Matt grabbed his nearest suit and rushed over to the district office.
To make a long story short, there were two positions open, four people being interviewed. One opening was for a full-time sub, the other was for a math/science teacher at the alternative high school in Yucaipa. Finally somebody saw Matt's great potential and he was hired as a full time teacher at the high school! Before you cringe and say, "Ugh, alternative!" let us explain: there are two "last chance" high schools in Yucaipa. One is for the kids who have to have security guards, and one is for the kids who have made honest efforts to clean up their act. Matt is at the second school. These kids are there to get in, get out and have very strict regulations put on them. The class sizes are small and even though the kids interests are limited to weed and weed, so far Matt has had very few problems. Actually, he is quite enjoying himself, doing a great, great job, the principle loves him, and he is home by 3PM everyday! So far, so perfect, and Matt really, really deserved this break! We are so grateful and thanks to all of those who were praying for us...all our prayers were answered! YEA!
~Matt, you are amazing and I am so proud of you! Thanks for the three most wonderful years of my life! Love, Melissa

Last weekend we ended up over at Billy and Katie's for a little nursery fun. Since Tommy's soon-arrival is kind of throwing off the female streak, it was time for new colors in the kid's room. Lia and Sophie both helped out, which was very cute to watch. We don't have pictures of the finished room, but it turned out very, very fun! Congratulations design team on a well-thought out room! (That would be Katie, by the way). And good job everyone on the execution. Now we just need little Tommy to get here so we can take way too many pictures and have way too much fun with our new nephew!

In not as happy news, our baby, Juno, went under the knife this last Monday. She had these awful dewclaws on her back feet when we adopted her a year ago. Usually these are removed when puppies are first born. They are like thumbs, kind of, but higher up on the leg than the rest of the dog's paw, and Juno's were huge, floppy, and weird looking. Of course we could have put up with her cosmetic defect to spare Juno unnecessary pain, but the nails on each claw grew so fast, and she is so big and such a baby when it comes to clipping her nails, that the nail on each claw had started to grow into the soft pad. We knew then these things had to go, and really it's for the best since they can get caught on things and be torn. Therefore Juno had her first experience at the vet since becoming our girl. Luckily for us she is such a trooper and is doing great, and lucky for her the doc gave her pain meds. Now we just have to convince her that being high is not as fun as she thinks it is! (She can now relate to Matt's students.)
California is going up in flames, once again. Gratefully we are far away from the Station fire up in LA that is really wreaking havoc. As of yesterday it had already spread over 120,000 acres and was only 5% contained! Yuck! However, we have had two fires closer to home, over in Oak Glen and Yucaipa. Again, we are blessed that they are not close to threatening us or any of our family and friends, but the smoke has been crazy! An up side came yesterday when Matt's school was cancelled due to smokey conditions. This meant a whole day together in which we got to hang out with Katie, Lia and Sophie for a bit, eat lunch at Marie Calendars, and...

...buy these sweet babies! Yes, we decided that it was about time to stop using Mom and Dad's machines and come into our own. Thanks to Best Buy for having a 15% sale on all appliances, and 18 months of no interest if you use their credit card. Since Melissa had one such handy card, we went ahead and splurged. While we could have settled for a cheaper set, once you have gone to front-loader you can never go back, and Melissa was raised on fine laundry equipment. We are especially excited for the water-save features and well, for clean clothes/sheets/towels/etc. Perhaps we are a little too thrilled over something that most everyone and their dog has had for years, but hey...this is our first appliance purchase together and so we are allowed to dance with glee for a little bit!

Well, thanks for "nosing" around our blog, (ha ha). Hopefully we'll do a little better about our posting intervals. Now that summer is just about over we are gearing up for cooler weather and therefore more outings, (Melissa has not adapted to desert life very well and has been kind of like a sun-dried lizard - inactive, hot, and dreaming of rainy days). Until then, keep your chin up and your nose clean!


  • Virginia | September 2, 2009 at 12:22 PM

    It sounds like you had a fun summer! I'm glad Matt's job is working out so well. Congrats on the washer and dryer! I bet Bill and Cheryl miss you coming around to do laundry though.

  • the man | September 2, 2009 at 10:04 PM

    We loved seeing you guys too! Kind of a bummer I didn't get to see your home! Next time!

  • heather | September 3, 2009 at 8:53 AM

    Well, you were definitely right about "the best part"! And if I had a washer/dryer set like that, I would be turning cartwheels with excitement. And now that I have seen a little picture preview, I can't wait to see the rest!! Oh, and get well soon Juno!

  • Amber | September 4, 2009 at 6:27 AM

    We're so glad you two were able to hang out with us this summer! It was fun to see your updates:) (p.s. you will LOVE your front loaders. I think I agree with you on never going back when you have tried these. You can seriously fit a king sized comforter in them!)

  • Billy and Katie | September 7, 2009 at 11:39 AM

    that picture of Lia cracks me up! I was trying to remeber what she was wearing, because I usually don't let her booty hang out... I forgot it was her swimsuit :o)