It's Been 8 Months Since I Posted and...

A LOT has happened!  The biggest news is that we bought our first home!  The Lord blessed us so mightily! We weren't even looking for a house to buy, just considering what we might do when our lease was up since our family had expanded and suddenly we were in escrow after only looking at 3 houses and, though the process took longer than we wanted.  We moved in right before Thanksgiving and got to celebrate the holidays here in the new house, which was wonderful in general and magical for Colin and I.  Just knowing that this is OUR house that the Lord has blessed us with is so surreal.  We honestly never thought we would be able to afford a home in California, especially in Valley Center.  Our home is on 1.38 acres, including many citrus trees (a staple of a typical Valley Center property), a plum tree, a peach tree and some unknown tree that various people have guessed to be another peach, an apple or an almond tree.  It's a really fun guessing game trying to decide what everything is.  Also, there are TONS of bulbs planted everywhere- which makes the anti-California girl in me insanely happy- and some truly beautiful roses.  I still can't decide if my favorite roses are the coral colored ones or the tiny pink ones that line the driveway.  I'm also super happy that the only palm tree in the ground here is in the front where I can't see it.  The boys are in hog heaven because the tree outside the front yard has two swings in it that they love to play in.  When they are older, we have a gully on either side of the land that will be the perfect place to play boy games, to jump off things, to run and feel like wild savages.
Blossoms from mystery tree
Every time I go outside and do yard work, I feel like the Lord blesses me more and more with the bounty here.  When I was a girl, growing up in an orange grove was amazing, mostly because, from about November when the first blush of orange hit the tangerine tree to March when they were barely still edible, I would sit on the boulders beside the clementine tree and eat from the branches all day.  My whole adult life, all I've ever wanted as far as a garden is a tangerine tree.  One day, I was having an especially hard day with the children that involved several people staring at me with pity and commenting on badly behaved children at the grocery store, and as I was driving up the driveway, the Lord opened my eyes to a tree that had just ripened... it was a clementine.  As I got out of the car to inspect it, I noticed another... and another... and another.  Seven total.  Blessed beyond my expectations and totally unexpected.  Another time I was weeding in the area I plan on having an herb garden.  As I'm weeding, my hands unknowingly work around a mint plant... and another... and another... and another. When I was a child, my mom always had mint planted under the water faucets outside to be watered by the leaking hose attachment.  One of the best memories I have is when she taught me that it was an edible plant because I loved being able to go outside and pluck a mint leaf or two, crush it with my teeth and enjoy the freshness of it while I read my book in the sun.  How the Lord blesses us in such simple ways if only we seek His face.
Kitchen Tile
The house is a three bedroom, two bath, 1350 sq ft ranch from 1971.  We love the new laminate floors (yay for easy to clean!), the big window overlooking the front yard, the lovely shower the simplicity of the house.  I love the pocket door into the kitchen that reminds me so much of my grandmother's house, the deep linen closest, the light that fills the house.  I love the window seat we are making under the big window in the living room (another childhood dream... I mean, what avid reader hasn't dreamed of a window seat?), the built in hutch in the dining room, the big old stove in the kitchen and the adorable tile in the kitchen.  For the time being, I love the little sea horse clings on the sliding glass door because, they too, remind me of my grandmother's house.
Of course, there are things that are frustrating, as with any house and, from what I hear, especially when it's your own home.  I am slowing growing accoustomed to the HUGE, overpowering lava rock fireplace.  The kitchen is small and the cupboards are an eyesore on top of not being standard size and the laundry room is in the FREEZING garage.  Oh, and the dishwasher is dented so it doesn't close all the way sometimes... which means I am constantly yelling at the dang thing when it's not working and, for some weird reason, pleased with myself when it is, like I somehow bent it to my will and dominated it from obsintantly refusing to clean the dishes.
However, to me, these things are so minor compared with the joy of being blessed with this home.  I feel like the Isrealites coming into the promised land.  The Lord promised them the land, the cities they hadn't built and the vineyards they hadn't plants and that's what I feel He has done for us.  On top of all that, we changed churches and have been welcomed with open arms into a small group of young parents, people who we have become friends with and whose company we truly enjoy.

In other news, Dylan has started preschool which he still can't decide if he loves or hates.  He says he only likes it when he gets to go to the prize box.  I guess that's a good thing since we are still planning to home school.  I am eagerly waiting to get our tax return to purchase our curriculum for kindergarten and am so excited to share the joys of new discoveries with Dylan.  Joshua, however, is so jealous that Dylan gets to go to preschool and cries everyday when I bring him home after dropping Dylan off. They are both so smart!  When Joshua gets upset that something isn't going his way, he now says, "This is RIDICULOUS! I'm NEVER gonna get it!"  Dylan said somethings so funny the other day. "Joshua, these aren't tater teach. They are tater TAUGHTS!"  Peter is crawling now.  He loves to go in the toy room and play with the big boys but mostly he crawls around the house following me as I clean.  His favorite thing is to sit in front of the mirror and "talk" to the other baby.

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About the Skidmore Family

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Our small family includes Colin, Brandi, Dylan, Joshua, Peter and a new little girl due in July. We're a young family raising our children for Christ.