Home Automation

This house came with a front door lock with a keypad instead of a key. (Well, it also has a key but no one uses it because why would you if there’s a keypad?) It is so handy. I can set up temporary pass codes for guests or service people. It keeps a log of when people come in and out of the door so I can see when everyone gets home. (Just wait, teenagers. I can assign you each your own passcode and there will be no “I swear I was home by curfew!”) I can even open the door with my cell phone from wherever I am because the lock is connected to the internet. 

So for Christmas, I got Matt another keypad lock for the garage door and also a lamp that he could turn on and off from his phone, all hooked into the same system. He ended up not particularly caring for the lamp so I have taken it over for my own. And it is glorious. I set it up on an internet controlled timer so that it turns on just before I usually come up to bed. So when I come upstairs in the dark, there’s a nice little lamp glowing by my bed. (This is particularly nice because the wall switches in this room aren’t right by the door so they are the type that you are always fumbling around in the dark for.) 

It’s now making me want to automate the rest of the house. The next thing I have my eye on is the automated window shades. I’m afraid to look up how much they cost but it would be so nice to have the shades go up and down automatically without me having to mess with them. Perhaps someday my house will just all run on programs I set up on my phone from bed. 

House Tour- Guest Room and Guest Bathroom 

Should I have taken these pictures during the day in natural light? Yes. But let’s move on and ignore that part. 

Here’s the guest room. It is downstairs off of the living room and would also make a good office, if we wanted an office instead of a guest room, which we do not. 

The bed is one of those IKEA beds that is a twin daybed most of the time, but if you yank on the bottom lip thing there, it opens into a king size bed. Basically the perfect guest bed because normally we have a lot of room in the room, but if two people come to stay, there is room for them both. 

I recently got a new quilt and throw pillows for the bed. I am undecided on the tan colored pillow with the seahorse and coral. I love the pattern, I do not like the tan color (it looked white online) and I do not like that it is burlap. Burlap is hot right now. Everything is burlap. 

Fun story! When I hung that TV on the wall, Elizabeth made disparaging comments about how small it was and asked me why I was even bothering. Look child, when I was young, we had to walk uphill both ways in the snow to watch television and let me tell you also about how DVRs didn’t exist. 

Also I am going to get decorative things for the dresser to go beside my basket of guest snacks and my Wick Habit candle. But I haven’t done it yet. 

Ooh, doesn’t the room look big in panoramic camera mode? 

Next we have the guest bathroom. Which as you can see is not in the guest room but simply next door. It’s also the only downstairs bathroom and thus the main one that everyone uses. Sorry, guests. 

Ooh, look! Another fancy candle. Remember me when you are famous, Erica! 


Now the best thing about this bathroom is that I can see into the bathtub (calm down, guests, just when the door is open) from my chair in the living room. Which means that I can bathe the big kids without getting out of my chair! Yes! I am living the dream! 


I believe the next stops in the house tour will be going upstairs. Oooh, exciting. 

Disney Errands

Something that blows my mind is that I now sometimes have legitimate errands to run at Disney. Yesterday, I had something to return, the kids needed haircuts (and the barber shop on Main Street is the best kids haircut place around), and I needed a birthday present for a little girl’s upcoming birthday party. So we went to Disney. 

Ryan’s before haircut picture. 

Elizabeth during. She wants to grow her hair out so she just got a trim. But it had been so long that the woman asked me if we wanted to keep the layers in her hair. Uh, she doesn’t have layers. It’s just uneven. 

This is why Elizabeth likes getting her hair cut at Disney. 

She was SO HAPPY. 

Ryan did NOT want to get his hair cut. He complained and whined the whole way there. When it was his turn, he shocked me by compliantly climbing up into the chair and behaving perfectly. He kept saying “Mama, I am being bery calm.” 

They cut too much off but I have still not figured out how to tell them what I want. I need a reliable set of instructions. 


He liked it. And it looked better once I ruffled it up a bit. But this is what I call his George Clooney haircut. He’s had it once before. 

We went on the carousel. Alex had never been before that she could remember. I think she liked it… 

This poor woman in front of us in line. I don’t know how it happened but she had Elizabeth’s glitter on her. I never saw Elizabeth touch her. I think it was just in the air.