Will 1.6

Willpower is 18 months old today.  Incomprehensible.

As I couldn’t sleep last night, I was thinking back to how much he’s changed.  Feedings, mobility, speech, personality, activity.  The development is just breathtaking.  From a helpless infant, he’s now Mr. Independent – his latest challenge is walking down the stairs forwards, one giant step at a time, rather than sliding down backwards on his belly.

Uncle Andy came up for a visit last weekend and was kind enough to share his pictures.  I’ve added them to the gallery here.

Very Busy Will Weekend!

Where should we start with such a fun-filled, packed weekend?

Will is really ready to crawl any day now. He has figured out getting up on all fours, but it’s the moving forward motion that will take some time and some more muscle development I am guessing. And big news from his daycare when we picked him up after work on Friday that he is pulling himself up. Can they really learn to walk before crawling?

Uncle Al & Aunt Susan came to visit for the weekend and helped us get a little more organized in our new house. We worked them like dogs all day Saturday. It started with installing the new closet system in the master bedroom closet. Susan and I probably emptied out close to 40 boxes of stuff and I used her expert organizing techniques while putting things away in there new spots. We also started on the shelving in the garage but that will probably take the rest of the week to cut, assemble, sand, paint and install.

We are very excited to have Uncle Andy (Gordy’s youngest brother) staying with us for the next 10 weeks or so. Al & Susan brought him up when they came up from St. Louis Friday evening. He just completed his freshman year at Saint Louis University with a Pre-Med Major in line. He will be completing some very important (pre-requisite) classes this summer at the University of Illinois. And it will be great to spend some wonderful quality time with Andy since we really haven’t been around him in years.

We all trucked down the neighborhood Saturday evening to attend a wonderful 5th birthday party for Jake Cirks. It is truly going to be awesome to live so close to our best friends and have our boys grow up together. It is so important to have your second family when your own family is not living in the same area.

On a completely separate note, please keep Grandma Jean in your thoughts as she is still recuperating at St. Luke’s hospital after being physically, mentally and emotionally exhausted from these last few weeks. This has all taken its toll on her with Grandpa Paul (no doubt), but we just need to make sure she gets well before she goes back home. Her doctor is treating her for bronchitis and pseudo-gout in both knees. She is also testing anemic and will need to be treated for that before she gets released.

More Random Stuff

Long post, brain dump, in three sections.

First, Willpower stuff:

  • Willpower’s face really isn’t getting that much better, despite an initial improvement. I insisted on taking him back to the doctor today rather than waiting until Wednesday. The infection is cleared up, but the rest of his face is still really red and chapped. The doctor was going to write a prescription for Metronidazole cream, but I told him that I already had some (I use it twice daily for rosacea) and he suggested we just use on Will the same stuff that I use on myself, also twice daily, and see if it improves in a week or so. He also wants us to start using a lanolin-free moisturizer called Vanicream as an as-needed moisturizer. Will is seven months old, and already has high-maintenance skin. Here’s what he looked like tonight, chilling on a John Deere at Lowe’s:

  • You can see some of the redness around his mouth and nose and cheeks, but you can’t see the scabbed over sores that he has underneath both ears, which is why we know it’s not necessarily related to just his mouth or saliva or formula. And you can see why we’re not doing too many fancy pictures, although I’m trying every day to put at least one iPhone snapshot up here. Not as high quality as Grandma’s stuff, but still fun.
  • We have a dermatologist appointment on May 14. Same dermatologist that I see for my latent ugliness, actually. He’s pretty good, so hopefully we’ll get this taken care of.
  • If none of the high-maintenance skin-care and dermatology tricks work, the doctor wants to begin allergy screening for Will. No, it’s not a formula allergy. And Willpower has already been through a battery of tests for the immunologists and allergy specialists at Cardinal Glennon, but they want to make sure.

Second, house stuff:

  • Roof is finished, and I’m sore and sunburnt. I put a new ridgeline on the main ridge, and above the front bedroom. The home inspector came back today to review all our repairs and tweaks, and the buyer left happy. I asked them directly, “Are you OK with everything, and are we closing on May 30?” Their answer was yes. Whew!
  • Finalizing a revised contract with the builder of our new home. We’re asking for early possession on Saturday, May 24 and closing on May 30, so that we’ll close on both properties on the same day, but already be moved by the time of the closing. If you’re going to be in town for Memorial Day weekend and want to participate in The Great Hulten Move of 2008, this is your chance! Sign up via email at gordy@gordyhulten.com!
  • Shopped for refrigerators tonight. Pretty sure we need a white one, but our Realtor is going to ask one more time if the builder will pull out the white oven/stove/microwave and dishwasher and give us an allowance so that we can pick our own stainless. Ain’t gonna happen, but you gotta ask, right?
  • Getting ready for vacation is fun. Getting ready for vacation and a move all in the same month is overwhelming. I think I was more excited about vacation, but now that the buyer is fully on-board, now I’m more excited about the move.
  • Our 30-year fixed rate mortgage will be at 5.875 percent, if anyone is wondering. Our mortgage broker is Associated Capital Mortgage, which is one of the companies affiliated with my engineering/architecture companies in the Devonshire Group. They really are fantastic, and I’m not just saying that because we own them. They beat every rate I got from Zillow.com and Lending Tree. If you use them, ask for Marty and tell them Gordy sent you.
  • We’re starting to plan projects. Burying gutter downspouts before the lawn is planted. Hanging blinds. Wiring the antenna for HD local stations. Closet system for the master bedroom.

Finally, other stuff:

  • My little brother Andy, who is just finishing up his freshman year at St. Louis University, is going to spend the summer with us and go to summer semester at UIUC. We’re pretty excited to have him for eight or ten weeks, and we’re hoping we can talk him into getting a haircut while he’s up here.
  • Our bank mistakenly made a large withdrawal from our checking account late on Friday afternoon, and despite my insistence that the error was theirs, they refused to correct it until today. It’s a little disconcerting knowing how unwilling they are to listen, even when they’re clearly wrong. They finally figured out the error today – someone had mistyped an account number from someone else’s NSF debit – but it was pretty nerve wracking not knowing all weekend if they were going to completely screw us. Needless to say, we’re switching banks after we move.