52 degrees, cloudy and breezy, but NO RAIN. (Thank you God!) Yesterday was amazing. There were thousands of people gathered to see the house, cheer on the Woodhouses, and I suspect, try to get on T.V. I took A LOT of pictures and it’s really hard to narrow it down to a few for blogging purposes! But I think I did alright.
With my two youngest kiddos in tow and my friend Heather by my side to help me, we walked what seemed like a mile from spectator parking to the staging area for the house. We were just four people in a sea of thousands. It was very surreal, and I was a bit nervous and kept my children close. It would have been easy to get lost in that crowd! There were people coming and going the whole time we were there. Several news crews were set-up and there was a marching band playing when we arrived. The reveal was supposed to be at 2 p.m., but that hour came and went without even a glimpse of Ty. He finally appeared and the crowd went wild. Can you say “star power”? Petey saw him and laughed, “He’s in real life!” The bus backed up into position in front of the house and we waited for the limo to pick up the family, who had spent the day in a trailer on the other side of the site excitedly waiting to see their new home.
While we waited, I chatted and the kids played in the dirt. Some of our writer friends were there, but most of the people around us didn’t know the family. There were blue shirts with the trademark logo sprinkled throughout the crowd and I felt a swell of gratitude to all who had volunteered to make someone else’s dreams come true. It’s one of the reasons I like the show – seeing people give of themselves to help others and a community coming together.
Everyone screamed and cheered when the limo pulled up and Ty opened the door for the family to get out. They waved to the crowd and talked with Ty, then it was time for us to yell, “Move That Bus!” which my children had been practicing on the way to Colorado Springs. They’ve seen the show and they know how it works.
I can only imagine how they felt seeing their new home and I wish I could have caught their facial expressions on camera. Like you, I’m going to have to wait until the show airs in January to see it. However, I did capture their surprise over their new car, a 2009 Ford Flex.
The car and the house are wonderful and I can’t wait to see the inside of both! I did a little research on the web to see what others had already said so I wouldn’t divulge any secrets about the inside of the house, and I learned a few things that I didn’t know already. So much for secrecy. So here’s an inside scoop – though you have to promise to watch the show when it airs to see all of this cool stuff. The home has a home theater styled after a drive-in complete with special seats from a 1964 Mustang Convertible, and a bowling alley and ice cream parlor in the basement. Kayla has a wall size aquarium in her room, and Josh has a dragon’s castle in his. He’s a big fan of Donita K.Paul, a local author who’s a neat lady! Be sure to check her out. They have a state of the art Homeschooling room which I plan to borrow some of their creative ideas from though mine won’t compare in size. Theirs is probably bigger than my living room and dining room combined. But I can take away ideas and make them work for me and my space. The rest is rumor so that’s all I can tell you for now.
The designers were there, but we only met two, Ed and Rib – a new designer to the show. Ed is my favorite, so I was excited when he was more than happy to take a picture with Zoe. She got a sudden shy streak and Ed had to help me convince her to take the picture “for Benny”. That’s when she agreed – little stinker. He was very friendly and funny and entertained the crowd while signing autographs and taking pictures with everyone who asked. I took their pictures with Kim’s parents and sister as well.
We watched as the crew filmed Kim, Jeremy, Josh, and Kayla coming out of the house to see their new car four times. It was funny to watch them be “surprised” over and over again. I was amazed that they got everyone to be quiet long enough to get their shots. Well, by that time most of the crowd had left. Only a few hundred people stuck around after the first time the family went into the house. You should have seen the line of cars trying to leave the site. We waited around until the crowd had dwindled, but we knew we weren’t going to get to talk with the family, so we eventually left and went out for dinner with our friends from the ACFW writer’s group. I love dining out with other writers. (That’s how I met Donita Paul). The discussions are always interesting and funny.
Thanks for sticking around to read about my friends. Thank you to all who prayed for this miracle to happen. Kayla’s home is safe, functional, beautiful, and so much fun. Thank you to the people with Extreme Makeover: Home Edition for choosing this deserving family and I give a big round of applause to the thousands of people who gave time, resources, money, and land to this project. The show will be airing in January. I’ll give you an exact date when I know one.
I’m including a few other links about their story and I’ll leave you with a few more pictures. Did I mention it was hard to narrow it down?