Monday, March 26, 2012
We're only in the upper 40's here and my construction crew is keeping the door open a lot so I'm keeping the furnace off....brrrrr.
Thanks for stopping by, and have a great day.
Friday, March 23, 2012
- I'll just get the traffic rant out of the way first...this afternoon's traffic was just about enough to make me go postal. and that's all I'm saying about that!
- Construction-wise, today was quiet with only an hour and half visit from the contractor to go over a few things to determine the cabinet arrangements and lighting arrangements...and he brought the permit to put in the window. Now we're officially 'legit".
- My 4-month-late-getting-potted bulbs are looking so beautiful. And the fragrance is so nice, especially from the hyacinth. When I smelled the traditional looking all-yellow daffodil, it brought back a fragrance memory gone for decades as I'm never up north when they bloom, there aren't very many down here and store bought ones seem to have no fragrance at all.
Thursday, March 22, 2012
Marty did sit down with me after he went to the gym, and we looked through the catalogs and the photos I'd take while at the store, and narrowed it down to one that we both liked. I don't think with that many choices, there's any more of a 'perfect' one than if there were only three, it just made it harder. A part of one choice may be preferred but it would have a part we didn't like. So it'll be what it is, and we will be happy with it.
I have today, and tomorrow in which to purchase the shower valves (and faucets) and same for the sink. Those components come first before other work can progress. Mr. Contractor would like them available should he be ready (as planning to be) on Monday to install them.
While at that store, I also took the opportunity to quickly browse through the kitchen appliances, the toilets, the sinks (bath & kitchen). I was blown away at costs. It was a rude awakening to say the least! I don't care for stainless steel, too institutional for my personal taste. SS was the first kitchen sinks we saw as we rounded the corner and I glanced at the cost: $1703.00 WHAT!?! Seriously??? Oh my, maybe I should start looking for a JOB outside the home!
This sink is a possibility.
But I like this one better, and this one is shown with the faucets we like, only we would get brushed nickel instead of the oiled bronze look. Brushed nickel supposedly 'hides' water spotting better, and we have very hard water here with lots of spotting factor! We're buying for two bathrooms, so maybe we'll get both sinks.
And as of about an hour ago this is how the two bathrooms looked
Downstairs: the bright area is where the newly framed in window will go, and the left side of that black-lined area is where there was formerly a narrow exterior door (prior owners had an above-ground pool so we suspect they had installed the door). And you can see the initial framing for where the all-new-to-this-bathroom shower will go :)
and, upstairs - this shows where the tub was, attempting to show where the water traveled underneath. It seems pretty spread out and Mr. Contractor 100% believes it was all due to the breakdown of the grout between the tiles allowing water to go through (even though there didn't appear to be gaps or holes, it was loose) and saturating the WRONG TYPE of wallboard that had been used behind the tiles to the point of being like a sponge. I was also going through a case of "buyer's remorse" last night as to the whole project. We're spending thousands of dollars (more like 10s of) all because of a 'leak' issue, setting aside the fact that the house needed to be upgraded from it's primarily 1966 workmanship (tract home, slapped up quickly from my understanding). Had we been able to figure out that the leak was simply from tile/grout issues and opted just for repair, it would have been a whole lot less expensive!
On the bright side of all this, and helping to ease my concerns of cost over runs, NO MOLD was found, and even the plywood beneath the tub was still intact and not showing signs of rot so will not have to be removed or cut and no other structural damage (not included in contract) was needed to be remedied. Praise the Lord for that huge favor!
Off to other things...
Monday, March 19, 2012
Back to the quilt show. I'll cover purchases today. I got these two bits of fabric; the blue/brown stripe is 1 1/3 yards, the other is a stack of 42, 5" squares. I have a gift project in mind for them. The colors are right in the 5" squares, but the florals won't work, so I'll save them for something else, and if I need more I'll shop in my stash.
This was an 'ahem' somewhat costly purchase because I bought it ONLY for one block.
The block I use, will be either this one, the rooster in the middle:
And I saw this nice cross pattern but needed to buy the pattern which had the special acrylic templates to make it. I don't know why Blogger rotated the latter photo-I did not take it that direction and it doesn't show that way on the memory stick :S
And then this one just looked interesting in the form of a flag that was on the vendor's wall.
It's by Donna Poster and she looked VERY familiar. Maybe I saw her years ago on Alex Anderson's show, or maybe she's even been a guest speaker at our guild...I just don't remember. It's a very forgiving pattern if you have trouble with that 1/4" seem, but does use a wee bit more fabric than the traditional method, but that's countered by an almost 3-D effect because of the folds. She has the flag pattern - free - on her website.
I also bought another pattern along with some embellishment items, but I won't show it as it will be a gift item also, but not for the same person as the aforementioned fabric.
And those are my 'conservative' purchases. I spent about the same as the limit my friend had set for herself. Hehee, I won't say what she spent but it was more than her self-imposed limit.
Sunday, March 18, 2012
Used this Week: 0 yards
Used year to Date: 0 yards
Added this Week: 2 yards
Added Year to Date: 2 yards
Net Used for 2012: -2 yards
Friday, March 16, 2012
- I won't rant about this week's traffic, but I have to wonder why the driver in the far left lane, when realizing he/she needed or wanted to be making a right-hand turn at the last moment, couldn't just turn left, turn around and go back straight through the intersection instead of stopping and making all the rest of the traffic in three lanes stop so said driver could make that right turn. I scratch my head in wonderment :S
- I was clearly reminded of how imperfect I am last night, and how easily distracted I can be. You see, I was fixing dinner and had put some items in the oven and set my watch timer before heading back upstairs to finish yesterday's post. I had also placed a pan of frozen corn on the burner (ok, no lectures on leaving a pot unattended on the stove with fire under it - though well-deserved) with only a small amount of water but with a lid. Here's the result, because I didn't realize I must have had the fire higher than usual, and because I forgot about the corn and didn't go back down to the kitchen until my timer went off - halfway down the stairs I was asking "uh, oh, what am I burning!?" OK, and don't laugh but we ate it anyway and it only had a slight 'smoky' flavor, not unlike campfire food ;)
- The kitties are curled up, each in their respective identical boxes. Usually, they're bouncing around like crazy in the morning, but it's pretty chilly today. I'd like to be curled up nice and toasty in my bed as well!
- One of the meds Marty is taking for his shingles, he refers to as a muscle relaxant, and he says it makes him fell loopy. He DID sleep in this morning!
- I'll be headed to the Glendale Quilt Show tomorrow. I'm looking forward to it.
Thursday, March 15, 2012
Within a couple days, he had a few more splotches on his face. And on his eyelid and and in the corner of his eye and it was puffing up. He doesn't think much of it at first as he's had rosacea for years and thought it was just a bad outbreak. But today, he decided he'd better get it checked by the doctor and trotted off to our favorite urgent care center (aka our primary doctor's habitat).
My phone rings; he's still at the doctor's, but said "It's shingles!" and then he says "And I have to go to the ophthalmologist RIGHT AWAY". He also says "I don't know when I can go back to work...it's contagious, especially to pregnant women." So he's on two oral meds and 1 eye drops and has to go back to the doctor on Sunday ...I love that our primary doctor aka urgent care center... is open on Sunday, and the ophthalmologist on Monday. If not treated promptly, shingles can cause blindness and/or scarring of the eye requiring remedial surgery.
Marty will be working from home tomorrow (Fri) and Mon, maybe even Tuesday. Have I said I'm one of those women that doesn't like having my hubby home during the work day? I don't know why I'm like that, but even if all he does is sit in his desk chair all day...it just bothers me. And that leads me into wondering how well I will again cope with workers in my house all day long for 5 weeks or more. I surely need grace...just do NOT pray for me to have patience!! because that usually incurs reasons to use patience!! The A/C-Furnace guys were here for several weeks a few years ago and that tested me quite a bit too! And when we get to the kitchen...oh my...that could be months. Maybe I should ask my doctor for some tranquilizers.
Contractor-2 (henceforth C-2) also met with us within a day of our initial call. C-2 was referred to me by a very good friend at church. She was my maid-of-honor, so I think I trust her :). She does a lot of decorating for folks at the church and has a working relationship with C-2 and had his phone # on her cell phone. C-2 had also done work for our tax man who is also a member of our church and who, along with his wife, hosted the bible study Marty and I use to attend long before we even had an interest in each other. So from their home, I was familiar with the quality of work that had been done. C-2 was here less than 30 minutes. Unlike C-1, he didn't bother with measurements. Our appointment was for 5:30 and he called around 4:45 to let us know he would be late as he was coming from an area a distance away and was caught up in heavy traffic. He arrived, shook our hands, but didn't seem overly friendly nor enthusiastic, very cut and dry. I excused it because I know when Marty contends with traffic it can set one askew. So we rushed through what our thoughts were, yada yada, and he said he needed to be off as he still needed to get home and showered and back to the church for the Shepherd's Conference. He actually lives within about a mile or so from us. That was last Wednesday night. We have yet to hear from him. That's 8 days...no word...no proposal. And before you ask, yes, we have tried to call him, several times, both from Marty's work cell phone, and from our land line. The phone just rings and never gets answered, nor does it go to voice mail. The last call, earlier today, was finally met with a recording to enter our pass code or something like that. Huh?
We were told C-2 was a perfectionist, well, I'm not seeing much perfection. I'll try not to make a judgement, maybe something critical has happened in his life. And I know I'm not a patient person. But between C-1 and C-2, C-1 is shining brightly, so we made the call today. He'll be meeting with us tomorrow to sign the contract! Yay!!!!! I think, I hope, I pray. But I'm NOT looking forward to 3 people using 1 bathroom for a minimum of 5 weeks while the other two are under construction. We're so spoiled. Growing up, we only had 1 bathroom for 7 people! But then, we only took a weekly bath with quickie sponge baths/hair washes in between. And if the bathroom was occupied, well 4 of those 7 were male, and well, you know how easy the guys have it...and we lived out in the country without visible neighbors (ah, those were the days) ;)
Sometimes, I have to wonder when one thing just doesn't move along as it should, if that isn't God saying "No" while saying "Yes" to the other. C-1 seemed to be a bit of a perfectionist too, maybe a little 'higher end' than we planned, but I think it'll be ok. We won't be going into debt, and that's an added blessing, we just may not have as much for retirement, but then, it'll be invested in a nice home which, hopefully, will at some point gain even more equity over time.
Monday, March 12, 2012
Here's what's busting out here at our house:These violets have been blooming for quite awhile; I think I've already posted about them once, but I just love them, they're happy little blossoms.
And I posted at one point about not getting my bulbs planted in a timely manner, but they're coming up great guns now and with buds! So I'm happy!
There are daffodils, tulips, and hyacinth poking up. Then, over in our terraced area are some freesia. They've never grown with strong stems, and the ants love them too much for me to be able to cut and bring into the house, but they sure are pretty. Ignore all those dead leaves, Marty likes to refer to them as mulch. um, yeah, ok. And I haven't gone out and tried to rake up the even bigger pile of leaves that sits in a corner all winter and spring...it'll be there yet in May or June.
And driving around town, trees are blooming and leafing, lawns are even greener and growing, and birds are singing ... a lot... and loudly... and it's a joy to hear them :) I've seen the Western Blue Bird, some little finches in the gold finch line, others I haven't taken the time to identify and the Phoebe. (And I don't know what I did to make this last paragraph show up underlined and in blue! Gotta love my relationship with Blogger ;) of course it probably won't show when I actually post this and I'll feel silly, but it shows as I type and when I look at preview.)
I'm posting this there too, but I haven't had any progress in several weeks. I'm considering four items as being on my 'wall' and I've worked on none, but they are: Jan UFO, Feb UFO, Mar UFO, and small guild quilt . At least the latter (shown below) IS still under the needle at the sewing machine.
Friday, March 9, 2012
- We had a second contractor come in on Wed night to get another estimate. He hasn't provided the figures yet, will probably take a few days. He was referred to me by a friend at church, and she praises him and his work highly. But should I take into account that he was wearing a jacket from my husband's cross-town college rival? He was also in a hurry as he got caught in traffic making him quite late for our appointment and then he had to rush to get home to shower and head back to church for the Shepherd's Conference. Marty and I haven't discussed it much more. In the meantime, contractor #1 is waiting for an answer, and I'm waiting to get this started so it can be over. I am not a patient person.
- Nick missed Tuesday's bowling because of a dental appointment. Dentist told him to lay off sodas. Huh? He only gets one or two on a weekend! I took him to the bowling alley to make up his games (league) on Thursday. His first game, he bowled his new high score of 242. He then proceeded to bowl a 191 followed by a 204. That just may be his new high scratch series as well. Woooohooooo...I'm proud of my boy and the God-given abilities he's gained. The teams have only two players each, and he and his teammate are in first place.
- FINALLY made it to a quilt guild meeting...and stayed for the whole thing last night. I'm still not comfortable leaving Nick home alone after dark even though he's 13. The speaker was ok, entertaining at times and her quilts were nice, gave me some ideas if I can remember them past a day or two- I didn't have my camera. I still want to know why so many women insist on continuing to hold their conversations - not even in a whisper - once the Pres and other committee chairs take the mike. Flat-out rudeness & disrespect in my book. Honestly, I've seen pre-school groups behave better. Of course, I was running late and had to sit in the back whereas I prefer sitting in the first couple rows, so maybe I picked up more on it for that reason.
- It seems my body's been trying to fight off something all week. Very dry eyes & light sensitivity for several days, stomach/abdomen troubles reminiscent of pre-gall-bladder removal, and a not-so-nice headache today. Some of it could be spring-related allergies, it's dry and windy and the local flora are blooming and leafing out.
- Why do people let their untethered dogs ride in cars with the window all the way down? Do they not realize how dangerous that is to the fur-baby? I have first hand experience on that...back in the mid-70s I had a collie/shepherd mix boy that loved to ride in the car. He was in the back and I had the front driver side window open and came to just a normal stop at a light and he'd had his head out, but at the stop it was apparently enough momentum that he went right out that window! and ran across four lanes of busy street traffic. Fortunately he wasn't hurt or hit and I only had to open my door and he came flying right back in. We BOTH learned lessons that day. So it scares me whenever I see a pooch standing with his front legs on the window frame with any opening big enough to go through, in a car speeding down the road.
- Quilting. Well, still no progress for March.
Wednesday, March 7, 2012
Does this mean I have to study historical migration routes and reasons for migrations?
I was hoping to be able to 'connect' with some additional cousins, but the closest any of these results revealed were connections from 5th - 8th cousins possibility based on genetic ethnicity. Had the results shown 3rd cousin or closer, the likelihood of an actual cousin would be more sure. These are early test results (of those submitted) so there's the possibility of more closely related kinship being revealed in the future
Usually this test is very expensive, but A.com had a $9.95 special towards the end of last year so I jumped at it. I don't recall if we were limited to one individual's test samples, but I'm also (now) wishing I had done Marty's too. Maybe they'll have another special rate some day.
Tuesday, March 6, 2012
After a couple really warm, almost hot days, we're back into the 50's as a high today with some cloudiness. Low to be 35, brrr, but I love it. No rain though in the forecast for at least a week and then only 'showers' which may or may not materialize.
A second contractor will be coming over tomorrow evening to take a look at things. Sure wish we could've been on the ball enough to have had them out around the SAME time for estimates so the first one wouldn't be kept waiting. I'm tired of always dragging our feet on everything. I'm ready to get this show on the road! I've even packed up everything out of the one bathroom and am ready to do the same in the other. For that matter, I'm ready to pack up the whole kitchen too. We wait too long and I may even just pack up everything and move out! Not really, but it IS tempting, especially when I get frustrated with the fears and procrastination from my better half. If money were no object, I'd have the whole house gutted and rebuilt. Please, a girl can dream can't she? You have to remember, my only choice in living in the house was because I married a man who already had it and the market in '96 was such that it was in an upside-down mortgage and made no sense to sell at a loss and look elsewhere. I just didn't know it would take so long to do remodeling. We've done some things like put in retrofit dual-pane windows, copper repipe, installed A/C and replaced furnace, retextured the ceilings on the first level and stairwell, and tiled the kitchen/dining (that was out of necessity along with the repipe as we'd had a pipe break and flood the whole floor). We've also replaced the garage doors, the front door and repainted the exterior, and some of the interior - once and it needs it again inside. So we have done a lot, but the crucial, and most expensive, areas haven't been touched. Home ownership is not an inexpensive venture, is it?
Nick came home Friday night from an overnight school-related ministry out in the desert at a church ranch. The kids all did grunt-work. He was pretty sore after swinging a pick-axe for several hours - that's the most manual labor he's done in a long time! He also had a nasty rug burn on the top of one foot. I guess they were playing a game where you had to get the other person's sock off using only your feet.
I came across a website that had some info on my great-great-grandfather in Germany. I've had a copy of a couple of the pictures for quite some time, but the site has more info than I had. The biggest problem, is that it's in German, and Google translator only does a so-so job at getting the meaning of what's written. Within the site, when I do a search on Voltmer, I get two pages of links where the name is mentioned and/or expanded on. Now, to try to figure out who, and how, all the other Voltmer names are connected - that's where it gets confusing. Accurate translations are very expensive. I had his will translated a couple of years ago, which gave me his full name and the names of his wife and children.
I've done nothing quilting all week. Quilt guild meeting is Thursday night; will I at least have that community quilt done?...probably not :(