Tuesday, March 31, 2015
Monday, March 30, 2015
|living room of the dust free house that we didn't buy|
|I've been busy with the den. The settee will go outside this week along with the table. Need to find a nice chaise. Lights will be added when other house is sold|
|Den has some blank spaces. I am going to frame my Audubon print Snowy Owl which will fill the middle here|
|And if we did not have enough bedrooms, I made another in the basement yesterday surrounding the space with shoji screens. Guests will be treated to seeing prints of Toddler Sue though one of these is actually Toddler Shanna|
We were treated to gale force winds again yesterday making going outside not inviting. No matter, I kept busy inside and I had 2 sets of guests. Josh and Allie came for lunch. It was her 18 month birthday. At the doctor's visit today, she was found to be off the charts for weight, height, and head size. She will be a big girl. Steve had gone earlier to pick up stuff at the Italian place. Taste treat that I served later at our House of Cards viewing: caramel cheddar cheese served on a slice of apple on a cinnamon cracker. For lunch: cappocola and provolone on just out of the oven asiago cheese bread with sweet hot pepper cheese spread. Allie had her own mix of sweet potatoes, avocados and chicken.
Josh had fixed the broken bed frame for us so I was able to set up the bed pictured. I also started on my baroque corner full of over the top frilly stuff my biological grandma favored. Photo when I am done.
And spring will come this week: a long run this morning in the beautiful sun. I was actually considerably speedier than usual. I came across the chow owners with half of their chows. We were at the park with the sign cautioning us about coyotes. She said we will hear them soon. They come right up to their windows and stare at their dogs (though the chows would give them a battle but the pug would be easy prey). And how haven't I noticed deer as she said they are all over our neighborhood? I see them on my running road but not in the neighborhood. She does have the large buffer woods in her backyard whereas we are in the middle so maybe we just don't see what she does.
Today's project: select a photo from our Italian trip to convert into a glass cutting board. Should I go with a photo of red peppers from the Rialto market that will match my kitchen perfectly? Or go for a more specific Italian scene (red peppers are found everywhere).
Sunday, March 29, 2015
|We will get a visit soon from this one|
|I am a Google Earth junkie. This is our house that we are trying to sell in September of last year. They have a program that will show your house over the years|
|From a different angle. I knew it must be early September as the black eyed Susans are still in bloom. Note garage covered with wild grape. I've been hacking them away. Please someone, Buy Me!!!|
So I fall asleep with earphones still in my ear. I keep the volume very low to preserve my ears. Yesterday at 5:15 am, I am awakened with a siren blasting at full sound!!!!!@#$#&!!!!!directly into my ears.
Turns out it was an Amber alert. Someone stole a kid somewhere in Michigan and everyone is to find a certain car. I wasn't the only one awakened by this but I bet everyone else didn't have on headphones. Meanwhile I had left the iPhone that I use for everything else back with Steve. He will be so mad at me. But his phone woke him up so he didn't hear my phone.
The Amber alert only has gone off once before. We were travelling across an isolated area of Oregon (what a huge state; I had grossly underestimated the time it would take to cross a small corner of it) and the siren went off with a news flash on how somebody in San Diego had kidnapped his girlfriend's teenage daughter. WTF! NW Oregon is quite away from San Diego. Later he and the girl were found in a wilderness in Montana so he crossed Oregon at some point. The mom was dead. He had only wanted the girl in the first place. Not sure what happened to the current Michigan girl.
After a run in the cold, I put away all the junk I rescued the day before from the old house. The junk removal people were very helpful back at the Money Pit and the painter is becoming more efficient. Small objects will be recycled or thrown away but they removed the big stuff. The other day I tried to give this clock below to the charity folks. It was too disgusting for them but I have since cleaned it up and will find a home for it here.
Steve is off buying more Italian goodies. Some will be for the Easter Brunch I am having for our big family. I will take a day off of running and instead entertain Josh and Allie and later, start a House of Cards, season 3 binge watch.
Saturday, March 28, 2015
|My missing rose!|
|Now each of my breakfast nook windows shows a Sue-made stained glass creation. I could even center the rose as it has a hangar though poorly applied|
Also found, some of my missing coasters though my Joan Miro ones are still missing. I think I might have given them to someone (who probably threw them away). Too bad. They looked really cool. I had bought them in Barcelona along with my ceramic dragon that is the centerpiece of Parc Guell that now crawls the wall of my guest bathroom along with my Oaxacan painted animal collection from my trips to San Diego.
As I type this, the trash haulers should be at our house ridding us of big things that we can't taken away ourselves. Little unwanted things will continue to fill our weekly trash. I went there yesterday to finalize what goes. The painter stopped by and I had expressed dissatisfaction on how slowly things are getting done, particularly the wallpaper which he had promised would go quickly. Now he denies he ever said that. He did take away some of our stuff for his personal use (good, less stuff for us to pay for) though he must be a hoarder. And Steve shared with me some other outrageous things he has done so far. If things don't get better, Steve has resigned himself to doing the work himself. He is a good painter. Meanwhile I have a carload of stuff to unload today. The objects become less and less desirable as time goes on. I have to keep asking myself: When did I ever use this? When will I ever use it? Steve to his credit, kept the sighing to a minimum. I had thrown a lot away.
Winter continues at this late date. I ran through snow flurries yesterday though I was comfortable. I saw a lone turkey. It is even colder today but it pretty and sunny.
Friday, March 27, 2015
Thursday, March 26, 2015
|This is their house in 2005. I sold it as is in a very run down state after my father died in 2004 to flippers. Then the market dropped. It was finally sold just last year|
The more you spend; the more you save.
Here in the real world at the Money Pit, we have to consider everything. There were obvious things we had to do or the house would not sell at all or ever pass inspection. We are now entering the less obvious phase of cosmetics. What does our mythical buyer want and for how cheaply can this be delivered? It makes my head spin. Our painter who lives 45 minutes away prefers 10 hour shifts which Steve is supervising (he is the one so hell bent on moving).
When the work is finished, I will post before and after photos.
Wednesday, March 25, 2015
|My brother at one. Seems to be recovering from chickenpox|
|My mom on her wedding day. My aunt, to the right of my mom has asked me in the past for this photo. It just surfaced today|
We had purchased a super 8 mm movie camera right before Shanna's birth though we did not film her birth. It took 3 minutes at a time. We had reels and reels of these that once we retired, had converted to dvds. Around the time Shanna was one, a friend asked me to film her son's first birthday party which we did. I got it developed but never showed it to her. She had asked me if I still had it. Nope, hadn't seen it in years. I felt very bad about this About 6 weeks ago, Steve found an unmarked reel deep in the cupboard. We had it converted into a dvd along with a film of Steve's basketball, softball and both of us playing racquet ball. At the tail end of the strip was the missing birthday party, just in time to give her a copy for her Big Birthday. Her baby has 3 kids of his own. Time does fly.
The orange and blue wallpaper is gone. Painting has begun. We spent several hours at the Money Pit yesterday preparing stuff for the charity folks to be picked up. This weekend, trash haulers show up.
Yesterday, my new Italian-American friend and I spent some time at the Italian market buying lots of tasty treats. It was fun trying new things. And the large cannoli were on sale, Yay. Strange food item there (not Italian): Peeps flavored marshmallow milk. And today, Tessa in the morning joined by Shanna and Daniel in he afternoon. Too rainy and windy for anyone to go outside.
And my first flowers of the year (too lazy to photograph them) 3 croci!
Monday, March 23, 2015
|Interesting birdhouse on my bike ride the other day|
|My pug vase holds a dozen of them|
|Allie at the waterpark this weekend|
What did I do yesterday? Absolutely nothing. It looked so nice out but all morning it was in the low 20s. This wouldn't bother me to run (it wasn't much warmer when I went out this morning) but biking has a different temperature range. I didn't even fix up the house (though this morning I was back to rearranging stuff and collecting even more stuff from the old house). I did spend time handwashing my crystal and antique plates and then watching junk TV. Some of the TV wasn't junk. I watched the Armenian Holocaust documentary as it is the 100 year anniversary of it. So heart breaking. And caused by people who follow a religion they say is of peace. Not peace as their basic tenet seems to be Death to Infidels!!!!! The Armenians are Christians (their church older than Catholicism), which is the main reason they were killed. The Detroit area is home to a large group of Armenians. One of my best friends growing up was one. I keep putting off getting together with her as I seem to be always busy..but once we finally get the old house on the market....I will breathe a sigh of relief.
Sunday, March 22, 2015
|Miss Tess and her purple birthday cupcake. Guess what her favorite color is?|
The first day of spring: it was very pretty and I did have time to go for a long run. Usually I don't see anyone else on the road but yesterday my footsteps seemed to have a strange echo and then I heard heavy breathing, not my own....
Back to making dinner: Thai noodle salad with grilled shrimp (would be served cold) on 86 year old Wedgewood plates
coconut jasmine rice with peas
green curried cauliflower
Korean scallion pancakes (thank-you Trader Joe)
The Moms would bring dessert, salad and appetizers and plenty of wine
I had scheduled this before Shanna scheduled a family party for Tessa. Yes I knew it was her birthday but I assumed it would be earlier in the day. Fortunately now she lives close-by so I could go for part of it. Lots of Syrian treats there, my favorite being the pomegranate meat pies and hummus. Josh and Julie were up north somewhere but Maya and Naomi came along with Tessa's paternal cousins.
The Moms were fun. Lots of interesting conversations and trip recounts. Though all of them have seen the house before, two of them came over 2 days after I moved in so not much was set up. We've now been here 6 weeks so more is being finished. This past week I have been concentrating on my den. The settee we have in it now will go out on the front porch and hopefully be replaced by a chaise. Also we need to recover some of our lamps from the other house (not until it is sold as some rooms have no overhead lighting there).
|thoughtful house warming gift from one of the Moms|
|Morning light looks cool filtering through the ruby glass collection|
|Thai noodle salad on my antique plates. I love my multicolored bamboo placemats|
It is so pretty out but too cold for my hoped for bike ride. At least we missed Ultima, the snow storm that hit the NE. I did ride Friday and heard the peepers, a wonderful spring song though they were quiet yesterday morning. Maybe the frogs only sing when it is above 40. Tomorrow I go for my plastic surgery consult to learn what can be done about my sorry looking chest. I guess I could run today but I am tired..
Friday, March 20, 2015
|The cliffs surrounding Bonassola, Italy were made of this friable green marble|
|One of the pieces I brought back. In the water, there were polished stones of this. I took back some for my rock garden. (collecting rocks for souvenirs is sort of crazy)I need to recover these before I sell the house|
Where are his rocks? I assume the best pieces were stolen by the squatter living in his house at his death. Or maybe he sold them earlier. Looking at the prices at the Rock Shoppe, his would have been worth quite a bit. He of course didn't pay anything for them. He had stuff to trade.. There was a glass tank at work to make windshields. Over time, artificial rubies would form on the sides and the tank would have to be sledgehammered open. He used these very crude rubies for trade. He also had a supply of pyrite fossilized sea shells uncovered in the building of the Ohio Turnpike. I am not sure how he got them.
My favorite rock was a huge chunk of rose quartz. In the Black Hills, there were chunks of this all over the place. I remember the parking lots were covered with mica. He also had a huge geode full of amethyst crystals. That would have been nice to have. Amethyst comes from the Greek for 'not drunk' as the stones presumably protected one from drunkenness.
This was to be my biking day but the weatherman lied. Maybe if the temp climbs another ten degrees, I will go out. Instead I finished hanging stuff in the den and entertained Maya.
Thursday, March 19, 2015
|I didn't miss the sunrise this morning however|
My breakfast nook juts from the back of our house surrounded on 3 sides with windows. The patio is there and someday I hope it to be covered with flowers. This is one of my favorite parts of the house as I love light. The other morning however I entered it and found 3 things that immediately put me in bad mood. First, coffee grounds all over the floor. Steve in haste to go to The Money Pit left a trash bag balanced badly. Second, gale force winds lifted our air conditioner cover and it was barely hanging on to a bush meaning I had to go out ASAP and rescue it. And considerably more annoying, at the construction site due north of us, the workers were burning construction waste, which they often do but with the gale force winds, the fire was about to be out of control billowing smoke and cinders into our yard. Do I go out to speak to these clueless idiots? Nope I called the fire marshal who promised to give them a lecture. And by the time I finished my run, the fire was out. And the next day, they invested in a trash container for their waste so no more fires. But I am afraid to go near them as they probably know I am the snitch.
I later contacted the head of the neighborhood association in part because he sent us a bill for dues even though we paid these dues prorated at closing (yep the title company had paid him). But I wondered about the open fire rules in our neighborhood covenant which I know is restrictive on many issues (garage doors must be kept closed, no fences, no parking on the curb etc). Township rules say construction sites must have a burn permit and they can only burn clean wood, no treated stuff and must do it only during favorable weather. The smoke was black so I am guessing something wasn't clean and the weather wasn't favorable. The e-mailed reply I received was filled with grammatical errors. I had to laugh. Back when we were about to purchase the Moose and Squirrel house, our young annoying realtor gave us some condescending speech about how our new neighbors won't be like the great unwashed back at the old hood (where he grew up); these people were apt to be professionals like physicians and hold doctorates so they would have different expectations, etc than the uneducated barbarians that I am used to. This was based on the fact that the new neighborhood's house values were 30% higher than the old (though the taxes were less so it would be cheaper to live there). Well in this neighborhood, the values are about 120% higher and even more so for our neighborhood association head. This does not translate into him knowing how to write a coherent sentence. And our neighborhood was full of doctors and people with advanced degrees. And with whom did he think we worked? Just love it when the young lecture me on how to behave.
That day I did run despite the strong winds. My path was mostly perpendicular to the winds and the dense forest cuts out a lot of the force. But the creaking trees were sort of eerie. I could see that some of them were knocked over and hoped that one would not topple onto me.
The big melt is almost over though the ground is still frozen so I can't rescue my patio stuff just yet. I saw the first crane of the season hearing it first (they can be heard a mile away..such a primitive sound). Woodpeckers were at work attracting mates. Yep they do peck at trees to get food but in the spring, they drum incessantly. Josh was treated with a couple weeks of a pileated woodpecker (my favorite kind)hammering at his metal chimney vent back at his old house. And then the shadow of the first vulture swooping over my yard (clean-up on aisle one, my running route, dear vulture).
We picked up Fiona the Dragon (name on the tag just happened to be Josh's favorite girl's name though he was not allowed to call his daughter that) to deliver to Josh later that day to have birthday dinner with him and Allie. And yesterday, due to a school holiday, all of Shanna's kids could come over to play.
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