Friday, July 17, 2015

Is It Over Yet??............

Summer.  I'm not a big fan of summer.  It's ok for the first few weeks, but now we're into the middle of it.  The beginning of the worst of it.  The heat.  Humidity.  Bugs.  Incessant weeds and grass mowing.  Ear shattering thunder storms.  Torrential rains.  And the ever present  tornado warnings.  No thank you; I've had enough.  Let's move on to the next season.  Fall.  How I love Fall.

Anywho, so since we last visited, some housecleaning and yard work has been done.  Unfortunately, it needs to be done again.  We'll get to that.  The hot, humid days have been upon us with a reprieve or 2 in between.  That's a good thing.

All boxes that were packed up for the "big move" 2 years ago are now unpacked and most things have been put back in place.  There are 2 boxes marked "Keepsakes"......things I definitely don't want to throw out, but don't want to be dusting off anymore either.  Then there's 2 boxes marked "Donate"....which will go to one of the SecondHand stores here in town.   One of these days.

Yesterday was a gray day, threatening rain all day (which didn't arrive till we got into bed last night), so I spent the day setting up a page on FB, supposing it to be a link to my Etsy store.  Hoping to get things back in there for sale by the middle of September.  Since it's all woolen apparel, I didn't see putting it in now, paying the fees and have it sit there.  Am I wrong?  Hmm.....How many people realize that, yes, there will be another winter;  yes, there will be another Christmas shopping season.  And it'll be here quicker than you can say "Bob's your uncle".   So.....plan ahead.....shop now?  I know there's such people out there....but I've never really been a stalwart.  I do admire them immensely, though.

We've heard from granddaughter a few times now by FB messaging.  We've got the webcam all set up, got Skype downloaded, ready to go.  Just haven't worked out times we can video chat together.  9 hours difference over there.  And she does spend a lot of free time chatting with her fiancé.   That's quite understandable.  Also, her work schedule is the afternoon shift....from 4 to midnight.   We'll figure it out pretty soon, I'm sure.

Remember the new landscaping lawn mower that I bought for BH a couple of months ago?   The one that made his eyes almost pop out of his head  and me choke when we saw the price?   Yeah....well Monday we had to take it back....to be serviced.   I wanted to throw up.   Right on the show room floor.  In front of all the shiny, clean, brand-spanking-new mowers.

Yeah.  It seems the engine revs started dying the last time he used it.  Quite a noticeable change in the engine sound.  BH checked it out on the "net"....called the service dept.  Yep.  Most likely needs a new air filter.  No, no, you can't rinse out the one in there now.  It's made of paper.....it'll disintegrate.   A new one will be $5.00.

Now the price isn't bad.  What's bad is he mows the grass every week, sometimes twice a week.  Probably 2 acres at least.  The mower is 2 months old.  So through the season, we're probably looking at 3 or 4 filters.   And for the original price of the mower....well.....you'd think they'd have a better, reusable filter, right?  Ppffftttt.

So, not only that, but then I find out the pull cord is stripped of it's cloth covering, right down to the plastic wire core.  How the hell did that happen???  Aaarrrggghhh.   BH is not the most observant or careful person when it comes to .........anything, really.  It was no surprise when he said he never saw the damage being done.  (There's a very funny story of our visit to the DMV for renewing his driver's license and the required eye test....I'll tell you later.  It's hysterical, trust me!)

Well, anyway....it's in the shop.  "Can you give me a rough time estimate when it'll be done?"  BH asks the service guy.   "Well, we'll take a look and see what's wrong; probably have to order the parts; we'll get to it by the end of the week.  You should have it back week after next".     Are you friggin' kiddin' me?????   A garage can put a new engine and transmission in your car in less time than that!!   We're not talking a riding mower here; it's a push...ok.....self-propelled...woohoo.....mower!!   Probably 'cause it's under warranty....yeah, that's it.  Not making any money on it, so push it back to the end of the line.

Well, I'm exhausted now.  Get a cup of coffee and see if that restarts my "engine" for the day.   I'll be checking in again soon....unless the heat and humidity do me in.

Thursday, July 2, 2015

It's.....July??!!

Holy crap!  This season is going fast.  Not that I mind all that much.  Fall is my very favorite time of year.  So...hurry up, Summer....get it over with.

Whatcha doing for the 4th?  We've got son and daughter coming on Saturday.  A cookout is planned.  Something simple and not too expensive, I'm planning.  Today is grocery shopping day....and other assorted errands.

Good news!....I am totally done with the inside work. The last room was scrubbed and freshened on Saturday.  So,  yesterday I weedwhacked, pulled weeds, fixed the little fencing around the hedges, trimmed the annuals back so they bush out instead of growing tall and "leggy", and Miracle-Gro-ed the gardens and planters.  Yea for me....a gold star!!

Now on to the rest of the outside work.  I want to scrub down the siding on the house.  First time in 12 years.  BH is very nervous about this....he thinks the color of the siding will get all "splotchy".  Oh, for crysakes.  Well, that will be accomplished next week.....great weather is predicated all next week.

Then it's the car.....washing inside and out, preceded by a good vacuuming inside and then shampooing the upholstery and carpeting.  And if time, weather and energy allow.....I just may tackle the van.  And, of course, there will be the old farm house...which needs to be straightened up and re-organized.  And boxes.  Need. to. be. unpacked. ugh.

We're planning a trip back to NY at the end of August to see family.  Did I tell you that already?  Anywho, we've been trying to plan this out since last year.....but something has always come up.  Fingers crossed, it'll finally happen.

Other than that, nothing new going on.  Tomorrow should be a very relaxing, puttering around kind of day.  Maybe I'll get pictures of the latest vest and get them posted.   Oh.....a coconut/banana cream pie will be in the making tomorrow for Saturday.  At the request of BH.  His birthday is the 9th.....so a little extra celebration is definitely called for.

You all have a very safe and happy July 4th!!!

Monday, June 29, 2015

In Case You Were Wondering.....

What am I doing right now?  Well.....dinner is on the stove, staying warm.  It's 4:50pm.  BH is out in the back 5(acres), behind the old farm house, throwing the rest of his chopped wood into the basement.  He said there was about 200 pieces left.....out of the 5200 he had stacked outside.  You read that right.....5200 pieces.  Which is our wood supply for next winter.  "It'll only take me a half hour or so".

I'm assuming there should have been an underline in the "or so".  We had no lunch today...so I'm starving.  I wanted to eat before 5pm so the kitchen would be cleaned up at a reasonable hour and we could relax for the evening.  I think I missed that train.

What's for supper?   Grilled (in the house) salmon, rice/w stir fry veggies, Waldorf salad and wheat bread.  Jello for dessert.  I haven't made Waldorf salad in many moons.  Can't wait to have it again!

Well, they're calling for thunderstorms tonight.  I opened the windows about 4:15 after having the A/C and all the fans running all day.  85 we had for a temp and a bit on the humid side.

I also blew a fuse.  The second one in 2 days.  The first time in about 20 years.  I guess I need to watch what's running on the same circuit a bit better.  I think it's because we moved the higher BTU  A/C into the family room on that line. 

So I guess the A/C, 2 fans and the dryer can't be used at the same time.  Ohhhhh.......Oleeever......Oleeeever..........(my favorite saying from "Green Acres").   Remember how Lisa had to unplug the coffee pot to plug in the toaster?  Yeah....it's that kind of thing.

Ok.  He's here.  Time for supper.   Mmmmmmm........

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Whirlwind.......

Pretty much this month.   So we took son to the Martina McBride concert last Friday.  It was amazing!!  She is a great performer.  We thoroughly enjoyed the evening......and son is still talking about it.  I took videos with my camera and converted them to a DVD for him.  He got to shake her hand at the end of the concert...he was the first and only one at the edge of the stage for the last song.






Yep...that's him in the first photo.  He says he'll carry this memory with him forever.....no doubt!

Got the word from granddaughter 2 days ago.....her unit will be leaving for Kuwait on June 30.  There's talk they'll be serving in Iraq as well.  God bless them all.

I've got 1 more room to do for the annual cleaning.  Plan to get at it today.  Then I'm done with all the inside work; time to move outside.  Not my favorite thing....outside....in the summer.  The heat, humidity, bugs......LOTS of bugs....of every species.  Of course, no shortage of mosquitos.....the state bird of Minnesota.

No knitting has taken place this month.  Lots of spinning though.  However, why does it always seem that the closer you get to finishing a fiber, the longer it takes.  It seems like there's no end to this particular color.  And my patience is running thin.  I want to get it done and move on to another.

Grandson's graduation party is today.  We will not be attending.  A very, very long story.  Lots of drama from our son and his fiancé.
They have pulled us into a nasty situation which we have nothing to do with.  And now there's a lot of anger on their part at us, and a lot of hurt on our side. The fact that invitations were sent out a couple of weeks ago....but we received ours just Wednesday.  Grandson was supposed to stop by our home Sunday to invite us personally, but never showed nor called.   It makes us feel like it was never intended for us to be part of the celebration; a last minute thought or decision on their part.  Oh well.  We've been through this before with another adult kid.  This is NOT the family I grew up in.  This is NOT my parents' family.   Never will be.  What a rotten shame.

So....cleaning today; taking daughter grocery shopping tomorrow.  That takes a few hours.

More rain in the forecast for tomorrow.  We've been getting quite a bit of rain.  I wanted so bad to douse the flowers with MiracleGrow to make them "thicker and lusher" as the advertising says, but they're wet enough with Mother Nature's help.

Still don't have the screen house up yet.  BH promises it'll be up by the Fourth of July.  We'll see......

And that's all the news from Upnorth, MN.   Hope you all have a great weekend!!

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Catching Up.......

Well, it's been pretty busy here in the beautiful land of loons.  Talked to granddaughter a couple of times; she's doing well in Texas.  Still no news yet as to when they'll be shipping out for Iraq.

So I've been catching up on the Spring cleaning.  2 more rooms left to do...I'm thrilled!  Then it's on to finishing up some outside projects and doing the unpacking of boxes.

There's been plenty of spinning going on; some knitting, though I haven't been "feeling" it for the past couple of weeks.  The white vest got washed and blocked yesterday...pictures coming soon.

My uncle died a few weeks ago, 84 yrs. old.  He's had Alzheimer's for a number of years and cancer.  My father's younger brother. Now there's only 1 sibling left....their youngest brother who will be 80 next month....and I might add, in very good health.

BH and I are taking sonwhomovedherefromSCsome years ago, to the Martina McBride concert in southern MN. tomorrow.  We ordered the tickets about 3 months ago, as a surprise for him and a "thank you" for all the work he does around here when he visits.

Not to mention that he is TOTALLY in love with Martina!!  He has every album and a few video concerts....that he watches over and over again. 

It's about a 3 1/2 hour drive from our home to the event.  And we're planning on driving home tomorrow night.  Not looking forward to that.  I hate driving at night....especially when we start getting back into the rural areas.  And....it's supposed to rain/w thunderstorms all day and into the night.  But we're taking an overnight bag just in case we feel it necessary to stop somewhere for the night.

Saturday I'm planning the Father's Day doings....because there's more rain and thunderstorms predicted for Sunday.  Hopefully, Saturday will be ideal for a cookout.  I cut up a watermelon this morning; got the potatoes on the boil for salad; going to the store and pick up some cheap steaks(??) and throw in some brown beans.  Daughter who lives in town now will be coming over, son will still be here, so it'll be a good day.

Next weekend is grandson's high school graduation party.  South of the Cities.  Another 3 hour drive down there.  And we will be coming home that night.  For sure.  Unless, of course, we're not invited.  That remains to be seen.  A huge problem has developed over the past couple of weeks between son, fiancé, granddaughter, and has spilled over onto us.  But more about that later.....or...not.

I'm so looking forward to July!  After the 4th, of course.  I hate holidays...except for Christmas.  Then we'll be free from any obligations....and can get on with our own plans.  Fingers crossed.

We still don't have the screen house up yet...too much rain, grass cutting and cool weather.  The A/C's have been sitting in the house for a few weeks....not set up yet.  We've had some very cool weather lately.  But, hey....that means the electric bill won't be going through the roof for another month.

Well, chickies.....gotta get to the store and continue on the tasks for today.   Wishing you all beautiful sunshine, comfortable temps and peaceful days.   Happy Father's Day to all your BH's !!!!

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Flying By.....

Wow....another month has gone by with barely a notice.  All the days seem to be running together lately.  The calendar for the past 3 months have been filled with appointments, reminders, birthdays, graduations, etc.  It almost looks like we're really very socially active people!  Not.

So, I finally heard from my brother and SIL about the sweater.  She absolutely loves it!!  Was sooo happy to receive it.  Even sent me a note from herself.   Whew.

I finished the white vest, but it needs to be washed and blocked.  Actually, I haven't even had time to do that, much less pose it and take pictures.  But I will....eventually.   So I started a pair of socks a few weeks ago.  Which, sorry to say, have been languishing in the tote bag more than being worked on.  Lost the mojo, I guess.

You know how it is when you have a million things on your mind, hundreds of things to do, and everyone seems to have a problem with something or someone.   Good grief.

Granddaughter left on Sunday for Ft. Hood, Texas.  She'll be undergoing more training before being deployed......to what was supposed to be Kuwait.....but she found out last night, may most likely be Iraq.   For 7 months.  Possibly 1 year.  

I'm sick.  We love her with all our hearts; we pray for her every day; we support her totally; she's very strong and determined for a gal-soldier who just turned 20 last week.  But when is this INSANITY going to END???
14 YEARS!!   REALLY????  How many more battered lives?  How many more deaths?  How many more destroyed families??   Have we REALLY made any difference in an area we never should have stuck our big, arrogant, self-important noses in???  No.   How much more money are "we" willing to spend on a fruitless endeavor while our country is going to hell??

We're BANKRUPT, remember??!!!  

Sorry.  This is just one of a half-dozen issues we've been dealing with over the past month.  Sometimes you just have to blow it all out before getting back in the game.

So....here's some photos.  We met her fiancé's family for the first time....wonderful, wonderful family.   My brother, SIL (not the sweater ones), our youngest son, were all there for her Deployment Ceremony and saying good-bye the next day before the unit boarded the bus for the airport.







We love you, honey.  God bless and keep you and all your buddies safe and bring you home soon.




Thursday, May 7, 2015

2 Down.....12 To Go......

Yes, it's that season again.  Spring.  Cleaning, re-organizing, repairing, etc.

So one job on my list (it's been on the list for 2 yrs now, actually), was to replace the screens on the 5...count them, 5....dining room windows.  And get rid of the sun filter film that the previous owner had on the 2 windows on the west side of the house.  It had been peeling off since....forever.....a little more every time I washed the windows. 

Well, once I got into the swing of things, the screening went pretty well.  It's an old mobile home; screens were attached to the wall....behind the window moulding.  Geesh.  So it really took some ingenuity to figure out a way to put up new screens.  I won't go into the gorey details.

The window film was, let's just say....a bitch to get off.  Maybe the fact that it's probably been on the windows for 30 + years.  And each window has 3 glass panels; you know, like louvers.  Well, after hours and hours....and hours.....it's done.  They are clean and bright and we can see out of them!

Curtains and shades were washed, ironed, and put back.  Now just wash the furniture with Murphy's Oil Soap, and this room is done.

Moving on.  The kitchen, hallway, spare bedroom and bathroom are next.  Family room then.  Our bedroom will be done or put on hold till Fall.  Oh....and washing the siding, repainting the skirting.  Those jobs have been on the list for 2 years also.

Then comes the fun part.   Unpacking the 20-some boxes that were packed when we anticipated moving.  Yep.  All to be undone, things placed back where they were.  Most importantly, all the crafts books, the spinning and knitting books and all the quilt patterns.  Because I've really gotta get started on quilting some time this summer.  Christmas gifts are being planned.  You can never have enough time to plan for the following Christmas.  Never.

Next week I'm hoping to get the yard work done.  Flower beds cleaned, fences up, decorations set out, weed-whacking done, seeds planted in the flower planters.  Going with marigolds this year.  Because I saved a gazillion seeds last year.

Of course, because of all this planning, there is rain in the forecast.  Today and every other day (a lot of thunderstorms predicted) for the rest of the month, it looks like.  Boy, if there was ever a time for the weather forecast to be wrong......

So with any luck, all will be accomplished and we can really enjoy the summer!  Finally.

BH suggested last night that he take me out for dinner on Mother's Day.  I've never been out for dinner on Mother's Day.  Who is this man sitting on the deck with me???   I told him I invited our daughter to come for dinner, so we would have to take her to the restaurant with us.  AND....he'll need to make reservations, I'm sure.   Well....this plan is still up in the air.  I'm really not crazy about spending the money for dinner when there's soooo many other things it would be better spent on.  Like all the gardening supplies.

Wishing you all a very Happy Mother's Day!!