Sunday, April 30, 2017

More Mysteries

We always seem to have mysteries around here. We come home from out-of-town and find random things in the refrigerator that no one seems to have left, all of the cords to the tv upstairs are unplugged and no one admits to having done it and we find things that no one claims.

While dealing with this nasty freezer situation, we found this:
This necklace was under the refrigerator. I sent the picture to ALL of the girls. Mindy and Elizabeth both said they thought it looked like something that Jordan would wear. She said it wasn't hers. I think it might be real because it's a nice box chain with a lobster claw hook. I'll have to get it checked our. This reminds me of the diamond necklace (yes, that was definitely real) we found out by the pool. No one claimed it. Even though the girls say otherwise, I think one of their friends left it. That's been years now.

This plastic cup is Tupperware. Probably 10 years ago, I bought a set of 4. We're down to one. We never knew what happened to the others. Yes, we figured some family member walked off with them. Well,  while helping Stephanie move, we found one---and took it back. Now we have two. I'm really excited because we're moving Jordan to her new apartment this summer. I'll bet we find another one! Before you know it, we might have the complete set again! I guess I'm pretty lucky that Stephanie didn't throw it out. She was ruthless and says they got rid of early HALF of everything they owned!
This is not exactly a mystery. Butch found it wrapped up in paper in one of Steph's moving boxes that he was taking to recycle. Stephanie and I had come across the cup, but she had no idea what happened to the saucer---so she put the cup in the Good Will stuff. Now the saucer turns up, but it's too late. Butch is so good at finding things. He always goes through everything---even at Christmas and has found countless gift cards and little things that almost got thrown away.

Another mystery for which I do not have a picture. It's a mystery to me how every time Butch goes out-of-town, something happens that scares the bejeebees out of me! When Butch was out-of-town recently, the door alarm went off at 3 a.m. signaling someone was in the house. I always thought that I'd immediately call 911. I didn't. I creeped out of bed to peer out the front windows, only to find that the front door was unlocked. I locked it and then worried that I had just locked someone in the house with me. I then found the pool door unlocked (we have a lot of doors). Anyway, turns out that the door alarm was malfunctioning.

Well, last week when Butch was at the beach, I went to bed early and was watching tv (something I never do unless I'm sick). It was only 8 p.m., but someone started banging on the front door---3 times. My heart started pumping. All I could think was that if it was anyone I knew, they'd call me. Or family members would use the "hidden" key---that's not really so hidden. I turned out the bedroom light and just waited it out. About five minutes later, Butch called. Just having him on the phone  calmed me down. He told me to call 911. I said I wasn't doing that just because I was being a baby. Now here's the thing. If it was summer and someone knocked on the door at 8 p.m., I would just answer it. Somehow, when it's dark, mystery visitors seems ominous. A couple summers ago, the same thing happened. Butch was gone and I got a knock at 9:30 p.m. It just scares the heck out of me! Anyway I never did find out who was knocking the other night. Just one more mystery.

This is the biggest mystery of all. Our Christmas tree stand. How is it nearly May and it's still sitting on the patio?

What types of mysteries do you have around your house? Email me or add a comment and I'll devote another blog post sharing them.

Saturday, April 29, 2017

A Few Things

I really don't know where the time goes. I just seem to be busy all the time. I'm not really complaining as I'd say it's mostly fun.

 I just love these little boys. Travis got a new bike for his 5th birthday. It's hard to believe that he's starting kindergarten. His little brother, Nathan is not far behind!
 Another of my favorites---little Evie at the party.
 This cute little guy cracks me up. Sandy said Titan really enjoyed his vacay at the pet sitters while they were at the beach.
 Victoria and Elizabeth enjoying some fun drinks. They had great weather all week at the beach. Butch really enjoyed being wth all of them.
Okay, now lately, I've been pretty proud of myself about the fact that I'm getting my multiples problem under control. Recently, Publix had LeSeur peas on sale 10 for $10.00. That's a great price as they are usually about $1.59 each. Still, I controlled myself and only bought two. But when I saw these cute Easter tablecloths on sale for 70% off, I had to have 2! You might wonder why I'd buy two of the same tablecloth. Well, the truth of it is that I need two to cover my large dining room table. These were a real steal for $3.00 each!
Ugh! back to the freezer again. You can see my attempt with the baking soda on cookie sheets and the dryer sheets. That wasn't working. When I got home from stitching on Tuesday, I saw the freezer door sitting on saw horses on the driveway.
 Butch told me that he took it off in order to remove the gasket and clean it out. He used a toothbrush and bleach.
I helped him put it back on. I asked him how he knew how to take the door off and the gasket. He said, "Barb, sometimes you just have to figure it out." The guy can do anything. I'm always so impressed (remember the recent cat door). Anyway, I'm not saying I couldn't figure it out, but I could not physically take that heavy door off. We've had the door closed since he left for Chicago on Wednesday. I'm almost afraid to open it to check the smell. Let's put it this way. If we get rid of the freezer, I think that would naturally solve my multiples problem. I think it would definitely curb my desire to buy more than one of anything that needs to be frozen!

The renovation was finally completed this week---well, except for one last thing. 18 weeks!
Since all of the pipes are exposed, I've paid for "pretty plumbing!" As you can see the top part is not so pretty. We'll be getting something else to cover or replace that. I expect it will take about 6 weeks as it seems everything takes that long. I don't know if I've already mentioned it here, but the sink ended up being so heavy, that a wooden frame had to be built to support it. That took about 6 weeks. When they got here to install it, the opening was too large---hence not enough support. The "guy" called his company and they were able to whip out a new frame in an hour!! It's so frustrating to have to wait so long for stuff. I say, quit taking orders until you are caught up and then start over. That way, people can get there stuff in a much more timely manner. I guarantee you that if it weren't for the fact that we were having out-of-towners today, there wouldn't have been any rush to complete my job!

Well those are my few things for today. As you read this, I'll be on my way to the beach with my sisters. The weather's not looking so great, but we'll have a great time for sure no matter what we do. I've decided to take the love seat for sleeping. I think I'm the shortest one of the bunch. Joyce has volunteered to climb up to the top bunk, but I'm not going to hold her to it unless I can't sleep on the love seat!

I'll be posting from the beach!

Friday, April 28, 2017

A Few Layouts

Well, I missed going to the farm for our spring scrapbook retreat last week. There was just too much going on that needed my attention. Still, I have several pages to share from the LAST time we went at the end of February. Here goes:
"Redecorating the girls rooms" is about the job I did for Stephanie in January 2016. She gave me a budget of $1000 for both rooms. I pulled it off---bedding, windows, art, bedside tables, lamps and knick knacks.
 "Eads Family Vacation" 2016---at the beach.
 I like to have plenty of title and/or end pages ready to go when I start putting albums together. This is another version with washi tape.
This is one of my AYM pages: "Heres one you might like: while searching for our roots, we missed the train!" This layout is about our sister's trip to Italy last spring. Side note: I leave tomorrow for our first sister's trip to the beach.
"Can you tell she doesn't like getting her picture taken?" This layout is about how Jordan frowns whenever you try to take her picture. She's been doing it since she was a baby. I love layouts like this where you can see tendencies through the years all on one page.
This is another one along those lines. "She likes her jewelry" shows Mindy through the years. I have to say, I started it. When she was a baby, I put a little beaded bracelet on her and never took it off!
 Another AYM: "And then I've got to be kidding me!" I say that a lot, but on this layout, it's in reference to Stephanie telling me that she backed my Solstice in to Nicky's car. I told the story of the gas shortage last September. When Steph couldn't get gas, I loaned her the Solstice (the car I've been keeping for an investment and trying to keep low mileage on it).
Here's a close-up of the pocket. It has window where I put the subtitle. It contains my journaling.
This is the layout I did for Karolyn for our round robin: "Little Rascals." Normally, we trade the layouts around every month. When I was the first one to get these pictures, I just knew I wanted to complete the entire layout. I've had these splat stamps forever and have rarely been able to use them. I loved making this layout. There were a lot of pictures, so I used washi tape to make a little flip album on both sides.
 Here's another layout: "Fall Outing" where I used washi tape to adhere lots of pictures. It's my favorite thing to do rather than making the page look too busy.
 "#I'm the Boss" is about me and my little sister, Jeanne. Most of the time, she lets me be the boss---but not always!
 "Sister Style" is a layout about Stephanie and Mindy. I'm doing various sister pages for each of their albums (Sandy's too).

That's about it for now. I haven't done much scrapbooking lately. I miss it!

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Maybe I'm "Old"!

I don't feel old---well maybe a little right now with all these aches and pains. But really, I don't think I'm old. I've always stayed current with music---okay, I'm losing that now as I listen to the "oldies" most of the time. I think there might be more to getting old than just my taste in music. In fact, I've paid attention lately and have come up with the following list:

Things that make me feel old:
When I went for my most recent treatment, the nurse asked if I had a living will. She asked if I had it in a safe at home. I said, "No." She seemed surprised. What she actually asked was, "Do you feel safe at home." I'm not even sure what that means. But the bigger problem here could be my hearing---that's definitely an "old" thing.

Christy, my designer, is certified to help people "aging in place." I didn't even know that was a "thing." Hence her installation of "fancy" grab bars in my new shower. Plus she said she was making the shower door wide enough to accommodate a wheelchair. Seriously? Do people roll their wheelchairs in the shower and get them all wet? All I can see in that scenario is a huge mess. Lord help me!

When going anywhere, my first thought is always about parking: where is it, how far is the walk, how much will it cost?

I feel pretty "hip" being on Facebook. But on the other hand, it makes me feel old when half the time I don't know what the "young" people are posting about.

A couple weeks ago, Karolyn's daughter, Lauren was able to join us for lunch. She asked me if this made me feel young--like a teenager:
My sparkly grey nails. No, I don't wear this color to act/feel younger. It just goes with everything. I never wanted to be one of those people that wore mini skirts past my prime, or long scraggly hair to seem younger. I asked my girls if my nails made me look like that. They said "no" so I'll keep wearing this color. But I have noticed in this picture that my hands are looking a little wrinkly!

This kind of mail makes me feel old:
Plus I got something about joining AARP. I guess I could have shared both of these on "Monday memos, mail and me." I forgot. This is just plain depressing.

It definitely makes me feel old that I can no longer be a "foot flusher." I can barely get my pants up much less balancing on one foot to flush with the other.

Recently, after working with Stephanie and Nicky on their move, they were treating at Taco Bell (I wanted something quick so we could get back to work). Stephanie will say that this was an "old" move. I ordered a taco. The girl said "Soft or crunchy?" I said, "I just want a regular taco. " I was puzzled, the girl was puzzled. Stephanie had to intervene, "She wants crunchy." Granted, I haven't been to Taco Bell in a long time, but to me, a taco is a taco. I didn't know there were choices.

I know I'm old when I pretty much HATE texting. I'm so slow. I can type on the computer way fast---that's why I prefer email communication. Young people's fingers fly over the keyboard to text. Half the time, I'll be in the middle of a response while everyone else is responding all around me---making my responses irrelevant.

It definitely makes me feel old when store clerks assume I'm eligible for a senior discount. On the other hand, I really like my buddy, Jason, at the movie theater. He doesn't arbitrarily give me the senior rate unless I ask. Most likely, that's more about making an extra buck should I forget to ask for the discount. Still, the fact that I remember his name says something!

And lastly, it's pretty hard to NOT face the fact that you are getting old when your friends are acting old!
Lucky for me, Connie is such a good sport. In this picture, she was supposed to be helping with her grandson's birthday party. Now this makes her really old! We shouldn't be expected to keep up with a bunch of 7 year olds! One good thing about this, I can keep up with her!

What kinds of things make you feel old? Or maybe, I'm the only one feeling this way!

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

A Major Mishap

You might have noticed that I missed "Monday Memos, Mail and Me." Well, I have really good excuse---or actually, a really BAD excuse!

First of all, I didn't really get anything worth noting in the mail last week. But the biggest reason I didn't post yesterday was because I was cleaning out the friggin' freezer! SOMEONE---and I have to admit, I think it was me---left the door open. OMGosh! The stench of rotting meat!

The last thing I recall was putting the Honey Baked Ham bone in the freezer on Easter Sunday. I'm pretty sure that was the beginning of the end. We have been somewhat distracted with Stephanie and Nicky's new house. Butch left for the beach on Tuesday to spend time with Sandy, Greg and the girls.  I had a busy week---as usual. On Friday, I started to notice an "odor." The first thing I checked was the trash compactor. Sometimes people other than Butch and I forget that it's a TRASH COMPACTOR---not a GARBAGE DISPOSAL. Well, that wasn't it. I gave up and lit a candle.

On Saturday, I still noticed the odor. It seemed the same--not really worse. I went sniffing down the hallway thinking it was coming from the laundry room. No, not there. I checked out the "cleaning closet" where we store all the cleaning supplies thinking maybe Margarita left some wet rags or something. Nope, that wasn't it either. I couldn't really think of anything else.

Butch was due home Saturday night. Around 6 p.m., I was thinking that I would cook something on Sunday. I decided to get something out of the freezer to thaw. OH MY GOSH! The stench!! It was disgusting! Bloody meat water everywhere! I even wretched a few times. The tile lifted from the floor. I went in to overdrive. I wanted to get the mess cleaned up before Butch got home. I was so happy that he had that time at the beach to relax and unwind. He worked like a mad man for two weeks between our move back in to our closets and Steph and Nicky's move. I really wanted him to be able to relax. There was no way I wanted him to have to deal with this disgusting mess.

I filled 3 trash bags with all of the food from the freezer. They were almost too heavy to carry. The waste! The expense! It was all bad. I only salvaged Mindy's wedding cake and two packs of dinner rolls. I hauled the drippy bags out to the trash. Now this is a really bad confession on my part---and will prove how really spoiled I am. Both bins were empty. I didn't know which one was for trash and which one was for recycle. Butch handles everything recycle/trash related. Unfortunately, as soon as he got home, I had to ask him to dispose of the bags. We couldn't let them sit overnight, or animals would have gotten in to them.

Anyway, back to the clean up. I've always been grateful that we have a pool whenever it came time to defrost the freezer. All of those beach towels come in handy. I never realized I'd use them for this purpose too. I ended up using ALL of the beach towels to sop up the smelly mess. I ended up having to use bath towels too. I walked on the floor to get the fluid to goosh out--yes I made up that word. I think you get the picture.

Here we are 3 days later and the freezer still smells. We put trays of baking soda on the shelves. We've put dryer sheets on the shelves along with the baking soda. So far, no good. Any other ideas that might work?

This is almost as bad as the pantry moths---but not quite. I guess I should be thankful that it's this and not that again!

I'd say this is about the worst excuse for not posting yesterday wouldn't you?

Sunday, April 23, 2017

A Few Things

I always wind up with a bunch of random pictures. Here goes:
So, I pulled out the dice to take to the beach. I'm not surprised to find this. With Jordan, you never know when you'll find a little note or artwork somewhere. Oftentimes, it might be buried in a notepad and you just happen upon it. These little bits of her always make me smile!
 If this isn't a sign of the times----times no longer relevant! The intercom system was already old and out-dated when we moved in to this house 22 years ago. Then there's the phone jack. There has never been a phone hooked up here since we've lived here. Both of these will go when we re-do the garage next year. It's time!
 I'm happy that so many of our fish---I think all of them---have survived the winter. We buy just regular little goldfish. Hopefully this doesn't happen again!
 Butch made this dessert up. He has made it for us several times now. He's starting to take an interest in cooking. Thanks to Hello Fresh, it's fun having him cook with me!
 I would have to say that this is my favorite comfort food. Cream of Wheat. I have it for dinner every time Butch is out-of-town. It's not just for breakfast anymore! Grilled cheese and tomato soup are my second favorite comfort foods.
 I picked up these a while ago. I'm all set for next Christmas!
 My friends and I went to The Marsh House a few weeks ago as part of our plant to try a new restaurant every month. This was the squid ink pasta---and it was delicious. I got it with scallops.
 Braised brussel sprouts are all the rage these days.
 We went to a new seafood restaurant called Fin and Pearl before the theater about a month ago. They slip the bill in to an old book. I thought that was such a fun idea.
 Then you are invited to sign your name anywhere in the book! I just like the idea of making use of old books destined for the trash!
The other day, as I was driving, I saw deer AND turkeys together. That's the first time I've seen that. I guess they like whatever seeds are there and the new grass.

That's about it for now.

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Not Yet

Well, I thought I was going to be able to share the "new" powder room. This was the very first thing I wanted to do at the beginning of the project so we would have some instant gratification. It was started first---on December 26th. But here we are, 17 weeks later and it's still not finished. This was supposed to be the week. I was excited.

Tuesday, the men came to install the sink. It's hand-made, mother of pearl inlay. When it finally arrived a month ago, it was decided that it was too heavy to "glue" to the underside of the marble top. I didn't know that all under-mounted sinks are actually glued. The plan was made to build a wooden frame for extra support---cha ching! It took 3 weeks for that. When they went to install it, the technician said that the frame was slightly too big and that there wasn't enough frame to hold the sink to his satisfaction. What? He didn't feel comfortable installing it. Now, if it were too small, they could have just shaved it down. But too big of an opening---you cannot try to add wood.

Plan B---technician calls his company and voila! What took 3 weeks to make they managed to make in one hour! Now I was excited that it was really going to happen.

The next day, Steve (our main man) came to install the plumbing. Would you believe it if I told you the drain was too large? Yep. Steve said there was no way he would risk grinding out the sink and damaging it. That meant a re-order. It's supposed to arrive sometime this week---week 18! I'll believe it when I see it.

All we have left for the master are the shower door and mirrors. The shower door has been another fiasco. I don't know if I've already mentioned it, but it's worth mentioning again. Clear glass is all the rage now. But, you have to clean them after every shower. We're not doing that. You can pay extra to have this super industrial coating put on, but it only lasts 5 years and is not guaranteed.

I just wanted plain, old regular shower glass. What I had and still have in the pool bath is nearly 35 years old and still looks brand new. The "guy" told me that it was going to cost 3 times more! What? The unpopular stuff is actually more expensive? That doesn't make sense to me. Still, I want what I want and not what everyone else wants. He brought us two boxes of samples to choose from. We were excited at the choices. We agreed on our favorite---translucent enough that you could still see our decorative tile, while requiring no extra maintenance. About a week goes by after we've made our selection. The "guy" gets back to us to say that the one we picked out has been discontinued! Really? In fact, ALL of those samples have been discontinued! That particular company was doing nothing but clear glass. He said that he found a company in California that would do what we want, but its was going to cost $4000! He said "no"---and he was right. No way are we paying that. I said to the guy, "So, you are telling me that we have no choice but the clear, high maintenance glass?" He replied, "Well, no, you could always get the "sand blast." After he explained that to us, we decided on that with the heavy duty coating to prevent water spots. He was so unhappy that he couldn't give us what we really wanted that he's doing the sand blast and coating at his cost. At least that's a little savings.

Then there's this. It will take another 3 weeks! Well, it's been a week, so only 2 more to go. This is the same company that is making our mirrors. I have a feeling the mirrors are done, but they only want to make one trip for installation. I've requested that the mirrors be brought this week. We'll see if that happens.

In the meantime, we are just about finished at Stephanie's house. All we have left is to do the decorating---hanging pictures and making it pretty! Boxes unpacked and everything placed in about a day and a half! The garage is still full of boxes---the un-fun stuff---and there are about 15 boxes marked decorations. We're doing that this weekend.
 The house is about the same size as her old one, but is 3 stories tall.
There are 3 outside spaces---this back deck, the front porch and a deck/balcony off the master bedroom on the second level.
 This is the front porch.
It's a nice size with plenty of room for the couch on one side and the chairs on the other. We'll be having happy hour here once in awhile.

This house has a lot of extras. I'll share some of those details when we finish decorating the inside.
Rio is enjoying her "kitty" door. This is the media room on the 3rd floor. She has complete privacy for taking care of business---if you know what I mean!
Unfortunately, she's enjoying the new furniture a little too much! I "unhooked" her claws from the upholstery and she hissed at me! They say she is a demon cat. She rules the house.

That's about all the house news for now. It's a rainy, stormy kind of weekend here. Perfect to do a little scrapbooking. Yeah, that's what I'm doing today. Steph's house tomorrow!