Tuesday, September 29, 2009
I got a message today from a fellow that lived on the next block over when I was a kid.
I may have played at his house a couple times...tho I really can't remember.
If I saw him on the street I would never know him.
Really... people... is this why you use this thing?
Oh... and it also really cracks me up the pictures that people decide to use of themselves. I am noticing folks in my age brackets (ie. too old for this shit) tend to use pictures of themselves on vacation.
Thursday, September 24, 2009
But, why is it the day before we leave for a vacation - even if its just a long weekend as we are preparing for today - that I suddenly need to clean things. I don't just mean setting the house in order, vacuuming, making sure the sink is clear and the laundry put away.
Nooo, this morning I find myself on my knees wiping out under the sink.
And that was at 7:30.
It's gonna be a long day.
Monday, September 21, 2009
Family can come to us in strange ways. Be open to these.
We lost a family member this past week. For our daughter she was blood - for my wife she was family by marriage - for me... well... she was just family.
Is it odd for the sister of my wife's ex husband to be family to us?
Of course it is. But life is odd. Wrap your arms around oddity, people. Embrace and treasure the oddity.
Nancy was as unique as they come. She was one of the happiest people I have ever known. She and her husband, Marcus, were folks from a different era, tho not so much older than we. Marcus was that sort of able guy, who are all but extinct now, that can do it all. He built the house they lived in top to bottom - he could build a car out of spare parts laying around the yard -and he had several spare cars out there to choose from. He could wire and plumb and had sheds filled with stuff he 'might need' all over their property. Of course he actually used the stuff.
He loved life. He loved his wife.
She was an artist. Prolific. She painted and sculpted and beaded and drew and and wrote and pasted and cut and sewed always.
She did not care what anyone thought of her. Some people claim to be this way - she really was. It truly didn't bother her.
She never threw anything away. Everything had a story, everything had a meaning.
She loved life, she loved her husband and her children and their lives.
Nancy was all heart. Marcus was all ingenuity - together they were ...
Friday night we gathered at their home on the hill with family and some friends around a colossal bonfire.
There was no wake, no church, no procession. It was exactly as she would have wanted it.
So much so in fact it truly felt like she was there.
I stood close to the fire, feeling the warmth, watching firelight lick the trees, a cool autumn breeze tossing little sparks around like fireflies. I looked toward the warm glow of their house seeing people gathered on the deck by a table scattered with bottles of booze and soda in various stages of consumption - she could have so easily been there in that group... chatting and laughing, telling her own stories. I bent my head to listen... to see if I could hear her loud cackling laugh.
I think I did.
I wandered up to the house for a refill. At the table on deck I lifted a wine bottle to the moonlight to see if it held another glassful. I felt her presence there so strongly, I turned to see if she was looking over my shoulder, perhaps to check if there were enough for two glasses in that bottle of red.
I am certain she was.
When we left, we hugged, we cried again, and as we drove away I looked back up the driveway as if I would see her waving goodbye and then turning to clutch Marcus by the arm and head back to her party, and the roaring fire, and her family.
I wish they had.
Friday, September 18, 2009
Time to check your winter power equipment.
Do you have a snowthrower or perhaps a generator?
It's a really good time of year to check on your winter gear. Change the oil, turn the engine over - make sure everything is up and running. Check your shear bolts, the skid pads and auger to be sure you don't need to replace any worn parts. Plenty of time to order parts before the flakes fly.
I know it may seem a little early but I truly dislike having to monkey around with power equipment once it gets cold out. Plus soon enough we will be caught up with the leaves and taking in the screens and such.
With afternoons still in the 70's it makes for a pleasant experience.
Plus, when that first snow comes I want instant gratification.
Thursday, September 17, 2009
I toss them in a heap,
(a somewhat tidy heap)
Then I give it a good vacuum and wipe down all the surfaces - I like to use a diluted simple green solution, because I think it smells fresh.
Then I decide what gets to go back in.
That's where I am now... in the middle of that heap of clothes figuring out what gets to stay.
I am going to be tough this time. If I am not wearing it...it goes.
I may end up with one pair of pants, two shirts
...and 20 pairs of shoes.
Tuesday, September 08, 2009
While simply moving was our top choice, packing seemed daunting so we decided to 'urge' the critters to relocate.
We started the project on our own but quickly saw that we were outmatched and brought in professionals.
After our guests had permanently left the premisis, we had the crawl space cleaned out and sanitized. All that was left was to re-insulate and close up the openings so no future happy families could move in. We had already dumped quite a bit of money into this little creepy hole in the wall (most likely a coal access or some such thing),
so when I got further estimates to finish the job - my fearless wife stepped in...literally.
We went to our local big box store and purchased insulation, and the cutest little hazmat suit.
We added gloves, goggles and a mask - and she was ready to go.
Clever gal that she is - she suggested we use the halogen work light to make it bright and cheery in there. See how good lighting can dramatically improve your space.
The work went quickly with me on the outside cutting lengths to size and handing them in. There were times when she was pretty far in there... so I pushed them in with a broom handle. heh.
Can you see why she is such a catch?
Friday, September 04, 2009
Remember as the fall comes and we prepare for winter - don't store firewood in or near the house. This includes your garage and basement.
At this time of year the wood is teaming with insects and you certainly don't wan't to invite them in.
If you plan to buy wood for this winter season, now is a good time to do that. It gives you plenty of time to get it stacked and covered and will also give it a month or two more of seasoning if its not quite dry yet.