Saturday, November 4, 2017

Changing Season

Yes it is fall, but I am also referring to the fact that the old house is now sold.

We are still adjusting to the new location but the next big change will be when I retire.  I am hopeful that will happen soon.  The commute to work is a tough one.  I actually go into work really early in the morning so it is the commute home that is killer.  I have noticed that I grind my teeth when I am stuck in traffic.  I need to retire before I break my crowns.

Plus, I have a lot of fabric to sew.

Speaking of sewing, I have been doing a little of that lately.

At the end of August I was invited to a 1st birthday party for a co-workers daughter.  In their culture the 1st birthday party is very important.  They had a huge party.  The day I got the invitation I began a quilt.  The first time I presented a co-worker with a quilt they did not even know that it was.

It is from 'The Big Book of Strip Quilts' from that Patchwork Place.  The quilt is called Flowers for Nana Girl.  I choose that pattern because I had pink and yellow 2 1/2 strips from a strip exchange from many years ago.  More years than I can even remember.  I only used a small portion of the strips.

After I completed that quilt I wanted to immediately cut out a new quilt.  I resisted and instead picked up a UFO.  Several months ago I had started a flannel quilt to give to one of my daughters.  As I was sewing two of the rows together I had flipped several of the blocks.  When I discovered it instead of ripping them out and fixing it.  I stuck it on a shelf.  I took the time to rip the rows and fix them then get the quilt top sewn together.  I have not taken a picture of this yet.

Since my daughter had quilted a couple of my quilt tops I have been working on binding most recently.  Right now I have a stack of quilts that need the binding sewn on.  Winter is coming I have plenty of quilt to sit under and stitch.

I also need to work more on the house blocks.   It has also become a UFO for lack of me working on it.

When we moved I had a quilt top together except for the boarders. I am still looking for it.  I had another top together that my daughter was going to quilt but said I needed to move a block because she knew I had given it a turn and had to much of one color in one area.  Can't find that one either. I keep looking.  Much of my fabric is still in bins.  I am hoping that I put the tops in one of them.  Now that we are no longer spending time on the old house and I am about to retire I am hopeful that I can finish unpacking the fabric.   I have to admit that I need to purge fabric but it is really hard.

Sunday, August 13, 2017

The old house

I feel like I need to show the old house.  It has been a part of out life for 44 years.  We raise all our children in this house.  Had 10 foster children and 10 foreign exchange students at different times.  We loved this house.  The only reason we moved is the stairs.

We had done many things over the years to it.  In recent years, we had changed to gas, re-piped the water, decommissioned the oil tank, put on a new roof and updated the kitchen.  Things that would have made it perfect for aging in place.  But the laundry was in the basement and one of my knees will likely need to be replaced.

After we moved out week looked at how old it looked.  We had a great kitchen but the whole house needed painted.  Plus the basement stairs had begun to list to one side.  I guess when I am a hundred and 5 I might list to one side also.  Anyway, the work began to spruce it up.

Then the rains came.  This year we had record rainfall.  And that is saying a lot for Oregon.  After the snow and ice melted and the rains continued we had a leak in the basement.  That added to the expense and the work.  We had to attempt to remediate the influx of water.  We think we were successful.  Anyway after the very expensive work was done we did not get anymore water during February and March, which had heavy rain.  Or April or May when it continued to rain.

The stairs got fixed and made to code.  All the electrical was checked and plugs and switches all changed out.  The inside was painted and we waited for the rain to stop to paint the outside.

My husband and I totally disagreed about what should be done with the front of the house.   I won some and lost some battles.   Here is what it looked like after we finished painting the front.

I felt we needed bigger plants he refused.  Ok they have grown a bit since this was taken but I still think we needed taller.  Of course the fact that we had a huge rhoddy on one side before influenced how I thought it should look. 
Front door, we painted the front porch.  I love how it looks.

The below picture was given to us by the young boy in the picture who is now in his seventies.  That rhodendron was small when he was a child.  It was over the roof this last year and the center stump was hollow and full of ants.  We know it had to go but I have to tell you the puny Azalea just did not cut it for me.  I wanted another rhodendron.   I have been looking for an old picture.  But they are all still packed and I could not find one on my phone.  Funny we took a picture of the kids every spring in front of that rhodendron.  But I know you can get an idea of it's size because most of my quilt pictures were taken on the front porch and you could see it next to them.

OK I found an old picture on Google street view.  This is from April of 2016.  Before we moved and started fixing up the outside.  Look at how big that Roddy was.  We had trimmed around the bottom for the walk way. 

We had updated our kitchen several years ago.  I miss it.

The color is all wrong in the picture.  Not sure what is up with that.  I need to go over with a real camera.

We did refinish all the wood floor both upstairs and down.

Two in the living room.  I am now finding that some of the pictures I took are not transferred from my phone I am going to have to take some more.

Dining Room

Entry Way From  the stairs looking toward the Fireplace.

This is getting kind of picture heavy so I will add more pictures of the other rooms in another post.

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Starting over

I am finally beginning to pick up habits.  Some are not so good.  The move broke all my routines and habits and it has not been easy to establish new ones.  Part of that is the longer commute.  Part is that I kept to much stuff for the smaller house so I have been a bit over whelmed by what still needs to be put away.  Part is I am always looking for something and I can't remember if I got rid of it or moved it.  However, I am making progress on getting rid of more stuff.  I am also finding creative ways of storing items in a house with little storage.  I just keep telling myself I just need to make a little progress every week.

I have continued to unpack boxes and make hard decisions.  But sometimes you just have to ignore it all and sew.  Although instead of sewing I have been folding fabric and placing it on my racks.  Yes racks.  I have several racks of fabric.  I have discovered many pieces of fabric and projects I had totally forgotten about.  Some I am still loving and would love to start right now and some are a 'what was I thinking moment'.  My biggest frustration is I am still looking for my small rulers (2 1/2, 3 1/2, 4 1/2 and 5 1/2 squares) and my favorite scissors.  Also a USB stick.  I have unpacked the majority of the sewing room and have no idea where they are.  We also lost our BBQ set but they would have been in different boxes.  All things I would not have gotten rid of.

Earlier in the year I had joined a Block of the Month program in the hopes of kick starting my sewing.  Then I got busy trying to work on the old house to get it on the market and missed a couple of meetings.  Which meant I fell behind.  Last weekend I did work on a block.  It is funny I do like these blocks but I am finding the hardest part is picking the fabric.  I limited my choices to a couple of fat quarter bundles.  Because I have so many I need to use them.  But I will pick fabric and look at it awhile and then change something and have to look at it a while.

Anyway I am behind a couple of blocks but I refuse to let this become a UFO.  I already have too many of those, but lets not mention a number here.  I am just trying to make progress on something.

Here is last weeks block. 

I have made a few others also.

This one looks much darker here than it really is since this was taken late in the afternoon.  One of my other frustration is my lack of natural light in my new sewing area.  But the room I am using was never intended to be a sewing room.  On the blue prints it was called the Family Room.

On the list of things to do in the house is add more lighting.

I am hoping to get a chance this weekend to make another block.  I have the fabric selected for another one and if I get that one done I will only be three blocks behind.

I need to not look at it that way.  I have made progress getting the house in order I need to remember that - and keep looking for my scissors.

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Finally a finish.

It has been a long time coming but I was finally able to sew a few weeks ago.

I am still sorting.  I still have boxes to unpack, but I made a baby present and have now presented it.  Really I just needed to sew.

I made a simple patch quilt in colors for a little girl, where mom was using gray on many of the rooms accents, so Pink and Gray it was.

I am still rearranging my sewing room as I change my mind about how to set things up.  I am sure I will be doing that for a while.

My husband still owns me a peg board for above my sewing area.  It was promised for Christmas and sits waiting for him to get around to it.  So frustrating.

I still have not found my favorite little scissors that I used at my machine.   I thought I had unpack almost everything but the other day I found a box in the garage.  They must be another out there somewhere.

We have had some unpleasant surprises in the new house.  Like water in the crawl space.  Lots and Lots of water.  We are having a drainage system put in.  Home inspector had said he saw evidence of previous water but the ex-home owner had come up with a big water bill and repair for a leak so we thought that was it.  Now we know better.

And this year we will break the all time record for rain in the month of February.

While digging the drainage on our property.  The workers discovered the neighbors drainage pipes in our yard.  That is certainly not helping our situation.  There was no easement on the Title.  We are not sure how to handle that but we have now damaged their drainage pipes.  So they will still empty on our property.  Sigh.

We are still working on the old house so it is not on the market yet.  Just one more thing to stress me out.

I NEED to sew.

Monday, November 7, 2016

We are moved!

We have been in the house for two weeks.

I am slowly unpacking and almost have my sewing room set up.  I can't totally get my sewing room set up until the new lights go in.  The room did not have enough light in it so I am adding some can lights.

I will need to downsize more.  Towards the end I was getting help and no purging was going on just packing. 

Then my husband went into pack rat mode and began bring items I had purged but not gotten out of the old place yet.  Plus items I had intentionally left behind.  Like the WiFi router for the old provider that I needed to return.  It took me over a week to find it.  I still need to return it but the day I took off work to do that I could not find it. 

I still have no pictures.  And who wants to see boxes anyway?

This last weekend I unpacked all the boxes in the master bedroom attempting to have at least one room that is no chaos.  Then this morning I realized I am missing a box somewhere that has my coats in it.  Maybe they are in the garage.....

We still are cleaning up the old place and hope to get it on the market soon.  There is some work that can now be done since we are no longer living there.

Friday, October 14, 2016

The Move has Begun

We finally closed on the house.  What a long process.  When we bought our first home I do not remember it taking this long.  As I think back I know it did because there were some items that needed to be fixed.  But at the time it did not seem a long time because the sellers actually let us move in and pay rent the first couple of months while we waited for the loan papers to finalize.

We were able to sign the closing papers on October 7th but could not get the keys until the next day.  We were lucky that the deed was recorded the same day because we had to wait for that to happen to get the keys.  If is had not recorded on that Friday we would not been able to get the keys until Tuesday.   Since we had not been sure we were getting the keys we had not arranged for movers for the weekend.  I had feared that we would not get the keys so did not want to do that until we had them.  Since the realtor got the keys to use Saturday morning it was too late to arrange a move that day.  But we did personally begin taking some of the mountain of boxes to the new house.  I am loving it more every time I walk in. 

It is nice to not have so many boxes here but the place is beginning to look a little empty.  I have been purging and packing for two months but there is still so much to do.  I have emptied half of the kitchen and that is all moved and put away.  I have very little room left in the new kitchen it is so much smaller.  I am having to make some decisions on what to get rid of next.  I will also be buying a piece of furniture for the dining room that can hold some of my items.  I am thinking a buffet, we will see what I find. 

My husband was dragging is feet about packing up and moving but he has now engaged.  This last week I worked crazy hours at work because I worked a code deploy in the middle of the night on Tuesday.  I had to do the site validation when the deploy ended.  Since I had worked overnight I had Wednesday off.  Since I knew that I would only sleep a few hours I had arranged for the locksmith to come by and change the locks that afternoon and the internet and cable to be installed and had the washer and dryer delivered.   It happened all at the same time. 

We had decided that moving our current washer and dryer out of the basement was not going to happen.  We will leave them.  They might last another couple of years if they don't get moved but a move might have killed the washer.  Anyway, since we installed the cable we had to move the TV over there.  That is motivating my darling husband to move out of here.  Last night he was not sure what to do without a TV.  I suggested packing up his study.   My son is calling my behavior passive-aggressive, I am calling it smart.

After I got the TV over there my husband actually talked about when we can move the beds.  We would do it this weekend but the Pacific Northwest is being hit by an atmospheric river this weekend and high winds.  Not a good time to be hauling furniture or driving a truck across an exposed bridge.  We will not be able to move this weekend.  I am not afraid of a little rain but they are saying that we will get almost six inches this weekend with sustained winds of about 35 miles per hour and gust up to 50 to 70 mph.  For around here that is not a little rain.  We normally get about 48 inches a year but we get it a quarter inch at a time, from October to June.   So we are used to dark and wet days just not copious amounts of rain over one weekend.  Oh well, we are going to take this one day at a time.  I just know that I can't retire until this house is sold and this house is not ready for showing yet.

What I really want to do is get my sewing room unpacked and sew something.  I have not sat down and sewn in two months.  Once we made the decision to move I was in packing mode I would purge and pack every evening and every weekend.  I am amazed at how much stuff we had in this house.  But 43 years in the same place with a lot of space for storage made it so I could 'hide' stuff in the basement and not worry about getting rid of anything.  I had trouble parting with fabric and sewing supplies but I did get rid of possible half of my library.  I thing that was over 1000 books.  Some we sold but most were donated.  I got rid of four truck loads of stuff from the basement that we no longer needed.  I stuffed the trash can and a neighbors trash can every other week for pick up.  I filled the recycling bins every week for the last couple of months.  I have shredded years worth of papers. 

For the purged items, I did not have the energy to have a garage sale it all got donated.  I had the children come and pick up their remaining stuff and also gave them anything that they wanted from the basement.  If it had been down there I was not going to miss it.  I am sure as it is I have still packed to much stuff and I will have to make decisions about it later.  I actually am still purging as I still pack up.  But I was running out of staging room and could not pack everything because we are still living here.  I so wish we could have just hired someone to come in and pack us up and move us but since I knew not everything would fit in the smaller house I had to make decisions.   This has been very hard to do but very necessary.  My children will appreciate the fact that I did it.  They all think moving was a good idea for us.  They did not want to deal with the mountains of stuff but I appreciate that they come and helped me during the last couple of months.  My oldest daughter was here almost every weekend with the other two coming in for several weekends to help.  They have all made trips to donation sites for me several times.  My son and his wife came one week day with their SUV and packed up all the old paint cans and took them to Metro for disposal.  They filled the back of their vehicle.  Getting rid of the hazardous material was the hardest thing to do because of scheduling.  They are open when I work.  And you can't put it at the street for pick up. 

I would post pictures but I have already packed all my cables for the camera.  Although the house is such a mess I would hate for anyone to see it.  With all I have been doing cleaning has not been high on the list and I have sure found a lot of dust. 

We are hoping for drier weather next week and that we will be able to arrange to have our furniture moved at that time.  Until then we will be living between two houses.  I have started to unpack and put items away at the new house and will put up curtain rods so I can hang curtains in the bedrooms at least.  

This post is getting overly long and wordy but this is the update for now.   I hope that next time I can post pictures of my new sewing space. 

Monday, September 5, 2016

September 2016

September - Labor day weekend.

We purged and packed the dinning room.

I am still going thru papers and shredding documents.  My husband asked if I was purging 40 years of papers.  I think it just feels like it.  I don't really have 40 years worth.  I hope.

I had a hard time purging items from the dinning room.  I love linens - of course they are fabric.  So it was hard to let some of them go.  I love dishes and teapot and cups.  I let some of them go but very likely kept more than I should have.  Thank God for the organizer and my daughter and daughter-in-law who helped me.

Oh, and cookbooks.  What is it about cookbooks?  I have collected them for years and hardly ever use them but I do enjoy looking at them.  I let many of them go and tried to sell some but most ended up at Goodwill.  I hope I don't buy them back.

We have also been eating out of the freezer.  We have had many interesting meals.  But I am attempting to get most of the food gone so we do not have to move it.  This is really not good for my diet. 

When my husband ask what I wanted to do today I told him it was Labor Day and we would be laboring.  Go purge and pack a box.  So far he has packed 1/2 of a box and purged nothing.  I am currently attempting to talk him into a storage unit so we are not living with packed boxes all around for the next month +.

It is going to be a hard move.