About Buffy

In another life I was a grade school band director. I still think of myself as a teacher despite the fact that it's been almost three decades since I was in the classroom. I've been the office for my husband's masonry company, cared for my mother for 20 years, and think of myself now as a quilter. Retirement, what retirement??!

Weather

We have a bright sunny day today.  I doubt we have more than two inches of snow.  It’s just enough to cover the grass, but our street is clean, and most of the driveways are, too.  Dear Husband was “reading” the paw prints in the snow.  I think a dog may have meandered through, and we can see bunny and squirrel tracks.

We put up a bird feeder last week,  a gift from my sister, Frankie.  It’s the tube style which slides to cover the seed portals when a bird (or squirrel) that is too heavy tries to suck the tube dry.  So far the squirrels haven’t tried to bring it down, but we may have to deal with that as the weather closes in.  The little birds, juncos and finches and such, sit under the patio furniture waiting their turn at the feeder.

We’re supposed to get some more bad weather starting later in the afternoon on Wednesday.  Those who will be on the road to family will have tough going from what they are predicting.  Snow and sleet, perhaps some black ice.  If you’re out and about, please drive carefully, and watch out for those who don’t!

What’s new?

Well, we asked our favorite appliance repair company to come to check out our broiler and give us lessons on how to run our oven/broiler.  It turns out the broiler is fine.  It’s the users who need a little work.  While he was here, I asked him if he could order a replacement for the flange in the disposal that was missing.  If I ran the disposal, I had to place something above it, or wear what it threw back at me.  He couldn’t  help us with that, but offered to install a new disposal for us.  Normally I would have said “No” to an offer like that, but I went for it.  The inside of the disposal was rusted, and it sounded as though it was going to shake apart the counter when it ran.  It turns out it was a good choice.  There were signs of leaking at the bottom.  So, we are now the proud owners of a much quieter, cleaner, neater garbage disposal!

We’re going to resume Cookie Day!  I have probably less than half the space that I once had, and only one oven, but with careful organization, we should be able to do this.  I plan to bake the day before, and leave one refrigerated cookie ready to bake first thing that morning  We’ll use the eating area off the kitchen for some prep, as well as the dining room table.  I can clear the trestle table in the living room to store baked goods.  I think it’s going to be a lot of fun.  So far, there will be four of us, plus a five year old.

I finished two blocks for my great-nephew’s Minecraft quilt, and just kept on working on other projects.  I have a 25 block whirligig lap quilt in blues and yellow ready to be sewn together.  I want to add white, yellow and blue borders to bring it up to about  44 inches square.  It will be the first quilt finished for the 2015 season of Scraps on a Mission.

While I was at it, I pieced two blocks for a “Missing U” quilt, the large blocks that are crazy pieced from a single color per block.  The first is from strips of medium to dark blue.  When I began the second block, I had a handful of fuchsia triangles, so I sewed them to a variety of fuchia/pink fabrics to make squares, and then pieced them into two strips.  I was total happy just playing with fabric!  :-)

Let’s see if this works…

I’m working with one of my nieces to make  Minecraft quilt for her son.  There are twelve blocks, and nine of them are based on an 8 by 8 grid.  The most difficult thing about those blocks is having enough solid colors to accomplish the design, and then having to cut them into 2 1/2″ x 2 1/2″ squares.

This is the quilt we are creating:  Minecraft

I’ve made the sword and the diamond pick axe blocks which are the same size block but on a 16 x 16 grid.  Each square finishes out at one inch.

If you can see the quilt, then the link worked! lol

COLD!!!

It’s not supposed to be this cold in the middle of November!

Yesterday they said it would be 22 degrees in our area at the peak heat for the day, but with wind gusts up to 30 mph, it was going to feel more like 1 degree.  Just 1 degree due to windchill.

We’re bundled up, but I need to search for gloves and scarves.  I don’t usually wear a hat, but if it’s really bad, I’ll loop my scarf up over my head, and pull up the hood on my coat.

I know that there is more reasonable weather coming, but we’ve already had measurable snow (on Sunday), so I think we need to begin hunkering in.  I think I may add some things to our pantry, so that we can make meals without having to brave the icy fang to shop.

85% Unpacked

It takes time when you try to squeeze belongings meant for one house, into a house half the size.  I thought I was doing a good job last spring and summer, sorting and giving away books.  Of course, I knew, even though I didn’t want to admit it, that the fifty boxes of books in the basement were going to be a problem, especially as there were another thirty or so boxes left to pack.  We begged ale boxes from Binney’s, to be sure we would be able to lift those boxes, and still some of them were almost too heavy for me to lift.  What has really surprised me is the number of boxes of yarn I have.  Where did all THOSE come from???

We can finally see the floor in the living room, and can seat visitors.  The new blinds have been installed in the kitchen and dining room.  The sitting room off our bedroom has been set up, with bookcases, a flat screen TV and a love seat.  The shelving for toys and DVDs has been installed in the basement, and TOMORROW…..they will begin putting up the acoustic ceiling in the basement!

It will take us a while to learn about our house, a full year, I’d guess.  I’m sure it will have personality changes as we change seasons.  I just realized that we have a problem at the window in the dining room.  I think we have to do something about a seal, because there was water (condensation) on one side that will damage the blinds and sill if we ignore it.  And, our favorite appliance repairman is coming on Thursday to check out the broiler and teach us how to use this strange equipment.

I find it easier to decide what to do next now that we  are so far into our unpacking.  When we first moved in, it was difficult to decide just where to begin, and it seemed like an impossible task.  Buying shelving was a huge help, allowing us to unpack the kitchen boxes.  Books came next, and everything that says “Personal Papers,” or “LLC” has now been moved to the office.  I have a quilt to finish for Scraps on a Mission, and then the office will claim my attention for a week or so.

We’re almost there!

Where did Fall go?

We had an amazingly beautiful fall!  This is the beginning of the first year in our new home, and we were very happy to discover that we have a LOT of color around our house and through-out the neighborhood.

There are a variety of maples along our street.  We have one right next to the driveway.  The city has had plenty of forethought in mixing up the specific species of trees along the street, so we had quite the display.  Our neighbor’s beautiful gold leafed maple just lost it’s leaves this past weekend, the last to go.

A tree was removed from the parkway before we bought the house.  We hope to negotiate with the city on the choice of plants to be replanted.  We’d be happy to go halves with them on the cost, if we get some say as to what is planted.  Will they work with us?  Who knows, but it’s worth a try.  Meanwhile…winter, here we come!

Masquerade

Dear Husband has been invited to attend the Girl Scout Dad and Grand Dad Masquerade Dance.  Two of our three granddaughters are in scouting, so both Dad and DH are going.

Dear Husband went out yesterday to Party CIty.  All on his own he decided that he is going as Gumby, the tall green character in a children’s stop-action Claymation series.  He tried the  costume on and immediately discovered that it’s made for someone seven feet tall!  I need to do a little hemming.

P.S.      The link doesn’t work, but if you go to Google and type in   ” Gumby ”  it will lead you to several You Tube entries.  Click on the one from 1967 called “Gumby and Pokey Intro.”

P.P.S.  Pictures to follow!

Moving RIght Along

Progress!  we’re making progress!

The electricians came yesterday and today, and have a bit more to do tomorrow.  My quilting workshop is now bathed in light!  Dear Husband has the plugs he wanted in the basement.  We have more light in our closet and a fan in our sitting room.  Tomorrow they will determine why a closet fixture is not lighting, and they will add lighting in the garage.

Thursday, the painter will return to finish our bedroom, the bathroom and the laundry room.

I HOPE the carpet will come next week, before the bookcases are ready to be installed.  At that point all but the living room will be complete, and we plan to take some time choosing furnishings for the living room.

Dear Husband has been very eager to get my cookbooks set up.  The shelves arrived last week, and he’s been unpacking boxes of books.  I thought I’d given away more of them. According to a blog entry by Helen Fletcher, my kitchen is still fairly well equipped, despite downsizing.

We’re using family antiques and favorite items to decorate.  I think our home is going to be very comfortable!

Leaves

We have a tiny pocket lawn, with a narrow strip of garden in the back that has a variety of trees, grasses, shrubs and perennials.  One of the maples has a tiny bit of color here and there.

At our last home we raked up leaves and saved them to use as mulch or compost.  Here, there’s very little room to compost.  I was happy to receive an information page with my water bill that told me how we will be dealing with our leaves.  It seems that we will rake the leaves toward the street, mounding them up on the lawn side of the curb.  We are warned NOT to rake them into the street, as they will clog the gutters.  Apparently the city workers make the rounds, sucking up the leaves and carting them away.  I don’t know where they go.  Yet.

The good thing about this is that the leaf pickup is free.  The bad thing is that we work on the village schedule, not on nature’s.  Still, it’s a good deal.  I better go double check on those pickup dates!

Sunset

It’s October 7th.  We are more than half way through the cycle of decreasing sunlight.  The sun is setting earlier, the sun is  tracking further south in the skies.  I love fall, but I mourn the loss of sunlight.

Well, maybe not all the time.  I just looked out the dining room window and saw one of the most beautiful sunsets I’ve ever seen.  Part of the sky looked like molten gold, with shades of melon behind it. There was a bit of crisp blue sky, and a con trail climbed from one color to the next. The final touch was a decoration of white wisps of cloud.  It was an amazing three dimensional gift from nature.

Our “new” home faces west.  Our dining room is at the front of the house and has a large window.  The houses on the other side of the street are tall, but they are on a lower slope of the land, so while we can’t see the entire sunset, we get to see a good portion of it.

You never know what will come your way when you make a change in your life as large as a new residence.  We are blessed that this change seems to be a very good one!