I’ve seen egrets this week! Or, maybe I’ve seen the same egret more than once. He/She must be the scout to see if our weather is ready for the migration! lol Now, I’m watching for the herons. They are harder to see because of their smoky gray color, and how thin they are. If you are not seeing a side view of those birds, you might miss them!
Spring is FINALLY showing up!
I asked the man who has helped with some of our landscaping to fill my veggie beds with a mix of compost and dirt. I thought it would be delivered about three weeks ago, and was getting ready to call to find out what had happened. Dear Husband pointed out that it had been delivered yesterday. I have seeds to plant! I’ll have to pass on the spinach until this fall, but I can get other things in, soon!
Tomorrow the Arr!! goes into Lake Michigan. Dear Husband is going to come home tomorrow night. He says that it’s a bit too cool to sleep over on an unheated boat. He’ll go back Sunday to get things squared away, and I’ll spend the day piecing quilts!
Egrets, the Arr!!, seeds and quilting. It’s Spring.

THE Weekend

‘Tis the week or weekend for the bringing home of the boat! YEA!!!!
We’re not exactly sure when that’s going to happen. Dear Husband has to coordinate the un-stepping of the mast at the park district, with the company that will lift the Arr!! out. Everyone is just a bit iffy about how much work they have, so DH is trying to get in touch to see what their plans are.
If we are very very lucky, he will go this evening to get the boat ready, and the mast will be taken down early tomorrow morning. Then, he’ll have to motor to the company that does the lifting and wait in line. He could possibly be lifted out on Thursday afternoon and be on his way home in the same day, or this could stretch out until Saturday.
This will be the last time this year I will have to sleep alone due to the boat. In that sentence, there is a blessing and a sadness! lol There’s a lot to be said about both situations.
Everyone who knows me knows that it is my job to worry. I’ve already started worrying about bringing the boat home. The past few years we’ve had a lot of nightmares getting it home, and I worry not for the boat but for Dear Husband. I’ll be glad when they are both home safely.

It’s Official!

Boating season has begun for the Arr!! This morning at 5:30 my stepson and I waived Dear Husband down the driveway and off on his trip to Lake Michigan. DH had to go from the western suburbs to the south end of the lake to Crowley’s Yacht Yard.
I’m always astounded to watch him maneuver a 32 foot sail boat on a trailer with a fourteen foot stake-bed truck. It must be quite the sight, rolling down the tollways, amidst Chicago rush hour traffic. He arrived in plenty of time for his slot, and I think they might have craned the boat in a bit early. Around noon, DH called to let me know that he was already at the harbor where he will moor for the summer. Tomorrow, the park district will step the mast, and he’ll be good to go!
While DH is gone this weekend I hope to get more work done in the gardens, and clean the quilting studio. I might even check to see if there are any movies I’d like to see. I’ll need to decide on what we’ll be having for dinner on Sunday and get a little grocery shopping done. If I’m lucky, I might even be able to squeeze in some time on a quilt. It should be a busy, fun weekend.
Happy Sailing, DH!


I have my annual Fall cold. I have been blaming my stepson for sharing his with me, but I discovered that my niece has the same cold, and she was with us for an afternoon. On top of that, I’ve been exposed to the swine flu, so I have spent the past two weeks pretty close to home. I chose not to go to exercise because I felt it would be wrong to share the swine flu with the senior citizens in the class. I hope to get back to exercise next week, before all my muscles turn to jello!
It’s supposed to be almost 70 degrees today. It’s sunny, and will be the last of the sunny days this week. We have rain forecast from this evening through Saturday. I should do a little work in the gardens, to move us through preparation for winter. My dear sis, Frankie, has done most of the work in the herb garden. I need to work at the front of the house, and in the long driveway gardens where the peonies grow.
Dear Husband was able to bring the boat home safely last weekend. Other than being swamped by a huge wave as he motored south to the yacht yard, it was a relatively uneventful trip. I suspect that he did better without my help than he does with it. He’s been offloading anything that would freeze, and winterizing the motor and bilges. Poor guy. Seven months and he’ll be back on the water!
Zucchini bread and pumpkin muffins are the only things I’ve baked so far. I’d like to make a carrot cake, and some pumpkin bread, and maybe some zucchini bread to freeze. I love the scent of fall seasonings. Cinnamon must be my all time favorite flavor!
I’ve managed to enter my Mother’s checkbook onto Quicken, but I realized yesterday that the program sees it as my property, rather than a separate account. I need to see if there is any way to sequester that data so that I can run reports, or I’ll have more work to do at tax time. Darn it all!
And that’s about all the news that’s fit to print. I hope you are all having a good Fall!

Moving In

Yesterday, Dear Husband began clearing the boat of anything that might freeze or mildew. He carried in bags of food and began emptying them out onto the island in the kitchen. The food is still sitting there, minus a couple of Rice Krispies bars.
What is it about a cleared off counter that draws JUNK to it like a magnet?? We will be hosting a brunch on Friday morning. Knowing that I work more slowly now than I used to, I started cleaning off counters and tables and end tables. Every time I get something cleared away, someone comes along to fill it up again! It almost isn’t worth trying to do this particular chore ahead of time, since it seems to make more work for me.
Salt and pepper, tea bags and other staples can be saved for next year. Some of the food can go into my pantry, but some of it just won’t fit! In the past, we’ve stored some of the items in the basement, but we found that mice will eat through the metal packets to get to condiments like ketchup and mustard. Can you imagine what that must have done to their digestive systems??
So, one of my chores today will be figuring out how and where to store the Arr!!’s leftovers. Maybe I’ll let them sit there for a while longer while I go out and play in the gardens. It’s a beautiful day, MUCH too nice to waste on inside chores!
Hmmmmmmm…maybe I could store it all in a sail bag, wrapped in plastic, in the basement. Or maybe a plastic storage box! I think I’ve just had an “A HAAAAA!” moment!

Follow Up

Dear Husband called to tell me that the Truck Service had found him, and brought just the tire he needed. He chose to leave the interstate and make his way home on surface roads. When he got close to home, he called again. I pulled on shoes and socks, and a long-sleeved t-shirt jacket to protect my arms from the mosquitoes. I grabbed a flashlight and headed down the driveway. We both made it to the end of the driveway at the same time.
As he was backing the boat into the drive, a car coming up behind him turned on his brights, to light the area. It didn’t help a great deal, but I thought it was kind of the driver to give it a try. DH had the boat into the driveway within two minutes, and then things went much slower.
DH drives a truck with a 14 foot stake bed. He’s VERY talented at backing it up with loads like equipment trailers, cement mixers or boats attached, but backing up our driveway in the dark is exceptionally difficult. The driveway is more than 250 feet long, and has a bend in it. That alone is difficult, but at the bend there are trees right next to the drive on either side. DH told me he was trying to miss the west tree…and pointed out the scrapes, just about at boat level, and admitted that he’d had some close calls over the years. Now add darkness to the mix, and you can imagine how difficult things were. He actually had the boat in the perfect position when he stopped. Unfortunately, the truck has to be in the perfect position, too, and it wasn’t.
Please make note in your Day Timers: I am going to praise my husband!
Dear Husband had the sense to turn off the motor, leave the truck, and lock it up for the night. He left it standing on the drive, and came in to have some supper. He finished the move this morning, all by himself. The Arr!! is settled in for the winter. Over the next week or so, DH will off load food, sails, cushions, and anything that might suffer from mildew. I really think he’s trying to make it less inviting for the raccoons! *G*
As my sister might say….”Home again, Home again…..”
My boat widowhood is coming to a close for 2007.

Woe is Me…..and DH…..

I was expecting my boat widowhood to end today. Dear Husband took the trailer to the boat yard last night in preparation for the homecoming. He spent the night on the boat, a last hurrah for the season, and motored to the boat yard early this morning.
He’d said that maybe 17 boats were ahead of him waiting to be lifted out. I didn’t expect him to come home early today. A little after 4:00 he called to tell me that he was on one of the major Chicago tollways with a flat tire on the trailer.
It’s VERY difficult to help long distance! I went to the computer and began searching in A friend also searched, and sent me a more helpful search through MSN, where I found a 24 hour truck service. The problem is, the trailer has smaller tires than most trucks.
One of my family members works for the county sheriff’s office, and he called the state troupers and asked to have a patrol car check the situation. Our problem is that the tire shops are closed for the night, and that boat and trailer will not be moving without a new tire.
We hope that the truck service is going to come through for us, otherwise, Dear Husband will have to separate the truck and trailer and leave the boat at the side of the road, a thought I don’t want to entertain!
I’m going to go search for all night tire dealers, now. With any luck I’ll get my husband back for the winter, soon.

It’s Official…

…I’m a boat widow.
I rose early today. Dear Husband kissed me awake as he usually does, and then he headed out into his day. I hurried to dress, but I wasn’t quite quick enough. I made it to the window to see the stern of the Arr!! start it’s ghostly trip down the driveway.
I fret on this day. Not because I will be a boat widow for the coming summer, but because I can envision DH pulling the Arr!! on the Chicago tollways as rush hour builds. It can’t be a fun trip!
It’s light out, the trees are still, so he has the advantage of little or no wind. He’ll be in Chicago in less than an hour, and then I think he takes the Dan Ryan south. No one in his right mind travels the Dan Ryan, especially towing a boat, unless he MUST. You can tell what an obsession this is for Dear Husband.
Sooooooooo…….quilting, gardening, visiting antique markets, looking for garden walks to visit…..girly things rule! (If we do this long enough, one day I might actually sound happy when “The Season” is upon us. Until then, I’ll just fake it.)

Boat Widowhood: Entry 1, 2007

Boating season in the Chicago harbors on Lake Michigan starts May 15. Dear Husband will be having the Arr!! craned into the water the weekend after the fifteenth.
Today, the UPS man delivered the new sail. DH is going to be like a dog with a doggie treat when he sees it sitting on the floor!
Dear Husband did the first mowing of the lawn Monday and Tuesday. He’s also trimmed a tree that is hanging over the SW corner of the house. He’s trying to get chores out of the way so that he can focus on the Arr!!
He’s done just about all the varnishing on the boat (I think), and he’s going to let the yacht yard take a look at the engine before he takes it to his new mooring.
If you’d like to go for a boat ride on a 32-foot Bayfield, send me a note. Dear Husband takes people along for the sail. I’m going to post a message on the family message board that they need to make their reservations now! *G*
And, before you ask……no…I won’t be sailing this year. Think of all the gardening and quilting I can get done, and the visits to the antique fair and the farmer’s market! No sailing for me.

I am a Boat Widow 2006

yep…the time has come. On Saturday it becomes official….boat widowdom for 2006.
Dear Husband had to part with the Arr!! so that the transmission could be overhauled during the winter. When the boat yard worked on it, they discovered that the support, or housing, for the transmission had cracked, and it had to be replaced. They let DH have the boat back long enough for the annual scraping and patching, varnishing and minor repairs to be done, and then it had to be returned to the boat yard.
By Saturday, the yardies should have put the boat into the water, taken care of the loose wires and tested the engine. Dear Husband will collect it, and motor twelve miles north to the mooring. I hope for his sake that the rain we had today, and expect to carry over to Friday, will have abated before he takes the wheel. It’s going to be COLD out there. He doesn’t need for it to be raining, too.
When the boat yard was located on the Chicago River, I enjoyed the trip upriver in the spring. It was astonishing to motor though the glass canyon, and see Chicago’s magnificent buildings from an entirely new perspective. Now they have moved south along Lake Michigan, so the trip is not quite as much fun.
Dear Husband is always eager to get onto the water and get squared away. After all, he’s been waiting all winter to return to the water. So, the very next day after the boat returns to the lake we celebrate Mother’s Day. Next weekend, we celebrate our granddaughter’s second birthday on Saturday. In June, there’s a family reunion the day before Father’s Day. I wonder if he will get to sail at all that weekend.
Don’t feel too bad for him, though. Once we get into summer proper, he’ll leave here on Saturday morning, and we won’t see him until Sunday evening. He hires my nephew to mow, and everything else has to wait until October 15, and the end of the Chicago sailing season.
I’ve been making a list of things I want to do on the weekends while he is away…. The Sandwich Antique Faire, the bookseller’s fair in Chicago, a number of movies coming out shortly, the Farmer’s Market, perhaps the Art Museum. I want to QUILT!!! I plan to put the frame back up in the living room and watch reruns of Gray’s Anatomy, House, M.D. and Boston Public, while I improve my quilting stitch. I’m starting to collect “summer” books, and there’s always weeding…
I’m a boat widow.