Monday, March 14, 2011


I had such good intentions.

Really.  I did.

But as usual, nothing happened.

Life, and construction, sort of got in my way.  Around the first of the year, we got started on our remodeling in earnest.  We hired Bob the Builder (whose name really IS Bob, and he's a contractor) to come in and rip out the old windows, install new ones all over the house, install the subflooring in the living room and master bath and closet (it's amazing how much faster it goes with a nail gun!), put up new, nice clean drywall in the living room, hall, and kitchen, remove the two stupid in-the-way poles in the living room that were holding up the upstairs and replace them with a nice strong engineered beam which looks SO much better, on and on.

This weekend Tom's brother, Ken, is coming down to redo our plumbing and put down our new tile.  Jennifer primed the living room and kitchen, and Tom has painted part of the living room a nice creamy color.  Today he added textured paint to the ceiling to hide the drywall joins, and I'm really pleased with how it turned out.

We've basically run out of money, so the kitchen cabinets and countertops will have to wait while.  We have designed it, so we know what we want, and so Tom could rewire the kitchen for the new placement of the appliances and the outlets.

We have a new front door, a new sliding glass door in the kitchen (that will eventually lead out to the deck, when we have one), a new doggie door that Katie learned to use in virtually seconds, pocket doors for the master bedroom and hall half bath, a French door for the library, and bifold doors for the pantry and utility area in the kitchen.  Bob tore down the wall the between the kitchen and the living room; it had to be rebuilt because it wasn't under the beam holding up the upstairs and was 6" off being straight from the corner to the stairs, and once it was down, we decided to leave it open.  It's amazing how much brighter the house is with that wall gone and new doors and windows and new drywall and light-colored paint.  Already it no longer looks like a dilapidated wreck.

Bob also slapped together a handrail for the porch steps.  They need to be replaced, but it'll have to wait.

We brought in an exterminator to take out the bees that had gotten into the soffits upstairs; Tom cleaned up three garbage cans of honey!  The county requires that the bees be killed rather than relocated because African killer bees are in the area and they don't want them to breed.  I hate it, but these bees are already angry, so let's get rid of them!  Also, they're on the side of the house next to the pool, and they've driven us out of it.....

I'm flying to Richmond every 6 weeks for appointments with my retinologist, Dr. James Combs at the Virginia Eye Institute.  Bascom-Palmer in Miami (the "mecca" of treatment for people with Wet Macular Degeneration) charges for a hospital outpatient visit in addition to the doctor's charge, so it ended up costing us about $1000 a visit--and that's WITH insurance.  So I'm now flying to Richmond, visiting my family, and seeing the doctor that I like for less than it costs to go to Miami for a few hours!

This time I'm flying out of Key West.  Sometimes I fly from Orlando, since Jennifer and family live there and I can visit them too.  However, it's a 7-8-hour drive (and gas here is $3.69 a gallon), takes two tanks of gas (I love my Prius!  It gets 50-55 mpg regularly.) and a lot of time.

I've been knitting a sweater--for me!  It's a cardigan called Pole (Ravelry link) by Joji Locatelli.

I am so in love with this pattern!  I'm knitting it in Claudia Hand Painted Yarn in the Turquoise Jeans colorway, which is sooo gorgeous. My yarn is lighter in color than this, more like faded jeans.

The sweater, when finished, will be blocked (*groan*) intensely, making it lightweight and perfect for taking into air-conditioned restaurants and wearing in our chilly (50s-60s) winter weather.

And--I'm going to be selling Claudia's yarn!  I have to call and set up an account, make my first order, and I'm in business!  I'm not sure how I'm going to do this; ebay charges eat into profits, but it's the easiest way.  However, after I get this going, I'll put the yarns on here and you can order that way, if any of you are interested.  I plan to sell it at less than retail.

Katie's a real doll.  She's such a smart baby.  We celebrated her first birthday on Feb. 7, which was the first anniversary of Zippy's death.

So, what have I left out?  OH--I bought a Kindle right after Christmas!!!  I absolutely love it.  I've downloaded over 300 books, the vast majority of them free.  I get a bunch from Amazon, some from Smashwords.  There are pages on facebook that list free and inexpensive ebooks as they become available.  (Yes, I have all of the Twilight series on my Kindle.  Of course.)  When I travel, I used to take a book for each day I'd be away.  Now I just take my Kindle.  My oldest granddaughter has loved using it when we're together.  I downloaded a bunch of classics and books that I thought she'd enjoy.  In just a couple of afternoons she read over half of Alice in Wonderland.

I've enjoyed going to the beach at Bahia Honda this winter.  I usually wade in the water (at high tide, it's actually up to my knees) and take photos and enjoy the sun.  Due to the direction from which the wind was blowing, the Atlantic side of the island was inundated with jellyfish and Portuguese man-of-wars, making it sort of dangerous to be in the water.  Those being beached were immature ones, small, but those tentacles can reach up to 50 feet in adults!  Many people were swimming and splashing and I haven't heard of anyone being stung, but with that many dead creatures in the water and on the beach, I can't imagine how they've avoided it.

For some reason, I can't download the photos from my phone.  They're on there, all right, but my computer can't "see" them.  Stoopid Android.  Stoopid laptop.

I can't believe that I'm getting so many hits on a blog that hasn't been updated in three months--till I checked the keywords most looked at--every one pertains to naked women at Fantasy Fest.  *sigh*

Photos will come as I can access them.  I haven't used my "real" camera lately because the Android camera works pretty well.


Kristen said...

perhaps try emailing them from the phone to yourself and saving them to the laptop from there? :)

i know it's not ideal with a ton of photos, but at least it would be one way of accessing them :)

Georgi said...

I am so glad you have posted, I have been a little worried since you have not posted in so long (yes, I know that sounds psycho). I am glad everything is going so well with the house. Wish you could post some pictures :-)

rita said...

I did email photos to myself from the phone, but it took AGES for them to reach my email account in addition to the ages it took to set up the emails in the first place. I used to be able to download them; I don't know what I did.

Georgi, that's sweet! How are you? I worry about blog friends if I don't see any posts for a while, too.