Archive for July, 2014

31
Jul
14

Summer “break”

When I started this blog, I had a lot of time on my hands. Well, maybe not a lot, but more than I generally do these days. I hate that I let my writing slide, but it is one of the areas that tends to suffer when life gets hairy. Really, a lot of things suffer when life gets hairy.

Since I started my blog, I decided to go back to school. My kids decided to take on extra activities. My work has picked up. I guess those are the main things that are keeping me from doing the things that I really enjoy doing. So many activities have gotten pushed aside; that is why I am happy to finally have a lull in activity.

I am not getting a huge break; really it is less than a month. But this is my summer break in classes; three weeks which I can use wisely to finish projects, organize, and maybe regain some sanity. So what’s on the agenda for my “break”?

• Finishing a baby afghan for my newest nephew. I started it months ago in hopes of having it ready before he came. He came a few weeks ago…
• Finishing the seating and shelves in the camper and preparing it for the shop. Larry, is really spearheading this, but someone has to hand him the screwdriver and nails.
• Crafty camper projects. I have tons of stuff to paint and sew to pull everything together.
• Write! I have had so many great things to write about and no time! You might see me blowing up your reader feeds. Be prepared.
• Work on diet and exercise. This might be a stretch, but I figure I can at least start the diet part again while I can focus a bit. Exercise might have to wait until fall when my projects are back under control; I am taking a class this fall that will make me have to exercise.
• Back to school! New clothes and supplies are on our horizon.
• Household organization. Unfortunately, despite my best efforts, the house is a disaster area. Time to clean, go through everything, and get reorganized.
• Prepare for craziness. What can I do now to keep down future chaos? Meal planning. Freezing ahead breakfast/dinners. Ensure that clothing is ready for a quick change when weather turns cold.
• Squeeze in some more fun! Summer is not over yet! Looking at trips to the lake, tubing, and back to school shopping is always more fun in a big mall!

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09
Jul
14

Frolic Remodel/Restoration #2

It has been a while since I posted on the progress we are making with Maybelle. Probably because I really did not feel like we were making much. Really, though, I was surprised last night when we finished working on a project and I took a picture and compared the before and after. She is slowly coming along!

After the roof was sealed and the air conditioner put back into place and sealed, we moved on to the front end. The front end was a little scary. The main issue was that the outside panels had pulled apart allowing us to see inside the old girl. And we could see some old yucky wood. On the inside of the same area the leak had damaged the wall.

To get to the boards we needed to replace, we had to remove the inside wall. New boards were added and then Larry was able to slowly ease the panels back into place and reinforce everything. Pretty impressive.

Then, we had to put a new board inside. A curved board. We went with an ugly paneling which is not a big deal since I will have to paint eventually. We measured countless times since it was an odd wall. Once we got the board back inside we were in for a surprise. It was an inch too short on either side. How? We will never know. Rather than starting over, I decided to find a trim that could cover the gap and was able to find a bendy lattice piece that worked at Lowes for next to nothing.

Once the wall was in place, we had to decide what to do with the bunk. While I liked the idea of having the ability to sleep additional people, I decided that the bunk really would not be that functional for us. We took the piece that normally faced out that had a ledge to hold the mattress in place and made it into a shelf and put it back in the place where the bunk would normally go. It is pretty amazing how much it really opened the area up and I do think the shelf will be much more functional for us.

The front end projects have definitely proven to be difficult and taught me that I am not nearly as handy as I ever thought I was. I have become slightly frightened more than once at Larry who I am pretty sure hates me and Maybelle some days. Really, though, I think he has impressed himself with his handy work.

Larry did make sure to mention to me yesterday that my camper will most likely not end up looking like the campers I swoon over online. Really, that is okay. I am looking forward to seeing the finished project and having a camper that meets my individual needs.

Next up, I think we are going to look into getting some professional help. We found as we started poking around that all of my gas lines have been messed with and cut and closed off and who knows what else. The plumbing is kind of in the same boat. Pretty scared of what that mess will cost me. We will rebuild the dining area and such after that is complete since storage tank and heater are underneath the seats normally and lines will need to be run.

In the meantime while I try to prepare myself for the next challenge, I am nesting big time. I found a great picture to put inside and super cute, and cheap, dishes. I am going to have to get crafty soon and make curtains and cushions somehow. I am not great with a needle. I did manage to buy a sewing machine over the weekend-for only $10! Maybe with some luck I can make something cute.

Ultimately, I am hoping to camp in some fashion, with or without gas and water, before the end of camping season. Fingers crossed!

Before

Before

During; tearing up the wall

During; tearing up the wall

After.  New wall and shelf installed.

After. New wall and shelf installed.

02
Jul
14

Morning Drama

This morning, I did something out of the ordinary and left for work early. Shocking! It was not without reason; I had a meeting that I had to prepare for. I was very disappointed when I learned later that my meeting is actually tomorrow.

Apparently, my poor organization caused more inconvenience than just my own. On my way to work, I dropped my kids off at my grandmother’s for the day. She lives in a retirement community that requires a key to enter which my kids usually have, but, in our rush, they forgot. No biggie, they can just call and get buzzed in over the intercom, so I just dropped them at the door and ran.
That was when the morning got interesting….

My grandmother ran to the grocery store figuring there was plenty of time since I am normally late. So the kids rang, but there was no answer. Since I was very early, they rang, and rang, and rang. An older man in the building pulled into the parking lot and watched them for a while before finally coming to the door and letting them in. A bit creepy, but I guess it is better than them continuing to ring the buzzer.

Safe building=unlocked doors. The kids were able to let themselves in and wait until she got there. Apparently, my grandmother got an earful from the kids when she got home because she should have at least left a note. I have to admit, I kind of love that they fussed at her.

I heard the story from my grandmother when I called to check in this afternoon. I didn’t mention it to the kids since we had a bunch of stuff going on this afternoon. Really, though amusing, I didn’t figure it was a big deal.
At bedtime, my teen brought it up. She asked if I had heard and then began to tell her side of the story. Very animatedly, I might add. She convinced herself that my grandmother was dead (awful, I know but for some reason anytime we cannot find her we worry about that). She acted as if they had to wait at least an hour, it might have been thirty minutes. She was very irritated that she did not find my grandmother or a note when they got into the apartment. I asked why she did not call me to say something was wrong; she said they are not allowed to use my grandmother’s phone because her plan charges her ten cents for each call. Seriously? I told her to call me if they were ever in one of those situations again; I can pay a dime.

Crazy as it is, I am really proud of my kids for how they handled the situation. I like that they worried about my grandmother-I think they are very good for each other. Sometimes, those scares make you appreciate what they have. I think it tickled my grandmother that they were worried; she fed the kids an insane amount of ice cream today.