Wednesday, July 30, 2014

coulds, shoulds, and ought tos

Well, I'm sitting here at loose ends. We are moved and the next grandkid doesn't come til August 10 and I'm leaving on Friday for the Pacific NW for a 5 day vacay with the girls.

So what to do, what to do?

I could go through these last boxes of stuff from the old house and shop and my daughter's attic, most of which I intend to donate to the women's crises center here. I could organize the last two bags of drawings from nearly 40 years of etched glass. I suppose I could do some finish work on the Botanicas that are cast but it's high summer out there which means it's too hot to do anything outside like cold work or gardening or replacing the hose from the pump to the filter in the water lily pond that is already choked with string algae or or. Hot and dry. No rain for weeks. Cicadas and dragonflies are the only creatures stirring out there.

What I should be doing, I guess, is starting to pack for my trip and stop feeling guilty for not Accomplishing something in the next two days.

My friend Catharine came up with this idea and invited some women with whom she wanted to spend the week and, much to my delight, I am one. There is myself and three others whom I met and spent a week with at the residency last year and then two friends of Catharine's whom I have never met. We are going to spend 5 days at a beach house on the Oregon coast.

So instead of turning my attention to setting up the new shop like I ought to, I'm going to be escaping some of summer's heat. Besides, Marc has promised me the new shop will be up and running by the end of August, at least rudimentarily.

Monday, July 28, 2014

granny camp 5.3

As I mentioned previously, grandgirl Jade has been here for her week.

I discovered this morning that two consecutive days of pictures I took of Jade's visit, the day we did the tie dye and the day we went to the beach, are missing. Apparently, I deleted them before downloading them. I can't imagine that I did so but they are missing.

Monday we got groceries and craft supplies in. We spent Tuesday and Wednesday in the city getting the last of our stuff and buying the new car so Jade will return for a make-up weekend.

The rest of the week we poked around in all the little antique stores and resale shops.

We tie dyed (my pictures are missing but Jade took a few).

We swam in the pool.

Jade likes to cook so we made her favorite chicken dish, smothered chicken, and banana pudding and a big fruit salad and a lime pie. Not all on the same day.

We went to the beach. There was almost no surf that day but the water still felt good. There were two large flocks of brown pelicans floating out in the water and we watched while one flew over and then took a nose dive and plummeted into the water. I guess there was a school of small fish out past where we were swimming as the seagulls and other shore birds were flying around above a section of water and diving in, sometimes coming up with a small silver fish. We had to leave mid-afternoon though as a huge rainstorm with lightening and thunder was sweeping over us. It was raining so hard as we traversed the bridge over the inter-coastal canal that I could barely see.

Friday was movie day. We went to see Lucy. It was not what I expected though I'm not exactly sure what I expected.

While we were at the beach, we collected lots of shells, primarily oyster shells, and driftwood to make wind chimes, or rather, wind clackers. I used the drill press to put holes in them and Jade strung them up.

She also made a dream catcher using some of the smaller shells for decoration.

Then, Sunday, it was time to take her home.

Friday, July 25, 2014

indulgence and...well, it's Friday, right?

In the midst of all this moving, the other twin arrived for her week.

Or rather, we picked her up last Sunday on one of our forays in to get stuff. I have promised her an extra weekend to make up for the fact that two of the first three days of her visit have been spent in the city dealing with moving and...

spending some of the money from the sale of our stupidly valuable property in the city!

We bought a new car, the first car we have bought since 1984. We bought a new truck about 5 or 6 years ago when we were first moving out to the country house and let the '84 Volvo rest in peace.

2014.5 Toyota Camry

Things on this car I have never had on a car before:

automatic transmission
power windows
power adjustable seats
power adjustable side view mirrors
CD player
radio that can be programmed about 50 different ways
back up camera
cruise control
outside temperature display
integrated bluetooth
voice command system
lock/unlock, alarm function on the key

and these are just the things I can think of off hand. It's pretty overwhelming. The salesman was halfway through showing me all the bells and whistles right before I drove off in it when I went on overload.

So, while we were waiting for paperwork to get done sitting at the desk (our third 'wait'), I was fiddling with the keys to the new car which was in the prep garage a fair distance from where we were sitting. There is a little red button that says 'hold' with the symbol for horn or loud volume. Hmmmm, so I held it down thinking we were too far away from the car for it to activate anything. Wrong! The horn on the new car started going blatt blatt blatt and then we couldn't figure out how to shut it off. Finally Marc got it to stop. He and Jade were shaking their heads at me but I thought it was really funny.

So, yes, it seems I am still a little kid.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

done and done

I am terrible about responding to comments. When I do respond, it is via email so unless you make an email address available, I can't respond to your comment. I guess the reason I do it that way is that I rarely go back to a post to see if the blogger has responded (there are a few exceptions). Shoot, I can't even keep track of what I comment on or much less remember to go back and check for responses.

So this is in response to all the wonderful comments and questions I have received about this very long drawn out move, this uprooting literally, from my old life.

As Marc says, we have decamped.

I have dug up so many plants or taken cuttings. I have no idea how much is going to survive, which cuttings will root. I'm still trying to get them in pots temporarily till the weather cools enough to not give me heat stroke while I prepare the ground for planting.

We decided to leave the sandblast booth/Tuff Shed after all as it has termites. Not bringing termites to the new shop.

I didn't take anything from the house itself besides memories. Just the chandelier. How do you do that anyway? I would like one of the diamond paned windows if Kevin decides to deconstruct the house. We'll see.

So yes, I'm OK. I walked through the house, my last time, and touched the walls and thanked it for giving us shelter and holding our family together. We weathered three direct hits from hurricanes over the years in that house with nary a creak. I apologized for not taking better care of it and for abandoning it. I told it I loved it.

Then I walked out and closed the door.

Mostly, I think, I am just glad that it is finally over. I am anxious to get the new shop set up. I don't like not having a shop or work space available to me. I have stuff to do and stuff to make! There are three exhibitions coming up that I want to submit work for. I have agreed to be in a gallery show next year and I need stuff for that. And the open house in December, which I assume will be happening.

Our future is here and before us.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

saying goodbye

Heading in again today with a list of incidentals to retrieve...wheels from the big table, ladder, some lumber, some bolts that got left behind, the pavers from the driveway. It will be the last time I go in the house as I am leaving the keys when we leave. Kevin is going to have the sewer cut off first thing tomorrow morning so that he can start the permitting process and we will cancel our utility accounts.

We (or maybe just Marc since the other twin will be here for her week) will be back on Wednesday to try and load up the sandblast booth onto a trailer and motor it out here.

And after that? I doubt I will ever go back.

Friday, July 18, 2014

gaping holes and dangling wires and a selfie

Well, I guess we're out. We have stripped the old shop of supplies, tools, equipment, light fixtures, and glass. We have taken what we want from the old house.

The entry glass and the large window and the other large window at my daughter's house were delivered to the new shop Wednesday. The air compressor, the refrigerator, and the pony tail palm were delivered out here yesterday. Our son-in-law brought out the old truck yesterday as well. There's still a few pieces of good lumber that I want to retrieve and some more plants, either through digging them up or cuttings, and the rest of our pavers that we repaired the driveway with last summer when we had to have the main sewer line replaced but by and large, we are done there.

The sandblast booth may have to be abandoned since we couldn't find anyone with the ability or willingness to move it for us. It will fit on our son-in-law's trailer if we can get it on there so we may make one more attempt before we give up. We did not disconnect the plumbing from the old cast iron ball and claw foot tub. Even if we had, I'm not sure we could have gotten it out of the bathroom without removing the toilet and sink (very small room) or even then.

So now we get to turn our attention to setting up the new shop. Lots of things to be done...taking down the old cigarette smoke infused paneling and replacing it with sheetrock, pulling up the old indoor/outdoor cigarette smoke infused carpet in the rooms, putting in insulation and sheetrock in the large bay area, getting the air compressor hooked up and a shelter built and the air pipes placed, building a permanent glass rack, getting 220 plugs installed for the kilns, getting the AC/heater installed in the rooms for starters. Also, the roof in the big bay leaks in two areas so we need to get that looked at.

I'd like to get a rudimentary work area set up pretty quick and devote some days to work while we remodel.

I also have a lot of plants to get settled so I started removing grass along the south side of the cement bunker yesterday so that I can get these bulbs and other plants in the ground. I'm happy that the dirt seems really good, doesn't have the clay we have across the street. It's not the best time of year to be digging stuff up and shocking it but at least the summer has been fairly mild this year.

More digging up grass today.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014


The house in Houston is no longer ours...technically. We won't get our check until today and we won't hand over the keys until next Monday, but yesterday we signed all the appropriate papers.

Kevin is a small builder and he plans to build a very nice single family home on the property. He plans to save the house if he can by having it moved onto another property. It doesn't seem likely though because all the power lines are on our side of the street and the streets in the neighborhood are narrow. Definitely the roof would have to be removed and it might have to be cut in half as well. He's still looking into it. He can't just restore it and add on to it where it sits because of the premium he paid for the property.

If he can't save the house he is going to try and salvage as much of it as possible instead of just having it demolished, reusing the old shiplap and maybe even the hardwood floors. I've let go of the house emotionally, and now, physically.

Our daughter had a sleepless night anticipating selling her part of the property. She has never lived anywhere else except for about 6 months in a different neighborhood. Other than that, she has lived in the Heights her whole life and all but about two years were spent either in my house or the one next door that they eventually bought from us. It's harder on her but she is looking forward to a better house. I, at least, had lived in many houses and neighborhoods and several years not even in the city before I settled down in the old house.

We'll be going in every day this week, still collecting stuff like the light fixtures out of the old shop and things we thought we would abandon and then changed our minds. Yesterday I pulled up the sandstone slabs that made up a short walkway and we're still trying to find someone to move the tuff shed for us and maybe get a moving company to move the other three large heavy items. My son-in-law has moved the old truck into his driveway for now since they have an extra week to vacate.

The carved glass entry into the shop and the two 5' x 5' windows will be picked up on Wednesday and delivered out here.

I guess I'm going to tackle digging up several of the larger shrubs because, as my son pointed out, I may kill them trying to move them, but if I don't try they are going to be killed anyway.