Posts Tagged ‘christmas’

company’s coming

Tomorrow, tomorrow, tomorrow! I’m so excited that Lauri and Aidan are coming – what a great Christmas present. Richard will drive into Portland and pick them up in the morning. Me, I’ll be here getting the last of things ready.
With Ryan here last weekend, and Gretchen and Tom on the heels of his leaving, it’s been sort of a company blitz around here.

Today and tomorrow I plan on finishing up some sewing. That and making a trip to Astoria for yet a few more items. Richard has some shop things to work on for Christmas. And I have only one package to mail for Christmas this year – hooray!

The weather has warmed up considerably – it should be in the mid-fifties today. Who cares if it’s raining off and on, so long as it’s not freezing.

Two weeks ago I finally got some things listed on etsy, and one of my items sold! Just one little elf ornament, but it’s a beginning. Hooray! So, it’s off to the post office for me. Enough of this goofing around online.

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getting ready

The weather has been COLD here. Really cold for this area. This morning it was 20 outside. Clear and beautiful, but damn cold. Too cold to be outside, so we spent yesterday cleaning through boxes in the den. Shredding old paperwork, sorting, boring stuff. We need to get things in order for our new house member. In another month it looks like little Richard will come to live with us. We need to meet with the high school( we have talked to the principal already ) and iron out a few other things. It will be mighty different around here with a teenager in the house – its been fourteen years. I’m both excited and nervous.

We took down a near falling over tree across the street on Sunday, and cleaned up the mess from the fallen trees over there. Even though its not our property ( he gave us permission to cut down any trees and keep the wood ) it seems only right that if we want the wood we do the cleanup. The owner will come this spring or summer and burn the slash, which we made into a huge pile. Our view is nearly restored to what it was when we bought the house. We have another big pile of wood to split, and a lot more to come.

I finally got the tree decorated; it is sparse with ornaments. I think I’ll end up using this silver tree every other year. I made a couple wreath-things to put above the mantle.

It looks like company this weekend, and in another ten days Lauri and Aidan will be here for a week. In between, there is the rest of Christmas to finish up with.

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end of the snow!

Who ever thought that anyone from these parts would be so delighted to see rain this time of year. We drove into Seattle on Monday. It was clear and bright along the way, but there was a lot of lingering snow.
            these shots are from around the east side of the bay after leaving the peninsula. We had an easy drive until hitting the junction in West Seattle. Not a good place for a non-4WD truck. We stayed with my sister that night, then on to Mom’s house on Tuesday. We had to chain up two blocks away from her house. The side streets in Seattle were all a mess.
It snowed hard on Christmas Eve. We made it to Justin’s for an excellent dinner of stuffed roast quail ( which I had never eaten before ), and back to Mom’s. It snowed hard enough overnight that Deb and her family in Snohomish were snowed in ( with over a foot of new stuff! ) and couldn’t make it in for Christmas. Boo. Mom made her prime rib for Christmas dinner, which was wonderful. It was a nice day sitting around talking and eating.
We left out of Seattle and came home yesterday. Ryan followed us out and will hang out here for a couple days. There was still snow on the ground here last night, but it rained and blew hard – today it is all gone. 
I had wanted to do a little shopping while in town, but the mess of the snow, ice, and then the crowds on Friday was a big turnoff. I just wanted to get away from it, and have never been an ‘after christmas’ shopper. The crowds have never been worth the sale for me, I guess. I think with the economy the way it is, there will be some good deals for awhile, so maybe we will make a trip to the city around my birthday.

Richard made a platform for the tv and gave it to me Sunday
       We wanted something low to keep the whole thing below the window line. It’s just right. He also gave me a 16G mp3 player – now I have a new toy to figure out. 
There is still no word from the last bank. This waiting is getting tiring. I want to move forward – in some direction, but we have to wait it out.

I ended up making a lot of shopping bags – like 30 – out of materials that I had here. And I got four chef jackets done for Justin, and a pair of pajamas ( also from fabric that was in my stash ) . This is the upside of having a hundred boxes of fabric.    We were not the only ones to give shopping bags though. My niece also made them for everyone. It was nice to get one that someone else made – everyone has different ideas and it’s interesting to see how someone else executes them.
With most of the Christmas sewing finished ( I still have something I want to do for a friend of mine ) I can begin to plan on the next thing I want to sew. Maybe for myself even.

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Sew, Snow, Sew

Thanks to the miracle of not losing electricity in this snow storm, I’m still sewing. Yay!  Because there’s still sewing to do. It’s my nature to continually add to any list. So, as I finish one more gift tomorrow, I will start another ( or two!) . 

We awoke to snow this morning, and it is beautiful ( since we didn’t have to go anywhere, and the lights are still on ). Here’s some pics we took on a walk down to the beach. Richard went along – his knee is getting better every day ( part of my christmas wish )!
 even in the snow, someone drives down the pedestrian beach approach.    Snow and sand – an uncomman combination
 Of course we had to include one shot of you-know-who.  She had a time of it on the walk down there. Sort of trying to hold one leg at a time in the air. But once we hit the beach she had a ball, running free for the first time in a week or so.  Life is good again.
  Dune grass in pretty winter mode.
 The house looks so Christmas-y all red and flocked with snow.
 our tree, and the (non)mantle,  
yes, we decorated the cinderblock above the new fireplace insert. Some fake fur, ornaments, candles, and kitch, along with a piece my sister Deb made several years ago which reads " Peace on Earth, Good Will to All" .     If only.

We did talk to a local guy who has a small sawmill about getting a mantle. We may get a piece of driftwood from the park, and have it cut / milled to size. 

Of course the sun shining made all the outside picture taking lots better. They are now calling for big winds, like the 50-60 mph variety for the next day or two. More snow. We did get everything in the mail to send to all the CA family that’s down south. We are planning to leave to go into Seattle on Monday, but depending on the snow, the sewing, and the power, well, who knows?

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With company over the long weekend, and work (!) the past couple days, I feel like I’ve been out of the country for a week or so.

Monday was Richard’s surgery. It went well, but I was the non-present caregiver. It turned out that the same day I had to go to the store and begin a full inventory. So, I dropped him off, and our neighbor a couple doors up the street greeted us to take him into surgery – she is a surgical nurse at the local hospital. She called me when he was ready to be picked up, and I left the store, went and collected him and brought him home. One of our neighbors offered to come and check on him mid afternoon, and so I guiltily went back to the store. Two days later he is feeling only a little pain – so we’re hoping that this is the beginning of the mend. Here is a pic of what the doctor wrote on the other knee:
 I like how they took care not to confuse the one with the other – a ball point pen NO on the not to be touched ‘good’ knee.

I am now done with Christmas!!!!
2007. Yeah – I’m the lagger in the gift dept. I finished Justin’s coat last week and it went back to Seattle along with the old one that I made for him twelve or thirteen? years ago. Other than the lining missing, and it severly threadbare, it was still all together. I hope this one lasts half as long. I took a pic of Richard in it, but its just not the same as the intended recipient. Here’s a closeup of the sleeve and pocket detail instead: 

Thanksgiving was nice, quiet and intimate. Ryan and Mom drove out and stayed until Sunday. It was lousy weather, so mostly we hung out, ate, talked, Mom and I both did some knitting, and Ryan worked  some.  Sunday the weather was nice, and in the afternoon Richard helped me to put up Christmas lights. I am a fan of the big old fashioned colored lights – I have collected lots of them at yard sales over the years as folks replace them with those new fangled ones. Not that I don’t like think the new ones are pretty, and they’re certainly more energy efficient, but I like the nostalgia factor of the old big ones. The strands that I have probably won’t last too many seasons here in this salty climate though. But there were enough good ones to decorate the south end of the house.  No doubt they are the first lights ever strung on this house. Maybe this weekend we will look for a fresh ( as opposed to shipped to So Cal )local tree. We didn’t have one last year with the aftermath of the storm, making a trip to San Diego mid month, and then being in Seattle for Christmas – so it will be the first tree here.
I would like a fake tree – to avoid the light stringing and the watering – but maybe next year.

As I mentioned, we ( the owners, a couple employees and I ) are doing a full inventory at the store. It is long, tedious work, and has consumed the past couple days. So far we’ve unrolled, measured and rerolled about 1500 bolts of fabric. Today the owner has another commitment, so we will resume and finish up tomorrow. The remainder of what’s left should go pretty quickly. Then that will be more information for the banks. This is such a long process. I am anxious for it to be done.

Now I can begin to get ready for Christmas!

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 So the past couple weeks have come and gone very quickly – yeah I know, no surprise. Christmas is over, and in the midst of all the rush we squeezed a trip into Seattle for a couple days. I am so lucky to have a place there where it is always comfortable to just hang out – thanks Mom for your unending hospitality.  I feel really bad for those who don’t have the relationship that I do with parents. 
Christmas was a different thing this year – I  forget how (nearly) the entire family in the space of one or two rooms can quickly raise to a fever pitch! If you don’t feel like joining in for a bit there is a lot to sit back and take in – half a dozen conversations surround you. It just hasn’t been that way for the last many years in So Cal. As corny as it sounds, I really love my family and am glad to be a ‘participant’ in gatherings once again. 
On Christmas Eve we went to Justin & Megan’s house for dinner, and he cooked pheasant – which was not anything like I remembered it. It was really good, and a side of veggies, and wild rice with fruit – yum.Oh, and a couple bottles of champagne.  The next day mom made prime rib which came out perfectly rare – can it get any better?  
We left Seattle Wednesday, and stopped to look at granite for the bathroom and go to the Verizon store. This turned out to be one of the better moves I’ve made. You see, my old phone crapped out on the way back from San Diego. After stopping at a Verizon store outside Salem, I called Asurion – the insurance company that contracts with them. It took over 25 minutes on hold ( what else is there to do while driving – I used Richard’s phone ) I filed a claim for a dead phone, with a replacement to be delivered in two days. Seemed like a good deal for the $50 deductible. The phone arrived – and I can only say that it was an unbranded ‘lookalike’ to the LG8500 Chocolate. It was just a little funky and just not quite right. The charger that they supplied didn’t work, but I could use my old charger, so……..         It became more and more obvious that the replacement was a piece of crap, and because I didn’t want to mess with it I was nearly willing to accept it, and just wait and upgrade in a few months, when the contract would allow. Ryan though, urged me to pursue it, and am I glad I did.  We went to the Verizon store, I explained the situation, and the guy there felt that we needed to call Asurion once again to explain the issue. Funny thing is that he was able to immediately connect me to someone ( no waiting) , and three representatives later,  things seemed solved. Lets just say I had my doubts – they offered to ‘upgrade’ my replacement phone to an LG8550 – the newer version. I waited, not expecting anything other than another refurbished? piece of junk. Going to the Verizon store paid off, when this afternoon a brand new, packaged in the factory box, phone arrived. No generic clone with a less-than standard battery. No charger just tossed in the box. A brand new everything, including a car charger.   I am happy.   So tomorrow I will make the trek across the river to have all of the data transferred from the dead phone to the new one.  In this world, I guess it is the squeaky wheel that gets the grease. 
There is so much to do in the next few weeks – the cleanup from the hurricane is still to be dealt with – lots of downed wood to be cut up, and boxes and boxes to get unpacked. We will be home for a while. Yea! Hopefully the new bathroom cabinet will be in next week, and then we will tear apart that room. Lots of sewing to do for my client. And a trip to Seattle somewhere around the 6th to go to the theater ( Jersey Boys  with my mom and sisters ). 

So merry Christmas, and Happy New Year to everyone!  With just a little luck, it won’t rain on New Year’s Eve in case we go to watch fireworks down in Long Beach.   
But if it does, thats okay. 

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