Friday 29 June 2018

Finish line in sight

Painting complete
The bathrooms are nearing completion, hooray!  I'm not sure if I mentioned it but the cabinet refacing was delayed due to a death in the family of the worker.  Then, because I wanted to have the bathrooms painted before the sinks and faucets were installed, that had to wait until D and Eli went to B.C.  They left on Tuesday, I took a day of vacation and got them both painted and today the plumber is here to finish the installation.  All that will be left to do is rehang the mirrors...not something I'm looking forward to.

I really like that the banjo counter is gone.  It did add more counter space, but it made it nearly impossible to get into the back of the toilet.  

My daughter is trying to convince me to get an over the toilet storage unit.  I probably will for the main bathroom as she has soooo much stuff.  I can manage in my en-suite as I didn't use the extra counter space.  I have a three tier plastic container that I keep under the sink - it provides all the storage I need.

The sinks are installed but the plumber is having some issues with the seals - they are plastic and are leaking a bit.  I expect he'll be here a little longer to get that taken care of - he says the only option is to silicone "the hell" out of them. Turns out it wasn't the seals it was old water.  Not sure how he can tell but I trust he knows what he is doing. 

At the same time, the company that has been installing new higher speed internet cable in the neighbourhood are finally finishing the work in the back yard.  I'm watching two men go back and forth from the front yard to the back with wheelbarrows full of gravel.  I took a look out the sunroom and it looks like they'll be here awhile...the hole is quite deep.  I haven't decided if I'll sign up for it or not, while it may be faster, I suspect the cost will be much higher as well.

That other finish line, is retirement.  I'll be taking another marble out of the jar next week leaving just five marbles!  When I look back I cannot believe how quickly the time has past, even though looking forward it still seems like a long way off.  I had my performance review with my manager yesterday and asked for a couple of projects to keep me busy into the fall as I've gotten into my routine and am finding things have slowed down.  When I get bored, I get bitchy...that's been the norm for me for most of my life.

Anyway, I'll end this post with a picture of Eli. I took this photo the evening they left for B.C.  I guess he travelled fairly well, though D wasn't happy hauling baby and bags on her own.  They're having a blast now visiting with J and exploring Courtney/Comox.  I've seen photos and videos of Eli on the beach, playing on a swing, visiting Dad at the job site, and meeting his cousin Ethan.  

They are off to Port Hardy when J is off work today to visit with his grandparents and other relatives.  I sure miss the little guy (though I'm sure getting lots down around here without his assistance), but I'm happy to hear that all is well and he's having lots of fun.

Have a great weekend everyone!

Sunday 24 June 2018

Work in progress

Remind me again why I decided to renovate the bathrooms.  I can't blame the cabinet company.  Their worker was in and out in two days.  But I'm still in the process of patching the drywall and getting ready to paint.  Plus I need to call the plumber back to install the taps.  And then there are the mirrors to be put up again. Oh boy, I really should know better!

I did do some priming after the mirrors were removed and before the counter tops came off.  What a gong show that turned out to be - not the removal of the counters but the paint.  I purchased the paint at Rona; when I went to use for the first time, a couple days after purchase I discovered it had already separated.  I stirred and stirred and stirred and stirred before I felt it was ready, only to be annoyed to find it was separating as I was painting. I'd paint a few brush strokes, stop and stir, and paint a bit more.  What a pain!

I kept at it though as I wanted to get the priming done before the cabinet guy came in.  Once that was done I decided to take the paint back to Rona.  I couldn't find my receipt but it was clearly their brand so I didn't I'd have a problem returning it.  Ha!

The front staff were quite pleasant to deal with but the manager of the paint department, not so much.  She asked when I'd bought the paint, and I said a couple of weeks prior.  I was then informed that it was my fault the paint separated.  Truly, that's what she said.  I was told I ought to have brought the paint into the store every three days to be shaken.  Really? I can't imagine doing that. I told her that I've painted many time before and never had this issue with any other brands of paint.  She stuck to her guns and refused to make any restitution so I told her to keep the paint and I walked out of the store...probably for the last time.  (Though I do like their garden centre).  

I drove a few blocks over to the Home Depot, where I confirmed that paint should not separate that quickly.  In fact, there was a young man (another customer) there who paints for a living who said the paint manager's comment was ridiculous.  While my paint was being mixed he pointed out an attachment for my drill that I can use to stir the paint more quickly.  I should mention the paint counter clerk was also very helpful and helped me find the appropriate paint with a built in primer.

Also a work in progress is my daughter's packing for her trip to Vancouver Island with Eli.  They fly out Tuesday evening and will be in B.C. for 16 days.  Eli has been a great helper, he quickly pulls things out of the suitcase as his mother packs.  The teddy bear tucked in has a audio component so that D was able to record a message to Eli.

He will be staying with his daddy for several days while she spends time with his mother up island. I suspect his time with Dad might be shortened as Eli hasn't seen J for some time, and he doesn't like being left with anyone either than myself or his uncle C.  J is planning to leave him with his sister-in-law while he works.  Yeah, I can see how this might not go so well....leaving him with a perfect stranger.  His auntie V does have a six month old so that might distract Eli for a short time. Either way, I'm certain J is going to find him a real handful. Not only is he now walking, but climbing is a great game.  Today he pushed the ottoman next to my end table, climbed up, and helped himself to pieces of a muffin I had put there to share with him.  Though I had thought I'd pass the pieces on, he had other ideas!

G'ma is going to miss this face while he's away.  I won't miss the mess, that both he and his mother make.  But it sure will be quiet around here.  J has indicated they will face time with me occasionally.  It won't be the same but I'm sure the time will fly by. 

Especially as I'll have a chance to get the painting done without a little helper!
He's been quite fascinated as I've sanded down the drywall patches.  Hmmm....perhaps this making a mess comes naturally.

I'd best get back to taping as he's down for his morning nap.  Have a great week everyone!

Sunday 17 June 2018

Remembering Dad

Happy Father's Day Dad!  Forever loved and always missed.

Dad was born at home on the family ranch near Meyronne, Saskatchewan in August 1910.  The second youngest of 6 siblings, his father passed away when he was just 14 years old.  He left school after grade 8 to help his brothers with the ranch.

In 1931, his mother, sister, one of his brothers and Dad travelled north in search of land.   Dad and his brother travelled with the train to ensure their possessions arrived intact, while Grandma and my aunt travelled by car.  They arrived in Nipawin on Dad's 21st birthday.

He was allotted a quarter section of land, and worked hard to break the land.  He had no money for equipment so he worked for other farmers during the summer, and in logging camps in the winter.  Through hard work and perseverance, he built his little farm up to 3 quarter sections.  

The house we grew up in was built in stages, starting with two granaries and then added to as the family grew.  That house burned down several years ago.

He married mom in 1954, and immediately became a father to my oldest brother.  A few years later, I was born, rapidly followed by my sister and younger brother.  Dad always said we kept him young, and when he turned 65 and started receiving the old age pension, he gave the cheques to mom to bank.  He was too young, he said!

Dad passed away in September 2008, just a few weeks after his 98th birthday.  He had always thought he would make at least 100 but it wasn't to be.  The photo above is one of the last I have of him.  He always had a smile on his face, no one was a stranger, and he had a heart of gold.

I will remember him, until I can remember no more.  Love you Dad!

*Comments are off.  

Saturday 9 June 2018

Lazy days

Do you ever have one of those days or one of those weeks (in my case the latter) where your get and go has got up and left?  And, if you do, how do you get yourself out of that rut?  Or maybe I'm too hard on myself and this (hopefully) temporary lapse of ambition will pass.  

In any event, it has been a very quiet and unproductive week both at work and at home.  I've kept up with absolutely needed to be done but no more.  So, for example, if you were to walk into my living room right now you'd find the normal detritus of a toddler, as well as several boxes (books) and piles of clothing.  The latter all belong to my daughter and are destined for a future garage sale...that she has been planning since early May.  I call it the work of make a mess baby and make an even bigger mess mom.  The floor, though has been swept and vacuumed so the dust bunnies have been held at bay.  

What I should be doing is painting the bathrooms (or a least cutting in), as the worker is here on Monday to start the refacing of the cabinets.  The plumber was here yesterday to remove the sinks and taps.  He discovered there were no shut off valves in either bathroom so those had to be added once the main water was shut off.  

This is the main bathroom where the  problem started.  D noticed there was water dripping from the sink onto the floor of the cabinet.  When we checked underneath we discovered the sink had corroded through the base and so some overflow was actually leaking.  I started looking into replacing the sink but after searching for sinks on-line (no one local had grey sinks), I eventually came to decision to reface the cabinets as I did a few years ago in the kitchen.  Yeah, that's me...spent a little or a spend a lot...and I go with the more expensive option.  

This is the ensuite bathroom.  You'll see that both bathrooms have the banjo counter top that extends over the toilet.  That will be removed when the counters are replaced.  While the extra counter space is nice to have, it's a real pain to get at the toilet tank when the flange or chain needs to be replaced.  

The cabinets will be refaced with the same laminate material called chocolate pear, while the doors and drawer fronts will be replaced completely.  The counter tops will have similar laminate as the kitchen, except that the material in the kitchen has a gloss finish while the bathrooms will be matte. When the kitchen was done I have purchased the handles so these just need to removed and put on the new doors and drawer fronts.
This is a rather dark photo but provides some idea of what the counters and cabinets will look like.  (This was pre-installation of the microwave above the stove).  Unlike the kitchen there will be no tile backsplash, rather the laminate will be wrapped up the wall about 4 inches.  

I still need to find taps for both sinks - the ones I ordered on-line were too small so need to be returned.  This is part of shopping I like's such a pain in the butt.  I'll probably replace the lighting as well as it is brass colored while the fittings are brushed nickel.  (see what I mean about spending more money...I started with needing to replace the sink....)

The paint I've chosen for the two rooms is quite a bit lighter than the original.  As both rooms are interior and without windows, I think the lighter color will brighten them up.  

I decided to go ahead with the refresh of the bathrooms as I think it will help with the resale of the house in a year or so.  The market in Regina has really declined over the past year or two, such that prices are dropping.  In the mean time I'll get to enjoy having nice(r) bathrooms. 

We've been having some wild weather this week with more storms forecast for this weekend.  This storm, earlier in the week gave us a good soaking of about 1/2 inch of rain or more.  We've had rain off and on, nearly every second day so that I haven't had to water most of the containers.  I do check the 10" pots more frequently as they tend to dry out more quickly but even those haven't needed more than a sprinkling. 

I have small birdhouse that my brother and his children built, that we hung on one of my sheds.  This little chickadee was busy between rain bursts bringing food to whomever was in the house.  Unfortunately I haven't seen any movement in or out of the birdhouse the last day or two, so I fear something may have happened.  My brother R, said it is unusual for a chickadee to nest in a birdhouse so perhaps the pair moved.  I hope so!

Finally, one more photo of my very handsome (and talented) grandson.  This week he discovered climbing!

Next to the cat tree is his toy box.  Lately he's taken to climbing into the toy box to get something, so it was a natural progression to take the next step of climbing onto the cat tree.  The view from there is so much better, right?  

I don't have a photo but the second time he climbed onto the tree, he made it up onto the perch he's leaning on and attempted to stand up!  That was it for the tree - it has now been moved into the sun room with nothing nearby to make the climb easy.  

Well, I'd best wrap this up and get to the bathrooms.  Procrastination is truly getting me nowhere!

Have a great weekend everyone.

P.S. I have my settings so that comments are e-mailed to me, but this function doesn't seem to be working. I've checked my settings and every thing looks okay.  Is anyone else having this issue or is it just me?

Saturday 2 June 2018

This and that

The wet weather we've had the last few days has put a bit of a damper on the weekend.  Actually it started with a head cold and accompanying headache on Thursday.  I called in sick and had a relaxing day...well, as much as anyone can have with a toddler in the house.

I did get some housework done yesterday (Friday) and the weekly grocery shopping out of the way.  But I still wasn't feeling 100% so finished reading a book.  Called "Secret Sister", it is the true story of two women, one who was adopted at 6 weeks as an only child in a loving home, the other who grew up in a dysfunctional home with a beloved older brother.  As they share their life stories, they both express the wish for a sister.  Later, when Jennifer looks for her birth mother, only to be rejected, not once but twice, does she discover that she has several siblings.  This is a story of family secrets, most of which are never entirely uncovered.  We can only surmise what might have been, though with the help of DNA, Jennifer and Helen discover they are twins.  Why one was adopted and the other not is a question only their mother could explain but never did.  It was not a book that I could read in one sitting; Helen's life was painful to read with a disinterested and uncaring mother, and an abusive father.  It's a wonder she made it to adulthood!  Jennifer fared much better as an adoptee, excelling at sports, and going on to become a champion golfer for the U.K.  Despite their very different upbringing, the two have built a strong and loving relationship.  

I am not so enamoured of the weather!  We've had about 40 mms. (just over 1 1/2 inches) over the past two days.  It was quite warm yesterday but today is cool and windy.  Prior to that we had several days of hot temps.  The front flower bed is starting to look good. 

The ferns are getting huge, and the hosta (behind the bergenia) was a mere sprout two weeks ago.  The spirea bush is finally leafing out...I thought I may have pruned it too much (or perhaps it was the rabbits) as it has been quite late leafing.

On the other side of this very small garden bed, things are coming along a little more slowly.

The columbine is doing well, with several volunteer plants.  I expect it will be a week or two before I see any evidence of blooms.  The nicotiania I planted is, however, starting to show small buds!  They are most fragrant in the evening.  The dianthus is doing well and continuing to bloom, and the sunpatience (in the hanging basket) and impatience in the other container add some lovely color.  

Now if I could just get outdoors to enjoy it all!  Perhaps tomorrow as the rain is supposed to let up today with temperatures in the more normal range forecast.  Of course, mother nature may have other ideas.

In the meantime I've been spending lots of time with my grandson.  This morning, his mom went shopping with a friend for a couple of hours.  There is a local thrift shop, Once Upon a Child, that sells new and gently used children's clothing and toys.  Today was a body suit sale (onesies). She came home with a large bag containing several items for Eli and the rest to give away.  Over the past six months or so she has been gathering donated items along with a few purchases.  D sorts these and creates baskets to give away on a pay it forward Facebook page.  She offers these to single moms under the age of 23, as she feels these young women need the help most.  Thus far she's given away 40-50 hampers/baskets.  Each basket contains clothing, a few toys, sometimes baby food or formula, and something for mom as well.  It gives her a purpose, while helping other moms.  I know she feels grateful for the help I provide and she's well aware not every mom is as fortunate.

I love spending time with Eli, his personality is more defined every day.  Generally he is a very happy baby, though he has a bit of a stubborn streak when he wants his own today.  This morning, his mom put him down for a nap just before she left.  Within 15 minutes he was hollering, so I went into check...whooee that child had filled his diaper!  He didn't seem too sleepy after his diaper change so I kept him up while I made my breakfast (egg and toast) which he then shared with me.  About an hour later he was getting fussy and rubbing his eyes so I tucked him back in his crib.  Guess what?  Fifteen minutes later he was hollering again.  Up again, he played until his mom came home about an hour later.  She fed him lunch, tucked him back in bed and all has been quiet for the past 20 minutes or so.  I think he may finally be having his nap!

Good thing, as G'ma could use one too.  \

Have a good weekend everyone!