Sunday 26 August 2018

Weekend wrap-up

This will be another boring post*, where not much is new and I'm simply documenting the mundane and benign moments of my life.  Of course, there will be a little of Eli...which makes it much more fun!  In fact, why don't I just start there?  That way, if you choose you can read this portion of the blog and skip the rest.  I'm thoughtful that way. :)

Eli is rapidly approaching the 18 month mark (September 2), and is way smarter and creative than most.  Of course, he's the only nearly 18 month old I know so I might be a bit biased.  

But just look at that face (hidden by the sunglasses as it may be), is that not a bright looking boy?  I call this his gangster look ...he loves G'ma's sunglasses and if I don't tuck them in my purse, they disappear with a little help from him.

This week he's continued to discover climbing.  I hear him giggling in the sun room and spotted him on the cat tree earlier this week.  Sheldon was hiding, or rather attempting to hide, in the top of the tree.  Eli climbed up and when I first saw him was leaning into the little house talking to Sheldon.  When he saw me, he showed me how he climb down safely on his own.

Eli has also discovered he can reach the telephone on the counter.  We'll occasionally find him with the phone to his far he hasn't figured out how to dial it.  Good thing I have a good long distance plan for when he does.  

The next thing up is doors.  A few nights ago, D and I were watching television in the living room when we heard the door handle turning in the front hall.  We found Eli there, standing in his little shopping cart trying to open the door.  Thankfully it opens inward so he and the cart were in the way.  The door to the garage is another matter as it opens up from the front hall into the garage but so far he hasn't tried it.  There is a lock at the top of the door left over from the previous owners.  They ran a foster home so I suspect it was needed then.  And I'm guessing we'll be using it soon too.

However, as we learned this weekend his ability to climb can be dangerous as well.  I was making dinner on Saturday night, D was in the garage on her phone in an argument with J (a far too frequent occurrence), and Eli was quiet.  I went looking for him and found him in the bathroom sink.  I took a quick pic on my phone and sent it to D as the pizzas had just come out of the oven.  I wanted to cut them and get rid of the pans as they were hot and within Eli's reach.  Not seconds later I heard the water running in the bathroom and a yell from Eli.  I rushed to the bathroom, followed quickly by D, and my son C.  He had turned the hot water tap on and was trying mightily to get himself out.  I pulled Eli out of the sink and we stripped him of his pants.  Both his legs were red but it turned out we were fortunate as only his one foot was scalded.  With lots of aloe vera, a soaking of tea, and some Motrin for the pain, he was back playing within the hour.  That first giggle was wonderful to hear.

He slept well during the night and this morning there is one large blister on the side of his foot, the others have popped and are healing up nicely.  It always amazes me how quickly little ones heal.  He hasn't shown any discomfort at all, and when D slathered some aloe vera on his foot he giggled as it felt cool.  

His vocabulary is growing as well.  Apple and football were two new words I heard this week.  I still love hearing him babble, and watching him get excited about his bath, ice cream, and Sheldon.  He really loves that cat, even if Sheldon is less enthusiastic about him. Eli is definitely a ray of sunshine in our lives and I'll miss having him here everyday.  Though I won't miss the mess that accompanies his progress.  Well, not a lot anyway.

Okay, onto the mundane.  Friday was ordinary with a nail appointment, grocery shopping and dinner with friends.  The only thing out of the ordinary was how quickly the temperature dropped that evening.  It was 32C in the afternoon, and cooled off to 15C by the time we left the restaurant at 7:30 p.m.  With the wind, it actually felt "cold".  Of course, it's not and at another time the temp would feel balmy.  Just not then!

Saturday meant housework.  I'd done my laundry on Friday but hadn't  put things away.  Oh that reminds me, I did make a quick stop at Value Village last weekend and found two pairs of denim capris for $16, one of which were brand new with tags at an original cost of $30. I had a pair I'd bought in the States several years ago which have worn thin...good enough for putzing around the house but I can't go out in them. 

I spent a good part of the morning cleaning the kitchen.  D was busy baking this week, buns and cookies.  While she is an excellent baker she's a lousy cleaner-upper.  There was flour spilled down the front of the cabinets, the counters hadn't been properly wiped down of sugar and flour, and the floor badly needed a scrub.  In the midst of these chores, D got a message from a woman interested in buying my kitchen table and chairs on Facebook Marketplace.  We'd had it listed on Varage sale; although we had one couple take a look, there wasn't much interest except for one low ball offer.  D posted it this morning, the woman and her son were here less than two hours later and I had the money in my hand just minutes later.  

They bought for the son and his wife, who have recently returned to Canada from South America.  They spent 15 years there, mostly in Brazil and Argentina as missionaries.  Their mom, who I'm guessing paid for the table, lives here.  The family is moving to Brandon to work with the Spanish community there.  I wouldn't have realized there would be that many Spanish speakers there but apparently there is.  They were both very nice people, and we had quite the visit as D and the son took the table apart and moved the pieces out to the van.

I chose to put this up for sale now, mostly because my daughter is so much better at posting items for sale, and the table was a heavy beast so having her help the purchasers was much appreciated.  In addition, it's one less thing (well, seven when you count the six chairs) that I'll eventually have to move.

The space looks bare now and the kitchen looks twice the size it once was.  I've moved a card table into the spot for the time being and covered it with a table cloth.  We don't often have sit down family dinners - generally we grab a plate and eat in the living room, though if Eli is having his meal, G'ma does join him. 

Sunday, has been much less busy.  I got up early, before anyone else, other than the cats, was stirring.  After feeding the clamoring hordes, I made a pot of coffee and put away the dishes that I'd left drying last night.  It is so lovely to sit in the peace and quiet.  It won't be much longer before that is the norm.

It is a cool day here, with clouds and possible rain forecast for later in the day.  Today is the final round of the LPGA which is being held at the Wascana Golf Club here in Regina.  I have no intention of going to the course, but will watch some of it on television.  There is vacuuming to be done and the living room floor needs to be scrubbed at some point too.  Don't you wish that housework would just stay done?  I do!

Have a great week everyone! 

*I started writing this prior to the excitement of Saturday evening but decided to leave it as originally written.

Saturday 18 August 2018

Spin, spin, spin

I usually start the post with a title and go from there.  Today I know what I want to write about but have no clue how to title it.  So I guess I'll just start writing and see where this goes.

Have you ever been worried and stressed about something, and when it is finally resolved, you feel the weight of the world is off your shoulders?  That is a rhetorical question, as I'm sure everyone has.  Today, I'm feeling such relief that things are mostly settled with my daughter.  (48 more sleeps to moving day!)  She has booked the movers and has packing well under way.  This morning she told me she's realized that she doesn't need to keep much out, just clothing and personal items, and the toys that are currently cluttering up my living room. Yippee!

The garage is beginning to be cleared of the extra stuff.  She's taken several bags full of items to Value Village (more to go today), and consigned a bunch of toys and clothing at a local children's resale outlet.  There is a pile of boxes and bins in the garage about the size of my car that is packed and ready to be moved.  There is still lots to go though as she's brought home crap stuff that J had at his place for sale.  There are tools and blinds and god only knows what else.  I don't know if she is planning to take it with her or if she'll donate it somewhere...either way she knows it has to be out of my garage.  When I informed her of that, there was a bit of a melt-down on her part.  She has to realize my home is not a storage unit.

Knowing all of this is coming to end means I can begin return to planning for the future.  I've just over three months before I'm finished work, hooray!  Yesterday, I had breakfast with two former co-workers.  We had a wonderful visit, talking about travel (C just returned from a short trip to Ottawa and area), future travel plans (all of us), the benefits of retirement (the two of them), and a bit of work gossip. ;)  I am so looking forward to the day I join the ranks of the retirees and don't have to plan my life around the weekends and a few weeks a year.

My son C and I have been talking about his plans as he is about ready to move out as well.  He's interested in finding a condo as he is not a yard work guy, likely a one bedroom, but possibly two, with parking, and hopefully an in-suite laundry.  I don't think he cares as much about the laundry but communal space can be such a nuisance.  In his case, mom won't be the bank as he's done a great job of saving money for a very nice down payment.  I may have to co-sign, however as he is still working a term position.  By then he'll have nearly 4 years in, and he must be permed up by the 5th year.  There has been some movement of those who are temporarily positioned outside his area...fingers crossed that every one is permanently moved so there is position available for him.

I've convinced him to wait until spring for selfish reasons.  I mentioned previously that I have booked two cruises for the period after I've left the office and before I officially retire at the end of January.  Just as a reminder, the first is in early December, a 10 day western Caribbean cruise out of New Orleans, with four days in NOLA before I come home, just a few days before Christmas.  The second is a 12 day out of New York to the southern Caribbean - lots of sea days at the beginning and end.

AND then...I found a 16 day re-positioning cruise on the Star Princess out of Santiago, Chile to Los Angeles, California in March.  The price was a steal even for someone travelling alone - just over 50% of what the same itinerary would cost on a different ship a week later..which wasn't a bad price itself.  Traditionally, re-positioning cruises are quite a bit less than the traditional cruises, I think because there are lots of sea days, less ports mean less port fees.  Still, there are sufficient ports on this cruise along with the sea days to make it interesting and enjoyable.  I've booked my air through the cruise line as I don't want to take the chance of not arriving in time and scrambling to get to the next port.  With Princess, if for some reason, the flights are delayed the ship will often wait or if that's not possible, they are responsible to get the guest where they need to be. 

By booking these cruises, I've taken care of most of the winter.  I suspect I'll hate the almost two months of cold weather between my return from New York and my departure for Santiago.  But there will be much to do, with readying the house for sale in the spring so I'll stay warm indoors. I'm thinking the for sale sign should go up by the beginning of May but if it is a few weeks later that will be fine.  To be honest I'm not really in a hurry to sell - the more I pay off the mortgage the more I should be able to get out of the sale proceeds.  There have been three houses on the market (with a fourth sign go up this week) in this particular neighbourhood.  Of the three, two have sold within 2-3 months, while the 3rd is my next door neighbour.  I think they are over-priced in this market and have had one price drop thus far.  Based on the size, location, and upgrades I suspect they will need to come down quite a bit more.  I do know they spent a pretty penny putting in a new driveway and garage floor but I doubt they'll recoup those costs.

I'm not making any definitive plans beyond spring 2019.  When I move to the island is truly dependent on the sale of the house, my son finding a condo of his own, and the availability of property where I want to be.  There was a perfect condo that went up for sale this summer, but of course, I'm not ready.  Hopefully when I am ready I'll find something similar.  

In the meantime I'm enjoying the time I get to spend with Eli.  At this moment, he's off visiting with his mom at a friend's home.  They had planned to go to the spray park but her 2 1/2 year old woke up with a cough this morning.  She also has a little one a month or two older than Eli.  I bet they are having a blast!  

The little stinker has learned some new tricks this week.   On Thursday, D called me at work to tell me that she heard some noises in the kitchen and went to see what was happening.  She found Eli sitting on the table eating from the cat food dishes!  We had been putting the dishes on the table out of his reach.  No they are on the counter, which so far he hasn't figured out.

From these photos you can see he has mastered climbing onto the chair.  From there it is an easy transfer from the chair to the top of the table.  

His mom scolds him, saying "feet don't belong where we eat".  He doesn't seem to care...but of course, he has his own high chair with a tray.  

His climbing doesn't end with the kitchen table though.  He discovered that if he moves a stool to the back of the couch, he can climb over the back, onto the couch, scoot off the front of the couch, race around to the back and do it again.  And again, and again, and again.  It's quite the game!

This little monkey has no fear.  

The other trick he learned is spinning.  He'll stand in the middle of the living room and spin until he's dizzy.  Then he tries to walk and it's a hoot watching him stagger around. You'd think it would be uncomfortable but he seems to enjoy it.  I've had vertigo before...I can state that I don't enjoy it at all. 

Okay, I've got my title now.  Things are moving along with D and Eli's move, the days are growing fewer to my vacation and retirement, and little Eli...well, he just getting bigger and smarter and if I say so myself, cuter by the day.

Have a great week everyone!

Sunday 12 August 2018

One day at a time

I started this post last evening after what felt like a very long day and a bit of a rollercoaster week. Today, I'm still feeling a little out of sorts but just the act of writing this out has been helpful.

I'm in a bit of mood tonight.  It is soooo hot and although I have air-conditioning, the poor thing seems to be struggling to keep up.  Of course, I keep it a few degrees above normal room temp so it is warm in here.  The poor cats are annoyed as the sun room has been off limits for the last few days and keeping out of the way of young Eli can be challenging for them.  He does love to chase them, especially Sheldon, and fails to respect nap time.  

As frustrated as they are with Eli, I am with my daughter.  I arrived home this morning from Saskatoon (more on that in a moment) to find that my garage is chock-a-block full of stuff.  There is more crap than was there a couple of weeks ago even though D has assured me she has been getting rid of stuff!  When the door opened, there was barely space to walk through to get to the inside door.  She has been painting again, spray-painting that is, this time a lamp for her bedroom in Melville and another coat on a table for Eli.  She was so proud that she'd found cardboard to contain the paint...until I pointed out the large splotch on the driveway.  Sigh....  Anyone know how to remove paint from concrete?  No worries, I'll google it.  

On a happier note, the sale of the house was finalized yesterday.  It was a bit of a scramble as the first mortgage company declined due to the age of the house so we had to start again with a second.  They needed some additional information, I was out of town, and for once in her life my daughter wasn't answering her phone.  I texted her to call me and found she was getting my calls but ignoring them as she was on the line with someone else.  She eventually called, and we were able to put the info together.  Then there was a glitch with the counter-offer as the previous owner has been renting it out.  The mortgage company wanted a notice to vacate - however the owner/tenant have nothing in writing.  He did re-word the counter-offer to indicate the property will be vacant on possession date.  He too, was out of town and the deadline to remove the conditions was yesterday.  It was tight, but in any event, it was straightened out and by 8:40 p.m. Friday I had the confirmation letter.  Another countdown ...55 sleeps until moving day. 

My trip to Saskatoon wasn't planned, but came about when my cousin E called to let me know her sister J had passed away on Monday morning.  J has been battling cancer for a number of years so it wasn't entirely unexpected but still sudden. She was only 57 years old and is the first of our generation of cousins to pass.

Actually, J is my second cousin, her father M is my dad's sister's son (or my dad's nephew if that makes it easier).  But my aunt married young, while my dad was in his 40's.  So M's oldest children, J and her twin sister (also J) are between my younger sister and younger brother in age.  They lived on the farm here in southern Saskatchewan, while we grew up on a farm in the north-eastern corner of the province.  As a result, we didn't meet until we were teenagers.  For some reason, no longer in my recall, my younger siblings and I spent a weekend at their home about the time the J's graduated from high school.  I don't remember if we kept in touch then...I'm thinking there may have been some letters back and forth but for the most part it was M and his wife who visited my parent's home.

J did attend my dad's funeral in 2008 with her parents, I saw her again at her  mom's funeral in 2012, and a year or so later when I was travelling to Saskatoon for work we met for dinner fairly frequently.  Once my work trips to Saskatoon ended, we kept in touch via Facebook, infrequent telephone calls, and a visit some months ago when J was here for an event for her niece.  I recall we had such a nice visit at dinner and she shared the book she had made for her family.  It was a scrapbook style, but published in a format that was professional and polished.  There were photos of various relatives including her grandmother (my aunt) that I'd not seen previously.  She had written the story of her parents from marriage through to great grandchildren.  I'm certain it will be treasured by all who received a copy last Christmas.

She was on leave from work due to her illness but looked healthy and happy.  We talked about her recent cruise with J2, her plans for future trips including one to Ireland, and family memories. In all of our conversations we never discussed her cancer.  I knew she'd been diagnosed (her brother T is close to my brother R) and she knew I knew but it was never something that either of us brought up.  When I left her at the hotel I told I'd be sure to be in touch and we'd get together again in Saskatoon but that didn't happen. There is definitely  feelings of guilt over that.  

Yesterday, I learned that she had a seizure earlier this year, and was subsequently diagnosed with a brain tumor.  Her original cancer was in the colon and she was close to 4 years into that battle.  She was hospitalized, refused radiation, but did agree to a gamma knife procedure.   After treatment J returned home, and she and J2 made a road trip to Ontario to visit friends and family in June.  In early July she had a PET scan and discovered that while the brain tumor had decreased in size, the cancer was back in her colon and had spread to her liver.  Even so, she was able to be at home until she had another seizure when she was moved to respite care.  After three weeks, it was decided she was well enough to go home again.  Even so, on Wednesday, she told her friend Linda she was afraid to go home and really would prefer to stay in the care home. 

This past Sunday, J2 arrived from Calgary and plans were made for her to stay at J's apartment with her for a period of time.  But on Monday morning, when she was walking into the home, she received a phone call to say that J had passed peacefully in her sleep during the night.  The family was told the staff had poked their head in the room a couple of times that morning, but thought J was simply sleeping as she preferred to sleep late.  I think it was as much a shock to the staff as it was to the rest of us.  

J was the oldest of 7 children, she never married, but had numerous nieces and nephews (including some grands).  She left home after graduation and moved to Saskatoon for school and never left.  She obtained her B.Ed but decided teaching wasn't for her and eventually found her way into communications for a couple of federal departments.  When I read her obituary I thought it truly captured her spirit so well, that I wasn't surprised to learn she had written it.  She also wrote a good portion of her eulogy, though as her niece said the family tweaked it.  There was some laughter and many tears shed yesterday.  

Let me say this, cancer sucks!  This is the third funeral I've attended this year and every one was due to a battle with cancer.  First was a co-worker who battled brain cancer for over 20 years. The second, was the stepfather of a friend who was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer about 2 years ago.  And, then of course, J.  I keep thinking that surely, with all the funding and research, there must be a cure soon for this insidious disease in all forms.  

Oh, and let's not get me started on gun violence, shall we?  If you haven't heard there was a shooting in Fredericton, New Brunswick yesterday.  Two civilians and two police officers were killed.  Why, oh why does this happen?  I have no answers.  We boast of stronger gun laws here in Canada, but the number of shootings resulting in multiple deaths keep growing.  

My brother, his wife P and daughter L are currently in Fredericton for a basketball tournament. Her team (Team Sask) were in the bronze medal game today; although they lost to Team Quebec to finish 4th out of a pool of 11 teams is pretty darn good in my books.  I'm so proud of L and all of her accomplishments.  She's a amazing young woman at the tender age of 15.

Speaking of proud, I'll end this post with another photo of Eli.  His mom took this photo of him after he climbed up on my chair.  He's holding the remote in his right hand and looking at a book of photos in his left.  He's often seen me reading in my chair and the remote is never far away...what a little mimic!

He's now 17 months old, 27.2 lbs in weight, and just a sweet little boy.  Not to say, he can't have temper tantrums and be a brat - that happens too!  But when I come through the door and he yells 'Ma-'Ma and comes running to me all of the frustrations of the day fall away.  

I'm reminded that even when we lose someone, life continues.  Finding those moments of joy, not only in memories but in the present is what sustains me.  I am blessed to have been part of J's life and equally blessed to part of Eli's.  

Despite the mess and chaos.

Have a great week everyone!

Sunday 5 August 2018

It's a waiting game

I'm one of those people....I hate having to wait for someone else to get back to me. I want to know now! Or better yet, 10 minutes ago.  However, with the long weekend, we're in a bit of a holding pattern with the house in Melville.

The broker found two different mortgage companies willing to finance the property. That was a positive as it more difficult to mortgage a second property, and especially one that is in a small town coupled with a low mortgage amount.  The interest rate is slightly higher, but just a 10th of a percentage point.  I've conservatively calculated the mortgage payments to be $120 bi-weekly.  It seems such a crazy small amount, but of course there are other costs associated with owning a property.

Oh, is that last statement true!  We had our inspections (mostly) completed on Friday.  D, Eli, and I drove up on Friday morning, arriving just after 9 a.m.  The selling real estate agent and the inspector were there.  She was busy putting pads on the bottom of the chairs and the table legs, while he was checking out the laundry.  Later, she left and he headed back down to the basement.  

I'm sharing a few of the cellphone photos D took - they are dark as her flash doesn't work since Eli threw it in the tub.  The kitchen is quite large but long and narrow.  The refridgerator is to the right of the sink, and the washer/dryer combo are directly across from the cabinets to the left of the stove.  That is a small deep freeze on the far left hand side.  

The flooring has been redone on the main floor with the exception of the bathroom and small porch.  The door you can see on the far left opens to the small porch with the bathroom to the left of that.

The wall between the kitchen and dining room/living room combo has been opened up (though the door to the original living room is still there as well).  

This photo is taken from the dining room into the small living room.  There would be more  room to get past the couch but the owner has an old grandfather's clock against the wall.  

D plans to turn the dining area in to a play area for Eli.  The current tenants are also using it for storage, so I suspect it won't look much different...though a little messier when Eli is through with it.  At the bottom right of the photo, they have a blender set up.  The little stinker figured out how to turn it on!  
He loved the space and ran back and forth between the rooms and then discovered the stairs to the second level.  

This is the view looking into the house from the front porch door.  The living room is on the left, the stairs on the right.  Being an older house, they are fairly steep and on his first foray, Eli was pretty cautious as he climbed (crawled).  But after he went up and down a couple of times he wasn't the least bit afraid.

I have no photos of the upstairs as the photos D took were just too dark.  It was clear the tenants have just moved in, and we were told they are there for two months for a firefighting course.  It was good to see their items in the room as it gave us a better idea of the size.  All rooms look big when empty, I think.

While the inspector completed his work, we took some measurements of windows, doors, the bathroom vanity and other spaces.  D's friend A arrived, and they took Eli outside where he ran back and forth in the front and side yards.  There was a pregnant kitty who came to check him out and the poor thing was chased about until she decided enough was enough.  

Meanwhile a locksmith came by to try to open the garage as it was locked and the realtor didn't know where to find a key.  However, he needed a drill that he didn't have with him, and the inspector had to leave so rather than go through the report, the inspector left it incomplete and headed out.  He was to meet with the locksmith today (though I've let him know Tuesday is soon enough) so I expect I'll hear more at some point.  

So the inspection report....I'm not entirely certain how much I can rely on it as he missed some things we noted - the flashing above the front windows and the broken window in the front porch for example, and put a lot of emphasis on the fact the house has sloping floors. He did, however, note there is some rotting at the bottom of the posts in the basement though assured me the house won't fall in on itself.  The plumber's report was separate and while I anticipated the recommendation to have a sump pump installed, there was one surprise.  Apparently when the water heater was put in, the chimney insert wasn't changed out to a smaller width as required.  The plumber doing the inspection was the one who installed it and he indicated the owner didn't want to spend the money.  I thought he would fail it, but he didn't....I guess he didn't want to be negative about his own work.  

I'm going to give him a call Tuesday morning and request an estimate of the costs to install both the sump pump and the chimney insert.  Maybe, just maybe he'll give me a bit of a deal?  At that point, I have a decision to make as depending on the cost I anticipate we'll be going back to the current owner for a price reduction.  I'm quite willing to share the cost, but I really think he should be on the hook for the chimney insert because he should have had the work done already.  If Google is right, the cost will be between $65 and $100 a foot - with a two story house it is going to cost a pretty penny.  I've been in touch with my realtor's co-worker (he's on vacation this week) and she is prepared to go back with a revised offer.  

There was also another surprise, this one a good one.  The inspector discovered that the entire house has been re-wired.  Between the new windows, the newer room (5-10 years), the furnace and water heater (10 years), and the wiring, I'm confident that much of the expensive repairs have been done.  Yes, there will need to be more money spent - I'd be foolish not to think so but I'm happy to know so much has been done to bring the house up to current standards.  

D is getting quite excited and packing is well underway.  The garage is starting to empty out of all of the extra items; although that is happening less quickly than I would like, she assures me it will be done in the 60 days or so before the move.  She's got a quote from a local moving company as well - we've used them before in the move to this house, the cost was reasonable and they were very efficient.  

So the finish line is in sight...


I've spent the rest of the weekend, thus far, doing regular weekend things - grocery shopping, laundry, washing floors (gosh this kid drops things and mashes them into the floors), and cleaning my bedroom and bathroom.  This morning I relaxed in bed and read with a cup of coffee.  My brother lent me a book he'd recently read, "The secret diary of Hendrik Groen, 83 1/4 years old".  The book was written by an "inmate" of a nursing home in Denmark - his word, not mine - about a year in his life. It starts off with the caution "Another year, and I still don't like old people." The almost daily diary entries are amusing, hilarious, sad, poignant, and sweet as he shares tales of bad food, the many complaints of the inmates, the escapades of the "Old but not dead" club, and the inevitable health issues that arise with age.  R brought it over on Friday and I finished it this morning - it's the first book in a long time that I've had difficulty putting down.    

We've been having lots of rain, but hopefully tomorrow will be clear and I can get out into the yard.  The lawn is in desperate in need of a mow and good weeding, and the containers need to be dead-headed.  I'm looking forward to the time when I don't have to squeeze chores into a certain day but can do a little every day (as long as the weather cooperates).

My wait won't be much longer though - just four months until the end of November!  The marble jar is looking very low.  

On that note, I'm off to make pasta salad for dinner this evening.  Have a great rest of the weekend everyone!