Wednesday, July 11, 2012

A novel, stitching and a giveaway


Long time no blog.  I've discovered that the longer a person waits to blog the harder it is to blog again.  Thoughts run through your mind and you can't decide whether you should spill everything that has happened over the course of the 6 weeks of silence or pretend you haven't been absent and just jump in with both feet.  Or perhaps you try for middle of the road and just hit the highlights.  I have a hard time with the middle of the road part, I tend to be an all or nothing person. Just jumping in doesn't feel right to me and writing a short novel on the perils and pitfalls of life in the McConnell household could send what followers I still have running for cover!  So once again here I sit trying to decide how to proceed.   After pondering for a bit I think I will just write what comes to mind and see what happens.

When last I blogged, we were trying to get the guest bathroom repaired and put back together before Adam and Marcia arrived.  This turned out to be a complete nightmare.  I'll try to be brief...eta: Ha!  like that will ever happen!

1.   Plumber arrives to replace tub.  Cuts old tub out, installs new tub.  Informs us that it wasn't actually the tub   that was leaking.  Toilet just needed re-seating.  Too late now! I just love throwing away money on things that don't need doing.

2.    New tub makes weird noise when you step into it and wobbles a bit.
3.    Tile guy came out, measures, will get us an estimate but can't do anything until the problem with the tub is fixed.

4.    Call plumber, they come out, tub must be replaced.

5.    Dan and I go order our chosen tile.  OUT OF STOCK ~ 10 weeks till it would come in.  
6.    Choose 8 different tiles to bring home over the course of the next couple of days.
7.    Only 1 of the 8 is in stock but it is 3 times the cost of the one we wanted. Can't do it.
8.    Plumber installs 2nd new tub.

After 2nd tub installed
9.    Try yet another different place for tile, find one similar to original, all in stock.  YEAH!!
10.  Call tile guy with new tile sizes.  Wait for estimate.
11.  Call tile guy again.  Still waiting for estimate.
12.  3 days later and still no estimate.  Call another friend who has a tile guy she likes.
13.  New tile guy calls (we'll refer to him as A), comes out and gives estimate on the spot. Says his brother (we'll refer to him as B) will do the actual job.  When asked if  B was any good was told better than A, has done it more.  Great!

14.  Flooring installation gets pushed back.  Just can't deal with both the bathroom and the kitchen.   Installation of tile begins.  I do not look at progress as I want to be surprised.  Take it from me...don't wait.

15.  Tile guy finished, wants money.  Leave work to come home and inspect the job and get a sick feeling in my stomach.  Refuse to pay tile guy.  Call friend that recommended  tile guy and ask if she can come look at it to see if I am being too picky.  Head back to work.

16.  Return from work to find shower covered in pink sticky notes pointing out all the bad spots.  Seems I am not being too picky.   Discover that toilet is leaking again, this time from the seal on the tank.  My guess is B had a hand in breaking the seal.  Has leaked through to the kitchen ceiling.  Good thing we hadn't repaired it yet.  Dan bought a new seal and got it fixed when he came home that evening.  

17.  Partner of A comes out (we'll refer to him as C) to inspect the job and collect money.  I tell him we have a problem and show him the shower.  After looking it over thoroughly, he asks us what parts we could live with and what we would need to absolutely have fixed.  There was no way to fix it completely without a complete tear out and we are now 4 days away from Adam and Marcia's arrival.  C also informs us that this was B's first solo job.  Really?  News to us since we were told he was experienced.  I could spend a lot of time on what went on here but you don't need all the gory details.  Suffice to say we agreed on what needed fixing and C supervised while B fixed, this took another 2 days.  They did not reduce their fee. At this point I just want them gone so I paid them and showed them the door.  

New tile
The tiles have a metallic sheen to them and in certain lights you can see the blue that you see in the picture.  I am thinking of painting the walls a pale shade of the blue. 

18.  Called the plumber the day before Adams arrival to finish the installation of the faucets. Shower is now usable.  But no time to paint or make it look like nice.  Walls are beat to crap from the repair of the tile.

As if this was not enough to deal with, during this time period my father also had surgery and as a result of the surgery he had pneumonia.   He's fine now.   The air conditioner broke, got it fixed.  Dan had to replace 2 tires on his car.  Dan is also working on replacing all the woodwork on the main floor including the doors (bathroom, laundry room, basement and hall closet).  He managed to get 3 of the 4 doors replaced before the arrival of Marcia and Adam.  Still no molding though.  Another incident during this time involved the piano tuner.  I pissed him off but good.  We had scheduled the piano for a tuning and a cleaning back in January but if you will remember that far back, Gracie was ill at the time and I couldn't afford it so I needed to re-schedule and it was June before he could come at a time I could be here.  Normally he gives me a call to remind me he's coming the next day only he didn't and with everything that was going on it just wasn't on my radar.   So when the doorbell rang I was just about to head to work.  I answered it and when I opened the door and saw him I said shit!    I explained that I was on my way out and besides, you couldn't get to the piano due to all the boxes that Abby had piled up around the piano, because the other thing that was happening during this time was Abby moving out. She had boxes packed and piled up all over the house.  It was a mess!!   He tried to tell me he could crawl over and around the boxes to do the tuning.  And maybe he could have but here's the thing.  The.dude's.blind.  Literally.  I did not need a lawsuit because he fell and hurt himself.  So I said I was really sorry that I had forgotten, explained about my dad's surgery being the day before and how I must have missed his reminder call.  He admitted to not calling and tried to tell me he never gives me a reminder call (total lie on his part).  Then I explained again about  the boxes, my not needing him to get hurt crawling around  etc. and that it just wasn't going to happen that day.  He took an attitude with me and demanded I pay him the full amount for the tuning.  By this time I was angry and said fine I'll give you a check how much do you want, he tells me and then says he'll apply part of it to the bill when he comes to do the tuning.  I told him that wouldn't be necessary as I would find another tuner, he started huffing and puffing and then finally left.  So now I have to find a new piano tuner.  My bad.

Adam and Marcia arrived on a Tuesday and that next week was spent cooking, cooking and more cooking.  We got to know Marcia a bit better and I think she had a better impression of Nebraska than she got back in January.  She and Adam make a cute couple and it's obvious that they love each other very much.  I might not like the fact that he lives in D.C. but I'm happy that he's happy.  

Adam and Marcia
As for the last 2 weeks that I haven't blogged, blame it on procrastination.  Decompressing from the month before or just plain laziness on my part.  Take your pick.  

Other random bits from the time of silence:

Amy got a black eye.  I'm not supposed to say how it happened, let's just say Amy v. Shampoo bottle.  Shampoo bottle won!

Abby and Jordan broke up.  He needed space.  She is coping as well as can be expected.  

Dan's mom was diagnosed with breast cancer, has had her surgery and is doing well.  Prognosis good. 

Dan picked up some contract work with his old employer.  The extra money will be nice. 

Work has been busy but not as busy as it has been which is good.  I can almost see a light at the end of the tunnel.  I've had an idea for our Spring retreat but am still pondering it a bit.  Trying to flesh it out so to speak.  And I've done some stitching. Not as much as I might have liked but still progress is being made.  

My parrot's tail feathers are almost done now.  That leaves just some flowers and leaves.

I've worked on Coverlet Houses some more.

I started this design from Jeanette Douglas, the name escapes me at the moment and it's a chore to climb over all the furniture to find the pattern right now.

I started and finished this design on July 4th.  It's from Threadwork Primitives and I'll make it into a pillow one of these days. 

And finally I have pulled the floss for one of my HAED's.  I'm missing a few skeins though and I have to wait for the silk gauze to arrive.  Yes, that's right, I'm thinking of doing it on 40ct silk gauze.  Insane I know but I want to at least try it.    

Also taking place right now as we speak, or as I type is probably more correct...the tear out of the kitchen floor.  They sent only one man.  At the rate he is moving it will be winter before he's done.  In truth he is supposed to be done sometime Friday. 

And that my friends catches you up on the time of silence.  I tried to keep it as short as possible but it's still a short novel in my opinion.  I hope those that stayed with me till the bitter end thought it was worth it.  And as a reward for sticking with me through the time of silence I am going to have a giveaway for one of my Scissor Beak Birds.  Just the bird, it does not come with the scissors or the thread.  It will arrive naked.  You may  have a choice of which bird you prefer should you be the winner.   

There are a few simple rules to follow.  

1.  You must be a follower
2.  You must leave a comment on this thread only.  Leave a name and a contact email if you can not be reached through a blog. 

3.  You will have 48 hours to respond to the email I will send you informing you of your win, if I do not hear from you by then I will choose a new winner.

4.  The giveaway will end next Wednesday the 18th of July.  

That's all.  Not too difficult to figure out.  Thanks for reading and commenting and hanging in there with me!

Take care till next time!