Saturday, October 27, 2012

a mixed bag of goodies

                                         Paolo Nutini,Down In Mexico.(Originally by the Coasters)

I love Saturdays! I don't have to get up early, but I do... coffee and conversation with Jeff before he again tooled off to work. Then got busy gathering linens to be washed, pouring another cup of French roast in my cup, hunkering back down into the master bedroom to watch Blue Bloods, followed by The Good Wife on our DVR recorder. My Saturday morning routine is obviously underway.

As I was patting myself on the back on the success of storing our DVD's and VHS movies into the old hallway linen closet it dawned on me, as I was looking at a HUGE box sitting in the midst of the almost emptied living room, that holy crapola batgirl... there is one more BOX of VHS video's to go through!!!  Well, it's time to choose between more movies. Which go? Which stay. The bright note on all of this is that I have one upper shelf in the linen closed that can be used for this, whew! I had wanted ALL of the movies in one place. I like it when a plan comes together. Guess I will be spending the rest of the morning doing this little project.

After work yesterday, dashed into Big Lots to pick up some black garbage bags, and while there cruised up and down the home furnishing aisles and let my imagination (which is considerable) go wild. I have come up with a VERY colorful interior design plan for the living and dining room reversals. Since the soon to be gray walls are neutral I'll be bringing in color with the area carpets, bench upholstery and chair fabrics to go with some of our more bold art pieces that we have stored. Even Jeff is getting excited. Well, you have to look beyond the glazed stare whenever I rattle the ideas off to him, but I know it's there. But, seriously he's onboard (it could be worse, he only has to paint the ceilings while I paint the walls, door jambs, baseboards, et al. He's getting off lightly).

Next weekend I am goin' in... yep... the dreaded bank of wall-to-wall hallway closet space is going to have to give it up. Time to clear out and give away. More boxes are going to be needed (like I haven't seen enough of them in the past few weeks). Jeff is going to be sawing up firewood from the fallen tree in the front yard tomorrow. The excitement around here is palpable, can you feel it?

Later this afternoon will be working on Shutterfly w/ a new idea for our upcoming family vacation album. Might even throw in some afternoon reading and a movie curtesy of Netflex... livin' on the edge, it's moment to moment around here.


Before getting started... serious coffee is needed. Whatever you're doing this Saturday, enjoy!

Saturday, October 20, 2012

what's in your box?

It's a fabulous Saturday morning; temps are checking in the mid 60's range, blue skies, sunshine.

I just finished watching The Pioneer Woman while taking a break from decluttering our living room. 


And thought I would take this moment to blog before I become exhausted and collapse into a heap after decluttering the living room, then beginning on the hall closet. A glutton for punishement, no doubt....

                                     Carol Burnett Show dental skit starring Tim Conway & Harvey Korman

After a week that began with a dental appointment that morphed into a week of dental drama Hell, I couldn't resist the above skit. I mean, at some point, you have to be able to sit back and be able to laugh about it...

Up early with Jeff this morning before he toddled off to work. Watched Blue Bloods on our DVR recorder. I love their Sunday dinner scenes as they remind me of our family when everyone gathers together on holiday/vacations.

                                                   Blue Bloods, behind the Sunday dinner scenes

After Jeff left I got busy with more decluttering. I have another 2 large bags of DVDs for Amanda, this follows the other 3 bags she claimed. From there I scouted up
paperback mysteries for Jeff's mom and have filled a bag for her. I have another 2 boxes of books and 1 box of VHS videos for the thrift store. Although, I have to say, I am somewhat apprehensive about this. A few days ago, our niece informed me that a local police officer, had contacted her about books discovered with my name on the inside cover. He was concerned that they may have been stolen from us. I called and spoke with him and assured him that they had been donated to a local library. Apparently, a familiar homeless woman had been seen looking through these and had taken some books for herself. I didn't have a problem with that (I mean the point of donating books is for them to find their way into the hands of someone who wants to read them). 

At the moment our living room soon to be casual sitting room/dining room is looking like it exploded from the pages of Libya Home Magazine. Boxes, half emptied shelves... the indoor gang jumping into the empty boxes, then jumping out at me as I pass by on my way from one shelf to another, provide entertainment (like I don't seem them).

But, I am making progress... and should begin painting in November. We'll be celebrating a late Thanksgiving on my Sutter Creek birthday get-away w/ the fam, so I don't have to worry about holiday entertaining amid the chaos.

Time to get back into the living room and finish filling up the boxes with what, I think, will be the last round of decluttering for that room...

Sunday, October 14, 2012

to blog... or not to blog?

It's been a somewhat productive Sunday morning... Jeff and I enjoyed coffee while watching Meet the Press, then switched gears to listening to music w/brunch. We needed our strength to go over ballot proprositions- we completed our absentee ballots and felt a sense of having done our civic duty. How wonderful a priviledge is it to be able to live in a society where your voice matters?

Then it was on to watering my front walkway flower beds, boxing up more books (hard to believe, I know) as the indoor gang attempted to sabotage every effort to do so, jumping in front of me while I walked, jumping into the boxes, out of boxes- it was a pretty swell game while it lasted. Even Leif & Amaretto got into the act. I brought them indoors yesterday as they have colds, but apparently are doing much better today.  

Jeff and I have talked over room design for the living room. I've tried being conventional... and honestly, it just isn't in me. We no longer need a formal living room, so why have one? We have decided on a deeper, richer gray for the wall/ceiling color. With an emphasis on a bohemian 50's flair in ambience, not so much in actuality. It's funny what influences our designing concepts. One of my fav rooms, was my childhood girlfriend Barbara's mother's dining room, I still can clearly remember everything. It was elegant, great art on the walls, comfy, had wonderful French doors that led out onto the front foyer terrace where we would sit and play barbies or color for hours on end.  So, I am updating this to fit our living room. I mean, we love to entertain family and let's face it we're ALL foodies squared, so this will be a perfect fit for us. While our current dining room will serve as a transition space between kitchen and living room, now to be a dining/conversational sitting room.  It will be minimalistic in furnishings (which my son David will love), I've always had lots of furnishings well designed, so as to not look cluttered, but very casual. At long last he has brought me over to his side...  Or, perhaps it is just age... I've just grown tired of having to care for inanimate objects. I can be doing something else with my time (that I really enjoy
So, basically we're just going to have our long dining room table, church pew benches (I'll be reupholstering myself), a dresser/credenza will take the place of our current coffee station. I have 2 of my fav art pieces selected for this room, plus sculpture pieces, 2 Queen Ann antique dining chairs (that we have stored in the garage-- they're faded red w/ black leather seats which will add a splash of color. 2 area carpets to place on the hardwood floors that we'll be painting. Plus, grommit-styled draperies (to cover our large bowler bay window at night) should finish off the new space nicely.

Meanwhile, today... I have some reading planned. I began Robert B. Parker's Blue Screen which introduces the character of Sunny Randall, P.I. who is his Jessie Stone's Paradise police chief's on/off girlfriend. A light read and fast-paced suits my mood. But, first I'm in desperate need of lunch...

                                                                  Chicken Fried. - Zac Brown

Saturday, October 13, 2012

saturday musings

It's a tomato Campbell soup kinda day (w/coutons)... at least, that was my soup dujour choice. It's the perfect Saturday afternoon w/ a beyond wonderful autumn vibe. Interesting neighborhood sounds-- writing this blog in our den, I can hear the cheering roar of the soccer crowd (at the school next door to PAWS) and actually, if I were to walk over to the window I could view them bundled up in warm sportswear as well. The wind is loud. It's swirling through the trees before whooshing full force against our rooftop-- sounding like a distant surf.

Indoors, Waldorf is leading the indoor gang in a game of kitty soccer. The twinkling of the ball as it rolls over the hardwood floors is being followed by the sound of thundering paws in hot pursuit. Then SLAM! as either the ball or cat hits the wall, obviously, they have not purr-fected their soccer coordination as yet. It's a goal. Pun intended.

I've filled another 3 small boxes of books (donation). I'm making progress in this department. I just finished watching one of my fav designing partners on HGTV, actually, I record their show on our DVR, Home by Novogratz, weekly. Today's show was in rearranging a pre-world war NY city apartment w/ 3000 books (Jeff and I were close at 2000). Their design on the bookcases interspread w/artwork, et al, is pretty much what we have going on. So, it was interesting to see it in someone else's home.

                                               Home by Novogratz, a new book by Robert & Cortney

Today is kind of a mixed bag of writing, listening to music, watching TV, watering my flower beds, working on family genealogy, journal writing, blogging. Plenty of things to keep me occupied until Jeff returns home from work later this afternoon....

                                               You'd be so nice to come home to. - Jo Stafford.

Monday, October 8, 2012

holiday vibes

Haisley & Zach watching Tom & Jerry (this past summer).
It's a gloriously crisp autumn holiday morning. Jeff has tooled off to work, the indoor (and outdoor) gangs have settled down for their first nap of the day.
I managed to send off another 2 boxes (filled w/books) for the thrift store w/Jeff. It feels great to just get rid of them. Who'd have thunk? I have this serious emotional connection to my books and have always hated to part with them, apparently that phase is over. WE used to think as we came across books that we wanted to read, purchase them, place them in the library and we'll get to them. Then came the realization, that hey... we're getting older and by the time (we have time to sit and read) our eyesight will be shot and we'll never be able to lug the books off due to old age. That was aha moment as Oprah would say. And then there are miscellaneous things I've been saving for Dave and Amanda to give to them some day... well the same thought applies, with the added caveat, that they are not interested and are not going to want these items. So, over the next few weeks, Jeff and I will be clearing these off storage space in the many closets we have throughout the house, along with some artwork, etc. Zao Zing keepsakes, hello clutter free house.
Kick starting my morning (in a few moments) with a cream cheese pastry, steaming cup of French roast while I hunker down to watch 2 episodes of The Good Wife that were recorded on to our DVR. Nathan Lane (whom I love) is this season's new addition. Last season it was Michael J. Fox.
This afternoon I have a couple of boxes to sort through that Jeff placed on the patio terrace table for me to sort through. And, then I have reading on tap. Finished Robert B. Parker's High Profile, began Death In Paradise last evening.
A low key day is what I have on my holiday schedule. Whatever it is you are doing, enjoy!

Saturday, October 6, 2012

kickin' it into autumn gear

                                                                         Sway, Pussycat Dolls

It really is beginning to feel like autumn. The air is cooler and carries a soft breeze. That wonderful clear winter light (that I so love) is everywhere. And, if that weren't enough to celebrate, we have a long holiday weekend that is just starting. It doesn't get much better than this. What are your weekend plans? Murphys Grape Stomp is underway this morning-- always a fun event. We're skipping it this year and I already am missing the delicious apple pies that I buy (annually) to kick start autumn. (I'll have to tool over to Covers Apple Ranch to make up for this depravation).

 ... doing my golden-haired lab imitiation

What's on tap for today? Well, Jeff has today off, the first Saturday... in all honesty.... since I can't remember when. Today's plan is to clean out the garage. Actually, I'm kinda morphing into what Jeff always describes me as... his best friend. Man's bff is always known to have been a dog which I am identifying with more and more lately... a golden-haired retriever of sorts (which is not a bad thing) I just kinda sit and point at what needs to be removed (when Jeff is in doubt). He'll look back over at me, I point again, still sitting. Since knee surgery there is a limit to what I can lift... which is probably better for Jeff as I would normally be taking box after box down and saying toss this... and this... and this can go too, and don't forget this! My job (as Jeff kindly suggested this AM) is to bring my laptop, or a book, to the patio terrace table, in front of our backyard's tandem garage door, that swings open and upward, cat herding. Keeping the outdoor gang from entering, as inevitably, one of them always sneeks in and has to be rescued.

"Life starts all over again when it gets crisp in the fall."
- F. Scott Fitzgerald
And then there are books! I am continuing my process of clearing off bookshelves. Still working on the shelves in the den, but moving on this weekend, to the hallway and living room as well. WE have so very many books, which we both love, but... there comes a time to say goodbye and send them on to others who will enjoy them as well.
Plus, I stopped off at the Library this week, after work, and picked up 2 more Jesse Stone mystery novels by Robert P. Parker. (All of my fav authors are passing away.) I've just begun High Profile and then will read Death in Paradise (have the DVD and all the other Tom Selleck DVD's of this series). Something about autumn and mysteries; the weather is crisp and you can just hunker down into the storyline as the days shorten and the dark lingers into longer hours.
What I love about these mystery novels is Parker's dialogue; his play on words, absolutely masterful.  I have a few of Parker's Spencer novels, none of his Sunny Randol, but winter is coming and the library has a ton of them... these may just be my winter mystery series.

Benefit of the Doubt, Jessie Stone series featuring Tom Selleck.
Cannonball Adderly featuring Miles Davis, Autumn Leaves (1958)
In case you still weren't feeling an autumn vibe, thought I would close out this blog with this classic Autumn standard...