Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Moving Day

Last Friday was the big day, and it's taken me 'til now to get my act together enough to post. This by no means implies that I have everything put away, but just that all the key components to do this particular task are in place: coffee, connectivity, and kids occupied upstairs.

Friday was crazy, no doubt about it! But the chaos was mitigated by the many helping hands we were so fortunate to have. In addition to my folks and Gail's family, friends Shawn and Katherine (buddies from our 1st assignment) and their kids came through for the weekend. Not your average house guests...they busily worked behind the scenes to make things flow smoothly.

The movers called at about 8:30. They were at the front gate with a small truck they had used to scout the route. I had warned them the week prior that they were dealing with some small, winding country roads, and a long gravel driveway, so they were checking it out for themselves. The worst part of the drive is the final ten miles, especially with a large trailer! Mark went back down the hill in his truck to act as an escort car, warning oncoming traffic of the obstacle coming their way.

Here they come, up the driveway:

Cause for celebration!

They backed the truck up to the house:

Inside, everyone is ready to go:

We've shamelessly hypnotized the children, for their own safety, of course!

Here comes the first item...of 447!

The movers were able to set up a ramp from the trailer right to the porch. That saved many steps during the long, hot day, but the running joke was that if it weighed over 50 lbs, it was going on the second floor!

Shawn and Katherine actually smooth out every piece of paper to make sure nothing is overlooked. They are unpacking things I haven't seen in years. Did we really own not one, but two silver ice buckets?

We actually had the beds set up that day. Sleeping on our own beds after a year and a half--priceless!

Clearly still chaos, but I'm really liking how our stuff is fitting in to the big picture!

OK, time to feed the kids and myself, and get to work!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

The Icebox Cometh

But first, of course, I have to make good on my promise of showing the third and final (?) island color.

I am plenty happy with it. My concerns about too much of one thing, and grimy footscuffs are tabled for review at a later date.

So we have the arrival of the Samsung 26 cubic foot side-by-side. Big excitement in these parts. Check out how these guys are moving it--holding it between them with straps over their backs.

Here is Mark, explaining how this works. Thank you, Mark!

Naah, really, he was just as excited and amazed as the rest of us.

Here's the guy explaining how, for $1,100, this thing will keep our stuff cold AND make ice!

And here it is "in situ".

You may notice the same thing my mother did: "Oh! It's white...".

Yes, the stainless would have been a little more attractive, but after I cover it with stuff, is it really worth the extra $$? I decided not.

And that's final!

Monday, July 19, 2010

On making decisions

We got the island painted the dark green color (actually two different dark greens). Here it is:

Bottom just wasn't doing it for me. I liked it, but something was off, and I couldn't put my finger on it.

Now, several of you (including my mother, who gets to see this all first-hand) let me know that you liked the color of the walls the best, and wondered aloud why was I off on this wild goose chase? Well, you monochromatic fans will be glad to know that the island will now be the same color as the walls. And my penance is painting it myself, even though Mark is a better, faster painter. Because he's already painted it one and a half times. Pictures next time.

Some of you also may have noticed that my father-in-law, Dick, using the sneaky pseudonym "Fran", left a comment casting dispersions on my ability to make decisions. Well, "Fran", let me just point out that for every one decision to make, I make five. And is five not greater than one? Therefore, I am a GREAT decision maker! Clearly!!

Now that we have that settled...on to my problem with the cabinet hardware. Because there is a problem.

Not that I don't love my hardware...I DO. But something just isn't quite right.

Overkill on the scoops?

Yes, I know I have lots of drawers, and perhaps that is the source of the problem, but I love drawers! They are so efficient. One movement, and you see everything! I had decided to put scoops on all drawers, and pulls on cabinet doors.

But the scoops seem kind of big for the smaller drawers, don't they? Especially next to my dinky wire pulls.

I could start by switching these two:

This is kind of a special case, because the bottom is a pull-out recycling center. Which acts like a big drawer, but I thought the scoop would look awkward. Now I'm rethinking that. But once I put that wire pull on the drawer, wouldn't it look nice to have all the top row drawers use the wire pulls? Kind of mix it up?

Part of the problem as well is that the pulls are kind of dinky, and the scoops are kind of clunky next to them. But I love them both! I have always loved the scoops, and the pulls are, to me, old-fashioned and farmhouse-y as well. And they have great clearance, keeping your fingers far from the cabinet face. See?

I love that!

Tune in next time to see how (or if) I solve this egregious problem. And to check out the final island color. How's that for a teaser, Corrie?

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Field Trip to Cat Haven

I've had the girls enrolled in a "summer camp" that consists mostly of crafty projects and free play. Last Wednesday, the group of us went to Cat Haven, a conservation outreach facility that houses many types of exotic cats. The Haven is located just west of Kings Canyon, so it is a beautiful setting. We saw about 20 animals, heard their stories, and really had a great visit, even though we had already started on our current stretch of triple digit temps. My nephew, Scotty, came along, which was a real treat for the girls...some serious hero worship there!

Here is the cheetah. Look for her in a future Adidas commercial:

A black leopard who used to work in Hollywood but had a disturbing habit of pouncing on men when they turned their backs:

A plains lion checking out a juicy morsel:

After the visit, we stopped for a cold one at a little country store. Note that Abigail is now missing BOTH her top sweet!

All in all, a great day!

AND we got word from the movers...our stuff should be here on Friday, the 23rd. Perfect!

Saturday, July 10, 2010

It's all in the details

As we head into the home stretch, we are focused on the details that we REALLY must (or want to) get done before we get our furniture. We anticipate the arrival of the household shipment around the 19th, so we have to be judicious in our efforts!

We were almost done with the hardwood floors when I took a break for my father's birthday (July 6th) and my 44th birthday on the 8th, and joined my family down at the lake. I came back home with the goal of finishing the floors on my birthday. Mark was a good sport and worked on other things until I arrived. See how patient he is?

Let me expand on that theme. Here is Mark holding up cabinet hardware for me. What an angel!

Can't he see the critical difference between these two?

Yeah, I chose the blackish black one, not the brownish black one. Clearly the superior color!

And speaking of color, I am once again deeply conflicted over paint choices. I chose a color for the island that was meant to add pizzaz, warmth, and panache. But now that I see it applied, I feel it is too much.

It makes the countertops look drab, which is not what they deserve! What do you think? I'm thinking maybe a dark green would do the job?

Maybe a dark, dark green?

Friday, July 2, 2010

We have a date (kind of)

Yesterday I got word that our furniture will be picked up from storage on the 13th of July. I'm assuming around the 18th (although it could be a little later), we'll be on the receiving end! Just enough time to be ready with a comfortable margin.

We have about two more days of work to finish up laying the hardwood flooring. It is absolutely gorgeous. Mark has been good about pacing himself, alternating work on the floor with other jobs, so he doesn't completely tweak his back. Unfortunately, he had a mole removed from the middle of his back this week, and that little extraction was more extensive that we had anticipated. Lots of stitches, and worse yet, no swimming or hot tub for two weeks! He doesn't seem to be bothered by the wound, but the hot tub and pool sure would be nice after a day of hard work.

On my short list...Must get cabinet hardware, so we can actually OPEN the cabinets to put things in!