Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Late Spring Snow

It's a happy town here....
People smile on the streets 
and store owners take the time to visit as you check out.
There are so many conversations going on in the aisles of the Kroger
that it can be hard to get your shopping done!

There was only a small amount 
of good natured grumbling 
about the late spring snow.

The power stayed on.
Most of the kids were out on spring break anyway.
So what if we had to cancel our invitation to 6 friends 
who were coming over to play cards?

who could not appreciate the beauty of waking up to this?....

The fence posts all wore caps....

There were low clouds for much of the morning 
that hid the mountains
and made us concentrate on the beauty close at hand....
Yes, even the pile of construction debris
looked better!

Since I have no flowers or garden yet, 
I wasn't bothered by the late frost nipping vegetables or seedlings.

Zero complaints from this Louisiana transplant!

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Between Shepherd Ears.... Spring??

Didn't we have the first day of spring a while ago?

A gentle snow has been falling for most of the day.  

Joe kindly swept out the satellite dish for me, 
so I'm typing as fast as I can to get this post completed
before it fills up with snow again.
No wind and really not cold.
But coming down just thickly enough that we're in a white cocoon
with none of our usual views.

I love it and so does Atta....

She'd stay out romping and hunting rabbits all day if I let her....

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

The Desk Nook

In the 70's when I was in high school, 
my mother announced that my old bedroom furniture 
was in need of going to GoodWill.

I had recently gotten my drivers license, 
so she told me to go to Kornmeyers, 
 which was the large local furniture store in Baton Rouge,
and browse....
Get some ideas and then bring her for a "look-see" at what I'd found.

I'll bet she thought I'd lost my marbles 
when I excitedly drove her out the next week- 
not to Kornmeyers, 
but to two shabby and dusty antique stores.

I still have the four pieces we bought that day....
a dainty mahogany four poster bed, 
a sewing table/nightstand, a bookcase, 
and an oak roll-top desk.

Last week Joe and I set about reassembling the desk.
It unbolts in order to come to apart in 5 sections, 
and had been dismantled since the move from Louisiana.

There are hidden drawers.....

(supposedly all roll tops have several hidden compartments)

And since it's "original" there are plenty of scratches and mars.

But it's as solid as a tank
 and has room to spare for all of my stationery, papers and desk tools.

At 4' wide and 3' deep, it takes up a lot of real estate,
so I decided against putting it in the downstairs study
and making it share space with Joe's desk.

And truth be told I wanted a space of my own too. 
So I'm making my "office" in the alcove at the bottom of the staircase.
Nothing on the walls yet and I'm looking for a rug, but
here's my nook.....

No more blogging from the sofa, easy chair or kitchen island!!!!

That's the door to the basement storage room
so I'm tucked away and not really in the hallway.
I can roll my chair back a few inches, 
 to look through the center hall glass doors and see the hills.

It may be an antique,
but it isn't stuck on needing carbon paper or an inkwell....

It can handle the latest fashions with style!

Friday, March 15, 2013

Hello Old Friends! The Books Are Unpacked!

We're back to being paying customers of the electric company!
After 5 nights and 4+ days with no electricity, 
the bucket trucks "found" our road 
and quickly had our electric meter humming again.

It came back on about 2 hours 
before 15 people arrived for a potluck dinner and meeting;
talk about good timing!

How about a house update?
Look what came out of hiding last month!
The books!!!!

It looked like a Barnes and Noble 
exploded in the downstairs hallways
as I sorted and unboxed....

The fiction books claimed the stairwell.
Yes, I arranged them in alphabetical order by author....
Go ahead and laugh!
There are still about 30 novels residing in the To-Be-Read stack
which has been growing faster than it's been shrinking.  :)

They keep following me home!!  
My first job post-college was as a buyer for a local independent bookstore.  
I loved that job.... until it was sold out to Books-A-Million,  
Though I'd have officially been a manager with BAM,  
I thought of it as taking a demotion.
I enjoyed the decisions involved with buying
and the interaction with the publishers reps;
becoming an "unpacker" of books sent via a corporate office 
wasn't my idea of a rewarding job, 
so I reluctantly changed careers.
Just think how many books 
I'd have if I'd been working at bookstore for the past 35 years!

Decisions, decisions while arranging the nonfiction....
 Should Out of Africa go in Memoirs or Adventure/Travel?  
Does a book about historic barns belong in the section for Architecture or Horses?  
The blue tape in this photo is covering up the hole for the second return air grille.
One of the grilles arrived warped and needed to be returned; 
Noel decided that walking about within the ductwork of the house 
(between the floors!)
was just the adventure for a little tabby cat.

The creaking and noises had us flummoxed for several hours
before we realized that she was awol 
and cruising in the ducts!

Once we'd fished her out,
we taped up her access route to the hidden world!

The children's books 
as well as the Civil War history books of my father's.
are still boxed up waiting for shelves
.... and grandkids?  

I've had free time to read again since the first of the year
so the To-Be-Read stack is starting to dwindle!

You know what that will mean?? 
Time to get more books!!

Friday, March 8, 2013

A Powerless Feeling

We had dinner with friends in town on Tuesday night 
and when we left to drive home, the snow had just begun.

By the time we were 2 miles from home it was falling so thickly that we could hardly see to drive!

We woke up to a beautiful sight of  8" of lovely snow blanketing the fields and house. 
We took Atta on one long walk down the lane, 
but otherwise it was a perfect day to stay holed up inside 
and enjoy the view from the comfort of the house.  

Do you want to know one of my favorite things about the new house?

The generator!

Yes, after just a few hours of snowfall,
 our power went out and it's still out three full days later!

The generator is big enough to run the sewer (VERY important!), 
well pump (almost as important!),
 a hot water heater, the refrigerator, stove, microwave,
 a few wall outlets (the coffee pot outlet!)
and scattered lights here and there in the house.  

Despite the fact that we can't run our main heat, 
the house is staying at a constant temperature 
with just a little help from the space heaters,
that we're turning on and off throughout the day.

So we're warm and comfortable and not lacking for much.

I'm not crying yet over the fact that I can't do laundry and vacuum!  :)

According to the BARC website there are only a few hundred people left without power,
but I refuse to complain.
It could be much much worse and we've very fortunate!

Off to bed....

My fingers are crossed that the power will be back on tomorrow!  

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

February Catch Up... Back to Louisiana

I've let most of February and some of March 
slide into memories without a post, 
so I'll indulge in an ancient history recap that hits a few highlights. 

February saw us reconnecting with life at our church.  
The necessity of painting and staining on Sundays was past 
and it was time to get back into the groove of regular attendance plus
and taking part in special services and talks.
Atta in the Church Courtyard (Last Fall)
Sure enough we're hearing quite a bit of "Are you folks new or visiting?"
It's pretty embarrassing to reply that we've been members for almost 18 months!  

While everyone in Louisiana was celebrating Mardi Gras, 
I went to a Shrove Tuesday brown bag lunch. 
Poor Virginia.... 
Shrove Tuesday with it's pancake suppers is a sad substitute for Mardi Gras! 
Sunset from the Kitchen Window

We're still unpacking and working on the house, 
but we're finding time to cook up a storm in the kitchen in order to have friends over,
play cards, go to concerts and talks
and in short do everything we'd like except ride our much neglected horses.
Hopefully this will be the month that we'll make time to get back in our saddles again!

Proving that you can indeed "go home again" (or at least almost home again),
I made a solo trip back to Louisiana in February 
for the annual high school "girls" weekend at Carol B's camp.
Field at Carol B's Camp
I missed last year's reunion and haven't been back to Zachary since the move, 
so I stretched the weekend into a full week's vacation!

Flying INTO New Orleans on the day after Mardi Gras 
is a sure way to score a last minute cheap ticket!

It was a week long virtual marathon of eating 
(BBQ, catfish poboys, crawfish, beignets, trout.....)
and talking until I was hoarse.

I haven't stayed up until 1-2 AM so many nights in a row since I was taking finals in college!

I truly regretted not having time to see more friends.
But I hope everyone knows that the planes fly both directions!
And I'm sure I'll be back.

I was so busy that I rarely remembered to get out my phone or camera for photos.
So no photos of people here, because like an Oscar speech, 
I don't want to be guilty of leaving anyone out!
Eye of the Donkey @ Ada's
I didn't go by the old house. 
Although I'd come 1,000 miles, 
I stayed in the front of the neighborhood 
and didn't venture that last half a mile down our old street....

I'd be delighted to hear from the new owners, 
but they haven't contacted us, so dropping in or planning a short visit wasn't an option.
And besides, this trip was all about reconnecting with friends,
not visiting my camellias!

Hmmmm, guess they aren't "my" camellias anymore!

I did a lot of wheedling and twisting of arms 
trying to convince friends to visit us here in Virginia
Time will tell if I was successful!

The forecast is for snow tomorrow!!! 
I'm about the only person in the county who is thrilled 
because I still feel that my winter experiences here have been shortchanged!
Three measly snows does not a Virginia winter make!