Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Retire, what's that?

Thankful that I like the colors that I picked out for the bedrooms.  Got rid of the dark peach and blood burgundy combo in the master and went with a soft peach on the walls and ceiling.  Looks nice.  I just need to get rid of the ugly brown ceiling fan.  It needs a white fan with frosted dainty globes.  I will wait until Wayne comes over the holidays to change that for me.
The spare bedroom which is just the same size as the master (small) was painted half in blue, half in yellow with a 6 inch wide of flowery wall paper around the middle.  Ugh.  It wasn't me.  I painted it a  sage green.  I used a blue border around the window pane since it has a blue shade in the room.  It looks really nice.

The guys that dried the floors never put the closet doors back on.  Thankfully the contractor that is doing the drywall put them on for me the other day.  I was using a lantern for my bedside light since I couldn't reach the wall outlet because of the closet doors covering it.  I think he (the contractor) felt sorry for me.  He said he would paint one wall in the living room that has some sun bleaching from where the previous owners removed their bookcase.  He said, "I'll roll it for free for you."  Big thank-you.
The contractor that is doing the excavating behind the house knows the contractor doing the drywall.  Both recommended the "same" people to put in carpet for us.  That was a huge relief.  Home Depot was monkeying me around.  They wanted $30 per room to move furniture, $50 to measure, etc. etc. The other carpet place in town…well, the guys are all older than I am and really could care less if they make a sale or not.  Very strange.  The new people I called said they would be here Monday to measure.

We may remove a couple of big trees behind us.  I tried not to move any, but we really need a bit more room.  Steve was going to hand cut a path to the garden from the flat area above for parking.  I said, Bull doze it (forget the hand cutting) and while you are at it, get rid of that pampas grass.  Done deal.  That pampas grass was already becoming a thorn in my side.  I'm not fond of taking care of it.  Plus, it was right in the way of the path to the house.  Now we have have 3 humungous piles of brush, etc. to burn back there in the woods come October when they lift the burn ban.  Plus, I must have over a cord of wood to cut up.  Unfortunately, the gas chain saw is in California.  Of course :0(

The culverts are in place on the road.  The drive is still going to be a bit steep, but at least there will be a level area to park.  All of a sudden after walking it a few times I got the bright idea to make it a circular drive above.  I'm glad I did.  Now I don't need to chop those couple of big firs. I think it is going to be so much better! I took all of this on by myself, but I'm sure Wayne will be happy to see how much work has been done and happy to have a place to park!  Next week the gravel will be laid down.  And, actually from our back acre you can SEE the water.  Too bad, the previous owners didn't put the house back there.  Odd.  But, I'm not complaining, we got in here for a good price.  We are the shack on the corner among the million dollar homes :0)

Pretty amazing when you think that you couldn't get through these woods without a machete.  Look at it now!  The path straight ahead leads right to the side of the house.

I really need to step up the search for work next week.  The dogs are pretty settled in now.  I am fairly settled, other than losing the diamond rings and not being able to find them.  I had my first interview.  It went well.  It was more like me interviewing them, so who knows, they might not call me back for a second interview.  I'm not sure I want that job anyway.  Lots of weekends and night hospice work and a ton of traveling.  I'm not sure I want to drive out to Forks at night to Ma and Pa Kettle's place in the boondocks.  Kind of scary. Know what I mean?

I will stop by the hospital in Port Angeles next week and see what kind of job openings there are, plus, I haven't gone over to the Olympic Medical Center yet.  With the dog being sick, the vaccinations, the drying of the floors, the fixing of the leak, the repair of the drywall, the painting, the excavating, the repair of the septic, the checking of the heat pump and now putting in carpet…..Lord knows, I need to make some MONEY.  Retire, what's that?

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Moving (dirt) on….

Still no drywall repair, no carpet, etc. as of yet.  Contractors ###***.  But, it's okay; it will all get done eventually.  It would just be nice to have some company while having a place for them to sleep.  What will be, will be.  C'est la vie.

Meanwhile, I hired an excavator (whom I really like) to start using some heavy equipment up behind the house on the back acre.  Even my neighbors were surprised to see how much land we have back there.  The timing was right.  The neighbor above me on 5 acres used a back hoe to go along the metal stakes that mark our property lines last week.  That gave me a walking path at the top of our acreage.

Property line

The brush is so dense you would have to use a machete every step of the way.  Steve (excavator) works for Legacy Homes here in Sequim and we looked at every possibility for the top acre.  We aren't just clearing a little park like area, we are trying to have somewhere to park our extra vehicles!

Our drive way is asphalt, but is on a steep incline.  So, this is where I have been parking my truck and van.  Yes, we have a garage under the house, but for now it houses a small trailer and my riding mower, and lots of unpacked boxes.  The VW is the only vehicle we have that fits in the garage.  Wayne has my VW in California.
Plus, the walk up from my truck to the house with groceries, etc. is a killer.  I'm sure it is a great "thigh master," but it's starting to get a bit old  (or I am) if you know what I mean.

When Steve is finishes excavating above, he will cut another 6 feet here where the truck and van are parked.  I can maneuver fairly easily backing both into the tight spaces, but doubtful that some my friends could…hahahaha  Plus, I am running 100 feet of extension cord to the house from my RV to keep it plugged in.  A rather large pain.  You can see it next to the lava rock wall.

Even the land below the van and truck is sloped.  You may wonder why we wouldn't excavate down there?  Because I don't want to be looking at a parking lot.  That's why :0)

So we decided to do something with the acre plus above the house.  Wayne already did a little excavating on his own while he was here with an outback brush hog which you can see as the clearing behind the kennels.  The excavating is taking place behind the big firs and madronas.

Private drive (Elk Heights Trail) going up towards my three neighbors above us.  The houses above us have views of the water.  Steve thought we might be able to see the water once he got through the brush.  I don't think so. Those are the culverts (40 feet) that will be used in the ditch to catch the winter rains.  We have them at the beginning of our driveway, too.

Steve taking a look-see.  probably a bigger job than he or I imagined :0(  The nice thing about Steve is that he is very ecology minded.  We are trying to leave all of the BIG trees.  He also trying very hard not to disturb the big trees root systems.  I really don't want one of them falling on the house because some are about 100 feet tall.  I don't want to blog about having a tree come through the back bedrooms.

After some 9 hours of pushing dirt and piling HUGE burn piles of brush.  This is the lower part of the acre.  Steve excavated the upper part, also.  I have some burn piles ready for October.  Should be quite the bonfire.  Burn ban until October.  We will blaze a trail from the level area where we can park a few more vehicles to the house.  The trail will lead right to my upper garden area.

King of the back hoe :0)

Thursday, July 24, 2014

The Ups, The Downs

Most certainly, moving to Washington while my husband moved back to California has been a journey of laughs and tears, frustration and satisfaction, etc. 

I needed help to get the riding lawn mower running.  I needed new U-joints on the Avalanche truck, had a flat tire having to buy 2 new tires, and had to drive to Port Angeles to get the parking brake fixed today.
The RV/Van needs to be plugged in in order to keep the battery charged.  That took me buying a new adapter for the 30 amp to the new 100 feet of 10 gauge electrical wire to be able to feed it all the way up the hill to the garage to get electricity.
The house is still in disrepair from the plumbing leak that St. Farm wouldn't cover because it wasn't sudden and catastrophic.  I have been living on bare floors with carpet tacks where the carpet used to be, plus several walls are gone waiting for the contractors to fix the drywall.
I didn't understand about heat pumps.  I now have learned they cool also.  Mine was making a huge buzzing noise vibrating through the garage.  I called our Home Shield house protection.  They said the heat pump is just old, but it still works.  I had to pay them for coming out, but they would only replace it if it didn't work at all :0(
The sewer is a whole new type of system to me, too.  A whirring chirping outside has been going off at odd times of the day and night and I have to go out and reset the alarm.  I called a sewer company and they have referred me to a plumbing company.
i called a fencing company to get an idea what price a small fenced yard would cost for the dogs.  It was outrageous.  I will have to wait until Wayne moves up here permanently to help with fencing.
Meanwhile, though all of this, fans from Service Master drying the wet walls and floors and me sleeping in the living room, the spare room, and at the campground, 

Wayne sent me my mother and grandmother's diamond rings.

Oh yeah…and Champ, he almost croaks after 4 days at Summit hospital with leptospirosis.  All 3 dogs had to receive pills morning and night twice a day while I had to be sure I washed my hands 100 times a day and followed all around with a clorox bottle.

Meanwhile, the diamond rings.  They are heirlooms.

I don't wear any rings, but I so wanted my son's wife to choose which diamond ring she would like as a Christmas present this year when they come home from overseas.  
I can't find them.  I have looked everywhere.  I have spent a week crying, losing sleep, and tearing this place apart.  I have crawled around on the floors with carpet tacks with a flashlight looking.  I have prayed and talked to my Mother whose birthday was July 23rd.  Still NO rings :0(  I feel like such a schmuck.  I don't think anyone would take them.  They are in a black plastic film can.  I have been cleaning madly.  There could be a chance I accidentally threw them away with all of my cleaning and garbage.  God, I don't know.  I just can't remember where I put them.  But, I finally had to let it go or I would lose my mind totally.

So, that's what led me to the above saying that I saw on Facebook today.  Lots of us smile big…. happy to be alive, but still have just as many problems as everyone else.  It's just how you deal with those problems and how you let it affect the way you live your life.
I have apologized to my son who is overseas in Japan.  If they ever show up, it will be such a blessing.  But, I can't continue to beat myself up.  The last couple of months have had many highs and many lows.  I'm sure my mental alertness has not been operating on full capacity.
So with much sadness, I bid those heirloom treasures good-bye and I will move on.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Lavender festival

No, I didn't ride my purple bike to the festival, but it was close enough, I could have ridden my bike.  Instead, my neighbor offered to show me around.

Jimi Hendrix was rocking at the Purple Haze Farm.

Rows of purple and white lavender

Now we are talking.  Lavender gin and tonic please.

This rental is available by the weekend or week at the Purple haze farm.  The backside has a nice patio, spa and barbeque.  Too scared to ask what it rented for!

Out in the middle of someone's lavender fields was a unicorn :0)

A lavender drink and a very tasty lunch!

Some lavender was deep purple, some purple-blue.

Poppies do very well here in Wa.  I love the red poppies, plus they bloom for MONTHS.  In CA. they bloom only for a short period.

I found a little buddy.

Each farm had food and art and crafts booths, music, etc.

This lavender farm was close to the Dungeness spit.

Kitty stopped by Fat Cat lavender farm at my request.  This farm is an acre or two away from where we put a bid on 13 acres.  Then, we backed out thinking it might be too good to be true plus, it was going to be HELL to try to get a "land" loan.  Plus, we would have had to refinance out home in order to do it.  Too bad.  We drove over to the acreage.  I loved it.  Even if we just got it for investment purposes.  But, no can do until the Green Valley home sells (whenever that will be)  Beautiful area.

Fat Cat farm

I believe those are purple poppies which I have never seen before!

Fencing around the garden areas to keep the quackers OUT.

I don't know the name of these blue flowers, but I loved them.

Kitty has chickens. She was much braver than I about going up to this rooster.  The last encounter I had with a rooster was at Fido Farms and I am still having nightmares about him.

The Millers at Fat Cat offered us some Strawberry Rhubarb pie and ice-cream which we ate around this picturesque pond.

The gardens behind Fat Cat farm.  So beautiful.

Just a pretty photo of a chicken.  The end.  Great day.  Loved the farms and the festivals and all of the wonderful people of Sequim!