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View From the Trail to Mount Colvin

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Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Thankful for a Good Night’s Sleep

What a difference a few hours make! Just nine hours ago, I was dragging after a long day of working and running around. Now I am all rested and looking forward to another day. And it’s a short work day – even better. Smile Both Harry and I are getting done work at 1 pm today. That makes today shorter than my Saturday is!! We will come home and throw our stuff in the car, and head out for my mother’s house. It is such a nice coincidence that the granite place is in the same town where I grew up. We can combine our visit there with a visit home.

I also love that we have the automatic pet feeder for the cats now. I don’t have to fill their bowls up with two and a half days worth of food before we leave. I think this may be the first time we’ve traveled since we got the pet feeder. It works pretty well – I just had to make a small adaptation to make it work a lot better. When it sat flat on the floor, like in the picture, the food dropped down but didn’t really move out of the little door that well. IMG_3495 See that round door cover? The food was getting stuck in there, so I kept having to stick a couple fingers in there and pull it out. A couple days ago, I had a brainstorm. I took a small binder, like you would hold paper in, and stuck it up against the wall, so the feeder now is on a downward slope. What a difference! The food actually falls right out now. I am so glad, because I was thinking that it wasn’t going to work so well even for a small trip. But now I don’t have to worry about the food getting jammed up in the opening. We also have found out that Harry’s son, Andrew, will be staying in the area for several months this spring. So I am hoping that he will be willing to take a couple trips over here during spring vacation to check on the cats. That will be one vacation down – only 3 more after that before we can start just taking them with us.

Ahhh, but I’m getting ahead of myself – back to the present and reality!! The next time I write, it will be from AuSable! Have a great day, everyone!!

Monday, November 29, 2010

Another Long Monday

Mondays are always long. I leave the house earlier on Monday than any other day. By the time I get home at 5:30, it’s 10 hours later. On top of that, today we had a few necessary items to pick up at Walmart. So after our dinner and a little bit of the news, we headed back out to the store (again!). We just arrived home about 15 minutes ago, and I am thinking about heading for bed, so this is going to be a quick entry!

Tomorrow we are heading north, and we have an appt. at the granite place on Wednesday to choose the granite slab for our kitchen. Pictures to come, of course! In love

Sunday, November 28, 2010

What a Great Day–Got So Much Done! :)

Today started off with a bang, bright and early this morning! We got up this morning and after having a cup of coffee, we headed back to Albany to take care of yesterday’s unfinished business. I bought my dress at Boscov’s and it opened this morning at 9 am. We were there shortly afterward, and made our way to the courtesy desk to have the ink tag removed from my dress.

Then it was off to another Home Depot.


This Home Depot had lots of closet pieces!

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Harry had his list, and was checking it twice. (Winking smile I couldn’t resist.)


We were able to find everything we needed for our upstairs closets. We then headed for home, and as it was nearly 10:30 by this time, we stopped at a diner near our house to enjoy a late breakfast.

However, our productive day was not over at this point. After unloading our car, we began to get out our Christmas decorations. What a project! I’m reminded of the saying – it has to look worse before it looks better.

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Ariel thinks this may make a nice hiding place…


And in one day, everything is done! All the Christmas decorations are out, the empty boxes are packed up and put away. What a great feeling!!

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Looks pretty nice from outside too!


Saturday, November 27, 2010

Hard to Find Closets

Before I mention anything else, I have to say, I LOVE my new Droid Incredible!! Open-mouthed smile I have been busily adding apps and attaching pictures to my contacts since we arrived home last night, and I stayed up much too late! If anyone is getting ready to upgrade their phone, the Droid Incredible gets a huge thumbs up from us. Thumbs up

Today was another jam-packed day. Work went by really quickly. That is definitely the best type of morning at work. Afterwards I headed home, changed my clothes, and we headed back out to brave the crowds at the mall in Albany. We were on two specific missions today. The first was for me to find something to wear to my company’s Christmas party in two weeks. It is a very fancy affair, and I don’t very often do fancy – sweat pants and jeans are more my style. However, we are going to the party this year, after missing it last year, so buying a holiday dress is a necessary first step. Well! I was so pleased, after choosing several possibilities and finding that the first one I tried on was comfortable and fit me really well. That was about the only thing that went right with our shopping expedition. There were several issues with the salesperson who checked us out. The final one we didn’t even know about just a little while ago – she left the ink tag attached to the dress!! Annoyed So guess what, we get to trek back to the mall again tomorrow.

Then we headed over to Home Depot to pick up the items for our closet. This time we were armed with a list that Harry made up after a lot of measuring and web page surfing. We still didn’t have any luck though, because they didn’t have enough of the shelving that we needed. By that time, we were both tired of fighting the holiday shopping crowds, so we headed home. So… tomorrow after we get my dress “de-ink tagged”, we will be heading to another Home Depot in Albany to see if we can find the supplies we need.

So, all in all, not a hugely successful day…but I sure do love my new Droid!! Be right back

Friday, November 26, 2010

Unexpected Black Friday Find

I didn’t expect to do any Black Friday shopping, but an unexpected encounter at the credit union where I work changed the day a bit. I had been planning to update my phone in January. This morning I was working with a couple members, and somehow the conversation turned to the phone purchase they had made before they arrived at my desk. There is a wireless company in the area that was having a Black Friday sale, selling Droids for much less than I expected to pay in a month. I let Harry know, and he checked it out and thought that it looked like a good deal. So Harry and I went over this evening, expecting to get a phone for me, and one thing led to another, and now both Harry and I have new Droid Incredibles. Harry is having a good time exploring all the apps and other fun stuff you can do with the phone, and after he figures it all out, I will have him teach me!! Be right back Other than that, it was a normal work day, and pretty quiet – everyone was at the malls and other stores looking for deals. Open-mouthed smile

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Thanksgiving 2010

Today was a wonderfully relaxing day. Both Harry and I were just as happy that we were staying put for the holiday.

We started off the day hanging out on the couch with a nice cup of coffee. Notice the not-so-nice temperatures we have coming up this week (although that 50 doesn’t look too bad if it actually ends up happening).


After breakfast, we started working on our dinner. Harry is in charge of the turkey.


Do you think this turkey will be enough to feed the two of us? Be right back



After our turkey was in the oven, we bundled up and headed out for our pre-dinner walk…


After an afternoon of relaxation, with a little bit of prep thrown in here and there, it was time for dinner!

Harry looks ready to enjoy!! Open-mouthed smile


Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!!! IMG_3726

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Short Work Day

I am happy to say that the marathon day is over. As expected, it was a long one. We ended up landing at home a few minutes after 8 pm, with a sandwich from Price Chopper for dinner. We usually eat our dinner around 6 or 6:30 at the latest, so we were very hungry and made short work of those sandwiches!

Today should be a much more relaxing day, although I am going to work for a few hours. The branch where I helped out yesterday is short a person again today, so I am giving up a little of my day off for a little extra cash. I could have worked the whole day, but decided that 5 hours was enough for me.

Our nice 60 degree temperatures of yesterday were short-lived, and today we are back to reality. Even so, I am going to plan on walking when I get home this afternoon. I did end up passing my goal of 180 minutes of exercise last week (by 5 minutes) but that is only the beginning. Now I have to keep it up!

We don’t have a lot of preparations for our Thanksgiving dinner. Harry and I are planning on a nice turkey dinner with all the fixin’s but it’s just for the two of us, so it should be a pretty easy dinner. Sounds like we may be getting some sloppy weather tomorrow afternoon, so I’m just as glad we aren’t traveling. Should be a very enjoyable and relaxing day. Smile

Safe travels today to anyone hitting the road!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Busy Day Ahead

Yesterday was the usual Monday – headed out to work early, came home, had dinner… By the time we were finished with dinner, I thought about posting but was too tired. I ended up going to bed early and was fast asleep when Harry came to bed.

Today will be another busy day. I do have a little extra time this morning though. I am going to help out at a different branch, and they open a half hour later. Smile After work, Harry and I are going to the Albany City Mission to serve dinners – it is something organized by my work, so several of my co-workers will be there as well. This is our second time going to the mission; now we know what we are doing so that is nicer.

We then have to deliver popcorn orders to our local boy scout troop. Harry has been “Popcorn Kernel” of their fundraising sale for many years. This is his final one. It has been several years since his son Andrew has been with the boy scout troop. (He has now graduated from Graduate School and is working for GE.) There are other fathers now with young sons in the troop who are interested in taking over this responsibility, so Harry is happily stepping down after this year’s sale.

Phew! This whirlwind day will go by quickly I’m sure. I guess it is supposed to be 60 degrees here today too. Unfortunately, I won’t be able to get out and enjoy it. Maybe a little will hang on for tomorrow. 

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Getting Something Accomplished

Today was so much more satisfying than yesterday in terms of having something to show at the end of it. We were up bright and early and waiting for the arrival of the Hickory Hill cabinetry rep.

I didn’t want to make the poor guy self-conscious, so I took his picture through the window. Flirt male


He brought all of his samples again, so we could confirm our choices from the previous visit.


Here is Harry checking out the address of the place where we have to go to choose the tile for our backsplash.


This is the sample piece of granite we have chosen with the type of wood we will have for our drawers and cupboards. We will be going to AuSable next week to pick out the actual piece of granite which will be used for our countertops.


Once I had given all of my required input, I headed out with my sister to a local craft show. Our best find was a new vendor from Alabama who was selling beautiful handcrafted mahogany baskets. Denise and I both gave in to temptation and bought several.

Here is Denise with her purchases.


This is one of the baskets I purchased. It fit the qualification for items that I buy now – it is useful, as well as decorative, and we will be able to use it when we move into the fiver.


Several times recently, I have been getting comments about the fact that after we make all of these changes, the house will be so nice that we will not want to leave! No worries!! Be right back Harry and I are both very excited about our future lifestyle of travel and exploration, (not to mention no more house upkeep and heading south for the winter) and we definitely see all of these projects as a mean towards that end. We are hoping that the upgrades will mean that when we do put the house on the market, we will not sit here for months waiting for a buyer. Fingers crossed We are glad that we are doing the kitchen upgrade sooner rather than later though, so we can enjoy it for awhile before we sell.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Whirlwind Day

Today was really busy, and went by very quickly. First I had my requisite five and a half hours of work. There were a lot of members coming in, and the morning went by like nothing. It seemed like no time at all until we were closing up and heading home for the rest of the weekend.

Harry was working outside doing some household winterizing chores. While he was finishing that up, I went for my walk. I did 5 laps today which was almost an hour of walking time. I am getting back on track! Harry finished up in time to walk for the final lap with me.

We then headed over to Home Depot for our shopping expedition. I am bummed because I forgot my camera – I was going to document our shopping trip. In the end, I would basically have been taking pictures of us buying nothing much at all! The only item we purchased was the dishwasher. Harry had chosen one online, but they didn’t have it there for us to actually look at. So we ended up ordering it. It will be delivered on December 18th. The best part about the purchase is that they are having a special with no interest for 18 months on appliance purchases, so we have a year and a half to pay for this dishwasher! That was the only success we had today. The faucets and showerhead that we had chosen online turned out to be only available online. And because it was only available online, we aren’t going to be able to use the 12 month, no interest promotion that arrived in the mail this morning. So that is a dead end. We have decided to wait and go back to our original plan, which was to buy those items sometime next year.

The other part of our plan for this afternoon’s trip to Home Depot was to pick up the closet organizer pieces for the two upstairs closets. But we didn’t have too much luck there either. In this case, there were too many options. After we started looking at all the choices for building a closet, we really didn’t know which pieces we needed to use, so we decided we had to do a little more research before we bought something. So we left the store pretty much open-handed. All we had was our receipt for the dishwasher! (Harry is looking at the Design a Closet section on the Home Depot site, so when we go back, we will know what we need to buy.)

After all of that window shopping, we were hungry, SO…yes I did get my trip to the Chinese buffet. Be right back

Phew, like I said, a whirlwind day! Now we are home, and settled in for the evening…

Friday, November 19, 2010

Getting Back To Business

Through some miracle, I have managed to maintain the weight I lost during my sickness and recuperation. It’s not because I’ve been super motivated! I started exercising on a daily basis last March and was really consistent throughout the spring and summer. But my surgery threw me for a loop and I have had a hard time getting started again. This week I have finally gotten my body off this couch, and back out on the walking circuit again – for three days in a row! My sister and I have a goal of 180 minutes per week. I still have 95 minutes to go this weekend, so we shall see whether I actually make it or not.

We have a busy weekend ahead. We will be going to Home Depot to order the dishwasher for the kitchen redo project we have coming up. We have the guy from Hickory Hill Cabinetry coming on Sunday to measure and sketch our kitchen, as well as to drop off samples so we can go choose the tile for the backsplash. My sister and I are going to a local craft fair on Sunday where I may find a Christmas gift or two. And finally, I am also hoping to be able to talk my hubby (are you reading this?) into taking me to my favorite Chinese buffet. Open-mouthed smile

Thursday, November 18, 2010

November Blahs

I was reading one of the blogs that I follow this morning (Big Dawg and Freeway) and it was all about feeling the blues this time of year. I realized afterward that it pretty much summarized the way that I have been feeling lately. Most of the leaves here are gone, our highs are pretty much relegated to the 40s (and that number will be steadily decreasing over the coming weeks) and cloudy days are much more common than sunny ones. I feel very restless. I would love to hop in a vehicle and head somewhere south, where the days are still warm and the sun is shining. But instead, I have to stay up here in the chilly north and gaze longingly at the beautiful pictures in the blogs I read every day. Hopefully the coming holidays will distract me for a few weeks. We will start decorating after Thanksgiving, and we still have pretty much all of our shopping to do yet. So December will definitely be going by fast! And as far as our traveling future, I know our day will come, so we will keep planning, working toward our goal….and dreaming….Flirt male

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Long Day

We are just landing after a long day out and about. Work was…well, work….Sarcastic smile

After work we headed over to Walmart to meet other employees for a shopping expedition. It’s hard to believe that we are already into the holiday season. We each received the name and suggested ideas for a member of a family, and off we went to choose some holiday items for our person. Harry and I had an 8 year old boy. We got to pick out some “wrestling guys and little finger bikes.” I had to ask someone what finger bikes were. I guess you know you’re starting to get older when you lose touch with what kids are playing with! After that shopping, we had to head back and get some groceries for ourselves! Now we are finally in for the evening. Smile Home sweet home.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Happy Cats

We have two very content cats tonight. We barely saw them for the past few days because they were staying out of sight. But now they have emerged and are relaxing here in the living room, quite happy to have the house back to normal.

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For Harry and myself, it was back to work today. Those three days off sure went by fast. And then yesterday, after everyone left, we headed upstairs and had a nice long nap. Flirt male It sure is nice to be a grandparent – spend some quality time with the young one and then send him on home!

I spent some time today looking over the amount of credit card expenses for the past few months. So far, our switch to cash has been a huge success. At the end of December, when we have been doing only cash for three months, I will give some actual examples, but so far we are both very happy with how things are progressing. The strange thing is, I don’t really feel like we’re doing things that differently. We still buy the stuff we like to eat; we still eat out on occasion; I don’t recall too many examples of not purchasing something we wanted. I think the main benefit has been in the awareness factor. With credit cards, it’s too easy to lose track of what we’ve spent. Two or three weeks go by, and all of a sudden, it’s like, wow, what did we spend so much money on? Now it’s simple – how much is left in our debit account? Alright, guess we can’t buy that until next Tuesday when we get paid. Sarcastic smile I am glad that we are starting this now – in 2 years and 9 months, when Harry retires and budgeting becomes even more important, we will already be used to it! Open-mouthed smile