Thursday, April 27, 2017

Bigfoot's Back in Town?

I haven't forgotten Our Mutual Buddy. 

He's been kind of quiet lately -- but I suspect he's not back yet. (He seems to migrate up and down the Front Range, in the spring and fall most years. At least that's what the sightings suggest.)

While I'm waiting for the Big Guy to show his face around here, I'm enjoying this 2016 commercial from HomeServe.

He'll stop by soon. I hope.

Life update:  One more report to go -- and it's nearly finished. I have to concentrate on quilt binding and restoration this weekend, then I'll be caught up. 

The Brick is feeling better. Me, too. We just run out of steam really quickly. 

     Fellow blogger Rae (from Life by Design) stopped by tonight for supper and a bed for the night, on her way south to Mexico for the summer. We've had a good time talking, from healthcare to travel, and the Canadian vs. US viewpoint on practically everything. She is a clever, intelligent woman with some thoughtful ideas...I've enjoyed having her here. 

She's heading out early tomorrow...if you've paid any attention to Western weather forecasts, Colorado is bracing for a big storm the next few days. You read that right. Late April/early May doesn't mean flowers -- around here, it means SNOW.

    Maybe Mr. S. is waiting for the dramatics to finish, before he heads back.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Deer Me...

Somebody was checking out the chickens this afternoon. 

And where was our fierce guard dog, Charley? Did he notice? Naahh...he was...

barking at those evil birds, the doves that hang out on the power line!

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Hey Girl - Again

Still plugging away around here. 

The Brick doesn't cough as much -- but when he does, the house rattles, and all the dogs look startled.

Continued crashes and such from the bathroom-in-progress. Daughter #2 is now here, as well, chatting away. (She is a jewelry appraiser, and a huge help in double-checking values when I'm working on such things.) 

Everything is blooming like crazy outside -- but I don't have time to go wander around in it. 
Soon, hopefully. 

Meanwhile, I thought you would enjoy another visit to "Hey Girl" World. (You know I've got a thing for this.) Poor Ryan Gosling has no idea how it started -- but he's managed to draw other cute guys in. Most of the selections today are craft-related: quilting, knitting and crochet enthusiasts, enjoy.

Try not to drool onto your fibers.  (Okay, maybe a little.)

And of course:

This is the last one...I think. 

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Monday Stuff On the Way to Other Stuff: Bathrooms

I'm not sure how...God's grace, I think. But we made it through a night and a day of Worship Team, flu notwithstanding. I'm pretty sure we were both running a fever before practice this morning, but fortunately they (the fevers, that is) broke sometime during the first service's sermon. Whew.
     The Brick went out with Son #1 to pick up tile, the toilet and the vanity this afternoon. We got an e-mail from Home Depot that the vanity had arrived. When Son went down to pick it up, though, they informed him that they hadn't received any order for us! Maddening. Turns out there was a small scratch down the front that will need refinishing...but it also means that Home Depot cut the price $300. No problem with that -- but it took several visits, a few hours of wrangling and a visit to the manager this morning to get that. 
     We should have our guest bathroom finished by Wednesday or so. Then it's on to the master bath.
     Meanwhile, I plug away at these reports. Then on to some quilt restoration -- and packing up donations again. 

    Since the Brick took on shopping duties (what a sweet man), I was able to fit a short nap and reading the Sunday paper into my worktime yesterday.  Feeling a little better. \
     The Brick dragged himself off to drive school bus today. (I wish he hadn't.) Hopefully, he'll feel better soon, too.

How to make money writing.  (From Amanda Bella)

Tartiflette pizza -- what's not to love about potatoes, bacon, onion, cheese...and pizza? (From Good Cheap Eats)

From kidnapping to kids, an amazing mini-memoir by Beth Rodden via Outside magazine.

The five best auction sites for watches.  (From Forbes) Plus a good blog that covers watches.

When bad times, hit...what do you do?  (From Funky Junk Interiors)

Hey, bring your pet to a Furry convention -- he'll have a great time!

A carrot eggs, butter or milk, and mixed right in the pan!  (From Strangers & Pilgrims on Earth)

When people can't agree to disagree.   I'm with Mavis on this one.  (From One Hundred Dollars A Month)

Chicken gyros. They need to marinate all night for best flavor...but it's said to be amazing. (Go ahead and call them shishkabob, instead -- it won't matter. From Amanda Settle)

How to get stuff DONE.  Even if it's tomorrow.  (From Raptitude)

A Chinese warehouse just cut its labor costs in using robots. I don't know whether to like the cheerful music that goes with the video -- or be horrified.

Foolish money mistakes and other stupid decisions that affect your life.  How to avoid them.  (From Money Boss)

Have a productive week.

Triangle boy -- via Pinterest

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Happy Weekend

     Making progress...finally! Still behind -- but not as much. As usual, life at Chez Brick is anything but simple:

     *Son #1 is banging away in the bathroom. Today, he finishes the flooring and puts in the bathtub. Then it's on to toilet, tile and the vanity. He's staying overnight, which means I cook and do the Mom Thing.

     *Nitro, our old-dog friend (15 1/2, and shaky on his legs), is staying with us while his owners are at a conference. Which means:

     *Charley is busy trying to dominate Nitro, plus 'reassure' me that he (Sir Charles) is still Big Dog On Campus. (Abby could care less.)  Our granddog Karma is on-site, as well, making things even more interesting.

     *I'm trying to finish off these reports, so I can return several boxes of estate items tomorrow. (And cash some welcome checks.)

     *We have practice tonight, plus play/sing for Worship Team at a church down south in Palmer Lake.

     *Tomorrow morning -- early, of course! -- it's the usual Worship Team for Creekside Bible. It's a bluegrass service, which means the Brick's mandolin is essential.

     To top things off, the Brick feels awful. (Sounds like bronchitis.) He dragged himself off yesterday to drive schoolbus for a track field meet, and didn't get home until nearly midnight.

      Joy of joys, I'm starting to not feel so hot, either. 
                          (Maybe it's an attack of bad grammar.)

Gripe, moan, complain. 

We'll get through somehow. Hope your weekend is going smoother than ours. 

Friday, April 21, 2017

He Has to Eat, Too...Right?

   Still hip-deep...but slowly making progress. 
   Aunt Corrinn died early yesterday morning. Surprisingly, The Mama is doing better... I have racked my brain, trying to think how to make it to the funeral service. What with all the other chaos going on, I just don't think we can. 

Meanwhile, this interesting perspective:

Plus this jar from an estate I'm appraising: now you know the Evil One's side job. 
He's selling chili powder for Mexene!

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Visiting A Weiner Kaffeehaus

...or Vienna coffeehouse, if you're English-speaking.

Here's a guide to get you through it. 

Back in college days, I spent a summer in Austria (Osterreich) and Germany, and a big chunk of that time was in Vienna. Cousins Tim and Joan Cumings were missionaries there, and  had an apartment not far from Schonbrun, the emperor's summer palace.

A few peaceful afternoons were spent there, wandering through the palace flower gardens and marveling at the rooms' elegant walls, painted ceilings and huge ceramic stoves. For an awkward farmer's daughter, this was unexpected territory.

Here it is, in all its glory  (courtesy Wikipedia)

My stay in Wien (pronounced "Veen") didn't provide for a lot of free time. For one thing, I was there to help out with Tim and Joanie's girls, and help pack for their move further south to Villach, ("Fee-lach") I didn't have a lot of extra money.

A few times, though, I visited a coffeehouse, both in Wein and in Heidelberg, Germany. (Deutschland, for you German-speakers out there.) My impressions:

*Elegance.  Why did I wear jeans and a sweater, when even the waiters were dressed better? Everything was presented with a flourish -- even the cloth napkins and china cups.  (Get that, quilting students??)  I had to repress an urge to double-check my wallet, for fear I'd end up washing dishes to pay.  (Yes, I was that poor.)

*Glass. Everywhere glass...and mirrors. You weren't supposed to stare directly at people, but that wasn't a problem. You just peeked into one of the mirrors, and gawked to your heart's content.

*The best, thickest coffee in the world.  Not only was it dark and practically leaped out of the cup -- if you didn't finish with a good solid batch of grounds in the bottom, it wasn't good kaffee. 

*Plan on sitting down? Then you'll pay extra.  Many people drank their coffee standing up, reading newspapers arranged on POLES. (Bear in mind that this little farm girl had not been to many big cities, at this point. Although somewhat familiar with Chicago, I'd never gone in a coffee place, been in a taxi, spent very few nights in a hotel, or eaten in a really upscale restaurant. I was pretty green.)

*Don't skip dessert -- no matter what.  If you love sugar, especially frosting, Austrian and German pastries are the best in the world. I'm not a big frosting girl -- to my mind, wedding cakes should be served au naturel. But the delicate, flaky pastry, lightly glazed and often decorated with fruit, did me in. So did the huge sort-of gingerbread cookies, Lebkuchen ("leb-koo-khen") that the Brick and I love to this day.

Oh my.

*TAKE YOUR TIME.  Rest. Look around, while you sip and crunch. (If you're a hickster from Michigan, try desperately to look sophisticated while you're doing it.) Don't rush; this is An Experience. Enjoy it.

Fortunately, there are some spots in America that still foster this grand tradition. My favorite, so far, is the Neue Galerie in New York City. They have a great collection of German/Austrian art, including some iconic Klimt pieces. Stop at their restaurant afterwards for kaffee mit schlag (coffee with whipped cream). For a moment, I almost felt back in college days, counting Austrian schillings with leather backpack at hand and a Solzhenitsyn novel nearby.

Even if you can't head to Europe right now, take time to bake some's been the signature dessert of the Hotel Sacher -- and Vienna -- for centuries. (Almost pronounced "soccer") Sachertorte remains the Brick go-to for birthdays, as well as Christmastime.

Sachertorte, in all IT'S glory (courtesy Wikipedia)

In spite of his years overseas, traveling for the Navy, the Brick never got to Austria -- or Germany, for that matter. I never made it to Paris, London...or Venice, even though Villach was within spitting distance. (An omission I forever regret -- but I was young and stupid. And overwhelmed.)

     We hope to see these again.  Sometime. Soon.

St. Stephen's Cathedral -- another amazing place in Vienna

Its tile roof, closeup   (courtesy Wikipedia for both photos)

Bigfoot's Back in Town?

I haven't forgotten  Our Mutual Buddy.  He's been kind of quiet lately -- but I suspect he's not back yet. ( He seems to...