Monday, January 29, 2007

Mom and Frank were down this weekend - and we went to Robert's All District Band concert. The kids played beautifully (of course). The concert was in an old auditorium at UNC Chapel Hill. Definitely designed for concerts because we sat on the balcony and the acoustics were wonderful.

Finally got around to finishing the kitchen floor - I'm pleased with it - and the price tag - just a little over $300 for all the tile & "stuff" to install. We're still getting the little bit of "haze" that happens with new grout.

Here is some of that "springtime" weather we've been having. I had to rescue them from the cold - it was 19 degrees here last night! Finally got a shot of winter.

This is a little creepy, but we had a VERY hard landing at the airport Sunday. The pilot was practicing landings and didn't make his last one. No one was hurt, but the $300K airplane was pretty heavily damaged. Just glad they walked away!

Gotta run -

Friday, January 26, 2007

Here's to our "adult" son!

Happy Birthday Robert! That's probably the last little cake that has the correct number of candles for him! I got a little Carvel Ice Cream Cake - yum! The ice cream is truely delicious.

For his 18th bday we are getting him a car - Grandma's car, to be exact. She decided she didn't want to drive anymore, so we're buying her Subaru Forester for him. He originally didn't really want it - it's not sporty enough. After months of searching for a sports car (that wasn't really a good idea from Mom & Dad's perspective...) he finally succumbed (spelling??) to pressure from the parents to get a more practical vehicle! The little car only has 24K miles and Grandma has always taken it to the dealer for maintenance, so we feel like it will be a good car for his college days.

Mom and Frank are coming down to visit this weekend, and they are bringing the car - actually, Mom is bringing the car, and Frank is going to fly down - so it will work out nicely.

Gotta run!

Love, K

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Thought I'd send some springtime up north!!

Found these photos that Richard took the other day when I went up the mast. Richard was using our old 35mm Minolta camera and he had them developed on disc only (no prints). These show the height a little better.

More later (as usual!)

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

We flew down to take a look at the boat Saturday - all was going as planned. The boatyard had the boat out of the water and on stands drying out in the "shed". This is just a great big hangar-like building. The mast and rigging had been removed. Looks kindof sad out of the water!

We made it a quick trip - just Saturday during the day because we had some rainy, sleet/freezing rain on Sunday..not good flying weather! Still not a bad winter yet - it's in the 50's most of the time and this week is sunny.

Gotta go for now - more to follow - Eagle Scout/new floor tile/what it's like to have an ADULT child (tomorrow!).

Friday, January 19, 2007

Well, I've gotten very tired of my plywood floor this morning I decided to tackle the tile. I could only do 1/2 of the floor since I've got to be able to have somewhere to put the fridge during the process. (I could take it outside, but I'd have to take the doors off - and grow a bit of muscle!)

Here's the result so far.

The green dots are just the spacers - they're different than when I did it years ago - but work very well.

And now, I'm very tired....I suspect I'll be sore tomorrow from all the bending over and perching on my knees. Tommorrow I will be grouting this tile and hopefully installing the other half of the room. May just get grouting done though.

Not too much else going on - the kids are out of school for 4 days. They are finished with 1st semester. Robert has a really easy 2nd semester.3 band classes...slacker. A bit of "senioritis" I believe.

Gotta run!

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Well, this is the best we can do in the South for a winter! For once, the school system was smart and didn't cancel school this morning. The kids had semester exams today, so it would have been a hassle to cancel.

There were all kinds of backups and fender benders in Raleigh on the news. Always.

I'm using this dreary day to get organized for my long overdue tile project. I've just gotten sick of the exposed plywood floor. I searched all the home improvement venues locally and couldn't find the tile I wanted. Most of the tiles these days are large- 12X12 inch minimum. I prefer smaller tile. I finally settled for some nice "earthy" tile from Lowe's.

I'll cut up and use the mats with small tiles to make a pattern in the center of the room. It should be a little more interesting than my original tile (which was just "dirt" colored plain"...)


Sunday, January 14, 2007

I did something I thought I'd never be able to do...I went to the top of the mast on our boat this weekend! 65 feet. What a view! It was calm in the marina, so it was not too bad. We have a special seat that you connect to the mainsail halyard. Then, you just pull up the person in the chair just like you were raising the mainsail. (still not easy - since I weigh more than the sail!)

The weather has been absolutely wonderful - 70+ degrees. We spent the weekend at the boat to get it ready for some maintenance. We had to strip all the sails and canvas. Richard went with us and took lots of photos. He seemed to have a good time. Neighbor Pat went with us also - he enjoyed the sailing (and the company, of course). We played poker and watched movies while we weren't out sailing. Just a fun, working weekend.

Here we are relaxing before we took the boat over to the repair marina. They will probably have it for a couple of we'll have to figure something else to do this winter!

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Our NCState campus tour was great. (I'm standing on a step up from Robert if you're wondering why we look close to the same height!) It was so familiar, yet so foreign! So many things were exactly as they were 20 years (wow!) ago. But, there were many new buildings and MUCH taller trees!

Most of the engineering classes were on central campus when we were there.

Now, Robert will have to ride a campus bus over to the "Centenial Campus" - a new, high-tech facility about a mile away from main campus. Doesn't seem like a great set-up, but they seem to make it work.

He got to talk to the Jazz Band professor in person, so he was happy. (Music is his real love, the engineering degree is just going to be a job....)

Meanwhile, back at the ranch....

A customer brought me a bag full of fresh turnips....and gave me a new way to cook them. He said just trim them, place them on a greased pizza stone, and bake until tender. Said it would bring out the sugar...and it does! They're just as sweet and tasty as can be!

I had bought a few eggplants on the day-old shelf for 50 cents each - so I decided to use the oven heat to do both veggies....yum...

Down to the boat this weekend to take it over to the service marina for some major deck repairs. The boat will be out of the water for a month or more....hope to have it back for very early spring!

See ya

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

I found these photos on my old camera from Christmas (before I opened my NEW camera!).

Richard with a sign that his loving brother got him.....

And later at Pat's hangar next door where we stored his Christmas present....ugly, big tires for his Explorer.

That's all for now - we go to NC State tomorrow for Robert's guided campus tour. Duane's going to try to get off work and join us. Should be fun back on campus - not only to be there with Robert, but to see what's changed since 1984!!

Monday, January 08, 2007

We went up to Kevin and Debbie's this weekend for the McCraw "late Christmas" party. Looks like everyone is pretty happy here!

Duane's mom gave me a beautiful applique (is that spelled correctly??) wallhanging. I'll have to get a photo of it.

We had a nice visit and made a quick trip home. It was fun driving on the mountain road between Marion and Spruce Pine!

I don't think I mentioned this earlier, but my ceramic tile in the kitchen floor has finally decided to pop up. One tile popped up and I thought I could just take a few tiles up to clean it all up (and then just glue them back down...) Wrong! The whole floor ended up coming up - ugh...

I guess the good thing is that now I get to choose some new, different tile to replace it. The old stuff has the cement still attached, and I'm not going to go to the trouble to remove it! I hunted out some of the old ceramic tile tools in the basement...didn't ever expect to use them again! Luckily, one of our neighbors has a electric tile cutter - so the job won't be too hard. Some of our original tile work I cut shapes with a rod-saw by hand! The wet-saw is a vast improvement. Still not looking forward to it, but the plywood floor is getting old!

Gotta run, see ya!

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Our prospective Eagle Scout has now finished his service project....finally!! With 2 weeks to spare before his 18th birthday!! (This is the deadline for reaching the rank of Eagle) Now he has to turn in his project documentation for review and submit to a final "Board of Review".

I wanted to show the detail a little so you could get an idea of how much work went into the trophy case. No molding was purchased - everything started out as 2X4's !!
They used a router to shape half-rounds for the trim. Very "thrifty" if I might be so bold to quote one of the 12 oaths!

The band had a stack of trophies that wouldn't fit in their original trophy case (you can see it to the right of this photo)

I haven't seen his final paperwork, but the boys (and leaders) put a couple of hundered hours in the construction. We're happy it's finished and out of the way!!

Good job Robert!

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

We had a wonderful visit with Sharon and Buddy over New Years on Ocracoke Island.

This is the view of a sunset as we sat on the pier one night.

I know vegan Teresa won't be amused at the next few photos.... but the Ocracoke "fish house" is in trouble financially. The townsfolks were doing a benefit- all- you- can eat shrimp and oyster roast (for $15 each, of course)...we were riding our bikes and saw this and HAD to stop.

The shrimp were HUGE and so were the oysters. YUM

Duane, of course, is allergic to he could only eat hush-puppies and help "shuck" the oysters for me!!

Had to include one photo of New Years Eve.....not the best one of me, but I thought it was cute!

Gotta run, more later!