Wednesday, March 31, 2010

The Cabinets are on Order!

Here it is the last day of March already, and I've finally ordered the cabinets for our new kitchen. Here is Erin, my designer, holding up the color samples. The small ones are cream and cappucino, both with a coffe stain. The cabinets are mostly cream colored, but the bar is the darker color, as are the cabinets above and around the range. The larger one is the style, not the color. It took us a very long time to design the kitchen. The work is supposed to begin April 20th. I'm keeping my fingers crossed!

The Painted Bridge

Yesterday I took a trip to Fredericksburg, which is about 45 minutes from our house. Mary Halsey, a friend of mine from church, invited me along to go antique shopping with her there. It was a lovely ride along the country roads, and after Mary found a little table she was looking for we went for a stroll along the river that runs through town. They have a painted bridge, which has the look of stonework, but which is just an optical illusion. It was really very nice. I didn't buy anything. After taking my last load to goodwill last week I vowed I would never buy anything again!

Friday, March 26, 2010

Our First Visitors from Colorado

We were so happy to have friends from back home stop by and see us Thursday! The Alfords stopped by to see our new house and go out to dinner with us. Ron was in town on business, and Janan was in DC for the fun of it. It was fun showing them our home and have them hear our frogs chirping in the evening. We hope to have a long procession of friends and family follow in their footsteps!

We're Saving the Planet

The county came by today while I was out running errands. They left some signs on our property showing where we can't cut trees or put up structures. The back of our property is on a forest and water conservancy area. It's fine with us, as we had no intention of cutting down any trees. We're doing our part to save the planet, one tree at a time!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Apple Pie Neighbors

Just when we thought it couldn't get any better, one of the new neighbors came over with a homemade apple pie! They're so nice to us that I wonder if they are having a contest to see who can be the nicest to the new people on the block. It was a welcome and delicious addition to our larder. We have so little food in the house, as I'm holding off on buying things until the kitchen is remodeled. We had a piece of pie ala mode for a snack last night. I love my new neighbors!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Gettysburg Again

We had stake conference this morning in Hampstead, which is about a half hour north of our house. Our stake center is in Columbia (south), but it apparently doesn't fit everyone, so we were assigned to go north. It was a nice ride. It was a good conference (TV conference broadcast to the entire east coast). We got out about 15 minutes early, and took a ride to Gettysburg. I had packed a lunch for us, so we did the auto tour of the battlefield and had a picnic in the park. It was a perfect day. It was fun to show Ed where Crystal and I had come last fall. We'll have to go back one of these days so Ed can see the visitors center as well.


Ed found a toad in our little copse while he was sawing wood yesterday. This time he saw it in time and didn't step on it! Brittany, Amanda and Crystal will remember a certain frog we encounted in Mexico one year that was not quite so lucky!

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Dead Wood

Our little copse is full of dead wood. We decided to clean some of it up today and drag it over to a pile of dead wood that has been stacked up by the developer to be removed later. I had asked them permission to add to their pile earlier in the week. We spent about 4 hours this morning dragging wood out. Here Ed is sawing a dead tree in half with a hand saw. We need a chain saw!

Some of the pieces were logs and required two of us. That was hard work.  Ed and I each dragged some medium size limbs to the pile, and I carted the smaller pieces in the wheelbarrow. We are very tired now. That's why I'm taking a blogging break! It was a beautiful day and we got a lot done! I hear we're missing a nice snowstorm in Denver. Oh, well!

A Walk in the Woods

We live a peninsula of land that reaches into Liberty Reservoir, a dam built in the 50s as a water supply for Baltimore and Carroll counties.Friday morning my neighbor, Janet, took me on a walk around the neighborhood. We are surrounded by water on three sides, although you don't realize it. There is a really lovely walk on the fire road. You see the water occasionally, and it's surrounded by trees. It was beautiful, and I imagine in a few more weeks it will be even more beautiful. Janet was a great tour guide. She knew the names of all the trees, flowers, and even the birds. I learned to recognize the tulip tree and the black capped chickadee! It was like having my own private botanist taking me for a tour in my own private park!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

A Room With a View

Today the diggers and the fillers came right up to my front step! It was quite a view from the living room! They messed up our yard, but they re-graded the septic area. We're hopeful that we'll never have another problem like we had last weekend again. They will throw some kind of carpet with grass seed and mulch over the mud. After that we should have lawn again in a couple of weeks. That sounds too good to be true! I guess we're not in Colorado anymore!

Temple Trip

I went to the temple with some of my new friends this morning. We went the back way, avoiding the freeway, but I think I could find myway there again if I had to. It was a lovely ride along tree-lined streets on a beautiful, warm spring day. The Maryland (D.C.) temple is so beautiful! The temple session was well attended. No one wanted to be home today!

Cleaning up The Copse

We've had such beautiful weather this week that I ventured out into our wooded area and picked up garbage. It was just as much fun as an Easter Egg hunt. I wished I'd had some kids to enjoy it with. I also pulled out some dead wood, in hopes of stacking it for the earthmovers to haul off with their other undergrowth. And, look, I got to use the purple gloves again!

Woodman, Spare that Tree!

I feel bad about all these trees being cut down for the new road into Derby Farms, but it is somewhat entertaining watching them load the trees up on the truck for processing into firewood. This lift picks up a tree as easy as if it were a toothpick. It's nice that it's still winter. The trees look dead, anyway, so it's not as painful watching them be carted off.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Living in a Construction Zone

The ground is too muddy for the earthmovers right now, so we enjoyed wandering around the construction site this afternoon. We really can't hear them from the house, but they have moved a lot of dirt for the new road to the right of our house.

And look what we have at the top of our property! I'm sure it's just in case the construction workers feel the urge! But, it's a long walk for us to the mail box, and if we should need to use the facility on the way back to the house, I'm sure they wouldn't mind!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Ed and the Purple Gloves

This could also be titled Ed and the Septic System, but that sounds a little disgusting. We learned all about the septic system yesterday, i.e., if it is not graded properly, the rain will pour into it, fill it up, and overflow into a pipe hole in the basement. The good news is that Ed heard the alarm going off, and found the water pouring in before it flooded the entire basement. The other good news is that it was a relatively new system, and the water appeared to be mostly rainwater, and it didn't smell bad. The third good news, was that the builder sent a septic company to pump out our tank. The septic guy also dug a small channel in hopes of keeping the rain from pooling on top of the septic tank.

Ed spent his morning sealing the hole in the pipe, and we have been fortunate that today the rain has slowed down. Tomorrow, if we're lucky, some of our friendly neighborhood bulldozers will take a break from building the new road and come re-grade our yard to prevent another disaster.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Amanda's Recital

Tuesday afternoon was Amanda's Senior recital. Here she is before the recital with her pianist, Hannah. They did an unbelievable job. Amanda had such poise, such confidence, and such a big, strong voice. This was a button-busting day for her very proud parents.
Look at all the people that came up from Broomfield (and Aurora) just to support Amanda! A trip all the way up to Greeley is no small matter, and shows a lot of love!
The recital hall was packed (music students are required to attend), and it was a very appreciative audience. Amanda's roommates were some of her many friends that showered her with flowers and candy.

Pre-Recital Lunch

Robin and Jana gave Amanda pretty much the whole day on Tuesday. we drove up in the morning and met Amanda and Andy for lunch at Santeramos in Greeley. We (the ladies) had a great time catching up. (We may have talked about our kids a little.) It feels disconcerting being in Broomfield and not owning a house anymore. Thank heavens Robin was able to put me up last night. She's a gracious hostess, and I felt right at home.

Cuddling with Brandy

It's great to be back in Colorado. The sun came out the second day, and we've had good weather (no precipitation), despite a little wind and a bit of a chill in the air. I just want to say, "I like flying first class." It was great that Ed was able to upgrade me. Then, to make me feel even more snobbish, Budget upgraded me to a Cadillac. I've come back to visit in style! Monday I stayed with Verlene and Paul, who really pampered me. We had a great visit, I was well fed, and even got some great loving from Brandy!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Pictures on the Walls

Yesterday we spent a lot of time putting pictures on the walls. As you can see in the Conservatory (it's like from a game of Clue), we haven't put the picture up over the fireplace yet, but we thought we'd lay it on the mantle for a while. We plan to get a new mantle and redo the fireplace. This is such a pretty room with all the windows.

Another big job we did yesterday was put up the music shelves in the hallway. Ed did all the heavy labor of mounting them on the wall. It took me even longer to put all the music in them! Just when I thought I was almost done, I found 3 more boxes of music! It was terrible. It will be nice to have all the music in one place, including the organ and piano music. It is centrally located and easy to find. I like it!

We also put the foyer mirror up so we can look at ourselves again, and wonder why our pants loook so tight. It looks like home now that we have the family picture up. Over the dooway on the left you can see the nice sign Kenna made for us that says Bush Family. It looks very cool!
And, look, we have a guest bedroom for all of you that have promised to come see us! It is really Brittany's room, but she's not planning on living at home for a while. It even has fresh sheets waiting for you!

Tractor Dreams

We're once again stimulating the economy by frequent trips to the hardware store. On one stop at Lowe's Ed took the time to try out the riding mowers. He thinks this looks like fun. I was hoping we could get a green and yellow one! Ed was busy yesterday rewiring our carriage light so it doesn't stay on all night. (The light outside on the way to one of our front porches) He also put in programmable thermostats and new doorbells. That was in addition to hanging all the pictures mirrors and tapestries in the house. It's a good think Sunday is a day of rest. We need it!

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Goodbye Trees!

So, I was paying bills in the study yesterday. You'd think Iwould have heard a bulldozer toppling 3 gigantic trees. Not so! In the back of the house it's pretty quiet. I was surprised to find they're starting on our new road. We're going to be living in a construction zone for a while again. yesterday I had only one truck and one earth mover.
Things have changed today. We have a REAL party going on now! We're going to have almost as much fun as Ed Melzer did, when he got to watch them build the high school next door!

Monday, March 1, 2010

New Friends

Here are some of our new friends! The Gadberrys (right), and the Weatherbys (on the left). The Gadberrys were nice enough to have us all over for dinner Sunday evening. You know these must be good friends to so willingly pose for a picture for my blog. (No one whined about it!) The Gadberry's lived in Wiesbaden, and are friends with Sue Patchell, Amanda's opera star friend.

We stayed quite late talking and learning about living in Baltimore. We got some good advice from Carrie about what kind of riding lawnmower to buy (one like her neighbors have, not like her pokey one). Fortunately, we won't have to worry about that till after the Great Thaw, whenever it arrives.

Send Me a Letter!

We (with empahsis on Ed) put our mail box up Saturday. I no longer will have to drive to the Post Office to pick up my mail. We also have our temporary street sign up (thanks to Kenna for her letter-cutting machine). The survey people came over last week and started to mark up the area around the new road into our development. As soon as the snow melts they're going to start working on the road. We wonder if that will be June at this rate!