Sunday, December 14, 2008

Again with the New Year's Resolutions!!!

Enough already. Like why would this year be different? The promised to keep up with the cleaning and ironing and to complete projects and to not work too hard and to use the treadmill. I will go on record now that whatever I pledge to do.................has the high probability of not making in to next December. Not that I want to be negative and defeat myself before I start, I am a realist.

Take for example, I log on and post so often. And as I reread my last post - May 2008 - I am well aware I had good plans and good intentions but not necessarily good follow through. Let's recap....

A year in review -
I joined a needlework guild - Delaware Valley Historical Samplers Guild. These women are so very talented, so very knowledgeable not to mention so very friendly. Month after month interesting speakers or hands on projects are on the agenda. I sit and absorb their knowledge. Having no formal education in stitching I think it better to just attend and take it all in. These women (and the occasional man) do beautiful work and each month come in with a batch of completed projects. I have never seen such prolific stitchers. I look forward each month to the meetings and regret having missed the November meeting ( I was in Massachusetts) and the December meeting (doing much needed Christmas shopping and a baby shower).

My daughters and I again went to Celebrations in May in Nashua NH. We had a great 4 day visit with my younger daughter who lives in Massachusetts. Lots of laughing, lots of shopping, lots of stitching and a few 'beverages' as well. We all took the Jeannette Douglas Pineapple Stitches class together. It has been fun to compare progress with each other or to call and say....what do we do here? Absolutely feel in love with Jeanette's "My Stitching Album" and signed on for the whole deal. Getting mine auto-ship from Mimi's Attic in PA.

June - July - August
...kind of melded together. Lots of weekends and almost every other one was a day trip or weekend here or there. Went to NYC - never really had been except to drive across the dreaded the George Washington Bridge - The GW - and use the Cross Bronx Expressway. It had to be the hottest weekend of the year. We actually went into the subways just to get the rush of air to cool off. Great day of shopping and walking through Central Park. We plan another trip to visit museums, etc.

Always wanted to ride in a hot air balloon....well I didn't ride but I went to a hot air balloon festival in north Jersey and for the life of me I can't remember the name of the town. It was in Hunterdon County. It was so incredibly awesome to watch the whole event unfold. The whole ritual from the vehicles pulling up, unloading, laying mats, unfolding, inflation and liftoff. Learned a bit about ballooning along the way. Did you know the best time to take off is at sunrise and sunset? Well we watched the sunset launch and yes we did get up to watch the 6 a.m. launch the next day. I have such a great friend - Debbie - who trudges along with me as I fulfill these fantasies.

Old fashioned Ice Cream Social - the Salem County Arts Alliance, of which I am a member, hosted the first annual Ice Cream Social. Ice cream, lemonade and an authentic civil war band in a gazebo. It was a neat event and well received. Hopefully we started a new town tradition. So many people pulled together to make it happen: The PG-CP Women's Club, the Salem County YMCA and the Penns Grove Rotary Club.

More day trips to Chestnut Hill in Philly, to Old New Castle in Delaware, to Lambertville and New Hope ......... and a weekend in Cape May. For a while there is was one weekend home, one weekend away. And although that sounds like a blast, boy did my yard and house show the lack of attention by September. The thing is my husband travels with a youth group every weekend so I am left to my own devices.

In September we had a local landscaping re-do our front yard. The soil was a mess and the grass all sparse no matter what we did. Also the remaining roots from a tree that came down three years ago were doing nothing but sprouting these mushrooms that were like potatoes! Yuck. Of course, my husband who was kind of like,"why do we need someone to do this? Can't you do it?" is now of the opinion, ......"bring Frank back in the spring to do the other side!" It does look nice and it is all part of the spruce-the-place-up-before-we-move (STPUBWM) plan. That plan has also involved painting..........

Managed to paint one bedroom upstairs and of course it is not as simple as on those home shows to which I am addicted. Painting the room including making new curtains, ripping up the wall to wall, new light covers, new outlets, repurposing some furniture, new interior doors for the closet and entry doors and all the other little touches that help make it complete. So of course one bedroom leads to the bathroom, the other bedroom and you know how it goes. The bathroom got new fixtures, new shelving, new light bar and new ceiling light. Some of the work is yet to be complete but that is on the contractor not me. I would like to tie up the loose ends before the holidays and touch up the paint and paint the trim but alas the contractor is busy just as the rest of us. In January I plan to recruit my sister to help me finish up the last bedroom. The entire upstairs will be in a soft cafe au lait color with white trim and all with new 6 panel doors. So for about $600 everything is updated and fresh. Again part of the before STPUBWM Plan. All that will remain is to have the hardwood floors redone. Got an estimate and hopefully we will able to pull off in the summer of 2009.

Another trip to Massachusetts in the fall to surprise my younger daughter on the event of her 30th birthday. Had been in cahoots with her boss for 10 or 11 months to make sure my daughter was not off on a business trip to the west coast. We pulled it off and showed up at her office with cake and balloons. It was great. She had no idea. So again a great four day weekend full of shopping, stitching, laughing and beverages! Of course beverages. While there we went to a fashion show at her LNS - Yarn and Fiber in Derry, NH. Pretty cool. The fashion show was in collaboration with Twist (I think, I will have to look that up and correct as necessary.) Derry NH is in the news this weekend because of the crippling ice storm. Researching the internet after the storm I read that the "Merrimack Valley is hardest hit" and that is exactly where my daughter is. Spoke with her and she lost power sometime Thursday night and spent Friday night in a hotel which was apparently not an easy task to find an open room. She was hopefully spending Saturday night with friends if she was still without power.

Another trip to NYC last weekend. Again my good mate Debbie hopped on the bus with me. Rockefeller Center was awesome the crowds were more awesome and yes those New Yorkers for the most part were friendly. You always have the irritated dad with no patience and assorted cuss words about the crowds and you have the privileged valley girl type that is a patron in Starbucks who makes the experience for the rest of us totally unpleasant because of her lack of patience and her being verbal about it. Right in front of her I gave the counter girl a tip and told her I knew what is was like to work behind a counter. The girls behind the counter were working hand over fist to keep up and the patron just stirred everyone up because there was a delay in the coffees being served. All I can say it get a real concern.....so what, you have to wait for coffee. Big deal. It is all good, we took a carriage ride in Central Park and Deb and I were happy with the world.

So that is my year in review and perhaps if I looked through my check register or credit card statements I would remember more events..........

In closing I wish all a joyous, peaceful, safe, healthy and happy holiday season. And as the season winds down, I am sure we ALL will be making those New Year's Resolutions.

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