Sunday, June 29, 2008

A yarn story

A couple of years ago, I was in Walmart's craft department and saw this gorgeous tortise-shell colored yarn. It was so soft (I am a sucker for fuzzy yarn) and the muted colors were perfectly blended together. I couldn't resist it even though there was only one skein left in the clearance department. It sat in my yarn stash, waiting to be picked for the small project it could support.

It seemed that hope was dim for the lone skein until I found the exact same yarn in Michael's Craft Store. Could it be true? Yes - it was Red Heart's Symphony color Earth Brown! Unbelievable! I immediately picked out several more skeins and happily brought them home to their long lost cousin. NOW I can make something; NOW there is hope!

Of all the things I like to do creatively, it seems that I am always drawn back to knitting. My projects may not be finished for years, but they eventually will be, and they will be used or worn or given away. Thanks to vacation, I pulled out the beautiful Earth Brown yarn and started a V-necked, sleeveless top. Here is what has been accomplished since last night.

Friday, June 27, 2008

To mow or not to mow . . .

. . .the never ending question when I get home from work. One rule that we have at the Baim estate is to not mow the lawn over the weekend if at all possible. My reasoning behind this philosophy is that mowing is a job. It is a chore. It is noisy, and it is not something that should be done on days of peace and relaxation, i.e. the weekend. Unfortunately most of my neighbors do not embrace that same philosophy. ***sigh***

The other day, I came home and looked over the lawn. Has it rained? Is it wet? Too wet to cut? My data weighed more towards mowing than not so I got Sparkie and we started the dreaded preliminary chore of picking up sticks. Because of the many wind and rain storms we had, there were more sticks to gather up than usual. Figures. Sparkie ate grass, jumped around in the leaf pile, tried to find the rabbit that lives in the yard, chased the sticks that I threw aside, selected the choicest ones and chewed them up into bits. Yup, that helped me out alot.

Whent he sticks were gone and the mower was gassed up, I got Sparkie back to the safety of the house, fired up the big, bad, loud rider and went at it. The front lawn only takes about 10 minutes to cut since it is pretty small. After I was about half done up there, I saw some ominous looking clouds above and started to feel raindrops. "Ha! I am tougher than this light sprinkle of rain!" I said to myself and kept mowing.

On to the back yard. A much bigger space. I threw the mower up a gear so I could speed it up a bit. Then, the drops got a little bit bigger. "This isn't going to stop me!" I muttered, reminiscent of Charlie Brown getting rained out of the baseball game and being stranded by his teammates. The mower started to pool little drops on the engine cover and my clothes started to get damp. One thing I don't like is getting wet. I just don't like it. I want to be dry or I want to be soaked. That damp feeling is just so annoying. But the final goal of a neatly manicured lawn was the higher purpose so I continued until it was done.

I like to mow the lawn. Getting to drive the mower, seeing that green velvety finish, smelling that cut grass scent - it's a satisfying task. I am not sure who will do this task when we have fallen off the face of the earth over the next 9 days. Hmmmm

Thursday, June 26, 2008


Vince and I are about to fall off the face of the earth for 9 days.
That is a good thing - since it means that we are going to be on vacation!

Our take on a good vacation is:
- sleep until we're ready to get up
- stay up until we're ready to sleep
- take every key off of our keyring except the ones for our house and car
- make no appointments and keep no schedules
- make a list of things that would be fun to do but not have to complete them
- get lots of restaurant food so we don't have to cook or grocery shop too much
- turn off the phones and computers (except to see restaurant menus and call in for dinner orders)
- create anything: crafts, music, art, etc.
- enjoy being free of the routine of regular life

Our take on a good vacation is NOT:
- getting on a plane to go somewhere
- making and keeping a schedule of any capacity
- getting back from a far-away trip and having to catch up on everything that was not tended to while you were away
- doing what the travel people say we have to do
- saying that you need a vacation after you get back from your vacation

I know that most would disagree with our take on what makes up a good vacation. It works for us, though. One more alarm clock to go and as of 5 p.m. tomorrow, we will fall off the face of the earth for 9 days. I have to say that I am really looking forward to it.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Rain storms and my lawn

I am starting to have a little trouble remembering what day the last time I mowed my lawn was. There has been plenty of rain coming each and every day which means when I get home from work, the grass is too wet to cut. I see lots of growth in the grass, especially since I did my weeding and feeding a while back. Unfortunately, the weed and feed didn't do too much to my weed issue, except for keeping the dandelions at bay. I still have many non-grass things growing quite happily throughout my yard.

There is a funny side to this - Sparkie isn't too interested in walking on the wet grass. Probably because his legs are so short and the blades are tall enough to poke him in the gut. He changes his interest quickly, however, when he gets sight of a bird, chipmunk, squirrel or rabbit about. They are all intruders as far as he's concerned, and they are perfect creatures to run after as fast as he can. Of course, he never catches up to any of them. Sometimes I see him darting off one way and them darting off the other way which reminds me of a Warner Bros cartoon and is so funny because a good hunter Sparkie is obviously not! Wow, no pun intended but that was a rabbit trail. Back to topic.

Yes, I will make my way home tonight, bend over to look closely at the grass and hope that it is dry enough to cut. And if it is, I will walk the property, pick up all the nasty branches that have fallen from the wind and rain storms, fire up our big, bad, loud riding lawn mower, and go to town.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

My recent improvement

About three years ago, I decided to brighten up my kitchen and paint my cabinets. The guy at the paint store told me what to use to have success and his advice was perfect. My 10 upper cabinets were beautifully transformed into the blue and white beauties they are today.

After 1/2 of the project was done, I ran out of steam and decided to "take a break" from the rest of the job. It has been gnawing at me over the last few months, but I didn't get the gumption to finish. 2 days ago, I had the gumption and an assistant! Believe me this would have never happened if it weren't for my sister helping me and encouraging me to keep going. Thank you so much, Roselyn!

Now that my cabinets all match, I just stare at them and almost can't believe that they are done. I LOVE them! This improvement was worth finishing - don't you agree?

Friday, June 20, 2008

Legal Lingo

If you take the time and actually read the wording on your deed, you might find some long, funny sounding words in there. Not exactly ones that we use on a regular basis. I will attempt to shed some light on what they mean....

Appurtenances - Something that belongs to or is attached to something else (i.e. a garden is an appurtenance to the land it is planted on)

Tenements - Property (usually land) held, holding of land; A house or building used as a residence

Hereditaments - Any property (including real property/land) that can be inherited or passed by intestatcy

Improvements - An addition to real property, permanant or not, that increases its value or enhances its appearance

These terms may or may not be on your deed, but if they are, at least you can know what they are referring to. Lawyers . . . gotta love 'em!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

A lot going on and creative energy

I am not sure what happened but after Mother's Day came, it seemed like everything exploded into action.
I don't mind being busy. I don't mind having alot going on. I do need some days where I can come home from work and not have to go back out to "take care of things".
It doesn't help that I decided to redecorate my living room which compounded into moving the stuff from the back room to other areas of the house. My basement has become a catch all but at least the main floor of the house looks great.
One thing that can either thrive or suffer when times are busy is creativity. For me, the creative juices flow when the goal to be achieved was initially envisioned by me. Perhaps I don't see the entire goal in perfect focus, but watching the development of it approaching completion is part of the creative fun.
So during the busy times and during the slower moments, I can step outside of the moment and enjoy what is happening. Peace!

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Stampin' Up retirement list

The one thing I wish didn't have to happen with Stampin' Up is the release of the retirement list. All their stuff is so great and we miss our favorites when they are let go for good.

If you are interested in ordering any of the retiring sets, please let me know. Here's a link to the list -

Thursday, June 12, 2008

3 weeks old.

I can't believe that little Landon is 3 weeks old already! Everyone is doing just great. He is a cutie pie!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

wow - what a change...

My living room transformation is almost done. The new chairs and sofa are such a better size for our space. The rug is the same as before. Check out the mission style side tables, tv stand, and bookcase! I LOVE it.

Next week, the last two pieces of mission items will be delivered and all will be back to normal at the Baim house once again.

(yes, that is our fat kitty by the tv stand, and yes, that is a guitar on the sofa. Where else is it gonna sit?) :-)

Sunday, June 8, 2008

getting there

The big event that I have been waiting for happened last Wednesday. We got new living room furniture! It looks so great.... I am not quite done yet though. I have two more pieces to get before it is just right: a bench and a coat rack/shelf to put by the front door.
Once that stuff arrives, I will take a picture for the world to see.
It is amazing how different thr room looks. The work and the wait was worth it!

Friday, June 6, 2008

Soda analysis

I made two bottles of soda a couple of weeks ago. One of them was creme and the other was root beer. Here's what I thought of them.

The creme soda did not have enough of a vanilla flavor. The color wasn't as appealing either. It tasted ok but it wasn't quite there. After the bottle was opened, I added some more vanilla to deepen the taste, which worked, but it wasn't a soda that I would want to continue to make.

The root beer, on the other hand, tasted exactly right! It was very flavorful and the color was nice and dark, just as it should be. I will be making more of this stuff...and next time I will be pouring it over a glass of vanilla ice cream!

My four volunteer taste testers agreed with me.

I have one more soda recipe to try. It makes a blueberry syrup that you mix with seltzer water; kind of like what they did in the old soda jerk days. I'll let you know when (or if) I make a batch of that.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

A sad sight at a beautiful place...

I had to make a trip to beautiful Lake Placid yesterday. The sun was shining and the smell of lilacs was in the air. It was a perfect day.

The reason I was there was, I was asked to go to an apartment that was being rented by someone who lost perspective in life, and the place was "trashed". There was stuff thrown all over and garbage was left on the kitchen floor. It was rotting and staining the floor, and beginning to smell bad. I will not ask you to continue to imagine what it must have been like, since it is not a pleasant thing to do.

We are pondering the concept of being one in Christ, and looking at ourselves with honesty through the magnification of the Word. I was reminded of the many discussions that Jesus had with the religious people of His day. He compared them to whitewashed building harboring rottenness - looking great on the outside but full of death on the inside.

The sight of the incredible beauty of spring was all around the perfect looking apartment house in Lake Placid, but one floor had become uninhabitable and was full of mess and garbage and disarray. You would never be able to tell from the street that the house had that problem.

Putting on a front will not bring anyone into a holy existence, or allow righteousness to flourish. We all have rotting, stinking garbage tucked away in our life. I don't know about you, but I'd much rather identify it as what it is, chuck it, and replace it with His beauty and order and peace.