Wednesday, August 31, 2011


Ooof!  That's about all I can say about the past week or so.  All last week, I was on a business trip to Bangor, Maine.  While I don't mind going up there (or the 6 hour car ride), it just makes for a long week.  We left Schenectady on Tuesday around 11:30am and didn't arrive in Bangor until 6:30pm.  It was a good week of meetings, but a long week.

On Wednesday, I saw the weather reports and was concerned about my parents who were in Florida at the time.  Hurricane Irene was, at that point, thinking of smacking Florida.  Thankfully, my parents got home and didn't have to worry about the hurricane at all on their trip to Florida.

However, by late Thursday, Irene was aiming for North Caroline and the east coast.  We drove back to Schenectady from Maine on Friday and it ended up taking a lot longer as there were a ton of people from the Boston area driving west to get away from the storm.

Saturday was spent putting all the outside stuff away in the garage (garbage cans, flower pots, chairs, etc) and we did some grocery shopping.  I was able to find a few containers to store water in, and thank goodness that I did.

Late Saturday, the first bits of rain started to hit us.  It didn't seem too bad though.  Sunday morning...we had full downpours happening.  The winds weren't too bad, but a lot of rain.  Our power went out around 10am on Sunday morning.  Shortly thereafter, a large tree came down across the road next to us and completely took out the power lines.  So much for this being a "weak" storm.  The winds were really picking up and all we could do is watch branches and trees come down and the roads fill up with water.

As the winds started to die down later in the day, we took a drive over to the new house to see how it had fared.  Thankfully no damage to the house or well....however, we did lose about a dozen very large trees to the wind.  The trees we lost were mainly due to large poplar trees, with very shallow roots, falling and taking out a bunch of other trees with them.  But as I least no permanent damage.

While we were at the lot, we did get cell phone messages that Rich's sister was out of power and they had 3-4" of water in their basement.  We were able to borrow a generator for a few hours and pumped out her basement.  They were lucky with only 3-4" of water...their neighbors had 3 feet of water in their basement. 

Late Sunday evening, we got back home and had some yogurt and cereal for dinner.  We were trying to eat some of the perishable goods in the fridge since we still didn't have power.  Ultimately, our power wasn't restored until about 9pm on Monday evening...36 hours without electricity.  We were definitely glad when it came back on.

The flooding in the area was unbelievable though.  At one point on Monday, all the bridges over the Mohawk river were closed.  There was no way to get from one side to the other.  The police, however, did open up one bridge because it was insane that people couldn't get across the river.  Thankfully, the major bridges on I-87 were reopened (they had closed due to a runaway barge with a 30 foot crane on it) so at least there were 2 bridges on that side of Albany and then one bridge on this side.  What a crazy day!

Things are slowly getting back to normal for us, but for many others, they are still without power and some without homes due to the flooding.  Its going to take some time for the community to rebound after this.

Friday, August 19, 2011

House Update - 19Aug

I have more pictures, but blogger is not being happy about uploading them currently.  There has been quite a bit of progress on the house over the week or so.  Most of it is not really "blog worthy".  All the electrical and plumbing rough-in is done, but it really doesn't look like much and its rather boring.

However, they did get more siding up on the house.  I do have a picture of the entire front of the house, but since Blogger apparently didn't like it...all you get is the front of the main portion of the house.  The "trim" over the windows will eventually be painted the same light tan as the rest of the trim around the windows.  It just comes as white, so it looks "eh" right now.

They did finish all the siding on the back of the house.  :-)  They still have to finish the garage and the "eave" above the garage and the chimney, but you can really get the idea of what the back will look like.  Houses are all kind of "blah" from the back, but it doesn't seem quite so "blah" with the red.  Its really hard to believe that this is the first red house that our building is doing.  It such a bold color that very few people are willing to do it.  I guess we wanted to stand out. ;-)

We also have a fireplace now!  Rich didn't want to move the cement board, which I can't blame him since that stuff is HEAVY, so you only get a partial picture of the fireplace.  Its fully wood-burning (since we have 16 acres of trees...we might as well use them) and it will eventually have stone around it.  There will also be a hearth at the bottom where you can actually sit and be near the fireplace.
 This next one is hard to figure out what it is...but its a picture looking UP at the ceiling in the 2-story foyer.  They finished all the sheet-rocking of the ceiling on the 2nd floor and have most of the master bedroom sheet-rocked.  The first floor also has 1 room (dining room) with the ceiling installed.  Most of the rooms have insulation, so I'm guessing that they will make good progress today in buttoning up the walls.

Its been exciting to see the house take shape.  Now that they're starting to close in walls, I'm sure we'll be even more excited.

Our closing date isn't until the middle of November, but there's still a lot of work to do.  They have to finish the walls, tape it all, spray-foam the master bedroom, final electrical, painting, floors, trim work, cabinets, hardware, and a bunch of other little things that just take time.

Hopefully we'll be moved in by Thanksgiving!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Stashbusting 2011 - Week 33

Again, I haven't posted very often over the past few weeks.  Check out my other recent posts to see what has been up....

However, I did get binding done on a quilt about 2 weeks ago and it hasn't been counted as a stash report yet.  I also made another block for my scrappy quilt (16-patch blocks made up of 2" squares - finished size - and all the squares are from the various quilts I've made).  I did also buy some FQ's...but they were on sale so its a good buy. ;-)

So here's the numbers for the past few weeks:
Added This Week:       6.25 yards
Added Year to Date:    43.89 yards
Used This Week:         0.47 yards
Used Year to Date:      23.92 yards
Net Year to Date:        19.97 yards

How did everyone else do?

Friday, August 12, 2011


Last night, after a final last push, I was able to finish the needlepoint that I've been working on for close to 3 years.  Here's "Starry Night":

Its something like 20 wide x 15 high or something like that.  I don't remember the number of stitches high and wide, but it came out to 70,500 stitches on the thing.

I also have some updated pictures on progress at the house.  Our front doors have finally been delivered.  They still need to be stained, but here's kind of what they will look like.

Here's a picture of the front corner of the garage completely finished.  The color of the siding and trim is spectacular!  We absolutely love it.  I can't wait to see the rest of the house finished.

All the electrical will be done this weekend (supposedly) and the insulation starts on Monday.  Then drywall starts on the 22nd.  It will be exciting to see things closed in finally and have the rooms take more shape.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Health & Fitness

I recently went to the doctor and the results were less than what I had wanted.  Ultimately, I've been very stressed out and haven't exercised in God knows how long.  I'm very badly out of shape and my heart rate isn't exactly what it should be.  My goal over the next few months is to ACTUALLY start exercising more and to lose some weight.

I think once I start losing some weight from exercising, my heart rate should get better (along with my overall fitness level).

I've always found it difficult to motivate myself to exercise, so I'm hoping that by posting here, I may have more motivation to keep going.  Its really odd since I used to be very physically fit.  Even as recently as about 4 years ago I was pretty fit.  I was going to the gym for at least an hour a day Monday through Thursday and then on Fridays we were going rock climbing at a local center.  I was down to 126 lbs at the time and looked and felt great.  I broken a bone in my foot in June 2007 and since then I've had a hard time getting myself back into exercising.  Work has also been difficult, which really makes it such that I don't want to exercise at night.

I know a lot of these things are just excuses, but its hard to change how you think.  I'm hoping that I can continue to motivate myself and keep the exercise going.

The goal for this week is to walk 30 minutes each day.  I'll post on Sunday evening on how I did. ;-)