Sunday, January 22, 2017

Back to Back weekends away... VT and NYC

Vermont. We went to my sister's home in Vermont (near Burlington) for Thanksgiving. One of our two other siblings came from Watertown, NY. All of our children (including my own 2+) were able to join us!

I did post two photos on Instagram.

My Vermont nieces and my own daughter on Wednesday night. Beautiful ladies. They have so much in common (those glasses! the love of each other!) We were at the Stone Corral, a Richmond VT hot spot... a "small-batch brewery on a horse farm offering limited hours at a tasting room in a barn".

Three Thanksgiving pies. I made the apple crumb. Not my best, but it was still good.

The weather was gloomy. It rained on Black Friday in VT. We all went shopping in little groups wandering through Burlington... Then we met as a larger group (11) to celebrate a birthday lunch (Mr K's) at a lovely Vermont-y local-food and brew restaurant, right downtown in Burlington.

We returned to our home in PA on Saturday, and that evening we had another family celebration with my brother (who lives local to me and did not make it to VT) and his entire family (one more niece and three nephews, two of whom live in NYC). Good fun!  

New York. The very next weekend, Mr K and I put our remodeling work on hold, once again, and went off to New York! I love that city only a 3-hour bus ride away!

We did so much and saw so much. I love that we also now have real New York people to visit. (A niece and nephew live in Riverdale. One of the VT nieces is studying in Brooklyn. And we have friends, our own age, who live part-time in a posh downtown apartment.)

[Dear Reader, I started writing this post over a month ago... I need to get it done!... I am sharing only a couple of my photos from New York. There will be a great many links for anyone who wants to see more.] 

Let's get this done!

We arrived at Port Authority around 10 AM on Friday, December 2.

It was not a very long walk (we passed Madison Square Garden and largest post office I have ever seen) to our hotel the Chelsea Courtyard Marriott... very nice.

After a bit of settling-in, we decided to walk to Rolf's for lunch... a longer walk than we expected. (We passed the Flatiron.) Rolf's is a German restaurant known for its over-the-top Christmas decorations. I did post my favorite photo on Instagram.

Rolf's decorates in October and un-decorates in May. It was quite a sight to see.

That afternoon, we visited the Whitney Museum of American Art with all of its thought-provoking exhibits and tremendous views. On the way back to our hotel we explored a bit of the High Line. 

Dinner with our nieces... after dinner drinks with our friends... And that was just the first day!

On Saturday, in between a couple of amazing meals, we went to Macy's for the window displays, and a bit of shopping. Later, along with our friends, we saw Exhibitionism: The Rolling Stones. From the website, "The Rolling Stones exhibit features over 500 Stones’ items with 50 years of Stones fashion, 190 original artworks, vintage instruments, interactive sound mixing desks and recording studio, a screening cinema with exclusive content, all culminating in a 3D concert finale." It was all that and more!  

We attended evening mass at St Patrick's Cathedral. And then (for the first time ever) I saw the lighted Christmas tree at Rockefeller Center. Dinner was at Rossini's.

(Home on the bus after a "downtown" Sunday brunch.)

[Dear Reader, Thanks for baring with me for this post. I just had to finish it. Next time there will be knitting!]   

Thursday, January 12, 2017

First there was the DIY

As 2016 was coming to an end, I did not post here. I was extra busy.

Today's post is about our end of year DIY home improvement. My next post will be about some traveling we did in the middle of it all. After that, I plan to move on to something more knit-friendly.

On October 28, Mr K and I purchased 22 boxes of 'Smoky Topaz' hickory hardwood flooring (to finally replace the original carpeting in the open main living area of our home we had built 20 years ago). (That carpeting was getting very tired.) He picked the flooring up the next day, and I helped him unload all 22 boxes from his truck and stack them in our downstairs family room. Did you know that hardwood flooring has to sit and get seasoned into its new environment for two weeks before installation?

November 13 was the date of this photo. Great start Mr K!

At about that time, I knew that there was never a better time to re-paint the walls (which actually had been re-painted once since the build). Yet I waited, because I knew, it would be determined, (with or without me). I mean, with all of that baseboard molding being removed...

And, within days of my thinking "I should probably paint", he said it out loud and I got on it...

The old color on the walls was 'Coir'. It was a neutral tone but with a bit of green in it (in the photo above, but hard to really see). The new color I wanted was chalky, and whiter... I picked 'Almond Paste'. 

I did most of the painting before Thanksgiving. Three rooms and a long hallway, a stairway, and a foyer. I finished the very last bit of kitchen painting just as Mr K installed the last of the flooring in the closets -- about a week before Christmas. He finished the baseboard repair and touch-up and replaced the last of the baseboards a couple of days later.

I did a lot of cleaning and holiday decorating as fast as I could!!!

We were able to get a couple of carpet installers here on the 23rd to staple the new carpet runner up the stairway. It was one task that Mr K did not want to do himself.

Here is a new grate for the floor heat. He picked it out and I love it. We are going to replace all of them.

We bought a new area rug for the living room on New Year's Eve and brought it home in the truck. I took most of the photos after all of the Christmas clean-up was finished.

Of course there will always be more to do, but it is looking a lot better than it did two months ago!

Sunday, January 1, 2017

2017 (I am not the right person to ask, but I am afraid.)

Ever since my Thanksgiving weekend in Vermont, I have been working on a new blog post.

It started out so well, with a couple of lovely photos.

Then, a whole lot of home re-modeling happened under this roof, and I tried... and I tried... but the post never happened.

I am now, in the earliest hours of the new year (not in a normal way about anything) (at all).

I do not ever remember a New Year's Eve when I felt such a sad sense of dread.

So sad I feel this tonight.

What about you?