Tuesday, May 29, 2007

I finished a couple of pair of baby booties this weekend. I think that is all the crochet that I finished over the weekend. I am about halfway through a doily, and I am reconsidering the baby afghan I have started. The afghan may get ripped out and started again with a faster pattern. I haven't decided yet!
It was a good long weekend. We had company for a BBQ Sunday night, so Saturday was spent cleaning the house and the yard. I got flowers planted in the front flowerbed by the sidewalk, and cleaned out some of the dead stuff in the other flowerbeds in the front yard. Ralph mowed and weed-eated the back, and we had a net up for badminton. With 6 kids here, including Alli, it was a fun time.
Ralph is off tonight with AJ. It is a "Court of Honor" for scouts tonight. That is their awards ceremony that is held every few months. AJ should be getting some merit badges tonight. He has all the requirements in for his Life badge, but didn't get everything in before the Court tonight. He only needs to have a Scout Master Council and a Board of Review (the Board is composed of parents). Once he does these, he will be a Life Scout. The next step is Eagle! (yes, it is a big step, but that is what he has left to do!) He has a minimum of 6 months as a Life Scout before he can obtain his Eagle, but it will more likely be much more than that! He has no idea of what to do for his Eagle Project, as well as all of the other merit badges that he has to get in the meantime. Maybe before he is 16?

Saturday, May 26, 2007

It's a three-day weekend, and I have a list of things to do a mile long - and most of them involve cleaning! We have company tomorrow for a BBQ, so I have grand ideas of cleaning all sorts of things before they come. Luckily, the company are friends, so if the cleaning doesn't happen, it will be okay! I also have flowers to plant in the front flower bed, and more cucumbers and peppers for the garden. I also want to get the dead grass pulled out of the front flower bed, and other yard work done in the front. Hopefully I will get all of the yard work done I want to.

I have a new project too - clean the guest house. We are going to have a "guest" for most of the summer staying in the house. Stephanie is an intern at the bank, and is working on finishing her thesis for her Master's, and the place she was staying will not be available after 7/1. Since she is only going to be in Redding until August, it was hard for her to find a place to stay (that she could afford) for just a couple of months. So....she will be moving in. I just have to clean up the house now! (She offered to help, and I may take her up on it.)

I am going to use this opportunity to get rid of a lot of stuff that is just stored out there, and I have no intention of ever using again. I may also have to store stuff (like my boxes of yarn and other craft stuff) in the garage so it doesn't get in her way. Those boxes keep multiplying - kind of like rabbits! I swear I have more yarn/thread than I need, but then I had to buy 3 skeins of yarn for the doll project. I guess there is always more yarn out there, waiting to find a home!

Friday, May 25, 2007

Check out Rachelle's birthday present! (Cindy - don't let her see it yet!) I started this a couple of weeks ago, and finished (almost) this morning. She needs a ribbon for her bonnet, but I have none! Tomorrow is a Wal-Mart shopping day, so I will pick some up them. This is a topsy-turvy doll - one doll, two heads. She is about 15 inches top to top, and is adorable! I took her in to work today, and if I wanted to make them to sell, could have taken a few orders. I am very happy about how she turned out. Even her facial features came out okay - and that is my worst area for dolls. Very cute!

Monday, May 21, 2007

Finished? Maybe! Ralph now has a zen garden - he spent the evening after dinner arranging and re-arranging the rocks around the fountain. He also wanted more sound out of the water, so he put a rock on top of the fountain, so there is a definite water sound in the back patio now.
Poor man - Dallas and his friend came down to see the project, and after they left, Ralph asked AJ if Dallas liked it (why do you ask if a 13 year-old likes anything?). AJ said, sure, but they (the Postens) already have one, only bigger. Poor Ralph - he was one upped before he started! It turns out the Postens have a huge rock fountain. Ours is only 274 pounds - theirs is wider and taller, and professionally installed!
Our small rock was more than enough for us to handle. That turned into the biggest part of the job. I thought it was going to be the digging, but our ground is still soft from the winter rains. Of course, when we first tried to move the rock on the dolly (it was put on the piano dolly when it was delivered) we couldn't budge it. It turned out that there was a nail driven into the rock to hold the tag with the weight and price, and the rock was put down on the dolly with the nail side down. Not only were we trying to move 274 pounds, but the nail was embedded into the wood! It wasn't going anywhere! I found a few muscles this morning that I had forgotten I had! I wasn't shoveling gravel though - Ralph was sore yesterday, so I don't know how he is going to be this morning!

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Well, the fountain is finished - as much as it is going to get for a while. We need to add some large rocks around the fountain, but that is the "finishing touch", and I am not sure which rocks we will put where. I didn't loose all of the pink rock though. Ralph decided it was enough just to clear out what we had to move. The rest can be done later. I am just glad we got it done! It didn't take as long as I thought it would to do the actual work, but it took longer to work out the details (can you say perfectionist??) It was a nice family project - the rock weighs 274 pounds!

The parts - the gravel pile - the prep work

Digging the gravel - the hole - installing the liner

Installing the liner - the liner in - the rock ready to stand up

The rock in - filling with water - adding the rock

Saturday, May 19, 2007

Well, the weekend is off to an early start. Allison was up this morning at 5:00 a.m. Happy Saturday! So much for sleeping in. It will be a busy weekend chasing kids, and Ralph and I have a large project to work on. AJ has to be in town this morning at 8:30 for the Rodeo Parade (Boy Scouts carry the banners for the winning floats) and then at 12:30 we are meeting another scout parent that will take him to Camp Lassen (outside of Chico) for the rest of the Order of the Arrow Ordeal. I need to pick him up Sunday morning between 10:00 and 11:00. Allison has three baseball games (one inning each) starting at 8:45 on Sunday, so Ralph will take her, and I will go get AJ.

Yesterday, I invited Ralph out to lunch, and he suggested a local spot by his work, and we could stop by the landscaping business close by and I could look at some fountains with him. An hour later, I went back to work with no lunch, but the proud owner of a new fountain for the back yard. (I ran through Jack in the Box on the way back.) Poor Ralph lost track of the time and thought I was angry or something when I said I had to back to work without lunch! When I explained that I had already been gone for 55 minutes, he looked at his watch in surprise! Maybe next week we can do lunch.

The fountain is really cool! It is a large basalt rock with a hole drilled up the center. Water is attached at the bottom and dribbles down the sides of the rock. It is going in the little corner rock area we have just off of the patio. We are also replacing the "pink" rock that is there with River Rock. Oh happy days! (I hate that pink rock!) Ralph is going to work on the set-up this morning and go pick up the rock and all the parts, and some of the gravel. His truck won't hold all that we will need, but he will get enough to get the pond set up and have the rest of the gravel delivered. The water collects under the gravel, so there is no "pond" for Alli to play in. She can go and sit on the rock, but that is about it! (and I am sure she will!) They have some really nice columns of rock that I would have really liked out there, but I was afraid Alli would lean on them and knock them over. The rock we got weighs about 250 pounds, and has a nice base on it, so she shouldn't knock it over, accidentally at least. Our plan is to have it all set up this weekend, and I hope we do. We have company coming next weekend for Memorial Day, and I would like to have everything ready by then.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Well, back to normal life! Work is busy, the kids are busy and everything else is busy! AJ has two different activities this weekend - actually three if you count Friday night. Friday is his Spring Concert for Band. I also got volunteered to play babysitter for the kids that are not on stage (they call it a chaperon, but I know better!) so we both have to be at the school at 6:30 Friday night.
Saturday morning, he has to be in town at 8:30 to march in the Rodeo Parade. The scouts carry the banners for the "winning" floats. After the parade, we are meeting up with one of the other Scout Dads, and he is taking AJ with him to Camp Lassen (outside Chico) for the balance of the Order of the Arrow Ordeal.
On Sunday, Alli has three (three!) baseball games, along with closing ceremonies and awards for Challenger's Little League. Unfortunately, this is at the same time AJ needs to be picked up in Chico. Ralph and I will have to split the kid duties this weekend!
I finished a new doily - this one is about 12 inches across, and is a light green - hard to tell in this picture. The snowflake is about 7 inches across. I took some of my doilies that I had completed to work last week, and most of them found a home.

Monday, May 14, 2007

What a weekend! Mom, AJ and I went to Crescent City for a Memorial Service for a long time family friend, and spent most of the weekend on the beach. Our hotel was just off of the beach, so we went for a couple of long walks, looking for shells. We found some of the smallest sand dollars I have ever seen. Some were less than a half-inch across. We didn't find much of any other shells.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Alli had her IEP (Individual Educational Plan) meeting this week, and I learned something about Alli that completely surprised me - she loves the treadmill! On Monday, they had a busy day planned, so they didn't put her on it in the morning, and in the afternoon, she went over voluntarily, and climbed on the machine! What a thought - Alli LIKES the treadmill. I didn't think anyone liked the treadmill - they just did it because it was good for them. It wasn't even her "scheduled" time for it, so it wasn't as if she knew it was next in her routine. She constantly surprises me!
I threw in a picture of AJ's birthday present to Alli - the huge bear from the neighbor's yard sale. The next picture is of Alli eating her birthday cake - finally!, and then splashing in the pool this week. You can't call it swimming if she doesn't get off the steps! AJ was in with her, and pulled her off the step out into the water, and she walked back on her tip toes as quickly as she could back to the shallow water. It is still cold!

Sunday, May 06, 2007

Here is one more!

Alli turned 10 yesterday, and poor thing missed her own party! I made her a birthday cake, and then after dinner, she fell asleep on the couch, and we didn't have cake and ice cream! Since AJ and Dallas were here, they were a little disappointed they didn't get cake for dessert (they did get ice cream!) I took some more pictures of Alli at her baseball game. The ones from in the outfield of are her "spinning" she is just turning around and around and around.

Yesterday was also the "Big Event" here in the neighborhood - a huge garage sale. AJ spent the night at Dallas' and helped his family with their sale. One of the items for sale was a go-cart, and AJ and Dallas drove it around the subdivision as advertisement. AJ had a lot of fun driving! (It did NOT follow him home!) One item that did follow him home was a huge stuffed bear for Alli. She rocked with it for a while yesterday (AJ and Dallas played with it last night too - poor bear!)