fufaraw: (Default)
I wanted a nice little row of pots of colorful flowers along the front of the house. Mainly geraniums and petunias, in all their glorious varieties, because petunias make me happy. OH just went nuts with the plants and the pots and the glavin. He discovered he didn't like buying annuals every spring, and started converting our pretty colors to... perennials. Which are mainly...green. And, well, they're better than empty pots, I suppose, but they don't thrill me the way !!Petunias!! do. So OH does rafts of little pots, instead of a dozen big pots with multiple plants, and they spread along both sides of the house and in back, as well as in front. And then he grouses and gripes about having to water and deadhead them all, but he does it because secretly he enjoys it. And then he goes away for six or eight weeks and I am privileged to water these...plants.
I got the front and half the side yard done this morning. I'll do the rest of the side yard and the back tomorrow. The neighbor is getting the other side when she does her own. I hope nothing dies of drought between now and tomorrow morning.

new shelves
I would post pictures, but there are a lot and I'm lazy . So, the first nine photos (reading the captions might illuminate, a bit)  here www.flickr.com/photos/59911899@N00/ are the new shelves and things OH has been working on between trips to NC. He got a huge amount done. The eight feet of DVD & CD shelving took a lot of careful measuring, cutting, painstaking putting things together, and more than a couple of hours just tacking the backing onto the unit, one shelf and vertical divider at a time.

He's off again, supporting his family as his brother undergoes cancer surgery. While he's gone, I get to load the DVDs and CDs, and rearrange the books so they make better sense than "out of box, onto shelves."

And then, yay! It's the Dread Closet Reorg. That's the bane of having a walk in closet big enough for a small nursery or reading room. So. Much. Stuff to sort and cull and purge and reorganize. And then, and THEN, there's the massive tarot culling and reorganizing.

Or, you know, I could nap.
fufaraw: (Default)
OH is leaving Monday for another stint in NC; his brother is having his cancer surgery, and their mom can't be left alone. BiL's partner is coming to stay near near the hospital and advocate for him during his hospital stay, and OH will be there once he's discharged to recover at home. We're expecting six to eight weeks before BiL is on his feet and well enough to manage for himself, and supervise Mom, if they've not found a good long term residential memory care place for her by then.

So there's that. He's been going ramming speed getting the bookcases together and in place so I'll have the books, DVDs, CDs, etc. to shelve and organize while he's gone. Then there's the walk-in closet reorg I've been putting off and half-assing for literally, years. I'll be busy.

So we bolted yesterday after he got the second coat of paint on the last shelf unit, heading for leafy shade and pleasant scenery, quiet music, and each other's company. Strapped into the passenger seat, I over-reached for something and my left shoulder spasmed and cramped. I eased it as much as I could, but as cramps do, it hovered right on the point of clamping down again. OH drove one-handed for a minute or two, while he jammed his fist into my shoulder blade, and when the knot went loose, he rubbed it out.

Once we were home again, he saw me working the shoulder and prepared to push his fist into the knot again. "No," I told him. "It's just sore from cramping up tight." So he massaged it (he paid for a semester of college as a masseur at the Y), rotated the arm and massaged it more until the joint was loose and happy. 

So far this week I've had a gastric upset (due to inflammation and medication), aching thumb joints and resulting near-useless hands, loose hip joints curtailing walks of any length, and now a malfunctioning shoulder. I feel so useful, not to mention attractive. "I'm so sorry, sweetheart," I told him. "That you got such a dud."

He hooked his arms around my shoulders. "You are intelligent, you're good with people, you have a good heart and a fierce sense of honor, you have a killer sense of humor, you have enormous patience, and you have a fabulous smile."

"I try," I said. "Yes, you do," he agreed. Then he grinned, the little shit. "And you have a *won*derful personality." Which is his way of avoiding telling me I'm pretty, because he's a little shit. Which was a good thing, actually, because up to that point it was starting to feel like, "You is pretty, you is kind, you is important," and nobody wants to bawl in the middle of the kitchen.

fufaraw: (Default)
Part of my deal with aspbergers, or the shallow end of autism, is a random, unpredictable but gimlet-eyed hyperfocus on details. I usually try to rein it in, but about some things I don't even try. Thank goodness OH is very aware of this trait, and indulges me for the most part.

In excavating the books and dvds, we found our collection of antique jail keys and the skeleton keys from the old house, plus a clock key and a couple of other keys of forgotten origin. Also found is the escutcheon and key windchime, bought and never hung. The fancy escutcheon, and the fancy key that serves as windcatcher, are fake old brass. The chimes are bright shiny silver, trimmed with crystal and pearl beads. The old keys will be mounted on a board, horizontally, two cuphooks per key (so they can be removed for closer inspection), and the board hung on the side of the tall bookcase in the living room. The windchime will hang from the ceiling, directly above the keys display. 

The keys, for the most part, are real old brass, and iron. I wanted them mounted against a background with a light texture, rather than a flat color. I decided to use the giftwrap I used to paper the back of the curio cabinet, across the doorway, directly opposite from where the board will hang. The paper has bright shiny silver dots, on a pearly finished background. I liked the idea of continuing the textured background from one place to the other in the room, and then realized, the bright shiny chimes and the pearl beads match the paper!

OH just grinned and shook his head while I hopped about, cheeping, "Look, look! I didn't even plan it and they match! Nobody but me will ever notice, but look! They match, they match, they match! Eeee!"

He loves me in spite of myself.


Aug. 13th, 2017 06:32 pm
fufaraw: single candle flame (one candle)
It's so much cooler now than it was last week. I feel like I'm actually living again, rather than laboring to exist from moment to moment. The air, while not perfect, is much clearer after the rain.

OH finished the bookshelves under the breakfast bar (pictures soon!), and we're both a bit dismayed to realize we have far more 15" tall coffee table books on various subjects than we even thought. Some of them will have to be shelved on their sides. Plus to that, the spines can be read easily. This coming week will be me pulling shorter books and fitting taller ones on the adjustable living room shelves, as the hall (bar) shelves are built for standard hardcovers. I'd kill for a library where I could shelve by subject, then author, then pub. date. But as things are, I shelve by size. And within that constraint, I try to organize by subject, and then by author, where I can. But mainly, it's all by size.

Since it's the anniversary of our son's death, we decided to drive out toward Deception Pass, where his ashes are scattered. The parking lot on Pass Island was jammed, so there was no hope of stopping, or having a private moment today, so we kept driving. Someone has planted trees and a garden around the massive chunk of driftwood that resembles a dragon and is locally known affectionately as Nessie. Thoughtful, but in a season or two she won't be visible from the road, standing guard on the cliff above the strait.

We drove out to Ebey Point--couldn't see the mountains on the far side of the water, but we found a gap in the sea oats that line the road by the beach and parked where we could watch and hear the breakers, as well as the grass blades and seed heads of the oats rustling in the constant offshore breeze. We'd planned to cut the stereo when we stopped, but Native American flute and drums were playing and it somehow seemed appropriate. We'd brought a fresh rye boule and a small tub of sweet butter, fresh zucchini, a bit of leftover smoked salmon, some very sharp cheddar (and string cheese, because picnic!), a handful of white grapes and another of home grown yellow cherry tomatoes. No conversation necessary at all, beyond, "More butter?" or, "Grape?" It was lovely.

I count as one of my great achievements getting OH to accept that hunks *torn* off a loaf of fresh bread are always better than a careful slice--more nooks and crannies for the butter! More texture, more flavor! Plus, that atavistic satisfaction of primitive humanoid ripping off a fistful of food and eating it out of hand.

I hope everyone had an agreeable Sunday.


Mar. 8th, 2017 04:38 pm
fufaraw: (J2)
Next door has a small dog who, between being taken for walks, gets let out the back door with an admonition to "Go potty, Sammie!" When he's finished his business and ready to go in, he gives one or two short, sharp barks, and they're very quick to let him in.

We've gotten into the habit of, when we hear the bark, saying, "Go potty, Sammie!" Not that he can hear us or would mind us because Not His People. It's just habit for us.

We've been watching the How to Train Your Dragon series on Netflix. In last night's episode Toothless was particularly courageous and protective.

"I want a Toothless!" I told OH. "We could let him out in the side yard. Nobody would even know he was there."

OH didn't miss a beat. "Go potty, Toothless!"

Hmmm, maybe not.


Feb. 27th, 2017 05:49 pm
fufaraw: (J2)
OH makes a vat of vegebarleybeef soup several times a year, particularly welcome in winter. He offered a quart to the next door neighbor, who said, "Oh, I couldn't eat that much!" and accepted a pint, instead. This afternoon we found the pint container on the back steps with homemade oatmeal chocolate chip cookies inside. I'm liking this arrangement!

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Minton's Haddon Hall plate, cup, and saucer, thrifted sugar and creamer, Portmeirion "A Fine Romance" teapot. It pleases me the tea towel has herbs printed in purple and green.
fufaraw: (red umbrella snow)
These binder clipsare familiar, useful little beasties. We have them around the house in several sizes, and use them for closing the chips bag to minding electric cords, and more.

When I dropped the laptop on a corner and broke the hinge of the lid/screen, OH leapt into action with the binder clips and duct tape.

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He re-established and stabilized the connection between keyboard and screen, even pulled the corner of the frame tight enough it didn't do that little boiling effect in the very corner. Of course, this all required that the lid not move.

You see where this is going, right? Yep, night before last, I pushed down the lid to close it--felt and heard the hinge go and stopped before it was completely closed, but the damage was done. Time to laptop shop. Which is entirely a mixed blessing, because while the computer itself is still good--blazingly fast and tons of storage--in spite of multiple settings tweaks, the touchpad remains Secret Rocket J. Squirrel. I've gotten extremely tired of it randomly highlighting a paragraph or two and deleting it--surprise! Or kicking up the font size a notch or two, you know, whimsically, when it wants to. I'm sure it's actually pilot error and I'm hitting some secret button accidentally, but I haven't been able to find the freaking button and I'm really frelling tired of the cursor squirreling around on its own. So I won't be sad to see the back of that feature.

But because the computer is fairly new and still good, OH plans to hook it up to a monitor and mouse and just use it as a desktop. So I don't feel too guilty about breaking my shiny new-ish thing.
fufaraw: (J2)
OH is rebuilding the neighbor's deck, from the crap job the handyman she hired did before she fired him. Support posts that don't reach the ground! Verticals that are *visibly* an inch and a half off plumb! Decking cut too short and pieced badly! We both knew it would drive him crazy if it wasn't fixed *right*, so he volunteered and she's helping with the digging and the clearing of rocks and the packing of gravel and sand, etc. Because she has a crop of them, she sent me another dahlia. This was the only thing heavy and wide at the base, narrow at the neck enough to support it. It's recycling. Kinda. Please to ignore the dust.

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fufaraw: (Dean welp)
Unable to follow a plot, but able to focus on the screen at least, last night, I watched DVR'd and Instant Watch eps of Dr. Jeff, Rocky Mountain Vet, I Am Jazz, and basically, house porn. Property Bros Buying and Selling, Desperate Kitchens, Hunting Vintage, House Hunters International, Texas Flip and Move, and one of my favorites, Good Bones. I love the joyous crafty mom on that show, and the git'er done redhead and her 'hit it!" demo brother. Sheer mindless destruction for channeling free-floating rage, and unlimited budget reconstruction. Plus, mom usually finds some element or article left in the derelict house to showcase, a touch I like. Listed Sisters didn't seem to be on offer--I like them, too. Dozing off to the Scott twins and waking up to John and Anthony felt pretty seamless, or that could just have been the fuzzy brain.

I finished up with an ep from the original season of Pitbulls & Parolees, and schlepped off to my bed. I've been sleeping as much on the couch for the last week, because sitting propped up, I didn't cough as much. Flat in bed, I kept myself awake wheezing musically, or if I did fall asleep I'd cough myself awake in an hour or two, plus keeping OH awake as well. But I woke in my own bed this AM, breathing fairly well, with only an occasional coughing spasm. We sort of blinked at each other. I've had this crap for a week, he's had it for two. He made coffee, and we sat down to catch up on the news online. One cup in, I was blinking and sleepy, and went back to bed and slept another two hours. I ambled out to the living room and begged for scrambled eggs. I'm perfectly capable of making them, but they're his pans, in his kitchen, and it's not worth dealing with him hovering to supervise. But the eggs were yummy, as always, and I had the rest of my coffee. And then nodded over the laptop, dozing off three times in two hours.

I left OH dozing in the recliner (over his laptop) and as the house was heating up in the day, went to the back of the house to put fans in the windows to pull cool air from the woods, set pedestal fans in the hall to push the cool air through the house, put the box fan in the front window to exhaust warm air, and closed the blinds to shut out the sun. I scalded the empty water bottles, filled them from the filter pitcher, refilling the pitcher as needed, and put the bottles in the fridge. Then I did a quick cleanup of the kitchen counters, and bagged the wastebaskets full of used tissues to go in the trash. I disinfected the toilet and wiped down the bathroom counter and faucet, cleaned myself up a little and changed pajamas, but I ran out of steam before I managed to change the bed. Tomorrow. And a real shower. And a shampoo. And a call for an appointment to get my hair cut--short.

Had a banana for lunch, and some cooled tea made of boiled chopped ginger, honey, and lemon. Realized I'd not taken any anti-cold or cough meds the whole day and celebrated the occasion in my head, since I was too tired to do it out loud. And then I sat down and dozed off over the laptop again.

OH woke up and, since the sun was over the yardarm, he went out to water the plants in the shade. No deadheading, though. He ran out of energy. It looks like we may have this crap on the run. Oh--I glanced at my desk planner, and realized it was still turned to last week. Huh. I really have been lost in time. So tell me, what have I missed?
fufaraw: laptop and coffee (coffee and keys)
Too many pictures of too much stuff behind the cut...

Read more... )

If you look at the third picture, on the wall just to the left of the cupboard is the whole-house thermostat. In the fourth picture, the door immediately to the cupboard's left is the furnace. The wall oven is behind it, and behind that is the washer and dryer. Between the furnace and the washer-dryer is the hot water heater. Cozy little thermostat never feels the chill. OH has discovered how to motivate it, though--a bag of remedial frozen peas draped over the top of the thermostat for a minute or two usually results in the furnace kicking on. I keep him around because he's always on his toes like that. And for car maintenance.
fufaraw: (Jaredshadow)
Read more... )
In other news, it feels really weird not to be hyperfocused on finishing a Big Bang story, and confabbing (do we still say confabbing?) with an artist. Ah well. Next year.

My Boo

May. 3rd, 2016 09:32 am
fufaraw: (Auscon shirtwrite)
The Other Human this morning: I'm sorry you didn't get your story in shape for the Sudden Crash.

Me: blink, blink. Blink, blink.

Me: (lightbulb) Ohh! (cracking up) You mean the Big Bang?

OH: (nodding) That. 'Course, from my perspective, what I see is, desperate fast typety, typety, typety, typety, hit SEND, Sudden Crash.

Me: Fair point. More coffee?

Ohh, I see

Feb. 1st, 2016 12:36 pm
fufaraw: (J2 Head rub)
OH and I are both suffering a bout of slight eye irritation, from either airborne irritants, or a possible approaching cold (makes warding sign). I mentioned that my eyes were itchy, and he said, "Mine too. I took a benedryl, and washed my face in cool water, and I washed my eyes out with eyedrops."

I made a skeptical face.

"If you don't want to take anything, you could at least use the eyedrops. It's just saline."

...aaand my compulsion to set words to music kicked in. To the tune of "Sailing...(takes me away)" I warbled, "saaaline..."

He closed his eyes and did the headshake and fought a reluctant grin. And then it occured to me: in our relationship, he's the Jensen, I'm the Jared!
fufaraw: (red umbrella snow)
We don't have a fireplace, but we do have a yawning black hole when the tv is off, so we've been playing the fireplace dvd a lot during the holidays, without music, just with the crackle-snap-hiss of "fireplace sounds." I've been creeping the Other Human out by randomly looking up and cooing in my best Lauren Bacall* voice, "What a pretty fire!" or "That's a pretty fire."

"Stop it! Stop it! You sound creepy, stop it!"

"Such a pretty fire..."

*the Witch of the Waste, Howl's Moving Castle
fufaraw: (J2)
Woke instantly this morning, noped out of another dream. Summer Glau in a ruffled red sheath and heels was trapped underground and the water was rising fast. A trap door opened in the floor, with the implication that it led to air and out. Nope, nope, nope, wide awake now, thanks.

In other news, the Other Human is apparently deeply appreciated by people more than just me. A clerk he sees often in the grocery store reached an arm from behind him, her hand holding a long-stemmed red-edged pink rose. "Take this home, you could probably use the brownie points." And the neighbor across the street, whose late-summer-fall garden has been usurped by dahlias, had stems broken in the recent winds. She gave him a pale yellow one as big as his head, with almost no stem.

We have a stack of three faux-slate ceramic tiles straight out of the wall-and-floor section of Home Depot. We attached rubber feet to the corners and use them as trivets. They are 6-inch, 8-inch, and 12-inch squares, of varying colors, and we have them stacked on the kitchen bar counter, off-center toward one corner. In the stacked corner is a rock, brought through customs by a British friend from her holiday at a ruined Scottish castle. The rock is roughly triangular, striped in subtle shades of grey, and echoes the corner of the stack.

OH put the dahlia in a rough-textured ivory-tan pottery bowl of water, set the bowl on the stack of tiles, with the rock on the lowest corner. So simple, so deliberate, so beautiful.  (click pictures to enlarge)

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