Wednesday, October 31, 2012

The aftermath

We ventured out Tuesday morning to survey the damage. There wasn't much of it. I saw potted plants and signs blown over and a few friends had flooding in their basement, but nothing too unusual. Leesburg was fine. By that time, the wind had died down and it rained a little bit more. By Tuesday evening it was cold and just dripping, and by Wednesday morning it had even stopped that. It's still cold and cloudy, though. Really, if I hadn't known the hurricane was coming, I just would have thought we'd had a heavy rainstorm.

I know not everyone had it so well.

Monday, October 29, 2012

9:20 weather update

We had our first complete power flicker - it went out for maybe a minute. Meg was in bed, but she noticed. "Mommy! It's DARK! Mommy, it's dark!" So we went in and cheered her up. It certainly was dark in there.

But then the lights came back on, including her nightlight.

7:45 weather update

I'm impressed by Hurricane Sandy. It goes from here to Kentucky and Michigan, and Florida to Maine?

Tonight they're anticipating the wind to get up around 40 mph here in Leesburg, with crazy gusts and inches of rain. I can vouch that the wind is getting louder out there. We've still got power, happily, and I fixed a nice dinner.

3:15 update

As soon as I posted, Jonathan got home early and reported that it looks like a tropical storm out there, with the rain going sideways and all. We decided not to go shopping. It's not a shopping day.

Also, someone's car alarm just went off, but that could from flying debris or just because it's what car alarms do.

3:00 weather update

3:00: the wind seems to be picking up. The highest gust I've seen reported for here is 46 mph, and it's still raining. The power has flickered a couple times, but so far it's holding on.

Hurricane Sandy knocking at my window

The rain and wind arrived last night, but we're doing just fine. We went grocery shopping on Saturday night, filled up a jug or two with water, and we're good on matches and candles. I even tracked down my French press and have my camp stove and a couple of Sterno cans in case the power goes and I have a deep need for coffee. I'm thinking we could do the Sterno on our sheltered stairwell, since inside isn't the greatest place. Our friends down the street offered their fireplace and grill in case of more disastrous disaster.

But we don't lose power here that often. Our house seems to be on the same line as the fire and rescue station, so they take care of us. Also, despite the dire warnings, we're pretty deep inland and up on the shoulders of the Blue Ridge Mountains, so I don't anticipate much trouble. I am probably failing to panic properly.

Meg and I are staying home and cleaning house. Jonathan went to work - a whole five minutes' drive away. So please pray for other people, who don't have it so well.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

A fuller world

Currently I'm in the middle of Timothy Zahn's Allegiance, which is a Star Wars book. The more I read Zahn the better I like him. He is one of the few male sci-fi/fantasy authors I can think of who seem aware that their worlds are going to have culture, art, fashion, and non-scientific things going on, and then makes that relevant to the plot. In Allegiance Mara Jade is eighteen and still posing as a Countess as she moves through the elite Core society. I like how Zahn describes her court dress and shoulder sculpt and how she transforms it into weapons. It's so Mara Jade.

Also, there's nothing quite like finding a book by a favorite author which you thought you'd read, and then discovering you haven't. :-)

Sunday, October 21, 2012


My sister's cat Izzy really gets along well with Meg, but sometimes she goes a little far and he nips her. We saw her rubbing her hand and scolding him.

"Ouch, kitty! You need to be careful. You hurt me with your teeth."

Monday, October 15, 2012

Mold, one point

We looked at another house on Saturday. This one was a short sale here in town, and we really liked it. It had three bedrooms on the main floor and a reasonable amount of living space, then a basement. You went down and found a pretty good sized living room down there, and opened a door and found a humongous room with a ping-pong table and groovy bar table, and then you opened another door with an even more humongous unfinished room with the washer and dryer, a door up to the yard, hanging racks for clothes, stacks and stacks of boxes, and the heater and hot water heater. It just kept going. It was phenomenal. Also, the people had a cat, which was definitely a mark in their favor.

The mark against them was that the basement was overrun with mold. One wall had been torn out, and the carpet really should have been. Our realtor did some digging, and found out they'd had a mold inspector in back in MAY who recommended massive mold remediation which was never done, and warned of possible structural problems. I get that it's the responsibility of the bank that owns it. But why wouldn't the bank try to, you know, preserve its investment? Nobody is going to win if they have to tear down the house. And if I lived there, short sale or no short sale, I think I'd invest in $5 worth of bleach and start scrubbing. I'd also knock down some spiderwebs. There were a lot of happy spiders.

Our realtor says it's always an adventure looking at houses with us!

I hate to see a house neglected like that. On the strength of it, I washed my strawberries in vinegar water today and bleached a moldy window frame.

Sunday, October 14, 2012


Meg saw my new big painting on the table. "So what are our options on this map?"

You think we've been playing board games, maybe?

Doing things

We all woke up sick, so we stayed home and watched Felix Baumgartner ascend to space for his skydive. So cool! It struck me as a very Mandalorian thing to do. Here on earth, we had a crafty day.

Meg and I made salt dough. I wanted those starfish for a project, and they turned out pretty well. Then we made a bunch of beads, big ones and small ones, and rolled some of them in glitter for extra beauty.  The big ones didn't bake so well. I'm thinking I might line the crevices with contrasting glitter and pretend we did it on purpose.

 During naptime I finished up this painting. Yikes - I hadn't realized it had been a whole year it had been sitting there unfinished. I still want to add a little bit, but there aren't any gaping patches of wood. I call that a success.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Welcome, James!

Congratulations to my darling sister on her first baby! She delivered James Alan today, and he's the most wonderful nephew ever. I get to go out in a few days and visit. He arrived precisely on his due date, 10/11/12, and we can tell he's going to be a very punctual child.

Tuesday, October 09, 2012

Those holey socks

It shouldn't surprise me, but clothes actually wear out sometimes. They really do. Sometimes my toes even poke through the ends of socks. 

For a while I carefully preserved all these odd and holey cast-offs. You can't give holey things away to the thrift store, like you can for the outgrown stuff, so they had their own laundry bin. I mean, Laura Ingalls Wilder would have made quilts and dustrags out of them. I'm sure someone on Pinterest is putting their child through college with sock crafts.

Then I discovered I had a laundry bin of holey socks and hopelessly stained t-shirts. I don't have room for my wedding dress, which is currently at my mother-in-law's house, so really?
The Lord will provide. If I really, really need more decrepit clothes, I am positive He will find me some. In the meantime, I acted in faith, risked the wrath of eco-bloggers, and threw them all away. Hello, nice dumpster.

Fall salad

I came up with a nice fall salad today. It's a good way to use up leftover acorn squash, and it just tastes fresh and kind of cozy. Since I'm not really a salad person, I'm always happy to find one that works.

baby spinach - big handful
1/2 cooked acorn squash, scooped into bite-size pieces
1/2 pear, diced
oil and balsamic vinegar for dressing

Tuesday, October 02, 2012

Ah... yes.

"What are you doing, Mommy? I have poopies in my diaper."

I'm kind of looking forward to the day when this is no longer my business.

That's why we're potty training.

Monday, October 01, 2012


"Carry me, Mommy!"
"I'll hold your hand."
"No, carry me!"
"I'll hold... the top of your head."
"No!" ::giggles::
"I'll hold... your knee. Can you climb stairs with me holding your knee?"
"No! Carry mine whole self, Mommy!"

So I did.