Monday, August 20, 2018

Life Last Week 2018-26

After being absent for the month of July, I got back into Life Last Week and then, well, life just got in the way of posting all about it.

The weather:::
 Hot, hot, hot, humid, humid, humid, rain, rain, rain, and then more hot, hot, get the picture.

On my reading pile:::
Finished Death of an English Muffin, on to Maisie Dobbs which I'm enjoying immensely so far.

On my TV:::
House of Cards in preparation for the new, final season and more Great British Baking Show, I just can't get enough of Mary and Paul.

Checked off the list:::
  • Vic spent a week in California and then was home for a week - he's working his way through his moving to-do list.
  • Spouses' group board meeting - our Welcome Social is coming up in September, always a fun time.
  • Volunteered at the gift shop and didn't bring too much stuff home with me!
  • Sophia is all moved in to her new apartment and cleaning the old one today.
  • Applied for mortgage pre-approval for the Washington house - should hear this week.
  • Booked our house hunting trip to Washington in September.
  • Booked all the hotels for our cross country trip.
  • Ordered a BarkBox for Spectra - does anyone else subscribe?
  • Inventoried all the kitchen/pantry items in the Christmas room (that's the third bedroom if I haven't mentioned it on here before - the overflow room for Christmas decorations and kitchen/pantry items that won't fit in the kitchen cupboards), all the DVDs, and books.  Working on the china cabinet today and then going upstairs to brave the craft room (the second bedroom) which currently closely resembles the aftermath of a tornado.  My home inventory app is certainly getting a workout.
Crafts roundup:::
Vic's the only crafter in the house right now - he is simultaneously finishing up the loveseat and my vanity.

And in other news:::
I have 11 sets of dishes!  Ok, some of them are only sets for two but still 11????  I need a serious china intervention.  Once we get the house hunting out of the way, I'll have a better idea of kitchen/pantry size and if I have to make some radical changes.

The kitchen/pantry section of the Christmas room

Tuesday, August 7, 2018

Prime Purchases August 2018

It's time for another Prime Purchases link-up with Tanya at The Other Side of the Road.

Spectra joined the Washington branch of the family last month and she's a bit of a chewer.  Sophia ran a number of leaving her alone tests - 15 minutes to start, then longer, then longer - and although she has done well so far (she has an ample supply of chewy toys to keep her busy), Sophia knew that she would have even longer periods ahead when she goes back to work.  So I invested in a camera that she can connect to an app on her phone to keep an eye on things.  She can even talk to Spectra from the app.

It's the TENVIS HD IP Camera - Wireless IP Camera with Two-way Audio, Night Vision Camera, 2.4GHz & 720P Camera for Pet Baby Monitor, Home Security Camera Motion Detection Indoor Camera with Micro SD Card Slot.

There wasn't really anything on Prime Day that caught my eye until I got an alert that Season 3 of Outlander was a Lightning Deal at $14.99.  I texted Sophia to ask her if she had Season 3 - she did not - so I sent it off to her.  When I checked our collection, we didn't have Season 3 either so I'll have to borrow hers as I couldn't order more than one DVD on the deal.

I bought this Professional Weekender bag for Vic to use when he comes home to Washington from Okinawa.  It's like a backpack but bigger, more like a carry-on piece of luggage, but it has so many pockets for his laptop, headphones, sunglasses, chargers and cords, plus a change of clothes, it's the perfect bag.  Even more perfect was the deal - $199.99 --> $159.99 --> $119.99 + free shipping.
I mentioned this thirty-one Littles Carry-All Caddy I picked up in the thirty-one sale in a Life Last Week post.  This is the Hello Holiday pattern - I thought it would be great for a thank you for coming gift after a holiday party with some cookies or other goodies inside.  It was a steal at $3.99, normally $14.00.  No longer available but watch for the next sale.

Vic loves this car so I picked up this Swedish dishcloth.  There are lots of designs available here at the Scandinavian Shoppe.

Monday, August 6, 2018

Life Last Week 2018-25

Life Last Week was on hiatus during Christmas in July but I'm back and here's what's been happening Chez Nous.

The weather:::
 More of the ghastly weather we've been having while I've been dreaming of snow at Christmas - it's been in the high 80s and even 90s every day with bursts of torrential rain in the afternoons and evenings that do nothing but make it more humid and leave pools of water that quickly become mosquito breeding grounds.  Have I told you lately how much I loathe the weather here?  What do they say in Game of Thrones, Winter is Coming?  It can't come soon enough for me!

On my reading pile:::
Working my way through this stack minus the Debbie Macomber book which I found out as I started reading it that it is number twelve in the Cedar Cove series.  Need to read 1-11 first.  I'm enjoying Death of an English Muffin.

On my TV:::
Worked my way through Madam Secretary and I'm watching Escape to the Continent on Netflix.  I think I'm going to start When Calls the Heart from the beginning.  Coming out of Christmas in July, I've been watching December Daily You Tube videos to get some inspiration as the products will be available soon.

Checked off the list:::
  • Christmas in July was a lot of fun - the Magical Holiday Home Forums members are awesome and we shared some great ideas during the month.
  • Vic's been super busy with work and it's not going to slow down anytime soon.  He's been to Florida and New Hampshire since my last update as well as a local inspection and now he's off again.
  • I finally turned over the Charities Chair and in keeping with the "I Can't Say No" problem I've had for many years, I agreed to take over as Parliamentarian for my remaining time here to help with the Bylaws Revision process.
  • The septic system proposal came in (ka-ching, ka-ching), the house needed to be pressure washed, and the lead inspection was completed with two minor things that need to be corrected.  Spending money on rental house 3, Pamela and Vic 0.
  • England made it to the semi-finals of the World Cup and then lost to Croatia.  #itsnotcominghomethistime.
  • Managed to get out of Hallmark on Keepsake Ornament Premiere Day without having to take out a second mortgage - 😜
  • Vic had a bed bug encounter at the hotel in Florida on the last day he was there (thankfully on the second bed in the room and not the one he was sleeping in) - he reported it to the front desk as he was checking out and the clerk said they would notify the manager (it was too early for him/her to be on site yet).  When the management followed up on the complaint, they said they didn't find anything even though we had photographs.  Since a member of staff was not there to witness the photographs being taken, they declined our complaint.  I wasn't taking any chances.  Everything that couldn't be washed in the hottest water possible was bagged and tossed in the freezer for several days.  Vic needed a new backpack anyway so we tossed that and his suitcase stayed in the garage for a week to be subjected to the heat of a Virginia summer to kill anything that might have made its way in there.  I made several recommendations for future hotel stays - leave your luggage at the door while you strip the bed when you get there, and if you find anything, call the manager and insist that they come up immediately to inspect the findings.  I hope it's not ever an issue again but you have to be prepared.
  • This little cutie joined the Washington branch of our family - her name is Spectra and she's so lovable.  Just what Sophia needed to help heal her heart after the loss of MudLynn.  She's two years old, a rescue, and a lab-chihuahua mix although I'm sure she's got some Australian cattle dog in her (those ears!).

Crafts roundup:::
Vic's projects have come to a standstill during his busy travel period.  I haven't done anything to Project Life either.  We are doing a lot of packing, though, does that qualify as a craft?

And in other news:::
We have less than 100 days to go before we are in Washington.  In that time, we have to make a house-hunting trip to Washington, pack out of this house, and start the trek across the country.  A busy couple of months are ahead of us.

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Currently - August 2018

 It's time for the monthly wrap-up, Currently, with host Anne from In Residence.  This month's prompts are following, ordering, pinning, watching, and counting.

Following // My two favorite You Tubers, Caroline (Mrs M) and Jen at Pretty Neat Living.  I love their chatty styles.

Ordering //  It's time to place my monthly Melaleuca order.  If you're looking for products that are good for you and the environment, and a host of health and nutrition products, check out Melaleuca.
Pinning // I've just come off a month-long Christmas in July celebration which involved pinning a lot of holiday ideas so I'm switching over to Washington pins, fun places to explore. including a return visit to Leavenworth, the beautiful Bavarian village.

Watching // We have a large feral cat population on the waterfront where I live and sometimes a cat will wander into the adjacent neighborhood.  I have a mommy cat who has taken up residence under my porch.  This weekend, she also had a kitten with her.  There is a local cat rescue who will trap and rehome them so they asked me to put some food out so they stay close (the mommy cat has been cruising the neighborhood for months) so I put out small bowls of food and water each morning and then pick up the food bowl when it is empty so it doesn't attract anything else with four legs.  This is day three; I haven't seen the kitten since this weekend but the cat has polished off the food on both days so far.

Counting // So many countdowns - the days until Sophia moves to her new apartment, the days until we meet with the bank about our new mortgage, the days until we travel to Washington on our house-buying trip, and finally, the days until we bid Virginia goodbye and hit the road.

Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Christmas in July 2018 - Day Thirty-One

And that's a wrap for Christmas in July 2018!  I hope you have enjoyed 31 Days of All Things Christmas from decor and decorating, outdoor decorating, and how to display a variety of items suggestions, to a Pinterest Party.  As I mentioned on Day Twenty-Seven, a My Favorite Things Party with a holiday theme is a lot of fun.  These are the items I put together (all from my gift closet, all purchased deeply discounted in the after-Christmas sales) as my contribution to the party.

Ziploc storage bags and containers - you can never have too many during the holidays

A drying mat - great to have under your dish drainer or even under or next to your coffee station

Holiday paper towels

Holiday hand towels for the bathroom if you don't have room for a fancier tray of guest towels - these rest right on the towel bar so you pull a towel from below

Holiday Kleenex in the traditional cube box

And the fancier Kleenex designs that have come out in recent years

I gathered all of these items together on a small base - I think I covered a mailing box with wrapping paper - placed the whole thing in a cellophane bag and tied it with a big ribbon.  It was a huge hit.

Monday, July 30, 2018

Christmas in July 2018 - Day Thirty

Books and other reading material today.  I love Christmas magazines especially the British ones I find at Barnes and Noble.  We have a Christmas Eve family tradition - we go out to brunch and then to Barnes and Noble.  Everyone has a spending limit, say $25, and we each buy what we want - a book or magazines - and then after we pay for it all, we take it home in the Barnes and Noble bag and put it under the tree.  No-one gets to look at their choice until Christmas Day after we've had breakfast and opened presents.  Christmas Day is pretty much pajama day at our house so its nice to have some new DVDs and something to read, exactly what we each wanted to read, as we are relaxing.  These are some of my favorites.

Sunday, July 29, 2018

Christmas in July 2018 - Day Twenty-Nine

My all-time favorite Christmas movie has to be White Christmas.  We went to see the stage production in Boston one Christmas and it was just as amazing as the movie.  The final scene where the doors open and the snow is falling - mesmerizing!

Pretty much tied for the first place slot with White Christmas is The Holiday.  Christmas and England, what's not to love?

And then Love Actually, I am lost in the opening scenes at the Arrivals Terminal at Heathrow Airport.  So much love, so much happiness.

Although not a movie, but right up there in viewing pleasure during the holiday season is the BBC Holiday Gift Set, a collection of Christmas episodes for anyone who loves British comedy and drama.