Sunday, October 31, 2010

Go giants!!!

Some things never change, whether your're retired or not.  Ha ha...  The Big Guy would still be glued to the World Series even if he had piles of reports sitting on his desk like in the "old days".  At least now he can go to bed without a load on his mind and wake up after the crack of dawn.  It's all goooood.

...Just being grateful...

(And thinking of you Rick... we'll see Barbara and the family tomorrow...)

Friday, October 29, 2010

Rick and The Giants

My big guy lost an old friend two days ago.  Very unexpectedly.  Actually, it was a shock.  Rick was out riding his bike and had a heart attack.

Everyone reacts differently.  The big guy seemed OK - sad, but OK.

Later that day, I received an excited phone call from the older son (27)....Dad was taking him and the younger son (22) to the first game of the World Series.     Uh.     Whaaaat????   Excuuuuuse me????

Me:          "And those tickets were how much, Dear???"
Big Guy:   "Only $500."
Me:          " $500. all together?"
Big Guy:   "Um...No...$500. each...."
Big Guy:   (Pause) "I was thinking, the Giants will probably never be in another World Series in my lifetime.
Me:          "Ummm Hmmmm"

They talked about the game for hours when they came home... and again today.  Tonight they're watching the second game on TV.  But what a memory they had of that first World Series game. Giants won 11-7.

Everyone reacts to loss differently.

Thinking of you Rick.

OMG! There's A Mouse In The House!!!

See that little black spot along the wall?  Yea - cute, cute, CUTE little mouse but...seriously, I wasn't a happy woman.  Ohhh man.  Home alone and...alone for the night with the big guy away and a critter scurrying around.  Clearly, I was the one more afraid. I mean what the heck do you do to get the thing out of the house?  I'm not real good at whacking live animals...maybe stay the night with friends and let the little guy have the run of the house?

My neighbor ran over with her mouse bait and there it is in the box on the kitchen counter but...I wasn't quite ready for that yet.  I might have nightmares.

After an hour of the two of us avoiding one another, I figured I must be smarter than he is. 

How did he get in?  Well, the garage door had been open all day and the door to the kitchen as well (I was gardening) sooooo.. he could darn well leave the same way he came in...out the door.  With that brilliant thought in mind, I scooped up a spoonful of peanut butter, placed it about 3 feet outside of the open front door and waited....   sure enough he got hungry and went for it.  SLAM.  Shut the door and we were done with each other.

Well, that was a fun four hours.

What a woman!    

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Ta Da !

The guest room is done, done, done!  Well, almost - I still need to add some accessories...maybe a few framed items above the bed or...whatever... I'm still thinking.  

I am sooo happy with my "frugal-finds" for this room.  It took some leg work but, really, it wasn't that hard.  The duvet cover shams and comforter were purchased at the HomeGoods store: for a total of $120.  I could have gotten the same thing in an all-in-one comforter set ( bed-in-a-bag) for a lot less ($80.) but since this was a guest room, I wanted to be able to easily wash a duvet cover for my guests and not have everyone sharing germs.  Not cool.  Oh - and the bedskirt was purchased online for about $40.

The end tables came from a home consignment store in our area that actually sells a few new things - they were $120 each.

The lamps are from Target.  Yes - Target.  It's a great place for lamps because they are so reasonable - and they work - unlike some lamps I've scooped up before at some out of the way places.  The Target lamps have "mix and match" shades and all together, I think they were about $40. a piece. 

Here's a cute little slipper chair from Target.  I ordered this online after I saw it in the store and it was about $150.  It's not really comfy - I don't think my guests will cozy up with a book but it's a decent place to park your bum when your're putting on socks or waiting for your better half to finish up in the bathroom.  The pillows (there's a second one on the bed) came form HomeGoods and they are beautiful, brown Ralph Lauren corduroy.  They look like a million bucks but were $20 each.  

The paint is Kentucky Haze by Benjamin Moore.  It's a nice, cool and soothing color - just love it.  (about $100 for the room)

I get such a charge out of spending as little as possible on this stuff and still having a pretty nice room come out of it.  

I really needed to get this room in shape because we're in that retirement mode like so many of our friends who also haven't been able to replace their former jobs and we're all going around visiting one another.  
Instead of "stay-cations", we've been doing "friends-house-cations".  No hotel rooms, new scenery, and we try to do cheap dinners.  The challenge that's been thrown out is to come supplied with a new kind of inexpensive but really good bottle of wine.  We've discovered a couple of very nice ones:  KlinkerBrick Zinfandel and Cline Ancient Vine Zinfandel  Yumm!!! (make sure you get the "ancient" vine kind.)

Friends are coming in mid-November so now we'll be ready for them.  So, all together I spent about $730.  OK, not cheap for those in a real crunch but I think it's do-able for some and certainly less extravagant than what more than a few of us would have plunked on our credit card a couple of years ago!  And I'm pleased with the way it turned out.  Now I have to keep reminding my darling guy how much money he has saved.. haha!

Friday, October 22, 2010

A Newly Painted Room...Just Feels Good

I loooove to paint!  Well, not the process of painting, really, but I really just love the feeling of having a newly painted room.  And the feeling of accomplishment too. It's energizing! We bought a house along a lake about a year ago and it may be our permanent retirement home - not sure yet - but it's been our all-consuming project.  The painting was put on hold for the summer months so we could enjoy the place with family but the paint buckets are calling our names again!

My favorite paints are Benjamin Moore - I use them all the time. They cover really well and designers (like myself) use them more than any other brands. Pottery Barn has its own selection of Benjamin Moore paint colors and they are frequently featured in magazines (look in the back of a decorating magazine, in the resources section,  and you will likely find the Benjamin Moore paint color listed by page).  Traditional Home magazine usually lists paint colors for their layouts.

The color in the picture of our guest room is Kentucky Haze:

We usually do the painting ourselves - I thought I retired from that job too until I started getting bids from painting contractors - whoa!  But you can get creative about asking for help if you can't do it yourself:

1.  Ask your kids to do a room for you and then put on a nice dinner for them and their friends.

2.  Or, if they have kids, make a deal with them to take the grandchildren for a weekend so mom and dad can have a romantic getaway in exchange for the paining job.  (Or a romantic dinner if you can't take the children for an overnight).

3. You could also pay your kids to paint a room - with the economy the way it is, they might really like that approach.

4.  UH...well you could always ask for having a room painted as a Christmas present.  How many robes and slippers can you handle anyway?

Just think about how great that room will look when it's painted and how nice it will make you feel.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Home Sweet Home!

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There Must Be Some Rules For This!

OK.  We've retired.  We don't have to get up and fly off to work, wishing we had another sip of coffee or another bite of toast!  No more kids to push out the door with lists of "to-do" stuff.  It's kind of quiet, actually.

This blog is meant for those of us who aren't quite sure what to make of this new schedule
(or non-schedule). 

My husband of 35 years retired 3 years ago, although there was always the possibility of him returning to work, even part-time, but with the economy the way it is, there's no way that's going to happen!  So here we are every day...together...all the time.   I have learned a few things in the past 3 years and I will share what I have figured out (the hard way) and...I still have a long way to go. 

I have worked from home for 20 years and I LOVED the independence so having a co-worker (retired husband) has taken some getting used to.  Maybe there are some of you who have the same thing going on. 

I hope I can pass along the "better stuff" I've learned.  I wished I could have found some inspiration when I first started out in retirement!