Friday, April 30

craigslist

Who knew?

I had never advertised anything on craigslist before (I'm more of a Trader's Guide type person), but Brian listed my bike on there Monday morning, and by Tuesday evening, it was essentially sold. We had a lady make an offer on it that day, but she wasn't able to pick it up till Friday. Since we already had people scheduled to see it on Wednesday, we didn't accept her offer until after that. The deal was finalized this evening at AAA, so now I get to buy some saddlebags for my new bike!

The craigslist response was overwhelming. We had around a dozen people respond, with a good number of them actually coming over to check out the bike. A few more wanted to see it this weekend, but that didn't work out due to the quick sale.

All in all, a good experience.

Thursday, April 29

familiar

So, I get the whole "do I know you from somewhere?" thing a lot.

Case in point--last week, Prime Design Solutions met with Johnstown Magazine for an upcoming story on our company (tentatively to be published in June). The person interviewing us thought she knew me from somewhere, but we'd never met before. When we bought my bike on Friday, the sales guy thought he knew me from somewhere, but we'd never met before. Today, I took a few pairs of pants to the local seamstress to be hemmed. She thought she knew me from somewhere, but we'd never met before. Do you see a theme here?

Certainly, this is not the first time this has happened, or I wouldn't be bringing it up. But, that's definitely the most times it has happened in this short of a time span.

Either I must look like half of the women out there (though I must say that I've never run into myself while out and about) or I'm leading a double life (maybe that's why I'm so tired all of the time).

Wednesday, April 28

the hurt locker

This was a great movie. We watched it over the weekend. It had me on the edge of my seat the whole time--it was pretty much non-stop action. More action than you would expect from the "Best Picture". Having grown up on Viet Nam movies, it's interesting to see war from a different perspective (jungle vs. desert), but I guess it all boils down to the same thing, war is war.

Sunday, April 25

so far behind

Behind with blogging--gardening's almost on track.

Let's see, since I last wrote, I've planted peas and radishes in the garden and transplanted all of the tomato plants into pots. I bought cabbage, Brussels sprouts, broccoli, and various herbs at Ray's yesterday, but couldn't get them in the garden in between the rain drops, maybe later this week the weather will cooperate.

new bike

So, I've been wanting to get a new bike. I had my heart set on a Triumph America for a few years now, but Triumph went and changed the design of them last year and I just wasn't into it. But, I do really like Triumphs and since the America was just another version of the Bonneville, I figured they were probably worth looking into. The problem with the Bonneville was that I just did not like the seat that was on them. I know they are a retro bike, but the seat was just a little too retro for me. But after looking into other seating options, I found a solo seat with luggage rack, which was exactly what I wanted (as shown above).

So, we went to the dealership last weekend and I fell in love with one of the Bonnevilles. We decided to go for it, so I secured a loan this week. We intended on going there on Saturday to purchase the bike, but, on a whim, decided to go there late Friday afternoon. And, it was a good thing we did--when we got there, some guy was sitting on MY bike! But, since we had a check in hand, we won out. However, I hate to think what might have happened if we waited another day.

That said, my old bike is now for sale. Details are here.

tea party

I went to a tea party today--not the kind with the right-wing wackos (though there's a good chance some of those people were in attendance), but an actual tea party. Each year, the Portage Historical Society puts on a tea party. Since my mom is involved, I try to go. This year I took my friend Carol so I had someone to talk to (my mom is one of the servers at the tea party, so she doesn't get to sit and relax). It was nice to catch up with Carol this afternoon and the tea party was nice as well.

What wasn't nice was the ride home. It started to rain, but by the time I got to route 56 it was an absolute downpour (complete with hail). I wasn't sure whether to pull over or keep going. I kept going, figuring that might be the safer option. I have never driven through rain like that before. Good thing I wasn't on my new motorcycle (more on that later today).

Monday, April 19

superhero movie

I never heard of this movie (probably because it was critically panned and presumably didn't do well at the box office) until Brian brought the movie trailer to my attention. Since it looked hilarious, we decided to rent it. We all thought it was frickin' hilarious. I mean, it was completely stupid comedy, but that's what we like. For example, does the world really need another fart joke? Judging from Jake's reaction, I would say yes.

It is certainly not something I'd want to watch again, though I hardly watch any movie twice, but it definitely filled the need on a Family Movie Night.

Saturday, April 17

lights out

That was the theme of the past day. It all started when a storm blew through town at the end of the work day yesterday. We closed the office a little early because our power was out. Little did we know the extent of the damage--there was a path of trees and limbs on the road the whole drive home. And, when I got home, there was also no power.

Yesterday evening, Brian had to run to his parents to help them out with something. So, Jake and I sat on the couch and played games by candlelight most of the evening. Surely, I kept thinking, the power would be back on soon.

We went to bed and I woke up numerous times only to find that the power was not back on. This morning, we decided to run to Home Depot to grab a generator--I have way too much food in the freezer (side of beef, half a hog, Costco loot) to be fooling around with no electricity. I've actually been wanting to get a generator anyway, just in case this sort of thing happened, so now seemed like the perfect time. Brian and Jake assembled the generator and got it started while I pitched out most of the stuff in our kitchen fridge. Luckily the basement freezer was packed, so it was still below freezing in there and nothing was lost.

The power was off for a total of 26 hours. The funny thing is that we hardly ever used to get blackouts up here. Most power issues we experienced were brownouts, with an occasional blackout thrown in, but all were short in duration. But, last year we had a blackout that lasted about 12 hours and this year we had the 26 hour one. If this is a trend, I'm really glad we bought the generator.

Thursday, April 15

rip peter steele

I couldn't believe the news today. Of course, a few years back, Peter Steele was rumored to be dead and it turned out to be false, so one could hope. But, as the news stories poured in, the truth became obvious.

Type O is one of my all time favorite bands. In the 90s they were THE band. Brian and I must have seen them at least a half dozen times. We even met a few of the members (including Peter) at some of their shows.

What a sad day for music.

Monday, April 12

the orchard

I heard about this "backyard orchard culture" thing and decided to give it a try. Basically, it is a high density planting of fruit trees. Since I already do the square foot gardening thing (which is a high density planting of vegetables), I figured why not? So, I ordered peach, cherry, and apple trees (one of each) from the Cambria County plant sale. And here is my orchard:



We'll see how that turns out. I haven't had much luck with fruit thus far (strawberries, blueberries) so I'm not completely convinced this is going to work. I also ordered raspberry canes. So, if I'm going to fail this year, I'm going to fail big time.

I ordered some other stuff that will probably work out, namely some flowers and some ornamental grasses. Oh, and horseradish, but I haven't received it yet.

In other gardening news, I also planted onions and potatoes in the garden.

In pond news, one of my goldfish suspiciously disappeared from the pond Saturday night. From what I've read, it is quite possible that a raccoon got him, though there were no signs of foul play. Details at 11.

Sunday, April 11

cube

This movie had an interesting enough premise--six people awake in a cube-like maze that is that is laced with deadly traps. However, the implementation of this concept left a little to be desired (and the bad acting didn't help either). Not recommended.

Saturday, April 10

wine night

Last night we bottled two batches of wine--a Trio Blanca and a Castellina Supertuscan. We've made the Trio Blanca in the past and it was just as good this time. The Castellina Supertuscan was an experiment, though. This kit came with grape skins along with the juice. I have found the red wines we make to be lacking in tannins, so I was hoping this would do the trick. The wine tasted pretty good, but I won't be able to make an informed decision on it until it has aged for a year.

The wine racks have been looking a little bare lately so the four plus cases we bottled last night should help that cause.

I still have another kit to make, but since I like making wine two batches at a time, I'm pondering what to do next. I'd really like to make a batch of strawberry wine this summer, so I guess I'll wait and see if I can get a good deal on strawberries. If not, I can always purchase another kit.

Friday, April 9

day off

Today was my first vacation day since last July. So, you can blame the crappy weather on me. Of course, I didn't have much choice in the matter--I needed to take today off so that I could pick up my plants from the annual Cambria County plant sale.

I was hoping to get some stuff done around the house. I've been neglecting my duties inside because I have been spending all of my free time outside, enjoying the nice weather that we'd been having until today. However, I didn't get anything done today. Between the plant sale and running a few other errands my morning was shot. I took a quick nap after lunch and then Jake and I headed to Richland to run some more errands. Once we returned, it was time to get dinner on (a delicious stew that is currently simmering on the stove).

And, here it is, almost 5:00.

Wednesday, April 7

tomatoes!

I planted tomato seeds the other day. I'm trying quite a variety this year (7 types). And, thanks to the garden journal my mom bought me, I'm actually going to keep track of how things do this year.

I've been working outside a lot too. Things are really shaping up out there.

easter weekend

Oops. I meant to post over the weekend, but that didn't happen, so this is going to be a quick one.

Last weekend was good, but active. Jake went to a friend's for a sleepover on Friday and then he had a friend over Saturday afternoon.

For Easter, we went to our church's Saturday service (which they only started last fall). The alternative was to go at 6:30am or 9:00am on Sunday. I don't like either of these. The first one, for obvious reasons (having to get up at 5:30am) and the second one because it is so long (like 2 hours). We were in and out of church on Saturday in like 35 minutes. I felt like a Catholic again. Then, on Sunday, we went to my parent's for dinner.

Since the weather has been nice, I've been spending all of my free time working outside. The past two years, I've been tied up with other things and haven't had as much time to garden as I would like so I'm making up for lost time this year. But, I'm now woefully behind in the house. Good thing the weather is going to take a turn for the worse this weekend.

Saturday, April 3

glorious weather

It has been so nice outside. I've been catching an hour or so in the garden each night. And, for perhaps the first time in my life, I think I'm ahead of the game this year.

In recent weeks, I have opened the pond, cleaned up the butterfly garden, put out most of the solar lights, and even did some weeding!

I'm making a concerted effort to work outside whenever possible this year. I'm sure there will be plenty of rainy days when I can do my housework.