Tuesday, May 31, 2011

The Green, Green Grass of Home. . .

     I can hardly believe it and couldn't wait to share, but we finally have grass! We also have a few plantings, some knock-out roses and tons of pine straw (Alabama mulch). As I mentioned earlier, the landscape will be a work in progress. Our top priority was drainage, cover the red dirt and set up a watering system. All the above objectives, have been met. There is still a little more sod and pine straw to be laid but all and all, we are pleased with our "instant lawn". Looks great from the lake. SEE!

     Today when we put the numbers on our new mailbox, I took a photo to show you the plantings on either side of the front porch. We plan on doing more landscaping on the hill running down the side of the driveway but not quite yet. I would love to add hydrangeas and then we hope to add some steps down the slope to work with the natural-ness of the hillside landscape. (Another day, another dollar.)

     Unpacking boxes and finding a place for everything is still an ongoing project and since we have all the time in the world. . .we are doing it at our pace! We were able to take a break this Memorial weekend and share some time with the Masons and their family. We found ourselves floating on an eight seat Relaxation Station with a Corona in our hand for most of the day, then a traditional burger with all the fixins' and then we ended the day with a sunset boat ride. Now that's what I call lake living!  Hopefully by the time our family starts visiting next month they can relax like that at our place. And, oh yeah! We are definitely buying our own Relaxation Station next week!
     The sofa and one of the beds are going to their respectful fixer-upers this week and then the wing back chairs will be next. The club chair and ottoman ordered for me is, you guessed it, not due until early June. My great room consists of my new beautiful rug, two chocolate leather recliners, 80’s style upholstered furniture and a 65” TV. And if you are wondering why I am holding off sending photos of rooms and their d├ęcor? It is because there is not a room completed! I have, however, lined the shelves and drawers and have most items in their new homes and I have almost ALL the glasses washed and displayed in their designated (upper or lower level) bars. The china has been washed and some tucked away in the china hutch but there is a lot of tarnished silver to be polished yet. I am stuffing food and cooking items, small appliances, serving pieces, cook books, recipe box and pyrex casserole dishes in the pantry just waiting for the day when I can’t get in there anymore without tripping to organize it. Don’t get me started on what has been stored in my beautiful laundry room without my knowledge. There was NO mention of tools, lighbulbs, extention cords etc. laying all over my counter when I was planning that room, was there?

    We are still struggling with getting the internet stabalized in our home and until then, my blogs will be short and sweet (Bet y'all are glad to hear that).

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Movin' Out. . .

        Finally, we have an official movin' out / movin' in day!
       To refresh your mind, we officially "broke ground" on this site Thursday September 17, 2010,  and as of Wednesday, May 18, 2011, we will have a new address on Lake Mitchell!  For those of you doing the math, it is exactly 8 months and 1 day! I have sent this new address (and new phone number) in a mass email and hope those of you who are interested got it.
       We have known about this date for about a week now and I have been packing boxes like crazy, because the move has been scheduled!  The AV man and the Direct TV man will be arriving on Monday, the rest of the appliances and carpet / rugs will be delivered on Tuesday, and the movers arrive here on Wednesday morning! Thursday, the new bedroom furniture and our new mattresses arrive; Friday I'll be unpacking the more than 100 boxes I have packed this week! We are in the process of setting a delivery date for our things in storage (in Virginia) and hope that it will be here within the next week.  Since we have been living in the rental with all the "stuff" we have now for eleven months, we can get by for another week without the rest of our belongings. The only hitch is all the "sitting stuff " will be placed in the lower level and our bedroom furniture will be on the main level, but you won't hear me complaining. Even when the rest of the furniture arrives, it will all be going to the upholsterer for a week or two anyway. What we will have in the great room until then, will work although (be prepared) it will NOT look good with the new color palette. :)
       There will still be quite a bit of "stuff " going on at the house but the builders feel we can start getting in and they can keep working around us.There is more "second" coats of paint going on all the woodwork and trim outside the house and the screens for the porch have yet to be installed. Since the porch furniture is in the storage shipment, we aren't ready for it anyway. Probably next week. Meanwhile, we DO have the four rockers for the covered deck which, I assure you, will be put to good use until then. We do have air, electricity, TV, telephone, running water, all the appliances and toilets in the house. All of that and the VIEW will keep me content for a while longer.
     The landscaping just got started a few days ago and may be a work in progress as we move in, but not a problem. H passed two humongous trucks full of top soil being delivered to our house getting the yard ready for the sod installation. YEA! At least the red dirt will be covered and we will finally have the green, green grass of home.
     I promise to add pictures to the next post if you will just bear with me. . .but until then, if you will excuse me for a few days until we get internet again, just like Billy Joel. . .we're MOVIN" OUT!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Splish, Splash . . .

       It's official. . .Tuesday, May 10, 2011 "Baby Boat" came to her new home on Lake Mitchell!
       Before I go any futher, I need to tell y'all that "Baby Boat" is not the official name of our boat.  That name came about because of her size next to the boats of family and friends that we were with at the time we bought her. Below is a photo of our boat rafted up with all the other boats last Labor Day.  Now can you see how easy it was to just start calling her Baby Boat? We are not sure if or when she will officially be named, but I wanted to share with you why I call her that. With that being said, and with the photo below. . . we were told today, that she is the biggest boat on Lake Mitchell! Go figure! We don't know that to be a fact but just goes to show you how all things are relative. All I can say is she is big enough for us and we look forward to going out in her as often as possible and enjoying every minute of it. Can you find Baby Boat in the picture below?

We were so lucky to have found this boat, in this condition, at this price, and at the time we were starting to look for a boat. We also count  ourselves lucky to have had family and friends, that were much more knowledgeable about boats than we were, to be with us at the time this happened. Then as a plus, we had Brian, the salesman at the marina who sold us the boat. He has looked after it for us while it was in storage and  today drove the boat  (about 3 1/2  hours drive) from Chattanooga and literally put it in the water for us! I thought H was excited when we bought the boat back in September, but today, waiting for her to get here I though he would pop his buttons! It was a long waited for day and I even wore my SeaRay shirt for the occasion!
      Below is the launch at The Ridge that is  used mainly by those of us who live here.   There is a public launch nearby. . .  but this one is just down/up the street from our home.

Next is a series of photos  taken while putting the boat in the water as if you couldn't tell . . .but you know me, gotta document it!

And splish, splash she's in!

     Now turn left (towards the dock) and head for your new boat house! H and Brian made it to the boat house by water quicker than I could drive back there and by the time I made it back to the boathouse, all the "guys" were gathered 'round her.  Actually, these are the guys who built the boat house and they were waiting to put it up her on the lift to see if it worked. And it did! Several more of our friends dropped by to welcome her home.

       After "the viewing", H  had a  "briefing" with Brian to go over again things he needed to know about the boat and then it was time to take her for a ride! Now, I'm not one who likes to "go fast" in a boat, but I must admit it was really a fun ride.  We took Brian over to the dam (the water is over 100 feet deep there)  and showed him a "small section" of our 150 mile shoreline on Lake Mitchell. The lake is about 14 miles long  with an average depth of 29 feet.  We then headed back to The Ridge.
       When the boat tour was over, Brian  asked for a tour of  the house. And of course, we said yeah!
The generator went in today, the painters are still busy at work, and the landscaper was preping the site for drainage and the installation of the watering system.   Bedroom carpets were installed yesterday with the rest will be completed on Friday. When we left today all the lower level bedrooms and bathrooms had been cleaned and were ready  for the furniture. Could we be getting closer to move in day? We are starting to bring things to the house now, because frankly, we have no place to put them here in this rental. Saturday, we will pick up the iron bed and leather chairs we purchased earlier this year. Our neighbor has offered his trailer and his help to get them to the lake. . . .and afterwards. . . let's see how can we repay them? I know, how about a boat ride?

Thursday, May 5, 2011

One Fine Day. . .

     That's what we are hearing these days. No specific date, just one fine day. . .in May. . .we hope. Sound familiar to any of you that have built a house?
     Last week, the builder said that the move in date may be moved back a week later than the last date he "kinda" gave us. This week, things have come together a little better and maybe we are back to the originial date. . .Who knows?
      All I know is the last time we went to the house, the appliances had been delivered, the painters were busy at work putting a final coat on the inside of the house after the floors had been stained, the heat and air conditioning men were checking things out and  installing thermostats, security guys making sure we have all the alarms we need, Terry, still hard at work doing all the wonderful trim work (inside and out), and the propane tank was delivered and put into the rather large hole dug at the side of my house.  The gutters have been added to the roof of the house and steps going down the side of the house from the screened room are being constructed.
     The plumber finally made it back on the scene and began installing toliets in all the bathrooms, faucets for all the sinks, hooking up the disposal, dishwasher, washer and dryer and getting fresh water down to the boat house. With the price of gas these days and all of our subs coming out of the Birmingham area, it is hard to get these guys here unless they have a full day of work. I hate that the granite guys have to come back from Tuscaloosa to drill more holes for faucets.  Its about a 2 hour drive from their place.
     H went to the house on Tuesday just to see what was going on and as he is getting ready to leave, the door bell rings! (Did I mention we have electricity?) It was the guy ready to install the gas logs for both fireplaces. We are not sure what he would have done if H had not been there. The doors all have locks now and only the builders and we have a key.  So H stayed and watched him as he also had to wait out the rain storm since he forgot and  parked at the top of the hill instead of coming down the driveway.
NOTE: The driveway, as I showed you in an earlier post, is a steeper than I had thought it was going to be, but I am glad to say I have been able to walk up and down it in flip flops without any trouble since the day it was poured. I am hardly winded when I reach the top now :) The first time to drive it was more scarier, but now, it's a piece of cake. . . once you get your nose pointed in the right direction. Driving up, not a problem  anymore. But I must go on record and say, only one of us has done this.
     I took Wednesday off to have a girls day out with  Jane and my new Verbena friends. We went to a historic B&B located in old town Prattville (just this side of Montgomery) for Tea! It was wonderful and afterwards we poked our heads into several little shops that reminded me a lot like Middleburg. H and Ralph went to Birmingham  that day where they were treated as VIP's at the Shoal Creek Country Club for the Regions Tradition Pro/Am . There they saw many celebs and pro golfers alike. The Mason's daughter works for Merrill Lynch who offered the tickets to the boys. So both H and I had a little "get away" time and treated ourselves to "one fine day!"
      Today is Thursaday and they are buffing and putting the final coat on the hardwood floors. We will not be able to get in until Sunday.
     Work yet to be done  at the house is. . . carpets installed, the rest of the appliances installed, the rest of the fans outside on the terrace installed, the screens installed on the porch,  more paint touch up and there is some  re-do work  on the mantle in the great roomand and that's not to mention all the landscaping that has been scheduled!  Due to a day of tornadoes and several other days of rain, the landscaper is a little behind schedule.
ANOTHER NOTE:  Thank you to all of you who called or emailed to check on us after the terrible tornadoes that went through our new home state. We were luckier that some fellow Alabamians. The last tornado of the day came right through this little tow of Clanton and headed staight to the lake. The good news is this one did NOT touch ground.  The weather people are saying this "perfect storm" should not happen again in our lifetime. Another bit of good news is they are saying the strong winds and rain did NOT harm this year's peach crop!
     With all of this going on, H is going crazy calling and setting up  our move in dates, move out dates, boat delivery dates, new phone service installation ( yes, that too will change again), TV and internet service installation dates, propane delivery, new furniture delivery dates, and storage from Virginia delivery dates. It's all a bit overwhelming because we haven't been given a clear cut date ourselves. So what do we tell these people? (H's frustrations vallidates once again the need for separtate work spaces.)
     Meanwhile, J is packing boxes. Enough said!
    Hopefully, my next post will have photos of all these projects finished! I know for sure there will be a picture of Baby Boat in his new boathouse on Lake Mitchell. Thank you, Frankie!