Friday, May 21, 2010

Out of Town

So where am I if I am staying (almost) next door to this house,

just up the street from this monument,

and this is also nearby?

Yes, I am staying just about next door to the Obamas... from the roof of the hotel I can see over the Treasury Building and see part of the White House and some of the grounds. We are less than a block from the White House. We took a walk when we got in, there was a musical function going on out on the White House lawn, and due to the Mexican President and his wife visiting .... the front had a screen up.

The Washington Monument is only a block or two away as is the Mall and many of the Smithsonian museums. I visited several yesterday, but the temps went from cold and drizzly on Tuesday to Hot and blazing yesterday! I was in a meeting most of the day on Wednesday and we took in a Baseball Game at the new Nationals Ballpark and we had killer seats, left field side, behind the dugout (Mets), just 12 rows up!!!

Today I am going out for maybe more pictures and later today a private Capitol Tour.... and what it includes I don't know, but I'll fill you in later!!!

I saw sparrows, starlings and other birds taking baths in a fountain yesterday too. There was one, that really loved playing in the water... He was soaked... and repeated the bath several times. He is the one on the left

Well I'm outta here for a walk and maybe some shopping.... More Later.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010


A week or so ago I won a Blog Giveaway from ArtQuiltMaker (see her blog here). It was for some sample silks from a tie factory that used to be close by her home. Anyway, all entrants had to do was leave a comment, which of course I did, or why else would I be telling you about my win!!! So today, they arrive!!! Please forgive the terrible pictures; I took them with the iPhone… And am I so very glad I posted a comment!!! They are lovely. No immediate plans for them, because I am slowly packing up the sewing studio and making those tough choices… stay or go. I am thinking that the silks will go… because I just might have another arty project coming up in the next few months… That could use some tie silk. So thank you Jaye for selecting my name!!!

I have taken all my quilted art off the furniture, walls and other areas that it has adorned since we moved into this house. Not that it looks totally bare, but when the plants go my house will seem very empty!!! My “mother in law” and quilting friend has agree to babysit a couple of my plants, I have a bird of Paradise that is very tall, a ficus that my DH gave me when we lived in San Diego (it was only about 6” tall then) and a split leaf philodendron… I have a bunch more plants, somewhere in the neighborhood of 15…. Some have taste marks from the cat…. He’s eaten a few of my plants over the years… I have had a few of my plants since 1999.

I am finalizing the arrangements for the dog and cat’s commute to South Africa. I think I am more stressed about that aspect of this whole move than anything else!!! We still have 2 hurdles … yet to go that have time constraints… but I think I have it under control.

And there will be more later.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

A NEW Header

Not sure if anyone has noticed… but I have changed the header on my blog… from Notes about … something, everything or maybe nothing… to A Quilters Adventure – Moving and Living in South Africa!!! Somehow it just doesn’t seem grand enough for the amount of change taking place in my house and life.

So if anyone has any better ideas for a title…. I’m open to suggestions.

I have also changed my profile, just a bit… since I won’t be from Chicago for much longer. And to be honest I’m not even from Chicago. We moved here just a bit less than 3 years ago, (Oct will be 3 years), and from Nebraska… where we were visitors for just under 5 years. Before that California, while I miss the weather, I don’t miss all the people, the high cost of living, and the taxes/politics at the state level.

When we get to South Africa, it will be winter, the beginning. It doesn’t get as cold there as it does in Chicago and Nebraska, so it will be a nice change!!! Of course when I was there in July last year (Pretoria), with only summer clothes I thought I was going to freeze to death. NO central heat in the homes like we have… so once I got chilled I stayed that way until we got back to the beach!

I am hoping that this blog will be a bit interactive as we get to South Africa and get settled in… with questions and comments from readers… that will keep me looking at South Africa with a new perspective every day!

As Always…. Much More later!

Sunday, May 9, 2010

The Waiting Game

Once again I have left a huge information gap….. I sometimes find it very difficult to tell half a story or only portions of a story... so I let it hang for a bit to see if I can tell it all or not. We still can't tell it all, because we don't know it yet or it could change direction in midtelling. There are a few things going on… the first and foremost is tomorrow I have the last part of my (medical) physical. It is not fun and tastes nasty to say the least and I have to drink a gallon of it!!! Once I have been proclaimed healthy things will really get rolling.

I have also been very busy preparing the house for sale. We had the exterior trim painted, the garden and yard spiffed up and a bit of carpet installed upstairs, (something we had intended to do since we moved in, but moving all that furniture…). Now that it is done… I wish we had done it years ago, but isn’t that the way it always goes?

When we got the word… we had to apply for a different passport, which we have received and are now in the process of applying for our Visas. I have begun working on getting the pets export/import permits and health certificates. It’s nearly as complicated a process as for humans. The dog has to be free of 5 diseases and have a specific microchip inserted. My DH has said that I can take the cat, but I would much prefer to find him a home. He is getting up there in age, and I am afraid he is too old to make the 22 plus hour flight. Although- he is in good shape otherwise, anyone need a really nice cat? I have a picture of him here.

We have a house assigned, (the actual house could change) but it has 3 bedrooms and the neighborhood is safe enough that I could even walk Axel at night, and we have a date. It is tentatively the end of June!!!

In the meantime I think we have decided to keep the house and not try to sell it. Things got a bit easier last week, since we made that decision. The market has not recovered enough… and not having to keep the house looking in tip top shape everyday will ease things up around here for me.

Now I need to start preparing our stuff…. Stays and goes to storage or goes with us and then which level of go… we will have 3 levels. Stuff that goes with us right away… clothes and things you just can’t live without, up to 500 pounds or so, then there is the airfreight, (which I forget what that weight limit is), but it will have all the stuff you can live without for a few weeks, but really miss… and then there is the slow boat stuff, which will be everything we think we need, (the kitchen, the sewing room and the bed). But I need to start a place to put and keep thing separated, so the dining room will be dismantled next week as the “Goes to Africa” place and not accidentally packed for storage.

Everything had to wait until next week, because… the kids all came in this weekend for a last stateside visit. They wanted to surprise their dad… so we did! He didn’t have a clue. So, Thursday we stayed in, Friday we went to a White Sox game, Saturday was a visit to South Bend to visit the Grandparents, and Sunday everyone but me went into the city… DIL, hasn’t been to Sears Tower and wanted to see the downtown area, then a tour of Wrigley Field… (we saw the Cubs last year and plenty when we lived in San Diego) and out to dinner for them. NO DINNER for Me! I will be very happy to be done with the whole Dr. thing, some tests and procedures are a whole nuther form of torture, doncha think?

I have spent a very few hours in the sewing room, but preparing for the new carpet and the kids, took just about all of my time! Oh, and I had a garage sale in there too! All in all it’s been a fast couple of weeks and as always,

There will be more later!