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Wednesday, February 16, 2011

What happened just before

Good morning … this is me. We’re going to see how far we get with an entry this morning, because we’ve been lacking. We did get to some posting since the weekend – in that we’d last been looking at the new house designs. As much as I like the design we got a call in to the guy with the housing and we finally squeaked out of him that it was like without the land about $180 per square feet … so that put my 2400 sq feet project at about $432,000.

Land minimally would be about $100,000 … so where we’re thinking of trying to keep things just under $300,000 that project is almost twice the cost.

Probably not too realistic. I’m thinking at this point the best alternative might be getting something already built at the Patriot place, but I have to wait there too in that … if we’re waiting another five years, you don’t know what will be available and what costs such as interest will be in place. So much to wait and see.

Really the first thing to do will be to take $250 out of my account after depositing my work check tomorrow to be putting down toward our first collection toward the house. I have to go with it’s a literal plan. Again that part is that … we are supposed to be saving $250 a month and then Rich will save $1000 a month and then in 5 years we will have the $75,000 to put down on a house … that’s at least 25% of a $300,000 house. We have to remind ourselves that getting a house is a big deal and it’s major to be working toward it. On a $250,000 - $75,000 would be 30% of the payment.

It’s going to be a matter of doing our best to work with things. I like the idea of pushing us to save money now … because then after we got a house it would have taught us to do with the extra expense. AND it’s a big deal to think, through building at least a total between Rich and us $15,000 a year toward house. That would mean in 16 years to my 67 year retirement $240,000 toward a house. Plus by then maybe we would have a windfall or have learned to save more toward the cause. It be a really big deal to have things paid off by retirement age … it’s our financial security.

I did check more into Rich’s life insurance policy … he says it will be handled by his mother, but in general … it’s only a $60,000 policy split 4 ways … I can appreciate the split between me and the kids, but still $15,000 … we’re thinking that’s going to go into making sure he is buried right. I am going to have to look at it that way. I’m not sure if he will have the policy after he discontinues working from this company. We are going to need reminding him that he’s got to include doing something like burial before he can talk about anyone getting money. I’m thinking that it costs $15,000-30,000, but maybe I’m way off … I’m not sure about those kinds of things. I’d like to think it won’t ever happen, but thinking it might not be realistic.

Ok, enough of that … this is what happens in planning, right? We’re not even sure by then if there will be a social security. Let’s hope for the best … and then like stated, be moving along.

We’ve been keeping abreast with Linda over the last several days and that has taken some of my writing time and effort. I feel better about doing that in day to day life, while appreciating that I still need time to be over here too. I’m glad that things are in writing so that later if necessary I can refer back to the kinds of things that were happening. I don’t feel it’s as legit as to be saying what is going on in Linda’s life directly, with the exception of some more generic parts like saying … she’s working on a project of such and such. It’s a tricky business.

In general over the last several days we’ve been trying to get through life without medicine. We had been waiting for Dr. M. to return yesterday, but we didn’t realize he’d authorized the medicine on his day off on Friday.

Walgreen’s hadn’t called to say the medicine was ready either. So we stumbled through an emotionally negative charged weekend AND Valentine’s day without the benefit of doubt the medicine gives us.

I was grateful to Rich for sticking it out with me. We had gone as far as stating that our gift to him was to not be mad at him. It was a very big struggle. Finally about bed time we got the medicine and waited the time and then miraculously we felt better and mushy, although too tired to play proper. I have to thank Rich sincerely for being patient with us. I can’t tell you enough how negatively we were being affected and then the rapid turnover. We’d gotten just a little drowsy after having cold feelings toward moving toward him, and then swoosh – we were snuggling to beat the band. If we can hold out for the part where there is going to be a change if we follow protocol then things turn out good. Just have to bite our tongue in the meantime realizing that we’re being set-up chemically to be emoting positively.

We did talk to our mother yesterday. We called CS, but she didn’t call back. We’ll give her a couple of days and then try again. When she is out of touch, she is really out of touch. My mother was feeling no pain for it being Valentine’s Day. It’s as if John wasn’t really gone. I told Linda that we have to remind ourselves that people grieve differently. She’s still being adamant that they didn’t do anything special for gifts on holiday’s or other special occasions like birthdays, because when they needed something they would just go out and get it. I can see the logic in that, but then it doesn’t say too much for the romancing of things as to surprising the other with something special. It’s not all about tangible needs, sometimes its just putting forth the extra thoughts. It’s too late though to play that battle.

During part of the conversation we were trying to get them to think of doing something special like candles at dinner or some Bing Crosby music or something. Margaret is still there listening to all the conversations so we have to be careful to include her in. It’s aggravating, but not much to be done with it. I gather there’s not too much happening. She’s in a world where the medical is dominating most of her thoughts. I can listen to it, but it’s a matter of being polite. I do want to make sure she’s doing ok, but it’s as you know not my favorite conversation. I think after something has happened you move on. I’m so used to talking to people who aren’t overly interested, that I set my thoughts to sound bites when talking verbally. What can’t be said in a sentence of two would take a lot more from the relationships.

I don’t know maybe I’m being a martyr. I’d not like to think of it, but then if I’m thinking and saying these things temporarily privately through the blog, then maybe I’m not making my wishes known well to the other.

But, I don’t want to get into an artificial situation either where people are just giving me time to talk without being interested to give me a “fairer share of time.” I don’t know … maybe I’m reading too much into it. I do have this part where we get to write and that seems to be better for us in getting out our thoughts, plus we have the good Dr. M.

By the way … we have an appointment with him today. It is a switch he made because he had to schedule something else in on Thursday. This kind of stuff really doesn’t bother us much as long as we get make-up time like that of today. We’ll have to account for that though so we don’t forget later in the day as we are busier with other things.

I think beside looking at the house plan … we still have our sewing world to account for. I don’t know how much we told you of other purchases in the past week or two, but we really put out some serious money of late.

This last set of purchases was split between Amazon and JoAnn’s – plus there is now added the new computer we expect in by tomorrow and the design book from this new house place.

The sewing stuff is almost all in. We got extra batting and the biggest deal was our stuff toward setting up the island out here for doing the cutting on the drafting table. We got another portable ironing table, another block and the cutting tools to be working out here without transferring stuff. We tested out that system after it came in with great success. We also took then down the iron that we’d bought but not accustomed ourselves to using. The big deal there was that we were frustrated with it shutting down every ten minutes. We gave ourselves some chance to get used to that, while we were finishing the cutting of Joe and Cari’s quilt. I love the tools part. It seems like it’s a pretty good balance. I love having everything we need and a place for it.

Things along that direction are feeling pretty darn complete with the exception that we’ve got the rotary gizmo and small scissors that haven’t come in yet. Should be here within a day or two.

The one thing that did come in yesterday was an after dinner surprise in that we DID get the three plastic under bed storage devises. That was of great assistance in allowing us to go through CS stash and putting it all in perspective. We filled the first two containers with bulk fabric. It’s pretty much the colorful stuff and there’s a good percentage of stuff at least 2-3 yards. I think … I’m not real familiar with sizes of things unless we unfolded it.

We’re going to look forward to planning on what to do with stuff so that we are using up good supplies that we have without ordering new stuff. Things like batting and backing though are going to have to be purchased. There were only a few pieces big enough or plain enough to be backing. Most of what is there might be better used for making blocks and a fair amount of it was kids’ fabric, so that part is good. I think what we might do is cut out some of it as to the picture designs in the print. Then when we put together the quilts it will be along the odd sizes of the prints. It is just a shame to cut them up in traditional squares and not take into account that some of the pictures on the fabric are quite beautiful – it will have to be a system.

It will be then a bit of a test in putting together the pieces in odd shaped-sizes that will fit an entire quilt in style and form. CS had a few blocks that she’d put together already. Not many, but I could see her experimenting with them. Maybe what we could do is combine the process so that we can have squares and then add the pictures in between the squares.

That would make the best use of the pictures and the scraps. Pswhoo! Love that idea! It might then become our signature line.

Did we mention that we finished cutting Joe and Cari’s quilt? That went then into one of our workshop cubbies to be done at will. Right now we’d like to finish a couple of the scrap quilts. I didn’t find magically the pieces that we wanted to finish the quilt sides of the newest scrap quilt. Maybe there is some darker blue fabric and we can make a one size square, but then again we still have the problem of what then to balance it that is going to match well enough the backing to the top piece. I don’t want to use the picture fabric, because that then changes the quilt to being for a younger person.

The other thing we want to be thinking of is that we’ve got CS EQ7 to be experimenting with too. Maybe with some of the squares though, if we concentrate on them ending up in even 4, 8 or 12” squares, it will be easier to piece things together. We’re going to need practicing with building log cabin type strips with the picture to make the sizes more generic. Just need a lot of time to put into things. After we get the gist of our room put together it will be easier to systemize the other.

We’re going to need to do a better job of obtaining matching backs to finish the quilt. Again CS didn’t have a lot of that and it’s going to add to expenses.

I think we’re talking like needing blocks of 5’ of fabric. Let’s see is that right? Quilt top for regular bed … 72” x 90” (per regular batting size) means cloth 40” x 40” across means 90” long x 2 = 180” divided by one yard (36”) = 5 yards … plus an extra ½ yard to clear things. So that means 5.5 x 10 = $55 for each backing … shoot that’s gotta come out of somewhere! I wonder if we could make up something like we were getting instead of fabric – more like sheets. Don’t really like that idea though either. Better talk to Linda and see what she says … maybe talk here to CS too … she’ll have the best idea on purchasing those quantities at the best price.

I know that you don’t want to get inferior product so that it’s not matching, but it’s not really feasible to put $55 + $12 (batting) or about $70 into each quilt to be given away. There must be a better way. I know that CS used eBay and her person in NY … maybe there will be another means she has of picking up bulk quantities.

AHA! We’re back. We just found a place that specially sold backings to quilts. I went through a lot of places and didn’t like a whole lot we were seeing, but I did find this one place and I chose 3 prints. Two for the current quilts and one more for the next and instead of $55, I paid $32 including shipping for each. The difference was that when you get specifically a backing quilt they have a width of like 108” instead of 41”. It makes a whole lot of difference. I still have to plan for shrinkage, but it should be ok. I haven’t made enough quilts yet to know all about that, but I ordered 3 yards of each (108” x 108” where I only need 70”x90”. That will mean I will have almost a yard to use the fabric on the front side for some of the interior borders to make it match more with the backing. I’m pretty happy about all that.

So, what else before we get to work? I should be there already, but it seems to take me a few moments in the morning. We’re going to need narrowing this down. Maybe we’re almost done though. Let’s see … not much on the housing front … talked about Rich and sewing. A little on my mother … still haven’t talked to my sister, but we’re going to see if she calls after we had placed a message on her machine.

I know that we will do better with work if we just open it up, so were going to post this now and then try pushing that front. We don’t want to lose our privilege and we’re hoping the excitement we feel now for being on the computer and watching our fingers type will carry into the work world.

Let’s get to it then, k?

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