Grueling hikes and Living Room Improvement

I had the most fabulous weekend. Twas the perfect mix of productivity and adventure. Saturday began with the usual foray to the farmers market and then there was an unusual foray to Big Lots. Handsome and I have been desperate to buy a couch, but we both were unwilling to pay exorbitant prices. I was willing to go a bit more expensive to get one from a place that delivered, but Handsome was more inclined to get a piece from Goodwill at a significantly lower cost, and just try moving it ourselves. Thank goodness I remembered that Big Lots sold furniture and, as it turns out, they go through a third party company for delivery. We got a fantastic sofa for an extremely reasonable price. The couch arrived today with no difficulty and I must say it makes the living room look so much more like a room that one could actually live within.

We spent the rest of the day yesterday hiking. There are pictures, but my bandwidth is down below zero so they shall be loaded at a later date. Handsome’s coworker suggested a trail in the Adirondacks that was called Blue Mountain Lake Trail. The trailhead was about a two hour drive from us through gorgeous central New York countryside. The leaves in the mountains are already beginning to sing the first notes of fall. We arrived to a crisp sunny day. The trail is (supposedly) two miles, but it is not for the faint of heart. The first two thirds are definitely rocky, but not hugely challenging. Then, the final portion. A steep incline up extremely slippery rocks with an active stream of water spilling down from the upper reaches. We have done a lot of trails, but this one was among the most challenging thus far. However, the view at the summit was worth the climb a thousand times over. There is a small fire tower at the top, looking like one should do anything but put weight on its steps. You climb the winding stairs, duck the low landing, and then look out on something close to Glory. Surrounding you is the entire sprawl of the Adirondacks. The trail is apparently one of the “center” trails where one can quite literally be in the heart of the mountains. The hike up was arduous, the hike down was rough enough for me to take a tumble (some ugly bruises but none the worse for wear), but that sight filled my mouth and heart with the taste of awe and adulation. Completely worth the climb.

 

Today was as productive as yesterday was adventurous. First, I went to a church that I might actually continue to attend (cross your fingers, after three tries I am a little weary of church hunting). Though small and quite traditional, I found the energy soothing and the sermon engaging rather than taxing. I came back and proceeded on a DIY craze to shame any of those on HGTV. I fixed two broken pieces of furniture, put together lighting for living room, and set up a most lovely spice shelf. Below, I have put a picture of sneak preview of the improvements we have been enacting. Tis a most special thing, that spice shelf. You see, that is actually a shadow box that my grandfather made for me before he died. I was very close to my grandpa and I still miss him well and often. I have not had the shadow box in my room since my high school days because moving it so often would have been too risky for my tastes. It used to house all manner of small breakable things that I found pretty. Here, I was a little flummoxed about where to put the darn thing. The box is special, but with the limited wall space in my room I didn’t know a space that would do it justice. Then, a brilliant idea. My grandpa was an excellent cook and baker, I think he would have liked this choice.

 

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New Friends!

Tis been a while since I posted mainly because this past week was a bucket of insanity that I did not anticipate. The rest of the summer staff arrived in the shop, including my assistant who will henceforth be known as Columbia. Turns out Columbia is not exactly what I was ready for in an assistant, but I am determined to approach this development with a positive attitude (mainly because a crappy disposition is generally less fun and does not get the work accomplished any more efficiently.) I was also faced with an intense painting project that required a great deal of focus and precision…and then multiply that project threefold. There was much staying late and hand cramping involved. However, I am really very happy because I have discovered some wondrous new friends. The two ladies of whom I am particularly fond are BearGirl and Lady Twin. BearGirl earns her name because of her dogged determination to see a bear this summer and Lady Twin is basically exactly like me only not. Together, we had many adventures, including a three mile hike through the Dunes where I went nuts over various wildflowers and we startled a young deer still in its spotted glory. Lady Twin has been keeping me sane on my various late nights and we sat out yesterday evening, enjoying the giant moon over the waterfront. While the crew I have been working with has been lovely, most already had established relationships with each other due to years of bonding. Thus, it’s nice for me to have a few people who are also new and are eager to establish new connections. We work hard, we take care of each other, and we have a damn good time being total sarcastic jerks when the situation calls for it (or not, let’s be honest). Life is brilliant.