Sunday, November 30, 2014

Our Retirement Home Part Thirty-Five (Finishing Master Bedroom)

As we approach the end of November it is with great relief that I can say Marie and I have finally finished (except for the railing ) the master bedroom! We painted the walls with Beauty- Tone Designer Series paint, put down a floating floor of engineered wood (Jasper Harbors from Build Direct, with a 25 year warranty), trimmed the windows with MDF in a white classic craftsman shaker style, and assembled our queen leather bed that has been residing in the cabin for a year. The walk-in closet was finished with Sauder's Hanover style closet organizer and glass sliding doors. It will be nice to sleep upstairs for the first time! gws


closet rail


closet interior

fresh snow Nov 28, 2014

Reg and Muffy

Sunday, November 16, 2014

A Week in Florida

After a pretty hot week in Florida, along the east coast between Miami and Lake Worth, we are back into what they are already describing as the "deep freeze of the century" as a cold air mass has settled over North America. We are hovering around the freezing mark here but out west and further south into the States they are already getting our Jan and Feb temperatures! So the break was nice but short and we are now ready to tackle our next project: putting down the floor in the master bedroom. We were delighted Lyn was able to drop over for a few days while we were in Richard's place on the Atlantic and we spent two busy days together, going to the beach and pier at Lake Worth and driving down for the day to south beach in Miami. That's one crazy city and I can't imagine what it will be like at March break. The beach there was ok, the water too warm to enjoy and full of seaweed and jellyfish. I do much more prefer the Atlantic beaches and the breezes that can make for some nice waves. We had one windy day where it was great to bodysurf, the water temperatures warmer than the air. This time down we flew El Cheapo Air (Spirit). For your bucks you get to fly in the middle of the night with seats that don't recline and surly stewardesses. The Airbus was new though and clean, and the flight less than 3 hours. We arrived around 7 in the morning, took the shuttle to the Tri-Rail and caught the train from Ft Lauderdale to Lake Worth, again using their shuttle to the corner of 10th and Congress and walking the rest of the way to the condo. As we were starving we stopped at Presidente's, the Cuban supermarket, for breakfast and a much needed coffee, before getting to the Richard's place. We relaxed at the pool for the rest of the day, planning our week in the sun. The next day we walked and bussed to the beach. It had started out nice but by early afternoon the wind had picked up and by the time we left we were the only ones there. The next day was better though, the sun hot and the water lovely. Lyn arrived on Friday after a four hour drive from Brooksville. Again we went to the beach  The next day was when we all decided to drive down to Miami and south beach, one place I had never been in all my travels to Florida!

Tri-Rail Ft Lauderdale
First  coffee of the day!

Cuban egg sandwich and plantain for breakfast

Lake Clarke Estates

Swimming pool, Lake Clarke Estates

Sunset, LCE and lake with fountains

Richards bldg. #8

Walking to the beach, Lake Worth

Only one at the beach!

Great waves for surfing

Air temp 81, water temp 80

Miss Lake Worth 2014

Mr Lake Worth 2014

Pier at Lake Worth, Florida
Lyn and Marie, beach, Lake Worth, Florida

Marie and Lyn, Benny's On the Beach
Miami is about an hour from Lake Worth, south on I95. We ended up in the Art Deco District and not far from the beach. Afterwards we walked along the waterfront where all the restaurants are, spent another few hours relaxing in the sun, and then headed back north. That night we went out to a Peruvian restaurant Richard had recommended in Lantana. Small and noisy, the food was excellent, the service wonderful and the beer, Cusquena from Peru, was tasty and cold. Marie cooked up a big dinner the next day for Lyn as she was returning home Sunday morning. It was good to see her again and talk about the last year since we had been together. Before we left Florida Marie and I went out to see "Interstellar", a new movie that was playing in Boynton Beach. Our last day we hung around the pool in the morning, then packed, cleaned the condo (maybe for the last time as Richard is trying to sell it), then headed out to catch the shuttle back to the Tri-Rail for the hour long train ride back Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood airport. We were early but people-watched until our flight was called. Plattsburgh was cool when we landed but there was no snow so the drive to Montreal was uneventful, arriving at Phil's just before 3am. Yikes I was tired. I'm getting too old for this!

south beach, Miami Beach
Marie and Lyn's leg, Mimi Beach

Cruise ships, Miami

Victoria's Peruvian Restaurant


Waiting for the train, Lake Worth station

Spirit over Fort Lauderdale

A quick visit with the kids the next day (we took Amy to her dance class and were amazed at how talented she has become)  before driving home in the dark. Now its back to work on the house. Next post will show me laying the bedroom floor. Cold weathers a-coming and it looks like were in for a long winter. Now where did I put my snowshoes?  gws

Amy at the Tyler Anne School of Dance, Montreal

"Travel far enough, you meet yourself.” 
    David Mitchell


Saturday, November 1, 2014

November's sky is chilly and dreary

October has come and gone and best to be forgotten. It started out promising with some glorious warm days here on the mountain but the last two weeks have been cold, overcast and downright depressing. Marie and I did get a chance to pick up three cords of firewood for the winter, put snow tires on both the Mazda and Ford, bring up the big bed from the cabin where we have been storing it and put up a shelter for the car - all while the weather was nice earlier in the month. Meantime I have been working on the master bedroom, finishing the drywall, painting and preparing the floor for the engineered wood that we will lay. Marie chose the colors for upstairs and we think they look great against the wood theme that runs throughout the house. Finishing upstairs has been a long time coming and we will be done certainly by ...Christmas! Marie is still undecided on the railing that will go up the stairs and along the open wall above the living room - this will be the last thing to do before we next start on the kitchen. It has been a rough month as well for the country after the senseless killing of two of our soldiers, here in Quebec and in Ottawa. I cannot help but think this is only the tip of the iceberg and we will really have to become more vigilante if we want to preserve our way of life and be more ready to "stand on guard". There is so much evil and hatred right now in the world it is almost unbearable to imagine the suffering of women and children in places like Nigeria and Syria and even harder still to believe young people from Canada cannot find in their hearts to appreciate the freedom and opportunities they have here. What is it that pulls them instead to join the sick, perverted and inhuman animals in the Middle East that are determined to lead them only to a senseless death? As well this month my good friend Bruce lost his son Christopher in a car accident in Williams Lake, BC. He and Edie are devastated and I can only offer them my deepest sympathy and hope they find some peace in their hearts soon. I knew little Chris when he was only two years old back in the 70s when we lived in Haida Gwaii and still remember the trips to the beach with him and his brother.
  This weekend we are off to Montréal to see the grandkids before heading south to Florida for a week to charge our batteries and do some shopping. We will be staying at my brother's condo in Lake Worth, on the Atlantic coast. Just a much needed short break from the gray of November that has descended upon us. Still little or no news from Lara but lots of videos and pictures from Fernanda and kids. We are all still wondering why we never hear from Lara and hope whatever it is will pass and she will come to realize she is part of  a very loving and worried family. We have all seen this past month how precious life is and how quickly it can be gone. Love while you can.. gws 

sunrise, 22nd October