Thursday, January 20, 2022

Journal making!!!

 A quick note about the snow back home. So the neighbor at the end of the street had complained about the snow plowing or lack thereof in front of her house. The level of service was deplorable, to say the least. She had been told that the backhoe would be back yesterday morning to clear her out. The backhoe arrived around 8 PM last night. 

And while he did a great job at her end of the street, this is what happened in our driveway. Are you kidding me?? We had ZERO snow for two days, and the backhoe found some snow to put in my driveway? Well, it's confession time. It's my FLIPPING neighbor who does this. She is too cheap to pay for a service to clear her driveway. She lives alone and can't lift the snow, so she dumps it in the street. And then, when the plow comes by, he passes her snow along to the next couple of houses. 

Let's say that I lodged a formal complaint against her with the city last night. I'm sick and tired of that, and I'm sorry, but if you can't maintain your property, then MOVE. Plain and simple -- just move. 

DH got saddled with the latest shoveling, but thankfully, it wasn't as bad as the first night, but still - I was a tad irked when I saw the photos. 

Snow in - AGAIN!!!

Those plow drivers have ZERO common sense in their heads. 

And all of this is happening about 10 feet ON THE STREET -- it's nowhere near my drive, but I need that little space open to get out of my driveway. Now that the temperature has gotten cold, those mounds of snow are there for the rest of the winter. 

This is the weirdest retreat ever. First, it's the longest retreat we've ever booked, so we decided to do some different stuff - more on that in a minute. But we've been here for two days, and NO ONE has left the house. Well, that's not true -- Helen Anne and I have been out walking, but NO ONE has taken their car anywhere!

That's hilarious as in past retreats; we're rarely all in the house at the same time! It's not that we are snowed in, although I think I might have to shovel a wee drift to move my car, and I shoveled the front porch step yesterday as the snow had drifted in there!

Helen Anne and I went for two walks yesterday. Both were just over one hour, so I managed to keep up my walking distance for the day. It's a tad colder today, so not sure, but I'm game. If I were home, I'd walk. For the most part, the roads are great - I see the plow just went by, so the roads are not too slippery or snow-covered - easy for walking. But the walk down the driveway to the road is COLD. The wind just whips up that road. If you can survive to the end of the road, you'll be OK. 

We were hoping to venture out today, and we just might do that. I'll check the road conditions before we go. With the wee bit of melt yesterday and the deep freeze, we now have black ice, and I really don't want to drive on black ice. Not an hour away, but I might venture out to the grocery store or do a run to Tim's. 

I didn't get a lot of sewing done yesterday. I made butternut squash soup for lunch. I had baked the squash before I left home, so all I had to do was chop the other veggies and cook them up. I didn't bring the immersion blender because I thought there was one here, and there was NOT, but I used a potatoes masher, and the soup was excellent. Not as smooth as it could have been, but tasty, and that's all that counts. 

The leftover butternut soup

It was my turn to make dinner, and I made chicken pot pie. I made it from scratch in the crockpot. So no crust required - I baked up Pillsbury biscuits which were just fine!! And the pot pie was delicious. I had precut the chicken at home, so it was super easy to chop up the rest of the veggies and throw them in the pot. So just to show you that I CAN cook if I want to. 

Chicken pot pie from scratch

OK -- I did get a bit of sewing done, but I also have to do some writing while I'm here. I'm making progress on that and hope to be done tomorrow. 

But we did something super exciting yesterday. We are so fortunate to have a journaling expert in our group, and Katheleen came prepared to give us a lesson and do something totally creative. 

The table looked like when Helen Anne and I came back from our walk. The table was well stocked with supplies. That looks so inviting - I couldn't wait to dive in! I tell you -- I sure have the best friends!!!  A HUGE THANKS to Katheleen for organizing this. 

The calm before the storm

And there we are - getting our hands dirty!! Cutting up paper bags, cutting and pasting was positively like kindergarten, and it was so much fun!!!!!

Happy journal makers!

Here's one of the pages that I was working on. Lots of collage and so freeing. I had to laugh as some of us ended up with many words on our sheets; others had different colors or motifs. But I like words, so it doesn't surprise me that this happened. 

My collage piece

And before we were done, it was total chaos. There was paper and stamps, and ink and brushes everywhere, but the five of us were in total heaven. We think we might even schedule a SCRAPBOOK-only retreat. Yep -- I'm in!!!

KIndergarten for adults

Tish had stuff on the floor. 

Tish's stash on the floor

My excess stuff was on a chair. 

My stash on the chair

And we parked the garbage by Helen Anne to grab those tiny bits that we really didn't need to keep. GASP -- we actually threw stuff away? Yes, we did, but not until we asked our fearless leader if it was OK!

The garbage for the bits

We hope to get back to it today, as everything we did yesterday had to dry. None of it was sopping wet but needed to dry before creating our journals. I can hardly wait!!!!!

In the sewing room, well, thank goodness we each have our own table, although I will say that it looks like my bags exploded on my table and they haven't moved. There is stuff everywhere. I see Katheleen's eyeglass case trying to staunch the overflow, but sadly it doesn't have a chance!!! Although it does seem to be holding things back from the bell, which I keep accidentally touching, and then it rings. NO - I don't have a finished project - just accidentally hit the bell again!!!

My sewing table overfloweth

It looked just as messy at the end of the day, and it looks the same this morning. My computer is set up beside the sewing machine, but still!!  I hope to get some of it tidied up today. 

Still messy this morning

But seriously, I've been a bit scatterbrained this retreat. It didn't help that I spent most of yesterday in the kitchen, where I was either cooking or making journals. And then a good part of the rest of the day was divided between walking and the computer. Today will be different unless we decide to venture out. That errand will take a couple of hours, so we'll see how the roads are before we venture out. 

I'm still sitting in the sewing room in the dark! I see Helen Anne is now up, but the rest of them are tucked in their beds! Which is fine -- I might take a nap later today as I was up early trying to get some computer work done. 

Have a super day and stay warm!


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