Day 115 (September 25, 2015)

115 Swing copy

I finished wrapping the boiler in insulation (as suggested by the contractor who refurbished it).  I had to crawl on the floor to get behind the beast.  By the time I finished, my pajama bottoms were filthy.  Thank goodness we had washers to clean clothes and a heavenly Father who washes us whiter than snow (Psalm 51:7).  The windfall for Jessie was that she got to sleep in an extra half hour.

Breakfast for my princess was cereal and banana.  Jessie now has significantly less gag reflex with the banana.  I’m not ready to score one for the home team, but we’re much closer than when we started three months ago.

School went off without a hitch.  Next week we’ll add a subject or two, but school is going smoothly, so that’s a blessing.

During school, I called a contractor who had visited before and talked about window installation.  I would buy the windows from the Amish man four hours away, drive them in the van that’s still working, and this man would install them.  The contractor thinks it will work.  That will save me between $2,000 and $6,000.  The contractor will come in the next week or so and we’ll wrap the window frames on the quaint porch windows with aluminum.  They’re so cute, the old windows will stay and they’ll get new custom storm windows.

A masonry contractor stopped.  He’s going to bid the tuck-pointing on the home’s exterior.  He looked at the cistern ceiling and says it needs attention.  He looked at the back concrete porch/steps and says it needs support.  He looked at the fireplace and says it’s in good enough condition to use this winter for an occasional fire.  He gave me advice about sweeping the chimney myself.  He and his wife have their first 11-month-old baby girl.  He got choked up just talking about Annabelle.  I know just how he feels.  I get choked up thinking about Jessie (and when there’s dirt in my eye, the other six).

I washed sheets for this weekend’s visitors.

Jessie’s brother called.

After school and lunch, guess where Jessie and I went?  You’ll never guess.  That’s right, we went to Menards.  The difference is that we went to the other Menards.  We returned the 8ft table and some other things.  We special-ordered the interior storm windows for the upstairs leaded glass windows.  We got a 6-ft table, a dozen tubes of masonry crack filler, a dozen tubes of silicone caulk, three ceiling fans, two jack posts, two drywall carriers, a small grill, a ½in valve, a torch kit, felt sliders, and two tool boxes.

We stopped at Jessie’s grandfather’s to borrow a cup of kitty litter.  I’ve heard of borrowing a cup of sugar from a neighbor, but never a cup of kitty litter.

We got Jessie a larger dresser out of storage, so we can put her winter wear into a dresser.  We got the dressers that my brother and I had as boys and the dressers that Jessie’s older twin brothers used.  Jessie and I will now use them.

We went to the bank to cash in the change from the quart mason jar.  Jessie’s uses the coins for counting in school.  But, I had told her three months ago we’d use the change to get ice cream.  Until now, I hadn’t made good on that plan.  We cashed in two rolls of pennies and a roll of dimes.

I planned to get a haircut at the Great Clips in the grocery store.  So, I told Jessie to take her copy of the first volume of Anne of Green Gables so she’s have something to read while I got my hair cut.  The haircutting joint was closed for renovations, so I stuck Anne in my back belt because Jessie didn’t want to carry it.  I bought eggs, romaine lettuce, and bananas.  In the produce aisle, we ran into a family friend who reads this blog.  To Jessie she said, “I heard you’re reading Anne of Green Gables.”  I was able to whip that book out from my backside and show the evidence.  Jessie and I were in the produce aisle and we were caught red-handed with both bananas and Anne of Green Gables.  The most fortunate part was that the kind soul with whom we visited did not ask to see my concealed carry permit for having an Anne of Green Gables in my back belt.

We stopped at another store and got Jessie some more vanilla ice cream, and for good measure, we got chocolate and peanut butter gelato.  I’m sure with visitors coming, we’ll find some other people with whom we can share the gelato.  Jessie’s ice cream fun was cut to fifty-one cents (plus the rest of the big jar of change).

Jessie and I went home with every good intention of putting away the stuff we’d picked up.  I did spread the kitty litter around the oil spill next to the boiler.  The contractor who refurbished the boiler spilled oil onto the concrete next to the boiler.  I just didn’t think a cup of sugar would get up the oil.

We called a half dozen old church friends on the phone.  Four were home.  We left messages with the rest.

After we put away the groceries, my good intentions of doing more work ended with Bible reading and prayer and a few pages of Anne of Green Gables.  Anne and her cohorts have been blessed with Patty’s Place for the next school term and Jessie and I have been blessed with a home that is nicer than I deserve.  The two of us ended day 115 in the house with which God has blessed us.

Blessings:  Running into friends at the grocery store.  Gelato and other obscene foods.  Bananas and other morally sane foods.  People from whom you can borrow a cup of kitty litter.  Old church friends on the phone.

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