Thursday, June 22, 2017

Thursday Musings

I just finished this stitching and will get this one and the matching one for dogs in my shop soon. Have to frame them. I rather like these new patterns from Urban Threads. Different and fun to stitch!

I'll be opening my shop in August. I want to stitch up some new things to list. These are just the beginning. 

Our cats are adjusting well to the move. They don't sit in the window anymore as the window sill is very narrow but do love it when we open the front door. There is a security screen door so we  lock it so they can look out.



Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Ironwood and Saying Goodbye

 Last weekend, our family went to the San Diego County Fair at the Del Mar fairgrounds. What a relief of coolness from the ocean winds, its been very hot here, in the 90s and as hot as 108. It was 72 at Del Mar.
We happened upon a seller of Mexican Ironwood. Years ago we'd bought several pieces and our son bought us the feather, the detail is amazing. Its a new piece and made with modern tools. Our older pieces were hand carved but they are all wonderful.

Here is the roadrunner we have

and our other piece is the oldest, a owl and yes he does have a beak.

These last two pieces were hand carved by the Seri Indians of the state of Sonara in Mexico. 
Iron wood is very hard and heavy. The grain is very straight and it sinks in water. You polish this wood using shoe polish.

We got all the boxes and things out of storage now and said goodbye to our house. It was sad leaving, especially as the bank has not turned the water on. Our lawn and fruit trees are dying in this terrible heat.Its puzzling as they were so determined to make us leave only to leave it empty for weeks and not taking care of the landscaping. The front lawn looks dead and dry.
I cried while driving away, those trees, rose bushes and sago palms were like children to me. Shriveling in the driving heat.

But life goes on and another page in our book of life has turned. I will try to post as often as I can.
The cats have been a great comfort to us as well as getting into Gods Word and prayer. I know, like Job that He is in control.

 I don't want to close this post on a sad note......

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Day Three of the Condo

As I said, there is a room behind the bedroom. A little funky but quite usable. Its still in the planning stages, but we have put up blinds, and put down a indoor/outdoor carpet. Before it was just concrete.

As I said, its a mess right now. The large window-like area that you see on the left is plexiglass with glass shelving. Eventually, this will be a nice office. Outside  toward the back left is the atrium. I will post photos in a few months so you can see the finished office.

We did look at rentals in the neighboring town of Hemet, Ca and could have got a much larger home for less money. However, after praying about it, we both felt we were to stay here in the Menifee/Sun City area. Our son and grandson are here so for the time being, we should be too. Plus our business is improving and we don't want to have to start over again somewhere else.

Having our personal things here has made a difference in the feel of the condo. Its starting to feel like home.
Be it ever so humble...
I will be stitching again also..guess the name of my shop Sweet Home Stitchery is becoming more appropriate!

Monday, June 12, 2017

Our New/Old Condo

I thought I'd continue letting you know about Sun City. Del Webb built it back in the early 1960s. He first built a similar senior living area in Arizona.

The Kings Inn was where everyone stayed and had the tour of the area.

I remember as a teen traveling with my family driving by here. I never dreamed we'd be living here years later.

The inn suffered a fire in the 70s and only a few buildings were left standing. They were moved across the freeway and now are part of the Americans Best Value Inn. We actually stayed there one night recently while moving. I didn't go in to register but Alan did and he noticed the office was older and looked rather vintage.

Now the lot where the Inn stood is empty.

Hopefully, some one will put something on it one day.
Our condos are right down the street from this lot. From what I understand (I could be wrong) these were built with the idea to house people while their homes were being built.

The entry of ours, like so many others has a geometric look

                                 The mail comes through a slot by the door. Rather classy. No more having to walk to the community mail box. There have been many break ins in these boxes so no worries when the mail is delivered personally.

We're still moving in. It seems to take time when we help with our grandson and do our locksmith business. All our stuff is in storage. We have about 1/3 left to get out. Its been challenging finding space for everything but its coming along. 
Here is the living room so far...

I'm trying to make the bookcase more interesting. The top shelf houses the flag that was on Alan's dad's casket. He was a WWII veteran. 
Also I put our cat Boots ashes with a photo of him as a memorial. He's been gone now 7 years but I still miss him. 
The other end of the room has Alan's tractor collection and my oil lamps. Plus an antique  sewing machine stand and vintage radio.

Behind those doors is the kitchen. and a bar area for eating. No dining room here. We would have left it open but the cats decided they wanted to jump in there so we're not using the bar. Plus we needed a space for the barrister bookcase. I was pleasantly surprised to find some old fashioned TV tray stands at Ross the other day. So we use them to eat on.

Here's the bedroom. Its quite large, big enough for the curio cabinet. Its a nice quiet retreat. I do have pictures for the walls but as I said, we're still moving in.

Tomorrow I will show you the office.

Most of these condos are one bedroom, however, someone built another room on the back. 
There is also a "atrium". A rather small area for planting and gardening. We've talked it over and decided to make a small raised bed there and plant tomatoes. Right now its a fenced in graveled area.

That's about all for today. 

Friday, June 9, 2017

One picture

Couldn't leave you without at least showing one photo of our new place. These little condos were built back in the 1960s.Ours is 725 sq. ft. Most are one bedroom but ours is two. A second one was built onto the back at some point. Alan is using it as an office and we're also storing a few pieces of furniture in it.

Our landlady is a wonderful person and we're really blest to have found this. Rents here are very high and we were pleased to have found anything near our price range. She doesn't mind the cats either!

Hello and Good bye to our house

I  haven't posted in a year! An entire year. Much has changed since the last time I posted.

As the dream I had some years ago has come true, we've been on a scary whirlwind ride of anxiety, fear and loss. And yet, God has been in control all along.

Way back in 2005, we decided to get a second loan on the house to do some needed repairs. When we bought the house, at the high point of the mortgage bubble, for too much money as it needed quite a bit of work. The back yard was a gravel pit, concrete was missing on the patio, the side yard was mud every rainy year. There were no landscaping or trees in the back..did I mention it was gravel pit?
The second went to do the repairs and bring the house into the 21st century.
Then my husband lost his job of over 20 years and couldn't find another. We ended up going into business for ourselves which has been fairly successful. For a few months, we couldn't make the payments on the second. But then we got really busy and were ready to start paying again.
Anyway, to make a long story short, the second disappeared online, we couldn't find it at one point to make payments.
I called the loan company and they said it had been written off as bad debit. This was during the time of the bank bail outs.We presumed, (wrongly it turned out) that that was the end of it.
we never heard about the loan for years...

2016---- We first got a letter from a company who had the loan. This company had bought the loan in a bundle with many others. Evidently, banks have been bundling these "bad" loans and selling them off for pennies on the dollar. The loan had floated around in some time before landing into the companys lap. And they were bulldogs.
First we tried talking with them, and asked for a loan modification which they agreed to, we got the hardship letter written and submitted. They wanted more information, including Alan's complete medical records to prove he is a diabetic.  When he called them, to check on things, they told him they had made a decision, foreclosure. No loan modification.
Then we tried for a cash settlement. again turned down. They wanted $33,500 wired to them in two days! plus $400 a month for the balance.
By that time, we had a small team in place to help us. Our lawyer suggested we try a loan modification on our first (which we were completely up to date on) which put off the second for a few months. Then when the loan modification was approved, they fell on us like vultures.
They scheduled our house to sold at auction. Again , our lawyer suggested a bankruptcy which put them off again.
 During this time, we tried a short sale and we actually had a cash offer on the house. The loan company denied it.
 The bankruptcy did put them off for awhile, which gave our son and family time to find an apartment and move.
As soon as the bankruptcy was denied, they fell on us again and put the house up for auction. It didn't sell and they took it back.
We were able to finally get a small bit of good news, they would do a cash for keys so at least we couldn't have an eviction on our records.
At one point, the second loan was telling us to move and our first was telling us to stay. What a mess!

Now, after all the heartache we are in a new senior condo and paying rent. Meanwhile,  our house is sitting empty.
The first loan has told us that they are going to foreclose on the second in three months if they don't come up with the balance on the loan. No discounts for them. No only that but the solar panel people will want a small fortune to remove the panels.
This second loan company will make no money on our house. And yet they did it. Why? Greater minds then mine are puzzled

Our new place is small but cute and with a little TLC will be home.  Peace is again reigning and we are out of the turmoil. 
I''ll post some photos when we get things together here. We've only been here about a week so far and there are still boxes in storage to go through.

We drive by the old house to check on it.Evidently, the company thinks its very valuable as they have security cameras on the entrances and high security locks in place.

                                    Good bye little house!

Saturday, June 11, 2016

Beans and Zucchini

Above are the green beans we planted this spring. These are huge bush bean plants. We've never grown such large ones and boy! are they producing the beans, I've given away several gallon bags of beans and also am going to can some. We planted 50 plants in two beds.

Its been a hot few weeks, most days are in the 100s but so far the beans have been fine. I go out every day to harvest.

We have one zucchini plant and its producing too. I made some zucchini relish again. I made the same recipe last year and it was so good! I hope this year will be the same.

If you'd like to make some, its fairly easy and I plan on making another batch soon. Great on hot dogs and hamburgers.  Just click Zucchini Relish for the recipe I used. It does have to sit around a week at least before using. You process it in a water bath canner for 30 minutes. I don't use the 6 cups of sugar that the recipe calls for but use Splenda instead. The Splenda holds up well in this recipe.

No tomatoes yet, we are counting the days and checking the plants daily.With our heat, it shouldn't be too long. The plants are loaded with green ones right now.

Thursday, May 12, 2016

The Old Desk

My husband is so wonderful with woodworking. Our son brought this old desk  home and I thought it would be useful inside our front door. However, the drop down cabinet was broken and the shelf inside wasn't fitting right. It was also scratched badly on the outside. 

We have a ton and a half of DVDs, and I thought the bottom would be great for the overflow. 

He took it out to the garage and started working on it. He said whoever made it didnt do a good job, that the bottom inside shelf was measured incorrectly hence the  drop down wouldn't fit right. He replaced the bottom shelf and put new hinges and a new catch on the door.  Plus he sanded the entire desk down and painted it. 

What a difference!

It looks 100% better and so useful with the DVDs

I tried to arrange them according to subject but you know how that goes with an active family. But at least they will be able to go through  them easily.. This is just a small sample of the ones we have. I went through them and have  taken some out for our garage sale. I still have about another 100 to go through!

What do you think of his handiwork? I think he did a wonderful job, turning something that should go with the trash to a useful item. 

Of course, I have to hang some of my stitchery above it!


Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Garden News

I thought you may like to see our raised bed garden. Its doing fine so far, the tomatoes are growing like crazy with lots of flowers so we're hoping for a good crop.

 The zucchini plant has tiny squash coming. I have to check it every day as they tend to get too big overnight or so it seems.

 These are tomato plants, they were so tiny when we planted them.

Our peach and nectarine tree, beyond is the new Valencia orange. its still small as we planted it last year. No lawn anymore due to the drought. Now the water district has lifted some of the restrictions, I don't think we're going to try to grow grass with the dogs, it would be impossible at this point. I'd love to get artificial turf but it would cost a fortune. For now, we're just keeping it fairly weed free.

That's about all for today. I cooked a big pot of chicken vegetable noodle soup yesterday and then froze some for the future. I already have some white beans and ham frozen, Next I think I'll cook a big pot of pinto beans and freeze them too. Its good to have things tucked away. The beans will be ready for chili. I'm freezing them in quart jars so it will be easy to just take one out for us two. 

Friday, April 29, 2016

Friday Friday

I just listed two more of the floral cards, this is get well card done with orange roses. These really pop and my photo doesn't do it justice. I've had a wonderful time stitching these and I  do hope others like them.

The second card is a birthday one. Always nice to send or give someone a unique card.

On this one, I embellished it with some burlap flowers with a little bling. Pink and copper flowers.
You can find these in my Etsy shop at Sweet Home Stitchery

We've been busy and our garden is doing really well. We have some baby zucchini coming and the carrots are coming up. All the tomato plants are getting huge and have flowers so we're  hoping for some tomatoes soon.
Our weather has been on the cool side for Southern California. In the 60s most days and we've had alot of wind, up to 40 mph. at times. It seems like all the dry leaves from last fall have been blown in to our front yard and it seemed strange to be racking leaves in April. Many dry branches have been blown down from the trees too. Jayden and I made a game of it, picking them all up. we filled the dumpster with leaves and branches, so next week will be another one of working on the front lawn. 
Lots of weeds and bare patches to work on. Thankfully its not a large area.
Our yard is shared with the neighbor and our lot is like pie slice. Narrow in the front and large in the back. Our neighbor is a single mom and has asked us to take care of the shared lawn.

Our locksmith business which in the past has been great, is very slow right now. We haven't had but maybe two jobs this month. So we're trying to come up with some ways to supplement our social security. My embroidery is one of those, plus Alan has been selling things on Ebay. Right now he's selling mailbox locks, the post office is no longer putting new locks in the communal mailboxes. They also have a certain type they approve which Alan is selling. You normally can't find these at the big box stores.  Here is his listings if you know anyone who needs a mail box lock. Proe_designer
The link for my shop is above under the card photo. Thanks so much as we struggle every month, it seems to get the bills paid and food on the table. Times are tough. God supplies our needs.

And finally, a little fun...