Saturday, February 22, 2020

February Note

It is a rare Saturday afternoon that I am sitting in the kitchen with a cup of tea and few grocery on top of the dinning table. Laundry is done and the sun is shinning into the apartment. It feels accomplished and relax!  The weather is starting get warmer and spring is probably around the corner.

It will be four years this June since we moved to the city. It is so unreal to think about how the time has gone by and how big my girl has became. We were pretty uncertain about the big cross half county move in 2016. There were lots plans that got switched and unplanned, but we stay put and stick to what our original plan was, stay together as a family. I think all has turn around and things are coming together and we are thankful!

A year ago, we have started look for something more permanent, something that we can stay on and feel more content. But it didn't really all happen like in the next day! We gave up house hunting a few times as we didn't really know if we want to invest a place in N.Y.. But there are so many ups and downs that we went through with the landlord last hour years. We went back to more talks and discussions about finding a place again. A few weeks ago, we have finally found a real nice house for us.  The house is just perfect size! It has a nice deck in the back yard, a nice updated kitchen and a finished basement for us.

I can't tell you how emotional I have had on the day we signed the buyer contract. I have started to plan on lots of things ever since. You will probably laugh at me for the most exciting list that I have is getting a washer and a dryer. As many you know that we bough a portable washer since we moved to the city. On the weekends, I would connect the washer in the kitchen sink and doing my laundry. It takes a good few hours for washing a week worth of clothes, but most trouble is there is no dryer to dry up. In the summer, things get dry up fair quick, but winter days takes up a good 4-5 days. Especially some clothes actually don't get full dry. We are all so look forward the laundry improvement at the new house. 

Second exciting news is probably; I will be able to have a room for real studio space. I will be able to spend quality time there sew, write, and draw! I can't wait to hang all the mini quilts on the walls and getting some nice storage space. I really have not be able to sew or stay in the studio last few months. The weekends were spent on house hunting and last few weekends have been window shopping for lists that we'll need when we move into the new house.

We are also looking forward the spring and summer for the gardening plants. We have a short list for growing vegetables and fruits. We really don't know what we should first start with, but strawberry, tomatoes and cucumber seems fair easy to grow since I have done so before. I have been saving photos and watching videos for how to build a raised bed for vegetable gardening . We like to do fruit trees as well, but we shall slow down and wait and see how the back yard does this summer. I am anxious for the future weekend mornings that I will be sipping my coffee from the deck and watch my veggie gardens and I though we'll do a bird house too.

There will be a lot of sewing job for the new house. There are  curtains need to be make, hot pot holders and dishtowels. I am looking forward making meals in the bright and lovely window kitchen and a place we can all enjoy time together.

I have been slowly packing the kitchen dishes away. Some fabric boxes have been sealed. I will get on to the books packing soon.  S is also slowly putting away her posters and bits and bobs that she has as well. We are all lazy and relax about about this for no reason!

The new house is about 18 miles away from where we are now. We have few large furnitures to move in; other than that are pretty much what we moved from Iowa four years ago.  We are waiting for a closing date and final walk through time. 

Meanwhile, I will be away for some time, again! Our life is full of events and motivations and challenges, but I am loving how we can work on all these together! We will be sore from the move and will take some time to settle in the new house. I'll be driving to work which I am self talking about this idea daily. I knew how struggled I am about driving in the city, but I knew I can do it! I probably just need have extra courage and be brave! I will be ok!

Thank you for everything! 


Saturday, January 4, 2020


Hello! Happy New Year!

Christmas was slow for us, I got a bad cold and couldn't really taste anything, but made the effort to cook the breakfast, opened presents, and prepared lightly dinner for everyone. Although, I was mostly blowing my nose and caught, caught, caught and felt my body weighted over a ton, but the cold is over now ( thank goodness).  S loved her gifts that she found under the tree. Just like every year, she would get up extra early in the morning and still excited about opening gifts. I secretly hope when she moves on in her adulthood she would still be home for the Christmas and watch same Christmas movies over and over.

I actually couldn't wait for December, 31st to come sooner, I thought that I would stay till midnight, just like everyone else, cheering for the new decade, but the truth is I was asleep by 11:30 p.m.  I knew the phone was buzzing with all the Happy New Year texts, but I couldn't open my eyes or even made the effort to reach out to the phone. I was out, completely, from the cold, busy at work, and the new neighbor noises. That was probably the best snooze for the longest time! But yet, I was up by 6 a.m. The body alarm was set; even I tried to go back to the cozy and warm bed.
Oh.. but here we are into a new decade.

So, the staycation started for me! I have had all the things plan out that I like to work on.  The tree has been put away, I carefully stored away the ornaments. I love friends who sent their handmade ornaments and cards in the mail every year. I appreciated them not forgetting about me, since I have been busy in life and hardly able to do much.  I miss the old days when S and I crafted in our little dinning table and she would make extra ornaments for selling during the holiday time. I miss Julie who got the tree for us in October 2007 and gifted us ornaments every year. It was a memory lane drive for me.

While the washer was running in the kitchen, I started cutting more penny square for the quilt.  The quilt is slow slow slow in process.  I plan on finish all the nine patch blocks before adding them together, so the colors can be balance as a whole. This is going to be a big quilt, a queen size.  I love the colors, cream background and contrast with floral prints, only. It is an intentional idea. I knew that in the past I used to use much modern vibrate colors. But for this quilt, the mix-match backgrounds with nice floral prints that I have been saved for years just seem special to me; time to let these prints shine!

I am feeling so rest with the self-time, the most needed self time. I used to be home alone a lot, but things just have changed. After four years of city life; I have semi-adapted the lifestyle, but the inner me, is so not! I have not been to a real fabric store for a long time! The store that with lots quilts hang on the walls, ladies that walking in the store with handful of fabric bolts, fat quarters and they are talking in quilting languages. Oh, I hope my quilting language still fluent since it has been awhile!

On my last trip oversea, I bought some Hakka floral prints. My dear friend Erin has always talked about these prints. So when we met last time, we spent all day in Taipei, DiHua District.  I got some prints and though making them into drawstring bags for her would be nice. Erin and I met when we were 16, she has always though that she was a year older than me, then years later, maybe after college. We found out that we were 4 months part. I was born in the Fall, so I was held a year back before entering elementary school; yes, so not fair! Because I was always the older kid in the class at the time.  I will put these drawstring bags in the mail for her, so just in time for her lunar new year travel.

When all the sewing bits and bobs are happening in the studio. The kitchen stove was busy, too. I made another big pot of chicken broth and chicken pot pie last night. I always love to saved up the roasted chicken from bone to skin. These are the best ingredients for the homemade chicken soup.  A dozen of the Blueberry Lemon Muffins for the Saturday morning can't go wrong!  Tomorrow I plan on making a pound cake, so we have some breakfast for the next few days.

For this year, I feel the need for staying authentic and original. I would like to make time for myself, so I could be more fulfilled. I would like to go back where I was before cook and prepare fresh food for the family, so we can dine out less ( Life gets out of control when it is busy). I would also hope that things calm down a bit more as we are settled in more now. These are simple goals, but somewhat the it gets challenge to enforce these in life.  I stay positively about the challenges and changes and I cried when there is frustrations, but after all it is all going to work out!

Meanwhile, for the last two days off, I shall use most of it! Sewing, cooking and a bit of movie watching before Monday arrives!

Wish you the best new year!