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Posts tagged ‘storage’

The Ugly Truth

It’s been hard to come up with the bandwidth to post since my life has no routine right now. My mind is a reflection of the chaos in my new home. It’s much easier to share my accomplishments than my shortcomings.

Would it fit? We got a bigger truck just in case

I decided to tell you the ugly truth here. I’ve had my ‘stuff’ here for over a month already and my place looks very much like a hoarder’s home. There is stuff everywhere and nowhere to put it…yet. It’s a total embarrassment as progress is slow.

As before in my manufactured home, I wanted the house to tell me what it wants. I hung no pictures so everything is sitting on the floor waiting. For what?

I sold three large bookcases that I didn’t want to move again. They were starting to show wear due to many moves. IKEA has no inventory in this area of the bookcases I like and there is nowhere here to buy anything similar. So, my son is building some to fit what little space I have to put anything. That will take time.

Where does it all go

I also left behind the flimsy drawers that held up the sewing table, which is a 2×8 sheet of plywood.

The move was hard in many ways. The movers came late in the cold day. We were already exhausted shuffling around things and chilled to the bone. The movers tied nothing down so my son did his best to tie up what was obviously going to come crashing down.

It worked and very little broke. At least nothing I couldn’t live without. I can thank my son for driving the 1500 miles very gently. The offloading was quick. Again, I had hired help. It was worth it to save our strength to put things away. The kids helped me so much getting things where they needed to be when I could no longer do more than point. I’m ever so grateful for that help.

When I put the quilt Emily made on my bed, I was home and cozy.

I’ve unpacked almost everything except some books. Until there are shelves, they remain in stacks of boxes. I look at it all and shaking my head, make a cup of tea and head to bed hoping the next morning will bring a fresh round of energy.

Still no home yet.

In the meantime, I’ve had appointments with a new pulmonologist, chiropractor, and have been lucky enough to get into pulmonary rehab. That just means that they make me exercise while tracking my oxygen level, blood pressure and heart rate. I was rewarded with a handicap placard and 24/7/365 oxygen supply.

my leash inside. Oxygen concentrator.

I’m acclimating to the altitude a second time and doing quite well in spite of the fact that some sort of oxygen apparatus follows me everywhere now. The rehab techs are impressed with my tenacity. I’m hoping to need less oxygen as time goes on. That’s the goal. Sewing is the next goal.

Clutter and shopping cart that now carries oxygen tank

Paring down  is on the list too. As much as I gave away and sold, it just wasn’t quite enough. We are working on unusual storage solutions and I’ll show you what we’ve come up with next time.

How do you feel about sharing the ugly truths in life?

From my heart to yours,

Marlene Herself

Missing

There is so much going on in my life these days that a lot of things are just not getting the top priority they deserve.  I’m befuddled, discombobulated and seriously distracted.

Sonar holding down the mouse. This photo from my son calms me.

Autumn came VERY early this year. Then summer made a momentary encore. It brought the stink bugs with it. I thought we had been exceptionally fortunate this year but just as my son arrived to help with some really hard jobs, the darn bugs showed up. The rain was kind. It let us get our outside jobs done and only rained when we had inside stuff to do.

This was the first of October!

The house is in escrow. Inspection has been completed and appraisal today. We were asked to put in a new hot water heater even though it worked just fine for a 16-year-old tank. All the smoke detectors were too old so up the ladder he went five times. We worked together to get stuff shifted in storage while we had the help.

Finally done with the current shift of 2 households

The real muscle behind the job.

My son trudged on for over four days to get done in time to get home for knee replacement surgery on Nov 4. Yes, he really loves his mother. It was two 12-hour days driving each way to be so overworked. We did fill up the Suburban with things I will never use again to send home with him.

Extra points since nothing rattled on the way home.

You never know how much you miss things until they are locked away. I’m missing my library, tubs of fabric, dressers and even my hair dryer that I rarely use. I’m going to miss my ice-maker in the freezer A terribly decadent luxury. The repairman for the ice-maker came 3 times before he admitted the dispenser would not work again. Packing time was put on hold while he muttered under his breath at the **** machine

I miss time to sew which is on my list daily and never crossed off the list.

I hadn’t had the brain bandwidth to write a post so we go back to the old phrase ‘of all the things I’ve lost, I miss my mind the most.” The charger for my watch has gone missing with all the shuffling of stuff. Poof! Into thin air.

I miss my routine. Nothing is routine anymore. I make a plan for the day and before the first cuppa is finished, it goes in the bucket.

Taking mom shopping. I forgot a cane so holding on tight.

Plans?? It’s impossible to make any because we don’t know if or when escrow will close with great certainty. Partway through the process, the second potential buyer decided the loan percentage rate was not to their liking and started again. Delays mean a later start to our trip running us deeper into winter months. Hopefully that means we will miss the crowds in the places we are going to visit. My birthplace being first is never crowded.

Basically a one street town.

I missed seeing my sewing friends too. Emily has already moved to Independent Living but managed to come visit a couple of times. Patti called to offer help and take me to lunch. We poured old wine down the drain together. A good day all the way around. I’m going to miss that too for a while.

Most of all, I miss being here and popping in to see you regularly. Let’s hope that changes soon.

Do you have anything you find you miss when it’s out of reach?

We ourselves feel that what we are doing is just a drop in the ocean. But the ocean would be less because of that missing drop. ~ Mother Teresa

From my heart to yours,

Marlene Herself

The Best Laid Plans

I’m a planner.  My son, plans very differently from me. I will ask what his plan is and he shrugs like a teenager instead of a full grown adult male. I’m sure something is working itself out in his head but I don’t see it. My plan was to have less stuff, his was to move anything that he couldn’t sell and pay less for storage.

I have plenty of  stuff and I’m working feverishly to pass most on or make use of it. We have both sold a great deal and given away more. My little corner of that storage unit is now in my house, driveway and shed along with some of his stuff. I figured I’d go through it this week as he drove his 26’ rental truck to the Northern Arizona Mountains where he has a shipping container purchased and placed conveniently and inexpensively. No more storage costs. The container can later be used for other projects.

This driveway was clear before Christmas

This driveway was clear before Christmas

The pile kept growing. We tried to sell the chain saw at the 100 degree yard sale last summer. Bargain rate if you are interested.

The pile kept growing. We tried to sell the chain saw at the 100 degree yard sale last summer. Bargain rate if you are interested.

There was a time frame to do all this as his navigator/alternate driver/friend flew in to ride back with him. It took us two days to pack the truck with some unprofessional help. A teenager thinking about the video games he was missing and a wonderful blogging friend who was a tiny force of nature. Crystal worked circles around the teenager and me. My son was methodical in a way that was testing my patience. It was cold in a way this city hasn’t seen in decades. Once it was all loaded, he began to be concerned. It fit but felt too heavy. The morning he was going to pull the truck out of the storage area, the gates froze shut and wouldn’t come open. Obviously a clear sign of things to come.

Four layers and I still got too cold when the sun started down.

Four layers and I still got too cold when the sun started down.

By 9 a.m. my son and his navigator/2nd driver managed to get the gate open by hand. The manager stood inside his office door in his long johns with his hands flapping in the air looking helpless to assist in any way. Once the gates were open, we fled after pulling them closed again.

My boxes in the back corner. Only the Holiday boxes will stay.

My boxes in the back corner. Only the Holiday boxes will stay.

Is this the end of the story? Oh, no. It took one stoplight for it to register fully that this load was not going to fly. An attempt was made to rent a tag-along trailer to distribute the load. There wasn’t one to fit the truck. Just go ahead they said at the rental place.

My wise son took the truck to our refuse and recycling center and had it weighed. 6000 pounds over is significant. So the next option was to call mom. That’s what we are for, right?

All but the tan posts go with this unit

All but the tan posts go with this unit

They spent the better part of a precious driving day, offloading his commercial steel shelving into my back yard along with anything too heavy and no longer worth the move. It would have to be sold from my place with him negotiating long distance. As they drove down the highway in the very late afternoon, I got a call that the truck was behaving nicely and all was well.

All together and full of stuff

All together and full of stuff

I wish I could say that there was rest for the weary after all this. I cleaned out the unit the next day in slightly warmer temps, loaded the third seat back into my vehicle by myself to get it out of the incoming weather and moved and sorted things to go to different places. Their truck made it into Utah and headed across to Arizona. Ahead of the weather I’ve been mentally holding back for them. I thank everyone who kept good thoughts with me for this to be a safe journey.

Cleaned out and empty. Ready for the next customer.

Cleaned out and empty. Ready for the next customer.

Anyone interested in a commercial steel shelving unit with the plywood shelves or several different weight bench thingies? I have some of my mom’s end tables that might go to the thrift store in the next load unless you want them?

P.S. They made it safely all the way. Yay!!!

From my heart to yours,

Marlene Herself

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In Search of a Break

It’s been hairy, hectic, and heavy. We’ve had a long week of shifting, shoving and shimmying stuff around.

The pods arrived and so did my former (ex) daughter-in-law. She worked like a trooper in helping my son and I build shelving in the storage unit. When he bought the shelves, I shook my head and shrugged, thinking this man is not playing with a full deck. No, I didn’t say it out loud. I just couldn’t see the picture he had in my own mind.

Just like a tinker toy, The beginning looks nothing like shelving

Just like a tinker toy, The beginning looks nothing like shelving

Once they were together, I had to admire his foresight. My stored stuff was placed on the first set of shelves moving from another location to this one closer to home. Then we had to make quick work to empty the first pod so they could deliver the second. The first one held all the heavy stuff like tools. The rest of the week was so exhausting that we all ate many of our meals out, showered and fell in our beds. Trying to squeeze five bedrooms, 3 baths, a 2 car garage and a shed’s worth of stuff into one bedroom and a 12 by 25 storage building along with my storage building worth of stuff was an exercise in mental hydraulics.

This is all my Christmas and crafts plus more sewing. If I ever get done moving it, I can use it.

This is all my Christmas and crafts plus more sewing. If I ever get done moving it, I can use it.

When the last pod was emptied, we celebrated. My living, dining, sewing room, and kitchen are NOT celebrating. It looks like I just moved in all over again. Next week we will make it better.

One pod empty, one to go and there is still lots of room in here

One pod empty, one to go and there is still lots of room in here

Needing a break, the rest of the time my DIL was here, we wanted to show her some of Portland.

Where do we take visitors who come to our town? Well, my son had to take her to Multnomah Falls. He has photographed it every time he visited here.

One of my favorite of his photos of Multnomah Falls

One of my favorite of his photos of Multnomah Falls

Then of course there is the infamous “Powell’s City of Books”. They spent well over two hours there. I spent a great deal of it in the café watching Portland walk by, buying NO books this time. There is no time to read what I have so more will have to wait. Since they sell new and used, the kids came out with a few, mostly my son. The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree when it comes to collecting books.

Don't let the small appearance fool you. You need a map inside as it fills a whole city block

Don’t let the small appearance fool you. You need a map inside as it fills a whole city block

It goes on and on and on

It goes on and on and on

Then my sister met us for a tour of the Pittock Mansion grounds since the Mansion itself was closed for the winter. The view was breathtaking. I mostly enjoyed petting the dogs everyone brought.

My son managed to capture the mansion with no one in front of it.

My son managed to capture the mansion with no one in front of it.

only part of the breath taking view.

only part of the breath taking view.

One of the highlights of our town is that we live in close proximity to Bob’s Red Mill. They ship to stores all over the country and have started serving 3 meals a day. I love having breakfast there so we did. My son found the best ginger cookies I’ve ever eaten.

We timed it just right as they are always busy. They have outdoor seating for those that want to dine with their dogs.

We timed it just right as they are always busy. They have outdoor seating for those that want to dine with their dogs.

You can't miss it driving by.

You can’t miss it driving by.

Row after row of organic everything. They will even teach you how to use it.

Row after row of organic everything. They will even teach you how to use it.

For me a town is a lot about the food and Portland does not disappoint. Since we were in such a jumble anyway, we tried several of the restaurants. The Ram makes the best French fries in the world. I should know, I’ve eaten them everywhere. We stopped by the German deli, Edelweiss, for stuff my DIL needed to bake the German cookies I gave her the recipe for.

One of 4 Gustav's/Rhrinlander's in the Portland area, this one is very close to home

One of 4 Gustav’s/Rhrinlander’s in the Portland area, this one is very close to home

Then to cap off her visit, we had linner (combination lunch and dinner) at Gustav’s German restaurant. She tried the beer sampler with dinner and we all enjoyed the pretzel and cheese fondue. My son, I don’t know where he come from, had a hamburger, while my DIL and I enjoyed more traditional fare. It was LUSCIOUS! I took home a bowl of their lentil soup to see if I can figure out how they make it. Better than mine any day of the week. Of course, my son disagrees. The spaetzle was extra good with a Madeira sauce on them. Mom always used a meat gravy that we loved.

We had a cozier spot.

We had a cozier spot.

We arrived home to pick up the mail at the box up the street from the house. There were stacks of mail for my son and my sister. I had one piece. Just one, and it was happy mail! The Snail of Happiness, who was inspired to do so by The Contented Crafter, sent me snail mail. A happy package filled with her creativeness. We all admired her handiwork. How lucky am I!! Bloggers are wonderful people.

A bouquet of knit roses in wonderful colors

A bouquet of knit roses in wonderful colors


A tiny paper rose was hidden inside, all was placed in star studded organza bag

A tiny paper rose was hidden inside, all was placed in star studded organza bag

The vase of the roses in a perfect shade of blue.

The vase of the roses in a perfect shade of blue.

Now I’m inspired to finish a few projects of my own…as soon as I unearth the sewing room, again.

That’s what I do when I need a break.

At what point do you need a break and how do you go about getting one?

From my heart to yours,
Marlene Herself