Tuesday, October 30, 2012

No Power but . . .

We survived the storm quite comfortably.  We received almost 4 inches of rain in less than 12 hours and we had wind gusts up to 45 mph with sustained winds of between 30-35 mph.  Our power went out about 5 pm yesterday and it's still out (9 am Tuesday), but since we have a generator we are enjoying "luxury camping."  We have heat, hot water, shower, refrigeration,  a few lights, and a couple of "live" outlets to use.  So I can plug in my Keurig, a toaster, or other small appliances - just not all at the same time!  No word yet on how long the power will be out.  Only about 10% of my town lost power, but I live on the outskirts and our power line comes in from the west whereas most of town gets there power from the east.  NH has over 200,000 people without power (out of 1.1 million).  We didn't get any damage on our property.  Most of our big trees came down during the 2008 ice storm.  The new construction also survived unscathed.  However a friend of mine got a tree through her roof and there are a lot of trees and limbs down elsewhere.  School is cancelled for the second day in a row - not a wonderful prospect for getting out early in June!!

Monday, October 29, 2012

A Couple More Construction Pics

I'm just hoping that these walls are still standing once Sandy get through with us.  The prediction is for steady winds between 35-45 mph with gusts up to 60 mph and 3-5 inches of rain.  School was cancelled today even though Sandy isn't expected to actually get here until early this evening.  It IS blowing and raining, but neither very dramatically . . . yet.  I'd prefer to keep it that way.  I have family on the coast in Virginia and Connecticut, and our son is in southeastern MA where winds are expected to be be MUCH harder.

From the foot of the driveway . . .

In back of the house - walk in cellar door, looking westerly.

And also from the back looking toward the east.  

We will have a slider in our master bedroom going to a deck.  Behind our new house are 10 acres of woods and wetland which we also own, so we will have lots of privacy.  And a chance to see lots of wildlife.  We walked out a bit on the land last week and found a small cranberry bog.  We picked a few handfuls of berries - maybe 2 cups worth which I will use on Thanksgiving.  We saw many deer trails and LOTs of bear scat. 

Saturday, October 27, 2012

More Progress!

Progress is being made!  The house is being built by high school students in our regional building trades program.  They work under the guidance of a teacher who is also a professional contractor.  He hires other professionals to guide the students in the various aspects of construction.  Considering the fact that students work only 2 hours a day, the house is coming along rather quickly.  We've had a couple of weather delays to contend with.  (Hope the potential superstorm fizzles as have the last couple of other potential threats the last few years!)

Here's the front wall.  There will be double windows on either side of the front door.

And from the inside looking out the front door:

Turning around and looking out what will be a sliding door out the back from the dining area to a deck.

This is a view of what will be the master bedroom - also with a slider out to a deck!

And this the garage foundation being poured.  We will be able to walk into a mudroom from the garage, and then into the kitchen.  A nice change from 30 years of walking across the driveway to the garage --- no more soaking wet trips with grocery bags!

The roof trusses are coming Nov. 14 so that will probably be the next batch of pics!

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Busy as a Bee

There just doesn't seem to be enough time in the day!

You'd think that after teaching nearly 20 years I'd have figured out how not to have so much planning, grading, and organizing to do.  I find myself heading into the classroom at 6:45 am and leaving it most days at 4:30 -5 pm.  I've had few days even longer.  I do try not to bring a lot of work home, at least during the week, and have been fairly successful with that.    The year has gotten off to a good start student-wise, and things seem to be on a fairly even keel school-wide.  I do have outside the classroom responsibilities that sometimes get to be a bit much.  I chair our district's staff development committee which is responsible for tracking recertification hours for all teachers/administrators.  I'm also an officer in our local education association (aka "the union.")  Both those groups have hit a few snags that take up time. I was training a team member to take over as staff dev chair after this year, but due to one of the "snags", that person resigned from the team.  Everyone else is brand new!

On the personal front my job as the moderator for my church has been quite stressful.  We are dealing with a couple of issues, and just as soon as I think something is finally resolved, another wrinkle appears.  We are currently dealing with some trespassing teens - not a major problem yet, but it's just one more thing.  As long as I've been in town (over 35 years) my church has had an open door policy.  We've never locked the sanctuary, believing that anyone who needs it should be able to come in.  A few local teenagers have recently been hanging out --- not in a respectful way, but also nothing majorly wrong.  As far as I know the worst thing they've done is race a wheelchair down our ramp from the chancel. Obviously they shouldn't be playing there.  Most of the congregation is elderly and they are quite nervous.  A few parishioners have been startled by their presence, but nobody has identified who the kids are which makes it hard to solve.  And of course, nobody's called the police.  I contacted our school resource officer because the kids are either in my middle school or in the adjacent high school.  I think he'll be able to sort things out once he has a chance to do some nosing around.  

I've also been attempting to participate in a book study group at church.  We're reading and discussing Brian McLaren's book , "A New Kind of Christianity."  I have been hungry for this kind of discussion group, and it's been very enriching and nourishing.  There are 8-10 of us who meet each week --- a fairly diverse group of folks, and it's led by an ordained member of our church (tho' she's not our pastor.)  I've had to miss a couple of meetings due to sheer exhaustion.  The group meets from 6-8 pm every Thursday and have just been some days, that I couldn't push myself to get there.

We've also been getting the new house built.  Here are a couple of photos I took this afternoon:

The first wall --- the window is in my master bathroom and the other end of the wall is part of the pantry.

This is the basement looking out toward the back of the house.  We'd had a driving rainstorm which is why there's water on the floor -- not all the floor has been installed overhead.

More basement.

From the back of the house looking into the basement.

Standing in my mudroom looking across my open concept dining/kitchen/living room to the non existent bedroom walls!

The leach field for the septic tank.  I guess we will have a green front lawn!

From the road, looking at the front of the house.

And finally I have been knitting!  I made a couple of Christmas gifts that I am not sharing here, not yet anyway.  I've also started this scarf.

I bought the pattern and yarn at the NH Sheep and Wool Show in May 2011, and finally got it started.  It's an alpaca cobweb lace from Long Ridge Farm.  The pattern is called "Two Rivers Wrap."

Finally, the meds for RA seem to finally be having a positive effect, so while I am not painfree, it's not the debilitating pain I was enduring earlier this year.  I still struggle with fatigue, and I am certainly not where I want to be, but things are improving.

So as I said in my title, I have been busy as a bee . . .though I'm not sure how busy this one was.  It was on the brick path to my front door --- it was alive, though probably just barely.

By the way, my first name, Deborah, means BEE!