Garage: Ground to a halt

Why is it that the very last thing that needs to be done on any project takes forever to get done?  We are waiting on the post covers to come in and get installed.  That’s the very last thing that needs to be done and the garage will be done.  It’s been a couple of weeks now.  Still no covers.  A call to Pete D. and he said they would be done last week.  Guess not.  Only good thing is, Rich doesn’t have to write the big check to Pete and company until it’s done.  At least Sally has moved into her new home.

This spring, Rich will get the place wired for electricity and probably get the heating system installed at the same time.  Then it will be dry wall all around.  Rick will be learning a new skill while helping us out.  I figure he will own a house some day.  Everyone should know how to drywall.  I’m the good critic of drywalling though.  I know when it is done correctly, but I can’t do it myself.  That’s what I have a boy for.

Christmas is fast approaching.  Three more days until the wrappings coming off.  I’ve completed everything, but buying the last minute food.  Rich and I will go tomorrow and buy the Polish sausage and rib roast.  There are odds and ends to get as well.  We still need rye bread, Kolackies, and other Polish items for dinner.  We try to stay traditional with the foods.  Christmas is one of the big Polish eating holidays, after all.  Sascha might even get to share in some of the goodies.  I love Polish eating holidays.

I’m trying to convince Rich to have Zurek soup for Christmas instead of barley soup.  Neither Rick nor I like the barley soup.  Wait, don’t tell Busia I said that!  Sorry, Busia.  I absolutely love Zurek soup and Czarnina.  Does that make up for it?  For those who don’t know, Czarnina is duck blood soup.  I have a great dating story with Rich on how I came to eat that the first time.  I never pass it when offered.

Thursday night, it snowed for the first time this winter.  This is the latest date in Chicago history for snow.  That’s not a good thing.  We really need the moisture and the cold.  Last summer had some horrible consequences from the mild winter last year.  I’m hoping for a return to normal.  I don’t mind the bugs and I want them for the garden, but not by the hoards that we had last year.

Still, the snow was a lot less than they had been predicting.  Originally, we were in the 3 to 7 inch range.  They were calling for whiteout conditions.  We had the really high winds, but missed the snow.  We might have gotten an inch.  Most of what was out there was ice from the rain that came through with the storm.  There were downed power lines.  One even fell on one of the pizza places here and burned it down.

Sascha seems happy with the colder temps.  Still, she doesn’t spend a lot of time outside these days.  She seems to prefer the company of her humans inside.  Rich took for her a run today.  She was so tired when she got back to the house, she was barely walking.  Even though she was panting and clearly overly warm, she still wanted in the house.  Luckily, I was in the basement wrapping the Michigan presents.  She could lay out on the cold concrete and cool down.

It’s funny to watch Sascha out in the yard.  Her entire configuration on the chain has changed because of the garage construction.  She can roam further back on the property, but she can no longer get under the deck.  I’m thinking she would trade the back of the property for underneath the deck any day.  I think she’s been keeping the critter under the deck company.  I don’t know if it’s still the groundhog or something else that’s moved in.  By the time I got out to look at the prints coming from under the deck, Sascha had walked all over them.  They could have been anything.

Rick had a Beltaine night to celebrate that ancient Celtic tradition to welcome the return of longer days and the coming of the sun.  They would have had a fire, but the temp prohibited being outside.  And they certainly weren’t having it in the house.  The temp was 14 and it was extremely windy.  Some of the guests came dressed for the weather.  I think they were secretly glad not to have to brave the elements.  Instead, they put all the food on the bar and played video games.  I suggested showing a camp fire on the big screen, but this was shot down as a stupid idea.  I thought it was pretty clever.

It was a quiet week.  I realized that I haven’t made my plans for vacation next year.  I have ideas, but haven’t finalized anything.  Usually, our vacations include camping and I need to reserve cabins wherever we are headed.  Jan 2 is the first day to reserve in most locations.  Once I decide, I hope they still have openings.  Should it be the Smokies and the Outerbanks?  Maybe we do a driving tour of a closer state, like Michigan or Indiana?  New Orleans for a few days?  We’ll see.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all of you!

So the garage continues to be unadorned with the final post covers. Sascha doesn’t mind though. That porch is hers!


Sascha still thinks she is a lap dog. Every time Rick sits down in Rich’s chair to talk to me in the office, Sascha has to be a part of the conversation. This is her best conversation pose. Does it beat a double ta-da?


One more cute pose. A boy and his dog relaxing on a recent morning in front of the TV.


Since there was one more pair of brakes, Rick wanted to try his hand at one more critter. He gave this one to the previous owner of the brake parts. She seemed to think it was cute.


Rick has a unique way of signing his works. This was an example on the latest creation.