The art of being spontaneous

I like plans.  I like to know what’s going on.  Being spontaneous is something I have to plan.

I work an eight-hour day Monday through Friday but in the summer I work four ten-hour days and have Mondays off.  Those three-day weekends are great!

Mr. Aitch is semi-retired.  He plays in one community band in the summer and a different one during the school year.  He also has a part-time job and works two days a week.  Plus he is the choir director at his church.  For him to have a weekend off is rare.  Very rare.

Two weekends ago Mr. Aitch had a three-day weekend that coincided with mine.  We didn’t have a lot of time to plan a get-away so we thought about some places we wanted to go that weren’t too far from home and that we could manage in three days.  On the Harley.

I spent several hours on the Friday planning our trip only to discover at 11:00 Friday night that the one thing we wanted to do and see was sold out.  No tickets were available for two weeks.  Bummer.

“How about Gettysburg?”  I hadn’t been to Gettysburg since I was a kid and though we toured the battlefields in the car, we didn’t  have a tour guide to point out interesting details but I wanted to go back and learn more about it as an adult.

In fifteen minutes we had a plan and room reservations for Saturday and Sunday nights.

Saturday morning we packed the Harley for the extended weekend and took off.

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Cheese, crackers, and of course, a bottle of wine.

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Gettysburg is only two hours from our house so it was a short enough ride that we could still do some things on Saturday.  It was a beautiful day.

As we approached Gettysburg we saw more and more motorcycles.  Groups of motorcycles.

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The restaurant parking lot next to our hotel was packed with motorcycles.

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Biker bar?

Our room wasn’t ready so we asked where we could get a bite to eat.  The receptionist suggested the restaurant next door.  Mr. Aitch said that it looked a bit crowded and a little rough. She looked at us a bit strange and said there were more places in town.  I don’t know if you are familiar with Gettysburg but it is a small town.  Hundreds of motorcycles were everywhere.

While we waited for our food, I decided to find out what was going on.

Bike Week in Gettysburg.

In my fifteen minutes of spontaneity in planning our weekend I did not stumble upon it being Bike Week in Gettysburg.

No wonder the receptionist thought we were a bit nuts when we looked for a quieter place to eat.  We did explain later that we were unaware that it was Bike Week when we booked our room.

Most of the activities were held at a campground and I can only assume that most of the bikers were camping otherwise we wouldn’t have gotten a room.

We heard lots of stories from the bikers.

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And saw lots of bikes.

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Unusual trikes.

 

Custom paint jobs that cost as much as or more than the bike itself.

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Bikes pulled on custom see-though trailers.

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Saturday was full of eye candy.

Sunday was more sobering as we toured the battlefields.  More about that tomorrow.

 

The uninvited guest

Mr. Aitch and I had an unwlecomed and uninvited guest swoop into our house Wednesday night.

A bird.

A sparrow to be exact.

He (or she) was sitting on my front door decoration when Mr. Aitch went out on the front porch.  As soon as the door opened, the sparrow made a beeline into our house.  The bird flew into the family room and perched atop the entertainment center as Mr. Aitch and I figured out how to remove him/her without causing a major ruckus.

We don’t have a big fishing net like my parents used to remove similar unwelcome and uninvited guests in their house.  The only fishing net we have is for aquariums and it just wasn’t big enough for the job.

While this brief discussion went on, the sparrow flew back and forth between the family room and kitchen taking in the view from atop the refrigerator then the entertainment center.

Our plan was to open the door from the kitchen to the garage (which is right beside the refrigerator), turn on the garage light, open the garage door, and turn out all the lights in the house and hope that the bird would “go to the light”.

And it worked.

The only presents the sparrow left for us were a few feathers.

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I took my fake-nest-and-flowers-in-a-basket decoration off the front door temporarily so we don’t have any more unwelcome and uninvited guests.

Reflections

Eagle-and-American-flag1Happy Independence Day to all my fellow Americans.

Let’s all take a minute or two and reflect on that.

We gained our independence from tyranny. We gained our freedom and our liberty.

Happy Birthday, America.  May you continue to grow and stay free and independent.

 

June update

Between repairing nine window screens, doctor appointments, hospital tests, a visiting grandchild, a flooded basement, work, and life in general, I finished a couple of things. Nothing knitting related but still creative or challenging.

In a previous post I showed you some pictures of our front porch.   I don’t know if you noticed the screen on the bay window. Probably not. Well, it was torn at the bottom. An over zealous power washer was, um, over zealous and several screens were damaged.  We don’t take the screens out of our windows in the winter so twenty year-old fiberglass mesh screens are fragile.

I learned how to replace window screens. YouTube is wonderful. I could pick all the components locals except for the plunger pins that hold the screen into the window frame.  I found a place on-line and ordered enough to replace all of them in our windows should the need arise.  Good thing I did as I ended up having to replace some in our other windows before the job was finished.

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I also decided early on that ivory cushions on an outside sofa was not a good idea. I purchased some fabric on-line and made new cushions.

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I plan on making new pillows as well but thought I’d give you a sneak peek of my progress so far.

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I even did the top stitching like the original cushions.

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They seem a bit bright and busy but anything would after plain ivory, right?

Unofficially it’s here

Memorial Day is the unofficial beginning of summer in the great US of A.

Last month I picked up some new furniture for our front porch from IKEA (yes, I love that store) which needed assembled.  The assembly could not take place until Mr. Aitch power washed the front porch.

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Ta-da!  38 feet of clean emptiness.

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Four hours later, after some semi-easy assembly and 64 hex bolts.  Those babies are time-consuming when hexing space is limited.  I still need to get some flowers of other plants in the window box.

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I love the ottoman/table which is not connected at this time to the rest of the sofa so it’s easily moved.

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I’m planning on making new cushion covers as I don’t see the ivory staying clean even though it’s just Mr. Aitch and me.  The covers are machine washable but I’d rather make new ones “just in case”.

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Plus I can make new seat covers for the swing and rocking chair as well.

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Red and white planters.

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New front door decor.

Kids say the darnedest things

Last week when I was at my daughter’s house, one of the twins asked me a question, “Nona, you’re her mom, right?”  She pointed first to me then to her mom, my daughter.

“Yes, that’s right.  I’m your moms mom.”

“Then you can tell her what to do, right?  Since you are her mom, right?”

“Well, not exactly.”

The other twin said, “Why not?”

“When she was a little girl, I told her what to do but now she’s a grownup and I don’t tell her what to do anymore.  I still offer her suggestions but she doesn’t have to listen to me.”

“Oh.”

We never found out where this was going or if they wanted me  to make their mom listen to me.  We did get a chuckle out of it though.

Happy Mother’s Day!

Bunny

I talked about making this bunny before but didn’t have any picture to show you.

I used the pattern by Little Cotton Rabbits.  It was a fun knit and the instructions were outstanding.  Lots of pictures, hints, and tips.  It was well worth it.  Still shirtless but Bunny will be fully clothed…soon.

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Bunny kissing our grandson’s nose.

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Bunny laying on the beach.  He doesn’t have a shirt on so he’s ready for a swim.  Looks like his eye needs some more work.

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Bunny sitting next to the fence.

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Bunny doing some daredevil trick while our grandson takes an important phone call.