Archive for July, 2012

Here is Stephen having a snack on the dock “down by the bay” as Em has been calling it when explaining their next step to her daughters.  “We’re going to move down by the bay,” she’d say.

Prices in this part of Maryland are a shock to all of us, especially prices of houses on the water, so they will have to enjoy the time they have this dock while they can…The house they are renting is what I would call a small one and is worth well over $550,000.00. I think we are lucky to live where we do! Em and Ingmar are going to continue looking for a house they like that they can afford. They don’t want to live in a development and apparently there are not a lot of older wood houses with character around the bay because of the termite problem! I am curious to see what they find.

The second picture (taken by my sil Ingmar) is at one edge of the park in Bellefonte, showing some of the buildings of the Victorian historic district where their house is located.

Some more pictures of grandchildren playing in Bellefonte. And now a picture of them playing in the new house “down by the bay” . This house has interesting floors with differently colored hardwood. We tried to keep the little people entertained while the older ones unpacked and unpacked and unpacked. It’s still going on. Moving down by the bay is not for the faint of heart! I just heard that they are planning a trip back to Bellefonte this weekend to get the things for which there wasn’t enough room in the truck, two vans and one station wagon, first time around.

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I’m beginning to recover from the adventure of helping Emily and her family arrive back from eight months in Hungary (as a Fulbright Scholar) and Germany (visiting her dear husband’s relatives and her own), and pack up most of their furniture and belongings from her home in Bellefonte, PA. The family who are renting this house were very kind and helpful which made everything much easier than it might have been. All their furniture was also in the house and they may be feeling less crowded at the moment.  But the truck Emily and Ingmar had rented was not quite large enough for all those belongings, so they will be making a trip north in a month or six weeks to get the last boxes. When they first moved to the State College area eleven years ago they had so few possessions (and no children) that they lived in a tent for the first six weeks while looking for a place to live. And now, while they are by no means hoarders of any sort, they have two darling children and a house full of “stuff”.

Alice and I helped with the moving by watching the four children – Alice’s two sons plus Emily’s two daughters. The first day we watched them in the morning while they played at the wonderful park just a few minutes walk downhill from their home. I have some pretty pictures of this on my phone because I forgot my camera, and Alice is trying to teach me to move these pictures so I can share them.  But in the meantime, here are some pictures nabbed from the net to give you an idea…I think you can see Emily’s house in the top of the first one.  The park has a river running through it, a bridge, gazebo, lovely weeping willows, a train depot museum and a newly renovated playground. I think they will miss it.

The next day, Friday, we took them to a place called “Fun Unleashed” which is fun for the kids but less so for nervous parents and babysitters! I do have pictures there and will show you them on my next post.

Thursday night Sofia was quite sick with a stomach flu, so I stayed with her for the morning when she mostly slept and drank liquids and ate just a little  easily digested stuff when she was able. By noon she was completely recovered. But the entire time was surely hard on all of them. They just flew from Germany arriving on Wednesday night and began packing the next day and the next day and drove to Maryland on Saturday.  We left for home on Sunday afternoon.  It was successful but intense for everyone.

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Well, an exaggeration, I admit. But several of the blogs I read had either taken a complete vacation or are posting much much less than previously. And since I am leaving for about a week, I thought I would take a blogcation too.   Perhaps the weather is the cause and perhaps not. But I definitely need to hit my “refresh” button.

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Random thoughts

And I’m glad to have even random thoughts with the heat and babysitting  and all that’s been going on at Chautauqua and just random travel…….Between Chautauqua trips and planning to help Em and her family move just six days from now, and driving with Alice today to Toledo to meet my nephew Laci (Lutzy) who is giving Em his old van, and then driving home with it while Alice drives Laci home (a good two hours farther north) and stays overnight so the cousins can play together, I am feeling quite scatter brained. More than usual, in fact, which is saying a lot.

So today I’m sharing some of Alice’s photos (again) of my grandsons. I’ve been baby sitting there a few times this week which I always enjoy.

As you can see, on the family bike ride last night Nathan came to grief. But he’s really a pretty tough guy, isn’t he. (Yes, he is.)

And Stephen is pretty stalwart as well, helping Alice watering the plants on their deck….Strong for 18 months, I think. I do enjoy these boys and feel blessed to see them so often. And I’m thrilled that my granddaughters will be back on the same continent soon. (And delighted that their parents will, as well).

Stephen is standing on a bench to water this larger  plant. And he’s very proud to be a helper!

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Not long ago Alice posted this picture of my oldest grandchild, Nathan, with the comment, “Busted”.

She wasn’t terribly angry that her seven year old was trying to read after he should have been asleep, because she likes the idea that he has turned into a reader.  This particular one is what is now called a “graphic novel” and remarkably similar to what we used to call comic books. But I read comic books as a child and seem to have survived unscathed. And Nathan reads all sorts of books as his parents have been reading to and with him since he was a small child. I think he is now reading some of the Henry Reed books that were Andy’s long ago. But there is an amazing choice of books . We count public libraries as a great blessing in our family, and are lucky enough to be served by a fine system, the Akron Summit County Public library, which always seems to win awards for excellence. But we also are collectors of books and haunters of book sales.

I was just at our cottage on Lake Chautauqua for two weeks and my friend Susan came to visit the last part of the time and we had lots of fun visiting an enormous book shop (Barbara Berry’s Books) in a rambling sort of barn with additions and the book sale at the local Mayville library as well as several quilt shops.

Both Susan and I found some treasures. The last quilt shop we visited on the very last day and almost passed up turned out to have the best prices by far and lots of civil war era reproduction fabric for Susan’s Dear Jane project.  I think she has inspired me to do a few blocks, but I don’t think, knowing myself, that I would contemplate doing a full Jane Stickle quilt. If you are not familiar with this madness you may look here at http://dearjane.com/. Still, it is a sort of  fascination and addiction for many and I now understand it better. Susan showed me the pattern of color which exists. You can see only five green blocks, the center and the outer most corners. Other colors move out in a sort of diamond from the center green. It’s not always clear because of the fading of some fabric.

I haven’t really unpacked from the trip yet or brought my camera upstairs. I did get some pictures, though not as many as I ought to have taken and hope to post more about it soon. It was very hot, even there, though not as bad as many other places this last week. Victorian summer spots tended to be chosen for natural coolness which is another blessing.

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