1. Setting aside the real March Madness (NCAA Basketball) describe something happening at your house this month that might earn the title 'March Madness'?
We are in the middle of doing the 40 Bags in 40 Days challenge and in Week #13 of the 52 Weeks to an Organized Home. We continue to get rid of bags of things that we no longer need or want which is creating more space throughout the home.
After inheriting quite a bit from my parents after their deaths (in 2012 and 2015) and selling their home (in February 2016), I've been going through items that I brought here and either finding a place for them or letting them go if my brother or sister doesn't want or need the items. It's been a long process since they lived in their home for 40+ years and acquired quite a bit.
At any rate, this past week I worked on the refrigerator and freezer; and cleaned the counter so there's more space to prepare meals.
The counter used to be filled with plants
(Christmas cactus, African violets, and aloe vera).
I've relocated them to other areas
so we have more space to make food..
Sophia went through her drawers and has a bag of clothes that will go to the secondhand store. This week, the rest of us will go through our closets and drawers and get rid of clothes we no longer wear.
2. What's a favorite made up word from your childhood or a favorite from your children's childhood? Does your family still use the word today? If there's a story behind the origin please share.
The only word that comes to mind is "froggy." My brother used to say it was "froggy" out when it was foggy.
Foggy morning in Grand Marias.
(Taken on June 17, 2006.)
Initially, it was because he was just learning to talk and thought that he was saying the word correctly.
Later in his childhood he would use that word every once in a while to get my sister and I all worked up (We'd tell him, "It's not froggy it FOGGY!"...and, if he'd insist on using the word froggy we'd beg our Mom, "Please tell him to stop! He keeps saying frrrrrroggy.").
To have such trivial issues to worry about these days...
3. Will you be doing any spring cleaning now that the season is upon us? Here is a list of 15 quick (under one hour) spring cleaning tasks:
clean out a drawer, vacuum furniture, whiten tile grout, dust the nooks and crannies you don't get to year round, degrease kitchen cabinets, wipe down walls, go behind furniture, wipe down ceiling fans, vacuum the mattress, clean the range hood, wash baseboards, shine the stainless steel, clean out vents, tackle the windows, and wipe down gadgets
Of the fifteen 'quick' tasks listed which two most need doing at your house? Will you do them?
The two tasks that are top priority here are cleaning out vents and tackling the windows.
For vents, I'm thinking more along the line of air duct cleaning (since we have four dogs and three cats) to help with cleaning the air and getting dust and pet hair out of the ductwork.
I also want to have one of the vents and ductwork below replaced. Both were damaged by Shadow (the cat) when he was in his last few months of life. It's been on my list of things to do and Spring seems like a good time to do that.
For the windows, I can clean the inside (the glass and screens). I'll have to hire someone to clean the outside of the windows since half of them are on the second level and out of reach.
4. A favorite movie set in Paris or New York?
I've enjoyed watching these movies (either on DVD or in a movie theater) that were set in New York: Arsenic and Old Lace from 1944, Miracle on 34th Street from 1947, When Harry Met Sally from 1989, and The Pursuit of Happyness from 2006.
Warmer weather! Anything above 40 degrees feels balmy and makes being outside much more enjoyable.
6. Did you ever want to be a teacher? Why or why not?
When I was growing up and was about five years old, I wanted to be a beautician at Jackie Ann's (that's where my mom would go to get her hair done).
By sixth grade, I thought I'd be an archeologist.
As I graduated from high school and entered college, I thought I'd be an occupational therapist.
Professionally, I worked in the development/fundraising/proposal writing/special events field. Eventually, I founded and operated a non-profit organization.
In 2001, that changed when I adopted Sophia and Olivia. By 2003 - after adopting Olivia - I was homeschooling full-time. Being both Sophia's and Olivia's teacher, has been one of the most rewarding things I've ever done with my life.
To be able to see them advance in their knowledge, to be able to see when they learn something new and it "clicks," is infinitely more rewarding and exciting than anything I've done professionally.
Each season of homeschooling has been so different - from preschool, through elementary school, middle school, and now high school. It has challenged me to find a method of teaching and resources that inspire and encourage the girls to want to learn.
Did I envision this path as a child? No. It didn't even occur to me. Yet, this path is one that I am so grateful that I have been able to take with them.
7. What's your favorite floral scent? Do you have this somewhere in your home or maybe in a perfume? How do you feel about florals in food? How about wines with floral notes-yay or nay?
My favorite floral scents are lavender and rose. I use the essential oils of both of these flowers. Often I combine lavender with patchouli or ylang ylang.
When I was growing up, my Dad would buy my Mom Maja soap that was made by Myrurgia.
I always loved the smell of it. It didn't know the name of it at the time. A few years before my Mom died, I asked her what soap she used to use that Dad got for her. She remembered the name and I was so thankful that it is still being produced. I use both the soap and perfume now.
I looked up the description for Maja. It "is an Oriental Spicy fragrance for women. Maja was launched in 1921. The fragrance features nutmeg, carnation, patchouli, cloves, vetiver, rose, geranium, citruses and lavender."
No wonder I like it: rose and lavender are in it!
Carnations were flowers my Dad gave my Mom on her anniversary - two red ones (to represent them) and three white ones (to represent my sister, brother, and me). Geraniums were flowers they used to plant in front of our home in Minneapolis. Pink ones to match the pink-painted house.
I've seen people use edible flowers in spring rolls and would like to try that this summer.
8. Insert your own random thought here.
Olivia finished organizing the Washington County Barn Quilt Trail this past December. There are 18 barn quilts that she designed using The Quiltmaker's Gift as inspiration and a theme for the trail.
I'm still working on the website and hope to have it done this by the end of next month so people who want to see the barn quilts know where they are located and the best route to see them.
At any rate, someone asked her if she would be interested in painting a windmill that they have had laying on the ground at their farm for four years. They wanted a patriotic theme since the husband and son were both veterans.
During July and August 2016, she painted the windmill.
It was a lot different working on metal than wood.
There were also a lot of little crevices, screws, and metal parts that needed to be painted.
The blades were painted red and white. About 3 coats of paint (on top of two layers of primer) covered the windmill.
We drove quickly to their home to see the process of the windmill be lifted off the ground and set into place. It was a beautifully clear day.
Once the windmill was secure, the ropes holding the blades in place during the installation were taken off so we could see how the windmill looked as the wind spun the blades around. It looked great!
Olivia - as well as the homeowners - was very pleased with how it turned out. It was another large-scale painting project she was able to accomplish this year.