Glade Cottage is set in the woods. There are large trees all around.
Almost 2 years ago we had one removed that was dead because it looked like it would take out both the Cottage and the house if it fell.
Another large and threatening tree growing behind the Cottage on our neighbor’s property had succumbed to fungus.
Our neighbor emailed to tell us she planned to take it down to about 20 feet of stump so it would not damage any structures, including ours, if it fell. In order to access the tree, the tree service’s boom truck needed to park in our driveway.
The lumbermen carefully cut down and lowered the branches.
In a few hours only the stub of a truck remained.
Unfortunately their bucket truck broke down in front of the Cottage and had to say put overnight until repair parts could be had.
We still have plenty of trees but the Cottage and its tenant are a little safer now.
When we travel Charlie and I like to do things like the locals. In Paris we both got haircuts.
In Havana Charlie got another haircut.
He was talking to our host in the Vedado section of Havana and discovered this mostly bald man got his hair cut for 45 cents directly across the street from our lodgings.
We walked across the street to the “salon” and it was closed. A few hours later the young lady was shaving a man’s head totally bald. Unfortunately she said she was all booked up but looked again at her schedule and told Charlie to come back at 5 p.m.
Charlie asked how much the cut would cost. When the barber said 5 CUC (equal to $5) he was taken aback since our host had estimated $1 to $1.50. Charlie negotiated the price down to 3 CUC and sat in the barber chair.
She started with the clipper and lots of hair fell to the floor. Charlie was a bit worried because he usually gets a scissor cut.
She cut the back and sides with a clipper, scissor-cut the top, and finished the back of his neck with a straight razor with a brand new blade.
The fun part was that this lovely barber told us what to beware of in Havana, where her favorite restaurants were, and the story of her entire family.
When the cut was finished Charlie looked a little more Cuban and ultimately paid 3 CUC plus a 2 CUC tip.
You can read about the Master List we’ve been working on for the past couple of years and our progress here. I’ve decluttered the list again and now I’ve removed anything that has been accomplished before 2017, retaining things that still need work, and adding projects that require finishing or are just plain FUN. (Our room by room to-do list is here.)
Projects to Do:
1. Paint green vanity
√2.Pump up curb appeal with landscaping upgrades
3. Move former back door to laundry
4. Clean closet in Treetops room
5. Scrape, sand and paint back bedroom door. Repair jamb.
I used to organize the house to-do list in one long list that I added to as I thought of something new. Here’s the updated room by room view at the end of 2015. I’m cleaning up this list with hope of retiring it very soon. At the beginning of 2017 here’s what it looked like.
In the past week lots of people have apparently looked up and viewed my 2011 post on ceramic Christmas trees. I only have one small tree left which I use yearly. The other 3 I sold on Craigslist to a very happy fellow.
Since there seems to be some interest in transforming these trees I’m reposting my 2011 article below. It might be of interest to revisit the original article and read some of the comments. People are very sensitive about these ceramic trees.
Heirloom Ceramic Christmas Tree Desecration
We inherited 3 green ceramic Christmas trees from our grandparents. They’re missing bulbs and have chips at various places on the trees. Charlie was horrified when I asked him what color he thought they should become. He likes how they are now. (Son said the same thing.) I, on the other hand, think they need some modernizing.
First they needed a good bath. They were dusty and dirty so I removed all the little plastic bulbs (not an easy task) and washed the trees in the kitchen sink using dish detergent, a handled brush and the sink’s sprayer attachment.
I toyed with all kinds of color combos: aqua and lime green, white, yellow and blue. Finally I thought some kind of metallic would be sparkly and holidayish. So I pulled out all the metallic spray paints I have.
And sprayed each one a little differently. The smallest one is painted with a mercury glass finish which is accomplished by spraying bright silver metallic over hammered bronze while the bronze is still wet. Work quickly.
The second one sprays satin nickel over the hammered bronze which gives a pewterlike finish.
The third tree was sprayed with hammered bronze topped with metallic charcoal. This turned very dark so I gave it just a dusting of bright silver.
I haven’t decided yet if I should put the little plastic flame-shaped bulbs back in or not.
The trio all lit up.
What your verdict?
Upgraded or ruined?
Have you taken a risk changing a family heirloom? Was it great or ghastly?