T-giving weekend and something that seems to have gone right

Written by karen on November 30th, 2008

We had a very nice Thanksgiving with dinner at home with Brad’s mom. (I meant to take pictures but only took one of the pumpkin cheesecake. We also had avocado eggrolls, spinach apple salad, cranberry sauce, twice baked potatoes, and roasted veggies.)

Our other plans for the long weekend (before I leave for NC Sat. night) revolved around getting ready for a trip to Portal next week to take a truckload of books to storage. (For those who missed it, we have so many books between home and work that it doubled our moving cost, so we’re doing the books ourselves.) The plan is that I will get back from NC Wed. night around midnight, we’ll leave for AZ early Thurs. morning, unload the truck and meet with the architect on Fri., and drive home on Sat. Then next Tues., I leave for PA. My sister will also be visiting next week (her last vacation to CA while we’re here….I feel really bad that we won’t be in town for much of the time she’s here, but I suspect she doesn’t mind.) Crazy week.

So on Friday, we finished packing our books and rearranged all the book inventory from work to get it ready to load on the truck. It was hot sweaty work. Then I came home and went through our attic, packing boxes of photo albums and organizing bankers’ boxes of old files. After getting it all together, I have decided that we may want to redesign our house as a large filing cabinet/bookcase.

Another thing we’re going to do next week is set up our post box so we can start getting mail. I wanted do somehow personalize our mailbox with something other than ugly stick-on decal letters, so we’ve been working on various ideas. In things like this, I am big on ideas and awful on execution. I frequently end up spending hours on an idea and then throwing the whole thing in the trash at the end. It’s very frustrating, but doesn’t always stop me from trying.

My original idea was to create a stencil by laser printing the address, spray mounting it to chipboard, and then cutting it out with an Exacto knife. We got spray paint to paint with the stencil. After doing this and trying it out on a piece of cardboard, the results were not very attractive.

So on to plan B….we searched the Internet for stencils but didn’t really have time to order online and so thought about going to an art store to see what they had. Brad thought Michael’s would be good. I hadn’t been there before — WOW! I felt the same as I felt the first time I went to Costco. Amazing! Who buys all this stuff? It’s incredible!!! Michael’s was full of a million things I could buy and do incredible projects with (only to throw them out when they failed). It was simultaneously thrilling and horrifying.

After I wandered around for awhile gawking at everything, we found our way to the stencil aisle. Consistent with the rest of the store, there were a hundred solutions to our problem, all of which looked quite manageable. We read all the labels, looked over the accessories (stencil daubers, whole sets of little putty knife kinds of things, and on and on), and made a decision.

Amazingly, we got it home, and it actually seemed manageable. (I stencilled a “K” on the bottom of the mailbox as a test before doing the whole address.)

Here are the results:

Stay tuned next week for a picture of our mailbox in its natural habitat.


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