January 3, 2021

Happy New Year!

The requisite New Years’ post….

It seems like the only time I make myself sit down and do this is around New Years. H’mmm, what’s that saying? Dunno. In any event, onward and upward. I will finish the posting I started in the summer (?), but most likely not today.

Someone described 2020 as the longest year of their life. Maybe it was true for them, but we have had worse. The year after Hurricane Katrina will always have that title for us. This year was, as the same for most people, adjusting to the new norm of lines, facemasks and limited availability of items at the grocery. We do wonder the future once (hopefully) a fully viable vaccine has been distributed.

The one big plus for 2020 is I was able (had the time) to go through some 20+ years of digital imagery. All the images were rated, and the top rated ones were post processed in Capture One and smaller files exported to Google Photo’s. The photos were built into Albums and links sent to the family for their viewing. That was a major milestone.

A plethora of other list items were completed, the most notable of which was a Grandmother clock build that I had literally been working on for 5 years.

Grandmother’s Clock

I mentioned to my son that this provides two clocks each for him and his sister to inherit and the response was resounding “oh boy”… My children have never shared my interest in clocks.

But you never know, as this year my son actually asked if I could send him a hand plane. He was building some shelves for their apartment and had read that block plane was the best tool to ease the edges. I almost fell over as when he lived here there was less than no interest in woodworking. As the year went on, he and his wife moved to a house with a garage vice the apartments they had previously had and he has built several wood projects. I’m guessing since they couldn’t go out, that he was bored. His Christmas wish list was for a couple of hand tools. A nice new set of Narex Chisels was acquired for him, but I loaded up a box with 50 pounds of hand tools for him for Christmas. Don’t know why, but it was very rewarding to bestow the tools to him for his use.

2021 looks to be a year in transition. Melanie and I have tentatively decided to list the house for sale in the early spring. There is currently very little inventory on the market here in Reston, and we have been looking for an excuse to get out from underneath this maintenance beast. We have made a comfortable home of of it, but it hasn’t been easy or cheap and continues to be that way.

So, the next couple of months will find us consolidating the “treasures”, packing up and storing off sight much of the accoutrement in the house. It’s much easier to sell a sparsely furnished house than one that is chock-a-block full of furniture and Knick-knacks. This will also be a good opportunity to cull the heard as it were. My daughter took a lot of what we had in the summer when she was outfitting her house, but has made it clear that she has “enough”. Oh well…

In 2012, I bought Jessica as I was giving Ellie Mae to Jourdan as promised when he got his drivers license. Jessica is a 2008 Honda S2000. It had some 5,600 miles on it and was under original warranty when I bought it.

Ellie Mae

Jessica is/was awesome. Luckily we had another vehicle around so it was never necessary to drive her around in inclement weather. In the almost 9 years I’ve owned her, she has accumulated about 28,000 miles.

The drives have been mostly to/from work which is a short distance and the occasional weekend foray. Truth be told, Melanie hates her, but was typically agreeable to a blast out in the countryside when asked.

Unfortunately, anything longer than an hour or two of driving in Jessica have never been exactly comfortable. I’m certain that watching us crawl out of the car after a couple of hours of driving was pure comedy. Unfortunately that situation is exacerbating. Arthritis of the hips is commonplace in my family, and it’s made itself known to me of late. Getting in and out of Jessica is, to be kind, painful. Combine that with the escalating prices of low mileage S2000’s, again point to the right time to bid a fond farewell.

So as we said, 2021 will be a year in transition. Melanie and I have no earthly idea where we wish to resettle to, which makes this entire process significantly more problematic. We have been driving around VA from Virginia Beach to Winchester, and aren’t any closer to identifying “the place”.

When we started this process about 18 months ago, I was certain that we would know the place when we got there. H’mmm, that hasn’t worked out. Unfortunately at this juncture, we have a desperate case of “Paralysis through Analysis”. We have seen a lot that we like, but unfortunately different parts in different areas. We haven’t come across the place that has everything we like.

A coworker has an empty apartment in Chattanooga and is recommending we go down there and spend a week looking around. As we haven’t found what we are looking for around here, we probably will do that. What worries me about moving that far is when the first Grandbaby shows up and then GrandMother decides “we’re moving”…

So, let’s wrap this up with the requisite:

“New Years Resolutions”

  • The obligatory “no profanity“. Unfortunately my work environment is full of colorful expletives, and it rubs off.
  • “Conversing” with other drivers in traffic. While not as bad as Maryland, the drivers here in Northern Virginia can be exasperating. I’m told that it’s not healthy to let it annoy me.
  • Weekly entries here. I am still not completely satisfied with this WordPress theme, but instead of endlessly searching for the ideal one, I’ll use this one and spend the time actually using it. Although saying all that I really do not like that this theme does not space paragraphs out.
  • Lose 10 pounds, natch. We have been eating fairly “comfortably” this holiday season. I’ve not had the desire to step on the scale, but I’m certain it won’t be happy news. We will go back to our more normal eating habits tomorrow on the 4th and adjust as necessary.

There is a wrap up of July’s post started and I’ll work on that next weekend.

Until then, stay safe and healthy and

Happy New Year!

written by Chris - Posted in Yapping