Week 24: Farewell to My Fabulous Fifties

Monday again? Guess what? We closed on our Florida house! It’s been a busy week getting everything scheduled for when we head down sometime this week. We are meeting with various trades to further customize our home. Furniture delivery happens the day before we arrive, though not all furniture is in yet. They are so used to snowbirds down there, they even have a service that actually accepts delivery and sets up your furniture for you so when you arrive, your home is furnished and ready to go! So excited to see the what everything looks like all pulled together. My husband Mike and I will need to divide and conquer with him doing most of the tradespeople meetings while I am out shopping for towels, linens, dishes, kitchenware, and other essentials. I will be relying on my friend Kim’s help and expertise as she has already been through this process and has done a stellar job with her own home. I promise to post a few pics of our house in progress. Wish us luck on getting everything we’d like to accomplish done in the few days we’re there.

Progress reports on one of our last house modernization projects; the back entryway. The wallpaper is stripped and the trim is painted. As far as wallpapering, I have the wallpaper and supplies but will need some uninterrupted time to start on the task. Besides stripping the walls and painting the trim, I am working to clear out the closet of old coats, scarves, etc which I will donate. I also cleaned the grout with a product called Magic grout cleaner. It worked pretty well, though it didn’t completely lift all the staining. I would say it is 95% improved. We had ordered a bench for the back entryway from Grandin Road which arrived broken. I am happy to report customer service for Grandin Road was amazing. They sent someone to pick up the broken bench the next day and two days later the replacement was on my front porch. I will post pictures of the whole project when it is complete.

This product worked pretty well. I would recommend it. It does require letting it sit for a few minutes before scrubbing with a nylon brush.

Duolingo continues with an 801 day streak. I was delighted to hit the 800 day mark! French class is underway and I’ve purchased the second book Alter Ego A2. We have almost finished our first book and the semester ends in a few weeks. I am really enjoying the challenge of orally conversing in French. I am still working on overcoming my “stage fright” when asked a question. It’s definitely a process.

I am at 49 work outs on my Nordictrack, almost up to my 50 workout goal. A migraine slowed down this week’s progress. This week I did a studio interval workout and a walk through the Scottish Highlands with Scottish actor Graham Mctavish (The Hobbit). This was the first time that a walk was conducted by a celebrity rather than an actual trainer. I am still concentrating on walking programs rather than running. However the studio interval incorporated a slow but tolerable intermittent jog that was manageable. Noom continues, 7 pounds down 6weeks in. My clothes are more comfortable and I am trying to be patient through this process. Only 3 more pounds to goal!

A nice stroll through the Scottish highlands to see a waterfall.

Meditation, affirmation, visualization and short yoga stretches continue. I am still using the app Headspace for Meditation. I look forward to talking more about working on our family lineage through Ancestry.com. I will go more in depth with that on another post.

The new to us restaurant we went to this month is Griffin Claw Brewery in Birmingham. We were looking for a place to eat after attending the Lions game with friends. It was a special game because it was a “Crucial Catch” game, honoring cancer patients, survivors, those who have passed and caregivers. As I’ve mentioned before, my daughters are both Lions Cheerleaders and they were dancing in honor of their Grandfather Les. It was very moving for us. I know their Grandpa Les would have been so proud of them both. So, we were looking for somewhere to relax and share a meal with our daughter Jenna, her husband Kristianth, our daughter Samantha and her boyfriend Andrew, his lovely parents and his good friend Jacob. We considered a few places before settling on Griffin Claw Brewery in Birmingham. They were busy but able to accommodate our party of 9. They offer outdoor seating with heaters and a fire pit along with indoor high tops, tables for 4, and long picnic tables pushed together. We were lucky to snag a picnic table for our group. They specialize in their own beers, offering seasonal brews as well as specialty releases. I passed on the beer and ordered the Apple Harvest Salad which featured apple slices, turnips, greens, goat cheese, sugared walnuts with Balsamic dressing on the side. Our group had a variety of orders ranging from shrimp tacos, burger and fries, jambalaya, macaroni and cheese, grilled chicken sandwich, with appetizers of fried pickles and pretzels with mustard dipping sauce. I may have missed a couple in there but everyone enjoyed their meals. They all came out at roughly the same time and everything was hot on arrival. This is a very noisy, lively place and great for after a sporting event. If you are looking for a quiet place for a private conversation, this is not it. I would definitely recommend it for a fun evening and will return if the opportunity presents itself.

The girls with the sign they held up during their dedication dance in honor of their grandpa.
Sammi acting as my model in front of Griffin Claw Brewery. You can see the outdoor seating directly behind her to the right.

Item #18: Finish 50 books in 2019. I finished the book “After the Flood.” I enjoyed it and would definitely recommend it. I am currently reading book # 63 “An Anonymous Girl” by Greer Hendricks & Sarah Pekkanen. So far, I am really enjoying it. Here is something not on my bucket list but I feel like I need to give it a shout out. If you haven’t seen the Netflix Series The Blacklist, do yourself a favor and check it out! It has seven seasons and we are only part way through season 1 and we are riveted! If you do check it out (or are already a fan) I’d love to know what you think!

Bonjour, mes amis! That’s all for this week. I look forward to sharing more about our Florida house next week. Make it a great week and see you all next month. (YIKES! It’s almost November!)

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