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Friday, March 8, 2019

Packing - Packing - Packing!

All is full steam ahead on both the sale of our home and the purchase of the next one.

Yes, after only three days on the market, we got a full price good solid offer from pre-qualified people with an accepted offer on their own home.

Contractual contingencies almost all satisfied, and both deals are moving forward to successful closings next month (fingers crossed).  If there is a gap between one house selling and not closing on the other one on the same day, we have the motorhome to live in during the transition.

We started packing all of the things we are not currently using. Ohhhhhh boy where did all this stuff come from?  The dogs are getting quite curious as to why I keep putting stuff in boxes, labeling them, and Steve carries them out to stack in the garage.

As long as I don't pack their doggie toys, dishes, or beds,
they are content. 
They were concerned by the "Chewy" box on top of that pile.
 I had to show them it contained extra bathroom supplies.

We are also using plastic totes for the bottom layer, and stacking the cardboard ones on top of those.  That way if there is some snow melt run off into the garage, we will be safe.

We bought about 30 boxes at Walmart and Home Depot of a good sturdy quality. Then also we got on a list at our local Walmart who saves us a pallet of 30 to 40 boxes at a time. How nice is that?

I am trying to stay on track and just pack up one room at a time.

Starting with my sewing room. Oh boy.

Four sewing machines, many many many boxes of fabric and tools and supplies as well as the actual big quilting frame, cutting table, sewing table, bookshelf etc.

Some things that we don't mind freezing are being carried in boxes out to the garage. From there we are going to keep stacking them up and haul a load at a time up to a rented storage unit in Oconto. Steve's cute little trailer behind the Tracker works for light loads.  But we will rent a big enclosed Uhaul truck a few times to get larger batches moved.  The kids will help at the end with the big furniture.

It was kinda funny driving down the highway 
with this grinning halloween pumpkin 
peeking out on one side,
and two Snowmen on the other, 
with a small Christmas tree in the middle! 

Lawn chairs and seasonal things are now stowed away...
Don't think we are using them during the next 50 days with all the snow we have! 
(and more coming this weekend!) 

We did drive up the other night to meet again with the sellers of the property we are buying. They are doing a long-distance move to Georgia, and didn't want to take both of their lawn mowers. They sold one to us and we moved it out of their way over to our storage unit.  They are so busy busy busy packing as well because they are taking multiple trips to get all of their items down to Georgia.

In the meantime, the buyers of our home would like to come back on Sunday with their children. The children would like to pick out their bedrooms and help them visualize their upcoming transition to the new home. I think that helps a lot with moving anxiety because the children were not here when the parents viewed the home. Actually, when the parents came to look at the home, they were here for only half an hour and immediately went and wrote an offer asking for a very quick acceptance time. They did not want to lose it to anybody else. Even though there were two more showings scheduled for that evening and the next day, the full price offer they tendered asked for a response by noon. Smart people. We felt we should just take it and be happy rather than hold out for something else. You know, the bird in the hand and the two in the bush type thing. Full price offer was just fine with us.

As for the house we are buying, I don't want to jinx anything by talking too much about it.

It will be full of fun projects for us to work on, but all the main expensive stuff is already been updated: new roof, new furnace, new water heater, new air conditioning, new kitchen appliances, and all newly refinished hardwood floors. But best of all, there is a brand new huge garage for Steve. Two stalls wide by two stalls deep, plus an RV parking pad already in place for our motorhome.

I am not saying it's better than we have now, nor worse, just different and full of great possibilities and added to the enjoyment of being nearer to ALL of our grandchildren.  Even the two in Green Bay will be closer, because it's a few miles shorter, and a much faster route to get there than from where we live now.  So ALL of the children will benefit by having us closer.  As well as Steve and I will be benefiting from having them close to help US as we age. (and watch over our house while we travel in the motorhome).

Sooooooo it's back to packing and I will let you know more details as we go along....

Saturday, March 2, 2019

On The Market! (on edit - ACCEPTED OFFER!)


Our home is officially listed on the market this week. We had one showing the other day, another showing today, and another showing scheduled for Monday.

Let's all keep our fingers crossed that someone will find this home, love it, and allow us to move on to the next phase in our plans.

Here is the link:


Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Moving? Moving? Moving?

We are on the brink of a new adventure. It all started with one simple statement coming from Steve's mouth.

We were driving home from a 3-hour roundtrip (again) to attend one of the grandkid's functions up in Oconto. Evidently, Steve had been tossing around an idea with our son-in-law Waylen. Steve brought it up to me as we were driving home in the car...

The statement was: "Now that I've retired, there's nothing really keeping us in Chilton"!!!!

The more we discussed the idea, it was kind of making sense. Two of our grandchildren live in Green Bay which is 35 miles away, and the other five grandchildren live up in Oconto which is 70 miles away. If we moved back up into that area, we would be closer for all of them, as well as living closer during our old age years to get some help if we need it?

We did live in Oconto for 15 years, and sold our log home out on the river in 2012. Steve was going to retire but instead took a job transfer to High Cliff State Park. That is why we bought a house in Chilton, to be near the park.

Don't get me wrong, it's been a great house, and it's been a lot of fun restoring it back to it's original beauty. As well as improving the things that needed to be updated like plumbing, electrical, and an overall face lift. We love the house and if we could just pick it up and move the entire house up to Oconto, we would!

We discussed it seriously for about a week, and then we called in a realtor that we know, Keith Krepline, to go over a few things about listing the house.

Although I sold our last two houses myself, because in my previous life in Green Bay I had been a realtor/broker. This time around we decided to let Keith do all the paperwork, the pre-screening, and all the crazy details that need to be done nowadays. I have not held an active license since 1998 and I am sure things have changed with the real estate legalities over the last 20 years. So Keith is our man, he's very prominent in our area and I've never heard a bad word about him. His houses sell well, and many times near or above asking price. We had a pretty good idea, of course, of what our home is worth and it will be listed within the next week or so.

We looked at a few homes up in the Oconto area already, but nothing really that fits our needs one hundred percent. There's something we like about one, or something we like about another, but nothing that is meeting all of our little boxes on our checklist.

The best part is that if this house sells before we find another one, everything can just go into a storage unit up in Oconto and we will live in our motorhome. Actually right in the middle of Oconto is a wonderful City Park called Holtwood that has daily, weekly, monthly, and seasonal rates. None of our kids' yards are big enough for us to park in, so the campground will suit us just fine if it comes to that.

Even if we find a very interesting "Fixer-Upper", we can live in the motorhome right in the yard of the new house and do the work inside. Oconto does allow RVs to park in the yard as long as it is on a specific parking pad and not sticking out beyond the house. No problem because that's one of our top criterias in looking for a house is that it needs to have a yard big enough to hold our motorhome. We do not ever want to store it off site.  We can make a parking pad like we have right now.

Our second criteria is that home has to have some original charm and character and real woodwork like the one we have now. No painted up stuff. Almost every home in Oconto has beautiful hardwood floors because it was the historic location of the Holt hardwood company that made beautiful floors. Almost everybody has the same floors in every house we have looked at.

We have started doing our little things on our punch list here around this house to get it ready for the market. Everything's pretty much done, other than we wanted to swap out some of the light fixtures.

There are two fixtures that I found at Goodwill, of all places, for only $4.99 each. We added two stained glass light shades that were, believe it or not, from Menards at only $7.99 each. (they shipped the wrong ones to me at the cheap price and I called them to try to correct it and they didn't care. They just said they would charge me a restocking fee if I tried to return them. So I kept them!) So these shades plus the fixtures total $12 each. The fixtures really appeal to me. I know I can never find them again anywhere else to buy them, so we are taking them with us!

This morning Steve replaced the one in our foyer with the beautiful crystal light fixture we had originally bought for that foyer in 2012.

That one cost $115. I would gladly give up the $115 light fixture and leave it behind just so I can take my Goodwill / Menards concoction with me!!

I packed up all of these special fixtures and shades, including the hobnail shades that our son just fixed for us. They can go onto any wall sconces in a future home, and I don't want to leave them behind. So with each thing we are removing, we are replacing it with something else that is pretty. Probably even more expensive. But we are taking the things that speak to our heart.

I am packing up all of these stained glass shades between balls of my woolen roving for spinning. The softest sheep wool ever and it makes perfect padding around the light fixtures and stained glass shades!

I started packing the extra clutter from the closets. It's a big deal to remove the excess and make things look nice and organized before they come to photograph the home. Steve and I gave the master walk in closet a fresh coat of paint....

and I did a clean-up the woodwork of old paint splatters from previous painters too.

There are five boxes already stacked up in the foyer for Steve to stow away in the garage. These poor dogs are wondering what the heck is going on???

Soooo wish us well in this next adventure as things unfold. We love 'Our Old House" in Chilton, but it's time maybe to move on and get back closer to the kids and the grandkids.

Steve will work his part-time job here in Chilton driving for the ADRC handicap bus until it's time to move. We don't know if it will be one month, two months, three months, whatever?? But in the meantime he will still keep up his part time job.

Anyone want to buy 
a pretty 
Craftsman style house
 in Chilton?

It's 1,926 square feet on a deep city lot in a nice part of town. We just dressed up the exterior with new shutters and trim. It has a nice deep driveway to the back of the lot where we put in our motorhome parking pad and a 50 amp hookup.

The two plus stall garage has a workshop area that's partially insulated and ready to be walled off if so desired. 


I know you've seen a lot of pictures on my front porch, here it is from both ends. And if someone offered me enough money for the house, I would even consider leaving them all of the porch furniture because it fits so well in here.


Entering into the house has a beautiful foyer with an elaborately paneled wooden staircase to the upper level. There is also a rear servant's staircase to the upper level as well. Turning into the living room there are original pocket doors that are in wonderful condition.

The living room has hardwood floors, leaded glass window, gas fireplace, and we are leaving the matching mirror over the mantle. I painstakingly stained it to match the mantle and make it appear to be all one unit.

The living room is bright and sunshiny facing to the east, and is separated from the dining area by these beautiful original columns.

The large formal dining room has a large bay window with more leaded glass to one side, and a gorgeous crystal chandelier. It also has hardwood floors. The original hutch from this room has been moved into the family room and could be put back into place on the back wall where our mirror is hanging.

The kitchen was a complete redo. These are beautiful old oak cabinets I restored that came from a butler's pantry from an old mansion that was being torn down. We also added the island with a dishwasher underneath. All of the appliances will also be included. Off the kitchen is a half bath, a first-floor laundry room, and the back staircase up to the second floor.

The family room, which used to be my loom room, is located off the dining room. Separated by sliding French doors that came out of an old church. this is the original hutch that belongs back in the dining room and will be included with the sale of the home. it will be up to the new buyer to decide if they want to leave it here or move it back to the dining room. We moved it out because we had a large hutch and buffet that both matched our dining set and needed to keep them together.

Let's go up to the second floor. But please forget about that beautiful light fixture hanging up in this photo below because it's now been replaced with the crystal one.

Upstairs off a long hallway, there are three bedrooms and a full bath. There is a fourth room which was a servant's room. It could become an official bedroom if you opened up a doorway into the adjoining closet from the third bedroom. It could be possible. Two of the bedrooms have large walk-in closets, which is really unheard of in an older home.

This third bedroom has been made into my sewing room and all three bedrooms have wood flooring, original woodwork, doors and crown moldings as well. Most older homes the upstairs wood is painted and plain. We adore the beautiful woodwork in this house and that's what we are looking for in another home.

We redid the bathroom and removed all evidence of the 1950s plastic glue on tiles as well as the turquoise bathtub and shower. We added the deep soaking tub and a separate stand-alone shower, and replaced the 1950's chrome and flickering fluorescent light medicine cabinet with something more original to the home. The hallway across from the bathroom has a huge linen closet with shelves and deep drawers for putting away the rest of your bathroom items.

The big deep backyard is perfect for dogs or children. The fencing that we put up was built from strong sturdy treated deck wood, not cheap fencing panels. The fencing connects the back door porch area and continues on around behind the garage to access the large backyard. We were pretty proud of this fence and we built it to last, thinking we were staying here forever.

With the two access doors off the garage, you could actually walk directly from the back door, through the garage, out into the backyard without ever having to leave the fenced-in area. Perfect for kids or dogs!

And of course,
Our RV parking pad 
with a 50 amp hookup post

If anyone's looking to buy a wonderful home, contact Keith Krepline in the link above and he will take it from there!

Stay tuned for our next adventure....

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Someone Left The Icebox Open

As we prepare to hunker down for these ice cold temperatures coming, we were pleasantly surprised at the good sense of the people that operate our county handicap transport system. It's being closed down for the next two days so Steve will not have any driving jobs.

I suppose if there's a real emergency that someone needs to get somewhere, they can contact an ambulance. He is normally transporting wheelchair patients from nursing homes and hospitals back and forth to clinics and doctors and dialysis. The sub-zero wind chills will be down in the 50 to 60 below zero range for Wisconsin. This I am sure is a determining factor to close down the courthouse and thus, Steve's transport driving department. The vehicles that he uses are somewhat old and maybe not capable of handling this cold weather too well. Today he had one idling for almost half an hour to warm up enough before he picked up some residents at the nursing home to bring them to Appleton. We are at 0° but it's 25 below zero wind chill right now even in the sunshine. You got to figure, these poor old folks are coming out of nursing homes that are warm (usually in the 72 to 75 degree range). They just can't tolerate these cold temperatures either. If there would be a break down on the side of the road with Steve's transport vehicle, I am sure Steve would have to call an ambulance to transport them immediately to somewhere warm.

So the next two days 
my hubby will be home with me!


I'm working right now on a pink baby quilt. It's made with the leftover squares from the quilt I posted yesterday. The pink blocks just didn't look right in the big "Winter in Wisconsin" quilt. So I arranged them into a small baby quilt or wall hanging or lap quilt. I have it all sandwiched together with batting and backing.... ready to start the stitching. This is what I will do the next few days.

I recently invested in these little plastic templates and a special machine foot from Westalee.  I did a little practice with them, and they are kinda fun! They will allow me to do cute little designs in various portions of the quilt.

I think I will put some little snowflakes or flowers in the larger blocks, and then still do regular quilted stippling in all the other areas. Maybe this evening I will load it up on the frame and get started?


For lunch today I made up one of my most favorite soups. Cream of potato with ham and shredded carrots. I cheat a little bit though...

I get Steve to peel me up a couple potatoes. I hate peeling potatoes so if he is around, he is conscripted into doing the job. I cut them up into chunks and put them in a pan with water and some chopped onions and shredded carrots. I add some of these dried vegetables from Piggly Wiggly. I just love these in soup.

I simmer them until the potatoes and carrots are tender. I added some chunks of baked ham that I had in the freezer. Then I cheat by adding a couple glug glugs from a jug of milk and then I sprinkle in some instant mashed potato flakes!!! It thickens the soup and makes it creamy rich. I add a little seasoning and some dried parsley.

Tastes like I simmered it all morning long and it really only took me about 15 minutes tops. I made enough that we can have some for lunch tomorrow as well.


This afternoon I finished off a pair of socks that I have been hand knitting on needles.  I started them last week when Linda was visiting. They are thick wool knit with doubled yarn. A long time ago I learned how to knit two socks at the same time on one long circular needle. That way when I change the colors on the socks I change both at the same time and they come out identical.

When knit on a long circular needle, they also both come out the same size. Sometimes when knitting two individual socks at two different times, one sock will be tighter than the other due to a difference in tension while knitting. They say when watching a drama on tv, your stitches get tighter than when you are relaxed while knitting. This way, the socks both come out the same in diameter as well as length.  For those knitters who are curious as to the method:

I had made a matching hat a while ago,
and I have a scarf hanging with my coat in the back hall.

Got these socks done just in time for the cold cold weather!


I noticed something strange this afternoon. While I was knitting, I had Binney by my side but Finnegan was nowhere to be found? I looked and looked for him. I finally found him way upstairs alone laying in the bathroom between the tub and the shower on the floor! He appeared to be sleeping there. I hope he's not getting sick. It was so strange because he and Binney are always glued to each other's sides.

When I called to him, he woke up and perked up and looked alert. I hope he is okay. Otherwise, our vet is only a couple blocks away if we need her.

p.s. he ate supper now at 5pm and is acting fine. Whew! 


As a boring old person here talking about the good old days: we never knew about "wind chills" when I was a kid in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan in the 60s and the 70s. Well, at least the weathermen didn't talk about wind chills. If it was cold out, that didn't matter, we went to school anyhow. 

(me on the left and friend Sherry Masonova on the right) 

  • We wore two layers of clothes under our thick snowmobile suits. 
  • We wore long johns or thick cable knit fuzzy leotards or "tights" under our jeans.
  • We wore heavy snowmobile boots with thick felted wool liners and double woolen socks. 
  • We had double knit heavy hats underneath our hoods as well as face masks or multiple layers of a scarf wrapped around our neck and covering our face. 
  • Our hands were protected by thick leather choppers, which were sheepskin lined, along with an extra pair of mittens inside of those as well.

I remember a pair of yellow woolen mittens knit by my great-grandmother Anna Today that had a certain smell when they got wet. That wet wool smell gives me comfort to this day because it makes me think of those yellow mittens.

Cold didn't matter to us.....

(me driving and Shelly Sarafiny Losey and Lori Angus riding) 

 (brothers Randy driving, then Umpee, friend Jamie Angus and sister Linda Anderson on back)

Do you know what? As soon as school let out? We hopped on our snowmobiles or grabbed our sleds or ice skates while we enjoyed the weather outside.

We didn't have "wind chills" telling us when it was too cold. 
If it was the weekend, we would load up the snowmobiles and go into the woods
traveling the trails and stopping to roast hot dogs over a fire.

 I know the temps were below zero on these days, 
but we didn't know about wind chills. 
It was just a weekend family outing. 

Winter in Wisconsin!