Getting closer!

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This has been a big week! All the downstairs flooring is installed and so are the kitchen counter tops. You are seeing photos of the kitchen with granite counter tops, new refrigerator and new microwave oven. The microwave was donated to a group called Schoharie Home Warming which gave it to us along with some other kitchen items like a coffee maker. The rest of the photos are various rooms with new wood laminate flooring.

I had a wonderful time cleaning the cabinets and laying down shelf lining. I put our canned goods in the corner cupboards on lazy susans, and put other things away. Since there is still lots of drilling, plumbing, and connecting to do with the appliances, I am only using the upper cabinets for now. I have  been rummaging through the garage and spare room upstairs to locate kitchen items, cookware, dishes, etc. My memory, which has never been great, has become worse than ever since the flood. I am having trouble remembering what things had to be discarded and what items we still have. So I need to just poke around and move things to see what we have.  I found a Valentine’s Day door decoration which I thought had been thrown out!

Psalm 118:28 You are my God, and I will praise you;  you are my God, and I will exalt you. 29 Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good;  his love endures forever.



Another quick entry. Phil, another friend from church, is installing the floors. In the photo on the right, you can see our new kitchen floor. On the left, you are looking at the dining room floor sub-floor. The old house syndrome, in which nothing is even, is a big problem for the floors. Fortunately, there is goo that he can use to even out things out. When it dries it is very solid. The big gray patch in the photo is the dried goo. The rest of the downstairs flooring will be wood laminate–recommended to be kid-and-pet friendly. The counter tops are scheduled to arrive on Friday of this week, and Frank will be installing appliances. I’m really looking forward to cooking in my own kitchen! “I will give thanks to the Lord because of His righteousness; I will sing the praises o the Lord Most High.” Psalm 7:17.


This is a very quick post to share photos of our new kitchen cabinets. They were made out of hickory by an Amish gentleman named Wayne. In some photos you can see the new and old colors for the walls. In one you can see one piece of the back-splash we will have.  Granite counter tops have been templated (not sure when that word became a verb….) and Frank needs to go to the place where the stone will be cut to pick out a slab.

Happy New Year

After a wonderful Christmas celebration, visiting with family in Mississippi, New Jersey and Pennsylvania, it is time to get back to teaching and working on the house. This year, more than any other, I was thankful for all of my blessings, especially family. What a joy to have two precious new little grandsons as well as Robert and Alex. On December 26th, although they were not all in the same place at the same time, I saw all three of my sons and all four of my grandsons in the same day.

I have to share this gift and its story. JJ and Kate cleaned and saved all the keys from my piano after the flood, and created a beautiful memento to display on one of our new walls. In addition to the one they made for us, there is one for each of my sons, my sister, my brother, and my parents. On the back is an envelope with a print-out of my blog entry “Good-bye, Old Friend”. Thank you, JJ and Kate, for finding a way to save something from that instrument that has been a part of me for almost my entire life. This will help continue the story of our family’s love of music and God.

Sing to Him a new song ; Play skillfully and shout for joy. Psalm 33:3

While we were away, John, a longtime friend and expert on walls and taping, finished installing the drywall, taping, and sanding it. I should have been excited about the progress, but, I have to admit, I was discouraged because the sanding makes such a mess. After spending a few weeks in homes that are intact and beautiful, it was tough to come back to our house and neighborhood. I was walking Sandy one recent morning, and saw for the first time that another house had been razed. It was just two doors away from us–now just a big hole in the ground. I actually burst into tears right there. Even though many are working on rebuilding, it will be  a long time before our village is restored to its pre-flood calm and beauty.

On the other hand, some very big steps forward have been taken. This past Saturday, in response to an announcement on Face Book, several helpers showed up for a painting party! All the walls are now primed, and most have a first coat of paint.

Yesterday, the kitchen cabinets arrived, thanks to Duane and Brad. An Amish man named Wayne made them by hand from hickory. The craftsmanship is outstanding, and I love the look of the natural wood. After Duane, Brad, and Frank installed the base cabinets today, we realize that we need to change the color of the walls. Thankfully, this is not too big a problem, because we will just use a new color for the second coat. I brought home little samples of paint from Middleburgh Hardware and actually put several different color samples on the wall so we could be sure to get the right color this time. We have decided on flooring, and that has to be taken into consideration as well.

Pretty soon I will be posting photos of our new kitchen and walls, and then shortly after that, the floors! Oh, yes, and new light fixtures. Stay tuned.

I leave you with a link to an article on the New York Times website about the wonderful ministry at the Reformed Church in Schoharie. I have mentioned this in a previous post–they feed homeowners and volunteers every day despite the fact that their own building needs repair. The love and support shared among neighbors here is inspirational. It is because of this spirit that I know our town will one day be even better than it was before.