My Big Fat Bathroom Makeover

When I decided to tackle a long over-due makeover of my half bath, I decided to save myself a few coins and do it myself!  Trouble was…..I had NO idea how to remove a sink, how to take out and replace a toilet, AND I wanted to put up wainscoting! So I do what everyone else on the planet does… I turn to YouTube!  There I found a gazillion videos on how to do just about anything and everything in home improvement.  My favorite was a channel called “See Jane Drill.”  I LOVE her channel. If you are a women who wants to do your own home improvement projects, I highly recommend her channel. She does everything!!!

I have to say the one thing that worried me the most was changing out the light fixture. I really didn’t want to get electrocuted!  I turned off the main breaker switch to the house so that there was NO QUESTION as to which switch went to the correct area I was working!  After I did that, switching out a light is extremely easy.  Home improvement isn’t complicated, but it is hard work!

I hope my little bathroom makeover gives you some ideas and the encouragement to get things done!  🙂

Advertisements

That thingy with the Arrow that Points North

A while back, I bought the cheapest Compass that was hanging on the rack at REI. It was this little thing that hung off the strap of my backpack that didn’t have dials or anything. It just gave you a direction. I figured I could at least use it to get myself north, south, east or west. Sounds easy enough!  If I keep walking West, I’d eventually hit the Pacific Ocean and then I’d know for SURE where I was. Of course I’d probably die before I got there and never see the Ocean. So I bought a map.  A large fold out piece of paper of shades of green and tan with a gazzillion squiggly lines and numbers.   I look at the map then at the compass, look at the map, then at the compass.  Hmmmmm..   Nothing made sense.

So, I did what every person thirsting for knowledge does… I go to YouTube. It’s there I learn from some fine compass reading YouTubers that I have to account for Declination in order to use the map with the compass. Something about the curvature of the Earth, True North, Magnetic North.. WHAT?  THERE ARE TWO NORTHS?  What the hell is going on here?

I needed to get to the bottom of this Two Norths thing (sounded hoaxy to me) and signed up for a class from REI.

Now, I can read a Topography map (sort of-need practice) and read my compass and I know the difference between the “Norths.”  Oh, and I learned something VERY IMPORTANT.  I had to keep “Fred in the Shed.”

My Mom, The Woman Who Taught me to ADVENTURE BIG!

Letting Go

Have you ever heard the story of someone being at the bedside of a dying loved one and telling them it’s time to go?  Then at that moment, the loved one takes their last breath?  Have you ever experienced this yourself?  I had always heard these stories and on February 3, this happened to me. My 92-year-old mother had been living in a memory care facility for the past 6 years. It was so very hard to see her deteriorate to the shell of a person that she once was. She eventually stopped talking and was completely bed ridden.  My mother was vibrant, lively and active and if there was a plug to pull, she would have pulled it herself!  She would have never, ever wanted this.  Who would?

When I got to her room, she was breathing pretty heavy and my dad, who is 96, hadn’t arrived yet. I went to my mother’s bedside, stroked her hair and said it was OK to get going on her next journey. It was time for her to leave her old and tired body and go see her parents, sister and other family.  Right then she took her last breath.

We had prayed for her to be let out of her prison, but when it actually happens, the reality sets in that our mother is GONE!  The woman who gave birth to me and my sister, raised us, and helped take care of my son was gone forever. Our mother.

If you had an awesome mom that you lost much too early, I am so very sorry. That sucks and has to be so freaking hard. My mom was 92 and it was still hard.

The American Dream

Eloyce M. Miller (later Cornett) was born in Shawnee Oklahoma in 1924.  When she was 2 years old, mom, dad and her baby sister, Lowetta took a  Model T car over a wooden plank road to California where there was promise of work. My grandfather Pete did many things to keep the family afloat during the depression.  He was a ditch digger, a baker, a miner, a gas station owner, a farmer, a house fixer-upper, you name it. My grandmother Thelma worked right along with him. They moved around a lot!  Northern California (Nevada City, North San Juan, Auburn) then to Arizona. They moved up and down the state of California from Los Angeles to Northern California a couple of times.

Eloyce graduated from Nevada City High School in 1942.  After high school, she worked as waitress, a dime store clerk, a machine shop worker, and a telephone operator. She eventually joined the Army and was stationed in Ft. Benning Georgia as a parachute rigger with the 82nd Airborne Division. It was there where she met my paratrooper dad, Marvin Cornett, who had just returned from the war.  He was a  Jump Master, teaching new recruits how to jump out of planes.  My dad owned an Army surplus Harley motorcycle and they rode in the rain to the courthouse in Phoenix City Alabama and got married by a Justice of the Peace, who by the way, had tobacco stains on his shirt!  In 1946 my sister Marleen was born.  My dad got out of the Army briefly to try his hand in the civilian world. After a year or so, he re-joined the Army and made a career of it for 28 years. The Army moved them all over the place from four years in France to various Army posts in the states. I was born in 1959 in Illinois where my dad was an Army recruiter. We lived in a mobile home and my mother hated every minute of the nine years we lived in snow country.

She  was very happy when my dad retired from the Army and we moved back to Northern California to be close to her family and out of the snow.

In the 1970s, Eloyce worked at McClellan Air Force Base in Sacramento CA as a secretary, an avionics repair technician, and in a warehouse where she worked on a conveyor belt boxing and moving military supplies. She even drove a forklift.

When Eloyce and Marvin retired, they traveled.. They spent several years driving their motor home from Northern California to Mazatlan Mexico and would park there for six months out of the year. They took trips all over the US, Europe, Japan, Thailand, Hong Kong, Alaska, Canada, Panama Canal, and the Caribbean. (I may be leaving out some spots)

Eloyce was a gifted artist (oil and acrylic), craft maker, seamstress, golfer, clogger, bowler, guitar player, belly dancer, world traveler and party hostess. (She loved to throw a party!)

Safe travels Mother!  See you on the other side!

To read my mom’s entire memoir in her own words, click here

There are a ton of pics and it’s a pretty awesome read.

Click here to see the music video to the song I wrote about her mom and dad. The lyrics were taken almost word for word out of her book.

Heavenly Landings! It’s a Pilot

A long time ago, I took flying lessons while I was working at a small airport in Redding CA.  I never did get my license because I ran out of money – Like soooo many.  However, I did spend many years flying in the back seat of a Piper Cherokee every day as a traffic reporter in the Sacramento area.  So, I eventually got paid to fly!

My husband is the pilot these days. He’s had his private license since 1996. He’s always talking about wanting to fly a float plane!

I’m in the process of putting together an entire wall of aviation for him in the master bedroom. Its going to be loaded with my artwork and other aircraft items such as a prop, shelves that are planes coming out of the wall, etc. Here is the BIG painting that I did yesterday.  It’s 24×30 on canvas. (HUGE) I call it Heavenly Landings. What a place to land a plane, on a mountain lake!  WOW!  I do call that heaven!

If you want this painting for yourself, you can purchase the print on canvas or framed here.  You can even order cards etc. img_2912for-wordpressimg_1595