Friday, December 5, 2014

Retirement and Memories...

No, not me!  Not yet, anyway.  Soon, I think.

I've been ready for retirement for a long, long time.  But, it is a tough decision to make.  There are just so many unknowns!  The big one - will I outlive my money?  and then the one you don't want to think about - waiting too long and missing the chance to enjoy the "golden years".  I waited too long to enjoy retirement with my guy, but I hope to have lots of years to enjoy with family, friends, and my power tools!

But, my boss is retiring, or rather beginning what, in higher education, is called a "transition" year.  He will still be employed for a year, assisting the new president when called upon, helping the president at another local university to grow their satellite campus, and representing the CSU system when needed.  Bottom line, though - come January 1, 2015, he will no longer be coming in to work, I won't be sitting in on meetings with him; he'll no longer be my boss.  I'll miss him!

In addition to being a good boss, he and his wife have become friends.  I'm going to miss seeing them on a regular, frequent basis.  I hope to still spend time with them - at our age good friends are hard to find!

The past couple of weeks have been a whirlwind of special events commemorating their 11 years at CPP.  Tuesday night we had a gala at the beautiful Fairplex Sheraton Conference Center.  One of the things we planned was to have special note cards available for anyone who wanted to leave a personal note for them.  But, we realized we'd need somewhere for those notes to end up and we looked for a special container for them.  When our event coordinator sent me the picture of a handcrafted suitcase-type box and said that this would be perfect, a light bulb went off - why didn't I make the box for them? Although I suspect it will be loaded up and stored away, it might, some day, bring fond memories of the crazy lady who took up woodworking at an old, old age!

So, the box was easy, the lettering not so much!  I need to work on a good transfer method.  What I ended up with is less than professional looking, but if you squint you think it looks old and quaint.  At least that's what I'm telling myself!!

Here's what I made for them.  This box measures about 14 x 17 inches.  It has brass corners, hinges and handles that I oversprayed with some darker metal spray.  It's been stained with several layers of stain to give it an aged look.  I sanded off some of the lettering and rubbed a bit of stain over it to age that as well.  The inside of the box has a felt lining on the bottom.






Happy Retirement Mike and Betty!
I wish you many years of joy and pleasure spent with
your girls, in-laws, grandkids, and the many, many friends you've made over the years.
I feel fortunate to be counted among those friends!


Mike and Betty
Ortiz
Cal Poly Pomona
2003-2014

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Some Home Updates

For the longest time I've been hankering to build and install floating shelves somewhere in my house. After a lot of time thinking about it, I decided that the best place for them would be in my small "water closet", in the space over my toilet.  And, YOU KNOW there's a water line in that wall someplace!  So, in addition to being just as averse to putting holes in my walls as the next person, I   was also worried that I'd drill a hole into a water pipe and end up with a major mess!
So, I've been procrastinating.

Finally, last weekend I'd had enough of being a chicken about this.  I pulled out my stud finders and went to work!  (By the way, the stud finders only seem to work on walls - I walked around my neighborhood and I didn't get one beep on the damned things!  Or, perhaps there just aren't any studs in my neighborhood; that could be it.)

They didn't take long to build, and they're very stable - I'm not worried that they'll fall down!  More importantly, no water pipes were damaged during the installation.

Here's the first one up, and then both of them (with my old, tired towels).  I probably could have added 3 shelves, but as it is I'll have a hard time reaching things on the top shelf!

  

Then, with a few pretty things added.
(This is a really tiny space so it was hard to get a good picture!)

    


I recently added a picture to the frame that's been hanging empty for at least a year!
(The top of the mat is white, like the rest of it - that must be a shadow that
makes it look the color of the frame.)
This is a needlepoint piece given to me by a friend.  It fit perfectly into my odd sized frame.




It's a fact of life that we all spend so much time in this room,
I think it's great that my space is now a prettier place to be!