August at Home

August at Home

While the month of July was all about travel, the month of August is, with a few exceptions, about being home.

Since the start of August, we’ve spent our days working on various house projects. For the last week and a half Bill has been painting the living room, hall way and our gym (also known as our old formal dining room).

I helped a tiny bit but we found that my time was better spent lightening the inventory of our home. I went through my closet and drawers, the medicine cabinet, most of the kitchen, and our office – tossing, donating and reorganizing things.

As you can see, our home is in a state of disarray while we work on our projects. But the end is in sight and things will be back to normal by month’s end.

In early August we worked on our front yard. We ripped out dozens of plants that had seen better days. We had 12 year-old society garlic growing between the dozen or so crape myrtles that line our driveway.

One the side pictured below, the society garlic was still pretty healthy. But the side where the lawn is was a different story. In order to keep the symmetry, they all had to go.

We also removed some scraggly looking rhododendrons, azaleas, Santa Barbara daisies and a few others plants. We trimmed up our rose bushes, dogwood trees and took a few limbs off a Japanese maple that was blocking our vineyard view.

Soon we will have new tan bark put in, then next spring we will replant some bushes, flowers and grasses. It looks a bit barren to me right now but we both think it best to wait until next year to replant. We want to do our research and really take our time making the right choices.

The interior paint should be done by the end of this month or early next. Then we’re going to most likely have the exterior of the house painted by a professional.

We go round and round about colors for the exterior. I am leaning toward white with black trim but Bill would prefer a color similar to what we have which is a light yellowish beige with white trim and black accents. It’s such a big decision to make!

August hasn’t been all home projects though. Last week I visited my friend Elizabeth who lives about 45 minutes away in Marin County. She makes the pearl and leather jewelry I love so much and show off on the blog. She invited me to go to a paint and sip event at a tasting room near her beautiful home.

I am sure you have heard or even participated in an event like this one. Often you paint on canvases – sunsets, moons, palm trees and the like. In this class, put on by artist Jan Morris, you paint wild flowers on a wine glass. That is much more my style. It was so fun! On this particular night, we would learn how to paint lupine flowers.

Glasses painted bu Jan Morris of Novato

Not known for my artistic talents, I shocked myself by doing rather well.

Jan was an excellent teacher and made sure we all got some personal attention and instruction from her. Maybe I do have an artistic hair on my head after all!

So what does it mean when you have pleasant dreams about your exercise equipment? I guess it means you’ve found the exercise regimen for you! I am so crazy about our reformer that I have to make myself take days off.

I really overdid it the first couple of weeks we had it. I ended up hurting my back. I am all better now, thankfully, and I learned my lesson. I listen to my body telling me to rest rather than my brain telling me to hop on the reformer for another session.

To help support my lower back I bought an inflated wedge from the company I bought my reformer from. I tried it a few days ago and it helps ease strain on my back so much! This wedge can also be used on a mat. It’s not just for reformers.

I am going to rely on the wedge whenever my back is feeling a little wonky. I usually just push through the pain but that never ends well.

Other than the back issues, I feel stronger, more flexible and more toned than I have in years which is also helping my confidence. I believe Pilates will be the key to being strong, mobile, and energetic throughout my 50s, 60s and beyond. I have yet to convince Bill to try it but he’s open to the idea. Maybe after all these home improvement projects wrap up I’ll get to teach him how to use it.

So that is what we’ve been up to so far this month. We hadn’t planned on taking any trips but that all changed yesterday when we decided to take a break from painting, organizing and purging to visit Tori, Bill’s youngest daughter. She is in Carmel for a few days, visiting her maternal grandmother, uncles and aunts.

Since we don’t know when we will get a chance to see Tori again this year, we thought we’d pop down to Carmel to see her. It’s a three hour drive to Carmel whereas it takes over 10 hours to get to her house on the Oregon coast.

Other late August plans include a visit from my dear friend and her husband who live in Las Vegas. Our newly redecorated guest room is all ready for their visit. I am so excited to see them!

I made some fun and tasty plans for the four of us. We are going to stay close to home since their stay is pretty short – just two nights. There are so many things to do and see here in Sonoma Valley, it’ll be easy to stay entertained!

Before we know it, August will be behind us as will summer. The summer season has been wonderful this year but I am ready for autumn to arrive. We are probably still a good 8 weeks away from real fall weather here in wine country though so I’ll leave my boots, jackets and scarves in storage for now.  Are you excited for fall to arrive too?

Thanks for stopping by!

XO,

Adrienne

7 Comments

  1. Jacquie in the Bay area
    August 20, 2018 / 9:46 pm

    Always good to hear what’s happening up there in Sonoma. I think of you every time I hear about the Carr fire, and all the other horrible fires burning In the state now. I’m sure you are glad Bill is home and not out there in danger. Enjoy the rest of the Summer!

  2. August 20, 2018 / 11:18 pm

    The two of you are pretty busy! And what a beautiful glasses! That looks like fun to do!

  3. August 21, 2018 / 7:19 am

    OH< I SUPPOSE but I can NEVER have enough SUMMER!
    I do REFORMER TOO!I ABSOLUTELY LOVE IT!
    I take a class 3 times a week……….but would LOVE to have one at HOME!
    NO SPACE so that will not happen lucky YOU!
    Yes, the pillow or a ball is GOOD for the lower back!
    GOOD LUCK with the HOUSE PAINT!We have that FIGHT ON GOING!!!!!!!!
    XX

  4. Rosemary
    August 21, 2018 / 1:44 pm

    Hi Adrienne, good to hear from you … sounds like you’re having a fun and productive August! … and yes, times passing too quickly, it’ll soon be time for scarves and boots … As much as I love warm and sunny weather, Autumn and Winter clothes are probably my favourites …
    You’re both getting on so well with your home decorating and yard tidying … your front yard looks so neat!
    Great that you were able to meet up with Tori while she was visiting relatives in Caramel … I can imagine how happy you all were to have this unplanned for, time together We spent a night in Carmel when we were last in California and we both really loved it. We were up early and had a wonderful walk whilst the town was quiet and peaceful. The beach and coastal area is gorgeous … I’d love to go back one day.
    Glad your back pain has settled … it’s so easy to exacerbate pain and back problems when exercising isn’t it? It’ll be lovely to have your own “home gym” when it’s all finished.,.
    Btw, I know I commented on IG but your painted glass is gorgeous… what a fun way to spend an evening.
    Take care … Rosemary xxx

  5. August 24, 2018 / 3:32 am

    I love that you painted wine glasses and yours is beautiful! – I did that in Ojai and it’s so much fun. Very wonderful to have a reformer at home. Bill is so industrious too. xoxo

  6. Kris
    August 29, 2018 / 9:30 am

    Hi – nice to see you “back here” – I missed you! Would you mind sharing what type of Reformer you bought? Considering one for our house, too.

    • Adrienne Shubin
      Author
      August 29, 2018 / 1:48 pm

      Hi Kris,

      Thank you! I’ll get back into blogging more regularly one of these days. Seems like there is always something more pressing to do – working on the house is our big thing these days.
      I love my reformer so much. I can’t imagine I would ever grow tired of using it so for me, it was a great investment.
      Here is the one we bought: https://www.pilates.com/BBAPP/V/store/reformers/pilates-studio-reformer.html
      We had it customized for bigger and taller everything as I am 6′ 2″ and Bill is 6′ 7″. Let me know if you have any questions for me!
      Kindly, Adrienne

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