Friday, October 31, 2008
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
Found myself on the Rochester Wiki today, looking at my neighborhood. Describes it really well.
Most of the homes were built 1880 - 1940 and were originally intended for the working professionals of Rochester, the doctors, lawyers, dentists and the like. As such, most homes have maintained at least some semblance of architectural heritage. Oak floors and Gumwood trim are very common, although previous owners may have painted or carpeted over them and new homeowners may have to replace a lot of outdated carpeting, tile and/or paint. There is relatively little turnover in real estate in the neighborhood so prices tend not to fluctuate very much one way or the other. Most properties in good condition range from $45,000 to $90,000 and offer 1,200 to 1,800 square feet of living space; mortgages are typically less than $600 a month - and that's after taxes and insurance. These make excellent starter homes; after the mortgage payment, there is still plenty of money to save for the future or to get your hands dirty and improve the house. Corn Hill offers a mix of older and newer homes which tend to be larger and slightly more expensive, but they typically require no work beyond routine maintenance.19th Ward
Posted by Luke at 2:02 PM
Sunday, October 26, 2008
Lindsay, Marni and I went down to the Apple Farm in Victor, NY today and got enough apples to feed an army. We're making pies and applesauce this afternoon. In fact, they're cooking right now.
I made an awesome ham and potato chowder for dinner, and the apple pies are up for dessert. A great fall day.
Posted by Luke at 5:27 PM
Saturday, October 25, 2008
Thursday, October 23, 2008
Tuesday, October 21, 2008
Worked last week on installing a couple new light fixtures in my living room to make the place look more and more finished.. including giving the room more light during parties. I was going for the indirect soft light approach. My sconce research is now complete.
Posted by Luke at 9:29 AM
Monday, October 20, 2008
Had a great time over the weekend with Laura and Luke, and catching up with other alumni I haven't seen in awhile. After working for several hours on Thursday evening in preparation for Laura and Luke to arrive (including finishing painting my closet and cleaning up after all the sanding), they got to my place around 6pm on Friday evening. But that was after a whole day of driving golf carts around, shuttling alumni at work. Fun! That evening, I gave them a quick shotgun tour of my house (pointing out every bit of work I've done), got them settled into their accommodations and then headed out for the corn maze, meeting up with a bunch of other friends, for an evening of following Michael and Jake through a maze in the cold.
The corn maze was as good as previous years. My only mistake was not bringing warmer clothes and/or a hat. My mistake. But we had a good big group of people, and finished the maze in 45 minutes. It was a lot of fun, and we even enjoyed another round of snacks, hot drinks, popcorn and laughter after getting out.
Saturday included several events, mostly revolving around food, eating, the staff food room, or going home and eating. But I met up with Laura's parents at Meliorafest (not as good as previous years [the food]), ran a couple errands and then attended my fifth year reunion dinner (very low key, even though I was a bit under-dressed), before I headed home while Laura and company went and watched/listened to Stephen Colbert. I haven't involved myself much in Meliora Weekend as of late, mostly because I work at the University, but I think I'll make a point of doing more next year.
For Sunday, we arranged to meet up with a couple alumni friends with Jake and Rachael for breakfast at our local diner. Bringing a bunch of people back together was a lot of fun, and seeing how everyone's lives are progressing is always interesting. Had to take advantage of everyone being in town before everyone split up and went our separate ways again. For Laura and Luke, that meant a 7 hour drive home to DC. For me, that meant going south to visit family for the afternoon. My grandmother made a big turkey dinner feast for the family, and I never miss at a chance to spend time with everyone.
But that led to me hosting the next family event.. the November birthdays. Three birthdays, 14 people... at my house in mid-November. Sounds good to me. That, and I'm also trying to host a Thanksgiving dinner for friends at my house the following week. I think I'll have all my major projects done by then, so it'll be a good 2nd housewarming event.
Posted by Luke at 1:13 PM
Sunday, October 19, 2008
Saturday, October 18, 2008
Laura and Luke are in town, spending the weekend with me and at UR for Meliora Weekend. And to kick off an amazing weekend, a bunch of us did the local corn maze at Long Acre Farms.
Laura and her cookie before the maze
Michael and Heather
Seth and Kelly and baby Milla
Group shot after getting out of the maze in 45 minutes.
We had a lot of fun. Plus a big incentive for getting out of the maze was the hot cider, donuts and popcorn. It was quite chilly, but was great. It's quite the group.
Posted by Luke at 8:45 AM
Friday, October 17, 2008
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
Monday, October 13, 2008
Really looking forward to Laura and Luke's visit this coming weekend. They roll into town Friday afternoon for Meliora Weekend. My five year reunion dinner and some other things going on, plus I'm volunteering and driving a golf cart on Friday. Friday evening also includes our annual corn maze, and I'm sure other fun things will commence once presented.
This was my first weekend in three weeks where I had TIME to do some things near or around my house. Which was nice, for a change. I'm trying my best to think economically and efficiently and to appreciate simpler things. This includes buying used and decorating with natural items. Using more greens and browns and spiffing up my property without buying things. It also means I'm doing more manual labor and working more in my gardens. I cleaned up my leaves, dead branches and yard on Sunday, and cleaned out a bunch of my flower beds in preparation for a last round of mulching to get ready for winter. My hands ache!
Plus I cleaned my car from top to bottom, planted some newly acquired plants, harvested the remainder of my vegetables (Mmm.. love home grown salads), and even stained a bunch of woodwork. This week is the final push of major work inside my house. I'm hoping to have, by weeks end, my dining room complete, along with my master bedroom closet. My mother is coming up tomorrow to FINISH it, and I'm hoping I can also get the chair-rail up in the dining room with her help. It just feels good to get things accomplished! My next big ticket item on my todo list is glassblock windows. A great company is coming to give me a firm estimate, so I'm hoping to have that done before the year is out. It'll be a huge step in securing my basement, replacing broken windows and making my home a little more energy efficient.
I hosted game night at my house Thursday night. A quick round of cleaning, including dusting off folding chairs/table, and picking up after my housemates, and people started arrive right around 7. But far fewer than expected. Where was everyone? Out of the 10-15 expected, 7 people came. I'm hosting every 3 weeks, so hopefully it'll get better. Someone asked if game night was dying. I sure hope not.
Friday evening everyone came over to my place (oddly enough, more than came to game night) to watch a marathon of Survivor. I ordered a couple pizzas and some wings, and we watched about 4 hours worth of Survivor in HD. My house has become the official Survivor spot, and even little Milla enjoyed the company. We were far too loud for a baby, but she seems to love the noise, and stayed quiet as we shouted, laughed and made jokes at the contestants' expense. We gave Kelly her birthday present from the gang, and even enjoyed a little discussion post-tv. Having everyone over is quite the treat, especially after all the work I put into my house.
Saturday included Kelly's birthday party and dinner. I promised the Messenger family a pie (since they do not eat ice cream), so that was my morning project. Marni and I went to the Garden Factory to check out some discount close out prices, only to find a few items at 25% off. And no mulch was on sale, much to my dismay. But the party was excellent, with everyone bringing their own favorite sunday toppings. Boche ball and such ensued and soon, we all made our way to King & I for thai food. A great day to spend with the friends, and far... far too many carbs. But a sacrifice for the team.
It's far too nice a day to be inside. Perhaps I'll head home early.
Posted by Luke at 3:18 PM
Sunday, October 12, 2008
Saturday, October 11, 2008
Thursday, October 09, 2008
Wednesday, October 08, 2008
Monday, October 06, 2008
Sunday, October 05, 2008
This weekend has been on the books for months. My cousin Jered, my ultimate nemesis in terms of attention from the family, visited this weekend with his wife and his four-month old: Addison. Always enjoy Jered. He's got that sick sense of humor that always goes just a tad too far. Right up my alley. They arrived around four on Friday, and getting out of work early I raced as quickly as I could.. an hour south to pick up some chairs off an ad on Craigslist. Okay. So seeing them right away wasn't exactly the priority. But I did make it there by 6, and the fun really began.
Though, and probably rightfully so, it was all about the baby. Of course Jered found a way to one up me. He bred and brought it along. He was the first in the family to make my grandmother a great grandmother.
But they were here all weekend and dinner and desserts were at (Aunt) Deb's on Friday evening. Saturday had dinner at my mom's and Sunday included breakfast at (Aunt) Allison's and dinner back at my Grandma's place. Food was delicious all around. I made three apple pies for the weekend, and with more pumpkin pies and berry desserts from everyone else, it was basically a food addicts dream for 3 days. Soups and more soup and some stuffed peppers. And more desserts.
Today we visited Seneca Lake and did a bit of site-seeing and picture taking along the water at the pier and Belhurst Castle. Absolutely beautiful and plenty of opportunity for jokes and sarcastic remarks. Jered and I have this little competition for 'favorite grandson' with my grand-mother and something usually happens to solidify my status with each of his visits. At times it goes a bit too far, on both our parts, but hey, it wouldn't be a fun weekend without at least one or two of our family members not talking to us by the end.
Jered and Crystal are headed up to Boston and down to New York City over the next few days. Great to see them, as always.
Posted by Luke at 10:23 PM