Sunday, April 30, 2017

The light at the beginning of the tunnel

"I can't see the stars anymore living here
Let's go to the hills where the outlines are clear."

How many Scandinavian-Germans does it take to change a light bulb?

Just one. If it's Neil.

Neil may have figured out the best way to drive me out of this house, Sugar Land and Texas.

He's been replacing light bulbs throughout the house with LED bulbs.

We had a realtor over to talk about what we would need to do to get this house ready for sale. For the most part, she advised doing very little and leaving repairs as negotiating points.

She did think we needed to have the carpet stretched, repaired and cleaned, and the paint touched up. And she was very particular about the lighting, especially making sure the bulbs within a room matched.

Part of the service she would provide (if we choose her) is to make a video of the house and apparently an unmatched light bulb stands out like a glaring mistake.

She also recommended brighter lighting in some areas and Neil took it to the extreme, buying daylight white light bulbs. He went with the same wattage we had but apparently all wattage isn't the same and in fact it is lumens that matter most. In some places the light is now distractingly brilliant. Looking down the hall to the game room at midnight, you'd really think there was daylight streaming in. It's that sunlit bright.

I hate it. It makes me feel not at home in my home. Which may not be all bad. I get overly attached to comfort zones.

I did ask him to change the bathroom lights to soft white, which I concede might be an improvement over the yellowish light we had in place. Light that never had bothered me before. But I don't notice things like that. I have familiarity blindness.

LED light are pricey, and one weird thing is that the smaller ones cost more than the larger. Since we are leaving, it is tempting to get the less expensive larger ones, that are just a little bit more obnoxiously blinding. I'm not sure it will be a good selling point though.

The LED lights also put out less heat and naturally, now that we've a couple of feet out the door, we'll notice a new degree of comfort in both the temperature of the house and the electric bill.

The brighter lights and cooler temps already are making Neil like it more here, inside the house at least, just as they are making me feel less at home.

While Neil has been busy filling boxes and researching activities in our home-state-to-be, I've been splitting my time between business as usual and washing my glass, sorting it and selling some of it.

I just finished a project for Beads of Courage - 50 pairs of orange and black beads, with just a little white on some. I was 3/4 finished when I got approval to use some white, but once I found an orange that was saturated enough to pop on black I was OK with the two-color scheme. I made these in four torch sessions.


BOC also asked for more Carry-a-Bead pairs. I pulled most of these out of inventory, choosing the ones with colors I think kids would like.


I also agreed to make another Captain America shield but I had to order more star murrini. I wasn't happy with my first attempts using murrini I had on hand.

Beads have been selling, not as fast as I am still making them, but enough for me to stay out of the slough of despond. I've been playing with this new style, which so far hasn't been a hit, but I've sold more sets of pairs and some of my signature encased silver glass beads. Still, I'm having some fun with it and have some ideas to improve it.



Neil is headed out to visit family for a few days, so I will have some guilt-free torch time. Yesterday, I ran out of propane and hooked up the backup tank. I pondered whether this will be the last tank I use before I shut things down here or if I should get one more. Neil thought I should get one more. I probably will. Even if my current tank lasts through most of May, for $20 I'd rather leave a full tank behind (or give it to a friend) than to run out and have to stop sooner than I planned.

When Neil gets back, we'll be making a trip to NC, possibly the last trip before the house is finished. We'll be choosing our granite slabs, designing our master closet, making decisions about landscaping, and taking another look at dining room light fixtures. I'll be interested to see how my studio is shaping up.

Even if we follow our move plan and it all goes down without a hitch, I expect there will be at least a three-month hiatus from bead making for me. I'm going to try to look at it as an opportunity to recharge, a little creative respite for the muse. Maybe my muse will get bored with the lack of creative output and find true purpose in the new digs. Which would be, of course, dictating to me on a regular basis.

I'll be happy if she deigns to come along for the ride and show up there at least as often as she elects to come around now. As always, I stand at her mercy.


I can't see the stars anymore living here
Let's go to the hills where the outlines are clear
Bring on the wonder
Bring on the song
I pushed you down deep in my soul for too long

I fell through the cracks at the end of our street
Let's go to the beach get the sand through our feet
Bring on the wonder
Bring on the song
I pushed you down deep in my soul for too long
Bring on the wonder
We got it all wrong
We pushed you down deep in our souls for too long

I don't have the time for a drink from the cup
Let's rest for a while til our souls catch us up
Bring on the wonder
Bring on the song
I pushed you down deep in my soul for too long
Bring on the wonder
We got it all wrong
We pushed you down deep in our souls, so hang on
Bring on the wonder
Bring on the song
I pushed you down deep in my soul for too long.


(Sarah McLachlan)

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Thanks for your comment! I will post it as soon as I receive it. Liz