Tex Knitter

Thursday, May 10, 2007

It All Started...........

........Wednesday evening when Jeffy was on his way out the door to return some DVD's to Hollywood video. He paused at the door with one arm leaning on the entertainment center, staring at the fireplace, deep in thought and said, "Honey, you really don't like that light over the fireplace do you". That's the fireplace to the right it's recessed with a popcorn ceiling and one swively can light in the center. I confirmed for the hundreth time that I didn't like it and he decided to do something about it. He plucked that sucker right out of the ceiling!

With that accomplished he began wielding a box cutter and in no time had cut the drywall from the ceiling and removed the popcorn. What was left was a giant rectangle of a hole in the wall. I personally didn't know where he was going with this and neither did he so at that moment we were matched.

The discovery of a 2x8 or 4x8 or whatever it is proved problematic as there was no way to remove it without compromising the integrity of the structure, meaning the house would cave in, so he decided to work around it but in what capacity he didn't know and to which I was afraid to ask.

Undecided about what he intended to end up with, what else was he to do but cut out some more dry wall? Made sense to me! Yep, an arch shaped piece was extracted from the wall in front of the fireplace, cut above the 2x whatever, and moved to the back of the hole above the stone.

The next logical step was to venture into what Jeff considers his nirvana; whipping out the power tools. Mine is kitchen appliances. So out the back door we go to saw and sawdust heaven and we cut a bunch of 2x4's. That one I got right! Back into the living room we go, industrial nail gun in tow, and up they go into the shape of the arch. Not bad.

Now this is the part of the story where I cut out. After three anti-inflamatories to kill my gout, two hydrocodones, I told Jeff I only took one, and three good vodkas I was out for the count but when I wake up we have a whole new look to this fireplace. It's got great lighting and the whole thing really pulls the room together.

A bit of finishing, some stain and varnish and we are all set.

I adore that guy!

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Up, Up and Awaaaaaayyy.....

.... in our beautiful, our beautiful new roooooom!

The thought of transforming a room is always fantastic. That's where the fantastic ends, at the thought. Jeff and I decided that the living room was going to be the first portion of the house that would benefit from having our little 'stamp' placed upon it and paint was the first order of business.

We both had no problem deciding what color we wanted; a warm mustard gold flat paint was the answer. After Jeff dropped his pants he came up with the calculation that we would need one gallon. In retrospect I should have dropped my pants too and carried the one. We needed two. Off to Lowes goes Jeff for the second gallon the next day.

The second can matched perfectly with the exception that they had sold him semi-gloss. After a bit of cursing in the most charming East Texas accent to be had he went back to the store to exchange it and now the re-paint job is pending.

The second portion of our Extreme Home Improvement involved taking our severly vaulted ceiling and dropping it to a level eleven feet and in the process creating a coffered ceiling to which the plans were written in ink; that means all in Jeff' head.

I must admit that little shit worked and always works damn fast and hard and he figured this would be a weekend project; ain't so.

Here is Mr. Handsome himself measuring off the wall for the project.

Note how damn sexy he is with a toolbelt! Yeh BABY!

Here's another shot from the other angle just so you realize both sides of him match.

Here he has the beams up.

Now comes the backing.......

...... and the boxes up!!
In the center of each box we now have recessed lighting!
All that remains is for us to agree on a stain color, place L-shaped trim around the outer edges of the boxes then varnish the whole thing.
Clever ain't he?????????????

Monday, April 02, 2007

We Got a Money Pit.... We Got a Money Pit... na na na na na na!!!!

Yes ladies and germs we now own the cutest little mortgage to be found in the Loan Star State! The house is kinda nice too.

The following pictures were taken by my good friend and ex-neighbor, Rick, and as you will soon find out he 'aint no Ansel Adams in any stretch of the imagination but we love him even on his medication.

Keep in mind this was moving day................

Here is a pretty poor shot of one end of our living room. The fireplace and hearth are recessed into the wall.

It is so freakin' wonderful to turn on the air conditioning and sit in front of the fire.

Click on it.... it gets bigger.

Next comes the kitchen.

Anyone who knows me knows that I have a butt-load of kitchen equipment. As Jeff says, "If we have one of something, we have four". But 'cha know what? In the preliminary attempt to get organized it looks as though all of what I have is going to fit! We all know what that means; I get to buy more stuff.

Trust me, it was pretty much all put away before bed.

Now for a series of photos that depict my little monkey hanging a chandelier over the landing on the stairwell. I say monkey because we don't have a ladder and Jeff stradled the stairs with one foot on the rail and the other on the second story window sill. Note that the bookcase on the landing is 8' tall. Why his arms didn't give out I'll never know.

I, all the while, drank bourbon, twirled my rosery beads and had the phone poised to dial 911 in the event of concussion. I'm good at supervising.

The end result.

And one tired guy!

Monday, February 05, 2007

Baa Baa Black Sheep

As I learned over Christmas there is an advantage to being the black sheep of the family. According to Jeff' dad being the black sheep of the family means that everyone else is 'above' you. That means that the black sheep doesn't have that far to fall! To quote Thomas, "Yep, I don't mind at all!"

So to keep the black sheep warm I'm starting him a 2x2 rib scarf. Simple yes, but we wouldn't want the black sheep looking to uppity now would we. No sirree Bob!

Isn't it odd that I knit his dad a scarf and give his mother Jack Daniel's???

The world is weird that way I guess.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Remember To Buy Minute Maid

Eight years ago I ran across the cutest little citrus tree at Lowes Hardware here in Dallas and when I say citrus that was exactly what was printed on the label. "Citrus". I asked the nurseryman just what type of citrus, orange, lemon, lime, grapefruit? His answer was, ' just citrus'. As I always love a surprise I went ahead and bought my little pig-in-a-poke and hauled him home.

The tree had been grafted onto a heartier root stock and within a year the top portion died on me. Then the root stock began to grow. Eight years of nurturing later that sucker finally produced five oranges this year!

I watched them slowly turn to their bright orange color over the fall and marveled at just how pretty they were against the dark green foliage. Yesterday one had fallen off onto the patio and I picked the little guy up, sat down in one of the patio chairs and sniffed it's wonderful aroma. I then dug my nail into the rind and was greeted with the smell of fresh orange oil tickling my nose. My sensory evaluation was running in overdrive as I pulled the remaining cover from this heavenly fruit anticipating the nectar of the gods that I was about to experience.

I then pulled this fragrant globe in two, pulled off a section and popped it into my mouth.....

..... sourest freakin' orange I ever tasted!

On the knitting side I'm still working on that Debbie Bliss sweater, mittens using Justin's pattern and started a scarf for Jeff' dad using one of my favorite yarns, Berroco Ultra Alpaca. It's a 50/50 wool/alpaca blend and knits like a freaking dream. A bunch of us guys are heading up to Oklahoma City this weekend and I hope to get the scarf done over the drive up and back. The sweater and mittens will have to wait.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Best Wishes For 2007

Well, well, well. Here we are in a brand new year! Since I'm writing this you can assume that I survived and as you are reading this I can assume that you did too. Good for us. My only problem is that my recovery time stretches out longer and longer each year and here it is Thursday and I'm still working on it. Lord amighty!

Our original plan was to head to a private party in Denison but then decided to stay here in Dallas and not make the drive. That was probably a damn good idea.

Here is a pic of Jeff with all the 'tude' the guy could muster New Years Eve and when I say 'tude' he had it in spades but ya can't help but love him anyway.
I want to wish you all the happiest year ever and let's see if we can make it to 2008.

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

When It's Christmas Time In Texas

Y'all know a few months back I wrote that I thought that I would be sitting out the holidays this year considering how screwed up the summer was for me. Appearently I lied. I had one of the best Christmas' ever thanks to Mr. Jeff Pace seen here on the right. (go ahead, click on him, he loves it!)

As some of you already know Jeff and I met early October at the Pub here in Dallas and went out on our first 'date', for lack of a better description and a story I will share with just a choice few of you, that following Friday the 13th. I will have you know right here and now that Friday the 13th is not an unlucky day at all as Jeffy has turned out to be one really nice guy and I have come to think very hightly of him these past weeks.

The two of us had made plans to spend Christmas Eve together with my boss and his partner, spend the night with them watching movies and snacking around and then all of us cooking Christmas dinner at their house the following day but that plan changed when Jeff' mother asked if he would house sit for her while she went to the 'cabin' in West Texas. Being the good boy that he is he accepted and asked if I wanted to go along and 'meet the rest of the family'. I agreed ,we hopped into the car and off we went Friday afternoon destination: Emory Texas.

Please note that his last name 'Pace' is a misnomer, the little shit drives like a bat out of hell causing my right thigh to be larger than the left due to hitting my imaginary brake all the time.

An hour later we make it to Emory. Now I'm expecting a modest little house in East Texas and from the outside it was. A low profile brick structure with white trim, yes modest as it could be. It just happens to sit smack dab in the middle of 600 acres of the most beautiful Texas farmland to be had and decorated from stem to stern Texan. I mean it's beautiful. Everything you would think a Texas ranch would be. To the left is the fireplace. Again, click on it. It doesn't mind.

Here is the dining room.

The table and hutch are all weathered barnwood and believe it or not comfortable!

And now for the bedroom.

I hit my hip on that damn bed all weekend but it's cute.

But by far my favorite thing in the house, besides Jeff of course, is the Christmas 'tree'. It's a decorated 7'x6' cactus and is breathtaking.

Needless to say I was in heaven all weekend. You cannot imagine how wonderful it was to be sitting in a room heated by the stove in the fireplace, watching white horses gallop past the window in the pasture out back and just getting away from it all and looking forward to a long winters nap. But that wasn't to be.

When Jeff said he needed to visit family he darn well meant it! There are dozens of them all residing in Sulphur Springs. Saturday afternoon we celebrated with one faction of the family hosted by Granny and Grandpa Pace. That evening we did the same at Grandma Tittle' Ranch for another side of the family. Sunday rolled around and Jeff' went to his great-grandmothersby himself, I just wanted a rest. That brings us to Monday.

By far the best time I had was celebrating with Jeff' dad, Thomas and step mother, JaNae, and her side of the family. First because she is a very warm and welcoming person and second because she clued me in on where she hid the booze. That's she on the right (Jeff is the one who is not wearing the apron) and since this is supposed to be a knitting blog, that's a cable rib scarf that I knitted for him. I probably couldn't have made it without you JaNae. Thanks a million to both of you.

That takes us to Monday night when we finally drove back to Dallas and had dinner finally with the boss and his partner. I tell you I have never eaten so much over a weekend in my life.

Jeffy, I thank you for a wonderful time. Thanks for taking me to the land of sweet tea and white bread a plenty. I love you and my gout loves you too!