Living Large In Our Little House

When Old Friends are New

We found we have more in common than our ancestry

We found we have more in common than our ancestry

Last weekend, we had guests at The Little House and it was awesome.

Mike’s mother, my Aunt Grace, was my mother’s best friend. His parents were also my Godparents, an honor in the Lutheran Church that is more than just symbolic.

We lived on the same block of post WWII bungalows and our dads worked for the same railroad. While the neighborhood was generally tight-knit, our families were even more so, vacationing and celebrating milestones with each other.

I even learned this weekend that our fathers hand-dug the basement together that created the addition to their little house.

After my maternal grandmother died when I was a baby, Mike’s Grandma Quinn became my grandma too. And there were the coffee klatches, Mom and Aunt Grace could sit smoking cigarettes, drinking coffee and talking all day (Mom often recounted this is where they learned President Kennedy was shot).

Mike is four years older than me and we were both mid-life babies. Truth be known, his birth was probably the inspiration my mother needed to have another child when her older three children were almost raised.

(more…)

A Spring in my Step

The view of our road

The view of our road

The weather has finally cooperated enough in the past three weeks so the dogs and I could start our seasonal walks. I’m a fair-weathered walker and our winter was so brutal here this year that we all got out of shape pretty fast.

The first summer we lived here, the dogs and I would walk about 4 miles per day, even in the heat of July and August. When we moved here, Dale stayed in the city for three months finishing up a job while securing a position here. I was lonely and still in grief over the loss of my mother and the walks on those hot humid days seemed to purge the sadness from me somehow. It also did wonders for my stamina and weight loss. We had gone to our German exchange daughter’s wedding that summer and there’s nothing that will tell you that you’re out of shape faster than a trip to Europe where walking and biking is the norm.

(more…)

A Busy Weekend

A dinner invitation, lots of work and prepping for a visit from my Godbrother and his wife this weekend prevented me from writing a meaningful post.  Please feel free to browse the archives and join me back here on Wednesday for more Living Large!

The Sun is Setting on an Era

Lake view

Several years ago, I read an essay in a magazine about a middle-aged woman who was dealing with what to do with her mother’s prized antiques. She had recently decided to sell them and the essay was about coming to terms with letting go of the things that had meant so much to her mother.

I read that then, knowing I would be that woman someday.

My someday is here.

Perhaps it was reading “The Lovely Bones,” which is a book about moving on – for the living and the dead in that case – but I awoke one morning several weeks ago ready to let some of the things I have of my mother’s finally go.

(more…)

I’m Not Laughing With You

Bedroom

That was appropriate for the funny saying on my dog calendar on Monday. You see, sometime in the early morning hours of Monday, I heard a Thump!

And then I felt one.

After a couple of swear words from me that are not suitable for this forum and an “Are you alright?” from my husband, I heard him laughing.

(more…)

Pantry Pests

Indian Meal Moth

Indian Meal Moth

The other night I saw a moth in the house and about freaked out. You see, it was about this time last year that we found we had an infestation of Indian Meal Moths. The one the other night was the larger moths found outside (he was promptly relocated back out), which was a huge relief.

My mother always kept a sparkling clean house and we never had a problem with bugs. That explains why I didn’t know what a cockroach looked like when I took my first full time job, which happened to be in apartment management.
I won’t say my house is clean all of the time, but during our 23-year marriage, we have managed to keep our house clean enough to keep pests away.
There’s almost nothing I hate more than a bug in my kitchen.

(more…)

Green on the Cape

I’m really excited today to present a guest post by one of our loyal readers, Alexandra Grabbe, an innkeeper of Chez Sven, a green B&B on Cape Cod. If you have ever had the desire to visit the Cape and can do so in April, Alexandra is offering 10% off the room rate for Living Large readers. Just mention us when you make your reservations!

Chez Sven B&B

Chez Sven B&B

I’m thrilled to address the readers of Living Large in Our Little House, one of my favorite blogs.  My house is not as small as Dale and Kerri’s, but it isn’t big either, and I’m proud of that fact.

My husband Sven and I live in a traditional three-quarters Cape, in Wellfleet, Massachusetts, an old house that once belonged to my parents. We actually have too much space for my taste.   I wanted to keep this marvelous house in the family, so five years ago I started a green bed & breakfast called Chez Sven.

(more…)