Monday, August 31, 2009
When I went to pick up the mail this past Saturday...what excitment! The whole Post Office was in a buzz because I got a package marked "Royal Mail" from South Wales. Why you would think it came directly from the Queen herself with all the fuss. I bet all 80 people were told I got this package!
The package came from Gina, http://quiltinginthevalleys.blogspot.com/. Gina sent me a house warming gift. When I got to the Post Office, I was pretty much exhausted, dirty, hungry and just needed to lay down. All the fuss gave me a serge of engery and I had to of course open it right there in the post office so all the ladies could see what came from so far away!
Thank you Gina for making everyone's day just a bit brighter with this package. I just love it! Purple and turquoise are one of my favorite combinations and the gold just sets it off so nicely. I can't wait to get a sewing room again so I can hang all my quilties up where I can enjoy them everyday. For now, your Star quilt will adorn my cubby in my bedroom. The card made me smile. I had just spent the day planting 10 peony bushes at the new house!
Friday, August 28, 2009
Having gone to school in Philadelphia, I learned a lot about Billy Penn, Betsy Ross, Christ Church, but if you asked me about Oil Drilling I would have said- Texas.
Because of moving I have nothing to share with you so I'll share today's newspaper, The News Harold. The story is written by Judith O. Etzel, staff writer
Western Pennsylvania's greatest claim to fame originates from a grimy, exhausting and less than auspicious get-rich scheme that took place in the middle of a dusty field near Oil Creek on a hot summer day exactly 150 years ago.Col. Edwin Drake's labors would turn how America works on its ear and launch an industry that continues to dominate the world economy.
While not a gusher when it came in on August 27, 1859, Drake's successful oil well, conisisting of an iron pipe hand driven down 69.5 feet in the Venango County soil, pumped enough crude oil into a scattering of buckets to mark the birth of the world's commercial petroleum industry.
This was not the only event of 1859. James Buchannan was the president of the US and as the nation's only president from Pennsylvania, ironically presided at a time when his own state would boast the birthplace of the oil industry.
He began his third year in office signing documents admitting Oregon as the 33rd US state. In the same year, ground was broken for the Suez Canal.
Napoleon III of France defeated Franz Josef I of Austria in the Battle of Solferino, Italy, in mid 1859. Queen Victoria decreed that Australia's Queenland be allowed to organize as a separate colony. The Comstock Lode was discovered in western Nevada, and it marked the first major US silver strike.
On the domestic front, The song Dixie was composed and debuted at a minstrel show in NY city.The first hotel passenger eleavator in the US was installed in a Hotel in NY City.
In Mass., inventors rigged a battery & wire contraption in a Salem house to pull off the first electric powered home demonstration. George Pulllman introduced the first rail sleeping car and tightrope walker Charles Biondin crossed over the Niagara Falls as 25,000 spectators watched. The year also spawned the pony express. The first overland delivery from St. Louis to San Francisco took 24 days.
As Drake and his cohorts were revving up the Oil Valley en route to inventing an industry, quite another set of circumstances in 1859 was poised to turn the nation inside out. It would culminate in the Civil War (1861-65), a conflict that would have an impact on the infant oil industry.
Less than two months after Drake's well came on line, abolitionist John Brown and 21 others seized the US armory at Harper's Ferry, Va. in a move designed to instigate a slave rebellion. Brown was hanged for treason.
Abraham Lincoln was elected President in 1860, only a year after Drade's drilling exploits. The Civil War would begin a year later.
The War resulted in the oil industry, a learn-as-you-go bare-knuckled occupation in those early years, being waylaid for a few years as manpower and supplies were tight.
Once the War ended, hundreds of veterans flooded the oil valley looking for jobs.
Photo of Drake and his Oil Well
So there ya have it. Pennsylvania was the first oil strike. I should have guessed that with the next town over being named...Oil City!
Saturday, August 22, 2009
Tuesday, August 18, 2009
Sunday, August 16, 2009
On to the yard. Well, it doesn't look like we made much progress, but we did! Of course, we ran over a few boards and now need to replace the mower blades next week. Stuff happens.
We are only cutting 1/2 acre. Since we are going into winter we'll just let everything die off and worry about it in the spring. The deer love it just like it is, so this winter they get a treat.
One side of the house all mulched and it's suppose to rain a lot this week, so lets hope the brown turns green!
Oh, you might wonder what boards were doing laying in all the grown up grass??? It seems they needed fire wood for the fire pit so they tore down the deck and handicap ramp. We found some of the deck in the weeds and the steps in the fire pit.
Makes me wonder why they just didn't use the stack of 50 0r so trees stacked up for the purpose of using the fire pit. Maybe they didn't have a saw??
Next weekend Dave is going away so we won't be going to the house. We have a lot of things on order anyway and they might not be in by the weekend.
When we lived in this house for 3 years, no one, not one person lifted their eyes to say hello. It was one on the biggest reasons I was glad to leave. In fact, we heard they were calling us the "carpet baggers". We didn't have "blood" in the town of less then 80 people and we were not welcome.
I have a feeling they didn't like the last neighbors they had. Maybe we weren't so bad after all?? Today a "neighbor" came and worked himself simple in 88 degree temperatures raking and hauling away grass and weeds. Since we won't be able to go to the house next weekend he offered to come and mow the lawn so it doesn't get out of hand again. He also said he might be able to get his boy scout troup to put in a day of work towards earning badges next Saturday...Gee, things might be different this time. He also said he & his wife run the senior center and maybe I would like to go with them...wow, I almost dropped over!!
The shame of it all is that we have no intention of living here. I guess you can say we are "flipping" the house. If we get it back together I hope we can sell it next year.
So, that was this weekends happenings. Now I'm off to bed for some much needed rest!
Sunday, August 9, 2009
Wednesday, August 5, 2009
It all sounded good when we headed out to Home Depot to load up on supplies. No sense in fighting with walls and plumbing. We decided to just remove the walls and bring all the pipes upstairs so we don't ever run into the freezing problem again. Since ALL the pipes need replacing it just seems the easiest way to handle it.
Here are photo's from our of last battle with this house. First we had to strip away the 1970's brown paneling, then the 1930's plaster board and finally we were down to the hand cut lumber the house was made out of...no studs, no insulation.
All the ceilings were the metal grid office type and under that was plaster board. There was also the original wiring from the 1920's and newer wiring which was not up to code.
We tried to live in the rooms while we studded it out and insulated. It was just an awful way to live!
Anyway, now that we are tuned up and ready to do it, last night I head something pop in my hip. With the disease I have it's not uncommon to get little fractures, and of course my bones chose now to get one. I don't know how much help I'll be this weekend. Today I was in awful pain but it seems to be getting better with each hour.
Anyway, I'll post when I can, but don't expect too much with all this going on. Tammy, thanks a bunch for the offer. We are just not near the stage of painting and finishing. Just getting water running again so we can move in will be a real challenge.
Monday, August 3, 2009
Soon after we moved, I got sick and won't be getting better. This area never recovered from the down slop of the 1970's so selling the house quickly just wasn't in the cards. So we gifted it last year to just get it off our hands. The deal was our names had to remain on the title for a year, sort of like an adoption.
To make the story short, the taxes and sewer were not paid for a year. Today we took the house back much to my sorrow. It is no longer in the condition it was a year ago. Lets just say I don't know how you live in a house so cold that the water pipes freeze, the water heater and the pump to the well.
Over the next few weeks we will be replacing ALL the water pipes and water heater, repairing the well pump and so much more. I wanted to move to a warm nice place...but looks like we are getting back "The Money Pit", like it or not.
Here is what it looked like back when it was the Salem Hotel.
This is what it looked like when we left a year ago.
I was just too up set to take a photo today. For some reason the people in this area turn their homes into junk yards..yep, even in one year. So in a few weeks when things start to look up for this house, I'll take a photo then. I don't know how I'll make it through this mess. I just don't know how.