Sunday, August 31, 2008

This Old Car: DIY Auto-style

We spent the weekend working on paint. Specifically, sanding down orange peel to a dull flat surface, then polishing the glow back on. This requires many, many, many gradations of sandpaper, rubbing compound, polishing compound, wax, second coat of wax... you get the idea. My arms feel enormous and are toasted like a s'more... I can barely lift my laptop! The right side is completely done now. The left ... Next weekend!

Done professionally, this job would have cost up to $1500. Our cost: about 200 smackers.

Preston's interior: Compare his stately new grey carpets and microfiber console to the old garish red. We finally got tired of the scarlet fuzz everywhere from the rugs disintegrating, and this is a vast improvement over the "pimped out" look. We used carpet from the Homo Depot and leftover material from the headliner project. Total cost: $50.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Taste of Britain

Matt, Denise, Gwyn and I took Preston out to collect Shaun from the car vet (Thanks Trevor!) and spent the day at the Taste of Britain car show. Preston has a lovely new interior, which I got terrible pics of so you'll have to wait. We did that ourselves last weekend. Which means Matt did it, except for me cutting carpet, screwing and unscrewing panels, and holding stuff while he sweated and cursed.

Shaun is running beautifully now, despite a rather alarming Windex-bottle-sized spray of diesel under the bonnet. It's a wonder we made it home without running out of fuel or bursting into flames. I think his new fuel pump isn't seated properly. We'll do some diagnostic work tonight.

Gwyn spotted the "food entry/exit" opportunity and snapped pics of a lot of car butts. She'd never been to a show before and was properly entranced.

Denise rode with me and captured the oh-so-pretty Amish countryside as we passed (barely) the horse-drawn buggys.

Friday, August 22, 2008

The wake of the storm

After the girls left, with all that traveling (including lots of little local trips to show them the Philly area and Baltimore), and still missing Blackberry*, we really needed some down time. For me, that meant more lace knitting. Here's what makes Matt happy:

*The cats are going nuts. She maintained the peace when Fig played too rough - now he's a roiling bundle of raging CoonCow. We really need another bossy bunny, but the landlord won't let us get a replacement rabbit. Not that anyone could replace her ... but we need a 24/7 police force here!

On to Maine!

Next we took the girls up to Maine for the annual Rose Family Reunion. This featured incredible cooking (by Matt's sister Nancy and her Andre) and tons of tiny children and pets running rampant.

We toured the tall ship Friendship. I was remiss in my picture-taking (it's hard to hold a camera while cracking a open a lobster) but at least I got Yanna (short for Juliana, Nancy's gorgeous daughter) and Mom.

We also played around with a metal detector and found some old blacksmith nails in the yard. Unfortunately the real motherlode - the colonial trash heap - was back in the woods behind a deer fence and we couldn't get at it. Next trip?

RoadTrip Beyond Ridiculous

The girls (Maddie, 15, and Gillian, 12) came to visit from Oregon and holy cow have they grown up. Both have teenager bodies now instead of being the stick kids I saw last. Gillie in particular has really changed. Both girls have a distinctive clothing style that makes me wish I were cooler. Oh well, at least I have my blue hair. We celebrated by throwing them in the back of the taxi and driving all over the country.

First, though, we had an awesome sleepover party with Denise and Pheobe involving Cherry Slush, chocolate cake, and pulled pork. G (right) & P served grog in the pirate room.

Then, off to Gettysburg. I took this pic of Matt and Gillie from behind (aka Lopey) because of the contrast with this one.