Copper Harbor Lighthouse

Copper Harbor Lighthouse

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Can You Hear Me Now?

I've been so busy that I neglected to tell you that I had to make another one of those calls to AT&T a couple of weeks ago. Yep, the April bill was still wrong. Actually, I had to make 2 calls that day. They disconnected me again the first time, and I was finally transferred to a man named "Mumble" during the second call. Well, that wasn't really his name, but I couldn't understand what he called himself. Mumble could tell that I was clearly exasperated with his company, so he told me he fixed the billing problem and didn't even charge me the $5.00 to keep the phone on "vacation mode." Uh, huh. He then went on to schedule the activation date with me. Since our AT&T billing cycle ended on Monday, April 27, I asked him to activate our service at the new house on Tuesday, April 28. Why tempt fate and expect them to bill us correctly for a partial month?

I connected 2 of our telephones to the phone jacks before we went to bed on Monday night, and I picked up the receivers to check them first thing Tuesday morning. Wow! I had a dial tone! 

But. . .

I also had an extremely loud buzzing noise. (Sigh.)

C'mon, really?

Isn't that exactly what I should have expected after all the hassles we've had in dealing with this company?

I put the receiver down and checked it several more times during the day. I was still hoping that the problem would correct itself. I know. . . delusional. Finally, after dinner, I made a call to my mom in Calumet. She had great difficulty hearing me due to that loud buzzing noise and said it sounded like I was calling from the North Pole. I would probably have better reception if I was calling from the North Pole! 

OK, now I'm fed up again, so I decide to call AT&T on the landline phone next - just so they could hear my lousy connection. There was only one problem with that plan. Their virtual operator couldn't understand what I wanted - due to all the "background noise" they told me I had. I tried calling them 3 times and they kept hanging up on me! 

Time for drastic measures. I call them a 4th time using our Verizon cell phone with a crystal clear connection. Now, the virtual operator decides he can't transfer me to the repair line because they don't handle Verizon repairs and gives me the Verizon telephone number! You've got to me kidding me! AT&T can tell that I'm calling them from a Verizon phone, but they can't do one thing right in installing/billing/activating my AT&T service! I somehow managed to get back to the voice prompts before they disconnected me again, and I finally reached a human being. I'm questioned about WHY I'm calling from a Verizon phone if I want repair on my AT&T line. "Because I just tried calling you on my AT&T line and your virtual assistant hung up on me 3 times - because he couldn't understand what I wanted - due to the fact that I have a loud buzzing noise on the line - and I sound like I'm calling from the North Pole!!!" (Or maybe from Maxwell Smart's shoe!)

After checking the line, she said it appears to be a problem outside the home. (Duh.) However, if the problem turns out to be a problem within the home, the service call with cost me $99. I reminded her (again) that this is new construction, and their installation guys installed it, so there shouldn't be a problem inside the home, right?

A repair guy is supposed to be here tomorrow between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Since they failed to show up for their first 3 appointments back when we had it installed, I'm not holding my breath.

Other than that, all is well in the Keweenaw.

Monday, April 27, 2015

Happy Birthday, Honey!

Thank you for being such a wonderful, thoughtful husband. You are my greatest blessing, and I thank the Lord for you every day. I love you, Sweetheart. Happy Birthday!

All is well in the Keweenaw.

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Friday, April 24, 2015

Sneak Peek Friday - Christmas in April

So, I was lollygagging around here this morning and on my second cup of coffee when I suddenly remembered it was Friday! You tend to forget that sort of thing when you no longer have a job M-F. Anyway, Steve went poking around in the barn for me last week and came across this box.

It felt like Christmas in April as I opened the box - except that I knew exactly what was in it.

I ordered those specifically for this house when we were still living in Saginaw - probably around 2006 or 2007. I peeked at them when they arrived, but I wouldn't use them until we made it here. Steve also found the box containing the copper and stainless breadbox that I got around the same time.

We're still finding (and looking for) lots of other goodies that have been packed away for this house, so you'll probably be getting peeks at those items, too.

On a side note, the sun was actually very effective yesterday and gave us quite a bit of melting - despite the temperature. Looks like another gorgeous day today, and the extended forecast is predicting highs in the 40's and 50's for the next 10 days!

All is well in the Keweenaw.

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Meltdown? What Meltdown?

Well, that didn't last long. It started snowing on Monday morning and didn't stop completely until sometime yesterday - officially adding another 11 inches to our Keweenaw County total. That brings us to 271.5" for the season (as of early this morning).

Remember the stakes we have in the backyard? Here's the photo from last Saturday again.

Here's the photo from Tuesday.

Speaking of Tuesday, we were out and about - running errands and celebrating my birthday. OK, maybe I'm not so thrilled about the extra number I had to add to my statistics, but I am very thankful for another year of life. I wouldn't mind if time started to slow down a bit from now on, though, as I'm really enjoying our life in the Keweenaw.

This was my view out our bedroom window when I awoke on Tuesday.

Then, the view from the great room.

This particular tree captured my attention.

I zoomed in for a better look.

After a leisurely morning, we headed to Calumet and Houghton on some errands. I snapped a few photos as we made our way down our driveway. Love the beauty of that fresh snow.

The worst thing about having both of our birthdays in April is that it necessitates an expensive visit to get our new license tags every year. Steve also had to renew his driver's license this year, but I don't have to renew mine until 2017. We always find it amusing that we can walk in and right up to the counter to take care of that business up here - no taking a number and waiting in line necessary!

The best thing about having our birthdays 6 days apart is that it necessitates two visits to The Hut. They give you a FREE meal on your birthday. Naturally, you try to pick one of the most expensive meals on the menu, so I got the full rack of ribs and brought most of them home. I shared them with Steve as an evening snack for 2 nights, and Cocoa is getting all the bones (one or two each evening). Steve will order the same thing when we return for his birthday meal on Monday, but I know he won't be bringing home as many as I did. I'll be lucky to get a taste! Cocoa will still get all the bones, however.

I'm killing some time here at the new house - doing laundry and waiting for the guys to get here with the U-Haul truck we rented. They're emptying out our 2 remaining storage units today. Yes!

(OK, I was interrupted over 3 hours ago before I published this post. Would someone please remind me why I wanted some of my grandmother's furniture? Oh, yes - sentimental value. I just sat down for the first time since the guys arrived with the U-Haul, and I spent the last 3 hours cleaning the first piece off the truck - one of her china cabinets. I hate to tell ya, but it was one of the cleanest pieces. I'll probably be cleaning furniture all summer. Oh well. It will be worth it in the long run, and I'm thankful for each piece.)

The sun has popped out,

but it's cold.

Not sure how much melting will occur today. Like I said before, summer IS coming!

All is well in the Keweenaw.

Monday, April 20, 2015

Having A Meltdown

We've had some bee-you-ti-full weather in the Keweenaw for the last 2 weeks. Yes, we've also had about 6-1/2" of new snow and a 1/2" of rain, but we've enjoyed our Keweenaw Blue skies on most days. 

The locals tell us this slow and steady Spring meltdown we're experiencing is actually pretty typical (unlike the rapid meltdowns we've had the last 3 years since moving here). Our sump pumps in the new house and in Calumet haven't even kicked on. That sounds impossible when you know we had 260.5" of snow, but it's true. The snow got very deep very quickly and unexpectedly back in November, so Steve hadn't had the opportunity to clean things up around the exterior of the house. Now that the snow is melting, we're seeing all kinds of things that were covered so nicely all winter. For example, he had staked out the septic field last year to prevent anyone from driving over it. We began to see some of the stakes appearing in late March, and I began to photograph one of them on a daily basis since April 3rd. That gave me the following documentation of our meltdown.
April 3
April 9
April 12
April 13
April 15
April 16
April 17
April 18

Temperatures are taking a nosedive this week, but Summer IS coming!

All is well in the Keweenaw.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Friday, April 17, 2015

Sneak Peek Friday - Goo Gone

Life at the new house is great! Really great! The only thing bad about getting new appliances, showers and tubs is cleaning the sticky residue left behind when you pull off all the tape and stickers. Thankfully, a product like "Goo Gone" was invented. That made the job easier, but it was still quite a job. Here's a photo showing some of the tape stuck to the new stove.

Doesn't look too bad, right? Well, that took me about an hour to remove.

It does look better, though.

The real killer was the shower in the guest bathroom. I always knew it was going to involve some work.

All that brown tape left behind an incredible amount of gunk. Plus, under that cardboard on the shower floor were nickle and dime size pieces of horrible red stickiness. After contorting my body into all kinds of awkward positions and sniffing way more Goo Gone than I cared to sniff, it was finally clean - but it took me 2-1/2 hours.

Goo Gone is a definite plus, but that doesn't mean you don't have to use a lot of good old elbow grease. Actually, it was more like fingertip and finger joint grease. My fingertips were so raw that two of them split open, and I mean split open - deep. It looked like a very sharp knife had attacked them. That was real fun for a week or so.

The bright side: nice shiny new things - and I won't have to do that job again.

As a bonus peek today, here's a photo of another milestone.

A closet pole seems like a simple thing, but it felt like a tremendous leap forward to have the first one up last week. Yes, it's the foyer closet, the trim and door isn't on and we don't have a proper shelf in it yet, but we have the pole! 

ONE MORE NOTE:  Please use my new email address when you email me from now on. It is Thanks!

All is well in the Keweenaw.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Saturday, April 11, 2015


Yes, it does!

Thanks to this little gray cylinder mounted in the corner between the garage and the laundry room. . .

and this black modem mounted in the rafters of the basement. . .

I'm able to share my view through the patio doors this afternoon while I type this sitting in the great room.

I can even share the view I have when I look up.

Isn't the Internet marvelous?! At this point in time, it's impossible to get Dish or DirecTV or cable at the new house. Those services may never be available to us, but we can still stay in touch and connected to the world via the Internet. We have a strong 4G signal here. Even the installation technicians were amazed! That was another huge blessing.

We. . .

are. . .

HOME. After the years of planning. After the years of waiting. After the years of working. We're HOME - on the Eagle Harbor Road - in Keweenaw County - in the Keweenaw Peninsula - in Michigan's Upper Peninsula. 

From our very first trip to the Keweenaw back in 2002, this area has always felt like home to us. We knew we wanted to be here. We knew we needed to be here. We understood that some people thought we were crazy, but we just aren't able to explain how much we love it here. It's the serenity, it's the solitude, it's the scenery, it's the safety, the slower pace of life and so much more. 

Despite all the struggles, we somehow had faith that we would get here. A friend recently confessed to us that he really didn't think we would ever do it (build the house) even after we moved to Calumet. Well, we did - and we owe all the praise and honor to the Lord. We still have lots to do, but Steve would go nuts if he had to sit around all day. He needs projects and he has plenty here! 

TODAY is a VERY GOOD DAY to be HAPPY - because we're HOME! 

Even our light bulbs say so!
We are so very blessed! 

All is well (and happy) in the Keweenaw.

Friday, April 10, 2015

It's Home!

Our address and phone probably won't change for a few more weeks. We still have lots of finishing work to do on the house. . .

but, it's now officially HOME!

Let's go over the list:

þ  Shower

þ    Toilet

þ  Hot Water

þ  Appliances

þ  Bed

þ  Sofa

þ  Dog

þ  Internet

Dog = Arrived on Wednesday!

Verizon 4G LTE (Wireless) Internet = Installed Today!

Since I haven't yet dropped the Charter Cable at the Calumet house, my Charter email is still functioning here at the new house. I'll be switching to a G-Mail Internet Address within a week. I'll try to let all my contacts know my new email address as soon as I set it up. In the meantime, continue to use my Charter email address ( or go back to my old, old email address ( That msn account will continue to work, as I use it for a lot of my online orders in an effort to keep more junk out of my regular email address.

So, it's officially. . .

 All is wonderful in the Keweenaw!

Sneak Peek Friday - The First

Here he is. The first to go up!

Amazing what my hubby can do when I'm not looking. Sneaky, isn't he? This guy somehow made it up on the wall before all the window trim did!

All is well in the Keweenaw.