Here is a random summary of what I’ve been up to:

It has been a lovely autumn. I am enjoying myself, and the weather is fine.

Autumn leaves

I have decided to wage war on most of the carpet in the house, starting with the living room. That means I’m ripping it out. The hardwood floors that were under the living room carpet need some serious care, but they are still better than the carpet, which was on my nerves.

Rudy on LR carpet removal

So there is a pile of stuff growing and waiting for a trip to the landfill.

Pile of carpet rolls

We are still washing the dishes in a dishpan. In doing so we (I) have caused the side of the counter’s splash board to detach because there was a bit too much water in the draining area. There were no draining boards in stock the day I bought the rack, and I haven’t been back to the store since. Plus I don’t that it would have saved the situation. Water gets around. Frosty the Snowkid claims she remembers the installation guys warning me of this when they put in the countertop in 2001 – when she was 4.

Kitchen counter detaching

I haven’t done much with the bathroom except clear the drains manually with rubber gloves and a hanger. That’s a job that will make you reassess the meaning of life. (No picture provided.)

Frosty and I missed our kayak class this weekend because of the weather. That’s probably it for kayaking until the spring. The sight of my kayak shoved in the shed tells me that I need to get cold weather kayaking gear, that I need to get proper hanging hooks for my kayak, and that my shed is too full.

Kayak in shed

I am half way through my Teaching Reading in the Content Areas class and am still enjoying it. I repeat: I really wish I knew these techniques when I was a student.

Frosty the Snowkid is closing in on the end of her first calendar year of online school and doing great.  Unless you ask her, in which case she’s apparently going to fail out of 7th grade.

Mary about to fail school

Plum loves learning about Maryland facts and history.  She seems to like war.

Abby's Maryland history work

Paul suggests I should work towards running in a 5K in December.  I still don’t like jogging, but the wiser person deep inside me thinks that I should at least be strong enough to run 3 miles if I had to.  It’s just that when I try to move fast it feels like I’m suddenly made of jello-shaped lead weights.

I could just keep telling myself that ripping out the carpet tack strips is plenty of exercise.

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About a year ago I started renting kayaks here and there to see if I like paddling enough to buy my own kayak.

Kayak tip

I did, so this past spring I bought a very cute little Swifty 9.5 foot recreational kayak (with paddle and PFD).

New kayak

The whole family enjoyed it with our friends this summer on the shores of Oneida Lake, but I’ve only gone out alone with it once or twice.

Kayaking by canal at sunset

For my own peace of mind, I need some training and practice before I head out alone on any extended trips far from shore. As an incentive, I’m posting my kayaking goals for the whole world to see.  This way maybe I’ll do them.

Kelly’s Kayaking Goals (in no particular order):

1. Join a paddling club.  Perhaps the Chesapeake Paddlers Association (CPA).

2. Find a beginner’s class.  Something offered through the CPA or a local community center group?

3. Get extra equipment (pump, whistle, dry bag, spray skirt, etc.)

4. Study up on maritime information like tides and weather.

5. Practice kayaking skills at Fairland this winter.

6. Find a kayaking buddy or buy a second kayak and equipment so a family member can join me : )

7. Go kayaking more often!

Then maybe I’ll get to see more of this:

Osprey at Jug Bay