What makes me happy?
FINALLY having my stove (Magic Chef 1000) hooked up and merrily cooking away. I cannot tell you how wonderful it is to be able to cook on a stove and bake in an oven, after almost two years of microwaving food and eating out. I almost wept when Pete and his friend Scottie finally installed the stove this past weekend.
And what a cool and impressive stove to cook with. I marvel that this thing was made in 1935 and is STILL running in excellent condition. I do have to calibrate the smaller oven because the knob seems to be a bit off, but everything else is great. I'm amazed that it has pilot lights and is so efficient, for being so old. The ovens have to be lit with a match, but that's not a big deal at all, and it's cool to watch the strange burners with central rings of gas light up. Of course, I immediately set about cooking not only dinner for the three of us (for which the stove performed flawlessly, as always), but...
I baked the first cookies of many in it as well. This was the first test cookie (chocolate chip), and it turned out great. The smaller oven needed a lot of extra time, but it did all right, leading me to discover the knob needs to be adjusted. But the larger oven is wonderful, and has been baking batch after batch of cookies for us. (For the record, Scottie ate the first cookie baked, which is only fair, since he helped us so much.) Matt had also played a key part in helping Pete to move the stove to its proper location (no small feat, since it weighs about 560 pounds), for which I treated Matt out to dinner at a local Mexican restaurant.
Anyhow, yes, I became a baking fiend, but couldn't help myself. These were gone in a matter of minutes, with everyone drooling over the cookies, including the dogs.
A few days later I also made more chocolate chip cookies, and a batch of oatmeal raisin cookies too.
Another wonderful thing is that Matt and Pete brought in my china cabinet from the garage, which has been in storage for the last few years too.
I immediately set about hauling out all my vintage teacups that have been piling up in my cabinets since we moved here. I was a bit surprised by how many I had (22, plus one more missing a saucer), but they were so pretty to look at, and I was glad to have them out of the company of the mugs and glasses and into the china cabinet, where they belong. Since then, I've bought two more at the local antique shop, bringing my collection (with saucers) to 24.
For the moment, they're simply resting in the hutch of the china cabinet. The hutch was missing its shelves and had a piece of loose moulding, but I got it at Crate and Barrel Outlet for less than 1/3 the price, so I don't mind.
Pete needs to build/find some shelves for the hutch so I can properly set up the teacups, as well as our small collection of wedding china.
Another sublime development in our house this weekend is the moving of our entertainment center into our living room from our garage. It, too, has been in storage for two years now, waiting for the floor to be finished in the dining room so it could be moved into the living room. Pete had forgotten I even got the center, but I reminded him about it and the fact that I got it for FREE. Not bad for a solid piece of oak furniture. I'm so happy to have places to store DVDs, books, etc., as well as a proper place for our tv (and NOT the buffet cart that belongs in the dining room).
I also got a nice rug for the sink area at Crate and Barrel Outlet, and the cats and dogs seem very fond of it. Max especially likes to rest here, which is funny, because he is so photogenic against the bright orange rug and vivid blue floor.
Yes, I'm still waiting for Pete to fetch our dining room set from Jeanette's basement, and yes, the walls are unfinished in the kitchen and dining room. But I don't care. I am so happy to have a little bit more normalcy in our house and our lives (I am SO sick of microwave soup/chili and pizza rolls!), and I couldn't be more content at the moment. Well, that is, until Pete gets one of his broken cars up and running and gets rid of the other two beaters. But that's a challenge for another day. For now, I'm enjoying the sweet taste of victory (and cookies) and appreciating the baby steps we've taken to make our house a home, before our baby arrives and is stepping out as well.