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Sunday, January 16, 2022

COVID In The House x 2

Between Christmas burn-out, cold weather (well, okay, at least for us), and the demands of work, blogging has taken a back seat. Ohhh, I'll get around to it again but there's no rush. I do have a lot of things I'd like to cover but all in good time.

When my oldest daughter got married last year, her husband had a dog which he brought with him. The dog's name? COVID

Welll, the real COVID finally caught up with us. Last week Sunday my grand daughter was running a fever. Monday, her mother brought her in for testing and to get meds. The results came back two days ago as positive for COVID. However, we don't know which variant it is but it appears to be a milder form. Omicron perhaps??? We don't know. It's a crowded - and busy - house and my oldest daughter, youngest daughter, son-in-law, and Bettina were all sick this week with low grade fevers lasting 2-3 days and sniffles. While they didn't get tested it's a safe assumption - given the nature of this bug - that it is probably COVID and that's how we're pressing forward. 

Opa Fritz

Friday, December 31, 2021

TRAIN TIME: This Year's Final Christmas Set-up: Kristkindl Markt, Lionel Polar Express Train Set & Running Trains on Two Layouts

This year's Christmas display wasn't nearly as elaborate as last year's I'm afraid. A bit of Christmas burn-out and a bit of lethargy set in and the desire to go big and bold just wasn't there. Last year of course, the train board was an empty slate on which I could do what I wanted really. This year though that 'empty slate' board was beginning to transition into my permanent layout and options were a tad limited. Deciding to go with a 'big city Christmas market' look seemed to work well. I initially planned to put Lemax Christmas streetlights around the downtown area but cost overruns prevented that this year. One addition that I'm particularly stoked about is the acquisition of Lionel's LionChief The Polar Express train set. It's not Bluetooth enabled so I can't run it off the LionChief app on my phone, but it's still a very nice set. It's an older version from 2014 with plain black roofs (vs. the 'snow' covered roofs of the more recent versions). Here's hoping and praying that 2022 will be much better than the last two years! 

Enjoy! Op Fritz

Here's the final Christmas market. Six different Lemax stalls all but one lighted (the stall on the far left is an older unlit stall). A few winter activities like skating rink, train, etc, round out the display. Easy to set-up these were just the right thing for my energy-less year.










During the period of setting this up I ran perhaps four or five different trains - picture here is the tail end of a Lionel Santa Fe set.





A little night running






(L) RMT's North Pole and Snowflake Express (R) Lionel's The Polar Express


The Edge of Town layout got in the fun as well. I pulled out a red Modern Marx engine (from their work train) and Marx Christmas cars and ran them simultaneously with the trains on the larger layout.

















Tuesday, December 21, 2021

TRAIN TIME: An Update To My Edge of Town Micro-Layout and This Year's Marx Christmas Train

The American Model Builders gas station is now on the Edge of Town micro-layout. It still needs weathering and the area around it needs scenicking but that's all for a future project or two. For this year, I'm running my Marx Christmas train on the EoT. Last year it was run on the larger layout. The engine I was using to pull the Marx Christmas consist gave up the ghost so I pulled this bright red train from my New Marx (aka Modern Marx) work train set. Enjoy! Opa Fritz










The train is a mix of Modern Marx and custom pieces











Saturday, December 18, 2021

TRAIN TIME: Working on The Edge of Town Layout Again - American Model Builders All-American Gas Station

Edge of Town (EoT) layout update. FINALLY, after a long hiatus, I got around to doing some work on the EoT. I made this American Model Builders All-American Gas Station kit for this area of the layout. Not a professional-grade build but better than a poke in the eye! LOL I also had to clean the layout up in preparation for running some trains. Next, I'll have to weather it a bit, add ground cover and more details. Enjoy! Opa Fritz