Friday, December 19, 2008
Tuesday, December 9, 2008
Is it because of the terrible traffic on the road that seems to spring out of nowhere? Or is it the shopping for presents for people who are impossible to shop for? Is it the incessant family time that your mother guilt's you into? Or maybe - my personal theory - we all just miss the hot humid weather of the summer because that's why we live in Florida, dammit, we like the heat.
Whatever it is it - everyone has got it. It's like a bad cold that seems to just keep going around. No one can shake it. Everyone I know is acting like a Scrooge.
I, for one, am going to have a great holiday season - even if it kills me.
This past weekend I made Dave drag the fake tree out of storage, put it together, and plug it in to infuse some holiday cheer into the house. Granted it's not decorated yet. (What? I'm a busy girl. Shopping for impossible people to shop for.) But still... it looks pretty when all the lights are lit. And I made D drag out the ladder and throw some lights on the outside of the house. He was profusely against this endeavor, afraid it would draw more attention to the peeling paint and overgrown shrubs in the front. My theory - It's still got peeling paint, even if we DON'T put lights on it so why the hell not? It's fun. Plus the street looks so festive when everyone has a little twinkle on their house ;)
I think tonight's agenda will be pulling out all the ornaments and stockings and hanging them by the chimney with care...
What if I don't have a chimney? Hmm...
Thursday, December 4, 2008
...Arnold in his. (But Arnie's food comas seem to happen every day... hmm... I wonder if turkey is an ingrediant in catfood?)
Monday, November 24, 2008
For Part One of the story... I think I'll fill you in on the actual installation. The appliance guys called and said they'd be at my house sometime between 12 and 4pm on Thursday, November 20. They showed up at 3:30 (naturally). The first task was taking out the old double oven/range. They struggled with that thing for like 20 minutes... and then once they got it out realized why it took so long. It was literally stuck to the cabinets. 38 years of grease had glued it into it's little spot in the kitchen. YUCK.
While the guys were struggling to get it out the door I quickly grabbed a Mr. Clean eraser and scrubbed the cabinets so as not to have the same problem in 38 more years. (Oh yeah... and vacuumed up the dead roaches on the floor. Ick.) Then the guys came back in with the brand spankin new equipment and promptly told me they could not install the microwave above the oven because there was no outlet. Long story short, AHS would not pay for an outlet to be installed because it was a "modification"... nor would they pay for the cord needed to actually plug in the stove. (GGGrrrrr... more on the "fantastic customer service skills of AHS" later...)
So on the Sunday before Thanksgiving it took Dave all day but finally he got an outlet put in. There were all these weird supports and boards in the wall - I'm guessing that's because there used to be a doorway where the stove now resides. Remember this? We discovered the old doorway after we stripped the wallpaper in the dining room, which is adjacent to the kitchen.
Monday, November 17, 2008
It's quite the shock... but I think we were just worn out from the Rays almost winning the world series, the Gator games and Jags games, and don't forget about those pesky elections that kept Dave at the office until 2:36 AM. (News sucks.)
So we've done some minor - itsy bitsy teeny weeny - things around the house, but nothing really spectacular where you'd say - Wow what a difference!
Instead I am focusing my efforts on NOT FREAKING OUT over the fact that we are almost 1 week away from hosting our first Thanksgiving. (See how well I'm doing?)
Thursday, October 30, 2008
So needless to say work on the house has been minuscule.
Hmm... where to begin?
I think when we spoke last we were coming up on the weekend of October 18th - which was a bye week for the Gators AND the Jags. I had high hopes for that ugly wallpaper. But alas we had bee-a-U-tiful weather and I just couldn't stand being cooped up in that poorly ventilated bathroom!!
So Dave and I tackled the flower beds in the front yard. It was a full 2 days of digging up weeds, pulling vines, splitting up lilies and planting them in bare spots. We then stumbled upon some free mulch that we put to good use. That's right. FREE mulch.
So that was the whole weekend. We were sore, tired, and sunburned... but happy to finally not be embarrassed of the front yard!
Tuesday night I went to the Dolly Parton concert with my friend Dana. It was fabulous, of course. Dolly was a tiny sparkly ball of energy on stage. And we had fun standing up and belting out Jolene with the 65 year old ladies next to us...
Wednesday was the big golf outing at work... I was one of the captains this year and I'm proud to say my team won. (Any doubt in your mind??) We were rewarded with a week of jeans... which I am enjoying at my desk right now.
And then on Friday Dave's friend Ryan from Chicago came into town. It was pretty much beer and sports the whole weekend.
This past week we tried to get back on a normal sleep (and eating) schedule... but today all that goes out the window. Not only is it Halloween... it's Florida/ Georgia weekend. Which means.... you guessed it... beer and sports. (And candy corn. YUM.)
(See? you mock me. But I'm telling you... I am turning into a man.)
((Would that make Dave gay??))
So I have high hopes for November. We are now down to 3 weeks before Thanksgiving!!
MAYBE we can get some more projects accomplished.
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
I reach for the scraper and the water bottle every night.... but can't quite seem to actually pick them up. Instead I just stare at it... hoping it will spontaneously start peeling off the wall by itself.
It's not really working for me.
Have I mentioned the fact that it's on the ceiling before?
Can someone please motivate me?
Thursday, October 9, 2008
Wednesday, October 8, 2008
We only put on lights in the room that we happen to be in. We don't buy bottles of water, rather we (GASP!) drink water out of the tap. And I put just about everything in the recycling bin now-a-days. (And most times they take it!)
But recycling doesn't have to stop there. You can also re purpose and reuse things in your home. Sometimes just a coat of paint will change the look of things... or sometimes it's as easy as moving it to a different room. Remember this?
That was the old yucky fan that was in the master bedroom. Not really worthy of "inside the house" status. BUT it makes a great impression in it's new home in the garage!!
Dave figured out a way to hang it from the rafters. And now it's got a new life keeping the boys cool while they enjoy the Golden Tee machine or play poker.
We never would have thought to put a fan in the garage, but since it was there and it didn't cost us a thing, Dave thought what the heck! Let's hang it up and see if we like it!
And we do. :)
(Well - truth be told, Dave had a bottle of vino, I had 2 vodka tonics, and we were listening to the stray cats fighting on the next street over. But it sounds so much more romantic the other way doesn't it??)
So here we are, alone with our thoughts.... nothing moving... just the calm of a nice night.
And Dave says, "You know what we need? MUSIC!"
Yup. That's right. The very next day Dave got to work hanging the outdoor speakers over the deck. It was quite the project. We had to figure out how to run the wire from the radio/CD player in the garage to the deck. This involved somehow going through a brick wall. Hmmm.
D actually ended up using an existing hole that a pipe was going through. He made it bigger and threaded the 4 wires needed through it. We realized that we actually have no idea what this pipe goes to, or what it's used for? But if I've learned anything from living in an old house it's this ---- If you don't know what it is, and it's not hurting anything, LEAVE IT ALONE. There's probably a good reason it's there, just no one is alive from the time when they installed it to tell you what that reason is.
So the speakers are up, the music comes through great, and the deck is open for tailgating! Just be careful about the actual wood on the deck... you might slip on the mold or fall through an old board. But that's another project!
A picture of where we had to go through the brick..... and Arnold, supervising.
Dave hard at work.......... and Viola! Where the speakers live today!
Thursday, October 2, 2008
I was in the kitchen cleaning up after dinner... while Dave headed to the back to "use the facility" as my grandma would say.
Dave: "Dammit! The bathroom light tripped the circuit breaker again. Stupid electricity. I'll have to investigate why later."
Me, not really paying attention: "Can you take the garbage out; it's REALLY stinky."
After work I walked around the house straightening up and noticed the master bathroom was out of TP. So I walked over to the guest bathroom to get some out of the closet, flipped the light switch and what the?? the electricity's still out.
Me: "DAVE! Didn't you fix this yesterday??"
Dave: "No. I told you I would have to investigate why the light keeps tripping the breaker. And I need daylight to do that. It will have to wait until I can get home from work early enough."
Me: "I don't remember that."
Then I noticed that the little button in the middle of the socket was popped out and the little light is red. (If you've ever used a powerful hairdryer, you know what I'm talking about.)
Ah ha! I know how to fix this. You just pop it back in! Simple. Why didn't Dave try that? Men. So lazy.
So I walked over and OUCH!!!!! got a shock while trying to push that stupid little button in. Ok. Well maybe Dave is onto something. (Dammit. I hate it when he's right.)
6pm. I am elbow deep in meatloaf mixture.
Dave: "Hey. Can you help me with the circuit breaker test? Now would be a great time. It's still light outside."
Me: "Ummmmm....... yeah ok. Let's do it. This can wait."
Dave: "Alright. I am going to the garage, I'll flip every circuit breaker in the house. Tell me when the little red light goes off. Now you'll have to yell really loud - but I'll leave the side door open so that will help."
So I position myself in the hallway, where I can see the red light, yet still be somewhat close to the open door. The next 20 minutes went something like this:
Ok WAIT! THE RED LIGHT IS BACK ON NOW. IT WAS THAT LAST ONE.
WAIT!! WHAT ARE YOU DOING?? IT WAS THE SECOND TO LAST ONE!!
DAVE STOP FLIPPING THEM! YOU ALREADY PASSED THE ONE WE NEED!!!
(I ran through the house to the garage.) "Hey! Didn't you hear me yelling?"
"Yeah you found it. You already flipped it."
Dave, staring at the board: "Shoot. Which one was it?"
Me: "Uhhh.... I don't remember."
Dave: "Ok let's try this again. I'll work backwards. This time really YELL when I hit it. I couldn't hear you at all last time."
I stalked off grumbling about hearing aids and someone in the relationship getting old; made it back to my post in the hallway; and we started all over again.
(at the top of my lungs) YES! THAT WAS IT! YES YES YES! CAN YOU HEAR ME? STOP RIGHT THERE! STOP! STOOOPPPP!!!!!
I then ran out to the garage at top speed to make sure he heard me. "That was it. That was the one. Did you hear me?"
(Huge dramatic sigh.) This is ridiculous, I thought. He is never going to hear me. There's got to be a better way.
And just like that! - I realized there is in fact a better way! CELL PHONES! (Duh.)
I had one, he had one; he stood outside, I stood inside; we called each other and went through this flipping process 1 more time. And when he hit the right switch I was able to say, "That's the one," using our inside voices, as my Kindergarten teacher would say.
So as the old joke goes..... How many college graduates does it take to turn on a light bulb?
Well... Apparently two. And two cell phones.
Wednesday, October 1, 2008
Last night I woke up in a panic at 3:40 am. I had a nightmare about not having a big enough tablecloth for the table. (Silly? yes. Does that help me today as I struggle to stay awake at work? no.)
I know there is nothing to be stressed over - but honestly I just can't help it. (Dave thinks I am genetically prone to stressing out anyway because of my Italian roots. Well well. We'll see who has the last laugh when my olive skin still looks great at age 97.) I have a list a mile long in my head of thing that need to get done - and only about $5 to do it all with.
Last night I compared our credit card balance to what we actually had available in the bank and... well.......... let's just say I cried for a good 45 minutes. After replenishing my tears with half a bottle of red, D and I decided that it's time to buckle down. We've now got a looming deadline in mind. We are committed to getting our butts in gear before both sets of in-laws get here to "see all the progress."
First things first - I will write down this list and get it out my head and onto paper. Maybe that will help with that whole "sleeping" issue.
Secondly - we decided to try and not spend any money on October as far as "stuff" goes. (No trips to the Depot, the Consignment Barn, or the most lethal of them all - Target. No matter what I go in for, toilet paper, milk, etc; I walk out with 6 bags in tow and $60 poorer. How do they do that???) Money will be used for necessities - Gas, Food, and Booze (of course).
I am hopeful this plan will work. Not only will it help make a dent in the debt - but maybe will help us tackle the numerous "half-finished" projects that have been lying around the house all summer. For example... here's a small mental list I just thought of (mental note - write this down too as soon as you're done with this blog)
Strip the wallpaper in the bathroom - Cost: FREE other than elbow grease
Cut, stain, poly the last wooden threshold - Cost: FREE since the materials are in the garage
Give away all those bags of old clothes to Goodwill - Cost: FREE
You get the idea.
Alright I feel better already! Sorry but I've got to run - I have to get going on this list I'm writing.....
Wednesday, September 24, 2008
Tuesday, September 23, 2008
I'll tell you what - it is expensive! to get stuff framed... but man, is it worth it if you really like the picture. I can get any old frame from Target or wherever and stick my photo in it, but really the framing guys do such good work! I wish we had the money so that I could really get ALOT of pictures professionally framed.
Unfortunately I had to settle for these two...
I had to get this really neat old calendar framed because it's a bizarre size. After years of searching I found NOTHING even remotely close so I decided to bite the bullet and get it done. And doesn't it look great? It's an under mat - I never would have thought to do that.
I guess it was given out as a freebie from an appliance company. I'm pretty people just used to tack it up to the wall and rip off the months on the bottom as the year went on.
I just love it because the picture of the little boy wiping the dogs ears is classic!
The other thing we had framed was this fantastic map of the Caribbean that we found in St. Thomas. I think our goal should be to hit every Island on the map, don't you?
The only problem now is where to hang it!! It looks good on every wall in the house. I am not joking you. Something about the color combination - it just matches a lot of our stuff I guess.
I got both these pictures done at Mr. Frame It - I would highly recommend if you are looking for a place!!