December 30, 2013

Now?! Now, I'm past the "mild irritation" and quickly heading toward "BOOM!"

Do you remember how in my last post I mentioned, in passing, that Man-Child's big gift had not arrived in time for Christmas morn?  And I kinda laughed it off because he's not a tiny guy any more?

Well, now I am getting a tad bit infuriated irritated.

Apparently, the Amazon supplier took their damn sweet time in actually shipping said gift.  So much so that they didn't bother to actually ship it until Hubby sent them an email saying "What the hell?" (I'm paraphrasing obviously...since he is so much nicer than me).  Funnily enough, the package was then shipped immediately.

WITH the caveat that the package would arrive anywhere between December 20th and December 26th.

Well, obviously the 26th has come and gone.  And still...nothing.  So Hubby fired off another angry (he claims) email today.  To which the response was, "We are soooooo sorry; it'll be there by the 2nd...for sure!  We can offer you a 10% discount."

Which was about the time I kicked Hubby away from the computer and replied for him.  I told them that we would be HAPPY to have 10% discount...provided the damn gift ACTUALLY arrives on or before the 2nd.  Otherwise we expect a full refund.

I GET it.  I get that both the online retailers AND the delivery services are overwhelmed during the Christmas season.  Seriously, I do.  Particularly since I don't have a small one waiting on "Santa" to deliver the goods.  But this?  This is totally unacceptable.

Up until now, I have been fairly calm about the situation, but now I'm about ready to explode.  If it weren't for the fact that this is a that Man-Child has NO idea that he has a snowball's chance in hell of getting - AND the fact that Man-Child is headed back to school soon - I would just tell them to take the whole thing back.  Period.  I don't want it.  Lose any and all chance of profit.

But it IS a gift.  One that Man-Child wants so very much.  One that he thinks he would never, ever get...even from Santa.

So I will wait.  For the next three days.

And if that damn gift doesn't show up?  Well...some VERY INDIGNANT emails will be sent.  And Man-Child will be getting a different gift.  And that's all I can say about that just yet.

Bastards.  Ruining Christmas for the "children..." How dare they?!


December 27, 2013

Reflections on this and that...

Hello!!  No, I haven't fallen off the face of the earth, despite my marked disappearance (you did notice I wasn't around, didn't you?).

But with moving and Christmas falling one right after the other I was more than a little busy.  I had assumed that being off for almost two weeks that I would get plenty done; both with the house and blogging.  Well, we all knows what happens when one assumes....

Needless to say, during the move and it's immediate aftermath absolutely NO Christmas shopping took place, so once I was free from the normal work day that became my main focus pretty much right up until Christmas Eve.

Our Christmas was very nice.  Beginning with dinner with friends on Christmas Eve.  It was a lovely evening punctuated with peals of laughter from their small ones.  Made me a tad nostalgic for Man-Child's "small" phase, which seems so far away now.

Christmas Day was a quiet one for us.  All the gifts - those that actually arrived on time - were oohed and aahed over and much appreciated.

The "one" gift...the one that was "the" gift for Man-Child has yet to arrive.  I'm not sure whether to blame the supplier or the delivery service.  I'm leaning toward the supplier since Hubby ordered it on December 10th and it didn't ship until much later.  Luckily Man-Child is old enough to understand that sometimes even Santa has issues with his suppliers.

Unexpectedly, our Christmas Eve guests called us late in the day to reciprocate - I can only assume that they needed to see different faces as much as we did by that point.  So once again, we ate, drank and made merry.  It was wonderful.

Although our Christmas festivities were fabulous - there was a pall hanging over them, as we had received the news that a friend from our old neighborhood had passed away the day before Christmas Eve.  Tonight we attended the memorial service as a family.  It was tough.  Man-Child had absolutely adored this woman when he was small.  Despite the fact, that on our first Halloween there she scared the boy half out of his mind by sitting so still, dressed as a witch, that she looked like a decoration.  Until he walked up next to her to ring the bell...when she yelled out BOO!!  And had that small, little guy running down the stairs, screaming for his life.

The realization that this was the first memorial service I have attended for one of our social circle is sobering.  It made me realize that I need to pull my friends closer and make the time to see them more often.  Life is short.  All too short.

Now that we have lived in this much smaller place for almost a month(!) I have to say we are adjusting.  The furniture might be a little tight but we are finding life is a LOT easier in smaller place; although Hubby still has dreams that we will eventually somehow squeeze both cars into the garage (just typing that makes me giggle because of the amount of STUFF that is currently residing in there.  He's a dreamer, that Hubby of mine).  It's not quite the pain to put things away since their are no stairs to navigate.  Cleaning is certainly a lot easier.  And, we are finding that instead of hiding away in our separate areas doing our own thing we are interacting more (which may explain the lack of blogging despite being home for so long).  Eventually, I hope to do a house "tour" but we still aren't quite there yet as there are still boxes to be unpacked (or repacked for the attic), pictures to be hung and things to be sent to the local Goodwill.  We are still tweaking things here and there as we settle in but the important thing is that we are comfortable and happy.  We really can't ask for anything more than that, now can we?

As the holiday season comes to a close, I wanted to take a moment to let you know how much you all mean to me.  This blogging thing started out as a lark, never meant to be taken seriously.  And while I still don't take the stats, number of comments, etc. seriously, I do take the friendships and connections that I've made very seriously.  And I wish you much peace, joy and love in the new year.

2014?  Somehow I have a good feeling about it.

December 16, 2013

The question of the day. Is it considered "murder" if...

I purposefully let some of my larger plants to die?

As some of you may know, I have an extensive collection of house plants.  Which are now housed in a MUCH smaller space...which means that I really don't have the room for them - currently they are occupying every square inch of extra square feet we have.  Which we can't afford to lose at this moment.

I have tried to give some of them away; to no avail.  As of today, I've only been able to unload one of them. *sigh*

Which is what turned my thoughts to "assisted suicide." Is it morally unethically to let some of them die a natural death?

Don't start throwing the stones just yet!  Normally, I do whatever I can to keep my plants alive.  But at this point, I'm at a loss.  Some of these things are HUGE.  Which necessitates HUGE pots.  Which takes up valuable real estate.  And the thought of just letting them die is killing me.  But unless someone takes them, what choice do I have?

Currently, they are practically sitting on top of each other - all vying for the little sunlight this place offers.  It's making me crazy.

So that is the question.  Is it morally unethical to just let them "go?"

Sorry for the absence - both in posting and commenting.  I've discovered that "downsizing" has meant that I am more visible in the home; i.e., there is no place to HIDE!  And, apparently, if I am visible I become a magnet to the Hubby and means I am available for a chat.  Despite the fact that I am on the computer...typing away and giving only monosyllabic answers. *sigh*

December 6, 2013

Moving, apparently, brings out the freak in me.

It's true.

Despite my recent lapses, at my heart I am organizing freak; and my freak flag is flying high.

It's true.  In my heart of hearts, I like things neat and tidy.  I like everything having a "home."  Unfortunately, I live with clutter-bugs.  And, of late, I have given up.  But no more...

I've been busy, busy, busy unpacking, discarding and organizing...and according to Man-Child (who isn't even here to witness the insanity) I'm over-thinking things.  Why did he say that?

Because when he called the other day to see how the unpacking was going I just happened to mention that I had been dealing with the closets.  That, in itself, wasn't enough to raise his eyebrow.  No, apparently, organizing closets and making them tidy is quite normal.

No, what had him roaring with laughter before informing me that I am insane was the hangers.  Yes, hangers.

I don't know about you, but in this house hangers have an ability to disappear with the blink of an eye.  This, of course, causes you to run out and buy more, grabbing whatever is available.  And before you know it, you are overrun with them.  And then you notice that they are all different colors.  You have white ones, tan ones, green ones, pink ones, blue ones and black ones.

And that is, suddenly, not pleasing to your eye.  So you decide that there must only be TWO colors of hangers.

White (and sturdy) ones for the guys and the nice, slim-line, velvet covered ones for you (to accommodate that smaller closet, of course).

So when I informed Man-Child that we now had designated hangers he thought I was insane.

He may be right.  But....

Those closets look damn good right about now

December 5, 2013

It's Official - We've Downsized. The Aftermath...

I was going to attempt to write a nice coherent post - possibly even break it up into a series like Part One: Packing 101.  Part Two: Moving Tips, etc.

But I'm exhausted.  So instead you get this ramble-y, jumbled mess.  Sorry about that.  Contrary to popular belief I am NOT Wonder Woman (but I really, really wish I was!).

So here's the deal regarding packing when downsizing.  No matter how ruthless you think you are being by getting rid of stuff prior to the move; you're not.  Believe me, you will soon discover this when you actually move into that new place that is roughly half the size of the home you just left.  And that's when the ruthless cutting out of things begins - and you make approximately ten trips in four days (and will still be nowhere NEAR done) to the local Goodwill drop-off.  Where the worker, who now knows your car by sight, will be flabbergasted when you start handing him dozens of pairs of shoes, along with those specialty cake pans that you only used once and other items that were squirreled away that you had completely forgotten about.

The next most important thing regarding packing?  Do not cheap out on the packing tape.  This is crucial.  My husband did just that and we nearly lost the bottoms out of a couple of boxes.  After that, I ditched the cheap tape and went for the name brand.  It was worth every penny.

The actual move wasn't too terribly miserable - mainly because of our friends and the friendly movers.  We hired professionals to move the heavy stuff - and that was also worth every penny spent.  These guys were fast, efficient, friendly and helpful.  As were our friends that we had enlisted to move the other stuff (night stands, plants, etc.).  But they went above and beyond.  Instead of just stopping at what we had asked for they proceeded to pack what was left and while I am beyond grateful (as it meant EVERYTHING got moved in ONE day) it has been a challenge to find some things.  Had it been left to me; I'd still be over there packing things into neatly labelled boxes...and eventually succumbing to panic and just throwing things into boxes willy-nilly.

As I was off this week, I was able to get the house set up enough that we can use the kitchen, the bathrooms and find our clothes - much to my husband's delight.  I've also been unpacking other boxes and, as mentioned earlier, making multiple runs to Goodwill with donations aplenty.  I'm trying to determine what we will need and what can go into the attic and what just needs to go.

We moved in on Saturday and were without internet until Wednesday.  I'd say it was a miserable existence - but it was actually a good thing because I was able to get so much done without the temptation.  I was able to keep up with most of your blogs via my phone during breaks - but neglected to comment because it's such a pain to reply on that thing.

Despite keeping us waiting for so long AT&T surprised me.  When I had called to move the service I specifically asked the woman if it would work when they hooked it up.  She said it would.  I told her that during both of our last moves it was a nightmare and wanted to be sure that wouldn't be the case this time.  She assured me it would be easy-peasy.  And for once, AT&T is not on my naughty list.

Today I decided to go through our filing cabinet - and let me also give you this bit of advice; it would be wise to do this once a year and not once every decade; which is apparently the last time I went through ours.  I now have a MOUNTAIN of paper to shred and have discovered that I really don't need that bulky filing cabinet.  The majority of what is left can either be scanned and stored on a cd or a usb drive (with the paper copies being shredded); while the few remaining paper copies that must be kept can be housed in a compact file box.  And?  Did you know that the IRS suggests that you keep copies of your returns for only two-three years?  Somehow I was under the impression that you had to keep that stuff FOREVER because I have found returns that date back to 2000!

I will admit that moving into a smaller space is a challenge but I'm already beginning to get creative with the little storage I do have.  Hopefully, I'll be able to share some of that in later post.

But I can honestly say that getting rid of so much stuff that is useless to me (but most likely needed by someone else; hence the donating) is freeing; more so than you would think.

In the end, I did have to part with some of my furniture (I know, I know, I swore I wouldn't) - but I've kept the things I really love and need (although it is a bit cramped in here) and my furniture now has a nice, new home where I can visit as often as I want.  I gave it to the friends that hosted us at Thanksgiving.

I finally realized that keeping everything would be impossible and that once we move to our "forever" (knock wood - because dear God in heaven I never want to move again once we land in our next place) home I would probably want to start fresh anyway.

So we are pretty much done with the old house.  The cleaners came today (again, worth every penny not to have to clean AND unpack!) and Hubby is over there now disposing of the last few vestiges that remained behind.

And now, we are looking toward tomorrow and what it will bring.  Hopefully something with bigger closets.

November 25, 2013

A really quick update....(and another rant about AT&T - really; at this point I should just get another provider and another example - or two- of how I am losing my mind)

We aren't homeless any more.

We've found a super-cute one-level townhouse/cluster home (what the hell is the difference?!) to rent for a year.  YAY!

The downside?  NO closet space.

BUT, I can live with it for a year or so until we figure out what our next move is.

In the meantime? I've been busy packing, packing, packing boxes and moving, moving, moving boxes and we are nowhere NEAR being done.  The mover's come on Saturday to move the furniture and, if all goes according to plan, we hope to actually be living there this weekend - one full week ahead of the deadline!  But we shall see.

In the meantime, we have been attempting to change our addresses and move services; always fun.  And AT&T (my VERY favorite people in the WORLD [NOT]) has informed me that they can't POSSIBLY transfer our internet until December 4th.  Which means, of course, that we will be without access for at least four/five days.  Nice.

Funny.  All the OTHER providers didn't have a problem with switching our service on the days we requested.

At any rate, I will be without internet for four or five DAYS - it will be a miracle if I make it out alive.  Most likely, I might find myself camped out in an empty house with nothing but my laptop and router.

I made the customer service lady SWEAR to me that there wouldn't be any issues with the swap.  I think she lied.  Why?  Because with our last two moves there were MAJOR issues.  And I can tell you right now, if I am without internet for that long AND I have issues getting it to work?  Someone will be extremely unhappy.  And that person will most likely be my husband (and new neighbors) as I become increasingly agitated and shouty.

As further evidence that moving is stressful (and/or I'm completely losing my mind) I, apparently, locked us out of our online banking account.  I received a random text the other day - which, flipped me out completely.

Total scam

Which resulted in me trying to log on to our account to make sure that we hadn't been cleaned out - because how in the hell does SunTrust even HAVE my cell number?  And no matter how many times I typed in that user name and password the account failed to open.

So I talked to Hubby - who also couldn't access the account - and had him call the number, only to discover that it was a scam.  But then he, fueled by my hysteria, went to the bank where he informed them forcefully that NO, there was no way we locked ourselves out of the account and that they have been HACKED.

Until...he came home and we were attempting to update the password, to keep our account safe, when he heard me repeating what I was typing into the computer (because that is TOTALLY normal behavior) and informed me that I was putting in the wrong information...which I had been doing all along (which once again proves my point that we all have too many login names and passwords to keep up with...)


To further fuel the speculation that I am losing my mind, cue today.  I made my doctor's appointment (as promised here) and went to fulfill my promise.  Dreading it; but determined.

Only to be informed upon arrival that the appointment isn't until tomorrow.


When I sent Hubby a text about it he responded with this gem...

Between this; the "bank fraud;" and the move - I'm beginning to think that maybe he should.

And yeah - I shouldn't title blogs with "a really quick update" because apparently, I am rather ramble-y.  But that - and my insanity - is why you love me...right?

And, finally (yes, really) all that aside to say, I wish you all a very Happy Thanksgiving.  You are all counted among my blessings.  And if you don't hear from me for awhile, it's all AT&T's fault.

November 18, 2013

A TOTAL jumble...that's the only description I have of my state of mind right now.

"I don't EVER remember any move we've made being THIS chaotic.  Even when we moved across the country (from Texas to North Carolina) WITH a toddler!"

Those may have been the words uttered from my lips to Hubby this evening as we tried to sort out the logistics of our impending move.  The move, which I might add, STILL does not have a forwarding address.  Although, according to the mail we receive on a daily basis, reminds us that very soon, we will no longer be living here - as evidenced by the stack of mail currently on the counter for the new owners.

We have found a place that we have decided we both can live in.  One in which we, probably, won't maim, kill, or otherwise harm each other.  But we are waiting to hear from the rentee (or is that rentor? Definitely the Lessor...maybe.  What the hell do you want from me?  Sure I may work in a legal department, but that doesn't mean I know what I'm talking about!).

With any luck, we are planning to move the weekend immediately following Thanksgiving.  Giving ourselves a full week to finalize the last minute detritus and clean the house for the new owners.  While also insuring that any so-called "helpers" (those that have sworn they would do whatever they could to help us move) are busy with family obligations.

And then there is the whole Thanksgiving Dinner debacle to contend with.  Hubby mentioned something about..."surely, we can have a normal Thanksgiving here..." Which, understandably, freaked me out completely.

Because, no.  We cannot.

Which lead me to declare that we will be having Thanksgiving at a local restaurant - pick your poison because I'm making reservations.

He finally acquiesced.  And my only remaining road-block was Man-Child...the one for whom the word "tradition" was created.  The very same one, after having exactly ONE scavenger hunt for a (large, impossible-to-wrap gift; as a TEENAGER) one Christmas wondered why we didn't have scavenger hunts for every Christmas thereafter...i.e., if you do it ONCE it's a TRADITION around here, apparently.

And when I informed him that Thanksgiving would take place at an impersonal restaurant - rather than in the chaos of our own home?

God, I LOVE that kid!
His response left me with tears in my eyes.

And then?!

*just like THAT*

I was left with MORE tears in my eyes when a friend called (I KNOW! I'm as shocked as you; I actually answered the phone!) to promise her husband (and his truck) into slave labor this weekend by helping us get rid of a bunch of stuff AND invited us to Thanksgiving dinner at her house, because there was NO WAY IN HELL we could have Thanksgiving at a restaurant! (her words, exactly...or almost. Don't get nit-picky.  At this point, my brain can't take nit-picky).

And yeah...that is how rapidly things are happening around here and perfectly explains why my mind is in perpetual yo-yo mode.

Y'all have no idea how much I am ready for this move to be over already.  Seriously.

November 11, 2013

At least he tries...bless his heart. But seriously, that was helpful HOW?

My husband has had the past week (plus today) off.  And during a discussion of how panicked I am over the fact that we haven't yet found a place to live (we only have NINETEEN and a few odd days left, people!  I'm ALLOWED to freak out) he mentioned that he packed our photo albums today.

All five hundred - give or take...into boxes.

The albums that were ensconced in drawers.  Drawers, that when slid out of the chest could be used as boxes.

Dear God in Heaven! Has this man NEVER moved before?

I smiled and said, "Thank you."  After mentioning that the drawers could have been used as boxes to transport said albums.  What can I say?  I'm panicking.  At least I remembered to say, "thank you."

To his credit, he did make two phone calls today about possible living quarters.  The one responded that we could see the place on Saturday.  The other never responded (what the hell is up with that? Is she SO rolling in commissions that she can ignore requests?  Must be nice).  When he sent me an email telling me that we would be looking at the one place on Saturday, I responded with "My nerves can't take this.  We have NINETEEN days to find a place to live, pack this house and move."

After about 10 minutes he came back with, "Can you be there at 5:30 pm tomorrow?" and became my hero all over again.

UNTIL, during our above mentioned conversation, he said, "You know, I look back over this week off, and I really didn't get all that much done."

Yeah, ya think?

Apparently, it's time for me to start using some of that hoarded vacation time that usually gets used at Christmas to actually get some stuff done.

Yeah, yeah.  I've talked a good game about this being an "organized" move and how if I just did a little every weekend, it wouldn't be stressful.  Well, apparently, I LIED.  Because the past three weekends have been crammed with me driving up and down the mountain to ferry Man-Child back and forth (let's not EVEN begin to get into the fact that Hubby was SUPPOSED to return him yesterday - leaving me home to find a place to live and pack, which did NOT happen, obviously), way the hell out to Raleigh and God only knows where else.  And nothing has been packed - other than those damn photo albums; which, needless to say, didn't NEED to be packed.  AND we still don't know where we will be living.

Oh sure, I could be packing right now, instead of typing this - but who the hell can pack when they are panicked, frustrated, exhausted (this Monday KILLED me, people!  Seriously?  Why do Mondays have to be SO draining?) and irritated?  In the mood I'm in, I'd pack the the damn cat - if we had a one, that is.

*deep breath*gulp*deep breath*

It will all get done and be okay...right?

Of course it will.  As long as I'm the one in charge of making sure it all gets done; apparently.

November 9, 2013

One outfit; two different comments.

"Well, YOU don't look like a coupon shopper..." were the snide words that greeted me when I exited the grocery store with a smile on my face last week during my lunch hour.

Granted, I was wearing one of my favorite (and most inexpensive, I might add - i.e., the uber-exclusive Tar-jay was the designer) outfits.  But, doggone it, if you can't feel happy when you are wearing a skirt covered in polka-dots, then obviously you need to see someone.

Plus the sun was shining (always makes me happy), the breeze was warm (ditto) and my errands were done - ensuring that I could go straight home after work.  Why wouldn't I be smiling?

Obviously, I had passed a woman who was having a "Bad Day." Because after mulling over her initial statement, along with the barely caught "mumble, mumble...guess you didn't think it could be horrible...mumble, mumble" I have determined that this woman judged a book by it's cover.

This week I wore the exact same outfit (most likely for the last time this season as it's getting far too chilly) and received a far different response.  This time I was approached by another older woman who informed me that I was "looking mighty pretty today."  Obviously, this woman was having a MUCH better day than the other one.

And the result?

Well, obviously it is apparent how much your attitude can affect other people.  The first woman had me stewing over how DARE she judge me?  She had NO idea what I have been through in the past few years.  And how DARE she judge me for appreciating the little things in life - like my very favorite polka-dot skirt and the fabulous weather? And what business is it of hers whether or not I have to use coupons? And just where does she get off in trying to ruin someone else's day?

Her attitude actually had me questioning whether or not I should wear my very favorite skirt the next week.  Yes, her judgment was still affecting me over a week later.

Obviously, I mentally flipped her off and chose the skirt again and was rewarded with kind words this time.

I realize that people have bad days - hell, I've been known to experience one or two or a thousand myself - but generally, I try to keep my bad days to myself and not spread the poison around too much..unless it's directed at poor drivers.  They deserve it.

It's too bad that this isn't everyone's philosophy.  Apparently, some people ascribe to the "share the bitterness" philosophy.  What a shame.

One woman looks at another and takes umbrage that this one takes care in her daily appearance while out and about, so she throws barbs.  Another woman looks at the same person - appreciates what she sees, and takes the time to note her approval.

I know which person I'd rather be.

November 5, 2013

Confession time

Okay ladies (sorry guys, if you are reading - you might want to click away right now) - before we begin; go read this; I'll wait.  Yes, it's kinda long.  Yes, it will make you cry - but it will also make you laugh.  No matter what; it's worth it. I promise.

Back?  Good.  Now here's the truth.  I USED to be a good girl that followed the rules when it came to my health (here's the proof - just three short years ago).  Well, kinda.  Diet & exercise were always iffy (okay; since it IS confession time - NEVER my top priority) but when it came to scheduling my yearly pap smears and mammograms, I was ON it.

And then it all went haywire when the Center for Disease Control ("CDC") decided that women 40 years old only needed a mammogram every two years - despite the fact that the American Cancer Society has always - and still does - recommended that woman over the age of 40 have one EVERY year.  Once the CDC made that determination my insurance changed and I kinda got screwed - until my company stepped in and reimbursed me.

Then my "doctor" (technically she was a Physicians Assistant) up and decided to leave the practice, which left me high and dry.  The very thought of finding someone else to "take care of business" (i.e., the pap smear) was daunting.  So daunting, that despite asking for recommendations from my friends, I let it go.  And as for the mammogram?  Well, yeah.  That slid too.

Throw on the extended unemployment, my son's Senior year of high school, graduation and ultimately, his leaving for college...

Yeah. "Haywire" doesn't EVEN begin to describe the roller coaster that has been the last three years.  Needless to say, I haven't had a pap smear OR a mammogram since prior to 2010 - yes, I know.  I am appalled at myself.

I've already emailed myself a reminder to call tomorrow and schedule both.  Will you?

November 4, 2013

It's official....we are now "homeless"...technically.

So, that's it.  We've signed the papers.  The house is sold.

Time for the panic to set in.  Not only have I NOT yet begun to pack one single thing - we have YET to find a place to live.

Which kind of freaked out the paralegal who called last week to see what our forwarding address would be for the paperwork.  When I replied that we didn't have one, she kind of stammered and said okay; that the whole idea of that freaked her out and hoped I would have a great weekend anyway.


We have been to view exactly ONE house so far and I can tell you when I walked in the front door the first thing I wanted to do was cry.  The second thing I wanted to do was to ask the owner how could he, in good faith, be asking what he was asking and why wasn't he ashamed of himself for showing a property in that condition.

I didn't.  But I was sorely tempted on all counts - particularly the last one.  Absolutely NOTHING had been done to that house - other than new carpet in some of the rooms.  Hubby mentioned to me later that all the Sheetrock needed to be replaced and that the ceilings were in bad shape.  That I hadn't noticed, what caught my eye was the extremely dated fixtures, the teeny-tiny closets and the fact that the laundry room was located INSIDE the guest bathroom.  Which, in itself, might not have been a deal breaker except for the fact that there was not a door to separate the two. Why?!  So you could fold laundry while "taking care of business?"

We've scouted out a few other properties; without walking through them - but I have a feeling we may end up in an apartment.  Which is fine for the short-term.  Except we will most likely have to rent a storage unit as well; as there are some pieces of furniture I'm simply not willing to give up.  The husband?  Well, in his mind, we GET RID OF IT ALL and replace it as necessary.  This seems ridiculous to me.  Particularly since some of this furniture is really, really nice and we got it for next to nothing due to once having a friend in the furniture business and replacing it would be impossible on our budget.

So pray for us.  No really.  Somehow we have to get it in gear and start seriously packing and seriously finding a forwarding address and now the clock is ticking....

And I'm off to find a paper bag to breathe into whilst I have a major panic attack.

November 2, 2013

As a mom; when he says "You should come up..." you really don't have a choice, now do you?

I received the following text message from Man-Child the other day....

An obvious reference to the last time he invited me up for a visit

Which, of course, meant that my plans for today were solidified.

Despite the fact that it would mean not following my own edict that I would pack every weekend between two weekends ago until it was time to move.  (Truth be told, I haven't packed a damn thing since then. Sshhh, it's our secret!)  AND despite the fact that he's been home three out the four weekends in October.  Only, I can't actually verify that - since while he was home I didn't get to spend any quality time with him as his friends and his father monopolized him.

So, of course, when you receive that text you go.

Did we find a corn maze?  To my utter disappointment, no.  We did not.  I have been trying for years to get him to agree to go and he (and his father) have fought me tooth and nail (what they have against corn mazes, I don't know!).  Until this year, when finally Man-Child caved.  And then life got too busy to actually find one until it was too late - I sense that someone had planned for it to happen this way....

Instead we had a nice lunch, did a bit of shopping, caught a movie and one of us got a haircut.

We decided to see Last Vegas.  It was a fun movie.  Although, we were the youngest people in the theater...but that may have been because it was "Game Day" at the college; so I'm assuming everyone else was at the game.  Anything that combines, Robert DeNiro, Michael Douglas, Kevin Kline and Morgan Freeman has to be good; right?  And it was - we both laughed out loud at several scenes.  Although, to be honest, as a mom watching with her son (despite the fact that he is "technically" an adult) there were a few scenes that made me squirm knowing that he was sitting right there!

Prior to the movie, MC was ruminating on getting a haircut and trimming his beard.  I, of course, was enthusiastic about the idea since he was sporting a Wolverine kind of 'do....

This picture does not even BEGIN to show you how crazy his hair/beard has become!

Now, I am the first to say, I don't mind facial hair...look at Hubby up there; he is sporting some facial hair but Man-Child's?  It was OUT OF CONTROL.  So the fact that he was willing to part with some of it?  I was SO jumping on that band wagon.

So when he suggested getting his haircut prior to my leaving, I was all over it.  We went to the closest place - which, to be honest, had me (and MC) a bit nervous since the girl doing the cutting had only been in "the business" for about six months and, as she confessed before going to town on the out of control beard, had never trimmed a beard before.  But obviously, she had aced her cosmetology classes as we were both extremely satisfied with the results...

Knowing my boy, his hair will never again be that neatly combed.

As for the packing?  Well...there's always NEXT weekend...right?  I mean, really, we aren't moving until December...and that is EONS away....

October 30, 2013

...and the weird stuff that happens around here? It just keeps getting weirder.

Apparently, we have a new neighbor...of sorts.  One that is keeping us HOSTAGE in our home until dawn breaks - seriously.

About a month ago or so, I tweeted

Silly me.  I thought Pepe was just passing through.

No, apparently, he's decided he likes it here SO much that he has taken up residence.  How do I know this, you must be wondering.  I know this because just about every morning for the last week or so, when either one of us heads out the door to get the paper, there he is...sitting in our driveway, just daring us to come any closer, flicking his fluffy tail and smiling (yes, really).

The first time Hubby came back into the house and told me there was a skunk in the driveway I figured he was insane and just didn't want to go out in the rain.  Until the next morning, when I ventured out the side door and looked up the driveway - and there he sat, giving me that "Come any closer...I DARE ya! I DOUBLE DOG DARE ya!" look.  Needless to say, I turned around and went right back in the door; because honestly?  Who wants to go to work wearing "Eau de Skunk Cologne?"

Without question, I have done my research on skunks since then and have decided that I can wait for daylight to break to get my paper; for a few more days anyway.  As it appears they are nocturnal creatures, I figure once the time changes he will be hunkered down and sleeping by the time I wander out (I hope) to get the paper and then when it gets really cold he'll go into a state of torpor (similar to hibernation, but not quite) and then we will move (possibly) and never have to deal with him again.

There! *dusts hands* Problem solved.

October 22, 2013

Resting (rather uncomfortably, I might add) on the horns of a dilemma...

So, I just received a text.  From a boss.  Not THE boss, mind you, but a boss nonetheless.  Nearly THREE hours after being off the clock; asking me to be in the office early.  Not for anything urgent, of course.  No, just to pick up keys.

Why?  Because he has determined that since our office is SO old fashioned as to still require the gents to wear a suit to work four out five days (and everything BUT the jacket and tie on the 5th day) that it would be TOTALLY unacceptable for him to pop in for five minutes to pick up a set of keys.

But yet it would be appropriate for ME to pop into work - extra early (mind you, without overtime pay) to grab the keys and bring them down to the parking lot, where he can then be merrily on his way to our other office (which isn't under the stuffy restrictions that we are for some reason) and spend his day out of my hair (which, to be honest, after the past two days of pure hell; WOULD be a small blessing that I could definitely use right about now).

Which leads me to to respond...

A) I'll try to be there; but you one will notice you popping in for five minutes sans the suit.

B) Sorry - I have a prior engagement at that hour. (What?  He doesn't need to know the "engagement" is with my bed!)

C) You don't pay me enough to deal with this kind of crap.

D) Okay.  You owe me BIG time.


E) Ignore the text and reply tomorrow three minutes before he expects me saying "OMG!  I WISH I had seen this last night!"

I need your input NOW, by the way.  Since I plan to hit the sheets extra early tonight since, as I'm sure you've has been an extra tough one.


And right about now, I realize...had the last one asked this of me; there wouldn't have been any question that I would have done it.  Mainly, because the last one would have NEVER asked me - she just would have be-bopped in there, grabbed the keys and have been merrily on her way.

October 20, 2013

Here's a novel idea - why not pack the garage first?

As it looks like the deal is solid and that we will actually be moving, we decided to pack up the garage yesterday.  And my suspicions were confirmed - Hubby IS a hoarder.

We spent two hours out there and I would estimate that about 70% of what was in there was garbage; thankfully he agreed.  So now we just need to move all the stuff that is destined for the trash out of the garage and get rid of it.

Remember those two boxes of baby things I mentioned last time we "cleaned" the garage?  Well, as Hubby picked one up it fell apart in his hands.  Looking at all those baby things took me back.  Was Man-Child ever really that tiny?  Obviously, he must have been.

Two days old

And it was also obvious that I had saved far more than was sane.  It also became QUITE clear to me that storing baby clothes in a box is not a smart thing to do - because those clothes were filthy.  So I did what any sane person would do - I scooped them all up and threw them in the wash.  And after they dried then proceeded to spend the next hour folding those teeny-tiny garments and deciding what I absolutely could not bear to part with and placing them in one of those Space Bags.  To the rest, I said goodbye and took them to Goodwill where they can find a new home with someone who needs them.

It feels good to be getting rid of stuff.  That is the good thing about this move; it is making both of us evaluate what we have and getting rid of things we don't need.  And the motivation behind it, is that we don't want to move it.  So the less we have, the less boxes that we will have to pack and unpack.  It still won't make the whole moving process any less sucky; but hopefully this will mean that the suckiness won't be as drawn out.

In the past, the garage has usually been the last thing we packed - which resulted in a total nightmare and might be partly to blame for why the garage is always the hellhole that it has been.  This time, this is the first packing we've done - and we assigned boxes such as "Car Stuff," "Plumbing Stuff," "Yard Stuff," etc. so theoretically when we land wherever it is we are going to land (yes, I still don't know where we are going to live) we can unpack the garage in an orderly manner and get it organized from the get go (oh hush, a girl can dream).

My plan is to attack one room every weekend going through, discarding and packing all the things that aren't needed on a day to day basis.  We'll see how that works out.

That is the good thing about this move; since we don't have to be out until December 8th - it is giving us plenty of time to evaluate what we are packing.

Now, if I just knew where we were going to live...

October 13, 2013

Someone please remind me to quit fiddling with things...something always ends up broken

I broke my blog...AGAIN.

Luckily, only for about an hour or so this time.  This time I single-handedly, in one fell swoop, deleted every single picture that has ever graced the pages of yours truly.

And it's all my phone's fault.  Or Google's.  I'm not quite sure but the more I think about it; the more certain I am that they were in it together.

For whatever reason, I cannot log into my blog dashboard from my phone.  I used to be able to do this and then *POOF* one day I couldn't.  Today was the day that I decided to fix this.  So I fiddled around with various things trying to get it to work and failed miserably.  The next thing I know, I get a notification on the phone telling me that it has synced all my phone photos with Google +.  Crap.

I never use my Google + account; why I even have it I will never know.

So I hopped on the computer to see what fresh hell I had wrought - and discovered that, yes indeed, I had synced all my photos to that account.  Despite the fact that they weren't being "shared" with anyone, I decided to go ahead and delete them; since I never use Google +.

After some struggling with manually selecting some of the 500+ photos, I clicked over to a new tab to figure out how to select them all at once - since that option didn't seem obvious.  Once I found it, I selected them all and hit delete with satisfaction.

But the empty albums were still there.  I clicked back over to the new tab to figure out how to delete the albums when a random sentence in one of the results caught my eye (of course, I've deleted that tab, so now I have to ad lib what it actually said) that said Google moved all your photos out of Picasa and put them into Google+; or something to that effect.

And suddenly, I was filled with absolute horror.  I opened another tab (why yes, I have been known to have as many tabs open as humanly possible) to check in on my blog.  I looked at about three different posts I was fairly sure had pictures in them, from various dates and ALL THE PICTURES WERE GONE!!!!

I clicked back over to Google+ to figure out a way to restore them and, of course, it wasn't readily apparent so I clicked to another tab to Google it.  And *phew* found out they weren't completely gone yet and was able to restore them.  Apparently Google+ knows that people are stupid and need an undo key.

But it would be even better if Google gave you a heads up before you clicked delete.  You know, something along the lines of "Hey! Are you SURE you want to do that?! Because if you do, all the pictures on your blog will go bye-bye!"

So here is the moral of this story - don't delete anything ever from your Google+ account.  And it's a good thing I forgot I even had that account before now, otherwise I might have deleted it...and who knows what would have happened then!

October 12, 2013

Doctor Sleep...and other stuff

Where have I been? I know, I know...I've been busy - well, not really but what other excuse do I have?

At any rate, last weekend I treated myself....

I can never say no to Stephen...unless it's short stories.  I can't stand short stories - even Stephen's - simply because I feel like I'm being cheated out of a whole story.  Yes, I have issues.  I admit that; now let's move on.

I actually bought the book on Saturday, the 5th, but due to circumstances beyond my control (i.e., celebrating Man-Child's birthday - dear God, in heaven, he's NINETEEN!), I didn't get to start reading it until Sunday; after driving him back up the mountain to school - and between the exhaustion of celebrating and the exhaustion of driving, I didn't REALLY get into the book until Monday and then I was hooked.  By Tuesday, it was clear that despite the fact I had over a hundred pages to go and it was past my bedtime, I HAD to finish the book.  Needless to say, on Wednesday, I was worthless due to sleep deprivation - BUT IT WAS WORTH IT!

The only reason I was able to jump right into this book without having to re-reading The Shining was because over the summer it became apparent that Man-Child had never seen (or read) it.  That was remedied fairly quickly.  As a side note, I do NOT remember the mother being so irritating the first time I saw the movie.  This time?  She irritated the hell out of me.

Because we watched the movie though, I was up on all the characters and I didn't have to stop to think, "WHO was Dick Halloran again?"

From the jacket; "On highways across America, a tribe of people called the True Knot travel in search of sustenance.  They look harmless-mostly old, lots of polyester, and married to their RVs.  But as Dan Torrence knows, and spunky twelve-year-old-Abra Stone learns, the True Knot are quasi-immortal, living off the steam that children with the shining produce when they are slowly tortured to death."

Now, if that tiny blurb - in addition to my exclamations of YOU MUST READ THIS NOW - doesn't send you running off to buy, beg, borrow or steal (please don't steal; that's wrong) this book, then nothing will.

In other news, the house has been inspected and we received the report yesterday.  And by all accounts, I can say without a shadow of a doubt the "inspector" in question is an idiot. 

In addition to other cosmetic, nonsensical stuff he determined that the pilot light was out on our fireplace.  Our WOOD BURNING fireplace.  The one that is filled with soot and stray ashes from previous, actual fires instead of gas logs; that produce no soot or ash.

So once, we address the fact that the inspector is a moron we will see if the buyer is willing to take it mainly as-is if we throw a small amount of cash in at closing (mainly because we don't have the time between now and the closing date to fix everything).  So, I figure by Monday we will know for sure, for sure, if the deal is done.  And then I can really start panicking, as opposed to only dreaming up scenarios that have me living in a van; down by the river.

September 28, 2013

If you need me, I'll be living in a van down by the river.

As you know, we may have sold the house, in a shockingly quick manner.  We are still waiting for the appraiser to come back with the appraisal; we still need the inspector to come and inspect and our closing date, if it happens, will be on October 31st.

And at this point?  At this point, I'm actually hoping the appraiser will come back with a ridiculously low appraisal so that we can tell the buyers that there is no way in hell we will lower the sale price to that amount.

Why?  Because I have been scouting around.  I know we are planning to rent before we jump into buying anything else - but you still have to know what's out there.  And what's out there?  Nothing.

Well, that's not entirely accurate...there is plenty out there that I liked but could never, ever in a million years afford - unless I hit the lottery.  And what we could afford - well, let's just say I was horrified and leave it at that.

Hubby continues to laugh at what he thinks is my dramatic moaning - but that's only because he hasn't been out there looking.

So then I turned my eye towards rentals - figuring I can worry about buying a house later.  That didn't go much better.  I kid you not, one house that was a two bedroom, one bath, teeny-tiny house in a semi-sketchy neighborhood was asking more for rent than we are currently paying on our mortgage!

Which is when I had my revelation and, of course, I tweeted it to the world...

Apparently, at this point, this is the only feasible choice.

September 22, 2013

Well now, that was unexpected....

Do you remember I told you about my tendency to put the cart before the horse?  And then proceeded to show you all just how insane I could be?

Well, apparently, all my insane tendencies were correct.  We received an offer on the house...from the folks that first (and, in fact, the ONLY people), came to view the house.  I had a feeling about this sweet, little family.  I knew they were interested.

Holy cow, were they they have been to view the house no less than three times in one week, yeah, I'd say they were interested.

Needless to say, this offer brought forth a mixture of emotions.  Elation (YAY! They love my house as much as I do!  In fact, the wife even informed me that this was the ONLY house she'd seen where she wouldn't have to repaint because she liked my colors so much) mixed with sadness and horror (how DARE they try to take MY house away?).

But in the end?  Well, the truth is, as much as I love this house - this house isn't exactly full of happy memories, is it?

Not long after moving in Hubby lost his job; for what turned out to be an extended amount of time.  Which means that the majority of our time spent in this house has been fraught with fear and uncertainty.  I can look around and pinpoint the areas where I have cried copious amounts of tears.  Yes, I can also look around and remember some happy moments - but to be fair the sad have far outweighed the happy.

So here's the deal...I'm ready to let this house go.  I'm ready to pass this house on to the nice, young family and hope that this house holds a beautiful future for them.  I'm ready to shake the dust of the past few years from my heels and face the future.

But despite the fact that the house is as good as sold - which I won't count on until we actually sign the closing documents - apparently, we won't be in any rush to leave it.

The nice, young family wants to close as soon as possible BUT for various reasons known only to them, they won't be able to move in immediately.  So they have asked us if we would entertain the idea of renting the house until December at a rate equal to our current mortgage.  We have agreed.

This does two things for us - it gives us a little bit of breathing room about finding somewhere else to live and it gives us the luxury of an organized attempt at packing.  In the past, when we've sold a home the new owners usually want to occupy the house as soon as possible, which results in slap-dash packing.  And we all know what happens when you pack like that - things get lost and unpacking can be a nightmare.

So, here we to start a new chapter.

September 11, 2013

An Open Letter to Jackasses Everywhere - Your Mother Would Be Mortified (FYI - you might want to take note McDonald's)

Dear Sir Jackass -

Did your mother raise you to behave like that?!  I'm hopeful that she didn't - but with the amount of jackassery I witness on a daily basis, I'm beginning to think she did - which, quite honestly, breaks my heart.  Because I can tell you that without a doubt, if I ever even hear a whisper of a rumor that my child MIGHT have behaved in the manner that you did today?  Well, let's just say that he would definitely live to regret his behavior - and no, I don't care if he will be 19 on his birthday next month.  Actually, I would STILL give him hell for it if he was about to turn 50.

Today, I stopped by McDonald's to get my fix a diet soda (hush, we aren't here to discuss my vices - we are here to talk about YOU) when I witnessed your behavior.  And I was APPALLED.

Yes, I realize that this particular McDonald's has recently undergone a renovation which added the "extra" order lane - of which, I can tell you I heartily disagreed with from the start.  Mainly because I had envisioned the EXACT scenario which you proceeded to act out in great detail today.

BAD idea, Micky-Dee! BAD.

I saw you there, taking your time to place your order as I pulled into the other lane and quickly placed my order for my single item.  I'm sure that kinda ticked you off, since I was able to pull ahead of you - sorry about that.  Quit screwing around while you are ordering; that's the only advice I have for you on that front.  If you don't know what you want then park the car and go inside to figure it out.

The elderly gentleman behind me also placed his order rather quickly.  Yes, maybe you DID complete your order first and was technically "the next person in line" but, from what I could see, the elderly gentleman was driving a gigantic automobile and, most likely, didn't see you over there as he began to nose forward - in front of you.

Your reaction of screaming and cursing at the elderly man was reminiscent of a toddler throwing a tantrum.  And then to make matters worse - you decided that jumping OUT of your car and standing in front of his while screaming obscenities was the best course of action?

Really?!  Where EXACTLY did you determine that this sort of behavior is how a "man" behaves?  Do you actually think this kind of behavior makes you "a man"?  Because, in all honesty, it disgusted me.  And then? To watch you swagger back to your car and pick up your phone - because, I assume, you had to broadcast your behavior all over social media - right about then I had an urge to get out of MY car and rip into you.

I judge you to be about...what?  Mid-twenties, maybe?  So let me give you just a bit of motherly advice, if you will.  Stop it.  Grow up.  And be a man.  What does it take to be a man, you might wonder?  Well, let me tell you.  First of all, don't act like an idiot - or worse, a jackass.  In public or otherwise.  Sure, you were hungry.  I get that, but you know what?  The person at the window offered ME your food (which quite honestly, happens ALL THE TIME at places with this kind of drive-thru system) - and truth be told, I was sorely tempted to take it to give to the homeless man down the street JUST to piss you off that much more when you either got the wrong order or had to wait even longer.  As you must have surmised (which, by the way, basically means "figured out."  Sorry, if my explanation offends you - but by your behavior, I can only assume that you are a Neanderthal - which loosely means, "cave man.") by now, I bypassed that childish impulse.

If you had to wait just a minute more for your damn cheeseburger would it have killed you?  No, probably not.  In other words, "Suck it up and be a man" - which, in case you weren't aware, real men don't behave in that fashion.  No, real men are what they used to call "gentlemen."  If you aren't quite sure what that means, look it up - you know, in a dictionary.  But since I suspect you won't - let me lay it out in quite simple terms - gentlemen don't act like jackasses - as you did today.

And here's just another little bit of motherly wisdom - respect people. Period.  Who the hell do you think you are?  When you find yourself screaming at a person - over a flippin cheeseburger! - I'm thinking it's time to take a step back, look at your life, look at your temper and start re-thinking EVERYTHING about your life, because you?  You are doing something wrong.  You are, in fact, a jackass.

And, I can only hope that your mother would be ashamed to know of your behavior - that she would, in fact, be MORTIFIED.


The "If-You-Were-My-Son-I'd-Kill-You" Mom (don't believe me? Ask MY son.  The one I taught to respect other people and act like a gentleman)

P.S. McDonald's? Are you listening?  Sure, this two lane system may be processing orders more quickly, but it is also processing more insane behavior in the jackasses that walk among us.  You might want to re-think that strategy.

September 8, 2013

The Invisible Box (or, more appropriately...Apparently, my insanity knows no bounds)

As you know, we are going to show the house tomorrow.  This, of course, led to a major cleaning frenzy today.

In the course of said frenzy, my eye happened to fall on this box.

Now this little box sits in an unobtrusive corner in my laundry room and is used to hold items that need to be taken to Goodwill.  You know, like *that* pair of pants that looked, oh so cute, in the store but in reality made me look like an Oompaloompa.  This little box is also apparently invisible to everyone in the house except for me - as I am the only person who ever seems to deposit anything into the box, unless I force them to at gun point. (Yes, I live with hoarders, people).

As I continued on with the cleaning frenzy, that little box remained in mind.  Why?  Because I had decided that the little box needed to be prettified AND it needed to happen before tomorrow - you know, just in case the little box isn't actually invisible to everyone but me.

So I pondered - yes, PONDERED - over the best way to make the box pretty.  

And I came up with the solution of covering the box with Contact Paper.  Yes, I could have used pretty gift wrap - but since I had pondered over this little box for far too long - I had decided that gift wrap just wouldn't hold up as well on a box, that sits in the corner, and is only used by me.

So I made a special trip to Target to procure "pretty" Contact Paper to cover the invisible box and came home and set to work.  Now, as anyone who has ever used Contact Paper to line their shelves knows, it is not the easiest medium to work with.  Throw a box with corners into the equation and you are talking EXTRA tricky.

But I did it; and now my invisible box is pretty.

And as if spending half an hour wrapping a box - that no one but me sees - wasn't enough.  I decided it needed a label, just in case that box isn't invisible to everyone else, so that they would know the purpose of the box.  So I headed to the computer, created said label, printed it, cut it out and slapped it on.

And there you have it.  I am now the proud owner of a pretty little, invisible box that proudly states its purpose.

As if you needed further proof of my insanity.

September 7, 2013

Putting the cart before the horse...because that's what I do best.

I was out running errands today when Hubby called.  Apparently, someone called about the house and wants to see it on Monday.  Which is when my mind went into overdrive.

With all the things that need to be done before we show it AND, more importantly, with what we are going to do if these people actually buy it.  Hence, putting the cart before the horse.

We've already determined that we will rent something while we figure out our next move.  Great.  That means there are at least TWO moves in my future.  But the thought of coordinating the sale of this one and finding and buying something else makes Hubby's head explode and since I don't have the time or the inclination to deal with head explosions, I'll just have to deal with the two moves.

But since even before the house was on the market, I've been scouting around.  And here is what I've determined regarding renting; other than an apartment or a town home (maybe), we will probably be shelling out about the same amount of cash that we are currently paying on our mortgage.  And?  Those houses are teeny-tiny houses that are ancient.  But what disturbs me more?

The lack of decent, affordable housing for sale in the areas we want to live.  I don't have a problem living within the city limits - but Hubby does because of the taxes.  He tells me (and I guess I have to believe him since I don't understand it all) that we can afford "more" house in the county.  And I don't mind living in the county, as long as it's the northwest part of the county.  The other parts of the county are just not negotiable for me (don't ask me why, it just is.  Plus all of our friends - that we never see - are out here).

I wouldn't mind looking at existing neighborhoods - but Hubby seems hell bent on building again.  He is convinced that we will never find exactly what we want.  I'm fine with building BUT I want to live in a neighborhood again (currently, we kind of live in between neighborhoods without actually fitting into either one).

And here is what I've discovered about this part of the county.  The only new neighborhoods are only building McMansions at ridiculous prices.  Even if I could afford a McMansion, I don't want one.  Basically, it's just the two of us.  We don't NEED a McMansion and I certainly don't want to clean one.  That's one of the reasons we are selling this one - which isn't a McMansion - it is just bigger than what we need.

And then today, I thought I hit the mother lode.  It was PERFECT.  There were brand new homes and lots for sale in what seemed to be a reasonably priced neighborhood.  The houses didn't look overly large or ostentatious.  The neighborhood was what I would call "quaint".  Although, the lawns were rather small - which would be a problem for Hubby but was one I could overlook.  None of the lots or houses had those info boxes that carry flyers with all the details about the house; so when I came home I Googled them.  And guess what?

That house, the one that looked smaller than the house I currently live in?  The one with the teeny-tiny postage stamp of a lawn?  I almost had a heart attack when I saw the list price; it was FAR more than what we are asking for our house - which is bigger and sits on nearly an acre.

I'm thinking either a) we need to re-think this moving thing or b) we need to up the asking price for this house.

So, in a nutshell, I am panicking over where we are going to go - after we move into a rental somewhere to plot our next move - before we have even shown the house to the first person whose shown an interest.

I'm insane.

September 2, 2013

It's Labor Day weekend! And, in retrospect, I have *definitely* labored this much so, that I need another day off

As you know from my last post, I toiled over the damn pantry all day on Saturday - which, I have informed my husband, makes my heart happy every time I walk in there - in my vain attempt to have him keep it the way he finds it when he walks in there.

On Friday, (which I might point out, my company so kindly provides as an "extra" holiday, in addition to the Labor Day Monday) I spent the majority of the day driving up and down The Mountain to retrieve Man-Child so he could spend the weekend with us - which was fabulous.  The house is so empty when he's not here.

Yesterday was Sunday - a day of rest.  Which means I did absolutely nothing. Except for helping Hubby figure out how to remove the three layers of glass on our oven door.  Why were we removing the three layers of glass, you ask?

Because not too long ago, Hubby was bemoaning the fact that there was much "cooked on gunk" on the stove top and wondering how to remove it without scratching the surface.  I tossed off "Use peroxide and baking soda to make a paste."  Somehow this little factoid had wedged itself into my mind while cruising the Internet at some point.  No, I can't point you to WHERE I found it.  All I remember was seeing the words "This will clean ANYTHING!"  He did it and it worked (I'm a believer - this stuff removed every single bit of the gunk after sitting on the range overnight - I'm now pondering where else in this house it might work it's magic).  Which lead him to try to clean the inside oven window.  Which did not work out so well.  Mainly because, he didn't leave the paste on as long and somehow during the process the solution seeped down the cracks and left a white stain on every single pane of glass, which was clearly visible from the outside.

So we struggled with the whole removing the three panes of glass (and cleaning them) for the better part of four hours (thanks to a couple of stripped screws).  Somehow, we managed to do so without breaking either the oven or the glass.  And it looks pretty good.

Now, we just have to do the same for the bottom oven.  Because, of course, the peroxide/baking soda solution somehow managed to drip down into those three panes as well.  *sigh*  And I wondered why I was exhausted on Sunday night?

Today found me driving back up and down The Mountain to deposit Man-Child back at school.  I don't mind driving, for the most part.  Around town driving makes me crazy because of the idiots - but I find, for the most part, highway driving is pretty easy, if a bit exhausting after a four hour round trip.  So, I don't mind going up to fetch and the going up to return - except I really don't like the returning part, if the truth be told.

When I came home, I discovered that Hubby was attempting to fix the corner cabinet lazy susan.  Remember when this happened?

Yes, after over a YEAR, the lazy susan cabinet has finally been repaired.  And all it took was for one of the cabinet hinges to break, which caused a phone call to the manufacturer to order to new hinges, which caused the new hinges to be delivered - eventually - which caused Hubby to scratch his head, which caused me to call the cabinet installer to come out and fix the door.  AND while he was here, I asked him HOW to reattach the lazy susan to the fixed part of the cabinet.  Which led to a very simple, and ingenious, explanation (which I would love to expound upon, but unless I have you right in front of me, so I could demonstrate, would be impossible to do).  Which sounded great, in theory.

In truth, it was two person job.  One of us had to actually fold ourselves into the cabinet (that someone would be me) several different times and the other to wield the drill - because his arms were longer and could reach the nooks and crannies.  But in the end, the task was accomplished.  And I was pleased.

So now, not only do I have a perfect pantry (for now), I also have the lazy susan back.  I sure hope the new home owners will appreciate all our efforts.  And if it isn't in the cards for there to be new home owners, I know *I* will appreciate the efforts.

And?  After all that?  I'm thinking that extra vacation day I so astutely tacked on to this extra long weekend is well deserved.

August 31, 2013

It's Official...the house is on the market, the "Boy" is home, and I'm getting old. *sigh*

Hubby finally put up the For Sale sign - yes, we are testing the waters with a For Sale By Owner sign.  So far?  The house looks almost as good as it did when we moved in.  Things are slowly, but surely, getting done (for those who are counting, so far ALL the painting has been done by yours truly and you are welcome to picture me giving Hubby the evil eye).  Things are getting weeded out, cleaned (again, it seems like yours truly is shouldering the majority of that burden.  Probably because he is a closet hoarder) and refreshed.

And as the house begins to take shape, I'm remembering how much I love this house (stop it!); but am prepared to let it go, if that is the plan, so we can start over fresh.

The pantry has been my main goal today - it was a mess!  As you all know, I am not the cook in this house so the kitchen and the pantry is mainly Hubby's territory.  But seeing as he is a closet hoarder someone had to take charge.  It literally took the majority of the day to assess what was needed in terms of baskets, containers, etc., set about purchasing said needs, and then actually following through with the clean up, decanting, decluttering and labeling (I labeled everything in hopes that Hubby will put things where they belong.  It's a vain hope, but a girl can dream, can't she?).  I even took a picture for posterity - because I think the odds of it remaining in this condition are slim to none.  Which pretty much means, I just wasted most of my day and some hard-earned cash.

Wonder how long it will last?

As I was collating the pasta into the containers, he piped up with "What ARE you doing?  Don't you know that those are different brands of pasta?  You can't mix them up like that!"  Are you freaking kidding me?  The pasta that I was manipulating were all labeled "thin spaghetti" (of which we had SIX unopened boxes!) which to me means they are all the same.  According to Hubby the different brands cook differently.  Who knew?  And even more importantly...why buy various brands then?  Doesn't that just result in too much info to store into your brain?  I told him to suck it up and deal with it.  For the rest of the pasta (rigatoni, elbow, penne and who knows what else) I gave up and just bought a big basket to shove it into.

And you still can't convince me that we NEED that much pasta and accompanying tomato sauce/paste.  Peanut butter, popcorn and coffee?  Yes.  Pasta, etc?  Not so much.

In other news, Man-Child came home for the long weekend.

Hmmm....didn't I have a very similar picture about this time last year?

Why, yes I did!

I love having him home.  It makes my little heart happy.  And he does provide perspective about certain things.  Consider what he yelled down the stairs yesterday....

And yeah...he's right.  As I noted with my next tweet...

And, even better?  The fact that he started his laundry without waiting around hoping I'd do it for him.  Granted, I did finish it (oh hush!  I'm allowed to spoil him a little!) but he still gets major points for not expecting me to do it in the first place.

Hubby is also enjoying having him home because he now has someone to watch football with - as I type Hubby is providing color(ful) and loud commentary on whatever game they are currently watching.

Now, we can discuss the most important part of this post.  I'm getting old.

Don't deny it.  It's true.

How do I know this?  Because in the last week I have succumbed and purchased readers.


I finally convinced my eye doctor that I couldn't see with my current contact prescription; and he agreed but informed me that I would probably need reading glasses. I was all "Whatever, I can't SEE!" Until I realized that the only time I can now see anything up close is without my contacts or glasses.  Do you know what this means?

As I am extremely nearsighted, this means that if I am wearing my contacts I can't see a damn thing that is even in the vicinity of my eyes.  I had become quite adept, when wearing my regular ("ancient" and definitely not my current prescription) glasses, of looking over them to see whatever it is I need to see.  But then I bought the readers - to wear while wearing my contacts when I need to see something up close.  Can you say "disorienting?"  And then when I switch from contacts to my regular old glasses (not the readers) - my eyes go into the eyeball version of anaphylactic shock.  It's insane.  I'm convinced that I am doing my eyeballs a disservice by freaking them out so frequently. But what choice do I have?  None, apparently, if I wish to see.

And the very worst part?  What to do with the readers when they aren't on my face.  At first, I dealt with them the way I deal with my sunglasses - I stuck them on top of my head.  But my sunglasses don't have those little nose pad things.  I buy sunglasses without them for a reason.  Because those little nose pad things - they rip out my hair.  Every single time.  Guess what these glasses have?  Yup, nose pad things.  Guess who will be shopping for a new pair sans nose pads pretty soon in an attempt from going bald?  Yes, that would be me.

Until then, you can picture me with my readers perched on the end of my nose like so...


In a vain attempt to see all things both near and far.

August 24, 2013

And let's just put this in the "Gigi was right" column; which according to my calculations means I'm winning.

As you guys have heard, we've had issues with our lawn mower...yes, I can hear you all yelling "WE KNOW!  Move past the whole lawn mower issue already!!"  And hopefully I will - after this post.

At one point we were told it was dead, kaput, gone.  By someone, who is very qualified in other areas, but maybe not so much in the area of small engines.

Considering that it is only about six years old, I begged Hubby to have someone else look at it - someone with experience at small engine repairs - because holy cow!  We paid a lot of money for that lawn mower; it damn well better last longer than six years!.  He resisted.  He was convinced that no one would make a house call.  He was convinced it was, in fact, dead.

But finally he capitulated (i.e, he got tired of hearing me tell him to call someone else).  He called a guy he found on Craig's List.  The guy came out, looked it over and announced that he thought he could fix it.  He loaded it up on his trailer and drove away; at which point Hubby's paranoia began to set in.  Quietly.

The next day, he called Hubby and told him that he could fix it for $50.  Which, after paying someone else - someone who wasn't qualified to work on small engines - who informed us that is WAS dead, seemed miraculous to us.  In Hubby's eyes, it was almost too good to be true.

A couple more days went by and Hubby called the man for an update - only to receive a "This number has been disconnected" recording.  And that was it; the quiet paranoia became full blown.  He was convinced that we had been scammed.  CERTAIN, that we'd never see the mower again.  (And, honestly, are any of us really surprised?  This is the same man that is convinced that each and every one of YOU are ax-murderers looking to kill us in our sleep...because "you know how those internet people can be.")

I encouraged him to try the number one more time - just in case.  And it went through.  The guy said he was waiting on one part but figured he could have the mower back to us last night.  Still Hubby was skeptical.  When the guy called and the connection was lost, Hubby's suspicious nature ratcheted up another notch, if that is even possible.  Despite me telling him that there had been cell tower "issues" in our area.  Eventually, he was able to leave a message telling the guy to call our land line - our dusty, unused land line.  Actually, it's a miracle either one of us even remember the number.  Actually, I'm surprised to discover that we still have - and are paying for - a land line.  Hmm, maybe it does have its uses - besides taking messages from random solicitors - after all.

Lo and behold, the guy called.  Said he'd be here in ten minutes.  And miracle of miracles, he was.  AND the mower was repaired.  And even Hubby had to admit that there are still some good people out in the world.  And?  Even more important - he had to admit that I was right!  Do you know how huge that is?  It's GIGANTIC.  Truly, this man should listen to me more.  Did I not tell him he needed a second opinion?  Yes.  Did I not tell him that not every person on the internet is out to "get" you in some way?  Yes.

So.  Does this mean the beginning of a new era?  One where he looks to me and says, "Oh my dearest darling, what do YOU think I should do?"

Sadly, no.  I don't think it is the dawn of a new era - because it's hard to teach an old dog new tricks.  But, I do get the satisfaction of knowing I was right.  And sometimes, that is enough.