Ten Things of Thankful – July 3rd!

Happy #1)

Man I do love my three-day weekends! This one went a little different from how they usually go. Often with three days, I fritter my time away and the next thing you know the weekend is over and I’ve accomplished less than I would on a regular weekend.

Happy #2)

My power-washer is acting up a bit, but I did get two sides of the house clean and sprayed for spiders. I am a bit sadistic when it comes to spiders, because there is nothing I love more than watching them fall from their hiding places and die. It has something to do with my endless battle to clean spider shit from everything that is outside.

Happy #3)

My youngest finally has a job! Not a great job, but it’s a job. Hopefully after the long period of unreliable income, he will be better about saving and get himself some wheels.

Happy #4)

I spent a ton of time on my hands and knees this weekend working on my deck. I scrubbed it, sanded it and stained it.

Deck Stained Black

Happy #5)

The stain came at significant savings. I was going to have it mixed to that color, but on a whim I checked the mis-tint shelf first. Lo and behold, someone else had second thoughts about the color and I was able to pick up 2 liters (almost gallons? – the big cans) for just $20 each.

Happy #6)

I have thought about staining my deck for at least a year, maybe two. This spring I was thinking about it even harder. I’m so happy I finally pulled the trigger on this project.

Happy #7)

I spent yesterday afternoon and evening debating whether to sand or not sand. This morning while I was sitting outside in my pajamas (I lie, I sleep in yoga pants and a t-shirt) drinking my coffee, I picked up the palm sander and started to sand. Like most jobs, the anticipation was far worse than actually doing the job.

Happy #8)

Showering and dressing after it was all done. In all honesty and a bit of eeuw, spending an entire day outside and active with my un-showered self was a bit much.

Happy #9)

Looking forward to finishing that last bit that’s in front of the other door. I felt it was wise to not restrict the use of both doors at the same time, so that’s why that one last bit isn’t done yet.

Happy #10)

I doubt my usual Sunday night insomnia will be a problem tonight. I expect I’ll be sound asleep in no time.

Linking up to Ten Things of Thankful later than usual this week, so it might take a couple of days to get around to read everyone’s posts!

 

”Ten

 

Ten Things of Thankful, May 28th

So happy Memorial Day to all of you Americans out there, I will be thinking of you come Monday when I’m starting my work week.

Happy #1)

This one is huge! It’s so huge it could probably count as Happy 1 through 10. It’s enormous!

So remember my no-good horrible neighbor? The one that was causing me major anguish and torment last year?

He has a for-sale sign up on his house!!!!!! Oh happy happy day!

Currently one of my besties is in Cincinnati for a sporting event and says she’s going to party her ass off tonight in celebration.

Happy #2

After finding out I had missed the last two books in the Harry Potter series, I am happy to say that error has been fixed. Kids series or not, I’ve enjoyed them all.

Happy #3

Kindle Unlimited. If you haven’t heard of it it’s for books what Netflix is for movies. I pay $9.99 a month and get to read as many books as I want from the Unlimited catalogue. It’s awesome.

Happy #4

It’s finally warmed up here. Of course I’m not sure why it always has to go from ‘wearing fuzzy socks and running the furnace’ to ‘time to turn the A/C on’ overnight, but it happens that way nearly every year.

Happy #5

Did I mention the for sale sign next door?

Happy #6

This week I bathed both dogs. I am so happy my son taught them each to get in the tub on command. It can get a little confusing when they both try to hop in at the same time, but it sure saves my back when it’s bath time. Plus now I get to pet silky soft dogs again instead of smelly ones.

Happy #7

My d-bag of a neighbor has his house up for sale! Happy dance, happy dance!

Happy #8

I am making iced coffee today, even if I won’t get to drink it until tomorrow. Last year was my first time even drinking iced coffee because I always thought it would be gross like hot coffee gone cold. Only it wasn’t – gross or hot coffee gone cold. Apparently you have to ‘cold brew’ the coffee for iced coffee.

Coffee sludge

So I have this jar of sludge sitting on my counter for now, but tomorrow it will be all filtered and if the recipe is right, taste yummy with ice and a bit of sugar.

Happy #9

Free gravel with free delivery! So the way it works is if you need stone – roofing companies can be your best source. They get it when they’re working on flat-roofs and have to get rid of it somehow. As long as you aren’t using it for a driveway or whatever.

Happy #10

Finding inspiration and being able to string together sentences and paragraphs on my screen again.

Old Grudges

Sometimes when I read a book, the most profound message I take from the author’s words is likely one that was never intended by the author. For me, My Sister’s Keeper by Jody Picoult was one of those books.

What struck me wasn’t that Anna Fitzgerald struggled with balancing her needs against the needs of her very sick sister Kate. It was that Jodi Picoult wrote about the very real human emotions we, or at least I,  struggle to bury every day while trying to be ‘good people’, because if an author understands that daily battle well enough to write about it, then surely people other than myself must face that struggle all the time.

At the time it was a revelation, something that said “okay, yeah you’re probably different from most people, but not completely alone”, because if she could write how I would think and feel in that situation, then other people must think and feel the way I do right? Still waters run deep and all that, so maybe other people are just better at hiding that part of themselves or perhaps they just don’t feel the need to lie awake at 3 am beating themselves up about it when they slip.

It’s human nature to toss out those little platitudes and quotes we all occasionally let drop from our mouths like dribbles from a cup we haven’t properly sealed our lip to. Ones about forgiving and forgetting and moving on. About being a happy successful adult who doesn’t hold a grudge. Hell you can’t go on the good ol’ Facebook without seeing a few of them written in a pretty font over top of a picture of some gorgeous woman that we all secretly want to be. Or is it just me that wants to be that beautiful woman with the lovely figure, because surely she’s got life figured out exactly right.

She probably isn’t holding a grudge about an office situation that happened at least five years ago or the ex that’s been an ex for long enough that he should only be a distant memory. She would probably only have fond memories of her time with that same ex because she’s got life down pat and she’s figured out the key to happiness ever after right? Obviously she must because a beautiful outside has never hidden a rotten core in the history of humanity.

Yet time and time again, no matter how many soothing layers I lay over my own toxic memories and past grudges, they come bubbling up and out of my mouth. Bitter words like acid that make me burn with shame. The type of words usually delivered with a smirk and a wink because the enemy of my enemy is obviously my friend, so ‘wink wink’ are you my friend?

In the dead of night, my conscience reminds me that those words that slipped past my lips said more about me than my former co-worker or past lover, and none of it was good. At 3 am it’s easy to pledge I’ll do better and be better while trying to lay down another layer of ‘good people don’t’ in hopes of containing the sludge I still struggle to neutralize. Yet somehow as soon as I’m around other people for longer than five minutes here it comes, spewing out like a soda belch that shatters any good impressions I might have made instead.

Someday I may get the hang of letting my grudges go, for now I would settle for getting better at keeping them hidden.

On-Line Dating, Soy Sauce and Travel

Right around Christmas, I had this brilliant idea to try on-line dating. Not that I’m even sure I want a man underfoot, but you know someday these boys of mine will want to leave the nest and when that happens maybe I’ll regret my singledom.

I’m not sure how hot a woman has to be to get a viable date offer on an on-line dating site, but apparently I’m a long way from that hot. My most notable offer was from a fellow who had no teeth, no job, no vehicle and thought I should be honored to drive to where he was and leap on his magic swizzle stick.

Ladies I saw the hair on that man’s head, and even with all of his other fine qualities, there is no way in hell I ever want to see the bush that would have come flying out of that man’s pants – or anything else that was in his pants. We’re talking Beetlejuice look-alike, with fewer conversation skills.

So I’ve spent the past three months or so wallowing in books while reveling in singledom and never hearing a man wonder why my dishes aren’t done or there are two or four loads of laundry piled on a chair waiting for me to fold them, or better yet, someone to just wear them so I can skip the folding all together.

But now it’s time to quit wallowing because this weekend I’m off to California for a week. Which means I’ve gone from zero to full on panic mode. Actually it started Saturday with a shopping trip for suitable clothing. Monday was shopping for food that could be ready and stored in single serving containers for my boys to eat while I’m away.

I spent at least ten minutes trying to remember which soy sauce I had at home. The one I don’t like and was waiting to use up, but then decided soy sauce isn’t that freaking expensive so why use up soy sauce I don’t like when the store has soy sauce I do like. Happily the soy sauce I bought wasn’t the same soy sauce I had at home and don’t like so we’re good.

Tuesday was the night to make two pans of lasagna, fried rice and honey garlic chicken. I won’t be able to serve fried rice before September once they’ve spent a week eating it, but that’s life. Lasagna of course is no issue, up until recently both of my boys thought that was only served for Christmas Eve.

That just leaves giving myself a pedicure, shaving my legs, packing, reserving parking, and making sure there are enough provisions left behind for the boys while I’m away while obsessing about night wear and hot flashes and wondering if the hotels have laundry facilities.

Ten Things of Thankful, December 11

Here I sit at the computer with my coffee and all around me is chaos. The real reason I haven’t yet posted after pictures of my floors is because I am struggling to find homes for All The Stuff. Through the week, there are dishes, dinner to cook and more dishes. On the weekend there’s laundry to wash and fold and more laundry yet. When did my weeks turn into this endless drudgery of not keeping up?

I’m just going to blame it on these shorter days and see what I can do to make a dent in the squalor this weekend.

So with that in mind…

Happy #1)

My counters are in the same state they were at the end of last weekend, so anything I get done this weekend is progress.

Happy #2)

Filing. I’ve always hated filing, but I got the job started yesterday and should have it wrapped up pretty quick today.

Happy #3)

My laundry is almost caught up, and I’ve already gathered the hoarded wet towels from both boys rooms so no surprise laundry dump right after I finish the last load.

Happy #4)

Justin had work this week. Temporary work, but money is money, and I’m happy to not have to worry about his phone bill.

Happy #5)

Sorted EntryThis space is sorted – for now at least. It’s a sort of utility room off the front door. Odd in shape, it’s nearly impossible to keep tidy. We’ll see if the shelving helps.

Happy #6)

Matthew is finally awake so I can get started on the cleaning. I’ll focus on being grateful that he’s awake and try not to let the fact that he woke up bitching spoil my morning.

Happy #7)

A picture of a very naughty looking vegetable messaged to me by a friend.

Happy #8)

Upholstered OttomanThe makings of a “Doggy Daybed”. Currently our two dogs enjoy their bean-bag chairs. Me not so much. Whether they’re being used for seating or dog beds, bean bag chairs look like a pile of laundry on the floor and I already have real piles of laundry hanging around. Come outside and playAfter seeing how much they enjoyed lounging on Matt’s truck seat (yes, that really is the bench seat from a truck in my house) last winter, I’ve had the idea of making them an upholstered bench lurking in the back of my mind. Finding one that only needs to be re-upholstered for $14? I call that awesome – even if I really wasn’t planning to work on any “projects” this weekend.

Happy #9)

If I manage to get all of the rubble sorted enough to pull out my sewing machine and upholster the doggy daybed, I’ll be able to look after some mending at the same time.

Happy #10)

For now, the doggy daybed is a handy surface for sorting out the excess of crap I have.

Ten Things of Thankful, October 9th

I debated linking up this week, not because I wasn’t feeling thankful but more because I’ve got lots happening this weekend and wasn’t sure I would have time to read everyone’s posts. In the end I couldn’t stay away so it may take me all week to make it around to everyone but I will get there eventually. I have a feeling this is going to be a much longer TToT post than my usual!

Happy #1 – Trade Shows

I spent a couple of days in Niagara Falls this week at a trade show conference for work. Now while I will jump down anyone’s throat if they imply that business travel is all fun and games, I’ve got to say there are plenty of worse ways to make a living. At the end of the first day I wanted to cry because my feet hurt so bad, but that was just an 8 hour day and it wasn’t so long ago that my job involved 12-16 hour days on my feet and I had to do that for 6 days a week every week.

Horseshoe falls Niagara Falls On the US sideSo now I’m the type of person who if I’m booking a motel room for myself, it’s going to be an economy room. Probably one of those old fashioned motor court style motel rooms. Niagara Falls still has plenty of those types of motels and they likely meet my requirements for a running shower and a clean bed. On my own, I would never book a room in one of the hotels right by the falls. I certainly wouldn’t book a room that had the view you see in the pictures above so let’s call that room and view Happy #2.

I even got to see the falls at night this time when the sales rep who works the territory adjacent to mine went with me to check it out after we had dinner. As lovely as it is, it’s not something that photographs well so no pictures of that. Sorry.

Happy #3

Comfy shoes and a cheap skirt. By cheap I mean it only cost $13 at Wal-mart and for that $13 bucks it looked great and was comfortable. The comfy shoes came from Wal-mart too and will probably be held in my closet for years to come specifically as “Trade Show Shoes”. As I explained to Matt, trade show shoes are just regular shoes that are a 1/2 size larger than your every day shoes. After two days, you need the extra 1/2 size.

Happy #4

Cheese! I have a love affair with melting cheese on food but I’ve never experimented with the pricier types of cheese. The first day of the trade show there is usually a cocktail hour, this year they had cheese platters. I recognized the brie and another one I can’t remember the name of and knew they were the milder types. There were two others I sniffed suspiciously (I can’t eat cheese that smells like feet, it’s just not happening) and then tasted. Not so great at first, but then I paired them with the dried apricots that were on the platter along with. Yummy!

Happy #5

After two days of eating out and all of that expensive cheese, Weight Watchers! Yep, I went and signed myself up for six months of strict dieting. On the first day I went over on my points I didn’t even count everything! I went to bed feeling very hungry. But I did not take full advantage of my fruit and veggie freebies, so hopefully moving forward that will help me feel a bit more satisfied. Adding exercise will give me a few more daily points too, and artificial sweetener for my coffee, because the sugar for my many morning cups of coffee alone amounted to a meal’s worth of points. And no, I’m not going to give up my coffee because there are already a lot of other things I need to mostly give up.Things like beer, whiskey, vodka and chocolate.

Happy #6

Pails of paintPaint! Paint chips thumbtacked to wallFor at least a month I’ve had paint swatches tacked up all over the place trying to decide on color. Top two contendersA couple of weeks ago I narrowed it down to two swatches that looked nice with my floor tiles and the fabric I used for my chairs.The lavender color at the bottom of the top swatch is the same color I used for my former office that is now Matt’s room. Then today I went to the store and everything changed.

Swatches with final choiceSurprise! Warm buttery yellow it is. And yes, it took me by surprise too. To make it more economical, I am simply painting all the rooms the same color. This way I can buy the big contractor bucket of paint instead of multiple gallons – or as they are here in Canada 3.78 L cans.

The sales clerk who mixed my paint was confused by my request for white eggshell for the ceilings. I won’t paint my ceilings with actual ceiling paint because it’s too flat to be wipe-able. I’ve been using eggshell for years and trust me, it’s nice to be able to wipe that oatmeal spatter or spider poop when you need to.

Happy #7

Drywall!My closet was built at least 18 years ago, and for all that time the inside edge of the doorway was never finished. I wanted it drywall with a hanging bi-fold door. My ex-husband wanted it with door casing and probably some sort of heavy ornate trim I would have hated. Corner BeadIt’s now dry walled for better or for worse. This is actually the first time I’ve done any drywall other than practicing my mad hole repair skillz. It may end up looking great, or it may end up looking kind of shitty. Either way I’ll learn something and if it’s horrible, I can fix it the next time I paint.

Oh trim will cover that and other trust issuesMind you I have to figure out what the hay I’m going to do with this big crevice. My ex husband was famous for saying “eh, the trim (or switch-plate) will cover that. It never did.

Happy #8

Did I mention I finally picked a paint color? I can’t wait to finish the prep work and see it on the walls. I can’t wait until it’s done either. Finally I’ll get my house put together. I’ve had two boxes of pictures for the walls just sitting in my living room for months. It doesn’t make sense to hang them and then paint right? It’s going to be tough maneuvering around furniture and dogs to get this done, but it’s going to be heaven when I can finally have everything where it belongs.

Happy #9

Did I mention I joined weight-watchers? I plan to quit smoking as well. Very soon I’m going to commit myself to a quit date, but in the meantime as soon as the roller first touches the wall my indoor space is going to become smoke free. No more nicotine haze on my pictures or windows. No more stinky clothes. Plus the cooling temperatures will add some incentive to quit I think.

Happy #10

I’ll be able to finally install my flooring! It’s been here, sitting in my living room for about a month. I still have to figure out the logistics (and money) of levelling out the floor a bit, but I’ll be able to start once the painting is done. And then after that, and this part is even more exciting, I’ll be able to install trim! Imagine, baseboards and window casings! Even better, they’ll all be the same style!

”Ten

My Value Village Addiction

I’m developing a Value Village/Thrift Store addiction. I’m not sure if I should blame it on some of the decorating blogs I’ve read lately, or just my need for some nice things in the midst of my cleaning binge. I usually only go to Value Village every other week or so – mostly for used books to read. Then every so often I drop off the ones I’ve read and it’s like the circle of life for used books. Yesterday I was going past to pick up my new vintage chair so I figured I might as well drop off the purged items from my closet at the same time.

When you donate to Value Village you get a voucher for 10% off so of course I had to go in to browse.

Vintage Blue Glassware with frosted patternAren’t these blue glasses so pretty? I didn’t even see that the rim is purplish looking until I got it home, I’m wondering if the rims weren’t silver at one time. I love the etched/frosted design on these glasses too. They’re perfect size for a Whiskey or Southern Comfort on the rocks.

Vintage Condiment or Relish serverThen I spotted this Condiment server. The spoons say Tupperware but I’ve got no way of knowing if they are original. I really need to find some trays with a lip on them if I’m going to leave my glassware on display though. Otherwise Miss Kitty will be batting it to the floor when she wants an escort to her food dish.

Old Wire Magazine RackThen there was this old metal Magazine Rack. It’s a bit rusty so I’ll be hitting that with some spray paint. Look at that dirty floor, you can tell it was raining out again.

Penguin Salt and Pepper ShakersThen there were these adorable penguin salt and pepper shakers. Both my Aunt and I collect penguins although her collection surpassed mine eons ago. I haven’t added any new pieces to mine in forever and the animals and kids have damaged some of the ones I did have. This one is going to my Aunt – her son is the selfish cousin married to an even more selfish woman. A set of salt & pepper shakers isn’t going to fix that, but it is a little reminder that the rest of us think she’s awesome.

Vintage Harvest Gold Wall ClockThis is an electric wall clock that I found at Value Village 2 or 3 years ago. Now I’m sure someone who likes Harvest Gold or collects vintage is going to gasp, because I spray painted that sucker. If it had been Avocado Green I could have worked with it, but I don’t do baby shit yellow.

Baby Blue painted vintage electric wall clockIt still works too! I’ve got it hanging by my workspace and it’s even made in Canada!

Sadly, I don’t have my chair yet. It was much larger than I was expecting and I’m going to need my mom’s help and van to pick it up. Can I just say it’s a gorgeous piece of furniture? I can’t wait to get it home and make the cushions for it.