Friday, July 3, 2009

I was a lollygagger yesterday.

From the Urban Dictionary:

:Lol'i*gag*er, a.(lollygagging); Lollygagger, The art of being extremely slow at everything; sloth like; moving a small distance in a long time; not quick in motion; tardy; to delay; sluggish; a habitually slow dude.

You know, I'm horrible when it comes to going through things to pitch/donate or pass on otherwise. It's not that I don't like giving things away, it just takes me so blasted long to do it. Internets, I'm a romantic goer-througher. It's horrible to admit, but my husband would probably tell you that it is excruciating to watch me move large hunks of things from one place to another.

I get to looking at pictures.

I get to reading parts of books.

I rearrange things.

I find things that I've forgotten long ago that I owned. Likewise, I find things that I own that I thought I had dispensed of long ago. Perhaps I did, but they liked me so much that they came back-- on their own.

I get bigger and better ideas involving another/other rooms. One room re-do's easily engulf my 1008 sq foot house. My mind wanders and runs off to partial other lands. (In the middle of everything, I decided to run a test spot on the floor with a homemade wax remover. See? For the record, it didn't work.) I have cleaning ADD. It's ugly, my friends. And clearly I'm one of those folks that is a lifetime member to the "Bit off more than I can chew in the time allowed" club. Ah yes, I believe that I'm a charter member. Though I have to tell you that otherwise, I proceed in a caffeinated-like fashion. It doesn't help that I don't find cleaning entertaining. Under the Tree (a local folk band)and The Mighty Mighty Bosstones didn't even give me the kick in the pants I needed. Ugh.

I need a healing right here at my house. At least a nice massage or a Reiki session might set me back to center. Who knows. All I know is that I have a queen sized oak rake bed in my 12' x 14' bedroom somewhere. I'm convinced of it. At least I swear that is where I slept last night . . .

Smiles in my day:
- K- is fascinated with the Food Mover that came with the Richard Simmons exercise videos that I purchased 5 years ago. Oh, don't worry. Only one video made it out of the plastic. Yes,that is exercise dedication.
- K- has been placing our pennies in the smooshed penny books. We have so many pennies that I've collected in a jar. She has been doing a good job booking them.
- I have far more books than I thought. Many interesting things to read and studies to do.
- Photo books from K- through her ages. Oh, what great fun!
- Having space to store all of the things mentioned above. That is, except for the Food Mover. I believe that K- can keep that in her kitchen stuff downstairs in her play area.
- Time is moving as slowly as I am today. That is an advantage to me!
- My 91 year old grandmother fell last night, but I'm glad to report that she is fine. She very slightly skinned a knee. She was reaching for some pop and kept on going. She listened to me last week and kept her life alert necklace on and was able to use it to summon someone for help.
-K- saw me throwing things away and she was taking a sneak walk to the trash can to see what I ditched. I busted her, though. Good thing she didn't see me bagging up all those Thomas and Dora movies. My name would be mud. She hasn't watched them in one sweet forever. Besides, I rotated stock and hoping that she doesn't even notice. I also liberated her drawers from some of the clothes that were clogging them. Hoping that I can score a consignment shop tomorrow that will happily go through my wares and pay me for them.
- After the grandma incident, my aunt sent me home with potato chips. She knows that I love them, but I don't buy them because I love them. Mmmm.
- The cleaning itch that I got helped me to free my side of the bed from all the books that I've purchased but haven't been able to read yet. I've been able to shelf my beads for bracelets. I cleaned out the little nook next to the armoire that only seemed to amass junk and found a new place to stow the sweeper. Now no one will see it when they walk in our room. Hooray!
- Crisp evening air.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Dear IKEA,

You sell wonderful stuff. Your Besta Bookshelf is currently residing in my bedroom. In fact, I have been reworking my bedroom and the livingroom bookshelf in celebration of its arrival. However, it would be great if you send along enough hardware for all of the shelves you include. Why you would include 6 shelves in the package, show 6 shelves in your photo, yet specifically only send enough hardware to install 5 shelves (as numbered in your instructions, as well.) It makes no sense. I've now just spent quality time speaking with your Pittsburgh service representatives, trying to get hardware sent out. The first rep wasn't convinced it could be done. She wanted me to stop in. The trip is about an hour and a half. Believe me, it isn't time nor gas efficient to do so. The second one has happily worked on it for me. Oh thank heavens, Carla pulled it through for me. Now in the convenient time frame of 6-10 business days, I'll be able to complete construction of our beautiful bookcase.

Irritatedly so,

Amy from Ohio

I'm going to paint my kitchen.

To celebrate the upcoming 10 year anniversary of our co-owning our home with the bank, I've decided to embrace what I have and paint. I would love to do an overhaul on the kitchen, but economically, we will be embracing a can or two of paint. Maybe I'll swing for the fences and do a little bead board with a chair rail. (Okay, yes it would be wainscoting, but seriously, we're talking pressed wood bead board. Let's call a spade a spade, shall we?)

I'm a fan of borders. I know, not everyone is. I don't go full on wallpaper, but I do think a decorative touch is good here and there. The border that I purchased is this: Do y'all know that the purchase date on the receipt was 5/25/07? I've had this border for over two years. The economy is getting no better.

My kitchen countertop is goldenrod yellow. My cabinets are dark. Dark cabinets are kind of coming back in, so I'll just clean them up and give them a good shine. I plan on changing the hardware, but adding up the cost of hardware or the time to take it all off, paint it and put it back on . . . Cleaning the cabinets will work just fine for now. I have no backsplash, but that shouldn't be a problem to install.

The microwave cart is an atrocity. Truly, I wished that I had the wrap around countertop that I have pictured in my mind, but it ain't gonna happen so again-- I'll embrace what we have. I'm going to go through the cart (which is a lovely open oak cart, but has collected an obscene number of cookbooks that I don't use.) I'll donate the unused cookbooks and use some of that space to hold my Kitchenaid and perhaps a crock pot. Living life off the edge, as my sister would say.

The flooring is original to the house, which is 1976 goldenrod yellow linoleum tiles. Or at least that's what they look like under 23 years of the previous owners love of Mop N' Glo. (Mom said that apparently, the lady used Mop N' Glo without cleaning the floor first.) I wanted to strip the years of massive wax off of the floor when we moved in, but because it took me 4 hours to strip our tiny bathroom floor, Hubs made me promise that I wouldn't do it. After 10 years, I still have that danged floor, so I'll strip 33 years off of it and give it a nice shine.

Hubs wants as little involvement as humanly possible, so I'm going to swing this one on my own. He'll come home one day to a kitchen a completely different color. Surprise!

So that brings me to this. I'm thinking of a muted terra cotta. Our livingroom is papaya and I'd like to do something kind of cohesive with the color choices, but I don't want to paint in the same color. That also leaves me with a decision about the woodwork. Since our home has dark doors everywhere and dark woodwork, we've painted as we've gone along instead of replacing, as it is the more economical choice.

Oh, the things to do. First, I must summer clean our home. Today brings to me the cleaning of the bedroom. We've finally finished the installation of the bookcase we purchased at IKEA. Hubs was a little irritated at me for suggesting that it get done last night, but I wanted to get it all finished today. I have our wicker chest sitting in the middle of the hall-- where he left it to make room for the bookcase-- and it is driving me crazy. I'll also be purging some things from K-'s room, reorganizing the linen closet, freeing my livingroom from toys-- again, washing the windows and maybe treating myself to a trip to the paint department at one of the local stores. Oh, so much to do so little time.

Smiles in my day:
- Deciding to tackle the kitchen.
- Getting the bookcase set in place.
- Feeling the need to set the house free of some of the accumulating items. Argh with all the stuff! I swear that it is breeding.
- My friend, Kim, agreeing to bail me out and take K- to her last reading class at the university. Kim is a prof there and since Aunt Arlene's memorial service was scheduled for the exact same time as K-'s class and is an hour away, she would have missed it. That would make her sad and it would make mommy sad to miss the experience and the sweet lovin' load of money that we paid for the class. She'll keep K- on at her house to play with N- and A- til we get back. Thanks, Kim!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Works for Me Wednesday: Hot Dog People

Recipe theme week. Not really a recipe, but a technique. Take ye ole hot dog. Ballpark is best, since they really plump when you cook them. No I don't want to know why. Please don't tell me why. We don't eat that many hot dogs, so they are kind of a rare summer "treat." Cut in all the right parts. Microwave for 45 seconds or so and . . . You have a hot dog person! :) The kids will absolutely love them. They were the highlight of Leland's birth weekend.

Smiles in my day:
- That I'm still my husband's go-to girl. I had his boss' birthday on our calendar. Hubs asked why? I told him that apparently I put it on there last year and transferred it on over. Everyone at work forgot, so I got the panicked "Make a cherry pie!" phone call. The man still needs me- not that he ever let on that he didn't.
- Searching for lightning bugs with K- and her getting so stinkin' excited.
- You know, I appreciate the man I married more and more everyday. We had a discussion at work today about how my one co-workers husband is pretty jealous of her having male friends. She is not permitted to hang around male friends and her husband would have a fit if he thought that she was talking with them on the phone. She admits that she feels the same about him. Hubs and I have never been that way. Most of the folks he works with are women. They've gone out for a bite after work and I don't mind. A friend and his two kids came over a few weeks ago and hung out for a few hours. Hubs didn't mind. I'm glad that we have that kind of relationship. Truly, neither one of us have ever had to worry about the other's faithfulness. That's a good thing.
- The budget deadline for Save Ohio Libraries has been extended. That is a wonderful thing! (They want to cut library funding by 50%, which would result in decreased programming, hours and the total loss of some libraries.)

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Tales from the Trenches: Unemployed family and friends

Seriously, unemployment has become quite an epidemic. What we have is a laundry list of folks that we know that have either gotten their pays cut or have gotten their jobs cut altogether. Just look:
Friend 1- Her husband got a job in the fall after having lost his previous job to job cuts. Had that job for 6 months and got cut again. He has since been unable to find another position, despite the fact that he has looked and continues to do so. They have had to subscribe to public assistance, phone their creditors to discuss creative financing and his wife has picked up as many hours as she can at her job.
Friend 2- Lost his job maybe earlier this year after his family went back to their home state after Christmas break. Since he is in school, his schedule is not as permissive with traditional jobs as what most would be.
Friend 3- Met up with us at the VBS Family Picnic and was telling us how his work hours had been cut from 40 to 32. He has a family and I have no idea what the state of healthcare is.
Friend 4- She's always sweating production hour numbers for her job, as she is afraid she will be cut if she falls under their requirement. She is a counselor.
Our dear plumber- Was at VBS as a volunteer. When I inquired as to why, he said, "There's no work." Apparently that has been the case for nearly a few months.
Neighbor 1- A police officer for a small nearby village and their department patrols are being absorbed by another township, thus leaving him partially unemployed in two weeks. Problem with this is that if he is unable to secure another job as a police officer, he must go back to school and pay several thousands of dollars to continue whatever he needs to do to be an officer.
Neighbor 2- A nurse that is looking at having a handful of nurses at his facility cut. On the other hand, his partner works for a pharmacy and has had hours out the eyeballs.
My dad- Pay was cut 10% and healthcare costs went up. He is afraid of losing his job altogether.
Family 1- One of my faithful readers' husband switched jobs right at the new year. Since, he has been handed a lovely 25% pay cut. (Correct me if I'm wrong, darling.) Ouch.
Family 2- Relation of my faithful reader above. Apparently he and his wife are gainfully unemployed. He is a blue collar worker and she is a teacher/coach. Double ouch.
Church staff- Everyone took a pay cut this year as a result of reduced giving. One of those folks who took a pay cut has a husband that has lost his job working for General Motors because of all of their difficulty. Hopes were raised when he was called back, only to have them dashed 4 days after the callback. He was let go again.
Church member 1- Said that her cupboards were very thin last week due to her employer not able to pay her.

Church members- We had so many additional volunteers this year. When my sister asked about volunteering (she knew we were always short), I told her that we were covered. "How?" "Unemployment is high. So is volunteerism."

Our prayers to all of these folks that their unemployment whoas be resolved quickly and they are able to get back up on their feet soon.

Frown in my day:

To the lady with the beautiful little 4 year old,

Please understand that you have a beautiful little daughter. It is your responsibility to watch that daughter, not allow her to go to one end of the gallery while you shop in the complete other end. I know that you yelled to her that you would be right there, but even after 10 minutes, you never did show up. I understand that your world might be a rosey one, but there are people out there that steal kids. It isn't cool, but it happens. Your new 4 year old should be with you at all times, particularly since there has been someone running around the nearby mall and the nearby city trying to abduct kids. Did you look around when you came in? In case you didn't notice, the neighborhood isn't the greatest in the world. Oh and I'm not a babysitter. While your daughter was good, didn't trash the place and used her gentle handies, you need to remember that she is YOUR responsibility, not mine.

Please understand that allowing the 10 year old to free roam through the American Craft gallery portion of our store unattended and unknown to you where she was-- that isn't cool. You might think that she isn't going to touch anything, but understand that she was the very kid that brought a Exotic Sands flip sculpture to you and was flipping it to show you what it did-- as she was holding it at the whole $80.00 or so that it is worth. Again, she could be abducted, but then I don't think that there is a high rate of child predators that shop at our store. Perhaps that is what you are resting on.

The 8 year old that was with you? Yes, he has the incredible touching handies. Touch, touch, touch. Clank, clank, clank. Wind-up after wind-up. If it made a noise, he had to do it 100 x, but you wouldn't know it because you were busy NOT WATCHING YOUR KIDS! That's what the gallery staff is there for anyhow, right? After all, we are a touchable museum, yes?

We're not Toys R Us, Walmart, Target, Kmart or another big box store. We are a little Mom and Pop. Please watch your kids and monitor what they do. Keep them at your side.

Thank you.

Smiles in my day:
- When my husband borrows my truck to tow the boat, he always takes my CD out of the truck (he hates my music) and puts it in his car for me, often at the song I was listening to. Today was Por*no for Py*ros. He really doesn't like them. Actually, hate is a better word. That's okay. I don't like his music, either.
- Antiques Roadshow. The ugly sailboat painting that hung outside of the lady's bathroom that appraised at 90 thousand or so. Bless her heart.
- Chocolate/Chocolate Chip Ice Cream.

Monday, June 29, 2009

My Quoteable Kid

Another post of K-ism's.

Resternot --> Restaurant
Checkmark --> Bookmark
B-nana --> Banana
The 'Cago --> Chicago
The Diarrheas --> Diarrhea
"I have too many hands. I can't even pick up my grapes." --> I have too many things to carry.
Maggie and the Roastest Beast --> A program called Maggie and the Ferocious Beast
"We bumped in togedder." --> I've see you at a place I went. Do you remember?
Jelly-Butter --> Apple Butter
Creature Home --> The place where something belongs.
"I peeled the top off." --> Picked the scab.
A soft pony --> Braided pony straight down the back.
Pigs --> Two pig tails.
Down hair --> Nothing in her hair.
Swish --> Kid mouth wash.
My "bad" shoes --> The Croc's she loves, but falls in.
"Itchy-scratchy, please." --> Scratch my back, please.
"Vulturing" --> Circling the end of the driveway/front yard/front window or door in hopes that her friend E- has come home.

Smiles in my day:

Having some fun in our postage stamp sized lot swimming pool. Looking at the Lions at the Pittsburgh Zoo. Waiting to see if daddy is going to catch a fish with my Mickey Mouse fishing pole. In the meantime, these feathers will keep me entertained. (Hubs' cousin's house. You'll read more below, but his front yard is a pond/swamp. They have to have their driveway reset every year due to erosion.) Rounded the bases and I'm coming home! (This picture was from the family graduation party that we went to a few weeks ago. Hubs' cousin has a full baseball field in his backyard. It is open to the public for games. How neat is that?)

And finally, I did actually watch the news broadcast of this ridiculous story. Apparently they had it on Jimmy Kimmel. Hubs' coworkers were laughing about it and he was surprised that I knew exactly what he was talking about. The cardboard bear, the rubberized poop and fake paw print? Oh, too cheesy for words. Hubs' favorite part is where they "walk" the bear up the tree. (Hi, Hubs!) Enjoy!