Neighbors are doing it right

I keep a list of things I like about houses and might consider for our forever home (like tile floors or hardwood floors, floor to ceiling windows, skylights, Olympic sized bathtubs, wraparound porches, a creek at the bottom of an expanse of lawn, plenty of trees, window seats, a library with a ladder, first floor laundry, a mudroom, etc.).  At this point, the list is full of contradictory things, and a house that had everything probably wouldn’t stay upright, but at least I have a list of things to refer to when we actually start looking.

Anyway, there’s a house a few blocks from us with pretty stone wall and steps and a vine-covered railing.  I like it.  I want it.

Added to the list.

Thanks, but no thanks

I had my free session with a personal trainer tonight, and, uh, yeah.  I won’t be doing that again.  The workout was fine, but she totally ignored my requests about what I wanted her to show me.  When we were done, she gave me the hard sell to work with her regularly, in the MOST annoying way.  Maybe this works on your other clients, lady, but I CAN meet my goals without your help, and I can certainly do it for less than $400 a month.  You don’t know me.  Don’t assume I need outside motivation just because I’m taking advantage of a free session.

I’ve been home for an hour and a half, and I’m still super irritated.  Must let go.

Breathe in.

Breathe out.

Breathe in.

Oh hell, I’ll probably see her at the gym again sometime.

Breathe out.

Maybe she doesn’t come in early in the morning.  She didn’t look familiar.

Breathe in.

I really don’t want to have to keep telling her no.

Breathe out.

The pushy personal trainer can shove it.

Breathe in.

Breathe out.

All better.

Hangin’ stuff

It’s time to hang pictures.  Some pictures.  Or at least we’ll start thinking about where pictures could go and we can lean them against the wall in the right room.  (Baby steps.)  Nearly everything we have (that we’re traveling with) is framed now, so we just have to make some decisions.  Except we’re likely to get more geeky art at the Rhode Island Comic Con this weekend (yay!), so maybe we don’t want to go poking holes in walls just yet.  We can wait another week, right?  And then another…while…before we get frames for the new stuff, and then some more time leaning pictures against walls while we work it out…  I’m sure we’ll have everything on the walls just in time for us to move again.

We’re rough.

Tune in next week for more useless wishing for a longer weekend

Where did the weekend go?  We ran errands on Saturday and went to the last Waterfire of the season (pictures to come).  Today, we went out to breakfast and then got groceries and cleaned.  I need another weekend.  I need more time for reading and exploring and watching more Stranger Things (we started season 2).

Ugh, and I have to work again tomorrow.  That keeps happening!  Who needs work anyway?  All work does is clutter up my life with things that aren’t reading.  Buying stuff and doing fun things that cost money and, like, eating and wearing clothes are over-rated.

This has been this week’s edition of the Sunday Night Blues.  Thank you for reading.

I wish I were Dr. Doolittle

We watched two cats confront each other, which I found hilarious, and I’ve just spent the better part of ten minutes trying to figure out how I wanted to describe it.  I was aiming for too grandiose, I think, so here’s the simplified version:

There was a white cat on the sidewalk and a black cat five or six steps above it on the walk to someone’s front door.  The white cat meowed at the black cat, but the black cat was having none of it.  It kept up a steady low warning growl while the white cat meowed piteously.  I can only assume the white cat was trying to apologize for something awful it did, and the black cat was like, no way, dude, you had your chance.  The white cat followed us a couple of houses down and then settled on the neighbor’s front stoop staring back in the direction of the black cat, literally claiming the high ground.

I wish I knew what they were saying.

Halloween costume

The only thing we wanted to do for Halloween this year was walk around the neighborhood and see the decorations.  At the last minute, I decided it was silly of us to wander around on Halloween without costumes, so I checked my closet et voila!  I was able to put a totally serviceable costume together using clothes I already own AND that I actually wear, although not in this particular combination.

Side ponytail, off-the-shoulder sweatshirt, high-top chucks.  I even tight-rolled my jeans for authenticity.  Then I topped it off with an overly patched acid-wash jean jacket.

I wasn’t 100% committed (no blue eyeshadow, no bangs), but I think it told the right story.  John put on a leather bomber jacket and went as my too-old-for-me boyfriend.

Cookies aren’t supposed to hurt

One of our dining room cabinets smells like cookies all the time and we have no idea why.  We never put cookies in it, and we’ve cleaned it with cleaning products that decidedly do NOT smell like cookies.  I’m not complaining – I really like being surprised with this pleasant smell every time I open the cabinet door – but it’s weird.  It inspired me to buy a scented candle so I could enjoy a pleasant cookie-like scent in other places in the house.

I wouldn’t go so far as to say I have regrets, but I will handle this differently next time.  Today is a chilly day, high in the mid-50s, and it’s a little overcast.  I remembered the candle, thought “what a nice idea!”, and lit it.  It sat on the corner of my desk for an hour or so before I couldn’t take any more Christmas Cookie.  I blew it out and moved it into another room, in front of an open window.

It’s been half an hour. My headache is subsiding, and so is the scent.  It’s fallen into mild and pleasant again.  Next time – there will be a next time – I will try to remember to leave it somewhere MUCH FARTHER AWAY from my head.  Maybe the hallway.

My Halloween post

I got a nightlight for our bathroom last week.  The light switch is as far from the door as possible (because that’s convenient in a bathroom).  It’s in the far corner, on the other side of the medicine cabinet, and it shares a wall plate with the outlet.  It’s a rocker switch, so every time we reach blindly in the dark to turn on the light, we risk shoving our fingers in the socket.  I figured I could solve the dark problem and the outlet problem by buying one of those nightlights that covers the unused socket.  I found these cool-looking clear ones that glow in colors in the dark, and I got the red one because I read that red is less disruptive to your sleep than blue or green. I didn’t take into consideration that a red nightlight might disturb my sleep in other ways.

Now the bathroom glows red like a portal to hell.

Seriously, every time I get up in the middle of the night, and any time I notice the glow down the hallway as I’m drifting off to sleep, I’m half expecting demons to show up.  I’m not sure blue would have been any better – then I’d imagine the not-friendly kind of alien.  And if I’ve gotten green…I don’t know – maybe dark fairies?

I might be replacing the nightlight with baby-proofing outlet covers soon.

How did I miss this?

A friend of mine at work casually dropped into conversation that he’s seeing a screening of Monty Python and the Holy Grail followed by a Q&A with John Cleese and WHAT IS WRONG WITH MY LIFE THAT I DIDN’T KNOW THIS WAS HAPPENING?

It’s totally not okay that I didn’t find out this was a thing until the tour had passed me by.  I am bereft.

But YOU don’t have to be.

Here’s the tour schedule.  (Hint: it’ll be in DC soon and Louisville the week after.)

I need you all to go and have a wonderful time because I need to live vicariously through you.

Why can’t I dream about Disney World or having superpowers or something?

I wish my dreams were a little less realistic, maybe a little more fantastic.  I tend to dream about mundane things, often close enough to my daily life to make me unsure later if I dreamed it or if it really happened.  (Did I pick up my prescription or just dream about it?  Are we still out of milk?  Maybe I only dreamed I got some from the store.)  Other times, my dreams are too close to real life for comfort, like the other night when I dreamed about work.  I dreamed about specific tasks I had to do this week, actual real documents I have to write or review – I feel like I should charge the customer for the hours I was sleeping.  The only unrealistic thing about it was that I was in the office with my coworkers.  (Maybe that counts as a nightmare.)  I suppose last night’s dream was a little less like real life.  I dreamed I was taking a walk in the woods and I found two bear cubs, and they were adorable and playful and they followed me home even though I was trying to leave them in the woods, and then their mama bear (even though one was a panda cub and one was a red panda cub, the mama was a big brown bear) was in the room, and I was trying to edge past her to get away, hoping she’d be focused on the cubs near the opposite wall, but she saw me and she chased me, and yeah, okay, that dream was nothing like real life.

I am a fascinating person

I’m not going to talk about work.  Instead, I will tell you what’s new!

(What’s new?)

Um….we joined a gym!  Again, but for the first time since we moved.  Our gym is less than a mile from our house, and it has oodles of cardio and weight machines and some group classes (although mostly at times I can’t go to because of work) and a scary half-circle-shaped room that’s always dark for spin classes – I’m not going near that.  (Spin classes have too much yelling.  I don’t want to be yelled at all, but I feel like if you’re going to yell, you should at least turn the lights on.  It’s weird.)  And they have 5 or 6 heavy bags, so we can resume our boxing workouts.  Yay!

I lifted weights (and by “weights”, I mean “lightweight dumbbells” – let’s not get crazy here) for the first time in months (since May?) yesterday morning, and I am paying for it today.  It’s the good hurt, but it’s still a hurt.  Oh, and then I sliced my finger on the edge of the sugar container lid that John chipped earlier this week, so that hurts too.  I did NOT bleed in the sugar.  (Much.)  At all!  For reals.  The sugar is not contaminated.  (Much.)  At all!  (I’m sorry -can’t help myself.)

So let’s see…what else is new?

Hm.

Well.

I guess that’s all.

I need to exercise some self-control

I have all the dinner regrets.  That’s not true – I have some dinner regrets.  We ordered takeout pasta, and it was really good, and I ate too much of it, but it was so good, and have I mentioned that it was really good?  But I’m so full I’m sneezing.  Like, a lot.  Can’t stop sneezing.  I mentioned that to Corey a few years ago (that I sneeze when I’ve eaten too much), and he said he sneezes when he’s hungry.  So maybe Mel sneezes while she’s eating?

Let’s be honest – my mood was already fine

It’s a rainy, kind of dank, dark day, but two things just happened that brightened my mood.  First, I got this ridiculous, totally incomprehensible email from a customer:

“It looks like we do not have production turned on. So I need to get your metadata chicken figure production”

Total autocorrect fail, and it’s making me laugh.  Metadata Chicken Figure is the name of my new band.

I responded with, “I can provide my metadata chicken figure production, but not until I receive your grounded sailboat muppet configuration.  I’ll need to make sure they match.”  (No, I didn’t.  But Grounded Sailboat Muppet is the name of my autobiography.)

THEN I saw this picture on Tom and Lorenzo.  It’s the hipsteriest hipster picture that ever hipstered.

Let us count the hipster ways…I get to 7 without even trying.  I am amused.

Minor technical note

Some of you have noticed that my cover photos have been changing.  Thank you for being observant.  🙂  Wordpress introduced a change a while back that lets me select a bunch of pictures to use as header photos, and then the software selects randomly among them.  Every time you visit or refresh the page, you’ll get a new picture.  Fun times.

When I first started doing it, it let me crop pictures so they wouldn’t take up as much room, but the cropping feature isn’t working anymore, and I’ve decided not to worry about it.  But that’s why some of the pictures are really big and some are narrow strips.

I’m also considering another theme change, but I’m very much in the “Hm. Maybe I should look at other themes” stage still.  I haven’t actually started looking.  Baby steps.

My refined palate makes life SO difficult. Harrumph harrumph harrumph.

We haven’t had great luck with restaurants these past few days.  We did go out for Italian for John’s birthday (yay us for going out!), but the food at the restaurant we picked (which was supposed to be a good one) was just okay.  Then for lunch the next day, well, we had brunch the next day, but even the bottomless mimosas couldn’t make up for dry fried chicken with boring gravy over biscuits (the biscuits were fine).

But yesterday, we were downtown in the evening to check out some synthesizer stuff for John, and we had dinner at this Korean place I’ve had my eye on.  THIS place is good.  No cooking at the table, but hey, that’s less work for us.  I had bibimbap and John had bulgogi, and everything was really good.

I am relieved.  A string of disappointing restaurants is almost as bad as a string of disappointing books.  But really, it’s a sign that I should go to the grocery store.  If I’m going to be disappointed by a meal, it might as well be one I cooked myself.

The Mute Little Toaster

Our toaster oven has lost its ding.  I don’t know exactly how old it is – it’s definitely not the one we got as a wedding present, but I can’t remember when we replaced it.  Possibly as long ago as the Portsmouth house, which makes this toaster oven around 12-14 years old.  I think that’s a reasonable life expectancy.  Of course, I say that as if the fact that it doesn’t ding when the timer is done means it doesn’t toast bread.  It still works!  It just doesn’t cheerfully alert me when it’s done anymore, so I have to pay more attention to avoid cold toast.  Life is hard.

Donuts and milkshakes and (maybe) Italian food, oh my!

It is John’s birthday!  For Birthday Breakfast, I brought home Dunkin Donuts AND Starbucks because I am a devoted wife, and also because I can easily pass by both places on my way home from running, but definitely more because I am a devoted wife.

Dunkin Donuts has renamed all of their donuts for Halloween, and I am totally here for that.  I got the Wicked Chocolate for John and the Boston Scream for me.  I was tempted by the Ghoulish Glazed, but I saved my extra sweet calories for my ridiculous Starbucks coffee.  John also went ridiculous for coffee today – I got him a white chocolate frappucino, which was made even more of a milkshake than usual because I think they forgot to put any coffee in it.  Milkshakes and donuts for Birthday Breakfast!

Birthday lunch was brilliant blissful buttery birthday banana bread, although that was a near no-show last night.  I got all the ingredients out, realized I didn’t have brown sugar, threw a tantrum inside my head because I REALLY didn’t want to go to the store for the 39th time this week, and figured out that we barely had enough normal sugar to make it work as long as we didn’t need it for tea or coffee today AND (pause while I breathe) I knew we wouldn’t need it because I had the Birthday Breakfast plans all figured out.

Dinner tonight is still TBD, since John is still working, but we’re thinking some Italian place in Federal Hill.  Or, if he works too much later, we’ll abandon the silly idea of going outside (which, let’s face it, is crazy talk), order in something delicious and stupid, and try again tomorrow night.  WE’LL SEE.

Definitely not talking about work. Nope, no sir.

Someone I work with is thinking about moving and asked me about working from home.  She’s done it for a day here and there over the years, but now she wants to move out of state.  She was wondering if it was hard to get answers from people or if I went nuts if I didn’t get out of the house every day or if I ever regret not coming in to the office and seeing everyone.

After I stopped laughing at that last part, I could truthfully say that the only issues I have with work are about the work sometimes, not the working from home.  And for the record, it’s no harder to get answers from people than it is in the office when they disappear from their desks and you can’t find them, and I mostly DO get out of the house every day, so that’s not an issue, either.  It’s really helpful to be able to walk away from the computer sometimes – I needed a lunchtime walk outside to recover from some of the things that happened this morning.  It’s all fine, all taken care of, and it had nothing to do with where I was, which is nice to know.  I mean, it sucks that the same annoying thing would have happened no matter what, but it’s also reassuring to know that I would have gotten the same response face to face.  I’m not being treated differently because I’m not in the office.  John wasn’t able to say the same thing about his last job.