It never ends

We’re being all companionable today, sitting next to each other on the couch with our laptops on a rainy Sunday, and wait a second – does that rain look white?  Is that SNOW?  It doesn’t look like it’s entirely snow, and it’s not exactly sleet – what the hell?  Is it STICKING?  Is the ground white?  Okay, everybody, take a deep breath.  No, there’s nothing white on the ground, but that rain looks really odd and snow-like.  Ugh.

Sorry about the momentary panic. We can move on now.  To some headlines written but never published.

[A couple of hours later.]

We’re back from the gym, and while we were gone, my fears about the weather were realized.  There is now a white slushy ickiness all over the ground.  I repeat: there is white slush on the ground.  In my YARD.  On March 30th.  I give up.

I did it!

I stopped flip-flopping and dilly-dallying and beating around the bush and delaying and stalling and pussy-footing around and dragging my feet and hemming and hawing and lollygagging and finally cut my hair.

Before (this is last June again, but I can’t find any others that show the length):


Partied in the middle (and on my way home from the salon)

Parted on the side. Please ignore the weird smirk. I fail at selfies, and I was getting tired of retaking because my eyes were crossed or I was looking down or making a weird face or whatever. Too hard.

It’s a delight to wash.  I just might do it again someday.

And now I feel old

I was helping a friend from work with her resume the other day, and she mentioned that she was just doing admin stuff for a couple of years after school, and I gestured to the end date of that section in 2007 and said, “so this is right around graduation?” with the intention of telling her that this probably doesn’t need to be included unless it’s directly relevant to the job she’s applying for, and she said, yes, for high school.  And then I stopped helping her.

Okay, I didn’t stop helping her, but I did pause to feel old.  She’s TEN YEARS younger than me.  What am I, her mentor?  Oh, god, what if I’m her mentor?  I thought we were friends…

The bathroom is a bathroom again!

Technically, the bathroom was never a bathroom as it does not and never has had a bath in it.  It’s a shower room.  Or a toilet and sink and shower room.  Lots of things with water, so let’s go with water closet.  The master water closet.  Anyway, it’s done!  Except for some minor cosmetic details like painting the trim and the window sill, but those are minor cosmetic details and so they don’t count and I can say it’s done!  Oh, and the door.  Shoot.  Painting the door is a little more than minor.  I mean, it’s white, but it could be whiter.  No, we’re done!

We’re very happy with it.


There’s no judging in yoga

It’s Thursday already.  That’s quick for this week and yet not quick enough.  I was reminded yesterday that yoga is on Thursday nights now, and I’m tempted to go.  I haven’t been since last June.  I probably won’t tonight (I’m practically falling asleep while typing, and I’m afraid if I go to yoga, I’ll just start snoring), but I’d like to put it back into my normal schedule.  Wednesday nights for Zumba, Thursday nights for yoga.  But then I look at having another evening away from home, and I don’t want that.  I like being at home.  It’s restful, even when remodeling projects are going on.  (Speaking of, I promise to take pictures and post them soon.)  And I’m a little afraid to go back – the other students have all continued and, I’m sure, improved, whereas my flexibility has gone WAY downhill.  On the other hand, it’s probably not worse than the first I went.  But, more importantly, who cares?  It’s yoga.  No judging allowed.  Or people will judge you.  (You’re allowed to judge people for judging people about the wrong things.  Besides, judging people is fun.  I mean wrong.  Judging people is wrong.)

Riley has no concern for our feelings

The other night, Riley did everything he could to make sure he was going to get kicked out of our room.  He went to bed quietly enough (on the dog bed on the floor on my side of the bed), but then he spent what felt like several hours making weird slobbery lip-smacking noises with pauses for low groaning.  (He’s been making these annoyed groaning noises a lot – that used to be Roxy’s thing.  Just one more habit of hers he’s picked up.)  Then at 2:30, he decided it was time to get up.  I found this out when he dropped his giant head on my shoulder and stuck his cold wet nose in my ear.  So I got up to let him out (and not let him back upstairs after).  I put him in the backyard.  Usually in the middle of the night, he goes out, pees, and comes right back in.  Was he going to do that that particular night?  Of course not.  I waited a few minutes, and then opened the door again to call him in.  No sign of him.  My eyes eventually adjusted a little, and I could just make him out as a slightly darker shadow along the back fence.  And I could hear him sniffing and snuffling at something.  Ignoring me.  I clapped, and I called, and I rattled the treat box – nothing.  I went out on the deck, barely dressed and barefoot.  Sometimes me on the deck gets his attention.  Nothing.  I was going to have to go out in the yard.  So I went back upstairs, got my shoes, got my coat, and headed out into the yard.  The dog let me get into the very middle of the yard before he sprinted for the deck, giving me a wide berth.  Then he had the nerve to be annoyed when I wouldn’t let him back upstairs.  So 10 minutes of chasing the dog around the very cold backyard in the middle of the night made the next day a little difficult, but I still made it out of the house on time the next morning.  Sleepy, but on time.  But that wasn’t the end of it.  Even though I took Riley for a short walk that morning, then let him upstairs while I showered and got ready for work, and then took him back downstairs to let him out before I left while John got ready for work, he still peed in the dining room after I left and before John came down.  Why?  Why not?


I have just fallen in love with a brand of yogurt.  OMG, you guys, seriously.  The company is Liberté, and wow, this stuff is good.  Creamy and delicious.  Yum.  I tried the Méditerranée Strawberry, and I would like some more please.

I’m okay.  Really.

Anyway, after I posted yesterday, we had an epiphany about the pipe problem and the vanity drawer.  Why shorten the pipe (which, it turns out, might require a blowtorch) when we can shorten the drawer instead?  Just not today.  For now, we can live with a drawer that doesn’t quite shut.  Haven’t hooked up the sink yet, anyway.


It’s a gloomy, chilly Sunday, and we’re putting the new vanity into place and realizing that it doesn’t fit exactly.  We got one that has a cabinet door on side and two drawers on the other.  Problem: the drawers are too deep.  One of the water pipes will keep the drawer from closing all the way.  There’s a solution, of course (shorten the pipe), but it adds complications and time.  I don’t think John was planning on spending his entire Sunday on plumbing.  We spent our entire Saturday on this bathroom (two coats of paint, and we went to Home Depot to buy the vanity and the sink and the faucet and matching towel rod and toilet paper holder).  It would be nice to have a couple of hours of daylight free. On the other hand, we’re so close!

McDonald’s saved the day

Friday morning at work, I was havingaday.  Like, a DAY.  It was nuts, and not in a fun way.  So lunch was french fries and one of those little hot fudge sundaes from McDonald’s.  It helped.  John hates those commercials for chocolates that show a woman taking a break and savoring tiny bites as she gazes out a window onto a beautiful view and so do I, but I have to admit I took a moment for myself when I ate that first bit of ice cream and hot fudge.  Commercials don’t lie!

Some thoughts on books and e-readers

Actual physical books!  Remember those?  Those things I love and prefer to decorate with?  I read three in late January/early February (three in a ROW, even), but before that (pause while I check…), the last physical-actually-made-out-of-paper book I read was in November. Turns out I read three real actual books in November. Everything since then (and lot before that) has been via the Kindle app on my tablet, except for what I’m reading now (one of the books I kept out when we packed them up).  It appears I got used to e-reading a lot faster than I thought I would.  Boxing up 99% of our books early last fall helped.  It also helps that I can read on my tablet while I’m at the gym.  My tablet has several (well, two) advantages over books at the gym.  First, it lays flat and stays open when propped up on the machine.  Second, I can enlarge the text so I can still see it even though it’s a bit further away from my eyes than it would be if I were just holding it.  I think making the text bigger helps me read while I’m moving so much, too.

I don’t have any other thoughts on the subject.  Nope.  No more thinking.  Ever.  About ANYthing.  (Seriously, I thought I had more thoughts.  Where did they go?)

There’s no way it’ll be this easy

We got an interesting call this afternoon.  Since we took the house off the market around Thanksgiving last fall, we’ve been dodging two or three calls a day from local realtors trying to get us to list with them.  We almost never answer the house phone anymore because it’s ALWAYS a real estate agent.  We’re going to go back on the market, but we’re going to sell it ourselves.  Anyway, I got distracted while working from home today, and I picked up the phone when it rang.  It was someone in real estate asking us if we were still looking to sell our home because she might have some potential buyers.  Hm.  She asked if we’d like her agent to call us.  Sure.  I hung up.  John said there’s no way they actually have interested buyers – this must be another ploy to get us to list with them.  Well, I can get rid of them if that’s the case.  So then we got another call.  I recognized the name as an agent who showed our house once last fall when our regular agent wasn’t available (actually, she didn’t – a junior member of her team did), although she didn’t remember us until a few minutes in.  Anyway, she has buyers looking in our area.  I told her we’re listing it ourselves and we aren’t really ready to go back on the market just yet, but we’re close.  And I said if they’re in a rush, given some notice, we might be able to prep the house to show it to them sooner, but we’ll definitely need notice because we are NOT show-ready now.  I didn’t tell her our master bathroom is still without a toilet (currently hanging out in the office) and vanity.  Hopefully we’ll have finished the bathroom before anyone wants to see it.  If not, well, we’ll just tell them our plan and hope it doesn’t scare them away.  John is spackling.  Then we can paint.  I would really like to have the bathroom back together by the end of the weekend.

Oh, she asked what we’re asking for it.  Yeah…we haven’t really talked about that yet.  So I told her I could tell her what we listed it for last fall, and that we’d probably start in that ballpark this time, too.  Hope that was okay. What am I saying?  Of course it was okay.  These buyers, whoever they are, are not going to want our house.  That’s how this is going to go, assuming this wasn’t some diabolical plot by our former agent to sabotage our For Sale By Owner plans and sneak back in as the listing agent through her colleagues.

There’s just no way.

But wouldn’t it be nice?

Information you need

Wine update:

Once Upon a Vine = good red blend, maybe a little drier than Apothic Red and Stark Raving Red.

Apothic White = yummy white blend, a somewhat sweet (but not too sweet) mix of chardonnay, pinot grigio, and reisling, according to the label.

It’s snowing again, which may or may not have any bearing on the wine update above.  You decide.

Stop with the flip-flopping, Mother Nature, or we’ll stop voting for you

Wednesday was the last day of spring.  We said hello (again, grudgingly) to winter yesterday.  Then we pretended to see someone else on the other side of the room and gave it the cold shoulder the rest of the day.  (Hee.  Cold shoulder.)

To make me feel better, I like to look at this picture (from Reddit), captioned “Minnesota Yeti Caught on Film“:

The picture is even wintry, in keeping with the mood and weather of the day.

The last piece!

Okay, it’s not that earth-shattering – there’s still a ton to do.  But John got the L-shape cut he needed and he set the last two tiles last night!  Yay for a fully-tiled floor!  Next is grouting.  THEN painting.  Then toilet, then vanity.  Shoot, we still need to buy a vanity.  We’re thinking something like this:

We need to find out if it’s in the store (it wasn’t that day, but maybe we weren’t looking in the right place) or if we have to order it.  But yay for tile!

I need a little more Kermit in my life

I started reading Jim Henson: The Biography.  The very first chapter describes a scene between Kermit and a little girl singing her ABC’s on Sesame Street, a scene I remembered as I was reading about it. I’ve seen that – it’s adorable.  Still, I read to the end and burst into tears.  You know, like anyone would.

That’s normal, right? (I’ve been a little stressed lately.)

The Riley Report

Five weeks ago, Riley had his first x-ray after finishing chemo.  His last x-ray was on Halloween, and it showed clear lungs.  This one was not clean.  They took three pictures, and on one of them, they could see a shadow that they were pretty sure but maybe not but probably is a lesion.  So Riley’s cancer metastasized.  When we got his diagnosis at the end of last summer, they told us that with the amputation and chemo, his odds were 50/50 that he’d be cancer free in year.  Looks like Riley fell into the wrong 50.  They couldn’t tell us anything else (like how bad, how fast, how much longer) without a second x-ray, so that brings us to today.  His second x-ray was this afternoon, and while there’s still only the one spot, it has grown by 38%.  That only brought it to 2cm, so it shouldn’t be affecting him yet.  The vet says it probably won’t bother him until it gets to 5-7cm or unless more appear.  We started the metronomic chemo (low doses by pill) yesterday, in the hopes that it will slow the growth.  Our next x-ray is in 7 weeks.

John is upstairs trying to make an L-shaped cut into a porcelain tile with a hacksaw, I just finished cooking Riley some chicken, and he’s hanging out on his dog bed looking at me.  (I feel judged – I’m not being entertaining enough.  Or I’m in trouble for not giving him the chicken yet. It’s too hot, buddy!)

He’s still okay for now.  We are, too.

Bathroom tile breaks sometimes

John and I bought the bathroom tile yesterday morning, and then we spent today actually laying it down.  We have completed a very (very) important step in this mini bathroom remodel.  First, we did the layout.  We needed to know how many whole tiles we could use and how many (and how much) we’d have to cut.

Not sure why we didn’t put that one missing piece in – maybe I figured we had the idea?

From another angle:

Oh, hey, there’s the piece. Camouflage.

Then we picked them all up and started actually setting the tile with mortar and stuff.  I helped (a little).  Once all the whole pieces were down, John started cutting the other pieces to fit and oh dear god that is one of the WORST noises ever in the whole entire world.  Also, one of our three boxes of tile had a whole bunch of tiles that kept breaking and NOT along the line John was trying to cut them.  Very irritating.  And I’m shuddering just remembering the noise of the tile cutter.  My skin is crawling.

Here are all the tiles actually glued down.

All those little spacers kinda make it look like Arlington Cemetery in there.

The only pieces missing are the two up near the shower.  One will be whole, but the other has to be cut in a L shape – that’s going to be difficult.  Almost certainly beyond the capability of our cheap little tile cutter.

Then we’re going to paint (still deciding on a color – suggestions?), put the molding back on, grout, put the quarter-round back on, put the toilet back in, and oh yeah – we still have to buy a replacement vanity and sink.  So it’ll probably be a couple more weekends before we’re done.