A Word from Our Sponsor

I was feeling pretty good today. We attended church, had a great breakfast, obtained what we needed from Home Depot. What can possibly go wrong after all that?

While the Hubs built another part of the vanity (there’s a middle piece with drawers) I painted the bathroom. The more paint that went on the walls, the better I felt about the decision of not going with the inspiration. No one would ever see it, so doing the hall bath makes more sense.

I have to say, I am really digging the way it turned out! I love the blue with the floor!

In case you forgot, Before

The lights are still there, but everything else is freshened up. I really need a couple hours to figure out what lights will be best there… Maybe it’ll happen after everything else is in. What is there now is really hideous, so I better get cracking!

After I was done cleaning up, I got a call from the Kraken. I’ll spare you the details, but suffice to say it was unpleasant. She was telling me how her life is a wreck.

I get this call a lot. I tell her she does things to make her life hard.

She agrees.

I give suggestions on how she can better manage herself.

She agrees.

A couple days later I get another call.

It makes me sad, frustrated, and irritated. And the worst part is, she’ll say she loves me, hang up, and I’ll be left trying to figure out what I could have done better.

And then I’ll rehash the whole thing with the Hubs. And still feel like I failed as a mother.

Grrr! It’s so annoying! Anyone else have these wonderful bouts with their kids?? I wish she would reflect on her life and make changes. But she won’t. I have 2 very unpopular suggestions for her:

Get your head out of your ass and do things differently. My mother was very big on that one – and pull yourself up by your bootstraps. I am not sure when or why that became such a terrible thing. Because honestly, it worked for me. Sure, I was crowding 30 and had an impressive amount of screwups behind me, but I was able to to turn it around. There is no reason she can’t as well.

The other is FROG (fully rely on God), but she won’t even hear it. Tonight she actually said, “Sure I’ll know where I’m going when I die, but what about now? It’s just stupid.” I told her about the peace, she came back with the guilt. And I wished I could explain it better. But I know she can’t hear it. All she listens to is that she is fully committed to being a victim.

And I hate that. As a Bootstraps gal, I cannot even imagine why anyone would want to be a victim.


A Vanity Win

Today we drifted over to the the house with the best intentions.

It didn’t really pan out.

But we did take this:

And make it into something lovely:


Which I think we can all agree is much better than this:

On Friday the plumbers come back and will install the vanities and sinks, faucets, and a new potty in the hall bath. Let’s just all keep thinking positive thoughts that the tiling will be wrapped up BEFORE then.

I had another fail. I’ve lost my inspiration card! So for expediency, I am using my old shower curtain and painting this bathroom to match. I’m a tiny bit disappointed, but I’ll make the closet into something weird to quell the sadness. And once I lay hands on the card again, I will take it directly to the paint store and pick out 2 wildly fabulous colors and get that bathroom cooking!

Yesterday there was a ton of tiling. It’s looking really good, the more that gets done the more I love the floor. Which I wasn’t expecting. I just wanted a light neutral floor that felt good on bare feet. So this is such a bonus! I’m hoping they can finish the tiles Monday. But I am not really relying on my time table! If I were, they would have wrapped it up on Thursday! Shows what I know!!

I do need to paint the bathroom maybe tomorrow. Today the Hubs did the texture on the fixes I’ve been working on all week. I gotta admit, I have a real love/hate relationship with orange peel texture right now. On the one hand, I love smooth walls… on the other, I am a really lazy sander. The orange peel texture covers a LOT of laziness! Would I pick it? Probably not. But now that I have to live with it, I’ve decided to see its virtues.

Day Three

I used to be a morning person. I used to pop out of bed and do all the things all day long.

Operative words being “used to.” Now, I’m on Day 3 of getting up at 6 to be at the house by 7 to sit around all day doing nothing. It’s exhausting! I don’t know how you people do this every day.

Today I was so bored I actually weeded a portion of my lawn with my bare hands! OK, I call it a lawn, but really it’s just 100 different species of weeds and I picked one to attack today. That is some next level boredom.

Meanwhile, inside the house there is actually tiling happening! And a lot of it! My bathroom is tiled. Tomorrow a new potty is being installed and I am again beside myself with glee! Not over the new potty, of course, but over a room I might one day consider walking barefoot in.

Today I feel like the ick is leaving the house. I know it’s definitely on the run, but tomorrow I might find some corner with ick in it and will again despair.

What can I say, I’m unstable.

But this was the end of day 2…


Oh crap… I don’t have a “today” oh well, I do have this:

Master Bath
More Master Bath

You’ll have to wait for grout to see the rest!

My Tile pile is dwindling. But don’t worry, I’m told there is another palette load in the truck.

I got to actually touch my laundry room tiles today! I’m thinking about leaving the door off the laundry room just so I can look at them 100 times a day! That’s not the only reason why though. There is a door to the garage in the laundry room, and they open into each other. I find it monumentally annoying maneuvering around them. However, I really hate a laundry room in the kitchen. It’s gonna be a fight to the death! Which will win? Door? No door?? Right now my money is on the no door option, but can I get over laundry in the kitchen?

And to make today perfect, the Hubs told me a story about some dude who almost died eating leftover Chinese food. WHAT? I will surely die if I never eat Chinese food leftovers! Leftovers are why I order so much! But is it worth the risk? As he told the story I was coming up with ideas of WHY the Chinese food almost killed someone. Must have been user error.

I might have a problem.

More Gross!

Brought to you by renters

Today the flooring actually started happening! OK, not really happening… but getting prepped.

And Oh. My. God!

Picture me rocking in a corner muttering, “not there, not there, not there” while the guy kept calling me to show me stuff I don’t want to know about.

And because I can’t know this alone, I’m sharing it with you!

It started in the living room:

Yikes! A Leak

And it’s active. The carpet was still damp. Guess what I had to do after he left? Yep. That hateful silicone caulk. Only this time someone is actually going to judge me for it! Apparently, some of the slab is gone and it has compromised the seal on the slider. Yay. I assume he’ll fill over what I caulked with mortar and call it a day.

That’s right folks, why fix something when you can push it down the road? That is what someone already did because I pulled a hunk of silicone out of the hole before I added more!

Then there was this in the dining room:

Wanna come over for dinner??

You guessed it, more termite damage. It looks a lot like there may be little to no framing left in the house! Now I’m considering a pest control contract.


When he showed it to me I actually touched it! Like I can’t freaking learn! I went out of the room and got the vacuum and sucked it all up.

Not today, filth. Not today.

And I’ve been washing my hands about every 10 minutes.

And when he ended his day, he rewarded me with homework:

Under the dishwasher

In case you’re thinking it’s not that bad, the stuff on the ends is 3/4″ deep. There are spider webs.

Hello? Terminix? Come NOW!

But I did it. Gagging all the while. Waiting for the bleach by the slider to dry so I could caulk that. More gagging. More bleach.

I hope I never see these people again. I might call Earl or shout groceries or make street pizza on their shoes. (If you don’t get the reference, watch the NCIS Chimera episode where Gibbs asks Tony where McGee is.)

Here is where we are:

Guest Room
Living Room

I think I might ask him to remove the bedroom carpet, even though the new carpet is not here. I just don’t even want to be in the same zip code as this carpet anymore.

He has promised to return tomorrow AM with help. I can’t wait.

No, really, I can’t. But my enthusiasm took a bit of a hit today.


Or at least I was until 5 seconds ago when I got some weird water/trash bill from my apartment for $95! WTF?! Up til now, it’s been like $30. I guess I am glad I’m on my way out…

Anyway… You GUYS! Today the Hubs got a return call from the flooring people. He wanted to confirm they are coming tomorrow to do the bathroom. Turns out, they ARE! And what’s even better is the guy said they are doing the WHOLE tile job!

I can NOT express how excited I am! I mean WAY beyond excited! I feel all giddy inside!

Today began so early. Obscenely early. Like Auntie early. We got up and headed over to the house to meet the plumbers at 8. And when we got there, Kim told us she sent them on another job and they’d be there by 9:30… I kinda thought the Hubs was gonna cry. He coulda slept in on his day off. In a perfect-day kind of way though, they called me and said they would be there in 10 minutes, and showed up at 8:30. By 10 they were gone and left us with this:

Now you see it…
Now you don’t!

And just like that, what would have taken us hours to do, it was done. What was left behind was not too appetizing, but at least the potty and vanity are gone for good.

While the Hubs did this:

And by “this” I mean hanging this light, not just turning it on!

I did this:

Repaired and primed

I had to re-do the bit in between the faucets and in the corner with some mud. I’ll sand and re-prime when I can get in there next. Because FLOORS!

We also did this:

No mirror!
Maybe the darker green instead

We somehow managed to removed a giant mirror from the wall and get it into the garage without breaking it. Now if we only knew what to do with it… We’ve also added a new color to the mix. I am really struggling with this choice. And now that we’re getting FLOORS! I feel like I really need to pick it. I’m on the verge of playing it safe and just using my old favorite shower curtain and painting the walls to match it. I can play fast and loose down the line in the hall bath. But I don’t really want to do that.


I’m beside myself with glee!!!

No Sand… Yet

I’m getting really lazy about taking pictures. But I did take one today I thought you might appreciate:


So this guy rolls up in a car with a smashed windshield… smashed like someone’s head impacted it. And he gets out and is wearing a flannel shirt over a sweatshirt, the earflap wool hat – and flip flops. Oh no, I’m not judging, I come from a town where “summer” people routinely wear items that befuddle the locals. But this was just whole other level of mixing seasons! We did have fun imagining what on earth happened to his windshield – and whether or not he even noticed it!

We learned a new skill yesterday! Our walls are covered with this texture called orange peel. We’ve been mending drywall and trying to ignore it, but I pulled a shelf out of the closet and made a couple of really big holes. I fixed them, but then there were smooth spots on the walls. This is something that has been rolling around in the Hub’s head for a while now so we decided to learn how to make the smooth blend. I watched a video and decided it was easy enough and told the Hubs about it. We went and got some texture in a can, and then gave it a try. As luck would have it, I cannot aim a can at a wall from 3 feet, so the Hubs took over. He did a passable job, but it’s in his closet so who really cares?!

Once he got good at it, I let him try his hand at the large smooth spot I made in the master bath. When I looked at it today, it’s barely noticeable. So really, if I’m honest, the Hubs has a new skill.

We changed out some ceiling fans, too. There was a ridiculously large one in the guest room, and a ridiculously tiny one if the dining room. So I had the Hubs take the one from the dining room and put it in the guest room, put the guest room one in the living room, and take the living room one and put it in the garage for donation. Turns out, these fans were actually very nice. They are heavy, balanced, and quiet. Other than being not my taste, they are quite nice.

We picked up a new light for the dining room:

I’m actually kind of excited to have it go up. I think it will lend itself well to the classy room I have planned.

I’ll just let you think about that for a minute.

Today we just brought a couple loads over to the house. We unpacked a box of wine glasses and there were only 2 broken. We also were going to bring a box of pictures over, but when we moved it, all we heard was glass. And oh Lord, was there glass! And all of it was so completely smashed I could not believe it. There was not a piece bigger than 2″x2″, I am really not sure what the movers who brought our stuff here did, but I will say they were thorough. I’m over it now, but out of 300 boxes there were 6 that weren’t crushed. 6! And now this, and I know the guys had to hear all that glass tinkling and they just loaded it right into the storage room and never said a word! So if you ever need a recommendation on who NOT to use for an interstate move, just ask me.

Now I gotta have 5 pictures reframed.

Tomorrow we’re getting some actual progress: A plumber is coming to take out the toilet and vanity so the tilers can do the master floor. I will be over the moon with glee if this actually happens.

Bye bye:




If this even comes out half as good as I want it to, it’ll be so joyful! I have picked out my paint, but I’m not 100% sure. Wanna weigh in?

Be Kind

The card is the inspiration, it just struck me as so full of life, I wanted to use it. I guess I’ll decide how it looks with the floors before I do anything more. It’s not like I don’t have plenty to keep me busy… Doors and trim aside, there’s so much else that needs doing.

Anyway… Tomorrow I’ll do better about pictures of the stuff we’ve done. After the plumber is gone I’ll be painting the closet, some doors and some trim. Yay. Have I told you how much I loathe trim painting?

Happy Long Weekend!

Pictures to Dryers

Thought I would start with a picture today. This is my dining room. I have been bringing my pictures over and hanging them on walls throughout the house to get them off the floor. I have missed my art. True most of it is $25 canvases from the home store, but some of it is actually pricey, or one of a kind, or from an artist friend. Wait til I show you my Bob! My sister and mom have one as well, but I got mine first so it’s somehow special-er!

Where was I?

Oh! I got an email today from the floor lady. My bathroom will be tiled Tuesday the 22nd. I couldn’t believe it because I had pretty much given up on it happening, and my plumber is scheduled to come out on the 24th! I did email her back to clarify she means the 22nd of Feb, because coincidentally there is also a Tuesday the 22nd in March. She responded: “Yes, the 22nd” which totally did not answer my question, but I’m choosing to have faith. The Hubs, not so much.

But, I was able to reschedule the plumber for Monday, so it’s all working out – as long as she meant February.

My three doors are all finally painted and curing as we speak. I also painted the trim associated with those doors. After they get re-hung, I’ll do three more. Can I just share with you how much I hate painting trim? I’m currently ignoring the baseboards, but will have to paint them at some point. I’m pretending the tiling will wreck my work, so I am waiting.

Office closet

I did, after all the whining, paint the closet. OK, 2/3rds of the closet. Today I took the shelf down and patched the holes. Tomorrow I’ll work it til it’s ready for paint. I have a vague idea of what the Hubs has planned, but as soon as the paint is done, I’m tapping out. Except the damned baseboards… I’ll have to crawl around and get those done.

I got my washer and dryer yesterday. It makes a hideous racket, so I’ll be calling someone out to take a peek at that. The dryer has an end-of-cycle buzzer that is so loud and long I’m pretty sure even if I am at the beach I will know when my laundry is dry. I’m not even sure what the purpose of it is. Who really cares if your dry clothes sit in the dryer an extra hour? Why is it so loud? And so long? Clearly, my new dryer is going to have surgery. Soon.

I guess that is all for today. Long weekend coming up! There will either be real progress or a lot of sand in the car…

Quick Update

I skipped out on my house yesterday. I intended to go over and paint some doors. But for some reason, other things just got in the way and I stayed here.

I’m in a one-sided negotiation with the floor people. I think if we get the bathroom done early, we can live in the house while the rest of the tiling gets done. So far I am being pretty much ignored. I did get a pat on the head this afternoon followed by, “we’re short 2 tilers this week, so the schedule may slip.” Honestly, I liked it better when she was ignoring me. Especially since the Hubs pointed out slipping schedules will likely mean 21 March is a pipe dream.

I boiled some hardware yesterday. I think I had reasonable success with it, although I did have to do a bit more scrubbing than the last batch.

Full pot

Maybe there was too much in there? Maybe it was way more gross than the first batch… Who knows. But it looks good now:

After the boil
After a little scrub

I was considering painting all these, but I’m backing away from that now. They are somewhat mis-matched, but so squeaky clean it doesn’t bother me.

This morning in anticipation for the washer and dryer being delivered on Thursday, I had the dryer vent cleaned out. I figured it was going to a big deal because the home inspector told us the vent was not properly hooked up to the roof thingee. (Yes, that is the technical term he used.) Last week I had someone out and he quoted me $495 to do it. So, like the good frugal shopper I am, I called another guy. And he came out today. And yep, sure enough, it wasn’t hooked up.

He assured me it was no big deal and he could take care of it. Which he did. And it took him less time to do the fix than it took him to get the enormous amount of lint out of the vent. He showed me the collected lint, it was in a tube about 18″ long and 8″ diameter. All packed up tight in there. And then he showed me a pic of the stuff that hadn’t gotten trapped and was just piling up as extra insulation in the attic.

Ew.. Gross - conspiracy keanu - quickmeme

Baby steps. It’s taking a lot to bring this house back from the brink.

Best part was he only charged me $125! SCORE! He was kind and did a good job. so I’ll be calling him back every year to keep it clean in there! He also alerted me to some other issues, so he might get called back sooner.

While he was working, I managed to do some sanding and mudding in the office and my bathroom. I also dug out and re-caulked the hall bathroom sink – and discovered that sink has a crack in it.


AHA moment or not, this pig is really trying my patience.

Speaking of pigs, I completely changed my mind on the front door color. And I picked 2 colors for my bathroom. Oddly, this is all coming together too easily. I better sleep on both those decisions.

Tomorrow I will paint some doors. And re-paint the office, maybe even including the closet. But nobody panic, I might not.

Something That Looks Like Progress

We’ve had some progress over the weekend. There was lighting installed. There was a little painting. Some doors came off. Some window treatments got what they deserve.

First, those stupid bi-fold doors got what was coming to them. If you’re a person who likes a bi-fold door, I encourage you to seek help. While I don’t deny there are one or two applications that call for such a door, I just really hate them. They always come off the track, they never fit just right, and for some reason they always look very trailer trash to me. The ones in the office were no different. So away they went. Now they are in the garage taking up valuable space.

The Hubs changed out some lighting. In our last house we were plagued with the awful “boob” lights. Don’t act like you don’t know what those are, you probably have at least two in your house right now. Well this house, thankfully, does not have any boob lights. But it’s worse! There are “ball” lights all over the place. Just when I thought the boob light was at the bottom of the barrel, here comes the ball light. Unfortunately, I don’t have any pics of them (they are GONE!) I do have a close second example:

Smashed Ball Light

We’ve all seen and hated them. They are just a cheap light. I get it, sometimes you need a cheap light. But when I see one, it makes me want to throw a rock at it.

Thankfully, the Hubs eradicated three of these offensive items this weekend.

Look at all that glorious light! All that from a $15 fixture! No need to be ugly, you can be just unobtrusive and get the job done!

We’ve decided to pick up a few more of these for closets, but the smashed ball light over the sink (pic above) is getting something wonderful. You’ll just need to stick around to see what it is!

Another thing that got removed were these:

My favorite kind of vertical blinds

There were slats missing, they didn’t close all the way, and like a lot of other things in this house, they were just plain gross. So I found a rod and some panels and this is what we now have:

In progress

I still have some wall work to finish before I can add the rest of the panels and the finials. But you get the gist. It makes the place look so much more like a home than a rental.

Now with all that winning, we had a bit of a setback. I told you before there was some funky stuff happening behind the sink.

Large gap under backsplash

Since I really can’t take on a new kitchen right now, we have decided to employ stopgap measures to limp the kitchen along a year or so. This includes caulking the giant gap where I am pretty sure a dragon escapes from at night.

I carefully taped it up so I could make a big fat mess with silicone caulk and then just remove the tape and have a perfect bead.

Yeah, in my head that went a lot better then the reality. First, the caulk was so thick I thought my hand was going to break in half. So there we are, I’m squeezing and the Hubs is holding the flashlight. I’m being so careful to get every millimeter filled and sealed. After it was all on, I wet my finger and did the smooshing part. OK so far. Except the caulk is not really responding the way normal caulk does to water. And I’m pretty much getting it all over my arm. Fine, whatever. I get a nice bead, go wash up (by the way, you need alcohol to get this shit off), and then set a timer for 10 minutes so I don’t forget to pull the tape.

And you can just imagine where the wheels fell of, right? If I had read the whole article, I would have read the part where it says you have to pull the tape IMMEDIATELY or else it sticks and rips your perfect bead out.

Which is exactly what happened. Except it wasn’t neat and bead-like. It was more snot-like and I had to dig it all out with a putty knife – which might possibly be the end of a putty knife I have had since I learned how to drywall.

19 Kids Crying for the Silliest Imaginable Reasons

I’ll have to bring it back here and try to clean it off with some alcohol. Anyway, I cleaned up again and then re-opened the caulk and went to town. I’m sure I did a crap job, but the gaps are covered. I’ll re-look at it tomorrow and see if it needs to be redone correctly. It’s not supposed to last forever, so I may decide I really don’t care and leave it. I did take out all the spikes, it’s just further up the backsplash than it should be. Sometimes stuff like that makes me crazy and sometimes it doesn’t bother me. What can I say? I’m unpredictable in my predictability!

I will say, sometimes the Hubs cares about stuff and will go along behind me and fix it. For instance today. I was mudding the holes left by the towel bars in the master bathroom and had mud left over on my knife. So I thought, “hey, I’ll go back to the office and dig out the nail pops I, for some reason, didn’t notice til I painted over them.”

And when I walk in the room what do I see? Three nail pops all neatly dug out, reset, and waiting for mud.

It’s like we share the same brain!

Which we don’t!

Thresholds Met

Yesterday I did things I didn’t think I’d do.

I have been very clear with myself about touching parts of the Sad House. OK, that doesn’t sound right. Let me clarify. I mean I won’t walk barefoot in there. I won’t pick something up off the floor and declare “3 second rule!” I just won’t.

More clarification. I normally would. I know, it’s gross. I’ll also eat off your plate and drink out of your glass. What can I say? I was raised properly. Thanks Mom!

Back to yesterday. I went over in the morning and got ready to paint. Usually when I go over there I’m dressed for war. Covered head to toe in clothes I can wash in scalding hot water if something warrants it. But my painting jeans are packed. I have precious few pair out and I don’t want to burn any on paint. I’m a very messy painter. So I’m left with no options except a pair of shorts I hate.

I have not painted in years. I honestly forgot. I put on the shorts and a shirt I filched from the Hubs. And I stirred, poured, got all my brushes ready, put on some music and started. And then:

I’m gonna have to get on the floor to do the cutting in.

Oh the horror! I am literally in the belly of the beast here. I don’t have a drop cloth. And I’m wearing shorts.

The Hub’s office is the kid’s room. This is where all the nasty sticky teenaged boy stuff happened.

Oh, stop! Not like that. Just disgusting boy stuff.

Anyway… At first I was determined not to let that carpet touch me. This is a representation of me in the beginning:

Not touching the carpet with bare anything

I’m getting in groove, I’m doing the corners, I’m doing up near the ceiling.

Hmmm, color seems a little saturated

And then I have to do the baseboard cut in. I’m in a tight crouch trying to get a straight line. Nope. Maybe a different angle. Nope.


And before self preservation kicks in, here’s me:

I’m painting along, legs and forearms on the carpet and it occurs to me I have broken the seal. Next thing I know I’ll be walking barefoot in this place. But I swear I’ll draw the line at the 3 second rule.

A couple hours after I started, I was done. I was fully expecting a rash to appear, but so far, I’m good. And although I am surprised at the color, when I previewed it to the Hubs he seemed OK with it. Of course he also quipped if he doesn’t like it I can paint over it.

Yeah, that’ll happen.


I did not do inside the closet yet, and we’re in negotiations about what to do with those bi-fold doors and wire shelf. I think you know what I would do! When he next is over there, the decisions will be made and I can move forward. I have yet to get the paint for the trim and doors… I’m thinking something not bright white. I’ve slated tomorrow as a shopping day to make these choices.

And who knows, I might paint again, now that my threshold for gross has been shattered.