Wednesday, August 31, 2022

Hump Day Poll: There's an App for That


What apps do you use on a daily basis?

I'll scroll IG in the morning before getting up, I use Cronometer at night to plan my meals for the next day, I might hop on YouTube and mail but that's about it.  I don't use many flashy apps.

What apps do you use on a daily basis?

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Monday, August 29, 2022

Neutral Weekend Recap

'Sup y'all?  Monday is upon us.  I must tell you that if you want a really good workout, just get this toolbox and go up and down on it all day painting.  My mom got it for the Mr when we got married and it's the most evil form of hamstring/glute exercises you can do.  Holy poopballs!

So yes, that would mean I actually painted the bedroom Friday!  

I'm going for a nice neutral that isn't gray anymore but wanted to try a griege and got Benjamin Moore's Tapestry Beige.  (I think it's not coincidence that the initials for the paint are BM because that's about what I had when we bought the paint for eighty friggin' dollars a gallon!  Y'all who are used to that price, tell me where your money tree is.)  

Here's a side by side of what we had from what we went to.

Nothing Earth shattering but we've got gray walls everywhere and I wanted to lean more toward a parchment with everything else that's going to be going on in there...eventually.  I still have some touch ups to do because of course there were some molly screw holes to be filled and sanded.

Speaking of which, do you like my new nightstand?

Nothing like a spackle bucket to balance your morning water, pills and phone on in between boxes of flooring to wake up to every morn.  

Otherwise, it was a low key weekend because my body was BROKEN on Saturday and the Mr needed the rest too.  Sunday we did this workout and got our butts handed to us so I'm sure we're broken again today.  Yeesh!

The Mr has an appointment with a new doc today.  If you could send out some good vibes that he's able to give us some answers from his MRI, that they're good ones and he's not a douchebag which seems to be harder to come by.

How was your weekend?

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Friday, August 26, 2022

What I'm Reading This Week #34

It's finally Friday!  Woo hooooo!  This week has dragged on forevahhhh.  We have implemented doing 2 mile walks in the morning (indoors) the past two weeks and I'm not gonna lie, I'm not a fan yet.  (Only of the time I get with the Mr in the morning now)  My heart rate takes FOREVER to even get into the fat burning zone but we have known we need to get in more movement for years so this is our attempt at it.  We also have done "two a days" before and it backfired spectacularly so we have no expectations but I'm hoping it works to help work off the rest of the home cookin' from last week.  We'll change it up between the two miles we currently walk, then mix up one milers on cardio days and two milers on strength days, then one milers another week and just try to keep our bodies guessing so it's not in a constant state of exhaustion which is how it was the week coming back from retreat.

Now let's get into:

8 Signs You're Not Getting Enough Magnesium  (I need to get more for sure.)

How to build bigger biceps: A little exercise each day improves muscles more than one big weekly workout  (Wow, this is a really interesting study given the different test groups!)

Is losing weight an important health goal?   (Courtesy of the Mr and just one more piece of friggin' confusing crap to not give us a clear answer.)

Vitamin B12 and Folic Acid May Help With NonAlcoholic Fatty Liver Disease, New Research Suggests—4 Foods That Deliver Both  (Sounds good but the first one on the list ain't happenin'.  The rest...bring 'em on!)

How to Act in Your Best Interests  (Inquiring minds want to know!  Wow, anyone else remember that commercial from the 80's for the National Enquirer?)

How to Style Your Home Like a Pro  (Obviously don't ask me.  We've been living in chaos for 7 weeks.)

Some Epson Printers Programmed to Eventually Self-Brick  (This does not surprise me in the least.  They all pretty much suck!)

30 Hilariously Relatable Comics About Everyday Life  (OMG, 11 and 12...hilarious!  But really too many relatable to list.)

You know what's fun?  Getting jolted out of bed by the smoke detector going off once over your head at 2:15am and never getting to go back to sleep.  We've got them on order and are hoping for better results than some of the one star folk.  I feel like we haven't gotten the full 10 years out of this set but still, I'm praying these last a good while.  And WHY do these only go off in the middle of the night and never during the day?? 

So here's your friendly reminder that if it's been 10 years or more since you've replaced your smoke detectors, it's time.  We also bought new fire extinguishers because those are 26 years old and my fire fighter grandpa showed a big sign afterward that he was in agreement with our new purchases.  Okay, okay...just keep it from going off again for no reason please Gramps!  

Oh and I have to say, I was surprised between here and FB how many people were team pineapple on pizza!  

What's floating your boat this last weekend of August?

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Wednesday, August 24, 2022

Hump Day Poll: Pizza Wars


Let's see where you stand on what seems to be a heated subject in the pizza world...pineapple on pizza...yay or nay?

I don't prefer it on red sauce based pizza but I'll take it on BBQ based chicken pizza all day long.  Hickory brown sugar BBQ base, chicken strips, red onions, pineapple and mozzarella or provolone.  Droooool!!  

How about you?  Pineapple on pizza...yay or nay?

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Monday, August 22, 2022

Marriage Retreat 2022

Wow!  I can't believe it's been 5 years since we started doing retreats!  Those of you who have been here that long may recall that we hit a potential impasse in our marriage.  You can read about that here and here.  I honestly don't know how we made it to over 20 years of marriage without marriage focused retreats.  This isn't to say we were both miserable but the words that kept coming up over this retreat to describe our marriage even up to this point were "lazy, coasting and complacent."  Those do not a great marriage make.  You can have a marriage better than 90% of the people you know but it doesn't necessarily mean you are giving each other best versions of yourselves.  Often times what keeps coming up in book after book that we read is how your spouse typically gets the leftovers of what you have to give after giving to everything and everyone else if you have anything to give at all.  Whether you have children or not, if you have a hectic work life, mental health struggles, you name it, life is just draining on so many levels and the person you agreed to slog through life with can be moved down the priority list as you set cruise control.  As long as no cheating, abuse, etc are going on, it's easy to think that there's nothing to complain about.  Hence complacency.  

This year we were just more concerned about getting the hell outta dodge because of the last month of never ending BS from the botched ceiling smoothing/correcting/painting debacles and the like.  (Which yes, we're still dealing with in varying degrees.)  There were some not great issues popping up in our relationship and to be honest, every workshop Wednesday we had since we got back from our anniversary trip was a total bust usually ending up with me in tears, him feeling like crap and both of us feeling more distant.  It was like we saved up the gripes on either side of Wednesday and that is not what that day was supposed to be about.  It was about setting up an intentional time to connect and work on our marriage, not grab verbal ninja stars to hurl at each other because we neglected our own relationship agreement from our first retreat.  We both agree that it's still an amazing agreement and one we don't feel needs tweaked or changed but rather...PUT INTO ACTION!  While we both feel we've made good progress on how we speak to each other and such (before the pre-reno) the fact is, the most important thing we created to have a wonderful marriage has been sitting in front of our faces, ignored, for five years.  I used to have it printed out and after a year or two of having it moved to different spots tucked away, I chucked it because it had become furniture.

But first, let's get to some pics of the much needed, much deserved relaxation.  The Mr wanted to bring the outdoor projector he got for our 25th so it wasn't a one trick pony.  While we had a few podunk internet issues, we were able to watch Minions: Rise of Gru outside on a clear night with our bug candles blazed up.

We also enjoyed some s'mores, as are required retreat treats.  (If you're a s'more maker on some on your travels, we always take these telescoping roasters which have been awesome for roasting mallows or the occasional hot dog!  Highly recommended!)  We went up early so that we could enjoy the scenery and lesser crowds at antique shops.

The place we rented was next door to a farm.  That alone makes my heart skip a beat because if there's anything we learned on our 25th anniversary trip, staying next to a horse farm brings us a lot of peace.

Sadly these were horses that didn't equate warm fuzzies to humans so they couldn't care less if we were there but it was still nice to enjoy their majesty even if from a further distance than we would've hoped for.  It's also nice to have water around and we had that as well.  We enjoyed feeding the fish who would wait to see what their take for the day was.  (I know this is going to tick some people off but meh, when has that stopped me?  😆  I find it strange that the Mr's co-workers were baffled as to why we were feeding the fish and not catching them.  Um, because the Mr doesn't need to flex his man muscles over a 6" long creature that feels pain to prove his masculinity.  Seriously, imagine going to Chipotle or wherever you like to go and biting into a burrito/whatever your favorite food is and then having a big hole ripped into your lip and expected to go back on your merry way!  Then having it happen over and over again.  Look, I come from a "huntin' and fishin'" family so I understand this is viewed as relaxation to some but we don't.  If it's not going to end up on the table, leave it be is our feeling where fishing is concerned not that you asked but there it is.)  

Anyhoo.  We also brought some goodies to enjoy.  The Mr found ChocoTacos at the store and we quickly realized why they were discontinued.  GROSS!    If you like stale waffle cone it might be up your alley but gag.  Obviously, s'mores were made a time or two.  I brought stuff for a yin yang afternoon tea.  

I like the dainty stuff like scones and macarons and he likes man stuff like summer sausage on pretzel crisps.

The book I got for retreat this year was The Six Pillars of Intimacy.  We listened to their podcast a few workshop Wednesday's and we both thought it sounded like something we might like.  It's an easy read so if you're looking for a book that isn't long and gives you a general direction to start, this could be a good introductory book.  We made the mistake of not reading the whole book before we left and while I thought that was going to be a problem, it wasn't.  I read it out loud while we were there and because, unfortunately, there weren't specific exercises to follow, it gave us talking points more than anything.  The biggest take away was that you need to live intentionally and just because you solve a problem once doesn't mean it's solved forever.  Little habits of our past began creeping in and just because it was solved at one point, doesn't mean it didn't apply to new situations that popped up.  Marriage is something we're all so woefully unprepared for going into it and this book brings that home.  Regardless of how many years you've been together, it is never too late to change things for the better.

Where last year money was our biggest focus, this year, it should be no surprise that our house was the focus.  Not the projects ahead but the act of actually cleaning it.  He came from a family where his mom did everything for him until he was about 16 and then she was like "tappin' out."  I came from a family of "pilers" and shoving things into closets when company came to deal with later.  Cleaning wasn't done unless 1) I was left a note by my mom which I understand now as an adult but loathed as a kid because I felt like it was all dumped on me after the divorce (before the divorce they were chores I happily did for a few shekels to save up for the latest Duran Duran cassette) or 2) company was coming and we needed to do a deep clean which was the only time it got done.  So neither of us had good role models on how to regularly maintain and clean a house.  We both associated it with either someone else doing it, super high stress because company was coming or having it be out of control and not know where to start.  So it's weird to be tippin' 50 and have to watch various cleaning videos and look at the discombobulated Flylady system and try to find tips and tricks that you can attempt to create your own routine around.  We're only 6 days into it and we have gotten a lot of things done that were previously ignored (I never want to clean kitchen blinds again) but we have a long way to go and decades of stuff to undo before it becomes a habit.  

I feel almost like I'd jinx it if I mentioned the relationship agreement needing to be brought to the forefront because if you read about any of our other ones, you'll see we failed every year which means more years of failing ourselves to put our marriage first than not.  We have set up reminders and read it every morning now in emails in hopes that it will somehow stick.  It has been a more loving week in general which is nice but I know how the pattern goes.  I'm not trying to shit on it all, I'm just using the history as predictor of future behavior and I hope we can find a way to change that habit.  We deserve it.  One of the exercises I wanted done was to write a letter of regret if the other were gone.  What things would we have regretted not doing?  For me, they were what seem like small things to others maybe but big to me like not being physically intimate, kissing passionately because I didn't feel sexy or not keeping a clean home especially when I quit my 'corporate' job.  Those are things I can change and rather immediately.  While I will always regret the years decades those things weren't a priority for some stupid reason, I can try to make up for them now.  

If you'd like to read about our previous retreats, see below.

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Friday, August 19, 2022

What I'm Reading This Week #33

Skittley diddley doo and Happy Friday to you!  😜

I hope everyone has had a productive week and you're ready to tackle the weekend schtuffs awaiting you.  I have been hard into Fall since week one of August.  I made Einkorn pumpkin muffins and we've even already had our first taste of caramel candy corn for the year.  I figure we're going to have to enjoy Fall while we still have a season because in 20 years its just going to be varying degrees of hellishly hot.

OH!  A quick word of caution if you ever buy anything off of social media ads.  1)  Look at the comments before buying.  Anyone who has had a bad experience will usually say so there.  2) Look them up on BBB or do a Google search with the name of the company and the word "scam" after it.  The Mr and I are fans of The Neverending Story and on an impulse buy, he got this book that looks like the one from the movie.  It said 100% satisfaction guarantee so whatcha got to lose?  Well, when it arrived looking like this:

he contacted them for a refund.  (Not to mention the horrible, very obviously screen grabbed pictures inside which that alone I would've told him to send it back.)  They did not stand behind their guarantee and were basically like "sorry you don't like it.  We can give you a 20% refund."   This is also after we would have to send it back on OUR dime and it would have to be protected like Fort Knox and if they received it damaged that they would knock off that amount from the 20% refund.  Um, NO.  So that's disputed with the credit card company for sure.  

Upon further research, the Mr found that this company stole images from a chick on Etsy who makes these legitimately (but obviously charges more for them because it doesn't look like a 2nd grader did it) and she posts on the ad every time it runs that they stole from her.  She's reported it to the offending social media company and they don't care because all they want is money.  So consider this our friendly e-scam warning for any nostalgia fans out there.  Plus I hear all of the time about people ordering stuff off of social media ads and either never getting the item, it takes MONTHS to receive or it's pure junk that looks nothing like the picture when they get it.

Now let's enjoy:

The One Muscle-Building Nutrient Your Diet Is Probably Missing   (Will have to make sure I get more of this stuff in!)

Drop Up to 13 Pounds a Week by Adding One Thing to Your Pre-Breakfast Routine  (I usually hate morning workouts but I'm willing to give this a go and definitely counting on nothing close to 13 lbs.)

Foods That Help Fight Fatigue (I think many of us could use some help in that department!)

All Types of Coffee Protect Against Liver Disease, Study Shows  (Good news if you're a coffee lover and I suppose we can hold our noses and drink some and then brush our teeth to get rid of that "a rodent died in my mouth 2 weeks ago" breath.)

How to Eat Healthy When Mental Health Makes Doing Things Feel Hard  (Good tips but I kind of wish there were quick meal ideas because on high stress days it's like "bowl of Cheerios for lunch, it is.")

Why Your Balance Gets Worse With Age and What to Do About It  (I would also add doing grip strength exercises because I'll be damned if some jars feel like they were tightened by Hercules these days!)

7 Health Uses for Hydrogen Peroxide  (I also saw in a professional cleaning video it can kill that "pink slime" that gets in your shower.)

Amazon Buys Roomba Company, Will Now Map Inside of Your House  (Nope, nope, nope.  Read the article to see how they tried this before and what they intended to do with the info!   Buy one that doesn't have an app to track your home.)

Is Old Music Killing New Music?  (How about new music produces some original crap that doesn't just follow everyone else?  Not our fault the 80's had awesome tunes that have lasted for generations!  Pffft!)

I suppose pulling the carpets up or at least getting the baseboards off will have to happen soon.  I just can't wait to see the crap fest awaiting us on the subfloors.  That's the plan at least.  Beh.

What are your plans this weekend?

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Wednesday, August 17, 2022

Hump Day Poll: This is Bananas


Banana "threads".  

Eat 'em?  
Dump 'em?  
YARF, don't even remind me they exist!!

OMG, I'm going to barf just talking about them.  I have no idea what my repulsion is to them but if one doesn't come off while peeling it, it might as well be a worm on it that I'm taking off and flinging into the bin.

How about you?  I'll assume I'm the only weirdo.

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Monday, August 15, 2022

What to Consider Before Having Your Ceilings Smoothed

(If you're stumbling on this by accident or looking to make the decision of having your ceilings smoothed, I'll give you a little fair warning.  There's a little language and sarcasm.  If either offend you, go to a real home improvement blog because this is our experience and I'm not sugar coating.)


Whether you have potentially asbestos laden 60's/70's popcorn, 80's "fashionable" swipes or 90's and beyond stomped/stippled ceilings, you may be considering having your ceilings smoothed.  You also may be wondering what they were smoking to consider putting such atrocities on ceilings.  The answer is easy...laziness.  One skim coat to cover the tape/joints and then another layer that they can slap a haphazard pattern on and onto the next job.  It doesn't require them to be precise and is quick whereas smooth ceilings require a bit more attention to detail if the company gives a crap.  (It likely doesn't.)  
If you've been here for a little while, you saw what our adventure in having our second floor ceilings caused.  If you haven't and you're considering jumping into this adventure on your own, this post is for you.  

You may be wondering "can I do this myself?"  The short answer is maybe.  You will undoubtedly look up various articles and YouTube videos to see what might be involved and tricks people have used to get them off.  If we didn't have the stairwell to contend with, we almost had ourselves talked into DIYing it with zero experience doing so.  After our experience with our 4 1/2 star rated contractor with hundreds of reviews on contractor vetting sites, we couldn't have done much worse and saved ourselves $1700 for 450 square feet.  (In comparison, we had the first floor ceilings smoothed (probably about the same amount square footage wise) and it was $1250 two years ago.)  We were originally quoted $350 higher for the second floor but our hesitation in getting back to him led to him asking about our budget.  We said $1700 was our cap (well, the Mr's cap...mine was $1500.)  I think if we said $1500 he might've still done it and even then, I still feel we would've paid too much for what we had to deal with afterward.   

Okay, so let's say you've looked at all of the videos and articles and you're like "we need a pro in here" then I'm going to give you some tips that I wish we'd known or lessons we learned.

What we did- Looked for top rated contractors whose reviews mention ceiling texture repair.  Oddly, even with living in a big city, there were very few that specifically listed this service.  There were only two that have it listed and everything else seemed to be drywall repair.  We called the highest rated one and the guy's attitude was pure crap.  He told us for such a small job that we were chasing them and it would be 10 days before he could even send someone out for an estimate.  He was pretty high on himself but also said they would do an excellent job, clean up after themselves and took pride in their workmanship.  Well, we did not have 10 days to wait for an estimate, 1 day to get over anticipated shock of said estimate and then if estimates were taking 10 days then surely starting the job would take at least as long if not a week longer so you're talking potentially 20-30 days out.  We had other plans and this was a 'throw in' project that wasn't even on our radar.  We contacted the second highest rated place who happened to be in our area and said he could be there in an hour to give an estimate.  He had no problem masking up for us, seemed nice and told us all of the things we could leave in the room and that they would protect everything with drop cloths and clean up afterward.  After some very brief discussion when he lowered his quote, we agreed and asked for a contract.  Half up front, half when finished.  Never EVER pay all up front and always have a contract, not just a text agreeing to the terms.

What I wish we'd done- Ask for word of mouth references.  (Which is what you think you're getting when you read online reviews but I think a lot more people don't review someone even with a bad experience because they just don't want to think about it anymore.)  I know the likelihood of finding someone who had ceiling smoothing or other drywall work might've been slim but some businesses don't necessarily advertise.  Obviously we'd never hire anyone who wasn't licensed, bonded and insured but you never know if someone had a great (or horrible) experience or a friend of a friend had an experience to pass along that could've helped.  In the end it probably wouldn't have helped but if you're on social media, it might be worth putting out a post to your locals.

What we did-  Trusted that when he said he would protect our property that he meant it.  I don't know what part of we're not immediately replacing the carpet he didn't pass along to his worker but we were left with an absolute mess.  Not only did we have clumps and chunks of hardened joint compound on walls, banisters, our doors where they didn't bother to clean up but they damaged our walls to the point of every single space they touched needing to be scrubbed down and repainted.  I don't mean the ceiling needed repainted, I mean the WALLS and that was after we attempted to clean off all of the solution they left dripping down every surface of the wall.  There were two guys on this "team."  One did work and the other one vacuumed and took smoke breaks.  He could've very easily gone into the section the drywaller just finished and wiped down the walls, caught any compound before it dried and such.  They did NOT use drop cloths as we found out at the end of day one.  They ruined a vintage armoire that we purposely put on sliders and was the only piece of furniture in the room.  I shudder to think what would've happened if we'd left all of the furniture in the room that he told us we could.  There was ZERO respect for our property from top to bottom to in-between.  So that night we put up our OWN drop cloths and taped them over stuff we needed protected in the office and were planning on reusing for painting.  They took them off and threw them away without asking and I don't mean when they were done, I mean before they started.  Oh and guess what else they did?  The scaffolding they set up in the stairwell badly damaged our 2 year old smooth ceiling from the first floor!!  We mentioned it to the owner when he came the next morning and he said they'd fix it.  If the Mr hadn't stopped the drywaller on his way out, then he would've left without fixing it and said no one told him he was supposed to.  So apparently it's common practice that you can damage someone's home and get away with it.

What I wish we'd done- Been upstairs to make sure at the start of things and ask what the plan was and make sure all areas were covered.  We should've gone up more often (at all) to check and make sure they weren't leaving a trail of destruction and joint compound all over everything.  (Not that you think you should have to with a top rated company but I'm here to tell you that you DO!)  I would've told them NOT to take the drop cloths down and those areas needed protected.  We did tell them that they needed to clean the horrible job they left dripping down the wall in the hallway because there was no way for us to reach that high to correct it and we had no plans to repaint the hallway.  Guess what we repainted?  THE ENTIRE SECOND FLOOR!  So if you think you're just getting your ceiling smoothed and might have some minor clean up to do, I officially pat your little head and say "awww, that's cute"  because that was us too.  You must be willing to repaint everything in every area they smooth and if not, you need to budget money to have it done.  If you end up having nothing to do that then you've likely found the one person on Earth who can pull off that miracle and I salute you!

What we did- We foolishly thought paying for our ceiling to be smooth meant we'd have a smooth ceiling.  Bwaaaahahaha!  First off, if you're type A and a control freak, you need to accept there is no such thing.  There are varying degrees depending on the pride in workmanship the person you hired has.  Ours clearly had about 30% and left some spots looking like waves, divots, gouges, long swipes of compound higher than another that weren't sanded to match.  All of this was hidden until after they were gone.  (I'll explain how below.)  Did the dude say if there were issues that they could come back and fix them?  Yes.  But when you are that angry at the disrespect your home receives with an experience like ours, the last thing you want is them back in the house and potentially have even more to contend with!  Any contractor will tell you a smooth ceiling is a myth.  It's basically 'smooth enough' and this explains why textured ceilings were so popular.  So I would say make sure you have some joint compound, putty knives and sanding block on hand because you will be doing some work if there is stuff  you can't live with.  (And trust me, there was a lot we could not live with when our dudes left.)

What I wish we'd done-  We should've looked at each room in low light.  Bright light conceals all evils and shadows.  Low light shows you where they are uneven and need to fix some stuff before they pack their bags.  This allows you to have a good(ish) experience when they fix what they overlooked and if they get grumpy, guess what, too bad.  They're the supposed expert, not me and that's what you as the client are paying for.  Don't be afraid to ask what you're paying for and expect them to deliver on what they said they would.  Certainly don't give them the second payment until you've gone through and inspected everything.  Once they have your money, they have no incentive to make good on that "we'll come back and fix it" stuff.  I've read review after review from many people frustrated that that never happened and not just with our guy.

What we did- Expected things to go back to normal within a day or so.  Maybe you'll be lucky and just have to clean up, sweep, dust and be done.  Maybe you won't have two weeks worth of spackling, sanding, priming, painting on the ceiling and then again on all of the walls of the rooms you now had to repaint that you weren't planning on.  Maybe you won't be sitting on the toilet with your fan light on and see a huge wavey mess in the corner that you missed and think "ain't no way I can live with that" and have to start that process all over again.  If you can get that job done and immediately think "that sucked a little but I'm so glad we had it done!" then thank your lucky stars but that was not our experience. 

What I wish we'd done- Day drink (even though neither of us drink.)  It would've at least cut the tension we were unleashing on each other. 

In summary:

Am I glad I don't have to look at those dust catching stippled ceilings anymore?  For what we went through emotionally and the stress on the marriage?  No.  Maybe I can answer yes someday but today is not that day.  

Am I glad we went through the process of having the ceilings smoothed?  F**k no.  I mean, ask me in a few months.  I'm nowhere near there yet.

I'm sure at some point, the ceilings will fade into the background just as our first floor ceilings did after we had them done.   I'm sure at some point, I will stop looking for the imperfections I missed fixing when I lived with a putty knife as an extension of my hand.  I'm sure at some point, staring at the ceiling at night will just become something I do at 3am for other reasons instead of giving me slight PTSD.  I'm sure I will get to the point where I don't have to hide reno supplies from "helping hands" that made me have to do more work than I had to.  I'm sure I will get to the point where I don't have to break out marriage self help books to have conversations about how to wrap up the reno in a way that doesn't have me ramming my head into a wall, crying in a fetal position and/or looking for a hotel to stay in that is as far away from the house as possible.


What texture are your ceilings?  (Or are you one of the lucky ones who got flat ones and if you are- thank your lucky friggin' stars!!)

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Friday, August 12, 2022

What I'm Reading This Week #32

Howdy do everyone?  The weekend is upon us and we are here for it.  We had some nice rainy weather off and on this week and I'm always down for that.  Not only is it calmer feeling for me than sun blazing in my face and a wall of gross when you step foot outside but it helps keep the never ending outdoor construction dust at bay.  I swear I don't know how long it takes to build a three tenant building but these effers are going for a record.  (And that's the second construction project.  The one on the main road has made zero progress in our neck of the woods over the past three months and they work on random stuff wherever the bulldozer lands for the day.)  So to say we haven't been on the patio at all this year except twice that I can remember between heat and dust isn't an understatement.  I'm always amazed my car isn't buried under an entire mound of dirt each week.

But now let's dig up...

10 Iron-Rich Foods You Need to Add to Your Diet  (Yes please!  Well, except #2 because eww.) 

How to Know If You're Stress Eating and What You Can Do to Stop  (Not doing a reno will quell the urge to curl up with a bag of these.)

Even simple exercise may help aging brain  (Every little bit counts!)

How to Hack Your Hormones for a Better Mood  (We could all use a boost now and then!)

Anti-aging creams and how the skin care industry makes you a customer for life  (It's true and I've never once met a cream/serum that performs any of the 'miracles' they claim.  (The latest being Peace Out skincare dark spot serum.  Total pooper for me.)  I don't try them often but when I give them the amount of time they say or longer...nothing.  I'll take my Andalou Naturals and Acure skincare which is natural, affordable and moisturizing and all you can really do if you plan to age naturally.)

Ashley Judd Says Family Grieves Differently After Naomi Judd's Death  (This family is perfectly approaching the individual  grieving process and everyone's right to do so that is right for them.  As members of a family that was ripped apart by how others tried to dictate we all grieve, this is the most important article of this round.  Books like this can also help you navigate the process.)

Farewell, Olivia Newton-John: Why We Honestly Loved Her (Never will a more pure human being exist.) 

Funny Movie Details That Might Ruin The Movie For You  (I don't think it's going to ruin anything for anyone but I'm going to be keeping my eye out for a few of the things in movies we watch pretty regularly.)

We are taking some time off this weekend to decompress.  It's been a not so great mental week on many fronts and we need some time to reset da brains.  We're going to unplug and not work on the house right now so that we can forget a bit of the crap fest that has been the past month (plus).  It put a choke hold on the marriage for a little while and if we're going to come out on the other side after attempting floors then we need to get in a better headspace and set some rules up.  While that doesn't sound like fun, anything will be better than how we've spent the last month and if we've learned nothing, it's that we need an actual plan and to learn how to respect each other's process going forward.  (Also looking forward to prioritizing a little relaxation in there too.)

What's on tap for you guys this weekend?

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Wednesday, August 10, 2022

Hump Day Poll: When I Found Out

When did you find out?

This can be anything and preferably before you were out on your own but you don't have to have been a little kid.  

Here's my example:

I came across one of those keychains you'd get at amusement parks back in the day where they'd take your pic as you came in for the day all full of hope and money.  You look through the little hole and see your picture negative in the back.  


Well, the one I found was me with four friends (one I have no clue who she was) and it reminded me that before we left for the day, we did one of those star trax deals where you record a popular song to the original music and they give you a cassette for like $30.  I sang lead on The Flame by Cheap Trick.  That was the day I found out I was tone deaf and after listening to it in the car, I pulled the tape from the spool and said "we never speak of this again."

When did you find out what you found out?

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Tuesday, August 9, 2022

RIP to My Childhood Angel

I knew this day was coming when I saw a video she did on Instagram a little over 6 months ago.  Although, I was sure it would be back in 1992 but she fought and won and got another 30 years with her family and blessed all of us.  


I have loved Olivia Newton-John since I was a little girl.  Grease was the first movie I saw that I remember at the drive in.  I instantly fell in love with her smile, her demeanor, her positivity and her music.  It was her music that saved me.  I was obsessed with her greatest hits album and obviously Physical.  If you're an HSP, you know that you are deeply affected by music, art and other media.  I would sob as a kid (and adult) listening to her music.  There is some tone or octave that her voice hits and it hits something in me that makes me tear up every time.  You put in the Promise (The Dolphin Song) and I am done and same with Whenever You're Away from Me with Gene Kelly from Xanadu.  I remember being in 3rd grade just praying my parents didn't see their weirdo kid biting her lip so hard it bled trying to hold back the tears that she couldn't explain.  Sometimes I used to pretend that she was my mom and would teach me to sing.  Not that I didn't love my own mom but I think we all think about having some famous mom at some time in our childhoods whether it was the Partridge mom, Carol Brady, Alyse Keaton or if you're like me, a singer.  I always thought she could teach me to sing like her and I could see that beautiful smile every day and we'd sing duets together.  😄

When my parents split, her music became even more important to me.  Her voice and movies would comfort me when I was in a long crying jag of uncertainty about my future.  I could escape to Xanadu, go to Rydell High, and watch her and John fall in love all over again in the movie that everyone hated but me.  (Two of a Kind)  I admired her my whole life watching her kick cancer's ass for 30 years and leaving a legacy with her Olivia Newton-John Cancer Wellness & Research Centre.

If Olivia has ever touched your life, consider making a donation to her Centre which was the pride and joy of her life.   Thank you Olivia.  You mean more to millions than you will ever know but then again, you probably know now and I hope you can feel the love.


Whenever you're away from me
Wherever you go
You're never far away from me
I want you to know
I only have to close my eyes dear
And suddenly I'm where you are
You better never stray
Cos I'll never be far away

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Monday, August 8, 2022

One Step Forward Two Steps Back Weekend Recap

Good Monday to you all!  I hope you had a groovy weekend with a nice dash of tomfoolery.

Friday, after having sanded and primed the ceiling, I was ready for the first coat of paint in the bedroom.   This is the coat that would tell me if I was able to continue painting or had more work to do.  I had more work to do.  But not as much as I thought but then I saw other stuff and I just didn't care anymore so I trudged on.  I burned a nice 1400 calories doing two coats of paint on the ceiling.  I was hoping to get the ceiling fan up that night but I could tell it needed one more coat.  Any paint that tells you it's one coat is a LIE.  


The only problem was, come Saturday my hands were so crippled that when I gave something outside the middle finger, it hurt like a mother.  If I can't give one finger salutes, then painting the third coat was out of the question.  Thankfully the Mr offered to paint it and I took him up on it.  He did the majority of the ceiling and I hit the perimeter close to the wall with the small roller.  I didn't need to worry about keeping the walls clean since those are getting painted.  Before the end of Saturday night, we had a working ceiling fan and light!

Only been without it a month.  Jerks.

As I was showering off after sweating through two shirts on Friday, I noticed something as I peered over the shower door.  Dime and quarter sized bubbles in the paint.  Of course.  So then it was time to grab the steel putty knife and scrape them off.  This time I wasn't fooling around anymore.  The thing in common with all of these are they are where that effing joint compound was used.  I saw this trick we used for drywall paper sealing with wood glue.  I primed the spots and let them dry for 4 hours then applied waterproof wood glue.

I put down another layer of primer and I'll tackle the rest today.  

I swear man, two steps forward, one back.  

Then it was off to buy Benjamin Moore Tapestry Beige for the rest of the walls.  I will not look at the receipt for the paint.  I will not look at the receipt for the paint.  I have never paid that much for paint in my life!!!!  (At least not for one gallon of it)  This stuff had better do our friggin' taxes for us for what we paid.  And if I don't like it....TOO BAD!!!

How was your weekend?

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Friday, August 5, 2022

What I'm Reading This Week #31

Top o the Friday to ya!  (No idea why I lapsed into Irish in August but there it is.) I am looking forward to giving my muscles a bit of a break.  After watching a video from Chalene Johnson about strength training, we upped our weight this week and felt it for sure.  We can't go gonzo on it and become bodybuilders or anything but our routine never did much more than maintain.  Now we blink and find ourselves at the ages where the slow decline of muscle loss will start if we aren't serious.  How the hell did that happen??  We watched an episode of Six Feet Under the other day where Claire corrected Billy telling him she was 18.  He replied "what you don't know is you'll be 18 forever." So true but I think 28 is more accurate.  No one can warn you what it's like to feel young in mind and older in body! 😆

Now let's feel:

What Is Nutritional Yeast, Really?  (I use this everyday to get our B vitamins in.  2g does it!)

How Long Does It Take to Lose Muscle?  (I swear it feels like I'm back at square one after every vacation.)

Depression Is Not Caused by Chemical Imbalance in the Brain  ("This notion emerged, not coincidentally, in the late '80s with the introduction of Prozac—a drug that appeared to be helpful in treating depression by increasing levels of the brain neurotransmitter serotonin."  I feel like everything I "learned" as a kid is wrong.  Makes me wonder what we're "learning" now that is pushed as fact that will be proven wrong in 20-30 years.)

Study Provides Better Insight Into the Vagus Nerve’s Link to the Brain  (I've recently been looking into this but need to actually do the exercises I've seen.)

Nursing homes use lawsuits to demand friends and family pay off medical debts  (I am in utter disbelief and actually kind of terrified.  If you or any of your family or friends need to go into a nursing home MAKE SURE YOU HAVE A LAWYER GO OVER THE CONTRACT!)

Genius Castile Soap Uses for Your Entire Home  (Still have unopened bottles of it from the last article I read touting its miracle powers.  Sigh.)

Millions are ‘awwwing’ over this cute video of an American asking Robert Irwin for his number  (That sweet lil nugget handled that perfectly and of course it's an American that was so pushy to put him in the situation.  😑)

Man Forgets Something When He Went to Work  (This is so sweet but also what does it say that this kind of act is now newsworthy?  But more than happy to share it!)

If you could throw out some good vibes for the Mr today who is having a test done, I'd be most appreciative.  No plans that I know of for the weekend.  

Any rump shaking plans in your future?

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Wednesday, August 3, 2022

Hump Day Poll: New to Me Entertainment

The Mr and I sometimes wax nostalgic about the days when we were promised streaming or something like it in our youth.  "One day, you'll be able to watch any movie you want, any time you want it!"  


What we somehow didn't see was corporate greed, licensing agreements, etc that would botch the ability for said pipe dream to exist.  So instead you're stuck juggling whatever streaming services you're willing to pay for and now it's somehow even worse than when Bruce Springsteen complained about 57 Channels (and Nothin' On).  By far not his best work but I still want to scream at him "oh just you wait sir!!"  (I could smack Peacock for making Escape to the Chateau a premium feature now when it's been free for the past 2 years!)

So that leads us to try to find what we can for free to entertain us between watching crap we've already seen or God forbid another mindless settling for American Ninja Warrior because what else are we going to watch?  

I know I'm probably late to the party but I somehow got suggested Rachel Maksy's video (I think it was for her kitchen reno) and I've been obsessed since.  As a fellow old soul, she appeals to me in that way but her personality reminds me a little of mine before life jaded me.  To quote the great Real Genius "Lately I've been missing me so I asked Dr. Hathaway if I could room with me again and he said sure."  It's nice to watch someone lighthearted that dives into things with little fear who isn't afraid to make fun of herself.  It doesn't hurt she has an adorable dog.  Her cosplay and transformation videos are awesome and we were especially impressed with her Star Wars one.  It's just nice to have some new to me content to throw into rotation to gap us over to the Fall shows.  (Not that there are many of those once they do start up but still.)  

Give me some more content!  Share some of your favorite free shows/YouTubers to watch.

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Monday, August 1, 2022

Weekend in Gif's Recap

Happy Monday, Happy August and a happy first day of next trip around the sun for my bestie since yesterday was her birthday.  I got the bathroom as done as it's going to be.  I'm not posting pics yet because it's not back together so just picture a navy black hole of neverendingness until I take proper pics.  

(This is about accurate between the color and the white bits of the previous color peeking through.)  (Source)

I should've just done all surveying sitting on the toilet,  When I thought I was done painting, I went to the bathroom and while I corrected the craggy lines from the tape and it looked straight from above, from eye level on the pot it looked like I painted while drunk.  


So I got the office chair and painted the perimeter head-on Saturday night after a solid day of doing nothing.  If I never hear the high powered fan running again it'll be too soon.  (Trying not to acknowledge that will likely be this week in the bedroom.)  As I was sitting on the bed waiting for the Mr to do his thang in the bathroom, I could see the spots I just could not live with in the hall.  I had sanded them last week and the Mr painted it and I thought it was passable.  But sitting there looking out and the fact that it looked like this


just made me grab the spackle bucket of doom for the 50th time and attempt to see if I could fill in the valleys a bit and see what we had to work with in the morning.

Sunday morning the Mr headed to the grocery for a small pick up and I sanded the ceiling.  It looks okay but I knew I wouldn't be able to see the full scope of it until it was primed and painted, neither of which I was doing at that moment.  I made brunch and we watched a little boob tube.  (That is how you date yourself...boob tube.)  Oh and I have a recommendation for spicy food peeps.  The limited edition Los Calientes Pringles are


Highly recommended and I'd stock up because who knows how long their idea of limited edition is.  I'm sure I'll want some around Christmas and will be sad they aren't available.

Our trim arrived via FedEx and I'm surprised they didn't just javelin it across the street given how sh*tty they like to deliver packages.  Usually it's a toss from a good 3' away and if it hits the porch, it hits, if not...meh.


What trim, you ask?  

The transitions and stair nose for the hardwood.


We weren't super productive.  I got the ceiling primed so I can paint it today.  We did a HIIT 20 workout and then a kettlebell strength.  I made a skillet chicken pot pie because I'm ready for Fall, right this very minute.  The Mr painted a spot on the outside of the bathroom wall that needed it then it was time for Chateau DIY and cocoa.  

I wish I could say I got more done but I didn't so...


What did y'all do this weekend?

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