Could I be posting twice in one day, that seems unlikely

Never the less, here I am. The original point of this post was to share a few links with you, but then I wrote everything and added pictures. So even though I'm typing them last, these links appear first.
The new six word motto for the US and my favorite runner up. I didn't vote, but I bet you can guess how I would have voted. I can guess how Amanda would have voted too.
Thank god this doesn't sound like my experience with the bank. See my comments below for what I did with the bank today.
So many bad companies the damn survey can't handle it. Oh the irony. There's so much material here, I just can't put any of it together to make a joke. It's an embarrassment of riches in the humor and irony departments. Apparently there's a strong Anit-Best Buy and Anti-Comcast movement.
I want this for a job. I bet I could do the "Rain Man" thing too. Careful, this one is totally safe for work but you may laugh out loud at times.

Today I went and bought a house. No, seriously. I just did my budget and it's about what I expected in terms of payments. And I can afford it. I may have to lay off the Carribou in the mornings. Then I went to work. Work was, well, to be honest, kind of slow. A couple of my people aren't doing well but there's not a whole lot I can do to help them. Other than that, the end of the month is sometimes slower than the beginning of the month. So I'm already arranging things for next month to keep myself busy. One of the things I did to keep myself busy was make an appointment with an eye doc for new contacts and the dentist because it's been a while. I need a cleaning. I had some excitement with the dentist. It's not clear whether my dental coverage is continuing in March. Although it should.

After work I drove home in the slush. Rush hour actually wasn't sooo bad. It wasn't great. I've definitely been in much worse though. And then I went out with my mentee. That was fun. I hadn't seen her in a couple of weeks. I went out with her once when I was so sick I thought I was going to die, and then one other time and then we weren't able to connect for like three weeks. We went to the YWCA and ran around and had fun. She's not so into the running. Maybe after we run a race she'll want to do it more. Maybe after we run a race she'll never want to run again. After that is when the slush on the roads got really out of control.

For fun, I went to my co-op where I'm sure I hadn't been in like a month. I miss it so much. I had a milk shake for dinner. Yum. I think I got all my servings of fruit for the whole day. And did I mention, YUM.

Last night when I got home there was tile but no grout. And did I mention the stove wasn't connected. It'll get connected next week. So I was bummed that I couldn't cook. But I was sick of having everything in my bedroom. So I put it all back in the cabinets. I'm not sure I've got everything exactly where I want it. And I need a new holder for my silverware. Amanda and Kelly will be pleased that I'm asking for help because they both think the one I currently have is tragic. I agree.

Here's the no-grout-tile.

I'm happy with my silverware and utensil placement. I'm happy with my tupperware and pots and pans placement because really, where else would those things go? I'm not sure about the dishes. I had an issue where I couldn't get one of the shelves out to move it around. So I have three shelves right now instead of four. That could be different and I'd be ok with it. Seriously, I don't understand how the thing is anchored in there.

I went to Ikea for shelf paper (which sucks by the way) and a couple of other things. I keep forgetting how great Ikea is for some random things. Kitchen scissors (which are usually ridiculously expensive), scrub brushes, little stuff like that. Ikea's not the first place I think of. It should be. 5:00 on a weeknight is the time to go too. Don't worry Amanda and Kelly, I still need more stuff. Nothing is getting done in the kitchen until next Tuesday. The lighting, six more knobs and some trim still needs completed. That's really about it.

Here's the post-grout shot. It's hard to tell in the photo but it really makes a big difference.

This one seemed relevant

Finally a Wednesday Mind Hump I can relate to.

This or That?

Ice in your drink, or no ice?
If there is a straw, ice is good. Otherwise, even in drinks that ice would typically accompany, no ice. Ever.

Shoes or barefoot? Barefoot! Seriously, all of the Kentucky genes just sunk right down to the bottom and my feet hate enclosure of any kind now. I'd go barefoot all year but for the fear of losing my toes.

Newspapers or online news? Online news for sure. Some of my favorites (most of them have probably appeared here before) are:
Freakonomics which always has a unique point of view, Time for the high brow news stories, and Digg for the (often) lower-brow news stories.

Zoos or amusement parks? Zoos. I hate roller coasters, typically the best part of amusement parks. The only thing that could get me on a roller coaster is a really hot guy who's going to put his arm around me the whole way. Then I'll do just about anything, also long as it stays within 50 feet of the ground.

Baseball or football? Baseball. I'm a Cincinnati Reds and Minnesota Twins fan. At least I was until they traded Johan Santana. We'll see how I feel about the Twins now.

Movies or TV? Lately I haven't done much of either. Movies if I can go out with people. TV if I'm alone.


Here comes the kitchen

I've had a request for, well first to update my blog at all (sorry) and then for some pictures.

The kitchen remodel has been exciting. It's wrapping up too which makes it more exciting and a little scary. Like a rock rolling down the mountain, it's fun to watch, but a little terrifying if it gets out of control. Tomorrow is the electrician, the plumber and the tiler. I think the only thing going on Thursday is the grout for the tiles. And maybe a little wood work.

I'm planning on doing some preview shopping so that this weekend I can go out and get exactly what I want. I need to compare Target to Bed, Bath and Beyond. Who has what at what quality and what price kind of thing. And I need a trip to Ikea. I know. I always need a trip to Ikea. Who doesn't really?

So, here's the kitchen.
This first shot is pre-hardware and pre-counter top. It's actually pre-floor too, but that's not the point of this shot.

Here's with some hardware and all counter top.


And the money shot. That's for Amanda.

Stories from the kitchen remodel

The biggest lesson I've learned from the kitchen remodel is letting go. Letting go of expectations, privacy, cleanliness, time lines, deadlines. I am letting go. Here's some stories about my letting go.

The counter top, part 1: My contractor called me and set up a time to come out with the counter top measurer. I was going to have to come in late, but it was a time that worked for everyone. So, 9:00am rolls around and my contractor calls me letting me know there were going to be another 45 minutes late. At which point I said, "Do I need to be there for this?" And he thought about it and decided he could do it on his own. I went to work.

The counter top, part 2: After the counter top was measured, they ordered it and planned an install date. On the morning of the install, I left the condo and went out to my car. When I got to the main door of the building, I thought "what's that big black thing in front of the door?" and I got closer and I thought, "oh, that's my counter". Just sitting there. Outside. And then I thought, "Ok. I'm going to work." I didn't ask any questions and it got installed ifne. I'm so glad I didn't worry about it.

The floor, chapter 1: Did I mention the floor had to sit in my house for a week? You should have seen the look on my face when they told me that.
The floor, revisited: This morning, the guy came to install the floor. He was pretty high strung. (Not like on drugs, just had a lot of energy.) So he had to figure out if he could glue the floor straight down on the linoleum. Which he can. So I said, "do you need me here?" And when he said no, I went to work. (This is a different person that's not through my other contractor.) When I got to work, I told people my story about the flooring going in. And they all said, "and you just left him there?" Everyone thought this was strange. I had no problem with it and thought it was the best thing I could have done.
And then he called me and said, "I have to run out and get straps to hold the floor together while the glue dries" (and I can hear him turning on his truck while he's calling me) and proceeds to tell me his plan for how he's going to get back into my condo without keys. Did I have a choice at this point?

The hardware: This wasn't a letting go so much as admitting I was wrong (thanks Amanda). Amanda and I went to Menard's and Target and picked out a bunch of different hardware. I really thought I'd want handles instead of knobs. (Who's thinking of a "your Mom" joke right now?) But there was this one knob Amanda really liked so I bought it. My hesitation had to do with the price and the fact that I wanted handles, but I didn't want to have hurt feelings. Want to know what my contractor did today? That's right, he installed those very knobs on like half the cabinets in my kitchen. And they look great.

Cleaning house

I have missed my blog. However, I've kept it in mind and have collected lovely pages I'd like to share. Let's do that before I update you on my life.

Prozac effectiveness rates are truly depressing. Sorry. It doesn't work for as many people as it should to be clinically significant.

Left handers truly do rule the world. I'm just saying.

Didn't even read the story, just looked at the picture. Hilarious. Totally safe for work.

Caution: When buying a house, know who your neighbors are.

Ten churches I'm likely to attend. Hee hee.

Best subject line ever.

I've heard that at Baptisms, you're supposed to get little babies a kind of religious gift. The next kid to get baptized is getting one of these.

Business I'm likely to patronize.

Pictures that changed the world. This one is too serious to make a joke with the link. Wow.

I told Kelly about this story where the church leader told all their married members to have sex every day for a month. That's a church I might actually attend.

They're making a Smurf Movie!? Cool.

Bats in the news. They could fly before they had radar. Cool.


I have customized firefox too much for it to be useful... woops

I've spent much of the night trying to figure out which extension broke Firefox now. Given my success in reporting a Firefox bug before, I thought I'd try it again. Let me know if anyone else is having this problem while I'm here: I try to re-open a tab that I've just closed. No success. It's one of the extensions I have installed. I'm not sure which one. It's one I recently installed I think, but I'm not sure.

So I started poking around in Firefox, created a new profile without all of the extensions installed, and I was able to find a completely unrelated bug so I reported that one. I haven't found the source of this problem. The next step is to create a new profile without all of the extensions and install them one at a time to see what's going on.

In other news, I bought no food at all from restaurants today including coffee. Wow.

And here's all the fun things I found on the internet before this not being able to re-open tabs I accidentally closed really got to bothering me.
I can relate to this comic on so many levels.
No blog should ever have this name. Even though it does sound like a name that's come out of my mouth on more than one occasion.


Too many tabs open

Usually, when I see a story I want to share, I mark it as a permanent tab (see the permatabs extension for Firefox) so that I can save tabs across sessions. I've got far too many tabs open right now which means I haven't posted in forever. Woops.

My next vacation spot? I wonder where that really is.
All the ways health insurance tries to screw you Some little known facts about your insurance.
Knitting projects for Kelly and Amanda. I'm sure a baby you know would like a Mario Pillow or a PacMan hat.
Read about the worlds six smallest countries. Hilarity ensues.

Now I want to say a word about the political events in this country. Many people have asked me who I voted for or came to discoveries of their own that will impact their political choices in November. I was poking around and found this forty-minute video (which is safe for work if you can watch a video of any kind at your job). It's a speech Sen. Obama made in 2006 at a Church (I believe in Chicago). It's a very interesting speech about the role of faith, spirituality, religion in people's lives, and the best way to incorporate those values into politics. It's quite an eloquent statement. If you don't have 40 minutes to spare, there's excerpts and comments over on the Digg page. Ignore the title of this Digg page, that's not what the video is about.

I was really moved by this video, and I agreed with most of what Sen. Obama had to say, particularly about the level of respect that needs to be brought to the table when discussing these issues. I also like the part in the beginning where he talks about his faith and why it's important to him.


Oh oh oh

Let me just say ahead of time, I'm not emotionally prepared to discuss how things are going with the kitchen, specifically the timeline of the work actually completing.

One of the things slowing me down is the floor. Here's my choices for bamboo flooring which I've heard is really nice. There are four wood blocks sitting on top of a cabinet panel. I'm choosing the one on the right, it's a light vertical grain. If you want the hi res picture, let me know. Don't ask how long it takes for the floor to arrive and be installed.


I want this day to be over

I am tired and grumpy. I want this day to be over. And I want my condo back in one piece. I'm not going to get the second wish anytime soon. Why not? Remember on Saturday when my contractor came in and I told him that I hadn't talked to the flooring people? Apparently there was a miscommunication there. The floor needs to be installed before the stove can be installed. The stove and the countertop need to go in at approximately the same time and the counter needs to be down before they can tile. Seriously. My kitchen is now a jigsaw puzzle.

Here's my day:
8:00ish Wake up. I am surprisingly well rested. That's good. Make a call before leaving Amanda's house to verify that I can start the morning with a visit to someone I need to see.
8:45 Try to do visit. In defence of the people I called, he was there. He just wasn't feeling well and was asleep. Woops. I didn't wake him up.
9:00 Get to work and the chaos begins.
11:20 Determine that I don't want to drive in the snow and call the client I was meant to be seeing in ten minutes to make alternate arrangements. Now I get to start calling home care agencies and tell them a client wants to move to a different agency. Normally this is less than pleasant but at least the phone calls are short. Three phone calls later, from the same person, I was just done talking to them. Nothing really got resolved from their end. I felt really bad because I know there's a whole culture thing happening that makes the business owners want me to know they do a good job. But after three phone calls I just lost patience. That all ended sometime around 2:00.
3:45 Make a beeline for the door. I have to go meet a tile guy.
4:10 The snow did not screw up traffic as bad as I feared. I got home, talked to my contractor and then called my parents.
4:30 Tile guy shows up. The ultimate recommendation (I am in agreement) is limestone tile. I think it's very much my personality. The other recommendation was "subway" tile which is the 3x6 rectangles that are slightly offset from each other. Ha. You think I can handle a rectangle? I need four sides of equal length. Tile guy also highly recommended the bamboo floor I picked out. Good thing too because it's going to take forever for it to get installed. I think it takes like a week or two for them to order it. I wonder how quickly they can get over to my house. And how much work I'm going to have to miss this time.
6:00 Here I am at Chipotle again. I miss being able to cook.
6:30 Get to Amanda's house and am strongly encouraged to check for any outstanding snow emergencies. The internet is slow but I find none. Then I decide to find out where my caucus is, in case I want to vote tomorrow. The website declines to provide that or any other useful information. So I called my parents again.

I have negotiated with my contractor to have a relatively empty living room and bedroom in the near future as well as a microwave and refrigeration. Exciting. Although I still miss my stove top. I wonder if I can plug in my toaster oven somewhere. Hmmm. And the blender. Maybe I could let Amanda test my blender while I'm without a kitchen. Then she would understand the value...

I have mixed emotions about moving home. I want to go back for all the obvious reasons. But I've really enjoyed having someone to talk with at the end of the night and the shorter commute to work (but mostly the having someone else to hand out with at the end of the night). Plus my apartment is still a construction zone and mildly depressing.

I'm tired and cranky. And of all the things on my to-do list for the next little while, I'd like you to know that "shower" is not one of them. Don't worry. Probably tomorrow night.


Pictures from Oz

I thought that those of you who aren't living with me (Kelly, that's basically you) would like some pictures of the chaos that is the kitchen remodel and bedroom insulation project.
That's right. Three buildings full of people had their water shut off for me. It turns out my old shut off valves didn't quite turn the water off as much as we'd like. They did make it go down to a dull trickle. So they shut off the water to the whole building to install new shutoffs. Wow. My neighbors have a good sense of humor.

Here's basically what my living room looks like. If you look closely you can identify the refrigerator. There's a stove and a wet saw too. Now you see why I can't get to my DVDs, or my tax forms. I guess those will just have to wait.

Here's the shot Amanda wanted. That's what the new cabinets look like, and how tall they are. I thought they'd be maybe a little darker and less blonde, more grey. Oh well. I'm happy they're here. I think I can't really judge until I see the whole thing with the black appliances.

Oh plastic, how I love you.

Here's some shots of the destruction that is my kitchen. Where are things right now? Well all the cabinets are hung, actually most of the cabinets are installed except the island. None of the doors are on the cabinets except the ones over the island and over the fridge. They have to cut the back out of one cabinet to do duct work, apparently my duct goes off at an odd angle and tin bending is required. I have to meet the tiler and choose my backsplash. Once that's on, the counter will be laid and the stove and dishwasher can then be installed. Party. I'm wondering if Ed will save the island for last because it will take up the most room. Hmmm. Can't push a stove in if the island is in the way. That makes sense.

And a closeup of the cabinet inlay. It's a bit different and a bit simpler on the drawers.

It's possible that I'm awake enough to write

It's possible I'm awake enough to write, although I'm doubting it.

Amanda and I went to Longfellow Grill this morning for yummy pancakes. Then I came home and did laundry. I'm overwhelmed by the mess here right now. It's so bad I can't even hang up my laundry, it's folded on my bed. Although that could have to do with how tired I am and how really little I've had to eat today. Chipotle anyone? At least they're folded up. It's a small stack really.

Then I thought about watching a free movie on Netflix. That's when I realized the movies that are instantly on basically suck. Why is that? I couldn't really find anything I wanted to watch. I dorked around and listened to some music. I contemplated getting my DVDs. It's one of those "I think I could get back there" situations that I just don't have the energy for right now. Seriously, can I go back and sleep more?

What led to me being so tired?
Friday: Lizzie is sicker than a dog. Woke up late. Went to work late. Left early. Slept. Went to job number two. Ordinarily, I would have called in sick to this job. But I couldn't this time due to a very specific set of circumstances. After sleeping at Amanda's on my air mattress, I felt mildly better.

Saturday: Wake up at work. Have to go find donuts. Thanks Grandma's Bakery. Your customer service sucks. Had a good morning with the overnight group. Went back to my house and showered. I took the plastic off of my bed and crawled in. It was then that my contractor showed up. Thank god I was dressed. He worked while I slept and he didn't really bother me. I was still having symptoms of my illness. I went out to lunch and then to meet the girl I'm paired with from Bolder Options.

I picked her up and we went to the Aquarium. See now why I couldn't call in sick? She decided that I was too quiet, needed to do something different with my hair and needed to dress in different clothes. (I can see Amanda and Kelly grinning now, especially about the clothes.) I was sick and pretty quiet. The thing about me is that if I'm quiet around you it means I'm not nervous. It's when I try to make mindless conversation with people I don't know that things are going south. I had a really nice time. She seems like a really thoughtful person, both in the considerate connotation, and meaning she seems interested in things and people around her. I think that's great.

After I dropped her off I went home, picked up my stuff, experienced more symptoms of my illness and went to look at drawer pulls. I had a bad customer service experience at one place so I went to pick up Amanda and go to Menards. I don't need that many drawer pulls after all. We picked out a few different things that I intended to try out. Then we went home and she studied. I basically had a bowl of soup and fell asleep.

Sunday: Hey, that's today. I tried out the pulls. I hate them all. The knob is the only one I like. Thanks Amanda. I'd try to take a picture but I can't find my camera. It must still be at Amanda's house. It's ok, I'm going back there soon anyways. I guess this means I get to look at a bunch more knobs now to pick one out. I've decided I like the distressed metal look. As a rule I don't like matte metal, and glossy metal will just look dirty. It's funny, I thought I'd really want pulls. Oh well. Maybe I will get the drawer pull Amanda liked. The ones I picked look stupid.

Right now I'm seriously considering Chipotle for dinner. It's either that or more soup. Although that soup's really good. Hmmm. Maybe I'll just go back and see what Amanda is eating. The good thing is my breakfast and lunch are planned for the next few days. Score. I've stashed a bunch of homemade goodies in the freezer at work. I considered going down there for some breakfast food today before Amanda proved she was serious about breakfast.

When I get back to Amanda's we have to fix her couch. This should be hilarious. I think when we drug it up the stairs to her current apartment, the frame got separated from something that should still be attached (like the bed). Although I don't think that's what made the bed so uncomfortable unexpected. We'll see how this goes. Amanda has three screws, my drill and a plan.

In the mean time, here's some proof that Kelly was right and we never should have given her a hard time. Sorry.