Friday, August 29, 2008

Non-Stop Action

I've been so busy this week with work that all I've wanted to do when I get back to the hotel is watch a little tv, surf the internet, and sleep. We leave at 3:30am, drive an hour and a half to Milkwaukee, fly to Phoenix, and then finally home at noon. I have a DMV appointment at 2:00, and then we hit the road for Tahoe. Phew, I'm going to be so exhausted by Monday.

I promise I will post some more when I get back from Tahoe - John Mayer concert, before and after condo shots, and labor day weekend fun. Have a wonderful three-day weekend!! Summer is almost over, boo hoo!

Thanks for voting in my latest poll, by the way. All THREE of you. Come on people, participate! Looks like we are going to the Beatles Tribute concert and then probably roaming around the casinos. Sunday, we might visit some beaches. Who suggested we go to the KISS concert anyway? Huh? Fess up! :)

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Thirty FIVE

Today is my true love's 35th birthday. (Yeah, I know what you're thinking!) Anyway, I got him a card before I left for him to open when he woke up today since I wouldn't be there. The point of the card was to lead him on a scavenger hunt to find his present. It was the only way I could think of to surprise him with solo birthday fun.

The card instructed him to go to the spare pillows in the linen closet to find his next clue. I used sticky name-tags (the ones that say HELLO!) to write the clues that would eventually lead to the prize. The linen closet clue read, "hi sweetie! Sorry there's nothing here, but go to the highest cupboard in the kitchen"...which led to, "dear Billy, you're almost there, but first you have to go to the pantry and find Rachael Ray." In the pantry he had to find the bottle of Rachael Ray's EVOO, and on the back of it was the next hint, "Oops! Nothing here either! You better go do some laundry instead". The next sticker was attached to the bottom of the laundry basket and it said, "You're getting warmer...but you might want to go look at my clean, pretty dresses and think of me". In my closet, he pushed aside my dresses to reveal the last clue stuck to the back of the closet wall with an arrow telling him to look to the left. On the floor in the back of the closet was a little succulent plant with a miniature "HAPPY BIRTHDAY CHAMP!!" balloon.

He texted me after he found his present and said "GOT IT!! THAT WAS FUN!" Whoo, I am so happy he was able to follow my clues, and better yet, that he didn't find them Monday-Wednesday!

Anyway, even though he doesn't read my blog, I'd like to say, Steve, I hope your day was even a little bit special. I know you spent the entire day in bed listening to the scrapes and bangs of the roofers, and dreading your first step towards that downward spiral staircase headed towards your forties. But, forget all that. I love you, even if you're old...because you have the face of a 20-something, a body built for nude still-life drawings, and a very young spirit. Pretty soon the painting, roofing, repairing, cleaning, unpacking, organizing, and settling will all be over and we will actually sleep, live, and breathe in peace. You are the most wonderful man in the world, and I am absolutely certain that you are going to be even more amazing at age 35 than you were at even 25. And most of all, I am very, very excited to get our cozy condo set up just how we like it and spend every day with you. In your words, it's going to be "hella fucking cool". I love you!

Pop Deluxe!

About to go to the coolest shop ever in downtown Madison. Pop Deluxe!

Have I already told you about this store? I feel like I have, but that's because it's the greatest store ever.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Quick Update

We finished painting the living room/dining room finally! I've started washing all the dishes and loading up the cupboards. Tomorrow we finish bringing the furniture in and unpacking boxes. We have one dilemma: What type of bed should be put in the office? There's not really much room for my full bed in there, so I was thinking of a daybed instead. We also have a futon that is semi-comfortable. Should we do the daybed, futon, or squeeze the full bed? My vote is daybed, but then we really don't have a place for the futon. GRR!

Monday morning I am flying to Wisconsin for work. I'll have internet access in my hotel room, so I will be keeping you updated then...maybe posting more condo pictures. I will be there until Friday, then Steve and I are going to Lake Tahoe to visit my dad for Labor Day weekend.

Time to go order a pizza and relax this aching back!

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Fingerpaint GREEN

We finally started painting the living room last night. We picked out a color called "Wreath of Green". On the color swatch, it was a dark forest green. We were going to go even darker with a deep dark pine green, but decided we needed a little bit of brightness to it. Originally, I wanted to do an olive/sage green, but Steve said it reminded him of the army so he quickly vetoed that idea. Anyway, with the first brushstroke onto the white wall, that little bit of brightness turned into a LOT! of horrifying brightness. We called it "Pre-school green" and then as we brushed it along, it resembled "fingerpaint green" - you know, like when the crazy 5 year-old pointer finger is going nuts all over the white paper? That's what we had on our walls. At first, we talked ourselves into how "fun" and "wild" it would be (denial!) Then we sorta panicked and crossed our fingers that we would "get used to it". But, then, the more we painted, the darker it got. The white started to disappear, and our Wreath of Green emerged!!! Thank you, Green Paint Gods!

So, here is a photo of an area with two coats, next to an area with one coat (especially the borders down at the bottom and fireplace). Also note my love letter to Steve - just trying to get in the spirit of pre-school walls. One more coat tonight and that should do it!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

This is what happens when Rachel is Bored...

Rachel Cubbers

Jaime with better eyeballs



Friday, August 15, 2008

Declined!

Last night, I stopped in at the Circle K Mini-Mart near my house for a couple of ice cold bevs. In line in front of me were two women with a little girl (about age 7) trying to buy a pack of cigarettes and a gatorade. They had a $5 bill and a credit card. The total bill came to about $6.50. The woman swiped her card, but to her dismay and confusion, the card was declined. The mini-mart worker asked her to swipe it again. Still declined. The two women looked at each other, shrugged, and said, "well, I guess we'll have to keep the cigarettes and put back the gatorade." One lady snatched the gatorade bottle out of the little girl's hands who looked up at her mom with complete sadness and horror, and pleaded, "why do I have to put it back?!" Well, little girl, it's because your mom is a total white-trash scumbag who doesn't have enough money to feed her meth addiction, and is in desperate need of a cigarette to hold her over while she scours the entire trailer for spare change.

Poor kid.

Faces of Meth - An informative website about Meth addiction and before and after shots of meth addicts when they were arrested, such as the woman below:

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

"Remodel" Update

Yes, we are STILL painting. Still painting the upstairs. What's taking us so long, you ask? Well, a few minor things:
  1. Both S and I are perfectionists. Each line has to be perfect, there can't be any missed spots larger than a pin head, no smudges allowed on the baseboards, and definitely touch-ups during the daylight since we only paint at night.
  2. These rooms are pretty big, so taping every inch of baseboard, ceiling, and window is a chore in and of itself.
  3. Not only are we painting, but we are cleaning up years of filth. Wiping every baseboard, door, doorframe, closet shelf, light fixture (there's bugs in them!!), window sills, blinds (I don't think they've EVER been dusted), etc.
See example of the filth passed down to us:
It's been a week and a half since we first unloaded the Uhaul and Sunday night was the first night we slept in a real bed. Last night we painted both bathrooms, tonight we're prepping the upstairs hallway, touching up the bathrooms, and cleaning the kitchen floor. (We've been having to put on shoes just to walk to the fridge). Later this week we'll start on the entryway, and the living room as soon as we can decide on what shade of green to buy.

This whole ordeal has really been trying on our relationship, but every night we still look at each other and laugh at all the crap The Universe has put us through in the past month. There's nothing that can tear us apart. The ONLY things we've been fighting about have been related to cleaning, painting, and moving stuff in. The only time I cried was last night when I smacked my face right into the shower door that was propped up against the wall. Fun times!!

The good news is that I found my camera! I'll be posting before and after shots [hopefully] within the next two weeks. I'm also going to post some of the nastier photos we took for our move-in check list that we submitted to the property management. They're in for a treat with those.

The other good news is that we're going to replace our old-fashioned electronic equipment with more modern technology. We're going to buy a stereo system with tiny speakers that controls the tv volume, the ipod, and plays DVD's, CD's, MP3s, and FM/AM radio. We're also going to buy a brand new flat screen LCD tv!! We've been shopping around looking for good deals and reading lots of reviews, but if you have any suggestions or advice, please comment!

P.S. We've begun to realize how hard it is to have a normal day without some of the luxuries that are still packed away in boxes. For example, we haven't had internet or cable for two weeks - we're like the Amish! I haven't prepared a homecooked meal for a month or been to the gym so we're getting real FLABBY. But worst of all - I've been using BAR SOAP to wash my face!!!!!!!!!!!!! UGH! Oh, and I haven't shaven my legs in weeks! I am so unbelievably sexy right now. :)

Friday, August 08, 2008

Should Marigolds Blossom in the Bedroom?

Here is a snapshot of our latest creation. Last night we finished this bedroom off with a bright yellow wall. In theory it sounded like a good idea. Dark grey and dark yellow go great together. In fact, it really does look pretty awesome. But here's my concern...this is going to be our bedroom. Do we really want an insanely bright wall? Or would we be better off with all grey, so that the bedroom is dark, cozy, and mellow? I'm thinking the latter, but that means we have to paint over the Marigold Blossom which means yet another night of work, and another day further away from moving furniture in.

What do you think? Should we keep the Marigold or paint over it with more grey??

Thursday, August 07, 2008

Painting does weird things to your brain

After crawling into bed at midnight...


Me: "Did you ever eat that burrito?"

Steve: "I don't know what you're talking about."

Me: "Dinner. What did you have for dinner?"

Steve: "That frozen burrito"

Me: "Right. So remember you heated it up and then left it to cool?"

Steve: "Oh yeah, I devoured that thing so fast"

Me: "Oh okay, because I never even saw you go back and eat it."

Steve: "Hmm...actually, maybe I didn't eat it. I don't remember now."

Me: "It's probably still sitting on the counter"

Steve: "Yeah, whatever. I'm over it. Goodnight"

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

My Best Friend is a GENIUS!

My best friend Heather just launched her Hippie Sack business. With her own two hands, she created all kinds of neat handbags and beach bags that are colorful, lovely, and very functional!! With scraps of fabric she found from all over Hawaii, she has managed to put together the most beautiful collection of bags. Go take a look at her website, HippieSacksHawaii. If you want to order one, email her at heather@hippiesackshawaii.com

Heather, you're so talented!! I can't wait until I get my very own hippie sack in the mail! :)

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

And Then We Dreamt of Paint

I wish I could say that we're all moved in to our condo, having fun decorating and arranging all of our furniture, and back to cooking gourmet meals, but unfortunately the only three pieces of property inside the place are two bikes and a futon.

Last Friday at noon, we arrived to find the carpet installers busy at work, just getting started on re-carpeting the condo. As awesome as it was to be getting new carpet, we were a bit annoyed that this meant a delay unloading the Uhaul. Time was of the essence because the Uhaul renter called saying he needed the truck back by 5pm.

We gave the carpet company another hour before we asked if we could park our moving truck where there's was in front of the garage and start unloading. By this point, I was pumped to start getting our stuff out of the cramped truck and into the ever-so-tiny garage...I just wanted to make SOME progress.

By 3:00, Steve and I managed to get EVERYTHING out of the Uhaul. Even the washer and dryer and the 40,000 pound tv. Must be all that spinach I've been eating because I really didn't think I would be able to be of ANY help, let alone help carry our monstrous furniture. You should have seen the look on Steve's face as I lifted my end of the dense leather couch with such ease and grace. He kept telling me how proud and amazed he was. Go me!!!!!

With the first hurdle behind us, we returned the Uhaul, chugged ice cold bevs, and returned to the condo to inspect what was to be our new home. To our dismay, the place was absolutely disgustingly dirty. The previous tenants didn't bother with cleaning...not even the toilets. I thought my toilet was dirty but these were nauseating. I imagined what their moms would think, or even what my mom would say. Before I had the studio cleaned my mom made me clean my toilet, saying it would be embarrasing to have such a dirty toilet for the cleaning lady. How can someone have the audacity to leave such filth in their wake?

Long story short, we called the property manager and demanded cleaning asap. He sent over two craggy college guys (Steve swears one of them was a 40 year old meth addict), but they looked young and harmless to me. They cleaned for about an hour and said they'd come back in the morning to finish. They never came back.

So, here we are: Saturday afternoon, half clean condo, new carpet bits scattered everywhere, boogers on the walls, an annoying alarm sensor that beeps everytime you take a step, and nothing to eat. The property managment is closed for the weekend and we still don't want to move stuff in until it's properly cleaned. ROAR!!!

Steve got a hold of the property manager on Monday and he said he would have the cleaners call to arrange a time to come back (Yeah right!) but he did say we could paint and they would pay for it!!! Let me tell you - we're going all out on this one!!

We decided to paint our bedroom dark grey - and have done so, leaving one white wall. We may or may not paint that white wall yellow, but the grey looks awesome! The guest room/office is going to be brown, the living room olive green, and the bathrooms taupe. We painted last night from 7:00-11:30 and fell to the floor exhausted, but we're doing it all over tonight, and tomorrow night, and probably for the next week! Phew, what did we get ourselves into?!

We are so excited to make this place our own. Steve said we're going to be here for a few years, so we might as well make it comfortable and fun. I can't wait for you all to come visit and see what we've done. I am going to try to take before and after photos if I can find my camera before we get too far along. Look for a future post about that...
Love and miss you all!!

Friday, August 01, 2008

Mother is Always Right

When I told my mom we were staying one night at Motel 6 before the move, she gasped in horror! We tried booking a night at Apple Farm but it was $179! Motel 6 for $50! We arrived after work and our non-smoking room smelled like an ashtray, so I asked if we could move. After a bit of hesitation, we were moved and the second room was a bit better, but still pretty nasty. The tv was from the 70's, greasy remote and all, but luckily the picture wasn't as fuzzy as the one in our first room. I ordered wireless internet for $3.99 and I spent an hour trying to connect and it never worked. The ONLY thing that saved my sanity was So You Think You Can Dance.
I am never going to stay at Motel 6 again! YUCK! Let's hope we get things moved in today so that I have a real bed to sleep in tonight. Moving-in starts in 47 minutes!! Wish me luck!
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