Friday, June 27, 2008

Yes, I’m still among the living

Quick update:
All the popcorn has been successfully removed from our new home’s ceilings.
I survived clambering around on the 8+ foot scaffolding scraping those walls.
However, my husband forgot the basic laws of physics while we were in the final stages of tear down, and he is currently at the doctor’s getting a tetanus shot.
This afternoon I am gladly ordering a ceiling fan that on any other day (and for any other house) I would have described as homely at best, and downright ugly at worst, yet I’m extremely pleased because it fits this house better than any I have seen or could dream up. (As for what that means for the house, you can read into it what you will.)
Saturday might be able to sneak some time to attend my knit group.
And Tuesday our home will be descended on by two crews of contractors and a total of 5-15 sweaty men. I can hardly wait!

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Coming to you from the new homestead

I haven’t been ignoring you on purpose. Really! It’s just been crazy busy, and with both my laptop out of commission and no internet at home due to AT&T’s amnesia that we ever had internet, finding the right moment when head space, connectability and time allowed to blog has proved to be nearly impossible.

Arrived home Saturday. On Monday I put Michael back on a plane for South Carolina, then spent the rest of the week working on the new house scraping a bazillion square feet of popcorn off of every ceiling (including one closet).

I also:
had two garage door operators installed
had internet installed
had 4x8 sheets of cardboard delivered to protect the wood floor from the
scaffolding which I also had delivered
supervised the numerous HVAC issues that if not fixed would have ensured our demise come heating season
and supervised two electricians doing other health and safety jobs
plus after one long day of working at the house scraping ceilings rushed home, took a quick shower, then picked up the parental units + one sibling for a go-see of the new home and dinner out at a Thai restaurant - which considering my father grew up on fried bologna sandwiches - was a new experience for all. Fortunately it turned out to be a good experience.

Until later.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

My New Favorite Phrase

Yesterday was the last full day of my trip.

I find I get excited on that final day. It’s still a day of work, but I know that in the morning I’ll be packing to return home. Tomorrow night I’ll be sleeping in my own bed.

Candy, one of my fellow travelers, put it very well. “You can smell the barn.”

Exactly. I couldn’t put it any better myself.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

One More Short “Hi”

I am nearing the finish line of my Michigan trip. Pics and brief outlines will follow (hopefully) in a few days. In the meantime, I have two things to share.

First, I received the diagnoses on my poor laptop. Both the mother board and the hard drive have failed simultaneously - 25 days after the warranty expired. OUCH!! I will get the computer back in about 4 weeks.

Second, I have come to the conclusion that when one begins to dream of elephantine-like creatures it is a sign of complete and utter exhaustion, and one should really take a couple of breaks including mid-day naps in order to de-elephantize one’s dreams.

Saturday, June 07, 2008

TSA Security Antics

It’s been at least a year (and maybe two?) since the TSA adopted their highly restrictive no liquids or gels policy. So I am continually amazed at the number of people who get pulled aside because they either don’t know the regulations, or think they will get away with it. Like today, for example. One young gentleman attempted to carry on a bottle of Crown Royal. The TSA agent managed to work through a language barrier to explain to him that he needed to put it in his checked bag, which he seemed to have. A second young woman tried to carry on a bottle of wine. When she was pulled aside, she burst out into tears and threw a conniption fit. That didn’t work. Her bottle was thrown out.

This afternoon after landing we spent a few hours at The Henry Ford. I love that museum. It was a productive few hours - and I bought a cool clock for the new home. I hope to sneak over to Busy Hands before they close this evening. Tomorrow we’ll be busy with interviews until mid-afternoon, then it’s time for more naps. We’ll return the rental car and meet up with the main group Monday morning. Somehow the expression “burning the candle at both ends” doesn’t quite do justice to the stress of the last month. I’ve packed along printouts of my weekly calendars for the next two months so I can continue to schedule contractor work while we are here. There’s no moving in until X gets done by the contractors, but the contractors can’t start on X until we’ve accomplished Y. But then once the contractors finish X, we can do Z which would be nice to do before we move in but is not as essential as X.

Expected calls this week include scheduling the garage door installation, scheduling internet, and learning the prognosis of my laptop. I also have to contact the contractor to have him source louvered interior doors which we need to install in a non-conforming bedroom to bring our red-tagged furnace up to code because it’s either that or we’ll need to get a standard door and install such large air returns at the top and bottom that the entire door might as well be one big vent. And the HVAC work is slated for the first Tuesday I’m back in town, so I need to know what we’ll be doing beforehand.

Whew!

(Oh, and in case you are wondering, I’m blogging off of the “Old Man’s” laptop while he is taking the first in a series of much needed naps.)

Friday, June 06, 2008

Descending Ever Deeper into Silent Mode

I knew that when we terminated our home internet service that blogging would happen less frequently. Which it has.

What I had not foreseen is that my laptop would bite the big one. He’s in the hospital now. No verdict yet on his prognosis. Having no laptop means that I won’t be blogging in Michigan.

So let me at least update you on a few things.

We closed on Monday, and so far I have found 2 half-buried golf balls in our front yard. Considering the angle of our house from the green, I can only conclude there are some pretty bad golfers out there.

And I have gone on a Home Depot vacation.

One of the home’s existing garage door openers doesn’t work at all. The other works, but a) we have no clicker for it and b) it is so old it has no auto reverse. In other words - dangerous. I knew about this weeks ago, and attempted to purchase the new openers then so they could be installed the week after we closed. “Dude” wouldn’t sell to us because the home didn’t belong to us. It didn’t belong to us YET, but it would belong to us when it would be installed. Didn’t matter.

Within an hour of closing we went back to the store and ordered it again. I stressed that it was a “health and safety” issue, and asked over and over when we would be contacted to arrange an installation time. He had a hands-off approach. He just placed the order and the system took it from there. He couldn’t give me exact times but he said it was usually very quick and they’ve never had any complaints.

As we discovered, the reality is that the order isn’t actually placed until midnight of the day the order is taken. Then it disappears into the system for 48 hours before it is then disseminated to any of a myriad of mysterious installers whose exact identities are apparently unknown to the people at the store selling their services. When Wednesday afternoon rolled around and I still hadn’t received a call to even set an appointment (keep in mind that I’m also trying to get electrical work done that can’t be done while the garage opener installers are there), I made several calls back to the store and asked what the hold up was. The replies I received were completely unacceptable. So I “returned” the openers and bought new elsewhere where the staff was much more attentive and knew the first name and cell phone number of the person who will be installing them. As I said to the customer service staff, if I had known that I wouldn’t even get a call to set up the appointment until the end of the week, I would have ordered it somewhere else.

It’d be handy to make some HD runs as we work on the home, but frankly their laissez-fair attitude stinks, and the stink has spread to everything in the store.

Here’s what closing day looked like:


And this is my first meal in the new abode:


Managed to finish, I think, the 2nd sleeve on the V-neck cardi this morning. Go, me! I say I “think” I finished it because I haven’t had a chance to compare it to the 1st.