Friday, June 22, 2007

Not sure what I was thinking in the first place

Yesterday I trekked to IKEA Montreal to buy a laundry hamper and some clothes hangers. They did not have the hamper that I wanted, and I was sad. But, when I checked online it said that IKEA Boucherville had them in stock. Boucherville is completely out of the way for me, but I really wanted these hampers and REALLY didn't want to go to IKEA on Saturday. So, I decided to make a fun South Shore shopping trip out of it. After going to Boucherville, (where I got my hampers - woohoo) I decided to "stop" at Promenades St. Bruno. These could nearly be construed as "on my way home" if they weren't so not actually on my way home at all. But whatever, there is a Gap and a Banana Republic, a Starbucks and a Jugo Juice.

As I pulled into the parking lot, my gas light came on. I actually noticed it, which is a big bonus since I rarely see it and it doesn't have a bell indicator. I did my little shopping trip (bought a new pair of summer pants and a tank top), and got back in the car to leave. I figured I would drive through the parking lot away from the highway I drove in on and would probably find a gas station. I completely circled the entire mall, no gas stations in sight. I took the next road out, still no gas stations and it brought me back in a complete circle to where I had started. So, I got on a secondary highway heading back into the city. Surely there would be an exit with a gas station close by.

I took the first exit, into a town that I recognized the name of, drove for like ten minutes, and still no gas station.

FINALLY I found a gas station. I pulled up, went to do the Pay at the Pump, and found that it was not in fact a Pay at the Pump, but one of the old spinning number pumps. That you have to lift the lever to get it to work. Which took me a second to figure out since I haven't seen one of those pumps since 1987. Then I had to wait in line for 10 minutes while everyone in front of me paid for their gas and 8 million lotto tickets.

What is the moral of this story, you may ask?

Stay away from the South Shore. And if you have to go, do not go alone. They want us to run out of gas so they can mug us of our high-tech technologies, like digital watches.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

A girl just needs her MTV

When we moved almost two months ago, we switched from Starchoice satellite to Videotron, our local digital cable company. I was very sad about the switch, because Starchoice had always been very good to us - great service in general with very few interruptions, fantastic customer service when we had questions or problems, and it was just a very good experience in all. But, cable was cheaper for almost all the same channels because we bundled it with phone and internet. When I called to cancel our Starchoice, Eric said it sounded like I was breaking up with someone. And I felt like I was.

Our new cable company has been pretty good so far too - our last experience with cable was terrible, but at that point it wasn't digital groovy cable, it was just regular plain old cable. Programming-wise, we no longer had time-shifting, the Documentary channel, or MTV. Halfway through the first month, I was annoyed that a lot of my shows were conflicting, so I called and signed up for time-shifting for $3 a month. Then all the shows were done, and time-shifting wasn't useful anymore.

But you know what is useful? All the time? Especially on Saturday and Sunday when you are doing laundry and chores and like a little background noise that is actually entertaining?


I SOOOOO missed MTV for the past two months. I especially love the MTV Canada VJs who crack me up, (especially Jessie and Dan). And the Real World. And My Super Sweet Sixteen. And Run's House. And....... Everything!!!

So I finally went online (now that we finally got a bill with our account number on it) and dumped stupid Time-Shifting, and added back MTV. And I also threw in the Documentary Channel so SB would stop whining.

Hopefully this will make Saturday Chores more palatable.

Monday, June 18, 2007

All hail the Queen of Craigslist

I love craigslist. In the past week I've sold two sofas. And now I have offers on a dresser I posted two hours ago. It's pretty fabulous. I think it helps that we have some pretty great stuff to get rid of, and we take pretty good care of it. I haven't even had to negotiate at all, they just take my price and go. I love it. I'm thinking of selling The Woodge.

We have painted our dining room/hall and our living room. All that's left is the kitchen. But I've had enough of the priming and taping and rolling and removing the faceplates, then replacing the faceplates, and the cleaning of the brushes. So I told Eric he is solely responsible for the kitchen. I'm sure at some point I'll break down and do it myself, since he's been so busy lately with work.

Saturday we bought all the flowers and plants for our patio and potted them. I'm not so into plants, but Eric let me buy a bunch of herbs and tomatoes and stuff, and I find those interesting enough. I hate plants with no flowers, so that was another requirement. Once we have finished installing all the pot-hangers I'll take a photo to share.

Completely unrelated, there is a TLC marathon of Little People Big World. I can't look away.

The worst part is that during all the painting and crap, it was beautiful and sunny outside. Then yesterday we took the day off, and although it turned out okay, it started with a deluge.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Taking a moment

I've had a non-stop week. I can accept that - I had things planned, stuff I wanted to get done around the house like vacuuming, painting, bathing, you know, those kinds of things. But we're busy, so I haven't had a chance.

But how does my busy day start today?

A dog peed on my foot.

I had consultation with a new client, and the dog was excited and jumping everywhere, and he peed on my shoed foot. Then he peed on my little clipboard/binder thingy that I love, and I had to throw out half its contents. And all day all I could smell was pee, even after I changed my socks and washed my feet. So gross.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Hurricane Summertime

So, apparently last Thursday was the first day of our busy season. No one called to inform me that Busy Season would be starting a few weeks early. But whatever. Thanks for that.

I really enjoy meeting people who really care about their pets. That's probably the thing I like the most about this time of year - people who want us to visit their cat twice a day even though Fluffy is terrified and hides under the bed the whole time leaving us to do our little chores and then just hang out. I love those people. And not just because they are great customers who believe in using professional sitters instead of asking Great Aunt Joan to come by. Great because they love their pets, and are fun, and they appreciate us. So that's one thing I love about this time of year - cause right now I'm getting calls left and right for new client meetings, and it's actually pretty exciting.

Aside from that, this is a crazy time of year. Full of cancellations, vacations for staff (theoreticaly before the Busy Season - thanks for coming early Busy Season!), last minute additions, last minute key drop-offs/pick-ups, and I'm sure we will end up with some kind of vehicular issue. Last year during this time we were taking over the business (one year today - woohoo!), having a few, hmm, staffing issues, and generally just trying to get our legs beneath us before the whole thing took off without us. After a year, I feel we are chugging along pretty nicely. We've tried all kinds of different promotional stuff to get growing, gotten to know lots of other great service providers, and come up with a pretty fabulous group of ladies for our team. I feel pretty great. I think we are far from finished growing, and I'm so happy doing this job.

So, let this be a lesson - all it takes to be happy in life is:

a)doing something you hate for long enough

b) doing something you think you can live with, but realize you can't

c) losing your mind

d) a stroke of luck finding your dream job

e) another stroke of luck to be able to take over the company of that dream job and be your own boss.

That's it. Easy recipe, huh?

Monday, June 11, 2007

Sweaty and disappointed

That pretty much sums up my Sunday.

SB and I spent the WHOLE DAY painting - and we have only finished the hall and dining room. I hate masking tape. And I hate cleaning paint brushes. And I hate teetering on a kitchen chair trying to reach that one little spot with a brush that's a bit too big, but if I just bend my body in an ess and reach my arm up over my head like that I will be able to reach just right......ah crap, I got paint on the ceiling. And the sweating - bucketloads. Even with the air conditioning on full-blast. I must say, I was very pleased with the behavior of our pets, though. Nary a one of them stepped in any paint tray, nor did they rub their head/ears/butt/tail on the walls. Simon hid out most of the day, Gabby cowered in fear in the bedroom, and The Woodge (aka Charlie) relished in state-sanctioned time on the bed. I peeled off the masking tape this morning, and re-installed all the switch plates. There are a few touch-ups here and there, but overall I think we could start our own painting business. If doing so wouldn't cause me to have a full-on nervous breakdown.

Now that we no longer live out there, you know, on the East End, where no one goes, ever, people are around us and our pets more often. And they ask, why do you call Charlie "Woodgie". The answer: we aren't really sure. We used to call him Woofie, because when he woofs it's really deep and obnoxious. Then it just morphed into Woodgie. And I love to call him The Woodge. So, you may be seeing his name as The Woodge.

Last but not least, after bathing myself, we watched the final episode of The Sopranos. I, like pretty much every other human on earth, was pretty disappointed in the finale. I, also like every other human on earth, thought the cable had cut out, and I already had my pen out to write a strongly worded letter when the credits started to roll. WTF? I was so ticked. Thank goodness I had SB, who, in a moment of clarity, became extremely philosophical. "Well, Tony just said we need to look back on the good no matter what happens, ever, we need to see that his life won't ever change. He'll always have to be looking over his shoulder, dealing with this crap. Right?" Oh, SB. I love you so. I'm still not happy, but I feel a bit less ripped-off. Things I did love:
1- Phil getting whacked
2 - Tony trying to get a free psych visit out of AJ's therapist
3 - Paulie and the cat
4 - Tony visiting Uncle June - loved loved loved this scene.

So now we wait for the movie - it took 19 months at a time between seasons, so I'm sure by the time I'm 87 it will come out.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Color color everywhere

The saga continues with the paint selection process. When we bought the place it was painted in oranges, peaches, yellows. Our floors are oak/honey. We do not have a sofa yet, but have several options that are tentative, and all are either mossy browns/mocha/beige colored. Our TV furniture and coffee table are dark brown, as will be our dining table.

Do you know how hard it is to pick out one or two blues and a tan/beige????? I brought home ten sample chips last week, thinking SB wanted grey with a blue tinge, but it turns out he wanted blue with a grey tinge. And which walls will be painted dark blue, and which will be light? and where will the tan be painted? And should we use a light and a dark tan combined on different walls in the dining room and hall? And don't even get me started on the kitchen and bathroom.

I'm also trying to sell our old sofas/sofa bed. I love craigslist. I have already had two people who would like to see the sofa. It helps that it's an IKEA sofa so people know it's ok quality and you can buy different colored slipcovers if you feel like it. Hopefully I can get rid of that. Maybe I'll sell off Charlie while I'm at it.

I can't wait for this weekend as it is Ems' birthday celebration - woohoo! It's at a bring your own wine restaurant, so you know it's going to get crazy! Still have to pick up her gift, but today my errand was to pick up more paint chips. Tomorrow can be present day.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

The day my world crashed down around me

Today I realized that I am not, in fact, the lost love child of Martha Stewart and Cormac McCarthy.

Can I write? I like to think I can, and I really love it, so check.

Those are all the McCarthy traits. Oh, and my reclusiveness.

Can I bake? Hells ya. Check.
Can I cook a presentable dinner for 2-6? I have been known to, so check.
Can I keep a clean house? I have been working my ass off since we moved, and finally have a bit of a routine, so yes. Check.
Am I handy? Just spackled, patched, and sanded all the GIGANTIC ASS craters the previous owners left. Also was able to jimmy our storage shed when SB had a little accident involving the lock and a rolled up rug on the weekend. Also figured out how to un-install one of our kitchen cabinets while SB and his friend spent a minimum of ten minutes trying to push/hammer/pull it out. So, Check on the handy thing.
Can I decorate?


I don't think I can decorate!!!

Paint color choosing has proved to be about as much fun as pulling out my toenails. And don't get me started on how many conversations/arguments SB and I have had about choosing a new sofa. At least we have a dining set pretty much firmed up, although I'm sure in a week SB will decide he has changed his mind. Or the one we have chosen won't match whatever color we finally settle on, and the whole thing will have to go back in the mix again to figure out what's more important - the perfect color or the perfect dining set. Grrrrr.

On the bright side, the dishwasher that came with this place, that on the outside looks like a giant steaming heap of crap, is actually really fabulous. It is fast. And the dishes come out nice and squeaky and super dry. It could be quieter. And it definitely could be prettier. But man are our dishes clean.