Monday, August 31, 2009

Too bad, because I was planning to surprise each of you with something you would have loved...

Saturday, the Pretend Husband, the Pretend Father-in-Law and I spent three hours painting the biggest room in my brother's new house tan. Sunday, we spent three hours painting the biggest room in my brother's new house blue-gray.

Kat's lil bro has been incredibly busy lately (like working multiple 24-hour shifts at his job, which basically means working days at a time) and needs to get his house into good enough shape to move into it when his rental lease ends. So the family has been pitching in and doing work, buying some of the items he needs and giving lil bro more advice than he will ever use.

Last week, lil bro asked me to go to the tile store and pick out the tile for his bathroom remodel. And I was all set to do it, but then I chickened out and made him come with me during the few hours he had off one afternoon. Because, as much experience as I have with remodeling and as well as I know my brother, I was not ready for the responsibility of picking out hundreds of dollars worth of (non-returnable) tile for a bathroom he would have to live with.

And it's a good thing he went with me because, out of the two colors of tile we both liked, he chose the one I wouldn't have (I would have chosen the other one only because it was half as expensive, but I agree he got the better of the two colors).

But, even with that experience, I agreed to pick out paint for the family room. I had a long conversation with lil bro about his preferences ("I don't care as long as it's neutral") and got warnings from the PH ("You like dark colors. Don't go too dark. He likes the color we had in our old living room"). And when I got to Home Depot, I chose a shade of brown that was sort of dark, but still much lighter than anything I would have picked out for my house. And, when they were unable to mix that color in a five-gallon quantity, I agreed to go even lighter, ending up with a very light tan...

... that had a peach tinge to it when we got it on the wall. But we wanted to surprise lil bro with a completed room so we painted the whole room anyway (and it's a big room-- it used to be a two-car garage, to give you an idea of how much wall space we had to cover). And when lil bro saw it on Sunday morning, he hated it. He thought it looked peachy. And better yet, I showed him the color I intended to get him (the one the PH, my dad and the Pretend Father-in-Law all said was way too dark and good thing I didn't get it), he said he would have preferred it.

So, off to Home Depot the lil bro and I went, returning not with a darker shade of brown, but an entirely different color altogether. And we spent yesterday afternoon repainting the very room we spent the day before painting (so it's kind of like we did nothing at all on Saturday).

And that's why I will not be trying to surprise anyone by doing something nice for them. Nor will I be shopping for lil bro's house by myself (although I'm happy to to help paint with whatever colors he chooses). But I'm not making decisions or buying anything non-returnable. Pretty much, it's the last time I try to do anything nice for anyone ever again (or at least until my back stops aching from a weekend of work).

Monday, August 24, 2009

Maybe it comes with a side of salad?

On Friday, while the Pretend Husband and I were traveling, we stopped at Wendy's for dinner. And I forbid him from ordering the Baconator. I have never forbidden the PH to do anything (I think our marriage vows pretty much forbid adultery, but that's God forbidding it, not me). I did it because the last time the PH had a Baconator, he had some-- ahem-- gastrointestinal issues for the rest of the night. So, really, it was for his own good (and mine!)

I sense I will be forbidding the PH from ordering something else just as soon as he hears about it. KFC is now offering this:

(photo courtesy of

That's the KFC Double Down Sandwich, which is bacon, cheese and sauce between two pieces of fried chicken. My arteries are clogging just talking about this. The fact that this sandwich is being tested out in only two markets-- neither of which we live in-- may be the only thing standing between the PH and a coronary right now.

Monday, August 17, 2009

We may want to get the PH in on this...

This morning before I left for work, I was lamenting to my sister that she and the World's Cutest Nephew would soon be leaving. In fact, I had woken up in a bad mood because I am already counting down the hours to the tears (mine) that will be shed when they depart after a week of staying with us.

"Well, there's one solution to that," kat's lil sis said.

"Peyton stays here with us?" I guessed. "You move closer?"

"Ok, I guess there's more than one solution," she said. "But the one I was thinking of is, you have a baby of your own."

Um, yeah. First of all, not just my decision. Second of all, let's see how sad I am when I get home from work tomorrow to a silent house without any need for me to repeat "ba-ba-ba-bottle" or "Yaaaaay, Peyton!" a million times.

(***note to lil sis: Of course I'll still be sad. I'll just enjoy not having to keep an eye on the stairs, the dogs, all doorways or the phone every second. Boy, does that boy move!***)

Friday, August 14, 2009

Where I've Been - and Will Be....

So yes. I've been absent again, but thank *goodness* for KAT (and, apparently, my mom) and her funniness for keeping up the blog.

I've been busy hanging out in 17th century villages and whatnot. (True story. See my twitter updates about staying overnight on site at the New York Renaissance Faire.)

And that's where I'll be once again this weekend while I help out my friends at the Crown and Feather by donning a fake accent and some fabulous clothes. I'd say come see me, but chances are, you don't know who I am and if you do, you may freak me out a little. But why not? If you happen to be going to the NYRF this weekend, come by! We'll chat over turkey legs.

It'll be great.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Let me be the first to welcome you to the 21st century...

A woman who works at a local business called to ask me about sending me some information for the paper. While lamenting the fact that it would take a couple of days to get her photos developed, she said, "Well, I can see if someone has a computer camera. How long does it take to get those photos?"

I replied that photos are available immediately on a *digital* camera and could be emailed to me. She then asked me for my "email number."

I will be shocked if I ever receive anything from her.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Forget matching hand towels-- I'm happy when there's no hair in the sink!

I figured it was time to move the post about asking my mother-in-law to share her prescription drugs from the top of the page. But I don't have too much to write about because my life lately has been a whirlwind of cleaning and finishing up tasks around our house in preparation for guests.

Growing up, kat's lil sis and I shared a bedroom. And not peacefully. Kat's lil sis is a perfectionist of sorts and likes everything to be organized and kept in its proper place. And me? I'm not. At all. Our room didn't quite have a line drawn down the middle, but it was easy to see which half belonged to whom. Mine was the one that looked like a tornado had recently blown through, tearing all my clothes out of my dresser drawers and leaving them scattered on the bed, the desk, the floor, etc.

And, while I've gotten better about it over the years, I'm still not the perfectionist my sister is. Yes, I like things to be organized. Yes, I love how rooms look when they're neat and clean. No, I don't want to be the one responsible for keeping them that way. So I've spent the last couple days cleaning, organizing and de-cluttering (and even unpacking some of the boxes that sit in the corner 10 months after we moved into the house). Which is something I would do for anyone who was coming to stay with us.

But it's especially important this time because kat's lil sis (and the greatest nephew in the world!) is the one coming to visit. And I'll be darned if I'm going to give her and the Pretend Husband any more ammunition than they already have ("KAT used to make me angry by keeping the light on to read when I was trying to sleep." "She still does that! I hate it!") I may still annoy people by reading when they're trying to sleep and not all my clothes make it back into the closet the second I take them off (or, sometimes, for a few days after I take them off...) but my house will be neat when lil sis arrives.

Between the dogs, my on-the-verge-of-walking nephew and my own bad habits, I give it about 10 minutes before all my hard work gets undone.

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Do you think she'll share? It will make work so much easier to take.

The Pretend Mother-in-Law had surgery last week and so the Pretend Husband and I headed over to the hospital to visit her that night. While the PMIL is normally a pretty quiet and sort of nervous person, she seemed to come out of her shell that night and was chatting about all sorts of topics. It was a great conversation that made the 90 minutes we were with her fly by.

On the way home, I remarked to the PH how upbeat and outgoing his mom seemed and mused that maybe it was because I'm not used to spending time with her without her husband around. But the PH thought differently: "It's probably the drugs."

Lo and behold, when I called her today to see how she's feeling, she was giggly and cheerful, and when I said, "You sound like you're doing well," she replied, "It's the Percocet!" and start giggling like crazy. I guess the PH knew what he was talking about after all.